Yesterday was my pre-op visit with the Dr. who performed my surgery. It had been two weeks since the procedure that officially ended a long and difficult chapter in my life. But (incase this is the first post you have ever read on my blog) I have learned that the long and difficult chapters are the ones who make us who we really are.
In fact, aside from infertility, ectopic pregnancies, and an earlier battle with an addicted spouse that ended in divorce, my life has been pretty typical. The long and difficult chapters are the ones that shaped me into the person I am today.
Yesterday I left work a few minutes before the appointment, arrived on time, signed in, and was taken back into an exam room on time. I waited just a few minutes for the doctor to come into the room, go over a few things, check my incisions, and declare that I was “free to resume normal activities.” In my case, “normal” activities include running on the treadmill (it ain’t pretty, but I do it), taking long hot bubble baths as often as possible, and a few other things that John is pretty willing to resume. But my return to normal activities is more than that. I am also getting on with the rest of my life.
Today a dear friend who came into my life at the beginning of her foster-adoption journey called me to talk about the possibility of going back on “the pill” to put a temporary stop to some of her painful symptom of her infertility. My heart ached for her because I’ve been there. I was 29 once and I wondered if I would ever carry a child. I wondered at the beginning of my infertility journey if I would ever be a mother. Adoption seemed out of reach and (if I’m being honest) seemed like accepting less than becoming a mother in the biological way.
So I told my friend about my visit to the Doctor yesterday and about the question I asked my doctor just before she closed my chart and left the exam room.
Without emotion, I was able to verbalize exactly what I needed to know.
“Did you see evidence of the pregnancy in my tube after you removed it?” I asked.
“Yes,” she answered, “Yes, I did. It was exactly as we thought.”
A wave of relief swept over me and I nodded my thanks. It was time to get on with my life. No turning back, just moving forward.
Getting on with my life means coming home to a full and busy house. It means sweeping Cole into a big tight hug and laughing as he says “Mommy, I love you. But your breath stinks.” Getting on with my life means reading a Bible story with Lizzie before she goes to bed and listening to her re-tell the story back with a deep, sacred voice for God. Getting on with my life means crawling into the bottom bunk with Camden to scratch his back and listen to him talk about the NFL and his favorite college football teams. It also means pretending to be interested in World War II fighting maneuvers while Mitchell rattles on about a new website he has found. It means reminding Samuel that middle school is tough and awkward for everyone, and that he will find his way. It means helping
To some it might seem strange that I needed to know if the Doctor could see the pregnancy. Having a tubal pregnancy (or three in my case) is a strange experience because you never get to “see” your unborn child. You are told it is there, and you have evidence in your own blood. But I really needed to know that I had made the right decision with this surgery. I didn’t wave the white flag of surrender, I simply closed that chapter of my life. There are so many more chapters to look forward to!
And for my special friend who is a little farther behind me in her infertility and adoption journey, I love you! God’s best for you is working its way out, one piece at a time. And the completed picture is more beautiful than anything you could ever ask for, imagine, or design for yourself. Just keep turning the pages.