For a long while (say-3 1/2 years), I mostly avoided the Mommy scene in my small town. I tried it out briefly last summer and encountered a group of unfriendly and frankly, downright bitchy douchebags and not having had any other reference point, figured that the moms in this town left a lot to be desired. So, while traveling the halls of my son's preschool post-miscarriage past the burgeoning bellies of quite a few baby #2s and #3s stung, these people were nothing more than passing acquaintances. All I had to do was endure 20 minutes of avoiding eye contact with the belly and I was good. It was harder to deal with than my previous few years of being a shut-in, but it was manageable.
And then, by way of lots of summer activities, we landed ourselves in the lap of more than a few playdates and I figured something out. The population of Moms in my town don't suck in their entirety. Imagine that! I somehow had gotten myself tangled up with a few bad apples previously, but there are actually relatable and likable women with kids my son's age out there. However, there's one thing that stands out. They all-and I mean ALL have babies. Every. Last. One. of. Them.
(ah, Big Bird, I can always count on you to 'get' me)
Yup. Once again, one of these things is not like the other and it's me. Yay...
I mean, it's not like I want a baby on my hip to fit in with the girls, but it's that much harder when your infertility is literally visual in the number of kids you have playing on the playground. And to make it ever-more-present for me, my kid has an over-the-top love affair with babies to the point of sometimes ignoring his peers in favor of them. And I'm sure you can guess what comments that solicits. So, this isn't just floating around in my head-it's frequent in conversations. It's always present when I am with them.
I wanted to take a break from this damn IF game-even just a brief hiatus, physically and most of all, emotionally, and it seems I never can. It follows me like a shadow. And now, being surrounded by an abundance of fertility, it's dancing in my face. But for once, I am feeling more community than I have in the five years since I arrived here. It is both painful and relieving. At the start of my infertility journey, I would have counted myself out, favoring self preservation, but I'm tired of being alone here. I need connections and I might just need them more than I need respite from the reminder of my crappy reproductive organs and the dreams I have on hold.
I suppose I'll just take it day-by-day. But it's a balancing act. It always is.