PLEASE NOTE: If you are struggling with infertility or are currently trying to conceive and you DON'T want to read about my pregnancy (which I totally understand), I recommend starting at the beginning of the blog (March 2010) and reading from there. I find out I'm pregnant in June 2011 so there is a lot of trying to conceive posts in between that you might find funny, helpful or relatable. Wishing you all the luck in the world!

Saturday, September 30, 2017

You Matter.



First, it drives me nuts that I can’t write on here more. It’s a high-quality problem though so I can’t complain too much. The last couple of months have been a lot of big changes and although, in the end, they all resulted in good things, it still was a process to get to a new normal!

One thing that has changed for the good is I’m working for myself. I could go on and on about this but the bottom line is that this has been the greatest gift at this time in my life for a whole myriad of reasons. I hesitate to give too many details and really, I’d rather focus on the positive than the negative. So, I’ll just say this: This is the first time in a long time where I’m able to truly be “me”. I don’t have to limit my ideas, sense of humor, personality or, most importantly, what I work on or who I work with. Of the many lessons I've learned recently, one of the biggest ones is you don't realize how much a negative situation (person, environment, etc.) can impact who you are and your happiness. As super corny as this sounds, I feel free and able to pursue any and every opportunity that supports true infertility advocacy and my personal interests in general.

As a good friend of mine said, “You are free to be your authentic self without compromise.” And really, that's a super kick ass awesome goal for all of us to have!

This has opened the door to many opportunities and projects, which has been wonderfully fantastic. The only thing is that it can keep me from this blog. HOWEVER, I’m now blocking off time (Yay having total autonomy over my schedule! Whomp whomp!) to write a new post every two weeks. Get it? EVERY TWO WEEKS.

Secondly, and on this note, I posted the below on Social Media a month or so back and it got a very big response.
 
Thirdly, around the time I posted this, I started what became a drama that lasted almost two months with my oldest son. This was one of the other “big changes” recently. As you may recall, my oldest, MJ, was the only embryo I had to transfer on my third IVF. Out of both funds and patience, we were very lucky that he implanted and stuck around.

He is now five and a half years old (Jesus, where has the time gone?!?). He is also, as you also may recall, on the Autistic Spectrum. He is high functioning, speaks (although is speech delayed), has a sense of humor and I often equate him to a human Rubix cube. Once you figure him out, he really is a lot of fun.

I’ve been as open about this as I have been about my infertility issues. What’s funny to me is there are very specific similarities between the two issues. Whenever I talk about either, many seem to either think I should be embarrassed OR they try to explain away the problem. With infertility, is it because I was too stressed or waiting too long to have kids? With autism, is it because he was conceived through IVF or because I had him vaccinated?
Infertility and autism (big shock everyone) are MEDICAL CONDITIONS. No one did anything wrong. There are no fingers to point and there is no reason I should be apologetic or feel shameful for either.
ANYWAY, the drama with MJ is he was starting kindergarten and because of his quirks (as I call them), we had to get him in the right program. This is another long-complicated story but the struggle was similar to my own earlier this year: I needed to find an environment for my son where he could flourish and be the best him he could be. What’s very sad (and makes me stabby) is the first program/school he was in was very dismissive of him and treated him, quite frankly, like he was one big inconvenience. Only recently, did we get him into a school that is working out well, which is a relief.
So what do all three of these things have in common? Collectively, they made me realize something so important that I wanted to share with you. And that is… YOU MATTER.
Now before you roll your eyes over how cheesy that statement is… hear me out.
It’s so easy to define yourself by roles, problems, or other people’s opinions. What I’ve seen time and time again this year is just because one or two or even three people don’t see the value in you, it doesn’t mean you’re not valuable. It means they are wrong.
The power of saying, “Hey… you. I see you. You ARE important. Your voice needs to be heard and you truly matter” can’t be underestimated. Even as (dear god, I can’t believe I’m going to say this but…) a morning mantra, to look in the mirror even for a second to say, “I MATTER!” can remind you that you are alive and can have an impact on your life as well as others.
On that note, I recent saw another meme that said:

And what if we all did that? If we didn’t apologize for our existence? I’m not saying to be rude to others or disregard hearing one another. I’m saying what if we all lived with real acceptance of ourselves, had confidence and proudly lived out loud?

It does not matter if you have or don't have children, if you have infertility, if you have autism or if you are either completely perfect (lucky you!) or far from it. YOU. STILL. MATTER.
This is what I’ve been exploring for a while now and I encourage you to do the same.
So if you are reading this, whether I know you “in real life” or not, please know you DO matter. Live out loud, kick ass and be YOUR authentic self!

4 comments:

Cristy said...

Seeing a post from you always makes me smile. But this particular post I really needed to hear. Thinking of you and all the transitions you are navigating. And thanking you for being an awesome role model.

SLES75 said...

YOU MATTER...it's the team motto for my walk next weekend. It's also so effing important to get that out. No matter the situation, everyone matters. I love seeing your posts...Like Cristy said, they always make me smile. SO every two weeks at least I'm guaranteed a smile. You best keep that up. I need my smiles. Thank you also for everything you do. Hugs to you lady! You are and always have been an inspiration.

Caro Townsend said...

This is an amazing post that resonated so much with me. I've recently been feeling less than okay because everyone around me is becoming pregnant for a second time and it's brought back a lot of painful feelings. But you are right. I do matter. I am not a failure because of infertility and I do have the right to be my authentic self!

Athena Reich said...

this makes me cry. ty

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