I’ve know I’ve been very intermittent in posting to this blog in the last year. A good blogger would write more often, but I guess I’m not a good blogger, so I just don’t. There’s an apathy that comes with acceptance. I mean, acceptance in the case of childlessness is a good thing, but then you sort of make a conscious effort to start separating yourself from things that make you remember/focus on the pain. I think that is a good thing for the most part.
I’m not a crusader. I don’t have agenda with my blog. This has always been a place where I could think out-loud publicly about what it’s like to be a childless woman. I’m not looking for hits nor am I trying to build an online persona, so sometimes I question why I even write here. Is it for purely selfish reasons, or am I trying to resonate with someone? I think it’s a little of both. I’ve always been a little uncomfortable with the me-me aspect of a blog because I’m not a person who likes to draw attention to herself, and that’s not a good trait for a blogger…so I hear. I’m also not a person who wants to ruffle anyone’s feathers, so sometimes I censure what I say…again, not a trait a blogger should have. I guess my main worry is that someone would read my blog and consider me a negative person or that family would read something I say and it offend or hurt them even though other than my husband I don’t think any of my family members are aware I have this blog.
Also, I’m definitely not an optimist by nature although if you met me in person I’m sure you would find me outgoing, happy, and witty. I worry that those qualities don’t shine through here because of the subject matter. Unplanned childlessness is a subject matter that doesn’t lend itself to much levity. Other than God Himself being able to laugh is what has gotten me through so many crappy times. So, be assured I laugh, A LOT!
I had a longstanding friend comment on a FB post I made about the Duggar’s having photos made of their stillborn child. I was defending their choice. If that’s what helps someone find closure, grieve, and have memories of that child that is completely fine although that’s not what I would chose to do in my own situation. I also made a side note concerning the Duggars that I’m not of their philosophy of eschewing all birth control and having as many as you can. My friend is of a similar mindset of the Duggars, and we were having a friendly little debate on the subject. I told him that the only time I tried to control my fertility was the first two years I was married (birth control) but really I tried to control my fertility the ensuing 10 years after that by being on fertility medication intermittently. Since then I’ve employed neither birth control nor fertility medicine. I went on to say how difficult it has been. His comment was:
“I know childlessness has been a great struggle for you, but it’s hard to remember, because you always seem so content.”
To me that was a big assurance that I don’t walk around with a little black rain cloud over my head all of the time. I’m the first to admit that unplanned childlessness has affected my life and my outlook on life to a great extent; however, I think I’ve for the most part coped well and have been able to project to others (even during times I have to fake it) that I am okay.
With all that in mind I’ve contemplated shutting down the blog several times this year, but yet something has kept me from hitting the delete button. I think it’s mostly because I have had so many people tell me that they appreciate what I write and have been moved/helped in some way by what I write. If not actually helped they at least feel like there is at least one person in the world that understands how they feel. That’s what keeps me writing even if it’s just once every couple of months.
On the personal front…the last six months have been challenging to say the least, and there have been some big lessons learned from those experiences. There have been some tough subjects to deal with in my marriage and family, but we are getting through. Middle age with its inherent crises has hit both my husband and I like a sledgehammer this year, but I think we’re finding some sense of a new normal and acceptance of the challenges middle age brings. I also have a scary, yet fortunately, very intermittent health issue which reared it’s ugly head this month. When I was worked up before all tests were normal or inconclusive, and the side effects of treating the condition symptomatically was determined to outweigh any gain, so I have left this condition to it’s own devices (whatever it is), as I’m not too inclined to get all upset and start going through tests again, but it is very upsetting when symptoms occur.
The most significant thing that’s happened lately is I lost a friend recently to cancer. She fought it bravely for three years. I knew it was going to hurt, but I could not fathom how much I would grieve until it actually happened. I believe it’s a big part of the reason my mystery health problem came to the surface again. This friend still has children at home (the youngest being 12) and it’s really hard to see any good that is going to come of her passing, but that’s God’s department and not mine. I just have to accept his decision to heal her in Heaven instead of on earth.
I’m also doing some purging of relationships in my life. For others’ privacy I will not go into any detail, but the time has come for toxic people to leave my life either voluntarily or by force. They have taken up way too much of my energy for years, and in some ways have affected my life and attitude more than unplanned childlessness. Sometimes you just have to let go of bad relationships.
I hope you, my readers, will also do some positive purging of negative things/people in your lives that keep you for experiencing life to it’s fullest. Losing a good friend to cancer at age 45 has all too clearly reminded me that life is too short not to be happy.
To a happy, prosperous, and healthy New Year!