When I decided to share my secret and reveal my struggle with infertility publicly earlier this year, I really didn’t know what to expect. All I knew is that after five years of keeping our infertility a secret, it was time to let the truth out. I was tired of dodging baby showers and questions about our future family plans. I was tired of pretending that we weren’t ready for children when I was truly crying inside to hold a baby of our very own. To sum it up, I had grown tired of putting on appearances and pretending everything was OK. I felt like I was living a lie.
It really isn’t anyone else’s business whether my husband and I have children, but society doesn’t see it that way. Every time I turned around someone was asking me when we were going to have children. I wanted to scream out, “I’ve been asking God the same question for over five years now!” But instead, I’d politely smile and mutter some trite answer. Then one day as I was leaving my doctor’s office and walking to my car, everything changed. I had an epiphany…it was time to tell everyone the truth. It was time to let others know that despite the overwhelming battle I was fighting, despite the odds stacked against me, despite the realization that I may never give birth to a child, I knew that my God was in control, and I trusted Him. What good is a testimony if you don’t share it? How could I help others in the same situation if they didn’t even know about my infertility? Although I had the realization that I should share my story, I must admit that I was hesitant at first. I did a lot of praying and even put off writing my post for a few weeks, just to be sure I was ready. I spent some time pondering why I’d been keeping my infertility a secret. Was it shame, fear, or pride? I knew it was a little of them all. I was ashamed that I hadn’t been able to carry a child for my husband. I was afraid of what others would think of me, and comments I knew I would be sure to hear. But most of all, it was pride that had stood in my way. Letting others know of this flaw, even though it wasn’t my doing or my fault, still made me feel vulnerable. I was admitting I wasn’t perfect, and that is hard for any of us to do, isn’t it? Despite my initial hesitation, I knew it was time to share my story and set myself free from the bondage I was experiencing.
The truth is that I never knew just how much my secret had weighed me down until I finally shared it with others. It was amazing the freedom I felt afterwards. No more excuses, no more hiding my struggle from others, no more pretending. I let go of my fear, shame and pride, and fell into God’s safety net of love and peace. I was finally free! The one negative response I received was completely overshadowed by the incredible outpouring of love and support given to me after sharing my story. I realized that all those years lived in fear were for nothing. Keeping my secret about infertility was a lot like the wait in line to ride a roller coaster. You know what it’s like to wait in line for a roller coaster, don’t you? Your time spent waiting to ride is mixed with anxiety and apprehension, but once you get on the ride, it’s all fun. You enjoy the ride and wonder why you dreaded it so much beforehand. You may even want to go on the ride again! If you’re battling infertility today, please don’t do it alone. Don’t let shame, fear or pride hold you back. Whatever it is keeping you from sharing you story with others, let it go. It's time to hop on, close your eyes, throw your hands up and enjoy the ride. Trust me… your life will never be the same. You’ll be so glad you did it. You’ll finally be free!
Sweet friend who is dealing with this all alone. You don't have to scream from the mountains to begin sharing. But I pray Christie's story will encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and share with those you love.