No fruit in my womb

If I had an opportunity to speak to myself ten years ago, I think the past version of myself would be flabbergasted at who I am in the present time. I think being so open and honest about my political standpoints, my sexuality, my mental health, and my spirituality would be enough to drop past Brookana’s jaw, but the biggest shocker is my standpoint on parenthood. 

I never dreamed of a career. I never cared about working and proving myself through my education and job. I never really cared about making a lot of money and having the best of everything. Those things never mattered to me. Ever since I was young I dreamt of being a mother. I wanted to help mold my children into the people that they wanted to become. I wanted to show them that there is so much more to this lifetime than what we can possibly fathom. I wanted to show them the beauty that surrounds us, and guide them through those lessons that can feel like torture just to prove that it’s not for nothing. I wanted to aid them in evolving as spiritual beings, and I wanted to applaud them every step of the way. 

I have thought and wondered for ages who these people were going to be and what kind of life we were going to have together. I never planned for perfection. I planned for stability, for moments of joy, for lessons. I thought about family dinners and making sure that my kids would feel safe to talk to me about anything. Having an open line of communication and being their safety person always meant the most to me. 

The point is, my heart’s desire was always to have children, biological or not. 

Back in the early years of high school, my hair started to fall out in clumps. My periods became extremely irregular, and when they did come, they were awful. My endocrinologist actually suggested the idea of me getting tested for PCOS, and it wasn’t long afterward that I received my official diagnosis. I didn’t care about anything that the gynecologist had to say. I stopped listening after I heard her say that when the time comes I might face difficulty achieving a pregnancy. 

For many years that broke me. It became an obsessive thought that would keep me awake at night. I don’t think I was mature enough to realize that motherhood isn’t blood. I couldn’t grasp the idea of adoption or fostering. I thought that my dream was crushed, and if I couldn’t have biological children, I couldn’t be a mom. 

I started dating my husband a week before my sixteenth birthday, and when things started getting serious, I started to think of the future. I thought about what our home would be like, what our day-to-day was going to look like, and who are children were going to be. Thinking about our future and being excited over it made things so much worse when I would remember that there was a chance that I couldn’t get pregnant.

For many, many years my husband and I would discuss what our life was going to look like, and children was always the main goal. 

Then, a couple of years ago, I started to transition into the person who is sitting here right now. I started doing more things for myself and really dove deep into self-exploration. For the first time in twenty-six years, I finally saw myself as important, and I gifted myself the right to be selfish. 

These past few years have been incredible. I don’t do things because I think that I have to, I do what I do for me. I have never felt more secure and proud, and this shift has really helped me be the person that I always knew that I was, but was afraid to show. 

About a year and a half ago, I went to the gynecologist because my husband and I had been trying to have kids, and it just wasn’t happening. To make a long story short, it would be incredibly hard to conceive, and if I were able to get pregnant, it would be incredibly dangerous for me and the baby. So, biological children was just something that was for sure out of the question. 

I made my peace with that long ago, but it did take my husband a little bit more time to understand that I couldn’t carry children. To be honest, finally hearing that pregnancy wasn’t in the cards for me made me feel somewhat at peace. For over a decade, not knowing if I could have children or not loomed over me, and knowing a definite answer gave me much-needed closure. 

We started the process of fostering with the intention of foster to adopt, but when we were towards the finish line, we decided to pause. 

My husband and I are young. I am twenty-eight, and he is twenty-nine. We have dreams of moving to the northeast and having a farm. We want to travel the world and see and learn as much as possible. We want to make the most out of this lifetime, and having kids at this moment in time would take all of that away. We want to be living our life together for us, and not for kids. 

So the person who always wanted nothing more than to be a mom became unsure, and if you were to ask me right now if I saw kids in my future my answer would be no. 

I just got to this place of independence, and I don’t know if I want to give that up. As much as I love my husband, I even have moments where marriage seems too much for me to handle. 

It just baffles me how you really do evolve as time goes on. The thought of being infertile haunted me for so long, and now I am beyond grateful for it. If I had kids years ago, it would have been the worst thing I could have done to myself. 

Life never turns out the way you expect it to. In five years’ time, I could be on my farm in the northeast with two kids, you never know. But for now, my time is for me, and I am perfectly happy with that.

Soul in Yearning: Fostering & Adoption

The world that we live in is not a world that I am happy about. You would think that as a society we would be more evolved, but the truth of the matter is that we are not where we need to be. Not just in America, but everywhere. Racism is still lingering around, causing harm and pain everywhere you look. People who belong to the LGBTQ+ community are being told by others that they love that they made “the wrong choice” or that “they are not good enough.” Women are still fighting for their rights. People who are seeking asylum in “safe havens” are being turned away for not having thousands of dollars to pay to legally be there. This world is not where it needs to be. 

As a woman, I can admit that things have improved, and I can thank the women of the past who gave me the opportunities that I now have. I can vote, I can obtain birth control, I can work any job that any man can work, and I can speak my mind. (With that being said, we cannot deny that human trafficking, child marriage, and slavery is still a horrifying reality in our world.) So because of the rights that I have, I can have any career that I want. I can be a doctor, a contractor, a history professor, whatever I want. 

Now with that being said, I don’t think there was ever a time where I have wanted to run towards a certain career path. It is interesting because there are women out there who said “I can’t wait to become a nurse” who became nurses. The same with teachers, accountants, business owners, etc. That was never me. I love to write, and I am making a career out of that, but it’s not my biggest dream. Every time I publish a piece that I am proud of I do feel my self-esteem going up, but it’s not enough where I feel like I really have accomplished a dream. 

My dream has always been something that you still could consider to be a “job.” And from what I hear, it is one of the most challenging jobs around. I have always, and when I say always I truly mean ALWAYS, wanted to be a stay at home mom. I remember being a young girl and playing with baby dolls and feeling as if I were on cloud nine. I remember thinking of names and sticking with those names for years. Penelope and Oliver. I even had the nicknames picked out. I used to daydream about finding out that I was pregnant and telling my partner, and us crying for hours due to the elation that we felt. (The dramatics) To this day, I still have recurring dreams of pregnancy and birth, and my husband and I holding our child for the first time. Those dreams are starting to fade though, and new dreams are starting to come forth. And I love them and yearn for them just as much. 

I found out a few months ago that it would be highly unlikely for me to conceive and carry my own child. You would think that it would hurt. You would think that it felt as if a dagger was plunged right into my heart. But I have known that the likelihood of me having biological children was slim to none since I was a young teenager. I have PCOS, which is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, which makes it very difficult to conceive. I have to take birth control in order to get my period every month, otherwise, I could go months in-between periods. I am not ovulating if I am not getting my period, and in order to get my period consistently, I need to be on birth control, which will prevent me from getting pregnant. The fucking irony, am I right?  My doctor said “sure, you can lose weight, but your body still won’t be able to carry a child safely.” At one point my husband and I went probably two years without using birth control or condoms, and yet here I am. Childfree. The woman who has dreamed about being a mother for her entire life, (well, for as long as can remember) can’t have children. I feel as if I am the leading character in a tragedy.

I made my peace long ago with alternative ways of expanding our family, and to be honest, thinking about those opportunities bring the same, if not more, excitement with the notion of bringing tiny humans into our world. There is a way where my husband and I could have a biological child, and that is through surrogacy. Not only will that be difficult in more ways than one, but it’s also costly. My husband and I are a younger couple, so dropping tens of thousands of dollars on something that is more likely to not work is out of the question. So then I started researching and looking into other options. Then I found my answer, and that was when my soul lit up. Adoption. Fostering. Foster to adopt. That is the answer. That is what I have spent my entire life looking for. My flame came back and it was brighter than ever, and I deep dived into what that world would be like and what kind of parent I could be to my child(ren.) Then I started daydreaming of new moments. I started daydreaming of the moment when Stephen (my husband) and I received the phone call that we were matched with a child. I started thinking about learning everything that there is to know about them, including their dreams and aspirations. I started to think about how I can teach them about values and morals, and how I would show them that it is okay to stand up for what you believe in, including yourself. I want to show them that this world isn’t perfect, but it sure is beautiful. I envision giving them everything that I have just to watch them smile for a few moments, and my heart starts to melt. 

I feel like I love a child that I don’t even have yet. I don’t wake up at the butt crack of dawn to wake my child up for school. I don’t hear “mommy” yet. I have five furchildren, and I know that they love me and my heart is so full because of them, but I want to be a mother to human children so, so, so badly. Instead of pregnancy dreams, I dream of a young boy. Ten to be exact. And I see him in the dead of night multiple times a week every week. And then I think about him all day long and I yearn for him. I know my son is out there in the world just waiting for me to find him. Little does he know, he is already so loved. 

For years I warned my husband that there was always a chance that we would never parent biological children, and he always would say “Don’t worry Bebe. We will be parents no matter what.” But I think he held on to hope despite his encouraging words. I think this because of his tone after my gynecologist appointment a few months back. You could hear the shock and the sadness after I told him what my doctor had said. For me, it was important to focus on how Stephen was feeling after hearing that information rather than placing focus on myself. I had already worked past that painful information. I was able to embrace our new reality with open arms and accept that we will be parents, just not through blood. Stephen, as much as he was always supportive of the idea of adoption, still was hoping that there would be a medical miracle and we would conceive. I asked him what he needed from me, I tried to comfort him the best that I could, and I gave him time to process the information before bringing up the next steps. I wanted him to work through his pain, and I wanted to help him the best way that I could. 

A few months went by and we started talking about when we should start the process of fostering. Our goal is to foster to adopt, but we are aware of how difficult and lengthy of a process that can be. It doesn’t matter to us what ethnicity our children are, it doesn’t matter to us if they are apart of the LGBTQ+ community, we will welcome any child that needs and wants a loving home. Our goal is for adoption, but we are more than happy to foster and open our home to children who need one. For a little bit, we stalled on starting the process of becoming parents simply because we didn’t know when the right time would be. The reality is there never will be the perfect time to become parents. All we know is that we are ready now, and we are willing to do whatever it takes. 

So we filled out an inquiry with DCFS, and now our journey has officially begun. I am so unbelievably filled with excitement, eagerness, anxiety, and nerves. The only fear that I have is that Stephen and I won’t be approved, but I know that we will be okay. I keep telling myself that in eight to twelve months, all of this will be in the past and I can officially enjoy the present. I can’t wait to see my children, and I can’t wait for this phase to begin. 

I love the fact that women are being so open with infertility these days. I love the fact that I don’t feel ashamed for not being able to have biological children. I want to be able to share and document this process because I don’t want anyone to feel helpless when it comes to being infertile. Also, I think it is important to know what going through the process of fostering and adoption is like. 

Whatever faith you belong to, or even if you don’t belong to any religion, could you please send out positive vibes and energy, prayers, or phrases of manifestation for us? It would be the greatest gift that you could give Stephen and me. I truly believe that one day very, very soon we will be parents, but a little extra boost would be extraordinary. 

Anyways, hearing the news that you can’t have biological children shouldn’t devastate you to the point of giving up. Depending on your perspective, it could actually be really beautiful. Your child, no matter who and where they came from, was destined to be yours. Your souls were meant to find and be with each other. Just remember that the soul of a human being is superior to blood.