A version of this blog originally appeared on Pregnantish.com.
"Hi Love. It's me — your mom, Andrea."
I've dreamed of saying these words for almost a decade.
I know I'm not alone — that many of you reading this also long to hear the word "mom" and may find it tough to deal with Mother's Day.
I know what it's like to feel that you're denied entry to a club that you really want to be in through no fault of your own. Trust me, if becoming a mother were based on merit, you would be in! You've already proved your commitment and loyalty, and have demonstrated how much thought and care you would dedicate to your family. You'd pass with flying colours, my friend.
Some of you have drained your bank accounts and prodded your body with more needles than you can count, just for the opportunity to step into this role. You've re-organized your lives and schedules because motherhood is something you value. You've broken down, exhausted, but have picked yourself up to keep fighting for the chance to be Mom. That's pretty amazing. If there were an award for resilience, you would win it.
You've broken down, exhausted, but have picked yourself up to keep fighting for the chance to be Mom. That's pretty amazing. If there were an award for resilience, you would win it.
I also know that some people don't understand why you don't "just" move on or give up. Chances are, some of them have said things to you like:
"Just relax and it'll work."
"Just get a surrogate."
These people may be well-intentioned, but their hurtful suggestions can make it seem like you're not doing enough. You and I know you're doing everything you can to make this happen.
It's tough to tell people who haven't struggled with getting or staying pregnant that the word "just" minimizes your experience, the immense effort and cost of these steps (no matter how great they may be), and the disease of infertility. If you have blocked tubes, PCOS, fibroids, diminished ovarian reserve, are with a partner who has male-factor infertility, and/or you have other physiological issues, their suggestions actually sound absurd.
(I once heard a fertility specialist say, "Nobody tells someone with arthritis to just relax and it'll go away.")
From one woman on this winding journey to motherhood to another — I see you. Infertility isn't your fault.
My biggest message for you this Mother's Day: Don't be so hard on yourself. From one woman on this winding journey to motherhood to another — I see you. Infertility isn't your fault.
On this Mother's Day, I honour you. I honour your commitment and dedication to having a child.
I'm inspired by you. You're going to be a great mom.
Andrea Syrtash is the founder and editor-in-chief of www.pregnantish.com. She is a relationship expert and coach regularly featured on national TV shows including Good Morning America and The Today Show, and in Cosmopolitan, Glamour and Women's Health magazines. She's the author of five popular books including He's Just Not Your Type (And That's A Good Thing) and Cheat On Your Husband (With Your Husband). She's passionate about helping people live and love authentically. For more, visit www.andreasyrtash.com