Thursday, September 19, 2013



It is absolutely heart-wrenching to suffer with infertility. To try, to battle, to lose month after month, while friends and family around you bring new life into their families. It's crushing to hear people say "we weren't even trying!" or "we got pregnant the first try!" when you live, day in and day out, in the agony and turmoil that infertility brings.

I know. I've been there.

It's so incredibly hard to lose a baby. It takes your breath away. It makes your uterus ache with emptiness, and your arms ache with loneliness. The hot if a positive pregnancy test shattered and stomped on with the absence of the heartbeat that was once in your womb. The constant ticking of the clock that no longer brings you closer to the joyous birth of your miracle. 

I know. I've been there.

When I went through those dark journeys, I did so openly, not caring that there would be (and there were) judgements and ridicule, shame and condemnation, for choosing the level of openness that I did. I knew that if I held it inside, seemingly to hold it all together, my hope and my spirit would crumble quickly. (You can read about my journeys here on this blog.) 

I've been blessed now with four pregnancies, and the births of two sons.

And in this fourth pregnancy, I find myself on the opposite side of the some of the darkest of journeys motherhood, or the pursuit of motherhood, can bring.

This time, I've been the one to openly confess that, despite years of infertility battles, we conceived without trying. 

I feel like I should be over the top overwhelmed with pure joy in this miracle that we never imagined would come naturally. And yet... 

I've been conflicted, openly, from the beginning, mostly regarding the timing of this new miracle.

However, there's more to it.

This time, I'm the one with the baby growing inside of me, while multiple friends that I love so dearly, struggle through the darkness of infertility, miscarriage, or the sheer longing to be a mother but the inability to be one due to various other life circumstances.

When I was going through the battles and the loss, as I said, the pregnancy announcements and births were quite a paradox. There was the incredible joy I felt for those I care for, but also the sharp stabbing pain in my own heart and hope. Jealousy, anger, despair- they are miserable and lonely emotions. You feel ashamed beyond description to feel the negative side while also the joy for them. You find yourself either distancing or trying to overcompensate by being extra interested. Not always, but sometimes. I've done both to various extremes. 

You try so hard to discount your negative feelings, because you think they shouldn't be there.

I say, embrace them. Explore them enough so you can understand them. Then, pick up the pieces of your broken heart, and try to heal. Somehow.

I don't have the magic answer. For me, it was being surrounded by support. Love. Empathy and encouragement. Understanding. Compassion. Prayer. Blogging.

It may take years, but I believe you can heal.

But, I digress.

I'm learning about the other side, as I said. I'm now the one who, God willing, will be delivering a baby in April. I have multiple friends due to welcome new life into their families around the same time.

But, I also have a few friends who were supposed to join. That's what their pregnancy tests confirmed. That's the joy they've embraced so fully, dreamed about, and maybe even shared with the world. And suddenly, as happened to me, the dream was shattered. They've empty wombs and broken hearts. And, no matter how much I portray I understand, I'm now a living, breathing reminder that they lost their child.

I am sure it was so with the previous pregnancies, though I cannot say with the certainty that I can this time around.

And, while I'm reveling in my miracle, my heart breaks for my beloved friends. Perhaps they need to distance themselves from me because just the sound of my name brings them to tears. Or, perhaps they've reached out for my comforting ear and empathy.

Either way, I cry. When I cannot sleep, and I feel the early flutters of this life I side me, I often find myself praying for these amazing women. Tears well up in my eyes, and my throat constricts with intense sorrow. 

I feel ashamed. I feel embarrassed. I want to withhold my joy and be private about this miracle. I want to take back my pregnancy announcement so we can be as we once were.

But I can't.

 It kills me inside every time I want to share, but feel incredibly rude in doing so. But, I know also that it's no good for friendships to deny my joy either. It seems the unselfish thing to do, but it doesn't necessarily mean its the right approach. 

It isn't my "fault" that I am pregnant, just as it isn't their "fault" that they no longer are. One of my dear friends said that to me recently, while we discussed how her loss and my sustained (this far) pregnancy affected us. 

But then, what can I do? I don't want to be the salt in the wounds that have not healed. 

I pray for them, knowing that I cannot heal them on my own, but that my God can. And, I pray it happens sooner than later. I pray they can embrace their sorrow, and hope for the joy that will come again someday.

And I miss them. 

I'm not sure I've made a concise point, but I'm hoping that my thoughts, which help me process, reach those out there that need it.

Love to you all.

Note: while I cherish all blog comments, I understand sometimes it is scary to put your feelings out there. You are able to respond anonymously, but if you are wanting someone to talk to, feel free to send me an email at Nicole.m.worthley[at]gmail[dot]com


  1. I have struggled with this before. I've been on both sides...sort of. I have had a lot of successes in my life, and sometimes I do feel bad talking about them. On the other hand, I have been on the side where I get a call that a friend is engaged/pregnant/won the lottery and while I am super happy, there is definitely that *pang* in the chest that says...when is it my turn? You are 10 years younger than me...that's not fair!

    But in the end, for me, it has always come down to my relationship with that person. If I am truly in a positive, supportive friendship with someone, I am going to want good things for them. And I want them to want good things for me too. If a friend can't be supportive because of their own stuff, then it might be for the best to take a step back and let them work through it. As for me, I would rather step alongside a friend who is celebrating a major life event, and be part of it, rather than step away and be depressed about my own lack of husband/babies/297 million dollars. (Especially the money...they can share that...not so much the husbands...maybe the babies...)

    Wow, I don't know where I'm going with this, but I hope it made at least a little sense. I love you, and even though I am one of those women who would love to have a baby but cannot because of "other" circumstances (ie I'm woefully and possibly eternally single), I would never begrudge you the joy that you should be feeling over your own miracle. It brings me joy to see it. Love you!

  2. I think you are one of the bravest women I know. It takes a lot of courage to stand up and say, "I'm suffering, and I'm going to speak out about it, because I know you are too, and together, we can heal quicker than if we were suffering alone." And to have been on so many sides of loss, infertility, and now being blessed with a baby you weren't even trying I bet if someone would have told you 10 years ago you would be in this spot, you would have laughed and not believed it. God is so good. Even in the rain, even in the pain, He is faithful, and is able to bring beauty from the ashes. I'm so glad we're friends.

  3. I am one of those people who is very open about my joys and struggles. Being open is part of being a light to the world. We all have struggles and plenty of them and we all have joys. Being together and loving through each others ups and downs is what life is all about. Something I am learning to do is wait on God, listen to what He has to say about a situation and then if there is something I can do to help, then I will do that something highly effective. I like to give a gift to remember a heaven baby. Something little that just says " I love you and love that baby too, even though we won't get to hold him/her for a while." having babies leave earth early made me very conscious of heaven, possibly because part of my heart resides there. It is hard to know what to say or do for hurting moms maybe I should start a blog to help with that issue. :)

  4. I definitely remember feeling so conflicted when I was pregnant with Lydia. While I have not ever lost a baby, I lost two siblings before my brother. I was old enough to know about them; therefore, I was old enough to know and still remember that pain. I remember we got pregnant so easily with Lydia that I kept thinking I was jinxing myself by telling people. Moreso, I felt like I couldn't tell all of my friends that we were pregnant, because I knew a few of them were truly struggling to join the mommyhood. I knew they'd be happy for me, but I didn't want it to seem AT ALL that I was "rubbing it in their faces," or boasting that I was pregnant and they weren't. In the end, those friends were happy for me (which makes me know they are my true friends... that they can be genuinely excited even when they feel sadness.)

    Hope you're feeling great and can come to peace with this pregnancy, because after all, you're experiencing a very beautiful event!