reflections on christmas past

throughout this year’s christmas celebrations, i couldn’t keep the ghosts of christmas past from floating up into memory.  what a world of difference it is to watch those memories play in my mind with this beautiful boy in my lap.  two christmases ago we had only recently learned that our second IVF attempt had failed (after the only, “hmmm… maybe that’s a positive blood test result?” I ever got).  My younger sister was pregnant with her second child and my younger sister-in-law was also pregnant with her second (actually, there had been a chance that we’d be pregnant together at christmas and we’d hopefully wished for that together on the phone a few times before we got our news.  ouch.).  I think even my best friend (who lives in the same town as my sister and who we usually stay with when we visit) was pregnant with her second at the time.  I don’t think I actually shouted about how unfair life was to anyone, but i do remember bursting into tears when i was trying to cook at my sister’s house and discovered that she had no sieve or strainer of any kind.  yeah.

Last year’s Christmas was full of hope and trepidation.  No one on my side of the family was pregnant and my sister even gave us a gift for our future baby (we were matched with Baby Dude’s birthmom and waiting for him to be born and for her to make her final, difficult decision) and on Jay’s side of the family (we celebrated at Thanksgiving) my other sister-in-law was waiting to find out if they were pregnant (in case you’re curious–yes.  twin boys.).  I was very afraid that she’d get good news and we wouldn’t.

And this year, here we are.  A family of three.  Lucky, blessed parents who have been given the awesome privilege of watching this little dude grow up.  I could finally share my own stories about sleep deprivation and feeding issues and diaper troubles with all of  my siblings and friends, instead of listening and nodding to their stories and secretly wishing i had their “problems.”  And nothing, not 30+ hours of driving, not my favorite Salvadoran restaurant being inexplicably closed, not even a hearty round of the stomach flu that caught at least 6 of my family members (including Baby Dude–from both ends), could make this Christmas anything but just lovely.  I also had a chance to visit two other college friends who had also had their own infertility struggles and meet their beautiful babies.  And my memories of years past only serve to make this year sweeter and also serve to remind me of other friends and blog-world acquaintances who are still searching for their path to parenthood.  I will never forget how rough the road of infertility can be–especially around the holidays–but being on the other side certainly helps to dull the edges of those sharp, painful memories and the forward momentum of a fast-growing child has pulled me out of the mire still left of the soles of my soul’s boots.


#1 Kathleen on 01.04.11 at 7:03 am

that leaves me with a nice warm fuzzy feeling that i hope to have someday soon 🙂 thinking of you guys!

#2 Sarah on 01.04.11 at 1:53 pm

My sister is pregnant again. And instead of being happy, I’m just… it figures.

#3 sister sarah on 01.04.11 at 7:27 pm

It was wonderful having you all here. I was amazed you didn’t get mad about the stomach bug. I don’t remember the last time we got along so well. BTW, the boys are dressing up almost every day!

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