It has been sixteen months since Adrienne had a hysterectomy. Saying “we’ve been through a lot” is meaningless truth. Adie and I will never be parents. Ultimately the decision was ours, heavily influenced by cold biological facts. This blog is small catharsis, but its material is not for those with a weak emotional constitution.
We have seen two Mother’s and Father’s Days since the decision. Each one is easier than the previous. The first one Adrienne wrote
“There is no I-had-my-uterus-and-ovaries-taken-at-32-so-I-will-never-have-children-of-my-own day. If someone makes one, I hope it’s in August. I don’t have anything else to celebrate in August.”
I will observe this day on August 11th and I am asking our friends to do so with me. The name isn’t catchy, the sentiment too raw, and it risks emphasizing our infertility. With a little effort we can all turn this day into something positive. This day we should:
Celebrate the life and happiness we have
We let go of a lifetime of desires and expectations while simultaneously redefining and reorienting ourselves. This process is not over, but our goal on this day is to be happy with all we have.
Birthing and raising children is often quoted as the biggest accomplishment a person can make. We do not believe it. Your affirmation drives us on to other altruistic endeavors.
Show that we are whole people
Any -ectomy takes something away from a person. We felt “broken” and may not get over that.
We are not the only ones
So many couples and singles struggle with their sense of childless self worth.
Think of them on this day. If you would like to help, it is simple as a phone call, email, tweet or Facebook post just to say “hi” or to remind someone of the good they do.
This day is not about trying or failing to be a parent. We need neither sympathy nor reminders of our “enviable freedom” and that parenthood is “not all joy“. At the same time the day’s purpose is not to belittle family. Reinforce the good things that all of do.
I would like to recognize Mandy Tompkins’ kind help in putting this together. She has been there before us and gone on.