Confession: When pregnancy is embarrrassing

The other day, I ran into someone that, though I have seen her a few times in the last year, mentioned that she didn't realize I was pregnant with #4. She noticed a bump, but may have chalked it up to leftover baby weight from Baby #3. She congratulated me sincerely, and I smiled.

On the inside, my stomach turned, and I suddenly felt like I wanted to unzip my face and crawl out of my skin.

Why, you ask?

Because this person had shared with me months before, her struggle to conceive her child, and the desire to give her child a sibling. I listened, because there really wasn't much that I could say.


Out of my 4 pregnancies, 2 were planned. Okay, to be fair--I'll just say that 3 of them came waaaaay ahead of {my} schedule. I probably would have waited much longer to get pregnant than my husband would have liked.

I became pregnant with my Princess six months after our wedding.

O-boy was conceived when the Princess was just 8 months old.

Sweet Baby K was pre-meditated, negotiated, and planned for about a year or so.

I was hoping to try for #4 this fall (around the time Mystery Baby will be born), after getting my butt back in shape, running all the races, and celebrating with a romantic anniversary trip/second honeymoon with my husband this year (10 years married, say whaaaaaaaaaaat?).

To be honest though, I've had a heck of a time getting excited about Mystery Baby.  It's not that I am ungrateful and don't really love my children.  And forgive me if this seems shallow or self-consumed. The fact of the matter is that pregnancy is awesome and scary and wonderful and terrifying and unpredictable... but it can also be a lonely time.  I feel alienated from a lot of my friends, especially those who have struggled to conceive.

Infertility is a topic that more and more people seem to be discussing openly than ten, even five years ago, and there is more support now than ever before. It is a difficult topic, and a topic that has caused tension in a few of my relationships because I can't relate--because my struggle--yes, I have at least one--is something else.  And while I beam with pride most of the time when someone notices my growing belly, every once in a while I feel a pang of something else.  It's not quite guilt, because guilt comes from a sense of wrongdoing. 

I've always felt everything very deeply, especially when someone I care for is suffering.  Sometimes it hurts when the pain is so big and so deep that it creates a chasm between you and the ones you love.  Sometimes the best way to be supportive is to give someone the space they need to grieve, and to heal.

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