Thursday, July 19, 2012

A letter to my mother

Dear Mom,

I want you to have grandchildren. I want you to have grandchildren who are my children! I love that you try your best to understand what I'm going through with this journey, and that you respect our decision to take the Catholic road.

Despite my trying to be strong, which I know you want me to be, sometimes seeing how my lack of babies affects your life makes me sadder than just thinking about how it affects my life. At your birthday party this year, you picked up my cousin's daughter to help you blow out the candles on your cake. If I had managed to conceive back when we started trying, you'd have had a different toddler to pick up, a grandchild of your own, not your brother's. You've started volunteering by reading books to nursery school children, showing both your love of literacy and your love of little kids. If you had grandchildren, you'd be spending time with them snuggled up in your lap while your finger traces the words on the pages. Rationally, I know that these things in your life already make you happy. Is it silly to think that grandchildren would make you happier?

I am sorry for my petty response when we were talking about another cousin getting pregnant. Because she's been trying for exactly as long as me, I should know how much of a blessing this is for her and her husband. But it does hurt me, more than other friends' pregnancies, and I'm still trying to figure out why. We've always had a weird sort of relationship, we girl cousins. I guess I didn't really know it was a competition until she and her sisters boycotted my wedding shower. But now that I know, this cousin has clearly won the baby race.

And then there's my Grandma, your mother. I love her soooo much, and I want her to meet my babies. She's going to be so happy for this new great-grandchild--I want to bring her that happiness, too! I know that it's going to hurt me to see her be happy, and that is the most selfish part of this. That is why I am just not right with this yet. I will do my best to work towards handling this better. I will be strong like you want me to be, and I'll even make every effort to go to the baby shower.

I love you, Mom.

Always yours,


  1. :( there is just so much pain cause by IF, it is never ending.

    I have so many pictures of 4 generations of women from my great-grandma down to me - taking the picture was always one of my joys at family gatherings and I have always dreamed of the day I am the 3rd generation and there is a 4th in my arms. It is actually one of the worst fears of mine, that my Nan will go to Jesus before I have a child.

    All of my mom's friends are grandmas and I see her longing look at us when we are holding our goddaughter at Mass on Sundays. While our relationship is not good (mine and my moms), I see the pain this causes her and I hate it.

    Praying your mom is awaiting a grandchild very soon!

  2. I'm sorry! That is so tough! I had to swear of fb again for a while because one friend was writing all about her 8th anniversary trip, and I remember being at her wedding and being in pain from being single; no change 8 years later! And then I was thinking about if I could have gotten married and had kids, I could have 2 or 3 by now. Argh! No more fb! Praying for you as you get ready to face some of the upcoming things such as the baby shower.

  3. So honest. So true. I think we have all experienced different degrees of these feelings. I had an insensitive cousin who got married a few months after our first miscarriage. At her baby shower, she says to me, "I guess we'll be racing to see who has the next grandchild." I was stunned. All I could think to say to her was, "Um, you know we've already buried one, right?" And she was like, "Yeah, I know. I'm sorry." So, she clearly knew and said that hurtful statement out of her callous selfishness. Ugh.

    It's not a race, though. And, you know what, anything fantastic and great takes a long of struggle and sacrifice and a long time to come around. So, there. When your child finally arrives, he/she will be the light of the family.

  4. This makes me sad. :-(

    I hope you are able to have the children you want. In the meantime, I know that accepting this cross is to make you holy.

    I can't imagine what it must be like to carry this cross. But remember it's to make you holy. Will God ever make you a mother? I don't know. But I do think He wants you to be the example of perseverance in prayer and showing others how to carry this cross for Him. There are a lot of women who carry this cross (understandably) with bitterness and reluctance. You can show them how to carry it for love. (Btw, I don't see any bitterness in you, I'm just generalizing.)

    I'm going on a retreat this weekend but I'm going to start on the St.Andrew's chaplet when I get home. It never occurred to me that you probably already say this chaplet. Well, we say it together then.

    1. I don't want to make you sad, Becky! I do try to keep in mind that this suffering, mild though it is compared to many people's on this earth, is helping to sanctify me and is a great gift in its own way. Check out Polkadot's collection of quotes from the Saints on Suffering:

      I've never prayed the St. Andrew's chaplet before, so this will be new to me :)

  5. I had the same desire to make my mom a grandma too. It was so hard to watch her with her nieces and nephews' kids ... some of my cousins are about 6-8 years younger than me and have several kids already. It is hard being the "disappointment" of the family ... not really, but it sure feels like that when you try and try so hard to have a child, both for yourself, but also for your parents to make them grandparents and to have all the experiences of having your grandma meet her great-grandchild.
    Suffering is not easy, so I will be praying for you! I keep you by name in my nightly prayers.