When I adopted my son, I assumed that my infertility woes were over. I was a mother now, so there was no need to think about my fertility again, right? I was so wrong about this. Adoption cures childlessness, not infertility.
The pain of my infertility started to bubble up as my friends started conceiving their second children. I had already placed our names on a waiting list at an adoption agency to adopt our second child, but the agency told me that it would probably take a couple of years before we would be invited to apply to adopt through them. In the meantime, there was nothing to do except love and cherish my son.
I did not appreciate how much I still had to grieve until I was surrounded by pregnant friends. Even though we all had one child the same age, they were members of a club that I could not join. They would talk for hours about their pregnancies, sharing morning sickness stories and talking about which OB was best. This would launch them into stories of their first pregnancies and deliveries.
I spent long blocks of time saying nothing because I had nothing to add to these conversations. I had never been pregnant, so I could not relate. Each time one of their babies kicked or moved for the first time, I was reminded of my own losses. Yes, I was a mother, but life had denied me a basic experience shared by almost every other woman on the planet.
I thought this would pass once my friends bore their second children, but it didn’t. Now most of my son’s friends had siblings, but he did not, and there was nothing that I could do about it. While my friends carefully chose how far apart to spread their children by age, I had no say in what year my son’s sibling would join our family. This was another loss to grieve.