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Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Desire of My Heart6

Before I dive into another instalment, I just wanted to say thanks for all of the positive feedback, support, and just plain keeping up with me and not getting bored. I promise I will wrap this up soon and move on to autumn thoughts.

People. I've heard it all. Everything from "God's punishing you for your sin" with some underlying reference to my purity (or lack there of according to them) before marriage, to being punished for my parent's sins. I've been asked "Don't you want children?", and been labeled "one of those couples who only want dogs". That most difficult question from an old friend, "Don't you have kids yet?". The truth is that people don't want to hear the truth. If I just reply with a simple "No", then they will follow with the "Why?" question. I know better. Believe me, they don't really want to know. "Well, because I'm unable to have any. I'm infertile". At this point the person will either dodge me by "Oh, know what I gotta go." or they will make that all important discovery/suggestion "You could adopt". I guess people just think that you go to the Baby Bank and pick one out and that's it. No, this whole charade just isn't worth the trouble. If there is a woman reading this and you too are conceptionally challenged and your wondering what answer do you give for said question, its this; "Oh, some of these days" followed by a quick (fake) dreamy smile and change of subject. Its whats good for everyone involved.

I think its important now that I address those who know someone who is infertile. They don't want to talk about it. I mean, if they do, they'll bring it up. If they do, then just let them talk and give them kindness. But, most likely they don't want to talk about it with you whom has three kids and one on the way. So, don't ask. If you, fertile one, come across someone without children-again don't ask. You don't need to know. The best thing to do concerning a very close friend or relative is to pray for them. Let them know your praying for them. If they want to talk, again; let them. But, DO NOT go on and on about how they are young and they have plenty of time to get pregnant or doctors aren't always right or maybe if you stand on your head.... all of that will just upset your loved one. If shes smart she'll yell at you, but if shes like me she will just smile and cry about it later. You know what, I may get yelled at for this one, but I gotta say it anyway...That person may not even want to hear "Its all in God's timing" or some other cliche like that. Believe me, its something she already knows. She may be ready to accept that- or not. Its not your place to give it to her. Hope that wasn't too painful. I'm moving on now.

In between the "Its not about you" and where I'm headed now, theres about 5 months. 5 months of heart ache, healing, confusion, and a lot of yelling. One day we were into it heavy, of course it was about me. I wonder if you've discovered that most of your disagreements with your husband is because its about you. They are. Anyway, he needed to leave for work. But, I was busy running him through the dirt. I remember he grabbed the phone and told me he was going to have my mom come and get me. He told me to get out. I don't blame him. He had been living with a crazy person for about a year. I had been rejecting his intimacy, I wasn't taking care of anything. I was no good, and it was all about me. That evening I didn't leave. When he got home he wouldn't let me into our bed. I probably cried myself to sleep. I remember pleading with God to let my marriage live. I remember waking up the next morning and it was like the light of the day gave me the truth. It seems so simple but I knew that I was wrong. Not just about the way I was treating my husband, but about everything. It was all very wrong. I repented to my husband and promised I would be better. Just as soon as I figured out what that was. I met a woman (because she was infertile) on-line that I could talk to about some private issues, and she let me know that I was to stop rejecting my husband because it is disrespectful. Honestly, I thought that sounded crazy. This was my first step to understanding what womanhood was all about. I had been a part of an infertility forum (stepping stones), so I joined a marriage forum. It helped me to learn to think of my husband over myself. I dug deeper. I came across the Biblical Womanhood blog and it was like feeding me. I went from blog to blog taking in as much as I could. Discovering that I had been so wrong for so long. I mean, it seemed insane to me on one hand. These women who let there husbands tell them what to do. Women who home schooled, women who wore dresses because they thought God wanted them to. Even women who wore stuff on their heads. It was the exact opposite of everything I had ever been told. And I loved it. I knew that it was the right path. At least I knew that the way I had been carrying on wasn't working for me. I was desperate to figure out what worked in marriage and in my life. So, I tried it. My husband must have thought aliens had abducted me. I did a complete turn around. And I've been turning every since. I threw myself into learning what the Bible really had to say. I discovered that I had been taught wrong about many things. Shush... don't tell my mom but I'm a conservative christian. I live for my husband and my home now. I'm one of those woman who not only lets her husband tell her what to do-but I like it when he's bossy. I cook, I clean, I love, I learn; and I mess up. That's the learning part. I know for a fact if God had allowed me to have a child at the time I thought I wanted one, I would have never been as happy as I am now. I don't always think I'm happy. Marriage isn't all about being happy all of the time. But overall, I'm happy. I know my purpose. Everybody needs to understand their God-given role. Those who never do are the ones who were searching their whole life but were unable to see what was in front of them. I found out about my infertility at the exact right time. So that I could go through what I needed to go through to become what God wants me to be. I'm not done yet, but I'm headed down the right road.
I think I might have a little more to say...but it'll have to wait until Thursday.


brandy said...

Great turn around, Bethanie! I'm so glad to hear your story. There are positive lessons from every challenge. Good for you ( for not being all about you). :-)

Jen in MS said...

Thanks again for sharing your wisdom. Unless one has traveled a certain road, they really are clueless. When you talk about what not to say, I know I've probably said my share of wrong things. My lesson came with my miscarriage. I heard all the common, "Oh, something was probably wrong with it" or "at least you have other children", "It's for the best", "I know how you feel", etc. The thing is that I may have told some of those things to myself, but that didn't stop my heart from hearting and I just wanted someone to sympathize with me, not try to soften my blow. I imagine infertility is similar. But I didn't learn what NOT to say until I had been in those shoes. When my girlfriend lost a baby at full term a couple of years before, I tried the best I knew to comfort her.....I'm sure I probably said the wrong thing, not meaning to. That was one good thing that came out of my loss....wisdom. And I'm still learning! :0) God has allowed me to minister to countless women who have suffered a loss. And with my miscarriage being a 18 weeks (and one very early, chemical pregnancy), I could relate to losses at various stages in pregnancy. I can see now how God was at work, shaping me back then into who I am now and the tasks at hand. I can see that same thing with you. You are turning your grief and loss into something positive in that others can gain knowledge about the pains infertility causes. Thanks again for sharing. Oh, and please forgive me if I have said anything to you that was upsetting! My heart sank as I read your post and my mind started racing wondering if I had said something offending.

Jenn said...

Wow! Thank you for sharing that. What a blessing and encouragement this post was to me.


Leigha said...

What beautiful thoughts you just expressed! I kind of had a similar experience...I was also headed down the wrong path in my relationship with my (now husband)..after we got engaged in Feb. 2005, I don't know what happened to me. We started arguing about all kinds of things (which were mostly all arguments I started) and there were a few times I thought, I am so unhappy..why are we getting married?!
Then one day two years ago I stumbled across the Biblical Womanhood blog. It was a lifesaver. Through it, I was introduced to "Created to be His Help Meet" and other Christian women's blogs. I saw what I needed to change in my life before my marriage ever even started. If I had not been through that painstakingly hard process, I don't know where I would be today. Every day is a learning process, but I am becoming more like the woman I now know God planned for me to be from the very beginning, and more like the wife my husband desires me to be. It's good to know there are other women out there that can relate.
Always enjoying your blog,

kenyangal said...

I am so glad you decided to share your post with the rest of us. I was diagnosed with fibroids early this year and there is the chance that I could loose my uterus in the process of getting them removed. I am going through the anger you talked about seeing as I too have been a virgin all along and been waiting on God for a husband though he has not provided one yet. They say fibroids come from under or non utilization of the uterus. Now how could I have utilized it without a husband? And now it could be taken out. I'm glad you have explained the anger because lately I have been raging at everyone about everything. Including God. You can read my ranting on my blog God bless you and thanks again for sharing.

rohanknitter said...

Thanks for sharing all this.

Bethanie said...

jeninms-I'm glad that you can share your story too. I think miscarriage and infertility are very similar. Besides the obvious that they often go together, one is the loss of a child and the other is the loss of the dream of a child.
Jenn-your welcome
Leigha- I'm glad for you that you saw the truth before marrying your husband.
Kenyangal- I'm sorry your going through this. I hope you might check out that forum I mentioned. I include the website in my final post on the subject.
rohanknitter-your welcome

Bethanie said...

oh yeah, jeninms-you have not hurt my feelings that I recall. rest easy.

Mary said...

Great advice for those of us with kids, Bethanie. Thanks for being honest. Your story is honestly amazing. You're right. I had no idea what all you'd gone through in this infertile journey and everything you're sharing has been really eye-opening. God bless you, dearheart! So much in so few years of marriage!

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