One thing I have struggled with over these past 2 years is my response when someone in my life announces they’re expecting… I try very hard to be happy for other people. I gush over their baby bumps, I like every post on social media, I comment on how they’re ‘just all belly!’…and yet inside my heart breaks a little. Every time I smile listening to the details of their circus themed nursery and the amazing deal they got on a Kate Spade diaper bag I feel my pulse rise… Not because I want a circus themed nursery or a Kate Spade diaper bag, but because I want a baby…and the jealousy monster pops up for every baby-oriented thing someone else has.
And this is something I’ve been so disappointed with myself about. I struggled with the feeling that I must be some selfish infertile monster because I cannot seem to look past my own disappointments and simply be happy for other people… I told myself a better, stronger, kinder person would be able to put aside her own feelings and purely feel joy for the other women in her life, without the background noise of “poor, infertile, nursery-less me.”
But you know what? I’m not going to feel bad about it anymore.
See, I actually think it’s appropriate that I feel happy for someone else and still feel sad for me. I don’t think it makes me a monster to be disappointed someone else is getting the one thing I want. When the people in my life tell me their happy news, I’m sure they feel a little guilty too. I’m sure they know their happiness hurts my heart a little. But I don’t think a single one of them is ever as sad for me as they are happy for themselves….so does it make me a bad person to admit I’m not as happy for them as I am sad for me?
The truth is, watching other people have the one thing Dan and I want more than anything is challenging, and that’s okay. Now, I don’t get to be an asshole…I don’t get to go out of my way to make other people feel bad about their happiness, it’s not acceptable if I make my friends feel bad about being fertile. But inside…if I want to feel a little sad for their happiness… if I’m frustrated when my co-worker announces her pregnancy was an ‘accident’ or genuinely annoyed at the girl I went to high school with who complains daily about being a mother and then posts that she’s pregnant (again!)… It doesn’t mean I’ve become a bitter, negative monster…it just means infertility is tough.
So… I’m giving myself permission to not be okay. I’m going to stop feeling like a bad person for allowing myself to be disappointed. I’m going to continue to be happy for people in my life and share their joy with them, while accepting that their joy can still hurt me a little…and that is fine (as long as I don’t allow my disappointment to hurt them.) Sometimes it’s okay to not always be okay.