The quest to feeling whole and fulfilled is different for every woman, but somehow, there might be one common point for most of us: having our own child.
I come from Romania, a country and mentality that I feel is still strongly based on the idea that a woman’s worth is based on her capacity of having at least one child and raising him/her as good as possible. I wanted to have children from an early age, about 22, but when the moment occurred in my life (I was happily married and feeling financially stable), I realized that, as much as I wanted this baby to arrive, I just couldn’t get pregnant.
It was about one year after our marriage that my husband and I decided to try for a baby. I was feeling very confident, as all the fresh mothers I knew had not encountered any problem in seeing the positive test the 2nd or 3rd month. Little did I knew that my journey would take longer and would represent one of the most challenging periods of my life.
We were trying for over 6 months already, with no result, and I started feeling impatient. I felt there was something wrong, but was afraid to go and find out what. I was too proud to admit it, maybe I could not get pregnant ‘’just’’ like the mothers in my life. One morning, I decided to contact my gynecologist and from this moment on, started a whole new journey.
From temperature based charting, to fertility status for both me and my husband, we had to go through several types of testing for more than 15 months. Every aspect of my fertility was being analysed and questioned and together with that, every hope that one day I might hold this baby in my arms. From one day to the other, the journey of becoming a mother became this plethora of tests and trials. It had nothing to do with the magic of seeing my belly growing anymore, but with being able to resist under the pressure of each menstrual cycle.
I started hating going out, because I was so focused on why I could not have this baby, that every single day ,I was seeing another pregnant women, either on the street, either in the work place. I remember how I used to get super excited for a new pregnancy announcement in the office and 5 minutes later bowl my eyes out in the toilet and desperately trying to calm myself down.
I think the worse phase of this whole process was when I heard my doctor’s voice telling me ‘’The last tests show signs of endometriosis! Do not worry so much (Oh, really ???), there is still some hope with IUI (intrauterine insemination) and IVF (in vitro fertilization), but you first need to go under surgery for the endometriosis’’. I froze out, right there, in the office. It was 15 months since we were trying to have this baby, and as short as it may seem, for me it felt like years.
I read all the resources I could find on this subject, crying and endlessly repeating myself, it is not for me, I am such a loser, I am not worthy as a woman. The best thing that could arrive at that time was meeting another woman that was going through the same struggles as I, and become friends. I suddenly realized I was not alone anymore. I also realized this huge pressure I was putting on myself because of the expectations back home, in my country. If you do not already know, I was adopted at about 4 years old, so having my own baby was something huge for my family.
It was right before Christmas holidays 2016 that I booked the conservative surgery in order to treat the endometriosis. I was supposed to go for it mid February 2017. I was on a strong hormonal treatment for 6 months and could not bare my emotional state anymore. I think I drove my husband crazy at how many ups and downs I was having in one day.
We went back to Romania, to spend Christmas as usual, with my family. At that time I was watching a Netflix series, ‘’Downtown Abbey’’, and I remember exactly how at one point in one of the episodes, Lady Mary Dockery finally accepts Matthew Crawley’s proposal outside the house, under a curtain of snowflakes. As cheesy and cliché as it may sound, that night, on the 24th of December 2016 I somehow remembered how I used to believe in miracles and acknowledged that life itself IS a miracle. That night I decided to surrender to the Universe will, no matter what happens. Two days later I was getting pregnant and I could finally see two lines on my pregnacy test the 9th of January 2017. I cancelled the surgery for endometriosis 1 months before the due date.
Months after, I realized that that moment of surrender was me letting go and energetically making space for the gift I would receive. I was no longer pursuing life, I was letting life just be as it is.
My personal quest to feeling whole and fulfilled, started from a deep wish to having a baby. For more than 2 years I struggled with self confidence, acceptance and doubts. I met beautiful women during this journey and read and heard amazing stories of warriors that did not give up on their battles. I am grateful to my husband for being such and amazing support, to my closest and dearest friends and family members that were really there during the whole time. I am grateful to now live in France, a country where 4 years ago things were moving in a more conscious way with regards to endometriosis.
I am most grateful for this big lesson that I had to learn about my worth. You will say, well, it is easy for you to speak like that, you had your baby ! It is true, I had my baby, but I also had my lesson : Having a child does not define you as worthy and complete. The child arrives not to complete you but to shift you as a human being and teach you the greatest lessons of your life. It is up to you whether you open your arms in front of this gift or not.
For all the women out there, fighting endometriosis, I hear you! For all the women out there fighting to conceive a child, I feel you! Your journey does not end here, you are enough, you are worthy, no matter what!