When you try to not see something, that’s when you see it everywhere. I wanted a baby, but couldn’t have one and started seeing babies everywhere. Stork covered cards with good wishes were passed around work in plain manilla folders like vital documents. The bank teller waddled to the safe in her “bun in the oven” tunic and leggings. Every woman on the sidewalk had a stroller, baby carrier, or the sticky hand of a toddler struggling to keep up. The couple in front of me in the check out line bought diapers and formula while they giggled about sonogram pictures and heartbeat sounds. And then, to add the cherry to the sundae of misery, a cousin of mine had a baby four months earlier than she should have. I was expected to visit and be supportive and crap. Yeah, I said it. Crap. The last thing I wanted was to see anyone’s child. Especially the child of someone that I thought didn’t deserve a child. Sounds harsh, I know. I would venture to say that every woman who has struggled with infertility has passed silent judgment on those around her who seem to be able to conceive with just the mere thought of sex. We don’t like thinking about those thoughts. We are just so hurt and scared that it won’t ever happen for us.
For the next few months, I would lay awake nights with silent tears slipping down my cheeks and hiding in the creases of my neck as my husband lay there snoring peacefully. Despite him being there every day and being supportive, I felt terribly alone and defective. Women are supposed to have babies. It’s one of the primary things that makes us women. With the frequent facial hair removal, I needed something to make me feel like a woman. I could grow a beard but not a baby. And that just plain sucked. A gripping spiral depression had me in its clutches and was fighting to keep me there. To make matters worse, the winter chill settled in and drove the optimism of the sun far from me.
Meanwhile, I had managed to lose another job. I had started graduate school and was looking forward to classes starting in late January. Depression does not stop us from being active, it just makes it harder to be active. Part of the PCOS madness is emotional unrest. This can range from mild mania to deep depression in a lot of women. The future was getting brighter, or maybe I was just too busy to notice that nothing really had changed.