Barren

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I’ve been thinking about writing this post for so long, but I’m doing this now just to check if I can deal with the truth by now.

I know that I would have difficulty doing this because I feel that “saying it out loud” makes the truth more real than ever.

You see, I don’t have a child – yet. And it’s not by choice. I am married to the smartest, funniest and most wonderful man in the world for 4 years now and we haven’t been blessed with a child.

As a joke, I always tell myself that this is my final examination of trust, faith and patience. I didn’t do well on the first year of the test. I’m not sure if I’m doing better now.

When you reach my age (34 – but less than two weeks from turning 35) and you’ve been married for 4 years, you’ve probably heard of all the silliest questions known to man about why you still don’t have kids. If only my soul would find rudeness acceptable, I would’ve come up with a smart-ass reply to let those who insensitively ask me questions know that they offended me. Fortunately (for them), that’s not me, so I just usually give them my most sincere smile and a shrug, hoping that they would get it and leave the topic alone. Some days, I’m lucky, but there are days when it’s agony.

To be honest, I can’t explain why I haven’t been blessed yet. Scientifically, we’re okay. We’ve been to the doctor and all. If I want to go crazy and start rethinking my past, I’d start thinking that I’m being punished by not being able to conceive. BUZZ! Done that!

On our 2nd year of marriage, we decided to start taking the baby-making seriously. For a year, we tried and tried to the point that it was no longer fun or romantic. It’s like being asked to do something over and over again to get a certain outcome and it just doesn’t happen. I even paired it with praying the novena, attending the mass, etc. I even stopped doing the things that I love to do (like running and dancing) and I’m supposed to do (like cleaning the bathroom… well, basically, cleaning) for fear that I might be stressing myself, which would make my uterus inhabitable.

I was okay with that kind of life for a year when one day, I woke up and realized that I wasn’t living my life anymore. My prayers started to sound different. They weren’t coming from a heart filled with faith and trust. They sounded like rants of a spoiled brat. When I realized that, my whole being was filled with shame. I couldn’t believe that my desire to be a mother made me an ungrateful child of God. I just had to stop that.

It wasn’t an easy process (it still isn’t). It’s hard to accept that you don’t have a child yet when everywhere you go, there’s a constant reminder that other people do. I can’t help, but wonder how it feels to be pregnant, to know that there’s someone precious living inside of you and hold someone of your own flesh and blood in your arms. I’m sometimes curious if we’ll be happier today with a baby at home. I want to know if my husband, my family and my in-laws would love me more than they do now if I’m bearing a child.

I couldn’t remember how many tears I’ve cried to let out my frustration and envy when I see a friend or an acquaintance showing off her pregnancy test to announce to the world that they’re having a baby. I couldn’t remember how strong I was to muster enough courage to click “Like” and say “Congratulations!” in the comment box. I’ve lost count of the hours I’ve spent on the baby section of the malls to find the perfect dress or shirt or shoes or pillows or blankets or bottles or toys or books for another baby. I don’t know how I survived each experience with a smile that reaches my eyes.

I guess this is my journey. A journey that not everyone has the opportunity to go on and to speak of. I sometimes feel alone, because I don’t want to burden my friends of my feelings. I’m already aware that they will look for the most comforting and encouraging words they could muster to tell me that I shouldn’t lose hope. For that, I will always be grateful, but I don’t want to hear them anymore. I’m tired. My heart, my mind and my soul are broken. Each day is a step to healing, but each day gives way to new wounds.

I don’t know when this will end, but I hope God will continue to give me the strength and the faith that I need to carry on – with or without a baby.

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