But first, I want to thank you to everyone who followed our journey, encouraged us on, and said all those prayers on our behalf. You will never know how much your support has meant to us.
There was a time when I felt completely alone. It honestly felt like we were being singled out, and were the only one's to have to walk this difficult lonely road.
Infertility is the most isolating condition around. It is a personal journey filled with heartbreak, hopelessness, and shattered dreams.
And we tend to walk this road alone. Because nobody, ever really understands unless they've been there, unless they've walked it. And even then, each journey is different, some longer and harder than others. And ultimately all end in different ways.
But we are not alone.
You have taught me that.
All of you who have come out of the woodwork, posted words of encouragement, blogged your own stories of heartbreak, and come together to support not only me, but each other, have helped me heal in ways I never thought I could. There is a whole community of women, men, and couples who suffer from infertility. And they come from all over the world.
This is a map of all the people who have visited my blog today.
And since I started this blog, I have had almost 15,000 unique visitors from:
- Every single state in the USA
- Every Province in Canada
- South Africa
- Saudi Arabia
- New Zealand
No. We are not alone.
And while my infertility journey is coming to an end, a whole new journey has begun for us. One that hopefully leads to two healthy, happy babies at the end of all this. But no matter how my story ends, please know that it is not the ending that matters. It is not what defines me or my journey with infertility...
It was that moment -- you know the one, the one where I was at my lowest of lows, the moment I was sure that life would not go on, the one where, dare I use one of my screenwriting terms -- it was my dark night of the soul. It was the moment, that I picked myself up, stared fear in the face, and went forward with strength, courage, and clarity. I knew what I wanted and I was going to fight for it one last time. It isn't the ending that matters, it's that moment. The moment where you realize who you are, what you want, and what you are willing to do to get it.
As a screenwriter, I can't help but liken my infertility struggle to great script. And I admit, I love a good Hollywood ending as much as the rest of you. I love it when the guy wins the race, the guy gets the girl, and everyone lives happily ever after.
But life isn't always like that.
And just like it didn't matter whether Rocky won or lost his last fight -- what mattered is that he went the distance.
You see, life torments our favorite movie characters, just as it torments us. But in the end, it is not the winning or losing that's important, it's how our favorite characters grow as people. It's about what they learn, who they become, and how they change. It's about looking inside yourself in your deepest darkest moments, and having the courage and strength to get up. The victory comes when our hero crosses the finish line, and win or lose, he comes to a place of peace and closure. Our hero doesn't always get what he wants, but he always gets what he needs. And it can come in the most unexpected forms. Our hero ultimately learns to accept the forces of life that he cannot control. And the victory finally comes when our hero looks inside himself, holds his head up with pride, and ultimately, finally, is able to smile.
And that is the best kind of ending there is.
That is the kinds of hero our classics are made of.
So my prayer for all of you, is that your story, win or lose, ends with your hands up in the air in victory. Because picking yourself off the ground, dusting yourself off, and going the distance is a victory in and of itself, and one that makes us all heros of our own stories.
And we are all heros. Strong, courageous, silent heros.
So today I declare myself an Infertility Survivor.
Because, yes, I survived it!
And that, in the end, is my greatest victory.