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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

A lot has happened in our lives over the last couple of years: My hysterectomy and recovery; my husband's cancer diagnosis; my step son moving away for a big fancy new job after graduation; my "surrogate" daughter getting engaged. And yet, despite so many changes, so many hurdles and SO many things that will never be the same, some things have not changed a bit. I still find myself grieving over my not having children of my own. In fact, I have over the last couple of months started having baby dreams again... waking up rattled and crying, with the first thought in my head being "maybe we can still try." Then I remember... It still shakes me to my core. I still see my counselor. I am still brought to uncontrollable tears. I recently found out that another couple we know is expecting. They are around our ages... 54 and 44, I believe. And yet, they excitedly await the arrival of a baby girl. When I saw the post of Facebook, I quite unexpectedly, yet completely, fell apart. I could not, no matter how hard I tried, stop the tears. And just writing this brings them again. But on the other hand, I am looking forward to the upcoming wedding of my "surrogate daughter" whom I have mentioned before. Hubs and I will be walking her down the aisle. I will be going with her to look at dresses... she said she wanted that mother/daughter experience. I'm so touched and honored. But on some level I'm still so sad that she isn't my "real" daughter... whatever that means. I'm still so shattered that I haven't gotten and don't get to do all those things that parents do with and for their children. Certainly I mother her: I support her and love her and encourage her. I tell her things I don't tell many others and she does the same with me. And yet- and I don't know why, exactly - it's not enough; it's not the same. She has a mother... she passed away, but she still is and will always be her mother. My step son, she tells me, appreciates me as a parent and how much I encourage and love him. But they both have other moms... good, bad or indifferent. I'm not the one who brought them into the world, who rocked them to sleep, who kissed scraped knees and took pictures before they went to prom. I'm the second mom. And everyone knows what coming in second is... a loss. I selfishly thought, while we faced my husband's cancer diagnosis, if he dies, I will have no one. I know I'd still have my own family and my two "kids" but they wouldn't be part of the two of us. They wouldn't be ours. They're not mine. Thankfully, I didn't have to face that scenario. My husband is doing well. He's getting stronger every day. I don't think I would have survived if I had lost him, too.

4 comments:

  1. I'm really sorry you're struggling with this. I know I found it hard when my sister had her daughter at 42, when I had had all hopes quashed when I turned 41. There's something about an older couple getting pregnant that feels like a kick in the teeth.

    Still, I now find I'm able to treasure moments and experiences with my niece. No, it's not the same. But I think accepting that has opened me up to some wonderful moments with her. I just hope that, in focusing on what you don't have, you don't forget to cherish what you do have.

    Also, I don't think second is necessarily worse, and it certainly doesn't mean a loser. The second wife or husband, the second (adoptive, for example) mother, are just two examples where this doesn't apply. Every relationship is different. Your relationships with this "surrogate" daughter and stepson sound wonderful. You get to be the one walking her down the aisle and planning her wedding. That doesn't sound like a surrogate mother-daughter relationship to me.

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  2. Yes, Mali. I do have quite a bit to be thankful for... and I am. And yet, there seems to always be something missing. I'm working on it. But it's really hard... more so some days than others!

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  3. I am so sorry to hear that. Keep your head up because there is always hope at the end of the tunnel. One of my best friends was in that same situation and after a diet change, prayer, and exercise she became pregnant. I hope you have fun going dress shopping with your daughter. Remember to always pray and believe.

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  4. you don't forget to cherish what you do have.


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