In the last few days, I’ve posted a few joking remarks about starting up fertility treatments again. As an Instagram example:
Obviously, I intended it as the joke for which it was taken. When I was pulling out that
ball point pen fertility syringe for another round of IUI injections last night, I found it ridiculous that my Follistim was hanging out with the barnyard penicillin and Land O Lakes. It’s funny, right?! Of COURSE it is! (Maybe just the teeniest tiniest bit neurotic.)
THE BEAUTIFUL AFTER:
When things are difficult for me, writing and humor are my outlets. The tricky thing about humor is that it can actually serve to convince me that I am in good spirits. The tricky thing about grief is that it can come and go in waves and humor can mask that, too. While dwelling in the negative isn’t healthy, ignoring emotions isn’t either. I value humor highly, but I can also use it as a crutch.
After I posted the joking comments, friends and family reached out to me. “I’m praying!” they said. “I’m so excited you’re doing this!” they wrote. With each new message, I became more and more thankful that people could see past my joking to comfort me when I didn’t even recognize I needed it. That being said, I equally appreciate those who joke back because it IS funny. Humor can buffer pain in the best possible way. I just failed to recognize my cover up and probably should have addressed some of the emotions behind the scenes. Oops.
This is all to say that:
1) If you have friends who joke about difficult subjects, consider reaching out to them to let them know that you’re cheering them on. Still joke back! (Thinking about even HOUSING chicken meds next to your butter is nutso!) But also know that you seeing through some of the facade is deeply appreciated too. While it honestly does make me feel better to make cracks about infertility, I also have a really hard time being positive about it so letting other people carry excitement for me is an enormous relief and blessing.
2) If you are going through hard times, please think twice (or three… four… five times…) about keeping it to yourself. Having a behind the scene cheer team often does more than you could ever do for yourself. Trust others to carry you when you are just tired or incapable of doing it yourself.
Thanks for laughing with me and thanks for cheering for me. I love your hearts. (Even more than chickens.)