I recently came across my old IVF diaries and it completely broke my heart to re-read them. My pain had been so raw, I was angry, depressed, grieving and confused. I wrote a lot about being in what I described as “Limbo Land; that place between history and the future; what currently is and what could be” I was also incredibly concerned about my purpose in life, fretting that if we weren’t able to conceive then I wouldn’t feel fulfilled. I became somewhat obsessed with defining myself and trying to work out who I was. I didn’t like being in Limbo Land because I couldn’t fit myself in to one of society’s boxes and felt like I was “in the middle of a great plain unsure of which direction I should go.”
I always kept diaries as a teenager and then intermittently throughout University and adulthood. I find writing by far the best way for me to express myself and have always found it helps me to see things from a new perspective and find a moment of clarity. When we first got together, my husband, thought it was incredibly odd that I’d write him letters about how I felt, rather than talking to him about it, and I suppose in a way it is strange. I’d say I’m a pretty good communicator but at the same time I can be such a passionate little thing that sometimes I know I need to take a step back, write everything down and work through the various emotions associated with the situations, believe me, I’m far too over emotional for my own good some times!
When I first decided to start my blog I had absolutely no idea what I wanted to do with it. I wanted to do something for me and wanted to have something that was solely mine. I love being a stay at home mama but at the same time was starting to feel that I needed an outlet and needed to nurture myself a little. Alongside my teenage diaries I wrote book after book after book during my childhood before going on to study writing, in the form of journalism, at University. I therefore knew that working with words was definitely a way I could get some well needed ‘me’ head space and was attracted to the idea that blogging creates an instant hit, you write and whoomp there it is.
Blogging wasn’t an entirely new thought, I’d toyed with the idea before but the technological side had always terrified the pants off me. However, this time when I revisited the idea I didn’t feel scared, I felt ready for it, the time felt right and I approached it with great vigour and enthusiasm, the excitement rife that I’d created the opportunity to simply write as me with no hidden agenda. Bring it!
I played around with a few ideas and styles in my early posts before penning It’s all about ME and oh how I loved writing that piece, the experience was incredibly cathartic and I was overcome with such a sense of peace and pride within myself. Something, which had been so personal to me, had resonated with friends, and strangers, those going through, having gone through or even those friends of couples going through IVF and infertility, and for the first time I felt as though something I had written had made a difference, I’d made a difference.
And I think that’s when I started to find my “voice”; it’s me! Not who I’d like to be, not who I think I ought to be but simply me.
I definitely have the tendency to be a bit of an over-thinker and for a while used to worry that when the subject of children came up and I talked about infertility people rolled their eyes with a ‘Here we go again; she’s still harping on about her IVF struggles even though she’s now got her child’ sigh. Yet blogging has really helped me get over that hurdle and I’ve decided to remain ‘harping on’ about it because I believe it’s incredibly important to do so, to get people talking, break the taboo and if I can help just one person feel like they’re not alone then that’s good enough for me, plus, I want Sam to know just how darn special he is and that he should be proud to be an IVF bubba and proud of his mama too.
But I guess that’s what I love about blogging, I find it entirely freeing. I can write about anything I want and force all you folks out there to read it! Mwaaahahahahaha (not sure why but I kind of felt an evil laugh was called for at this point!)
And so do I feel as though I’ve found my purpose? Has having a child defined me and made me fit in to a box?
Hell no! And I’m not sure I actually want to be boxed up anyway!
I have though, started to think that my purpose might simply be to be me. To wear life’s scars with pride whilst being proud of the person I am and liking myself to boot. I can’t choose what others might think of me, just as I can’t choose what life decides to throw at me, but I can choose how I decide to cope with it and what I decide to blog about too.