Transitions never go the way they think they will. Sometimes they exceed our expectations, sometimes they fail to meet our expectations, sometimes our expectations are not even in the same universe as the reality we experience.
I've been going through a lot of transitions lately. And I'm learning to change my expectations, and in some cases trying NOT to have any.
Over the last year, we went all-in on a last-ditch effort to have a biological child. We quickly hit a barrier that stopped us cold. If funds were unlimited, I could have kept trying indefinitely, until it worked. But funds are limited. Chances at pregnancy through in vitro are not at 0%, but they're not in my comfort zone. After 10 years of infertility (120 consecutive months of disappointed expectations), one would think I'd be used to disappointment in this arena. But there's a tiny but dwindling glimmer of hope that is never fully extinguished.
Sometimes I wish I would have been told 10 years ago that this path would be impossible. I could have grieved, eventually accepted, and moved on more resolutely. There's never been a diagnosis or a sure answer that has closed the door completely; it is perpetually cracked open, ever so slightly. I imagine it will just inch ever closer to being fully closed, and that will be my answer, maybe a dozen or more years in the making.
Adoption is our path again! To be honest, adoption was the path I leaned toward first, before this last-ditch in vitro effort. I've had sporadic and fleeting visions of a baby with dark, soft, curly hair. Maybe these come strictly from my imagination, maybe they're a gift, a prompting that's pulling me forward. I don't know. I'm learning, the older I get, to embrace the uncertainty and the fogginess of what lies ahead. We can only ever see a step or two ahead of us, the circle cast from the lantern we hold in our hands in the here and now. No one gets more than this.
I honestly do not care how my baby comes to me. I've learned from experience that I have no trouble loving non-biological children with my whole heart. I leaned toward in vitro first because seemed like it would be cheaper, easier, and more certain—initial blood tests had been promising. I had a well-meaning friend wonder aloud if the only reason I was equally comfortable with either path is because I don't know what it's like to have a biological child.
I look at my daughter, and I simply cannot accept that thought. There is no way I could love her more, however she got here. I almost wish I had replied, "I wonder if the reason you're okay only having biological children is because you don't know what it's like to adopt." Plus, my husband has both a biological and an adopted child, and he'll be the first to tell you that the love is no different.
Needless to say, my heart has been up and down over the past year. Into fear and out of fear. Paralyzed at times and occasionally soaring.
Despite it all and through months of interviews, questionnaires, red tape, and even FBI background checks, we are finally home-study approved and actively looking for our next miracle! You can see and share our profile here.
Yes, I often feel like no one deserves more than one miracle like the one that visited our doorstep 4 years ago. But nevertheless, our hearts are open, and our hopes are high.
The Joy of Job Transitions