”Don’t waste your time hating failure. Failure is a greater teacher than success”
― Clarissa Pinkola Estés
I have wasted many months hating failure; failure month after month.
Failure to see two pink lines, failure to produce the miracle that is supposed to define the word “woman,” failure to give my husband the one missing piece, failure to keep my ideal weight while my hormones fly to Mars and back, and now, failure to even ovulate.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about toughing it out, yet this is a whole lotta failure for one girl to keep her chin up through.
So rather than hate all this failure, I think I may just extend the olive branch and see what it has come to teach me. When I do so, I realize just how phenomenal of a teacher this failure has been.
Ten Lessons for Women Failing to Conceive
- Your husband does truly and deeply love you, to a depth you may never have realized without this catastrophic failure.
- Taking care of yourself has to be your first priority. From the food you put into your mouth, to the time you set aside for naps, walks in the woods, and long hot baths– you must nurture and love yourself first.
- Some friends will stand beside you, and others will drift away; this is the essence of life. It is not personal, it is not meant to hurt you, it is just the way relationships ebb and flow. Let them go in and out, as with the tide. Welcome their coming, and bless their leaving.
- Jealousy comes from the root of fear. Letting go of the fear of your inadequacy, and of the unknown future, releases your jealousy of others whose belly’s are round.
- Some gifts are greater than motherhood. We have all been given gifts, don’t waste yours. A baby may or may not come to you from your womb, yet pining only for this creation may cause you to lose sight of the one knocking at your back door to come in.
- The world needs your light, don’t hide it. Infertility can cause self-esteem to plummet. Finding the courage to pull back the shades to stand firm in the miracle that is you, illuminates a world previously lit only by candlelight. The world needs your brilliance.
- Your faith will be tested in nearly every way. Before reaching the top of Everest climbers encounter freezing temperatures, altitude illnesses, and constant setbacks. This is your Everest, don’t waste time journaling about your daily defeats, zip up your jacket and keep climbing.
- There is a store of reserves you never knew you had. In Alaska there are three months of the year when it is dark 24-hours a day. Facing infertility means there are months when you will feel dark 24-hours a day. Keep holding on for the light, it always comes, and when it does you will realize the abundance of the storage you may have never known was in the cellar of your heart.
- Gratitude–always have it. The ability to find it is developed on a road marked with fertility challenges as pit stops along the way. Be grateful for the struggle, it is teaching you to be strong.
- Hope, never lose it. She will be the hand you hold while in the doctor’s office, the pillow your tears fall on when you learn the heart didn’t start beating, the blanket that encompasses you when you fall exhausted from the struggle. And hope will be the gentle shove pushing you forward when it is time to let go.