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Thursday, November 28, 2013

alone


Self-pity has been threatening to pull me down into a deep dark hole. I'm kicking and fighting to break free and this post is an attempt to claw my way out.

Why am I so down?

Because I'm sick.
And I'm alone.
I'm childless.
And it's Thanksgiving.

In the world outside of these four walls, I see pictures of
sleeping babies
turkey trots
delicious food being prepared
gorgeous thanksgiving table settings 
family togetherness
children playing
happiness and laughter
black friday shopping 

I close my iPhone. Listen to the silence in my house. Feel the heat of my fever burning my skin and the pain in my throat when I swallow. Think about the family that I won't see, the turkey trot that I can't run, the food I won't eat, the shopping that I can't afford to do this year and the baby that I still don't have. 

Take tylenol. Cry. Sleep.
Repeat.

But I'm not going to repeat anymore. 
Last week, I received an email from a woman struggling with infertility. She found my blog and given how long I've been at this...she asked me if I had any advice on how to be happy and find joy amidst what we're going through. 

Here's what I told her.
In terms of advice to be happy despite this crappy situation, I'm still learning day by day. And some days are still harder than others. But the main thing is to focus on what you have instead of what you're missing in your life. It sounds so simple but as you know....it's quite hard. 
I already know this and need to take my own advice. The only way out of this slump is to focus on my blessings and give thanks for all that God has given me. I have so much to be grateful for and need to focus my energy on expressing gratitude.

I'm thankful for so much but here are a few specifics.
another year with my grandmother and the hope that she might still meet my baby
my husband who loves me despite all of my many flaws
the love and encouragement of my mother 
my team at work who supports me in growing my family
my best friend who set this up to help ease the financial burden of IVF
And all of you...for taking time out of your busy lives to read this blog and walk on this journey with us

I give thanks for all this. And I will continue to pray for the blessings that are yet to come.



35 comments:

Aubrey said...

Happy thanksgiving my sweet friend. You are on my mind and are in my heart always. XOXO

Erika said...

I'm so sorry for the sad circumstances around your Thanksgiving this year. :( I know very much how you feel and hate that you have to be alone to suffer through it. Praying that God eases your burden and gives you some joy today. Much love, friend.

Katie @ Loverly She said...

Jessah - so admire you for pressing on to be thankful despite circumstances. Reading this post reminded me of Ann Voskamp's book, One Thousand Gifts. She writes about the "hard" thanksgiving - being grateful even when the times are dark.

Kasey A said...

Im sorry you are feeling ill and missing out this Thanksgiving. Sending healing wishes your way and praying that next Thanksgiving greets you better!

Northern Star said...

Hugs hugs hugs dear friend. Thinking of you this holiday season.

Cristy said...

Thinking of you today Jessah. And hoping all your hopes and prayers are answered this Thanksgiving

Dream Chase said...

*hugs* Happy Thanksgiving. Praying that next year's is so full of blessings that make up for how hard this one is.

Ashley said...

So sorry you're sick, Jessah! The rest of my family is, too.
Praying for your heart right now. I know how easy it is to get lost in that dark hole of despair. Keep trusting the Lord's plan and cling to Him. He is faithful!

Gypsy Mama said...

I will be praying for you and wishing that next year's Thanksgiving will be different. xo

Air Force Wife said...

Hey Jessah. I stumbled upon your blog not that terribly long ago, also (not surprisingly) dealing with infertility. I love the cheer and endearing quality of your posts. I love your poise and determination. And I understand how all of that strength, and cheer, and everything, can just fall down. It's always the worst during the Holidays, even when we try to keep our chins up. So, I hope that your immune system continues to perk up and you feel better. I hope that you'll be with friends, family, and your husband soon. And I pray that this will be the last Thanksgiving in which you have to wait for a child. Life does have a habit to get better at times.

Aramis said...

Your advice is good, but you're also right in that it's awfully hard to listen to yourself sometimes. I feel your pain so much right now, I'm in the same place myself. At least it helps to know that we're not alone, right? Sending hugs.

Charity said...

Aww I know the feeling of those days friend. But we are overcomers. The devil seeks to remind us of what we don't have to try and destroy our joy. A few weeks ago I was talking about how I longed for my own child to make memories with. I felt so low, but encouraging friends reminded me that I already had so much to be thankful for. It's all about perspective. Your words to your reader are wise and true and I admire that. Infertility is hard but I have experienced so much love and joy in the friendships I have found in ladies like you. My womb is empty this year and our house doesn't have little feet running around but I am thankful and hopeful that our time is near. Thank you for sharing your heart all the time and keeping it real. Happy Thanksgiving my sweet friend!

Sarah said...

You are not alone, friend. We are here. Listening and praying for you. I've known this pain before. But I also know that sometimes you have to give yourself a day or two to cry and feel pity and scared and MAD!!! And I know physically feeling ill does not help at all. Thinking of you and hoping your body and soul feel better soon xo

Ashley {Life on the Parsons Farm} said...

I understand your pain. But I also know that finding things to be thankful for are what gets me through every day.

Amanda said...

Oh Jessah, that sounds like a really rough Thanksgiving! It's like I always know the holidays will be hard, but I'm kind of blown away every year by just how difficult they can be! I'm so sorry that you're sick and unable to spend the day with family! I hope you're feeling much better soon! HUGS!!!

Robyn B said...

I love the realness of this post! Thank you for sharing...and i love the list of things you are thankful for! Ive learned that even if i dont feel grateful....if i practice being grateful....it normally changes my heart and helps me feel more grateful:)

Susannah said...

Oh, dear girl! I'm so sorry you're going through such a hard time!!! Praise the Lord you still are able to find thanksgiving through it. Thanks so much for linking up!

Jennifer T said...

It can be so easy to feel sorry for ourselves; I wish could say I didn't relate to this post, but I do. That is excellent advice you gave; if only it were easier for us to apply. I am sorry you are sick and feeling down. I wish I could come over and just give you a big hug! Please know that I am grateful for you and always cheering you on in getting your baby but also in just finding the joy in life in the process. Big hugs! Get better! xoxoxo

Holly Olsen said...

you're so right...being thankful for what we already have sounds so simple...but we all know it's not that easy. I do know that when i choose to be grateful it eventually leads to joy.

I think we all deserve pity parties once in awhile! We are only human after all :)

Caroline said...

Oh girl, I'm so sorry to hear this but admire that despite the circumstances you are able to see the good around you!! xoxoxo

conceptionallychallenged said...

I'm so sorry you are feeling down. It is a tough situation, and being sick and missing out on something you were looking forward to makes it all feel even worse.
I hope you get better soon, and that next year's Thanksgiving will look very very different, and much happier.
Hugs.

Sybil@PeaceitallTogether said...

You are an inspiration. Not just for women going through infertility, but for anyone whose circumstances are not what they would choose. So glad that you are able to find ways to be thankful, despite difficult circumstances...because through it all, God is good!

JenS said...

I'm sorry you are feeling so down right now. I was never very good at appreciating the good things in my life. It's not an easy thing to do. All I could see was infertility. I hope that next year you have something new to be thankful for.

Suzanna said...

Self pity is such an easy hole to fall into, I know, that's where I've been at lately. It's amazing how life can seem so much better if we take the time to look on things with a different perspective, yet we usually don't want to put the effort into it. ((hugs)) I hope we both can pull ourselves out of the self pity party.

Amber said...

You might feel alone, but you most definitely are not! I'm so sorry you have been sick. That is no fun at all, especially during a holiday. Jessah, you have an amazing spirit and touch so many people. The fact that you can feel so down, and yet count your blessings just goes to show how special you are. Hang in there Jessah. You have so many people rooting for you, praying for you! Hugs, my friend.

Emily said...

The holidays can be so hard. There is no escaping the reminders of what we want but don't have YET. Notice I said YET. Your time is coming Jessah. I know I don't have a crystal ball, but I truly feel it's going to work out for you, and that this is the very last stretch of bumpy road; That part when the road has been long and you want to just throw your hands up in the air, but if you keep going it will finally pay off. You are almost there! I will be here routing you on the entire way!

Marcy said...

I completely understand your emotions and being torn with sadness in a quiet house, while struggling to be grateful for what we do have. Hugs. It's a very tough path to be on and combined with a fever it's no wonder you are feeling down. Hope the fever has passed and you have renewed energy.

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Jayda said...

I absolutely love your openness and honesty in this. I'm so sorry for the difficult things you're going through...I can definitely relate to some of them. You're right though, it's so important to be thankful for what we have...it can be so hard to remember! I'm so glad to have found your blog though your sweet comment on mine. Really looking forward to reading more!

Always Maylee said...

It's so hard to stay positive through it all, but you're right. Reminding yourself of what you do have instead of what you don't is so important, even though it's so hard to do. I hope you still had a wonderful Thanksgiving. :)

xo, Yi-chia

Amie said...

Praying for you Jessah!! Maybe next Thanksgiving you will have your miracle in your arms :)

Whitney B. said...

In the hardest of times, it is difficult to let our light shine through to others. I'm happy you use blogging as a platform to help others feel not so alone on their journey with infertility. I'm happy you were able to see the things and people to give thanks for, praying for that miracle baby to join y'all soon.

Callie Nicole said...

I love this - I think in any difficult circumstance that is the way to stay happy, because God has given each of us so much! My heart goes out to you in your struggle with infertility - we tried for 11 months with my son - not long in the grand scheme of things, but enough to scare me, and I have so many friends who are struggling to get pregnant. You are all close to my heart. I will be praying for you and your husband. I think that e-mail is proof that God is using your struggles to touch people though, and that is a great thing! Thank you for being so honest.

coll said...

I started my journey at the age of 31 and was finally able to get pregnant at 38. Keep dreaming! I knew it would work and it did. It was a long battle but worth fighting.. Be a dreamer:)

Janna Renee said...

This was me Turkey Day 2012! I feel ya girl! {HUGS}

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