I was a little nervous going into tonight’s first meeting of the debut of the Resolve Tucson Infertility Support Group.
I kept flashing back to fourteen years before when Lisa and I had our first meeting.
We were about two years into our infertility journey and the pregnant world was closing in around us.
Friends who had been thinking about having kids were leaving messages on our answering machine with their ‘we’re expecting’ joy filled messages.
Our siblings had already begun to produce grandchildren that were fast becoming the centerpiece of every family get together.
Our ongoing infertility saga began to become a source of irritation for some family members, while others tilted their heads and reached their arms out in a gesture of empathy that often felt like pity for the infertility lepers we had become.
After traveling 240 miles round trip to Phoenix for support for about six months, Lisa decided Tucson needed a support group, and I was actually looking forward to us expanding our social network beyond the spawning universe around us.
Tonight I was reminded of why I love being part of an infertility support group.
It takes courage to go to a meeting of strangers and talk about your infertility.
So often, you arrive battle fatigued from all of the insensitive comments hurled at you by well meaning, or just ignorant, people who have never dealt with any kind of infertility.
Many times you are weary from the emotional assault of unexpected pregnancy announcements, the relative that can’t resist carrying on about a child’s ‘first’ anything, or any emotional landmine that lies beneath the dirt of the infertility unaware world.
Being in that room tonight, I had the privilege of meeting some new brave souls facing their infertility head on.
I felt like we met new members of our family, and even ten years after our story was resolved, I had forgotten how often I avoid talking about our infertility history with the “non-fertility challenged”.
I still have a low sperm count. I don’t know why – even 15 years after I got that fateful one million count result back.
I could talk about that tonight, and not feel judged. No one someone squirmed in their seat or looked away uncomfortably.
I was reminded that we are never alone in this journey, as long as we have the company and support of others brave enough to bare their souls, and share their hopes and fears and tears and triumphs.
I look forward to the next meeting—on the third Tuesday of next month!