Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Backsliding

First an update: things continue to progress with Baby Bear's bio family. Biomom and Biograndma are having their first visit with him on Thursday. So things are moving along smoothly there. At this point, a quick reunification is probably best for everyone involved.

An interesting thing has happened in the past few days, one that I'm not at all happy about - I've been backsliding. As my profile suggests PB and I have been dealing with infertility for three long years. When we were in the midst of that struggle, I thought things were as bad as they could possibly get. They weren't (hello, October 2006) but it was a long hard climb out of the pit I created for myself. I went through the grieving process, I felt guilty (like it was my fault, since it's female factor infertility), I bargained (you know, just one kid, and we'll be done) and then I got really angry for a really long time. I also had serious issues dealing with "fertiles." I felt especially resentful of people with tons of kids, or of people who had kids who were about the age of our imaginary kids, had we been able to conceive relatively quickly. I started to hate my body and developed serious body image issues for the first time in my entire plus-sized life.

It took me a really long time (and some therapy) to work through all that crap. But I honestly did. At the end, before we dove headfirst into foster-to-adopt, I was still upset by my infertility and every new failure still hurt, but I didn't rage against the Universe and people with kids, and everyone else. I had accepted that this was our reality and that it was unlikely to change. I finally got over those feelings of intense jealousy.

One totally unexpected and unwelcome side effect of this whole situation has been an extreme rushing back toward my worst feelings about my fertility. It's like I've not made a shred of progress in dealing with it. I'm mad at people with children again, even though I shouldn't be, and I don't want to be. I am seriously resentful of the failure of my body to do what most women's bodies can do. I'm afraid that it will ruin what PB and I have (even though, really, I know that we are strong enough to get through this).

Secretly, I worry that I am being punished for not wanting kids all along, for not being sure that I could be a good mom.

L says backsliding is called that because it is descriptive of the state - you slide back, but not permanently. She's sure I'll make it back to a more OK place with my fertility (or lack thereof). Because I still have some sense of persepctive, I think she's probably right. We'll see.

7 comments:

Renee said...

I know we dont know eachother well, but all I can think of to do/say I give you a hug. If you arent the hugging type feel free to *gag* behind my back *wink*

Tamara said...

Just wanted to let you know that we (hubby and I) certainly feel for you all in learning that your little one will be reunited with the birth family. We had 4 kids returned before we got a child who we would adopt through foster care. It WILL happen - everyone I've ever known who wanted to foster to adopt got their forever child eventually. It hurts so, so much. We cried a lot, and I ate a lot of ice cream. But in the end it was all so worth it.

I wish I could offer more encouragement, I really do. It is a very special thing you are doing. I firmly believe we are called to do this - it is God's work for us. Hope I haven't overstepped by saying that - just is very dear to my heart.

Hugs to all of you as you go through this transition.

R. said...

All things in life seem cyclical. Including your thought processes on this paticular issue.

Once upon a time, when I thought we wanted to reproduce, I used to spend time on alt.infertility, and the backsliding was very rampant and cyclical. You aren't alone in going back to a line of thought, but the reality is that you will move out of it. Sometimes, you'll move out of it quicker than other times, or you may stay in it a bit longer.

It's either a cycle, or a zig-zagging line to get to where you want to be.

But please don't beat yourself up for going backwards for awhile - if you don't come out of it, then it's time to become upset. Just work through it at your own pace because I'm guessing there is something to be learned out of the backslide.

(Hugs could be included here if I were a touchy feely person)...

Anonymous said...

I can truly relate to your post and your struggle. My husband and I have been trying since 1996 to keep a pregnancy, and it just hasn't happened. We, too, are foster adopt parents, and currently have two little boys in our home. I wish you the very best in your struggle. I know how very hard it can be.

Amanda said...

Thanks for the comments! I love to hera other perspectives on this and even though I'm sorry for all of you for experiencing this same thing, it's good to know that others are surviving it.

parodie said...

I wonder if you would find it any different to think of this as a cyclical rather than linear process - as you experience different things, you cycle back to parts of your grief that you have already experienced, but since you have grown and changed since then, you experience it slightly differently (which changes you again, etc). In this way, you can think of these waves of hurt and grief and anger as a form of progress in and of themselves - you are learning. It sucks (!!) but it is part of the process too.

Good luck. And another tentative hug. :)

Amanda said...

I like this take on things, Parodie... Continual learning (at least in this form) gets tiresome after a while, but I think you're right!!