I have known I was pregnant for a very long time. Such is the case when you get pregnant from IVF.
For a long time, I have wanted to shout it from the rooftops — that it worked, that I can’t believe it, that I saw him on my ultrasound, do you want to see all the pictures?!
For a long time, I have not known how to announce my pregnancy because I know too well what it’s like on the other side. I’ve had too much practice smiling when I want to scream, offering congratulations — and meaning them — but feeling gutted at the same time.
Every time I’ve gone to write the caption or make the post, I can’t help but think of her. My friend who did an embryo transfer a month after mine and it didn’t work. My friend who quietly miscarried last year. The stranger who reached out on Facebook in solidarity, who I don’t know how to respond to now that I am (hopefully) out of those woods?
There is a big secret Babies Are Hard club whose members rally to support each other whenever one of us breaks our silence. I’ve felt honored to be one of them. I feel so strange to maybe not be anymore.
What I’ve found myself wanting to say with this announcement is, I’m pregnant and I’m sorry!
Of course I am not sorry I’m pregnant. Not a bit. But I am sorry for the pain of those who want to be pregnant and aren’t, or who were pregnant but aren’t anymore, or who are getting to the age where they need to get pregnant but for whatever reason can’t get pregnant just yet.
It is strange to hold both these feelings at once, and yet the messiness of it feels like par for the course.
Because I was supposed to get pregnant and I didn’t. I was sad when I didn’t get pregnant, but then sometimes I was also relieved. I felt guilty for being relieved, then mad for feeling guilt over my feelings. There were supposed to be answers, and there just weren’t.
It’s funny because these announcements look so simple. They are all pink and blue and pre-planned, and when you glimpse their smiling faces you never imagine the pain or fear or confusion that once may have filled them. You cannot imagine, say, how many shots in the belly and/or butt were required to achieve this happy state. And maybe that’s the whole point — that nothing is simple, that it isn’t supposed to be. That this is only another beginning in the messy rest of my life.
Because I am grateful and terrified.
I am flooded with relief and overwhelmed with a whole new set of worries.
I am where I am but have not forgotten where I’ve been.
I’m pregnant, and I’m sorry.