Forgive my terrible iPhone pictures but we are on our way back from Disneyland Paris and I wanted to wish you all a very merry Christmas!
Disney’s always been our happy place… We always went to Disneyland Paris in December to celebrate Christmas (a bit in advance of the actual day because we like to be at home on the day). It was our “Second date” as T says (because apparently none of the intervening meet ups counted as a date, because we didn’t go out anywhere!).
And for those of you who followed my blog during the pre-B times, you’ll know it’s the place we went to try and be happy again after years of infertility and our first cycle of IVF ended in the loss of our first, longed for baby in 2015. (We said if it didn’t work out we’d go to Disney World in Florida. We did, and it was amazing. Very few things could put a smile back on my face.)
For those who’ve been through infertility and loss, you know the pain of trying to find happiness whilst thinking you may never have your happy ending. And I wouldn’t say anything so crass as to suggest you will have it – because life isn’t fair and it doesn’t always work out that way. But I hope 2018 is your year. Even though some of us are on “The Other Side” and have a baby after infertility and loss, I don’t think we ever forget.
So to be able to go to Disneyland with our little baby B and to see his reaction to meeting all the characters, and to see Disney through a child’s eyes – that felt all the sweeter. Bittersweet, almost. T even said, I wonder what our first baby would have looked like? To us, B is the most beautiful baby in the world. (Almost a toddler!) We wished and hoped for him for so long. I just loved the ability to give him that experience of the magic of Disney and to know that the dream I held for so long finally came true.
I know there is pain and sadness and I want to hold space for that. I wish that all of you could have your Christmas wishes. I also think of my friends who have gone through so much this year. My friend with cancer, marking a year of fighting it. My friend with infertility who had to accept that her journey to try and have a baby is over. My brother and his wife who are dealing with a life changing diagnosis for their child, and letting go of all the jealousy I used to hold for his perfect life. And all the difficult stuff going on in the world… It just blows my mind sometimes.
This year has been such a life changing one. The year I became a mother. The year B came into the outside world after kicking away inside me for months. Timehop tells me I was absolutely huge about now. I had all these ideas about motherhood, and I knew I really really wanted a child but I wasn’t sure if I wanted a baby – I thought that part might be difficult and tiring and hard.
But it’s been the best year of my life. And I feel such gratitude that somehow the stars aligned and we managed to make a baby (with a little help from our – medical – friends). I can’t even describe how much gratitude I feel. And I really don’t say this to be smug. I don’t feel proud of anything I’ve done because it was almost all down to other people, people who helped us achieve the (almost) impossible.
So to all of them and all of you –
The doctors who helped us
The nurses and midwives who looked after us
The embryologists and fertility doctors who helped us make B
The surgeons who made things safe for B to grow – and helped him enter the world
The immunologist who dosed me up on ten different types of medication
The sonographers who figured out what was going on
The friends – in real life and online who supported us
Our families who rooted for us and cried with us after our previous loss
I am so deeply grateful. I hope that you find your happy under the tree. I hope you get your heart’s desire. I’ll never stop feeling grateful and I won’t take any of this for granted.