To the Friends I Left Behind on the Infertility Journey

My doctor warned me years prior that I may have some trouble conceiving when I was ready. While most women ovulate monthly, it was maybe once a year for me, making it extremely difficult to time a pregnancy. As a young adult I brushed it off, the desire to have a baby was many moons away.

When I was ready to start trying, I think I was still in denial of how long it could possibly take. Nothing happened.

I was eventually diagnosed with PCOS and my chart was marked with “infertility.” My doctor discussed my options with me and explained that I could take a slower paced route or follow a more aggressive plan. I know myself well and already felt that every additional day was testing my faith and sanity. I’m also as type A / enneagram 3 as they come, so the aggressive route was definitely a better option for me. I was referred to a fertility doctor and there it all began.

The Reality

I wouldn’t wish the stress of fertility issues on anyone. It can really take a toll on your mental health. I’ve spent way too many moments staring in disbelief at negative tests, crying in the car before walking into someone else’s baby shower, and daydreaming about the life I wanted so badly.

More than anything, the infertility journey can feel so lonely. Statistics tell us that 1 in 8 women experience difficulties with conceiving, but it definitely doesn’t feel so common.

However, sometimes difficult times have a way of uniting people with similar stories. My struggle with infertility introduced me to a new tribe of confidants. I met strangers who have become great friends. It turned previous acquaintances into now close companions and strengthened bonds with some people I’ve known for years.

The Announcement

When I eventually found out I was pregnant, of course I was overjoyed. I eagerly told my husband, close family and close friends. But I really struggled with how I would tell my infertile tribe. I felt so happy, but also so guilty. As elated as I was, I know what it is like to feel that cringe of jealousy at yet another pregnancy announcement. And this time, from someone who was supposed to be in the trenches with you.

There was no way I could keep it from them for long. In this world, you check on each other, all the time. You check on each other’s appointments, tests, medication, cycles, trackers, etc. You celebrate every bit of good news and mourn the struggles together. So one by one, I broke the news. They were happy for me of course, even the friend who replied with “thanks for informing me,” and called me two days later to apologize for her cold response. No apology needed my friend, oh boy do I understand.

To the Friends

As I progressed through my pregnancy it was important for me to still keep up with my friend’s journeys. It’s important for me that my friends struggling with infertility know that I’m still here. I’m still here to talk, dream, and hurt with them. We can cry, we can pray, and we can grieve. Whatever you need friends, I’m still with you.

  • To the friend saving money for treatments…
  • To the friend waiting to announce her pregnancy…
  • To the friend who is scared…
  • To the friend who is so sick of bad news…
  • To the friend awaiting her first consultation…
  • To the friend feeling left out among her friends who are all mothers…
  • To the friend who will spend another Mother’s Day without a child…
  • To the friend who wants her body back…
  • To the friend with secondary infertility…
  • To the friend who is sick of pretending she’s handling this better than she is…
  • To the friend who has had to put her fertility treatments on hold due to the pandemic…
  • To the friend whose partner and family don’t understand…
  • To the friend who is afraid to try again…
  • To the friend who has decided to end her journey to motherhood…
  • To the friend who finally got some good news…
  • To the friend who is suffering in silence…

Please know that although I may be at a different point in this journey, I’m still with you.

Danielle Blanco
Danielle is a native New Orleanian. She graduated from Ben Franklin and attended the University of New Orleans' undergraduate and graduate schools. She and her husband Abraham married in 2017 and welcomed their son Blaise in June of 2019. She balances motherhood with working full time as the Director of Finance and Operations at a local CMO. As a first time mom she is learning to embrace the chaos. Danielle’s current struggle is getting her little one to nap as well at home as he does at daycare and to utilize his sippy cup. This type-A mama can usually be found on the go with a to-do list and a plan. She enjoys gift giving, thrifting, watching tv and sewing. Additionally, she never turns down a happy hour or beach vacation. She is excited to experience New Orleans as a mom and is truly proud to call it home.

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