This week’s Inspirational story is by Laurie and the theme of her story (if we were to pick one) is relationships. I ‘found’ Laurie on Twitter and wrote one of my first guest blogs for her called ‘Starting Over After Infertility – A New Business Idea?‘ That was 2 years ago now and we’ve both changed a lot since.
Laurie and her husband Bruce decided not to go through treatment and are mentoring children as volunteers, which is something I know others find helpful.
Coming to terms with childlessness tests every relationship, and afterwards none are the same. Some become stronger and others break, and this break can be temporary or permanent. Especially your relationship with God and/or the Church. Laurie is our first writer to comment specifically on this and she says that her ‘ relationship with God is the most important thing in my life! It’s not just my faith that helps me move forward – it’s trust. I trust God, and believe with all my heart that having children is, for us, not meant to be.’ Whether you share Laurie’s views or not, faith is working for her and enables her to say that she ‘trusts that this is how my life is supposed to be.’ I admire Laurie’s certainty.
I love her advice to ‘create a life that is full of different activities and people that captivate you’ as she says ‘if one thing falls through ….. then you have other meaningful and fulfilling things in your life.’ So who’s with me in being what she calls a ‘Renaissance Woman’?
Over to Laurie,
1. Where are you on your journey now?
I’ve accepted that my husband Bruce and I won’t have children naturally, and probably won’t adopt or foster children. We considered adoption and fostering, but my heart wasn’t in it. My husband would’ve gone along with fostering or adopting, but I don’t think his heart was really in it, either. So we decided to volunteer our time – him as a Big Brother and me as a Big Sister, through the Big Brothers/Big Sisters organization – and pursue other hobbies and interests.
2. What’s your story?
After two years of marriage, Bruce and I discovered we weren’t able to have children naturally, due to male infertility. We tried IUI (intrauterine insemination) for six months, but were unsuccessful. We considered IVF (in vitro fertilization), but I didn’t want to go through it. I thought it’d be too emotionally, physically, and financially demanding. It would’ve been great to have kids, but I just didn’t want to go through fertility treatments.
My husband was disappointed – he always said he’d do IVF if he could – but he was very, very supportive of my decision. Bruce just wished he could’ve been the one who the option to undergo the fertility treatments. Me too.
3. What helped you to heal/how did you deal with your grief?
My relationship with God is the most important thing in my life! It’s not just my faith that helps me move forward – it’s trust. I trust God, and believe with all my heart that having children is, for us, not meant to be. God knows me, and He has allowed my life to unfold this way for a reason.
This doesn’t mean I’m happy and peaceful all the time! I still feel sad when my friends get pregnant. I always grieve a little when I hold a baby, and I long for the feeling of bonding with my own baby. But I trust that this is how my life is supposed to be. I believe God loves me, and I am filled with peace, joy, and power when I turn to Him. His grace and love amazes me!
4. What are the positives (gifts) for you of not having children?
Freedom – emotionally, physically, socially, financially, and professionally (though we have two dogs who tie me down more than I care to admit).
5. How are you different now (who are you now)?
I’ve learned that we live with grief. We never heal fully after a heartbreak…we just learn how to live with it. Hopefully, we learn how to live with joy, peace, and acceptance! I’ve always been optimistic and positive, so it’s probably easier for me to move forward happily even without children. Plus I had a very difficult childhood – I was in foster homes myself, growing up. My bad childhood made me so incredibly grateful for my adulthood.
My freedom, my independence, and the little things in life make me so happy! I’ve also deepened my relationship with God. It didn’t happen overnight, but I always trusted that He knew what He was doing. I’ve learned how to see myself the way He sees me, and it’s changed my life. God makes me different.
6. What advice would you give to women who are not as far down the road as you are?
Close your eyes and turn your attention to God. What is He telling you about your life, your relationships, your dreams, your life, yourself? What do you need to know? Building a strong, vibrant, real relationship with Jesus will change everything about your life! There is nothing that offers more freedom, joy, hope, or peace in this world. Acceptance and surrender are the keys to happiness. Acceptance of and surrender to God, and to His will in your life.
And, create a life that is full of different activities and people that captivate you. Don’t focus on one aspect of your life, such as your marriage or family or work. Be a “Renaissance Woman” with a wide variety of interests and friendships! That way, if one thing falls through – such as not getting pregnant – then you have other meaningful and fulfilling things in your life.
7. What brings you joy/what’s your passion?
I love building my blog business, writing, playing the flute, and romping with my dogs in the forest. I’ve just started learning how to paint with oils, and I’m thrilled to finally pursue this dream! I always wished I was an artist, but I never dreamed I could actually paint. I thought I wasn’t creative or artistic, but I was wrong. I also do yoga and run.
Laurie has a series of blogs called Blossom, and writes tips-based articles that help people find freedom, faith, and courage. She writes about everything from laser eye surgery to how to make money blogging.
How did this help you?
How did this story resonate with you? Please share your comments below to help other women (you can use a different name).
Taking control of my story and really owning it changed my life. If you’d like to do that but it’s too much of a challenge right now, check out the Let Go and Move On Programme and see how it can help you.
If you’d like to take control of your life and your story and inspire others I’d love to feature your Inspirational Story. You can use your real name or any other that you chose to give me, and I’ll happily promote your website or blog. Some of the feedback I’ve had from the writers includes ‘I’m so pleased to have told my story now’, I’ve been astonished by the amount of messages I have received …. all grateful for me sharing this part of my story’, and ‘… seeing the response has been utterly humbling and beautiful. I’m so grateful to you.’ So if you think you could inspire others please contact me.