Friday, August 6, 2021

Inflammation of My Feelings

This morning was hard on my heart. 

For part of my job, I work in pediatric healthcare. There was a community health fair for children today. I didn't think much of it. Okay, cool, community health fair, do some free screenings, sounds good...

But it wasn't. 

Well, it was. It was really great actually. It was a wonderful opportunity for parents and their kids.

But it ended up being hard for me. It really made me feel things. And it was confusing in the moment. I didn't know what I was feeling. But I knew I didn't feel good. So I half paid attention to my feelings and half just went on auto pilot and got through the morning.

But now I've had some time to reflect.

I'm home. I'm happy. I'm on my couch with a quilt. I ate dinner. (Pizza!) I'm tired from the work week. (The good kind of tired, the kind where you worked hard and you feel it.) And I'm happy to be home. Did I mention that already? ;) By the way, things here are going well. Repairs are slowly but surely being done... We will finish unpacking eventually... It's just nice to BE somewhere. No, it's more than nice. It's much more than that. It's a big huge relief. I've been searching for years for a home after I sold the house I bought for my children. I appreciated every place I've lived since then, but none of them felt like home. This house does.

But I digress.

So. This morning. I felt awful. There were several contributing factors. The current pandemic and people's varying level of precautions stresses me out. Also, the health fair was held in a building where I wasn't comfortable. I don't even know how to explain it. The environment was just very off-putting. But it was also (mostly) infertility.

Infertility sucks.

There I was in a room with mothers and their babies and toddlers. Yes, there were other healthcare professionals in the room too. But guess what everyone had in common except me?... Ding, ding, ding. You win a prize if you guessed that I was the only one in the room without kids.

Big sad, annoyed, and hurt sigh.

It's not the kids. It's never the kids. I love kids. I like them; they like me. We are equally fascinated with each other and we get along fine. 

It's the moms. It's my sadness that I never got to be a mom and never got to have mom friends. It's the camaraderie that I will never share. The experiences I will never have. And being reminded by held baby after snuggled toddler after knowing smile from one mom to another...

It was a long three hours. And then it ended. I kind of had a stomach ache, but I also compartmentalized the event and told myself to think about it later. And I did when I got home.

There were so many triggers at this morning's event. I didn't realize how many there were at the time. But it was quite the combo. And that's okay. That's how it goes sometimes. What I can do is isolate what factors bothered me and do my best to avoid them in the future.

I think community health fairs are important, but I don't think I should do anything else that day. I don't think I should have any other responsibilities on my work schedule on days when there are health fairs. I will need to go home and just nap. It takes a lot out of me.

I love kids and working in pediatrics, but I'm not interested in learning about babies or working with new moms. I think there are other people better suited for that. I enjoy and excel at working with kids ages 3 and above. In small groups. Preferably one-on-one. For finite periods of time. ;)

I took care of my infertility-inflamed heart today. I knew I felt crappy. I honored that by giving myself some space and time to reflect without judging myself. Then I figured out some things I can try to avoid in the future.

And, most importantly, I still appreciate and enjoy the life that I *do* have. The feelings from this morning didn't fester or linger. They were just there in the moment while I was immersed in that particular environment. I went back to work in the afternoon and now I'm home. 

This really shows me progress in my recovery from infertility.

I'm thankful for insight and healing.
And for my life and my home.
Even on the hard days.


  1. I am so happy that your new house feels like home.

    I am sorry that the day was hard. It would be hard for me as well.
    I also love children 3+.

    Sending you hugs.

    1. Thank you Klara. I'm glad I now know that I prefer working with kids ages 3 and older. Also, I am really, really thankful for my new home.

  2. I've never been one who loved babies. But I'll admit, after infertility it is often particularly hard to be around them, and their mothers. I'm really sorry you had to go through that.

    But I'm so glad that you look after yourself, and have plans about how to do that in the future. That's all we can do - learn how to cope and protect ourselves. And one day, sometime in the future, you might go to an event like this and, by the end of the day, realise that it doesn't affect you in the way it would have.

    Also, it's so great that your new house feels like home so soon after moving in!

    1. Groups of babies and toddlers and their moms are not something I actively choose to be around, that's for sure! But... Situations like that can happen when you work with kids. I'll just plan even better for myself for those events in the future. (I can still be a kid myself. I don't have a problem buying myself lunch or some other kind of prize for getting through hard stuff. Hahaha)

  3. That sounds so, so hard. I am glad that you took time for self care, for recovering and being kind to your inflamed heart. Those moments are exhausting. I'm glad you can do what you love, but man that sounds hard. And I hear you -- it's not the kids. It's all the other stuff that makes it hurt. Sending you love!

    1. It was an interesting experience. I thought I was prepared. But NOPE I wasn't and it hit me right while it was happening, as families were transitioning to and from the different booths. It hit hard. But don't worry, I just stuffed it down! Lol. And, very important, I unpacked it when I got home. Don't need to be carrying all that around with me!

      Thank you for your understanding. I know you get it from being a teacher and working in schools.

  4. Dear Phoenix, I'm very sorry to read that you had a tough day. Yet it seems to me that you know what you need and what is good for you, which is very important to avoid and/or compensate for bad days. This is a big step toward a peaceful life.
    Congrats on your new house, I'm glad that you feel at home there :-)
    I send you hugs!

    1. It can be hard to know what we need in the moment. But over time I've gotten better at it. Because YES! I want a peaceful life. :)