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My Big Fat Full Plate

I wish I could go back to times in my life when I thought I was busy and apologize. “I’m so sorry,” I’d say. “I misjudged you.” Right now, I don’t just have a full plate. I have an overloaded buffet platter and there isn’t even room for the smallest olive.

At present, I have an almost 7 month old baby (who is teething and waking up often in the middle of the night to make clear how he feels about teething) and I have embarked an entirely new career working with Fertility Authority. I also, by the way, really need to lose about 40 pounds. Each issue: New baby, new job, fat ass – could on its own be a full-time project. Still though, I do try to squeeze in exercise (does worrying count as cardio?), eat healthy (well, mostly), be a good and attentive mom (it’s 3am and you’re teeth hurt? Please… do go on!) and be the best damn worker I can be while learning everything on the fly.  So, it goes without saying that I’ve missed having the time to write on the blog.

Let me give you a quick example of a recent incident that best illustrates the state of both my brain and my household. This past Friday, I came home after a long week and an even longer day. The nanny, Aggie, who is a lovely, sweet and quiet older woman, was sterilizing the bottles while my husband was getting MJ undressed for his bath. Aggie wished us a happy weekend and then left. So I went into the bathroom to prepare the bath. I looked and saw there was a big pile of poop in the toilet. I immediately lectured my husband on remembering to flush and he came out on the defense claiming that he didn’t remember even pooping that day. This lead to a 15 minute debate of us trying to recall who pooped last. Just as we became convinced that we each were in fact the poop culprit, I got a call from Aggie all upset. “Jay… I’m so sorry. I did something terrible. I used the bathroom and forgot to flush.” She was mortified but we were relieved to know we hadn’t lost our minds.

Actually, to be fair, after 7 months of parenthood, we kept calling it “poopies”. Yes. I asked my husband if he made poopies. I’m not proud.

It is without exaggeration when I say that going through infertility has sincerely helped me during this crazy time. As I’ve mentioned before on my blog, when I was cycling or going through one of my, “Why the f*ck can’t I get pregnant” depressions, my daily morning motto was, “What do I need to do stay sane today?” There is something about a full plate that can overwhelm you but if you try to remember that you’re doing your best and getting through it, it can be calming. That’s really all we can do – our best.

And really, even though I’m exhausted and behind on everything, I am happy. Through my new job, I have met several people who are desperate to get pregnant and I do what I can to be comforting and helpful.  I find this incredibly rewarding.  I also find myself thinking of them while I hold my son at night. There was one person I spoke to who had truly been through more than any woman should bear and later that evening, as my son fell asleep on my chest (as many a man has done), I thought, “I hope one day, she will hold a baby in her arms like I am now.

Even though I was genuine in thinking this, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the time one of my friends who was getting married, sent another friend and I, who were very much single at that time, a card that said, “I hope you will one day know the happiness I feel.” Truth be told – the letter pissed me off. Extra truth be told – I actually put the card in a frying pan and set it on fire. If memory serves, someone had dumped me earlier that week and my engaged friend’s mere happiness made me feel like a failure. Although I don’t recommend setting things on fire, it did make me feel better.

I mention this because as much as I know my plate is full, it is full for good reason. I don’t ever want to lose sight of that gratitude or where I came from. At the same time though, I would never want my current happiness to be seen as hurtful. It’s a fine line and I’m still not sure how to walk it. Again though, I guess I can only do my best.

So please believe when I say that even though I’m not blogging as much anymore, I am here, I do care and I’m thinking of all of you. Truly. In the meantime, I hope that between now and my next post, I will have lost some weight, gained some more sleep, continue to excel at my job and for the love of god, remember whether or not I’ve pooped.

37 thoughts on “My Big Fat Full Plate”

  1. When an infertile person successfully brings home a baby are they cursed with guilt forever or just temporarily? Can I call it "survivor's guilt" or is there a better term? Does the guilt only happen when you have immersed yourself in a community of infertiles? There are people online and offline who bask in the happiness of motherhood without shame. Who deserves to do that more than someone who struggled so hard to get there?

  2. So glad to read a recent post from you girl! 🙂

    Yes it is hard to walk that line and I don't think it gets much easier. Maybe it's not saying those things to the person you are referring to (about hoping she has a baby) but more listening and making her feel as though you do. I don't know, I find it very hard too, with a few friends that are still struggling, and sometimes myself don't even know what to say even though I've walked in those shoes for a long time. I agree with Buttermilk, it's "survivors guilt." What's important is that we're there I guess!

    And so happy to read about your career change! Does this mean no more Mr.I'm-an-Ass Boss??? 🙂

  3. Even though I rarely see a post from you you never fail to deliver a big laugh out of me! And your nanny cracks me up!

    You are the epitome of showing true empathy and love for others going through infertility. Thats why even when I wasnt prego yet I still loved reading your blog instead of clicking the unfollow button. You have never forgotten your journey and a lot of infertiles gone pregnant easily forget that. I've tried to do the same since getting pregnant and can relate to walking that fine line of balancing the two.

  4. Jay!!! I've missed you!!! A lot has changed since I've last written you! I'll email! 🙂 so glad to see that you're balancing and back to writing! (even of it's a little bit!!) I've referred so many friends to your blog who are going through infertility and they have found it immensely helpful!! So a big thank you to add to your big overfilled plate!! 🙂

  5. Ha ha, that story about the poop is too funny. Or, poopie. My husband and I disagree on what words to use (he hates "pee" and "poop" and thinks you should say "go to the bathroom" even with a baby). I feel like I will eventually win this argument. 🙂

  6. It is a wonderfully full plate isn't it? I think we all wonder how to align the sometimes overwhelming responsibilities and fatigue of parenthood with just how badly we wanted to have all of that to begin with. Great post, especially managing to work poop into it, no newborn story is complete without poop!

  7. Hi from ICLW!

    I needed a good chuckle, thank you!!

    My Hubby is constantly whining about being tired and has mentioned he wants me and our son to leave for his birthday so he can sleep. I, on the other hand, would love it if he would take our son and leave for a day so I can blog! As soon as I really started getting into it, I had a baby and I haven't been able to write like I want to.

  8. Dear J,
    So good to hear from you…like the new design of the blog, and honestly I don't think there could be a better 'go to" person for any infertiles to seek out than you. You went through hell and back to get that beautiful MJ in your arms…sometimes just listening is the best think you can do ~ but you should never feel guilty that your perseverance paid off. That should be the thing that helps others 'keep the faith' that their child is out there ~ Never give up…
    You are the best role model there is…*smile
    Sending you lots of love and {{{{{{{{{HUGS}}}}}}}}}}}} xoxoxo Meg and Hayden

  9. I had a friend refer me to your blog today. I have been going through fertility issues for a while and I just recently had a chemical pregnancy and I felt broken after it. I seriously spent my whole work day reading your blog from the beginning and I was laughing hysterically at most of it. I was pretty disgusted with the things people said to you once you were blessed with a healthy pregnancy. I am yet to get pregnant, but I wanted you to know that your blog gives me hope and it put a smile on my face. Thanks xoxo

  10. Thank you for the laugh out loud at work this morning!! Just the way to start my Friday!! 🙂 Your argument with hubs sounds oh so familiar to my life! As you said busy can be good, especially when its busy with things that bring so much happiness like an awesome job and happy baby boy! Can't wait for another update post from you!

  11. 🙂 That thankfulness is so important on the tough days. Cling to it. I have to remind myself of that often.

    And the first time my Beloved said he had to go to the potty we both just about died laughing. Life with wee-lings is never dull.

    ICLW #7

  12. ICLW #4 — I have to remember to flush in the mornings; I get up so early that I hold off trying to keep the babies asleep longer. I always feel so bad if I forget!

  13. Hi from ICLW.

    You are hysterical.

    I agree that infertility is going to help us deal with all the crazy once we finally do get pregnant – everything sort of comes from a different perspective (not that I would wish infertility on ANYONE)

    Also, your argument with your husband had me LOL

  14. Hi from ICLW. I've been reading your blog for some time now but never commented (Bad lurker!) I am so happy for you that MJ arrived safe and sound and that you are settling in to life as a mommy (with its ups and downs, of course!). Thanks for keeping us laughing!

  15. Hi Jay! Sorry I haven't been around much lately. Thank you for this insightful post (once again). It really spoke to me because today I have been feeling hurt by other people's happiness but please know that, though I can only speak for myself, I recognize this hurt is nothing more than my own feelings that are caused by and come from me. I do not believe they are caused by anyone else, such as you! But thank you for never forgetting the trecherous journey that others continue to go through while you hold your miracle in your arms. It's what makes you so amazing! 🙂

  16. Ha! I seriously lol'd at the poopies. My husband will leave ones he's proud of to 'share.' Then there's our potty training two year old who tried to shake out her poopy panties over the potty this week and splashed the entire bathroom…ah, good times. I hope you've had a couple breaks now and then since you posted this!

  17. Hi, I'm here from ICLW! For some reason I just keep showing up as anonymous, but I'm from I appreciate that you're able to remember what it was like to struggle with infertility and you don't just throw out party line platitudes (e.g., it will happen, just think positive thoughts). I think that everyone who struggles to get that BFP should be allowed all the happiness in the world, but it can be hard to be the one left waiting when it seems like they just forget what it's like to be on this uncertain, exhausting journey. I really like your writing style – definitely made me smile. I also think it's amazing that now you get to help other women in their journey to motherhood!

  18. Here from ICLW! I like your writing style – definitely made me smile. It's fantastic that you're a mom now. I hope one day I can say the same. I also really appreciate that you remember what it's like to struggle with infertility and you're there to help others through the process. Although anyone who gets pregnant deserves all the happiness in the world and shouldn't feel a need to remain solemn for the sake of those still on this uncertain, exhausting journey, I find that those who turn to party line platitudes once they get their BFP hard to cope with. So I appreciate your approach.

  19. Hello from ICLW! I am laughing at the toilet culprit story. If I were the nanny, I would NEVER have 'fessed up to that one … props to her for her honesty!

    Now that another month has passed, I hope you feel like you're balancing your full plate better. Happy commenting!

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