If you have ever suffered from infertility, you are familiar with the feeling of "being slighted." You go through all the "why me's?" and the "it's just not fairs." You simply cannot shake the feeling.
I was talking the other night to an old college friend that also suffered from infertility, however has since been blessed enough to have twins after ivf. She talked about the feeling of "being slighted" and how it didn't completely go away even after her miracle twins were born. She said that after all she had been through to conceive, she had hoped she would be able to soak up the infant stage, but instead was thrown into "survival mode" with doing everything times two. Not that she would have changed it, just that she was resentful that she didn't get to do any of it like everyone else. She felt slighted.
I can relate to this 100% because while I would not change a thing and I'm more grateful than I could ever put into words, I do feel slighted. I feel slighted out of being pregnant, breast feeding, getting to plan a pregnancy, make the medical decisions during pregnancy, and well, I could go on and on. But, before I go on. I thought, You know, I feel certain that there is not a person in this world that doesn't feel a little or a lot slighted.
Maybe you got pregnant before marriage and you feel like you missed out on the whole "kid-free honeymoon" phase of marriage or you didn't go as far in school as you wanted to. Maybe you are single and don't want to be. Maybe you married the wrong person and are feeling like you wasted too much time. Maybe you got married too young and missed out on your "wild and free" years. Maybe you have been diagnosed with an illness or disease that has robbed you of countless opportunities and caused you to become more of a spectator in your own life. Maybe you have lost a close family member or spouse too soon and you resent the moments in your life that they will miss and a day does not pass that you don't miss every ounce of their being.
I started thinking that all of us are in this thing together and we have more in common than we realize. I find myself often saying, "nobody can relate to this. I just feel so alone." And that's partly true. Most people cannot relate to infertility. However, most people can relate to feeling slighted in this life.
So what's the lesson? I think the lesson is that this is life and there are no guarantees. I think the lesson is that we can't expect it to go smoothly. It's life. Have you ever thought that maybe we actually create our own heartbreaks through expectations? I don't even mean unrealistic expectations. I just mean by having any expectation at all.
Maybe we need to change our expectations into hopes. Maybe we need to never, never, never give up hope. But expect nothing because you will be disappointed. If you expect anything, expect that. But hope for the best, make it a habit to see the good even when it's hard to find, and whenever you catch yourself feeling like nobody can relate to how slighted you have been, look around. Look past the smiling faces and perfectly filtered selfies on social media; because behind the facade, we are all... a little slighted.