life, philosophy, thoughts

Daily Prompt: The Road Less Traveled

cabin road wm

This Daily Prompt, The Road Less Traveled, was from July 2nd, 2013. Just a little heads up, this topic is a very personal one, but something is calling me to share it.

I actually wrote an article about my road less traveled several years ago, but it’s too long for a blog post at 1,900 words. So, here is just the beginning of that article.

woods trail wm
Childfree Street is kind of narrow, but still a nice view.

My life is on a road few travel. This road is not shown on any maps (or GPS) to help guide the way. When I bump into a rare fellow traveler, we usually become fast friends and journey together. We are women who wanted to give birth and raise children but were unable.

Some people take a turn onto the lovely Adoption Lane. Not many choose the sharp left curve from Trying-to-Conceive Boulevard, onto Childfree Street.

The article goes on to explain why adoption isn’t always an option for everyone. But, that is not the reason why I’m sharing my road less traveled here today. The Daily Prompt said to talk about the moment I made the decision, and what my life might’ve been like had I chosen differently.

I never made the decision not to have my husband’s child. We tried for a year with one miscarriage as a result. From there we moved to medical intervention. We had agreed to try five hormone treatments, but on the third one I got seriously ill. We were told by the doctors that once I healed, we could try the treatments again. My husband was worried about me and objected to trying two more times. I didn’t argue much. I wasn’t looking forward to putting my body through more hell, so we agreed to stop hormone treatments.

Side note: Keep in mind that three hormone treatments did not mean we tried three times. There were many months of trying in between for a total of seven years.

We discussed adoption but needed a break from all the physical, emotional and mental strain first. At that point, I found myself in a deep depression. Eventually I realized that it wasn’t so much a depression but a period of necessary mourning. I grieved the loss of my fertility and my imaginary children.

dupont falls wm
The tears spilled over like a waterfall.

Once I made it through that grieving period, I actually laughed and enjoyed life. I turned forty, and much like George Bailey, I wanted to live again! The idea of going through the ups and downs of the adoption process in order to start a family felt like switching on the emotional roller coaster all over again.

So, I/we never really chose not to raise biological children, but at age forty, I/we did choose not to become adoptive parent(s).

door to sea wm
There is light and beauty on the other side.

What would my life be like today had I chosen differently? Well, instead of being an empty nester like other people our age, we still would’ve had little ones at home. So, being on our own at this age is actually what we wanted. Except, we had hoped to have raised smart, healthy, independent grown children by now.

Sometimes it makes us sad not to have a family. But, the two quotes I shared on Friday are what changed my life and brought me into acceptance.

When I went through the grieving period I mentioned above, many people suggested I go on anti-depressants or adopt  in order to stop my heartache. I knew for certain that if I didn’t face the pain head on, then the entire purpose of the infertility would’ve been lost. I needed that time to introspect and to learn. I am now grateful for what I faced and glad I didn’t avoid it. I grew spiritually during that time, especially when the universe planted this quote in my path…if you’re not enough without it, you’ll never be enough with it.

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22 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: The Road Less Traveled”

  1. Lori, this was such a personal and heartfelt post. I can’t imagine the pain and heartache you endured as you raised your hopes and had them crushed time and again. You are an inspiration to others who find themselves on a similar path. I admire the way you dug deep inside yourself to find happiness in spite of the fact that your life followed a course you’d never planned to take.

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    1. You know, Terri, I thought of you when I wrote this out because your life sounds a lot like mine when I was growing up. It’s the one I thought I’d also have as an adult. I didn’t plan to live 1,200 miles away from my family either. I’d rather not be living here, but it’s where the job took us. Neither of our lives are perfect. Obviously, there are ups & downs on any path of life. There is also much to be grateful for in both our lives too. Your reading this and commenting means a lot to me. You are one of the more compassionate people I’ve met.

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  2. Grieving in a natural method for something desired that didn’t come about is, I think, the healthiest way to approach life. For me and my husband, it was a choice not to have children. Do I sometimes regret it? A little. But I soon remember how it was the right decision for us. For some in your position, adoption is the right choice. But for others, not necessarily. I’m glad you found your way through the grief to reach the good and right place for your.

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    1. Thanks for reading and commenting about my road less traveled, JM. Also, for sharing openly and honestly about your road. Good to see you.

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  3. I’m glad you went with your instinct and allowed yourself the time to grieve without intervention. You fully expected to have a family and events conspiring to prevent that is a significant loss. Also knowing when to continue to pursue or line of action of not, is a significant factor in making sound life choices. Sometimes boats do sail without us on them. Sharing your story is very generous of you, as I’m certain other people will benefit.

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  4. Lori, thank you for sharing your heartache, and the way you allowed yourself to fully grieve without masking the pain. It must have been a challenging time for you both. It sounds like you learned and grew from the process and have come to terms with what Life is offering you. Hugs.

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    1. Thank you for coming back today, Kathy, and reading about this part of my life. It will always be a part of me. Once in a while I miss the family that never was, but I’m happy and blessed in many other ways.

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    1. Hey Carrie! I’ve never been Freshly Pressed and often wondered what the heck a blogger’s gotta do to get there. It means a lot that you think this is worthy. It came from my heart. Thanks for reading.

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  5. That is so deep and must have taken a lot of courage to share, so I thank you for that. In a sense, I know how it feels to cry everything out and feel much happier. I went through something similar at a three-day intense emotional-release course. And I think crying really does heal, because you are letting things go rather than suppressing. I think you are so incredibly strong and brave to face the pain head on. I only hope that I will have your strength when obstacles come my way. Thank you for being so inspirational.

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