What does one do when she realizes she is almost completely alone? When the person who is supposed to be in this with her, feels so differently as to not understand her at all, as to not validate her pain or her grief? What happens when she realizes that her life would be a thousand times easier if she could just let go of her dream, let the portrait of the family of four that hoovers desperately in her mind’s eye just wither and die? What happens if she sees that all the pain and suffering that she–and everyone she loves–is experiencing, is because she wants something that never was, and probably never will be?

How does that person move forward? How does she lay that dream to rest? How does she not harbor resentment toward those who love her, but not her dream? How does she find peace with fact that she may not be able to pursue that which others come by so easily? How does she find peace in this new life, that she doesn’t recognize or want?



22 responses

  1. Hi sweetie. So sorry you’re in so much pain. We just finished talking about this very thing this week on the podcast. It will be live on Tuesday- I hope you give it a listen. In the meantime, don’t paint over the pain- confront it and live it. Better to do that now than to have the full weight crash down on you later. And hug Isa. A lot. Abiding with you.

  2. Get over yourself maybe? You are just making yourself and your existing family miserable by pushing for some arbitrary ideal in your head. Do you really think a second child is the answer and going to make you complete??! Really??!! Try living in the now with your beautiful and healthy daughter and husband who loves you madly and the supportive grandparents that live within a stones throw of you. You are so blessed you don’t even know it. You’re not entitled to all your dreams it’s a fact of life. Stop harping on about it and start living. Seriously not talking about unicorn farts and fairy queefs but EVERYONE has shit in their lives and if your worst is losing your dream of a 2 child family well you’re doing pretty darn well. Stop thinking everyone else is so happy and so fertile and so lucky and supported by their partners. They are not.
    Quit focusing on everything you don’t have! Grieve it, let it go and be thankful. Stop destroying your family, the one you have instead of living in a freakin dream.
    Start acting 32 not 15.

  3. Andy: if anyone needs to get over themselves, it is you. Not the author of this blog. It must be nice to be a Pain Olympics judge, arbitrating all types of suffering, pronouncing whose pain is deserved and whose is not. Bully for you! The thing is, everyone in the ALI community deals with “expert judges” such as yourself, often on a daily basis, and boy is it nice when they follow us to safe places where we seek solace and kindness from others suffering in silence. Except, not. I would never seek out a blogger who writes about divorce and harangue them and say, “Stop your whining. YOU haven’t had two miscarriages like I HAVE, therefore your pain is null and void.” Because I have NO IDEA what they are going through. Pain is pain and it is awful. Judging anyone else’s pain is a shitty and mean thing to do.

  4. Oh for goodness sake, Andy. Esperanza frequently acknowledges the blessings she has. That doesn’t mean she isn’t allowed to have goals and desires – we all have them and the fact is it can be painful to give them up.
    If you can’t handle reading about the thoughts and emotions of others can I suggest you might want to stop reading blogs that focus on those facets of life and perhaps stick with more factual reading material. There are plenty of cooking or exercise blogs out there. A bit of exercise might help you work out some of that aggression you are clearly harbouring.

  5. Setting dreams aside is a very hard thing to do, especially dreams that you’ve had since the beginning of time. What we envision for our families is so central to who we are, that facing the possibility (and unfortunately in many cases, the reality) that that vision may not be, is terrifying. We were already mourning the possible loss of our “family of four” as we were being diagnosed with MFI. We didn’t even have one child yet, and we had discussions about dealing with letting go of the dream of having two. What you’re feeling is so normal and within the realm of expecting and deserving support and love from those closest to you. What you’re going through is so hard, and painful. You want what you want – and it doesn’t matter how many children you currently have. IF steals many things from us, and mourning those losses is something that we must do in order to move forward.

    Andy, please understand that mourning the loss of a dream does not, in any way, diminish one’s appreciation for what they currently have. Would you tell a woman, or better yet – a FATHER, who lost a late-term pregnancy to get over him or herself because of the child they already have at home? No you would not – or at least – I HOPE you would not (maybe YOU would). People’s losses are only qualified by themselves, and outsiders’ (even those people close to them) realities, personal experiences and expectations, and coping abilities should never be applied to someone else’s experiences.

  6. Wow, this post got hijacked by someone going in a totally different direction. None of us are entitled to all our dreams, but we’re still entitled to be sad if we don’t achieve them. And that’s all I’ll say in response to Andy.

    But in response to Esperanza, who is actually the one we should be responding to – do what you just did. Come here. It would be great if you & your partner could see eye-to-eye on everything. But sometimes you need to seek support elsewhere. Sometimes doing that can get you to a point where you’re better able to communicate with him, and if not at least it’ll help you process and feel better overall (I hope). So sorry you are going through this.

  7. Oh, E. How I wish I had any kind of answer at all as to how one would go about letting a dream like this go. I felt much the same way after my last miscarriage, during my months of rock bottom, every time my husband would say that he would be okay (not happy, but okay) even if we never had a child. I wanted so badly to be able to agree with him, to say that I would be okay too, that we could still be happy (or at least okay) with just the two of us, but after all we had been through, it would have been a lie, and I couldn’t convince myself that it was okay to lie about that. I am so sorry you’re having to wrestle with this possibility, and I admire that you are looking for ways to come to terms with it, though I still fiercely hope that it won’t be the final outcome after all. I’m just going to ignore Andy, hoping that you know that the rest of us know much, much better what you are talking about, and we realize that his impression of you is not anywhere near accurate.

  8. When you find out, please let me know! I had one perfect birth & two subsequent miscarriages, the second one complicated & very scary. I think I am going to give it one more try, & that’s it. I know the disappointment & heartbreak you are feeling (at least something close to it) & it is very real & does not diminish my appreciation for the blessings I have. If anything, it just makes me so much more thankful. Wishing you comfort & resolution.

  9. It takes time, that’s all I can add. For us, the adoption of our son helped, but some days I still get sucker-punched by the “what ifs”. Be kind to yourself and your partner. My thoughts are with you.

  10. WordPress ate my comment. You are more than entitled to grieve for the loss of your family building dreams. We know you love Isa but it is still a sucker punch to realize you might only have one and it hurts so damn much.

  11. Andy: Esperanza is grieving. It is not up to you to judge whether or not her grief is real, or “imagined in her head.” It can ALWAYS be worse. And Deborah is right: we are not entitled to all our dreams, yes, but we CAN grieve when one of the biggest dreams we had might no longer possible.

    E: If I knew the answer to your questions, I’d be in a better place myself. You are NOT alone, not one bit. Lots of love and hugs through the computer to you.


  12. It is such a difficult thing. I don’t know if you ever read Bio Girl, but she has a beautiful post about coming to terms with being a family of three. Not that there is an easy answer here, but you are not alone.

    I’ve been thinking about this a lot as well, as we always wanted two children but are not sure it is possible for us to pursue adoption a second time.

    Here’s the link:


  13. Obviously, I am just now catching up on all your recent posts. I am so, so sorry this is happening to you. You deserve to have the family of your dreams and I wish there was something I could say or espcially do to help you get that dream. You are always in my thoughts- wish I could give you a hug tonight 😦

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