Third time pays all
I have been doing a lot of thinking about what it means to be a woman. Growing up the majority of the women in my life were either mothers or nuns. I learned what it meant to be a woman from my mom, my grandmother, friend's moms and my teachers who generally were either nuns or moms themselves. When Adam and I began our experience with infertility and IVF I decided that I there must be something wrong with me, I decided I must be less of a woman because I wasn't able to have children. Some common questions for that time in my life what "what is wrong with me?" or "Why isn't life fair?" While I stayed in the state of focusing on what I didn't have, I missed out on a lot of my life. Adam and I would put off doing fun things, because of treatments or hoping that I would get pregnant that cycle. While focusing on my health during that time was necessary, my internal dialogue and hating my body and life didn't help me concieve or be happy.
Recently when my body started hurting, when I started to have irregular bleeding, and my doctor began requesting me to repeat ultrasounds to monitor ovarian cysts, I could've chosen to go back to the old pattern of hating my body, of feeling like my body was attacking me, feeling betrayed. Instead I kept doing my work and living my life, unfortunately the pain and the bleeding increased. So I decided to go visit a surgeon to get more information.
Today I am headed into surgery, to remove the cysts that have been contributing to my discomfort for the last couple of years. As I began to prepare for the surgery, it brought up a lot of emotions relating to my last surgeries and left me asking myself again "what does it mean to be a woman?" I realized I still don't have a reasonable answer for that question.
Therefore I will stick to an unreasonable answer to that question, I am a woman because I was born to be one. I have gotten the chance to be the little princess, the drama queen teenager, the blushing bride, the bitter infertile, a mother and so many other facets of being a woman. I know that I have not gotten the chance to raise a biological child, however when I get to sit with children at work, when I am sitting with my hospice patients, I get to experience that nurturing side, that unconditional love, which is what we all crave from a mother.
I am chosing this time to see this surgery, the pain, the journey to heal as a blessing. I am so grateful that I will heal, that I will continue to discover new parts of myself and that I will be able to help people. There are plenty of times where I am screaming in pain, where I am gritting my teeth, or freaking out about what is happening and then I remember what a gift my life is, what it has been. I don't intend to miss out on so much again, by focusing on loss, or what I can't do. I am grateful for what I can do and I look forward to exploring how to heal my body using new tools. I look forward to teaching my yoga class as I get back to normal and showing them it isn't always perfect. At the same time it is ALWAYS perfect.