I am constantly taken by surprise by the insensitivity of people and their behaviour, especially from the very few people that are aware we are going through IVF. From my friend, who I supported extensively for years while she went through every fertility/IVF process there was – she now has 2 children and complains to me about the difficulties of motherhood (wrong audience, luv). From my parents-in-law who have not once (!!) recognised the loss we suffered from our miscarriage – literally, not one word said to us about it since – and who go on ENDLESSLY about their grandson born from their other son just a few weeks before our loss (accidental conception).
Then this morning, my brother-in-law (father of the baby) phoned us at 9am. Last night was a late one as we were at the church for the midnight service marking Orthodox Easter. Once I was home and in bed it was edging on 1.30am, which is approximately 3 hours past my bedtime since the hormones took over. I was struggling to stay awake until midnight, much less stand up for the service! It was a tough one for me and I didn’t feel well either. And after the service I was kind of forced against my will to go back to the brother-in-law’s house and coo at the sleeping baby. In any case, the plan was to try and sleep off the late night a bit… that was until the 9am call.
So what was the call for? The call was to tell my husband to come over and visit their baby. What? It was 9am, FFS and we’d just seen the baby a few hours previously!! My husband mentioned this to his mother today at lunch and her response was, “Oh they wake up early now they have the baby so that’s why he called then.”
So let’s just get this straight. They have a baby, and we have to wake up early just because they are up and fancy a chat (my husband is not even that close to his brother so this made no sense at all). I pointed it out to the MIL (in a possibly rude tone) that our schedule has not changed and thus 9am is not an acceptable time to call on a weekend unless it’s an emergency (especially after everyone knew it was a late night previously). The irony is that before the baby, the brother would sleep most Sundays until 1pm or 2pm. But of course that’s forgotten now.
What no one seems to have realised is that they had a baby a couple of weeks before I lost mine. It has taken every ounce of strength and decency to not have some kind of public breakdown about this. I have to constantly tell myself that our loss is not the fault of them or their baby. But what they don’t realise (the brother and his partner don’t know about the miscarriage) is that every single mention of their baby and every single time they complain about how hard it is, a piece of me breaks inside.
They’ve never once asked me what’s going on with us so I’ve not had the chance to tell them, and we are not close enough for me to just blurt it out (not that I would anyway). Maybe it’s the age group I’m in where everyone is very caught up in what they’re doing and doesn’t have time for other people, but I listen a lot to other people’s struggles and I’m constantly astounded that everyone is ready to talk, but never to listen.
I live in my husband’s country and so my family and friends are very far away. I feel very alone at the best of times and never more than during periods like this. If it wasn’t for my amazing husband and my three wonderful cats I really would feel like there was no point to anything.
Today has been hard and I’ve been cranky all day. I imagine most people at the family Easter lunch today thought I was a moody cow. They would be at least partially right (hormones), but if they just tried to invoke some empathy for just a few minutes maybe they would understand what a huge effort it is for me to put on a brave face and keep going.