I teach the FertilityCare System, and I am a part of a Diocesan-wide group of NFP teachers who get together regularly to figure out how better to offer our services and expand programming. And such.
Which is not the point of this post. The point is that I've been doing this for years...since before I was married, before I knew we had infertility issues, before we adopted the kids. And I've been doing it continuously. So these people have walked with me through all of that.
At the same time, I have walked with them. Through their planned pregnancies, their unexpected pregnancies, their multiple-birth pregnancies, and through miscarriages.
In other words, in a large group of NFP-teaching women, I am the sole representative of the infertility camp.
Last night, one of these ladies announced that she's expecting their fifth child.
Years ago, before Olivia, a pregnancy announcement would cause me secret physical pain. More recently, before Martin, such an announcement would cause longing for another baby to call my own.
Now, I greet baby announcements with joy for the new little life and empathy for the parents about to embark upon sleepless infanthood once again.
No pain. No emptiness. No longing.
It's weird to be in this place, where pregnancy is not expected or even hoped for. Where joy is found in knowing that God created our little family in a rather unconventional way, and that we are perfect just as we are. Where openness to life means being comfortable as a family of four and letting God have complete control over when and whether we will have more children. Where we know how very blessed we are to have two very special and delightful kids in our lives.
Where infertility can no longer steal our joy because it no longer defines us.
God has truly blessed us.