Seen and Heard
Facing Life without Children
Website offers hope, healing for the involuntarily childless
-Mary Beth Sammons
It seems insensitive for me, a mom of three, to write about infertility. But, I offer this caveat before I dive into this story. I married young. I had a daughter right away, then two more children. The way it turned out, I didn’t have a marriage, a companion or someone who loved me. .And so I balanced both, being mom and a breadwinner. In the workplace, I met a group of women who become a fellowship of friends – 25 years plus, we’ve been slogging away at being journalists.
I envied them, because they had the freedom I didn’t. They’ve traveled the world, dated, and dined at the finest restaurants, and they have been loved deeply by men who became their lifelong companions. They stood by me in divorce. And, I’ve stood in the shadows mourning with them on Mother’s Day, struggling to be an understanding friend, to support them and to be someone who hasn’t walked in their shoes, but feels for their pain. I have cried many, many tears for them as they’ve struggled through infertility treatments and then, in some cases, the acceptance that their lives will be childless not by choice. I don’t know the right words to care, but I do.
And so, in wanting to connect, to help them heal, move on and be a compassionate friend and listener, I was thrilled to read in the New York Times, about a new blog/Website that is a place for women who have had to give up their dreams of having children to come together, to feel less alone. Even the artwork on the Website, Coming2Terms.com, visually portrays the metaphor that these women can rise from the flames that so painfully turned their dreams to ashes and see beauty in life once again.
The blog is created by Pamela Jeanne Tsigndino, of Los Gatos, California, who tried for more than eleven years to have children through extensive and exhaustive medical technologies. She writes poignantly about moving on, and about the everyday things that remind her of her childlessness. Yet, she provides insights the ways she has come to accept life without out children, tears and all. She is the understanding guide for other women who are united by the dull ache that unfolds during all the stages of trying to have children, and accepting they won’t. There are no right words to do or say, but I hope my friends find this site, and find comfort knowing they are not alone.