Earlier today, Patrick and I arrived in Miami without our three kids. We’re here to celebrate his 40th birthday in a place we’ve long enjoyed visiting. In fact, our very first trip here happened not long after we started trying to get pregnant.
A Time for Hope
On that first trip, we laid in bed one night watching a movie. I turned to Patrick and said, “I can’t wait until we have kids we can bring here. Can’t you imagine all of us lying on the bed after a day at the beach and watching a movie?” The rest of the trip, I thought about what it would be like to have our children with us. My visions included angelic, well-behaved toddlers who giggled and let me dress them in perfect outfits.
A Time for Longing
My spirit was much less optimistic when we came to Miami the following year for vacation. We were newly diagnosed with infertility. I had two negative pregnancy tests while we were here. I didn’t have the emotional energy to imagine bringing our children to the beach because all I could think about was how to bring our children into the world. Longing mixed with hope and bubbled in my heart every time I saw a family with kids.
A Time to Heal and Reflect
Now that we have three marvelous children through adoption, my time in Miami is about reconnecting with my husband and searching for treats to bring back to the kids. (We wouldn’t dream of coming home empty handed!)
But as we walked the familiar streets this afternoon and I saw many kids running and playing with their parents, a ghost of that old despair and longing nudged its way into my heart: I missed my children. But today, I savored the fact that now I know the shapes of their eyes, the silly nicknames I’ve given them, and the sounds of their excited voices. I know the curves of little lips that, when we return home, will welcome us with kisses.
In what ways has infertility Changed the way you feel about certain places you visit?