When I started this blog, there were about 20 blogs in my blogroll under 'you are not alone' and only 5 or so in 'been there, done that'. My rule was that if someone had already had their children, or was already pregnant, I didn't add them. I wasn't in a place where I could stand that. I made an exception for bloggers like Grrl, Julie and Tertia, who had been part of the small group of bloggers who had inspired me. But it was a small list - those whose infertility journeys had been successful but who were important enough to my own journey that I added them to the list of blogs I checked up on at least on a weekly basis.
Over the last 2.5 years of blogging, people have gradually moved from my 'you are not alone' list through 'on their way' to 'been there, done that'. And I've gradually added more to the front of the pipeline, but look at the 'been there, done that' list now, it's longer than the 'you are not alone' despite the fact I almost never add people straight into the 'been there, done that' category. It's a fact of our community that people move on - into the other categories, and/or they drop out. The few people who've stayed in the 'you are not alone' group for the whole of the last 2.5 years or at least most of it, are some of those I feel closest to - Millie, Pamplemousse, Jen, Julianna, Kay, Manuela, Flicka for example. Their tenacity and ability to deliver support to others despite all the utter crap they've had to deal with is a real testament to their strength - and the strength of the community we're part of. I don't believe that there's a reason why some of us don't get to move categories. I don't believe that the statistics mean it's inevitable. Even among the approximately 200 blogs in my infertility lists, we aren't big enough to be statistically meaningful group. It's just shitty bad luck, and if wishes were able to be made manifest, it wouldn't happen. In fact, that category simply wouldn't exist.
I add people less frequently to the 'you are not alone' category now. Somehow I'm less good at knowing what to say to those starting on their first clomid cycle or IUI. I can't bear to dash their happiness sometimes, their belief that in just getting going things will be ok. They might be, and then again they may not. I don't want to be death's head at the feast, making life harder for those who haven't got to the point of cynicism yet. I hope they don't have to get there, and then I move on to the next blog.
It's been extraordinary to me to move my own blog through those categories. It took me until about 20 weeks to move myself into the 'on their way' category. Even then I kept not finding it when I scrolled through bloglines. It didn't occur to me to look there. Tomorrow, please please it all goes to plan, I should be moving to the 'been there, done that' category. Of course I won't get round to moving myself til I get home from the hospital - which won't be til Monday at the earliest, but officially it's time to move. It's an extraordinary feeling. I'm not sure I can do it justice. It feels right to be doing it with Kath, with Amy, and with Carol. It feels wrong not to be doing it with more of you. It's absolutely awe-inspiring. It's making me so very happy and so very apprehensive. I'm terrified and I'm overjoyed. I have no idea what tomorrow will feel like but I feel ready for it, despite the piles of paper we didn't get round to sorting out.
Tomorrow, all being well, I get to meet my daughter. She's been a long time coming. I don't know what she looks like, but I already love her. I know that will change tomorrow although I don't know how. I know there will be really tough times ahead, tough in ways I can't imagine now. But I also know that there are ways through them and it will all be worth it. I cannot forget for a second how extraordinarily lucky I am to be here. To get to meet her is the most extraordinary gift. I don't deserve it any more than anyone else does. It makes no sense that I got this gift, but/and I'm so terribly thankful that I did.