Stripping Away The Disguise

To most of the world, I appear to be a normal woman. Sure, I’m a SAHM in a world where that doesn’t happen often. And, yeah, I’m a fat mom in a world that reveres thin, shapely bodies. I’m also a mom who has been married to the father of my children for more than 15 years. What the world sees is a mom to 3 happy (mostly), healthy, and sort of brilliant children.

The world doesn’t see the infertile.

The world doesn’t see the woman who has been pregnant 11 times but only has 3 children.

The world doesn’t see the woman who got dragged so very deep into the dark pit of depression by loss after loss after loss while trying to have her third child. Thank God she had her first two children to ground her and keep her tied to everything else that is important in her life.

The world sees the field trip going, kid schlepping mom who loves her life.

The world doesn’t see the mom who aches to have a fourth child and who knows that may never happen because of the delays caused by infertility.

The world doesn’t see the mom who never got to hold her daughter.

The world doesn’t see the woman whose heart shattered over and over again.

The world sees the woman whose life is blessed beyond measure. I am blessed with a spouse who loves me beyond measure and children who are growing into fine young men. I am blessed with a fabulous family and friends I treasure like family.

The world sees me but not all of me.

This is me with the disguise stripped away.


Today is the last day of National Infertility Awareness Week…April 24th-May 1st 2010. Click on over to the NIAW page and the homepage. According to the CDC, about 12% of people of childbearing age experience infertility. That is more than 1 in 10. That means that someone you know has gone through this. Educate yourself.

23 Responses to Stripping Away The Disguise
  1. Another Dreamer
    May 1, 2010 | 11:50 am

    Powerful post (*hugs*) Thanks for sharing it. It’s so true about how the rest of the world usually see the whole picture.

  2. Sandy
    May 1, 2010 | 11:58 am

    Your willingness to share your story in such a moving post will help other women not feel so alone. That’s what these kinds of blogs have done. That is their legacy, and it’s an amazing gift. Thank you.

  3. Ernie
    May 1, 2010 | 12:53 pm

    Great post. The world doesn’t see the infertile is a powerful statement. Thank you!

  4. Claire
    May 1, 2010 | 2:41 pm

    Just a hug, to you. ((hugs))
    The comments above me, summed it up well!!

  5. stitcheranon
    May 1, 2010 | 3:34 pm

    I think it is important to realise that a lot of women are in the same boat. I do not have one friend who has not lost a child, whether within weeks of a pregnancy or within weeks of due date, it is all the same. Loss. Infertility too, means loss: loss of oportunity, loss of family.
    But we are lucky with children we have, and all said: there are sooo many people so much more worse off. Starving, watching children die of preventable disease, war etc. It is great that you talk about it, not enough of us do but dont forget those smiles too 😉

  6. Quiet Dreams
    May 1, 2010 | 4:24 pm

    Beautiful. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself with us.

  7. Kakunaa
    May 1, 2010 | 8:52 pm

    Very beautiful and moving. Thank you so much for sharing….(((HUGS)))

  8. Mrs. Gamgee
    May 1, 2010 | 11:25 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story… It means so much! ((hugs))

  9. Stacie
    May 2, 2010 | 1:26 am

    Oh, Kristin! This was such a powerful post. It is so painful when the hurt you carry on the inside is invisible to everyone else around you…sometimes even to your own family. Sending love hand many hugs your way.

  10. battynurse
    May 2, 2010 | 2:09 am

    This is a beautiful post Kristin. Just beautiful.

  11. Fran
    May 2, 2010 | 5:23 am

    I always find it difficult to read about the looses people have had. I can imagine that every loss for you was a fragment of your heart being destroyed. But you have also had the joy of motherhood. We always want more than we have and at times we forget to see who has even less. It is true that the World doesn’t see infertility, or prefer not to see infertility. Definitely infertility is more obvious when people have no children at all, or children who don’t look like them at all. Adoption = infertility. Childless couple = infertility or choice of living child free. Your own children = fertility at least to some extent. Much love, Fran

  12. Aunt Becky
    May 2, 2010 | 11:49 am

    Now I am officially sobbing. Thank you for sharing your story.

  13. *Tanyetta*
    May 2, 2010 | 8:32 pm

    Very Powerful!

  14. JJ
    May 2, 2010 | 8:39 pm

    Beautiful words, Kristin–thanks for being such an amazing IF sister!

  15. MrsSpock
    May 6, 2010 | 12:23 am

    Once you have living children, you become an “infertile in disguise”. To the outside world, you have it all, but on the inside, still broken.

  16. Waterbishop @ An Older Version
    January 4, 2011 | 2:39 pm

    Great post.

    No, the world doesn’t see it all.
    In fact people who know the story forget the first half quite quickly as well. As though it just didn’t happen. Its unnerving.

  17. tasivfer
    January 5, 2011 | 12:14 am


  18. jeanna
    January 6, 2011 | 10:55 am

    I am still waiting for my first take home baby (though we are close) after the lose of our twins a year ago. I find it hard to keep up the disguise sometimes. This was beautifully written thank you for sharing.

    (from the creme)

  19. Mr. Thompson and Me
    January 6, 2011 | 7:13 pm

    I think that you are brave. This post was simple – yet powerful. Thank you for it.

    Now following from Creme de la Creme (hope you’ll follow back)

  20. Delenn
    January 12, 2011 | 12:42 am

    I missed this the first time. Powerful stuff.

  21. Sara
    January 15, 2011 | 2:32 pm

    I see you.

    (from the creme)

  22. Esperanza
    January 31, 2011 | 1:44 am

    Thank you for stripping away your disguise for us. It’s so hard sometimes, to let other people see us for who we really are. I’ve wanted to many times to tell people who I really am but it always feels wrong, it always feels like I would be bringing others down, killing a happy moment. And of course they could say the Hurtful Things, like At least you have… and You should be grateful… They just want to brush our losses under a rug anyway, so why even bring them up? But our losses are a part of us and they shape our feelings and our thoughts and our dreams. I see you and I honor your losses. I’m so sorry for all you’ve been through. I know my words cannot bring you any peace, but please know you are in my thoughts and in my heart. Thank you.

    Creme de la Creme #125
    Creme de la Creme 2010 Iron Commenter Attempt

  23. gailcanoe
    February 23, 2011 | 3:54 pm

    I’m here from the Creme. This was a great post. And, it is something that I often think about. People don’t see infertility no matter how much we might be hurting. Even after being married for 10 years, people still ask me or my husband when we are going to have kids. I just want to say, “Duh. Don’t you think there might be a problem here if we’ve gone 10 years without reproducing?” People are just blind.

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