On blogging after infertility: Being That Pregnant Woman at Subway

I’ve heard it said that blogging is just navel gazing.  So then, that must make blogging about blogging must be the epitome of navel gazing, huh?  Well then this here is some serious navel lint licking, since this goes way beyond gazing.

Its no surprise I’ve had issues trying to figure out how to do this whole blogging thing after having a baby. Its not surprising, because, well, a lot of other people have faced the same questions. I hope its obvious why. At least for me, I’ve had an intense fear of being That Pregnant Lady at Subway.

Don’t you know her?

I remember her vividly.  It was around the start of our “trying” and we were on a vacation. Another conference-turned-vacation, but still. Trying to rent our car and just enjoy ourselves, relax, and not think about “trying” because that’s how it would work, right?  (Short answer, no).  We got our car from the rental location and just decided to eat at Subway since it was close, easy, and we were both starving.  And that’s when I saw her, That Pregnant Lady at Subway.  Just standing there.  Ordering her sandwich.  Being pregnant and all.  Completely innocent.

But not to me.

And at that moment, I couldn’t handle it.  I didn’t know her, her story, or anything about how quickly or slowly that baby got in there. But there it was. Her belly. She was pregnant.  I was not.  I did not need to know anything else to have the reminder of our struggle.

So I didn’t burst into tears or claw or attack her or anything (just didn’t know where you were going with it…) but the reminder started the thoughts which brought up That Discussion That My Husband and I Always Had About Infertility once we got into the car.  And it brought back all the emotions regarding infertility that I was just trying to ignore for just a little bit, you know?  Have a nice moment with my husband?  Not think about it all? 

And as much as we can say “Oh its not that pregnant woman, its infertility” (because it is), That Pregnant Woman at Subway just was a big giant reminder. And it was looking at her that made my eyes tear up. And it was her I couldn’t make eye contact with.

Yes, there are triggers everywhere and we can’t control those…I think that’s part of the “cross” part of infertility…but, I think the fact that they are everywhere has literally made me not want to be one on this blog.  I just, don’t want to be That Pregnant Woman at Subway for others, at least on the internet. (Figuratively, at least at this point – I guess I could have literally been last year.  This is not a pregnancy announcement)

I can’t help that I am for other people in real life, which I’m sure I have been.  Its just frustrating and humbling, and of course something that I can only get on “this side” as I have the hindsight to look back at myself and how I dealt with infertility.


Its been very difficult for me to accept what I can and cannot do in terms of helping other deal with the cross of infertility. The thing that makes being That Pregnant Woman at Subway more difficult on this blog is the relationships that have formed from it and the transition that occurs as a result. 

I’m going to explore that in my next post so this doesn’t get too crazy long.

I have about 17 more parts to this “series”, if we’re going to call it that.  Please bear with me as I’m trying to be genuine to myself and the fact is, I haven’t been able to be because I haven’t been able to give these thoughts feet to go somewhere.  So here I go exploring it, in bite sized chunks, with the help of some friends.

11 thoughts on “On blogging after infertility: Being That Pregnant Woman at Subway

  1. I feel the same way sometimes – not that I’ve been pregnant, obviously, but that now I’m a mom. It’s still weird and I still have a hard time hitting publish when I post photos of C and talk about life “after IF”. While I was still waiting there were some days I could handle the IF-turned-mom blogs and other days I couldn’t. It’s easier for me to rejoice with those who have suffered as well because I know they know the pain. I was talking about IF with my sister yesterday and I feel like those of us who have to wait appreciate the gift even more and recognize it for what it is – God’s plan and not our own. Looking forward to your next posts. :)

    And seriously… can.not.wait!!! until you are here!!!! :-D

  2. Infertility was a big part of your life and you blogged about that now motherhood is the biggest part (I assume) so you can’t not blog about that, from the perspective of someone who doesn’t at all take it for granted. I’m also looking forward to your next posts on this.

  3. I’m sorry, I just realized how awful that must have sounded. You know, sticking the words “I assume” in there, about motherhood. I did that because I’ve only read a couple of your posts. Hope it didn’t come out too bad or make you think that I think you don’t value motherhood.

    • Just wanted to say that I didn’t take offense at all! I think this gets to why and how we write what we write on blogs. But I was not even remotely offended!

  4. I totally understand this and look forward to how you dissect these emotions. I have a hard time them (the emotions). Any conversation about “suffering” or “hope” leads me back to my experience with infertility which leads me to tears as if I am still suffering from this IF cross (with 2 babies napping as we speak/type, I obviously no longer carry the IF Cross). But the scars are still visible and I can’t seem to get over them…I’m just learning how to cope with them…which is weird. Anyway, I can’t wait to read more!

  5. Very good post and so appropriate and relevant to my thoughts this morning. My day started with a fairly new coworker (who has an 8 year old) asking me if I wanted a child someday. As if that’s any of her business or appropriate for her to ask this at work to me whom she doesn’t know is currently self injecting hCG for the first time and after being off the pill for 7 years and married for 13 years. As if fertility is a choice! She went on about how childless couple are selfish…at that point I pretended having to call a customer and didn’t answer, dumb founded this happened at work and seething inside. A couple hours later I found-out my best friend who now lives abroad is pregnant. She just stopped the pill a couple months ago. She is very well aware of my situation, she could have sent me an personal email at least but no, I learned of this on Facebook where she posted 3 pictures of her 8 weeks old pea. I congratulated her like everyone else then I went in the bathroom and had a good cry for 20 minutes because I wanted to be moms together with her and that’s just not going to happen…just like everything else that was supposed to be special and intimate about this…it’s all robbed from me and I needed to mourn that and now I am thinking about how if I ever am blessed to have a child, I vow to never ever post pictures of my uterus on Facebook. How could I ever be that person to someone else with this cross?

  6. It feels like you are inside my head writing this. I have stopped blogging, mainly for the reason of not wanting to be the one to make people sad the way I used to be. I look forward to more of your thoughts on the subject.

  7. Some thoughts (great reflection by the way, and I look forward to more)…speaking from the IF trenches still, I get the image of That Lady at Subway! “Being pregnant and all. Completely innocent.” Ha! Yep, I get that. But at the same time…I have to remind myself that’s it not her fault, after all. It’s not like because she’s pregnant, I’m not. Or that she had anything at all to do with our struggles to conceive. I have to remind myself that because I definitely feel the temptation to be bitter toward all pregnant women and all moms…well, that’s a little tricky since it includes some very good friends! What am I going to say to them? “Sorry, I can’t see you now, or really ever, not until I’m a mother too.” Yes, it’s hard to have dinner with my visibly pregnant friends, and it’s hard to see their babies that “could have been mine” (so I think). But I still love them! I’m glad for them, and I think they’re great mothers!

    I think Sayin’ I Love You had a great point: you blog about what you live, what’s important to you, and now motherhood is a big part of that. I wouldn’t be too worried about whether you’re going to cause a current IFer pain…I can always choose to not visit your blog, which I might have to do if I just can’t take a kiddo-story right now – and actually, it’s easier to avoid blog-moms than the lady at Subway!…but we’re still in this together, living the Christian life, trying to get to heaven…and it’s nice to read about happy endings every now and again =)

  8. Pingback: An important addendum: To all the moms out there! | Matching Moonheads

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