Unbearable: ‘Don’t Get Your Hopes Up’? Hope Keeps Me Going

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Having a child is usually a happy time in a woman’s life. Unfortunately, as we wait longer to have children, infertility and trouble conceiving can become a part of the family making process. Unbearable addresses these difficulties.

Last week, I had a very different plan for my next article. It was going to say something like this:

My boobs are achy. My stomach is unsettled. I feel like I could nap the day away. It’s obviously time for my monthly fake-out. Except this time, my body isn’t faking. This time, my body is actually responding to a real development, not just my hormonal stress. This time, finally, I get to give everyone good news.

Alright, I probably wouldn’t have told everyone a week after I found out, but I was honestly planning my goodbye in my head. I was thinking out exactly how to tell everyone the exciting news. I was two weeks late for my period. My boobs were so sore that I literally couldn’t sleep on my stomach. Time to drink the sparkling grape juice, right?

My husband tried to bring me back down to reality. We haven’t had a doctor’s appointment yet. Pregnancy tests have been particularly unreliable for us and we really don’t have any reason to trust them at all. “I’ll believe it when I see the baby,” my husband told me. I understood his point, but I couldn’t help but feel hurt.

Then, my wonderful, caring husband said the words that I dread. “Just don’t get your hopes up,” he told me. “I hate seeing how hurt you are when it doesn’t work out.”

I knew what he meant. I appreciated his sentiment. He really does just want to protect me from all the difficult stress and emotions that seem to flood this process. I know that my husband’s first instinct is to do whatever he can to help me, and in his mind, staying realistic is helpful.

He’s not the only one either. If I confide in my mother about my excitement, I hear the same warnings. “I don’t want to see you disappointed again,” she tells me. If I talk to my dad, he has the same hesitation. “Just try to hold off on the excitement until you talk to the doctor,” he warns. They all say the same thing. “Just don’t get your hopes up.”

Personally, even I meet the excitement of a possible pregnancy with a little trepidation. I might be more likely to think I’ve pregnant first, but I also feel a hint of terror at the idea. I immediately start worrying about the possibility of another ectopic pregnancy. There’s a very real chance that my next pregnancy could end the possibility of me ever having kids. That weighs heavily on my mind. But I’m still hopeful. I just can’t help it.

(Photo: Diego Cervo/Shutterstock)

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