Perception vs. Reality


Some days I think I’m doing fine until I open Facebook. The news feed reads like a who’s who of America’s Most Fertile. On any given day my eyes fall victim to 3-4 pregnancy announcements, a gender reveal video, a baby shower photo album and one or two birth announcements. It can leave me feeling like I’m on the wrong side of an episode of Oprah’s Favorite Things. Everyone gets a baby! Everyone that is, except me.

It’s not that I’m not happy for my friends. I’m genuinely thrilled for them. The tough part, though, is that it can be a painful reminder of my own infertility. It can make me question God and doubt myself. Why can’t I get pregnant? Did I do something horribly wrong to be so undeserving? Why is God blessing everyone else?

Something I have learned through this journey is that things aren’t always as they seem. A friend recently revealed that she was “Eggspecting” on Easter. I couldn’t help but feel a little jealous that she didn’t know the pain of infertility. Come to find out, she had several miscarriages prior to this pregnancy, and she lives in constant fear that history will repeat itself.

Another friend appears to live the carefree life of a jet-setter. It seems that at least once a month she and her husband are setting off to quaint islands around the world. Little did I know, they want nothing more than to stay home and raise a little one. Unfortunately, her husband suffers from male factor infertility and babies may not be in their future at all.

Still others tell me that I have no idea how lucky I am. They don’t even know if they have fertility problems because they haven’t found the right person yet. They struggle every time they open Facebook too. Their hearts sink because their news feeds are filled with engagement announcements, wedding albums and various other photos of couples living out their happily married days.

The point is, we’re all struggling with something. Everyone we meet is fighting some kind of battle. No matter how picture perfect another person’s life appears, I can assure you that it isn’t. We could all benefit from having a little more patience with each other.

I read somewhere that the reason we struggle is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlights reel. Try to remember that next time you compare yourself to the girl who appears to have it all.