Happy Birthday

That's right... two posts in a row entitled 'Happy Birthday'.

One for my daughter and now one for me.

I got up this morning and just stared into the mirror in disbelief. Who is that 25 year old who is blankly gazing back at me? There are parts of her that seem to jog my memory, but I just don't recognize her fully. That red hair is unmistakeably familiar, but it has grown so long over the last year. The eyes hold some recollection, but between the dark rings underneath and the overwhelming sadness they hold, I can't quite place them either. She is much pudgier around the middle than she used to be. Suddenly, she smiles and I search her face desperately to see some left over remnant, but the forced grin seems so painful that whatever memory I had of her during happier days disappeared and was replaced by deep sorrow.

I look closer and I see the contrived smile of a people-pleaser who never wants to let on that she is still broken because she doesn't want the people she loves to stop and try to fix her after they have all moved on. I see that her hair and her waistline have grown because the arduous task of simply trying to live her everyday life has preempted basic things like haircuts and workouts. I see in her eyes not just the past 25 years that have been lived, but also the future life that she has lived in her mind a million times over--the one that includes her daughter's first steps, prom hairdos, and wedding dresses. I see in her eyes the hopelessness that comes with secondary infertility and the sheer terror that her future will never hold any of those things.

I see all these things in the mirror and am powerless to do anything about it.

Happy Birthday Girl in the Mirror.
Maybe in your 26th year you'll get it right.


Laura said...

Thinking of that girl in the miror and that you find parts of her again and the new parts that you see will be full of grace and healing and many other blessings from a very special angel!

Henninger Family said...

I see so many of those similar things when I look in the mirror. Soemtimes I think wow - I have aged this year or who is that in the mirror. It's scary...praying for you still.

Once A Mother said...

Reading this post was like reading my own thoughts in someone else's words. The age is different, I am 29, but the rest of it, oh, it all rings so incredibly true. I am so sorry for you, for me, for everyone on this journey. Just remember that while this road may leave you feeling lost, you are never, ever alone.

Thinking of you, and sending you wishes for a better year ahead.