June 17, 2012 is a Sunday. That Sunday is Father’s Day. You have to pay homage to your father but inside you are missing something because you are one of the many men who have to face down an invisible enemy, infertility. Infertility hits men in the most tender of spots, their ego. Men are a fascinating lot. Most of us were raised to be tough. We were raised to be fair but to protect, especially the women we love but sometimes our toughness is our weakness. We forget to address what eats at us and in the end that can hurt the ones we love and are hereditarily raised to protect. Father’s Day approaches and inside you are shaken because maybe you feel you will never be a father. Maybe you feel you are not living to your wife’s expectations because the infertility battle has yielded only pain. Maybe you are looking for a fight as a way to quell the pain that manifests in your heart. Like most men you probably don’t express these feelings. Rubbish!!!!!
This Father’s Day, use the feelings in your soul to reevaluate your situation. If you have not shared your feelings with your wife maybe this is the time to do so. Full discretion of the heart during times like these can only strengthen a couples resolve to see their way through difficult times. Just because you have yet to reach the finish line does not mean that you bail out of the race. A strong couple can conquer the greatest of foes. When you work together you listen closer at your doctors appointments and collectively hear more. My wife and I rarely remembered everything that happened at a doctor’s appointment but together we could fill in each other’s blanks. If you share with your feelings with your wife and use your emotions to fuel your wish to beat infertility then your odds at fulfilling your shared dreams greatly increase.
When you doubt yourself ask yourself what you would tell your child if she doubted herself and wanted to give in. You already have the heart of a father and time, tenacity, and a little luck could bring that child to you. My Dad has not given me a ton of advice in my life. The reason is because I have not solicited it. The advice he has given though has always been simple and often only a few sentences; straight and to the point. I recently asked him why our family fights so much. His answer was simple and honest. He said, Damn kid when they fight that’s how they communicate. They love each other all the same. That answer may not fit all families but for this one it made sense. I tell you that story to suggest that maybe this Father’s Day you take a chance and talk to your dad about your feelings. He may have a one liner or two that will get you through. Stay strong my brothers and know you are not measured by what you have but who you are and you are amazing.
About Andy Thornhill:
I live in Virginia Beach with my wife and daughter. We went through a five-year journey with fertility treatments before our daughter was born as a result of IVF. I published an EBOOK for the Nook (Barnes and Noble) and Kindle (Amazon) titled The Longest Love Letter. The book tells the story of my wife’s amazing strength during that difficult time of our life. It is me speaking directly to my daughter telling her the story of unconventional way she came to be born. You can read more about us on my blog The Tao of Pigpen.