I took ZGirl to my workplace a few days ago to introduce her around. Since I’ve been fairly open about our earlier miscarriages and some of our treatments, a few of my coworkers know things had been painfully difficult getting to this point. Because of that, I heard several times, “It was all worth it, wasn’t it?”

While I smiled and nodded I thought: Well…no, not really.

Sure, it was worth making the difficult decision to cross that line we had drawn in the sand several times over about what kind and how many treatments we would pursue. It was worth the thousands of dollars we spent on all the IUIs, IVFs, the FET and of course, the donor egg cycle. It was worth the pain caused by hundreds of injections. And if that’s “all” we had to endure, then yes, it would most definitely have been worth it.

However, I will never forget that to get to where I am right now, I lost four other babies. That’s  the part that was not worth it.

It is also illogical for one to expect that I would ever have to think about the impossible – would I trade ZGirl for Vivienne or Wolf or Miscarriage No. 2 or Miscarriage No. 4? I would hope that no one would be as simple minded to ask me such a question. I would also have to hope that ifwhen I am asked, I am able to restrain myself from getting “stabby”.

I learned so much about myself, so much about others. I learned that there is a hidden dimension to what it means to be family or friend that only reveals itself – whether positively or negatively – when there’s a very personal crisis. Valuable lessons to be sure.

But, please, don’t assume “it was all worth it”.

25 thoughts on “THE VALUE OF WORTH”

  1. People like to minimize the suffering of others. Bottom line.

    BTW, it peeves me each time I hear the name of the Brad/Ange twin girl, but it does make me think of you each time, too.

  2. Amen, sister. It’s not like we get extra special bonus points at the gates of heaven for all our trials. I wish people would just stick to the never-tacky “oh, isn’t she just gorgeous? Congratulations!”

  3. Actually, I would have assumed that it was all worth it. I also would have assumed that if it wasn’t worth it, you would have stopped before this point. However, I never would have asked for confirmation of my assumptions.

  4. Really? I can’t believe someone would actually ask that. ESPECIALLY if they knew what toll you paid go get to this point.

    Probably the same type of people who try to console us with, “Oh well, the miscarriage was probably for the best.”

  5. i’ve gone through phases where i throw questions like that right back into people’s faces. why not get stabby? why not answer right back, even chirpily, “oh, you mean it was worth having four children die so that i could have z-girl?”

    i know it’s considered “inappropriate” to talk back like this, but i sometimes think it’s really important to make people think about the truly stupid things they say.

    then again, nobody has ever really accused me of being a nice person.

  6. Yes.

    and Yes.

    No matter how things turn out for me, I learned some hard lessons along the way. And I lost some things too.. like thinking my real-life family and friends would be there for me.

    Whether I gain another child (ever) or not, it was not worth losing all those other things. Just one more thing I’ll be pondering for the rest of my lifetime.

  7. I get what you mean. I’ve tried to tell fellow IFers who are still in the trenches that the crap is worth it, so that they don’t give up before they get their family, but if someone who had never gone through it, tried to say that to me in a conversation I’d be annoyed.

    And trading lost babies for this one? Sigh, those kind of what-ifs are crazy-making.

    A friend of mine kept trying to tell me that the other babies had to die so that Julius could come to me, that he was b-shert, meant to be. I just about vomited into the phone.

  8. Ugh, stabbiness is totally justified here.

    A couple of my friends said, “You got lucky, didn’t you?” when I said I got pregnant with P on my first IVF. HA!

  9. Why does everything have to be justified? It is as if justifying erases pain and then all is good.

    I have SO LEARNED that life is not linear and that somethings can not be explained. Worth it, perhaps in perspective. Otherwise why would you do this. But, worth it in terms of loss? No freaking way. That loss, each loss, stands alone. It will never be justified. The pain is real and will always be. The present is no substitute for shit that happened in the past.

    Kiss your little on and appreciate her for what she is, your daughter.

  10. I don’t understand those people at all. I can see saying that if, say, you had a tough labor, or some difficulties during the pregnancy that you soldiered through – that I think makes sense (although I still think that it’s a weird thing to say). But to imply that the fact that you have Z-girl now makes everything you’ve been through in the last five years somehow better? That’s just asinine. And honestly, I think that it minimizes all your losses, which is no-one else’s place at all.

  11. It’s such a tough one, because of course you wouldn’t trade her for anything. I feel the same about Pob. I think I blogged about my dream just after Pob was born, where I was giving birth to boy/girl twins, one much smaller than the other, and I wasn’t allowed to keep them both, I had to keep just one. Wonder what that was about hahah.

    Anyway, I get it. Hang in there.

  12. I think I know what people mean when they say that kind of thing but it really is a ridiculous sentiment if you stop and think about it. Of course arriving at this point in time with my beautiful daughter, I wouldn’t change anything that happened which would cause me not to have her but do you really want me to say that losing multiple babies and spending months in a dark place emotionally and cursing my body for failing me and putting strain on relationships was “all worth it”? It is a ridiculous thing to ask someone to contemplate.

    Yes, struggles that resulted in this little miracle sleeping on my chest were worth it – she is worth anything I had to go though – but get your heads out of your asses people!

  13. I think people say that when they haven’t been there but still want to somehow acknowledge what they don’t quite understand (and perhaps sometimes to try and step on someone a little). But yes… it’s totally inappropriate even if they don’t “get it”.

    When I think about whether my daughter was “worth” the 5 miscarriages, all the years and the IVF cycles it just makes me want to cry and I don’t think anyone who hasn’t been through it would understand. It’s not crying for joy and it’s not crying that she isn’t enough it’s just still so raw and painful that to even think of anything making it all okay is just ignorant.

    Okay, so maybe the comment makes me a little stabby as well.

    Kisses to Z-girl (and the rest of the DD household)


  14. I think that there out to be some kid of inane comment police who stop people before they say things like this. Sometimes saying nothing but “congratulations she’s lovely” is really all that is needed.

You can say it here.

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