Today I had the opportunity to join a live TV show on infertility. I was joining via Skype as I am in the UK and the broadcasting was in Portugal. I was feeling strong and very grateful for the chance of talking about an issue that is so dear to me. It was an opportunity to do what I love the most: raise awareness in society and let people facing these struggles know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, of a meaningful and fulfilling life.
The show had a few interventions from people who are facing infertility and involuntary childlessness. The pain in their words was overwhelming. And just as I was about to go on air, a woman called on the show, her voice was trembling as she talked about her journey, about her challenges and about how grateful she was that she had received support from the Portuguese Association of Fertility to have the family she desired so much. Her emotions could be felt in her words and everyone in studio found it difficult not to cry. My intervention was straight after, I could feel my heart beating fast, my eyes trying to smile but as soon as I was live I couldn’t help myself and got emotional 🙁
Even though infertility was extremely challenging for me when I was diagnosed at age 17, I managed to psychologically adjust. So feeling all these emotions and crying sixteen years after, came as a surprise to me! I managed to quickly put myself in a better state and ended up saying something really useful about coaching, NLP and logotherapy and how useful it is whether you’ve just been diagnosed, are pursuing IVF, surrogacy or are simply trying to cope and get on with life!
Once offline, I carried on watching the show and just started crying again. It was like my subconscious mind had accessed all the emotions I had felt when I was initially diagnosed, triggered by the pain all those women were expressing. It took me a while to make sense of what was happening inside me. Did it mean I hadn’t resolved an issue that I thought I had coped with ages ago?! I realised that is not the case because I don’t feel any resentment, anger or sadness related to infertility… I am able to clearly notice how infertility is a big blessing in my life: it causes unavoidable suffering which is a unique opportunity to grow as a human being and find meaning in life. This is an opportunity that is not available to many who don’t have a condition (like infertility, chronic pain, cancer etc) that causes unavoidable suffering.
But this situation has also reminded me that I am human and it is ok to show vulnerability. It reminded me that even though I have coped, the invisible scar of that diagnosis is still in my subconscious mind. And I choose to leave it there where it belongs: in the past, and just access it when it’s useful to me, when I need a reminder of how meaningful my life is today, because without it I wouldn’t have the fulfilment of supporting other infertile people find meaning in theirs.
If you’re curious about the show and understand Portuguese, here’s the link: https://www.rtp.pt/play/p3150/e281805/sociedade-civil
Andreia Trigo www.infertile-life.com