(Warning: This might be the most self-pitying post I’ve written to date. If you’re looking for a ray of sunshine, skip this one.)

I woke up this morning at 4:45 with cramps. My period has officially started.

This is miserable. Not that this is news to most of you reading this. You wouldn’t be here if you hadn’t at some point experienced this particular kind of misery. It doesn’t seem to have an end point, just a recurring nightmare replayed every 28 days.

About two years ago, a friend of mine from high school had a stillbirth. It was obviously heartbreaking for her. As if that weren’t bad enough, people have said the most INANE stuff to her, like “You can always have another one,” “God must have needed another angel,” and “Everything happens for a reason.”

Everything happens for a reason. This is complete bullshit. What reason is there behind my friend losing her child? What reason is there behind my brother and his wife’s 4 miscarriages? What reason is there behind my inability to get pregnant? What reason is there for any of the shit we’re going through?

We use this phrase all the time, like when we have lost a job or are going through a divorce. These are things people say to try and put pain in context, to make it bearable. Hell, I’ve even said it to myself. But I don’t believe it anymore. There are no greater powers at work here. And if there are, they really suck at their jobs.

I used to believe in God. Not a hardcore church-goer, but I always believed that something out there “had a plan.” Sure, had a plan, but you’d be surprised how often that plan would get completely screwed up.  So it was nice to think that there was something else that saw the long game when I couldn’t.

To be honest, this whole thing has turned me into an atheist. I’m not being hyperbolic here. I remember very clearly driving down the road with terrible cramps and the sinking realization that this month was another uterine no-show. Just rounding a corner, I thought “There is no God in this.” And like that 34 years of Catholicism was gone, a direct correlation between my consistent infertility and my lose of faith.

I know what I have to do, guys. I really do. I need to pick myself up and move along. But I think I’ll pull the covers over my head a little while longer before I pretty myself up and get to work.

Every month is another shot, right?



  1. c. from indeterminatewait · June 19, 2014

    If the most self-pitying post you’ve ever written is about feeling like shit on CD1, then you are basically an infertile saint (who doesn’t believe in god, so kind of a weird saint). I’m 100% with you on “everything happens for a reason”. No, no it does not. I’ve never been religious, but even for people who are it seems like an absurd assertion. If there is a God, exactly the way churches portray him with the beard and all, it makes no sense that He would be involved in the minutiae of the everyday lives of every single person on the the planet. That seems absurd, even for an omnipotent being. And boring. (Also, it would pretty much mean “He’s” not so fond of brown people and women – I mean, Africa? South America? India? All of world history?) So anyway, I don’t mean to make light of losing your faith – I know that’s probably a terrible feeling – I’m just letting you know I agree with your thinking. Things just happen, good and bad.

    I’m sorry this month wasn’t it. I always look at CD1 as at least better than CD Twenty-I’mprettysurethisdidn’tworkbuthavetokeephoping/thinking/wondering. Yes, new cycle, new shot. Wishing you the best.

    • thecommonostrich · June 19, 2014

      For. REALS. Losing my faith has been weird. I wasn’t terrible attached to it, but then again… it was nice to have it around. Kinda like your high school boyfriend/girlfriend.

      I like to think of CD1 as New Year’s Day for my uterus. It’s a little crabby and hungover, but at least we’re starting fresh.

  2. labmonkeyftw · June 19, 2014

    I’m sorry, Ostrich. I’m cd1 today too, and threw myself quite the pity party yesterday when it was obvious this cycle was done for me.
    I started this journey an atheist, but have still struggled to reconcile the unfairness of what friends (and now I) have had to go through versus how it is ‘meant to work’. I was sent this quote from a nerdy and wonderful friend of mine, and it’s oddly comforting in its cynicism: “You know, I used to think that it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought, wouldn’t it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them? So, now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe.” – Marcus the Ranger on Babylon 5
    Be good to you today: eat something delicious, and wallow if you want to! This is a real and true grief, and while you know you will pick yourself back up, you don’t have to immediately.

    • thecommonostrich · June 19, 2014

      Thanks so much. How weird that you know exactly what I’m going through right now (or at least an approximation.) I’m sorry to hear you’re on CD1 too, dear. You’ll be happy to know, I took your advice– I got a chair massage at lunch, and had a big piece of chocolate cake.

      You know, it is sort of nice to think that this isn’t personal. I just happened to be standing in front of a locomotive of crap, that’s all. Maybe next time I will be on the metaphorical platform.

  3. conceptionallychallenged · June 19, 2014

    I’m sorry. Recurrent nightmares suck.
    I think people say such stuff largely for themselves, followed by a silent “but it won’t happen to me”.

    • thecommonostrich · June 19, 2014

      Yes, I wonder if people who say that stuff really think that, or if it’s just something you say because you don’t know what else to say. They feel compassionate, but don’t realize how trivializing it is.

      Thanks. Today was really craptastic.

  4. julieann081 · June 19, 2014

    Hi. I’m really sorry for what you’re going through. I’m new to your blog and just wanted to tell you that I HATE the phrase, “Everything happens for a reason.” I also hate, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” Pffft! As a mostly agnostic person, I can relate to what you’re saying about religion/faith. Be kind to yourself! ❤ I'm glad that you had a massage and some cake!

  5. Haisla · June 19, 2014

    I’m so sorry that you’ve woken up to yet another month of heartbreak and disappointment. I’m on CD1, too, and it truly, truly sucks. Sometimes there is no rhyme or reason and awful shit just happens. I think I often try to see some kind of ‘meaning’ in events, even (and especially) in the bad ones in order to make them more bearable. Somehow the idea of a completely random universe terrifies me and I keep on clinging to the hope that there might be something benign behind it all, (not micro managing but) keeping it all ticking along. Having faith and being aware of all the suffering in the world can be nigh on impossible to reconcile, though. Thanks for your honest and raw post. I’m glad you’ve found some ways to be good to yourself today..x

    • thecommonostrich · June 23, 2014

      Thank you so much, dearie.

      I think Blogger still hates me, because I can’t respond to your recent post. I’ve tried different browsers, different computers…. Bah! And since this post and your aptly titled “Depresso-fest” are so very related, I will respond here. As I just learned, sometimes knowing that someone is out there helps. Ahem…

      a) I totally know how you feel. It’s like an emotionally dysfunctional merry-go-round. And you just can’t get off the damn thing.

      b) There is no question that this experience will change who you are. Life fundamentally alters us, this just happens to be a trial by mother-fricking fire. The only thing that keeps me grounded is reminding myself that I can choose how I carry myself through this, though obviously I have no control of the journey itself.

      c) There is nothing wrong with taking time to acknowledge the crap-fest you’re in. I’ve come to realize this is part of the monthly grieving process, because yes… this is real grief. You have to honor the sadness before you can let it go, and start fresh.

      d) The internet hugs you. Or at least I would, if we were in the same geographic location.

  6. bionicbrooklynite · June 20, 2014

    “Everything happens for a reason,” gets a serious face-stabbing from me. And I have been hearing it for a long-ass time. It’s a stupid view of the world, to the extent that it isn’t just mindblowingly cruel. Sometimes I believe in God and sometimes I don’t, but I never believe that bullshit. Likewise any of that “never gives us more than we can handle” poppycock. In the memorable words of the parent of one of dad’s patients, “so if I were a weaker person, my baby wouldn’t have died?”

    When I am in a praying mode, I tend to limit myself to thanks, apologies, and requests for inner peace. I can’t stand the thought of a God who sits around deciding who gets to have the nice things everybody wants and who gets the horrors.

    Sorry for the continuing, meaningless crap-fest. There’s no reason to it, but I hope there is an end.

    • thecommonostrich · June 23, 2014

      I’ll admit, I used to sorta buy into it because with the passage of time, you realize that some unfortunate things are actually not so bad. But then there are the “Very Bad Things” that are still very bad regardless of how much time passes.

      Instead, I’ve come to realize how phrases like this just trivialize whatever you’re going through. So yes, let the face-stabbing commence.

  7. Pingback: CD1 | the ostrich

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