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“May today there be peace within. May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others. May you use the gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. May you be content with yourself just the way you are. Let this knowledge settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of us.”

~Mother Teresa

This quote came to me just when I needed it.

Somewhere between lunch break and my last class of the day, I lost it…the trust.

This happens from time to time. How? Well, today it was this. I got a glimpse of myself in the mirror, my eyes focusing on the grays that stubbornly parade on my head and the faint lines on my face becoming more visible.

I feel old…

…like I should have a three year old by now, tugging at me, needing me, challenging my priorities… like I should be able to offer advice to my younger sister in her eighth month of pregnancy…like motherhood should be something that defines me already.

For a while now, I’ve had this tendency to focus on women who are pregnant or who’ve just had babies-in magazines, on TV, on Facebook updates. In particular, with women around ages 36-42,  I get a mixture of comfort and panic. On the one hand, I am uplifted hearing about women older than me getting pregnant. On the other, each notice makes me feel behind the clock. Some days, the ticking seems deafening.

There’s a long story here. But, the short of it is, we want a baby, and not getting one in the years of trying, has been hard to accept. It’s harder, even, to trust that we’re exactly where we’re meant to be.

Self-doubt is a persistent pain in the ass.

It natters, saying:

Hey, hey you, maybe you should have started trying a long time ago. Maybe saying no to the more aggressive fertility approaches is a dumb thing. Maybe you need to start that adoption process; doesn’t look like natural conception is gonna happen for you two. 

There are days when I cower under these thoughts and have a hard time looking past them.

There are also moments when I feel picked up, knowing that regardless of the disappointment, we’re exactly where we should be in this process.

I have no idea what’s in store for us in creating a family. But, surrounding myself with reminders like the one I received today is exactly the type of knowledge I want to settle into my bones.

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