Did you ever see "What's Eating Gilbert Grape?" It stars Juliette Lewis and Leonardo diCaprio. Leo played a boy with developmental disabilities and Juliette Lewis ended up being a family friend. Leo's mom was extremely obese and very embarrassed by it. She rarely left the house. When she met Lewis's character she told her, "I wasn't always like this." Lewis's character said, "I wasn't always like this either." I found it to be a very touching moment.
When we go out these days with our two little boys, I wonder if we cause pain to people who see us who are experiencing infertility and/or loss. Here we are with two very little children, appearing as fertile as can be, when really it took several years to add children to our family. I always try to be cautious about my attitude and disposition when I'm out in public.
There was nothing worse as an infertile woman to hear other people say, "You can have my children," or "What I wouldn't do to be single again and be able to (x, y, z)." I wouldn't want another woman to see me tell my kid to shut up (oh yes, I do have my moments) or look stressed when one is crying or needy. I know that's a lot of pressure to put on myself (not refraining from "shut ups," because I think that's just good parenting, but to look pleased and even-tempered every minute when out in public), but actually I really do enjoy my beautiful children most of the time. I think they're hilarious, adorable, and fun.
Anyhow, I think I've posted about this before, but I hope people realize when they see happy couples or happy families things aren't always as they appear. You never know who has suffered loss, who is putting on a show in public, or who is actually watching someone else's children and is about to go home and cry themselves to sleep because they long for children of their own. We need to extend grace to each other, even when we see someone who is parenting a different way than we are.
That's it. Putting away the soapbox. Thanks for playing.