My family and friends know me as the one who is always saying, “Hold on, let me get a picture of that!!”
I make everyone freeze so I can snag a photo of whatever excitement is going on. I don’t care if eye rolls ensue while I get 5 shots of the exact same thing. I don’t care if we’re in a hurry and it causes us to be late. There are moments worth remembering, and I’m not going to rely on memory alone to do the job. Having those photos to look back on is everything to me.
And I’ll bet you can relate to wanting photos of happy times. Blowing out birthday candles, a row of flowers blooming on a sunny day, that airplane window shot on your route to vacation. Photographing happy times makes sense to me. And probably to all of us.
Which is why when I started taking photos of our infertility journey, it puzzled me. These were not happy, much less appropriate, times to be pulling out a camera. Photos of us in the hallway right before a doctor appointment, in the room after an IUI procedure, crying at home on a tough day, after getting a phone call with test results, being nervous before surgery, and the days of recovery after. Why would anyone in their right mind want to document and remember those kinds of moments?
Then one day it hit me. I was taking these photos out of a belief that those kinds of moments would one day be behind us. And that someday they’d be moments worth remembering.
I didn’t know how or when, but I think somewhere deep down I knew our chapter in infertility would end with a miracle. And when that miracle came, when that prayer was answered, the heaviness was lifted, and the joy went from scraping by to overflowing – I wanted to remember every hard day we went through to get there.
Because I knew when the time came, I couldn’t allow myself to forget what God had done for us. I couldn’t lose my empathy for the many friends still in the infertility trenches. I couldn’t celebrate pregnancy fully without also carrying the lessons (albeit painful ones) that years of waiting taught me. I wanted to feel it all, deeply. And remember, with gratitude.
Wherever you’re at, whatever you’re going through, do you think it’s a season that will be worth remembering someday?
Whether you do or don’t, take a photo today anyways – while holding onto the hope that one day you’ll look back on that image, with new eyes, and see the beauty that was always unfolding there. #NationalInfertilityAwarenessWeek
Join me in sharing your story of infertility with the hashtag #myinfertilitystory and #NIAW2020.