Just when you think, you have heard it all, you will hear one experience that will knock the breath out of you in one whoosh. I have had that feeling several times, when I read reactions to some of our blog posts. TTC is painful mehn!
However, this did not come from any reaction to a blog spot. It is reality for every one of the women in this article.
When Bola was around the age of 27, she was rushed to the hospital with a particularly bad case of menstrual cramps. That was when it was discovered she had fibroids. Although, it was now affecting her lifestyle, the location of the fibroids shouldn’t prevent conception but there was one glaring fact she had to explain to the doctor. She wasn’t married yet. Even though she was in a relationship that had prospects, she still did not have a ring on her finger. But ladies, she had hope.
As it turned out, Bola might as well not have had any hope, because that guy broke up the relationship some months down the line. She grieved so much, it showed on her face and demeanour. It was also about the time she decided to lock her hair. If nothing, it gave her something to do every morning. She mourned her breakup because she was really heartbroken, not because she felt her “sperm donor” had left. They had been together for a while, and both sets of parents knew the lovers.
Weeks turned to months, and she moved on and fell in love again. By this time, she was 29 years old and smarter too. She didn’t have time to waste, and made it clear to her beau that she was seeking a relationship with a future, not the “Let’s see how it goes” kind. He said that was what he was looking for as well and that he also didn’t want to waste his own time.
Alas, he was all mouth and no action, a very indecisive fellow he was. After months of waiting for him to make up his mind about where they were headed, Bola broke off the relationship and that was when the waiting started.
The waiting wouldn’t have been so bad, if it was solely for a man but it was a waiting that meant she listened to her biological clock go tick-tick, every month. It was a waiting that saw her fibroids grow bigger and further decimate her conception chances. But she still had to wait, as she wanted to do things the conventional way.
Bola is a long-time acquaintance of mine. She just got married about two years ago to her lover, a single dad, and I can tell you for free, the amount of prayers and wishes it took for this man to ask for her hand in marriage. I remember one time I had seen her picture cuddled up with her husband-to-be on her BBM display picture, and my sister and I had been so happy! I had asked, if that was the lucky man, and she had replied with this comment; “Amen o.”
Well, God answered her prayer, but still needs to answer another one. That for a baby. I cannot begin to tell you how fast friends and family moved on from praying that she got married to praying she conceives a baby.
We are praying, but Bola and her husband are not so worried about having a baby, After all, they have a 7 year old son who gets all their attention. What it does for a now older Bola is take off the edge off her longing for baby. Will the longing ever go away? I don’t know. What I do know is she is a lot happier for having married into a ready-made family.
Meanwhile, somewhere in my old neighbourhood is tall, stately Marian, who was one of the early friends I made when I got there. We had connected over my small bump that led to the birth of the older twins. She had also been a witness to the trouble those babies put me through; like their insistence on taking a walk on the pedestrian bridge close to our house. Life sha!
Anyways, as we got closer, I got to know more about her and you know what, she’s been through a lot. For starters, she had gotten married early in life, suffered two still births, before having her now teenage daughter.
After that, she had a successful pregnancy, gave birth, but somewhere along the line, that boy too also died in mysterious circumstances. The boy’s death was, and is still, painful to her, even more than her other losses, as she got to hold the boy, took him home, christened him, circumcised him and cooed to him for weeks, until one day, she discovered him dead in his cot.
Not long after the death of her son, she also lost her young husband. It was double tragedy and it took a while before she recovered.
I met her years after those two incidents, when her daughter was in Primary School, but her longing was clear; she wanted to get married again, so she could have more babies. But it looked like, for her, all the decent men had taken flight. She kept attracting stringers and desperate men, who only saw a vulnerable woman they could use and dump.
She went through some men, but as the years went on and her daughter grew older, she became very selective. There was a time she even went off men, as they were just distracting her from her business.
However, I was so happy a year ago, when she called me to tell me about the man who is now her husband. He was everything she was looking for; an older man with a sense of responsibility. He did not just want to date her, he asked for her hand in marriage almost immediately, went to her parents’ house to sort out the marital rights, bought her a ring and then legalised the union with a registry marriage. It was as though she hit the jackpot; all the right boxes ticked.
Her story is a source of encouragement to me, and an example of how having the right man in one’s life could change your narrative, because today she has a proper shop for her fashion business, rather than running it from her apartment, and she drives their car even more than the husband himself.
On the TTC front, she has gone from wanting twins to wanting triplets, neither of which has come yet, but there is nothing that is impossible. If God could so change her story in less than a year, after meeting her ‘destiny helper’, then he can do this too. By the way, this is a second marriage for her husband. His first one had produced older children. While he would like to have a baby with his new wife, it is not a must-have scenario, but I heartily pray for that triplets for my friend, if only to replace the memories of her loss.
For Seyi, the fact that she married a man with kids was just a coincidence. It turned out, she would have some challenges with having children, and those kids of her husband would turn out to be her best buddies. Boosting her spirit with their boisterousness. There are no dull moments with the children around.
Everyone had been understandably sceptical about a young man with a baby mama, who had not one but two children for him. They wondered why he did not marry the mother of his children, at least it would have been the sensible thing to do. What no one factored in was that the mother of these boys did not want to marry him. She just wanted children by him, which she got.
Life moved on, he met and fell in love with Seyi, and they got married. The fact that he was already a father did not matter after a while, as the boys were such treasures whenever, they were with them.
So, when a bump did not show nine months after their wedding, Seyi’s mother called to ask her what was happening on the baby-making front. She was understandably sensitive about the fact that her daughter had married a man who already had children, and boys for that matter. It was on her prompting that her daughter and her husband went for testing. It wasn’t immediately picked up, but Seyi was diagnosed with PCOS, so she isn’t ovulating even though she still sees her period.
She is undergoing treatment but she found her mommy roles to the boys do her a lot of good. The boys make her forget the details of her TTC issues, as they run her ragged with all their energy, but it’s good practice for when her baby join them too.
For these ladies, this arrangement works and helps with their TTC journeys, and that is all that matters for now, but I earnestly pray that their own babies come soon.
As they say, the more, the merrier!
Baby dust to all TTC moms!
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