I've bought necklaces. I've written letters. I've screamed. I've cried. I've distracted myself. I've avoided feelings. I'm grieving.
It's not enough.
It's not enough to share on Facebook and Twitter and here on the blog. I need to do something. Something bigger. Something stronger.
Less than 24 hours after thinking this I found myself on the Resolve website; if anyone had outreach, I knew it would be them.
I clicked on a link that said Advocacy Day and found what I was looking for.
Every year Resolve facilitates an Advocacy Day - where people go to Washington, D.C. and speak to legislators about infertility - educating them, discussing bills currently in the works, lending their voices to bring awareness to infertility.
For the first time in a long time, I was fired up. I could do this. I could go into D.C. (I mean, I live right around the corner!) I could talk to Congressional representatives.
I could be a voice.
I filled out the form, and even selected "yes" when asked if I would be willing to be a group leader - the main speaker during a group presentation. I clicked "submit" and then stared at the confirmation page and thought, what the hell did I just do? It's one thing to write and blog about infertility, but to talk face-to-face with lawmakers about it? My stomach started to hurt. I might not be strong enough for this.
Then I thought about the hell Ben and I have been through in the past three and a half years. The emotional roller coaster. Hearing the word no.
I'm slightly terrified, but I'm doing this.
I'm doing this for friends who have undergone procedures and surgeries, only to be told they can't get pregnant. I'm doing this for friends who have had a miscarriage. I'm doing this for friends who have had multiple miscarriages. I'm doing this for friends who have gone in for an appointment late in their pregnancy only to be told their baby no longer has a heartbeat. I'm doing this for friends who might lose ovaries and have to face preserving their fertility at too young of an age. I'm doing this for the childless parents.
I'm doing this for those who have watched their dreams die in a doctor's office.
I'm doing this for men who suffer from infertility. I'm doing this for the support systems who are there when their loved ones need them the most. I'm doing this for the children - the ones who are only dreamed of and wished for, because fertility treatments are something their parents cannot afford. I'm doing this for the children who are never met by their parents because they're gone too soon. I'm doing this for those who can't speak up.
I'm doing this because there is no wrong way to build a family.
The tears in my eyes battled the smile on my face.
I can be their voice.
It might be hard, or frustrating, or painful. But the legislators in this country need to know we are here. They need to know how many people are affected by the hell that is this disease. They need to know we are doing battle daily, and on May 7th we are speaking up.
(Want to participate or even donate? Check out the Advocacy Day site to find out how and help spread the word!)