Hope is an essential emotion. Hope has saved lives and gotten people through unimaginable circumstances. Many holocaust victims credit this single emotion with allowing them to survive impossible conditions - the hope of the life they once knew or the hope of seeing their family again. Hope is the fuel that drives the most successful of people - the hope of financial freedom or the hope of creating a legacy. Hope is the hand that pulls children out of the inner cities and into the great colleges of our country - the hope of a better life.
For me - Hope has been the salt in the infertility wound. With every cycle comes the hope that this is it. That this is the cycle that will get me pregnant. Of course - with every negative test result - the loss of that hope is the source of the deepest pain. I wish someone had told me when I started IVF that I should check hope at my doctor's door.
As we begin to make plans for our donor egg cycle fear is the predominant emotion. Not the hope that was always there before. I fear the potential of more wasted money. I fear the fact that I may not get pregnant. I fear the doctor's will not be completely be honest with me about my donor. I fear if this doesn't work my husband will not be able to love me anymore. But - most of all I fear the unexpected visit of hope. I've tried to hide from it. I've tried to lock my heart so tight that it can't get in but it is creeping in and that makes me feel panicked.
Panicked because I don't know how much disappointment I can handle. Because I think at some point I will be so lost that there's nothing left of the woman my husband fell in love with. Panicked because I don't know who I will be if I am not a mother. And panicked because I'm afraid the God I thought was always there has forgotten about me - just like Celie in The Color Purple - "Dear God, I've always tried to be good. ...Please let me know what is happening to me."
But there it is. Hope. Starring me in the face and filling my heart. Maybe this really will be it this time.