Not everyone loves you.
Not everyone cares about you.
And that’s okay.
I have spent the majority of my life realizing this cold hard fact, but it wasn’t until a few weeks ago when my mother said it to me that it clicked. My mom, of course, loves me. I often tease her that she’s obligated, but the reality is she does love me. I love her too. But the conversation we were having was based on how I didn’t understand why (exhibit A) didn’t like me.
When I was growing up I was surrounded by love all the time. Both my mother and father worked, but my brother and I were watched (and partially raised) by our grandmother and great aunt. We were surrounded by family at all times, and unlike a lot of families out there, we do legitimately care about one another.
I would like to say I was pretty socialized as a child… But I wasn’t… And that really accounts for a lot of my social awkwardness. I sometimes think it was the “sheltered” atmosphere of our family. Being fiercely protective also creates somewhat of a barrier between you and the outside world. I am weird and I find it very difficult to associate with other people. Even small talk becomes a bit of a task for me. I am awkward. Especially with new people. That, however, is another topic for another time.
My personality is off-putting, and because I am non-conforming female I make it even more difficult to connect to. I also recognize that I do a creepy amount of “observation” with other humans in social situations, mainly because I’m trying to gauge them. (I sometimes think I am a mild case of asperger’s syndrome or even avoidant personality disorder.) This is disturbing to a normal person. It also makes me appear “Judgy” when reality I’m just trying to learn how best to interact with the person I’m dealing with. “Dealing with” sounds bad. But I will adjust my personality if I know I’m not going to be accepted for my good old weird self. I am a hard pill to swallow. Needless to say, it makes it difficult for people to get to know me.
However, recognizing my weirdness does not make the it any easier when people don’t “love” me or even like me. Especially when it comes to family. I will fight to the death for anyone holding that title, whether I agree with them or not. However, conversely, when the same courtesy isn’t given to me, I am a little shocked.
Lately I’ve been experiencing that hole. While my own family has surrounded me with a blanket of love in this difficult time, I can’t say the same for my in-laws. I realize I’m not the daughter-in-law a lot of parents would want. But I am a loving wife. I am a good person. I am also a human who has hopes, dreams, and fears. I never had surgery before. And a short surgery had been unexpectedly long. Recovery took a long time, as a result. I didn’t even feel 100% normal up until 3 weeks ago. That being said, I would expect the occasional “How are you doing?” or “Is there anything we can do?” …if not for me, at least for my husband. I had surgery and I barely got a “How do you do?” And maybe… Just maybe… You might have been concerned with how your husband might deal with something as terrifying as watching your wife rolled into an OR. Or how an hour and half became 4. I know I would have been an absolute wreck.
Also knowing we had another loss… Not even a word. Just. What? Maybe we are dealing with something terrible and maybe you could give some words of comfort?
It would be nice if they could just… Ya know… give a crap. At all.
It’s not new to this current situation (my infertility), but the indifference in general has created a distance. It’s a distance I’m not proud of. It’s a distance I don’t understand where family is concerned. It feels… Wrong. But I don’t know how to bridge the gap because I’m not the one creating the gap. It’s just this situation has really made things more obvious.
I think I should also mention that I have a major personality defect. I don’t let people hurt me more then once. If you destroy my trust even once, I will never trust you again. I try to be more lenient on family because of the aforementioned “fierce protectiveness.” …But I feel hurt with this whole situation. I also have a photographic memory. It makes compiling a list of transgressions pretty easy as well. I can usually tell you what shirt you were wearing when you said something. It makes me feel petty to keep an open tab of bullshit, but its also pretty f-ing shitty. At the same time… When we tell you that we are doing IVF and you tell me a story of someone who did IVF and then got pregnant naturally later, implying some bullshit like I just need to “relax” makes me a little rabid. That’s cool. I’m happy for them. Too bad any “natural” pregnancy I may ever have would be in my tubes and I could die. I generally don’t want to die. Infertility is not a one-size-fits-all. …But cool for them.
In closing. Courtney. Not everyone loves you. And that’s okay. They don’t have to. The people that love you, love you as fiercely as you love them. If everyone loved you, then you would have no frame of context for love.