• Are we too scared to bring children into a more violent and seemingly crazier¬†world?

    I know we just ended Thanksgiving where we were focused on gratitude, but for some reason I really feel called to focus on forgiveness today. Maybe part of the reason is because this summer I took a class on forgiveness. When I signed up for it, I wasn’t aware that I had others to forgive as much as I liked what the teacher shared about the program. He said he was going to teach us how to feel more empowered in a world that has so much more anger, greed, crime, and violence. He was suggesting that when we focus inwardly to heal the anger inside of us that we will be better able to help others in their pain and bring forth more peace.

    In my town alone, which is 20 miles from Chicago, I read weekly police reports of multiple car thefts and house break-ins. There have been hold ups in banks and gas stations and just last month a student was shot from a drive–by-shooting just outside the high school. Your town may be experiencing more crime and violence as well. Whether or not you have seen an increase in crime, we all see it in the world at large from Standing Rock to irate Chicago customers shopping at Michaels. Then there is the internal violence that is attacking the human body, like cancer. Within the last three months I have lost two uncles and one aunt to cancer.

    What does this have to do with infertility, surrogacy or adoption? Well, I think if we’re too scared to bring children into a violent and seemingly crazier world our bodies may clam up and our minds may shut down feelings of hope and possibility.

    Phew, I know I am usually so uplifting and hopeful and this may be hard to read. I don’t usually focus on such negative topics, but they are hard to avoid. I think it’s important to address what may be happening inside your cells as well as your mind. You can take precautions to protect your house and body, but the threats are everywhere. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed at times.

    So, what can we do when we are working so hard to create or adopt a baby to only fear losing them in some senseless act of violence or illness?  I believe that my forgiveness teacher, Mark Anthony Lord, was right when he said that peace starts within us. Making peace with relationships that may be rocky from your past, anger from relatives asking you nosey and/or insensitive questions, feeling forgotten by the fertility or adoption workers that you have spent a lot of money to engage with, or your partner not opening up to other ways of becoming a mother. There are so many small (and sometimes big) insults that happen to you along the way to your baby that it’s easy to get bogged down by them.

    As I started the forgiveness class, I could not believe all the anger and hurt I had inside. I must have shoved a bunch of stuff way deep down and this class helped me to acknowledge, feel, and then release the anger that I had sitting inside of me. Of course, the suppressed anger acted like a magnet and I attracted more frustrating situations into my life, which made me even angrier. As I practiced exercises to release my anger I found myself feeling more open, loving, and patient with others and myself. I felt more grounded and not as reactionary as I had been previously.

    The most important reason to care for yourself right now is for your own mental and physical health so that you can show up to your child one day in a more conscious way. Let’s not add to the madness. It may seem like such a simplistic solution to heal the hurt inside of you. Forgiving others isn’t the entire answer, but I think it’s a start.