the last three months have been... hard. i almost feel like that's kind of an understatement. they've been really hard. on april 1st, we lost our sweet puppy, mack. he was the happiest little pup in the whole world & he really brought our family so, so, so much joy. we felt happiness in the midst of our infertility journey with mack & i will be forever grateful to have had him in our family. when we lost him, i had a really hard time. a much harder time than i could have ever imagined. i legitimately sobbed for days & there are still days that i have a really hard time with him being gone.
when he passed away, i was overwhelmed with the amount of love that people showed to us. literally floored. i still am blown away by the kindness that was shown to us.
as parker & i talked about that kindness, we were overwhelmed with gratitude & also recognized that people understood how hard this was for us. they were doing whatever they could to help us & to show that they were mourning with us. for over a week, we came home to a package a day from friends near & far. they were sharing in our grief & letting us know we were loved. we were sent willow tree figurines, bright boxes, necklaces, hand-drawn pictures, notes, text messages & more. (honestly, i am STILL floored by the kindness that was shown to us. those little things truly made the biggest difference!) i felt the kindness & the empathy with each act of kindness.
as we've gone through our infertility journey, we've been shown similar acts of kindness from friends & family. i wanted to share this post, not to make anyone feel bad, but to offer ideas for those who may not know what to do. sometimes, just reaching out to say, "hey, i'm thinking of you & i love you" is life-changing. that sounds dramatic, but it's true.
YOU MAY ALSO BE INTERESTED IN: how to help a friend going through infertility
5 gift ideas for someone going through infertility
1. good grief
sure, this may be a little shameless self-promotion. but seriously, i wrote this because wished that someone would have written something like this to help me along my journey. i looked for something like good grief to help me feel validated & understand the things that were happening that i couldn't change. i would 10/10 recommend giving something like this to a friend with a heartfelt note letting them know that while you don't understand, you care.
2. bright boxes, sunshine box, blue box
i've been sent bright boxes & also a blue box (a box filled with blue things & a note that said, "just something out of the blue to let you know i'm thinking of you.") i wasn't expecting either gift, but just knowing that the person on the giving end was cheering us on & willing to take a few extra minutes to send us a little something to brighten our day, really meant a lot. (she says as she tears up while typing... it still matters. and that was months ago. so yeah, those things help)
4. willow tree figurines
i love, love, love willow tree figurines. i think they are the sweetest expression of love & thoughtfulness. this one and this one are two of my favorites when i think of infertility.
5. heartfelt notes
not everything has to be a physical item or trinket. receiving a heartfelt note from a friend who is cheering you on, can make a world of difference.
please, please, please don't take this as me asking for money. HOWEVER. i want you to know that infertility treatments are a heavy financial burden. i saw this meme today that said, "i'm making a jar that says, 'IVF FUND.' next time someone asks me when we're going to have kids, they have to put $5 in the jar." if you're curious as to how much infertility treatments cost, check out this post (or google it). i don't want you to feel like you HAVE to give your infertile friends money. but if you're sincerely looking for ways to help your friend & you are able, money can be a good option & it truly is appreciated.