The family that wasn’t meant to be

At certain points in my life, I wanted to have children with GR more than I wanted anything in the world.

I pined for a family. Everywhere I went I only saw pregnant women. It was like I was starring in my own horror movie. Zombie pregnant women were always coming at me. It was ridiculous. (If you’re trying to get pregnant, please take my advice and steer clear of the produce department at Whole Foods.)

I wanted a child or two and to have GR be a father and me to be a mother and us to be a unit.

Newsflash: It never happened.

Now I’m 41 years old–almost 42–and there is still a void in my being for that family that I never had.

My mind tells me, “It’s okay, Brooke. Shit happens. You tried your best but you and the universe wanted different things. You are destined for a different life. You will birth other things. Carry on.”

My heart speaks to me less about it than my mind does, perhaps because the void is so vast and so deep that listening to my heart talk to me about it is still too difficult. When my heart speaks to me its voice resonates throughout my entire being. I can feel a gaping hole inside my body. It always ends in crocodile tears.

My heart says, “You are still longing for something that never happened. Something that you cannot manifest on your own. You are alone in this world. You are not a part of a unit. You do not have a family.”

Rational? No. (The heart never is.)

Real to me? Yes. Very real.

Compassionate and well-meaning friends who I discuss this with sometimes say to me, “You can still have a child if you want. You still have time.” And they are not wrong. They are kind and loving and want me to have what I long for. The thing is, it’s not just the child that I want. It’s the whole package. The father and the kids and the unit.

The truth is, however, that this ship has more than likely sailed. As much as I couldn’t make GR stay alive, I cannot will myself my own little familial unit. It is something that, regardless of how open you are to it or not, how hard you may have prayed for it or not, or how much you feel you deserve it or not, the universe either does or does not make it happen for you. I know this because I had a husband. He died. I tried to have kids with him for more than five years before his cancer diagnosis. I saw fertility doctors and acupuncturists and had tests run to make sure my fallopian tubes were open and that I had enough eggs in my basket and I took hormone pills and Chinese herbs and on and on and on. I took real efforts and real actions to manifest a family into my life. It was like pushing a boulder up a hill on most days. It felt like I was fighting a losing battle on my own. In fact, I was. Plain and simple…it fucking sucked. It was devastating.

I know that you can want something more than anything in the world and if it’s not meant for you, it’s just not meant for you. Because other things are.

That’s reality.

In my mind it’s all fine. My heart–at this juncture of my life–is taking a little more time to come around. But it will. I know that my heart will catch up with my mind.

Honestly, in some irrational way it feels a little silly and selfish and self-indulgent to spend any time pondering all of this–how many of us want things that don’t happen?–but I know that it’s okay to long for things that are ultimately not meant for you and to have to mourn those things and then find ways to heal from them. This is essential on our path to inner peace.

I don’t know yet exactly how that path will unfold for me, but I possess a genuine curiosity to find out. In ways, it is already unfolding, and has been for awhile.

I am choosing to have faith.

I am willing to keep my heart open and to listen to it more often and more closely to see what it has to share with me. Already my gut tells me it’s because the universe has plans for me to birth other things and to mother in other ways.

All I REALLY want. (Photo taken at the Henry Miller Library in Big Sur, CA in Sept. 2018)


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