Monday, August 13, 2012

Infertility and the Olympics

I absolutely love watching the Olympics.  I can get hooked on almost any sport - except maybe handball because I just don't get it.  But I've been glued to the TV for the past 2 weeks watching everything from cycling road races and gymnastics to football :) and volleyball. It's simply amazing to me to watch people who've sacrificed everything for 4 years just to have a shot at their ultimate dream.  Some achieving the impossible, some falling short only to have to wait another 4 to try again.

In many ways, infertility is much the same, but in many ways it isn't.  Something struck me so poignantly the other day while watching an interview with one of the Olympic organizers.  The gentleman commented that he thought the Olympics were, in part, so amazing because they were a metaphor for real life -- touching on the sheer will power, perseverance, strength and fortitude that these athletes possess to achieve incredible results.

Real life is a lot messier and we can't will ourselves through some things we face - a failed IVF attempt, a failed adoption, blocked tubes, cysts, etc.  While it is incredibly inspiring to see these athletes achieve their dreams after such hard work, I always feel bad for the 4th place finisher.  The one who doesn't get a medal, or the advertising deal or world fame even though they've sacrificed just as much, maybe even more, than the gold medal winner.  Fourth place finishers are OK in my book because I think it takes much more strength, fortitude and perseverance to recover from loss than it does to actually win.    

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