The Pain Olympics

Today I read this post from a blog that I follow. It was about something referred to as the Pain Olympics. I had never heard this term before, but basically, it’s that contest people sometimes engage in where they try to prove that their pain and suffering is worse than anyone else’s. I would rather not win a medal in the Pain Olympics. I would rather learn to focus on the blessings in my life. And that is what I long to do in this journey of mine - find the good, find the better blessing.

I have spent a lot of time sharing my world of secondary infertility with you. But I am beyond thankful that I’m dealing with secondary infertility. I have said it often - I’m so blessed to have a sweet little girl to call my own! My arms are not empty and I am thoroughly enjoying the role of motherhood. There are many women out there, and some of them my own sweet friends, who are dealing with infertility - nothing secondary about it. I pray for those women every day. Because they deserve to have what I have.

What I have is motherhood. And I am so thankful that when a group of mommies starts swapping childbirth stories, I can participate rather than feel a familiar sting of pain. And when they share potty training tips, I can roll my eyes and say, “That doesn’t work for everyone!” instead of feeling left out.  I’m thankful to be able to participate in “mom” events, like the moms day out program at my church and standing up in the church service on Mother’s Day to receive my chocolate bar. I cherish morning snuggles with my 2-year-old, knowing they probably won’t last much longer. I love the way my parents and parents-in-law light up when they see their granddaughter walk through the door. And even when the timing is not ideal, I usually try to drop everything when my daughter shoves a pile of books under my nose and says, “Wanna read some lots of books?”

See, for me, a big part of my pain is that I can’t provide a sibling for my daughter. And that sentence contains one of the hardest parts of my life and one of the best parts of my life. It is why I will never even come close to the medal stand in these Pain Olympics. I feel as though God has given me only the slightest understanding for what other women have gone through and are going through. It makes me pray harder. Some days I weep as I beg God to give my friends children. Because as great as my pain sometimes is, I know that it is nothing compared to theirs.

And that’s a perspective I need sometimes.

Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift.
- 2 Corinthians 9:15


  1. Great post! Very good points. I admire your positivity and strength. You have a beautiful daughter. I'm so glad you have her, but still you've been through so much. More than anyone should have to go through. My heart goes out to you.

    I have a lot of friends with secondary infertility, and I've never judged them or thought they were luckier for already having a child/children. I've always tried to relate to them, just as I would anyone else with infertility in general. It's so unfair and should be easier for people to have the families they want and deserve - and to have a sibling/siblings for their child.


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