My Perfectionist Heart



My confession is this: I am somewhat of a perfectionist. I set goals — lofty goals — and I straight dominate those suckers one-by-one. You see, I am of the mind that anything can be accomplished with hard work and persistence. And so each actualized goal strings behind it a trail of exhaustive work. But these goals, they’re met with meticulous precision because I don’t back down — I conquer.


And the thing about this infertility is that it’ll drive a perfectionist downright mad. The work — oh, the relentless work — it will devour everything you feed it — hope, energy, strength. And there will be no recompense because this struggle, it is a selfish endeavor that incessantly depletes your heart of optimism. And then the goal, once adorned with hopeful promise, suddenly seems impossibly insurmountable. Still, you forge ahead because you are not a quitter, and your perfectionist heart keeps saying, if you only tried a little harder


And that’s the thing. I have tried — God knows, I have given this fight everything I have, but you see, it is never enough. Because just as I am stuffing my face full of gluten-free pasta, someone “enlightens” me on the fertility benefits of grass-fed beef. And, oh, did you know my cousin got pregnant when she gave up caffeine? And, really, you should put on a few pounds.


Then the perfectionist in me quickly confiscates any logical reason I have. And suddenly, I find myself strolling through the grocery aisles looking for grass-fed beef and decaffeinated coffee because, surely, this will fix everything. I just have to try harder…


But the negative pregnancy tests do not relent. They show up and deride my efforts, month-after-grueling-month. And here I am — in the midst of a gluten-free, dairy-free stupor — overwhelmed by just how ridiculous all of this is. Because, really, nothing I can do will make this happen. I have tried everything. EVERYTHING. And, truthfully, all of this trying is enough to drive anyone absolutely out-of-their-minds kooky.


And like I said here, all of this baby stuff isn’t up to me anyway. So, here we go; I am declaring it — I’m going back to the basics. I’m laying my perfectionist “I can conquer it all” heart to rest, and I am running to my Only Hope. And when my tired soul feels battered and broken yet again, I will hold my head high in faith knowing that, “nothing [is] impossible with God.” And that will be enough. It is always enough.

10 thoughts on “My Perfectionist Heart

  1. Gosh DARN….again you bring a tear to my eye. I totally remember this feeling. Funny how you already have the “mommy guilt” brewing (eating and drinking this and that something or other FREE). There is a baby with your and David’s name on her (or him). She (or he) will come to you whatever way God decides. Continue to enjoy the journey. Your 5 year old words of wisdom are forever etched in my memory, “Mommy, Aunt Angel is a mommy now.” I look forward to sharing similar words with you. <3

  2. Hy Brittany, I’ve just finished to read your last post. I liked it. As you know I got married just two months ago. My wife and I are both 40. Now, we have been trying to have a child, but our fear is that maybe we are a little later in age. All this is taking away the serenity and peace. For example, my wife is afraid to die after she giving birth while I fear to be barren. Probably, they are only silly fears. It’s gonna be ok. As you wrote, even I believe that nothing is impossible with God. So, I ask you to keep us in your prayer, so that God’s plan about us may be realized. A big hug. Say hello to David. P.S. Next Wednesday we go to Rome for the Papal Audience as newlyweds so that we can a reserved place. We hope we can speak with the Holy Father. We will pray for you and David at Holy John Paul II’s tomb.

  3. I understand how you feel. It is so hard to find that balance between doing all you can to help the situation and letting it go in God’s hands. Prayers!

  4. I could have written this: this infertility does the same thing to my perfectionist heart and it’s torture. It’s a day in and day out fight against myself.

    Thank you for sharing.

  5. Just wanted to take a moment to thank you for this post specifically. A friend referred me to your blog after my husband and I have become more vocal in the past few months among our friends about our frustrations and (mis)adventure of doctors visits and tests and diet changes and charts and temperatures and supplements etc. While our doctor greets us every two months now with a smiley “ok, let’s try this now…” approach, by the end of that night, the hope becomes tears as we become overwhelmed. It all requires so much discipline and fear. I must or must not do so many little things, so far not feeling like any of it matters anyways.

    And in the end, we’re supposed to put all this effort into getting pregnant and while I can say without reserve that I desire greatly to welcome life, I’m also purely terrified of motherhood. So much death-to-self now that’s already a struggle, all in an attempt to gain a life time of death-to-self moments.

    Thank you for so beautifully articulating your experience in a way that speaks so clearly to my heart.

    1. Oh, Jill. Thank you for your comment. I’m so sorry to hear of your struggles. I know all too well the discouragement you are facing. Hang in there, my friend!

  6. Reading this post I know you understand the struggle of perfectionistic tendencies, the grief of infertility, and the hope that nothing is impossible with God. Thank you for being willing to share some of your most difficult and personal challenges. So many who deal with infertility think they are alone or feel that they are. Plus, your nothing is impossible with God has come to pass. I will pray for you, your husband, and Judah.

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