Why did I create the #IAmWhole project?
To give a face to infertility
Through my own battle with infertility, I have found comfort in sharing my story. To my surprise, many women that I encountered either currently struggle with infertility, have in the past, or have a close family member dealing with the inability to conceive. I began to wonder, "Why, if this is so common, don't I hear more about it?" I suspect that many women don't feel comfortable sharing for a number of reasons, but I also suspect that sharing our struggles will bring the kind of camaraderie and awareness that we are longing to experience.
To build a compassionate community of women who will lift one another up
Community is vital. With the help of a healthy community of supportive women, you are no longer alone in your infertility struggle. You can walk through whatever season you are in with the kind of confidence that genuine compassion brings. My hope is not only to encourage the infertile woman, but also to help those who have never struggled with infertility to know how to support your friend/family/coworker who is.
To convey that your worth is not dependent on your ability to have a child
Ladies, you are inherently valuable. You are valuable because you exist. You are valuable because you are you. There is absolutely nothing that can remove your worth. Your ability (or inability) to conceive a child has no bearing on your worth as a woman. I think that many women walking through infertility, on a subconscious level, may think that their struggle to get pregnant makes them failures. I am boldly saying that the status of your uterus has nothing to do with your value, and I want you to wholeheartedly believe that.
So, what exactly is infertility?
Generally speaking, infertility is the inability to conceive after one year of attempting to conceive. Sometimes an individual will have an explanation for her inability to conceive; other times, it may be unexplained. This project seeks to share the stories of women who are currently facing infertility or have battled infertility at some point in the past. This will include both childless women AND women with children. My hope is to include stories/encouragements from women in every season of life.
How can I support your project?
It's simple - share your story. Allow me to take your portrait and host the story of your journey through infertility here on my site. Do you know a woman who is dealing with infertility? Share this project with her. Let her read and learn that she does not have to walk through this without the loving support of a compassionate community. If you are particularly moved by a story that you have read on this site, forward it along. You never know who you may encourage.