15 July, 2016

Wanting it enough

 You can achieve anything series – Part 3

One of my favourite reality shows is Project Runway. I watch it for the fashion, to feel how out of touch I am and for its celebration of creativity and inspiration. One thing always puzzles me though. In one of the last shows, they always ask the last four or five people why they should be included in the final three to show at New York Fashion Week. And almost without fail, they all say, “because I want it so badly. I’ve never wanted anything like this ever before.” As if that’s a decent reason to give them a place. Only rarely will they refer to their creativity, their skills, their record of wins, their unique aesthetic, their commercial appeal, etc. Perhaps they’re part of the generation who have been raised to believe that wanting it is, in fact, enough.

Ultimately though, only one is the winner. Others, who have “wanted it” just as much or more, worked just as hard or more, and shed just as many tears or more as the winner, don’t take home the prize, receive the title, or bask in the accolades.

So clearly, “wanting it enough, working hard enough, believing in themselves” are not, in fact, enough to ensure we achieve our goal. We certainly see evidence of that in the infertility world, nowhere more so than here in our No Kidding blogging community.

So many of us cling to the idea that if we want it enough, we somehow deserve the reward. Who can blame us, after all the messages pushing the ideas that we must become mothers, and that it is within our grasp if we try hard enough? But those of us on this side know that wanting it, sticking at it, and working hard are in fact, never enough. They might help. They might in fact work for some people. But for the majority of us, we know that ultimately, luck and/or fate and/or genes and/or location and/or wealth and/or privilege or whatever you want to call it is going to play a part.

And that will be my next post - Privilege in the infertility world.


  1. I am always looking forward to your next posts!
    have a lovely weekend.

  2. Love this post.
    "So many of us cling to the idea that if we want it enough, we somehow deserve the reward." I watch a lot of Food Network competition shows and I hear this all the time. And it is absolutely true in the infertility community.

  3. Loved this!!!
    Being a person who enters a lot of competitions, I hear this a lot from the winners! I am constantly reminded that life is pretty subjective and random! Wanting it badly was something I thought I needed enough of to have a baby...but there are SO many other factors in play that we forget. Much like these creative competitions...sometimes you are gonna get the rug pulled out from you regardless of our skill or desire.
    Great post!! remembering that we have so many facets to our desires...

  4. Looking forward to the next post. I think what you say here (and in your last 2 installments in the series) is very true. I've been watching the Olympic trials recently, and it's amazing how many people chalk success up to something purely within their own control (as opposed to acknowledging the intangible factors or variables or breaks that simply went their way) when it's obvious that those they're competing against have often worked just as hard, sacrificed just as much, and want it just as badly.

    I think it's really important to talk about how "wanting it" doesn't necessarily mean "getting it" no matter how much a person puts into something. There are major factors, especially in infertility, that are out of the realm of human control. I'd love to see this myth debunked once and for all - and you are doing a wonderful job at that!

  5. Oooh, so looking forward to your next post. I bet I can predict some of the things that might pop up... I feel like "wanting it hard enough" is said soo much in those competition shows, and that completely eradicates the value of any practice/hard work/dedicated time devoted to whatever it is the people are working for. It's like the drive, the wanting, becomes more important than the work it takes to get there, and in infertility, you can want and work all you want and it could still not work out because of all the things you state in your wonderful last sentence (of the penultimate paragraph). I feel like as a teacher, too, it's hard not to fall into the trap of "you can be anything you want!" or "you can do anything you set your mind to!" -- although I am 8th grade and so have to gently let my students know that the chance of them all becoming NFL players or video game testers is pretty slim to none, no matter how much they want it to be true. Great food for thought.

  6. This is a great example of how much we use that "I want something badly" phrase and think that it will have an impact. It is really engrained in our culture - "If I work hard enough, it will happen" and that's just not true. Sometimes, things just don't workout the way we want.