This Mom Explained Infertility to Her Son & His Beautiful Response Blew Her Away

Shelby Eckard and her son Parker
Shelby Eckard

This morning, Shelby Eckard sat at her desk crying. A friend of hers had just texted her an ultrasound photo of her baby. When the 32-year-old mom from Aiken, South Carolina, who documents her struggles with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) online under the name PCOS Support Girl, was approached by her 7-year-old son Parker, she had to explain why the image was moving her to tears. Eckard had to figure out how to explain infertility to her child.

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"He asked, 'what is that?' I explained it was a baby, trying hard not to go any further because I'm not ready for a 'where babies come from' discussion," Eckard writes on Instagram. "He said, 'but momma- I don't understand. Why are you crying? Babies are awesome.' This spawned a whole flood of tears I held back behind burning eyes. How do you explain to a 7 year old the emotions and challenges of infertility."

Somehow, Eckard was able to figure out the perfect way to do just that.

"I mustered up my strong mom voice and told him, 'yes, babies ARE awesome. They make hearts happy and homes feel full and are the greatest present a person can ever get. Having a child is like looking forward to a birthday. You know the time for it is coming. And for some reason, for some, those 'baby days' don't come when they're supposed to. Or ever. And it's like waiting on a present and not knowing if you'll ever get it. And it can make you sad. If you were looking forward to your birthday, and it didn't come, you'd be sad, right? And you'd be really happy when you finally got your birthday present. Mommy had to wait for your baby sister, and it was really hard. But she's pretty awesome, right? And she was totally worth the wait. So mommy is happy when she sees her friends happy. And that's why she works hard to help those women feel happy each day.'"

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OMG, pass all the tissues, please. And as if that wasn't enough, fast-forward to a little bit later when Eckard went looking for Parker and found him in her bedroom, sitting on her floor "doodling and writing." 

She shares on Insta:

"I asked him, 'what are you doing, buggy?' He said, 'I want those ladies to be happy, too. I want them to get their presents. I can't give them a baby. And I thought maybe they can borrow my sister for a little, but I can't drive and I'd miss her. So I am drawing them pictures as presents. Maybe you can send them to them for me? When they're sad? I don't want them to give up. I want them to be happy.'" 

Shelby Eckard son Parker
Shelby Eckard

"There's moments when I think I'm failing as a momma, but these moments? I know I'm not doing so bad," Eckard concludes her post. 

The proud mom tells CafeMom exclusively that she's as floored by her son's compassion as anyone. "I am blown away by his big heart every day," she says. "His ability to be empathetic for others, and his unending desire to help fix things, from his broken Lego tower to a struggling woman's hurt heart, makes me want to do better." Amazing.

Shelby Eckard and her son Parker
Shelby Eckard

More from CafeMom: These Fertility Advances Will Blow Your Mind (& Help More Couples Have Babies!)

Ultimately, she shared the story with followers of her Instagram account to show solidarity. "The main thing I want my followers to know from all of my stories is they are never alone," Eckard explains. "It is very easy to get lost in the seriousness and complexity of adult situations, emotions, and maturity. Sometimes, seeing situations through a child's eyes, and speaking your words with the intention of children hearing it, can make things a little more clear and less overwhelming." 

No matter what situation you're relaying to your children, it's likely you'll get through to them in an even more powerful way than you could've imagined, Eckard believes. And from her experience, she wants other moms to know that they're doing just fine.

"As a mom, I think we all want to be reassured we are doing something right," she says. "Most days, I feel like I'm failing at this mom thing, with the unfolded laundry, sticky floors, raised voices, and tempers lost too often. But little things like this remind me, I'm not doing so bad. My kids may have messy hair and sticky fingers, but they have huge hearts. And that's something to be proud of."

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