Thursday, September 25, 2008

Infertility Part II: The Hardest Aspects

I've covered what I've found to be the blessings related to infertility, but I would feel dishonest if I didn't touch on the hardest aspects of it.

Obviously, the continual disappointment of not conceiving is the biggie. Before going through it, I had no idea how grinding it would be to month after month have that heartbreak.

The isolation it creates surprised me. I don't want to whine about it endlessly to my friends; I don't have family I can talk to about it; there are only so many times L and I can have the same conversations.

Fighting with myself to avoid giving in to bitterness and/or jealousy. I'm certainly not perfect, but I've never really had a problem with either of those before, but I sometimes really have to remind myself of the blessings of this in order not to descend into both. It would be very very easy to become completely hard and bitter.

Working where I do. I think my job is in one of the worst possible spots; there are pregnant women and small children everywhere! I often try to avoid leaving my behind-the-scenes area since as soon as I do it will be an obstacle course of babies and pregnant ladies.

Wondering if I should start trying to come to terms with not having children. I almost think it would be easier if I knew that it was not going to happen; I feel like I could close that door, grieve it, and move on. As it is, it's a monthly reopening of the wound and sometimes I just don't know if I can take it anymore.

Obsessing over my body's symptoms. I really wish I'd never read some of those TTC posts. Every twinge became a possible early pregnancy sign, and just made the eventual "No" that much harder to take. I've gotten smarter lately and refuse to allow myself to even begin thinking of the possibility until day 35.

The endless two-week wait. I'd had no idea that two weeks could take so long. And if you don't know what I'm talking about, you've apparently never tried to get pregnant.

The expense. Once you start going to the doctor to find out what's going wrong it's obvious - reproductive endocrinologists don't come cheap, and none of the tests are inexpensive. Even the prescriptions for Clomid were pricy. Insurance covers virtually nothing, so medical decisions have to be made keeping finances in mind.

The embarrassment. Sitting in the RE's office discussing details of my s_x life and my cycle and many of the tests are so not fun.

Turning something that should be about intimacy and pleasure and connecting and turning it into a chore.

The hormones! Clomid just about made me crazy. I was miserably sick physically and incredibly moody emotionally, something like PMS times a thousand. I knew I was being irrational and still could not seem to help myself not be that way. I'm supposed to do one more cycle on Clomid before moving on to other options, but I've been putting it off because I don't know if I can handle another cycle on it.

When people take pregnancy or their kids for granted. It's so frustrating to see people not appreciate what a miracle it is. And then when I hear people talk flippantly about starting a family once this or that happens, I want to tell them that it just might not be that simple.

Being in the stage of life where sometimes it really feels like we're getting news of another pregnancy every single week. Some don't phase me at all, others do and sometimes it seems quite random which ones do or don't.

Wondering what's wrong with me that God won't let me have a child. And I know that's not the issue and that it's bad theology, but sometimes it's still what I wonder.


Anonymous said...

Reading your post was like I could have been reading my own journal - I so understand what you're saying. It doesn't really make it any easier to go through, but it is nice to know I am not the only one. Thanks for being open about it.

Di said...

Hi Renee, just wanted to reach out and hug you over the tineterweb. Thank you for your honesty, and I know what you mean about the two week wait taking aaaages.

Try the last dose of clomid - you never know what might come of it. Then make a decision to have a break from ttc. This won't necessarily end up with a pregnancy with the whole 'if I don't think about it, it might just happen' mentality, but it might enable you to really connect with L again, to get some of that 'us-ness' back again (again, not saying that you have lost this, but just going on what we did). Put the focus back on your marriage, and enjoy each other for each other's sake. Its what Sunday afternoons are for, after all... :P

Of course, you may still have in the back of your mind 'I wonder if this time was THE time', but if you make your focus each other rather than babymaking, it will do wonders for your marriage.

Sorry to blather on, but this is the point that I reached after our ttc journey, and hoped that by sharing it, it may help in some little way.

Love Di x

Kate said...

'When people take pregnancy or their kids for granted. It's so frustrating to see people not appreciate what a miracle it is.'

Yes. Yes. Yes. Particularly now that our door is closed (and in the midst of extreme grief, there is relief that the cycle of continuous hope/disappointment has ended), I really feel like snapping at people when they talk about how they'll never be able to go on holiday again because of their kids, or how restricted their lives have become, or whatever. They have no idea how fortunate they are and how much it hurts others when they talk like that.