"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life" Proverbs 13:12

Saturday, June 30, 2012

A sense of moving on

Feeling rather down at the moment.

Just got back from a mostly fantastic time away, working with Uni students on a retreat.  It is the start of my new job, and a great reminder, despite my nerves, that I am very well suited to this.

The bit that makes it mostly fantastic and not all fantastic is the same reason for my flat downess today.  You see, last year, though I was working there was very clearly an end point.  A time to move on.  But this job?  Someone asked me "So you are doing this for good?  Indefinately.".  And my answer was "I guess".  And that is really scary.

Of course, we are moving onto ED, and I still have good hopes for that.  But despite that there is this growing sense that this, this road that I am on, is not going to have a happy ending.  That this job, this life, with its good things (which are very good) and its Infertillity (which is bad enough to ruin most things) is just going to be my life ahead.

I was reading a blog that I've been reading for ages, a blog of someone who has had a baby after trying for ages.  As I read it there was this real sense of "It was all worth it" and "God had a plan".  But that just doesn't seem to happen in my life.  Thumper was my "happy ending" and he is dead.  And it just doesn't seem like anything good is going to follow him, at least not for a few years anyway.  And maybe never.

And remind me, even if there ever is, that I will never, ever say that Tim and I are "Finally a family".  Because no IF should ever, ever say that because it is a toxic lie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I know we are doing the right thing.  I have no doubt about this.  I am very confident that when I am eighty I'm not going to look back at this point and think we made a mistake.  But dreams dying hurt.  They hurt like hell.

And as much as I love my new job, compared to motherhood?  It kinda sucks.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Guilt and grieving

There is a fair bit of grieving going on in our house.

Not just about our embaby, but about Embryo donation.  While we are really excited about it, there are alot of things that both Earl and I need to grieve, as we move onto our last 'chance' (for want of a better word) to have genetic children.

I feel a little guilty.  I think because as I process this concept I spend alot of time inside the head of my potential children.  What will they be thinking?  Will they be wondering about their genetic parents?  Will they feel cheated about not living with genetic siblings (particularly if for some reason we can only have one child)?  Will they doubt our love for them?  I always thought I'd love to show my kids this blog one day, so they can get a sense of what life was like waiting for them, so they can know about their little embaby brothers and sisters, and so they can see just how wanted they are.  But now I feel funny about that idea.  Will my talk about our grief make them feel like they are not loved and wanted.

But there is grieving involved, and it's real.  And its not just the grieving that my children are unlikely to have my husbands green eyes.  It's also grieving the "simpleness" of having your own genetic child.  There are so many things that have to be sorted, so many conversations that have to be had.  So many worries that wouldn't be there if we weren't going down this path.  We want to do it, we want to have kids, and we want to have kids this way.  And we love the idea of giving an opportunity of life to an already existing embaby.  But the grief is real and normal and just part of the process that comes when things don't happen like you always imagined.  A process we have been through before, many times on this crazy journey.

It's made me decide that despite waiting lists I am happy to wait until after our Stim cycle to begin the process of going on our clinics waiting list.  Part of the process is two counselling appointment, and I thought I could get one or both "out of the way" before we finish stim cycle number last.  But the more I think about it the more I think these appointments aren't just hurdles to jump over but they are important.  They are important for us as we get ready for this next step.  They are a chance to grieve and talk and think and pray.  And perhaps it is better to have them when ED is not just potential step if our stim cycle doesn't work, but when we know this is the next step.  I suspect then there will be alot more grieving, but also alot more excitement at this special new way that God might grow our family.

But I guess the question comes, will I show my kids this blog anyway?  I think I will.  I think it's okay for them to understand the grief, and it won't necessarily make them feel unloved.

And Genetic or not, I have a funny idea that any kids we have are going to be so very loved, so adored and cared for and cuddled, that they are not going to doubt our love for them.  And if they are in doubt, I will be telling them I love them everyday anyway.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Aftermath, and thinking about the future

Sorry I didn't go into many details last Friday.  I was not in a good place, and not in the place to write.  But I wanted to share a bit of what the last week has been like, the good, the bad, and the very ugly.

I knew when I woke up.  Well, I didn't KNOW but I definately had an incling.  I woke up with a stomach sensation which only comes in one situation, just at the same time as AF.  So I knew.  It was very early, so I went back to bed, but it was that sad, confusing, restless sleep.  Earl was sad as well, so we lay there, for longer than we should.  Crying and cuddling and sleeping and talking.

It is strange how the mind works. For most of the 2ww I was actually pretty hopeful.  But as soon as AF arrived I took on the attitude "It was never going to happen anyway".

We called this embaby Peter.

The biggest drama was that my day was not free.  It was flexible but not free.  On Saturday I was going to give a talk at a ladies event at my parent's church.  A talk I had not finished when AF arrived.  Not to mention the fact that I was making Pizza and decorating cupcakes (also not ready yet) with my Sister-in-law and her family that evening.  I wallowed as long as I could then I got to work.  Somehow it all got done.  Somehow, it all went well.

The talk went so well, better than I could have ever expected.  I'm still not sure how.  And it was weird because I was on a high afterwards, which felt really weird.  One minute I would be crying over another failed cycle.  The next I would be smiling over the talk.

And of course, on Sunday, with all my major responsibilities over, I fell apart.  In the morning before church, Earl and I were hanging out with our friends kids.  The little girl who is five was singing a song from the radio (seriously, how do kids know modern songs, I have no question her parents wouldn't let her listen yet to the songs she somehow knows anyway!).  Earl had it on his phone, so he turned it up and me, the girl, her little brother and Earl danced around the kitchen.  And for one crazy minute I saw a future, a future where Earl and I had kids, and where we danced together round the kitchen.  And I wanted to cry for the future and the embaby I had lost.

So, that was my Aftermath.  I guess I can be thankful of my crazy ability to do what needs to be done despite heart-ache.  But oh, how I wish I could just be glad of heart.

We saw Doc yesterday.  It was emotional, but once we were out of that office (I hate that office so much, so much disappointment associated with it) we could objectively say it was helpful.

Here is the plan:

1) Start the Embryo donation process.  While we can't go on the waiting list while undergoing treatment, we can do all the pre-waiting list requirements (counselling appointments etc).  This week I will call the Donation nurse and start that ball rolling.  While its scary, it is nice that the contingency plan is already in place, to take the pressure off this last stimulated cycle.  And Doc was very, very confident about ED for us.  He said he had tested everything on my uterus and it was fine, and that problems are usually egg, then sperm, then uterus anyway.  So while there are no grantees, it at least gives me hope for the wait.

2)Last Stim cycle, this time with a two week course of steroids.  Our Doc is suspicious of treatment for "natural killer cells" because there aren't any proper studies proving it works, but he feels like since we are on our last cycle anyway, this is the time to try the more "alternative" approaches.  I am also going to get Earl onto some conception multivitamins and perhaps go back to acupuncture.  Earl and I feel really good about this.  We are giving this next cycle everything.  If it doesn't work, then we won't be stuck with any unhelpful "What ifs?"

So overall, given that this time last week I could have still been pregnant, we are going okay.  It's actually been a shocker of a week for other reasons that I won't go into on this blog- some of which I'm sure is exacerbated by our BFN.  But all in all, I'm feeling okay as I write, and that, given everything, is a blessing.

And my dear friend HJ has had a BFN on her IUI.  I am so sorry friend, I so wanted us both to have our happy endings this round.  Many, many hugs and prayers from across the ocean :(


Thursday, June 7, 2012

AF arrived

And I hate her. That is all LG

On hold

I hate this time!

I feel like I'm on hold, like I can't do or think anything!  I'm trying not to be hopeful.  I'm getting upset and sad when I don't have a reason yet.  Then I get happy.  Most of the time I try not to think about it, but I can't.  Because everytime I go to the bathroom I worry. Everytime I get a twinge in my b00bs I think about it (incidently- that is a symptom for me of both pregnancy and AF being on the way).

It's so hard.

Beta on Monday.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

The 1ww

As of today, the 1ww had begun.  This time next week I will be taking a blood test.  I might already have my period by then, but by then at least I will have some sense of what has happened.

Have been really struggling to sleep.  Which for me is a very unusual thing, though at least at the moment I have some ability to sleep in or have afternoon naps to compensate.  The lack of sleeping is because my head is spinning as I lie down, lots of thoughts about lots of things.  Most of the time not about 1ww or pregnancy but as often happens with these things, the stress of this is underpinning everything so it is the cause, though not the content of my insomnia producing thoughts.

I've had a really sore back, an aching neck, and a little bit of cramping.  Could be a) AF coming on, b)hormones I took on Saturday, or c) early pregnancy symptoms (okay, I don't know if back pain is really an early symptom, but the cramping could be!)

Hoping to have a really productive day today, planning ahead just in case AF does come and I am suddenly not functioning mid week.

This 1ww is the real killer for me.  The constant uncertainty, the stress with every bathroom stop, the waiting, waiting waiting which at this stage doesn't contain any hope, just a desperate 'please don't not be pregnant, please don't not be pregnant'.  Which is a terrible double negative but it is so different from 'please be pregnant'.  Please be pregnant is a hopeful I-want-a-good-thing-to-come.  Please don't not be pregnant is a fearful I-don't-want-to-go-though-that-pain-again.

Appreciate your thoughts and prayers,

Saturday, June 2, 2012

A bigger picture

This cycle I am on involves two small pregnal hcg shots in the 2ww, to help my body along if it is pregnant. Number 2 was this morning.

I'm kinda relieved to be able to blame hormones on how I've been today.

In some ways its been a lovely day. We spent Friday night at Earl's Aunt and Uncles Holiday house, with Earl's sister and brother and their partners, as well as our beautiful little nephew. We watched TV, went for walks, played board games. It was really fun.

But when i wasn't having fun I was an emotional mess. I'd be upset if SIL#1 didn't let me hold nephew when I wanted too (not that I asked mind you, I was just upset because she didn't think to). I was upset when SILs would talk about times they had hung out without me (which is ridiculous because I hang out with SIL#1 and nephew at leased once a week without the other SIL). I was upset when SIL#1 started talking about whether she would have God-parents for nephew because I was afraid it wouldn't be Earl and me. And I was upset about the fact that they were continuing to hang out while I had to go home.

And overarching that I was upset because I am quietly confident that SIL#2 is about to start trying to have a baby and if I'm not pregnant right now I suspect she will beat me too it.

But there was a comforting thought. As crazy as the above stuff sounds, I used to be like that all the time.  I've always had strange paranoia about friendships, partly due to some bullying that went on in my teens, and partly because I'm a sensitive soul who wants to be loved.  This used to be what I was like.  And what changed it?  Infertility.

When we started trying to have a baby, then I began to realise how all these silly relationship drama's I got caught up in weren't really that important.  There were greater, more important struggles in the world.  Today hormones set me off the edge, and it was a window into how miserable and silly I used to be.  And as much as I hate, hate, hate IF, it has changed me in some strange ways for the better.

Don't get me wrong.  SIL#2 trying is going to be a massive big deal, and will no doubt feature more and more on this blog.  But there are things in my life that are so much more important than made-up competitions in my head about who is whose best friend.

Like a 2 week wait.