Saturday, October 4, 2008

If...Then. If not, then what??

If this upcoming surgery is a success, then we proceed with IVF. Last attempt, final crusade, whatever you call it – our fifth and final fresh IVF.

If the surgery is not successful, then we don’t want to waste that IVF attempt for nothing. I’m not sure what our options then are. Using a Gestational Carrier? Here? Overseas? Costs? Viability of the option for us? I don’t have the answers to those questions. Not yet anyway. And I’m sure there will be even more questions to consider – but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

If we do the IVF, and it is successful (by successful I mean not just a BFP, but bringing home a healthy baby), GREAT!!! Nothing like it. All the heartache, all the trials and tribulations will finally come to fruition and it will all be worth it.

If it doesn’t work – then what? The other day someone asked us if we were “Still trying” and “Have we not considered adoption”. I think most people suffering from IF have considered adoption at some point in time.

It’s again a completely personal decision, and one that cannot be categorized as right or wrong. Adoption is such a beautiful decision on it’s own, that I feel like I would be trivializing the beauty or the enormity of the decision if I take it on a rebound from a failed TTC cycle.

I’m probably not going to be able to explain this like I feel it in my heart, but I’ll try.

It’s like walking down a road, and coming to a 3 point split in the road. You want to take the path leading towards your left hand. You walk down that road and walk into a roadblock. You try again, but the block’s still there. You keep trying but the roadblock stays there.

But you still want to go down the road on the left. Everyone you know has been down that road, and has reached their destination! So you keep trying to overcome the hurdles on that path. Now you’re at the point where EVERYONE around you thinks you should change course and take the road that leads to your right hand side.

It’s easy for everyone to say that, because they have themselves been down the road on the left hand side, reached their destination and some of them are now considering taking a scenic route detour and exploring the path that leads to the right hand side.

The path straight ahead seems like a less popular one, but I’ll come to that in a bit.

That’s sort of how it is with adoption – in my mind. Most people want to have a family and will TTC. Most of those will get pregnant and will move on with their pregnancies and babies. People like us are still trying to tackle the roadblocks in our life. So easy for someone with a child to say “You guys should consider adoption instead” Had we chosen to adopt in the process of building our family, WITHOUT the baggage of IF and failures in our mind, it would be a different scenario.

Someone even told us “It’s not about HAVING a child, it’s about the child, and it’s about being parents to that child.” It made me feel like I was being selfish about wanting to have a child. Like I’m making this whole deal about ME. Is it wrong to want (and be selfish in that want) a child? Isn’t it obvious that once you have a child, the focus is certainly on the child and being good parents to the child?

I think deciding to adopt on a rebound, or because you HAVE to, is a poor choice. (Please note – this is my opinion – and even this opinion may change with time. I'm not judging anybody for any decisions, in fact, I'm very pleased for those that are able to make their decisions in peace.)

I feel adoption is a decision that needs to be taken with a clean slate. Clean colorless background. No grays and blacks of failure and depression, or reds of anger and frustration.

At this point, in my mind, my slate is not clean. It’s gray, red and black. If I choose to adopt with this frame of mind, it’s a decision for a wrong reason.

I feel if this IVF does not work, DH and I will live childfree. That, to me, is the path straight ahead. The one that is unpopular. We both feel like we will need to detox. At least for a while. While we lick our wounds and pick up the pieces of our life. 

We may decide after a while that adoption is right for us, and will move down the path leading to the right. But for now, if our IVF doesn’t work, we will close this chapter.


nancy said...

I think I get what you are talking about. Like adoption is a 2nd choice to conceiving/delivering a child. Like "if this fails, we can always do this less wanted option."

For us, adoption was never in the cards. Maybe if we tried for years and years and no baby ever became of it. But then adoption may have been our "second choice" path to have a child. We definitely were not one of those couples who just sought adoption because we always wanted to adopt.

I also don't think all couples think of adoption as the just what to do when ttc doesn't work. Some see adoptions as another avenue of "ttc", but they can't focus on both paths at the same time. They'll try this one, the conception thing first. Then, if that doesn't work, they'll just go to the next way of doing it. TTC first was just done first because it's "easier" (yeah, that one is a totally loaded word!)

I think it comes down to do you really WANT to adopt? If you would only do it because you want to be a mother and nothing else worked, maybe adoption isn't ever going to be a road for you. But like you said, you would be in a certain frame of mind IF surgery or ivf didn't work. I would leave adoption off the plate for awhile, until you could decide what was really best for you, not just what the next step could be.

I know it's totally not the same, since i already had two children, but we wanted a third child just as bad as I wanted my first. (of course, if I didn't get a 3rd, my life would be different than someone having to live childfree.) After all the surgeries and meds and IUIs, my husband and I decided to do 2 IVFs and as many FETs as we had embryos. IVF#1 came and went. I started to really see myself as not succeeding. I asked him if he wanted to adopt. And we both had the same answer. No. It just wasn't in the cards for us.

Lauren said...

Nikki, once again you totally verbalized the things that go through my mind every day. I'm with ya, girl.
First of all, I REALLY hope this is a success for you.
Second, we're on a similar page. I can't say adoption would be ruled out for us, if and when the time came, but right now it's just not in my heart. I want to be a parent first and foremost, but I also ache to experience the full gamut of parenthood -- from pregnancy to birth and beyond. I guess I feel like I'll be cheated out of a very important part of the whole experience if I can't have my own child. I, too, worry that I'm being selfish, but I don't want to make such an important decision when I feel like I'm "settling." I know that sounds awful. :(
DH says he sometimes feels his heart being tugged for adoption, but I can't say I feel it -- at least not now. Besides, the whole process of adoption is not an easy one either.
I wish you all the best, Nikki!

Lauren :)

Melanie said...

I totally understand what you are saying. Although we have talked about adoption even before we knew we really had problems. But, for us, I think we would have to take some time and heal from all the failures. (Although this IVF is going to work.. I'm being positive!!) This is our one and only chance. We can't do more than 1 IVF unless some miracle happened and someone gave us the money to do it again. Our insurance doesn't cover any of it.

I think adoption is definately a personal choice. I think it can't be a last option kind of thing. I have all kinds of feelings about adoption. I think it's a very beautiful thing. I had a friend adopt after her failed IVF attempt. But they took time and healed before rushing into it. I think that is so smart! We have no problem with adoption. We've talked about it.

It's hard for me with IF. Everyone in my family has kids. I'm the only cousin that doesn't have kids. (Even my cousin that didn't ever want kids has one now.) I want the pregnancy! I will be selfish in that! I want that! I want to be a mommy for sure whether it's mine or adopted. I don't think it's all that selfish for us to want our own. It sucks that IF has consumed us.

Okay.. enough of my rant. I think it is wise to take time and go on the straight path until you have time to think and heal your heart. Sorry if this doesn't make much sense and it's just a rambling.

Jackie. said...

The long and winding road....

First, I am wishing and praying that your final IVF results in a white-knuckled drive home from the hospital because your healthy newborn is strapped into your backseat for the first time.

Two, the adoption thing. I love how you are thinking of it in terms of a clean slate, tabula rasa. It does not surprise me at all to hear you express that you want to make sure that you would make that decision from a positive place and with a clear head.

All of these decisions are heavy ones, and for each person there is a unique "right" thing.

Lots of hugs,

Shelby said...

I am officially one of the team members on the sidelines rooting for you. I really hope/pray this IVF makes this discussion less relevant. But if not (and in IF, we unfortunately always have to formulate a plan 'b'), I completely understand your decision with adoption. And while living child-free was not what you originally planned, I see that with the wonderful relationship you have with your DH, you will enjoy each other immensely. I just understand what mourning that will take first and to be honest, I've already started to prepare myself. Take care, Nikki! **hugs**

I Believe in Miracles said...

Nikki~ It seems like you have some hard choices to make and a nerve-racking next couple of months. I pray for a sense of peace with whatever you decide.

Licking your wounds and regrouping is a good idea in any case before moving on to whatever the next step is... I know I've started thinking about that too.


debbie said...

I hope that this IVF works and you come home with a beautiful baby. If it does not work, I think it is better to heal before considering adoption. Adoption should not be the rebound option. Anyways, all the best for this IVF.

Also, I saw you are from San Jose, CA. I live in Fremont.