Saturday, May 30, 2009

Only in my life do these things happen!

These things happen only in my life! DH and I have been through the wringer for 8 years with IF. Of late we started talking about exploring options with adoption more seriously, and we were finally beginning to be able to put our arms around the idea of proceeding with adoption. We decided to go attend an informational session on adoption organized by a local support group, and guess what? Just as the meeting started, there was a fire in the building, and we had to evacuate!

There was total drama – with firemen, and smoke and ladders and everything! Here are a few pictures that DH took with his phone:

But even a burning building was not going to stop a group of determined IFers to get the information they wanted. Our group crowded around the moderator on the sidewalk, and asked her to continue talking! (If IF teaches you something, it is resilience! Nothing can deter us much any more.) It wasn’t the best place to be holding an adoption seminar, but there we were, all trying to ask questions, and listen to what the moderator was saying over the noise on the street!

We finally ended up walking over to the across the street and sitting on the floor in one of their lesser used hallways to continue our session!

The session was very very useful. But at the same time, very emotional. Each time the moderator said “First you have to deal with the grief of your infertility”, I had to wipe tears from my eyes. For the most part of the session I had a lump in my throat that made it hard for me to ask the questions I wanted to.

The moderator herself is an adoptive mom, twice over, and has dealt with her share of IF before they adopted. She told us a lot of important things about the process, logistics, and emotions of adopting. DH and I have come back with a ton of information, and a list of things to research on, and make decisions about. She helped dispel some myths and misconceptions that we had about the costs and the process of adoption, and she brought in a lot of clarity for us.

We are still not sure if we are jumping into the application and home study process immediately. But we are beginning to think along those lines, and are beginning to agree to find out more. This itself is a huge step forward in the process for us.

Adoption is a beautiful thing, obviously, but today, for me, it is a very emotional piece to process. It’s the realization of acceptance, the apparent finality of giving up TTC. Yes, we still have the FET and the 4 embryos, but who are we kidding here? What hasn’t happened so far is very highly unlikely to suddenly turn around and happen now. I’m at the point where I’ve begun to accept the fact that I may never have a pregnant belly.

I’ve finally broken my addiction to hope, and it has been rough.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Which of my readers writes daily horoscopes for Yahoo?

This is what my daily horoscope at Yahoo said today:

Whether you think that your dreams are messages from your subconscious or not, there is no denying that the visions your mind creates while you're sleeping can give you some insight. So evaluate the strange images that have been invading your snoozing hours. Analyze them long enough, and you'll start to see some patterns emerge -- patterns that you need to change. You are being warned about something, so heed those warnings.

I can't believe the coincidence that I should have such a random dream, and then this should come up as my daily horoscope!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

I think I need help

I don’t even want to try and interpret this one. I had a dream the other night, and not only was it disturbing, it was downright weird.

In my dream, my mom is pregnant. And it’s one of those “oops” pregnancies. My parents are worried about how to break the news to me (much like most of my IRL friends don’t know how to face me once they get pregnant). It’s like I am so incurably infertile that it’s all that my family and friends see about me any more!

So anyway, back to my dream. My parents are worried about breaking the news to me, but they finally take me aside and tell me they didn’t know how to tell me, you know, because of how long DH and I have been trying to get pregnant on our own. I don’t say anything to them, and without any real conversation, it becomes understood that I will bring up the baby they have as my own.

So flash forward – poor pathetic me is bringing up my own new born baby brother and passing him off as my own child. (Why did my dream select a baby brother over a baby sister? No idea.)

How disturbing is that? On so many levels. Right from the fact that they didn’t want to tell me, to the fact of course that my 61 year old post menopausal mother can get pregnant and have a baby and I can’t, to the fact that I’m bringing up my baby brother and pretending he is my baby. Also, my relationship with my parents is very good, so I have no idea why my sub-conscience would come up with something so insane!

OK - I think I need help.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Real life meetings

I feel like a recovering drug addict. In a way I am exactly that, right? I was addicted to hope. I was on major drugs, shooting myself up in the most shameless manner, in some absolutely crazy places, like public restrooms and gas stations!

And now, I’m having withdrawal symptoms. Not the usual kinds though. I’m not dying to go back on the drugs. I’m not dying to put my brain back into the fog it has just broken free of. Quite the contrary. In fact, I wonder if I even want to proceed with this FET at all any more.

It feels like I have wanted a child, and been denied that for so long, that now I don’t want it any more. It’s like scar tissue in my heart, you know? From the hope that existed there, that has been dashed so often and so badly.

It’s been one month since I started my job. It’s been 2 months since I called off my FET. The last two months have felt nice. I’ve enjoyed my wine (OK, not just wine – I’ve enjoyed my cocktails as well ☺ ), I’m enjoying fitting into my regular clothes and not feeling like a bloated, water soaked pin cushion! I feel almost brazen confiding that I have not even taken my pre-natals or folic acid for 2 months. I just don’t feel like taking them any more.

DH and I are enjoying leading a normal life, and not being on a drug / patch / injection / suppository / appointment / blood draw schedule for the time being. I’m enjoying laughing again. I mean, not that I wasn’t laughing before, but I was certainly down in the dumps more often than I was laughing.

I met a couple of my IF sisters last weekend. Sarang (her blogosphere name) is part of a local IF sisterhood that came together a few months ago. She is dealing from a recent failed IVF cycle, and I am so proud of her for dealing so well. Meeting her on Saturday for breakfast brought out so many emotions that I had shut away for the last 2 months. She was asking me about my next steps and it suddenly made me realize how far I had mentally distanced myself from the thought of starting to prep my uterus lining for FET. It’s like I had this wax coating on my emotions.

So while I on one hand I’m enjoying being drug free, on the other hand, I know I need to get moving on with FET / adoption research, or whatever else it is that I need to do. The age time bomb is ticking away! Sarang gave me some ideas about adoption that I am going to research on. I am also planning to attend a session on adoptions, which a local support group is holding soon. Sarang, thank you for being there, and helping me sort out my lost and numbed emotions recently. Thanks for reaching out and doing all that you’re doing!

On Saturday evening I met Darya! It was so nice meeting her! She was in San Francisco for a conference, and I went up there and met her for a drink. It was really nice to hug her in real life – after having sent her many many hugs over the internet over the last year or so that I’ve “known” her. And it was so easy talking to her in real life! Like we’d known each other forever! 

I put up a picture on FB, and someone commented “Are you sure you’re not sisters?” I commented back “In some ways, we are sisters”

Darya – I wish you many many more conferences in San Francisco! I will come and meet you for a drink after EVERY conference that you attend here – how about that? Thanks for all the support you’ve given me over the last year – it was so nice to meet you!!

ALSO: In case anyone is interested, a friend of a friend has some meds to give away. (I will delete this part of this post in a few days) So if you or anyone you know is interested, and needs the meds, leave me a comment with your email address, and I will send it ahead to my friend. Here are the details:

Full cycle of menupur (Bravelle brand) that will expire 7/2009.
If you know anyone who can use it and their insurance does not pay for it, I am happy to let them have it.
They cost about $2K without insurance.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

We're all mommies too!

Every year, women like me brace themselves for the coming weekend, the 2nd Sunday of May. Yes, Mothers Day, celebrated almost all over the world, and dreaded by the IF community. The commercialization of every holiday and the all-pervasive media with all its advertising and constant reminders of the celebration of motherhood, become constant reminders of what we’re missing. Every commercial on TV, every advertisement on the radio, every announcement of Mother’s Day sales all over the place are like knives through our already broken and shattered hearts.

And I think I speak for many of my IF sisters here – I have endured each Mother’s Day for the last 8 years, thinking, believing, hoping, praying, while desperately and fervently wishing that this is the last Mother’s Day that is breaking my heart. Next year, I will have my little baby in my arms, and I too will be wished “Happy Mother’s Day!” For 8 years I have pretended to ignore the commercials and the announcements, and have wondered how it would feel to wake up on Mother’s Day to breakfast that my child(ren) made for me, to clumsy but heart tuggingly cute hand made cards, smudged drawings, and squeals of laughter, all the excitement in the air!

But instead here I am – hoping to go to bed on Saturday night, only to wake up on Monday morning. Hoping to slink away somewhere on Sunday, to try and avoid the obvious. And it’s all because we physically don’t have our children in our homes and in our arms.

The other day I saw a Mother’s Day commercial on TV, and I turned to DH and said “ I’m a mommy too, aren’t I? So what if my babies are all dead?” I know it broke his heart to just hear that being said out loud. But isn’t that the truth?

Our babies may not be here in flesh and blood, but they are here in so many other forms:

In the form of every dream that we have had where we’ve seen our babies’ faces, or felt their hugs.
In the form of the imagination of what our babies would look like – for every time that we have looked at our DH’s face, and imagined a baby with those eyes, or that smile.
In the form of every treatment cycle that we have gone through – and the 2ww when we are PUPO
In the form every embryo that we have ever created through ART
Sadly, even in the form of every chemical pregnancy, every miscarriage, every ectopic or every pregnancy gone wrong – those were our babies. They just grew angel wings way before they should have.

We are all Mommies. The world may celebrate Mother’s Day only for those with living babies, but let’s not forget to remember our babies that were, or could be, or should have been. We are all Mommies, whether or not we have babies to cuddle and kiss.

I hope I don’t offend any of you by saying this, but I do want to wish all of us a Happy Mother's Day. Many many hugs to all my IF sisters, and many thanks to all of you for holding my hand through some of the roughest days of my life so far.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Left behind

It’s happening again. In the 8 years that DH and I have been TTC, we’ve been “left behind” so many times. I used to lurk on some message boards, way back in 2002-2003 etc. I never posted, but I did find myself following the stories and posts of some of the women on the board. One by one they all got pregnant, or adopted and moved on. I got left behind.

Then I started posting on the boards and made some friends. One by one most of them got pregnant, or adopted and moved on. I stopped posting on the boards because I just ended up feeling like a bitter, unsuccessful oldie, still there, still trying. I was left behind again.

Then I started blogging – and now I’m noticing the same thing. One by one, so many of the blogs I read have gone from being IF blogs to becoming pregnancy blogs to parenting blogs.

I’m left behind again. Yes, there are some people from each group that are also still here with me, and I can feel their pain. It feels terrible to be left standing in one place when the world is rushing past you. How infertile am I, that even the IF community is getting pregnant before me?

And I’m not even talking about my IRL friends any more. I don’t even expect to have a child that will be older than any of my IRL friends’ kids. On the other hand, if I do have a child, I expect to be that pitiable older mom with a young child, feeling totally out of synch and out of sorts!

I don’t grudge anyone her success or happiness. Not at all. In fact, I’m happy for my IF sisters when they get to the other side of this roller coaster. I know many have been to hell and back on the infertility journey, and I’m so glad and relieved for them when they reach their goals and get the BFP or get matched with a baby they are adopting.

But I’m tired of being left behind all the time. I’m tired of being tired of treatment. I’m tired of enduring. Out of stamina. Spent. Ready to give up.

It doesn’t help that pregnancies and pregnancy announcements are everywhere! Everywhere you look, you’ll get blindsided! DH is not spared either. The other day, he was out in the park with Simba, and he met one of our neighbors. She usually brings her toddler out for a walk around the time that DH takes Simba out. They hadn’t run into each other in a while recently. She met DH, hugged him and he asked her how things were, and where she had been. She unzipped her jacket, revealed a very pregnant bump, and said “I’ve been busy – I’m due in 10 weeks”. DH didn’t have a response for her. He came home and told me how blindsided he felt at her news. All I could think of was “Thank goodness it wasn’t me outside in the park getting to see that pregnant belly”

There is a commercial complex being constructed in a nearby downtown. I remember seeing the signs “Ready in June 2009!!”. This was early 2008 or maybe late 2007. I remember thinking “June 2009 – that’s far away. We’ll definitely be pregnant or have a baby by then!” I crossed past that construction site yesterday. There are huge buildings, almost ready for business. And then it struck me. June 2009!! It’s almost here! And me? Left behind again. Not pregnant, don’t have a baby, and in a worse mental situation that I was one year ago. Buildings have been made, and I haven’t been able to make a baby! Shame on me!

No sign of AF. No idea when she’ll show. On top of that I’ve had the worst possible cold and sore throat for the last couple of days. No fever, else I’d be sure I got the swine flu, and given my luck, I wouldn’t be surprised either! I’m sneezing and coughing and every pore of my body feels like it’s blocked and “woolly”.

And no, being all clogged up does NOT help my not so sunny disposition much! ☹