I don’t know if it’s the looming presence of the holidays, or it’s because everyone around me seems to be pregnant, but man oh man, am I ever feeling things right now. I feel like everything is setting me off. I actually de-activated my facebook for a few weeks just to get away from all of the negativity. I don’t know what it is, but I feel so much more sensitive to it all right now.
I had to log in to my facebook recently to post something for work and I immediately felt an overwhelming sense of frustration. Because of my age, I seem to have a lot of pregnant facebook friends at the moment. And because Facebook seems to be the place to complain about said pregnancies, I am having a hard time scrolling through my feed. Listen, I have never been pregnant (Not even a little. I may have had a chemical pregnancy once, but I don’t even want to ask my no-nonsense doctor about that one), so I don’t know what it’s like to be pregnant. I don’t know how physically, mentally, and emotionally demanding it all can be. I get it. Pregnancy looks really hard. It looks tough. I applaud all women who get to go through it. Good on you. You’re growing a human being, you’re allowed to complain. You’re allowed to bitch and wish the baby would just hurry up. You’re allowed to say you wish you had never gotten pregnant, or talk about how much you hate being pregnant. You’re allowed to do all of these things.
And I am allowed to not listen to you complain. I am allowed to hide you from my feed or unfollow you. I am allowed to pretend I don’t hear you bitching about your pregnancy or change the subject when you tell me to “not have kids, they ruin your life.” I am allowed to ignore all of those things. And I do.
Because it keeps me sane.
Every time I read an annoyed expectant mother’s post or see a pregnancy announcement I’m hit with an overwhelming amount of grief, sadness, and guilt. Just like that. All three come crashing down on me and there is literally nothing I can do about it. It suffocates me and unless you’ve gone through, you wouldn’t understand.
People tell me I should be grateful for what I have. Oh trust me, I am VERY grateful for all that I have. I have a lot. I know I do. I’m very lucky to be married to who I am married to. But this has nothing to do with him and it has everything to do with how I feel.
I am allowed to be sad. I am allowed to feel all of the emotions that I feel.
And I’m okay with that. I just don’t want to let myself get bitter.
That’s the hardest one with infertility, isn’t it? The bitterness. I think we all feel it from time to time. It always comes after the sadness for me. I’ll feel really sad for a couple of weeks and then when I’m tired of feeling sad, I’ll start to feel really angry about things and the bitterness slowly seeps in and I can hear myself saying nasty things about people, or feeling like there’s no hope left in me at all.
Infertility is annoying and I am a control freak. I like being in control of my body. I like knowing that if I eat right and I exercise, I will feel great. I like knowing that if I get a good amount of sleep and take care of myself, I will avoid getting sick. I like knowing all of these things. Infertility takes that away from you. Because sometimes, there’s nothing you can do. Sometimes it can’t be helped and that frustrates the hell out of me.
I mentioned earlier that I have a lot of pregnant friends/acquaintances right now. One of them is a friend who had to undergo IVF to get pregnant. She and I shared our frustrations with our fertility struggles this summer and it was SO nice to have someone to talk to about all of this and who could finally understand what I was going through. I was happy when she told me she was pregnant, which she was very considerate about and told me privately before posting to social media. I will always appreciate that. But that pregnancy announcement stung, and I didn’t expect it to, at all. (Please note, I love my friend and I am SO, SO happy for me, but I am also SO, SO sad for myself. It’s a complicated place to be, but here I am!)
I was initially so happy when she told me. I knew that she had been wanting a baby for a little while now and that she and her husband had had a hard time and that their only option was IVF, due to male-factor infertility. But when I saw their announcement, I couldn’t help but reflect on my own situation. All I could think was, “we’ve been trying longer than they have. We should’ve gotten pregnant first. That’s not fair.” And I could feel the bitter tone of my words.
Yes, we had been trying longer. Yes, we had done more treatments than they had. Yes, I had done more to change my diet than she had. Yes, I felt like I had done more research on infertility than she had. I had done everything RIGHT and yet here I was, still not pregnant, and she had gotten pregnant during their first round of IVF.
I shared my discontent with my husband, as I always do. And he listened to me, as he always does. And he understood where I was coming from and he let me say all the stupid things I needed to say. And then, as he always does, reminded me that we are not them. We’re us. She doesn’t have PCOS like I do. They don’t have the same barriers that we do and that everyone’s journey to baby is unique.
And I knew he was right. Those words are always floating around in my head, usually way in the back where I can’t hear them anymore, but they’re there. I know our journey is different. They’re all different. Some couples take a month to get pregnant, and some take 10 years. There’s so much uncertainty in it all, which I am very slowly talking myself into embracing. Because I don’t really have any other option. If we are lucky to enough to conceive one day, I don’t think I will have any control over when and where that happens. I can eat my greens and take my vitamins, but at the end of the day, my ovaries are either going to work for me or not. Even with sophisticated medication and procedures, there are never any guarantees. We did three highly monitored cycles, with very expensive medication. We timed everything down to the last second and they still didn’t work. I ate pineapple to support implantation, I kept my uterus and feet warm, I listened to mindful mantras every night. I did everything I was supposed to and then some, and it still didn’t work!
That feeling of chaos and uncertainty is a hard pill to swallow.
For now, I am always trying to remind myself of how far I’ve come, fertility wise and health wise. I had a very good appointment with my OB last week and my blood work shows that my hormones are all within a normal range.
Imagine that. Normal.
We’ve decided to give Clomid another go, so we’re waiting for a new cycle to start.
I’m not feeling positive about things, but I’m also not feeling negative either. I’m somewhere in between and I’d say it’s an alright place to be.