family

Genetics

This is a really important post that I’ve been putting off for a while. You see, around the same time that we found out I was pregnant, in fact the same day that I had the bleeding and went to the ER, I found out some major information from my dad. According to him, I have an inverted 9th chromosome. This was something my parents learned during the amniocentesis when my mom was pregnant with me and never told me until now. In fact, from what my father said, my mother didn’t/doesn’t want me to know and I’m not supposed to tell her that he told me. Without getting into the whole long story of my family and secrets like this, it’s pretty fucked up.

Mind you, this is something my nearly 80 year old father told me that they learned more than 32 years ago, so it’s possible he’s in some way mistaken. But, BUT, whatever you can say about my dad’s short-term memory lately, his long-term memory is on point. I really have no reason to disbelieve him.

I did some quick and dirty Google searching and from what I learned inv9 is one of the most common chromosomal abnormalities and is generally considered benign. However, some studies have linked it to infertility and miscarriage. And I read a couple scary stories about multiple miscarriage from people with inv9 on message boards. So, you know, this should at the bare minimum be something they told me when I started all the fertility testing (that they totally knew about) and was asking questions about family history.

Obviously I’ve been rather hyper-focused on this pregnancy and because of that I haven’t been thinking a whole lot about this. But when the genetic counselor started talking to us at the OB orientation I got nervous. I checked the box on the form saying I wanted to talk to a genetic counselor but haven’t heard back. So we are starting with the low-level blood testing for possible genetic issues and we’ll go from there.

My feelings about this are really complicated. I’m (obviously?) pissed at my parents for not sharing this information sooner. Especially my mom if she truly told my dad she didn’t want me to know (from what he said they first had this conversation at a point in their marriage shortly before they were separated for a couple of years so it was a difficult, contentious time for them). It also makes me nervous about this pregnancy and any other possible future pregnancies. Anything that increases chance of miscarriage is no good for my peace of mind. I’m relieved to know now but wish I could have found out sooner when I wasn’t pregnant and testing to confirm would have been simpler. But nothing I can do about all that now. So we go forward. I’ll let y’all know if I found out any more info about me personally or this pregnancy or inv9 in general.

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Blobby

I’m just going to get this out of the way from the start. I am six weeks pregnant. Actually six weeks + three days going by my last period.

I haven’t written about it here for a few reasons. The biggest being that we were waiting until we told our families. A couple family members know about the blog and it would be irresponsible and frankly cruel for them to find out here. I’ve also been stupid busy. I graduated this past weekend. My mother-in-law was in town staying with us and one of my aunts is in town staying with my parents. I have had very little down time to sit and write (or read, still catching up).

I have about a million feelings about this pregnancy. I actually ended up in the ER a couple days after the first positive test. I was having a lot of cramping and that morning I started spotting a little. The symptoms were so similar to the ectopic that I freaked out and went in to the ER because the RE clinic wasn’t returning my calls. But it was crazy early (I was something like 3w3d) and so the ER really couldn’t tell us much. The RE clinic, when I finally got them on the phone that night, said it was probably implantation.

I’ve had two ultrasounds now and we know there is a pregnancy in the uterus. The first doctor was still concerned about the possibility of a second pregnancy in the tubes, but the second doctor was not. However the second doctor was awful so her lack of concern wasn’t exactly comforting.

The main things I am feeling are: overjoyed, guilty, and terrified. They are all probably self-explanatory but I’ll break them down for you anyway.

Overjoyed. Duh. I’m pregnant. We know it’s in the uterus, not the tubes. At our ultrasound next week we should get to see/hear a heartbeat. Our family is, for the most part, really happy for us. My mother-in-law’s joy and optimism were contagious while she was here. My husband is so freaking thrilled he wants to tell way more people than I’m prepared to tell yet. He has christened the embryo “Blobby” after I tried to explain what the yolk sac looked like after the first ultrasound. We are so much further than we ever got last summer, it’s hard not to feel hopeful that this good luck will continue.

Guilty. I think most of the women in the infertility community who I know who have gotten pregnant have dealt with guilt for the pregnancy alone. I’m feeling extra guilt on top because this was relatively so easy for us. We just used Femara and did timed intercourse. I feel so incredibly lucky. I won’t even get into how lucky I am about the money part too. It’s so hard to see so many amazing, deserving women and men in the community who are having no luck at all. Every canceled cycle, failed treatment, or god-forbid loss breaks my heart. I’m at a loss for what to say to people. How do I say my heart is breaking for them and have it be sincere when I know that I have inside me right now what they want more than anything? People keep telling me not to feel guilty. And I get it (aside from the whole don’t tell me how to feel thing), but that doesn’t change anything. I know people are happy for me and wishing me good things as I have done with so many others. I just wish I could take whatever magical unicorn dust got me here and spread it around.

Terrified. Like I said, we are so much further along than we ever got a chance to be last summer. But it’s still early. I’m still waiting for the other shoe to drop. I was telling my mother-in-law that one of the difficult things about this community is that I have heard so many stories of loss. It’s hard to feel confident in any pregnancy when I know how easily it can all be taken away. My hope increases every day but I really do have to take this thing one day at at time.

The other big issue has been the pregnancy side-effects (symptoms doesn’t seem right when I know for sure I’m pregnant). I have been having a really difficult time with “morning sickness” that has been more like all-day sickness. I haven’t actually vomited, thankfully, but I feel nauseous all day long. It’s exhausting. I had no idea it would be this hard. Which sounds naive and crazy, maybe. But damn. I’ll still take this over not being pregnant in a heartbeat. And people keep pointing out that it’s a good sign. I refuse to complain about it on Twitter because I know how hard that is to hear. So my husband bears the brunt of my pain and whining.

The internship I was hoping to do this summer isn’t going to work out in the way I had hoped because of the pregnancy but they are still trying to find ways for me to come into the studio and be around my fellow artists and such, so I greatly appreciate that. My husband is having surgery on his foot next week so I’ll be highly distracted by taking care of him for a while too.

In the meantime I’ve been thinking a lot about what to do about this blog. I want to keep blogging but it feels weird blogging under this name while pregnant and even weirder if I become a parent. So chances are I will start another blog in a few weeks where I will blog about pregnancy, birth, and parenting after infertility. I will absolutely not forget where I came from. Said blog will also likely be more personal, with names and photos. It will also probably be something I’ll share with friends and family, so less raw honesty. When I set it up I will let you all know so you can decide if you want to follow me there. I fully expect most of you won’t and that is totally okay. I get it. In the meantime here is my promise to you. When it comes to this blog I will never post: ultrasound photos, bump photos, pics of any sort of baby items, or lengthy complaints about side-effects. I’m also not going to post the whole weekly breakdown thing, because honestly, nobody really cares about that stuff. I will talk about the pregnancy. I probably won’t post very often. And I will absolutely keep reading and commenting and thinking of all of you.

Unicorn dust for everyone!

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More Brain Dump

I can’t seem to stop posting, mostly because I can’t seem to stop thinking about some things. I want to get two of those out now, even though I should be doing homework.

The first is about my mother-in-law and her husband. I love them. They are great. Today she called about plans to come to my graduation. I was pretty disappointed to learn a couple of days ago that while she was still coming out for graduation, she wouldn’t be able to make it to the ceremony. She has to teach a class the night before and the ceremony is at 9am so there is just no way for her to be here. I understand and I can’t really blame her for that. At least she’ll be here for the party the next day. But then she’s leaving the day after that. She’ll be here all told for less than 48 hours. That’s disappointing in and of itself but even more so because she’s leaving here to go see her husband’s daughter and said daughter’s husband and kid. Who I swear she and her husband visit and vacation with so much more often than they see us. And I can’t help but think it’s because of the kid. Due to the complicated relationship my MIL has with my husband’s oldest brother, she barely has a relationship with that brother’s two kids. She also has a step-granddaughter with another of hubby’s brothers who she also doesn’t see often. So this is the grand-kid they have the closest relationship with and I swear it seems like she and her husband make a point to see them all the time. I feel snubbed for not having kids. I KNOW this is probably mostly (maybe all?) in my head. I know that. But it still hurts. I honestly believe if we had a kid we would see both of my husband’s parents more often (his father has yet to come visit except for our wedding which doesn’t count). I don’t know, I had to say it. Of course now we might be driving up to this step-sister’s place after my graduation in order to spend more time with MIL and her hubby (who isn’t coming here at all) and step-sis and her family. Which is good, my husband doesn’t get as much family time as he wants, but I’m also frustrated with always having to go to people and people so rarely coming to us.

On a totally different subject, thanks to the wonders of procrastination I caught up with everyone’s blogs yesterday and today. Go me! But reading about everyone else’s experiences is making me realize more and more that the care I’m getting from our clinic is substandard. As thrilled as I was with the way they dealt with everything during the ectopic, everything since has been less than awesome. When we met with the nurse practitioner back in January she said that we we started the Femara cycles that we would have blood work done on CD 21 to make sure I was ovulating. But when I finally got in touch with a doctor to get the prescription, he said we weren’t doing that and I should just do OPKs. Even though I have high baseline LH and could be getting false positives. So I have no idea if I’m actually ovulating or not and it doesn’t feel like they care. I know I should stand up for myself and demand more but with everything else going on in my life I just don’t have the energy right now. I know that it is a teaching hospital and they have different rotations and I’m not always going to see the same people. I wish I could only see the doctor who we dealt with for most of the ectopic, she was amazing, but requesting her means waiting weeks or months for appointments. I just wish there was greater continuity of care (like how the nurse practitioner insisted on liver tests but the doctor I saw before that looked at the same stuff and never mentioned it). And I wish it felt like they cared if I get pregnant. At the beginning I was feeling really positive that Femara could work for us having gotten pregnant once before but without ANY monitoring I have no idea what’s happening in my body. I don’t know if I’m ovulating, producing cysts, or what. I don’t know what to do if these cycles don’t work. The nurse mentioned going straight to IUI but the doctor said maybe monitoring and injectibles. I have no idea what’s appropriate but I do know that they are not supporting me in the ways I need. I need to speak up next time I see or talk to them. Stupid fear of confrontation.

Okay, now that all that is off my chest it’s back to a bit of homework and then book club. Not sure if the woman who was recently pregnant and now has a newborn will be there and if so if she’ll have the baby with her so send me strength.

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And All That Jazz

This post is going to be a mishmash of various things to catch you all up on now that we’re back in town.

I had the second attempt at a saline ultrasound the Monday before Christmas. Different doctor, I took the meds, and it still didn’t go well. Although I was on the medications this doc decided to avoid doing the thing that caused me so much pain last time (basically pulling my cervix to get the catheter through). So once again he couldn’t get a balloon catheter in and the other one didn’t work right. He was able to get better images than the last time and didn’t see any polyps or fibroids. He talked to the other doc and asked me where I was in the process. When I explained the whole situation (ectopic -> HSG -> ultrasound so we could start treatments) he said he was comfortable with me moving forward with treatment. If I was getting ready for IVF he would have had me schedule a trip to the OR to make certain that my uterus was free of polyps but since we aren’t there yet we are going to avoid any unnecessary surgeries.

I had a really bad reaction to the medications that night. Or it was stress. Or both. I don’t know. But either way I was sick. I was weak, dizzy, shaky, nauseated. And then once I finally tried to eat some soup I threw up shortly after. It was not a good night. My poor husband had to clean up after me and take care of me. I did not envy him. I’m still not sure what caused it. I took two Percoset when I think I’ve only ever taken one at a time before (the prescription said to take one or two, hubby urged me to take two and avoid as much pain as possible). They put me on a different anti-anxiety drug than I’ve ever taken before (I think it was Ativan, I’m not sure and I’m too lazy to get up and check right now). And I was super stressed with getting ready for Christmas and our trip. So it could have been a combination of things. Either way I was useless for the rest of the day and night.

I have a follow up scheduled to hopefully finally start treatment of some sort this coming Wednesday. I’m nervous though, because I’m seeing the nurse practitioner who did my intake. I last saw her right after I got pregnant when we were in limbo about if I was going to lose it or what. She said at the time that if I did end up losing that pregnancy that she would probably still have me continue to try without intervention for a while longer. We’ve been trying without intervention for over two years and we’ve had one pregnancy. I think it’s time for something else. So I’m going to push her. But who knows, maybe with the added complication of the ectopic she’ll have some other ideas. I honestly have no clue. Whatever they want to do I have many questions, side effects and how long before we try something else and such.

This trip to see my husband’s family was both wonderful and exhausting. Seriously exhausting. Physically and emotionally. Like I said, I love his family but oh my goodness they have so much drama. His family is huge and his parents went through an ugly divorce and both are remarried. There was sibling drama (he has one brother who I just want to smack sometimes but I try to remain as neutral as possible), step-sibling drama, spouse drama, and grandparent drama. Not really parent or step-parent drama for once, which was kind of amazing. And unfortunately while we were out there my husband’s great-aunt passed away. So while I would certainly not characterize it as drama, it added to the emotional charge of the visit. We went to the visitation on our last day there but missed the funeral because that was the day we were flying home.

I also did not end up seeing my husband’s friend with the new baby that we were supposed to see. I got really sick that night and stayed home while my husband went out. It was a good call as I was (TMI alert) running to the bathroom with diarrhea for most of the time he was gone. I’m not sure if it was something I ate or if I picked up a 24 hour stomach bug that was going around, although most people with the bug were vomiting so who knows. But hey, it got me out of seeing a baby, right? Sigh.

Now we are home and things are starting to get back to normal. Slowly. But I can already tell it’s going to take me a while to recover from this trip.

I missed out on posting a year end recap or new years resolutions post like so many of you. I don’t like calling it resolutions but I do think about things I’d like to do better. One goal this year is to get better at keeping track of birthdays, starting with my immediate and extended family and my husband’s immediate family (including step-people and spouses and kids that is a big group, if it goes well I’ll add his extended family next year). The other thing is to work on taking better care of myself. This means making appointments that I’ve been putting off, like a doctor’s appointment to discuss the bizarre acne/rash I’ve had for a couple of months and a dentist appointment to get back on track with fixing my messed up teeth. I need to get back to re-prioritizing myself. Yes the dental work is going to cost us some money but we are doing pretty decently financially right now and this needs to be taken care of sooner rather than later.

I’m probably forgetting something else I wanted to post about so don’t be surprised if you see more posts in the next couple of days as those things come back to me. For now I’m going to try to turn my focus in and really take advantage of the next three weeks before my last semester of my Bachelor’s degree beings. Dun dun dun.

No Break

We are in my husband’s hometown visiting his family for the holidays. I’ve been really looking forward to this trip for several reasons: I love his family and don’t see them as much as I’d like, it’s a break from doing much of anything, and we get away from the hustle and bustle of a big city. The other reason is that this was looking like a mostly baby free trip. The only kids I was really expecting to see are his niece and nephew and I wasn’t even sure I’d see them thanks to some family drama. But we will be and that’s great. I haven’t seen his nephew since he was less than a month old and he’s 17 months now.
Then today we were at my father-in-law’s house and he starts asking my husband if he’s going to see any of his high school friends. It turns out both of the ones he wants to see have kids under a year old. Awesome. We are definitely seeing one tomorrow night, I’m not sure about the other yet.
So this will not be the baby break I was hoping for but I will suck it up and deal because these are people who are important to my hubby and he wants to see them while we’re in town. At least I can drink if I need to, right?

Love the Fertile, Hate their Fertility

Excuse me for bastardizing a common Christian saying in the post title (and just before Christmas too! What a heathen!), but that’s how I’m feeling tonight. My cousin and his wife finally “officially” announced on Facebook the pregnancy that they have been hinting at for weeks. I’m sorry but when you grow your own hops and grapes in your front yard to make your own beer and wine and then start posting about drinking mocktails, you are being neither subtle nor coy.

This will be the fourth kid for the couple, but their first together (he has one and she has two from previous marriages). I love them. They are wonderful parents. But I’m so jealous. I’m so angry that they get to have four and I still have none. I hate being angry and bitter when people I love are pregnant. There is joy mixed in there too, so it’s all confusing and weird. It’s the worst.

It doesn’t help that I’m still overly emotional from the birth control hormones and simultaneously worried because my period is being weird (I’ll spare you the TMI details) and I’m concerned I’m still going to be bleeding on Monday. They said I can’t have the ultrasound if I’m still bleeding. The fact that my period is being weird after a short cycle is making me think of another time something like this happened. I honestly wonder if what I’m experiencing is actually a chemical pregnancy or something like that. But I don’t know, because I’m a terrible infertile.

I decided to make a list of all the ways I suck at this whole infertility thing

  • I almost never remember to take my prenatal vitamins. Like, it’s bad. I’ve been chastised by doctors for it.
  • I haven’t been bothering with ovulation predictor kits. They are expensive and we are still in this testing limbo so I don’t want to spend the money. Maybe if we ever start actual treatment cycles I’ll do it.
  • I also don’t take my basal body temperature. I’m not consistent with when I get up every day plus I suck at following through on doing things like that daily (see vitamins).
  • I barely chart my cycles. I keep track of cycle day 1 and I generally have sort of an idea of when I ovulate thanks to cervical mucus but I’m not out there calculating the length of my luteal phases and whatnot.
  • I’m not doing any complementary medicine. No acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, herbs, chiropractor, massage, or even (for the most part) yoga. That shit is expensive y’all.
  • I don’t stock up on pregnancy tests. I didn’t even know the dollar store sold such tests until I saw some of you ladies posting about it. Even at dollar store prices I always feel like I’ve wasted money every time a test comes up negative.

There seems to be a financial theme to that list. Hmm. A friend of mine who is a shaman did a reading for me I think just about a year ago (I’m pretty sure it was a New Years thing). She thought that maybe one of the things blocking me with fertility was a fear of not being able to financially support a child. I suppose I should really stop focusing on lack and think more about abundance. (No, I’m not talking about The Secret.) It’s interesting, bringing this whole post back around again, that the financial thing is such an issue for me. My cousin and his wife are not exactly rolling in the dough and aside from my general feelings of jealousy I also feel concern about their financial ability to support another child, but that is truly not my business. So the themes are the link between abundance and fertility. I shall be pondering that tonight. In the meantime I feel the need to repeat that I love my cousin and his family. I AM happy for them.

Families and Flow and Two Whole Years

If you look at my about page I list October 2011 as when we first started trying to conceive. That’s both true and false. We started then but had to take a break because my psychiatrist said I couldn’t get pregnant on the antidepressants I was on. It took me nearly two months to safely ween myself off the Zoloft so it’s more accurate to say that December 2011 was when we began trying. Two years ago (not exactly 24 cycles, thanks PCOS). That year we spent the holidays with my husband’s family and we are doing the same this year. I’m already comparing the two in my head. The hope and excitement I felt two years ago, the stress I fear of seeing his sibling’s kids and the potential of family asking us how things are going.

Speaking of how things are going, my period decided to start today so nope, not pregnant this cycle. I’m not entirely surprised but I am disappointed. I had started to convince myself that the stuff I was feeling couldn’t be PMS because it was too early. But no, my body just decided to have a 26 day cycle this month. Bonus, that means there is no way to get the second saline ultrasound in this cycle. I already called the clinic to see if there was any way they could squeeze me in before the holiday, but there isn’t. And the next weekday after our trip will be day 21. So I went ahead and scheduled an appointment for next cycle. It’s okay if I’m a little early but if my body decides to get back to it’s old habits of 30+ day cycles we might have a problem. Exciting.

In the meantime there are some good things about my cycle starting today. For one my favorite professor is having an end of semester party at a local restaurant and micro-brewery tonight. Now I can enjoy a beer without worrying about if I’m pregnant. The other upside is more complicated. As I’ve mentioned my sister has her own infertility stuff. I won’t talk about it here because it’s her business, but also because she barely talks to me about it. I’ve given her gentle nudges but I don’t want to force the issue. I was hoping that she would be more open after I talked to her about our stuff, but she’s not. Although it ended in loss I suspect my spontaneous pregnancy of this summer may not have helped the situation. Anyway, I bring this all up because I was dreading one thing about possibly being pregnant this cycle. According to my little tracking app my due date would have been the day before my sister’s birthday. And if we did have a positive pregnancy test this weekend, we probably would have told our immediate families during holiday stuff. Can you imagine being infertile and getting the news on Christmas Eve that your sister is due the day before your birthday? Even if that sister has infertility too? I think that would have been too much so I’m terribly glad that we are not in that situation.

For now I should probably get back to work on my final papers. One of them is a research paper on how IVF is portrayed in the media in relation to women. It’s been an interesting project, to say the least. I’m busy with finals and then I have to actually do some Christmas shopping and then we’re going out of town so don’t expect to see too much of me over the next couple of weeks. I’m reading and liking and occasionally commenting. I’m thinking of everyone going through such ups and downs right now. If I don’t post again before, I hope all of you who celebrate have a lovely Christmas.

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Green-Eyed Monster

Jealousy has been a constant theme in my life lately. It’s more than just jealousy of pregnant women and families. I can barely look at Facebook without something jumping out and hurting me, even if it has nothing to do with babies, birth, or pregnancy. The baby stuff is easy to explain, but the other stuff is harder to talk about.

A lot of what hurts right now are seeing people go through other milestones. One of my husband’s brothers and his wife are in the process of buying a house. I should be happy for them, but I’m having an incredibly hard time being happy about it. It’s soooo petty and stupid, but I’m jealous. It’s impossible for me to imagine us being able to buy a house any time soon, even if we didn’t have to contend with things like the military moving us around. I’m still a student and we’re living on one income and things have been tight. By the time you’re in your thirties you’re supposed to at least be able to consider buying a house, right? Even more petty, and I’m hesitant to say this because the wife reads this blog, is that I’m jealous that they are able to do this despite being younger than us. I know it’s silly and everyone’s life paths are different and blah blah blah. I feel like a failure.

Oddly enough weddings are tough right now too. And I LOVE weddings. There is just something so special about seeing two people commit their lives to each other. But what’s tough is seeing these couples on the edge of so many possibilities, knowing that one of those is babies. The couple whose wedding we attended a couple of weeks ago is hitting a lot of nerves right now. They are around our age but own a house. They went to Hawaii for their honeymoon, we went an hour away for 3 days the first time and after Wedding 2.0 we spent a week at a beach house with my husband’s mom, her now husband, and his daughter (who was like 6 months pregnant) and her husband. And we were only able to do that because my mother-in-law and her husband paid for basically all of it. When we first got married we talked about going on a Mediterranean cruise as a late honeymoon. Now I can’t imagine ever in our lives being able to do that. The couple who just got married was talking about how they might come visit us sometime soon because they want to travel around a bunch before they start to have kids. That right there stung. We never got to do any of that. Maybe we’ll never get pregnant and we can spend the rest of our lives traveling. Or we have kids and we are blessed with kids but never go anywhere.

Images of people traveling. Tales of great jobs. Photos from late nights partying. Adventures moving to other countries. It is as though everyone else is out living wonderful lives except me. School stresses me out more than anyone I know. I have almost no social life. I don’t have a job. And I don’t even have kids to blame it all on.

I have wasted so much of my life. I am continuing to waste so much of my life. Everything everyone else does stings. It’s not fair to the people I love that I feel this way. But I do.

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Unhelpful Advice

Let me get this out of the way first: thank you for tolerating and even sympathizing with my post yesterday. As much as it was drama, it was exactly how I felt at the moment. It took phone calls with my husband and a good bit of wine and pizza to finally soothe me. The financial aid situation has improved slightly in that my grant came through and was disbursed to my account. I still don’t know what’s happening with the loan. This morning I woke up and checked my email to learn that one of my classes for the upcoming semester had been cancelled due to the professor’s illness. I was so shocked that something else had happened after everything that I almost started laughing. It’s just that ridiculous. I spent the next little while trying to find a class that met all my criteria: it had to fit my schedule, it had to be an upper level class, I had to have met any prerequisites, and of course it had to have open seats two weeks before the semester starts. And you know, it would be nice if it was a class I was actually interested in taking. I’m so glad that the class that was cancelled was an elective and not something I need to graduate, although it also officially closes the door on the certificate in Women’s Studies that I was considering. Fortunately I found a class that fit the criteria and is even taught by a professor I’ve had before and who I like. She’s a bit of a hard ass with grades but I know I’ll learn a lot. So things are not entirely dire but the Universe definitely keeps throwing more and more at me.

And now for what I really wanted to talk about. This has been floating around in my head for a week. I’ve said this before but I will reiterate it again: I really lucked out on a mother-in-law. She is kind and supportive and I love her dearly. But she said something last week that I haven’t been able to let go of. We were talking on the phone after my appointment at the clinic and I was sharing everything I’d been told. I told her that after the HSG if the tubes are blocked they will want to move to IVF but I don’t really want to put myself through that until I’m done with school. But if the tubes are not blocked, then we’re looking at trying to intervene with medication like possibly Clomid. And before I could even finish what I was saying she interrupted me to go on this spiel about she doesn’t think I’m healthy enough to start trying again right now in general and especially not something like Clomid that could result in getting pregnant with multiples. And that I should not even try again until I’m done with school because think about all the stress hormones while I’m in school that I would be sending to the baby.

I let her finish her little speech and took a deep breath and calmly gave her my canned response that I’ve had to give to too many people about how we are trying now because there is never going to be a “good time.” There is no guarantee that I will be any less stressed after I graduate. And there is no guarantee that we will be stationed somewhere like we are now with an excellent fertility clinic in the area. She kind of accepted that and we talked about all the unknowns of the life my husband and I live and that was pretty much that.

But… what I can’t get out of my head is her comment about stress hormones. Because that hits a really sensitive spot when it comes to me having kids in general. I have a worry and a feeling of guilt that I am too depressed/anxious/stressed to have kids. That I would be a bad mother because of it. So when someone puts in my head the idea that I’m going to do harm to an unborn child because of all the stress I feel, guess what that does? Causes more stress. I mentioned this to a friend of mine yesterday (who went through her own infertility struggles and is now pregnant with her third) and her response was “Pregnancy is stressful.” Which was her way to saying that yes reducing stress is good but there’s always going to be stress if even just from being pregnant and babies are still born every day so don’t stress about it. Not to mention that going on Clomid does increase the chance of multiples, but it doesn’t guarantee them. It doesn’t even guarantee that I’d get pregnant at all. So why add that worry to the list?

My friend yesterday pointed out that people who haven’t been through infertility generally don’t understand how utterly ridiculous the idea of waiting to try to conceive can sound to someone in the throes of infertility. And I get that. And if there was any sense of certainty that my life would be less stressful after graduation, waiting might seem like an option. But there is not. As far as stress goes, life is stressful, infertility is stressful, and I tend to be a high-stress lady. I’m not going to deny myself the opportunity to have a child based on the fanciful idea that at some indeterminate time in the future my life will be less stressful. Maybe it will, but this summer was supposed to be a relaxing break for me and we’ve all seen how that turned out.

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