One of the outcomes of IVF treatment that has really floored me is how it changes your perception of yourself. The process is so all-encompassing that it’s almost inevitable that you end up focused solely on the goal of making a baby at the expense of most other things.
What I’ve learned the hard way – and you really do have to look for the rainbows during the storms – is that there is more to me than my (in)fertility. I have more than once lost sight of my own strengths and value I bring to the world. I’m not claiming to be anything special, but we all have something unique that we contribute that is more than just based on our uteruses.
Most recently I’ve started to feel sexy again. To be able to look at my body and think yep, that’s not bad! I know that in a few weeks I’m going to be all dosed up on evil, bloating progesterone again (ugh) so for this short period I’m enjoying my sexy.
The bad side of all this relative freedom is that I’m starting to get cold feet about going ahead with the next transfer. Of course I will still do it but I’m more edgy about it than ever before.
After 2 missed miscarriages within 5 months of each other and the associated grief, there is a part of me that thinks maybe I’m better off not putting myself through all this again. My husband is more positive about our prospects than me (he always is) but he doesn’t have to be poked, prodded and medicated.
The reality is that I’m enjoying being and feeling normal. Sure I’d be delighted to have a baby but I’m so terrified of it going badly again I’m asking myself am I doing the right thing?!
I think I am doing the right thing – there are 15 embryos in the freezer with my DNA in them – but the fear is real!! I don’t want all that I am to be swalllowed up in the whole ocean of fertility with its infinite depths and dangerous dark patches. Part of me thinks why not just stop this nonsense and just enjoy my life even if that’s without children.
Am I alone with this thought?!
I’m in the middle of no-man’s land at the moment as I wait for my next cycle and likely transfer date in November. It’s actually nice as I’m mainly medication-free (thyroid meds excepted) and I almost feel like my usual self at the moment.
The pregnant girl at my work is being occasionally irritating – I nearly cried at my desk on Friday when she came back from a doctor’s appointment and was joyfully telling everyone she could kind of see a hand on her baby scan – but I really feel that’s my sensitivity rather than any insensitivity on her part.
However, this and the recent family christening drama have made me wonder how much should I have to apologise for my own grief?
I understand that we are all in our own bubbles and narcissistic to varying degrees. So while I’m walking around thinking everyone is staring and pointing at me as “the childless one” maybe they’re not. Or maybe it’s a fleeting thought before they go back to thinking about what’s for dinner.
There is a grounding for these thoughts in that there is some unresolved issues currently with my hubby’s family and I’m not really sure how much I should unload on them. I think I’ve explained before here, that his parents are very nice, kind and generous people but they have an almost total lack of empathy. So even if I did emotionally unload I won’t get the response that I want from them, which is kindness and understanding.
I realise that in a normal situation most people would just be honest and let them understand the pain that we are feeling. But my husband is VERY private and I don’t think he would want me to do that. At the same time, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out that we’ve been married for 3.5 years, together for 7.5 years and I’m fast approaching my 38th birthday. With no baby in sight it doesn’t take much to deduce that maybe we have a sensitivity to this topic.
So am I being overly unrealistic about how other people should behave, or should those who are close to me be more sensitive? Should I be apologising more freely for my own grief? How much information is too much to share?
All advice welcome!