Thursday, August 20, 2009

Firsts & Lasts

I was never going to be one of those mothers. You know the type...the ones who stand and cry as they wave goodbye to their children on their first day of Kindergarten. I never understood why moms would feel sad as they watch their children grow, learn, and thrive. This is a good thing after all! I was certainly never going to do it.

If there is one thing Elise has taught me, it is never say never! If I were to make a list of all the things I said I would never do as a parent before I actually had a child, I shudder to think how long that list would be!

I was never going to put my child in bed with me. This particular promise took less than 24 hours to be broken.

My child was going to be taught manners and would never talk back to me. Anyone with a child age 2 or older is probably laughing at this one. Wasn't I cute and naive?

I was not going to let my child watch television.

I was never going to feed my child fast food.

And I certainly was not going to cry when my child went off to school.

As the first day of school nears, I find that I can't even think about sending her to school without crying! I am sure to be a total mess on Monday. And I absolutely loathe crying in front of people - especially strangers! I am going to try to avoid it at all costs, but I have serious doubts as to whether or not I'll be successful.

One thing about people with secondary infertility is that we know exactly what we are missing. We've had the joy of raising one baby, and we know just how wonderful it is. Milestones take on a new meaning to us, because every single first is also a last. Elise's first day of Kindergarten will most likely be the last time I ever walk my child to their classroom on the first day of school. I'm so excited for her, but it makes me intensely sad at the same time.

I don't want to give up on the dream of having another baby, but we are taking a break for an indefinite amount of time. I've always said that when the process starts interfering with our quality of life, it will be time to stop. And the past few months have not been good quality. The drugs are hard on my body and the negative tests are even harder on me emotionally. I'm not doing well, and it's affecting the quality of my parenting as well as my overall happiness - which affects Jamie's overall happiness. I can recognize when I'm in an unhealthy place, and I know I need some help this time. I need to make that first call to the counselor for an appointment, but I'm still working up the nerve. I don't mind writing about my feelings on infertility (it's actually a bit therapeutic), but I absolutely hate to talk about it. I can't have a discussion about it without crying and as I said before, I hate crying in front of people. So, this holds me back from going to see the counselor. I'm sure she sees a fair amount of crying in her office, but I prefer to be strong, independent, and self-sufficient. I've always considered myself to be a capable, self sustaining person. To admit that I need to rely on someone else isn't easy for me (just one of my many faults). But I'm working on it and getting there, slowly but surely.

I can't say if or when we might try another medicated cycle. After 7 failed medicated cycles, I am feeling pretty defeated, and I know at this point the odds are not on our side (if you recall, injections are statistically most successful within the first 2-3 attempts and we have 3 failed attempts). Emotionally I am not sure how much more I can invest before going bankrupt.

Romans 5:1-5
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Not feeling it

I hate to say this, and I certainly hate to be negative, but I really don't think I'm going to be pleased with the outcome of this cycle. I've known for a few days now. I guess just call it female intuition. As a matter of fact, I had a complete breakdown early Thursday morning from about 12:30am to a little after 1:00am. I haven't cried like that in a long time. It was uncontrollable sobbing, and I have no idea where it came from. Perhaps a progesterone side effect? I've never taken anything that made me cry so much. But I was laying in bed that night (not sleeping because Jamie was snoring) imagining the conversation between Jamie and I...the one where I have to look him in the eyes and tell him that I'm sorry I can never give him a baby. The one where we finally give up. I don't know how I am ever going to get through that conversation, and I feel like it's becoming more and more imminent now. I feel like anytime I really hurt over this process, I'm hurting 100x more for him than I am for myself.

One of my friends told me that the time period between 2 and 3 years of struggling with infertility is the hardest. The first year was really hard. Really hard. I spent a lot of time in a state of anger and just trying to really absorb everything and come to grips with it. The second year, I feel like we were just kind of coasting. I made peace with a lot of things during the second year - some things not even related to infertility, but the journey has made me face a lot and think about a lot of things. We were getting into the medicated cycles, and we still had a lot of options during the second year. Now the third year has begun, and the fear is setting in. We are running out of options, or at least it feels that way to me.

Jamie and I were talking this morning about sending Elise off to Kindergarten. We've been spending a lot of time shopping for school supplies, school clothes/shoes, talking to her to prepare her for the transition. It's such an exciting time for her, and I'm enjoying every minute. She's not a toddler anymore. The toddler years are so precious, but I am loving my older child even more. Jamie and I were talking about how hard it is going to be to have to start all over if we do get pregnant. I haven't changed a diaper in years, and I think I've totally forgotten how to feed a baby! It's amazing how that knowledge fades in just a few years. I guess there is something to be said for having children close together - everything is still fresh on your mind.

Right now it all just seems so completely intangible and unattainable. Dr. Dunn has passed me the information for an infertility counselor, and I am beginning to wonder if maybe I should meet her sometime. I'm not sure of the cost. I guess it might be worth finding out. What I would really love to do is just find a way to forget about all of this.