I wrote a post awhile back with my tips for trying to conceive. Obviously, all yall know I’ve never had any issues with conception and my post was intended just to give tips that I’ve done to other friends who are in the early stages of trying to conceive. I never, ever intended the post to be educational about fertility issues or to attempt to offer advice for those battling such hardships.
Even though the post isn’t super current, today I’ve gotten multiple comments on the post from people who it has offended. I have responded to each comment in a personal email as I am sure none of them will be reading my blog again to be able to see a public apology. Although I will say here and now that I am SO SO sorry that I hurt so many feelings with my post!!!
In my emails I asked some of the commenters if they would ever be interested in guest posting about their fertility struggles so people like myself (who clearly have no idea what that is like) can gain a better perspective and understanding.
I’m truly honored that one of them have already responded and has given me the go-head to share this with you today. After reading the comments earlier today I just couldn’t imagine sitting here blogging about my kids like I normally do. I felt like it would almost be a slap in the face to these women who want so badly to hold children of their own. After reading this story I am in tears and feel so heartbroken for this women who I do not know and for the many out there who have stories similar to hers.
I want to say also that I’m ALWAYS open to your comments. I try very hard to be true to myself with what I write and be very open and honest with my feelings but I also try very hard not to do it in a judgmental or critical sort of way. I try to be me without offending others and it does crush me when the times happen where I do offend people or hurt them especially when it’s totally unintentional on my part. If you ever feel that I’ve misspoken or have hurt you on a personal level, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I have also written a post about that here.
Here is the story of an unnamed women who is battling fertility issues. While I do not know her name, I will pray for her and ask you to do the same. I am grateful for the opportunity to be featuring her story today and I appreciate so much having my eyes opened to the kind of struggles so many women face.
I would like to share our personal
infertility journey with you all, sorry it’s a long read but hopefully it can
offer you an understanding of what it’s like to be in our shoes — Our journey
began in 2008 and never did I think that after all that time we would end up
where we did. Who knew that trying to start a family would be so difficult for
us? The road we chose to take has been a long painful one – physically, mentally and emotionally but
thankfully we have met some wonderful people along the way (My Reproductive
Endocrinologist Dr. Ashim Kumar and the FSAC nurses and staff).
It wasn’t long
after my Dad had been diagnosed with terminal lung Cancer that we decided to
start trying (June of 2008), I was really hoping it would happen before I lost
my Dad because I wanted to see the look on his face when we told him he would
be a Grandfather again (my brother already had 2 children), unfortunately we
never got that chance (I lost my Dad on August 3rd, 2009)….and then the
heartache continued, I cannot even begin to find the words to describe the
heartache; I believe it is a pain that only those who have gone through the
same experience can truly understand, constant disappointment month after
You can try your best to explain to others what it’s like but they never
really get it, they try to offer you words of encouragement and/or tell you
stories about a friend of a friend who went through the same thing and comfort
you by telling you that as soon as that friend of a friend decided to stop,
give up or quit (however you want to put it) and started to relax and to be
stress free that BAM, miraculously it happened, well la-di-da and good for
them, forgive me for being cynical but I don’t care, I’m not them and they’re
not me. The words I have heard repeated over and over again, which to tell you
the truth I can do without are “don’t worry,” “your time will come,” “just
relax,” “don’t stress,” “it’s okay” — my friend Patti and I refer to
those words as “punch phrases” because every time we hear someone say them to
us we want to punch them, yes, believe me I know that sounds awful but if
people fully understood just what people in our position were going through
then it wouldn’t sound all that bad to them and as a matter of fact it would
probably sound perfectly rational. Now I know that everyone says these things
having the best intentions in mind but honestly it doesn’t help and it
certainly doesn’t make me feel any better and the worst part about it is that
everyone who has said these things all have children already. Quite frankly
it’s almost impossible to relax and not stress when you’re getting repeated
injections and your abdomen is covered with welts and bruises.
From March 2010
thru April 2011 (and April – May of 2012) I have gone to 52 doctors appointments,
was diagnosed with cervical stenosis and had a laminaria inserted to correct
it, had ovarian cysts which required aspiration, have had 82 injections of
fertility medications and countless blood draws and ultrasounds. Does that
sound relaxing and stress free? It is frustrating to have to rely on drugs to
make your body do what it should be doing naturally. To be perfectly honest
it’s not okay and I’m not fine, I have my good days and I have my bad days and
I have cried more times than I can even count while my husband looks on
helplessly knowing that there is nothing he can do to “fix” this or
to take that emptiness and pain away, I can’t even begin to imagine what that
has been like for him, he has been so supportive through all of this and has
always been there to catch and comfort me.
During the last 5 years, between
Louie and I, we have at least 70 friends/family members that have had or are
due to have babies (or their 2nd or 3rd babies)….I know
that sounds like an exaggerated number but it isn’t. You try your best to be
happy for everyone even though you are dying inside and the feelings of being
envious, jealous and resentful of everyone every time you find out that someone
else is having a baby eats away at you, to say the least, this has been
devastating for us. I just want to be a Mother and to be able to make my
husband a Father and with every passing day it seems less and less likely that
it will happen.
I wouldn’t wish the pain of this emotional roller coaster on my
worst enemy, the magnitude of just how difficult this is just cannot be
explained. I don’t need to be pacified….I just want to be heard; the pain is
real, physically, mentally and emotionally. Not a day goes by that I don’t
think about it. It is a dark, lonely and misunderstood place to be. Some days I
just feel so alone. Just once I would like for someone to say to me that they
have no idea how I feel or what it’s like to be in my position, I’m to the
point where I can really do without people pretending to know what it’s like.
Also, I’m tired of being told “just be happy for so and so” every
time I find out someone else is pregnant….can’t people just figure out that
this isn’t about someone else, it’s about me. After what we’ve gone through I
think I have earned the right to be a little selfish. There is a grieving and
healing process you have to go through like with any other loss, this for me
has been the death of a dream.
SUMMARY — my husband and I started
TTC in mid 2008 and after almost a year with no luck I went to see my OBGYN —
several blood tests were done (on both my husband and I) and I was then
referred to a Reproductive Endocrinologist (with unexplained infertility (am
anovulatory) — was hospitalized with an
infection in my uterus a year or so prior to that, not sure if this was/is a
factor). After several setbacks — no rubella antibody (vaccination required),
cervical stenosis (corrected with laminaria insertion/removal), ovarian cysts
(cyst aspiration required) — we were finally able to begin treatments (August
of 2010). Did 5 IUI cycles (was completely unresponsive to Clomid (pill form),
immediate push to Repronex (injections) with HCG trigger shot) — each cycle
meds had to be increased as my body was not responding to “standard”
doses, all cycles failed. Made the decision to move forward with IVF (March of
2011) — 23 eggs retrieved, 21 fertilized (though ICSI), 13 viable embryos.
First embryo transfer was done on 03/26/11 (2 embryos transferred) — blood
draw done on 04/05/11, unfortunately it was a BFN — Gave ourselves some time
to heal, grieve and to let my body recuperate from the 5 IUI cycles and the IVF
cycle — did our second embryo transfer on 05/05/12 (3 embryos transferred) ,
did blood draw on 05/15/12 which was a BFP but my Beta count was low so did
second blood draw on 05/18/12 which came back as a BFN–8 embryos (referred to
as “frosties”) still available for transfer.