Moving Day

We moved! NewsBoy and own a house!

Now if I could just find that thermometer…maybe we could do some baby dancing in the new house.

I’m gonna wade through all my boxes and will be posting again soon.

Stay Tuned….

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Ignoring the Anniversary

So I ignored an anniversary earlier this week. Sue me. This past Sunday was the two year mark of my going off BCP. Can you blame me for wanting to ignore it completely? I have nothing to show for it. (Plus the bulk of my week this week has been all about trying to get a closing date set so we can move.) I knew it was there. All day Sunday when NewsBoy and I were packing I was acutely aware of what the day meant. All week long I was hyper aware of the fact that I am now in my third year of trying to conceive my first child.

I had hoped that I would hit this anniversary knowing I was pregnant. I had hoped this last round of IVF would have worked. It didn’t and I’m not. So I’m now in my third year of trying to have a child, a place I never in my wildest dreams expected I’d be. And yes, I am glossing over a lot of tears and discussions and poking and prodding. But the down and dirty details are as follows: in the last two years I’ve had 12 negative pregnancy tests. In my first year I only had 6 cycles while trying to regulate things….my longest cycle to date is 73 days. I’ve been through four cycles with Clomid…and two IVF cycles. And I haven’t a thing to show for it. All my scars are on the inside…you can’t see them.

No matter what else is going on in my life, (you know, like buying and selling a house…have I mentioned that I’m doing that?) the heaviness that surrounds my heart is constant. Yes, I have learned to live with it…I guess you could say I’ve redefined normal. But not a day goes by when I don’t think about the miscarriage I had in July. I should be 27 weeks today. I’m not. And I don’t know that I will ever get to be pregnant.

The “Negative Nelly” (that’s what my Mom used to call me when I was all negative about things) in me keeps screaming that I should just give up and accept a life without children. The Jewish Mother in me keeps telling me to ignore her because my time will come and I should keep fighting.

I am a fighter. I can’t think of one instance in my life where I didn’t go after something I wanted…when I didn’t fight. (And I’ve never wanted anything this badly.) I was raised to go after whatever it was that I wanted. I was taught that if you wanted something you go after it until you get it. But how much more can I take? How much further can I go? Do I go through a third IVF cycle? A fourth? I just don’t know if I have the fight left in me.

Not for the Faint of Heart

I have to tell you…this whole buying and selling real estate thing is quite possibly more stressful then IF!

I never thought I’d say it but…I’m glad at this point that IVF # 2 didn’t work. With the amount of stress and anxiety that I’ve had in the last two weeks that is real estate related I would have certainly miscarried. (Not to mention that job stress thing.)

Maybe my Mom was right…there is always a reason.

Coming Out of the Infertility Closet

I’ve always been an open book, if you will, when it comes to pretty much everything. And I mean everything, except that is for my struggle with infertility. This struggle…this fight…this sadness I’ve kept pretty much to myself (and NewsBoy of course). Yes, our parents and siblings are aware of what we are going through. And yes, I do have a small handful of RL girlfriends who know what we are going through. But by and large, in my real life, I have kept this to myself. Sure I have found amazing support online with people who don’t know me and wouldn’t know me if they walked right into me on the street. But my family and the people that are part of my every day life have no idea what we are going through.

After my friend IvoryGirl read my Thanksgiving post we started talking about how we keep our infertility from the people we are closest with but share it freely with complete strangers in cyberspace.

One of the main reasons I don’t want to go to Thanksgiving this year is my fear that I will simply blurt it all out at some point in response to someone being insensitive without even knowing it. Then I become family gossip. I don’t want that. Because this is no one’s business, right?

This is a very personal battle. I mean most people get to make love to their partner and surprise the world with a pregnancy whenever they see fit to share it. I don’t get that. I get phone calls and emails asking when my next doctor’s appointment is…when the next procedure or cycle will be. My sex life (or lack thereof) is out there for the world to know because I’m broken. I can’t have a baby the “old-fashioned” way. I need doctors and embryologists and anesthesiologists just to have a chance at having a baby. I get looks of pity and pep talks. (And who needs or wants those!? Or is it just me that gets really angry from that crap?) I don’t get to surprise anyone with the news if …IF…I actually get pregnant. Except those who have no idea I even want children. So part of me wants to maintain the secrecy just so I can surprise someone. Anyone.

But as I continued my conversation with IvoryGirl I admitted to skipping a lot…and I mean A LOT…of family functions over the past two years just because I couldn’t handle seeing kids or because I had just gotten a BFN again. In a way, it feels like I’m hiding from my life. I hate that. And I can’t figure out which will make things easier for me over time. I know with all my heart and soul that my family will do anything for me. I know that they will support me through anything and everything. But telling them comes with questions…the ones about when we decided to have kids…why we changed our minds…Am I ready to answer those questions? Do I even have to?

And then IvoryGirl in all her infinite wisdom said to me: “If they ask questions, you can say with impunity, ‘This is a really difficult process for us, and we’d prefer not to talk about it. I hope you can respect our wishes.’ And who knows, maybe having the visible support of your extended family will help you cope? Maybe in keeping it private, we’re giving ourselves a heavier burden to bear?”

And you know what? She is 100% absolutely positively right. How many of us suffer in silence daily only to cry to our computer screens because the people we talk to in cyberspace are the ONLY people who can even begin to imagine what it is that we are going through. We go through the motions of every day life. We smile at family gatherings and hang out at the bar (clearly there is a bar at my family gatherings) because it’s easier then facing the kids that are running around or the talk of so and so’s pregnancy. But IvoryGirl’s questions remains…are we making this harder on ourselves then it needs to be? I just don’t know…maybe we should have a little more faith in those we love? Maybe we should come out of the infertility closet?

Debating Thanksgiving

NewsBoy and I do an every other year thing for Thanksgiving. (You know, one year with his family, the next with mine.) This year we are with my family.

Thanksgiving with my family comes with a caveat. We go to a cousin’s house. Now this cousin has a roommate (LONG STORY SHORT…two women who have been friends for as long as I can remember…own a house together…each adopted a child when they hit 40. But they didn’t adopt together. They are not a couple. Regardless my family refers to this roommate as a “cousin”. I have spoken of this “cousin” here.) So Thanksgiving with my family includes her very large family as well. I admit fully and completely that my family can be very loud, but we’ve got nothing on this “cousin’s” family. They are loud. And obnoxious. They also at this point feel comfortable enough with my family to ask and say whatever it is they want.

For the first time in a very long time my brother and I are on the same Thanksgiving schedule. In addition to this…my Aunt, Uncle and cousins are going to be up from Florida for the holiday weekend. So for the first time in possibly a decade my mother will have not only all of her kids together but her brother and niece and nephew all in the same place.

I honestly don’t know that I can do this. I don’t know that I can go to this house and listen to the, what I’m sure will be incessant, talk of my SIL’s pregnancy. I don’t think I can put on a happy face and pretend to be excited for them when the abyss of sadness goes with me everywhere. I don’t think I can fake it all afternoon and evening. Because while I am happy for them…that’s all I’ve got…I can’t seem to muster excited…and it reminds me of the bitter and angry person I’ve become. I’m also 100% positive that my Uncle will see right through me and I’ll end up having to tell him what we are going through. I don’t know that I want to share this with anyone else. I go back and forth on it constantly. But I’m at the point where I think that no one will know when my next round of IVF will be. I can’t deal with the looks and sounds of pity I get every time my body fails to do what it is supposed to do.

I’ve said as much to my mother. The first time we spoke after I got the last BFN I said that I wasn’t sure I could go to Thanksgiving. Being the saint she is she of course told me to do whatever it is I need to do.

So I’m not sure what to do. Whether or not I go to Thanksgiving I will see my Aunt, Uncle, cousins and the “cousins” who host Thanksgiving. The Saturday after Thanksgiving we will all be getting together for a surprise early birthday dinner for my Mom. So any which way you slice it I will have to deal with my family…but the question is just how much I can handle?

So what do you think? Do I go to Thanksgiving?

What Infertility Takes…

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays…this year I hid from it. To the best of my ability I avoided children in costumes. And I did a really damn good job of it too. I even avoided going into the mall when NewsBoy and I were shopping just so I wouldn’t have to walk past kids in princess and pirate costumes. I literally stopped in my tracks when I saw kids and did an about face. (Much to NewsBoy’s confusion and dismay.) And, who’d have thought I’d say this but, thanks to a cold we didn’t go anywhere that evening. So it’s like Halloween never happened, right?

I’ve become a bitter and angry woman. I’ve taken to avoiding things and people that will remind me of the fact that I don’t have a child. I’m thinking about skipping out on Thanksgiving (where there will be plenty of discussion and excitement of my SIL’s pregnancy) and would certainly have developed a “migraine” for a friends son’s 1st birthday party if IvoryGirl wasn’t going to be there. I get angry when people who have children complain about their child’s behavior. Nearly every one of my friends with young children complained on Facebook about the time change because their kids got up early due to Daylight Savings. I would kill to have a child that could wake me up early for any reason.

In short…I’ve become everything I hate…everything I never wanted to become.

That’s what infertility has done to me. These are the things that infertility takes. It takes the fun out of everything. It takes the joy out of the celebrations for the people you love. It takes you from your ability to enjoy your life and the company of your loved ones. I want to be happy and excited that my friend’s kids are having birthdays and are potty trained and are sleeping through the night and are going to pre-school. I want to be happy and excited that my brother is going to have a baby, that I will have another niece or nephew. But I can’t. All I have is this overwhelming sadness that follows me where ever I go. It permeates every thought I have and every decision I make. There is a gaping hole…an emptiness that is persistent and that emptiness is overwhelming. Because while the sadness of negative Betas do diminish with time, that abyss that tells you there is something missing just gets bigger and bigger with each test result. Every pregnancy announcement…every birth…every birthday party…every milestone… every adorable picture just enlarge the chasm of nothingness that infertility leaves in its wake.

I have a good friend that I’ve known since High School. We’ve drifted apart over the years but we keep in touch. This is the one friend that was always my measuring stick when it came to bitterness because of my infertility. She’s one of those women who went to college intending to find a husband and didn’t even come close. When NewsBoy and I got engaged she said “What do you need to get married for? You don’t want kids.” When we would get drunk she’d break down in tears because she’s single and will never be a Mom. When we turned 25 she was convinced she was too old to be a mother. Everything about her was about her becoming a mother. It’s all she has ever wanted. She never really wanted a husband…just kids. But every time we would hear about someone getting married or someone having a child. She would get upset, angry and eventually bitter about it. On the scale of bitterness I have become her. While I didn’t understand that desperate need then, I most certainly do now. And it’s the realization that I have become this bitter, angry, childless woman that makes that abyss even larger and more prevalent.

I want to find a way back to the happy person I was before the abyss that is infertility infected every aspect of my life. I just don’t know how to get there.