Accepting

This Clomid cycle has been much improved. Maybe my body is coping with it better, or maybe the B6 is helping, but either way it has been welcome relief after Clomid cycle 1. Skin is pretty much clear again now, and it’s nice to be rid of the teenage look and not have to cake heaps of concealer on each morning. With a week to go until D day, there are no major PMT signs. This time last month I was already starting to cramp, and tears were almost on the hour. Emotionally, I feel so normal. Feeling normal shouldn’t even be something I have to make note of, and feel grateful for. It should be just that, the norm. Anyway, the point is, I’ve been feeling pretty good. Not irritable, or any anger towards the universe. I feel light, and the most accepting I have felt of our situation for a while.

The infertility battle can define you if you let it. I can become all consumed, overwhelmed and it can infiltrate my life at almost every level. I’ve talked about it to my husband at every chance, only for him to become despairing; holding his hands up, asking what I want him to say or do. I’ve unloaded onto my closest friends whenever I could. I’ve thought about it constantly, and I mean constantly, for days at a time. And I’ve let the humiliation, questions, hurt and sadness eat away at me, leaving me feeling bitter or teary.

Right now (and I say right now, because I know these attitudes can fluctuate), I’m tired of battling. I’m tired of feeling like I’m clinging on by my fingernails. I’m tired of feeling desperate. I’m tired of feeling like I’m running, looking over my shoulder because the dark shadow of infertility is haunting me; out to catch me; claws at my back attempting to have me entirely in its clutches.

I’m tired of trying to find reasons for why this is happening to us. I’m tired of feeling like I have to justify myself to others: we aren’t really and truly infertile; everything works, really; I’m just like you, it’s just taking a long time.

I’m tired of this journey defining us. I’m not just the girl who couldn’t have a second child. I’m not just the girl who couldn’t move on. I’m not just the girl who let infertility destroy her. I’m a Mum. And a frickin’ good one. I’m a wife. And a frickin’ awesome one. I’m a friend. And a frickin’ fabulous one.

I’m in no way saying that I’ve lost hope. Not at all. I actually find it pretty difficult to give up hope (I tried once to see if it would help, it didn’t because I had nowhere else to go but down). I’m just saying I don’t want anger, bitterness and sadness to be the first thing people see. I’m saying I don’t want my daughter witnessing the horror of an incomplete Mumma. I’m saying I want to have fun and laughter every day. I’m saying I want a relationship with my husband focused on love, enjoyment of each other’s company and not on shared grief (though we will have this sometimes). I’m saying I want to live in the now, and look forward to the future.

I don’t know what the next week has in store for us. I’m staying positive it’s something good. But if it’s not… Well, let’s just accept that it’s not. I think I’m getting to the point where I turn around and face my infertility shadow head on. I’m close to sticking two fingers up to it, and shouting, “Come on then if you think you’re stronger!” I want the power back. I am stronger. I want to choose to accept what is happening, but not give in. I also choose to calmly and serenely do whatever I can and whatever it is I have to do to make this reach a conclusion.

Stage 1: Accept.

 

Failure is not an option

Sometimes I wonder what it is that keeps me on this emotional rollercoaster.

What keeps me trying to conceive a second child? Is it the desperate desire for another pregnancy; another child? Is it the overwhelming need I feel to give my daughter a sibling? Is it because I always said it was two children that I wanted, before I had even met my husband, because that is what feels right? Or has society set that number in my mind? Is it because my competitive streak says I can’t lose this battle? Is it the need to feel in control of my own life?

The honest truth is that they all keep me going at different times, as and when I need them to.

Believe me, I have thought about trying to get off this train, just because it is too damn hard a lot of the time. Sometimes I even question whether I really want this anymore. Has enough time passed to change our plans? When I ask myself that question though, I always find the answer, not too deep down, is yes I do. I feel like my subconscious mind tries to protect me by tempting me with no more sleepless nights, no threat of morning sickness or toddler tantrums again. Life is pretty easy with our not so little Little One these days. Things are calm and controlled. We are out of the baby/toddler phase. We are in a different era, and I have heard the little voice in my head whisper, “Do you really want to go back there again?” ‘Do you want to change the status quo?’ I do. And until it’s physically impossible, I just don’t know what it would take to get me to give up on this goal.

Sometimes, in those dark moments, when I wonder if I can carry on fighting for this baby, it’s Little One that keeps me going. She wants this too. This isn’t just my desire, or my husband’s desire. We all want this. I feel like it’s not just my choice. Twice this week alone she has said to me, ”I wish we had a baby so I had someone to play with.” Oh, the sadness. I HAVE to complete this journey somehow for her, for us; for our family. She feels the empty space. I play with her. Her Daddy plays with her. Her friends play with her. She is looking for a different relationship. Children really are very perceptive.

Underneath it all, I am a fighter. I am strong. I can endure the pain. So, out of the black nights when another cycle has ended unsuccessfully, always comes the girl who says failure is not option. I will get back to the content and emotionally peaceful life we knew before we began trying to conceive. I will have another baby, somehow.

So, here I stand at the beginning of yet another TWW. My week or so of hope leading up to ovulation has given me respite. A time to re-group, and relax and feel positive. For the next two weeks I will be repeating ‘failure is not an option’ over and over, willing my body and the vitamin B6 and the Chinese herbs to help my body do its thing. Let’s get pregnant!

TWW – The Worst Weeks …

… of the menstrual cycle.

I’m mid TWW. That’s two week wait for those of you who are not so obsessed with trying to conceive, not really The Worst Weeks. Though they really are a time of torture that not many women survive without some emotional turmoil. For me it’s waiting to see if all that Clomid taking, temperature monitoring, peeing on ovulation sticks has finally been worth the effort. For those of you who know the hell that is this time, I apologise, as I’m sure the sight of those three capital letters made you shudder. It really is the worst time.

 Am I? Aren’t I? Could I be? Oooh, what was that twinge? Ahhh, I think I feel a little nauseous. Wow. I had a really runny nose today, but I’m not sick. That’s random. I wonder … Grrrrrrrr! Don’t come within 1KM of me. I’m extremely irritable and everything and everyone annoys me today. Right, my breasts feel a bit sore. My period must be coming. Bloody brilliant. Oooh, but that could be a sign of pregnancy …

That is pretty much a typical TWW.  Thrown in this time though; my little ones birthday. Time is passing. The potential sibling age gap grows. I think I would be OK with the passing of another birthday if I knew for sure I would get to experience this all again. Please let me experience this again. The three of us had a nice day. Just us. But I feel a pattern coming on. Last birthday, I was emotional. Happy for my little one, and excited for her to open her presents, but I struggled to not snap at times. This year was the same. It’s such a shame to let anything take away from enjoying my little ones day, but it’s tough and I feel it’s a bittersweet day.

So, the clomid did its job. I ovulated, and fairly early (for me) at day 17. Everything looks ok so far temperature wise which, I might add, really fuels the obsession especially in the TWW. I spend two weeks watching my temperature, analysing my chart for any dip that might mean its ovulation day, and then another two weeks praying the darn thing stays up and keeps my uterus a beautifully cosy place to grow a little person.

I think we did pretty well on timing our baby making bedroom action too. So what can we do now, but cross our fingers and hope that next week brings us longed for news? You gotta keep your hope right?