Thursday, June 12, 2008

Needles and ART and feeling alone

We (my husband and I) have spent large sums of money attempting to have a baby. IUI, IVF w/ ICSI and Assisted Hatching, many vials of Follistim and HCG and Lupron and Clomid and progestrone in oil and progrestrone suppositories. I have several large plastic bags in my bathroom closet emblazoned with the ‘IVP Care’ logo, full of alcohol wipes, needle packages and boxes of have half-empty medicine. I also have a sharps container that holds the needle waste created by the IUI and IVF cycles. In my day to day world I don’t know anyone who has ever dealt with this mess of infertility treatments. All of the people in my world have had children the ‘old-fashioned’ way and have never in their wildest dreams considered the possibility of having to have their eggs/sperm harvested from their bodies and mixed together by embryologists in a fertility lab. Most of my friends and family have tried to be very supportive and sent prayers and good wishes to me but they don’t understand the reality of actually going through a cycle. The pain of a multiple negative pregnancy tests, sobbing in the bathroom at work because you got the phonecall, the heartbreak of realizing you may never have your own biological child. People try to be really helpful and say “have you thought about adoption?” And while it’s absolutely an option, we’re not in the place where it is our option yet. I don’t think they understand the grieving that one has to go through sometimes when dealing with IF failure. It makes me feel very alone in the world.

I read blogs of other women who are going through or have gone through the kinds of things I have – some with success and some without. I was looking at a blog earlier and found a link to this YouTube video about PIO injections. It struck me because it made me see, physically see, another woman dealing with what I’ve dealt with. I do feel alone because everyone I ‘know’ with IF is online but this video made them a little more real for me. I ‘know’ there are other couples all over the place having the same doctor’s appointments and ultrasounds and injections I am. There are other women crying in the bathroom on their lunch breaks and trying to keep their mascara from smudging so everyone doesn’t ask “what’s wrong?”

I keep thinking it’ll get easier, but it hasn’t yet. November will mark 4 years since our first RE visit and still no pregnancy. We have another RE appointment next week to go back and discuss doing more IUI’s, possibly with donor sperm. I can’t help but feel pessimistic about it though. More hemorrhaging of money, more 7:30AM ultrasounds and blood draws, more hormones and more disappointment. Oddly enough Doug is more optimistic than I am. Usually it’s the opposite, I’m the cheerleader and he’s the emo kid. I guess we’ll see who’s right and who isn’t.


Anonymous said...

Your post and that video brought back a flood of emotions for me. I am so sorry. I know that this is a very hard time. I think one of the hardest things with IF is you never know when it's going to end. And all those pg friends and family members. And the baby shower invitations. And first birthday parties. And siblings. Such a roller coaster of emotions and feelings. My depression ran deep those days. I remember having to remind myself to breath. Everything hurt.

Remember it is a season of life. A hard season of life. But it will end. You will have your end. And you will be on the other side of infertility. And the next chapter in your life will begin.

You are not alone.

bridgmanpottery said...

april, I sent you an email on ravelry.

Kate said...

While I myself have not suffered the pains of infertility (I haven't tried to have a baby yet), a very close loved one of mine has. She has been through much of what you have, and has been trying for many years. I cannot imagine your pain, nor hers, but my heart does ache in the only way it knows how for her.
I'm sending you peace and love and strength even though we've never met. I wish you the best.

Jaime said...

i am sorry to hear about your struggles. i cannot say that i know how you feel, only that i know a very small bit of what you are feeling and of what you are going through. we only started TTC 3 months ago and i am soooo devastated/disappointed when i find out i am not pregnant - i feel so silly getting so upset when we have only started trying. i can only imagine how you must feel having been through/having to go through everything that you are. just keep your chin up and keep praying, and hopefully soon you will be blessed with a child. just know that you are definitely not alone. sending big hugs and lots of baby dust your way...

Sophie said...

I just discovered your blog and came across this post...I am so sorry :(! I know that isn't much of a consolation to you, but I am actually worried about having to go through this process myself. A few years ago, the doctor told me I had ovarian cysts, then he said I'd probably have to try fertility treatments if I ever wanted to have kiddos in the future. That in itself was very disheartening - I can't imagine how hard it'd be after trying for so long :(. This is certainly something you shouldn't have to deal with on your own; blogging is great therapy, I've found :).

I do wish you the best and send a prayer your way - even though I'm just a stranger :).

Nice meeting you,

Jess said...

God bless you and your family.

StickyGooeyCreamyChewy said...

I found your blog through the TWD site. I just wanted to tell you to hang in there. My husband and I went through 7 years of infertility. I have been poked and prodded and cut and stuck more times than I can count. I have permanent scars on my arms from all of the blood tests! I know how hopeless and isolated it can make you feel. But, things can work out. I now have a beautiful 14 year old daughter who is the light of my life. I never thought it would happen, but it did. Never give up hope.