You’re either reading this because you’re a friend on my FB, a follower on IG or maybe you stumbled across my page because my tags peaked your interest in your search engine. Either way… This is something you’re either struggling with, struggled with, know someone who is struggling with or you’re a friend/family member of mine and curious about what I’m going through. When I started talking to a few close friends about it suddenly my most private details were subjected to casual conversation. I realized this topic is… AWKWARD.
Everyone has heard the term infertility. We all know it’s that taboo subject that is like an elephant in the room. When it’s brought up this awkward aura fills the room and nobody has the right words to say. The rooms with elephants and awkward remarks are my new normal. This normally wouldn’t be something I would share to my family, let alone the world or people I’ve never met who know me on social media but I’ve learned this is something people need to know and understand. I always thought, once we do our baby dance we will get pregnant and have a baby! Needless to say that was not our outcome and hasn’t been for awhile. I feel like I go through a cycle of emotions every month…
1. Confidence- confident this time will work!
2. Hopeful- after the baby dance nothing but hope and prayers that THIS is our month. Constantly doing pregnancy tests knowing that it’s too early but there’s still hope!
3. Defeated- aunt flow comes and I know there’s no way we could be pregnant this month. Once again I end up crying on the bathroom floor alone asking.. “Why?”
4. Depression- upset it’s not working and it seems like everyone is posting baby announcements and I can’t help but feel the slightest bit jealous.
5. Determined- that “can do” attitude sets in and then I’m researching different vitamins and herbs that have helped other women. (This week is filled with a large influx of Amazon deliveries.)
That first feeling of solitude really slaps you in the face. But I’ve come to realize I’m not the only one struggling. I’m in support groups, resource pages and of course my husband is my #1 supporter. He has held me when I cried after every negative pregnancy test. He shares my excitement when I’m waving around an ovulation test with tears of joy because I finally ovulated. He listens to my carefully thought out presentations on different vitamins that I KNOW will help and my reasoning on why we NEED them. He talks me through it when I’m ugly crying about how another friend is pregnant after not even trying. He learned all of the acronyms such as BD(baby dance), TTC(trying to conceive), DPO(days past ovulation) and my least favorite BFN(big fat negative). Like I said, he is my biggest supporter and my biggest fan.
Not only is infertility real, but secondary infertility is real as well. Yes, I already have a child. No, it is not easy (for us) to have another child. Infertility, secondary infertility, PCOS, endometriosis and so much more… They don’t give preferential treatment to those deserving of a child. It can happen to anyone. I can’t speak for everyone but take a second and just think about how it must feel to hear about those who “magically” got pregnant after a one night stand when you’ve been trying for months or years. I mean I have a reproductive system, it’s sole purpose is to reproduce, but it’s NOT. Sometimes I can’t help but think somehow I’m “defective merchandise” that can’t be returned or fixed. So whether you or someone you know has been trying for 3 months or multiple years every month is filled with numerous emotions. Sometimes the thought of isolation seems so much easier than explaining to family or friends or having to listening to conversations that consist of “well you haven’t been trying for too long, it’ll happen when it happens, just give it time, you’re young, stop stressing THEN it’ll happen” and many more. So for anyone that knows someone or has/is experiencing this, this is close to my heart, this is for you… For us.
Infertility is so much more than a struggle to get pregnant.
It’s the months that turn into years. The years that turn into forever. It’s the cramping pain you feel when you have yet another month of no luck.
It’s the tears you cry telling your spouse “maybe next month”, when you know it’s not the truth.
It’s the tears your family sheds for you and the prayers they pray each night to make things better.
Infertility is the hundreds of dollars you spend on pregnancy tests, ovulation kits, fertility teas, and supplements.
Infertility is the heartbreak you feel after going to the third specialist that year and getting told “I’m sorry, it didn’t work” once again.
It’s the hours of endless crying in the bathroom after running into a friend who asks “Are you pregnant yet?”
It’s the bittersweet pain you feel when your friends announce they’re expecting another, and you’re dying on the inside.
It’s the thousands of dollars spent on another medication that is “proven to work!”
It’s being told you’ll never conceive until you drop the pounds. It’s going home and eating a pint of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream in tears after hearing it.
It’s the defeat you feel when someone says “well you already have one kid, you’re fine!”.
It’s your friends asking you “are you okay? How are you? You don’t look well.” And you blame it on being tired.
It’s your friends and family insinuating you’re pregnant when you feel nauseated.
It’s your friends saying “just give it time, it’ll happen”. When you’ve given it a year(s) of time.
It’s so much more than just not having a baby. It’s the wrench it throws between you and your friends, your family, your spouse. It’s the depression that keeps you hidden socially. It’s the pain of hope. And it’s the continuous need to try again next month, against all odds.
Infertility is the courage to keep trying, when your hope well has almost run dry.