Wednesday, April 20, 2011

National Infertility Awareness Week

I wasn't sure I was going to post on infertility or not this week. It's a tough subject for me, and I'm finding myself in an odd spot, emotionally speaking, right now.

This year, the topic is mythbusting: what myth about infertility isn't true? And I think my myth to bust is that once you have a child, your infertility journey is behind you - that it's no longer painful, and that you're no longer infertile.

*****

Sitting with Acorn getting him wound down for bed last night, I was reminded of how blessed we are. Where did this amazingly cute, funny, stubborn, happy little boy come from? Five years of trying to get pregnant, followed by the last 3 years of medical drama, and yet here we are, with Acorn thriving, and Leaf on the way, and apparently thriving as well.

As I mentioned last year, having a baby doesn't undo the past though - doesn't change that infertility label. Just as Acorn coming home didn't make him magically into a kid who'd never seen the inside of the NICU, and just as having his trach out won't make him have never had it, infertility is something you carry with you forever.

Having a baby (or even 2) doesn't change the emotional strain. It doesn't change the immediate reaction to some of the dumb things people say. It doesn't eliminate the gut reaction to some situations that makes you think, "wait, so people like that just happen to get pregnant and treat their kids like yesterday's garbage, but we had to go through all this?" It doesn't change the worry about whether or not you might have another child - no matter how many children you have, the question of whether there will be another, and what you'll have to do to create that child will always be in the back of your mind.

Having a child makes baby showers a little easier - but not much. I've skipped 3 in the last 3 years because I just can't do it.

Having a baby means instead of bleeding to death from a thousand cuts, I've got some painful scars, a lot of healing cuts that get ripped open again from time to time, and a few gaping wounds still to be patched up. It still hurts like hell though,

*****

RESOLVE offers this page for basic understanding of infertility: http://www.resolve.org/infertility101

National Infertility Awareness Week® (NIAW): http://www.resolve.org/takecharge

18 comments:

  1. I didn't struggle with infertility, but I did have a loss due to conditions that were "incompatible with life" and am carrying a baby now with a neural tube defect who will need surgery asap after he's born. And then, we'll see if he's okay.

    So much of what you've written, I could plug in "loss" or "poor prenatal diagnosis" and it would still make sense. These things change who we are. And while I may be better than I was before, couldn't I have gotten there without that much trauma?

    Congratulations on Leaf. I hope this pregnancy is thoroughly uneventful and blissfully normal.

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  2. Someone said to me recently, "You'll forget all this just as soon as you have a baby." I smiled and nodded, but what I should have said was, "No I won't. IF has changed me. I'm more cautious, more afraid, and have a huge, open wound that will become, at best, an ugly scar."

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  3. Yeah. I've heard that often. "Watch out, now you'll get pregnant like that!" *snap* I wish.
    But I want to ask them how having hosted a baby once will improve my husband's morphology and motility? How will having hosted a baby make my eggs a better quality? And how will having had a child decrease the crushing disappointment when trying for a second?

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  4. Love your post!
    http://ldsinfertility.blogspot.com/

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  5. My husband and I tried to conceive on our own like every couple does. After a year of trying we went to a doctor. We did a number of rounds of IUI, no success. Doctor said it was unexplained IF. Wow! Now what? He said to keep trying.
    We did. We tried a total of 8 years before we finally decided to go to the next step. We had IVF. We were successful, and pregnant with twins. We were so excited, but then tragedy stuck when the twins developed TTTS. We lost them, even after trying surgery. Of course, people have thought and said many things. The most painful is when they said I have to forget them and move on. Really? After so much...I say never. I will remember my precious little girls forever. And now as I await the birth of our baby in May, I still think of my twins every day. Nothing can replace them. And even though we cannot wait to see our baby, we will never forget all we went through to have her. Good luck to all who are TTC. I wish you all the best.

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  6. I think that wherever our infertility takes us, we always be "in recovery". This was really beautiful, thanks so much for sharing it.

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  7. I came across your blog on resolves website and wanted to say thank you for posting this. I can relate 100%. When I was trying to get pregnant I thought "once I have my baby it'll all be okay again" but in reality its not.

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  8. Thank you for sharing this story. It is very true that the feelings and emotional trauma that you experience during infertility treatments/adoption stick with you beyond having a child. I am sharing the link to your story on my blog: http://ticktalkbioclock.wordpress.com
    because I think others could learn from your story. Thank You.

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  9. I chose this same myth. I became a parent through adoption, and infertility's affect just won't go away. I don't think they every will.

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  10. I am 6 months pregnant through an embryo adoption program. After my first sonogram at 6 weeks, I sobbed all the way home. Not from happiness but from this weird confusion that I was still hurting from all of the pain up to this point and that it was all so bittersweet. I love my baby, but I still walk through baby stores angry at all of the other "normal" pregnant women! It's a very odd feeling to be one but to still carry all of the hurt. Nice job on the blog topic- you are dead-on.

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  11. Wonderful post!! My scars are now twenty years old, but believe me, they can still rip open. You are absolutely right. Infertility is a part of life forever - no matter how many children you have. Congratulations on your beautiful son and the one on the way. I'm praying for an absolutely normal and boring pregnancy and birth.

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  12. I found your blog through the Resolve NIAW blog submissions list. Congrats on Acorn and Leaf! I just wanted to echo everything you've said above. My experience is similar to yours--pregnancy and subsquently parenting didn't magically heal all my crazy infertility baggage. I am so, so grateful to be a parent finally, and I was surprised at how little any of my emotions surrounding infertility really tempered with pregnancy/parenting.

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  13. I found your blog through the Resolve NIAW blog submissions list. Congrats on Acorn and Leaf! I just wanted to echo everything you've said above. My experience is similar to yours--pregnancy and subsquently parenting didn't magically heal all my crazy infertility baggage. I am so, so grateful to be a parent finally, and I was surprised at how little any of my emotions surrounding infertility really tempered with pregnancy/parenting.

    ReplyDelete
  14. My husband and I tried to conceive on our own like every couple does. After a year of trying we went to a doctor. We did a number of rounds of IUI, no success. Doctor said it was unexplained IF. Wow! Now what? He said to keep trying.
    We did. We tried a total of 8 years before we finally decided to go to the next step. We had IVF. We were successful, and pregnant with twins. We were so excited, but then tragedy stuck when the twins developed TTTS. We lost them, even after trying surgery. Of course, people have thought and said many things. The most painful is when they said I have to forget them and move on. Really? After so much...I say never. I will remember my precious little girls forever. And now as I await the birth of our baby in May, I still think of my twins every day. Nothing can replace them. And even though we cannot wait to see our baby, we will never forget all we went through to have her. Good luck to all who are TTC. I wish you all the best.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Yeah. I've heard that often. "Watch out, now you'll get pregnant like that!" *snap* I wish.
    But I want to ask them how having hosted a baby once will improve my husband's morphology and motility? How will having hosted a baby make my eggs a better quality? And how will having had a child decrease the crushing disappointment when trying for a second?

    ReplyDelete
  16. I didn't struggle with infertility, but I did have a loss due to conditions that were "incompatible with life" and am carrying a baby now with a neural tube defect who will need surgery asap after he's born. And then, we'll see if he's okay.

    So much of what you've written, I could plug in "loss" or "poor prenatal diagnosis" and it would still make sense. These things change who we are. And while I may be better than I was before, couldn't I have gotten there without that much trauma?

    Congratulations on Leaf. I hope this pregnancy is thoroughly uneventful and blissfully normal.

    ReplyDelete
  17. http://scarprinnow.com/August 10, 2012 at 5:14 AM

    Hi – It’s good to read such interesting stuff on the Internet as I have been able to discover here. I agree with much of what is written here and I’ll be coming back to this website again. Thanks again for posting such great reading material!!
    http://scarprinnow.com/

    ReplyDelete
  18. I asked Dr.Oloye to cast a twin spell. I have fertility problems and have been trying for almost 2 years. I began to give up hope. I came across Dr.Oloye and thought it was worth a shot. I was a bit skeptical at first but ordered a triple cast, so it didn't exactly break the bank and I decided to ask her for help. I wasn't sure what the outcome would be but within a few days I received a a pretty Rose Quartz' Fertility Pendant and a simple verse. I did what the instructions said. I had a scan last week and I'm 9 weeks pregnant with twins, I cannot believe it. I want to say a huge thank you. I often emailed for advice and Dr.Oloye always replied with a straight answer. They are my miracle babies.You have nothing to lose with her and we would highly recommend her work on:extremesolutiontemple@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete