Thursday, December 11, 2014

A couple weeks ago I was making chicken noodle soup. As I was cutting up vegetables, I started feeling a little queasy. I remembered briefly having the same feeling the day before. The first thought that popped into my head wasn't "maybe I'm coming down with something," it was "maybe I'm pregnant." So there I stand in the kitchen counting cycle days trying to figure out if it's even possible.

Robbie and I have been married for almost 10 years, and we've been trying to, or not trying not to, get pregnant for almost 7 of those years. In that time, I've learned more about reproduction and fertility than I ever wanted to know. I have also learned, and come to terms with the fact, that we will probably never get pregnant on our own. That still doesn't change the fact that every month I hold out hope for a miracle. And every month I am disappointed when a new cycle begins.

I am past the point of charting my cycles. I don't cry anymore when another month comes and goes. But I know enough to know when there is that less than 1% possibility that it could happen. And it never does, but it could. And so I hold onto that hope, and the disappointment that comes with it. I feel like that's a good thing.

When we had frozen embryos there was never any question as to whether we'd try for more. The answer was always yes, we'd like to have more. But then that option was taken away from us, and we had to really consider what we thought our family should look like. Robbie and I are both in agreement about another round of IVF, but there are days that I question if the expense is worth it. We have two amazing children and I know we could be happy if we are never more than a family of four. We're prepared for that, and we will gladly enjoy every day, just the four of us, if that's where our journey takes us.

The disappointment every month reminds me that the desire for more children is still there. It confirms to me that we are making the right choice to go through this again. So while I hate the feeling I get every time a new cycle begins, I'm glad I still feel the sadness 7 years after we started on this journey. I don't think infertility ever gets easier, at least for me it hasn't, but I've learned to live with it. I've learned to cope with the feelings of sadness, disappointment, and emptiness. Because along with those come feelings of hope, anticipation, excitement, and joy.

After the start of the year, we'll begin testing to make sure we're ready for our upcoming IVF cycle. While I don't necessarily enjoy blood work and ultrasounds, I'm excited about them because of what they mean. They mean we are getting closer to having a real chance at expanding our family, and that is something to be happy about. I will take the other emotions as they come, but being optimistic and happy is what I will choose to focus on.

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