ALL THE WAYS!

Well I STARTED my Christmas Eve with a good attitude. My day started with laughs and smiles. Then I made the critical error of trying to perform a seeming trigger-free task. I went to the convenience store to wish the owner, a friend of the whole neighbourhood, a happy retirement (today is his last day) and to buy recycling bags for the Christmas wrap (we have some presents under the tree).
During my warm chat with “Harry” from “Harry’s Variety” he glanced at my belly and asked excitedly, “when is baby coming”.

Deep breath, swallow those tears, keep up that fake smile, decide how to deal with this.

I decided to go with an approach that has worked in the past. The truth. For an old man to whom English is a second language he was actually pretty interested to talk about it. I told him there was no baby in there but that we were waiting for a child through adaption. He asked what the problem was? Why couldn’t we have a baby? I told him they just wouldn’t stay in there. He asked why I don’t try ALL THE WAYS? ( he really emphasized that one). I explained that we tried ALL THE WAYS (emphasis right back at ya) but to no avail. We moved on to talk more about adoption. He’ll be watching for his new neighbour to arrive.

Merry Christmas and happy retirement Harry. Now time for a little cry.

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Now what?

Just a quick update because it’s still a little raw to write about.  My pregnancy test was negative.  IVF didn’t work for me.  It feels like a loss in so many ways.  My heart is broken.  Now I need to figure out how to move on.  Today I have an acupuncture appointment and lunch with a great friend planned.   I guess that’s a start.

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Memory Lane

I caught myself watching one of my own memories today as if it were a movie.  The memory was so clear, I could feel it, touch it and smell it. It was a memory of a time shortly before everything went wrong.

I was almost two months pregnant.  It was my first pregnancy.  My husband and I were both glowing with excitement.  My husband was on board with starting a family but it wasn’t until I was actually pregnant that we both realized how much it really meant to him.

We were at a barbecue at a friend’s rooftop pool.  It was a beautiful warm day. The sunlight was bouncing off the water. I didn’t swim, but I put my toes in the water.  The view was amazing.  Everything felt perfect.  When our friends were all swimming, my husband and I had some time alone poolside.  We sat on a beach towel on the deck.  He looked so happy.  He was actually tearing up.  He put his hand on my belly.

“I was thinking”, he said, “that after we have this little chicken, we could adopt a sibling for that chicken”.

For him to say that meant so much to both of us.  It meant that we could have more than one child. It meant that we hadn’t abandoned the idea of adoption even though I was pregnant.  It meant  that his ideal family was based on the model of his own family.  Our life was really beginning.  We had so much to look forward to.  Both of our dreams were coming true.

It was hard for me to “watch” this memory.  This is the part of my life that I now have to file under “before”.  It seems so long ago.  I feel like we were different people. I have since lost three babies.  I have cut friends out of my lives who have had babies since.  I have watched the world move on as my world seems to stand still.  I have been living in pain. My life has revolved around fertility treatments.  Adoption has evolved from a way to grow our family to quite possibly the only way we’ll be able to grow our family.  Our sex life has been scheduled to the minute and full of the fear of a miss-timed broken pregnancies.  I miss my life.  I wish I could go back to the pool and dip my toes in the water and not worry about anything but a sunburn.

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IVF: The Famous Two Week Wait/ A Spot of Bother

I knew the TWW would be hard.  Even without IVF, the waiting period is always hard.  With IVF it’s even harder.  There is so much money at stake and there’s the fact that I know that my embryos are inside of me.  Instead of waiting to see if I GET pregnant, I’m waiting to see if I STAY pregnant.

It started off ok.  I was told to rest for the first four days.  I took these two weeks off of work because I knew I’d be nervous and I knew it would be best for me to take it easy.

Everything was going well.  I even managed to stay off of google. When my husband was home, he brought me everything I needed.

On Tuesday, my mom came over to bring me to my acupuncture appointment so that I wouldn’t have to take the bus.

On Tuesday morning, before my appointment, I noticed some spotting.  My Twitter network, my friends and even Dr. Google told me that this was likely implantation.  My past traumas with spotting just made me feel scared.

My naturopath confirmed that it was likely implantation bleeding.  She said that “most women are so excited about this”.  I just sobbed. It was just a reminder that everyone else’s positive pregnancy experiences don’t belong to me.  I’ve had lots of “great signs” during my pregnancies, I just don’t have a baby.

It’s now Monday.  Almost a week later and I’m still spotting.  It’s not a lot of blood.  It’s really just a couple of spots per day,  but it’s enough to terrify me.  It’s enough to have kept me on the sofa for the past week.

I’ve taken two home pregnancy tests.  They both came up negative.  I know that my official test isn’t until Thursday and that there is “always that chance” but quite frankly, I’m not feeling it right now.

I’m crushed.  I’ve lost hope.  I feel ripped off.  I feel like I didn’t even get to enjoy my two week weight by hoping.  I spent my two week wait trying not to bleed.

This is it.  We agreed to one cycle of IVF and now it’s over.  I know – I could be surprised by my official test on Thursday and then I’ll look back at this and roll my eyes, but for now, I’m feeling it’s over.  Even if I am lucky enough to get a positive test on Thursday, I’ll be terrified because of all of the spotting.

I still don’t understand why this is happening.  I don’t understand how I got pregnant so easily with broken babies and now I can’t get pregnant at all – even when they put a fertilized embryo right inside of me.  In the next couple of weeks I’ll have some decisions to make.  Do I go on birth control? Do we risk another miscarriage?

I also have to figure out a way to get through going back to work, and worse, get through another childless Christmas.

I have to get back to focusing on the adoption but also mourn the loss of the biological children that I won’t have.  A rough time ahead.  I’ll report my official results on Thursday.

(I wanted to post a picture, the doctor gave us a print out of the transfer ultrasound.  It’s a picture of those embryos inside of me.  My husband took the photo. I know he’s trying to protect me.)