Monday, December 24, 2012

This time of year has always been one of my favorites.  It’s a time for family, friends, celebration and reflection.  I have allowed the last several years of loss and heartache to prevent me from making happy memories.  I know that it can be difficult to enjoy the holidays when you are suffering with infertility, but I encourage you to not let a temporary situation steal your joy! 

I am going to take this week off to relax and enjoy spending time with G and our friends.  I am going to try and focus on all the many blessings that I do have because I know that there are many!  Our struggles with infertility and the memories of our miscarriages will still be there in the New Year, but that is a problem for another day.  Enjoy your holidays and I will catch up with you next week!

Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

18 Years and Counting!

It's a few days early, but since I don't post on weekends I wanted to make sure I got this one out!

18 years ago I was getting ready to walk down the aisle to marry the love of my life.  The entire bridal party was lined up on the stairs waiting to make their entrance.  I could hear the music playing and I remember sitting in my chair rocking back and forth wondering just what in the hell I had gotten myself into.  I was young, stupid, scared and in love.  I wondered what the future would hold for us.  What kind of apartment would we live in?  Would we make friends quickly when we got to our new duty station?  What would our children look like?  As I made my way up the stairs and saw that smile on G’s face I knew that no matter what the future held I was going to be with a man who loved me more than I could ever imagine.  In that moment it didn’t matter what was coming our way because we were together and together we could get through anything.

Our “fairytale” began on December 22, 1994 and I use the word “fairytale” loosely.  Our marriage has had its fair share of trials and heartaches and to be honest there were times that I was sure we weren’t going to make it.  G has always had hope and faith when it came to our marriage surviving.  It took a lot of hard work, dedication and prayer to get us to a healthy relationship.  We have been able to persevere through everything that has come our way and infertility is no different. 

G has continued to have hope even when mine was failing.  He has never lost faith when it comes to us becoming parents which makes this anniversary a little bitter sweet.  I can’t believe that another year has come and gone without us having a baby or at least be expecting one.  This year has been especially hard for me because there were two times that we thought our time had come only to have it quickly and painfully taken away.  G is my rock, my strength and my motivation.  Marrying him is the best thing that I have ever done in my life! I thank God every day for allowing us to find each other at an early age and giving us the strength to survive our battles.  Like everything else in our life we will survive infertility…together! 

Happy Anniversary to the love of my life and thanks for all the “betters” you have given me in our marriage!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

What's in a Feeling?

Miriam-Webster defines feeling as easily moved emotionally; deeply felt; expressing emotion or sensitivity. I am a woman so I am naturally emotional, but throw in infertility and there is no telling what you will get.  My infertility has caused feelings of fear, sadness, depression, anger, anxiety, joy, determination, perseverance and maybe a little neurosis.

We all have feelings but it’s how we express them that varies from person to person.  G tends to bury them deep down where they can’t be seen by the world.  He’s definitely been known to be an ostrich and bury his head in the sand when it comes to dealing with his emotions.  I on the other hand, have never been very good at hiding my feelings and tend to wear them on my sleeve.  As much as I would love to hide my feelings from the world at times its not a skill I have been able to master.  I guess you can say I have been emotional since birth.

G has long since said I was an empath and have the ability to empathize with anyone no matter the circumstance.  I can feel the pain, sorrow, joy and excitement of others.  This ability is both a blessing and a curse.  While on this journey I have had my fair share of trials, losses and a myriad of emotions to accompany them.  To my surprise, because of those feelings and afflictions I have been able to offer support to others suffering infertility or miscarriage. The draw back to that is I begin to take on their emotions myself and end up feeling their pain as well as reliving my own…Talk about overload!

I don’t regret my trials because they have helped shape me into the person I am today.  They’ve made me stronger, more compassionate and more determined.  I know that because of those trials and the feelings they have conjured in me that I have the ability to make it to the end of this journey and I will become a mother!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

You Might be an Infertile If… Round 2


10.  Your husband has ever threatened to wrap you in bubble wrap during the two week wait.

9.  You worry that your doctor will find out just how crazy you really are and can't blame the hormones!

8.  You’ve ever thought of taking Mucinex or cough syrup to try and get pregnant.

7.  When asked what the date was you mistakenly gave them the date of your next BETA.

6.  You have actually looked forward to getting a shot in the ass because you know it could help
      you get pregnant.

5.  You have “splurged” by drinking a caffeinated Diet Coke.

4.  You haven’t used birth control in over 5 years and are hoping to accidentally get pregnant.

3.  Having multiple people in the room while trying to get pregnant is no longer considered weird.

2.  For once in your life you are thankful you have a fat roll because it makes fertility injections a
     little easier…OK THAT IS THE ONLY TIME I AM THANKFUL FOR SOME FAT!!!

1.   You have actually had a conversation with your husband about the best way for you to get
      pregnant and it didn’t include actually having sex.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Pregnancy, Newborns and the Infertility Clinic

I was recently talking with some friends and this seems to be a common issue with those going through infertility.  Not all infertility clinics are stand alone clinics and there are often triggers for infertiles while visiting their RE.  I am not a stranger to the situation myself!!!

Dr. L is housed in the “Women’s Center” at the clinic I go to.  So what does that really mean?  Well it means that not only is the waiting room filled with women who are trying to conceive, it is filled with pregnant women, toddlers and babies as well.  Going to your normal OB/GYN it’s really kind of expected that you would be surrounded by women who are pregnant and possibly have children with them.  However, bringing a baby to an Infertility clinic is like bringing donuts to an Overeaters Anonymous meeting! It really is just cruel and unusual punishment.

There are few things in the world that are more gut-wrenching for an infertile than hearing a baby cry, especially while waiting to see your fertility doctor.  For the most part I have been able to handle seeing those women and hearing those babies fairly well, with a few exceptions…after each one of my miscarriages.  Hearing those cries were reminders of my now empty womb and those maternal longings would tear up in my eyes as I watched the new mother calming her infant.

I have no ill feelings towards those who have children.  I never want anyone who desires children to experience the heartache of what G and I have.  However, when those of us trying desperately to conceive are forced to endure the cooing and gurgling of a healthy newborn it really does feel like torture and at times resembles envy!  Sometimes if it wasn’t for my deep desire to conceive my own baby and my total trust in Dr. L I think I would give all of this crap up just to not feel the pain any more!!!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Time and the Infertile

We have been on this journey for almost 5 years now.  As I type that, it is really hard to believe that it has been that long.  It really feels like one big blur now.  I used to keep up with how many cycles we’ve done and whether they were medication only, IUIs or IVF.  Now I honestly don’t think I can tell you how many times we have tried assisted reproductive technology (ART).  I was talking to Dr. L and couldn’t remember what # try we were on since the miscarriage.  I guess that is both good and bad. 

The good is that I am no longer focused on how long it has been or what we have been through.  I am no longer measuring my time in reference to the last miscarriage.  Don’t misunderstand, that miscarriage is nowhere near forgotten it just doesn’t serve as a reference point for time any longer.  Time just seems to be passing.  The bad is that the time is passing and I have nothing to show for it.  I have no successful pregnancies and I can’t tell you anything significant that we have done in that time.  It just appears to be one massive cycle of fertility treatments with no definitive separation.

G and I have often said that there are points on this journey where you become numb.  Numb to the fears, numb to the time and numb to the procedures.  They just become a part of your life and at times it feels as if you are just going through the motions. This is a difficult valley to be in and it is far harder to climb out of.  You have to make the conscious effort to pull yourself out of that pit of despair and bring back the excitement of each try otherwise you will bury yourself in self pity and sadness.  We have been in that pit several times over the last 5 years but with each other and a little help from Dr. L and Dr. M have been able to pull ourselves out and continue the journey.

Infertility treatments are not for the faint of heart.  They are emotional, depressing, stressful and at times very painful.  An outsider truly has no understanding of the strength it takes to survive infertility.  I know that we will survive infertility and come out with a victory!!!  I can't wait to share that little miracle!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

I'm Sure I Heard You Wrong!

Over the past several months I have had the privilege of getting to know some amazing women who are struggling with infertility as well.  We share Tweets, emails and encouragement to help with the daily struggles involved with this journey.  During these conversations I have come across several things that have been said to them at some point during their infertility trials that were truly hurtful.  So after a few months of our first installment of things not to say to someone experiencing infertility here is the next addition.

     Toddlers are such picky eaters.  You’re lucky your dog is your baby – Don’t get me wrong I have had pets for many years and I love them dearly, but in absolutely no way is that a substitute for a HUMAN BABY!!!  Being able to easily dump some food in a bowl to feed my cat does not take away the pain of not having a child.  I don’t wake up in the morning relieved because I don’t have the stresses involved with feeding a picky toddler.  Believe me, anyone who is struggling with infertility knows the difference between a pet and an actual baby and does not believe for a moment that is an acceptable substitute!  Don’t mistake the fact that someone has pets instead of children as them being interchangeable!

Think of all the things you can afford since you don’t have kids – I am here to tell you that not every couple who is “child free” is buying expensive toys and gallivanting off on luxurious vacations.  The reality is that many of them are living pay check to pay check like the rest of the world.  People who don’t struggle with infertility don’t understand the expense involved with creating a family through assisted reproductive technology (ART) or adoption.  Those on this journey are likely putting every penny they have into trying to expand their family and I can attest that it is not cheap!!

Is your wife/husband OK with you not wanting kids? – First of all, making the assumption that someone is child free by choice is the first mistake.  Though there are many people in the world that truly don’t wish to have children and make the conscious decision to live child free, this is not the case for many couples.  For those who are child free not by choice, there is likely a lot of pain associated with the situation.  Insensitive comments don’t help with the work they have put into just being able to cope. 

You’re in your 30’s now; when are you guys going to get started? – First let me start by saying you are 100% in none of your damn business land!  There are many circumstances as to why a woman is not pregnant.  Maybe she just got married and they would like some “alone” time before starting a family.  Maybe she has had cancer and no longer has the parts required to have children.  Maybe they suffer from male factor infertility.  Maybe they just truly do not want children.  Regardless of the reason, this question is not of any concern to anybody but the couple involved.  I assure you that for anyone who wants children and has extenuating factors as to why they don’t or can’t have children, this question can be extremely hurtful.

At least you have time to watch a movie or read a book. – Yes, I would much rather be sitting on my couch reading a book or have the ability to watch an entire movie without a baby crying than to have a baby.  Thanks so much for putting that in to perspective for me.  I feel so much better knowing that I can have a life of leisure because of my infertility!  Infertiles want nothing more than to experience the hustle and bustle of being a parent and would trade going to the theater in a heartbeat to hold that baby in their arms.

You’ll understand what I am going through when you are a mom – Ouch!  That is definitely a painful one.  I can say that this may be one of the most painful quotes that I have heard.  It’s a stabbing reminder that I am once again not a mother but I also am not able to understand about children because I don’t have them.  Yes, I may not be able to grasp all aspects of raising children, but it does not make me incapable of understanding their needs either.  Your exasperation with your child’s behavior, your fatigue from being up all night with a sick child, or the sheer frustration you have with their busy schedules is something that as an infertile I long for.  I want the blessing of looking at that little rug rat and wanting to pull my hair out because of something she did.  I want to have all the good and bad that come with being a parent.  

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

You Might be an Infertile if…

I was flipping through the channels the other day and came across an old comedy show with Jeff Foxworthy.  He has always been someone who can make me laugh.  His country twang, his delivery, his content; he just makes me laugh!  Maybe it’s those deep rooted redneck genes in me that can relate to his “You might be a redneck if…” bits.  Whatever the reason it really got me thinking about my struggles with infertility and how it could totally be a comedic set.  So for today’s enjoyment here is the first installment of  You might be an infertile if…

10.   You have ever seen your female reproductive organs on 32” Plasma screen.

9.     You can’t remember the last doctor’s appointment where you got to keep your pants on.

8.     You have Tweeted about where you are in your menstrual cycle. 

7.     You have ever had someone else shoot you up in a public place and it was perfectly legal. 

6.     You have spent more money on fertility treatments in the last two years than you have on all
        your vacations combined.

5.     You are baffled by the fact that people actually manage to get pregnant on their own.

4.     Instead of butter in your refrigerator door you have fertility medications and needles.

3.     Your infertility medical records are thicker than the last Harry Potter book.

2.     You’re at the doctor’s office so much you have your own monogrammed sheets.

1.     Getting pregnant doesn’t technically involve you having sex. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Hope after Loss

As the New Year approaches, the pain of losing our first pregnancy two years ago is beginning to creep back into my mind.  We had just told our family and some very close friends that we were pregnant and had celebrated with them on New Year’s Eve only to be painfully awoken the next day to losing the baby.  I guess not enough time has passed to quite ease that pain or maybe it is the fact that we have had multiple losses since then but whatever the reason it is still at the forefront of my mind today.

For several weeks after that first loss my life was a living hell.  Tears would stream down my face as I stood in the shower washing my stomach thinking of my empty womb.  I would sit in the bathroom floor sobbing as my husband stroked my hair trying desperately to ease my pain.  I would cry out in my sleep with nightmares of that loss over and over.  I couldn’t bring myself to go to work let alone face the world.  My life as I knew it came to an abrupt halt.  How could something so small, something I had never met, something that I could never hold have such a strong grip on my heart?  It was genetically made up of me and the man I loved…It was part of me.  I was already in love. 

Why would I want to relive this pain now?  Why would I want to share my heartache with the world?  One word…HOPE.  Because of that very first pregnancy I have hope.  That little miracle, albeit short lived, allowed us and my medical team to see that I have the ability to get pregnant.  It allowed me to believe that my body was not totally broken and I could indeed have that biological child that we have been longing for.  That pregnancy, and the two that followed, have given me the extra hope that I needed to believe that miracles do happen. Yes I have not been able to carry that baby to term as of yet, but I do believe that my day is coming.  I trust Dr. L with all of my heart and I know that if we don’t try there is NO chance that we will have that biological baby! 

We just have to continue to have hope, faith and pray for that little miracle!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Surviving the Holidays

The holidays can be hard enough without having the added stress of infertility or reliving a loss.   Christmas 2010, we were over the moon and were announcing our 1st pregnancy to our family.  New Year’s Day 2011, I was in the ER suffering a painful miscarriage.  It was one of the most humiliating and painful experiences of my life.  Sometimes it’s difficult to disassociate the bad with the holiday itself.  I have to work extra hard to remember why we celebrate and find ways to cope.  So, here are a few tips for surviving the holidays and finding some joy:

  1. Just say NO!  - There’s no doubt that December is a jam packed time of year and that list of parties and to-dos is growing by the minute.  It’s OK to say NO and only accept the invites to the parties and get-togethers that you know will be enjoyable and less stressful for you.  I tend to avoid the large parties where there are lots of guests that I don’t know.  It prevents me from having to field that dreaded, “Do you have kids?” question.  I encourage you to get out of the house and attend some of the small gatherings with friends where you can just relax and celebrate!
  2. Spread some Christmas cheer – It’s easy to get caught up in your own pity party around the holidays, but it’s important to remember the blessings you do have.  Try giving back to others during this time of year.  Adopt an Angel from the Salvation Army Angel Tree.  G and I do this every year.  It gives us the chance to bless a child even though it is not ours.  Volunteer to serve dinners at a local food shelter.  Adopt a family and provide them with all the fixings for a holiday dinner.  Bringing others joy helps to put things into perspective and you can’t help but be happy when you see those smiles!
  3. Create new traditions with your spouse – Take this opportunity before you have those little miracles to start some new traditions with your spouse.  Build a gingerbread village with all sorts of fun candy.  Have a special fondue meal at home on Christmas Eve with all your holiday favorite goodies for dipping.  Take a tacky light tour or visit the lights at the botanical garden.  Make homemade waffles with all the toppings for Christmas morning.  Watch movies in your PJs all day Christmas day.  All of these are things that you can expand on when you have your kids. 
  4. Music, Music, Music! – Listen to those Christmas songs.  Make a play list of some of your favorite Christmas songs that make you happy and listen to it anytime you need a lift.  I know it’s a little corny and old fashioned but my all time favorite Christmas album is the Carpenters Christmas.  It has some of the best memories from my childhood and baking with my Nana so it always puts me in a good mood!
  5. Pamper Yourself –  Get a massage, facial, manicure or my personal favorite a pedicure!  Buy something that you would not normally do for yourself.  Take time to read that book you’ve been meaning to get to.  Spend the entire day lying in bed watching your favorite Christmas movies.  No, these won’t miraculously make all those sad feelings disappear, but taking some time for yourself can help you through them.
I think that we as women and infertiles tend to put added stress on ourselves and try to live up to the expectations of others.  The worst stress comes from our own expectations of what we think we “have to be”.  Allow yourself to let go of that perfection and what you think you need to be for others.  Do what is best for you and your partner!   Don’t let the blues of infertility or loss prevent you from the joys of the season!!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Never Give Up! Never Surrender!

OK I am really pulling out my geek flag on this one, G will be so proud.  Anyway, I was sitting at my desk today and for some odd reason this quote came into my head and I just couldn’t forget it.  I haven’t seen Galaxy Quest in years so I’m not sure where it came from, but after thinking about it for a while and repeating it over and over in my head I realized that it is very pertinent to my fertility journey.  Never give up! Never surrender!

I decided to look up the word surrender in the dictionary.  It means:  to give over or resign oneself to something; to give up or abandon.  Ha, that is so perfect when it comes to my infertility.  Since my last miscarriage I think I had resigned myself to the fact that I was never going to be a mother, at least not biologically.  I was giving in to my fears and abandoning my hope.  So in essence I had already surrendered even though I was going through the motions of the fertility treatments.  There was a number of tries to do before moving on to the inevitable.

I didn’t actually know that's what I was doing until last night when I was crying on G’s shoulder.  He helped me realize I was putting up my protective barriers and giving up.  I was accepting my defeat and waving my white flag.  I had this “set” amount of time that I had placed on my trying to conceive journey and was trying to protect my heart from more pain.  If I controlled the limits and drew the line in the sand of when we were done then it would prevent the heartache of being forced to stop.  I was my own stumbling block.  I was telling Dr. L when we were done instead of letting him guide me.  I was putting limits on what God could do.

So after that realization I have renewed hope for where this journey is going.  I will continue to listen to my wonderful husband, Dr. L, Dr. M, my pastor and of course God when it comes to this journey.  I will allow them to better guide my decisions.  God help me, I am putting down my protective shield and allowing this journey to take me wherever I need to go!  I guess it’s a little ironic…I’m not surrendering to my infertility I am surrendering to God!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

No Man Left Behind

I am sure that at some time in your life you have heard the phrase, no man left behind.  It is commonly used in the military to describe solidarity; you go into battle together and you come out together. OK, so why am I bringing this up today and how does it relate to infertility?

We as females are so heavily involved with our infertility that we tend to forget that we have a partner who is in this same battle.  It’s our bodies that are being poked and prodded.  It is our bodies that are physically changing.  It is our bodies that are having hormonal overload.  God forbid, it is our body that is not able to function correctly.  We become so self-involved that we often leave our partners out in the cold to suffer in silence.  We are constantly leaving a “man” behind.

I know that several times on this journey I have left G behind.  I have let my emotions run away and take over my every waking minute to the point that I forgot I was not alone in this fight.  I was not the only one afraid of my cancer diagnosis.  I was not the only one who was afraid before every surgery.  I was not the only one losing hope after each failed cycle.  I was not the one who couldn’t sleep at night when I did get pregnant for fear of losing another baby.  I was not the only one suffering and depressed after each miscarriage.

I can remember the look on G’s face and the hurt in his eyes when I selfishly believed I was all alone on this journey and let him know it.  I told him that he had no clue what I was going through.  It was not his body being injected with hormones and it was not his body failing so he could not possibly relate to what I was experiencing.  Yes, I was right…he could not relate to what I was feeling physically, but he more than understood what I was feeling emotionally.  I had been dismissing his feelings and forgetting all the pain and suffering he was experiencing too.  I forgot that he has many more things he has had to deal with outside of the infertility.  He has had to watch me suffer through surgery after surgery, numerous biopsies and painful miscarriages knowing that there was nothing he could do to comfort me.  His love for me is so great that he was enduring the pain of being helpless. 

So I encourage you to think about your partner and remember that you are on this journey together.  You make the decisions as a couple, you suffer as a couple and you will be victorious as a couple.  Take a moment to remember why you want children with this person and don’t ever leave a man behind!

Monday, December 3, 2012

For Better or For Worse

For better or worse…those are the vows said at many a wedding.  I am sure when you say these words and picture the worse, infertility never crosses your mind.  I’m here to tell you that infertility would definitely be in the “worse” category.  Even the strongest of relationships can start to come unglued when infertility drags on.  It is all encompassing and begins to become the topic of every conversation.  Your daily routines begin to revolve around doctor’s appointments, ultrasounds, injections, inseminations, egg retrievals, transfers and pregnancy tests.  Not to mention the toll it takes on your bank account.  We all know that finances have long been a stressor in marriages, throw in infertility and you’re just asking for problems.

Infertility is more than just the inability to have a child. For some women it defines who they are. It causes anxiety, depression and wreaks havoc on your self-worth.  It can end marriages, friendships, and family relationships.  The fear of isolation, judgment and emotional wreckage often cause couples to suffer in silence.  In a time where couples need support the most, societal discrimination prevents them from reaching out. Despite the increasing numbers of those affected by infertility it still remains a taboo subject.  The topic can quickly bring a conversation to a halt and empty a room in no time.  According to the American Fertility Association and the CDC 6.1 million women and 4.7 million men require some sort of medical help to create a family.  To bring it a little closer to home, if you and your spouse were out to dinner with 8 other couples, one of those couples would struggle with infertility.  1 in 8 couples…that’s insane!

Having just learned that I am once again not pregnant "for better or worse" is echoing loudly in my head.  G and I have surely experienced our fair share of the "worse" over the last few years.  Each time I thought this is the worst thing that has ever happened to us something else comes along causing deeper wounds than the previous.  Every failed cycle reopens those wounds and allows them to fester again.  These are the times that G shows the "better".  He reminds me over and over again just how much I am loved and that we are on this journey together.  As I lay there crying in his lap over my negative cycle he strokes my hair, reassures me that I will have my baby one day soon and reminds me that "better" far outweighs the "worse"!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Case of Miscommunication!

As an infertile I am sure at some point in your journey you have stopped to wonder what it would be like to be childless.  You have wondered what it would be like to go the rest of your life never getting pregnant, never becoming a mother and living alone just you and your husband.  I know I have and that was a hard image for me to get out of my head.  I love my husband dearly and am very happy with him, but I can’t imagine my life without children.  I have wanted to be a mother since I was 15 years old and that desire is so deeply imbedded in me that I have to be a mother!!!

G wants children as much as I do, but he has made it perfectly clear that if we never have children he knows that he would still be happy with just me.  I have really struggled with that statement and have felt guilty because even though I love G and am happy with him…I still want children.  Being childless has always been a fear of mine, but now I had this guilt that my husband would think he was not enough.   We spent a lot of time talking about it with each other over the last several months and realized that the problem was miscommunication. 

As I am sure infertiles can attest, infertility is riddled with miscommunication.  We have been guilty of this several times on our journey and have really had to work at making ourselves clear to prevent needless heartache down the road.  With the help of Dr. M we were able to talk about G’s statement and I have realized that he does not feel like I love him any less because I want children.  We have different goals and desires that complete us and for me it is to be a mother and G understands this.

I encourage anyone on this journey to take the time with your spouse and communicate your desires, wants and needs to each other.  Make sure you are clear and if issues arise talk about them because a lot of times it is just a matter of miscommunication.  If you are unable to resolve your issues or find a way to communicate effectively I would suggest seeing a counselor who specializes in infertility to help.  Infertility is stressful enough without putting undue strain on your marriage!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Failing!

Have you ever had those times where you feel like a failure when it comes to your life?  I am sure most everyone has had those feelings at one point or another.  I think those struggling with infertility have felt it a little more than others.  I am currently in that frame of mind.  No, I don’t like it and yes, I know that it is not all reality, but the feelings are there nonetheless.

Today I am overwhelmed with the holidays and what that means.  They often revolve around family and friends which brings reality to the fact that we are still a family of two.  I realized that I would have been over 5 months along had I not miscarried in July which is really amplifying those feelings of failure.  I struggle with hormone induced depression while going through treatments and this week just happens to be the hormonal overload.  These are the things where I feel like I am a failure.

  1. Making G a father.
  2. Making our parents grandparents.
  3. Keeping the weight off; which seems to be much harder when you are struggling with keeping sane and warding off infertility depression.
  4. Keeping up my exercise routine.
  5. Being a good friend and keeping in touch with those I love.
  6. Keeping my house in some semblance of order.
  7. Being a good daughter by keeping in touch or visiting my mom more.
  8. Being the wife I was before this roller coaster!
  9. My body is broken!
  10. HAVING A BABY!!!!
Knowing that I can get pregnant, but have not been able to carry that baby to term is very hard and makes me feel like my body is failing.  Really I want to scream, cry and run away from this life sometimes.  The fears of the cancer returning, the struggles of infertility, the lost babies are sometimes more than I feel like I can handle!  I am trying to make things right, I am trying to be the person I want to be, but sometimes I think I am failing at this life!!!

Wow...Pity Party for One, huh!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Hope, Pain and Insanity

Hope springs when a new cycle begins.  Every shot brings us that much closer to having the baby we have been longing for.  Every ultrasound shows my body is that much closer to allowing conception to occur.  Every office visit is filled with encouragement from Dr. L and my favorite nurses.  Every procedure is reassurance that I am going to be a mother…that is until the 2 week wait.

The 2 week wait is a fickle bitch.  Her emotions range from joy, hope and excitement, to dread, desperation and despair.  I have learned over the last several years that the wait is split into 2 parts.  The first week is usually quite calm and filled with hope and anticipation.  The second week is when things begin to get ugly.  My hope weakens as the symptoms from my HCG injection fade and what I believe are PMS symptoms set in.  I cling to any sign or symptom that there is a chance that the cycle worked. As I become more and more convinced of its failure despair and depression set in.  All hope is not lost and the true pain doesn’t rear its ugly head until confirmation that the cycle was unsuccessful.

Pain is going into the doctor’s office before your blood test and seeing your favorite nurse tear up as she reads your facial expressions.  Pain is waiting for the dreaded call you know is coming from that same nurse saying, “I’m sorry Chrissy, but you’re not pregnant…this cycle didn’t work.”  Pain is looking into Dr. L’s eyes and hearing those words come out of his mouth saying, “I’m sorry Chrissy, but the baby is not growing and you are going to lose it.”  Pain is telling your parents that you have had another miscarriage.  Pain is the breath being knocked out of you as you realize that you are back at ground zero.  No surgeries, no shots and no painful procedures can compare to the pain of losing hope again!!!

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.  The funny thing with infertility is through that insanity is where the reward comes from.  G and I are on a difficult path right now.  Every loss and every unsuccessful try causes heartache and depression.  We are so tired of making decisions that even the simplest of choices become difficult and we have no energy to get there.  Hearing those words that the cycle was unsuccessful or that we are going to lose another baby drains that hope and causes extreme pain. The climb to get out of the pit of emotional despair after these trials is difficult and requires great resolve and yes insanity.  We continue on this path of hope, pain and insanity because we know that the blessing that will come from our perseverance will far out-weigh anything we are going through now. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

How Old Am I in Fertility Years?

It’s official I am 37 and another year older.  This birthday really got me thinking.  How old am I in fertility years?  Is it like dog years…the first 35 count as one and then every year after that count as 7?  So fertility speaking am I 49?  Why is it after age 35 fertility decreases?  What is it about that magic age that causes those eggs to become decrepit and conception that much harder?

If you follow the news, you've no doubt seen the barrage of stories focusing on women trying to conceive after age 35 and them waiting too long.  The statistics show a steady decline in a woman’s reproductive health causing her to have trouble conceiving in later years.  People constantly tell me that I shouldn’t listen to statistics and quite honestly it’s not like I have ever done anything by the book, but the stats really are weighing heavy on me today.  The problem is I don’t seem to have issues getting pregnant it’s the staying pregnant that I seem to have a problem with.  All the tests show no reasons for the losses so that makes this that much harder.  Now let’s throw my age into the mix and yeah I’m stressing. 

Being married at the age of 19, yep you read that right, I am sure people assumed that G and I had an obvious reason to get married.  I am sure there were a few suspicious onlookers at our wedding that just knew I was pregnant.  Yet the years passed and no baby.  We really wanted to take the time to enjoy the early years of our marriage.  G was in the Navy and out to sea a lot so we didn’t want him to miss out on our kid’s lives.  At the ripe old age of 30 we decided that we were ready to expand our family.  We had no clue that we would have issues. 

After the cancer was gone and we began fertility treatments I was ovulating in no time.  We have been able to conceive multiple times now, but still no baby to bring home.  Since I started seeing Dr. L two more birthdays have come and gone and I am officially in what would be called my “late” 30s.  I can’t say that I have seen any changes in my treatment cycles with each birthday, but don’t doubt that with any slight difference I am immediately questioning if it is because of my age.  Dr. L tells me not to worry yet, we know that I have high quality eggs, can ovulate and can get pregnant; we just have to wait for one of those little guys to take up shop for 9 months.  Great…more waiting!!!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!!!


Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving.  Remember to take a moment and reflect on the blessings that you do have.  I promise you even though they are sometimes hard to see...they are there!


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Blessings Despite Infertility

Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite times of year; with football, brisk days, beautiful skylines, apple picking and pumpkin cheesecake.  It signifies the changing of seasons and harvest time, which for an infertile can be a reminder that we are not fruitful, the passing of our dreams, disappointments and our unfilled goals.  While on this journey, there have been many a holiday where my future and my life felt uncertain…and this year is no different.   I know that it’s hard to look at your life through your struggles and think about being grateful for the things you have.  After a lot of reflection I have decided to share some of the things that I am truly thankful for in my life and this journey.
  1. I am thankful for life -  After experiencing multiple miscarriages I know just how precious life is and how quickly it can be taken away. For that I am thankful for the life I have and those that are in it!
  2. I am thankful for my marriage –  After my cancer diagnosis I was so insecure that I thought my inability to have children would cause G to stop loving me.  If I couldn’t give him a baby why would he want to stay with me?  I even told him I understood if he wanted to leave me.  I know it is silly but I didn’t want to be the reason he didn’t have a family.  However through all the cancer treatments, surgeries, infertility and miscarriages God revealed just how great G’s love is for me.  We have been tested, twisted and have suffered great losses, but there is no doubt in my mind that we can get through anything TOGETHER!  Cancer and infertility may have bent our marriage but we refused to let it break us.  I am thankful that my struggles gave me the security and assurance in my husband’s love.  
  3. I am thankful for every tear I shed – I know that this probably seems silly, but it is true.  Each tear I shed has helped me cope a little more with the longing and desires of my heart to become a mother.  Each tear allowed me to express the numerous heartaches we have had.  The stresses of this life have been overwhelming at times and I wondered if they mattered to anyone.  My tears are often, they are in public, they are in private and sometimes are a surprise.  I have come to realize that when my heart was truly broken and those tears streamed down my face I could cry out to God.  I could feel myself growing closer to Him through these pains.  I know that despite all that we have been through the tears will one day stop because of the family that is coming.
  4. I am thankful for new relationships - I have had several new relationships prosper from this journey.  Because of my struggles I have met 3 amazing doctors in Dr. L, Dr. M and Dr.B.  They have provided us much guidance and comfort during a difficult time.  I have also been privileged to have an amazing nurse that has been by my side through many tears offering encouragement to stay on this path.  Through a surprise glitch with Facebook technology I met an amazing woman who had similar struggles as me and has been a fantastic cheerleader.  No matter whether this journey ends with a biological child or not I know that I have some amazing new people in my life that will help us take that next step in growing our family!
  5. I am thankful for this blog – I never thought I would be able share my story with others.  I have been so ashamed of my cancer, infertility and miscarriages that I didn’t want to be judged by others.  Through the urging of my doctors, pastor and husband I got out of my own way and opened up to others.  Letting my guard down has allowed me to grieve my losses, understand that I am not alone and that my feelings are completely normal.  I have been able to empathize and ease the pain of others struggling with the same issues.  I am thankful that my story is helping others!

I wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving and I encourage you to take a moment and amidst your struggles find some things that you are thankful for.  Believe me…if you look hard enough you will find some blessings!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Dreaded Baby Shower

You know that it’s coming and you can’t stop it but it still stings when it happens.  You go to the mailbox and there it is…that adorable duck covered envelope.  You know what’s inside and your heart just sinks!  The dreaded baby shower invitation, another reminder that you are not pregnant!

We’ve all had these moments at some point during our journey and we struggle with the do we or don’t we go.  I am not going to lie I have missed many a shower over the last 5 years, especially following my miscarriages.  There are showers that we feel obligated to attend or showers of great friends that we want to attend.  So how do you handle those showers?  I can’t say I have the best answer, but I’ve decided that going forward if I have a shower I have to attend I am going to start with a pre-shower “Screw you, I’m not pregnant” party.  This party will include the following:

1.      Baby bottles filled with Jell-O shots to get a nice buzz before you leave.
2.      Playing an inappropriate game of “Guess the Baby Daddy”.  Doesn’t matter if you know who the father is it should still make for some good entertainment!
3.      Gorging yourself on a cake that says “Congratulations it only took you 6 months to conceive!”
4.      Handing out party favors which consist of a multi-pack of pregnancy tests.
5.      Crying and babbling incoherently!

No matter what we do or say, baby showers are always going to be a tricky situation.  We want to be supportive of our friends and loved ones, but that is not always possible.  We never know what those triggers are going to be.  It’s important to know that is OK to say NO when it comes to showers.  If the person is a true friend they will understand.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Who Wants to Have a Baby?

I can remember as a little girl having this Cabbage Patch Kid named Bev Molly (no I didn’t name her) that I just adored.  I loved the fact that she smelled like a new born baby.  Every day I would diaper her, change her clothes, feed her and put her down to “nap”.  I was playing at being a mom, but it was from that moment I believe my desires to become a mother started.  That desire has grown leaps and bounds over the years and to this day there is nothing I want more in this world than to be a mother! 
I was sitting here thinking about how creating a baby seems more like childhood games than it does reality.  What seems like such a natural progression of events I have learned is difficult for more couples than I could have ever imagined.  Sometimes it seems like conceiving a child is like playing a game of Russian Roulette.  You spin, you shoot and hope and pray one of those millions of sperm meets with one of those eggs and a baby is created.   Or maybe it is like “Operation” where you carefully gather one sperm and insert it into a single egg with such precision and skill in hopes that an embryo develops.
Over the last several years our personal attempts to conceive have been more like a game than our lives.  I’ve decided to call it “Who Wants to Have a Baby?”, the exciting game of possible parenthood, losses, heartache and financial overload.  Picture it like a giant board game.  You roll the dice and draw a card.  You have 3 mature follicles go ahead 2 spaces.  Awe…your IVF ended in a chemical pregnancy go back 4 spaces.  You have a ruptured ovarian cyst skip a turn.  Just when we think that we have the game beat we draw some tragic card and get sent back to start.  It’s like a game that never ends and I shudder to think about what it means to “lose”!  I continue to have faith that we will win this game and have the most amazing prize at the end, but sometimes this game just sucks!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Infertility Changes You!

Early on in our infertility journey I had promised myself that I was not going to let this change me.  After all there are no guarantees that say life is going to be easy.  Struggles really are just part of life and we have to accept that.  The funny thing is for a while I think I actually believed that I would not be changed by this journey.  I took those blows over and over and would get back up, brush myself off and start again.  I knew that together G and I could overcome absolutely anything…yes even infertility. 

In the beginning I put all my efforts into putting that smile on my face and allowing myself to have some sort of “normal”.  I would meet friends for dinner, movies and shopping.  I talked on the phone, texted and answered emails.  I was diligent about remembering everyone’s birthday and continued to bake the cakes they asked for.  I tried so hard; I was going to stay the same fun loving person I was before the dreaded diagnosis.  The problem was I was suffering in silence.  My life was a façade…I was not alright!  Yes, there were a few close friends who knew about my cancer, my infertility and miscarriages, but I was reluctant to share my constant thoughts and fears because I didn’t want to burden them.  I tried not to talk about it unless they asked, and for the most part they didn’t ask.  I kept those feelings buried deep down inside where no one could see.  To onlookers it seemed as if I had jumped that obstacle and was doing fine.   

At first I asked about those new babies.  I bought adorable little onesies (I have a fetish for onesies; cutest piece of baby clothing ever), I oohed and ahhed at the appropriate times, I looked at baby pictures, I cooked meals for the new parents and I even held those little babies close.  I swaddled, snuggled and rocked them as if they were my own.  I would smile, hug and say my goodbyes then I would get back into the car and lose it.  I was putting on a brave face, pretending I was alright for fear of hurting those I loved.  I would sit there sobbing…wishing, wanting, and childless feeling lost and alone.  It was at that moment I realized that I had changed.  I cried for the babies that I had lost, I cried for the thoughts of my dreams never coming to fruition and I cried for those friendships that I was not sure would survive this journey.  Our friends are moving on with their lives and growing their families and I don’t fault them for that.  I feel like everyone is moving forward and I’m still stuck in neutral full of sadness, anxiety, frustration and uncertainty.  

I am not the same person anymore.  Yes, I can still laugh, joke and make those somewhat questionable comments at times, but I am definitely not the same person I was 5 years ago.  Though I never wanted to change from my infertility I guess it really was inevitable.  I have experienced a mixed bag when it comes to how I have been changed.  I have allowed myself to become vulnerable and let others in, especially G.  I have realized that sometimes it’s ok to do what is best for me no matter what others feel is best.  I have learned that I am much stronger than I ever imagined. I have discovered that I have an ability to empathize and comfort others despite my own trials.  Most of all I have learned more than ever I know that I am going to be a mother…some way, somehow!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Infertility Proverbs

Someone said to me the other day, "Your time will come” which really got me thinking. We all know someone who has the "glass half-full" type personality.  I’m sure you can think of someone who always has one of those famous clichés on the tip of their tongue for any situation.  So I decided to come up with my own list of "Infertility Proverbs" for those struggling on this journey.  If nothing else I hope they make you laugh!

  • If patience is a virtue than I must be Ghandi.
  • Good things come to those who wait and wait and wait!
  • A watched follicle never grows.
  • Don't count your embryos before they’re hatched.
  • An infertile couple and their money will soon part.
  • You can lead sperm to eggs, but you can’t make them fertilize.
  • Strike while the HCG trigger is hot.
  • All’s fair in love and infertility.
  • Another day, another ultrasound.
  • Hell hath no fury like an infertile with a negative BETA.
  • A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single RE appointment.
  • Seize the egg!
  • The early bird catches the sperm!
  • An infertile in need is an infertile indeed.
  • Every BETA tells a story.
  • There's a time and a place for everything, and that time is 36 hours after the HCG trigger.
  • Don't bite the hand that inseminates you.
  • If at first you don't succeed, try, try again...and again, and again, and again!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Should Have, Could Have, Would Have

Lately I have been having nightmares that wake me up in the middle of the night.  Often they're giant snakes chasing Sherlock Holmes and me down the road while spitting venomous balls at us…you know, typical dreams.  However over the last several nights they are hitting a little closer to home and filling my head with thoughts of doubt. 

  • I should have gotten a second opinion sooner.  Then maybe I would have more time before I am “too old” to have kids.
  •  I should have started trying to get pregnant in high school then maybe I would have caught up by now.
  • I should have lost more weight and given up caffeine before we started trying to get pregnant then maybe I wouldn't have had my first miscarriage.
  • I should like chocolate like everyone else.  OK, maybe that one doesn’t really haunt me, but it is a thought.
 
These thoughts do more than disturb my sleep they also haunt my waking thoughts.  I know that there is nothing I can do to change what has happened in the past, but that doesn’t stop me from “shoulding” all over the place.  If only I had done these things sooner then I could or would have my baby now.  If only there was a road map to life that tells you the direction you “should” go.  It sure would make my life easier and keep me from second guessing myself on everything not just the big things.  I SHOULD go to the grocery store on Thursday instead of Friday.  I SHOULD be nicer to these people.  I SHOULD continue on the path Dr. L suggests.  I SHOULD NOT eat a bag of Doritos.  Should is a word that gives us the ability to have guilt when things don’t turn out as we planned.  I fear that I will always wonder what I SHOULD have done differently when it comes to having a baby; especially if we never have a biological child!  Should have, could have, would have...right?

Monday, November 12, 2012

Gender Selection

This topic has been a common thread from other infertiles and I wasn't really moved to write about this topic until recently when I had my own experience.

I was talking to someone the other day and learned that they were expecting a baby, for the 3rd time.  I was genuinely happy for her until she spouted out, “We really hope it’s a boy because we already have two girls and we want a son now.”  Uhm…ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  This just mildly annoyed me; not really enough to write about it until this week.

I was reading through several online pages and they were all blowing up in response to an episode of the Ricki Lake Show about infertility.  First comments were positive and thankful that she was dealing with a topic that has long since been considered taboo and bringing awareness to a growing epidemic.  From what I gathered as the show went on the comments began to turn from praise to rage.  You know me, I had to see what the big deal was.  As I read on I found the trigger..."Designing Babies".  "Designer Babies" refers to a baby whose genetic makeup has been artificially selected by genetic engineering combined with In Vitro Fertilization to ensure the presence or absence of particular genes or characteristics.  The couple they showed had 3 boys and wanted a girl this time.  I paused as I read this.  Going through IVF and genetic testing just to choose the sex of your child.  I didn't even realize this was an option.  As someone who has been through the entire gamut of fertility treatments including IVF and not having a successful pregnancy yet I was floored.  I can't even begin to imagine having 3 children already and going through IVF just to balance the family.

I could totally understand why the feeds were exploding with negative comments.  We as infertiles want children so badly we could care less whether it's a boy, girl, black, white or Asian. (Well G may have a problem if I was to deliver a baby that was black or Asian...there would be some serious explaining to do)  We don’t have a preference at all.  OK, that is not true we do have a preference…A HEALTHY BABY!!!!  Call me selfish, but that's what I want.

I truly believe that people mean no malice with the things they say; really they don’t think about it because they have not experienced it.  Infertility is one of those things talked about so little that people don’t really understand what it is like for those suffering with infertility or miscarriage.  Your pregnancy and baby are truly a blessing and not everyone gets to have that experience!  

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Running Out Of Places to Hide

You would be amazed at just how often child rearing is the central topic of conversation among adults.  The ladies room has become a sanctuary for me over the last several years.  It is one of the easiest ways to excuse myself from the “normal” adult chit chat which typically includes talk of babies and the adorable things that toddlers do.  I can easily sneak out of church service when it’s time for the children’s sermon to “use the rest room”.  I can fake an eyelash in my eye and run to check on it when someone shows up at a social event with a new baby.  My phone will mysteriously vibrate with an urgent call when it is my turn to talk about children or my lack of.  I have even pulled the “I forgot something in my car” trick to get out of an uncomfortable situation.  I have become quite the escape artist when it comes to avoiding those triggers. 
I never thought there would be a day that I ran out of places to run and hide from my infertility until last week.  It was Halloween and I was riding the elevator up to my office with several women when I was hit head on.  “Are you taking your children trick-or-treating?”  I was trapped like a mouse on one of those sticky traps; fidgeting and trying desperately to get away.  I slowly scooted to the back of the elevator looking at the floor avoiding eye contact until it became my turn to answer.  Just when I could feel those tears welling up in my eyes…Ding, we were on my floor.  I almost knocked down three people just to get out of the elevator before I had to answer.
No matter how hard I try I cannot seem to hide from my infertility.  Just when I think I have dodged a bullet my shield is punctured and it all comes flooding back in.  I wish that infertility had an easy fix.  I wish I could take a magic pill and have the family I have been yearning for.  Sadly even those procedures with the highest odds don’t have a guarantee that we will be able to have that biological child.  I guess for now I will continue to hope, pray, persevere and keep dodging those bullets best I can.



Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Yeah, yeah, yeah…bite me!

I have learned over the last several months, to my surprise, that I seem to have some small gift for writing.  It’s amazing to me how many words I didn’t really know that I knew, moreso that I could use them correctly.  I have been able to find the perfect way to express my feelings or sentiments through writing.  Yet today, after thinking long and hard about things and learning that once again I am not pregnant, the finesse and perfect words seem to be eluding me.  I cannot seem to get past the phrase, “Yeah, yeah, yeah…bite me!”  Classy I know, but hey that is all I got today.
The magazines are covered with pictures of Adele and Tori Spelling's new babies.  All I can muster right now is, “Yeah, yeah, yeah…bite me!” I received an email this week from a friend who I know was trying to encourage me saying, "Your day will come!"  All I can muster to that is, “Yeah, yeah, yeah…bite me!”  I just found out my neighbor is pregnant yet again and all I can muster right now is, “Yeah, yeah, yeah…bite me!” 
As I sit here mulling over my situation and that empty room upstairs I can’t help but feel as if I am being punished once again.  I wonder if we are not meant to have that biological child and I am just ignoring all the signs.  Let’s review:  uterine cancer, four surgeries, nine biopsies, years of hormone injections, one chemical pregnancy, two miscarriages, 7 IUIs, one IVF, one FET, and thousands and thousands of dollars…no baby!  Am I seriously just that dense?
I accept that these are the cards I am being dealt…really, what other choice do I have?  I have done
everything possible to make these babies stick.  I have listened to the doctor, I have lost weight, I have taken all my medications like I was instructed, I have tried acupuncture, I have tried bed rest, I have cut out all caffeine; you name it and I have done it.  There is nothing I can do to change things.  At least that is what I keep telling myself.  The problem is that the only thing that keeps popping back into my head when I try and comfort myself is, “Yeah, yeah, yeah…bite me!” 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Avoidance, Another Year and a Noose

I have always been a fairly social person and really enjoy being around other people.  This year I have done a complete 180 and have become pretty anti-social.  I have managed to keep a fairly small group of people in my inner circle and shared with them the majority of our situation but to be honest there are many more that I have avoided.  Some I avoid because I don’t want to answer “Where are you with your infertility treatments?”  Some I avoid because they are going to announce that they are pregnant…again.  Some I avoid because they are going to tell me all the adorable things that their children have done and some I avoid because I just really don’t want to answer when asked, “How are you?”
“How are you?”  Seems like a simple question, but honestly if I unleashed all the thoughts and feelings that come to my mind when asked this question I would probably be admitted to a psych ward for observation.  If I am being honest, the best answer I can give right now is “I’m hanging in.”  Really if you think about it that is the best response for anyone on this infertility rollercoaster.  We hang in there and do the best we can to maintain a shred of sanity.  Some days we win and can find the joy in the little things.  Then there are those days when comfort food, crying hysterically and girly movies are the best form of therapy.  Hey, a girl’s got to do whatever she can to make it through the day otherwise the world implodes around you! 
I have a birthday coming up next week and I will be 37.  I know…GASP!!!  Age has never really bothered me until I started trying to have a baby.  Early 30s no big deal I still had plenty of time, but as the years tick down the noose around my infertile neck is getting tighter and tighter.  I’m going to be another year older with significantly less money and no baby to speak of.   I guess in my fairytale world I would have been done with baby making and raising a couple of adorable and if anything like their father rambunctious children by now!  Everyone keeps telling me don’t listen to the statistics, but it’s hard when they all show 36 and older having decrepit eggs and higher difficulty getting pregnant.  Holy Shit!  More difficulty getting pregnant because I’m 37…noose getting tighter!!!
My hope is not dead, but I am starting to feel like maybe it is bound, gagged and hidden in someone’s basement right about now.  I bet it’s with that damned stork that’s missing!!!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Necessary Distractions

G and I did this study a long time ago called “Men are Like Waffles and Women are Like Spaghetti”.  I’m sure several of you are having that aha moment as you read this visualizing your mate and how they relate to their environment.  The premise of the book is that women are like spaghetti in that everything they see, think about or do is all intertwined.  We can see a dog walking down the street and be reminded that we need to pick up hotdogs from the store.  Men are like waffles in that they compartmentalize everything and can only be in one box at a time.  We watch football and that is all he is thinking about while I'm reminded that I need new tennis shoes.  Men also have this uncanny ability to think about nothing.  I know, hard to believe, NOTHING.  I would love to have the ability to think about nothing, but unfortunately I can not shut anything down.  My mind races all the time (it’s amazing I ever get any sleep).

I have never been a person that does well with being still.  I can’t sit for long periods of time without having something to do (which absolutely drives G crazy).  I need to be doing something all the time to keep my mind engaged or it begins to wander to things that I would rather not think about. When you're at a crossroads and your every thought is about infertility, waiting or the miscarriage, you have to find ways to cope or the insanity over takes you.

You can’t tell your mind to stop thinking about something because that is all you will ever think about.  However, you can redirect your mind to something else for a while.  It has been so important for me to find ways to distract myself from my struggles and have a little joy in my life.  Don’t get me wrong I can’t always achieve that distraction and will still have those meltdowns but at least I am finding some peace during this wild ride! 


Limit those occasions where you are left to ponder your situation and find distractions you enjoy to take your mind off of things.  Most times I double my efforts to keep those negative thoughts from creeping back in.  If we’re watching movies I have to be playing on my IPad.  If I’m reading I have to be listening to music.  I spend a lot of time baking because it keeps my hands and mind busy.  Remember those things you love that may have been put to the side because of your circumstances and find some joy while your waiting.