**I chose this post for the Creme de la Creme 2007 because it expressed something I wanted to say, but from the comments at the time I'm not sure I expressed it well. I wasn't trying to imply that infertility or its effect on our lives magically evaporates once a child is on the scene, but rather talk about my realisation that we have a greater capacity for emotional healing than I ever imagined, and the courage that can be gained from that thought.**

There are short bursts of tears now, at odd moments - on being asked to remember something about university, when discussing how to use the leave Mr Bea needs to take before June, as the TV is switched off after a Fred Astaire muscial. But they're gentle enough, and they go as well as come.

I remember our first appointment with FS. We crept into the waiting room, wide-eyed and naive; nervous, desperate to get knocked up within the next six to twelve months or so. As we sat, a woman signed in at the counter, and I watched the receptionist lean over and whisper, "You're pregnant, aren't you?" The woman hesitated, then nodded, and the receptionist gave a little squeal, but the woman didn't smile, she just sat with a stony face, pretending to read a magazine with unfocussed eyes.

Half an hour later we were waiting to have our bloods drawn, when the woman came out of the nurse counsellor's office, crying inconsolably.

Several staff herded her gently to the phlebotomist's room.

We sat there in silence, thinking, "Oh God."

It's funny how time changes. A few weeks ago, after scan number one, I dared to get hopeful, and what I felt wasn't what I'd expected to feel. I've often imagined thinking, "Finally - this could be it," but when it came time I thought, "Wow - this could be it already." If you'd told me at that first appointment I'd be sitting here, April 2007, waiting to speak with various doctors about recurrent miscarriage*, having moved on to IVF, suffered OHSS, clocked up five FETs, three chemical pregnancies and one D&C at nine weeks, I would have shrivelled up and died. I didn't know that when I felt it maybe, maybe, might just be our turn, our whole journey would melt away into insignificance.

In that moment, it seemed short.

Somehow, that makes it hard to be afraid of what's to come.

--
*On which, more later.


25 Comments

Bumble said...

Lovely post, as usual Bea.

If I could have looked into the future 6 years ago when we started trying and seen what I'd have to go through and still not have a baby, I don't know if I could have continued. No, who am I kidding? Of course I would have continued.

What you say about that one moment when you think it's all over and that your baby is finally on its way, I remember that moment too, and its amazing how all the pain from the past just melted away. Suddenly something I thought I'd never forget or get over, seemed a distant memory. Then when it went wrong, the reverse is just as true. In the blink of an eye, its back. x

Adrienne said...

Is that it, then? When the desired result is reached, the pain recedes into the background? Maybe for a moment, but I can't help but think that it's changed each of us, that it will sit there waiting to sneak up on me in unexpected moments, that the pain will always be. Even if. Even if we are so lucky.

I'm glad you're healing, Bea.

thirdtimelucky said...

Me and my husband were talking about this the other day. he seems to think that it will all be forgotten once we have a baby but I'm not so sure.

Mands said...

Bea, your story makes me afraid!
I don't think the scars ever go away completely, I just think that being able to watch your own children sleep or play, might make it a little more bearable. And that's what I'm hoping for all us of us. Soon.

Baby Blues said...

Hope keeps us going. I would want to say that this journey has made me stronger, but to be honest, I'm not that strong. I'm just stubborn. And I just want this badly too.

Enjoying my cup coffee while reading your well written post.

Bea said...

Mands, I didn't mean to make you afraid!

Adrienne, thirdtimelucky - I'm quite sure there's a permanent change. But it seems (for me) it will be easy to make peace with everything when I can feel I've made it after all. Or at least much easier than I expected.

Bea

serenity said...

It is amazing how much we shit we can be dealt... and remain standing through it all.

I love your thought that it all just melts away at some point. I really hope that's true for me.

*hug*

TeamWinks said...

The journey is so not insignificant. Please know that. If for no other reason than you have touched many of out here. You have helped us immensely.

I wish I had something more poignant, but I don't. Last night I posted about grieving, and I guess we all have to work through that. I'm just thankful I have women like you by my side as I do it.

GLouise said...

Great post. I also remember that first appointment to our fertility specialist, thinking, "What am I doing here?" but also feeling quite sure that they would be able to DO something for me!

DD said...

I still remember that doe-eyed, hopefullness of our first clinic visit. I wish I didn't so maybe the following two years wouldn't hurt as much.

I'm sure eventually the pain does melt away, it's just not knowing what will do it and when that hurts the most.

Samantha said...

It is amazing what we do as part of our quest. Like you, I'd never have imagined myself in the situation I'm in. I'd like to think it's all going to be worth it, but really, I don't know. I do hope, like you, that I will make peace with it, regardless of the outcome.

Mary Ellen and Steve said...

When we started our journey I never thought that we would be where we are today. It's amazing what you can go through when you have to.

Krista said...

I have had friends and family say to me "I admire what you have done to get your family but I will not do it, I could not. If we don't get pregant we will either adopt or give up because I am not strong like you" To this I laugh. If you had told me in the beginning what I would go through to get pregnant I would not have thought myself strong enough either. Ultimately you have a goal and whether you can make it through depends on how badly you want to make that goal a reality and what information you have at the time. No one knows how strong they are until they have made it through the crisis.

I love your post Bea, and I agree that when all of this works, the pain will not be the most prominent memory.

Lut C. said...

Not knowing how the story will end makes it very hard to deal with, that's how I feel about it.

Jason and Samantha said...

My hubby an I talk about that as well, hopefully all the crap the infertiles go thru will be worth it.

(hugs)

The Town Criers said...

It could blow your mind if you pause to think about how you felt those first months vs what has happened since. I'm sorry, Bea. Sending you peace.

megan said...

v. scary. it's hard to imagine the whole journey melting away. we're still pre-ivf and i'm already not sure if we're successful that i could go through this again....

My Reality said...

I wish there was some kind of crystal ball that told you how this would end. I could do all kinds of ART cycles if I knew at some point that it would end in a take home baby.

I just wish there was an easy way to do this. I have been thinking about you, Bea.

ak1908 said...

Oh Bea! I was so touched by your words.

As my sister delivered the first grandchild (my first niece)yesterday morning and as I was making the four hour trek back home last night, it hit me-I may never ever experience the joy of being pregnant again. It hit me that perhaps, in this lifetime, I may have to try other avenues to become a mom. It hit me that we might have to move on to more invasive procedures or adoption. It just hit me.

It hit me again while reading your words. I agree with bumble, in the blink of an eye- life changes sometimes for the better and unfortunately sometimes for the worse. For the women in the world like us, those who've experienced the beginnings of joy, only to have it slip from our grasp, that blink of an eye is the difference between complete joy and complete emotional annihilation.

My thoughts are with you and DH as you make the life changing decisions that await you. I'm so sorry, again, for your losses.

Patience said...

Fabulous post Bea...

I'd love to 'interview' myself, the one that was all bright eyed and excited at that initial consultation- and see if she had any idea whatsoever of what she was in store for...

Sarah said...

ooh, wow. what a haunting post. in a lovely way.

Piccinigirl said...

Oh bea, this post made me cry. While I know you are healing, my heart still breaks for you. Because not knowing if/when your baby is coming to you is such a heartbreaking place to be.
Thank you for writing about those moments of tears, for making me feel less alone in mine and for writing about it so eloquently.

My only wish is that you get past this to peace and of course baby.

*hug*

LIW (Lady In Waiting) said...

Your post reminded me that the catalysts for major growth in my life have all been painful. And that it is better not to have a crystal ball. We just have to take the journey and make sure that we always seek support when we need it.

My thoughts are with you, Bea.

Katarina Jelly Beana said...

I followed the link on Creme de la creme.

Eloquent post. There is so much we can't possibly anticipate at the beginning. The horrors that await so many of us seem like the stuff of Stephen King novels at first, but often become our reality.

I hope you are doing well/better.

Kathy V said...

I came via the creme. Sometimes in this journey time runs together. Sometimes it seems as though it is relatively short and other times like you said it is Did we make it already. Thanks again for this post.

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