Monday, September 27, 2010

Infertility and Blessings - Mood Swings, Mixed Emotions, and Baby

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future."
Jeremiah 29:11

I was so excited to get pregnant with Aidan and so very thankful for the blessing that God had given us - this second chance at parenting - that while I was pregnant with him, I promised Steve I would not pursue any more children through infertility treatments. Going through infertility treatments is draining emotionally and can be very hard on a marriage. You would think trying to create or enlarge your family would only bring you closer as a couple - which it does do - but it is extremely rough, also. There are so many things that go on emotionally that you are definitely not yourself. You have all of the emotions of not being able to get pregnant, the negative test results every month, the ups and downs just within a 28 day definitely takes it toll on an individual and a marriage.

To give you an idea of just a touch of the emotions of a cycle, here is what can happen emotionally during those days. The first few days you're not fun to live with, as is anyone, but you do have hope for this cycle. Then begins the medications - which do not make you a pleasant person because of all the "artificial" hormones that are raging through your body. The medications make you almost psychotic. They cause you to go up and down, but mostly down, and as for me, I was a real witch during that time. Conversely, there is hope. Excitement about the possibilities. Then the every other day ultrasounds to see if you might, just maybe, be producing follicles. And the excitement when you see that you are, indeed producing follicles. And the frustration when the follicles aren't growing fast enough or are slowly forming or disappear or burst. And then the excitement again when everything is ready to go and you get another shot to cause the follicles to "ovulate." Then the wait until you can do inseminations, which are pretty "uncomfortable" at best. Followed by taking it easy and the waiting game. Fourteen days of waiting, to be precise. All during that time, you are imagining that you are definitely pregnant, you just know it. And almost immediately on it's heals, you know that you are not and this month is one more month that did not work. Fourteen days of wondering "did it work?" "Will we have another baby in several months?" Finally, you get to go in to take the blood test....and then wait some more. This wait seems to take longer than the fourteen days because now you are waiting to see if it worked or not. The call that comes, you know, holds either ecstatic enthusiasm and possibilities or absolute devastation. And just statistically speaking, 99% of the time, it's devastation. And so begins the entire cycle again.

So you can imagine why I promised not to pursue it again and you can imagine my devastation when, within two hours of Aidan's birth, the realization that I promised something I knew I wouldn't be able to live up to. I knew I wanted another baby - and I knew I was willing to go through anything to get there. But I also knew that Steve was definitely not ready to hear that and definitely did not want to relive all of that again. So I didn't tell him right away, but I also knew that he knew what I was thinking and feeling.

We were told by my OB that the best possibility to get pregnant again was to try immediately, so we did do that. There was never a real "break" in trying to get pregnant; but I also was aware that while nursing the chances were low that I actually would get pregnant anyway.

I was determined to enjoy every bit of Aidan that I could and not wish away his babyhood. It is easy to complain and not enjoy everything about babyhood when you know you are going to have more children. When you are able to take for granted that there will be more children and it is just a matter of time, you can "waste" those early days/months/years. I know I did with Austin, because I knew there would be more some day. With Aidan, I did not have the luxury and it did help me to enjoy most aspects of a newborn. There are still bad days and there are still things you aren't thrilled about, but all in all, I enjoyed my finite time with Aidan much more.

Obviously, as time went on, I realized I was not going to be in that percentage of women who are blessed with another baby right away. I knew that it was going to take more and I was very ready to try again by the time Aidan was a year old. The question was....was Steve??

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