New Year’s Eve Musings
Both my last post and this one are being written on New Year’s Eve 31st December 2012. I wanted to close off this last failed cycle and the whole infertility experience this year and try and look forward.
2012, I would like to say it has been a pleasure but it hasn’t.
It’s been a rollercoaster of a year.
This was the year we found out about our severe male factor infertility, where both of us had numerous tests and appointments, HSG, clinic open day, more meetings with the Wand than I can enumerate. The year we started our IVF cycle with great hopes and expectations, with a good response to medications, but a tricky transfer. The year we had our first IVF failure, 2 days after my first wedding anniversary. Rising hopes and expectations again as we started our frozen cycle using 2 embryos, after first going through the treats of a mock transfer and endometrial scratch. Then the crushing disappointment of a second failure literally days before Christmas. Meanwhile happy baby announcements continue all around me. I continue to buy and send baby gifts to others. Before Christmas while in my 2ww I stood looking at baby bootees in a shop and I chose a pair in my head for my possible baby girl and a pair for my possible baby boy. I received a Christmas card from a friend who had 2 babies in the last 2 years with ease and is older than me. The card depicted her two little sons in Santa hats. It is beyond cute and I cried when I saw it. I turned 40 this year and kept the celebration low key. It is hard to celebrate entering the autumn/winter of your reproductive years when you really want a baby so much. The clanging clock over my head is a constant reminder of the march of time and the fear that an invisible door will shut any second with me on the wrong side of it.
One of my husband’s Christmas presents to me was a selection of very nice body pampering products comprising of Dead Sea Minerals, paraben-free and way more expensive than I would probably ever buy for myself. He said it was time I treated and pampered myself. It occurred to me that maybe he is right. I have put my body through a lot, and I carry a lot of anger and resentment towards it, for not working properly, for not sustaining life, for gaining hormonal weight. As I used some of the products today, I thought how sad it is that I hate my body now and that I should try and appreciate it. It is doing the best it can.
One of the hardest things has been the way the treatments invade your life- having to revisit what you eat (though I don’t mind eating healthily), even trying to plan anything is a headache. My husband and I did not take a holiday this year with the exception of a couple of days in April within the country. As we are self-funding our IVF we cannot afford to. The house needs painting and we haven’t done that either. We have spent around €6500/€7000 on treatment this year, not to mention a fortune on supplements and acupuncture. I genuinely wouldn’t care a jot about the money if we got our precious dream but it is just disheartening to know we will still have to keep digging deep to stay on this path, both financially and emotionally. But dig we will.
So I won’t be sorry to see 2012 go and I hope 2013 will bring happier times. I am trying to make a plan for next year, to move forward from the sad place we are sitting in now. So an attempt at some New Year’s resolutions follows.
- I want to restore some balance- stop putting everything on hold. Get our house painted. Take a holiday, even a small one in 2013. Schedule treats for us as a couple on a regular basis. It’s easy to lose ourselves as a couple in all of this.
- I want to restore work-life balance. Stop working late, use remote working more. Delegate! I don’t have to own everything. Prioritise me when I need to, especially during treatment. I still get the work done and I should not feel guilty.
- Get more rest. I do not have to be on the go 24/7. Sometimes things can wait.
- Address my stress. I start yoga again on 9th January and will continue acupuncture. Might even throw in a little reflexology. Listen to relaxation cds on a regular basis (non ivf ones between cycles). Listen to music, which is my antidepressant, and read more fiction.
- Try to breathe properly and deeply.
- Start the healthy IVF food/exercise regime on 2nd January.
- Ask about next steps, a second endo scratch, assisted hatching and immunes testing at my review meeting for failed FET cycle.
- Consider other options, including a change of clinic if need be. I have registered for an open day at another clinic on 13th January, one that does reproductive immunology and immunes testing and is used to clients who have failed elsewhere.
- Investigate adoption options. I have already letters drafted to my local health authority to ask about applying to be assessed as potential adoptive parents. I just have not sent them yet. I need to investigate this more.
- Be grateful for my family and friends and all the wonderful support I have had in the past year. There are many great people both in real life and online who are there for me and I would be lost without them.
- Above all be grateful for my wonderful husband, we met and married later in life but he was so worth the wait.
So as we ring out the old and ring in the new, I am going to try and have hope, hope that better times lie ahead.
Today my husband treated us to a ‘Smart TV’, he really wanted to get one and I agreed as he likes his gadgets and he has had a bad year too. As I type this he is experimenting with it downstairs. Tonight, seeing as a party we were to attend has had to be called off due to illness of the host, I am going to spend it with him and enjoy some music on Jools Holland’s programme, open a bottle of champagne and some tasty and rather unhealthy snacks and toast ourselves for surviving the year, toast our three little blastobabies who sadly could not stay, and toast all the amazing people we are lucky to have in our lives.
A safe and happy New Year’s Eve to you all and peace and happiness for 2013.