Monday, March 12, 2007

It's been a good decade...removing my armor seems like such a bad idea

While moving forward into this journey, planning this "party" with all the trimmings, I have not truly considered the emotional ride I am once again signing up for. After reading some posts written by disappointed IFers on other blogs, I am reminding myself of the potential pain and heartbreak ahead.

I remember it all well...the many AF's that would come and go...the excitement around day 5 of my cycle when the cramps were gone, the estrogen was rising and my was body re-setting itself to possibly host another life. I was a working-outside-the-home corporate gal then, it was just Ivan and me. My yearning for a child was suffocating at times, the pain enveloping me.

It was 1995...Dr. Google was not out of medical school yet and we had only recently gotten a PC at home... a desktop that cost $2000.00 and had 16 MB of RAM. (((are you up off the floor yet?))) The Internet was NOT what it is now so the information-at-hand was sketchy. We had a limited number of online minutes, Blogdom!

By the end of 1996, I was emotionally drained. We had only been trying for a few years "on our own" and we also did five IUI's after my surgery for endometriosis. Despite Dr. Smile encouraging us to do IVF, I knew the long arduous IF road was not for me...I just wanted to be a mom.

In early 1997, we learned a baby was going to be born that Spring. And, on my birthday in February, we learned that we would be the parents to this child in a few short months. The courageous woman carrying this child had chosen us to parent her baby. The powers-that-be had intervened, knowing I could no longer keep up the IF pace, however low the incline. We knew this was the road we should take...we did not seek the adoption, it came to us. And what a glorious, glorious event.

Goose was born that spring and then we adopted Lili three years later. Life has been full. Busy. Wonderful.

For ten years, I have been a mom. A Mom.

During this decade of growth and tantrums and fevers and irreplaceable cuddles, goodnight kisses, late-night talks and many, many "I love you's", I have still felt the sting of infertility now and then. IF leaves a hole, not a wound as much as a sense of incompleteness. With that said, many of you might feel wounded after miscarriages and several failed IVF cycles. I never took it that far so my "cross to bear", so to speak, is this hole - this piece of me not fully developed - a potential not realized. It is that hole, however small, that has brought me here with advancing age as the final catalyst. It really *is* now or never.

We could have done this when I was 27 but my Goose was about to be born.

We could have done this when I was 30 but my Lili was waiting for me from across the globe.

And now, well, now I don't feel another soul calling out to me...not yet any way. I know this is the right time for IVF, ten years after Dr. Smile suggested it. Now, a decade later, *I* am ready to do this.

But at what cost?

I see your pain, Blogdom, and my heart is heavy for you and maybe a little heavy for me in advance. And I want to pinch myself and say, "what in the h$ll are you doing, Ashpash, inviting this pain back into your life?" Pain that will no doubt be magnified by the needles, drugs and expense.

Will my journey end in six weeks when we get a negative pregnancy test at the end of April or will this blog take a fresh, miraculous turn with the sharing of symptoms and pictures of an expanding belly?

Either way, I am confident my pain will not be as stinging because I am already a mom. The loss of my fertility will always be there and it will never go away. But, somehow, being a mom will soften the potential disappointment with IVF.....right?

This, my friends, is where I think I might be fooling myself.

If this fails, I will still be a mom, still active, still healthy, still adored by my children.

If this fails, will I feel a sense of "we were so close" and want to go back for more? Will the photos of those embryos Ivan and I created be too painful?

I don't know where this is leading me but I know that regardless of the outcome, I want to experience it...the good or the bad. As I await my cycle to begin, I will continue to read your stories...your sorrows, your triumphs and your ongoing struggles somewhere in between. Thank you for sharing your stories, Blogdom, they inspire so many on a daily basis and help moms like me summon the courage to move on and see what life will bring.


Sarah said...

and thank YOU for this post. i always wanted to adopt from the beginning, so your perspective is really interesting.

i know what you mean about feeling like it is time for IVF. after saying i wouldn't do it for a few years, i just sort of decided it was time to give it a shot (haha), to at least know that we had tried.

i'm rooting for the blog to take its fresh miraculous turn soon!

Sara said...

What a thought-provoking post. I can imagine that it's quite shock to your system to jump back into the insanity of infertility treatment after a 10-year break! I hope that your journey is one of the happy stories. I really want that for you, and for all of my infertile sisters. I also hope that whatever the outcome, it brings you peace.

Samantha said...

Thank you for explaining your background and your choice to adopt first. Your post reminds me that like or not, infertility will always be a part of our lives, whether we choose or don't choose to have treatment, whether we have children or not.

You are brave to follow your heart, take the risk, and try this again. You and I are on a similar schedule. I'll be watching to see how things go for you.