Wednesday, December 15, 2010

When I was at therapy on Monday, I had a thought about the whole ideal of relaxing and not stressing.  After all, people say all the time that it doesn't help me to be stressed, and I know that.  However (analogy time again, boys and girls), telling an infertile that it would help them to relax is like telling a person that has been shipwrecked and floating without a life jacket for a day or two to tread water and breathe.  Yes, it will help, but the longer the person is out there, the harder that is to keep doing.

Monday, December 13, 2010

For the past day or two, I've been numb when it comes to IF.  I've been able to enjoy things with people, and I smile whenever I think about the fact that my friend starts work at my job in the morning, but with IF I've been numb.  The topic came up last night because friends asked how I was, and then a discussion came about.  This morning was another sermon on hope, and those normally leave me bawling.  But instead I sat there twiddling my thumbs and feeling dead inside. 

I know I'm on what would, under normal circumstances, be too much Zoloft.  But these aren't normal circumstances.  Under normal circumstances I'd be pregnant by now and making sure that hormones didn't make my depression worse (in which case I might still need this much Zoloft, but that may or may not ever be a question for another time).  If feeling numb and dead inside is what I have to be like in order to be functional, I'll take it, because I was barely functional on the next lower dose.  Besides, if I'm dead inside, then it won't hurt so much to get my proof of failure on my favorite holiday and then go off to see kids and pregnant people.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Last year, I very carefully got both the regular and swine flu shots, thinking I might soon be in the vulnerable category.  I doubt I'm going to get a flu shot this year.   Not really any point, and I hate needles anyway, so I might as well go back to what I did the first 20-some years of my life.
I feel like shit.  Why can't I be happy for other people's happiness?

Sunday, December 05, 2010

The sermon at church this morning was about Advent being a time of preparation and waiting.  It made me think, because part of what makes this so hard is that I've done a lot of the preparation, and it feels like I've done that preparation for nothing.  I declined to run again for my elected position so that I could free up time and be doing less traveling.  I prepared my heart for a baby.  I started to prepare my house by accepting baby things that a friend was getting rid of...which are now gathering dust in the attic.  I worked on preparing my mind by learning more about pregnancy and childbirth.  I work on preparing my body every month by checking when I'm ovulating and by not drinking for 2 weeks every month.  And I work on preparing my body on a daily basis by trying to eat healthier and deal with my weight.

I feel like I've cleaned the house and decorated and made food for a party that in the end no one wants to come to.  So I'm sitting at home alone while the food grows cold and the decorations wilt.

I'm trying to handle the waiting, but it's hard just like it was hard for the Jews in the days of Isaiah when they were waiting and preparing for something they never got to see and benefit from.  I keep praying for patience and peace, but I don't even get a prophet telling me that it will eventually come.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

I've had a lot of thoughts and feelings going on over the past few days. 

For one thing, this month feels momentous to me, even though it's not actually different from any before or after.  The reason it feels momentous is because it is cycle #18.  I think I've mentioned before, two couples that I am friends with needed an extended period of time to conceive with nothing being wrong with them.  Both of those couples conceived at 18 months.  I know that the chances of me conceiving this month are the same as they are any other month, but I almost just wrote that I know the chances are infinitesimal, because that's how I feel.  I also know that it is possible that there is nothing wrong and it to still take over 18 months, even if the chances of that are about half a percent.  Still, emotionally it feels important even if objectively it's not.  I'm REALLY glad I'm going to be around a lot of my closest friend in the days after I find I didn't conceive again.

I was talking to my friend J yesterday (who doesn't read this blog because he hears every detail from me anyway), and he said again that I'm thinking about this all too much.  J said that when he sees me at that time of the month, I might as well have a tattoo on my forehead that says "I was a failure again, as usual."  He's right about that, I'm sure.  However, unlike other times when he's been concerned about how much I'm thinking about it, this time he had a couple of ideas about HOW to stop thinking about it quite so much given that I can't stop being surrounded by pregnancy and babies. 

J pointed out, for one thing, that because I'm tracking my BBT and, depending on the week, doing OPKs in the morning, pregnancy is literally the first thing I think about as I wake up every morning.  I said that it was to find the patterns and trends, and J replied that after 17 months, I know what the patterns and trends are.  He does have a point...I do know when the BBT is going to change, especially since (despite what my OB/GYN seems to think) I don't have irregular cycles.  So I'm going to try just checking my BBT for a couple days at a time when I expect it to change.  Maybe that will help keep IF from being the first thing I think about every morning as well as the last thing I think about every night (which is when I pray, even if I've prayed other times in the day).

I've also been thinking over the past day about calling my time of the month something other than my Proof of Failure.  I don't know if I can do that or not, because that's what it is to me, and at this point I can't think of it any other way.  But we'll see.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Something struck me as extremely unfair tonight.  And yes, I know that life's unfair, every infertile knows that if she didn't before.  But this is one piece of unfairness that people inflict on each other rather than unfairness that isn't under anyone's control.  And that makes me angry.

Why is it that people hold infertiles up to a much higher standard than they do anyone else?  Once people get to be my age and have been married for a while (so I'm not talking about teen moms here), if they start trying and are able to conceive quickly, most people don't say to them or their spouses, "you know, maybe you're not ready to be a parent."  Even when they get angry or upset or have a hard time dealing with things, their ability to parent isn't called into question unless they do something really egregious.  But if someone with infertility is upset or angry or anxious about their infertility, they're told, "you know, you have to be able to handle things better than that if you want to be a parent," or, "maybe you're not actually ready to be a parent." 

I know quite a few other people with ADHD, some parents and some not.  The parents I know with ADHD weren't told (and their spouses weren't told) that maybe they shouldn't be a parent or maybe they weren't ready to parent because they had trouble staying organized.  I know plenty of people who don't handle stress well or that handle stress but have a lot of it that are parents and were not told they weren't ready.  But the infertile person is told that they stress out too much and that they'll never conceive until they just relax.  Overweight people that become pregnant aren't told that they're not ready to have kids because they're too heavy unless they're obese enough that pregnancy and birth are likely to cause severe complications.  But the infertile woman with a little extra weight on her is told that her weight is probably the problem.  (For the record, yes, I know that I have more than "a little extra weight."  But I'm not just talking about myself here.)

To those that want to hold me and other infertiles to such a high standard, please put yourself in our shoes and ask whether you would need to do the same to be a good parent or to be "ready" to be a parent.  To the others of you out there, thank you for listening to me rant and not throwing rotten tomatoes.