T and I have been trying to start our family for 3 years. We have endured 3 IUIs, 2 IVFs, 2 ruptured ectopic pregnancies, 3 operations, endless tests, and the complete loss of dignity and a fulfilling sex life.
I just had the most recent operation a month ago and I am ready to try again in May with at least an FET cycle (I have 1 frozen embryo) or perhaps another IVF attempt. Fortunately, we are not financially constrained, as we have full coverage, including drugs, for 2 more IVF attempts (we are very lucky).
Nevertheless, my husband is worn out by the endless treatments with no results. He wants to take an indefinite amount of time off - at least 6 months, maybe more - before starting up again. He says that we need time to grieve our losses and to regain our marriage. We are both depressed and our relationship has suffered under all the stress. He is probably right. We have been through a lot and need to recover.
However, I cannot imagine putting this process on hold indefinitely. Because I have high FSH and am a very poor responder to fertility drugs, I feel that time is running out very quickly. At age 34, my ovaries are prematurely aged to the point where being blasting them with the max allowed dosage of Gonal-F every day for two weeks did nothing. Who knows if I have enough time left to take a break for an indefinite amount of time? Every cycle is precious and I do not want to waste them.
I cannot proceed in this process without T, though. He wants to wait, so wait we shall.
But the waiting has thrown me into a severe depression. Since T put on the brakes 3 weeks ago, I am perpetually tired yet can hardly sleep, and when I do I have nightmares. I feel aimless and like my life has no meaning. I feel like I am losing everything important to me and that I have nothing to look forward to in life anymore. Every night I feel like shit and go to bed, thinking that with a good night's sleep, things will look better in the morning. That there is no way I could continue to feel this grim, that this too shall pass. But it keeps dragging on and on. I look out to the future and don't see a time when my life will get better, when I will be out of this hole. A time when I will be able to really _start_ my life.
Every mother I know says that their children give them real fulfillment and purpose in life. That they would not give up a single second of their childhoods. That raising kids is the most important thing they do with their life, that the love you give and receive is far beyond what you could comprehend without having experienced it. That it makes life worth living. I know that it would be the same for me. Without that purpose, I feel like my "real", authentic life hasn't really started yet.
I'm at the starting line and tensed up and waiting the starting blocks - having done all the preparation to get me to this point. But yet the damn gun never seems to go off. And I am left watching other people start their "real" lives - out there with meaning, love and fulfillment. I don't think it will be easy, but I think that being a mother would be the most important and fulfilling thing I could ever do with my life.
I dream of seeing our child’s first smile and hearing his first laugh, which I am sure will sound just like T's. I dream of taking our daughter to the park and putting her in the swing, of watching our son play soccer, of giving our daughter a hug and a kiss when she falls and gets a scrape on her knee, of teaching our son to read and to love books and learning, of seeing my husband's trademarked look of intensity on the face of our daughter as she learns how to ride a bike.
For the past three years, these images have sustained me. The current cycle or circumstances might not have been going well, but I was confident that someday, somehow we would have kids. It gave me hope. There was always something to look forward to. Another attempt to look forward to, another procedure, another adoption talk or information session on surrogacy. All things that would put us further along the path to our family.
In some ways, the 2nd ectopic and having my tubes removed were a relief because I felt like it was at least putting us closer to finally having that family. Less options to try meant less time before we finally ended up on the path right for us.
I felt like 2005 would be the year when we finally resolved how we were going to start this family. I would prefer biologic children because I want to experience every second of their lives, but if it wasn't going to happen, I wanted to be done with it in 2005 and have moved on.
But now, where are we? In a nowhere-land, someplace where we wish we were not but cannot seem to leave. Waiting and waiting and waiting for life to begin, in what seems to be a permanent holding pattern.
Does anyone out there have suggestions on getting out of this hole? (Last week, I started taking anti-depressants and seeing a therapist.)