I sometimes wonder what if one of my friends/family members was having trouble conceiving, what could I do to help? what could I say to them if they were starting fertility treatment? how could I help prepare them and let them know all their feelings are normal and were once not so long ago my feelings?
Obviously I do have friends and some family that have not got children and some that have not started trying for children yet. I hope when their time comes to start a family that it is a short exciting time and happens nice and fast and is a time of joy not a time of hell.
But if it wasn't like that for one of them and they needed fertility treatment, say IVF, what could I do to help? well obviously I would give them all the general information I could like what to expect at their first appointment, what tests you needed done before you saw a fertility specialist, what treatments they might recommend, the costs of treatments, the side effects of drugs etc. All these general things I guess are easy to explain to them, they are things they need to know, but there are other things I think they would need to know that perhaps wouldn't exactly have them jumping for joy, but if someone had told me these extra things to expect, well perhaps that would have been of some help?
The harsh reality is, I would tell them, you are probably at some stage going to feel lots of crazy emotions and you will wonder if this is normal or if you are being overly dramatic, well I can tell you now, they are all normal and not at all dramatic. You will probably start to feel like the whole world is against you, why did this happen to me? why can everyone else sail through this so called natural happening? what did I do to deserve this? you will start to hate the world and everyone in it, pregnant people will become your enemy, even strangers, you don't know their story of how they got pregnant but as far as you are concerned they are pregnant therefore you hate them. You will struggle to be happy for pregnant friends, you will know this is the wrong way to feel, after all they haven't done this to hurt you, but you will not be able to find the strength to be happy, you will think it should have been you. You will start to detest stupid adverts on tv advertising baby products etc and wish that the whole world wasn't surrounded by babies and being a constant reminder. You will start to feel like no matter how many success stories you read it really doesn't matter as it will never be you. You will start to hate life in general, nothing will make you happy, happy people will annoy you, you will try to find happiness in small everyday things and it may bring you some happiness for a while but then your mind will always go back to your sadness of not having a baby. You will start to get frustrated that no one else understands properly how you feel, even though friends and family try so hard to help and understand, you know they don't really get it and you just wish they would. You will start to constantly feel like you have become a different person, someone you don't particularly like and someone who generally has a bad attitude. You will feel sick, tired, feel like you are constantly being poked and prodded, you will feel sore, you will be broke, you will feel grumpy, you will be bombarded with all sorts of information that constantly changes, you will feel like you are ruining your relationship, you will feel like your sex life is slowly becoming ruined. All of these emotions are normal, and my god there are alot! I really really hope that anyone who does treatment has a success the first time round and is able to dodge most of these feelings, but if not there is an up side that really really does keep you going, and ultimately keeps you doing this to yourself time and time again.
You will have days where you can see extreme hope, somehow there will be something that makes you keep going, weather its a few kind words from a nurse or just a hug from a friend, there will be something that will make you carry on, I promise. There will be days when you feel extreme excitement and you feel great and cant wait to make this dream a reality, there will be good news, at some point you will hear some positive news, weather its just something small like you are responding well to the drugs or something bigger like you have had lots of eggs fertilized, there will be some good news and I can tell you now that will make you more happy than you have felt in weeks, you will experience kindness from people that you never expected, you will feel lots of love and support from people that completely over whelms you, open up to people, let them support you. Sometimes hope and some good news will be few and far between but hang in there as it will come. If you are lucky like me you will realize how amazing your husband/partner is, you will be so surprised by him sometimes and wonder how he ever manages to put up with it all, but he still does, that will give you immense amounts of happiness and something you will never forget.
The last thing I would say to the person struggling is there will be a baby for you. You need to keep remembering that, even if it takes even more try's than me I whole heartily believe there will be a baby for you, there will be an end to all this. When you feel like you have no more money and no more strength, find more money, find more strength, because at the end of the day it's only money. After me and my husband spending $26,000 on treatments there isn't a day that we wish we had that money back, its only money. Don't have any regrets, keep going, keep trying.
I hope even reading this now might help someone, who knows, I forget what family/friends read this so who knows if this has any affect but I will be here for whoever needs me in the future and I guess that's pretty much all you need to know right now.
On a lighter not folks, lets touch base on how everything is ticking along. Well today I am 7 weeks 3 days. Things have calmed down after my terrible bleeding episode on Monday night, since then the bleeding has eased off and today it is pretty much gone! yah! We still have our 8 week scan on Tuesday even though we only had a scan on the Tuesday just been, the doctor said we may as well keep it and have another look at our bubba. We also have our first midwife appointment coming up at 9 weeks. Today I had my last blood test through the clinic, my HCG levels are still rising well and no concerns there. After the 8 week scan with the clinic they are going to be cutting the apron strings so to speak or cutting the umbilical cord you may say, we will no longer be under their care. It will all be left up to my midwife. I must say when the doctor told me this I felt kind of sad, believe it or not. Its weird, I have been with them for so long now and especially over the past 8 months I have pretty much had contact with them on a weekly basis, and sometimes every day. We have grown a really strong relationship with some of the staff and we feel really comfortable with the clinic and getting treatment and care from them. It just feels a bit sad that a stranger will now be taking care of me and my baby. Gardner guy said last night that wouldn't it be nice if the clinic could do everything and you could be under their care right till the end. But as we know all to well there are lots of couples that need their attention now and we are done, we have been helped, but it wont be the last they will see of us, will will be back when we want to use our frozen embryo to try and have a second baby!
How am I feeling now? well still tired! so tired. Very hungry, my latest obsession is Apple Pie. I still don't have any nausea, lucky aye!!! there are a few moments where I kind of gag but really nothing to even mention. I went to put on a denim skirt this morning and it was a bit too uncomfortable, bugger, there's that one down the drain already, mind you it was quite a snug one to begin with so I'm guessing that the fluid or whatever you call it has just pushed me over the edge and that skirt isn't going to be in action anymore. That is really all though, I feel pretty good and blessed that our baby is strong and still with us.
My last word would have to be to any friend/family member who is trying for a family I sincerely hope it is an easy road for you, but sometimes life is not kind to us and we don't know why but wherever there is a black hole there certainly is a bright opening and once you crawl your way out of the black hole and into the bright opening it will surely be amazing. Don't give up, don't let failure be an option and always know you have a friend who is here for you and will never give up on you and will keep walking along side you.