Ten plus years later, I have not forgotten my journey of infertility and I don't think many women/couples do. I looked up and saw this story on The Today Show and tears came to my eyes as I heard their pain, sadness and anger. I completely understand all of it.
When I was going through it, it was terribly hard to find support. My Reproductive Endocrinologist's office didn't even tell me that there was a monthly support meeting at their own hospital so you don't have to guess that there wasn't much of a group. But I did go and sit with the social worker who had experienced infertility. I made the RE's office advertise the meetings and slowly there were about three of us. I find it validating now that when I was fighting then trying build a support group that a Harvard study has recently revealed you are 50% more likely to conceive when involved in a support group.
They handled the whole situation horribly. I will never forget while in the middle of an insemination with my legs in the air, the culmination of weeks of testing and injectables, my RE walks in and starts talking about my insurance fighting them about sperm washes. I was in the middle of deep breathing to relax. I had read that minimizing stress was incredibly important in the process. (It's when I took up yoga) And this yoyo with an MD degree is talking to me about money while the sperm are being delivered inside of me. I really wish I would have told him off, the whole office deserved it. My current self would have assertively told him that it was not the time or place to discuss it.
I eventually found two women who had gone through very similar journeys and were with me every transvaginal ultrasound, blood draw and failed cycle along the way. They knew the nitty gritty of estrogen counts, follicle size, uterine linings and the use of pharmaceuticals. (I had another good friend who had difficulty getting pregnant as well). I can imagine how agonizing it was to go through that with me. Two and three phone calls a day and so many tears. I am still grateful. When I went to the hospital recently with my abdominal pain, I was brought back to those good ole' days of ultrasounds while staring at the black and white screen. The radiology tech thought I wanted to have a baby because I was so interested in the follicles.
The funny thing is where I am now with self acceptance, learning to love in a very present way and appreciating the NOW, for a few moments recently I thought, hmmm, the thought of a new baby didn't scare the crap out of me like it ALWAYS does. For a few moments, I thought how precious a new life would be. I wondered what it would be like to not have all of the anxiety and sadness that I had with Riley and to some extent Mallory. Even though George has had a vasectomy, when I have weird symptoms and no period, I freak out that I might be pregnant. But as I had those few moments of bliss and it really surprised me to think I COULD embrace it. And... then.... I thought of the sleepless nights, my forty third birthday coming, the finances...well those blissful moments were over. Maybe it means that I might just hold someone's elses new baby and instead of having PTSD, I can really celebrate with them about their new life. Life is precious indeed.