A blog about babies: the babies I lost, the babies I never had, the baby who made me a Mama.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Half-Full Rose-Colored Glasses; or, Cycle Day One

Yesterday, I sent Lawyer Guy an e-mail giving him the heads up that I'd started spotting and would be getting my period soon. I told him I loved him and tried to keep an upbeat and encouraging tone; he told me he loved me and that we'd get through this. I had an event last night that prevented me from getting home until late (by which time AF had taken up residence), and when I walked through the door, Lawyer Guy confessed that he'd been sitting alone feeling sadder and sadder that this cycle didn't work out.

As I've written before, it hurts to see Lawyer Guy taking our troubles so much to heart. But as I hugged him and tried to put on an optimistic attitude, I was also glad that he felt comfortable enough to share this with me. Six months ago, he wouldn't have. Six months ago, he was worried that I was an emotional hurricane waiting to happen and needed to be handled oh-so gently lest I break out in another storm. I'm glad that he feels that his fears and sadness deserve equal weight with mine, and I'm glad to be able to give him some of the support he's given me the last eight months.

While I put on as positive a face as possible--for his benefit and my own--I'm feeling pretty worried under the surface. Maybe "we did it once" doesn't actually count for shit in the reproductive stakes. Maybe "it's bound to happen sometime" is a big fat lie. But we've only got two or so more months until we start testing with an RE in the fall, so I'd like to be as positive and happy during these two months as possible.

And in the service of that goal, I decided to think of reasons to be grateful right now. Not just reasons to be grateful for my life generally, which I am and which I have listed before, but specifically reasons to be grateful for the difficulties that we've faced in trying to have a child. I'm grateful for this challenging time because:

- I believe I will be a better mother for it. I believe I will appreciate and maybe even enjoy my children more than I would have if they had come easy.

- I will never wonder "what I missed" by having children. I will never feel cheated of youth, of time with my husband, of my career. I know what is most important in my life and in my heart, and it's not amazing career opportunities or nights out on the town or a stunning physique (which I've already lost). It's being a mother and having a family with Lawyer Guy.

- I will never use birth control again. Score!

- Lawyer Guy and I have both decided that we will welcome as many children into our lives as we are lucky enough to conceive. For a long time, I wanted a large family while he wanted no more than two children. But after the last eighteen months, we both agree that we will be grateful and thrilled with any "oopsie" pregnancies that come along, something I can guarantee would not have been the case with him if we hadn't lost the m&m or struggled to conceive afterward. And given my age and our recent track record, I think we can all safely assume LG and I are not going to turn into the Duggards of the 21st century.

- I've stopped caring so much about the petty, superficial aspects of parenthood. I used to want the best stroller and crib set and bedding and preschools and diaper bag that money could buy. That all seems so pointless now.

- Lawyer Guy and I have grown as husband and wife and as friends. We've worked through some incredibly upsetting situations that might have derailed other couples and have found ways to build a stronger relationship through them. We have become even closer and more intimate as partners. We've learned to grieve with each other and laugh with each other through our grief. And we've also learned how to handle when our feelings don't match up, when one of us is sadder or angrier or more worried or more frustrated than the other. After almost ten years together, I didn't think it was possible for our relationship to grow like this so quickly, but it has and I am so grateful for that.

I don't know what comes next: if we'll get to testing, to treatments, to a pregnancy (and healthy baby) in months or years. But I'm going to try to keep growing closer to my husband and making our marriage the center of everything we do (even our fertility treatments). Today, I feel confident that ten years from now, this will feel less like wasted time and more like the sturdy foundation for beautiful family.


  1. Slopie, I've been semi-stalking your blog...hoping beyond hope this would be IT and you could cancel that dang RE appt. I'm so sorry you're still on this fracking train.

    Meanwhile, all of the things you are learning and appreciating because of this is inspiring and amazing. Thank you for reminding me of all the little & big things we actually earn from this process. I'm with you on all of them.....and oh, oh, oh how I yearn for an "oopsie" baby. Can you imagine?

    Here's hoping you ovulate early again (heck yeah for the shorter cycle!) and this time--nick of time before RE stuff--is it. xo

  2. Great post! And you are so right! I love that you and LG are open about your feelings. B and I have moments, but mostly it has always been me spilling out my guts and him listening patiently. Only recently have I realized that I need to pay more attention to his feelings and even try to get them out of him.

    And... I'm not sure if you know this about me, but I had my child's life planned out before I ever tossed the bc pills. I'd researched pediatricians, cord blood banking, strollers, cribs, carseats, and well you get it. Today, as I'm "halfway there", I have yet to worry about strollers, cribs, carseats, etc. It just matters that I get this person here... the other things are trivial.

    Please know that I'm in your corner, cheering you and LG on. I'm so ready for you two to be parents, and you'll have to buy your little one an "Attorney Work Product" onesie. ;)

    Thinking of you. Love your blog and love how well you express all the emotions of IF. Hugs!

  3. these are completely awesome things to be greatful for!! i keep trying to make "deals" with god about things i no longer "need" that i would've fought tooth and nail for earlier.

    shopping doesn't even interest me anymore, which has dh a bit concerned, bc i'm a shopoholic. or used to be anyways. i keep saying "not until i'm pregnant and baby is about to pop out".

    i'm very hopeful for you, so i hope that counts for something :o)

  4. This is so beautifully written. I am disappointed for you guys on this cycle, but it sounds like you both are in a good place. I share a lot if this same list and some I hadn't really thought of. Thanks for posting it.

  5. Nuts to cycle day one. But one of these times it IS going to happen. (This is my mantra.)

    Like you, we can't imagine ever using birth control. I'm not religious but it would be hard not to view a whoopsie pregnancy (you know, one day in the future, when we already have the two we've been aching and struggling for) as an act of some higher power... when I think of all the money I wasted on contraception! Yowza:)

    There are few good things about being on this road (personally, I'm not a silver lining kind of girl). But I will say that becoming closer - if you're lucky enough for that to happen eventually - is unexpected and wonderful.

  6. Yuck, AF. I'm sorry about cycle day 1. But this is truly a great post. It's so important to always look at the silver lining and not focus on the negatives, and I needed to read this today. I needed to be reminded of the good instead of continuing to look at the bad. So thank you for helping me refocus. You have no idea how much I hope you and Lawyer Guy never have to step foot into that RE's office.


  7. "Today, I feel confident that ten years from now, this will feel less like wasted time and more like the sturdy foundation for beautiful family."

    I ♥ this.

  8. Shit on CD1, I'm so sorry, sloper. I was hoping so much that this was your cycle and you and LG wouldn't have to go through all the testing and the RE appointments. I know you have a couple more cycles left and I'm hoping that those are it.

    Love the positives that you pointed out on how all this waiting is something to be grateful for. They're all great reasons and something that I have a feeling I'll be coming back to this post to remind myself of these things often.

    Thank you so much for your comment on my blog today. I really, really appreciate it. <3.

  9. I'm really relating to all of this.

    Also, I'm so glad that you're open to the "good" that comes from this journey, as well as the bad. I try to remind myself of this stuff, too.

    You've got a great relationship w/ Lawyer Guy. I hope it just keeps getting better.

  10. Sorry about CD1.
    Your relationship with LG sounds really good, as does that he's opening up his feelings to you. My husband used to be all like "well, they told us it would take some time", but in the last months he has also admitted every now and then that he's disappointed, sad, discouraged. I'm hoping that both of us can give our husbands good news soon (hell, I hope that for all of us in this IF corner).

  11. This post made me cry a little bit. It is all true-- and while I am very sorry that you got yet another disappointing cd1, I know that you WILL be an awesome mom, LG will be an awesome dad, and this experience is worthwhile-- in retrospect.

    I too feel that I won't ever use birth control again. But I guess sometimes your first baby can make you more fertile afterwards... ;) I hope this is the case for you, and that you and LG have an enormous brood!

  12. This post made me cry... starting with: "Maybe 'we did it once' doesn't actually count for shit in the reproductive stakes. Maybe 'it's bound to happen sometime' is a big fat lie."

    And I cried all the way through to the end. So many of the same thoughts have been floating around my head -- but in a much less eloquent fashion. Thank you for this.

    Blast that CD1. :(

  13. I love this post - I love that you are not just focusing on how your blessed in life but how this struggle has blessed you. I agree so much with your points, I was nodding my head and thinking YES! Thank you for posting this - I think we all feel the same way!

  14. How comforting and heartbreaking that LG is so disappointed. I know that it has to feel good that he understands and is as frustrated as you are-- then, on the other hand, you never want another person to feel like you're feeling.

    Let me say, how AWESOME it is that you've decided not to ever go back on birth control. I've refused to go back on any hormonal type of birth control after September. However, Rob's not comfortable just "winging" it. I'd be thrilled if we were blessed with the miracle of an "oops" baby-- but I believe that would never happen. (Rob's apparently more optimistic about this possibility than I am.)

    So, I'm exploring the idea of being fitted for a diaphragm after Liam's arrival. The idea of trying to prevent a pregnancy seems absolutely bizarre.

  15. This is such a great entry. Very sweet, emotional, thought provoking and still holding on to hope (as you should). Sending you every happy wish and lots of luck. XOXO -- Jay