It’s a deep, deep well

So, up until I went to my afternoon appointment to start the third – and I believe final – round of IVF, I had been feeling really positive and even… dare I say, happy. I was actually quite proud of myself and my new-found “attitude of gratitude.” (I can’t actually believe I used that phrase – I am such a dork!)

I was inspired by a story I remember hearing a long time ago about Dolly Parton on a movie set (Steel Magnolias?) Whatever the movie was, it was being filmed in sweltering summer heat & humidity and the actors were spending long days on set – sweating, overheating, and complaining about it all. One of the actresses noticed that Dolly hadn’t complained at all and inquired as to why. Dolly reportedly responded, “I dreamed my whole life of being here and now that I am, I’m not going to complain!”

It occurred to me that the same principle applies to my undergoing IVF. Yes, it’s stressful, expensive, invasive, painful (on so many levels)… but that’s not all it is. It is also something that allows me to have hope, make informed decisions about my body, and to some degree control over my reproductive journey. If I didn’t have my father’s financial help, there would be no way in the world that I could pay for it out of pocket at this point in my life. That’s something for which I am deeply grateful. In fact, the more I think about how many women find themselves mired in infertility without the benefit of at least trying IVF, the luckier I realize I am.

This realization brought with it a serenity that I had not felt in some time.

For better or worse, I am lucky to have the opportunity for IVF #3. While I have no control over the outcome, I still have a tremendous appreciation for the journey…. Which is why it completely took me by surprise that I was overcome by the same heavy sense of grief that I felt at the beginning of IVF #2 almost immediately upon leaving the clinic. The light, happy feeling had gone and in its place was the all-too-familiar well of sadness. It was all I could do to not burst into tears as soon as I got into my car. But, why?!?

Is the sadness itself an omen that things won’t go well this time? Was I reacting to the fact that my RE was in a bad mood today and didn’t treat me warmly like he did last week? Maybe it was a delayed reaction to him telling me that I might not qualify for the FDA trial because I didn’t have enough antral follicles developing? The study requires a minimum of 14 antral follicles and my RE only counted 10 – which he told me, for the first time ever, is an indication of how many follicles I’ll produce this cycle. Gee, you think I could have used that information last time? Okay. I think I’m onto something here. I think that’s when the sadness kicked in. It’s kind of like knowing right in the beginning that your chances don’t look good. And with two failed cycles in my back pocket and no lottery winnings to pay for countless IVFs… maybe this is the end of the line for my childbearing efforts? No wonder I felt sad!

Well, source of sadness demystified! But what now? Do I believe him and accept what he says about my body as true? Or do I shrug it off and continue the optimistic course, believing that my energy affects my body and that absolutely anything is possible? I don’t know. I know what I want to say… but I don’t know what I’ll actually do. I’m really wishing now that my husband were home and not working a late shift tonight. I need my best friend.

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Daryl
    Jan 09, 2012 @ 19:11:35

    Sometimes the grief and sadness just catch you by surprise, whether it’s for a loss, a failed procedure, or the fact that we can’t have kids the way everyone else does. But hopefully that wave of sadness just rolls on so you can get back to thinking positively about this round of IVF. *happy thoughts*

    Reply

    • msfertility
      Jan 09, 2012 @ 21:34:58

      From your lips to God’s ears! Thank you, Daryl 😉 I think I’m floating up to happy again… maybe all this hypnosis stuff really does work! (It usually takes me much longer to get out of a funk.) Thanks for your empathy!

      Reply

  2. Julie
    Jan 10, 2012 @ 09:17:47

    You’d think with all you’re paying him, he could have at least mustered up some words of encouragement! Well here there are — I’ve read over 30 different IVF blogs this week and I can tell you from research that the 3rd, 4th, 5th… 9th tries at IVF DO WORK. I’ve seen the baby photos to prove it. I’m so sorry about your financial situation, and I really hope you can stick with the FDA trial. I’ll be reading!

    Reply

    • msfertility
      Jan 10, 2012 @ 12:07:19

      Thank you for the encouragement, Julie! I’m having major breakthrough bleeding from stopping BCPs now and judging by my interaction with the hubby this morning, I’m more than a little hormonal today – lol. But I know this whole enterprise is worthwhile for the greater good. Trying really hard to keep my spirits up today! I think I need to read some success stories, too!

      Reply

  3. newbie
    Jan 11, 2012 @ 15:16:00

    Thanks for stopping by my blog today. I hope you do get to go to India one of these days, but after you first get pregnant! I hope you have a great cycle this time – I just went through IVF #3 myself. Somehow I was able to be a *bit* more even keel this time. Just a bit, but every little bit helps. Sending some positive thoughts your way so you can stay sane through the next month!

    Reply

    • msfertility
      Jan 11, 2012 @ 20:08:32

      Thank you, newbie! Although, your name no longer fits – you’re more of a veteran I think after having gone through 3 IVFs! I’ll be rooting for a successful FET for you next month. I hear that those are much more relaxed than a full-blown cycle. I hope things are easy from here on out for you ~ good luck!!

      Reply

  4. Sandra
    Jan 11, 2012 @ 20:14:39

    Thank you for commenting on my blog, I wish you all the best in this upcoming IVF. Even though they are tough in so many levels I also try to remind myself to be grateful we live in times like this where we have options. IVF is a numbers game and like Dr. Schoolie sometimes says, it’s more of an endurance race than anything, hope you get to cross the finish line this time, best of luck to you, I will be following your progress.

    Reply

    • msfertility
      Jan 12, 2012 @ 13:04:45

      Thank you, Sandra! I will definitely keep checking in to see how your next cycle goes. I think you did an amazing job getting your doctor to see you as a human being (not just another patient) and of creating that synergy of working as a team. I think your chances for success look great and I, for one, will be whole-heartedly rooting for you!

      Reply

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