If you’re going through Infertility, know someone who is, or have read any of my blogs, than you should be well aware that it is friggin HARD. It consumes your every thought. I seriously cannot stress that enough. There isn’t one thing you can successfully do throughout the day that won’t remind you of the struggle you’re experiencing. The biggest issue for me, is that it wreaks havoc not only on your relationship with your better half, but also with yourself. This is why I beg of you; If your body, mind, and soul are craving time to refresh and rejuvenate, for the love of god TAKE IT.
Back in 2014 when me and Mike decided it was time to start trying for a baby, I had no idea what we were going to be up against. I began taking prenatal vitamins, and eating more whole foods. I had started my weight loss journey because I knew being at a healthier weight would not only be beneficial for me, but for our little one. I was excited to come off of birth control, although I was nervous about how my body would handle it. Because, well, PCOS. I had discussed our plans with my Gynecologist and she prescribed me Provera to take every three months, in case my menstrual cycles didn’t happen on their own (they didn’t). I downloaded apps that tracked my periods and fertile windows, and purchased ovulation and pregnancy tests in bulk. I was ready, and this was going to happen. See back then, I didn’t know anything about Infertility. I figured it was going to be a little harder for me because of the PCOS, but boy was I in for a surprise.
For one whole year we tried to conceive without success. At this point we hadn’t been getting any help from medications or Doctors. Just good ol’ keeping track of my periods, fertile windows, and the dreaded TWW (two-week wait), which is the two weeks after ovulation where you wait for your period to start, or for a positive pregnancy test. Or in my special case, you get neither. I thought this time was rough, but it was a piece of cake compared to the next year.
A healthy couple can take up to one whole year to successfully conceive. It isn’t considered anything to worry about until you reach that time line. Once we crossed the one year mark, I made an appointment with my OB-GYN, and it was at that time that I was diagnosed with Infertility. We discussed what the next steps were, and came up with a game plan. My Dr. seemed optimistic because there were so many options (most of which came with a hefty price tag, mind you). The first step for us was to have the HSG which would determine if there was any blockages in my Fallopian tubes. I of course, am working with only half of the goods, with only one clear tube. No big deal, I only need one anyways.
After this test was completed my Dr. gave me a prescription for Clomid. Clomid, or Clomiphene, is a drug that is used to induce ovulation. You take it on a set day, for five days, and hopefully you will soon after get a nice big smiley face on an OPK (ovulation prediction kit). I did five separate rounds of Clomid starting with the lowest dose of 50 mg all the way up to the highest, 250 mg. With not one successful round on this drug, I was then referred to a fertility specialist. After doing MORE testing, he put me on something called Femera. This is similar to Clomid, but maybe a little more potent? Either way, I did ovulate both times. I was told, unfortunately, that my levels were not high enough to sustain a pregnancy.
I’m not going to get into how physically awful it is to be on these medications, I have already shared that with you. But the mental aspect is a whole other topic. Once you have been prescribed these ovulation inducing drugs, you become obsessive. You think about it all day. About what’s happening in your body, what your next Ovulation strip is going to say, whether or not it’s working. I would test in the morning when I woke up, after work, after dinner, before bed. When I wasn’t in a place that I was able to take a test, I was thinking about the next time I would be. I actually remember bringing some to work with me at one point. AWKWARD. Then, after you do get the positive ovulation test, you have to begin the dreaded two-week wait. Every. Single. Thing. Feels like it is a symptom of being pregnant. Cramping, back pain, twinges in your ovaries, gas. You literally start to make things up, because you are so IN TUNE with your body. I mean I think I felt kicking one time 5 days before I could take a pregnancy test (Insert sarcasm). Do you know what kind of stress that can cause when you get negative after negative pregnancy test? What it does to your relationship with yourself and your significant other when you’re constantly stressed out, depressed, and upset?
I decided I couldn’t do it anymore. I needed to stop. And it’s not because I am weak, or because I want to be a mother less than anyone else. It’s because I also love myself, and I love Mike. I was so depressed I didn’t want to leave my bed or talk to anyone. I cried constantly, and had to fake a smile every day at work. I caused a lot of fights between me and Mike, not because I wanted to, but because I felt like a part of me was dying and I had no idea how to express it. I felt worthless. Is a body going through these emotions even a fit environment to grow a child anyway?
I went back on birth control about a year ago. I needed time to recover from my heartbreaking experiences and to accept what could potentially be my future. I’m getting my hormones back on track, and have given myself time to prepare for the next hurdle we will over come. I feel ready this time, to take infertility on 100%. I know what not to do, and what I need to do differently. And I feel rejuvenated. Am I scared? Hell yes. I don’t know if this time will be any easier, but I know I will be ready for it. So ladies, if you feel yourself fading quickly, do NOT be afraid to take a break. Give yourself time to recover. And don’t let what anyone has to say about it bother you. Sometimes it’s okay to be a quitter, even if it’s just temporary.
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