After two years of trying to conceive on our own, my husband and I thought it was time to seek advice from a fertility specialist. I remember entering the office looking around and thinking, “Wow! There are a lot of women here.” My palms were sweaty and my heart was thumping I was so nervous. I looked at my husband, smiled and said, “We got this!” My husband and I discussed our story with the doctor and we decided that fertility options were the path we needed to take. So begins the poking and prodding that my body would have to endure for the next eight months.
I was sent to visit a specialist to see if my fallopian tubes had any blockages. While the specialist was running dye through my tubes he told me a partial blockage was discovered and so it needed to be flushed out and to stay still, that there “may be a little pain“. Honestly, I could have easily kicked him away with my foot as the pain was not “a little pain“, it was excruciating pain. I lay there half-naked, feeling fully exposed, telling myself, “Adrienne, what do you think childbirth is going to feel like?” At this point I knew this journey that we were on was going to be everything but easy. I left the appointment feeling angst, pain, exhaustion, and defeated.
About a month later we started our ‘fertility routine’ which included hormones, blood work, ultrasounds, and inseminations. Feeling like a number in a production line is an understatement. There was no “Good morning Adrienne“; no ”How are you today?“; no smile or any other pleasantry, not even a small one. My husband and I just went from room to room, following the plan and going through the motions of what had to be done if we wanted to start a family. I sadly accepted the fact that this is how it is going to be and this is what needed to be done if we wanted to start our family. I told myself that it’s only going to take a couple of months, then we would get pregnant and we will never have to do this again. My husband on the other hand despised the whole process. He would get upset and embarrassed. Each month was a real chore getting him to the office at 6:00 a.m. three days in a row in order to provide a ‘sample‘ for the insemination process. It was hard for him (and me for that matter) to understand that there are many other couples that are doing the same exact routine that we were doing.
The first two months of taking clomid was uneventful; but, by the third month I was feeling depressed, angry, emotional, sad, and anxious. I called our doctor and said I have had enough with the clomid and asked what do we try next. Ha! Now it became fun. I had to give myself a shot of hormones every day for the next three months. Now, honestly, there was no physical pain as that first shot was more of a jab. However, this too made me moody, grumpy, and emotional. After two months of the shots and not wanting to be touched, not even by my husband, I was feeling that the monthly routine was just a cruel reminder of what was NOT happening for us…starting a family.
My husband and I felt it was time to move on as the toll all of these procedures took on my body (and our marriage to be honest) was just not worth the pain and emotions. I turned to holistic medicine, acupuncture, Mayan massage, chiropractic care, and naturopath for options as well as comfort. Now let’s talk about feelings…. anger and not wanting to be touched at all, overwhelmed, failure, stressed, consumed, depressed, heartbroken, sad, jealous, alone and resentful. Why is it that everywhere I went someone was pregnant? I used to be so happy for those people; but, now I became resentful. One of my younger sisters announced that she was pregnant; and, as happy as I was for her, I felt the deepest pain and sorrow. Being honest now, I’m not sure if I was forcing the happiness. A year after this announcement, my other younger sister announced that she, too, was pregnant. All I could think was “Why….why….why….why not me?”
I planned both baby showers and showed up with a smile on my face; but, boy I felt like hiding in a corner to cry. I felt so alone and out of place. Both events were excruciating, to say the least, to get through. With a smile on my face all while having to host family and friends. Of course, most people knew I was trying, and as sweet as they were trying to be they would ask me how I was doing. I wanted to lash out and scream, “How the hell do you think I’m doing?” Why is it that when people know you are trying to get pregnant they always feel like you want to hear their suggestions? My favorite was when they would say, simply, “Just relax and don’t be stressed.” These same people had experienced no problems getting pregnant and had had more than one child naturally. Without medications, without shots, without months and months of trying only to fail. As a little girl growing up, I dreamed of the day that I would be able to carry another precious living being inside of me only to have someone tell me that it’s just not “my time” and that “it will happen when it’s supposed to”. Aaargh!!!!
After seven years and after all this defeat had occurred, my husband and I were blessed enough to be given the opportunity to adopt a baby boy. It was truly a blessing in disguise. I first saw Matthew when he was just three day’s old and once I held him in my arms, I knew that this was why I had struggled for so long. It was this moment that I, my husband, our family and Matthew was truly blessed. I was finally able to fill a void that had consumed me for so long.
Now Matthew is just about 4 year’s old and is the greatest joy in my life. However, that yearning to have a life growing inside of you never ends for me. I would love to have a sibling for my son and for me to experience what almost every women wants to experience…the feeling of a being growing inside you!
Words I have just for you: I can’t possibly know the pain you may have experienced in your journey for conception. The disappointment, the frustration, the hope and the hopelessness of each negative pregnancy test. Perhaps you have felt the heartbreak of successfully conceiving but then lose that child. Perhaps, like me, you have given the power over your own body to doctors in the hope that somehow they will make everything better. I don’t know why we have been chosen to undertake such a painful journey or why we must go through such struggles to bring our children into this world. But, I do know that when we look into our babies faces, they will never have to wonder if they were ever really wanted. Ours are the children who, no matter how they came to us, will look at us and know, from the deepest place in their heart, how much we cherish them, and how we labored to give them life. And, in that there is no greater security and no greater gift.
“Oh, what a power is motherhood, possessing a potent spell. All women alike fight fiercely for a child.”