Friday, February 20, 2009

Longing to Believe in My Miracle

I have been quiet as of late. Not sure what to write, but sitting here on the eve of my retrieval, I finally feel compelled to do so. This, my first IVF, has left me feeling a mixture of emotions:

  • Deeply disappointed at my body's poor response,
  • But not surprised.
  • Embarrassed...
  • And more infertile than ever.
At last count, and after many dosage increases, I had 13ish mature eggs at best (17 counting the little guys who will never be). My doctor was surprised by my slower-than-average response and while I prophesized that this would come to pass, I had no evidence to prove that it would be the case other than a deep intuition. Of course, then again, I had no evidence that I would miscarry last June other than my intuition and that happened as well. I think it's safe to keep listening to myself.

The feeling that this IVF was a lesson in futility and at best a 'trial' run to demonstrate my response for future cycles deepened as the days progressed. I suppose my absence here was an attempt to disconnect from that disappointment, but with each and every day I showed up for blood draws and ultrasounds, I was reminded. Nevertheless, I had so many saving graces along the way, the first being my non-blogger IF friend Sarang, the most thoughtful person on the face of the planet. I can't count the number of times she has surprised all of us IFers with thoughtful, hope-filled gifts. This time was no different. On a day when I learned that the doc postponed my retrieval by yet another day (3 days total), I got a package from her wrapped in a pomegranate ribbon. Inside was a beautiful silver necklace with two pomegranate beads, a pomegranate ribbon charm and a silver pendant engraved with 'miracle' dangling on the end of it. The enclosed card to me was simple:

"I believe in your miracle"

Insta-tears.

She believed and at once I realized, I did not.

When I think about all of this pain and effort, I don't think, "Hey, at least I might get a baby out of this." Instead I think, "This is necessary to move on. I must do this to accept that I will never have the child I've so long dreamed of."

So when you realize that others hold out more hope for you than you do yourself, it is powerful. It's powerful that friends I met just a handful of months ago have so much care and concern for me, so much understanding, many times more than friends I've known for years and it's powerful that I've allowed myself to give up, at least at this moment in time. Thank God for them.

When this is all said and done, I have big plans that I hope I will honor. If it's positive, well then, I guess my big plan will have already been put into place. Hopefully it's a plan that will stick (the words of someone who has obviously met loss). If it's negative, I think it might be time to take a break. I will no longer require myself to be a constant human petrie dish on a mad race against some undefined clock. I will take a moment to breathe, perhaps a small handful of months, and enjoy what it's like to no longer be a pin cushion constantly under the influence of artificial hormones and two week waits. I'll take a break from wondering how to explain my way out of a meeting because of a last minute ultrasound and I'll not pay attention to every single twinge in my body. There will be no pills to take, no shots to administer. And I'll do something about the 20+ pounds I let myself gain in grief. I'll try to begin to reverse that deep disappointment in myself. I planted it so deep that I know it will be hard to dig out, but I have to begin somewhere. Now is as good a time as any.

As you might be able to tell, I'm tired. No, exhausted. I'm coming off the end of 5 months of continuous treatment, still grieving my beloved dog, my lost baby, and I'm ready to turn my tired mind away from the singular focus that is infertility, even if just for a moment's time, knowing that this particular journey is not quite over...yet.

21 comments:

G & H said...

Oh my heart just feels for you so much ;( I just wanted to say that I would say an extra prayer for you tonight and I'll be thinking fo you for your upcpoming procedure

Another Dreamer said...

(*hugs*) It only takes one embryo.

I am holding onto hope for you. I will be thinking of you two and sending all the positive thoughts I can muster in your direction.

I also have one of those necklaces. I wear it everyday. May it help you emotionally as it has helped me.

Cassandra said...

Wishing you the best of luck with this retrieval.

We will all hold your hope for you...

luna said...

wishing you all the best with retrieval, recovery, and the dance in the dish.

your friend is a lovely soul. I heart her.

'Murgdan' said...

Even if you are out of hope...I will be hoping for you with all that I have.

(hugs)

Nikki said...

Hugs to you Shelby. IF is tough, and IVF is the wringer of it all. I'm sorry the process has been so taxing on you, mentally and physically. I'm holding on to a lot of hope for you. I hope you have a smooth retrieval and wonderful looking embryos! Good luck!

Sarang's gesture was so thoughtful! She's a wonderful friend! Lets hope that the fact that your friends believe in your miracle will bring your efforts to fruition soon.

Your plan is a good one. Of course we hope this cycle works, but if it doesn't, take the time to heal and focus away from infertility.

Hugs - thinking of you today.

babyinterrupted said...

Hoping for the very best for you. Perhaps this miracle will come as others are hanging onto it for you - but then again, for myself, miracles do not always look the way I thought they would. Peace to you in these days.

Michelle said...

Many hugs! I am so sorry you are feeling this way but I completely understand it. I am holding on to hope for you! Please take care of yourself and I hope all goes well beyond your expectations!

My Reality said...

I know how hard it is to have hope when it is your own cycle. I will continue to hold onto hope for you.

Karen said...

I've been thinking of you. I will hold on to hope for you this cycle. 13 (lucky 13) possible eggs is pretty darn good in my DOR book. If this cycle doesn't work, I think a break might be good for you. I know for me, I would have lost my sanity if I hadn't taken a break from time to time. Yes, they were usually forced breaks but still. . . I'll continue to keep you in my thoughts. Here's to more eggs than expected at ER.

MamaSoon said...

Thinking of you...

I hope your journey ends very soon and triumphantly.

Sarang said...

M-Sis, I do believe in your miracle. And I hope your retrieval went smoothly yesterday. Am thinking of you with hope in my heart~~~

banditgirl said...

Shelby, I really feel strongly about this IVF. I know I can't predict the future and it's not a 100% likelihood solution, but it is 50-60% which is significantly better than the 5-10% IUIs. I feel very strongly about this one for you. In my heart I do and will, even when you don't. Would love to tell you this in person next weekend too when we'll hang hopefully!

Martha said...

Please take good care and thank goodness for friends to help us through the tough times.
Best Always.

Lost in Space said...

"This is necessary to move on. I must do this to accept that I will never have the child I've so long dreamed of."

I understand and share the same thoughts.......

I'm holding onto hope for you that your slow and steady response produced a bunch of healthy eggs who are now your sweet growing embabies.......

Hang in there, hun.

Tara said...

I think 13 is great! I only had 8. It only takes 1, babe. Chin up. This is NOT a lost cause or a futile attempt at IVF.

Many hugs and positive thoughts your way.

Jendeis said...

I'm so proud of you for taking care of yourself, and glad that you have such good friends.

courtney said...

We're not meant to go through life alone, and your story is a great illustration of why. I especially don't think we're meant to go through IF alone.
Good luck.

itsazooaroundhere said...

Oh Shelby, I'm just reading your post after a weekend away, and I am sorry you are so tired and disappointed. Like the others, I have a LOT of hope for you on this cycle, and I hope the retrieval went well (as well as strong, growing embryos!).

It's wonderful that you have such strong IRL support, friends can be such a life-saver. I hope you'll continue to write in your blog, and just know that we are all here for you regardless of how this cycle plays out.

Hugs, Betsy

I Believe in Miracles said...

I'm hoping for you! Thinking happy thoughts.
~~~BIG HUG~~~

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