Monday, December 28, 2009

2009 in Retrospect

If you have read my blog longer than a year, you may recall my 'real' Christmas letter last year. In that letter my ultimate goal was to have the seething sarcasm shine through like a diamond as it mocked the Christmas letters I so loathe. However in writing it, what I didn't plan for was how much it did allow me to reflect. Given all that had gone wrong in 2008, I needed that reflection or rather debriefing, because in many ways I felt as if I were leaving a war zone. So, in that same spirit, I bring to you the same type of reflection of 2009, but less with the post war zone trauma. Ok, I'm a little late for the Christmas thing, but we'll settle for the New Years letter, m'kay?

2009: The Real Story

Hello friends and family!

After the crap fest that was 2008 (see last year's letter), I began 2009 looking for some serious redemption. I mean, the powers that be owed me and they owed me big, but of course as any infertile will tell you, it doesn't work that way. Deserve all you want, but don't be surprised if after donating all your earthly possessions to charity and serving a Peace Corps mission in Sub-Saharan Africa that your entire family dies in a car crash. Sorry, that easy morbidity is the bitter infertile in me talking. Anyhow, I rang in the New Year with the hubby and a few friends having just completed my 7th and final IUI. While sitting there not drinking and pretending that it might have actually worked I guess I knew better and alas, I was right. It was time to take that final leap.

So two weeks into January not only am I met with a BFN for that 7th and final IUI, but my beloved dog falls suddenly ill and we were forced to make the immediate decision to say goodbye.

Happy freakin' New Years to me. This whole 2009 redemption thing didn't look too promising at this point.

As a result of our failed attempt, just a handful of days later, I officially popped the cherry on my IVF virginity- $27,000 worth to be exact (or a loaded mid-sized sedan). You might recall mention of these plans in the last letter. If you have any familiarity at all with the cost of fertility treatment, you might be surprised by our price, but I assure you it is a steal considering we purchased a package of 3. Yes, a steal as in 'take out a loan you'll be paying off for the rest of your natural born life'.

To assist in paying for it, I interviewed for an additional part-time job two days after Kyra passed away and the day after I started birth control pills for the IVF (yes, IVFers sometimes take birth control pills for IVF-I'll explain later). Needless to say I am completely nauseous for the interview but somehow manage to snag the job and the impossible task of actually fitting it into my schedule just a few weeks before the IVF. Also on the agenda for that month:

Jury duty, food poisoning, unfulfilled due date, in-laws staying over, multiple daily meetings, headaches, out-of-town conventions, friends coming in from out-of-state, birthday parties, dinner parties, giving myself injections in dark alleyways, etc.

So, I somehow manage to survive the process of IVF, a new job and the death of my dog without streaking down the street naked like a madwoman with a garbage bag flung over my head, which is a miracle in and of itself, but to be honest, I am not hopeful. It is too much of a feat after 4 1/2 years of infertility to maintain any semblance of hope for me and I am proven correct when I get what appears to be my period (I know, TMI for a family letter, but remember, this is the 'real' story). But...

I was wrong.

I learn that in the beginning of March, I am...(wait for it)...pregnant.

But as you might recall from last year's letter, I have been pregnant before and yet when my due date arrived, there was no baby to be seen. In fact, the day after getting the most recent news I went for a massage and confessed tentatively that I was 'sort-of' pregnant. Most of you who have had vanilla pregnancies might not get this and might think me Crazy with a capital 'c', especially when I tell you that I somehow managed to score an ultrasound almost every week until my second trimester, all the while spending my time in between each in heart pounding terror. And maybe you're reading this and thinking that having babies is the way life goes for most people and is not that big of a deal, but I somehow managed to have a vanilla pregnancy as well and this is beyond my WILDEST dreams.

And the fact that I delivered a healthy, full-term baby boy in November and that nothing during any of the months and years before this even matters (so I won't even bother covering any of it) is beyond my WILDEST dreams, as in, 'you just won the freakin' lottery, what are you going to do with your gazillion dollars?' dreams. Yes, babies are born everyday and you yourself probably had babies, but believe me when I say that I KNEW I would NEVER have a biological child of my own and yet, I did. I am simply stunned. Bravo 2009.

So, friends and family, redemption? More than redemption. In fact, every shitty thing before and after doesn't seem to matter.

So, 2009, you've outdone yourself and for once, I cannot wait for your follow-up act in 2010.

Happy New Year to everyone. I really hope the best for all of you as we all start anew again.


Sarang said...

Shelby! Your 2009 was certainly a roller coaster...and I am so, so happy for you that it ended with a *BANG* in a spectacular way with the birth of your son.

I, too, am waiting for the new year...and the new beginnings it will hopefully bring.

Much love and can't wait to meet Baby G next year. XO

Another Dreamer said...

I agree with Sarang, a roller coaster, but what a finale :)

Little G is adorable!

Me said...

I try to keep my holiday letters as light as possible but I also try to be "real". Last year I talked about my husband's chronic illness, his unemployment and the way the economy was affecting my company. This year I came out of the IF closet with GUNS BLAZING and devoted 1/4 of the letter to the topic of our infertility. ;)