Fertility treatments, Love, Pregnancy, Volatile bodies

A New life

I gave birth to a most beautiful baby boy a short while ago. He’s healthy and everything I could’ve ever hoped for. The pregnancy was hard on me and I was put to bed rest for the last months so that he wouldn’t come too early. The labour was over 24 hours long all together but I still pushed him to the world myself. I got to feel it too because of the medication wearing off right before. There were a couple of scares during the labour and it almost went to a c-section because his heartbeat was too low. I am thankful beyond any thanking to the medical team, the midwives and the doctors who helped me give birth to a healthy child. All the fear and pain were worth it when I first got to hold him. All the years of sadness and worry were worth it.

I can’t believe that he’s real, he’s here and he’s mine. When I breastfeed him in my arms I can’t help but wonder in amazement that we created him. There’s parts of me there, parts of Wonderboy. I thought I wouldn’t get to see myself in him; I was prepared to have a child who wouldn’t be genetically mine. It was hard to get used to the idea during pregnancy, but it isn’t’ anymore. He’s himself, so tiny, so frail, so wonderful and curious about the world.

It’s only been a little while since the baby was born but we’ve already started to look for the thing that brought us both so much joy when we had very little of it. First sexual experiences after the biggest change in a woman’s life and body have been scary and yet I’ve been supported by Wonderboy through all this. Finally it doesn’t have to be a place to hide in from all the grief, it can be a place of discovery again.

I wanted to come back here and tell everyone who might still be reading and wondering what happened to us. We got everything we want now. This story really has a happy ending.

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Fertility treatments, Love, Wonderboy

Tears

A lot of crying going on here today. I had to leave work straight when I got there, because the cramps were so painful I almost didn’t manage to get out of the bathroom. This is, I think, the first time that I’m setting this up like this within myself: why can’t I carry his child? Why can’t I give him a baby? Wonderboy’s been so unhappy this past few days that it has made me unhappy too. I’ve never seen him like this. And I can’t change a thing. And I’m hurting.

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Fertility treatments, Love, Wonderboy

Carrot Soap

Another one of those possibly pregnant weeks of my life has just ended. What a relief. My period was over a week late today, so I called the clinic. They don’t know yet, if they can still treat us before the summer holidays or not. We’ll have to wait and see when my next period will start. I hate that everything is decided by my body. You’ve all heard about the dichotomy between body and soul, mind and matter? Well, this so makes it official. How can I grow better follicles or bleed more quickly? I can’t. I can’t change the body I got and I can’t really help the hormones either.

They gave me this youth hormone, DHEA. It’s not even considered a real drug, if you live outside Europe, but here it’s a prescribed drug that I was fortunate enough to be given. Our doctor is trying to get better follicles out of me, if she can. I hope and then I despair. It’s hard to believe that it could happen, and still I mostly do.

It’s really hard to see my coworker’s rounding belly. Almost even harder, because I know they were in treatment too. It worked for them. So, we’re in a smaller and smaller minority. Will we soon be in the minority that gives up, childless? I hope not.

My little sister will be donating her follicles to my big sister in the Fall. It’s arranged and everything. There’s a small chance that she’d donate to us at the same time. That’s why I want to do this now. I don’t want to wait forever. I can’t.

It’s devastating to think the child wouldn’t be mine biologically. But when I dreamed about having children, when I made the plans, I was working under the mass illusion we have in our civilization that children pop up wanted or not and it’s almost impossible to stop that. So, obviously after a lifetime of laboring under that sort of illusion it’s hard to steer my mind in to a new kind of tomorrow. One were social parenting becomes as meaningful as biological. One where love isn’t only romantic, but also between siblings.

True love conquers all. Yeah, I’m beginning to see what they meant by that. If my sister and my husband can give us a child, I am forever in debt. To love.

I am crying again. But isn’t it beautiful? Can you imagine a better way to express your love? I know I can’t. I am so loved, and now I finally feel that I deserve it. And I will shine it all back to everyone. That’s the way love works.

This childless life is so hard, Wonderboy said yesterday. He was in the dark of the bedroom, alone, just lying in bed looking at the window with closed curtains. Everything is all sad. Nothing makes us happy. 

A lot makes us happy! Look, I made a funny face. Look, look here, I am caressing you, hugging you, tangling into you and kissing you and – oh sorry – crying in your ear.

When we don’t have any little babies just toddling around here, I answered and he looked even sadder, if possible.

He wants to have children with me. He is sad that we don’t have them. He’s scared that we won’t have them. It broke my heart a little bit. I want to give him babies. My body and soul are agreed on that. He even fantasized one day, out loud:

I could be a stay at home dad. I could take the babies into the park and play to them.

He has never talked like that before. He has never made plans or even been at all interested about the babies, just the trying. I can see it, now, in my mind and I can’t shake it off. My Wonderboy sitting near the sandbox with all the other mommies and with our Wonderchild. How lovingly he would take care of our child. He will be a great dad. And he will let me be who i am: very attached to my work, so worry passionate about it.

Doesn’t it break your heart too?

That’s why… I bought handmade soup today. Two different hues: avocado&olives and carrot. How could anyone stay unhappy, when they wash themselves with carrot soap? Obviously they can’t. I have the answer to everything. I am the master of this body. Which will soon, very soon, smell like a carrot.

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Fertility treatments, Love

Hope

When we got back home yesterday, I withdrew to take a shower. Maybe it’s because I was raised in a house where no one respected privacy and I never got to have a room for myself, but I always retreat to the shower when I’m really sad. Sure enough after a couple of minutes I started to cry. Not thinking about it seems not to be an option.

Wonderboy had been doing the dishes. In the middle of my crying he knocked on the door and came to the bathroom, although I didn’t answer anything to his knock. I just wanted to be left alone. He was all normal and I felt my heart had been ripped out of my chest, once again. He wanted to kiss me and I wouldn’t. I know this is a way for him to seek some kind of emotional certainty, but I was angry at him for not letting me have a private moment, although he knew all the circumstances. He just couldn’t leave me alone, because he knew I was sad. He had to be there, making sure what was happening.

Not everything is something you can share. There’s also the very personal experience, the losing of a baby I had to face that he was not facing. I had stopped the progesterones on Saturday night because of the periods, and that makes my whole body and mind change so drastically. It’s hard to adapt to, and even harder when you’re hurting like hell, bleeding and know exactly what it means.

When I came out of the shower, I asked Wonderboy to stop playing the guitar. It felt like he was mocking me, and the sadness. He was able to do stuff he’d normally do and I wasn’t. I was, once again, the only one devastated by this. Wonderboy couldn’t have reacted in a better way. He chipperishly agreed to put the guitar away and asked me if I’d come and cuddle with him. As I couldn’t answer him anything and didn’t really feel like cuddling at all he asked me again a couple of times.

And so I gave in. I went to the bed, cold streams still running from my hair and I let him take me into his arms. I began to cry again.

You can cry as much as you need, Wonderboy said. He caressed me and held me really close. He kept trying to say little consoling things like how far we’d come, and how it could work the next time. All I could think about was that it hadn’t really worked this time either. The embryo should’ve been 8 cells, and it was only 4. It was the only one to make it. That doesn’t sound like a super outcome to me – unless it results in a pregnancy.

I felt unsure if I could hang on to the hope for another year of this. I was wondering should we really be trying the donator sperm on some of the eggs just to know what could happen.

When I asked Wondeboy how he felt, he answered, sad, but also hopeful. Maybe I could feel that way too if I wasn’t the one carrying this all in my body. Wonderboy did come out of the bathroom looking real worried. I had flushed the toilet, but I hadn’t checked it out after, and I had apparently lost so much blood that the water in the toilet was still rich with blood. Wondeboy came to hug me and kiss me.

My baby’s losing so much blood, he said to me and hugged me tighter. I guess it’s easy to be all hopeful and serene, if you don’t really have to face the blood and the pain and the reality of what’s happened. What we lost.

We didn’t really lose anything, he’d said a while earlier.

Yes, we did. We lost our baby, I said.

And then I cried again.

What will we do if nothing works? What will we do after next year?

I don’t know, he answered.

I don’t know either, I said.

We’ll have a break, he said.

A break? We won’t have a break! This has been nothing but breaks!

So, we will go get more treatments? he asked.

Did he really think we wouldn’t?

Well, we won’t get children, if we don’t, I answered.

Then we’ll have to start skimping on everything. It’s only a year away. It’s not a lot of time to save money.

This was the first time, I think, he took this seriously. I’ve been thinking about the years to come for a longer while now – he’s just been concentrating on the next time. The IVF’s will work, he still thinks. And they might. But they might not. I didn’t say anything about donors. I’ve had that talk many times already. But that’s what I’m considering, if next year won’t bring any change. I don’t want to, but I do. This is something I won’t take a break from. This is something I can’t compromise. So, there needs to be a way, if this doesn’t work.

I hope it works, though. I really do. But even the fantasies of our kids are slipping away. I have a hard time imagining myself as a mom. I have a hard time imagining myself as pregnant or with a child. And I have such a hard time sitting in the bus or waiting in line at the grocery store when other people’s kids wail and cry and laugh and talk. I have a hard time seeing pregnant women. Next week we’ll find out if my work mate’s 2.nd IVF treatment got her pregnant. I’m dreading it. Of course I hope happiness for them, but it would be so hard to handle, seeing her every day, knowing it isn’t me.

I hope it is me sometime.

This morning Wondeboy just dashed to work, not giving me a second glance or a hug as he usually does. We did cuddle for a while when we were still in bed, looked into each other’s defeated eyes and hugged tight. Maybe his sadness is different. Maybe he wants to – and can – escape it. I was left here alone, writing, before I have to go to work too. I also had to let our doctor know we didn’t succeed. They have to start filing papers to transfer us to where we live now. We have no idea how that’s going to work and how long it’ll take. I have no idea about anything. Just a little hope.

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Fertility treatments, Love, Male Lead Relationship stuff, Passing Woman, Pregnancy, Volatile bodies, What Women Really Want, Wonderboy

Survival of the Fittest to Adapt

We have been trying to keep doing a small token thing, a ritual if you like. I think it was Lily’s wonderful book that gave us the idea. When we haven’t been able to do much else, and even when we have, Wonderboy has always commanded me to prepare the tea for us. I haven’t been able to do even that with the procedures and my body being so sick.

When I got out of the transfer, I was so proud of myself for doing it all by myself. I was so happy to finally get there that I needed to reward myself, so I bought these hand made chocolates. They were for us both, but Wonderboy’s been on a strict diet so it has mostly been me to consume the chocolates. Somehow Wonderboy still figured a new ritual could take place in this: it is my job to bring the golden chocolate box to him, if I want them. He will pick and choose one for me. Only one. And then I get to eat it. If I ask and he thinks it fits, he can grant me another. This… makes me oddly happy.

We tried to have sex yesterday. It was tentative, I admit, but I was actually turning a little horny. It has been almost three weeks since last time and I do feel a little alienated from my body. From him.

I’m glad that we tried. I’m glad about everything we did. About the nakedness, the warm skin, his scent, his lips. We caressed ear other from head to toes like I’ve never imagined Sex going. It was very loving and we were pretty scared. That’s probably why it didn’t hurt our feelings that we couldn’t do it. The progesterone capsules I have to use go straight into the vagina. They stay there to give me progesterone through the day. (3 times a day, so at work too. That’s been a treat, I’m telling you.) Turns out they also burn like hell, if you go on meddling in the orifices. No amount of lubrication helped, we were both burning. So we stopped. We kept hugging and kissing little, sweet and innocent kisses.

Do you want to do something else? To play? I asked.

Not really, Wonderboy said.

Me neither. It’s because of the burning, it kind of took the desire away.

Yeah, he admitted.

Then we caressed each other for a while.

It’s kind of miraculous that we can have a conversation like this – a situation like this – and both feel pretty happy and serene. We weren’t really even that disappointed. It was about something else entirely. It would’ve been nice to be able to have an orgasm together, but… it wasn’t as important as I once imagined. Huh. We exchanged our love yous there and then went on to read and play games by ourselves. It isn’t such a big deal considering the stuff we are going through.

I woke up tonight with soul shattering cramps. They almost made me throw up and wouldn’t subside in an hour before I took some pain medicine. I had to go sleep on the coach because the pain would stay away in only a certain position. At night I still thought that these could be the pains associated with the implantation. But today… when the cramps kept on rolling and kept shaping into a more familiar shape. I’ve nee here before. All the other times I thought I was pregnant I suffered for these same kinds of cramps and pains and stabs. They remind menstrual cramps a lot but aren’t exactly the same.

Now I feel I know. I know already. It didn’t work. There isn’t going to be a baby, not this time either.

The next time we have a chance will be in another hospital, with another doctor, after some waiting because of our move. It will probably be before next Christmas. Probably. But they might want to treat us differently. We might end up losing time again, doing treatment cycles that don’t result in any embryos. It’s not like it’s self-evident anyway – I got 10 follicles and only one was developed enough that they could transfer it (and only 3 fertilized at all).

Same all fears began to rise. Same all thoughts. Will we ever? Will we have to use someone else’s sperm or follicles in the end, anyway? Will our money run out? Will our will run out?

It’s not for certain yet. Wonderboy still believes I might be pregnant. I don’t anymore. I feel my body too well. Damnit. I was so happy for a while, even to be given a chance.

I don’t really know how I feel yet. But not devastated. Disappointed. Expectant. Sad, a little hopeless even. If it didn’t work, we still don’t know, if we can get pregnant. We still don’t know, if it will ever work for us. We still just have to wait. It’s quite a big thing to ask of someone, this waiting,  without a promise for the hopes to be fulfilled.

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