Growing up, the word on the street (in a small town, ha ha) was "don't have sex before marriage because you could get pregnant". In a public school, they taught ways to protect, abstinence, and choices. I made my choice to wait.
How come no one said that it's not easy for everyone to be a fertile Mertile?
Seriously, I was scared silly about getting pregnant (even though I chose to wait anyway), and thought it would happen really quickly after we started trying to conceive.
Weeks went by.
Months went by.
Finally, years went by.
Why is this happening to us? We LOVE kids. We would make great parents. We are responsible, nurturing, caring, and loving people who would like to be blessed with kids.
Throughout the past 2-3 years, I've found others around who have gone through the same thing. However, currently all my other support systems have kids, and we're still childless. I truly believe that we will be parents someday, it's just taking a REALLY long time.
We knew we wanted kids right away. However, with people telling us we need a "year" to experience all the joys of being married, we decided to listen. About 6 months into marriage, we felt the desire to follow our dream of becoming parents.
Fast forward a year--No positive pregnancy tests. No joyous "OH MY GOSH!!" moments. No "CONGRATULATIONS" for us. All that was left was depression, anger, sadness, and a desire for something we could not have.
It was depressing.
It was lonely.
It was just plain awfully emotional.
At this point, my husband told me it was time to go to the doctor (we had hit the one year mark of actively trying, so something was wrong with us, ha!). With his encouragement, I set up an appointment with our family doctor (I didn't even know where to start). When the appointment came around, my husband had recently been laid off due to the lovely economy. He said to go anyway. We had an HSA account set up with some money in it for this.
As I got into the room, the doctor looked at my health chart and asked, "Oh, what does 'self pay' mean?". My response was that my husband had recently been laid off, so we are paying with it in cash. At that point her demeanor changed, as she sat down to talk
She talked for the next 50 minutes. Boy, did she talk. No tests, no prescriptions, no referrals, no nothing but a $80 charge for the appointment.
She told me everything I had already found out via the world wide web. She said that I may need to lose weight. She suggested not to pressure my husband into something since it's hard enough losing a job. She said that I was young and that I had time. She told me that I need to relax, and it will happen. She had the audacity to say "Maybe it's not God's time for you yet, just keep trying". Now, I'm a Christain and I believe in God. I fully agree that He has a plan for my life, and that it is in His timing. I also know I have choices, I have the choice to seek help from doctors. I expect doctors to help me.
She did not. In fact, when I asked her should I start taking prenatal vitamins (hinting that I'd like that prescription), she said no. The doctor walked me out of the room to the pay counter and asked the ladies to print out all the prices for any and all tests we might need to take.
I was in tears by the end. Walking out of the doctor's office crying, paying a $80 fee, with a list of prices for tests I should get done, it was discouraging. I was upset. I was hurt. I was really flipping mad at that doctor.
I never went back.
It took me another year just to get up the guts to call another doctor to get the ball rolling. A whole, entire year.
In the fall of 2010, we went to an informational meeting at a fertility place about 30 minutes away. I had some anxiety, but they were friendly, helpful, and non-judgemental. In this informational meeting we got a coupon for our first consultation, which went fabulous. By the next month, we had all of our tests done.
We now know what we are up against.
We had our first IUI done December 2010, which turned out to be unsuccessful. :( It was a sad few days. My amazing husband was right by my side though, and we looked at the reasons why it was a good thing it didn't work out this time. (Trying to look at our glass half full!)
Currently, we are in the midst of still having no insurance. Is having kids more important that having money? Yes. I feel you can't put a price on being a mother. Being a mom is an amazing experience, I understand that. We look forward to seeing where our jobs take us, and finally getting insurance and starting the process again.
In August/Sept. 2011 we were changed forever. Read it here.
Why is infertility always such a hush-hush topic?
I have no good answers for that.
No one wants to talk about infertility.
No one really wants to hear about it.
No one understands unless you've experienced it.
People who experience infertility should not feel ashamed--it's not your fault. It's not a topic that should be taken lightly. More couples experience infertility than we know (approx. 1 in 6 couples!).
My thoughts and prayers go out to women (and men) who are dealing with infertility. It's not easy, it's not for the faint hearted--it's a difficult road.
If you know someone who is going through infertility and maybe you have not, here's some advice:
* Be sensitive, empathetic, patient, encouraging, and loving. We need lots of love to get us through this tough season that we did not choose.
* We may seem down after others have told us that they are expecting. We may put on a happy face but inside we may be full of tears, anger, or depression. It's not your news, it's just a reminder of what we do not have yet. We love you and your new bundle of joy.
* We (or at least I) have a hard time doing things with a group of women, especially if they all have kids. Kids are a big part of life, they are precious and they are typically the topic of the conversation (naturally)--we can't bring anything to the table when it comes to the many mom tips and experiences. We feel again that we've been robbed of something, and have a hard time wanting to attentively listen to conversations that revolve around kids. Know that you are still loved, we still love your kids, we still love hearing about them, but give it to us in small spurts that we can handle.
* Send us a note of encouragement. Infertility creates a roller coaster of emotions: sadness, anger, depression, etc. Sometimes we need that encouragement of "Hey, I'm thinking about you." We need a lot of happy thoughts from others around us since in the midst of infertility it's hard to be happy.
* Please be patient with us. We love you. We love your family. Waiting 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or more years just takes a toll on our thoughts, attitudes, and outlook on life.
Great Infertility Resources
If you are experiencing infertility, and need a few good laughs--check this site out: 999 Reasons to Laugh at Infertility.
Great products for pregnancy items/ovulation tests/vitamins - Early Pregnancy Tests