Like a bruised banana

Warning: long, sad ramble ahead. For “Just the Facts Ma’am,” scroll down.

My belly looks like a spotty bruised banana. Lupron mine field.

I haven’t posted in a few days. There’s just not much to say right now. And what there is to say I just haven’t had the energy to write about.

I can’t quite figure out whether I am just so sick and tired of all this that I can’t get happy about this cycle, or whether I should be taking a clue from my body, the universe, god, God, whomever . . . that maybe the time just isn’t right. Maybe I am just a superstitious loon? Really hard to say. Really hard to separate the fact from the fiction, the anxiety from the reality.

We are still a go for FET, but my heart is not in it. I feel a sense of dread about it. I fear wasting these embryos, but I also have enough logical thinking left to know they will not grow into babies while in the deep freeze. It’s just that I am not convinced that they stand a better chance in my uterus. So, I keep scanning for reasons to postpone: I feel anxious, I have (am getting over) pneumonia, I haven’t had a good fortune cookie in a long while, etc.

I have turned into a very casual IVF patient. Last week I forgot my Lupron dose on Thursday. I had to run home at noon and give it to myself about 6 hours late. Today I overslept (blame C. who is in charge of the alarm clock) and nearly missed my E2 bloodwork appointment. None of this should be mistaken for relaxation. I am not relaxed about this cycle. I am as anxious as ever. I am just detached from it and maybe not in a good way. I don’t know what, if anything, this means.

I’ve also been thinking a lot about loss and grief and what that all means. For me, every cycle of ttc has been a progressively more painful “loss.” I know that not getting pregnant is not the same as getting pregnant and miscarrying. It does however, have one very vital thing in common: empty arms. We all have the same empty arms. I also have had a much harder time with IVF failures than with less invasive “cycles”. No doubt it has to do with all that is invested and lost in terms of money, emotion, time, effort, etc. But it also has to do with the embryos. With all other modes of ttc, you never really know if there was anything viable there in the first place. With IVF you know there is an embryo(s). So, somehow, (in my mindanyway)a failed IVF cylce is more of a loss in that you know you lost life, even if in it’s most basic form. But is there a difference? I don’t really know. I am not sure which loss is the most at the root of the pain. The loss of hope? The loss of an embryo or several? The loss of control over my life, my body, my (perceived) ability to be happy.

Maybe it all comes down to the loss of who I expected to be at this phase of my life. I fully expected to be a mother. It is such a huge, all consuming role, such a revered role. To be denied the chance to live it is such a big thing that no amount of grieving or therapy or blogging is going to make it feel OK to let go of that plan, that hope, that dream and move on. I don’t know how I can manage that yet. I can’t imagine living in this painful limbo state forever either.

In my last counselling session I said to the counselor that the pain of trying is starting to equal the pain of not having. I think this may be what allows people to eventually let go.

So, I don’t even know where I am ging with this gloomy ramble but I am starting to wonder when you know when to stop. I do know I am not there yet, but I fear that I am closer than I thought I could be. And if I stop trying then what?

It may be the pneumonia talking. This nasty thing has taken a lot out of me. But there is also part me thinking what more can my body, my mind, my spirit take? I felt so tired and worn out this past week that I wondered how I’d handle this illness if I already had that wished for child to care for. I don’t have a huge network of support. C. and I will be on our own with this baby thing. One set of not very involved potential grandparents and two sets of even less involved aunt/uncles. Not exactly a Walton’s style extended family! Most of my friends are getting ready to send their kids off to college and those that don’t have kids never wanted them. So, parenthood will be a solo flight for the most part. One I am desperate to take, but I am just trying to approach it realistically.

So, as this FET gets closer and our last chance to have a mutually biological child together is about to come and go, I am feeling pretty scared of what I will have to face next. What if this fails, what then??

Just the Facts Ma’am

FET update:

Lupron continues at 5units, E2 results from today pending, this will determine tomorrow’s EV inj dose. U/S and repeat E2 on Thursday

Pneumonia update:

Took last antibiotic yesterday. Feeling better but not all better. Still tired and still coughing but each day gets easier. Not able to do much in terms of exercise, get out of breath very quickly. Will see family doc again if not feeling “normal” by Wednesday. Basically, this sucks!

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20 Responses to “Like a bruised banana”

  1. Lindy Says:

    I just can’t even imagine how worn down you are by it all. But on top of everything else, try not to beat yourself up over feeling detatched. I’ve read a lot of posts like that from repeat IVFers. I think it’s totally normal after a painfully failed cycle to feel listless and detatched about the whole process and to feel that it is doomed. Just try to be kind to yourself and keep putting one foot in front of the other.

    Much love to you, Beagle.

  2. seattlegal Says:

    I’m glad you are starting to feel a little better. Sorry that it all just sucks! Take care!

  3. Angie Says:

    I was hoping you’d be feeling better by now.

  4. caroline Says:

    I am sorry things are looking so down – I wish there was something magical I could say to make it all better. Just try and take one step/one day at a time – you have a lot of readers cheering you on!!

  5. annmarie Says:

    Beagle, we’ve all felt this way and it’s OK. We’re here for your venting, whining and whatever else…Be strong for this cycle. Don’t lose hope…and if you need to be icked up off the ground, let us know.

  6. Pamplemousse Says:

    No wonder you are feeling detached. Your illness and all this stress of doing the FET. Your body and mind are just weary. Would waiting to do the FET make any difference? Your clinic would tell you if you were not up to it.

    You will know deep in your heart when it is ready to say stop. Some peeps have to know in advance ie. we will do 3 cycles and if then nada, we will stop. Some reach the state of acceptance when the pain becomes too much. Is the journey still worth the pain? Will you feel the loss of treatment or is it a relief to say “Enough”.

  7. Ellen K. Says:

    I’m sorry, Beagle. I have not been there (IVF) yet but the book “Unsung Lullabies” is really eloquent on the differences of a failed IVF cycle… the huge emotional difference that comes from seeing the embryos. You’re in my thoughts. Be good to yourself.

  8. MoMo Says:

    Beagle–this is such a hard road to travel, you just hope that every little step will make it easier. Hang in there. We are all here for you. Hugs.

  9. Barely Sane Says:

    Beagle…
    I’m sorry things are so tough right now. I hope they get easier and perhaps clearer for you soon.

    Keeping my fingers crossed for a GOOD fortune cookie!!

  10. DD Says:

    I think we let ourselves get our expectations up when it comes to IVF just because we really feel it is the end-all-be-all, and when it doesn’t, it’s hard to hold it in that beautiful sparkly light that pulled us into it in the first place.

    You do not have to finish out this cycle, Beagle. Even if it’s to take one off where you are not counting days or scheduling appts, it may help you decide. I know how difficult even that thought is. Whatever you decide, we will be supportive. Don’t forget to take care of you.

  11. soralis Says:

    I am so sorry that you are still feeling sick, I hope you feel better very soon.

    I am sorry to hear that you are having such a rough go. I have been down your road and it’s not a fun one. I wish you the best and hope that this cycle is the one for you.

    Take care

  12. Mary Ellen and Steve Says:

    I am glad that you are recovering from the pneumonia. What an awful thing to go through while dealing with your FET.

    I understand what you mean about feeling detatched. I think that most of us have felt that way at some point in our journeys.

    Try to go easy on yourself Beagle. You’ve had a tough go of things. I hope that things get easier and this FET goes smoothly. I know that it sounds silly, but just try to take it one day at at time. You and C will know when it is time to stop. Please know that we are all here pulling for you. Hugs!

  13. Thalia Says:

    Beagle, first some of this may well be due to the pneumonia. It really takes it out of you and often causes mild depression as you are getting better.

    Having said that, you have a heavy emotional burden there, too, which I would not want to diminish in any way. It is tiring, it is draining, particularly when yuo feel unsupported and when something you want just keeps on not working for you. Just try to keep looking 1 day or 1 week ahead rather than 10 years ahead.

    Btw, when you have your baby you will make new friends via the activities and schools he or she attends, so you will start to form a new, child-focused community to complement the adult one you already have.

  14. Meg Says:

    Beagle – I’m sorry to hear the pneumonia is still going.. no wonder you feel so dejected.. Really. Perhaps the detachment is a good thing?? It’s less investment. I was just thinking about this, actually; how after all the build-up, I seem to be skimming over the top of it all, ignoring it.

    Love to you. Let us know how you get on. Bloglandia (well I) miss you.

    x

  15. Liz Says:

    The process can be emotionally and physically draining. I know at one point I had to become detached in order to cope and go on. Be good to yourself and remember we’re all hoping for you.

  16. Leggy Says:

    I hear you on the worn down feelings- its so hard to pick yourself back up again and charge forward. Good luck getting through- let me know if some face to face friend time would help.

  17. Sarah Says:

    Wow, what a heavy post. You have said so many of the things that I have felt, especially about loss of what you thought your future would be like at this point. I agree that when your body is worn down, it is also much harder to deal with the emotional side of things.

    I hope that you will give yourself some time to heal. Take care.

  18. Kristi Says:

    Infertility is one of the hardest battles a woman can fight. From reading your blog for the last few months, I can tell you that you are an incredibly strong person, and although you’re feeling down right now, I know you have it in you to keep going. We all wish for the crystal ball to look into the future to just know that someday, after all the struggles, we will become pregnant. It would make things so much easier if we just knew it was going to happen at some point. But because this doesn’t exist, you need to rely on your loved ones and your friends (including your blog friends) who know your struggle, and who can pick you up in times like this. And I really hope you’re feeling better soon.

  19. serenity Says:

    beagle – I could have written your post. I am so damnably tired of trying right now. And for my last FET I kept forgetting – did I take my estrace last night? Shoot, I forgot to take my progesterone 3 hours ago… or did I?

    It’s very normal. On top of which you are sick with pneumonia? Mustering energy for much of anything has got to be a chore.

    Hugs to you. Hang in there.

  20. Alli Says:

    I hope you are feeling better soon.

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