The One That Almost Went Unpublished

Change is hard. Grief is unpredictable.

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Last month we moved into a new house. We left behind our first home, the place we started our fertility journey, and the place we ended it in so many senses.

I discovered in the moving process how bad I am at change. I also discovered that little apartment  which I had so many fond memories in, I also held so closely tied to our fertility journey.
I had no idea really STARTING OVER would be so hard.
We didn’t tell very many people, but immediately before we moved, we did some fertility re-testing to find our tests were much worse than previous. This was the end game. The final determinant. While we had already proclaimed we were done with fertility treatments, this was the nail in the coffin. It is over.

I pushed thoughts of fertility out to get the move done. I was perhaps the most stressed I have ever felt in my life. I blamed it on the move of course.
Now things have calmed. The boxes are unpacked, we are settled in.

Here I find myself in this house. Lots of space, perfect for a FAMILY.
There is a children’s bike left behind in the backyard from the previous tenants.
For the most part, I am me. Hopeful, excited, happy….but then these moments that I never saw coming come. My soul breaks open and the pain feels so sharp it is as though someone is squeezing my heart.

In those moments, I become that person I hate, that I won’t allow myself to be. The bitter one. The one who avoids pregnant friends. The one who allows strangers “You’ve been married for 5 years? No kids? What are you waiting for?!” questions to penetrate and hurt them. The one who sometimes has to fake a smile when people talk about their families. The one who cries in her husbands chest because she can’t shake that pain as quickly as she scheduled. The one who wants to go kick that damn bike and tell it to stop reminding her of what she doesn’t have.

It feels so selfish and overwhelming.

But then I pick myself back up…and trudge upward, searching for peace.

So friends, please excuse me while I am selfish for a while. Be soft for me when my heart is hard.

We will have a beautiful life, with or without children…
We will have a beautiful life, with or without children…
We will have a beautiful life, with to without children…

Today I am choosing joy, but pardon me if tomorrow I can’t.

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Choosing Joy

It has been a week of emotional up’s and down’s, but I am happy to say I am finding peace.

While my mind changes every.single.day as to if I want to try IVF or head straight to adoption…I have a lot of time, so I am trying to not let it stress me out.

I think it may seem like I am stuffing down my feelings in an attempt to not really deal with my emotions. That is far from reality. I am very in touch with my emotions, but I am trying to let joy be the prevailing emotion. So do I break down crying at the topic of infertility mid-run on a windy, terrifying bridge…yep? Do I let it take my whole run? Nope. I laugh about the ridiculousness of where I chose to break down, I express why I am sad…and I carry on.

Many people have asked, how are you? My most hated question. I don’t really know how I am. One minute I am sad, one minute I am happy, one minute I am planning my adoptive family. Haha. A short, “I’m Fine.” seems to be the answer lately. I am happy to talk about everything we are going through….but sometimes, at the end of a long HAPPY day, I don’t want to let sad emotions seep in. I want to choose JOY instead of sadness. I AM choosing joy…so if I don’t express my sad feelings to you, I am not trying to hide anything…I am moving on and picking happiness.

..Because? We will have a beautiful life with or without children.

So what are some things I am doing to help me CHOOSE JOY?

  1. Planning. I am a planner. If you ask my husband he will tell you what a bond me and my schedule book have. HAHA!! I am allowing myself to plan for an immediate (2-5 year) future without children. We are planning a trip, and making goals…and I love it.
  2. Eating healthy. I got a little off track in all the infertility treatments, so getting back to eating whole foods, and storing up on nutrients is helping me feel my best.
  3. Exercise. It is amazing how cathartic running is. In many ways I can run away from everything….zone out…dig deep. In many other ways, running helps me to delve deep into myself and my soul and feel my feelings in a healthy way, and then push deep to let them go.
  4. Keeping busy. I find joy in a full schedule. I love being able to look at a week and know exactly what I need to do.
  5. Loving fully. I am trying to not let infertility to cause me to be hardened. I am trying to express my love to my husband and friends without holding back…because that is who I am, and I refuse to let infertility change that. 😉
  6. Simple Pleasures. I am forcing myself to take every day breath by breath. Smell the latte. Experience the flavours. Feel the wind on my face on the patio I am sipping the coffee. I am trying got be present, and ever amazed by the wonderful world we live in.
  7. Budgeting. Getting serious about our budget is helping me see that IVF/Adoption/Home ownership, etc. are not impossible and ARE in our future. It is also much less stressful to have a plan.
  8. Letting myself fall apart. In letting myself take 5 minutes in the moments I am sad to just feel bad for myself….I am able to deal with those emotions, and then consciously choose to move on. I am not dwelling in sadness, but I am acknowledging when it comes, and giving it a time limit.
  9. Giving to others. It is amazing how much joy can be found in helping and supporting others. I don’t mean financially. I mean really listening, caring, lending that helping hand when needed. I am trying to make this more of a part of my daily life.

Thanks for joining me on this crazy, but JOYFUL journey.
***If you find yourself free please join us to raise money for our refugee family. Beer night details if you follow this think…. https://www.facebook.com/events/799490583492942/***

Hope & Infertility

My Marathon has come and gone. I have a beautiful medal hanging in my kitchen…a perfect 42.2km technical shirt hanging in my closet.

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I have conquered one of my biggest life goals. Now… I have to put all of my energy in to a different but important one.

For those of you who aren’t aware. My husband and I have been struggling with infertility for nearly 3 years.

For three years I have debating sharing this with the world. While I have been very open with people I know on a day-to-day basis…opening myself up to criticism on the internet is a whole other ball game. Most people know the vague details of our struggle, few know the minute ones. I truly believe that couples shame and fear shouldn’t have to be hidden. I believe that community is so important in this journey…and for this reason, I will share as much as my heart can bare as we start the next leg of the journey.

Next month we will be starting to undergo a series of costly fertility treatments. While we have had some minor ones already-this is the “real stuff”. Within the next 1 month to 1 year, we will know if it is possible for us to conceive a child.

Over the last three years I have found a lot of ways to not get attached to the idea of a biological child. I resigned myself to adoption (which is definitely something I would like to partake in one day, but I would also love to experience pregnancy once if I am blessed with that experience), I told myself I didn’t really want children, I convinced myself I would be a terrible mother, I told myself children would interfere with my life goals…anything to avoid the pain that is infertility.

I thought I was okay with the life we have. I was okay with life without a biological child. I was very excited for the future…and where that may lead us with a possible adoption story. Then we met the fertility specialist. My whole plan going to the appointment was to confirm what I already knew in my head: I am a barren desert..and no forms of life will grow here. When I was given my “statistical odds” of becoming pregnant naturally vs. IUI vs. IVF….I was weary and hesitant. Then, something in the last week since my appointment has changed. I can’t stop researching fertility treatment statistics, reading success stories, etc.

Hope. Something I haven’t had in a very long time has resurfaced…..and it is utterly terrifying. For the first time in a long time, I think if the words “You can not conceive naturally” are thrown at me again…I might just fall apart. I feel so fragile…..anticipating the worst, and hoping for a miracle….

So now we wait, and hope. Within the next month our first treatment will start and we will start the waiting game to discover if we will become parents….

We are young, we are hopeful. Fingers crossed, Prayers sent. xo