Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Going Back a Year...

Emotion is so hard to capture outside a moment. I knew that when I decided not to write about the treatments in real time. I just couldn't. Once we made the decision to try one last time, to give IVF one shot, I just went silent. It was too emotional, too hard to put it all out there, too hard to even put it in "print" privately. It was all I could do to just walk it out and put my heart and hopes in God's hands.

It was a year ago today I took the home pregnancy test...or at least I think. I remember taking the test when I got back from Greatdaddy's funeral.  David was still in Oklahoma, flying back the next day. I had to get back for work on Monday. Two lines were visible immediately, not like the barely-there-had-to-imagine-line I got with Ethan. I wasn't scared with Ethan. I was immediately over-the-moon happy. I felt happy this time, too, but also strangely disbelieving and the fear was already creeping in.

In the IVF preparation class, the nurses advised us not to take a home test because you are scheduled for a more accurate blood test 2 weeks after the transfer, anyway, and they try to encourage couples to minimize the emotions...your body is high on hormones that might skew the test anyway. But there was no way in hell I was going to wait for a phone call after a blood test...I was grasping for anything that would make the process feel more normal again.

I had been doing injections and blood work and ultrasounds for weeks. Many days I had to be at the hospital by 7:00 am for a blood test and ultrasound before work at 8.  The injections were broken down into one week of suppressing drugs (one injection a day), 2 weeks of stimulating hormones (two injections a day), and one shot for the LH surge that would get the eggs ready to release--a hormonal and emotional roller coaster ride to say the least. The tears well in my eyes even to recall these small details. In fact, I've read many an infertility blog and I never could understand how women put every 1:_____, day 2____...this many eggs retrieved, this many mature, this many fertilized, and heart was too fragile for a play-by-play.  Still is.

I remember laughing one morning at the memory of being scared of needles as a child, "Wow, look at me now, giving myself a shot in my stomach!" I'll never forget the day of the egg retrieval...the horrible pain I was in for the next 24 hours, on heavy pain killers just to try to take the edge off enough to sleep through the recovery. It's not painful for everyone. You're put under for the actual procedure, but I had bleeding into the lining of my abdomen and I was in quite a bit of pain from the moment I woke. I remember joking with David in that super sterile environment, with nurses coming and going, that some people (actually, most people) get pregnant having SEX.
What a novel idea.

But even as I joked about the craziness of baby making in an IVF department, it still hurt. It hurt to be reminded that while others were upset when they accidentally got pregnant, we had come to THIS place...this far to try to make our dreams come true and pursue the creation of family we believed God wanted us to have. The whole process felt like the antithesis of intimacy. So many people and drugs involved in a miracle that is still ultimately in God's hands. We did love each other through it, loved and supported each other in ways that don't happen in the privacy of a bedroom. And you know, it was intimacy... intimacy of the heart and not the body.

...and though it may sound like we had faith, hope, and love, neither one of us thought it would work, but we believed we were supposed to do it anyway.

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