Dealing with Infertility

I honestly detest getting in bad moods.  It just seems like when you get in a bad mood, nothing really makes you smile.  You think about the negative things and have a tendency to focus on the problems more than the solutions.  Every time I go out in public, I see families.  I see moms and dads playing with their children and it leaves a gaping hole that no one can truly understand unless you’ve been in that position. 

When I was 19, I got pregnant.  I was almost six months along before I even knew it because my body wasn’t giving me the signs, or if it was I honestly didn’t see a difference.  When I went for prenatal care, the doctors gave me the most devastating news any mother to be ever wants to hear.  The baby wasn’t going to survive.  I was so anemic that there was nothing that could be done and they doubted that I would survive the labor.  After a lot of hard praying and researching, I went for an amnio to see just how bad the damage really was.  My baby wasn’t getting enough oxygen or blood to survive the delivery.  My heart just dropped.  The doctor assured me I would be able to have more children.  As hard as the decision was, I did what the doctors highly suggested. 

Fast forward many years.  I was 34.  My marriage was on shaky ground.  I got sick as a dog only to discover I was pregnant.  I was happy.  I really thought that finally I would have a chance to have the child that I so desperately craved.  About 12 weeks into the pregnancy, I suffered a devastating miscarriage.  My husband was too engrossed in his own world to take me to the hospital.  The night I lost the baby, I knew my marriage was over.  My husband was so concerned about his video game that he didn’t know what to do when I said I needed to go to the hospital.   I called my folks and had them come get me.  By the time I got to the ER, my Blood pressure had dropped to 57/42. 

I know by telling my story that some of you will be the first to throw stones and say that I never should have listened to the doctors.  Let me tell you, unless you have been in that situation, you have no idea how many emotions someone is dealing with.  To this day, I still question if I made the right decision or not.  I made the decision that was right for me at the time and I can’t go back and change it.  I will never know if my child would have defied the odds or if I would have managed to survive but the odds were not in our favor. 

I’m now 50.  I still have no children.  I’m currently in the middle of changing professions, I’m not willing to settle for someone who is not willing to be a partner in all areas of my life.  I know what I want and I’m finally ready to take some chances that I’ve evaded for years.  I’m re-aligning friendships by getting the negative people out of my life.  When you are constantly surrounded by negativity, then how do you expect to stay positive? 

I’ve volunteered a lot with kids over the years.  I made lots of mistakes but I also did some really good things.  I know without a shadow of a doubt that some of those kids really benefited from knowing me and I know my life is richer because of them. 

If you have been reading the other blogging site that I do for Friedens, then you are very aware that I believe in God.  I make no apologies for being honest about what happened.  I am always striving to learn as much as I can. 

So many women struggle with infertility.  They also struggle because they have lost children.  Society creates a stigma that you aren’t normal if you don’t have a family.  They tend to tell you to go out, find a partner, or a man, that you can just magically have a child with.  No offense to anyone, but if that’s the criteria then we have a really messed up sense of logic in this world.  We have so many children in need of good homes.  The foster system is overwhelmed with children who have either been abandoned or their parents weren’t in a good place to take care of them.  Some of it could be financially, emotionally, physically, or even stability.  The point is there are a lot of reasons why kids are in the system.  The worse part is that some of the kids are in the system for the wrong reasons. 

As I am getting my feet back on the ground, my life is full.  I’ve made peace with the fact that I won’t be able to have children and if I have a family, I will have to either foster or adopt. The problem with that is that it’s really expensive and not the easiest thing in the world to make happen. It pains me when I think of my ex husband who found a look a like who he had a child with. It’s hard to understand why some people are easily able to reproduce while others struggle with this. No matter what life may throw at you, no one deserves to be criticized for their inability to produce. I’ve made no secret that jobs have penalized me for being childless and for those that think it doesn’t happen, wake up. It not only happens but it’s another form of discrimination.

I hope if you are struggling with this issue, that it helps to see others open up about their struggles.  It isn’t about slamming someone for stupid decisions.  Believe me when I tell you there are enough people who will gladly do that for you.  But it is about realizing that you are worth taking those new chances.  You might discover who you really are without having to worry about what the person you love thinks.  It’s a journey that challenges you on every level.  After the loss of each of my children, I was hit with extreme loss.  For a long time I just went through the motions.  I didn’t want to deal with what happened.  I felt like I was a horrible mother.  I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t carry to term when so many other women could. 

I later found that I had severe fibroids. It was causing my miscarriages. I had done a study to try to get some relief from the constant pain that I felt. I had learned to conceal the pain but when I was alone, I would curl up in a fetal position and not want to move. When the study ended, I didn’t want to go back to a lot of pain. I made the agonizing decision to have a full hysterectomy. I no longer live in pain but it took the option of biological children off the table. For me, it was the right decision. My plan is to finish my education and start fostering a child and if that doesn’t work, then I will continue to help children anyway I can.

Eventually, I had to learn that it wasn’t about me.  Miscarriages happen to more women than what people want to talk about.  Complications in pregnancy are more common than people want to discuss.  You aren’t alone.  When you are ready to talk to someone, do it.  If it makes it easier to share your story, then share it.  We are all people with emotions.  I’m taking a chance by telling my story.  I hope some of you will take a chance and tell yours. 

Just remember it isn’t your fault. Research everything and never let anyone make you feel bad about decisions you made in the past. You are the only one who knows what’s right for you. Deal with your emotions and your journey. Just because you are going through this doesn’t mean you won’t have children. I’ve seen so many cases where women who couldn’t get pregnant finally did when they least expected it. We make our choices in life. The beautiful thing is that once we are able to determine what path we need to enter, we can move forward. If you choose to continue infertility treatments, the road is long and every person who takes this option understands it’s expensive and not a guarantee. Nothing is. But the rewards are great when invitro works and there’s been many cases that it’s helped families recognize their dream. It can be costly and devastating when it doesn’t work. Adoption and fostering are intense and society has made it more difficult to adopt or foster a child. The system needs work. But if you truly want children in your life, you find ways to make it happen. Love doesn’t have a price tag. I hope each of your are able to make your dreams come true and can have the families that you may be desiring. Never give up. After all, anything worth while is worth pursuing.

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