After much mental debating, I’ve decided to let the topic that consumes my mind out onto this blog in hopes that this might allow others to talk about it, as well as a way to ask for a little help.
If you are reading this, you probably know how much I love children. I am often teased that if a baby is within 100 feet of me, I need to hold it, or known as having “baby-dar”. Tommy and I have been trying to conceive for almost a year now. I feel the need to say right here that anyone who has hinted at us that we should have our own children recently should NOT feel bad, there is no way you could have known because we don’t talk about this with too many people. Which leads me to why I am blogging on the subject. In a world of pregnant couples, I feel all alone even though I know there has to be someone going through the same emotions I am.
I guess this whole process started when I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. That means that my thyroid needs a boost form daily medicine to balance the hormones that run my entire body. When my doctor finally found the cause of my headaches and 12-hour nights of sleep I was thrilled… until she scooted closer to let me know that it would probably be harder for me to become pregnant. Even though I cried on the way home at that thought, I was fairly optimistic. That was two years ago.
Tommy and I decided to wait to “try” until after we got back from Africa for obvious reasons. All of the couples around us were having “oops” pregnancies, so we figured it would only be a few months. Well, those few months passed and some unusal things were occuring that kept leading us to think “this is the month” and time and time again, it wasn’t. So we went to my doctor and gave her the calendars of information about my body that Tommy never wanted to know, but now (unfortunately) is casually comfortable with. She told us we were doing everything right and because of my thyroid condition, she referred us to a fertility specialist at 6 months of “trying”.
We went through a series of tests and at the end of each one the phrase: “Everything looks perfect” was both a relief and frustrating. A relief to know that your body looks to be functioning normally, but frustrating because I am the kind of person who wants an “ahh ha we found the problem and are going to fix it immediately” solution. The only test I have left involves exploratory surgery. Our fertility specialist doesn’t seem worried because of our positive test results, our age, and the fact that we haven’t passed the typical one year of trying that most people have to go through until they are referred to a fertility specialist.
I am pretty good at putting on a smile about it when people ask. The truth is that it is tearing me up inside. You name a place I go on a daily basis and I guarantee I have cried there multiple times. I have some really good friends that know me well enough to ask the right question or give the perfect piece of encouragement at just the right time. On the other hand I have a few people that know what we are going through that just like to make casual jokes about what “we should be doing”, while it wasn’t hard for them to conceive at all. Sometimes I feel like I must be the only person in the world who is struggling so much with this because no one talks about it. It seems more socially acceptable to talk about STD’s than to discuss infertility, which makes it a silent struggle. It is as if people look at you differently as a woman if you are unable to conceive at the exact time you would like to, which dates back many hundreds of years I’m sure. That is why I think no one feels comfortable to bring the subject up. Woman’s bodies are designed by God to carry a child, and maybe it is hard to talk about because they feel that their bodies are “broken”. The truth is that you can pee on every ovulation kit that is out there, measure your BBT every hour of the day, plot out every calendar, and still you have only a 20% chance every month of getting pregnant, which you can’t really control anyway.
I have googled this issue to death and no longer allow myself to read the heart-breaking stories or statistics about it that you can find online. I know there are couples who have been struggling with this for 10 times as long as we have, and I can’t even imagine how they are coping with it. It is getting to the point where it is hard for me to see a pregnant woman without feeling sad and I NEVER wanted nor thought I would get to that point and I am doing everything possible to reverse those thoughts and emotions. School just ended and on the last day I found myself sobbing at my desk while my students were at Music. I think that I was a little more attached to this bunch because while we were silently struggling to have a child of our own, I still got to see those 28 children and care for them and teach them each day. They were a tiny dose of therapy without even knowing.
Let me just say that Tommy could possibly be the most sensitive, wonderful, thoughtful man alive. He has been to every doctor appointment to hold my hand even if he had to drive 30-minutes for a 5-minute appointment. He knows every month when to send an encouraging email with words to make any heart melt. He prays and prays and prays and has undeniable faith that it will happen. I would not, and could not go through this without such a wonderful friend and husband. We both feel like we would make good parents, but I am sure that is no different from any other couple. We also feel that God placed this on our hearts, we just need to wait and listen for his plan and not our own.
What this boils down to is that we need prayer. Lots of it. I can’t even begin to tell you how emotionally draining this process is and how hard it was for me to just spill it to the world. It is one of those things you can never imagine unless you have gone through it. It has brought Tommy and I to a new appreciation for each other and our marriage is stronger than ever, but on an individual-emotional level, I know I am paddling upstream and it is getting increasingly harder for Tommy as well. So we ask you for prayer. Bold prayer. Prayer for patience, prayer for strength, prayer for guidance, prayer for a child.