Thursday, January 6, 2011

Limbo

limbo
[lim-boh]
noun

1. in Roman Catholic theology. . . .

2. a place or state of oblivion to which persons or things are regarded as being relegated when cast aside, forgotten, past, or out of date: My youthful hopes are in the limbo of lost dreams.

3. an intermediate, transitional, or midway state or place.

4. a place or state of imprisonment or confinement.

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I think the last three definitions of this word do a pretty good job of capturing where I am these days.  More than just being in transition, I feel, at different times, like I have cast aside my dreams of motherhood or that I am trapped/stuck/stymied.
 
My mood and the intensity of these feelings varies from day to day, and sometimes hour to hour.  Sometimes I think "F$%* it!" and want to forget about any more "trying" to become a mother, no matter what the route.  In that mood, I indulge in elaborate fantasies of how I will spend my money if I don't have to spend tens of thousands of dollars on fertility treatments or adoption (and, later, providing for a child): the (luxury) car I will buy, the vacations we will take, the student loans I will repay early.  I remind myself of various comments I've heard from friends over the years: "parenthood is overrated," "stick with dogs, they're easier," "enjoy your freedom," and the like.  I dwell on the negative side of parenting that I am currently avoiding: the sacrifices, the lost sleep, the time it would take away from work, the "I hate you, Mom!"s I would surely hear eventually.
 
Then, at other times, I find myself on the verge of tears, thinking about never having a child of my own.  Oddly enough, this mood doesn't usually hit at times I might expect, like when I hear of (yet another) friend's pregnancy or when I am around small children.  No, sadly (and inconveniently), this mood is more likely to strike on random afternoons when I am at my desk, hard at work on some project. . . . afternoons much like this one.
 
Officially, we are "looking into" embryo donation.  We may well go that route if the right situation presents itself.  I would find that preferable in many ways to trying to adopt a newborn, and as many of you have said, the jump from DE to DEm is a short one for the woman of the couple.  I have drafted a profile for Miracles Waiting (though I have not posted it, as it is way too long and needs extensive editing) and put out feelers through another online connection as well.
 
Unofficially, I am sad and confused about where I want to go from here.  I am tired of dealing with infertility and want to move on with my life.  In the nearly two years I have been writing this blog, so many people I know, both in real life and in this community, have achieved pregnancy, while I have been stuck in the same place.  (Don't get me wrong: I'm happy for those of you in this community who are "livin' the dream."  It just highlights where I'm not.)
 
We are no closer to our goal of becoming parents today than we were when I did my first IUI in April 2009.  In fact, in many ways, it feels like we are much, much farther away, given my ever-advancing age and the fact that we've only ever seen one short-lived BFP in nearly three years of TTC.  In April 2009, I thought we just needed "a little help" to get pregnant and was confident I would be having a baby of my own by the end of the year.  (Ah, the naivete.)  Now I know that the chances of our ever having a child who is genetically related to us both are slim to none.
 
Why is it that so many others seem to see the obstacles in the road as challenges, battles to be fought and won, while I continually wonder if this is the way The Universe has of telling me to take a different path?  Three years ago, I would likely have told you that I wanted to be a mother as much as--if not more than--anyone I know.  Now I question whether my unwillingness to do absolutely anything to achieve motherhood means that I just don't want it as much as others.
 
[SIGH]

The last thing an Overthinker like me ever needed was an extra few years to deliberate on the rightness of a decision.  When I tossed my birth control pills in April 2008, I was excited about becoming a mother.  Realistic, but still excited.
 
Now?  If I could wake up tomorrow and find myself unexpectedly pregnant, I would still be ecstatic.  But I'm just not sure I have it in me to continue fighting this fight. . . . which makes me feel like even more of a failure because, compared to most of the women whose blogs I follow and who leave me comments here, I haven't "done" much.  Though we have been TTC for nearly three years, we only did six treatment cycles, four of them with IUIs in addition to meds.  We have never done (and never will do) IVF with my eggs.  We haven't done a DE cycle.
 
Clearly I am no longer in The Good Place I was before MM decided that he didn't want to spend the money on DE.  I thought I had resolved most of my feelings about my infertility, but now I think all I really accomplished was resigning myself (for lack of a better word) to DE IVF.
 
I am headed back to see NC, my counselor, next Tuesday and am hoping she can help me sort out my feelings.  We shall see.

9 comments:

  1. Sending lots of love your way - I think your feelngs are completely normal and I wish I could give you a hug in person - thinking of you.

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  2. I hate that you're going through all these feelings. It's just awful. Know that we're all here for you.

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  3. I completely get where you are coming from. It is so exhausting to continue the fight. Sometimes the path to least resistance is to stop fighting. I hope the counselor can give you insight into what you really want.

    It's so hard when the universe is gettting pregnant except yourself. I think it's only normal to feel sad at times. Hang in there S.

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  4. I so understand where you're coming from. *hug* I'm another in this community who feels like she "hasn't done much" and I've been trying for the better part of 15 years now. Our circumstances are such that I highly doubt we'll ever do IVF or adoption. I don't think that changes how much I want to be a mother though - life is different for everyone - It's been my dream for as long as I can remember. But I too sometimes doubt and think "maybe I'm better off without kids". Infertility certainly leaves too much time to second guess...

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  5. Just want to put a note of solidarity up. I'm still here 5.5 years in without anything to show and have been lapped by even other infertiles more times than I can count at this point. LOL.

    I feel so much of what you described. After spending the past year going to therapy where we mostly talked about adoption, reading adoption books, attending adoption seminars, and even an 8-week pre-adoption support group, my hubby had a change of heart and adoption is out of the picture.

    Sometimes it is all just so much to take in and switch gears. Finding acceptance in alternate family building methods is hard enough without all the additional changes.

    It sounds like going back to your counselor is a good idea to sort some of this stuff out. Of course, we are always here too to fill in the gaps. Hang in there.

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  6. I feel the same way a lot of the time...maybe I just don't want it enough, or as much as other people. I think it's to be expected that you're struggling right now...you came to terms with a plan you were comfortable with, and now that's changed. I hope the counselor can help you sort things out.

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  7. I am glad you have a counselor with the history. It is complicated at is most simple points. They are so good at directing you through the analysis, though I suspect you are talented at this yourself, considering your career.

    Think with your heart not your head. Well, a combo anyhow.

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  8. I'm so sorry for all you're going through. What a way to start the year. Be thinking of you.

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  9. Hey, anytime you start to feel like you haven't done much, just pop over to my place. My vast inertia will make you feel like a go-getter.

    Sorry, joking aside, you've really been moving through some serious things over the last few months. Things are going very, very fast for you, both in terms of what the possibilities are for parenthood and in terms of what you and your husband are open to. It's totally understandable that you feel like you're in limbo.

    And regarding this: "Now I question whether my unwillingness to do absolutely anything to achieve motherhood means that I just don't want it as much as others." No. N. O. Full stop. I think that medical science, for all the miracles it can work, can trick us into thinking that there is always one more procedure just around the bend, one more intervention we can try. It can be absolutely unending, and not being sure how far you want to go in terms of real and invasive procedures on your own body is NOT in any way a reflection on your desire to be a parent.

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