I usually do not pledge any changes in the form of New Year Resolutions. I try to live my life day to day and make alterations when necessary and celebrate happy times and milestones when they come. I understand the meaning of a new year, a fresh start. I enjoy wiping the slate clean. In my office I am a big fan of new calendars with no marks or smudges, packing up the previous year files and creating brand new, pristine labels for crisp manila folders. Preparing new budgets and goals for the year is very satisfying. I have a different outlook in my personal life. Every day is a chance to change my life for the better (if I have the energy).
I am glad that Mel at Stirrup-Queens asked us to share our Resolution Posts because I have been thinking about something very important. Trying to formulate the post, I just could not come up with a good title. For the first time in a long time I am categorizing the year of 2010 for change in a couple of different ways. Here is one example:
I had a bit of a revelation during December. After visiting with my RE, the thought occurred to me that our infertility journey may have been completely blown out of proportion.(Note- this RE is our second doctor after a few years at a previous practice.) Yes, I seem to have Polystic Ovarian Syndrome. Yes, we have male factor infertility. Therefore, we would have difficulty conceiving on our own. Whether time heals all wounds or not I am not sure. However time does provide clairvoyance. It has been 3 years since I ended my TTC journey through medical intervention. I am not sure exactly when but at some point it became clear that my cycles were rather regular and I am ovulating. Five years ago I was under the impression that I may only ovulate 1-2 times a year. Trying to mastermind that would be worse than trying to win big at the casino. Things seemed pretty dismal. Our "severe MFI" has now turned into moderate to severe. The numbers have varied and are not the best but not the worst either. We did discover that I have ANA and ANC anti-bodies which can now be remedied somewhat.
My point is that I have talked to many, many people in the past year. I have heard different stories of how they ended up in an RE's office. This has forced me to look back on our experience as rushed and done without enough research. At times I get angry because it is possible that if we had taken some time to try and conceive on our own, see what my cycles would be like without drugs, maybe learn about lifestyle changes and fertility in general, we would never have made it to the fertility clinic. I try not to think about what could have happened because there is no changing the past. Every event led us to being parents of our beautiful son. The "What if's" are not worth muddling over. But, they can help us avoid making the same mistake- selling our bodies short.
My Resolution for 2010 is to try and conceive. You read that right.
My cycles are pretty regular. Why can't I buy some OPK's and try to figure out my body and when I ovulate during my cycle? Why can't I make some lifestyle changes such as cutting out caffeine, alcohol, and exercising more to try and make my body more healthy in preparation for getting pregnant? Our last IVF slammed the door of conception in our face. What I realize now is that I allowed that door to close and stay closed. I really believed that my body was broken to the point that I would never get or stay pregnant. I do not feel that way anymore.
I have put a lot of thought into going down this road again; however, I do not feel like I am setting myself up for failure. Us infertiles know what failure feels like. We play the hope lottery all the time. I look at this as something I have to do so that I do not wonder for the rest of my life if we could have done more on our own to have a baby. Do we really need all the drugs and procedures? We do not know because we never officially tried on our own. Some people get pregnant with absolutely no effort. Most women have to figure out when they are most fertile. We will have to do that and then some. For instance, I will have to take baby Aspirin for the anti-bodies, we will have to make sure we boost our fertility with diet and exercise, we will have to be extremely aware of a pregnancy in order to try and sustain a pregnancy that may occur. I can come to terms that staying pregnant will be difficult unless we take the necessary measures. But every woman has to worry about miscarriage. I am no different. I am just a bit jaded.
We shall see what the future holds, but I feel good about this realization. I understand that technically we are infertile. Technically our chances of conception are that much lower than 90% of the population. Screw the statistics and my negative frame of mind. After six years I have come out of the fog of impossibility. I am taking control of what I have left of child bearing years and will give it my full attention. I am taking a stab at thinking of myself like most women- TTC the old fashioned way. Conceiving in private and on our own terms. Something in my heart is telling me this is what we need to do. This is the next step in this extremely difficult and mind-opening journey. It is a step toward closure on our baby making abilities. I won't be left wondering because we will have done everything we needed to do so that we can move on from this part of building our family.