"Now and then it's good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy. "

04 December 2010

My Brain

I'm still wading in my emotions right now and I want to come out. I want to be free of this journey but the only way to be free is to keep going through. But its really thick right now... and heavy. Its like a muddy sloppy trek through a thick dark forest and I can't see the end and I'm carrying a big pack filled with my gear that makes each step a struggle. The gear I carry with me is all the research I've done, all the statistics and protocol variations, all of the what ifs of cycles past and donor eggs of the future, all of the money spent and the knowledge of the money to be spent.

This journey can suck the life out of you  if you let it. Many of us who are multiple IVFers have found ourselves here, with a new set of sadness and struggles. We're past that point of the initial infertility shock and loss and failure. We're the veterans, the ones who's hope fades from time to time, who are past that shining star of the promise of their first or even second IVF.

I'm not saying our pain is any more than the pain of those who are successful on their first IVF cycle, let alone their first IUI, but I'm just saying we're at a different point in this journey.... Considering 4th, 5th IVF cycles, donor eggs, adoptions...

I think its different because we have to face the real possibility that we will never see our own biological child. (And I do know some face this without even attempting IVF... so please don't take this as anything other than one experience/perspective). That was not in view with my first IVF cycle 2 years ago, even our second... But now, its real. Its SO real that it hurts like hell. I've grieved that I can't conceive a baby the natural way, that I've made peace with. But now I'm grieving the possible loss of  my genetic child.

It makes me wonder how many of us are there? What percent of people make it this far? What percent are successful with their first IVF or with their first IUI? Am I the norm or am I the exception?

Anyways, B and  I spent a half hour at our clinic last night looking through donor egg profiles. It was a heavy night. It didn't feel right yet. It felt sad and strange and somewhat wrong. So I think that just confirms I'm not ready to make decisions yet.

We did however, lay out all the options the other night and here's what came out as when I tried to organize the mess in my brain.  Remember those old anti-drug commercials with the scrambled egg in a frying pan saying "This is your brain on drugs", well...

This is your brain on infertility:

For the math geeks in the audience,  I even calculated the probability weighted cost for each option (not pictured)


  1. I totally get it. When we were doing IUI, I always felt "well if this doesn't work then there is alway ivf". During the first ivf, I thought "sometimes it takes them a cycle or 2 to get it right". I am speechless now as I am mid cycle for my 5th ivf attempt. Veteran status is strange and weird and not a lable any of us would want to have.
    I am thinking of you as you try to make these difficult choices and figure out what you next steps are.

  2. My heart goes out to go!

  3. Thinking of you, Kathleen. I am sure you guys will make the best choice for you, but my heart goes out to you. Wishing you tons of luck with whatever you decide to pursue next.

  4. This makes me laugh. I should take a picture of the white board we have in our hall with a very similar decision tree. I'd be interested in your probability analysis.

    Please know that I don't laugh because this is a "funny" situation...I'm just laughing that we have done the EXACT SAME THING.

    How many people could you say that about:>

  5. I can't believe you erased our fantasy football draft picks from the whiteboard !?


  6. Thanks for the comment on my blog I don't think I will do a number 2 for 2 weeks......haha! Just kidding, I will go on with life as usual after today. Like you said it will be what it will be. Hope you are enjoying a good Sunday!

  7. I can totally relate to this post. I have been so blessed to have local friends going through IVF and we were all in the trenches together (not that I would wish this on anyone, but just nice to have people who understand). However, they ALL had success with their first IVF attempt or second in one case and then there's me...years later still trying. It feels so depressing to know that I am the "one" that this might not work for. PS - I am LOVING your whiteboard! Something I would totally do!