My brother phoned me a few minutes ago to tell me his girlfriend was pregnant.
I burst in to tears, muttered congratulations, told him I had to go and immediately hung up.
2 days before my scan and this is the phone call I get. While I’m fucking full of hormones.
It’s a reaction I haven’t experienced in so long and to be honest I’m annoyed at myself for reacting the way I did. But I can’t lie to myself. I thought it didn’t hurt as much anymore, but I guess I was wrong.
I always imagined going shopping with my mum while she browsed the rails for clothes for her first grandchild. I pictured her excitedly telling her workmates that her first grandchild was due in a few months. I love that she gets to do all this, it just hurts that it won’t be my baby she’s talking about. I know what you’re thinking; who needs a baby with me around ay?
I’m jealous. It’s horrible to admit but it’s true. It’s a shitty emotion and one that’s almost impossible to hide. How am I going to face him and act okay?
They’ve been together about a week (I’m exaggerating of course) and she’s still legally married to her ex. And already has a 2 year old. And here’s me – married for nearly 5 years and painfully and frustratingly trying to have a baby for most of that time to no avail.
It sucks. There’s no other way to describe it. Or maybe there is? It’s shitty. It’s unfair. It hurts. It makes me feel things I hate feeling. It makes me feel like a bad person. Like a bad friend. Like a bad sister.
I had another IVF appointment yesterday; this time to have an internal scan and collect some meds.
They scan you a few days after your period stops to see how your lining looks. They want it to be nice and thin before they can make it thick again. (It’s a strange process)
For some reason a “thin lining” always sounds much more pleasant than a thick one don’t you think?
Anyway, she had a look and it seems my little reproductive organs are looking fantastic. Lining is perfect. I took this as a good sign. (last time it was too thick and we had to come back two days later).
The nurse who scanned me was the same nurse who was called to take me to the ward after the ectopic. She remembered me. At first I thought I must have made a great impression, then I realised it’s probably because she’s not seen too many IVF twin pregnancies resulting in miscarriage AND ectopic. Either way, I’m obviously very memorable.
I left the appointment feeling much more positive. Much more excited. I’m allowing myself to look forward to the possibilities. The “what if’s” are much happier this time around.
I’ve been reading “The Secret” recently and I am in no means exaggerating when I say it’s changed (and changing) my life.
If you haven’t read it, I won’t go in to too much detail but it essentially tells you how your thoughts are so powerful and they become your reality. It’s through reading this that I realised how negative I’ve been over the past few years. Even thoughts like “I don’t want to be late” can be construed as negative.
I’ve been crippled with self doubt and low self esteem and it largely stems from experiencing so many losses. But recently I’ve been making changes. Hubby bought me a mini journal and I’ve been writing positive thoughts in it and reading it every day. I’ve been looking at my body and telling myself I look amazing. Why is it, that as women we’re not allowed to do that? That if you’re proud of your body, or you compliment yourself – people don’t seem to like it? I think you should all try it. Write down positive notes to yourself and read them every day for 2 weeks and see how you feel after it?
My confidence has grown (I’m still a work in progress) and I feel so much more relaxed and positive. I’m not getting stressed and anxious about as many things any more. I remind myself every day of what I’m grateful for and I really do believe I’ll achieve anything I want to.
I’m going in to this next round of IVF as a much calmer, more excited person. I used to say “What if this fails, what if I lose the baby”? I was always worried and panicking, but now I’m going in to this saying
“What if we have a baby?”
I never really shared my last round of IVF with anyone. I’m an advocate for telling the “12 week rule” to go fuck itself (apologies for colourful language) but for some reason I wanted to do the whole thing alone.
Maybe out of fear? But isn’t that what I’m speaking out against. Talk about it. Tell people what you’re going through. People want to support you.
I say these things to people over and over again but strangely, I chose not to follow my own advice and where did it get me? Up baby loss creek without a bloody paddle.
I needed people to know what had happened. Why I couldn’t be arsed going out for dinner. Or why I was popping pretty high dose painkillers every 4 hours. Or why there were stitches all over my bloody body and why I had grew 2 dress sizes over night. (I swear the laparoscopy put a couple of stone on me)
This time it’s different. I’m sharing. Social media, family, work, friends, strangers. Whoever the Hell wants to listen. If I want people’s attitude to change around baby loss then the change has to start with me.
So, on the 21st June I go get my drugs and we start attempt number 3. And I’ll shout it from the rooftops. I’m no longer afraid of “jinxing” it. Going in to it with that thought is already starting on a negative footing and I’m all about going in to this much more relaxed and more positive.
I’m excited about what our future holds. I know other people are excited too, and I want them to be a part of it this time.
Another Facebook pregnancy announcement that wasn’t mine today.
I was fine with it. I “liked” and commented. I mean, if that’s not worthy of an award I don’t know what the hell is? (Apart from this blog of course, did I mention I’m nominated again? Not shortlisted yet – so fingers crossed)
I’m getting distracted. Focus Nicola. Yes, I was ok. It still reminds me I’m not quite there yet, but it doesn’t bring the same pain it once did.
I made the phone call to the IVF clinic today too. I told them we’re ready for our next go. Third time’s a charm right?
I’ve been feeling a bit fed up of this journey recently. No, “fed up” isn’t the write term actually. It’s too negative sounding. “At peace” is better. I’m at peace with whatever happens now.
I’m no longer in a rush to get pregnant or start treatment or have a baby. I’m not desperate anymore. And at one point, I was. Desperation is a horrible emotion. It rules your thoughts and your well-being and poisons everything around you. I’m not the same person I was four years ago. I’m not desperate anymore.
As Doris Day once famously said
Que sera sera
I’ve been absent again. I don’t even know what to say anymore without sounding like I’m making excuses. But I have been really busy. Moving flat, work, end of term coursework.. the usual.
I haven’t made any more IVF appointments yet. If it wasn’t for college I probably would, but I just can’t afford to take more time off. My logical mind fights with my hopeful heart constantly.
I’ve had 3 pregnancy announcements in as many months and every one has been difficult for me. More difficult than it’s ever been. I often think about stopping and just resuming normal service. But then I think;
Will I lie on my death bed with regrets? With wishes I had kept on trying?
It’s just always there isn’t it? Babies on adverts, babies on TV programmes, babies on the bus, babies in the local cafe, babies knocking on your door saying “Hello, I’m super cute but you can’t have me. You suck. Bye bye”
I feel I’m the last one to get pregnant. Everyone I’ve met through this journey, everyone who went through a loss, everyone has had their happy ending. And yes they still hurt. Yes they still mourn their lost ones. But their story has the fairytale ending. I’m still in the part where the wicked witch has me under a barren spell. When will my fairy godmother come and wave her baby dust wand? Will she come at all?
I loosely call myself a blogger, then have the audacity to discard my writing whenever I feel a bit too overwhelmed.
I promised you all a ‘warts and all’ tale of IVF and miscarriage but, sometimes it’s hard for me to find the desire to write when all I want to do is watch crappy TV, drink wine and have bubble baths.
It’s funny because the past few weeks have been okay for me – I’ve been so busy with college work, real work and moving house that I havent had much time to think about anything else. But.. of course there’s a but.. I had a slip up last night….
I bought my stepson a photo frame to give to his mum for Mother’s Day. It has space for around 6 photos so I had a browse through her Facebook to pick a bunch of photos that I thought he might like to choose from. Scrolling past a bunch of pictures I suddenly thought “Oh Nicola, why don’t you pick a baby one? That might be nice”. Yeah well. It wasnt.
I seen two photos of my husband with Kian as a baby. One he was holding him, looking in to his big beautiful baby eyes, and the other they both lay on the floor – heads touching – fast asleep.
It felt shit knowing I never got to experience that with him. Knowing that I might never get to experience that with him. It’s such a difficult thing to face and come to terms with and no amount of bubble baths or red wine will shake that. (It’s probably not the best idea to try shake it using wine anyway to be honest)
I love my husband and I love my stepson and it kills me to think I might never be able to add to our family.
I know I still realistically have a lot more tries through IVF, but mentally I don’t think it’s going to be quite as much as I first thought
I haven’t written for a while and it shows. I’m really struggling this time. On the outside I look fine but in reality I don’t think I’m coping at all.
5 years ago, I was so happy. In fact, 4 years ago to this day, I was happy. I was still on honeymoon. Still positive. Still confident. Still blissfully naive. Still pregnant.
Everything else in my life is suffering now. 2 months of no work and no pay. I’ve only just got back to college and I haven’t been at the nursery much at all. The one day I did go was a total disaster. Hint: being around 45 toddlers isn’t the greatest idea after you’ve just lost twins.
I’m crying all the time. If I’m not crying, I’m feeling shitty anyway.
I don’t feel like me anymore.
I’m feeling it today. I’ve been so conscious of physically recovering from my surgery that I think I neglected to think about what else it meant.
I lost my baby. Again.
I saw another pregnancy announcement on FB today and it hurt. It’s been a while since one really affected me. But today just felt different for some reason.
I was so close. I hadn’t been pregnant in so long that I forgot how 2 little lines on a stick could make me feel so much joy.
I had twins. Twins. And just like that, they’re both gone.
It’s fucking shit.