Updated: Mar 27, 2020
Starting to sink in that ICSI is coming soon
It’s definitely sunk in over the last week or so that we’ll be trying harder than we ever have before to have a family and I’ve been feeling undue amounts of pressure and emotions from all angles.
I‘ve mostly been feeling overwhelmed but also a little ungrateful as I know how many women would kill to be in our position.
We’re under 35, have ICSI funding on the NHS and ultimately an opportunity to start our family that we didn’t have before. We’ve been poked, prodded, sampled, quizzed and finally got the thumbs up to begin.
There are so many feelings, some explored and some not that I find it easiest to write them out in a list... I love a good list.
My goodness am I tired. Physically my body is screaming out for a rest, I get to the weekend and all I want to do is stay in my pyjamas and binge watch absolutely anything and eat my body weight in cheese. I’m mentally exhausted, we’ve been through so much this last year even outside of fertility investigations that I’m not sure how much more my mind can fit in there.
I am so over the moon to finally be trying something else. We’ve had funding approval for a while which was followed by so many investigations into whether or not I’d need surgery first. So we’re really pleased to have a plan in place to start after our holiday. I’m excited at the prospect that there is a possibility we’ll become a family and I will be a mother. I’m so keen to make Tom a daddy. This really could be it finally!
Literally shitting it about everything. In the grand scheme of things, being frightened of needles seems a bit silly but I am terrified about injecting myself daily. The pain, yes, but also, what if I do it wrong? There’s so much pressure on it working that I’m worried I’ll mess it up. I’m also so scared of it not working, which we’re aware is a very real possibility. I’m so scared that we will go through 6-8 weeks of preparation for it to be unsuccessful and then we’re back at square one with so many other decisions to make all over again. I know I’m thinking too far ahead and trying my best to be positive but it’s very hard. There are risks involved at every stage of the process that we discovered at our patient information meeting last week so it makes it feel slightly more realistic.
Contradictory to my last paragraph, I know, but occasionally I feel positive about the whole experience. It’s a chance we didn’t have previously, if it doesn’t work we will have at least tried and there is around a 40% chance that it will work. There is also a part of me that is positive about learning more about my body, it’s capabilities and how IVF works.
I feel distraught at times that we are having to go through this to have a family. I feel in a state of mourning when I’m at my lowest that we‘ve been unable to conceive naturally, like we’re broken somehow or we’re fighting against nature’s intentions for us never to have children. Maybe this wasn’t meant for us and we’re pushing it too hard? I feel sad that we haven’t had that experience of discovering we’re pregnant naturally and feeling super clever that we’ve made a child unaided. And that we’ll never experience that feeling.
Information overload. Quite simply. When I first started this blog I was on some sort of righteous mission to share everything and spread the unspoken word of infertility. I wanted to hear about everyone’s experiences of it to feel less lonely and read about all the possibilities we face to get where we want to be; IVF, surrogacy, egg donor, sperm donor, adoption, whatever else. These days I’m feeling overwhelmed by that information. I love coming on to my TTC Instagram and trying to keep up to date with others’ stories but sometimes it’s hard and I feel selfish. Sometimes I just want to be Glenda again and ignore what’s going on until I’m ready to face it again. I do a good job of this most days, but generally there isn’t a day that passes where I don’t think about our infertility at some point.
7. Strong AND Weak
I feel tough. Mostly when my friends say that I am. “You’re so strong to go through all of this.” And it does empower me. It makes me feel proud, like I’ve already achieved so much. But then there are days where I’m not (see pyjamas and cheese reference in point 1). I feel tired, I don’t feel ready to try it, I feel jealous of friends with families planning their magical little Christmas celebrations and I feel like giving up on our opportunity and just succumbing to a child free life. And that’s what kills me the most. Like I’m a fraud somehow to all the friends that think I’m doing so well.
I am so ready to get started. ‘Just get it done’ is one of my favourite mottos in life and I am known to be fairly impatient! I wanted to start immediately but it feels sensible to wait until after a nice break. I’m also ready to be a Mum. I feel like this whole experience has tested me, pushed my boundaries and I feel like I’ve fucking passed already so let me have my turn!!! I’m doing my best to get healthy, joined a gym so I can tone up, lose some muffin tops and feel like I’ve done everything to prepare my body for what’s coming. I’ve even cut down on the cheese, ok?
I feel so grateful that we have an amazing support network around us to go into this. Our families have been amazing, friends have popped up all over the place and we generally feel like everyone is rooting for us on some level. Oddly I feel grateful for social media and the world it opens up to create communities that can have conversations about potentially awkward subjects and raise awareness of those subjects. I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with social media. I hate that it collects so much information on you, but I love to share! It brings out the best and the worst in people.
There is a small part of me that feels somewhat defeated before we’ve begun IVF. Resigned to the fact that it won’t work so I can feel less disappointed when the time comes like I’m prepared for it some how. Then I have this atrocious habit of planning for that time and needing something else on the list as a backup plan. So I start researching other options if IVF fails and then begins again the cycle of feeling overwhelmed!
I am sure I’m not alone in some of the feelings listed above and it feels good to journal them. If anyone had any tips on how to cope with this phase or the next when it starts I’d love to hear them.