Tuesday, September 3, 2013

No Miracles Here

I'm not going to hit post on this until I hear back from the doctor's office, so you can assume that if you are seeing this, there was no great miracle (not that I expected one, but I know some of you did).

Another day, another blood test when I already know the result is negative.  At least this specimen box still amuses me every time.  

So, here's where I am:  I no longer believe that Assisted Reproductive Technology can fix whatever is wrong with me and that this is the way that I will become a mother.  I just don't.  I've hit a wall with it, and I hit it hard.  I can't imagine the world in which all of these negatives, when we are doing everything we can, will suddenly turn into a positive. I am tired of it.  I'm tired of the physical pain, the emotional torture, and of failing and failing and failing over and over again.  I find no hope in my heart when I think about continuing down this path and I am starting to really fear where it will lead me emotionally. I've been doing a lot of reading about trauma, PTSD and infertility and am recognizing some things in myself that are a bit scary and that are not improving the longer this goes on.  I will write more about this in another post at another time.

I was reading, the other day, this article on the Resolve website about how to know when it is time to move onto adoption and right at the beginning of the article is this paragraph (emphasis theirs):

Making that leap from infertility treatments to adoption is not to be underestimated. But how do you know when it’s time? Most adoptive parents say that they wish they had done it much sooner instead of wasting significant time and money on unsuccessful treatments. But they are speaking as happy parents with 20/20 hindsight. The turning point for many couples is when they realize that they would rather be parents than be pregnant. Often, around this same time, is when the idea of adoption begins to no longer seem like the next step in a series of failures, but rather the first step in an exciting journey that will end in success.  When you can embrace it in those terms is when you are emotionally ready to begin.

It just struck me.  I read this part again and again and again and I called Ian and I read it to him:
Often, around this same time, is when the idea of adoption begins to no longer seem like the next step in a series of failures, but rather the first step in an exciting journey that will end in success. 

I almost cried when I read that.  I am so tired of a series of failures.  So tired.  Suddenly adoption feels less like a consolation prize and more like a taste of hopefulness.  With adoption, I can be a mother.  With the path I have been on so far, I can not.  So, I think that's where I am.

I know it's not that simple.  There is a lot to process, there is a lot for Ian and I to talk about, and there are those 9 frozen embryos sitting in a lab at UCSF.  Also, Ian is not quite there.  But the time has come to at least add adoption to the conversation in a serious way.  I have a meeting with Dr. Tran in a few weeks, and I've told Ian and our nurse both that I will do another frozen cycle with the three embryos left that are supposedly also great quality.  And once those 3 embryos die inside my uterus like the last 9 have, I think I will be done.  Ian is taking steps he needs to take to process for himself where we are and where we are heading.  

I need to figure out how adoption works. I know infertility treatments.  I don't know adoption and it feels big and unknown and hard and new.  I will take any solid information anyone can give me about what has worked for them, especially in the Bay Area.

So, that's it for today.  No miracles here.  


  1. Sorry for my ignorance... but I'm curious to why they haven't tried just putting one embryo in? I only ask because I had a friend successful IVF all three times this way, she said IVF is more successful this way. I know everyone is different but why do some doctors choose three over one? Maybe just for her? Just wondering. I know you know way more than you likely ever want to about the reproductive cycle. If you are tired of answering questions np.

    I love that statement you quoted. Very powerful:
    "Often, around this same time, is when the idea of adoption begins to no longer seem like the next step in a series of failures, but rather the first step in an exciting journey that will end in success. "
    A little light at the end of one of the tunnels maybe?

    1. That is inaccurate information, actually - your friend must've been confused or had a very different and specific case where that makes sense. The more embryos absolutely = the more likely that one will stick. The decision for how many to transfer is based on diagnosis, age, and the goal of a singleton baby, not multiples. Someone who had one embryo transferred at a time must've been younger and/or likely to succeed based on diagnosis, thus they didn't want to put more in for risk of more than one baby. The reason I had 2 at a time for awhile was based on my age and diagnosis, and after multiple failures we switched to three because the risk of multiples went down as it seemed less likely that all my embryos would work given that none had so far.

  2. oh how i wish i could take some of your sadness and throw it into the ocean so that it could dissipate into the miles of salt and turn into hope and happiness on some farther shore

  3. I'm sorry, Lady. Thinking of you and your Hubby.

  4. Thank you for your reply Sharon. Yes that makes more sense to me thank you (diagnosis and age with number of embryos).

    Sending our love.

  5. Hi Sharon; I know we've only met a couple of times since I mostly know Ian from Danger, but I wanted to give you a virtual hug. Also, I was adopted as a newborn and currently have an unexpectedly wonderful relationship with both my mother (my father has passed away) and my birth family. If it would ever help you and/or Ian to chat about adoption from the point of view of an adopted child, I would be happy to do so.

    1. I'm also an adoptee and would be happy to chat. I think being a parent is about committing to love a person you haven't met. Genetic relationship doesn't make that little person any less mysterious. And the core commitment to love a little stranger is what makes you a parent.

  6. I'm so sorry Sharon. I'd love to here your thoughts on PTSD and infertility and what kind of research you were able to find.

  7. Much love from our end to the both of you. That is a seriously powerful opening paragraph. I can see why you (almost?) cried when you read it. Sending you healing thoughts in every possible way.

  8. Hi Sharon,
    I've been following you quietly for some time... I'm in the same boat and unfortunately am currently pregnant with a non-viable. Found out while hubs and I were about to start a donor egg cycle. Needless to say the trauma and stress have not stepped aside. I was struck by your comments on your PTSD. I see an EMDR therapist who has helped me so much throughout my (too many) years of infertility. She has told me without question that infertility is CTSD - chronic traumatic stress disorder. If you're interested, I'd suggest checking out this website and maybe seeing if you can find a good therapist near you. It has really saved me, many times over practicing these techniques. If you want any more information about EMDR first, just ping me. http://www.emdr.com/
    Big hugs - hang in there, I'm rooting for your success!


  9. "the first step in an exciting journey that will end in success."

    That's really beautiful. I wish you your success and I hope that moving onto a new step is a positive for your journey as well as the end result.

    - Crystal W.