Wednesday, 19 June 2013

The struggle is part of the story...

by Bex

Yesterday morning I was crying.  I decided to write.  I wrote this post.  I felt better and now I am ready to share it.


Life is pretty shit right now.  


You might have trouble believing this with all of the exciting things such as bloggers events, new maxi skirts, zoo trips and recipes on the blog lately and by no means was my excitement about these things meant to deceive you.  In fact, they were more to deceive myself.  To distract me from the other, very upsetting part of my life I've been going through this last year.  I am constantly trying to remind myself there are good, fun things I can do to make life worthwhile.  I am sorry this is obviously a rather depressing post but I have got to the point where I feel I need to share.  It's such a personal thing and you may have remembered me talking about stress and life being difficult a couple of times over the last few months, relating to Nik's exam, job, etc. but the main reason has actually been our difficulty in conceiving.  We will never conceive without outside help and it's been a struggle to come to terms with.  I do share a lot of our lives on this blog and I am so grateful to those of you who made the effort to send a hug or message whenever I said I was feeling down.  Now you know why.  I don't want it to be a secret any more.  




I have found other people sharing their stories about fertility problems and struggling to conceive so helpful, knowing I'm not alone in having these feelings of disappointment, guilt, misery, hopefulness and just the sheer fact it feels SO unfair.  I know we're not the only ones going through it but sometimes it helps to be reminded that we're not.  When people all around are getting pregnant some so quickly and easily (and knowing a couple for whom it was a real surprise after just missing one pill, SO easily) and sharing their lives, be they at times difficult, it still twists a little inside.  I am happy for all of you who have started a family, however it happened.  Those of you who have struggled and those who it just happened for.  I don't begrudge any of you in the slightest but it still hurts when we just don't know if we'll ever get there.  A few weeks ago, after a particularly difficult couple of days, oblivious to the exceptionally bad timing, our neighbour came to tell us she's pregnant and due in August.  I just can't help thinking, why are they so lucky?  I can't help but be insanely jealous.  


It's difficult that most people don't know.  I wish it was easier to talk about it openly since if people did know I'd be less likely to get unintentionally hurtful comments from friends or family.  Especially as we have two family weddings coming up and we're likely to get asked about children, having been married for two years now.  I am an adult and can handle these potentially awkward (and, for some baffling reason, socially acceptable) questions but if they happen to come on a bad day, or phrased in the wrong way the scenario could get quite uncomfortable and I may be liable to explode.  

Hypothetical inappropriate relative/family friend: Oh how come we're not hearing the pitter patter of tiny feet yet, we thought you would have a rugrat in tow by now?!  
Me: We're so sorry to have disappointed you in our reproductive efforts but actually we've been really struggling for the last two years and may not be able to have children, thanks for the reminder at this happy event when I'd managed to forget about my misery for five minutes!  

Not the best, really.  And obviously I'd be much more likely to politely reply with the (presumably?!?) expected response: Oh, one day soon, hopefully, * insert jovial laugh*.



The only reason I haven't shared this story so far, when I do share so much of myself and what I'm up to, is that this obviously concerns more than just me.  I always thought I would share this story eventually, when our IVF worked and we were pregnant.  It has taken us both a long time to come to terms with what we are going through and it's only now I have felt able to share, with Nik's permission, our personal story in such a public way.  Some of you already know what we've been going through and I thank you massively for your support through it all.  Even those of you who didn't know what 'other things' I was was referring to in February - the messages I received and placed together in a post have been wonderful to go back and read over when I've felt down or lonely.  I'm sure you can imagine that feeling I had so little control over our lives in any aspect whatsoever at that time was just too much.

The treatment side of things hasn't been too bad.  It's the waiting, the not knowing, and more waiting.  The rollercoaster of emotions.  That's the killer.  

Sadly, our first cycle of IVF has just ended today in an unexpected way, at a stage we weren't prepared for it to fail.  It was a shock.  We were always trying to remain positive yet be realistic and were prepared for it failing at so many points but we were really starting to believe it was going to work.  It hasn't.  We're devastated.  We're back to square one.  And more waiting.

I am terrified it might never work.






44 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hugs and a handhold. Lorri x

Kirsty | A Safe Mooring said...

Oh, Bex. Sending you all the love in the world. It is so brave of you to share this, and I'm so sorry that this round of IVF hasn't worked out as you'd hoped. Waiting is always the worst part of anything like this, and I'm gutted for you to have to go back to the beginning again. Just know that we are all here, supporting you and cheering you on.

I know a wee bit of this heartache myself, and it really is so difficult to deal with other people's insensitive comments. I would LOVE it if you gave that honest answer - that would shut them up pretty quickly! Alternatively, you have my full permission to just punch them in the head, and I will personally defend you in court :)

Big hugs to you and Nik xxx

Fee said...

This made me cry. It's so eloquent and brave. When you first told me about this, I admired how positive you were and I am admire you now for how you have talked about it.

I hunk it's natural for other people's pregnancy news to be a like a punch in the chest if you've had any sort of issues. And people asking you questions should not be so rude but I am sure you handle them with more grace than they probably deserve.

I wish there was something I could say to help but I know meaningless 'It'll be fines' don't help - but I will say that I understand, in a different way, the endless feeling of square one and can keep you company whenever you feel afraid (even if it is from the other end of the country).

Sending you so much love xxxxxxx

Frances said...

So brave of you to share Bex (and Nik too) - I'm so sorry it hasn't worked out as you'd hoped so far. Sending hugs and have my fingers firmly crossed for the future for you both xx

orangemush said...

Oh bex. Thank you for sharing this, I hope it helped writing it, I think sometimes it does.
Muchos hugs and I'll be keeping all my appendages crossed
X

Lauren Kerr said...

nothing to say except sorry to hear the bad news, had everything crossed for you. hugs to you x

Siobhan said...

Oh Bex this is heartbraking. I'm sending you both all the love I can. xx xx

briony said...

Hugs Bex, I really wish there was something helpful I could add but you've got all the love & support in the world. You're such a strong person. Big hugs xx

Briony

Lorna said...

Sending you so much love, bex. Sharing this will make a difference to lots of other women, and it's so brave of you.

The comments (WHY DO PEOPLE THINK THIS IS OK?!) are so tricky to deal with, I hope you find a way that helps you to cope, preferably without ending in assault (although this should be allowed...)

Shall try and keep a lid on the pregnancy tweets, had somehow forgotten how they made me feel last year, it's so hard to read when life is being just plain unfair.

Lots of love.

anna and the ring said...

Oh lovely.

I feel for you both. And hugs to you both.

It's those off hand comments that really catch you when you're feeling at your lowest ebb.

Trying is hard. I have some close friends going through similar things.

But keep trying. That's all you can do. If you ever need an extra hug xxx

Amanda M said...

Words seem pretty empty and futile to make any difference to what you're going through but I could wish that there was something I could write that might help.

I think it's brave of you to pour your heart out - and hopefully it makes it less isolating. I have friends going through this and for some reason it seems a particularly lonely time. Hopefully you will find some support here too and know you are never alone (in the most non-creepy sense).

And I too would love you to give that response; about time some people thought before they opened their tactless mouths.

Lifeasanhourglass said...

Thank you so much for sharing your journey so far Becky it's incredibly brave and inspirational. I have a very close family member going through something similar and you have perfectly captured how she feels, it's beautifully written.

I'm sorry things haven't gone to plan for you both so far as I have no doubt you'll be the most amazing parents. Sending hugs your way xxx

Anonymous said...

Dear Bex,

Sometimes sharing is a step forward in the healing process. It has been for me.

I am in the same predicament as you and I know it is so hard. We are doing IUI. My first one worked but then I had a miscarriage. Ugh. SO unfair.

This week my best friend told me she was pregnant-she got pregnant on her honeymoon, first month they tried. I am over then moon for her, but oh, when she told me it felt like I had been slapped. Once again, so unfair.

I have come to the conclusion that conceiving just takes longer for some couples than others. This makes me take a deep breath, sit back, relax a little and hope so much that it will work again.

I will send you an email so we can be in contact.

Lottie x

Amanda said...

Oh Bex, I am right there with you as you know, and I feel your pain. I wish so much that this will be over for you and Nik very soon. It is hard... but the rainbow is there at the end (even if we don't know so, we must believe so, gather up the pieces, and hope it will work soon, somehow).
I am so sorry to hear your IVF cycle did not go.
I'm sending you all the hugs and love, and if you ever need to talk / rant / vent, I am there, just send me an email anytime.

Caroline W said...

I have nothing to say which hasn't already been said. Thank you for sharing your story.
You are so brave and I can only urge you to stay positive.
I wish you so much love and luck for the future and I hope you get everything you wish for.
Having been one of the people who has had to smile when I have been told about friends pregnancies when all I've wanted to do is cry I can do nothing but reassure you that even though we've never met I can always offer a shoulder.
Lots of love xxx

M-J said...

I feel for you both. I can't even imagine what you are going through but I hope that one day you get the outcome that we all wish for you, and that baby will be the most loved in the world. Sending you hugs and hope. x

Lynky said...

Becky my love, this is a wonderful piece of writing and you explain your pain and frustration very well. Despite the fact that you feel the world is against you and life is so unfair, you just have to read all the love and support from these wonderful ladies to know that life can only get better when you have friends like these, thank you ladies. Thinking of you both
as always. Lots of love Mum xxx

Bex said...

Thanks Lorri
x

Bex said...

Thanks Kirsty, I went back to find your old post about those comments and questions to link to! I'll bear that offer of legal defense in mind ;) You've made me smile.
Xx

Bex said...

Thank you Fee and thanks for the email. Wishing you stupendous luck also! Xx

Bex said...

Thank you so much Frances!
Xx

Bex said...

Thanks Gemma, I really do find writing helps! Appreciate the appendage crossing :) x

Bex said...

Thanks Lauren xx

Bex said...

Thank you Siobhan xx

Bex said...

Thanks Briony. I know I am lucky in some ways and having all you guys supporting us is amazing :) x

Bex said...

Lorna please don't feel you need to do that! If I'm feeling down I just avoid my general twitter feed. I've already started writing a post referencing just that in fact! It's my issue if I feel jealous and you should never feel you can't be publicly excited about your pregnancy! I hope one day I will be all over twitter with such excitement! :) xx

Bex said...

Thanks Anna! It's amazing and scary how many people we and our friends know who are going through similar issues! That's one of the reasons I wanted to be more open about it. Xx

Bex said...

Thanks Amanda, I'm hoping now it's properly out in the open we won't get any such questions but you never know.
Xx

Bex said...

Thanks Laura! Good luck to your relative as well xx

Bex said...

Thanks Lottie, it would be good to keep in touch via email. That's awful about your miscarriage. Getting over all those hurdles and it can still go wrong even if you get that far. It really is SO unfair and so heart breaking but as you say, you just have to keep going.
Sharing really has helped and I am overwhelmed by everyone's messages! Xx

Bex said...

Thanks Amanda. I often think of you and you're one of the people I referred to as being open about everything and sharing. Thank you. Xx

Bex said...

Thank you Caroline and the same goes for you. Sorry you are going through troubles as well. It really is such a difficult thing to deal with. Xx

Bex said...

Thanks M-J! Xx

Bex said...

Thanks Mum. I'll copy and send you all the tweets I received as well, they're a pretty amazing bunch aren't they! Xx

Anonymous said...

I feel a bit strange commenting as we don't know each other & it's not something I've done before but your beautifully written post touched a nerve & I felt compelled to comment. After many years of "trying" we too had to accept that our dream of having a family was not to be without outside help & our 10th wedding anniversary present to ourselves was several rounds of IVF, eventually we were lucky & our IVF "baby" is now 18! However, 18 years ago the world was a different place & we didn't feel able to be as honest & brave as you - our friends & family only found out about our IVF when we announced our pregnancy - it is the one thing I regret as there were many instances over the years (especially early in our marriage when everyone seemed to expect "that" announcement) when a well meant enquiry had me down for days. I really admire your openness & truly believe it is a much healthier approach. I wish you both all the luck in the world with your journey to parenthood, however it comes, you seem to have a wonderful supportive circle of friends & family who I'm sure will be there for you every step of the way, best wishes for a happy & healthy future Helena S x

Carole said...

Great post, so honest. It will help others. As someone who ended up not having kids (and as a cancer survivor) I can't tell you how many thoughtless comments have been made. (I particularly hate the "how are you, the cancer hasn't come back?" question - what are you supposed to say? I generally say I hope not) Hang in there and keep as positive as you can. Suggest you take on something that soaks up time so you can't think about it all the time - will give you a wee mental rest.

Roz M said...

Look at all the lovely comments from our beautiful readers, I can almost feel the love through the page :D

This post is so brave and you will undoubtably have helped others who are going through something similar. I am so lucky to have you as my friend and please never forget I am here for you always xxx

Penny said...

Bex I just want you to know (well I know you know but I'm saying it anyway!!) that it's totally normal to feel all these things especially the dark stuff....I hope you are giving yourself a break and being as kind to yourself as much as you can. I think you're incredible for talking about this, I wish I had been able to. I know for a fact it will help, ditto for you being your fabulous upbeat self even when you probably don't always feel like it underneath. Thinking of you lots right now and wishing you strength and patience for the horrid waiting limbo.

Lots of love

Px

kates said...

Hi Bex, I didn't want to read an run - sending you big hugs right now, very brace of you to share this. Keeping my fingers crossed for the future for you both xxx

Becca said...

Bex, I'm truly sorry to hear this, such a brave thing to write. I wish both you and Nik all the best in the future - my fingers are firmly crossed for you! X

WestEndGirl said...

Bex,

I read this post seconds after you tweeted a link to it. I can see how much courage it has taken you to write it and hopefully even typing it out has maybe helped in some sort of small therapeutic way. You are so positive in everything you do - I wish there was something I could say that you haven't heard before. Try to stay strong and keep the postive vibes going.

Thinking of you and sending you big hugs xx

steff said...

Oh Bex! This is such a beautiful, honest and brave piece of writing. I can't begin to understand what you and Nik are going through right now but I wanted to add my voice to the others in offering my support and admiration for you. You're a amazing lady and I have everything crossed for you and your journey ahead. Much love xxx

Janie said...

I've walked your path. I have the well worn shoes as a reminder, if I ever needed it. It changed me forever, yes in some less than positive ways but mostly positive ways. I met some amazing people along the way, some insensitive twits too and it was a hard time for me and my husband at certain points in the journey. We faced decisions and challenges when considering trying to have a baby I'd never have anticipated as we naively walked in to married life. My advice...you can only ever deal with the here and now. Don't venture into the fantasy of what the future might be like, stay grounded in the present, it's a place full of love and kindness. Remember you are loved and loving. Remember you are brave. You'll become grounded in science, facts, figures, counts, levels but always remember hope and miracles can never be underestimated in their ability to turn up unannounced to all involved. You are stronger and more capable than you know.
I have battle scars. They fade in time. But they remind me what I am capable of, and with gratitude for what eventually came our way.
There's room for all sorts of magic and miracles in this world. Go forward in courage.
xxx

Gaynor {Our Day by Design} said...

Im so sorry im so late in commenting but just wanted to echo everyone else in sending you lots of love & hugs. It is so brave of you to share this and im sure in doing so you will also help lots of others going through similar things. Im so sorry the IVF didnt work as you hoped this time. xxx

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