Why choose now to share my story? I told a friend about my plans of writing and telling the world. The friend rightly said, ‘Not hiding is great; but posting is totally different to not hiding’. It’s true. I’m conscious of the fact that once it’s out there in the open, I’ll be vulnerable, and I could be a subject of matter discussed. However, I’m already feeling vulnerable having gone through this and gossip is already rife. That’s what has prompted me to write. Perhaps it might resonate with others, or not. Perhaps it’s just something I need to do. Whatever the reason, I feel it’s the right thing to do. For now, at least.
I’d like to point out that those who are already going through this journey know exactly how it feels (even though circumstances are different for all and each story is different, no matter the journey), and they can each provide you with their own version; they’re pros in this field after all. I’m writing to let the other side of the world know; the ones who have no inkling as to what this journey involves.
So, what does 6 years of TTC involve? Other than your life been taken over and now my biggest fear is peeing on sticks (it has surpassed my previous fear of swallowing pills), for me it has involved a whole bunch of things.
Hundreds of medical tests (I once had 21 vials of blood drawn out – no, this is not something I would joke about), nutritional advice, various supplements (the fear of swallowing dissolves after popping about eight different pills in one sitting), hypnotherapy (with the promise of continuing to hypnobirthing if one should ever get to that stage; ha, the irony!), theta healing, acupuncture, reflexology, yoga, meditation, spirit babies, a laparoscopy, dye test, immunology, a hysteroscopy, injections after injections and IVF. Multiple IVFs. I think that covers it all. (All the while, hoping and praying each month that I’m pregnant.)
Hey, at least no one can fault me for being mediocre.
I. HAVE. DONE. IT. ALL. And still no baby. And no, don’t tell me that I just need to ‘relax and let go’. (FYI – Don’t ever tell that to anyone who is trying for a baby. It takes all their willpower not to punch you in the face.) ‘Let go’ of what exactly? The hope and dreams that millions of others have and achieve? Or to surrender and accept a different reality? (You know, one of the lures and advice that some IVF clinics use is to explain how in war-torn countries and others who are in horrendous situations [like rape] still conceive. You can agree or disagree with this.)
I do not know if it a society thing or if it is in-built in to our human psychology; but, we are engineered to always put all our efforts and concentration into something we desire. Live it; breathe it; feel it … isn’t that so? So, for those who think the solution to my lack of baby is that I need to relax, how exactly should I carry on without putting effort in to it? How do you propose I go in to IVF half-heartedly and really ‘forget’ about what it involves? How exactly should I ‘let go’ of something that has been a part of my life for all these years? Perhaps writing this is my way of letting it go. Perhaps accepting a different alternative is. Just how unfair is that? I agree, when all else (science and the likes) fails, you are almost forced in to a position to accept a different reality. But don’t minimise the gravity of TTC by belittling it and sugar-coating it with the word ‘relax’. It is not a sweet anyone wishes to savour.
And what if I have relaxed? What if I am (and have been for several months at a time) at that stage where emotionally and mentally I am calm? I do meditate after all. I’m doing things that make me happy. I’m not over-exerting myself. Then what? I’m still in the same situation I was as before.