Friday, April 29, 2011

Aftershocks of Infertility and Failed IVF

So, I've written all about our failed IVF treatments.  I've told you how they affected us while we were going through them.  I have not yet told you about the aftershocks.  They rippled through our entire lives, and affected us in countless ways.

First off, we agreed to jump right back on the bandwagon.  We were going to try IVF again in October 2008.  But then the fighting started.  The harsh words.  The blame.  The avoidance of each other.  The drinking to forget (for me).  Our relationship went downhill, and it went so fast that no one even realized how bad it had gotten until we hit rock bottom.

Rock bottom started on the day that we started sleeping in different bedrooms.  Then K moved out and in with his mom.  We talked less and less, and when we did, it was always fighting.  I remember the day my boss put an offer on the table for me to move for work.  I told him No, but then when I told K about it he freaked and thought I said yes.  We screamed at each other over the phone for my entire 2 hour drive home.  That was the night that we started sleeping in different rooms.  He moved out right before Thanksgiving, but we still hosted a family dinner.  It was the absolute pit of Hell for both of us, and ended with me locking myself in my bedroom bawling.

We started to live our own lives.  We starting talking about divorce.  We couldn't look at each other.  But he did tell me that I would have to file, that he never would.

I finally went back to my boss and told him I was interested in what he could do for me to move, 4 hours away.  I needed out.  A week later, he offered me a moving package that I couldn't refuse.  I told K.  He was upset, but took it in stride.  Looking back now, that move was the best thing for us at the time.  We were so angry with one another.

With the decision of divorce, we both started dating other people.  I moved.  He went back to school.  We both lived the single life, and for a time, loved it.  We still had to talk because we owned our house back home.  I had started going to church before I moved, but now I started RCIA classes and decided to be baptized catholic.  We spent a lot of time talking about the rite of marriage and it hurt to know that I was throwing that rite away.  I started realizing how much I missed K, the him before we dealt with infertility.  The me before we dealt with infertility.  I was afraid to admit that to him, or even really myself.  I continued to date, so did he.  I got counseling, and slowly came to grips with the tragedy I had endured, with the loss of my babies, and inadvertantly, with the loss of my love, my husband. 

Slowly, the talks became less fighting and more talking.  We became friends again.  We even had some talks about the people we were dating.  The more we talked, the more we talked, if that makes sense.  I started finding myself checking my phone to see if I had texts from him, even when I was with the guy I was dating.  That became my sign.  I knew what I had thrown away.  K had always said I would have to file for divorce, but I could never bring myself to do it.  But I didn't think he'd have me back.  Not after what I had done. 

I ended things with the guy I was seeing.  K and I started talking more.  I was so afraid to let him know how I felt.  He was no longer dating anyone either.  He said it though, he was stronger than I was, 'Let's try this again.'  I was so afraid, afraid that it wouldn't work, and that one of us would hurt the other.  We had plans to see each other over Christmas, and I told him that we would see how that went and go from there.  He agreed.  We talked about it more and more.  We saw each other a couple of times, but it was a non intimate situation.

Then the other shoe fell.  The one thing that in my mind could ruin any chances of making it happen.  I never realized that in the long run it wouldn't have that effect at all.

I found out I was pregnant.

Somewhat ironic that someone who thought they couldn't get pregnant ended up pregnant 'by accident.'  I thought I knew my cycle, but I messed it up one month.  I forgot that while I always considered US infertile (and still do), I forgot to remember that I could get pregnant, that we suffered from severe Male Factor Infertility, and there was 'nothing' wrong with me.  I got careless.  When I found out it was a moment of pure joy, I was elated beyond belief, then I had the moment where I thought to myself that it was the wrong situation. 

The day I told K I cried so hard.  He took it well, but he cancelled our plans for the night and went out to have his alone time.  I was devestated, and had prepared myself for single parenthood.  But I was wrong about K.  He called me and said, 'you know, this is what we always wanted.  wanting this almost destroyed us, and now we've been offered a miracle.  I love you and love our child.'  He also pointed out that we were getting divorced, that he made the same choices that I did, he did the same things that I did, but he really couldn't get anyone else pregnant.

He opened his arms and took me back, with unconditional love.  I'm not saying we haven't had to work hard, because we have.  We had a lot of hurdles to get over, a lot of apologizing and forgiving to do.  But we did it.  We made it in one piece.  We learned how to communicate.  But it has all been worth it and now we are stronger than ever.  K adopted Bug, so we are truly one unit, one family, Bug is his daughter, period.  We even have to catch ourselves before giving K's medical history for her. 

I was baptized at Easter last April.  I was 6 months pregnant, and it was right before my 30th birthday.  I thank God, literally, for giving me my life and love back.  I thank him for making me see the light, I thank Him and my counselor for getting me to accept and move on from my demons.  We go to church every week, with very few exceptions.  We have finally found GodParents for Bug (virtually no one we know is Catholic), and are getting ready to baptize her.  Every day, every week, I thank God for K, for Bug, and yes, for our sperm donor.  I thank God for helping me to get back on path, and to help keep me on it.  When I struggle, I talk to K now instead of keeping it in.  I am, in a good way, a changed woman.

The wrong situation turned out to be the best thing of my, of our, lives.


  1. I thought what a brave woman you are to bare things as you have... up somewhere near the top of your post. I contemplate this type of bravery, but haven't decided if I'll try to tackle it or not.

    Then I continued on. Wow. If I thought you were brave at the start, I don't know what the superlative of bravest is now that I've read to the end. But whatever it is, you are.

    I don't have this exact experience at all, but I do understand of how something that goes pretty much the opposite of how you'd hoped can still turn into something more beautiful and perfect than you'd dreamed.

    Great post.

    PS It was okay to laugh... I was laughing, too (when I wrote it anyway). :+)

  2. What a brave post, so honest and articulate. Your little Bug is so blessed to have parents who are so committed to being there for each other and for her. What a beautiful gift to give her - and each other - making your marriage and relationship a priority.