May finally came, we got through monitoring, we tried our best to stay calm and Zen. I went to acupuncture multiple times a week in an effort to do everything I could for success. I took vacation from work during the cycle so I didn’t have to deal with any other stress and could just relax. The egg retrieval came, we got the eggs, and we waited to hear about the fertilization reports.
The next day I was in immense pain from the retrieval. I did not have this the first time around and it scared me that something was wrong. I spent a lot of the day resting in bed recovering from surgery the day before, waiting for my doctor to call me back. When the phone rang, I answered and he had a weird tone in his voice. He told me the news; none of my eggs even achieved fertilization. He told me that we were waiting on two more, but that that things did not look promising.
Once again I was thrown into this mode of complete loss and desperation. Why could we not catch a break? Were we ever going to have a baby? My doctor told me that my body needed to rest a little bit before we started the next cycle, which we would use Akiva’s frozen sperm in. Waiting all that time for something to happen felt like forever. It felt like we would never get to our goal.
Somehow, the next time we did a cycle, the little embryo stuck, and grew and grew. I found out exactly one year after our first negative pregnancy test that I was pregnant. I was so nervous. We had never had success before, why would this be any different? Something bad was going to happen.
It is hard when you have had years of being told only bad news, to believe that good can happen. You get yourself into a mindset of negativity because you don’t want to get your hopes up that anything good will ever happen in your life. If you don’t get your hopes up, then you don’t have to be as depressed when it fails. The truth is, every single time, you get your hopes up. Every single time it hurts just as much when it fails.
Every month I went to the doctor, I waited for her to tell me that something was wrong. I finally had to change my mindset very actively and focus on the good things in life. I started planning for my baby and accepting that this was actually going to happen. Once I did that I was able to be excited about the future.
I spoke about this with my therapist and she agreed that I have post-traumatic stress disorder like so many other people who have gone through treatment for infertility, specifically severe infertility. When you break into a cold sweat and your full body begins shaking when certain doctor’s names are mentioned. Getting overly emotional when thinking about certain times in my life. Vivid emotional dreams about procedures, phone calls, and appointments we have had in our journey and waking up terrified. It is very hard to go through something so overwhelming and come out with no trauma or long lasting effect on your body and not expect the worst in every situation.
Only once I gave birth to my daughter and heard the doctor say that she had a perfect APGAR score, then heard another Pediatrician tell my husband that she was the healthiest baby she had seen in a long time, did I start to breath. At that point I started to fully enjoy my life again and live in the moment and celebrate the amazing life God gave us to raise.