Infertility Survival Day
So, this blog post may be a bit heavy. We’re talking about infertility today since it is National Infertility Survival Day and the Crazy House struggles with it. If you want to turn back now, that is perfectly fine. National Infertility Survival Day is always the Sunday before Mother’s Day. Anyone struggling with infertility can find Mother’s and Father’s Days very painful. This day is a chance to pamper yourself or those around you who may be fighting a mostly silent fight. Infertility affects both men and women and is often a taboo topic to bring up. It is a painful situation and one that often leaves friends and family at a loss on what to do or say. I plan to do another blog post in this infertility series about the best way to approach a situation where infertility is an issue, but that is not my focus today.
As many of you know Hubs and I have been together for almost 15 years. That is over a decade of dreaming of a family, peeing on sticks, and quietly crying. It has not been easy. In college we were careful, but once we decided that a baby would make our family whole, we stopped being cautious. And nothing.
Years went by, and still nothing. Another year and we had better insurance and could finally get in to see actual doctors. The result, infertility. There were problems on both sides of the process. Both Hubs and I had issues and the chance of us conceiving even with the help of drugs was slim to none. We looked into treatments, surrogates, and even adoption and fostering to adopt. For a couple that existed below the poverty line it was synonymous with being able to book a flight to the moon. Hours, days, weeks, and ultimately months were sacrificed as we looked for ways to make our family whole. We wanted a baby and weren’t giving up.
So, it was around the time when we were SERIOUSLY considering taking a mortgage out on our home (as it was paid in full thanks to a foreclosure deal and 30k in life insurance Hubs was left) for adoption fees when we took a REALLY hard look at our life. We were young (early 30s), fairly healthy, Hubs had a good job, I had a flourishing business, and most importantly we were HAPPY. The want and need for a baby were causing some serious stress and heartache but during the times we weren’t focusing on that, we had never been happier. Hubs and I had a VERY tough talk one night and the end result was something that 5 years younger me would have never fathomed. We decided it was OK to not have a baby and more importantly, we knew we could be happy if we didn’t have a baby.
It wasn’t an easy decision and by far the hardest we ever faced as both a couple and individuals. We had both been moving toward the decision independently so it was almost a relief when we broached the subject together. We were tired of the heartache, the testing, the continual question from others on when we would have kids (don’t even get me started on that topic) and just the overall process. We both felt like we were waiting for a baby for our life to start and frankly, we were tired of waiting. So, we stopped. We moved on.
It was HARD but a year later we are even more steadfast in our decision. In a few weeks, both hubs and I are having procedures done. I have had HORRIBLE periods since I was 8. And by horrible I mean two weeks long with super heavy, pain filled cramps that would put me in bed for days on average of every other 2 weeks….it is horrible. This has gone on for 20 years and is most likely a cause of my infertility issues. So, since kids were out of the picture finally, we looked into options to ease the pain and suffering. Both Hubs and I felt the pain no longer was needed. It was worth suffering through when we still had plans to have a baby but we decided enough was enough. So, I’ll be getting an ablation and ridding myself of my uterine lining to (hopefully) stem the painful period issues while still keeping the important bits to avoid hormonal issues. With this procedure, it is possible (and HIGHLY dangerous) to get pregnant so Hubs is also electing for a vasectomy, just in case. This huge step for us feels right. We don’t have the resources or as strong of a desire for kids as we once did. I grew up wanting to go to college and make a better life for me so my kids could have the world like I never did. I’ve let go of that dream and it is surprisingly freeing. Instead, we are focusing on living our life and spoiling our niece and nephews to no end. We are making big plans and rather than that ever-present “when we have kids” or “if we have kids” we are working on the here and now. We are looking at vacations and trips, even contemplating selling our house and moving in a few years where we would have enough space to possibly foster (tiny house bars us in our state). Rather than putting our life on hold and waiting, we are going to live our lives and enjoy them.
As a side note, if you are struggling with infertility and having a hard time coping, PLEASE see someone. Many women centers offer counseling and can help with the emotional state. The desire to have children can be crippling both mentally and emotionally. It can be extremely overwhelming when you are on the poverty level as the options are so far out of your price range it is ridiculous and can manifest in other ways (drinking problems, drugs, anger). So, don’t suffer in silence. There are even support groups on Facebook that may offer help.
Be sure to remember, it is NOT just women who struggle with infertility either. Men (Hubs included) often take it really hard too when faced with a childless future. We are all humans and need to remember that. Here is a great link to find ways to pamper yourself or your loved ones -----> How to Celebrate National Infertility Survival Day