Just about this time last year I was preparing for my 30th birthday. I was doing my best to hide a pregnancy, as friends and family wanted to make plans for a big celebration. But there ended up being no dirty 30 celebration for me. Instead of being inside a bar, I was inside of an operating room at Ochsner undergoing a D&C. It was not quite the 30th birthday celebration that one dreams of.
One week shy of my 31st birthday I find myself at a fork in the fertility road and am struggling with the path to take since it has been just about a year since my miscarriage and more than a year that we have been trying for baby number two. I have what is known as Unexplained Secondary Infertility: the failure to get pregnant after having given birth one or more times. There, I said it.
When I got pregnant with my daughter it took no time at all. I had no reason to think this time would be different. But month after month and no smiley face on a pee stick, I went to my doctor for answers. After many, many tests, this Secondary Infertility thing got real. We have two options.
We can undergo fertility treatments, or we can continue the wait and see approach with the realistic idea that we will have only one child.
To date, I have been pretty quiet about this entire situation. I have only talked about it with my closest friends and parents, sharing very little information. And the only reason for that is I really don’t know what to say. And, if I say it, then it makes it more real.
I know this is a decision that we need to make together, but my outlook changes on it daily … and I am not sure I’ll ever reach a decision on my end.
On one hand I am scared that the fertility treatments won’t work and the reality of that is heartbreaking. Of course we are so blessed with our daughter, but it still is very emotional to want a second child and not be able to have one. It crushes me when my daughter asks me why all of her friends have brothers and sisters and she doesn’t. Of course we want to give her a sibling; it is just not happening.
But, I think I am almost more scared for the fertility treatments to work and be pregnant again. The idea of undergoing another miscarriage is one of the things I think about most. I am not sure that I am strong enough to handle that. Or the endless worrying that I am sure accompanies being pregnant following a miscarriage.
This is scary, and this is real. I can’t believe that this is where I find myself. I thought that if I was able to get pregnant so easily the first time that we were in the clear for fertility issues. I didn’t think that if I already had a child that I could be infertile. I am often in denial that this situation is even happening.
The emotional highs and lows that I have experienced in this journey have been hard. One day I feel so defeated and the next day I convince myself that I don’t care. But deep down I know that I do care. Is one child God’s plan for us? Are fertility treatments safe? Could I come to terms with abandoning the idea of having a second child? What happens if I lose another pregnancy? These questions haunt me.
Friends who were due when I was are now holding their babies in their arms, and I am still sorting through this emotional mess with no light at the end of the tunnel.
I do my best to put on my brave face when people say that it is time for a second child. Of course they don’t know because I don’t talk about it. But on occasion I just can’t hold back the tears anymore and my armor shatters. I fall apart and my poor hubby has to put me back together again. I know that he is going through this and his emotions are high as well, but he has been the rock for both of us.
All I can do is hope that by the time I reach my thirty second birthday that I am at peace with our final decision.