Thursday, August 15, 2013

The small quiet room

Rebecca Mock
Well, it turns out this weekend's backpacking trip will let us blow off some steam.  Mostly this is because what was supposed to be a pretty-good-shot IUI this morning turned into a actually, looking at things now, IVF is your only viable path.  I'll give you some packets on various clinics before you go bad-news-athon.  This, after a good first sit-down meeting with a new doctor yesterday in which he was like, hey, things look super sparkly great, let's do an IUI tomorrow and we'll take another look at things!  So that's that, I guess, which kind of sucks, since their cost for IUIs was *drastically* lower than the clinic we went to in our old city, which meant we were up for doing a bunch if necessary.  But, we were basically told not to bother, and to find a clinic for IVF.  On one hand, it's nice to have the option be so simple, because we don't have to agonize over how far to go before doing IVF; on the other hand, it fucking fucking fucking sucks, because it seems like the door has been officially slammed on ever having kids naturally.  Not that we were holding out for that at this point, but still...

It's nice to know what we're dealing with, but the knowing sucks in other ways. At least in theory we can remove the "unexplained" portion of our infertility.  (Maybe, anyway; to be honest, the verdict doesn't totally jive with previous tests, but as seems to be the case with infertility in general, who the fuck knows.  First they guessed female factor, then they said male factor, then female became the assumption once those tests seemed to get better, then back to male and I'm looking perfect.  Oh god, what if we're that tiiiiiny percent of the population in which both people are part of the problem and we're somehow swapping back and forth LIKE MAGIC?  Lottery of Lame.)

(Also, this might mean I have to get violent with my acupuncturist, who put me on this "no alcohol, no coffee, no spices of any kind, no SHRIMP" diet.  Because if I'm denying myself shrimp for no reason, heads are going to roll!)*

(ASIDE: I'm sorry, to anybody reading this, that my blog is so, so, SO overshare-y.  I should probably learn to zip it better.  At this rate the Internet can just become my doctor.  Sorry, Internet, for the excessive bitching about intimate details.  I'm sorry for all the squicks.)


I finished reading Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar
the other day, and more than anything, it's given me so many small pinpricks of sage smartness.

I’ll never know and neither will you of the life you don’t choose. We’ll only know that whatever that sister life was, it was important and beautiful and not ours. It was the ghost ship that didn’t carry us. There’s nothing to do but salute it from the shore. -- DEAR SUGAR, THE RUMPUS ADVICE COLUMN #71: THE GHOST SHIP THAT DIDN’T CARRY US

Others from other columns:
I don’t know why we forget it when something truly awful happens to us, but we do. We wonder why me? and how can this be? and what terrible God would do this? and the very fact that this has been done to me is proof that there is no God! We act as if we don’t know that awful things happen to all sorts of people every second of every day and the only thing that’s changed about the world or the existence or nonexistence of God or the color of the sky is that the awful thing is happening to us.


Most things will be okay eventually, but not everything will be. Sometimes you’ll put up a good fight and lose. Sometimes you’ll hold on really hard and realize there is no choice but to let go. Acceptance is a small, quiet room. 

Rebecca Mock

So, hiking, acceptance, and who knows what seem to be on the agenda.

*Sorry acupuncturist.  I like you!  Please keep sticking needles in me.


  1. I love Dear Sugar! Her writing is so beautiful, and so reassuring somehow...She wrote one column about baby loss that I still turn to for occassional comfort, three years later.

    It's hard sitting in that small, quiet room and not knowing even what it is you're meant to accept yet. A childless life? Taking the knocks that come with assisted conception? I feel very similarly about our impending IVF journey...On the one hand, it seems to be the only thing that might be a source of hope, the real possibility that we'll end up with a living baby. At the same time, there are clearly no guarantees, and it's scary and arduous and (I feel like) there is no real reason to imagine that will work either.

    Hhhmm...I'm not doing much to help here, am I?! Just know that there are people who get the ambiguous, shifting lottery of lame without answers when it comes to family building. Sorry you're stuck here too, even while I'm grateful for the company. Thinking of you and hoping that IVF might be the trick for both of us! Enjoy that hiking trip -- it always helps me to get outside my own head for a while!

    1. A week later: I'm actually feeling pretty hopeful about IVF, if only because if it *is* more male-factor then in theory maybe we have a better chance of it working, and it might be less expensive if we don't have to use as much medication for me. But it's still scary to pour so much money into something that may not even work -- I am such a penny-pincher, and it just completely unnerves me! But I know if it DID work that it'd be so, so worth it, and so...we're going ahead with it.

  2. I am crossing my fingers for you...
    Realizing "it seems like the door has been officially slammed on ever having kids naturally." was I think the hardest part of all of this for us (or for me at least). I really mourned it. But from there, as crazy and awful the treatments sound, in reality they were not that bad at all(or you reach a point where you just go with it and you stop caring, and you don't even feel pain or symptoms, it's like anesthesia) One of the two.

    1. Yeah, it's like, I mourn our not being able to do what everybody seems to take for granted. But it seems bigger than that too, like I mourn this taking over our lives in a way that people who've never been through it simply *cannot* understand, even when I explain that there's really no middle ground; either you pour yourselves into it entirely and let it consume your life, or you don't do anything. The process is, simply, consuming. So I mourn the fact that the majority of our marriage has been spent coping.

      But it's also good to have some clear plans in place, for once. We know what we have to do, and we just have to schedule it.