Sunday, November 9, 2008

A guest blog entry, bought to you by the Great Blog Cross-Pollination

Updated to explain this post in case you don't know about the Second Annual Blog Cross Pollination. The short version is that I have a guest poster today, and I in turn have a guest post on their blog.  Please read the following post, see if you can guess who wrote it, and then click on over to their blog to see if you are right and find my post for today.  Enjoy!
Infertility, How I Wish I Could Quit Thee

The other day, my husband asked me what I write about on my blog, now that we aren't "infertile" any more.

Hmmm. Good question.

That's a tricky one, because although the proof of our supposed fertility is sucking on my left breast as I type right-handedly (thus explaining any typos), I still feel infertile. For so many reasons.

First off, there are still tiny reminders here and there of our days in the IVF trenches. There is still the small matter of an outstanding balance due on our egg retrieval. It should have been paid months ago, but my insurance company and the clinic are having a little war over billing codes. So, even though everyone knows that we shouldn't pay it out of pocket, we still get a bill every month. And every month, I scan it quickly to make sure that we are not getting assessed a late fee. As I scan, I see the list of procedures that remind me all that we had to go through to get to where we are today.

Secondly, we have already started the talk of When To Try Again. I know this is a conversation that fertiles have, too, but it's different. Having many close fertile friends, their discussions go something like this.

Husband to wife, "When should we start trying to have another baby?"

Wife to husband, "Well, we want to have a baby when so-and-so is X number of months/years old, so [counts backwards on fingers to get to nine months ahead] we should start trying in such-and-such month."

So then they do. And then they are knocked up either that first month or very shortly thereafter. Or, even more annoyingly, it actually takes (gasp) a few months for them to get pregnant and they call me up asking for advice because it's "taking so long" and I am "the expert" on getting knocked up.

Whereas our conversations on when to start trying to have another baby go something like this:

M to me: "When should we start trying to have another baby?"

Me to M: "Well, we have those five embryos, broken down into a straw of three and and a straw of two, so we have two chances. With our history, we should probably not expect the first FET to work, so we should probably start trying before we really want to get pregnant."

M to Me: "How many do we transfer? Two? Three?"

Me to Me: "We transferred two on a fresh cycle and one survived, so given that this is a FET cycle, we'll probably transfer three."

M to Me: "What if we get triplets?"

Me to M: Silence. "We'll have to talk to Dr. M about it."

Even though my scars of the past are slowly healing with each sweet smile and precious coo of my little boy, they are still there, deep in my heart, where I carry my lost angels. I don't think that they will ever go away and I wouldn't want them to. I truly believe that all of our loss has made M and me better parents. I know that we both cherish the little moments more than we probably would have otherwise. The birth of a baby doesn't instantly erase the pain and loss, it simply dulls it and makes it bearable.

So, what do I write about now that we are not "infertile" anymore? I guess I write about the obvious: our life with our son, learning how to be parents, keeping the romance alive between middle of the night feedings. The reality is, however, that I am not completely sure which category suits me best now: fertile or infertile? Perhaps it's not important to decide which box to check off right now. As time goes on, it might not matter so much.

But deep down inside, I still feel infertile.
Please guess the author of this post in the comments below, and then click over to their blog HERE to see if you were right!