Thursday, September 28, 2017

Sitting Through a Lecture on IVF

The physiological response to trauma is so interesting to me.

Today's class covered trying to conceive and fertility treatments and I immediately had a physical response. I didn't know those topics were going to be covered in today's lecture. But there I was, sitting in class, listening to information I already knew inside and out. I just wanted it to be over with. But it kept going on forever. My stomach got upset. I felt warm. I think I might have sweat a little. I did all I could do in the moment; I sat there and paid attention to my breathing. And I occasionally answered questions out loud. Apparently no one else knew the answers. (They're all young and/or fertile. They don't have to know these things.) I would have felt weird about answering questions in class (which in no way revealed any of my personal information), but I often ask and answer questions in class so it was nothing out of the ordinary. Thankfully, the professor called a break.


But still. The damage was done. I don't want to say my entire day was ruined because I don't want to think like that. But, my stomach was definitely messed up for the rest of the day. And I still had all of my classes to get through...

It was fine.

I got through it. I'm home now.
Had a good cry when I got home. Brief but cathartic.

F you trauma. Damn those physiological responses sometimes...

Monday, September 25, 2017

Change of Scenery

It's been a rough month.

My last four posts have been full of sadness and frustration. My last friend who was trying to get pregnant conceived. And then announced it by saying those three little words that I hate, "never give up." (Gross.) I had mixed emotions about going to a kid's birthday party, decided not to go, and I'm pretty sure that decision negatively affected that friendship. (Oh well.) A cousin's wife had a baby, which I learned about on social media while eating breakfast. (I didn't even know she was pregnant.) Insensitivity towards infertility seems to run rampant among my professors, as evidenced by their caustic comments and endless rambling about their own children. (Annoying.) I found out my estranged, older cousin with major addiction issues had another baby. (That's incredibly tragic.) Another friend, who got pregnant with IVF, had her baby. (That's a loss of friendship for me and my husband, as these people were one of the few friends we had as a couple.) I didn't even write about the last two situations. It was just overload, and I felt alone and unsupported in this world. I was exhausted.

And on top of that, my school program just plain sucks. I love the profession, but I have never been more disappointed in a program. And this is my third graduate school program, so I kind of feel like I know what I'm talking about. The professors are rude. The school is disorganized. The quality of teaching is severely lacking. And, overall, the whole experience can be summed up in one word: demoralizing.

It's been a rough five years.

So I have been very low energy, not very happy, and just putting one foot in front of the other, keeping my daydreams that I'm working so hard for in the front of my mind.

But don't worry folks! This post has a happy ending.

I went out of town this weekend and it was one of the best things I've ever done. My trip was related to my future profession, but it had nothing to do with my school. In fact, I wasn't even in the same state. It was a change of scenery and it was glorious.

Sometimes you just need to get away. I missed my husband and I missed my dog, but I felt good. I felt good about my decision to go back to school. My particular school may suck, but they're just a means to an end. I felt good about my husband's and my decision to move. Of course, I missed home but only because my husband and dog were there. That's about it. I came home and my husband asked, "Well, are we still on track? Are we still moving forward with our plan?" And I gave a hearty, "Oh hell yeah!" reply.

I'm gonna remember this the next time I have several weeks in a row knocking me down. I don't usually have the time and money for an out of town trip, but I am going to try to create a relaxing "staycation" next time I need a break. There will always be fertile irritations and annoying professors/co-workers/bosses but I can always get away, whether that is by taking a trip or enjoying good food with a good book at home.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Never Give Up?

I am having a hard time letting this one go. Honestly, I am pissed. My last friend to get pregnant announced it on social media yesterday. Ok, whatever, she called me to tell me so I knew the announcement was coming...


Ugh. I hated it. I hate how she announced it!!!

She posted a pic of a bunch of her needles in a heart shape (which I think is extremely personal and kind of gross but whatever I guess) surrounding a onesie that said something about things being worth the wait.

(Ok. A little weird, but people are entitled to their own choices.)

She wrote out ALL of their treatments, what all they had done and how many treatments failed.

(Ok, now we're definitely getting too far into Overshare Territory for my tastes, but, again, people can share what they choose to share.)

But, it's how she ended it that makes me want to scream and break things:
"For those struggling with infertility, I want to encourage you not to give up."

Oh really???

So, I gave up, huh?
What? I didn't want it bad enough?
I didn't try hard enough?
Did I not deserve it?
Or, let me guess, it just wasn't meant to be; things happen for a reason... UGH. GROSS.

Thankfully, I am super secure in my decision to stop treatments. As I've written before, they were killing my soul. I was a shell of a person. I was depressed and hollow and inactive and in a very very bad, very very dark spot. So, my former friend's comments don't make me question my decisions, but they do hurt my feelings.

Of course, she is not going to be thinking of me when she announces her pregnancy. Of course she is not going to be thinking about how her cry of "Never give up!" will affect the infertile women who will never get pregnant.

But why didn't she think of me?

She has been dealing with infertility for years. She came to me for advice about finding a doctor and what to expect with IVF and how to deal with failed treatments. We've been friends since high school. She knows how badly I always wanted to be a mother. Or, at least, I thought she did.

I'm having a hard time letting go of this one, but writing this post is helping. I HATE it when women who struggled to get pregnant suddenly seem to have amnesia about the whole experience once they get pregnant/have a baby.

I suppose, the worst part was that she was doing a gender reveal (I freaking hate those) live on social media at a certain time, so everyone could tune in and watch. Um, no thank you. So she's already gone. My friend who only just began her second trimester is lost to mommy madness already. I wish her well.

And for anyone else, in case you need a healthy reminder:

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

I Need a Break from Fertile People

I woke up this morning and I already knew I needed a break. I could just feel it. I am just so tired of fertile people going on about their lives, making the comments that they make and doing the annoying things that they do.

I was eating breakfast and checked social media and the first thing I see is my aunt posting about her newest grandchild being born. I didn't even know one of my cousin's wife's was pregnant. I don't even know who had the baby. I quickly unfollowed my aunt so I won't have to scroll through any more newborn pics than I'd already seen.

Then I go to school where one professor talks, I swear to God, for an hour about her kids and her parenting style. No, it wasn't on topic for the day's lecture. Oh my god. Can't I just get a break?? This is the same professor who was supposed to email us something last night but told us it was one of her kid's birthdays that day and so she probably wouldn't have time. Oh really? So if I'm celebrating my anniversary with my husband or my dog's birthday or something else that is important to me, let me guess, I won't have the option of turning something in late, will I?

Because the only thing anyone seems to freaking care about is whether or not you have children!

Right now I am mad and sad and frustrated. There are several contributing factors, most of them school-related because the program I'm in is chaotic and unorganized and they treat the students extremely poorly, but this is, to use the cliche, the straw that broke the camel's back.

I am so completely sick of fertile people. For being so exclusive in conversations. For expecting so much emotional labor from me. For holding me responsible for helping them when there was no one around to help me when I was deeply depressed from infertility. I am really sick of the double standards and I just need to vent!

I really need to meet some people like me in real life.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Still Skipping Parties

This weekend one of my good friend's kids was having a birthday party. I was excited about it and really wanted to go. I said I was coming and planned my schedule accordingly.

I didn't go.

Aaaahhh I drive myself crazy sometimes. I went back and forth in my head so much over going to this party. I was trying to figure out what was the problem, what was all this vacillation about, especially when I really wanted to go. Well, it was going to be a long drive, a lot of time in the car. Also, school started two weeks ago and I'm already overloaded with reading assignments and projects. I was going through this list in my head... But none of those things were really it.

What was really it was the obvious: I didn't want to go to a kid's birthday party.

Yes, I wanted to see my friend. Yes, I wanted to see my friend's kid. Yes, I wanted to hang out and talk and catch up with my friend and visit with her family and friends and eat cake. Yes, I want to be there for the important moments in my friend's life.

But I didn't want to go to the cute toy store near me and buy a present. And I didn't want to go to a party with a bunch of adults and kids and be the only woman there who wasn't a mother.

This sucks. I hate that it's like this. But it is.

In one way, it's only a kid's birthday party, it's not that big of a deal. In another way, I really hate saying I am going to do something and then I don't do it. And, I hate that I'm not there yet. I hate that going to a kid's birthday party still bothers me. Overall, that's what I learned from this and I won't be RSVPing "yes" to any more kid birthday parties for awhile.

When I talked to my husband about it he just said, "Who cares? Kids' birthday parties are boring anyway." Hahaha. So there's that perspective too!