All of the Feelings.

Welp. Its CD5 of the first IUI cycle. I’m having a lot of feelings.

I think I’m excited, because I think this is ultimately a better shot than we have had before. I think I’m hopeful because the acupuncture + supplements + diet changes have made clear positive changes for my cycle and that *must* mean that BFF’s swim team is shaping up too, right? I’m nervous about trying to fit an IUI in during a very complex three day training (because, of course, that is when I am due to ovulate) and having to possibly ask my colleagues to step in for me at the last minute. I’m scared this is a waste of money without any evidence that BFF’s sperm has improved.

My therapist, herself the mother of twins conceived via IVF and donor sperm, seems to be pretty pessimistic about BFF’s sperm working. While she understands that we have reasons for wanting to keep trying with BFF, she ultimately believes we won’t be successful until we switch to another donor. I’d prefer she at least not tell me this as I genuinely want this to work but have so much fear we are throwing money away and prolonging the awful roller coaster we are on. Its hard not to want to dive into whatever has the best success rates. And IUI’s with less-than-awesome-sperm aren’t it. Balancing the things I know rationally and the ones I know emotionally is, like always, fucking hard.

So I’m doing everything I can on my end to make my uterus the most fabulous place in the world. A friend bought us a BlendTek blender which is, I guess, a really fancy blender. Since we didn’t even own one before, I’m not clear on the details. What I do know is that I have been making fabulous green smoothies every morning for a week and its been delightful. I’m keeping up with the supplements, the less sugar less wheat diet plan, and consuming a truly remarkable amount of produce, god bless the summer harvest.

I’m trying not to be so damned down about the whole thing, but its feeling hard these days. In the grand scheme of things, we are still so new on this path of fertility. It feels so impossibly sad to think that there could be so many more months of this. And yet, I can’t imagine stopping here.  Some friends of ours will hit 2 years of trying with a known donor in the next few months. They have done some tests but are not going to do IUIs, use any fertility medications, or go to any further lengths. They are giving themselves until december and then calling it quits. That feels so foreign and impossible to me. Sometimes I’m embarrassed to admit to myself that I will absolutely advocate for us to do whatever we reasonably can to get pregnant. And, frankly, for me to be pregnant.

I think that fear is deep down inside of me. That while we will have children that I will never be pregnant. It feels like a grief I don’t want to admit to. Because I know and believe that children, however they come, will be mine. And still . . .still I want so so deeply to be pregnant and give birth and maybe that just isn’t in the cards.

Its too early to say that. But sometimes, when I try to unbury just how and why I am so morose, I come to that. And it stings because it means something about me that I don’t want to be true.



13 thoughts on “All of the Feelings.

  1. Oh, sweetie. This just tears me up for you! I don’t know if I have asked this or not, but is BFF on any sort of supplements for increasing sperm count and quality? My donor was on a pleathora of vitamins and supplements, it never hurts to try right? If he’s not, I am sure I can ask our donor what he was taking and pass it along to you. I’m here with you, girl! Hang in there, sending you big big hugs! ❤

  2. *hugs* I get those moments of doubt, too. There are bridges that you may not have to cross but it’s always a good idea to take a look, so that you know they’re there (if the bridge wasn’t there, you’d get very wet) Talk together about which options you intend to pursue and when it’s time to move on to the next step. It gets easier when you know you have control of the situation.

    If it helps, here’s some of the dietary advice we found when researching for our donor: sweet potatoes contain vitamins A,C and E and folate, which are all good for sperm production and pomegranate juice increases sperm count. It could help to up his zinc levels by getting him to regularly eat foods like oysters, lean beef, turkey, lamb, herring, wheat germ, legumes and nuts (if he’s taking supplements, 100-200mg daily should do it) and make sure he’s limiting mercury foods like swordfish, tuna steak, tile fish, king mackerel (and shark!)

    Keep going.

    • Thanks so much! BFF is taking a bunch of supplements recommended by our acupuncturist (high quality fish oil, FertilAid for men, pygnogenol which is especially good for morphology), getting weekly acupuncture treatments and has made some changes to diet. I will pass along some of those specific food reccs though.

      And thanks for the kind words of advice too. Its helpful to know other people ‘get it’

  3. As daunting as this has all been you’re just down right now but certainly not out. You have so many more options-ESP when your parts are fine-it’s easy to get sucked into this downward spiral of emotion but if you really want to be pregnant you will be plagued by the “what-ifs” if you stop now. Don’t close any doors just yet!

    • I think the difficulty is balancing how hard things can feel with the knowledge that we still have so many options left. We are such gluttons for punishment – to invest so much time and energy into a pursuit that has no assurances! The human drive to reproduce is powerful!

  4. Ugh – I have these feelings, too. Particularly the waste of money (why, why does it feel like we’re throwing it down my old-egg well!?) and the just on the verge of becoming fully formed grief at being a parent but not carrying a child. That’s a hard one for all of us I think. So if you find a coping mechanism – not that I think you will/should have to ever use it – please share.

  5. I think everyone trying to make a baby through assisted production shares the same feelings as you. We all worry about the same things. We all fear the unknown. But, you’re not there yet. There are a lot of options still available to you. I feel like you’re more in the boat of not if but when. It’s only a matter of time. Things will work out in your favor. I have to believe that for your sake as well as my own. Keep fighting!

    • Thanks. Its really good to get reminders that we are far from the end of the line. As exhausting as looking into an unknown future can be, its also helpful to know there is a lot more hope to pass through yet.

  6. I think everyone trying to make a baby through assisted production shares the same feelings as you. We all worry about the same things. We all fear the unknown. But, you’re not there yet. There are a lot of options still available to you. I feel like you’re more in the boat of not if but when. It’s only a matter of time. Things will work out in your favor. I have to believe that for your sake as well as my own. Keep fighting!

  7. This sounds really hard. And it makes sense that you would start to wonder if it will ever work, but you are a long ways from having to give up on being pregnant. Given that you are determined to do this and willing to look into other options (like IUIs), I have a lot of faith that you’ll get there.
    I think one of the hard parts about making these decisions is that it involves giving up on certain parts of how you’d envisioned this process going, and having to decide which parts you are willing to give up and which are worth fighting for. You wanted to inseminate at home, use BFFs sperm, and have you be the one getting pregnant. And in order to get better odds of it working, you have to decided you’re up for IUIs. But now you’re getting pressure to also give up on using BFF’s swimmers, and you’re wondering about you getting pregnant. It sounds like you guys are going a great job of navigating these tough decisions and deciding which pieces you’re not willing to give up (and it certainly sounds like there’s no reason to give up on your uterus at this point!). Hang in there! It really will happen.

  8. Hi, I just found your blog. I think the in-between times are the hardest–waiting to do something is just awful. It sounds like you’re on the right path, though, and that you’ve got a good shot for this upcoming cycle. I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed for you!

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