I thought I was doing fine. I had a really good weekend, full of fun things and seeing friends and cooking good food. Everything was going well. I thought maybe this time would be different than the other times I'd be on Lupron. After all, I don't think this cycle will be as stressful, right? There are no big hormone shots and no every-other-day ultrasounds to check on follicles, and no frustrations over my slow-to-grow follies and my lagging-behind estradiol (we'll see if this is true or not- I have no idea- going out of state brings plenty of its own stresses and of course we still worry about fertilization, donor eggs or not).
Well, I was doing fine, till Sunday evening. By Sunday I'd had six doses of Lupron. According to my memory and this blog, it's right around there that I've always started to feel the effects. Sunday I was doing fine- I had a leisurely morning, went to a great class at the gym, finished a good book, shopped for the week's groceries, and made a delicious dinner for us. Then, very late, B talked on the phone to his friend in NY. This is a friend of his from high school, and for the past two years we have gotten together for an annual weekend visit with him and his wife. I like them very much, but don't know them all that well. Two years ago when we met up in the mountains, I was on my second month of Clomid and still very hopeful. She was very newly pregnant, but very sympathetic about our situation, and shared that she had miscarried her first pregnancy about six months before. We had a great time- we hiked, we went down waterfalls, and it was all very fun and active, just my kind of vacation.
Then last summer, when they invited us to their house for a weekend in NY, I had already failed one IVF and was about to start my second. They had a five month old daughter. Initially, I told B that I didn't want to go, because I thought spending a weekend with a newborn might be hard for me. But when he told them my hesitations, they absolutely insisted they wanted to see me, that it would be fine, and that they totally understand but I'll have a baby soon enough. Reluctantly, I went, and you know what? I had a great time. With a baby that little, you can still mostly do everything. They can eat and sleep anywhere, so we walked around the city, went to museums, and even went winery-hopping on Long Island. It was great. And of course, I was still thinking IVF#2 was going to work.
Fast forward another year, to now. They mentioned the yearly trip... but things are different now. In the past year, I've failed another two IVFs, been told I can probably never have a genetic child, and have spent tens of thousands of dollars on treatments. My last hope for becoming pregnant is donor egg, and I don't even know if this will work.
Also, although in the past they were always up for adventure, things seemed different. A toddler is totally different from a baby, and when B was on the phone on Sunday evening, I could hear all the "can't"s they were listing. They can't fly into an airport very far from the beach, they can't do a house up on stilts because of strollers, they can't get excited about a city or anywhere where there is stuff to do because they have to be home at 7 pm every night for baby's bedtime anyway. Basically, they want to rent a beach house and sit around for an entire weekend. With a toddler. With me, ten days after my next pregnancy test after my donor egg cycle.
Does this sound like torture or what?
So, I told B that I don't want to do it. He and his friend had just spent half an hour throwing out ideas of where we could go, and searching AirBnB, but they hadn't made any progress because of all these new restrictions with a toddler. But when he hung up the phone... I just started to cry. Noisy, loud, dramatic tears. I told him I don't want to sit in a beach house and watch them play with their baby all weekend, and not do anything else, and be in the house by 7 pm every night, and that for all we know she's pregnant again, and then I'd have to deal with that too, and all just about 10 days after a possibly negative pregnancy test.
He got kind of upset with me. He wanted to know why I hadn't shared my hesitations with him when we started talking about a shared vacation, about a month ago. Why we'd had the conversation this far and now I'm backing out.
I didn't have a real good answer. I guess I've always had fun with them in the past, and I didn't realize how different this year would be until I heard him on the phone, and I heard how what used to a fun, adult weekend would now be totally dominated by the needs of a family with a toddler. I completely understand and respect these new needs of theirs.. I just don't think it sounds fun for us. At all. In fact, it sounds like the opposite of fun, even if we weren't in fertility treatment. And the fact that we are, and that I could have a negative pregnancy test just weeks before, makes it not only very un-fun, but more like torture. This is honestly why people with toddlers hang out with other people with kids. And with our particular situation, it seems really hurtful emotionally to me if we did it.
So, what seems not a huge big deal became a big deal. Because I didn't realize how things were until that phone call, so it had gotten kinda far before I had to pull the plug. And of course, as I started this post: the Lupron. What normally would have been a conversation between me and B became a no-holds-barred weep-a-thon that went on and on. I cried and cried, even as he was being supportive and told me he understands and would tell them the situation and that we'll have to skip this year's trip. But I just kept crying. Sometimes it is so clear to me all that I am missing as I am not a mom and want to be... so many friends have babies and are now having baby #2, and although I care about them, it's so hard for me to really become intimately involved. Especially when I'm starting a new cycle.
The feelings I have are really the feelings I have, but the Lupron makes them seem more dire and more vivid than normal. It's two days later and I'm still feeling so bad about this. Upset at my infertility, upset at missing social and friend events due to this mess, upset at B for even putting me in this position (though it's not his fault, I realize), and upset at myself for being upset at myself! It's just an endless mess of unhappiness, and I have felt really bad for days now.
The one good thing is that yesterday B emailed his friend and told him, and his friend was very understanding. Even better, his wife emailed me this today:
Hi [my name]!! I have been thinking a lot about you. I can only imagine how painful this conception process has been. We 1000% understand that it would be incredibly hard to spend the weekend with [her daughter's name]. I am sad that we won't get to see each other, but absolutely understand and would feel the same way. We love you two and only want the best for you.
Good luck with your next round. My fingers are crossed!!!!
Love, [her name]
That was such a sweet and compassionate email to send, and I wrote back to tell her how appreciated it was. I think it's hard to know what to say, but saying something can be so much, much better than silence to someone who is going through something painful or hard.
And now, back to waiting... 1 week of Lupron down, and (up to) 1 to go! Here's hoping to see my period soon so I can get off this evil drug and move on to the more exciting parts of this process.