It's not always easy to do.
The day before our beta, I knew I would be working and didn't want to receive a call while in the office, so I hastily left my cell phone number in an email to my nurse and asked her to leave a message for me when the beta results came in. I spent the entire day dancing around the office, with my spirits high and my heart prepared for the best, but still hadn't received a message come early evening.
After I had left work and attempted to occupied my time with grocery shopping, my theory that no news is good news started to dwindle and I began to worry that something was wrong. I finally gave in and made the call to the office, where I got the receptionist because my nurse was in a meeting with another patient, but she did pass along the information that a message was indeed left earlier at the number that I had emailed her.
I thanked the receptionist and tried to calm my nerves as I hurriedly checked back at my email to see what number I had sent to the nurse.
Sure enough, it was off by one digit.
Unable to wait any longer, I frantically dialed the incorrect number I had given the nurse, and was answered by a sweet older gentleman. After I explained myself as quickly and sanely as possible, he assured me that he had indeed received a strange voicemail earlier in the afternoon, and put me on hold to find the details for what felt like an eternity.
Upon returning to the line, he repeated bits and pieces of the message that he'd heard, but didn't understand.
Your number was less than 1. I'm sorry, you can stop your suppositories...
And that's how my cycle ended, from the mouth of a complete stranger who had no idea how devastating his mysterious message could be on my fragile, broken heart.
It was a hard day, although the tears I shed were few and far between. I suppose I was in a state of denial, and still am to an extent. My husband pulled into the driveway just as I received the news, and he could tell the outcome of our cycle by the look on my face through the dirty, rain streaked windows.
We didn't talk much about it, but it was heavy in the air for the rest of the night. We picked at our dot cake, but neither of us had the heart to eat it all. We tried to make a pizza for dinner, but somehow managed to break the door lock which disabled the oven, so we headed over to my parents house to finish cooking it and attempt to break the silence that was clouding our heads and slowly suffocating us from the inside.
Being around family eased the pain, and we returned home late that night feeling almost normal again. As I crawled into bed I thanked the Lord for making the pain bearable, and asked him to give all of my babies a kiss goodnight for me.
I woke up in the middle of the night to my husbands shallow, uneven breathing, and a few sniffs that confirmed he wasn't taking the news as well as he had earlier. I felt somewhat emotionless as I held him and comforted him, wondering why I wasn't crying with him.
Why I couldn't let myself feel the pain just yet.
Since then, I've made my way slowly through to acceptance, as well as the usual roller coaster of emotions and questions. By nature I'm a planner, so I immediately did all that I could to help "fix" the situation. I threw away old drugs, hid the schedules, heating pads, and pictures of our precious embryos, started looking up acupuncturists and purchased DHEA vitamins. Bought some new workout shoes, rid the house of all sugars and white flour, and prepared a list of questions for the follow up appointment that will be scheduled soon.
But there was one burning question that I knew the Dr. couldn't answer.
If God really has no intentions of giving my husband and I our own biological children, then why in the world would He not have instilled in either of us the desire to adopt?
I don't believe for one second that God intends for us to be childless; the Bible is full of verses and bits of wisdom about family and the importance of children and what a blessing they are. But I've struggled for a while with the fact that so many couples-fertile and infertile alike-hold the desire by either one or both parties to adopt children. Yet for us, although we believe that adoption is an amazing and wonderful act of selflessness, it just isn't something that speaks to our hearts.
Now I could argue that this could be because we haven't opened our hearts to it, but I just don't think that's the case, especially after praying profusely about the matter. Both of us so badly want our own biological children, that there is a very real possibility that we could be pushing away the idea of adoption, looking at it as a sort of settlement for the failure of what our true desires are.
Or it could just be that settling for adoption would mean giving up, and I can't do that yet.
We still have one more try. I still have hope that God has something amazing in store for our lives. And while at times the possibility of the future can be so terrifying that I have to fight off a panic attack, the fear still isn't strong enough to stop me from moving on.
From finding that silver lining.
More often than not, this entire situation seems insane. Although our first cycle was canceled and in reality doesn't count as a full try, we've attempted IVF a total of three times so far with nothing to show for it besides some grainy black and white photos of some precious embryos that were too beautiful for this earth. It's still hard for me to believe that we've come this far, and even the most evasive medical procedures available to us in this day and age aren't able to produce a valid pregnancy for us.
A normal, healthy, young couple.
It just doesn't make sense.
But my silver lining in this dark, menacing cloud is that where medical miracles may fail, God never does. And although we have no idea what the future holds, we know who holds our hands. And although it may be strikingly painful right now, I know He is in control and He has a plan for us, one that we want to follow, no matter where it takes us, because we both trust fully in Him and we want what He wants.
I've found that it's near impossible to stay frustrated and depressed about this unwelcome situation when I believe this to be so true. It's almost as if focusing on God's promises, and knowing that with Him, anything is possible brings alive a part of me that is just too excited to be overcome with fear of the unknown.
It's like I'm caught in the midst of a horrible storm, but floating safely on a life raft. And even with no idea where I'll land or how long it will take me to get there, being on this raft is far better than drowning in a raging sea.
That, mixed with the countless prayers, support, love and encouragement from the few family members that know about this cycle and the community of women that I've never met but have grown to love, is what keeps my hope alive.
And that's my silver lining.
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
It's not always easy to do.
Posted by Tabitha at 11:20 AM