Thursday, September 4, 2008

How Accurate Are Those Pink Lines?

So I think it has been clearly established here that I am somewhat of a neurotic freak. Especially when it comes to pregnancy. Now a lot of people have told me that since I was able to get pregnant the first time I tried that I need to drop my "infertile" label. First of all, I don't necessarily label myself as infertile. I had what a lot of people have, which was "unexplained infertility." Now, looking back it seems that label is only accurate when I was using frozen sperm. Now I am not saying anything bad about frozen sperm, but for me personally, I tried to get pregnant for 3 years using frozen sperm and it never happened. When I switched to use a known donor, and therefore "fresh" sperm, I got pregnant on the first month I tried. Both times. So an infertile I am not. However, the fact that I spent 3 years at my local REI clinic and over $30,000 trying to create a child that never happened leaves a girl a bit scarred. Because I seem to be able to get pregnant rather easily using fresh sperm, does that mean that I didn't go through the stress of trying to get pregnant for 3 years? Does it erase the memories of dildo cam, after dildo cam, and shot after shot, and month after month of waiting and hoping and praying, only to find out that it didn't work? Does it put all the money I spent back into my bank account? Does it make up for all of those months where I sat during the two week wait, just like everyone else out there, and was ultimately disappointed? I don't think it does. Now I am not saying this because I am in some way "fighting" for my infertile title. I'm not. I don't want the title. I don't want any title. But because I have a (somewhat) healthy son, and am pregnant with my second child, that doesn't erase the feelings and emotions that go with trying to get pregnant and not having it work the way you would like it to work. Sara over at The Egg Dance has posted some writings that take me right back to where I was about 5 years ago. I feel for her, and I feel for every single other blog reader/writer that I frequent that is fighting for their chance at parenthood. And while I read them, I still feel a sense of guilt because for whatever reason, I am not fighting that battle anymore. I am incredibly lucky to be where I am, and yet, like many of the people who have had to go through any battle to become pregnant, I am still a skeptic. The "infertile" in me is alive and well. Oh, and the neurotic freak that I mentioned above.

As of today, I still have not heard that I am pregnant out of a doctor's mouth. I still have not received any results on any bloodwork that could possibly confirm that there is indeed a child growing inside of me. And because I am no longer considered "infertile," I am supposed to be handling this pregnancy just like any "normal" woman. Meaning, I have not had any ultrasounds and/or BETA's that would make me feel like things are going as they should be. So I have no idea. And since I am still a neurotic freak, I am not really convinced I am pregnant. Sure, there are the 47 pee sticks that I have peed on, but that doesn't seem like enough. No, I haven't gotten my period yet, but still... I need some sort of confimation. As I wrote about before, I went in for one blood test last Tuesday. And since I was out of town on Friday (72 hours after the initial test when I was supposed to do the second test), I didn't go back in for the second test until Tuesday of this week. Today is Thursday and I haven't heard anything from my doctor about any tests. So I wait. And I wonder. And I freak out a little bit. Because even if you are lucky enough to lose the "infertile" title, that doesn't mean that you suddenly assume all is wonderful and going smoothly. I know about what can happen. I have seen it happen and I have read about it. I know that lots of women have miscarriages, and that sometimes the numbers just don't double the way they are supposed to. I can't get rid of all the baggage that comes with it and I can't stop assuming that there is something wrong. And I can't convince myself that this ginormous BLOAT around my middle section will somehow, in about 9 months, produce a baby. I need something more concrete. And so I wait...


eggdance said...

This is such a great post-- I think you manage to capture so much so well. I think often as women who need sperm from a source other than our husbands, we are assumed to be infertile (and because the frozen stuff just does not work as well, we often become officially "infertile" due to the lenth of time that we must try). But I think you point out the gray areas-- and there are so many. You have had the experiences of infertile people, regardless of your pregnancies. I have now had a bunch of those experiences as well-- and I'm not at all sure that I am infertile either (although the fact that my insurance company now says I am means that I get services for free). Maybe it really doesn't matter, but what I hear is that you don't want your experiences erased. That makes sense.

I think it is normal to be nervous, but I am sure that all is well with kid #2.

Sara said...

the identity of an "infertile" is a self-identifying one. You went through it all, and I think most of us who went through it agree that there is a big difference between infertile and TTCing. It isn't clear when the transition happens, but it's painful; it's a long road. I'm so glad it had a happy ending for you the first time, and (still awaiting the confirmation) the second time too!