Home » GG&G's Real Life » Our Battle with Infertility: Year 2

Our Battle with Infertility: Year 2

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If you’re following up from the last two weeks, welcome back. If you’re new on this post, welcome into the inner recesses of our marriage and family planning. To catch up, you can visit our Infertility page.Sorry if this is TMI. If you’re dealing with infertility, please please please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help and…we hope this helps you, too. 🙂

In our last post, we recounted summer of 2011 to summer of 2012…that was the year of tracking, basically. We couldn’t really do anything because we hadn’t been trying “long enough”. To hear that is so disheartening, especially when you feel like something may be wrong. I felt like something may be wrong. In fact, I felt that way before we ever started trying. When we were first married, I knew we couldn’t financially handle kids and life and everything. We thought we might move shortly into our marriage and it just seemed like waiting was the right idea. All along I was worried, though, that when we were ready to try, it wouldn’t work. Being right about this really really really sucks.

Typically, I see a nurse practitioner at my OB/GYN because my favorite doctor EVER left a few years ago to stay home with her kids. I have never had any issue with the nurse practitioner and they have a great staff, but in the summer of 2012, we needed to see the doctor. The doctor started to test for EVERYTHING. We had day 3 labs (to make sure my cycle was OK), day 21 labs (to make sure I ovulate properly), more cycle tracking (joy.), and we scheduled a semen analysis for Chris and a test called an HSG for me. Sidenote: Getting bloodwork done on vacation because that is when your cycle lines up is REALLY annoying and WAY more money than we anticipated. Nothing says relaxing beach day like hanging out at the medical center getting blood drawn. Some of my cycles (as I noted in last week’s post) were a little off, but ovulation seemed normal and my bloodwork was A-OK. Chris’ analysis came back and was pretty good as well. At first, my doctor’s office told me he had abnormal numbers, but later we found out that “abnormal numbers” means “one level might have been ‘off'” and that one level can be affected by external sources (heat, time, etc) so it wasn’t really anything that should be affecting us long-term. Looking back, this is awesome. At the time, it was terrifying (and painful for my sweet husband).

HSG stands for Hysterosalpingogram. Basically, you go to the doctor (between your cycle dates and ovulation, I believe) and they insert a catheter that will release dye into your whole lady-system. You can watch it on a screen so, that was entertaining. They basically do this x-ray while you stare at the monitor showing your uterus and fallopian tubes. The intent of HSG is to check and make sure your tubes are working properly. Well, the dye SHOT through the tubes. I mean, it SHOT through there. That is totally normal, but, wait- THAT IS TOTALLY NORMAL. At this point, we were in to September 2012. Translation: I was missing school for this. We have definitely maintained the mindset that growing our family is more important than a job, but the 2012-13 school year was a year where I took more leave than ever before. (Foreshadowing: 2013-14 has been even worse, in terms of leave.)

We tried to stay really focused on the process in 2012, but it was so difficult with work and everything else. On top of that, going to a regular OB/GYN’s office can be *really* frustrating. For one, I couldn’t take off all of the time just because my cycle said so. For two, they can only work regular doctor’s hours (unlike fertility specialists). For three, they TRULY are fabulous, but didn’t seem to understand that my life runs on a TEACHER’S SCHEDULE. No, I cannot come get 10 minute blood work on my “lunch break”. What is a lunch break?!

Chris got two analyses during this year. They both had strong numbers in some ways and weak numbers in others. When you’re getting a semen analysis, you want good a) count [duh], b) motility [that they’re movin’ and shakin’], and c) morphology [that they look like tadpoles]. He went to see a urologist (super nice guy!) who said that he really didn’t feel like there was any reason that his numbers should be keeping us from getting pregnant. Great, right?!

THEN, WHY NO BABIES?! WE ARE BOTH SO NORMAL.

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Fall 2012- proof that we’re normal and not just crying about being infertile all the time. But, look at those people. Won’t they make CUTE babies?!

Next week, I’ll be talking about the second half of 2013. This was the time when we really started making moves and tried (as much as possible) to stop leaving things to chance. (You might even get to see pictures of my pee! Lucky you!) Obviously, we’re not very close to a due date so, some things didn’t work. However, that brings us almost to now and we have more answers than ever before. No, we’re not pregnant at this moment in case you thought that was our cryptic way of telling you.

Emotionally speaking, my breaking point in the process (meaning, when I almost broke someone) was when my nurse practitioner (bless her) said, “Sometimes these things take a while,” at my October 2012 yearly checkup. I wanted to harm her. Don’t get me wrong, people are SO well-meaning and they just.don’t.know.what.to.say. BUT, sometimes it’s better to say, “I’m sorry, I don’t know what to say.” Write that down. Then, if anyone ever tells you they’re dealing with this and you’re out of your depth, say it. And, read this. Don’t say these things. It will save you from a mental or physical punch to the face. 🙂 If you’re STILL unsure, google “things not to say” and “infertility” in the same search. Many brave women have opened up about this…and I promise none of them will want to hurt you. 🙂

Also, there’s a great post written by a *husband* no less, at this link about ten words that describe infertility. I have thought this over many times and could probably add a few, but he just says it SO well. For me, it’s #10 on his list. That has been my station in life for the past 8 months or so. Heart-wrenching ambivalence. We know that anything that has been said has been meant to be supportive, but if you’ve struggled with infertility, MANY of these will ring true and you will want to high five this man! 🙂 And this man, he says beautiful things about a situation that is not so beautiful. Thank God for good husbands in the world. Mine is practically a saint (even my students tell me so) for putting up with my crazy throughout this whole journey.

Thanks so much to all of our friends and family. So many of you have reached out since we started blogging this journey and we are truly grateful. We’re still not really up for giving up to date information. The timing of everything is still too sensitive for us to feel the pressure of keeping so many people informed. We love you (even you readers we don’t know) and appreciate your prayers and happy thoughts as always. Thank you SO much for sticking with us on this crazy ride!

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17 thoughts on “Our Battle with Infertility: Year 2

    • Thanks, cousin! It’s funny how many people have been like, “Ooooohhhh, so you DO want kids!” I’m not surprised that you (or anyone else) had questions. I hope you and your two sweet boys (three if you count Brandon, haha) are doing so well! I miss you guys and hope to see you again soon! Thank you so much for your prayers- we definitely covet and appreciate them. Love you!

  1. My prayers are with you and I feel that one day soon you can look back on all your hard work and see that it was worth the wait.

  2. Hi: I saw you were following me on Instagram and then came over here. Oh, I certainly know everything you are talking about.I went through infertility many years ago, and in my mid thirties. One quick suggestion: have you been tested for prolactin??? That is what you secrete when nursing and which keeps many new mothers from getting pregnant (again..). Well, they finally tested me and mine was very very high. A one month dose of a pill and three months later I was pregnant!! Yes indeed, and that was 29 years ago. We always only wanted one child, so that was fine. Perfectly normal pregnancy and I had the girl I really wanted! When she was about 4 they tested me again and yes, it had gone up a little. But I never really had to worry about birth control… Anyway, ask your doctor about this.

  3. Pingback: Our Battle With Infertility: Year 1 | gourley girl & guy

  4. Pingback: Our Battle With Infertility: Back to the Beginning | gourley girl & guy

  5. Just got caught up with your story — thanks so much for getting in touch with me, and for being brave enough to share your story. When I shared mine, it connected me with so many women who are experiencing the same thing, and I think it was therapeutic for all of us. I’m sure the same is true for you! I hope that you will find healing in sharing what you are going through, and I hope you get your baby very soon!

  6. Another test you can do is the SCSA Sperm DNA Fragmentation test. Just google it and you will find the website. You can order it yourself, or your doctor can if you want to claim it on your insurance. Men with normal counts can have high DNA fragmentation due to medications they are on, conditions they have, or even idiopathically. It could be the answer, or it could be one less thing to worry about.

  7. Hi Jessica and Chris! We have a mutual friend who led me to your blog because my husband and I are also dealing with some fertility issues. You are both so brave and considerate to share your story with others in an effort to comfort them even in the midst of your own struggle. It truly is amazing how much of your story I identify with. Even though our situations are a little different, the feelings are ALL the same. Thank you so much for sharing. I’ll be keeping up with your story and perhaps I will eventually be ready to share some of mine. Wishing all the best to you both!

    • Jennifer- So glad that you reached out to us! There is definitely more to our story (a year, plus!) and we would love to share whatever you feel comfortable sharing or venting about. 🙂 I can be reached at gourleygirlandguy@gmail.com. Who is our mutual friend?! I’m so interested, but understand if you don’t want to share! Prayers for you and your husband!

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