Happy Thanksgiving!! I know I’m a day late, but I was lazily relaxing at home yesterday and cooking dinner for Dave and Valentina so I took the day off writing. I loved the cooler weather, the rain, and the coziness of it all – Dave built a log fire, we had a nice dinner and watched back-to-back episodes of Downton Abbey!
Since I’m still feeling very much in holiday mode, I thought today I would just write about where we’re at in the fertility journey and share a few thoughts about it.
It’s a funny thing when you want something, then you don’t know if you’re going to be able to have it, but you might, but you might not. It’s this weird limbo place and it’s hard to know how to feel. If I knew for sure one way or the other I could accept it, adjust to it and move on with life. It’s the not knowing that’s so hard.
After our unsuccessful IUI’s, I kind of just let go of the idea of trying to get pregnant – I was sick of thinking about it, worrying about it, feeling upset about it – it was quite a relief just to let that go. I think what’s been really interesting is that in the past few months, I’ve really worked on the “what if” of not having another child, and have focussed on seeing the bright side in only having one.
Part of that relates to the new vaccine bill, which mandates that children have a certain number of vaccines to enter the school system in California (both public and private). While I never in my life anticipated homeschooling Valentina, it now is a possibility unless we cave to the governments demands and requirements, which I don’t really want to do. I would have to put her in a home-schooling co-op, as I’m not sure that staying home every day homeschooling is my gifting, but I’m sure there will be many other people also making creative plans for their child’s education with this new law in effect next year. Anyway, the point is – I suddenly started thinking … if we only have Valentina … and if we homeschool … a whole new world of freedom and flexibility opens up. Perhaps we could have The Life, where we can spend 2-3 months a year in Australia, summers in England or Europe; or even take a one-year sabbatical at some point and educate her in a different country. I have a certain amount of flexibility with my work as I work with a lot of my patients long-distance via Skype, which really means I can be anywhere. We’d have to be financially free enough for Dave to not have to work, or to be working with me in my business, but he is also open to any possibility and loves to travel as much as I do! None of this is impossible with two children, but it’s all easier with one.
I also keep reminding myself of Romans 8: 28:
And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. – New American Standard Bible.
The other thing I try to draw on is that God knows me, my husband, my daughter, our life, our circumstances, and He knows best what’s right for us, and the perfect timing for it. If we don’t have another baby then that’s God’s plan for us; if we do have another baby then that’s God’s plan for us too. If we get pregnant a year from now, that’s God’s perfect timing. I’m not saying I always like it and always feel acceptance of that (sorry, God!), and I’m not saying I’m not going to do anything to help it along either, but I try to constantly remind myself that He’s been in charge of my life so far, I have seen how He has intervened, directed and shaped everything – and it’s all come together for good. It has to be a deliberate decision to come from that place – it doesn’t necessarily come naturally as it’s easy to default back to the “what ifs” and “why nots” and “not fairs”, but I do try to remind myself of it daily.
Having said that, there have been some tough times recently. In the past week, I’ve learned that four of my friends, including two of our previous nannies (which is all of them!) have found out they’re pregnant. That means that of all my mummy friends that I’ve made through having Valentina, of all of them who wanted a second or who have been trying, I am now the only one left who is not pregnant or had another baby (some still have one but have chosen to wait on a second for their own reasons). That’s pretty tough. Many have had their second child already. While I’m definitely so happy and excited for them, I’d be lying if I said it didn’t sting a bit too. It just brings home the absence of pregnancy for me, and because I try to hide it and just show excitement, it ends up feeling pretty lonely. Dave doesn’t know what to say to make it better, so he stays pretty quiet, which can make it even more lonely.
So it’s all a mixed bag right now. I’m certainly very thankful for what I have – for my wonderful husband and our beautiful daughter. We’re also still very much at peace with the decision not to do IVF, and I’m glad we’re on the same page about that. I’m still doing my bee stings three days a week, and this week we are going to consult with a herbalist in Australia who evidently has helped many couples get pregnant, even ones who have not been successful with IVF, so I’m excited about that. Dave has agreed to take herbs too, so we’ll give that a try. It’s a new approach and I know of someone who had two successful pregnancies using her program. Her name is Stacey Roberts from Sharkey’s Healing Center (her American website is www.naturalfertility.com). We talk to her via Skype on Thursday of this week.
They say that every cloud has a silver lining, and I have definitely been trying to focus on that. For the most part I am in a good place, with small periods of sadness and loneliness mixed in. I think part of it too is that I fix people for a living, and yet I can’t fix this. My doctoring has not worked on myself!! But there’s nothing to do but seek out the advice of people who specialize in this, take the actions that might help, continue to be grateful for what I do have, keep coming back to the place of acceptance, and continue to vision a life of infinite possibility for our little family unit of three. Our beautiful family of three.