Monday, 11 June 2012

My Experiments with Infertility

How many kids do you have?
Arre married for long and no kids?
You don’t want kids?
It is time you both  started a family.
When are you planning to have kids?
Planning chodo and now have a child.


My husband and I have faced this litany of questions all the years we have been married. Most of the times these questions are asked by family and friends, and at other times by nosy busy bodies who have too much interest in other people’s lives.


I had been thinking of writing this post for many days now,but always stopped as I did not know how my family will react to this post. I finally gathered the strength to write the post, for all the people who have been in my place and have had to struggle with the agonising fact that they will never be able to have their own biological child/children. Writing this post has acted as catharsis for me.


After 12 years of marriage, I had to face this brutal truth. I had to undergo a battery of tests and procedures over a period of two years which included Laparoscopic surgery, three IUI’s and three cycles of IVF to be declared ‘Infertile’. I was diagnosed with a disease called ‘Adenomyosis’ which causes of infertility.


Mayo Clinic says ‘Adenomyosis (ad-uh-no-my-O-sis) occurs when endometrial tissue, which normally lines the uterus, exists within and grows into the muscular wall of the uterus. This happens most often late in your childbearing years after having children.
Adenomyosis differs from endometriosis — a condition in which the uterine lining becomes implanted outside the uterus — although women with adenomyosis often also have endometriosis. The cause of adenomyosis remains unknown, but the disease typically disappears after menopause. For women who experience severe discomfort from adenomyosis, certain treatments can help, but hysterectomy is the only cure.


In my case,  ‘Adenomyosis’ cripples me every month for 5 days and I go through my own personal hell. I am unable to move from my own bed because of severe abdominal cramps. I am homebound and many a times have had to rush to the hospital to get help for the pain. I have been having this problem since past 5 years but got to know the reason only two years back.


The past two years have been an eye opener for me as I never knew I had the determination and the courage to go through so many procedures. Hubs stood by me like a rock and has been my pillar of strength. Trying to find an answer for infertility is a difficult journey riddled with self doubt, anger and disappointment. I met countless other women at the hospital where I was taking the treatment. I could read their faces so easily as I had the same look, that of hope and anxiety on my face everyday.


After every failed IUI (Intrauterine Insemination) and IVF cycle (In vitro fertilisation),  I went into a negative phase where it became difficult to cope with the loss. It was difficult to communicate with friends and family as most asked me to stay positive but could hardly relate to my situation. Even friends who had been through the same situation, instead of being a support had moved on and instead of being empathetic and supportive were more into narrating that I will get over it as they did. 


Many people started giving me advice at the drop of a hat. Why don’t you adopt?  Just be positive and you never know you might get pregnant?  Being a parent is important whether it is your own or adopted.


I had to nod or say ‘Yeah’, whereas all the while I wanted to ask them ‘Why didn't they adopt? Why did they try for their own child? Adoption is a solution for childlessness but not infertility. I craved for the whole experience of bearing a child.


The whole process of trying to  cope with infertility and trying for a child is one filled with self doubt, guilt and helplessness. Added to that, the spate of hormones, the daily injections, medicines and endless number of times you have to undergo ultrasonography puts additional stress in your life. Your emotions are on a rollercoaster ride and you are literally in the state of suspended animation. You don’t have control over your life and your own body.


For me, every cycle of procedure started with anxiety over the success, being hopeful after the procedure was done and total hopelessness when the result was negative. This upheaval of emotions made it difficult for me to function normally. I had terrible mood swings, aches and pains in my body coupled with constant stress. I could not concentrate anywhere. I literally lost my sense of humour and even the desire to blog.


Today, I am still in the mourning process and trying to cope everyday. The sight of children makes me uneasy. My eyes mist over when I see small babies. I start crying when I see ads for baby products and get irritated with myself for being so sensitive.


My experiments with infertility have been quite difficult but all the while the support and love of Hubs has kept me sane. Till last month, we were completely focused on having a child and suddenly now life feels aimless.


Slowly, I am trying to bring back life on track. There are many things to learn, explore and enjoy. I am learning to drive a car  and have joined ‘Yoga’ classes for harmony and peace. Hubs and I want to go on a Holiday. I want to start blogging regularly.


This prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr has inspired me a lot and gives me strength.


God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference
.



I know, life does not end just because we are unable to have a child.


In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on.
                                                                                       - Robert Frost

69 comments:

Ritu Lalit said...

Hugs.  Its the nesting instinct, once it grips a woman, it makes her really sensitive to baby ads and seeing babies.  Stay strong

Jyotsnakewadkar said...

Hi Sis. I hope your blog will make people more empathetic towards people going through what you both went through.

Geeta said...

Sending you lots of hugs dear... I can empathize with you all the way... Hats off to you for pulling yourself together and writing this blog- I still have a hard time talking about the whole experience...

Pallav Gogoi said...

After ages I am reading something real. Your post gave me goosebumps. It's life, move on..Time will heal every thing. Regards Pallav.

Namrata Mahalingam said...

It's one of the most common problems around. I am glad your husband is so supportive.

BTW, adoption is a nice idea.

Take Care.

Smita Saxena said...

Firstly I should applaud you for writing this post, it needs guts to bare your emotions :)
*hugs*
A fren of mine is going through the same phase though in her case there is still some hope but I know what you are going through. It must be difficult specially when you know you are being judged by all and sundry.
Just cheer up and smile rest all will fall in place automatically.

Aparna said...

A very big hug to you. It stirred me reading about your feelings and emotions and endless efforts and imense thirst to have your own baby. Honestly I can imagine but will not understand what you had been through. I Wish God to give you strength to cope. Writing a blog about this is definitely a courageous step but the best way to keep people's mouth shut. This unwanted end result is possibly a starting point to look for another aim in your life. As they say life goes on and it should go on...

smitha said...

Hugs, LP. You are so incredibly brave to just post about this. Hugs and all rye best for everything.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Ritu. I agree the nesting instinct is difficult to shake off...I am trying to be strong.

Purbaray said...

Welcome back Vinita! Writing about your ordeal can be cathartic. And I've always felt that God has a plan for each one of us. We just need to be patient.

Stay strong girl!


 

Lazy Pineapple said...

That is the plan. I wanted to share my feelings so that I could reach out to others who are in the same boat.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Pallav for your message. Yes time will heal everything..but for now I need to grieve :(

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Namrata. My husband is my soulmate. I am not against adoption. It is just that people throw that word in my face when they know I don't have children and that is what makes me angry.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Smita for your kind words. I had to muster up all my courage to write this post. Do give my best wishes to your friend and I hope that she is successful.  I am learning to smile :)

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Aparna for your comment. Hugs to you as well. I wrote this post because I wanted to get over this phase. This is the start of my healing process and I know it will take some time. As I said, I have already stated to bring my life to normal and want to learn so many new things...

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Purba...It was cathartic to write about my situation. I am blessed in all other respects except this. I am trying my best to remain calm and strong..

Anjali said...

Sis, big hugs. It takes a lot of courage to write what you have written.  Well written.

Gayatri said...

Vini - I decided to comment here instead of cluttering your FB feed. I lost what I typed there forgive me.I sit here at work fighting back tears while you are processing all this upheaval. I hope your blog is a source of information to some hapless woman googling her symptoms or for the word adenomyosis. I know I stumbled upon writings of very articulate women who usually wrote a no holds barred version of their struggles with fertility treatments. 
Know that you are in my thoughts and best wishes going forward. I highly recommend martinis and a vacation. 

Kalyan Karmakar said...

wow lazy you are one brave girl ...wish you and your husband loads of peace and happiness...take care

Rohit said...

Martini's and vacations it should be. That was really good writing. sorry to hear that but you have always been a very strong girl and you will find a way out, just follow your heart and seek happiness. Give love to hubs as well.

Shilpa Garg said...

Hugs LP!! I am speechless and can so very relate to your situation... have gone through some of it long back (the comments, the incessant advice, a miscarriage, the visits to the labs, doctors...) , and then finally Aaryan came in our lives! Stay positive and strong! Am glad you are moving in the right direction! Take care and loads of love, dear friend!

Anirban Mitra said...

You are an incredibly brave lady to express what you have above. I say this from experience. We are married for 14 years and have been through all the above trials and pains, repeatedly. My wife , perhaps, faced the greater trauma , but I tried to be around holding her hand- firmly. We are in the final stages of adopting a child at the moment but the pain remains as a constant wound at the back of our minds. Hope that you have the strength to face life as it has presented to you.

Anirban Mitra said...

Is it a coincidence that my blog goes in the name of lazyani:))

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Anju :) 

Lazy Pineapple said...

I loved your suggestion of Martini and  a Vacation :) It took me many weeks to pen this post. It was difficult and also painful. I am hoping that my post inspires others to talk about their problems.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Kalyan. Your wishes are much needed...

Lazy Pineapple said...

Hi Shilpa....I am sure you must have gone through hell...it is like that, right? I am glad that you were finally blessed after your struggle. I will now be a regular at your blog, I promise... Thanks for your wishes 

Lazy Pineapple said...

Hey thanks Anirban. I am dropping you a mail.

Corinne Rodrigues said...

I know this took a lot of courage to write and I admire you for it.  Frankly anything I write here seems so trite in light of the depth and honesty of your feelings. All  I can say is that I empathize with you, having longed to have children too and to have to give up on my dream because of age and other factors. I'm learning to focus on what I have and forget about what could have/ should have been and enjoy the present. Consider yourself hugged .....

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Corinne for your words and hugs. Sorry to hear that you had to give up that dream :( it sucks but we still have to carry on...
I am doing what you did...trying to focus on the good things...

Journomuse said...

V, have been in a state of really really hectic work, leaving no time for even a sigh, forget looking at my blog. But seeing a link for a new post on the messenger made me get here...There are two points where I empathise...yes, not sympathise but empathise...Every time I talk about wanting to have a child, there are people who advise me ( I don't doubt their intentions) that when there are so many orphan children out there, why do I need to have a child of my own, why not give a life to a little one..to all of them, I have always explained that I am selfish enough to want to experience those nine months of nurturing a life within, bringing up a child for a lifetime afterwards is the only experience I can replicate through adoption. And the second, is the constant state of self-doubt- in my case, being a single woman, the odds are anyways stacked and those to judge even more...So finding the right time to do it is as equally important as deciding how to do it..and once those factors are sorted, then the thought of whether biology will let me have my child. 

I just hope that your innate sense of humour and maturity sees you through this difficult phase...I can endorse that writing is catharsis..I have got over several demons and learnt to put setbacks behind in this manner..So I'd just say a great start...and I will soon be in your part of the world to catch up with you for that long-pending cuppa...:) Much love!!! 

Naomanansari said...

Courage. Very few have and display. You are right and am proud of you. It would help countless

Deepak said...

*Hugs*

Yugandhara said...

Congratulations love!!! How many buckets did you fill while writing this? I filled one while reading. I don't know what to say. Love you both. Take care.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Deeps...I guess desiring a child is a women's natural instinct and adoption is not the answer for everybody. When people make such suggestions..they are being insensitive as it is often suggested by those people who have their own biological children. This to me sounds very hypocritical..
I know of a single woman who went ahead and too help of a sperm bank to have a child. Things are changing in India and our mindset too has to change.

As for me, I am taking baby steps towards getting back to normal. I am looking forward to our lunch/coffee together. See you soon...

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Naoman...I hope that this post is helpful to many who are going through the same thing as I am. Please do share it with your friends..

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks for the hugs Deepak..

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Choti...dropping an answer to your mail..

Zephyr said...

 Hey Vinita, it was very brave of you to not only have faced insensitive people and their nosy questions all this while but also come out and share the pain. I am sure it is cathartic and helps you when we send you our love and hugs. I can only wonder at the ways of God who gives children to those who do not appreciate their worth and deprive those like you. There are no words that I can say to make the pain less, but here is a hug -- maybe it will help.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Zephyr..Thanks for being so supportive. At this moment hugs and wishes are what I need. Though I am inching everyday towards a person I was, I still have a long way to go but I am determined.

Ramya said...

I know you have heard it umpteen times now, but really Vini, you are a brave girl to have shared your difficult times. I am glad that your husband is your proverbial rock and hope that you both find the understanding & love that you will need to get along with life.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Ramya for your kind words. It was tough to pore out my heart cause I thought people will be judgmental but everyone has been super supportive till now.

Ashima Saini said...

Hey gal, be strong... i know it pinches... One can always consider adoption if things don't work out otherwise, its a wonderful thing to do to help a needy child and give him or her a good life while having a child to love.

Liza said...

I can only dare to imagine what you are going through...I have no intentions to console you but I sincerely believe that God has better plans in store for you...He cannot allow bad things to happen to such beautiful people as I know you both....

L.C. Griffith said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. It is a loss and I believe when we suffer important losses we must allow ourselves the time to grieve. Sending prayers and love your way. The sun will shine again for you and you will feel complete.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Ashima..thanks for your comment. Adoption is an option but is not the answer for everyone who cannot have children. I believe that the person needs to be ready to accept someone else's child in their life.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Liza for your kind words...hope you are well...

Ramya said...

Hi, Stumbled upon your blog by blog hopping. 

My prayers and hugs to you. From my experience, My aunt delivered baby after 5 years of married life. So I completely understand. There was this couple who lost bot the sons at the same time. I still curse God why on earth he gave them kids. They lived happily and loosing kids at the age of 19 and 23 is the worst thing that could happen. Please be strong. 
And I also know other couple who didn't have kid for 15 yrs and then they adopted a baby girl . Kindly think of alternative  after 3-5 yrs. Its not a bad option.I am sure you will be proud and happy. for taking the decision. Sorry I am again talking abt adoption. The reason is , I saw the family struggle without kids and now they are extremely happy. I just want you to be happy too :):) 
Take your time. Time heals everything!! 

KAVITA M said...

hi vinita,
All I want to say is thanks for writing this in the blog and sharing with us. I admired you before and now I admire you even more. I want to say I love you. Please start blogging again because you are special and you write with your heart which makes your blog special. I will say take your time to grieve because only then you will be ready to move on and I do believe you have lot more strength inside you which will help you to become a new Vini and I am sure this VINI will be ROCKING.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Hey Kavita. You have boosted my morale through your sweet words. I am getting back to blogging and trying to blog regularly. Thanks for appreciating my writing. Please keep reading and supporting me with your lovely comments

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Ramya for hopping to my blog. I agree time heals everything. It is too soon to think about adoption as I need more time. I am thinking of all the options. Thanks for your kind words and please do visit again.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks L.C Griffith for your support, love and prayers. I am getting there slowly and trying to heal.

Shail said...

May God give you strength and peace of mind to get over this difficult phase of ur life...stay brave..Have Faith!!

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks for your support and blessings Shail

Subhorup Dasgupta said...

i see that the discussion thread has already covered all that one can say in such a situation. life goes on, but only one who is going through the struggle of trying to conceive knows what it feels like to go on with life... here is something from my personal experience that i thought of sharing. http://subhorup.blogspot.com/2012/06/countdown-expired.html

Lazy Pineapple said...

Yes life does go on but at the moment we are struggling to be normal. I commented on your blog and am sorry that you and your wife have to bear this pain..

Anirban said...

I only know you through the online world, a forum which makes pain seem unreal and distant, but your post touched my heart. I only wish that you didn't have to go through these situations at all. My profoundest respects to you and to your husband.


You are not alone and while I cannot personally relate I can empathize with you. I'd also like to share this piece with you which highlights some of the same emotions which you have so gracefully captured. http://www.orionmagazine.org/index.php/articles/article/6694

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Anirban for your comment. I read the article that you have shared here and found it to be extremely moving. I am thankful for your kindness.

Dr Aniruddha Malpani, MD said...

Very well written. I do hope you will share this with your infertility doctor as well !

Lazy Pineapple said...

Hi Dr. Malpani..Thanks for your comment. I will surely do so. Thanks for your suggestion..

Rachna Srivastava Parmar said...

Vinita, it takes a lot of courage to write about something so painful because it feels like we are laying bare the raw wound. But, sharing does help healing. Words are inadequate to express how I feel. I am sending you strength and hugs. Life teaches you ways of dealing with pain.

Lazy Pineapple said...

Rachna : Thanks for your kind words. Yes sharing does help but sometimes it can become more painful when people become insensitive. Thanks for your hugs and god bless you...

Deepa said...

LP, I know you'll find the strength to get through this, to accept the unacceptable. No amount of words positive or otherwise will console you as much as you can console yourself. But I am going to say this. Thank you. You have no idea how much this post of yours will help others. I say this because I personally know someone really going through what you went through. They haven't been told they're infertile yet, but they have been through multiple cycles of failed IUI. I am still hoping for something positive, a miracle maybe. But this post will give them a lot of strength and courage to go on. I hope you find your peace LP. In an adopted baby or in life's other pleasures. I know the idea of having someone's else's child is not the same as having your own and one really has to be ready for it. I know that life's other adventures might not fill the void, but its a start. Stay strong. Please. God bless.

Sandeep said...

... God Bless u both always!
Sandeep

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thank You Deepa. Yes, no amount of positive words are making an effect on me at the moment. I need the time to grieve to move forward. I hope your friends hear something positive. My very best wishes for them. Please do ask them to contact me if they want to talk. Thanks again for your comment.

Lazy pineapple said...

Thank you Sandy.

Sunnyflower said...

I too have been married for 12 years and now after my 4th failed IVF I have hit rock bottom AGAIN. I feel I live in a completely different world from everyone I know and the despair that comes from realizing that all the energy I put into hoping for a positive outcome is crippling. I don't know where to go from here. I don't know if it is worth dreaming babies anymore. For sure life goes on and we cope but there is always that gaping hole in our insides that never goes away. I m so tired of being sad..........

Lazy Pineapple said...

Thanks Shail..

Lazy Pineapple said...

Hi Sunnyflower..you are going through a very difficult period and I can understand how you feel. It feels that you are on a different planet and no one can understand you.
If you would like to write to me am very much there for you. My email id is vkherdekar@gmail.com. Hang in there dear...this too shall pass

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