Monday, June 2, 2014

California Dreamin

Today I realized that it has been nearly a year since my last blog posting.. And in that time SOOO much has changed.. I mean nothing really for the better, just different.. The wife and I finally gave up.. We literally did.. Gave up everything we knew and loved, and moved from AZ to Southern California..

From the top, our first few weeks in Cali were brutal.. Every possible thing that could go wrong, did.. Hitting every lump and bump in the road possible.. But we made it through, hence me being here writing this post.. We made our way into some new company, both personal and business.. We met a group of awesome women who'd all been TTC as long or even longer than my wife and I have, and can gladly say that since then they have all gotten pregnant.. Of course, considering the wife and I have the pregnancy touch.. If an infertile or any woman for that matter wants to get pregnant all they need to do is be in our presence for half a second and they'll conceive that cycle, without fail.. But that is neither here nor there, back to the point.. We moved here in the hopes that we would be able to move forward with more extensive fertility treatments (i.e., IVF) with a world class awesome thoughtful and understanding Dr.. And the perks of being able to have both our names on the birth certificate and having 2nd parent adoption be options are amazing as well.. All these high hopes for just a place on the map..

We did do 6 cycles since being here in Cali, all resulting in the same negative outcome.. This brought a sense of realization to our moving here.. We are now trying to find our place.. We are now well aware that moving states was never going to define our journey for us.. It was never intended to make our journey any easier.. We'd just placed way to much weight on our being in a fresh new place.. This new place doesn't change the fact that the wife and I both are dealing with infertility, while still longing for children, and hopelessly trying to fight and scratch our way to have the means to continue towards our dream.. We can now say that we have spent upwards of $35k over the course of 4years on our hopes of trying to become parents.. And being here now would still need an additional almost $9k to continue forward to IVF treatments..

Being that we are both fighters and apparently stubborn, we are taking on the challenge.. I will be picking up my 3rd job this week (2 part-time and 1 full-time), and my wife her 2nd.. We are either glutton for punishment, can't admit defeat or both.. No matter were the road takes us, we are determined to have our dreams come to fruition.. Now more than ever..

I would die for that....

This is a project that we hold dear to hearts, and were more than happy to be a part of.. In this video, that isn't a couple that looks like us.. THAT IS US.. We were blessed to meet, walk, chat, and bond with with some amazingly wonderful people.. All dealing with the struggles Inez and myself have to endure day in and day out.. Really hope you take a few moments to click the link provided and watch.. It seems at times that others may not care about your struggles or want to hear your story while you are in the midst of the storm.. No matter how many years things have been stagnant.. They only want to hear of them once you have made it through to some sort of happier ending.. One more palatable for their lives.. Well truth be told, there aren't always happy endings.. And during the struggle is when they were needed most.. Worst than any one part of this journey, is the isolation and loneliness that is felt.. This project reminds me that we are not alone, no matter how much this world likes to make us think that we are outcasts because we have to :try: for our blessing..

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

I do know love....

I’m finding myself hurt by the tags/comments/pix that we’ve all seen.. You know, the ones that say something completely terrible like “You’ll never know love until you’ve loved your own child”.. To that I say “Screw, no, FUCK YOU”..
I know a love no one would ever understand, unless placed in our shoes..
The kind of love that leaves us susceptible to an unbearably painful hurt on a month in month out basis..
The kind of love where I have to feel a grief for child that was prayed for so hard that never came to be..
The kind of love that I sink my ALL into, every ounce of  free time, every possible cell of energy available in my body, and every dime we make just for the hope that one day..ONE DAY..we will be blessed with something that came so easily to so many others..
The kind of love for a wife who has held my hand through every medical procedure, every blood draw, every mood swing caused by fertility meds, every failed cycle, and every devastating ultrasound result..
I’m blessed to say I DO know love.. One that I know is stronger more in depth and unbreakable than what most will ever experience.. So for now I will continue to take solace in the blessings I have received, and file your comments away as sheer ignorance.. I pray for your sake, you never see any hurt that nears what we’ve endured.. And I can promise, I will never take for granted this dark before our dawn.. It has shaped enlightened and humbled us.. We don’t see any light yet, I'm faithful and know that I have experienced the purest love, there for the light will come..

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Just asking for a little reassurance...

A guide for family and friends:

The author, Jody Earle

I want to share my feelings about infertility with you, because I want you to understand my struggle. I know that understanding infertility is difficult; there are times when it seems even I don't understand. This struggle has provoked intense and unfamiliar feelings in me and I fear that my reactions to these feelings might be misunderstood. I hope my ability to cope and your ability to understand will improve as I share my feelings with you.

 I want you to understand. You may describe me this way: obsessed, moody, helpless, depressed, envious, too serious, obnoxious, aggressive, antagonistic, and cynical. These aren't very admirable traits; no wonder your understanding of my infertility is difficult. I prefer to describe me this way: confused, rushed and impatient, afraid, isolated and alone, guilty and ashamed, angry, sad and hopeless, and unsettled.

My infertility makes me feel confused. I always assumed I was fertile. I've spent years avoiding pregnancy and now it seems ironic that I can't conceive. I hope this will be a brief difficulty with a simple solution such as poor timing. I feel confused about whether I want to be pregnant or whether I want to be a parent. Surely if I try harder, try longer, try better and smarter, I will have a baby.

My infertility makes me feel rushed and impatient. I learned of my infertility only after I'd been trying to become pregnant for some time. My life-plan suddenly is behind schedule. I waited to become a parent and now I must wait again. I wait for medical appointments, wait for tests, wait for treatments, wait for other treatments, wait for my period not to come, wait for my partner not to be out of town and wait for pregnancy. At best, I have only twelve opportunities each year. How old will I be when I finish having my family?

My infertility makes me feel afraid. Infertility is full of unknowns, and I'm frightened because I need some definite answers. How long will this last? What if I'm never a parent? What humiliation must I endure? What pain must I suffer? Why do drugs I take to help me, make me feel worse? Why can't my body do the things that my mind wants it to do? Why do I hurt so much? I'm afraid of my feelings, afraid of my undependable body and afraid of my future.

My infertility makes me feel isolated and alone. Reminders of babies are everywhere. I must be the only one enduring this invisible curse. I stay away from others, because everything makes me hurt. No one knows how horrible is my pain. Even though I'm usually a clear thinker, I find myself being lured by superstitions and promises. I think I'm losing perspective. I feel so alone and I wonder if I'll survive this.

My infertility makes me feel guilty and ashamed. Frequently I forget that infertility is a medical problem and should be treated as one. Infertility destroys my self esteem and I feel like a failure. Why am I being punished? What did I do to deserve this? Am I not worthy of a baby? Am I not a good sexual partner? Will my partner want to remain with me? Is this the end of my family lineage? Will my family be ashamed of me? It is easy to lose self-confidence and to feel ashamed.

My infertility makes me feel angry. Everything makes me angry, and I know much of my anger is misdirected. I'm angry at my body because it has betrayed me even though I've always taken care of it. I'm angry at my partner because we can't seem to feel the same about infertility at the same time. I want and need an advocate to help me. I'm angry at my family because they've always sheltered and protected me from terrible pain. I'm angry at my medical caregivers, because it seems that they control my future. They humiliate me, inflict pain on me, pry into my privacy, patronize me, and sometimes forget who I am. How can I impress on them how important parenting is to me? I'm angry at my expenses; infertility treatment is extremely expensive. My financial resources may determine my family size. My insurance company isn't cooperative, and I must make so many sacrifices to pay the medical bills. I can't miss any more work, or I'll lose my job. I can't go to a specialist, because it means more travel time, more missed work, and greater expenses. Finally, I'm angry at everyone else. Everyone has opinions about my inability to become a parent. Everyone has easy solutions. Everyone seems to blow too little and say too much.

My infertility makes me feel sad and hopeless. Infertility feels like I've lost my future, and no one knows of my sadness. I feel hopeless; infertility robs me of my energy. I've never cried so much nor so easily. I'm sad that my infertility places my marriage under so much strain. I'm sad that my infertility requires me to be so self-centered, I'm sad that I've ignored many friendships because this struggle hurts so much and demands so much energy. Friends with children prefer the company of other families with children. I'm surrounded by babies, pregnant women, playgrounds, baby showers, birth stories, kids' movies, birthday parties and much more. I feel so sad and hopeless.

My infertility makes me feel unsettled. My life is on hold. Making decisions about my immediate future is impossible. I can't decide about education, career, purchasing a home, pursuing a hobby, getting a pet, vacations, business trips and houseguests. The more I struggle with my infertility, the less control I have. This struggle has no timetable; the treatments have no guarantees. The only sure things are that I need to be near my doctor at treatment times. Should I pursue adoption? Should I take expensive drugs? Should I pursue more specialized and costly medical intervention? It feels unsettling to have no clear, easy answers or guarantees. Occasionally I feel my panic subside. I'm learning some helpful ways to cope; I'm now convinced I'm not crazy, and I believe I'll survive. I'm learning to listen to my body and to be assertive, not aggressive, about my needs. I'm realizing that good medical care and good emotional care are not necessarily found in the same place. I'm trying to be more than an infertile person gaining enthusiasm, joyfulness, and zest for life. You can help me. I know you care about me and I know my infertility affects our relationship. My sadness causes you sadness; what hurts me, hurts you, too, I believe we can help each other through this sadness. Individually we both seem quite powerless, but together we can be stronger.

Maybe some of these hints will help us to better understand infertility. I need you to be a listener. Talking about my struggle helps me to make decisions. Let me know you are available for me. It's difficult for me to expose my private thoughts if you are rushed or have a deadline for the end of our conversation. Please don't tell me of all the worse things that have happened to others or how easily someone else's infertility was solved. Every case is individual. Please don't just give advice; instead, guide me with your questions. Assure me that you respect my confidences, and then be certain that you deserve my trust. While listening, try to maintain an open mind. I need you to be supportive. Understand that my decisions aren't made casually. I've agonized over them. Remind me that you respect these decisions even if you disagree with them, because you know they are made carefully.
Don't ask me, "Are you sure?" Repeatedly remind me that you love me no matter what. I need to hear it so badly. Let me know you understand that this is very hard work. Help me realize that I may need additional support from professional caregivers and appropriate organizations. Perhaps you can suggest resources. You might also need support for yourself, and I fear I'm unable to provide it for you; please don't expect me to do so. Help me to keep sight of my goal. I need you to be comfortable with me, and then I also will feel more comfortable. Talking about infertility sometimes feels awkward. Are you worried you might say the wrong thing? Share those feelings with me. Ask me if I want to talk. Sometimes I will want to, and sometimes I won't, but it will remind me that you care.

I need you to be sensitive. Although I may joke about infertility to help myself cope, it doesn't seem as funny when others joke about it. Please don't tease me with remarks like, "You don't seem to know how to do it."

Don't trivialize my struggle by saying, "I'd be glad to give you one of my kids." It's no comfort to hear empty reassurances like, "You'll be a parent by this time next year."

Don't minimize my feelings with, "You shouldn't be so unhappy." For now, don't push me into uncomfortable situations like baby showers or family reunions. I already feel sad and guilty; please don't also make me feel guilty for disappointing you. I need you to be honest with me. Let me know that you may need time to adjust to some of my decisions. I also needed adjustment time. If there are things you don't understand, say so. Please be gentle when you guide me to be realistic about things I can't change such as my age, some medical conditions, financial resources, and employment obligations.

Don't hide information about others' pregnancies from me. Although such news makes me feel very sad, it feels worse when you leave me out I need you to be informed. Your advice and suggestions are only frustrating to me if they aren't based on fact. Be well informed so you can educate others when they make remarks based on myths.

Don't let anyone tell you that my infertility will be cured if I relax and adopt.

Don't tell me this is God's will.

Don't ask me to justify my need to parent.

Don't criticize my course of action or my choice of physician even though I may do that myself. Reassure yourself that I am also searching for plenty of information which helps me make more knowledgeable decisions about my options. I need you to be patient. Remember that working through infertility is a process. It takes time. There are no guarantees, no package deals, no complete kits, no one right answer, and no "quickie". My needs change; my choices change. Yesterday I demanded privacy, but today I need you for strength. You have many feelings about infertility, and I do too. Please allow me to have anger, joy, sadness, and hope.

Don't minimize or evaluate my feelings. Just allow me to have them, and give me time. I need you to be strengthening by boosting my self esteem. My sense of worthlessness hampers my ability to take charge. My personal privacy has repeatedly been invaded. I've been subjected to postcoital exams, semen collection in waiting room bathrooms, and tests in rooms next to labor rooms. Enjoyable experiences with you such as a lunch date, a shopping trip, or a visit to a museum help me feel normal.

Encourage me to maintain my sense of humor; guide me to find joys. Celebrate with me my successes, even ones as small as making it through a medical appointment without crying. Remind me that I am more than an infertile person. Help me by sharing your strength. Eventually I will be beyond the struggle of infertility. I know my infertility will never completely go away because it will change my life. I won't be able to return to the person I was before infertility, but I also will no longer be controlled by this struggle. I will leave the struggle behind me, and from that I will have improved my skills for empathy, patience, resilience, forgiveness, decision-making and self-assessment.

I feel grateful that you are trying to ease my journey through this infertility struggle by giving me your understanding.

The difference a decade makes......

If someone would have told me 10years ago that I was dating the devil reincarnate, that she and I wouldn’t last, and in 10years time I would have found the love of my life and been married to my mirror..  I would have sworn them a liar.. I mean we were so great together, and we LOVED…. I can’ t even continue to talk about this one.. Lol.. I was just stupid..

If someone would have told me 10years ago that I would find wonderful friendships, build them strong, and then lose those friends.. That I would learn the meaning of “Only the good die young”.. I’m sure I wouldn’t have believed it, but only because I was so adamant that my small net of friends would have been the only group of friends I would ever have..

If someone would have told me 10years ago that there would ever have been a day that I would question my confidence, that I would ever not be 100% satisfied with my looks, that I would ever be disappointed in my appearance.. My cocky ass would have just laughed..

If someone would have told me 10years ago that I will become the accountant that I’d dreamed to become.. I wouldn’t have known how that could have been possible.. I mean I rocked hard in the street life, I figured that my Lawyer/Accountant dreams from HS were unobtainable..

If someone would have told me 10years ago that there would be a day that I would face a struggle harder than any I’d ever thought possible.. And be stuck in and constantly reminded of that struggle for years.. I would have figured that there was nothing that could possibly be more difficult than what I’d already experienced.. If only I understood then that Murphy’s Law is real..

 I’m coming close to my 29th birthday, meaning closer to being 30 and the end of my 20’s.. Today in this moment I am not where I’d dreamed of being when I was a child and not where I’d thought I’d be 10years ago.. I am here and I know I am blessed.. May God grant me the serenity to accept the things in which I cannot change, the strength and courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.. Thinking of the me I was just 10 short years ago and the me I am now, I can see the difference a decade has made..

Friday, February 22, 2013

Our give a damn is busted..

    It’s been 24months now since we 1st decided it was time to start tracking cycles, looking at donors, researching fertility, etc.. And still no babies to report.. It seems that every time I want to be excited about anything, the wind is sucked out of my sails and my hearts broken..

    We’ve officially reached another impasse in this whole TTC process.. Being that in this time we’ve had people ask us about getting pregnant, get pregnant, and have their babies.. Yet, we are still here with very empty arms.. Peoples comments are becoming more and more insensitive and the intolerance for our inability to be “chipper” has become overwhelming..
    My words of wisdom to those who have apparently not the slightest bit of couth when it comes to dealing with us infertile folks…….  
·         Don’t ask us how we’re doing, it’s never “great” or even “good” for that matter.. You looking at us like we should be so happy just because we exist makes me want to slap you.. Just saying..
·         Don’t tell us something stupid like “Oh, well why not just take my kids for a while.. You’ll surely change your mind about wanting kids..” You come off as an ass..
·         Don’t say “Well if you can’t get pregnant I’d carry your baby, or donate eggs”.. Going there might seem like a polite or generous thing to say to someone like us, but just leads us to believe that you feel that we are inferior to your all mighty ability to lie on your back and produce a baby.. Shuddup..!!
·         Don’t mention adoption or IVF to us, unless in that same statement you’ll be offering us the $20-30k for that to happen.. Like we don’t know those are frickin options.. WTAF..!!
·         Don’t talk to us about going out and having a good time drinking, partying, and whatnot.. Like as if any of that is truly healthy or will take our minds off any of the horrible crap that has happened to us.. We obviously made a decision that it was time for kids because we were done with all of that.. Common sense would tell you we don’t think that shit is fun anymore..
·         Don’t tell us about someone else’s pregnancy or baby and expect our eyes to light up with joy and excitement.. WTF is wrong with you..??
·         Don’t tell us what so and so from your cousins, step-dads work did in order to get pregnant.. I’m sure if my Dr who specializes in fertility is stumped, whatever crap they did means nothing in my world.. And 2nd, don’t assume just because we haven’t had a baby we don’t know what we’re doing.. My advice apparently works for everyone but us.. So I know what the fuck I’m doing.. TRUST..

      I’m tired of us being treated like my wife and I have something wrong with us.. The ones who’ve achieved pregnancy don’t want us around because we are a “bummer” in their prefect little lives.. The ones who aren’t in the ‘married with kids’ phase don’t want us around because either they feel they don’t know what to say, so would rather say nothing at all to us, or because we “don’t party like we used to”.. Well in all honesty, we’re not who we used to be.. And will never be those people again.. We’ve seen too much, been through too much, to ever be able to go back..

    We’re in limbo, and alone.. We know this.. I just never knew that it was at all possible to continue to feel so hopeless, yet daily life seems more and more bleak.. I feel blessed to have found the love of my life, but question why we would have this perfect life dangled in our faces.. With no way of actually achieving our picture of true happiness.. Life’s way beyond a bitch in my book..

    All and all, if you can’t be here with us and I mean truly with us in our darkest hours, then we don’t need nor want you around when we finally make it through to the light..

Friday, November 16, 2012

Trying so hard to remain faithful...

  Completely blank.. That is the best way to describe my feelings today at the start of today.. Sometime during last weekend my wife and I had a brief convo discussing the brand “Lost” that I used to rock hardcore a) when it was popular like 7/8yrs ago, b) when I always felt so lost.. I used to always feel so detached from everyone and everything until my wife found me.. It seemed during that time when I was “lost”, that no matter what I still felt full of faith that there was something better.. That things could and would get better.. During our convo about being lost, we continued to discuss how we would often speak to God and our angels.. How we both always felt a sense of, though we were lost, we never felt alone.. We never felt that our voices, our cries, our tears went unheard..  
    Fast forward to our current life’s struggles.. We went on to talk about how all things TTC have made our lives feel so empty.. That after so much effort, so many prayers, and so much sacrifice we are still left in this complacent state of uncertainties..  Where’s all the faith we once had in the workings of the world..?? I mean I once felt that anything was possible and all would work as it should, when it should.. I was always taught that God would never place more on you then you can bare.. Before, I didn’t understand how someone could lose their faith in their being an ultimate plan for them..
    I’ve now had reality check the hell out of me, and I’m still trying to catch my breath..  Just trying to remain focused and follow all of the things that were instilled our whole lives.. To know this is only a test but we HAVE to pass.. That the rewards will be great for all of this heartache.. But how do you deal in the meanwhile..??  At this point we are trying so hard to remain faithful..
   I just today saw a saying “In the end it will all be okay.. If it isn’t okay, then it isn’t the end.”, and to see this written, when I did, brought me right back to believing in the plan.. It may differ from the one I’d written for myself, but I feel again that after all is said and done it will be OKAY..