Showing posts with label infertility. Show all posts
Showing posts with label infertility. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Thank You, Infertility!

I daydream. I always have. Sometimes Jeremy says that is me just being ridiculous and worrying about the stuff that no one worries about. Sometimes he is right. But other times my daydreaming really is valid.

I have been daydreaming about babies and pregnancy lately. Not that I want more children. I am content and happy with Max and Harper. They complete our family. I am satisfied. But what if?

What if I wanted to have children?

I feel as though infertility has robbed us from even contemplating this question.

Could we even have other children without treatments? We can't afford to spend another $20,000 for a chance at another child.

So we are not having any more children. And although I really am fine with this choice. There are things I will miss. Miss about having babies (because mine are big kids now!). Miss about being pregnant. And I can't help but blame infertility.

After all,  it was the beast of infertility that stole a normal conception and the excitement of a no worry pregnancy. I'm not bitter,  right?

I'd never ever in a million years take those little humans (that are my life) away. But our family plan has severely been raped by that infertility monster.

No more ultimate safety of babies being in me.
No more flutters in my belly.
No more kicks or stomach contortions.
No more ultrasound pictures.
No more nursery preparation.
No more pre-washing baby clothes.
No more love at first sight at a baby's birth.
No more stumbling in the night to make the bottles.
No more baby smells.
No more infant bathtubs (I loved ours!).
No more coos and first smiles.
No more first anything. (Too dramatic?)
No more growing out of newborn clothes.
No more teeny tiny diapers....and teeny tiny poops! Ha!
No more laying a baby down and the baby being there two seconds later.
No more teeny tiny clothes. Or shoes.
No more warming bottles.
No more bottles.
No more baby food.
No more feeding schedules.
No more BABIES!

It is so sad. It is sad that these two are it for me. But it is also a way. As much as I would love to relive those wonderful firsts, I know that I would miss that at any point. There's no magic number of children that would ever make me content. I'd miss those things at 3 kids, 4 kids or even 5! The truth is that my babies are NOT babies. It is just plain sad.

But because of infertility (yep!), I have my miracles. I blame infertility for a lot. It sucks. I hate it. I hate that we had to walk that path. But I also have to see that through that process and journey...I got Max and Harper.

Infertility gave me all of the above missed experiences and so much more.

We now have a lifetime of happiness ahead of us. Each day brings a first that will be added to my no more list. Whether it is Harper smiling her largest at the prompt of "cheeseburger" or the babbling conversation that happens in our car ride home when asked "How was your day?"

So instead of feeling robbed by infertility. I have chosen the mindset that God has blessed me by giving me the chance to experience motherhood via the path of infertility

As odd as it sounds...thanks infertility?


Friday, August 29, 2014

Marriage is Hard

Instead of apologizing for my absence, I will just say life has been busy and grand all at the same time. July 31 I started my new job in a new school district. It has been a great change for me and I am loving it! August 13, school started and then my professor (yes, professor! I love saying that!) job started August 19. So I am still trying to navigate and juggle everything. Some days I am not quite sure how I have managed to keep all of the plates spinning on those teeny, tiny poles.

One of the reasons I have been able to do everything and come out fairly unscathed is because of the topic of this husband, Jeremy.

Tomorrow marks SIX years of wedded bliss marriage. August 30, 2008, I resigned myself to be forever known as Mrs. Sickel and committed my life to loving Jeremy.

Notice that I didn't say wedded bliss above. I would be lying if I said that the last six years have been blissful and perfect. In fact, I am convinced that the last six years have been by far the most difficult, scary and sometimes ugly moments of my life thus far. And I am sure Jeremy would agree.

My parents are getting ready to celebrate 50 years of marriage in October and Jeremy's parents are getting closer to 40 years of marriage. What awesome examples of unending love, huh?

Marriage today seems to be an act or commitment that is taken for granted. It is so easy to change your mind mid-marriage or in some cases, minutes into the relationship. I am not saying that Jeremy and I deserve some kind of fancy award for making it six whole years. A small feat, really. Six years is just starting this journey really. (Although a gold star on the sticker chart or a blue ribbon with 1st clearly displayed is always appreciated.)

The events that occurred between August 30, 2008 and August 30, 2014 weren't abnormal to so many, but they were hard. Life didn't deal us the best hand to play with, but we did our best. I was willing to give up on everything at least a dozen (ok...more than that) times. I wasn't always rational in how I viewed our sucktastic journey through infertility. But I didn't need to be. Jeremy found a way to ensure that when I was losing my freaking mind, he was keeping it together for the both of us. I, of course, did the same for him ALL (maybe twice) of the time.

Any marriage that makes it through the throngs of infertility deserves some kind of reward. (Like, paying off fertility debt is just a start! No really. I am not kidding. That should be a thing!)

I never thought anything in life would be harder than surviving those years of fertility treatments, denial, blame, doubt, hatred, hurt, depression and disappointment. That was until the last 14 months presented itself.

The last 14 months proved to be pretty dang hard and even more challenging to our marriage. Now these months were MUCH different from our infertility times. We experienced amazing, undying, unconditional love...for two little humans that we created. So yeah...Max and Harper are great! We love them in a way neither of us expected. A way that makes our hearts literally want to burst out of our chests.

But our marriage has been anything than ideal the last year or so. We both would agree. But the best part is that we realize this and haven't given up. Nor do we (or at least I) have plans to. (Jeremy, you better not either!)

Parenting is SO hard. This goes for any parent no matter how many kids you have. Although my experience is twins, it doesn't change the fact that being a parent is a hard job. Two different people have two different ideas of what is right for the kids. Different ideas on how to feed them. How to dress them. How to play with them. How to discipline them. How to teach them. How to put them to sleep. How to hold them. How to change them.

Pretty soon those two people who were so in love and so involved in each other's lives are now devoting every waking moment to raising the kids. We may have a good 5 minutes at the end of the day to discuss personal feelings and thoughts but by then, don't you just want to sleep? We start to schedule conversations. Remember the time when we could talk whenever we wanted? Sleep deprivation sets in and then the 'whose turn is it to get up?' turns into a whisper-shouting match at 3am. (yep, that happened!)

So if we are honest, our marriage has suffered since becoming parents. But the good thing is that we have realized this. We need to make more time for us. This nights. We don't do them. Mainly because we feel like our two are a handful for anyone who watches them. They are so busy and into everything. And...I want to spend as much time with them as possible. But I am seriously doing a disservice to Jeremy and my relationship.

I am certain that we love each other more than we did 6 years ago. We have seen the worst of each other. We have experienced some really awful things that are unfathomable to some. But we have also experienced overwhelming joy and blessings. We have seen God work in our lives in miraculous ways.

It really is crazy to see us as those young, anxious newlyweds. We had no idea where life would take us but we were going to do it together so it didn't matter. It still doesn't. We are in this together. I couldn't ask for a better partner and father to Max and Harper. I am so fortunate! Happy Anniversary, Jer! I love you!


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Be a voice. Be heard.

Happy National Infertility Awareness Week!

Infertility is always a part of each victim's life.

It doesn't matter if you seem to be "on the other side" of the disease with the answered prayer baby in your arms or in your belly. It doesn't matter if you are just starting to seek out medical help. It doesn't matter if you are on your second IVF failure. It doesn't matter if you have gone through countless procedures, surgeries, miscarriages and heartbreak.

We ALL know what it feels like to want something so badly that you would do nearly anything to get it.

We put our bodies through hell for the chance of starting or completing a family. We get our hearts filled with hope at the beginning of a cycle or the beginning of the adoption have them broken into a million pieces when things go awry. Our hearts seem to magically heal in time for the next cycle...and the next...and the next. We go through this over and over again holding onto a faith and love with such persistence. We obsess over each twinge, spot of blood, cramp, and cycle day. We test...then test, and then test again. Our minds constantly guessing on what it all means and if we need to call the RE.

We carry a heavy burden.

We bear other's advice. We bear the weight of our partner's childlessness. We beat ourselves up and blame ourselves for all the failures. It is our bodies. It is our fault.

We ache for the child so badly that when we are lucky to see a positive pregnancy test...we are afraid to celebrate. After all, we know that at any given moment, our dreams could come crashing down.

We are infertile.

It is the type of disease that stays with its victims forever. Once an infertile, always an infertile. Even after it seems like we have "beat" becomes a state of mind. We will never be the same. It has altered our hearts. It has essentially robbed us from an experience that many get for free without heartache.

If you don't know about infertility, please take the time to educate yourself. Most likely a couple you know is suffering. Some in silence. We need you.
For more information, visit 


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Infertility Thoughts From "The Other Side"

For those of you that are trying for your take home baby, this is for you. For those of you that are blessed (like me) to receive the lovable take home baby(ies) we hoped for, you may agree (or not).

I initially thought that infertility was just a short chapter to my life. It turns out, infertility never left me. It is a part of who I am and possibly always will be. It is true that the twins have seemingly completed our infertility struggles.

BUT infertility consumes us.  It overwhelms every part of us.  It infiltrates our emotions, our relationships, our finances, our intimacies.  It becomes so much a part of so much of who we are. 

Without realizing it, we begin to expect people around us to understand what it’s like to be infertile.  We long for understanding that we cannot even verbalize.  I wonder if we are not holding people to a standard that only God Himself can meet? 

I know that I expected everyone to understand what I was going through...even Jeremy. I disliked and loathed the idiots that unknowingly made stupid comments like "Why haven't you two had children yet?" or "Do you not want kids?" or "Are you doing it right?" or "Have you tried this?" or "You can borrow mine!" I found myself more focused on their idiocracy and insensitivity.

I still find myself dodging these same idiots. Except now they come with insensitive comments about how we obtained the twins. "Twins?" or "Do twins run in the family?" or "Gosh! I am glad they are yours." I really want to spew our entire struggle to them. I want to tell them that we spent thousands of dollars, cried millions of tears, and prayed countless prayers for these twins. Yes, they run in the family but we also had to have medical intervention.

But then I realize that the masses don't understand or know too much about the infertile world or my infertile mind.

Infertility is a lot of things.  It is a physical, emotional, relational and financial crisis in a young couple’s life.  It is an anvil on which many marriages are strengthened and some are destroyed.

That infertile mind doesn't go away. The pain is lessened by the smiles of my babies but I still hurt for the "abnormal" process that we had to go through to get these babies. I hurt for the so many women and men that are still in the trenches of IF. I know that those couples are facing the insensitive men and women who just don't understand.

I am sorry that you are having to paste a fake smile on your face when you answer their questions with "Yes, we want children. We will have them in due time. [nervous laugh]" (At least that was my blanket response.)

So, I posted pictures through pregnancy. I post pictures of my babes. But know that I am still infertile. I just pray and hope for your struggle to be lessened because from here on out...being an infertile never ends. We will always be infertile.