To everyone TTC:

May 2016 be your year.

May it be filled with baby dust.

May you finally get that BFP.

May you finally hear that heart beat.

I am rooting for you, you strong, beautiful person.

You have been told no too many times. It’s about damn time you get told yes.

You will have your tiny human, and it will be just as wonderful as you pictured.

I cannot believe how strong you have been.

May 2016 be your year.

Last night I cried

Last night I cried on the way to my abuela’s house. I felt down pretty much all day about having another Christmas without a baby. Santa visits my abuela’s house every year, and has done so for the past 52 years. My dad sat on his lap, all of my sister sat on his lap, and I sat on his lap. I want so badly to see my child sit on the same Santa’s lap that we all have for generations. 

Every holiday my husband and I say the same thing “Next year we will be celebrating with our baby. Next year it won’t just be us” and every holiday is the same, empty. 

So I cried, I didn’t sob, I just let a few tears roll down my cheeks while I let it out to my husband. He held my hand and reminded me: Hope is all people like us have. We will never have a guarantee, but if we lose our hope then we have nothing. When Santa showed up (his actual name is Joe and we give him a bottle of good Tequila as a tip every year) I smiled as I watched the children in my extended family squeal in excitement as they all went up to get their gifts from Santa. I leaned over to my husband and told him I will probably cry when it’s our kids turn, because I still have so much hope that it will happen.

So here is to another year of hope. To all my ladies out there struggling, don’t lose hope, because somedays it’s all we truly have. It’s ok to break down every once in a while, but keep your head up. Lean on the people around you for support, and if you don’t have anybody, I will be that person for you.

Merry Christmas to all my Tumblr followers, but in particular the women who suffer in silent agony with infertility today. You are not alone this Christmas.

Clomid, 100mg.
Opk’s on CD10.
Resume IUI next time if unsuccessful.
Cross fingers.
Cross toes.
Cross heartstrings.
Be positive.
Be optimistic.
But guardedly so.
(Because heartbreak is real.)
No caffeine.
No alcohol. (Personal choice / no judgment)
Yoga. Daily.
Mindfulness. Daily.
Smile when asked if we’re pregnant yet.
Smile when told to relax and get drunk.
No throat punching.
Assault is illegal.
And breathe and breathe and breathe.

I’m sorry that I haven’t been able to stay pregnant.
I’m sorry that I haven’t been able to make my husband a dad.
I’m sorry that I can’t stomach going to baby showers.
I’m sorry that each pregnancy announcement makes me grasp a bottle of Jack Daniels.
I’m sorry that my heart breaks every time someone asks me if I have kids.
I’m sorry that I can’t afford IVF.
I’m sorry that nothing I’m doing is fixing my infertility.
I’m sorry that my body was only made to kill my children.
I’m sorry that I understand the inclination to steal an infant from a nursery.
I’m sorry that my state makes adoption impossible if you aren’t rich.
I’m sorry that my womb is empty and broken.
I’m sorry that I would pay someone to get pregnant for me.
I’m sorry that I feel so insane about all of this.
I’m sorry that I’ll most likely never be a mom if I stay in Illinois.
I’m sorry that this hurts my husband so much.
I’m sorry that I’m this way.
I’m just….sorry.

Potential Names for My Infertility Memoir...
  • Literally Bleeding from the Ovaries
  • Getting Pregnant in a Petri Dish
  • Is the Stork Lost?
  • Screw You Too, Clomid
  • The Art of Timed Intercourse
  • Crying Myself to Sleep and Other Concerns
  • That’s Ok, I Didn’t Like Money Anyway
  • I Don’t Need Therapy; YOU Need Therapy
  • When the Baby in the Baby Carriage Never Comes
  • Hormones Be Crazy
Dear God

I don’t want to believe in you anymore. I don’t want to have faith anymore. I don’t want to get my hopes up or get them crushed anymore. See, if I keep believing in you, I have to keep believing that the pain, turmoil and absolute anguish I am going through is by your design. If I keep having faith, all that happens is it keeps being tested. And it hurts. Damnnit it hurts. All the time. So much. I can’t imagine a loving and omnipresent God that loves his children would want to watch this. This infertility struggle that only, for me at least, ever ends in miscarriage and death. All I’m ever left with in the place of a child is emptiness. Sorrow.
So I don’t want you to be real. I don’t want to think I can rely on you. I don’t want to put my life in your hands. I want to be done with it all. I want science and biology to work. I want to feel whole and stop feeling like a failure. A disappointment.
I don’t want to believe in you anymore.
Even if I still do.

The Holiday Letter I Wish I Could Send...

This year, I decided to write a raw, authentic holiday letter.

I wrote it, but I chickened out when it came time to send it. Instead, I sent a gold foil-pressed one with a photo of B and me smiling as we dance at a friend’s wedding. We look so carefree. So in-the-moment. I love this photo and yet it feels like a total lie. It screams, “See how happy we are? See how connected we are? Our life is perfect.”

Below is the Christmas letter I wish I had been brave enough to send. Strong enough to post on Facebook. But no. It sits on an anonymous Tumblr blog (which I guess is only 1% less sad than just sitting on my private Dropbox). Anyway, this is how our 2015 really went…

This year, you guys…between lots of family health issues, kitty health issues and boatloads of fertility disappointment…2015 was just not our year.

It’s hard to be open and honest about our fertility journey. But I have to be. I owe it to everyone else who is going through this same thing silently. This year, I learned that this beast plagues so many of us, but so few talk about it openly. And I totally get why. Fertility isn’t something people talk lightheartedly about at barbecues. It’s personal. It’s intense. It’s scary. But it’s also needlessly isolating…which is why I am about to compulsively over-share right now (for the squeamish and overly modest, consider this your TMI warning).

My expectations were tragically misaligned when B and I started this journey in September 2014. It’s been 16 months. 16 months of continuous disappointment. 16 months of peeing on plastic…which adds a whole new meaning to the phrase “test taking anxiety.” 16 months of learning about my body and becoming unphased by phrases like “cervical mucus.” 16 months of trying to avoid Facebook, which is a minefield of jealousy-inducing sonograms and announcements. 16 months of becoming a witchdoctor and trying everything both scientific and deeply unscientific—from yoga to acupuncture, and from Chinese herbs to (essentially) standing on my head. And 16 months isn’t even that long for a lot of couples! Of course I didn’t know any of this before we started trying. I thought deciding to have a baby would be like deciding to go get frozen yogurt. You just did it.

False. At least for us. Some people get pregnant really fast and really easily…like on their honeymoons or the first month they ditch the birth control. But our process has been the opposite of fast and easy. It’s been exhausting and crazymaking, especially for a natural-born control freak like me. My friends can attest to this, as I’ve become an obsessive, over-sharing mess, prone to crying at deeply inappropriate times at deeply inappropriate places.

So now, a soapbox moment: please be aware of how fertility and miscarriages may be affecting the people in your life. Many don’t talk about it and suffer silently for years. You’re not helping when you ask, “When are you guys having kids?” or “When are you guys having another kid?” They might be asking themselves the same thing. I know not everyone wants to be parents, but some of us really do and we will talk about it when we are ready. Please don’t flippantly say crap like, “Your job is your baby,” or “You can always adopt!” or “You’re so lucky you still get to sleep in and drink bloody mary’s,” because some of us would swear off bloody mary’s forever just to hear a heartbeat during an ultrasound.

That said it hasn’t all been doom and gloom. The silver lining is that going through this has helped me uncover my truest friends. My board of directors. The patient, consistent, empathetic ones who have been there for every painful, terrifying step…always offering me a soft place to fall and a big glass of wine. I could not go through this without the love, kindness, emotional presence, good humor and blinding optimism of my tribe…you’ve been able to be hopeful when I have not, and I’ve really counted on that. Thank you, thank you, thank you for letting me be my imperfect, babbling, dramatic texting, over-sensitive self during these impossible, seemingly endless months. It does not go unnoticed. And of course a special thank you to the ever-patient, ever-loving, ever-funny B who gives me humor, calm and kindness during this whole thing…proving, once again, what a great father he will (hopefully) make one day.

So where are we now? We’re still trying. We’re working…on ourselves, on our home and on our relationship. We’re doing some preliminary testing which has given us no reason to panic, and together B and I will determine the next step. And the next step. And the next step…whatever they may be. Thank you, everyone, for your sensitivity and support during this time. And to anyone who has gone through this or is going through this or will go through this, know I am here to talk. I’ve experienced a million emotions through this journey—fear, jealousy, anger, shame, anxiety, resentment, loneliness, gratitude, hope—all of it. I’m here for you. Our community is here for you. You are not alone. I promise.

Hope for those TTC.

I am a part of a baby forum online (BabyandBump, go join if you haven’t, it’s wonderful). And just in my little group of ladies I chat with, I have seen SO MANY miracles!!!!

One woman got a BFN at 13dpo (everyone thinks they’re out with a BFN at 13dpo). She went on to get her BFP at 17dpo!

Another woman had been trying for 9+ months. Her husband got an SA done and had 0% morphology. He went on a vitamin regime for a month and it brought his morphology up to 1%. They were told that their chances of conceiving naturally were EXTREMELY small. They were getting ready to do their first round of IUI when they got their natural BFP!

Another went through 6 rounds of clomid. One ended in a chemical pregnancy, the rest- nada. Usually at that point doctors recommend IUI or IVF. She decided to give femara (a fertility drug like clomid) a try, and got her BFP the first cycle on it!!!

And another got her BFP, and was bleeding. CRAZY HEAVILY. She was told ‘miscarriage is imminent.’ Those exact words from her doctor. Her hcg wasn’t doubling properly like it should, and the baby was measuring behind on all ultrasounds. She is now over 20 weeks pregnant with her baby girl and they are both doing great!

DO NOT LOSE HOPE LADIES. Your BFPs are right around the corner <3