It's been hard psychologically too. It's taken me a long time to come to terms about using an egg donor to grow our family. I can't say that I have completely accepted it (or really ever will), but I have embraced it as a realistic way to have a child and once again experience the gift of motherhood. That's why I was certain that, after finally coming to terms with the use of donor eggs, the universe would finally give me a break and I would conceive on our first transfer attempt. After all, we had a beautiful little (already hatching) grade A embryo and perfect conditions for transfer.
I knew a few days after the transfer that I wasn't pregnant. The silver lining in all this fertility treatment mumbo jumbo is that I have become VERY in tune with my body. I know the subtle signs that hint to a soon-to-be extra pink line on the home pregnancy test. And this time, the signs just weren't there. Even so, I was in denial. Maybe the cramping and sore breasts weren't the high-dose progesterone and estrogen - maybe they were something else? Maybe that perfect little embryo implanted late? Maybe pregnancy with an embryo transfer felt different than pregnancy resulting from the old fashioned baby-making way? Maybe I just hadn't eaten enough pineapple - or prayed enough yet?
While I knew the truth, the negative blood test was a huge blow. And it doesn't help that people try to comfort me by telling me I'm one of the strongest women they know and that the "good thing is I can try again". Give me a %$#@! break. If they only knew, I am NOT strong. In truth, I am weak. I am tired. I am pissed. I am envious and full of self-pity.
In the depths of all my self-wallowing, it's come as quite a surprise to me that I am not the center of the infertility world. Although it feels like it, I'm not the only one who has experienced loss. Slipping away to the ladies room at work to inject myself with hormones, or experiencing a miscarriage while giving a presentation, is not exclusive to me. Nor is the hoping and praying and begging for a child. So, after getting over the shock that it's not all about me, I've come to find solace in the solidarity of women who are fighting this same baby-making battle as I am. I draw courage from the sisterhood of womb warriors.
So, I may not be strong, but I am courageous - and tenacious. Those who are closest to me know that, while I cry easily and often think the sky is falling, I am definitely not someone who easily caves or gives up. Some people ask me why I continue to put myself through this torture. But the truth is, how can I not? How can I simply give up on my heart's greatest desire? How can I give up now, ESPECIALLY after going through all this, abandoning all that effort in vain? Simply because for me, there is no greater gift than children. And I will continue to give it my all, not because I'm strong, but because having a child is worth fighting for. "It's the possibility that keeps me going, not the guarantee."