I often find myself asking this very question, how did we end up here?
Perhaps before I go any further I should do some introductions. I’m K & my hubby is C. Our family is the two of us and our gorgeous puppy, J, who came to live with us 12 months ago. That’s us, that’s our family.
Our story starts back in the late 1990’s where we met at school. We spent our late teen’s and early 20’s pretty much like everyone else, having fun! In 2005 we got married and had absolutely no immediate plans to start a family.
After 18 months of marriage it happened, the switch got turned on. I remember it happening even now. I literally went from not even thinking about having children to I want a child within what seemed like 24 hours. That switch was the most powerful driving force that I had ever felt. I wanted a baby, we were going to have a family. It consumed me, it consumed us. We made plans, we talked about what our family would be like & how many children we would have. It was exciting, it was the next natural step and we both wanted it more than anything.
The first few months I wasn’t really panicking but after 6 months of nothing I started to wonder if something wasn’t quite right. The obsession with ovulation set in and trying to make a baby became the be all and end all of my life. I couldn’t think about anything else. After 18 months of nothing and me being a complete wreck C went to the GP. He wanted to make sure there wasn’t anything wrong with him. Off he went to the local hospital to do some samples. I don’t think either of us actually thought anything would be wrong. There was always a hope that it would just take time. Neither of us were prepared for the outcome of those tests or what it would mean for our future.
We both went to see the GP together for his results. That’s when I heard the words that I will never forget:
“You will just need a little help getting pregnant”
Looking back now I think that is what I would call the understatement of the century. I don’t think I heard much else that the GP said, he asked us which hospital we wanted to be referred to. He recommended one so we told him to write the letter to refer us. I also heard the words IVF but at that time I don’t think I really had a clue what those three letters actually meant. Of course I knew what IVF was, but I don’t think I had any clue about the details of what IVF treatment involved. Part of me is glad I didn’t because if I knew then what I know now I’m not sure it would have been a path that I would have gone down so easily. We found ourselves just going with it, without much caution.
I cried all the way home from the appointment. How could this be happening to us? Why me? How do I cope with this hellish situation? I had no idea what just happened.
That evening I went to see my parents. I wanted to tell them face to face. As my mum opened the door I just burst into tears. I don’t really cry but here I was barely able to speak. I managed to tell them what had happened. There were no words that either of them could say to make this better. For once they couldn’t fix this for me, for us. Somehow we had to pick ourselves up and try to move forward. We didn’t realise the the impact this would have on our whole family. We were open with close family from the outset and I’m not sure we would have coped with the long haul had we not done that.
We didn’t even question whether we were going to have IVF, it was going to happen and we were going to have a family. After all, didn’t IVF just work? We were in our late 20’s, we had time on our side and we were going to do this. We were going to get a little help and I was going to get pregnant, we were going to have our family.
I think we underestimated the initial tests and potential diagnosis, we just weren’t prepared at all. I don’t know if anyone is ever prepared or ever can be prepared to hear that the thing you want the most, the thing your heart yearns for and the thing that seems to be so natural just isn’t going to happen for you. We were blindsided. We didn’t think about the reality of what this meant for us as a couple. Somehow we had to find the strength to deal with it and move forward. And that’s exactly what we tried to do
It has felt a little strange re-telling the early part of our story. This is how we got here. This is how our IVF journey started…
Wherever you are on your infertility journey I want you to know that you are not alone, many of us are on the same path & you will find the inner strength to get through whatever is thrown at you. We are all true infertility warriors.