Stuck in a Moment.

February 4, 2011 at 1:02 pm | Posted in Heartbreak, Infertility, IVF #4: I'm STILL doing this?, My life | 22 Comments

To add insult to injury, yesterday’s drive to my clinic for my blood test took an hour and a half.

In bumper to bumper traffic.

Which was bad enough. But I had to leave work early yesterday to take the afternoon shift with O, who somehow caught a case of pinkeye.

So something that SHOULD have taken me an hour, altogether, took me more than 2.

Grrrr.

But anyway. Beta was confirmed negative. Not that I had any hope, for for anyone who MIGHT have been holding out hope, it’s officially crushed.

(Sorry.)

The good news was that, since our consult with Dr. HIT isn’t until next Thursday, I can start the pill in order to make it so that we don’t have to sit a cycle out.

Small blessings, right?

I had decreased my progesterone usage over the past couple of days to 2x a day. Because I don’t WANT to stick something up my hoo-ha if it’s not, you know, going to DO anything.

Because of that and the day-late beta, I was blessed with AF this morning.

CD 1.

It got me thinking this morning on my way into work. If I actually counted…

… how many official CD 1s would I have gone through in our quest to create our family?

I stopped myself when I realized I didn’t know what “official CD 1” meant. Did it mean when we threw out the birth control? When we were hoping for something to happen (and then it didn’t)? When we were actively cycling with our clinic?

The thought of counting all that Fail made me unbelievably sad.

So I stopped thinking about that.

I’ve been saying for a while that I feel stuck.

Honestly, I’m pretty fucking miserable. The only light in my life right now is my son. I’m desperate for his love and snuggles and smiles and kisses and hugs and giggles.

It’s not HEALTHY. Because I really do need to learn how to be happy again. WITHOUT using O as a crutch.

And though I get angry and bitter and cynical about the fact that I am FORCED to manage the Suck that is my life right now…

… well, I’m also tired of being miserable.

I need to start looking at the good in our life. I need to make plans, to decompress, to allow myself to relax and focus on the stuff we DO have. Yes, some of that is O. But J and I need to remember to do the things we like to do – both with O AND without him.

Our life is one big to-do list, and it’s time we stop the madness and start to ENJOY things.

So yes, we may be stuck in a moment right now. There may be too much uncertainty in our lives.

But we have to figure out how to be okay.

So tell me something, dear readers.

How do YOU focus on the good? What do you do when things get to be too much for you? How do you recharge, renew – as a family, with your husband, by yourself?

Any and all assvice is most welcome.

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  1. You’re absolutely spot on with your observation: “Our life is one big to-do list, and it’s time we stop the madness and start to ENJOY things.”

    So go out and enjoy. Find the things YOU love in life. Personally, I love to travel. So I am always planning a trip. Some sort of a trip is ALWAYS on the horizon. Right now, I’ve got two potentials in the works. A trip to Edmonton in May/June for my cousin’s wedding (which I absolutely REFUSE to miss) and a trip home to Newfoundland in August to see my sister and (hopefully) meet her new little one.

    But that’s just me. You need to find what is fun for you Serenity and grab at it. Activities, hobbies, skills… hell, at one point I took a part-time job just to get me out of the house in the evenings! But that was before I met and married Hubby; things have changed since. However, the principle still stands. I love to get out, do new things and meet people. If you already know what you love, then work with that.

    In the meantime, feel free to use the whole “vacation” thing; it usually works well! Many, many hugs to you. And skip counting the CD1s… they all suck. *nod nod*

  2. I think it is OK to have life be SUCKY right now, be totally dependent on O’s kisses. You got bad news this week. If you are still like this in 2 weeks, well, then I’ll have to come up there and kick your pink-eye @ss. Let yourself be sad this week…and then maybe try to do something you love. Find a good song on the radio and sing really loud. Get together with some trusted friends and drink too much. Allow yourself to feel that while you may be sad in general, you can still laugh. And, just keep on keeping on.

  3. Oh, and go on a run for me once they clear the streets.

  4. My answer is similar to Gil’s, with traveling. And when it becomes too expensive to do as a family (as airfare is horrendous right now and it’s hard to justify when you’ve got IF costs too), I plan a smaller weekend family trip nearby, or I find someone to visit by myself and make the most of that kind of trip. It helps give me something to look forward to, and when I take the trip, I’m really enjoying everything that life has to offer with very few thoughts of what’s holding me back.

    Our door is always open here for you, just so you know. πŸ™‚ (Well, not literally, Internet crazies. Figuratively for you.)

  5. I will take an hour BY MYSELF and go wander the craft store. Sometimes I buy something, sometimes I don’t, but I give myself the opportunity to choose something new (or not). Same thing with the bookstore or the wine shop. But just giving myself permission to try something new is really, really good for me.

  6. Concentrate on being in the moment.

  7. Take a day, forget the list and go outside to a park, the zoo, sailing, to the woods whatever and just get as much wind in my hair and lungs as possible. This always makes me feel way better.

  8. Well I’m still just glowing since I had Kate. Life is a lot of awesome right now just because of her. The rest of it… eh, doesn’t seem to matter much. But then I also play a game and read…. things I wouldn’t have done when I was feeling like crap (which is sad, because they might have helped me feel better).

  9. I think a little protected time out does wonders. It doesn’t have to be much – but it’s still hard to find that time! A coffee occasion works well for us (somewhere that has proper coffee and also an attached playground), but I can’t count the number of weeks that’ve been skipped on that front. Sometimes months go by.

    The other suggestion is looking outwards from your immediate life to think about what others *don’t* have. It could be as simple as doing a weekly grocery shop (together/by yourself) and adding something (or something each) for the local food bank whilst there. Or (mutually/by yourself) choosing a charity once a fortnight (or however often it helps) and donating a fixed amount each time.

    Lastly, sleep. Arranging life so one person has a morning/afternoon off by themselves to just sleep is a precious, precious thing.

    Bea

    • I struggle a lot with focusing on the good. For me, I do use my daughter, who is 3 1/2, but it is more thinking about how if I had made a wish list of what I wanted in a child. She pretty much embodies every thing on that fictional list. I could never have made such a list because I just prayed and prayed for a child, a healthy child. Still, she is truly everything I could have ever asked for. So, I remind myself that although we want to add to our family, I can never feel unlucky with her. I’m not sure that helps. I have also started making lists of what I would do or have if I could do or have anything on earth I wanted, and then truly considered how can I make that somehow work with my current resources. I would love to be a stay at home mom, but we can’t afford it, so I think about what it is about being at home that is most important and try to satisfy those points as a working parent. I try to do a lot of projects, crafts, trips to museums and the library that I think we would do during the week. I force myself to be in the moment when we are together. And, i try to be very involved in her school. If she is not feeling well, even if she does not have any symptoms that require she be at home, I still saty home with her and take a sick day. I wish I didn’t work and had lots of money so I could help my sick sister-in-law and my brother take care of their kids. We are broke and I have to work, but I can send a quick text to say I care. I help my parents come up with ideas of things they can do since they have more time and money and need help knowing what would be helpful to my brother. I call and talk to my niece and nephew and at least while they are on the phone with me, my brother and his wife don’t have to worry about what they are up to and can just sit. It may not seem like much, but it helps me realize my ultimate dreams, within the confines of reality. I hope that makes sense.
      I truly hope you can get unstuck. I have felt similarly in recent years and it sucks. Depression sucks and for me, once I was able to admit I was depressed and tell people, I was able to start actually working on it.
      Good luck.
      Melissa in Durham

  10. Replace the list with a fun to do list. My happiness does revolve around Boo but having him start at daycare one day a week which is giving me a small break I am hoping I can do things that make me happy without him. But together we love doing things outdoors which I know is difficult for you with all that snow around. Make plans ahead so you have something to look forward to. This is one that I am going to start doing too. Oh yeah and like Bea said sleep, get as much as you can. It’s something I am struggling with being on my own.

  11. This is horrible and selfish and WRONG and nasty – but, I am being honest (hope no one slams me). Sometimes, I have to look at other people’s horrible circumstances to remind myself to feel better about my own. *ducks*
    I know. I know.
    But it is true.
    I have “met” so many people on the internet – many of them through absolutely heartbreaking tragedy. Life altering mind blowing tragedy. I do not go out seeking to find people who are dealing with such horror, but you just can’t spend time on the internet without running across so many sad situations.
    Sometimes, I have to SMACK myself in the head and remind myself that WOW – right now…I am so lucky. We tend to get mired down in our own issues (human nature) – but seriously girl – it could be so much worse. It could be so much worse. I try to just remind myself all the time- I have a nice home, we have enough money, we have a healthy child, we have opportunities that so many people do not, I have good friends, I have a loving family, etc. etc.
    Maybe someday tragedy will find my home, and I have had heartbreak. My Dad died in May. But right now – things are ok. I wallow in my own “bad” things, you are not alone – everyone does it. But you can practice not mulling on the bad – and try to break the cycle and unstick yourself.
    Write a list of good things and read it every morning, meditate, concentrate on living in the moment, pray, take a bubble bath, spend time with friends, play with your adorable boy, volunteer to help others, reach out to friends, spend time with family, craft, cook, eat chocolate, walk around in nature (if it would ever stop freaking snowing), go on dates with your husband, have sex, buy some new silly thing that makes you smile, watch the news(there is true suffering in so many places, it reminds me to be thankful), take a drive and explore somewhere you haven’t been before, try some new hobbies, take a class, exercise, go to a spa, make new friends, listen to music…just LIVE. Try to do at least ONE thing every day that makes you feel GOOD.
    Rooting you on from out here in internet land…xo

  12. Life became very overwhelming for me and I reached a point that I could no longer take it… so I decided to forgo all the long term goals and set up small ones, day goals instead… leaving each day, baby steps and if day goals were too much I broke them down to a point that they were manageable. I accepted my situation instead of fighting it because I was just getting tied up more more with the struggles. HUGS my friend, things will get better

  13. When we were first dx with MFI and told that IVF/ICSI was our only shot, I was devastated. But then I realized that my devastation did not alter reality. So, if the outcome was the same either way, I made a purposeful choice to make jokes, laugh, and have fun. I mean, IF robbed us of the intimacy of baby making, but I wasn’t going to let it rob us of the fun. Honestly, it was the best decision I ever made. It wasn’t easy at first. I had to act my way into happy thinking/feeling. There was no way to think/feel myself happy, it took conscious actions.
    ***Disclaimer. It worked for me and I’m not saying this is the right thing for you or anyone else.
    ***Disclaimer #2. I know it sucks. The feelings suck. The being “forced” to sucks. Losing loved ones sucks. General lack of control is truly evil. But just like with running, you can keep going…one.day.at.a.time and you will get a good outcome even if it’s not what you expected.

  14. “Any and all assvice is most welcome.” I renew and refocus the same by myself, with my husband and with my family. Prayer. I just put my burdens at the feet of Jesus, tell him I don’t want them anymore and that I’d like a smidge of peace, please. Sometimes I just can’t do it, so my husband prays over me. Sometimes Grace and I pray together, and I’m telling you, sometimes hearing a 4 year old pray can just drop the suckiness on it’s head, it’s so cute.

  15. My heart just plain hurts. I wanted it to be so different for you than this. just plain hurts….

    I haven’t read all the comments, but I look forward to it. I don’t fully know how to answer that question as I don’t think I do a very good job of it. The darkness has been so thick and heavy for so long due to IF.

    If I were to do bullet points, I would say:
    -going to my counselor regularily, lightened the load and held me accountable for doing the “work” i needed to do
    -reminding myself to have grace for myself and not be so hard on me, remembering that the grief does lift, in all things in my life, the wounds have always healed. there is never anyway to predict how long.but they are all healing.
    -Massages. πŸ™‚ Thank God my insurance pays.
    -Surrender- I can’t say this is a word I use in day to day life, but it just popped into my head. This last year has been a lot of letting go. It seems so cliche, and the infuriating part of it is that I DON’T know HOW TO LET GO. But somehow, in my desperation to let go in life, I often find myself somewhere down the path, looking back on the journey and realizing that indeed I had begin to let go, and in doing do I was breathing a little easy. But in the midst of the letting go, I find it an infuriating concept.

  16. You’re in a bad place right now. With everything you have gone through, over the past years and just in recent months, it’s natural and normal to feel as you do. And God, this weather…! I hope your load starts to lighten soon. I think it will. I hope it will.

    I thought about this today when the babysitter was over to take care of the girls. It had been a full week since I had any childcare help and I was really dragging. I have built in a couple of days each week in which I have time to just be myself. Not I & N’s mom, not D’s wife. I always spend some time at the coffee shop, reading or writing. It completely recharges me. I seek moments of quiet time as often as possible. For example, I never use the baby monitor (our old house is an echo chamber anyway), and I make it a point to shut the bathroom door while showering if the girls are awake. They’ve survived so far. It’s also much more pleasant to shop and run errands by myself.

    Re: reconnecting with spouse — We don’t have many proper date nights. But in the past year or so, D and I have started showering together once every couple of weeks, usually after the girls go to bed. It’s intimate and fun, and the white noise of the water is relaxing; it helps me turn off my mommy ears.

    You have a VERY busy life; your days begin with long, hardy runs, and then you go to work, and it sounds like work has been stressful lately, too. Also, I think you’re pretty far from family, or at least it’s not so simple as having them drop in and help out. I imagine your runs are your main form of alone time. And that’s great, but maybe you can find a way to treat yourself on the weekends or even just once a month in the evening, like a book club or monthly girls’ night out. I try to meet friends for coffee or drinks as often as I’m invited.

  17. I do something like watch a ridiculously mindless reality tv show, read, do a workout DVD, but the best medicine for me is doing something with my son. Even if it is just tickling him and hearing his infectious laugh it can snap me out of whatever shit I’ve got weighing on my mind. I have a some flexibility in my job so I’ll take time out of the office and just walk around Target. I know it is lame, but it does help me just to go up and down the aisles alone. I think also think that what Cibele said about living each day and tackling things in baby steps is important.

    HUGS!

  18. You got a lot og good advice…and adding seems silly. I am sad that u r sad..and I want u to be able to move past this ..after IF we r never the same and I hate that once again it is robbing u. Of the ‘light” that makes you..well you.
    You know while I do go to the boys for hugs and affirming love…I do let go a lot..listen to music I like and am thankful I was able to have an IPOD…read my books/NOOK and get lost in the story..watch my DVR and enjoy “my shows” and of course try to get to my happy places like NYC as ofen as I can to refresh and decompress.
    My only wish. For u right now is to find a truly happy destination and fight with all u r worth to get there. You (and the journey) r worth it!!!!!! Xo

  19. The past 6 months+ have been kinda sucky in our house, so I can totally understand the “life sucks” feeling. But, to get out of it–I plan and organize fun things to do. We go to the museums, we get out of the house (away from my to-do lists). I plan for a small get away. And there are always books. Books are my escape.

  20. When I look back to our years of infertility, I only have one regret. Once we were parents to our son, I spent too much time (in my head) thinking about the next one, and the losses, and the pain (physical and mental) and the comments from idiots. I should have just looked in the next room and realized that the miracle that was our son was right there. I needed to shake myself out of my ‘I must produce a sibling’ mode and enjoy the moments with him at that time, because they weren’t going to happen again. He was growing so fast and I realized I was there, but not really there.
    IT IS SO HARD to come to terms with (a phrase I hate but am going to use) “it is, what it is” and make a conscious decision to flush all the crap thoughts out and decide to be content. Contentment is not easily obtained for us Type A girls, but I am here to tell you, it IS possible.
    Go hold O, smell him, have another chat where he blows your mind with how great he is, and really look at the amazing little boy that calls you Mom. That’s the first step in contentment.

  21. If I had an answer for you, I would do it for myself. I think it is natural to want to get out of how you’re feeling because it’s a painful place, but just as you can’t talk yourself out of happiness, I don’t think you can talk yourself out of sadness. Maybe take the day to just feel really really sad. Take a day to snuggle and get those hugs. Maybe the answer is just taking what you need until you feel satiated instead of denying yourself.

    I’m really sorry about the negative.


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