Monday, October 23, 2006

2 Weeks

M and I had a serious conversation this weekend. Actually, it was a series of conversations on a very important and ever present topic: infertility. Treatment for infertility, to be precise.

These conversations, along with the differences in the way M and I process and conduct these kinds of conversations, make me very sleepy. So we had to take breaks to prevent me from falling into a narcoleptic coma on the kitchen floor. To be honest, I'm not sure if this topic itself is what causes this reaction in me, or if it's M's reactions to this topic that do it (smart money is on the latter). Either way, I become one hell of a sedentary, slothful, somnolent son a bitch at the outset of one of these discussions. Just the thought of it makes me want to curl up under my desk and have a little nap. But I have a meeting in 15 minutes, so I'll just nap then.

As I've mentioned before, M is having a very difficult time in the few weeks leading up to the official cycle kick off. CD1 is fast approaching, and then it's back on birth control for a couple weeks. She is literally in knots over whether or not she can ever be put back in the situation of getting a BFN. Just the thought of it sends her into hysterical tears. See, I'm starting to realize something: it's not the treatment that she can't handle. Its the risk. She would really rather give up trying than risk going through another BFN. Having seen her at her last BFN, I can understand why. It was a total and complete breakdown. There are many things I don' know, but I DO know one thing: she can NEVER be in that situation again. I honestly don't know if she would live through it. She is very strong in a number of ways, but not when it comes to this. Now, that doesn't mean necessarily that she can never have treatment again, but it does mean serious steps need to be taken to give her the coping tools necessary to deal with another BFN.

And since we are just a few short weeks away from shots and treatment, we don't know that there's time for her to gain these coping skills. It would literally take years. So we have agreed: 2 weeks. She is going to decide within 2 weeks whether to continue trying for baby #2, or pack it in and get busy living the life we have (which is, admittedly, a pretty good life). We are extremely blessed to be able to contemplate this decision knowing that we already have a baby.

So, 2 weeks. If she still feels like she can't go through with it in 2 weeks, and if she feels that way consistently during this period, then that's it.

I also have 2 weeks. 2 weeks to get myself accustomed to the idea that I may be the father of only 1 child. I was sad after these conversations, and M was afraid I was angry with her. I had to explain that I wasn't angry, but the decision is one in which I obviously have a stake and the possible outcome makes me very sad. I'll need to grieve too.

Honestly, there are moments when I think it would be very nice to put this chapter behind us. We could make plans again, go on nice vacations, we'd have more money, etc. But then Buggins will do something so sweet and innocent and it will occur to me that she's a declining asset. Every sweet phase she goes through will be IT. We won't see it again. There's no backup. When she outgrows her cute clothes, we can't save them for her sibling. And then I feel like we'd be making a big mistake by stopping.

Anyway, that's where we are. This post is kind of serious, but what do you want, it's Monday. I'm sure M and I will go through periods in the next 14 days when we are convinced we should stop, and also that we need to continue.

Wish us luck. I have 5 minutes before my meeting. Going to lie down.

23 comments:

theoneliner said...

I hate those conversations, too. Actually who doesn't?

I read a book that suggested that couples talk about IF for 12 mins. a day. Each person talks for 6 mins...and the other cannot interrupt. You can say a lot in 6 mins even though its not a long time. It's helped us.

Sorry you two have to even talk about it at all.

Anonymous said...

It's an important conversation to have had, and one we may need to talk about soon... but one day, at least, it's got to be done, I think it's important. It's like a loss, an idea you have to finally "greive" for. For those in our situaiton, life, one day, has to go on and done with good heart, whatevers decided.

Good luck...

Just another Jenny said...

I'm glad you managed to stay awake for the conversation, it sounds like a pretty important one. I know where your wife is coming from, the negative is much much worse then the hormones and the treatments.
I hope that when you've made a decision, you can both accept it and find the best way to move forward. It may involve getting some outside help, whichever route you choose. Decisions like this are never easy, my heart goes out to you and your wife.

Krista said...

Good luck Mr. and Mrs. Smarshy. I do hope that whichever decision you make, you are comfortable with and will have no regrets.

Anonymous said...

I have to say, it's amazing what strength your mind can muster even when you think you don't have any left.

Hope the decision is one you are both able to deal with. That is so hard.

Possibly some Eminem would help keep you awake before the meeting? :)

My Reality said...

Good luck to both of you with your decision. It is a tough one to make.

serenity said...

IMO - those are the toughest conversations to have - the ones where you really dig in and make decisions. J and I haven't done that yet; I think we're putting it off for a while.

I will say one thing - this I know from experience. Back in April, when I knew I was going to lose our unviable pregnancy - I had a breakdown. I thought it would kill me.

Somehow I managed to get through it. And all the subsequent BFNs. And though sometimes I feel like I am coming seriously unhinged, apparently I won't die from BFNs.

That said - you and M need to make the decision that's best for you both. And I really hope that you're able to come to a decision in which you are both comfortable.

*HUG*

M said...

Time will go by and, at the end of your life, you won't consider those decisions as crucial. Your attitude as regards life counts more than the outcome of your actions.

Erin said...

Those are some very, very tough conversations to have with each other. The issues are so important and so emotional. I can completely understand why M feels like another BFN would destroy her. It's one of the major reasons that I don't think I could do IVF.

FWIW, I have to disagree with the previous commenter--I think this IS a crucial decision that you'll look back on at the end of your life. I hope you can look back on it with peace, whichever way you decide

Hope548 said...

Much luck to you in this huge decsion. There is certainly no easy way to cope with a BFN. I did find that the second was easier than the first and the third was the easiest of all, but I wouldn't say any of them were easy. The first one was a huge blow, and then you start to expect them to be negative, which is sad, but I suppose it's a defense mechanism.

It's a big decision, and I'm glad you're giving yourselves some time to make it. Good luck!

Thalia said...

At least you both make yourself have these conversations, that's the hard bit.

Re your decision, well, I know you will both handle wherever M ends up. Although I'm not convinced that it is impossible to develop coping strategies. The counsellor at our clinic helped us tremendously with this in the space of a month. It didn't make it ok, but it made it manageable.

Good luck, and take some speed or something (don't you bankers have access to good drugs?)

lola said...

I hope that whatever happens you two can come to a decision that you will both be comfortable with.

One Mother's Journey said...

I have to agree with Thalia - at least you're able to have those conversations. I think that's half the battle.

Whatever the decision, I hope it'll bring you both some peace. It's a tough road, no matter which you choose.

Irshlas said...

Yea for thoughtful discussions, regardless of how painful they may be. If more folks were having them, I think we'd be a happier people the world over!

And from a selfish point of view, thanks for being brutally honest about your situation. It's comforting to know my life isn't so different from others' lives.

Motel Manager said...

Longtime lurker, first-time commenter.

These conversations are so tough, but I think it's good you're having them. With our BFNs, I really appreciated that my husband made it clear that he was open to considering all options. By that, I mean that I liked not just the supportiveness of it, but also the reminder that we didn't HAVE to keep doing this - that it was a choice. It is easy to lose that perspective.

Good luck with your collective decision....

susan said...

All of this sucks. That any of us has to have these conversations is simply not right. I'm angry. Very angry.

best of luck to you both.

Anonymous said...

Well, I think it's great you're on the same page. That's hard to achieve at these important junctures. The decision itself? Well - I guess we'll see how that goes.

Bea

soralis said...

Good luck! I understand why your wife would never want to go through another BFN again.

Take care

OHN said...

Please keep your communication going. My hubby was not interested in talking about my obsession with starting our family. He said he knew it would happen someday and it didn't do any good to talk about it...he really had no clue how I was feeling. You seem to have a grasp on your wifes struggles-We made it through that horrible time in our lives but talking it out and deciding TOGETHER would have felt so much better. I wish you all the best, no matter how you decide to continue.

Rumour Miller said...

One of the ways in which people resolve their infertility is to decide to stop the treatments... I wish you and M and Buggins all the strength, courage, love, conviction, peace and happiness so that you can make it through these next two weeks and all the weeks to come regardless of what decision is made.

I am sad for you both but I also know that if this is what you decide to do then you just need our support. I think I can speak for everyone who reads your blog that we do support you and M.

Amy said...

Have a good nap? ;-)

Katie said...

Hubby and I had similar serious conversation about 2 months ago and we decided NOT to pursue treatment. HUGS either way.

Sleep well. Sounds like you are depressed. I have no idea why. ;-)

Kristi said...

Good luck making this tough decision. Sorry that you & M have to go through this. :(