Not you, the other you. The ‘you’ that existed before having a baby was the only thing you thought of. Where are You?
You’re in there somewhere. I need You to focus on who you were before your IVF rollercoaster began. Right now You feel bewildered that no one can give you the answers you crave. You need to move forward before this consumes you.
Not having a baby doesn’t define you. Being a mum is something you’ve wanted forever, but you’re more than that. You’re a daughter, sister, wife and more. These too are important aspects of You.
To others you appear strong yet, inside, you’re crumbling. Whenever you see a young girl pushing a pram; or when you hear news of an addict having a child taken away, you struggle to accept the unfairness. Whilst your outside voice congratulates pregnant friends, your inside screams, ‘Why, can’t it be me?!!’
You love your three closest friends, but…
You’re genuinely happy they have children. Yet, unfairly, out of the four of you, you’re the only one who hasn’t had a medical explanation for not conceiving. You’re the only one without a child. You love your friends, but the closeness is different. They have a bond through their children which you’ll never experience.
Stop blaming yourself that you’ve not had a child. IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT. The tests show there’s nothing medically wrong. I understand it’s the label of ‘unexplained infertility’ that you struggle to accept. Your logical brain tells you there must be a WHY. Without that, nothing makes sense.
You did everything you could
You did all the right things to prepare your body: joining a gym, overhauling your nutrition and abstaining from alcohol. You tried other things in your desperation to have successful IVF. You tried acupuncture. You changed brands of deodorant and shampoo as you’d read that using less chemicals sometimes helped.
You’ve lost hours trawling the internet, seeking anything you’d not already tried. On one IVF attempt You even tried McDonald’s fries, loaded with salt, because one forum said they helped facilitate embryo implantation. In your case, they didn’t.
There’ll always be a part of you that thinks about the baby you carried for ten whole days. Who would that baby have been? Was it a son or a daughter?
Your sister said it wasn’t a baby, merely a ball of cells
You were angry because those cells were important to you. However, you realised she would never understand your pain. How could she? She’d been blessed with four beautiful babies. The mere ball of cells was the only baby you’d ever known.
Your pain is real but you need to think of life after IVF. Contradictory, I know, given this letter began by asking who you were before IVF.
Your friends have said it’s like a black cloud consuming you. They know this isn’t who you once were. They want the old you back.
You hate that this now comes down to cash. If money wasn’t an issue you’d try IVF again. However, You can’t justify spending £8,000+ and potentially still have no baby.
Remember who you were before this began. What did You do with your time? What did You talk about before IVF became the only topic of conversation? Your brain is so fixed on IVF and babies it’s nearly impossible for you to remember who you were before. But, please try.
With love from Me.
Letter 2 .. who you are …
Yes! There you are. I knew you would find the ‘you’ you were before the IVF. From now we’ll not discuss IVF. This is now all about celebrating YOU.
Following the death of your Dad you got promoted. How, you still don’t know. This was a proud moment as you’d finally been recognised for all your hard work and commitment.
Since that promotion you’ve been promoted again, received a director’s award and were nominated to attend the Royal Garden Party. So many achievements and amazing accomplishments. You’re about to complete an English degree.
Remember, family is what you make it so STOP being hard on yourself. If you have faith, things will work out in the end.
To be continued as my story has not finished yet….
Thank you so much to Lisa for being so open. Sharing your story and breaking the silence offers so much comfort and support. If you would like to share your story, please email firstname.lastname@example.org