The inability to get pregnant after 1 year of frequent and unprotected sex.
So where am I?
One year? 14 months? Or the end of cycle 13. How do I quantify where I am? I am referring to the duration of time we have been trying to have a baby. How long has it been? Do I count from the time I went off Birth Control pills or do I count from when we actively started trying…or do I count according to the number of cycles we have been through?
Ahh, the ups and downs of cycles. Initially, it was no big deal…we figured you have unprotected sex during your fertile window and boom…pregnant. Of course, we had the jitters that first month…I thought for sure I was pregnant. Is that a cramp? Yep, the nipples are tender. Is that nausea I’m feeling? We went through at least 4 or 5 pregnancy tests. We were definitely going to get pregnant this month. My positive result was coming.
My period came and went and we were stuck feeling somewhat defeated. A saying from my childhood echoed in my mind. “If at first you don’t succeed, try try again.” We are type A people. With a little hard work, we ALWAYS get what we want. Thus, we were quick to pick ourselves up by our bootstraps and get ready for round 2. This would DEFINITELY be our month.
The months came and went. We began to grow weary and anxious. What could possibly go wrong? Why is this not working for us? We began to chart basal body temperatures (BBT), use ovulation predictor kits…and a few other unmentionable things were done to hone in on ovulation and keep track of where I was in my cycle. We sought care from our OB/GYN.
A little embarrassed at first to see her, (I mean, after all, it had only been 6 months) but we were medical people and are used to being our own best advocates and taking initiative. Our doctor felt like we were healthy and knowledgeable and left our journey in our hands. “You guys call the shots.” Whatever you want, you just let me know. We began testing and continued to try. Normal. Normal. Negative. Normal. I began to go to an acupuncturist. Started herbal therapy and all but eliminated caffeine, soy, and alcohol.
The diagnosis: Unexplained infertility.
There it is. Just like that. “We really aren’t sure why you are unable to get pregnant.”
Of course, everyone had all sorts of advice for us. Some of my favorites are:
- Just relax and it will happen.
- Maybe you should go on vacation. It will happen.
- Maybe you should think about adopting. It always happens after you adopt.
- It must not be God’s will for you right now. It will happen when it’s right.
- Don’t worry so much. It’s a natural process.
Thank you. Thank you so much for your advice. How long did it take you to get pregnant? 1 month, 2 months? Wow…by chance? Great. Really sounds like a lot of experience to draw such fine wisdom from. Advice from well-intentioned friends and family. It was heartbreaking. I don’t want your advice, I just want you to give me a hug, ask me how I am doing, offer to pray for me and with me. That’s all. Yet, the words come like stabs into an already bleeding heart. A heart so full of pain, sadness, and oh so lonely. We seek great comfort in our Lord and King. So thankful for the courage that he gives us. So blessed by his presence. We wait in hopeful expectation of the joy that he will bring forth from this anguish. We do not yet know what shape or form it will come in, but I know it will. Beauty from the ashes.
So now I wait. I am always waiting. But that’s okay. It’s growing me. Daily, I grow stronger. I keep thinking of what God said to Joshua (1:9) –
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
This is actually the third time in the first 9 verses that God says this to him.
“Be strong and courageous.”
My battle hymn. May this be true of me in this journey.