The Thing About Secondary Infertility

>> Tuesday, August 18, 2015

No news here. I’m sure you figured that from the title. Anyway, I had a good last couple months mentally about this trying thing. I’ve actually felt confident and centered around TTC. I’ve been charting, using OPKs (finally, FINALLY found some that work for me), noting other important signs, having impeccable timing, and relaxing about the whole thing (which sounds impossible with all that tracking, but somehow it happened, at least somewhat).

My temperature plummeted yesterday morning, so I know where we stand for this month.


I’ve been having all these thoughts lately. The longer I travel on the road of secondary infertility, the more I feel unsure about the future. Ada’s quick conception and (relatively) uncomplicated pregnancy was indeed a blessing. It was also a curse, because I surely believed I knew my body and what to expect from this process. You track your cycle, do you what you need to do around ovulation, and get pregnant right away (or at least within a few months). 9 months later, you have a baby.

At least that’s how it worked the first time.

Now? I have no idea what is going on. I feel like I’ll never be pregnant or carry to term again. I’m losing confidence in myself and my body. I feel a lot of doubt and skepticism.

The thing about secondary infertility is that you’re in a sort of no man’s land. Even doctors and nurses have said to me “well, you know you can conceive and carry a pregnancy . . . so it will happen.” I get it. And the statistics are stacked in our favor on this. But as the months and years drag on, I’m becoming less sure of this “fact.” It makes everything feel so much more isolating.

Also: Having a kid already somehow makes my feelings about this process less valid to others. “Well, you’re blessed to have Ada,” is something I hear regularly. That’s the most obnoxious of all. Of course I’m smitten with my daughter. But that doesn’t necessarily make this easier.

I dreaded going into the school year without my BFP. I’ll admit I don’t have the purest thoughts sometimes when I’m around lots of moms with babies and hoards of kids. I still feel sadness, anger, and a big green jealousy. Now I’ll be taking Ada to a baby-laced gauntlet each and every morning. Of course, that’s incredibly, overly dramatic, but it feels like they’re coming at me from every direction.

You know when you get a new car and you all of a sudden notice that everyone else is driving that car? It’s sort of like that with pregnancy. Lately I’ve been running into so many pregnant October mamas. As that month draws closer, I feel pretty darned empty. I am coping in my own way, and I’m probably making it all sound way more intense than it actually feels. I am just starting to wonder how long this will take . . . if it ever happens again. Or if it happens, if I’ll just miscarry again.

The thing about secondary infertility is that it sucks as much as regular infertility, but I don’t feel like I can fully express my frustration or sadness without seeming ungrateful. Or greedy. Or mentally unstable. I feel like I shouldn’t want this second baby so badly because we’re already blessed. And then there’s the part where I can’t exactly get away from my countless bins of baby clothes. The long-forgotten baby swing and bouncer in my garage. There are so many constant reminders of the state of my vacant uterus.

I’m going to have to toughen up for what’s ahead, and I’ve accepted that.

As far as what we’re doing moving forward. Stephen is finally going to get tested. My doctor doesn’t seem to think it’s necessary, but I’d have greater peace of mind being able to check him off the list. If I don’t get pregnant next month, I’d like to meet with my doctor again. He said to wait another 6 months, but I don’t feel right having zero interaction.

If I simply wasn’t getting pregnant, that would be one thing -- but I still can’t figure out why it was so hard the last time only to end in miscarriage. There might not be a reason. Still, I’m hoping there might be most tests (HSG, more comprehensive thyroid, etc.) to take. Or something. Anything.

So, that’s the update. Wish it was a happier one. Hope those of you who are TTCing are having better luck than we are. If you’re not, you’re certainly not alone.


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