I take it all back.

In a moment of panic the other week, I almost ran to my computer, signed into my blog and Facebook accounts, and deleted all mention of our infertility.

I take it all back.

Am I crazy for talking about this so publicly?  Who really needs to know the intimate details of our baby making efforts?  Do any of you really care?  Sure, it’s not like I’m broadcasting all the stats of our sex life—we all know by now, because I’ve been giving you the play-by-play, that simply having sex will not work for us—but listening to someone talk about medical procedures can get really tiresome, no?  I’m like the Great-Aunt you see only at holidays and are forced to hear endless, unnecessary details about her bunions/achy back/strange cough/gastro-intestinal issues from the moment she walks in the door.  Sorry for being the Great-Aunt of the group.  I take it all back.

And then there are our families.  Our families who have known almost from Day One about our visits to the doctors, how we’re progressing, all of our ups and downs.  Now, with our first IVF cycle quickly approaching, I wonder if it was a mistake cluing them in at all to what we’re going through.  What if the first cycle doesn’t work?  What if the second cycle doesn’t work and we’re all out of tries that are covered by insurance?  What if either cycle works initially but then we miscarry?  That is a whole mess of emotion I would’ve rather kept to myself, rather than exposing my family to that immense anticipation and possible heartbreak.  And then there are my friends, and even the strangers who are also struggling with infertility, who have been following along with the blog and rooting for us.  If these IVF cycles don’t work, I might be subjecting them to unnecessary disappointment as well.  Excuse me, friends and family, while I try to erase everything I’ve said in the past.  I take it all back.

But what happens if I do become pregnant?  What will I blog about before I’m ready to announce our growing family to my social media world?  I’m backing myself into a content corner, here.  Trying?  No, we’re not trying to have a baby.  You’ll find out after the obligatory three-month waiting period when I post my fuzzy ultrasound photo or emerging baby bump on Facebook.  I take it all back.

It’s in moments of panic and doubt like these where I have to remind myself why I started blogging about our infertility in the first place.  Because someone needs to talk about it.  Because not enough resources exist for infertility support.  Because lawmakers and decision-makers need to better understand what it’s all about.  Because someone out there can relate.

All that business about taking it all back?  I take it all back.

33 thoughts on “I take it all back.

  1. Wow, so many great comments! I agree with all. Thanks for your honesty and for providing an interesting read. I have not yet decided to ‘come out’ in part because my fiance and I have not yet married (we’ve been trying for 8 months to get a jump start, since I have a few reproductive system conditions), and because my fiance is an incredibly private person. Perhaps the blogsphere is the place for me for now… Good luck to everyone!

  2. I love reading your blog! You are writing my exact thoughts in a way that never knew how to actually write down. Thanks!

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this post with our Facebook community! We’ll be sure to share it through our social media channels. Gena, this was wonderfully written. We’d love to have you guest blog at some point for us with your story – if you’re interested, you can email our Director of Communications and Social Media, Keiko Zoll, at keikozoll AT resolvenewengland DOT org.

  4. Ditto what everyone else is saying: this story is important and it needs to be told. With babies everywhere, everyday, the general population doesn’t give much thought to fertility struggles, and there’s an assumption that it only impacts a small amount of families, or that it was brought on by people’s bizarre problems, and that “it won’t happen to me.” And at the same time, until only recently, there was shame and secrecy surrounding the whole topic, and couples going through it felt like there was nowhere to turn for information or support, and that the matter should be private because it is so personal. Now we know the value in sharing this information and raising awareness of fertility issues. Keep doing what you’re doing and don’t apologize!

    1. I fight with the shame and secrecy issue all the time when it’s my turn to post but I have to remind myself that there’s no shame in doing everything possible to make a family and that more people need to know what infertility means! Thank you for your support 🙂

  5. your story and journey to having a baby is important for everyone to know about, because your story is shedding light into a struggle that many people are going through, but do not have the outlet to talk about. we are all here for you and applaud you for your courage to share your story! xo

  6. How fortunate we are to have the internet and people like you to share their stories so that we can find and share support. I love you more than words can say and I can’t wait to see all the good things that are in store for you.

  7. Gena,
    Every time I see a post by you, I can’t wait to read it. I love hearing you put a voice to something that is still considered taboo in our society. Even in 2013, no one talks about the agony of this process. It’s not just about having sex or seeing a doctor. It’s about taking medications that hype you up, injecting yourself with hormones that just about drive you (and your partner) crazy. It’s about keeping track of taking these meds at certain times and charting your ovulation daily for 2 weeks. It’s living, breathing, sleeping, eating fertility until it comes out your ears and fills up your house! And then you wait for an agonizing 2 weeks, where all you can think about is “am I pregnant??” Every pregnancy symptom you’ve ever heard of, you seem to get, convincing you even further that you are pregnant. And after 4 weeks if you aren’t pregnant, you mourn your loss and compartmentalize. And three days later you get to start it all over again. You don’t just try on fertility like you try on a new sweater. It becomes your life. And it takes special people to accept and comply with this process. As someone who went through this for a year and half and has beautiful twin boys to show for it, I can say that while it was worth it all, it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. It is so refreshing to hear someone that I can relate to speak so candidly about infertility. Please understand that you are a light for so many women, writing the way you do. You are an inspiration to so many who feel like they are alone in this. And you have a community full of support behind you for whatever you need, good or bad.

  8. Gena, I usually comment though email keeping my comments between us. This was by far my favorite post. From someone that has struggled with “baby” issues and decided to focus on a career instead of going down the struggling Mommy route I want to thank you! I am 40+ now and learned wherever life takes you…try to never look back, just hope and wish the move forward is just as amazing. Hey I’m still living in CT aren’t I! The city girl living in the country for a guy..Kids Smids. The journey is amazing. I wish you all the love and happiness in whatever route you decide to write about, just promise you will keep writing and fighting! Thank you Gena!

    1. We’ve talked a lot about this off-line. I hope you never regret any decisions you’ve made or where you are in life now. It’s true, life has its twists and turns, huh? You never know where it will take you, but I believe that, for you, where you are is where you need to be. Kids or no kids, city or no city, and whatever happens between now and ten years from now, it was all meant to be. I believe that for the both of us. Who knew we’d have so much more in common than just a love for sushi? 🙂 Speaking of, we’re overdue for a dinner date…

  9. Please don’t take any of it back! It is such an important topic to talk about & so many hide from it. We need all the love & support we can get. I say “we” because so much of what you are going through, I have been through & am currently going through. I have had two miscarriages & my first IVF cycle unfortunately didn’t end in happy news. We find strength in numbers & your strength is very encouraging to me to carry on & hold onto hope for our future too. I don’t even know you but know I am routing so hard for a happy ending for you too! xo

    1. Thank you so much for this comment. It helps me feel stronger, too, to know that there are others out there on the same path. Best of luck to you, Diana!

  10. I agree with Susan Woodson! When I had a miscarriage, I learned that EVERYONE had had a miscarriage. They just never mentioned it until I did. We help others at the same time we help ourselves by being open and real.

    As for being the Great-Aunt with the bunions, etc. — NO. That person is interested only in talking about herself and trumping everyone else’s tales of woe with her own. That person is lonely and self-centered. Your reports are full of hope and generosity and it’s so clear that you want to support others who are in a similar position.

    As for the “what ifs” — they can trap you and suck you under. Try not to go there. The whole baby-making, baby-raising, kid-raising, adult-raising journey is so fraught with peril that none of us would ever be parents if we stopped to really think about it. I believe totally in the power of positive thinking. You WILL be a mommy, a wonderful loving crazed overwhelmed blessed mommy.

    And aside from the poignant topic, this was a beautifully written and executed post! Loved it!

    1. I’m glad you liked the post, Randi! And I appreciate your comments, I know I’m not alone in this!

  11. I have found that when you let others into the intimate details of your lives, you also let in the love and support they offer. Sharing has brought me closer to many friends and has not had any negative effect. I applaud you for sharing. It is so brave and I hope that when we all share, it shows another way and helps others share as well. Thinking of you and sending you good, loving vibes.

    1. Thank you, Cara. Sometimes I worry too much sharing makes me selfish, in a way. I just have to trust that I may be able to reach someone in a positive way. And know that I’m thinking of you and your girls!

  12. Although I am long past child bearing, and have grandchildren, I can say certain things that happen to us in the course of our lives, stay with us for ever, and for me, dealing with infertility was one of them. What I would have given to hear about someone else’s trials and tribulations trying to get pregnant, or writing about them myself when I was going through it, it is so cathartic. Never second guess yourself and keep moving forward. I find myself rooting for you, even though I don’t know you. By writing about your situation, you are giving strength to other people going through the same thing, and helping yourself by seeing how strong you are week by week, even if you don’t feel it when you are writing about it. Keep up the good work and as the British say, “Keep Calm and Carry On” ❤

  13. I couldn’t agree with Jen’s comment any more than I do. Perfectly stated. Lots of love to you, as always Gena.

  14. Gena, I don’t know if you remember when I wrote on the blog about my miscarriage. Kate Street commented on that post and it really changed my perspective on keeping things like this to yourself. Yes, it’s hard to talk about your hopes because when your own hopes are dashed, so are the hopes of the people you’ve brought along on your journey. That’s really hard. It was very hard for me to UNtell the few people I’d told that I was pregnant when I lost the baby. But Kate pointed out that those are the times when we need support the most. We need to tell people when we’re happy about something even if that happy thing doesn’t turn out, because that’s when we need our friends and family around us. We need to be talking about this more and bringing it out into the open more. Thank you for sharing this journey with us. When it happens (and it WILL happen), we’ll celebrate with you. And if you have more bumps in the road before then, we’ll mourn along with you.

    1. Oh geez, I’m a bucket of tears all of a sudden. Yes, Jen, is so right (and I’m so touched I said something meaningful to you!). The good and the bad ~ the ones who love you WANT to be there for you and with you. After my miscarriages, I so needed to TALK about them. Grief and hardship is something we’ve been taught to keep under the covers…why, because it makes OTHERS uncomfortable? Maybe if we talk about it more, it won’t be uncomfortable because people will know how to handle and empathize with grief and hardship. This is why I am SO HAPPY you’re sharing this difficult journey, Gena…because it’s BEGGING to be shared. You are doing absolutely awesome. I’m inspired and honored to witness this blossoming….

      1. The un-telling must be so hard. Thank you both for sharing your experiences, and for making me feel better about continuing to tell my story.

  15. Brilliant post!!

    You are doing SUCH an important thing. I know all the drawbacks, I’ve been there, felt it, and lived through them, and I’m in awe of your bravery in the face of them all. You are awesome!

  16. Oh my god, Gena. I love you and the next time I see you I’m going to hug you so hard! I love this post, it brings tears to my eyes. Your honesty and openness is truly such a beautiful thing to witness (tears running down my cheeks).

    1. Kate, you made my day today with your facebook comment. Seriously, it meant a lot. I can’t wait to find out what else you see for me!

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