a little crutch

I have decided to be honest with myself. I need a little help right now.

I have worked hard on trying everything natural first to deal with my anxiety and depression over infertility and everything surrounding it. Using essential oils, meditating, exercise, but it’s just not cutting it. I have been feeling worse and worse this past year and more intensely the past few months. My highs are high and my lows are lower. The lows seem to occupy most of my days, more than the good ones. I do a good job faking it, but inside I am hurting. I am breaking.

I decided to see a therapist and my primary care doctor last week because I seriously thought I was having a nervous breakdown at one point. I was hesitant, but accepting of both their advice to take Zoloft for a while. I hate that my infertility has led to me this. It makes me sad and angry all over again! But, I am for the first time, in a long time, hopeful that getting a little help from my friend Z might help me in big ways. I have had a few friends take Zoloft while they were going through infertility and they both said it worked wonders for them. Zoloft is non habit forming and is easy to wean off of when I feel that I am ready to do so. This anti-depressant is also recommended when trying to conceive because you can continue taking it if you do become pregnant. {in the case that I do become pregnant I am pretty sure I will stop, since my depression is situational}. Zoloft also helps with motivation, anxiety, and not letting things effect you as much. I mean I still want to feel, but I am hoping I won’t feel so intensely. I know Z isn’t a magic pill that is going to make everything rainbows and butterflies. I am just hoping it will make things blue birds and waterfalls 🙂 This is scary to write and admit that I need a little crutch at the moment. If I am going to get better and stay sane in my life, my head, my heart, and my journey, I need to own it. It is ok to have a little help.

Other rituals I have started to help with my mood in conjunction with Zoloft:

-Taking fish oil with DHA, which I have read and heard from a good friend, helps with mood and depression.

-I have started listening to nightly meditations before going to bed to help me relax and fall asleep easier. {thanks Justine for the great advice in your book}

-Opening all my blinds in the morning to let the sunshine in. My doctor told me that starting your day off with a little bit of sunlight helps with happiness all day long.

-Cutting back on the caffeine. Now, I am not a big caffeine drinker, I only have a half a cup in the morning and I may get a Starbucks in the after noon and drink half, but doctor told me I should not be drinking caffeine after 2pm. So I will be giving that up.

-No boozing. Ok maybe I will have a glass of wine here or there. You aren’t really supposed to drink when taking Z, so I am going to try and follow that as good as I can!

-Step up my exercise routine. I am climbing 2 days a week, but I need to be going at least 3 along with cardio. I am hoping Z will help step up my motivation.

Z isn’t an instant fix. It will take a couple weeks to feel its full effects. I am just hoping it will be as my friend put it…”It’s like waking up one morning to the most beautiful sunshiny day, when all you have been seeing for weeks is the biggest thunder storm.”

 

 

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The Loneliness of Grief

Lately I have been noticing that a lot of the lady loves I follow are feeling the same way I am about infertility kicking our asses emotionally. Today Resolve posted a great blog post by The Broken Brown Egg, and I think it pretty much sums up my feelings exactly about loneliness, anger, and grief in regards to infertility. I just adore it. I hope you enjoy as much as I did.

“October is pregnancy and infant loss awareness month. During last month’s #MoonshineMeetup, a conference call for the Broken Brown Egg’s Shellshocked Support Group, one participant said something so profound that it really made me stop.  She said, “If someone’s child passes away, they are expected to mourn, and they are allowed to think about it.  Because my child was never “born”, does that mean I should act as though it never happened?  Why don’t I get to think about them?”. 

It was a heartbreaking thought, because it made me really stop and think about how lonely grief really is.  I started to really think about how many women and men we encounter every day who we never suspect to be in mourning.  They are right in the middle of their pain, and we look right through it.

Infertility in and of itself, is an ongoing bereavement.  With every month gone by, you are constantly grieving over your vision for your life, your hope, or your plan for your future. Every single day is a readjustment period.  Every reset and restart is like signing yourself up for the same pain all over again.

And the hardest thing about grieving, the absolute worst thing, is that it feels as though everyone wants you to forget. They will say that it’s because they want you to feel better, but you feel as though what they really want, is for you to not bring them down.  They don’t want to look at your sadness anymore because it is an uncomfortable inconvenience.

“Grief is like the ocean; it comes on waves ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.” ― Vicki Harrison

To our credit, most of us do a pretty good job of keeping our sadness to ourselves.  But it crushes you.  Your heart feels like it’s beating out of your chest, and your body does what feels like a double-step.  You think to call or message someone, or just scream “Help Me!!”, but then that overwhelming feeling of loneliness sets in.

You’re not actually alone, but it feels that way.

Because everyone else is over it.  And you just know that when you start laying out your issues, their facial expressions will say, “are you still talking about this?”, or “umm,…isn’t there someone else more qualified to listen to you about this?”.  Everyone else seems to have moved on.  Everyone else can act as though nothing ever happened.

But something did happen.

And it is happening.

And it hurts.

It feels as if everyone wants you to “just” let it go.

And you’re left thinking, “But why do I have to forget?

And, “Why don’t THEY remember?”

You get furious at their impatience.  At their painful indifference.  At the way they treat you as though you want to stay there.  That you want to feel this way.  That you want to be unhappy.

We spend a million hours every week with all types of people.  Laughing, talking, hanging out, working our jobs.  Mundane things.  And most of the time, nobody realizes who is actually broken inside.  I mean, if you can do your job adequately, and you provide enough of a “you” for it not to be so obvious that you aren’t firing on all cylinders, not one person is going to touch your shoulder like in the movies and say, “Really, are you okay?”.

“Grief never ends… But it changes. It’s a passage, not a place to stay. Grief is not a sign of weakness, nor a lack of faith… It is the price of love.”
— Unknown

Wherever you are in your process, it was on my heart to share this simple truth: Grief is lonely, and it often outlasts sympathy, but it is necessary.  Allow yourself to grieve. No matter how you come out of this, or when you reach the ever-elusive “other side” of it, know that it is your right, to remember and reflect and regroup.

Whether it is a child who never took a breath, or one who took far too few.  If it were a dream that never came to light, or a loved one who is no longer with you,…you have the absolute right to remember that it/they mattered.  The condition of your heart, is important.  What it feels like to YOU, is valid.  And what you’re going through, is real.

Take all the time, and love, that you need.  You have my empathy.”

source: thebrokenbrownegg

Take care my friends and know that I too, have so much empathy for you. I am always here to just listen, for a shoulder to cry on, or to have a glass of vino ready to chat. xoxo Rikki

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infertility is kicking my ass.

I have been having a rough few days. I feel like when I am making progress in my journey I encounter more set backs. How can I be soooo high one day and so low the next? It is a very helpless feeling.

It all started Friday. Ok, if I am being honest, I haven’t really been feeling great since the bachelorette party when my bff told me she was pregnant. I guess I have been taking the news harder than I wanted to admit. My inner mind has been driving me crazy for a week. I haven’t been sleeping well, I have been analyzing her situation, my situation, the whole nine yards. Anyways it all caught up with me over the weekend.

My period started Friday. Usually this doesn’t effect me anymore, as I assume it is coming and I stopped getting my hopes up a while ago, but for some reason this month I really felt like maybe I could get pregnant on my own. I have been eating healthy, working out, praying, thinking positive, and I even started my Fertilitea.

I had a crazy busy weekend with weddings, which adds extra stress.

My bff is pregnant, along with about 5 other people I know who have announced their pregnancy within the last week. Its weird how it comes in waves and it is one of those times. oh joy.

Did I mention my period started?

So on top of feeling like shit all of Saturday- I literally was holding back tears the whole way to do my wedding and then again on the way home, I come home to a box and a note from my fertility Dr. {Mind you I have not heard from him or the clinic since our last failed IUI in June.} Inside was my camelback water bottle that I had accidently left at the office the day of our IUI and a note that said,Dear Rikki, I hope you’re well and perhaps even successful with a pregnancy… it really doesn’t matter what the rest of the note says because this fucking set me off. REALLYYYY??? You never called to check on me after my last IUI and now you are writing a note hoping I have a successful pregnancy? Remember how YOU didn’t get me pregnant?? You know I have unexplained infertility right? You know you should never assume an infertile is pregnant on their own? I am super thankful to get my camelback back considering they are expensive and my husband has banned me from buying another one until I got this one back, But really? Really?

Obviously I lost my shit. Totally and completely lost it. Hubs was a saint and so was my Mom.

The only saving grace was that I got my Diva Cup in the mail and I couldn’t wait to use it. Gross I know. But super cool. I cannot believe that this was the little shed of light that was carrying me through the day… I can’t wait to get home and see how much blood I have in my little cup!

I feel like my feelings surrounding my friends pregnancies are not validated. Like when I say I wasn’t that upset or I didn’t feel like crying when my bff told me she was pregnant and I get the response back “good. that’s good you didn’t feel that way.” It is like people are saying “good, you shouldn’t feel like crying, because it is not a crying matter.” But what if I said I wasn’t ok and that I wanted to scream and cry? Is that ok or just selfish?

I feel like no one is empathetic or understands what I am going through. Sure people feel sorry for me or have sympathy, but I do not believe anyone truly understands how I am feeling.

I feel so alone.

I feel frustrated.

I feel like I cannot grieve yet. I cannot grieve because I don’t know what I am supposed to be grieving. I cannot grieve yet because we haven’t gotten any answers. I could grieve if someone told me, “Rikki, you will never get pregnant.” Ok I could grieve that and move on with how I am supposed to have a child in another way. I cannot grieve because we are not done trying. We are in this miserable, shithole limbo.

I feel angry. At myself and every pregnant girl out there.

I just want to feel “normal” again. I want my life back pre infertility, when I was naïve and happy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Post 19.

I have been MIA in life lately. It has been a rough go the past couple of weeks. I am annoyed at everyone and everything.

Things have been snowballing for me since last week. There are some factors that may have caused this to happen, but I rather not go into it here. I keep forgetting it has only been a little over a month since our last attempt at IUI failed. I forget it has only been 5 weeks since I accepted the fact that we were taking a little time off. I forget that it has only been 35 days since I was told “you are not pregnant”. That number is a little ironic since we have been trying for 35 months now to conceive with no success. I try and remind myself that this isn’t a wound that is going to heal easily. It is going to take a lot of triple antibiotic and TLC.

I have been noticing some not so good behaviors that have started to intensify. My OCD cleanliness is at an all time high- I can at least control my surrounds if nothing else. I talk more shit about everyone else around me more than ever. I snap at the tiniest thing- I’m like a little Chihuahua. I feel angry and out of control. My inner mind is rambling on and on and I haven’t learned how to quiet it. I see this behavior. I acknowledge this behavior. Now comes the hard part: changing it.

I think the best thing I can do right now is continue with my workout routine. When the endorphins are flowing it is really hard to feel angry or sad and if I do, I put that into my training. I am feeling stronger physically and I hope this will relay to my emotional mind as well. I am also learning how to quiet my mind through meditations. Our inner voice{mind} tends to talk and talk and talk to us. It makes us worry about things that we can’t control. I am learning that no matter how much my inner voice{mind} worries about life’s different scenarios, or how much it bashes things, it will never change what is going to happen. Life will go on with its plan whether my mind says to or not.

I will try and stay positive. I will work on being my best self. And most importantly I will work on not getting down on myself for having bad days. Tomorrow is a new day…

Me post workout. “You will never regret a workout or sex.”- Angie Tieman. Best advice I got all week!

workout

 

 

 

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Jealous or Envious?

One of my best friends asked me a question recently, “Are you jealous or envious of other women who are pregnant? What is the difference between you feeling jealous or envious?” At the time I had an understanding that they are different emotions, but I didn’t quite know how to explain it…

I came across a fellow blogger on here and love how she explained the two:

“Throughout my work of recovery I have come to understand jealously a little differently. It first started at the Emerging Women conference last October in Boulder when I saw an interview with Tami Simon and Alanis Morissette. Tami interviewed Alanis about the book she is writing and about her work with Relationships First. One of the points she spoke about was what she thinks the difference between jealousy and envy is. She said that jealousy is about connection; that when we are jealous of someone or something it is about self improvement, we want it too. But when we are envious of something we not only want it for ourselves but we want to take it away from the other person, making it not about connection but disconnection. She used a really simple example of her hair. She said something to the effect that she knew many of us in the audience were jealous of how great her hair looked (it was the shiniest most beautiful head of hair I’ve ever seen). She said that some of us were probably jealous of it (for me, she was completely saw my green accurately). She said we just wanted some of the hair gods to shine on us too. So her suggestion was to go out and buy the pomade she used to make it look that gorgeous. She then explained that if we were envious of her hair it would be more about chopping it off her head for ourselves so that not even she could have the luxury of this beautiful mane.”- follow Justine Froelker

So there it is. I feel jealous. NOT envious. I would never want to take away someone else’s joy or happiness. I would never want another woman to feel the pain of infertility. BUT, I do allow myself to feel jealous. I think jealously is a natural emotion to have when we want something someone else has and we don’t.

Justine  also points out how healing jealously can actually come from celebrating it. Yes, I know that sounds crazy but celebrating jealously can actually cure it! I didn’t realize I was already doing this. I am curing myself every time I participate in the vary things I want so badly. Every time I go to a baby shower. Every time I hang out with my mommy friends and their babies. Every time I over night baby sit for my nephew. Every time I go to a 1 year old birthday party my jealously ceases a little bit. I actually feel satisfied and good at the end of the day.

It is easy to let jealously and self pitty get in the way of important connections and relationships. The grass is always greener on the other side right? I am sure some of my mommy friends have been jealous of me. So let yourself feel jealous- but only for a little bit. Then put your big girl panties on and embrace this beautiful life you have been blessed with each morning.

 

 

 

 

 

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