chicken.

I’m a big fat chicken. Let’s back up…

Last night hubs and I were planning on attending this new Love and Loss Support group at our old church. It is a support group for couples dealing with loss of a baby, miscarriage, stillbirths, or infertility. My husbands parents sent us the flyer and thought it might be beneficial to us. I was excited at first about the opportunity to come together with other couples dealing with similar issues as we are, but when I got to thinking I pretty much over analyzed the whole thing and freaked myself about before ever getting there. Hence, why I am a chicken.

I felt like my “loss” would not be as big as other couples. I have never been pregnant or carried a baby full term to have it lost or have had a miscarriage or worse.

I felt like we were going to be the only ones suffering from infertility and people were going to judge that we didn’t really understand what loss was.

I was scared that we were going to be breaking up into groups- men and women- and I wouldn’t have my husband there for the support I need.

I was scared to hear sad, sad stories that may frighten me into not ever wanting kids. We forget that getting pregnant is really only the first tiny step. So much more comes after.

I was scared of being categorized.

I was willing to go if my husband was all into it, but he said he wanted to be there to support me and that he wanted to go if I wanted to. Ball in my court. Dang. I wanted him to be like, “Yes Rikki we are going. It will be good for us.” Since I didn’t get that I rationalized with myself all day. Going back and forth, back and forth. I finally decided I wasn’t really that into going… or so I think…

I really have felt stronger and better the last week or so. I feel like I have turned a corner and that each day is getting easier. I haven’t had the gut-punch feeling when I see a pregnant girl or hear an announcement. I haven’t felt that twinge of jealously when I hang around my friends and their kids. I am actually enjoying my childfree existence. I have been activity trying to be positive and participate in things that make me feel good. Writing this blog helps. Exercising and focusing that energy on my body and health helps. Not talking about infertility helps. Being outside helps. I even made it into the baby section at Nordstrom Rack yesterday to pick out some outfits for my new niece {this is a HUGE step people}. I couldn’t bring myself to buy anything, but it was a big step to just go look. In doing all these things I feel like I am well on my way to “recovery”.

If this support group would have fallen into my hands a month ago I would have been all over it. I almost felt that by going it would have set me backwards. I feel like I am doing things to manage my sadness in a positive way. I feel like hubs and I are getting on the right track with each other again. I didn’t want to go to this group and focus on sadness and what is not. I am past that {at the moment}. I know I could have possibly learned other ways to cope, I know my story may have helped another {maybe}, and another’s story may have helped me. I think I was being the judgey one by not giving it a chance or assuming it was going to go a certain way. I know I was trying to talk myself out of going the whole time out of fear… BUT at the moment I am happy {most of the time} where we are…. at least that is what I am telling myself so I don’t seem like such a chicken…

love and loss

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Infertility & Love.

Dealing with infertility and continuing a loving and respectful relationship is hard. This is one issue you don’t think you will be dealing with when you get married. You think you will be arguing over money or which side of the bed you get to sleep on, not why aren’t we getting knocked up.

It took a while for me to come to the realization that this is just as hard on hubs as it is on me. He feels sad and let down too. He feels like he isn’t performing his job adequately or efficiently {which by the way he is}. I didn’t stop to think about how he was feeling because I was too caught up in my own selfishness and emotions. When I finally took my drunk goggles off and smelled the roses, I was able to understand and deal with my relationship around infertility in a different way. I really do believe infertility has brought us closer and has deepened our marriage on so many levels. Mind you, we have had our ups and downs through this journey.

My tips:

*Remember you are in this together. No matter what your husband or wife is going to be there when this is all said and done. He is the one by your side lifting you up when you had a bad day, he is the one who you cry to after you found out another person is pregnant and it wasn’t you, he is the one who has that sexy shoulder to cry on, he is the one who makes you feel like no matter what he will always love you, he is the one making you laugh when it hurts and you don’t want to, and he is the one who takes your mind off the negative.

*Make him feel needed and special {and not just for his special sauce}.

*Keep the romance. It gets complicated and unsexy when you have to schedule sexy time around your fertility friend app. {an alert pops up- “ITS TIME TO GET BUSY NOW! NOW! NOW! RIGHT NOW!”} No pressure… riiiiighhhttt.  Guys don’t like feeling like they have to live up to some standard or goal- unless their doctor stats are quality and quantity. We have a secret phrase we use when it is go time, something that takes the pressure off. Don’t just have sex when it is prime time. Have sex just because too! Put on some sexy clothes or some mood music- AIR or John Legend are always winners {wink wink}…

*Talk about the future with babies in it. We still talk about names we like and vacations we want to take with our kids. We talk about what our kids will look like and how we will raise them. I think it is important to stay positive in this conversation and have that glimmer of hope that we will be able to implement what we talk about someday.

*Spend time together NOT talking about babies, pregnancy, or fertility. No brainer right. Take advantage of being able to go on spontaneous dates and sleeping in together. It won’t be this way forever…

*Go see the “Cord Cutter”. This could take up another post entirely, but all I gotta say is GO. I heard about Connie with Soul Sync through a few friends that have been to her- I don’t know if they are ok with me saying their names or not so I won’t- but you know who you are and I thank you for bringing Connie into my life! Anyways Connie is sort of like a therapist, but it is a lot deeper than that… She helped hubs and I so much with issues pertaining to our relationship that had nothing to do with infertility but linked it all together. – Connie at Soul Sync

*Hubs won’t always understand your struggle fully. That was a hard one for me to swallow. Even when he is being supportive, there is a big part of him that just doesn’t get why it is so upsetting when Aunt Flow shows every month. Find a community where you feel comfortable and where people understand your struggle completely.

*Keep your crazy in check. I know how those special little fertility pills can turn you into The Exorcist. And it is no fun for anyone. Hubs is not going to want to get sexy with you when you are being an all out b-word or crying at every commercial on tv . It is easier said than done. I know its like Sybil- you don’t really know you have been acting that way until your head is clear the next month.. “I wasn’t that bad on those pills, was I honey?”…. yes you probably were that bad. Just keep it in check. Be EXTRA sweet.

Most importantly be honest with each other and your emotions. Keep an open line of communication. You are both going to have good days and bad days. That is ok.

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