It wasn't easy to take this particular trip down memory lane. In some respects, my "1998 memories" series of posts (about my pregnancy with Katie & her stillbirth) was easier to relive. It was stressful writing about that stressful time in my life too -- but there is a part of me that loves to write/talk about my pregnancy & my daughter. She is still (& always will be) a part of my life and, on a certain level, it brings me a wistful pleasure to think about her, even if her story is ultimately a sad one. There's no real pleasure in reliving the details of my failed fertility treatments (except maybe the fact that I survived & am still here to tell the tale). Writing about the onset of anxiety, I could feel the tension in my body rising all over again, even though it all happened 10 years ago.
There were so many little details that I had forgotten, or hadn't thought about in years. When I look back now at all the little daily ups & downs, the 4 a.m. wakeup calls (5 a.m. on weekends!) to get to the clinic in time to join the lineup for ultrasounds, all the running around from train staion to ultrasound clinic to RE's office, and then the mad dash to MY office to put in a full day of work (sneaking in the side door & hoping my tardiness wouldn't be noticed)... I get exhausted just reading about it. How did we do it? And we only did it for a handful of IUI cycles over 1-1.5 years. How do other people do it for so many more cycles, of IVF, even, over many years??
I also found myself getting annoyed with Dr. RE all over again -- how he'd be hot about our prospects at one visit, cold the next. I realize the doctors aren't gods and they just call it like they see it from one visit to the next (and don't always read their own files or remember what they've told you at previous visits) -- but a little more consistency would have been appreciated.
As I read through the ups & downs (many, many downs) of each cycle, I found myself thinking that, really, the writing really was on the wall, almost from the very beginning, if we'd cared to see it. But we didn't. We (at least I -- dh was always a little more skeptical) didn't WANT to see it, at least not until I was forced to -- blinded by hope (& desperation) as I was. I'm really highly doubtful that IVF, in addition to the treatments we did, or instead of them, would have ultimately led to a different outcome. It confirms my belief that we did the right thing in getting off the merry-go-round when we did.
I'm not sorry we tried, even though the odds were stacked against us -- we gave it a good shot. And I'm not sorry that I've written about now at this level of detail, or revisited this time in my life at the 10-years-later mark. If you don't look back now & then, you sometimes forget just how far you've come.
But I'm glad it's all over and I don't have to do it all again. Once is definitely enough.