Monday, February 8, 2010

Hurry up and wait.

I am a pin cushion. At least that is how the last few weeks have left me feeling. I contemplated putting up a pictorial post of my many needle sticks for this week's Show and Tell, but thought, nah, who really wants to see that right? Bruise tracked arms are gross. Agreed.

I have had infectious disease tests. Every imaginable hormone tested. My thyroid tested. Glucose fasting tests. Tests for diabetes, cholesterol, PCOS. To be honest there were vials taken whose purposes escape me. After about the 20th tube of blood, I stopped keeping track.

Friday Hubs and I met with the RE to talk about our game plan, as well as to get the results of his sperm count. All good on that front, though none of that came as a great surprise since he was able to get me pregnant twice before without trouble. Here comes that roll of anger at the injustice of having lost my fertility to birth a dying child. Will that ever pass? It is so frustrating to know just how fertile I used to be, that I got pregnant so easily twice. Sometimes I get so stuck on that. On the why in why don't I have any living children to show for it? What makes me so damn undeserving?

If you are someone who finds comfort in hearing that "God chose us to mother sick children because we are such special parents" you might want to skip ahead a few paragraphs. I don't want my rant to take away from anything that brings you comfort. 

I have been thinking about that alot lately, and I think it is crap. God didn't choose me because I would be such an amazing mother. Obviously the choices I made, though well intentioned and based on what was the best of our knowledge at the time, were the wrong ones. She is dead. My daughter is dead. Nothing about this loss has made me a better person, wife, family member or friend. I am nothing extraordinary. If God chose me specifically because he thought I was the right, strong person for the job, he was wrong. End of rant.

Our appointment with the IVF doctor Friday was a review mostly of what we already knew, an opportunity to ask questions and sign consent forms, and a meeting with a financial planner. The meeting ended, and I am paraphrasing here of course, with "now you owe us $3000 down and you will be put on the waiting list."

The waiting list!? What waiting list? Haven't we waited long enough? Sometimes I feel like my whole life has become hurry up and wait.

At the end of my next cycle, a trial run will be performed sans eggs. Once that happens, another round of waiting begins, this time for a slot in the injections class.

I asked the RE how long of a wait until we could actually get started on injectable medications and he said, "Maybe, I dunno, April?" 


His words left me feeling so defeated, my hopes for this year crushed. We are only, what, 5-6 weeks into 2010 and I already know that a rainbow baby is not possible for me this year. I got pregnant at 27. 27! How did I go to sleep one night waiting for the birth of my child, and wake up in a reality where I would have to wait four years from that first test for a chance to bring home a baby? God please let us bring one home. Please. I can't lose another child. I can't.  

Have you ever felt like EVERYONE is pregnant but you? When we were pregnant, only one other friend was at the same time. Now, only a few years later, everyone has reached a point where they are starting their families, and hubs and I are stuck in frustrated bystander mode.

Three of my best friends are expecting, two within a week of my due date with Peyton. Walking the line between my joy for them, and my internal heartbreak is so difficult. I want to be there for them. I want to be a good friend, to shower them with all that this moment deserves, and yet I can't. Not to the extent that I would have been able to. 

Last night was a perfect example of that. At a Superbowl gathering of maybe 12 people, two of the women (my best friend being one of them) were expecting. There was a lot of talk about due dates, godparents, ultrasounds, kicking. I hate no longer living in that world. I hate that while "normal" women can offer congratulations without heartbreak, and coo over ultrasounds and due dates, my child's death plays on an angry repeat in my mind. I want to be in that world. I want to, but I can't. When you have seen what we have seen, there is no going back. 

Instead of joining the conversation, I found a seat in front of the TV (I hate football by the way) and fought back tears, pretending to focus on the game. I wish I could put my sorrow aside, move past it and be the bigger person. I wish I was stronger, that I could overcome my heartache and interact like a "normal" woman, but I can't. That part of me is broken.

Do you ever feel like you no longer have a place to fit in? That's how I feel all the time. I don't  fit in with friends who have children, or with those who don't. Honestly I don't know where I belong anymore. Is there a place for people like us?

Last night hubs and I were talking about it. How we had a daughter once. We did. We had a living, breathing, pink and beautiful child. We were parents. He a father. I a mother. She was here. She shared our oxygen. Does that matter? Does that still qualify us as parents, or are we somehow "less than"? That is how I feel alot. "Less than."

It happened. She existed. I swear she did. Does anyone else know that, can they see that? Do I look like a mother, sound like a mother?

When people talk about pregnancy or parenting, unless I am asked directly, I stay out of it. Who wants advice from a woman who couldn't make a healthy baby? Who wants advice from a woman who couldn't keep her alive? Is it even okay for me to consider myself a mother, when my only child is dead? 

I carried Peyton. Loved Peyton. Nursed Peyton. But then came the next chapter. The ugly chapter. The one no pregnancy book talks about. I made end of life decisions. I held Peyton as the color drained from her perfect little being. Did I lose my mom card with that chapter? I feel like I did.

Everything leading up to Peyton's birth felt so right. I remember beaming. I remember the excitement. I remember the joy, and naive anticipation. Since her birth nothing has ever felt right again.

I know people want us to move on. I hear their comments all the time. 

"Have another baby."
"Adopt a baby."
"Why don't you look into getting one of those kids from Haiti."

If only things were that simple.

How can we move on, when things outside of our control leave us indefinitely paused, stuck on the most painful chapter of our lives?


  1. Hi there! I have been following your blog but never left a comment, but wanted to now. My heart goes out to you every time I read your blog. I am really surprised by the amount of time the fertility doctors are making you wait. I am the mom of two IVF babies- if it could be wrong with my body it is! Anyways I am wondering if you should consult another fertility specialist and see if they have the same waiting periods. With both of my experiences we never waited for anything. The "injections class" was a ten minute visit with a nurse and us practicing on an organge during one of my visits to the doctor and we never did a trial run without the eggs either. I am just wondering if you could speed things up a little with another doctor. Just another view on things but please don't feel like you have to take my advice...just wanted to share my experience!!!!

  2. "Do you ever feel like you no longer have a place to fit in? That's how I feel all the time. I don't fit in with friends who have children, or with those who don't. Honestly I don't know where I belong anymore. Is there a place for people like us?"

    Hell yes I feel this. In fact, even in comparison to other babylost moms that had a live baby, or a baby at 30 some weeks, I feel like I don't fit in.

    Listen, YOU ARE A MOTHER. YOU WILL ALWAYS BE A MOTHER. end of story. Look @ your blog title, "once a mother ..." Always a mother.

    I do understand feeling like everyone else is pregnant. I sucks. Everyone else has something to be happy about and I don't. I am happy for them, but not as happy as I could be, if I didn't know how things could end up, if I didn't feel jealous. I hate having these feelings. I'm getting on my own nerves.

    I'm so sorry you are hurting. I wish I could give you happiness.I wish I had more to say that would actually give you peace. I can't believe all you've been through and how strong you've been. It's unbelievable.


  3. You are a mother. Most definately. And you have a daughter still, she's just not with you. That's what I tell myself anyway. "I have a beautiful, wonderful little girl, only she's not with me anymore."

    I think infertility after babyloss is so cruel. :(

  4. Hi! I just found your blog...haven't even read most of it. I just had to stop on this one and let you know that you are not alone. I have too good of an understanding of how lonely you feel right now. I know you don't know me, but please feel free to contact me if you need someone who understands, has been there, lived through it, and won't tell you to "get over it". And, I certaily won't judge. It has been 16 years since my baby boy died after being born prematurely. He fought hard for 3 days. We still don't know for sure what happened but every day, I think about it. And I want to tell you that I know you will never forget or get over it but you will move forward. I went on to have 4 more children but none of them can or will replace my son. For anyone to even think they could, has obviously never lost a child.
    And ARE a mother. You always will be. Don't ever, ever let anyone tell you that you "were" a mother.
    Here is my email address....I know it sounds funny but it is a nickname for my son :) I have to put "anonymous" only because I can't figure out another way to get it to go through!
    Praying you find strength! (((hugs))))

  5. I've got a good one for you... when you said Is there a place for people like us?

    I don't know - but I wish there was....My sister (who is 44 and has had her tubes tied for 20 years and smokes) just told me she is going to try for a baby.. WTF? She who once told me she would be my surrage. NOW is going to have a baby of her own - She has 3 grown children already. Her baby is 20 mine is dead. Where do you think I went after hearing that news? BALISTIC - I can't be happy either not for her - just thought I would share because anywhere else if I tell this story I would be thought of as selfish - feels good to get it out!

  6. I'm a new reader of your blog.
    I feel "Less than" all the time.
    Even by my friends who had babies after me. I feel like they thinnk they're more of a mom I ever was, or ever will be.
    I wish they would just sometimes say, I value your opinion. Instead of barely listening to me when I try to talk about my experiences with being a mother.

  7. you are and always will be a mother.
    fitting in is hard, i am still struggling to find my place.
    i am sorry to hear about your struggles with having another baby, my heart aches for you.

  8. "Do you ever feel like you no longer have a place to fit in? That's how I feel all the time. I don't fit in with friends who have children, or with those who don't. Honestly I don't know where I belong anymore. Is there a place for people like us?"

    You nailed this Kristin. I feel the same, and I keep seeking out parents of dead children to try to blend in, to no avail. I wish that we lived closer, so we can blend in together, and want and need children together - as you go through your IVF and shots, and I lose more babies to miscarriage. In real life, we could conquer all things fertility, with a grace that none of our other friends possess, because they have not walked in our shoes, nor do they EVER want to. I feel closer to you than any of my IRL friends or family at this moment.

    Let me guess - before Peyton, you never had a problem fitting in? Could walk into a room and strike up a convo? Was outgoing and happy, that person with a gleaming smile all the time? That was me too. I feel like I've weathered this shit storm for almost a year, when do I get my reprieve? When do I get my happy ending? Why is it so damn EASY for other people? And APRIL?!? Are they crazy? WHY NOT NOW!

    Years have also passed for hubs and I, and I also feel like the rest of the world is in a fast car blazing past us, while we stand still.

    Oh, Kristin my dear. With all that you've been through, I wish that these months will come and go quickly, and you can soon see hope streaming through.

    Peace and love to you.

  9. You are a mother and your husband is a father. Nothing you did can take that away.

    As for the hurry up and wait, that sucks and I'm sorry.

  10. I'm sorry it's so hard. I wish you could be pregnant right away.

    So many things you said really resonated with me. I also can't give a 'normal' reaction to anyone who's pregnant or had a baby. I also feel like everyone waited for my son to die and then they all decided to get pregnant. I also feel like I've been waiting for so long to bring home a baby - we started trying in Dec 2007. The weird thing is that even being pregnant now, I still feel that pang of jealousy and can't be happy for people who are announcing pregnancies. I don't know if it will ever change. Things just seem to easy for so many people.

    Hoping that Feb and March fly by for you, and that soon you have a quick and easy pregnancy and a wonderful take home baby.

  11. I wish I could pull you in close and hold you tight. . .You have no idea how much I wish that.

    Yesterday, an old friend from school called me. She and I sat in the front row of several upper level psych classes together...both honor student, non traditional mamas...she had long red hair, I had frizzy brown hair...we laughed together, and talked about our kids once upon a time. She had left for Cambodia right before I found out I was pregnant November of 2008. She had found out about me losing Simon and Alexander when she just returned....from another home school mom. She told me I was a great mom...and that I should try to have another. I started to cry because I can't replace my twins...and..."I'm not allowed." She started to cry too...and I thought of you....I thought of you because you said the same thing to me that SHE said. That I WAS allowed. That it wasn't anyone else's business how many children I had...that my kids were the best kids ever....and that it was o.k. for me to say yes again. To say yes to life.

    I kept thinking of you. My sweet lady friend...all all the struggles you are going through. I thought about how UNFAIR it was that all I have to do is say Yes to life...and it tends to come. I'm sitting here crying because I feel that the world is saying NO NO NO, you can't do it! Your crazy to want more...What IS your problem woman? and I think of you...and I god....what I would give to be able to give my fertility to her. What would I give to be able to GIVE her what I hold you close, and transfer it to you. Because...your allowed....and you deserve that joy.

    I want to say yes. and I'm so grateful to you for being SO generous....and I want you to know that I am so excited for your future of babyness...and am so eager for you to NOT have to wait more. You've waited too long.

    too long.

    It isn't fair for anyone to ask you to wait even longer.

    My old friend has a new baby...and I could hear it's little coos in the background...while she cried for me....and told me it was still so soon to expect not to be in so much pain. You old friend....she lost a baby too. and she understood....and suddenly, the coos that were causing me so much pain stopped hurting. She had lost a baby...she understood how much those coos meant. It changed my pain to know she understood how precious that baby was. How horrible it was to lose.

    I never knew that about her until now.

    I don't even know where I'm going with this...I just wanted to tell you I'm thinking about you.


    You may not feel like you are a better are. At least from where I am standing. You are able to be friends to people like me.....and really really give love that you really understand...because my tears are yours...and yours are mine. We are crying together, because no matter how different our lives are...we get this pain.

    Your not alone.


  12. I've done IUI and IVF several times, never heard of the "trial run" thing-what's the point in that?? My injections class was 10 min w a nurse, too, and they offered review at an online site which was great, it's not rocket science! The process of a cycle for IVF can take a while, first you go on the pill (ironic, no?) then you start the hormones, then you switch hormones at a certain point, then you're monitored every day before you switch again, still monitored everyday, until the retreival. Then they let you know how many days you have to wait before they put the embryo(s) in. But a waiting list? You may want to seek an alternative doctor, or at least get a 2nd opinion...

  13. I'm struggling with the SAME thing, I just feel like I don't fit in the 'group' anymore. I find myself always pretending distracted when the subject matter comes up, no one wants to talk to me about Nolan.

  14. Holding you close, Kristin. I don't know anything about IVF but I really, really hope they can speed up the process for you. Waiting takes such a toll-days feel like months and months like years and years like eternities. You don't know it, but you're so inspiring (I know that's probably annoying to hear) to so many. Peyton's picture alone brings me to your page sometimes. She's so beautiful, and so are you.
    I hope you find answers and speed and hope.
    Thinking of you

  15. I have followed your blog for some time now. I often come here when I feel like I don't fit in in the world around me. I walk into your world and cry tears for your Peyton, for you, for your hubs and for a little while, I hurt for us both, for belonging to such a cruel parallel world full of despair and pain. I too lost my daughter, my first, my only, my treasure and most precious moment in life. I lost her and continue to lose her, this loss renews itself every day, the problem is will my strength renew itself as well?

    I read your entry today and hurt for you all over again, for how cruel infertility is, for how unfair this all is, then I move to a different place, a place of admiration, a place where I realize how powerful your words are and how they reach me and so many others in that dark place where our lives seem to operate. I wonder if you know what a powerful voice you have, what an amazing sense of self, awareness of this pain, clarity on exaclty what your struggles are, I just can't but wish it was something that registered in your despair, I wish it was more. I wish you had Peyton, I wish she could have you, there....You are a mother, this never ending pain and the love you feel is what you have left of your mothering of Peyton, you don;t change diapers but you carry a memory of your precious Peyton, you have her, after death, you are a mother, after life, after a buried child, you are her mother. That's what I tell myself, I am Noa's mommy, maybe there is little physical evidence of it, but my heart knows it everytime I wake up and she is my first thought, when I remember her weight in my arms, her smell, her sweetness..she is mine and I am hers. If I only could stamp your life with the word "mother", but I dont need to, your life speaks of Peyton, she is your stamp.



  16. Kristin, I cannot imagine this road you are walking. Let me tell you, after having two healthy children, and one who died, I still don't feel like I fit in. I have people telling me I am cheating my children to think and talk of my duaghter, to remember her. But you are right, Peyton, my duaghter, all the children of the mothers who read your blog, those children were here. They lived. We held them and loved them. It is not a dream, although, on nights like tonight, I wonder too.

  17. You are a mother. You will always be Peyton's mother.

  18. You are a mom. As long as you carry your daughter in your heart you are a mom. I can't imagine the hurt you carry as well. That pain of loving a child that you can't physically hold any longer. I can't imagine it. It makes my throat tight and my eyes sting. It makes my heart race with fear of the things you have faced. I have no words that don't sound stupid in the face of all you have endured. My heart aches for your loss.

  19. I don't have advice..just virtual hugs.. We tried for 4 years for Ella, and now even if we wanted to "try naturally" again, I can't guarantee a healthy baby.. and I like you, am just not molded to be a special mother, or mother of an angel, or any other BS that is handed.. I am not better because of the loss in any way, shape, or form..

    and as far as other pregnancies.. they are seriously all around me..4 people in 4 days from Friday-Monday have being my 18 year old senior in HS brother and his girlfriend.. I instantly got ill and just bawled..I could not even contain it..what the hell is going on in this world.. people WHO need and want a baby have to walk on fiery glass just to have a chance..ugh.. sorry that went into a rant I did not plan..but as you already know, you are not alone in this.. I am pulling for you and your rainbow..big hugs!!

  20. I would go to a different RE too! I did IVF twice - didn't work either time. However, it is not a complicated process, and the other ladies are absolutely correct. They are stringing you along TO GET MORE MONEY. You are so young, I'm sure it won't be a problem for you to have lots of follicles, eggs, embryos, and then babies. I really would switch to another RE. Every time you go in there it costs A TON of money. You don't need to do a cycle without meds, etc. I know I don't like advice from strangers, but you are wasting money and time with these people. After you have done IVF, you actually see that it is not complicated at all. It is just a huge money-maker, but unfortunately, it's all we have in the baby-making world. Best of luck -


  21. I have been reading your blog for quite sometime but never leave comments. Today though? You have me in tears. I don't know what to say except I wish I could hug you! Thank you for writing. Thank you for sharing.
    Sending you love and hugs...

  22. I really wish I knew what to say but there are no words I can say to make your pain go away. In my eyes you are a wonderful mother and more. You and Peyton are a part of my world now and I thank God for that because you are such a nice, kind person. Sending you ((hugs)).

    P.S I think you should get a 2nd opinion too. My sister in-law is going through IVF and I don't recall her having to wait so long.

  23. I just started reading your blog. I am so so so sorry for your loss. A mother's nightmare for sure. I have delt with infertility before and that was painful, especially when you feel everyone around you is pregnant. I have never lost a child that I carried to to term. I have had miscarriages and that was so hard for me. I didn't know if I was ever going to have a baby. I will pray for you! And you are a mother and will always be one. If you live the life the Lord wants you to live you can have Peyton with you forever. Pray for His guidance and He will comfort you and guide you. I so hope that you can have another baby!

  24. "Do you ever feel like you no longer have a place to fit in?" Every damn day. Every day.

    None of my business, but have you got a second opinion? I've never heard of anything like that waiting game before...

  25. "I want to be in that world. I want to, but I can't. When you have seen what we have seen, there is no going back."

    That is EXACTLY it.
    I hope and pray that the IVF happens soon

    PS Peyton is a BEAUTIFUL baby and what a beautiful name. You are absolutely a mom - but in your heart, of course, you know that.

  26. You are beautiful mom and will always be. I struggle with everything you wrote about but never put it so eloquently. I hope all the waiting is worth it some day and that Peyton gets the younger brother or sister she deserves.

  27. You are so a good mom.
    You lived and breathed and LIVE and BREATHE all that a parent could go through: your parenting experience is vastly more intense than many will experience their whole lives. You made wonderful loving decisions for your daughter and you continue to do so. I was touched by your pictures of the nursery.
    I think of you all the time. Sending you hugs and the strength to turn away from a football game and let those tears flow. If we were friends in person, I would definitely take the moment to hug you and share your grief.

  28. Your post really touched me. I can relate to so much of what you're saying. And you are NOT alone. There are so many of us here all feeling like we don't fit in - all the while feeling all the other difficult emotions of losing a child. And please know that there are many of us who will never forget your Petyton. She was a beautiful little girl and she will always be yours.

  29. I can relate to so many of the things you said... wait wait wait wait wait wait.. I wrote about it recently. No one understands when I say 2010 is slipping away.. they're like "um, but it just started.." and I wanna hit them over the head and say "UM, but it takes nearly a whole year to be pregnant, so YES, 2010 IS slipping away" meaning the thought of having a baby in 2010. I was supposed to have one in 2009, and now I might not even get one til 2011?! WTF?!