Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Stages of Grief

I think that one of the hardest things about IF is the hope-loss cycle that occurs every month. With each new cycle, comes new hope that the treatment will work and I will finally get pregnant. I take my medications, go to my appointments endure the tests and procedures all with hope for a successful cycle. The 2ww also starts off with so much hope, even if everything didn't go perfectly, as long as I ovulated, I am hopeful that I could be pregnant that cycle.
I continue charting my temps and looking for clues that I'm pregnant. If things look good, I will generally start testing around 11DPO which is a bit early, but not impossible to detect a pregnancy. From 11DPO and my first BFN (which was today, by the way), I start working my way through the stages of grief at the loss of a pregnancy that never even happened. I begin, as most do, with denial. I keep testing and hoping and with every BFN I get one step closer to realizing that it didn't happen, yet again.
I then make the abrupt transition to anger. I can't stand to look at pregnant women, I yell at the TV when I hear stories of women neglecting their children and teens dumping their unplanned babies in the nearest garbage can. I can't understand why they get to have a baby and we can't. It seems so unfair and I get angry at the world for this injustice.
After anger comes bargaining. I don't consciously make bargains, but I do change some things at the point right before AF shows her ugly face. I stop drinking (not that I drink much anyway), I focus on my eating, I clean the house and basically act like a pregnant person. Maybe this is my way of bargaining. -Hey, if I prove to the world that I am a good person, worthy of a baby, it will happen, despite the multiple negative tests.
Well, bargaining has failed for 18 cycles now and when it does, and AF shows, the next step settles in, depression. I cry, I mope, I sleep more and I just plain hate the thought of trying again. This is the worst I think, for me and for Tim. I know he hates seeing me like this and he really hates hearing me say that I want to give up. It's always the depression talking, because I want a baby more than anything, but in the depression days, the thought of going through the loss again is more than I can bear.
All of my treatments have started on CD3, so the final stage generally comes at some point that day. Acceptance. I have to move on, I have to keep trying and to do that, I have to let go of past failures.
And then the cycle begins again...

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