Friday, June 3, 2011

Pinot noir in hand

I composed a post yesterday and then just like that, Sa.fari ate it. I was trying to delete a word and all of a sudden it deleted 6 paragraphs. After that I didn't have the humph to start over.

The week has come and gone, and I will be going back to work on Monday. I am feeling apprehensive about it, but I've made plans to work from home on one of the days next week so that I can come back and be with Mr. A. I'm not sure what I will tell people who ask what happened, what was wrong, am I better, etc. I can tell them that I am physically better. That would be true. I can tell them that I was ill. That wouldn't be entirely true. I can tell them to mind their own fucking business. That doesn't sound like me. Any good scripts you have, please send my way. As you can see, the well is dry of inspiration for a good story.

I am sitting here drinking Pinot Noir. It's nice to be able to drink wine, but I would give up wine for the rest of my entire existence if it meant I could have a child. Bargaining. That's a stage of grief, says Kubler-Ross.

I have been doing ok, I think. I cry each day, and I have moments of feeling complete desperation, but otherwise I am holding on. I focused a lot on self-care this week: long walks, reading a novel, watching the first season of Ma.d Me.n, baking and cooking, spending time with beloved friends, and spending some quality time with Mr. A. I wish I could send you all some of my pear, pecan, and dark chocolate muffins.

What's been the hardest are the nights and mornings. I wake up each night and can't fall back asleep. With my 'middle of the night irrational mind', I can't seem to hold on to the belief that we will ever be parents. In the dark hours, I am choked by the panic that I will not have children, that all this work is in vain, that nothing we can do will change this utterly shitty luck. I do fall back asleep and then have trouble getting out of bed once morning arrives. And when I do get up, I'm pretty unsteady for a few hours. By the afternoon, I can usually start looking into options for our next steps. If friends call me in the morning, the get the weepy Augusta; if they call in the afternoon, I can hold a conversation without sobs.

I had lunch with Sattva on Tuesday. I bought her lunch and she started to cry. She said it felt like she didn't deserve lunch, which is where I joined her in the crying. She deserves oceans and mountains of gratitude, and all I have for her is this puny lunch. She reminded me that we were sitting exactly where we sat a year ago having lunch and discussing the ramifications of going ahead with the egg donation. She said she didn't regret it. She said "let's try again". Sattva being Sattva, she of course wants to try again. That took the wind out of my pipes. How can she even think of going through that again? She said that looking back, it wasn't too bad and that overall, what she took from it was this sense of doing something good. She reminded me that because we've done all the preliminary steps, it wouldn't take too long to try again. Mr. August and I had always thought that we would not want her to go through the IVF procedure more than once. I must admit we are seriously taking in her offer. I think the dream of having a child with her help and seeing our families join through the egg donation is still very strong within us. We have an appointment with Dr. RE on June 16 and we will get his opinion on whether that's a good idea or not.

It's pretty daunting to think about the other options, although I have thought through them carefully and will not reject any of them at this point (except adoption through the Children's Aid Society, which is something I can talk to you about through email but won't post on here). Embryo adoption, surrogacy, or private local adoption. What is daunting is simply the money and the wait time, otherwise, I feel capable of going to the ends of the earth to get our child. I realize all the options are gambles, and guarantees are not granted in this game.

A few friends have asked me this week how come I still hold hope after what has happened. I did not have answers when they asked, but it made me think about it more. I was walking downtown earlier today and it occurred to me that the reason I still have hope is you. You women have gone through hell in the form of multiple miscarriages, umpteen IUIs and IVFs and surgeries, years of trying and failing, years of keeping hope alive somehow. I have 2 failed IUIs, a diagnosis of ovarian failure, and a miscarriage and that's all. Your hope and your tenacity has inspired me. I've decided to keep fighting this merciless IF monster. I've figured out who my heroes are, and I will work to emulate them. Thank you, dear women.


  1. Don't discount what youmhave been through. No one should experience multiple IUIs and IVF failures. IF sucks all around. You sound like you are holding up well, better than I did or could have been I'm proud of you. Your strength and determination is powerful. I know you will be a mom, I just don't know which path will take you to it.

  2. I like the phrasing that you are physically better because it implies that there's more without having to go into all of it.

  3. Lurker here...but just wanted to say ditto to the prior 2 comments. You have been through a lot and IF means having been through more than most and yet to keep on going. You are so strong and I admire the attitude you have with things. I hope the best for you.

  4. Oh my friend it's so good to hear from you. Continue to hold to hope, it is what propels all of us forward and gives us each the strength to fight through the pain of all that IF throws at us. One step at a time you'll find the path that is best for you & Mr. A. I remember feeling overwhelmed after we lost Lily, also wondering if we'd ever be parents and not knowing which route to take next in our attempt to try. And then it all just fell into place and we knew which path was right for us. Continuing to think of you often and sending prayers for continued strength and clarity as you move forward. Will be sending lots of thoughts your way for Monday as you return to work. There is no perfect answer to your question, ultimately whatever you decide is best for you in that moment and know that all of us will be there with you in spirit ((hugs)) and so much love my friend.

  5. I would also gladly give up wine for the rest of my existence if you could have your child, if that sweetens the deal, Universe...

    It's so YOUish to end this post with gratitude to others, but I also balk at the "that's all" at the end of your laundry list of PAIN and SUFFERING. Maybe if you'd said "I have a hangnail and that's all", I'd be okay with you minimizing, but you'd already been through an awful lot before this latest punch in the gut. That said, I certainly take your point: the things our friends have endured are sobering, astonishing, and so comforting.

  6. My dear Augusta. You've been close in my heart this week. I know in the weeks after our miscarriage last fall, I took so much solace in knowing I wasn't alone in all of this, that others had walked in my shoes and survived. There were days I wondered if I could survive, but I did. It still stings at times, and I know that I will always carry the pain of it all with me for the rest of my life. But the crying spells and pangs of desperation do get farther inbetween and it gets a little easier to hope each and every day.

    I had a close friend at work that just told everyone that I needed some space those first few days back at work. It was the best thing I could have done. I could then approach people on my terms and tell them what I wanted to when I had the strength. It did feel like there was an elephant in the room at times, but that is what worked for me. Do you have someone you could ask to do the same for you?

    Feel free to email me if you ever want to vent or chat. You are in my thoughts!

  7. That's all.

    That's all?

    Well, hell, Augusta, love you, but that is about the stupidest thing you ever did say. (Can you see my sadly smiling face here at the key board as I reprimand you? Ok, good.)

    Each of those items are just the tip of the iceberg. Each of those items comes with a sad and sorry group of sidekicks to amplify the pain of the leader. Many women are crushed by a mere fraction of what you have endured.

    Entire posts, heck, entire blogs are written about the options you are considering. How can my comment ever express the idea that I see your load and I wish I could help? I am glad you see options and I send you all the strength in the world as you get to know them.

  8. It's a bitter cup, Augusta:(

    For me, the mornings and nights were always the worst, as well. I could stave off my dark thoughts at other points in the day, but somehow when you're lying there in the dark, they have a tendency to come crowding in. The thing is this, though - and it's something I held onto and hold onto still - that blind panic, that feeling of "It's never going to happen" is just a feeling. It's not a reality, even if it feels very real.

    What to tell and how much - it's such a difficult decision. There are pitfalls to saying nothing and there are pitfalls to saying something. All I hope is that - whatever you say, or don't - you are surrounded by people who are warm and supportive.

    It doesn't surprise me at all that Sattva said what she did (though, it does drive home the point of what a wonderful person she is). Wait and see what your clinic says, but I am very glad that you are not starting from Square One.

    Continue with the self-care. It is so important and there is no expiry date on that. The thing is that the world goes on - which sometimes feels like a very ugly reality - but YOUR healing is another matter. And you are entitled to take as long as you need (though I am very, very glad that you are considering next steps...we always did, as well).

  9. Augusta...never EVER discount what you have been through. Ever. This is not the pain olympics dear friend! Your account of your despair and grief you are feeling takes me right back to my miscarriages and particularly my diagnosis that I just cant conceive normal healthy babies. I have been there and its sooo soooo awful. And its even more awful when you just are so confused you don't know where to turn. Knowing me...I need to analyze everything. It gives me a sense of control as I understand things when things seem so incredibly unfair. For what its worth...if I may...I think you were handed some absolutely terrible luck. What I know about loss and reproductive genetics I think because you made it to week 12 tells me that (although baby made it to week 9) tells me that the pg did not end because of your body. In fact your body still continued to nurture the pg for 3 weeks after that. My first m/c was like that too and so I was confident that my body could carry a pg without major intervention. So in my opinion, yeah...go for a 2nd time. But when you are ready. Right now your soul has been rocked to the core. Step back, consider your options as its sounds as though you are. Because the next pg will be terrifying and you need to collect enough strength to do it again. And if you can't that's quite alright too. PG loss ads considerably more complex dimension when considering treatment again. But it sounds as though you are considering some other equally fantastic options. But for now...please dont make any decisions. At least not until you feel stable enough. And for me the nights were the worst too...take care. Hope you know you are in my thoughts and will be here no matter what decision you decide. I look forward to hearing what your RE says.

  10. Oh Augusta, I too always find the mornings and nights the hardest, its that winding up and down of the mind that just can't be quietened. And that physical thump that happens inside yourself when you wake in the morning and remember your reality.
    I'm glad you still have hope, and so you should. But I agree with Bunny about you minimising your pain, "thats all" isnt a fair description Augusta, you've been through so much more than those two words desribe.
    Really thinking of you so much lately, you're in my heart. xxx

  11. Everyone else who has commented previously has so eloquently stated the thoughts I have as well.

    You have endured more than your fair share of IF setbacks and sorrows. If there was a quota for how much we had to endure to then receive a child, We would all have a dozen kids running around our homes by now.

    I can't imagine the pain you must be in right now. I will be thinking of you as you return to work. I echo everyone's sentiments that I hope your coworkers will not pry and will allow you the space and healing you need, and that you will know just what to say to them.

    I saw this quote today, and just thought I would share it with you.

    “Like the mortal life of which they are a part, adversities are temporary. What is permanent is what we become by the way we react to them.” E. Oaks, Adversity 1/17/1995

    Your strength, courage, and gratitude towards others during this terrible time in your life speaks volumes of the type of person that you are.

    Thinking of you, and hoping your heart will heal.

  12. Thinking of you today, dear friend, as you go back to work. Hoping for a gentle return.

    Love, H.

  13. Augusta, your journey has been long and what you've had to endure is insanely tough by any standards, so cut yourself some slack and give yourself a shitload of credit for handling it the way you have. I am in awe of you and wish more than anything that I could do something to make this journey come to an end, with a baby in your arms (or more than 1 if you so desire!).

    You're an incredible woman and I am thinking of you and hoping like hell you can get to the other side of this IF mess as quickly as possible.

  14. Oh, my darling. You have been through far, far too much already. No one else's pain changes yours even one little bit. I am delighted that Sattva is redy for the next go-round and think it would be beautiful and amazing if you all could join your families. Don't question her generosity; if she offers, she means it. I love you so much and hate that you have to feel this heartbreak. Nobody should have to and I consider it a personal affront that your wonderfulness has to be distracted with this bullshit. For now, enjoy the wine. June 16 is right around the corner. Love and love and love.