Another month and another negative pregnancy test.
I start my own personal crusade to convince myself that there is a reason. Our timing was off. My hormones were out of whack. It wasn’t meant to be. No matter the reason, the negative pregnancy test is a disappointment.
My husband and I have been together for over 15 years. We had talked about having kids, but we were busy and we weren’t sure how we really felt about it. Finally, we “pulled the goalie” and shortly thereafter, we were pregnant.
I loved being pregnant. I know many women struggle with it, but I loved it. And, it was an easy pregnancy. I gained 8 pounds (don’t hate me – I was chubby to start) and left the hospital lighter than when I conceived.
We started talking about the ideal spacing of our kids. But then, it never seemed to be a good time.
And now, here we are. We have been trying for a couple of years and have had no luck yet. My son will be 5 years old very soon and that is certainly a larger gap than I wanted. Not to mention, I will be turning 40 this year and my biological clock is thundering in my ears; telling me I need to hurry up.
Welcome to Secondary Infertility
As a type A personality, I researched this term once it started being bandied about by my OB/GYN. I had been pregnant before with such relative ease that it now feels like I am being punished for waiting too long. I learned that this is not uncommon and the causes are varied. My doctor has given us some medications for me to try, and we are hopeful.
But the reality is that secondary infertility is still hard. My friends seem to keep conceiving with little to no trouble at all and, while I am happy for them, I am jealous deep in my heart of hearts.
The outside pressures don’t help, either. “I am not getting any younger and your son will be in school soon. When are you going to have another?” my mother remarks with maddening regularity. My mother-in-law is more covert and says directly to my son, “Wouldn’t you like a little brother or sister? Maybe your mommy and daddy need to get to it.”
My friends are kind, but even they are starting to look at each other like my words and my actions don’t match. I have made no secret of my desire for another baby… but month after month, I have no exciting news to share.
Standing in Hope
The popular wisdom is that talking about it can help, but I just can’t seem to do it. Now, I am not a shy person. I am often the first to get up and give a presentation to a room full of people. But talking to others about my infertility problems makes me uneasy. I don’t want to add that shadow to every conversation I have. I realize that it is likely just my perception that it would be awkward, but that is enough to prevent me from being open about it.
Sometimes, I feel guilty. I know how lucky I am that we have a beautiful, healthy child. It feels a bit selfish to want another, but I truly do. I wonder if by sharing my problem, others will feel that I am being too greedy. As if there are a certain number of babies to be had, and I have had my turn.
So here’s where we stand, my little family of three. Happy, but missing an important piece. Maybe I am not destined to have a second child. But we continue to hope that with time, and a little luck, our hearts desire will soon be realized.