Hey friends! I’m back. So sorry for the long absence. I didn’t forget about you I promise. Before I tell you what’s been going on in our seemingly never ending quest to become parents, I feel like I need to explain why it’s been almost 6 months since I’ve put pen to paper – or more accurately finger to keyboard.
I didn’t stop writing because there isn’t any news to report. Because, well, there is. It’s definitely not because I don’t think about being a mom anymore. I think about that about 10 times per minute on a daily basis. And I most certainly didn’t stop writing because I no longer see the importance of shedding light on this difficult subject. I 100% do.
The truth is I haven’t been a good little blogger because lately blogging makes me really sad. When I first started sharing my story a year ago I felt that my words gave me power. It was almost cathartic to share my struggle with you and it somehow took away a teeny bit of my heartache. It was comforting to know that “I’m not alone” and that “others have walked my path” and that “I too will overcome infertility.” Honestly, I received some of the most inspiring and heartfelt messages from complete strangers just reaching out to a girl with hurt in her heart. Thank you for that, sincerely
But that was a year ago. Yes, I had already struggled through 2 years of infertility, but I still had 2 more rounds of IVF on the horizon and all the hope in the world. I felt like my time was finally here and that is would be even more special to share it with you all! A small part of me also believed that once I shared my story my wish would be fulfilled. Does that make sense? Like I couldn’t become pregnant until I “went public” with my struggle. Welp, obviously that was a total bust.
Now we’re 3 years in. I literally can’t believe it. I cannot wrap my head around the fact that I still don’t have my babies after all this time. It’s like every day I’m waking up to the same horrible nightmare. I often have dreams about those babies. I am holding them and feel so supremely content. It’s euphoric. Then like a flash of lightning…I wake up and they’re gone. If I’m being totally honest, in the past 3 years I have struggled with depression at times. I’ve felt so low and broken that literally the only thing I want to do is sleep until I can be a momma. Like wake me up when this part is over. It’s scary to admit that…to even write those words. But it’s true. Of course I haven’t given up, I haven’t given in and I haven’t lost hope…or my mind. Well maybe my mind a teensy bit. If there’s anything I have learned from this whole mess, it’s that we all struggle with something. Everyone is hurting and sometimes life is not fair. And that’s just that.
Now I’ve also taken a break from blogging because I am uncertain about where the line is for sharing versus over-sharing. For the past 10 years, I have had a pretty successful career as a news anchor, working in top markets on the West Coast. Obviously part of my job is to share my own life with viewers – it makes us more connected. The connection that I have with my friends on the other side of the TV is the reason I love what I do. But how do you know when you’ve shared too much? I started this WTF blog when I was taking a break from work…Doctor’s orders! It somehow felt safer to share videos of me giving myself shots of Ganarelix or waking up after surgery hysterical when I didn’t have to face everyone in a work atmosphere. Does that make sense? I could easily separate the tearful IVF patient and the cheerful morning show gal. I’ve been back to work for 6 months now and I’ve struggled with how to address this. Up until about 1 week ago, I don’t even think my new co-workers knew about my “dirty little secret.” I was outted when a re-run of The Doctors aired on my station and they obviously put it all together. To be clear I’m not saying it’s bad that my co-workers know what I’ve gone through, I’m just saying it changes things. At some point I hope to have the strength to share my story with the viewers. Yes…I sorta have already on The Doctors, but for the most part the people who have seen that show don’t actually know me. I’m just a girl that can’t get pregnant. But it’s different with my viewers because I know them and they know me.
In the meantime, literally the ENTIRE WORLD is having babies. Now please forgive when I talk about this particular part of infertility. By no means do I intend to sound bitter or cruel, it’s just how I feel. Like how is it possible that Snooki has had 2 babies before me? Even Kim Kardashian is preggo with #2?! Yes, I realize she struggled with infertility and I commend her for shedding light on the subject…but SHE GOT PREGNANT! (Btw, her Fertility Specialist Dr Huang was my also my Doc. I went to him for my first round of IVF.) All of my friends are on baby #2 or #3 at the point; I’ve been totally lapped. Friends that had no interest in having a child back when we first started TTC are pregnant and have had babies. Even fellow TTC sisters on social media who I once turned to for solace have gotten preggo and are now busy decorating nurseries. Just to be clear, I could care less what other people in the world have going on especially (pseudo) celebs whom I don’t even know. I try not compare myself to others. My point is that it’s in my face ALL THE TIME. I can’t go a day without reading a headline that makes me want to scream out in frustration or see a post that makes me tear up. (Which by the way, I have taken a 4 month break from my personal Facebook page. It’s just too hard to log on and see babies and preggo bellies everywhere. I can’t do it anymore and I honestly feel better now that I’m not exposed to it all the time.) Please don’t get me wrong…all those babies is a good thing! It means a win for the good guys! It means most of my friends will never know the pain of infertility or the deep ache that grows inside where a baby should be. It means that infertility is a big, FUGLY witch that will not prevail. Down with infertility! And that’s all fine and good, but it leaves me with one question. When’s it gonna be my turn?
Only God truly knows the answer to that question, but I’m thinking it’s gotta be soon. Upon moving back to Northern California, Gabe and I signed up with a Christian Adoption Agency with a program called Foster/Adoption. They connect foster kids who have been deemed “family-less” for a number of very sad reasons, with couples like Gabe and I. You’re probably thinking, but didn’t you guys just get approved to adopt this past October? Why yes we did. Good memory. Since this is a new agency we have to do it all over again. So that’s what we’ve been doing the past 6 months: paperwork, classes, therapy, filling out forms, appointments, reading, etc, etc, etc. While it may be time consuming, it is absolutely invaluable information for sure! I honestly think that every parent should have to go through this training before they have kids. It feels good to know we’re arming ourselves with as much knowledge as possible to be the best parents we can. I’ve gotta admit, though, this process has been long and exhaustive. We’re tired of talking about being parents; we’re ready to just do it. It’ll probably be 2 more months until we are 100% certified with this agency and put on the list that social workers call when they have a child that might be a match for us. (I’ll go into more detail about that process in my next blog.) After that it could happen fairly quickly or it might be several months. Until then we’ll just keeping waiting and praying. Praying and waiting.
I’d like to end on a positive note as I usually do. Just because I am missing this one (extremely important) piece of the puzzle to my life, doesn’t mean that I am blind to all the wonderful things I do have. My supportive husband, my loving family, my health (besides this dang IF stuff), we just bought a house which we’ll get to remodel together, my sweet Lola, dear friends, lots of fun travel plans, etc, etc, etc. And I have YOU! Yeah I’m talking to you. You just spent 7 minutes of your precious time reading about something extremely personal and private and important to me. How special does that make me feel?! VERY SPECIAL!
So as you can see my list is rather long and thankfully I can see that too.
(As a side note, I would like to say that it was because of one short conversation with a very old friend that I even found the strength to write today. Out of the blue my old buddy Rich Berra dialed me up. Rich is one half of the popular JohnJay and Rich Radio Show broadcast in Phoenix, San Diego, Portland etc etc. Look em up on I Heart Radio. Anyway, we go way back and its been a while since we’ve caught up and Rich just called to check in on me…as a big brother of sorts. I gave him a quick update and then got into my whole mess which he was slightly familiar with through social media. Rich is very aware of the appalling numbers of children that need to be adopted. The JJR Show works to raise money for these sweet children and to help find them loving families. I told him about my angst to continue writing…how it made me sad and I felt uncomfortable because of my career. Rich said, “Alexis you have to share your story. Now more than ever. Write about your first few moments with your new kids. Tell everyone what’s it’s like to snuggle a child that has a fear of intimacy. Share your story. You have to.” You’re right Rich. I was afraid, but your confidence in me gave me courage. Thank you for that ol’ friend.)