when hope is lost…

Fuck. I’ll begin by saying I have no good news. Yesterday at 11dp3dt, my super-sensitive pee stick detected no sign of hCG whatsoever. Sure, there’s a chance it’s still a bit too early, but let’s just say I’m not too hopeful that my beta on Friday will have a different result. In fact, I wish I could just cancel it. No need to rub salt in my fresh wounds.  

Oh, how I wish this could be a different post. How I wish that instead of pouring the sorrow from my gut, I was trying to gingerly find a way to share cause for rejoicing, a shred of hope. How I wish I could join my fellow bloggers cautiously embracing their wonderful news. But it is apparently not to be. And so I preface the following (long post warning) with a “sure, miracles can happen,” but they don’t usually happen to me. And I’ve been on the crap side of statistics enough to know the familiar sting of yet another defeat. 
The biggest. fattest. fucking. negative. ever. Of course if 48 hours makes a world of difference, I will so very happily eat my words. 

So how do I feel?  Let me count the ways… 

I feel deflated, depressed.  In my heart I had such high hopes for this IVF.  It was our best chance.  It was our only chance.  I truly believed I would become pregnant. There was every reason to think it would work.  There was no way it could not work.  After all we had been through.  After my excellent response.  I was so excited I could not even fall asleep.  I was so very hopeful.  I tried to let go of all fear.  I was dreaming big and soaring high.  But what goes up must come down, I guess.  Now I just feel letdown.  I feel sorrow and ache.  Distracted.  Despondent.  Empty. 

I feel defeated, like a failure.  Once again my body has shown it is simply incapable of sustaining a pregnancy.  Even when bypassing my crusty tubes and pesky ovary, and compensating for poor morphology with help from the lab.  And still, my womb refused to hold two beautiful healthy embryos – 8 perfect cells with zero fragmentation – the best of the bunch.  It refused to carry even one tiny perfect embryo.  Which begs the question: what is wrong with me?!  Seriously, what the hell is wrong with my body that it can’t even accept the most perfectly gorgeous gifts, hand crafted by the most skilled technician and delivered with the utmost care?  Maybe it’s true, maybe it’s just not meant to be.  No, not because of god’s will.  Not because I’m being punished.  But because I just seem completely incapable of fulfilling the most natural elemental function in the world.  I feel defeated and betrayed by my own body.  Again.

I feel bewildered, disillusioned.  There is no reason why this should not have worked.  There is every reason why it should have.  Is it my old eggs?  Poor sperm?  Is my womb scarred for life? Did I sneeze out those embryos with that terrible cold on transfer day?  Was my mental state not positive enough?  Am I now paying for every poor choice I’ve ever made with my body?  In truth, I will never know why this failed.  Which means that even if we had another 12-15k that we were willing to spend on another attempt, the outcome would not necessarily change.  It’s not like my protocol would be tweaked to yield more eggs or better quality embryos.  I had 30 mature eggs that resulted in 15 good quality embryos, some of which were excellent.  No, I have to assume it’s my useless hoohah that’s refusing to do its fucking job.   If I didn’t think she was listening, I’d say listen beotch, you are so fucking fired.

I feel powerless.  I tried to take control of my fertility, to overcome our many obstacles.  I accepted that we needed help and sought the best available.  I put my faith in experts and technology.  I gave up control of my own body.  But not even the best RE can fix me.  Not even the most high-tech science can help me.  I feel doomed and inextricably linked to a fate I did not choose and cannot change.  I feel forced to accept this cold-hearted truth.  I may reclaim my body, I may shift my attitude, but I cannot change my destiny.  

I feel drained, exhausted.  Physically, emotionally, financially, I am spent.  I’m so tired of so many things, but this I will save for another post.  It’s not just the early morning visits an hour away.  It’s not just the bruises and holes in my belly and butt.  It’s the toll of raised expectations quickly dashed, of shattered hopes and dreams.  It’s the toll of the incessant need to feel positive but never with a good outcome.  Of feeling pitied and pitiful.  What is the cost of trusting so deeply in something that lets you down?  What price do we pay for holding everything in, for hiding inside our life until it (hopefully) improves?  What is the cost of our privacy, our self-esteem?  The impact is immeasurable. 

I feel forsaken, alone.  Forever left behind. Denied. Destined to be excluded from the joy of parenthood, doomed to never experience the sacred bond between mother and child.  Like I will never experience the profound wonder of a healthy pregnancy or birth.  Like I will never know the awe of gazing into my baby’s beaming eyes, the bliss of motherhood.  More than a failure as a woman and wife, which is hard enough, I fear I will never know how it feels to be a mother, with all of its joys and challenges. 

I feel incomplete, unsettled.  Unhinged.  Like I will never be right with this, that I will never fully accept this fate, that I will never truly find peace.  I feel I will never escape the pain of facing the belly of a pregnant woman, watching her lovingly caress her growing baby, or seeing a new mother gently cradle her newborn to breastfeed, or parents with toddlers and strollers in the market or park.  I don’t think I will ever hear the sweet laughter of a child and not be reminded that it will never be my child.  This is not acceptable.

I feel hopeless.  I feel no faith.  I can’t even look into someone’s eyes without feeling like they could see deep down into my tormented spirit.  In many ways, I feel as I did after I lost my baby boy nearly two years ago.  I feel a deep sense of loss, of grief that will live within me forever.  I ask myself now, as I did back then, will this pain ever go away?  Will this sorrow stay at the surface or will it subside?  Will it rise up as anger or bitterness?  What happens when hope is lost?  How does it feel to give up on a dream?  Right now I just want to know, will I ever be whole?


~ by luna on January 3, 2008.

27 Responses to “when hope is lost…”

  1. De-lurking to say I’m beyond sorry.

    I’ve been where you are…it’s barely been two months since the negative of all fucking negatives in my own life. It sucks, it hurts, and there’s nothing I or anyone else can say to make it go away…even though anyone who has read your words wants to do so.

    I will address your last question. You ARE whole. I’ve read your blog, your words, only a whole person could write the way you do. A child, not even one who is wanted as much as we both want our children, is not required to make someone whole. I know you don’t believe me right now, but think about it.

    Possibly the word you’re looking for is “complete”, and that I cannot answer. All I can do is send my email and say that I know how it hurts. I know how it sucks. And I’m here reading your words, and will continue to do so. Take care of yourself.

  2. Here via Mel’s blog. I am so sorry. I hope there is still a happy surprise ending, but I know the sinking feeling well. My heart goes out to you.

  3. There is nothing to say. No words to offer comfort. I’m so sorry for your loss, your pain, the rough road ahead. I can’t say I know exactly what you’re going through, but I know grief. We’ve become good friends lately. I’ve lived it. I’ve had times where it becomes all I am and it feels as though it will never end…until it is just a part of me again. And then it falls into the background. And then it conspires to pop up unexpectedly. Sleep, peace, comforting things. They’ll all help some.

  4. I’m sorry, sweetie. Just sending good thoughts.

  5. I’m so sorry, so incredibly sorry.

    I can relate to all the points you made and I have some understanding of what you are dealing with. This is why I realise that my words won’t help, but please know I am thinking of you.

    I wish I could tell you how it would all work out or you’ll be fine but I’m in the same dark place right now. I’m sad to have company.

    I could have written each of your paragraphs (only I haven’t a way with words) I understand the lack of hope, the inability to look forward, the anger at being letdown by my body again and again, the most terrible feeling that this might never be over.

    I hope you manage to find some peace. I don’t know how but I hope you manage.

  6. I’m so very sorry. How I wish I or any of us had the ability to say or do something that would take away your hurt, alleviate the intensity of the competing emotions that you express here. Having walked in your shoes and felt what you’re describing in every way shape and form I know how very hard this is. All I wanted to do was escape the enormity of what I was thinking and experiencing. For me, sleep became my best escape. I know it’s little consolation at a time when you’re wrestling with so much but there will come a day, on your own time and in your own way, when the pain becomes manageable. In the meantime, all we can do is offer our empathy and understanding. We’re there for you friend. Wishing you peace and strength.

  7. This post is beautiful in the most heart-wrenching of ways. It is THE post that I both fear and expect that I will write in 2008. Even though my vivid imagination falls short of the ability to fully understand what you are going through, I am tortured for you and with you. I wish, with all of my energy, that I could change the space that you are in. Hell, I wish I could change the space of all of us in the trenches. Life is so incredibly cruel and unfair. I agree with you that the cost of attempting to feel positive in the face of a litany of disappointments is high. Hopefully, we will never experience its full force.

    Please email me if you need a virtual shoulder to cry on. I will keep you in my thoughts….if I believed in a god – any god – I would pray for you.


  8. Oh, I am in tears. You have been so, so supportive of me and I have been waiting for your good news. I am so sorry that this is the post that you had to write. I wish for the other post, the one tht I was praying to read.

    I am not sure if words from me would hurt or help you at this point, but if you EVER need anything, ANYTHING at all, please e-mail me at soupgirl79@aol.com. I am here for you.

  9. I am so, so very sorry. I wish I had the right words to say or a magic wand to wave to make this better for you. Please know that you’re in my thoughts, my prayers, and my heart right now. I wish you peace, strength, and love that shelters and surrounds you.

  10. As trite as it may be, I’m so sorry. Your pain is palpable and I wish there was something I could say or do to take some of it away, even for a little while.

    I’m hoping you find peace (and in that miracle)

  11. Oh gosh, I am so very sorry. There is a bunch of stats I want to throw out to seem somewhat positive for the future, but I won’t do it. I’ll just be here to listen. And to help hold your heart when you need a little help carrying the burden alone. ~hugs~

  12. I am so very sorry, I just found you today and cannot express how sad this post makes me for you. {{{{HUGS}}}}}

  13. If it offers any solace, you are not alone. I got my negative from my first IVF in November. I was so positive that this was the answer. I was absolutely gutted. I’m having my first FET in a couple of weeks. What gives me hope is that I have heard many, many stories (true stories!) of women who were not able to get pregnant on fresh IVF cycles, but were on frozen cycles. Many women. So, allow yourself to grieve because it is like a death, but know that there is hope. Not a shot in the dark kind of hope, but real hope.

  14. I wish that I could just reach through this monitor and space and time and give you a hug and hold you cry with you and yell with you- and tell you it will all be okay- reading your post is like reading my own thoughts. My thoughts just this morning as I did the horrible task of pee on the stick and then stare back at that huge horrible all too familiar one line. I wish I could find something to say to bring you peace and hope- I guess just know that I am thinking of you and holding you in my heart today.

  15. So much of your post resonates with me. So much of it I could have written. I still wonder if I will ever feel whole, yet I know I feel more whole than I did two years ago and it is not because of this pg, but because I had to start recognizing and choosing happiness where I could. It can be done even if the baby thing continues to be elusive, it is just harder.

    As for there being no reason it didn’t work . . . it could have been a beautiful embryo that was just plain not viable. With our biggest crop of eggs we had over 8 day 3 embryos that were top grade. We grew those and 4 others out to 5 days and only one was still growing. This is a good lab with excellent rates so I know it was our embryos. If we had done a day 3 transfer I would have thought it was me.

    I suspect this isn’t the least bit helpful. It probably wouldn’t have helped me in a similar situation. I wish I could help and make it work for you.

  16. I am so, so sorry – I know how much was riding on this one cycle. There are very few words that anyone can say at a time like this, other than I am thinking of you, and wishing with all my heart that you had not had to write this post.

  17. To follow up on your comment of my comment . . . It may be that the FET’s won’t work, but it may also be that the magic embryo is still waiting to be transferred. I will let you know if I get any revelations.

  18. I am so sorry, so so sorry. It is awful when we have so much hope and then it just crashes. The only thing that kept me going was doing FETs straight after the fresh transfer and then the 2nd FET eventually worked so maybe your baby is still waiting. I am sorry, I just wanted to let you know, you do whatever is best for you, whatever you can. Sending you a big hug.

  19. I am so sad and disappointed for you — was really hoping this would be the one. You write so eloquently, I wish that today it was with joy rather than pain. You are in my thoughts.

  20. Soooooo sorry. ((hug))

  21. This post really broke my heart — god, you have such a gift for expressing things with just the right words. Things I’ve felt myself, but can’t quite get out exactly.

    Wish I knew what helps. I hate to admit it, but taking antidepressants is probably the only way I could’ve faced 08. Hoping you find comfort and peace this weekend — I will definitely be thinking of you.

  22. Heya. I know I already responded to this, but I wanted to check up on you. And I understand you needing to take some time from blogging your heart out, but I did just want you to know that we’re thinking of you.

  23. This post broke my heart too. I am so sorry. I just experienced a failed IVF (my first) and my heart goes out to you because I can relate to all of the feelings you wrote about. I really am so sorry. Please take care of yourself. And know that you have a lot of support. A lot of people are rooting for you. Pick yourself up when you can.

  24. Just stopping by to check in and see how you are doing and let you know that you are still in my thoughts….take care- lots of love to you

  25. […] desert. Blinding whiteness means no need for a beta. Not much else to say. I’ve said it all before. Only this time there are no future prospects. This was it. I feel dead inside. Right now I […]

  26. Such a beautiful, sad, honest post. I can relate to just about everything you’ve said here. I know it feels that way, but I hope you know that, really, you’re not alone. We are with you.

  27. […] began with lost hope and led to more failure and a cycle of despair, confusion and depression that lasted for months. […]

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