Warning: This is not a happy, feel good post. If you want all rainbows and unicorns, I suggest you go here.
Yesterday was my second beta. As I said the other day, my first beta (on a Thursday) was 58.4. Dr. C doesn’t allow his patients to have second betas on weekends because the only clinic location that’s open weekends is 45 minutes away. He thinks it’s not worth the drive for a blood work-only appointment. Because of this, the standard 48-hour follow up beta that most woman get was a 96-hour follow up for me. As so many things in this infertility journey–surprise!–the next step involved more waiting.
My result was 214. My nurse assures me this is a very good number. Naturally though, I scoured online forums for appropriate second beta numbers for 13dp5dt as soon as we hung up the phone. When I compare my results to what I find online, I seem to come up short. Way short. (Please, yes I know that everyone and every pregnancy is different and that betas don’t mean as much as we like think they do… I get it. This is about something deeper.) It’s about this: Why can’t I just relax and accept that maybe–just maybe–my results are normal? That I’m entitled to a chance at having IVF work for me as much as the next woman? That, for once in this terrible journey through the wastelands of infertility, something good happened, and it happened to me? Throughout this whole process I’ve grappled with a secret underlying, paralyzing fear that there is something so fundamentally wrong with me that I would never be permitted to get that “normal” the other 90% are blessed with. To be told otherwise is completely a mind trip. Why can’t I just accept good news? Why do I so easily accept the bad news?
I hate this. No, I loathe this. I loathe that this journey is filled with these little degrees of reassurance that we cling to so fiercely, followed by the almost immediate expectation that the fragility of good news could come crashing down at a moment’s notice. And there’s not a damn thing you can do about it. I can pray, and I do pray. Fiercely. I have faith and give God the glory for all this. And that is enough. More than enough. But at the end of the day, God is God and I am still fallible and not in control.
I loathe that for so many years all I wanted was to get pregnant, but being pregnant didn’t assuage the pain. Once that dream of being pregnant became a finite reality, the thrill of actually being pregnant is so very fleeting. That unknown new joy of having a tiny life deep inside you is quickly negated by the landslide of fears and anxieties that come along with trying to keep that tiny life going for the full forty weeks. Then–just when you think you’ve got that part down–a whole new plethora of concerns about delivery are unleashed. I want to enjoy pregnancy; I don’t want to worry my way through every stage of it.
I didn’t expect this. I thought that once I got pregnant I’d become this blissfully happy idiot (see rainbows and unicorns reference above). That the hard part was over. That all my infertility struggles would just magically go away. The ugly truth is, the hard part’s just begun.
I actually didn’t intend this post to go this way. In fact, I was planning to blog about my medically-relevant details, such as the seven big cysts that I’m currently living with or the fact that I wake up in the middle of the night to pee and can’t fall back asleep for hours every single night. I just can’t do it today. It seems that all I’ve just written is what’s truly inside my heart instead.
Stay tuned for happier posts. I believe they’re coming.