Pregnancy:  IVF  - The Road Less Traveled

By Alexandra Gekas

I deserve this. I am capable of this. I can let myself be happy. 

 

I deserve this. I am capable of this. I can let myself be happy. 

 

I deserve this. I am capable of this. I can let myself be happy. 

 

I find myself needing to deliver these affirmations often. 

My journey to motherhood has not been easy, yet I know deep down my journey was a blessing. My husband and I tried to get pregnant for around a year with no luck. I always thought in my heart it would be challenging for me to get pregnant - perhaps I had a sixth sense, or perhaps I was just fearful infertility would happen to me. Either way, it did. 

IMG_7454.jpeg

Waiting to transfer embryos

Across the course of a year, we had three failed IUIs, a medically induced cyst, delays because of COVID-19, and even a failed round one of IVF. When the second round “took”, I couldn’t believe it. Even as I look down at my growing 6-month bump, I’m still in disbelief that I am going to have a baby. In fact, I have to give myself almost daily affirmations that I deserve this. That I’m capable of this. That I can let myself be happy. 

 

Infertility has been the single hardest life challenge I have ever gone through. Much harder than losing my dear father at 18 years old. While infertility is not uncommon these days, it is still isolating. It’s not talked about frequently or openly. 

 

It can bring out these horrible feelings and emotions that make you wonder, am I a bad person? Will I always feel this way? Across the past year of my life, I’ve felt emotions ranging from pure range to debilitating sadness. I’ve felt resentful towards all the people around me who got pregnant in 1-2 months. I’ve felt annoyed in the presence of children. I’ve felt doom that I would never feel joy again. I even felt, though fleeting, that maybe life was not worth living. I remember discussing this with my therapist and her sharing that I will find joy again. I will like children again. She told me that my resentment does not make me a bad person. 

"It can bring out these horrible feelings and emotions that make you wonder, am I a bad person? Will I always feel this?"

The feelings haven’t completely subsided with pregnancy. The resentment still trickles back in from time to time. I still want to shout sometimes “You don’t know what I went through to get here!!”. And yet, I know I need to let my feelings come and then tell them it’s time to go. Because when I take a step back, I realize that my journey might not have been as easy as some people I know, but for others it was much harder. Don’t we all have struggles in life? Putting this into perspective is so very important. 

 

I’m choosing to look at the positives and repeating those regularly. It only took me a year to get pregnant after starting treatment - I’m lucky. I’m blessed. It’s taught me to be so very appreciative of something I might have very well taken for granted. It’s made my marriage stronger than ever before. There is so much to be grateful for. There are millions of other people out there struggling - to find food, shelter, love etc. Putting life into perspective can make all the difference. I vow to try and do that as much as possible. 

 

For the women out there struggling to get pregnant, show self love. It’s ok to have emotions that make you feel unlike the person you thought you were. You are not a bad person. You are not alone. The real you is still inside and will shine again. 

 

To the mamas out there who took the road more traveled, have compassion for the women around you who might be on a different journey. You have nothing to feel guilty about. You do, though, have the ability to show true compassion. To be careful to make assumptions about others. To ask questions with love. To understand small things like a baby shower or Mother’s Day might bring pure sadness to others around you.

 

While my journey to motherhood might have been different than some, every journey is beautiful. 

 

I deserve this. I am capable of this. I can let myself be happy. So can you.

IMG_0925.jpg

Pregnancy Announcement