The Inevitable Question

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A big pet peeve of mine is as soon as you hit some major milestone in your life, people are always rushing on to the next. Take getting engaged for example. As soon as he puts a ring on it, you no sooner can buy a bride magazine before someone asks, “Have you set a date?” Then, you get married, and before you’ve even had the chance to change your last name on all of your documents (what a PIA that is), people are already starting in, “Are you trying?…maybe a honeymoon baby?!” Like pump the brakes and let me enjoy being married for a hot minute. One upside of infertility is that after so many years of marriage without a baby, people tend to stop asking. Then, if you’re lucky enough to have a baby, you no sooner get home from the hospital to hear, “When’s the next one coming? Ready for another?” I mean, can my stitches heal before you ask this? I haven’t even been cleared for action down there yet.

While more often than not they’re really well meaning questions, I find them utterly annoying. I think it’s in part what’s wrong with society today. I mean we can’t even celebrate one holiday without the next occasion’s motif lining store aisles. It’s always such a rush to get to the next big thing that sometimes the opportunity to savor and relish in the delight of one momentous occasion can be lost. I love that I had a long engagement to enjoy being engaged and was married for a few years before trying-to-conceive. Of course, six years of marriage before a baby wasn’t ideal, but I know that many first year marriages wouldn’t be able to survive the wrath of infertility. I’ve really been able to enjoy each stage to its fullest and feel like each chapter was complete before the next. I know that’s not in the cards for everyone nor what many people would prefer, but for me I like spacing between these joyous life events.

This holds true for adding to our tribe. There’s nothing more I want to do than to have another child to raise and love with my husband; to give Mikie a sibling so that he could share the same bond we do with our brothers and sisters. But if I could plan 😁🙊 I’d love to have them spaced about three years apart. Truth be told, I want to feel like I’m starting over. I know that sounds crazy to some, and there are definitely pros and cons to having kids back-to-back or years apart. For us, spacing just seems right. Unfortunately given our infertility issues, this means that we’d have to start really getting the ball rolling by the fall if we intend on doing a round of IVF in a year or so. And that effing terrifies me.

It’s not the doctors appointments, insurance dilemmas, and loading my body with hormones that’s scary. It’s the fact that I thought if there was a next time of trying to get pregnant, it’d be different. I always say the pressures off next time around. We already have our baby, which is such an abundant blessing, that regardless of the outcome at least we have him. And it’s not that that isn’t true. It is and I’m incredibly grateful, but I’m not complete. I’ve always read articles from moms that tell you, you just know when you’re done and it’s your last baby. I’m not there yet and if I had to guess, I probably won’t be there even if I am lucky enough to have another (Please don’t tell my husband 🤐, but I think 3 is our magic number). That probably sounds so selfish and ungrateful of me, especially since it’s truly a miracle that we even have one to call our own. But if a fertile couple wanted more kids, we wouldn’t think less of them, right? We might say they’re very blessed already, but that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve more if their hearts so desire.

So this must be what secondary infertility feels like. The great divide between feeling appreciative for the child(s) you do have and yearning to hold another. It’s like a tug of war of the heart. And while it’s easy to say at least, all you want to say is at last.

I have to admit, I never really got it before. I was that infertile girl who thought at least you have one healthy child.  I can’t even have that. And even after getting pregnant and having my son, I still felt that way to some extent. It isn’t until now, when I’m faced with the possibility of not getting pregnant again, that it’s starting to hit me.

I wasn’t intending on writing this post so soon, but lately it seems to keep hitting me.  Since our baby is upwards of a year and a half, I can only anticipate to hear more of the inevitable question-one that I try to consciously avoid asking others, especially those I suspect might be having difficulty trying to conceive.  At this point, I want people to ask.  I really do.  It’s just now I think I’m rewording my response:

“Yes, we’re beyond fortunate to have him, but we’d love to have another if we could.  No, I don’t know it’s going to be any easier and the pressure isn’t off the next time.”

M O R A L of the S T O R Y: infertility never ends.  Not even after you’re lucky enough to overcome it.   When you want a child to rock, nurture, teach, snuggle so badly, the heartache never fades, no matter if it’s your first, second, or third time around.

6 thoughts on “The Inevitable Question”

  1. Well written!! I am about to embark on my second round of IVF. My first was a complete success and am feeling exactly what you’ve mentioned. We are blessed with the first but we would love a larger family. My fear is more in relation to the success of the second attempt, because as we know it is not as “easy” or as “cut and dry” as it sounds.

  2. Thank you for sharing your story, Morgan. I haven’t begun on the journey to have children yet but after I get married next year, at the ripe old age of 32 and having never tried to actively have children, I am afraid of the unknown and the difficulties that may come with it. I’m sure it can’t be easy but being so open about your struggles is definitely going to help others get through their own personal challenges. I really love your blog! Thank you for posting.

  3. Thank you. This definitely mirrors my emotions, feelings, questions, etc. lately. I have an almost three year old conceived naturally, but am struggling to conceive number two. With two, failed IVF cycles and insurance denying any more cycles we are forced to wait and switch insurances. Doctor recommending two more cycles with our own eggs and if those fail be done with trying or move to donor eggs. I am OK with the latter but question myself when others question me, wonder if the cost is worth the risk, wonder if I am being selfish and ungrateful for my one, etc. But I’m not done and I feel far from being a complete family and it’s very much weighing on my emotions.

    1. I hope it helped to validate what you’re feeling. You’re not alone, nor are you “wrong” for feeling this way. While we aren’t considered secondary infertility since we had to do IVF for baby #1, as we embark on starting for baby #2 I can empathize for those struggling with secondary infertility. I think it adds a whole other layers of emotions. Just know what you and your husband feel in your gut and heart is right, is what you should do. I always try and put it into perspective by saying if someone with no infertility issues wanted more children, nobody would question that. So why should they question you? I’m certain God will give you just what your heart needs 💞 Here is you need anything at all. Feel free to email me directly at onprayersandneedles@gmail.com

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