The one good thing about infertility? LOADS and LOADS of sex… or is it?

Infertility sucks.

It sucks because every day is a reminder that you do not have a baby. Especially at my age, friends, siblings and cousins are getting married and having children.

It sucks because everything you do, you are thinking about how different it would be if you had a child.

It sucks because it is rare to think about something else. Distractions do not work and life is about procreating, so there really is no escape.

But, the silver lining is the sex. I love sex. It also helps that my husband is very good at it!

When we first started trying, it was great. We would be trying to have more sex than usual (no one in a long term relationship with a full time job has the time or the energy to have sex everyday), and actually that was really fun. Although we were tired after a long day, we would give each other a nice long kiss and we were off! We were in the moment, having fun and just being a happily married couple.

After a year and nothing had happened, I started doing some research to see when would be the best time to have sex. I know we were taught this at school, but to be honest I really wasn’t sure. So, after discovering that the best time to conceive is days 12-17 on your cycle, depending on the length of the cycle, we started thinking a little more about when we were having sex.

Then, we were worrying about how “old” the sperm was and what was the optimum amount of time between sex in order to have the “freshest” sperm. I know it sounds disgusting, but these were honestly the thoughts going through my head. After all these thoughts, research and discussions with my sister who is a medical student, we determined that 2-3 days is optimum (1 day, the sperm won’t be replenished so to speak, more than 3 days and the sperm is getting too old). So, we would have sex day 10 of my cycle and every 2-3 days thereafter.

The moment my period starts (after much crying and wine drinking), I get my calendar out and write down which days we should be having sex.

And that is when it starts. Sex has become a chore. It has become something that we “have to do” at certain times or on certain days. If one of us comes home from work on one of those days and is not feeling up for it, you start feeling guilty or making the other one feel guilty.

Sex is now on the same level as hoovering or doing the laundry. It needs to be done on those days or the next period will come.

It has been 3 years of trying now. I’ve got a diagnosis of unexplained infertility, which means that we are still having sex on the optimum days “just in case”.

Having heard horror stories of husbands and wives breaking up over the pressure of baby making because sex has become more of a chore and is no longer enjoyable, I was so worried that this would become an issue in my marriage.

Luckily I have the most understanding and patient husband any wife could wish for. It also helps that he does little things to remind me that he finds me sexy, baby making or not.

For example, he’ll walk into the bathroom while I am having a shower and find an excuse to have a long peak. He’ll randomly grab my boobs and look at me with a huge grin on his face. When I am undressing before bed and getting into my pjs, I sometimes spot the look on his face: lust with a hint of awe.

All that he does may not necessarily lead to sex, but it does remind me that he finds me sexy and desirable whether we are trying for a baby or not and that he would happily have sex with me even if nothing comes of it.

In conclusion, I don’t really have any advice if you view sex as a chore. The reality is that when you are trying to conceive, it fucking is sometimes. But maybe once in a while, have sex even when there is no chance of a baby being produced, but just for the fun of it.

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Do I look fat to you?

Sure, I could lose a few pounds, but do you think I am obese?

If you do, fair enough, but let me tell you, I actually like my body. I like being 14 and a half Stone. I like having big boobs, I like the fact that my husband loves my big boobs.

I have fucking awesome boobs.

So, the fertility doctor, in our last appointment, explained that we are in the category of “unexplained infertility”.

We have to wait 3 years, and I have to have a BMI of 28. Apparently I am at a BMI of 32. So, I need to lose 1 and half Stone.

Shit.

I’m not very good at losing weight.

And over the past year (the last year before the 3 years are up), I’ve tried EVERYTHING.

  1. MyFitnessPal

Did not work for me. Ended up spending too much  time trying to input food onto the app, whilst eating snacks.

Weight lost: 0 pounds.

2. WeightWatchers

Did not work. I have a FitBit and all it did was tell me I could eat loads as I was doing so much walking.

Weight lost: 1 pound in 3 months (SCORE)

3. BootCamp

Went on a week-long boot camp in the summer and bloody hell that was hard, felt sick the whole fucking time. Also spent £1000. However, it worked!

Weight lost: 9 pounds in one week (WOOOOO)

4. Book by Paul McKenna, How to lose weight

This book made sense and worked for me, but only for a while.

Weight lost: 10 pounds in 6 months

5. NHS: Eat less move more

This works if you have willpower. I have NONE

Weight lost: 0 pounds

So, the three years are up in January and my appointment is coming up then. I need to be BMI 28 by then. I am currently BMI 29. Nearly there, but I’ve now stopped at 13 Stone and nothing will shift it!!!

How frustrating!

But you know what really bugs me? the fact that I was told that I should not be happy with my body the way it is and I have to change it because I am slightly overweight.

Also, people who don’t deserve children get pregnant and I can’t because I need to lose a few pounds? How is that fair?

I. Hate. My. Life.

Fuck.

 

The HyCoSy

After finally getting an appointment with the infertility clinic, it was a year and a half into trying.

The doctor started on tests and as I’ve mentioned in a previous post, we did blood tests and a semen analysis. Both were fine, so I had to go through a procedure called a HyCoSy. This looks at whether there are any obstructions in my tubes.

I got the letter for the appointment and it had to be done a certain time during the month. Unfortunately I had to book it during my hubby’s lads holiday in Poland. The letter also said that someone had to come with me as I may not be able to drive home.

That freaked me out.

I may not be able to drive? It sounded super painful.

Luckily I have lovely parents who are also teachers and were on holiday at the time, so they agreed to come over and stay with me for a few days.

So, I live in a two-bed flat, and my dad is kinda old and needs to sleep in a bed… So… I ended up setting up a blow-up mattress in the spare room for myself and my parents slept in my bed.

I should be comfortable, right? My friend said that when she had to go through the HyCoSy, she didn’t feel anything at all, so all I needed was for my parents to drive me home and then I could just enjoy their company. (that is not what happened…)

Day of the operation.

Had to get naked (always super fun in front of your parents and strangers at the age of 29) and wear those weird robes which don’t really close. Plus legs were not quite shaved that recently. Needless to say that I was not sexy…

I then had to wait about half an hour (whilst wearing the uncomfortable robes!) in a room with other strangers, really awkward.

This other lady also in a gown was sitting there crying. I felt really sorry for her and wanted to give her a big hug, but wasn’t sure how that would go down, so I just sat there uncomfortable and tried not to look at her while she silently wept. Not a happy moment…

Finally, I was called into the operating room (not sure what else to call it). I asked my mum to come with me.

So basically, this is what a HyCoSy entails: they use a speculum to insert this tube up your vagina and tubes and then inject this blue liquid. Then, they insert the stick which is meant to detect any blockages.

I know this sounds ok, but let me tell you, it was fucking painful.

Well, the issue with me is that is (apparently, according to all the gynaecologists), I’ve got quite a deep cervix. this means that it’s not easy for doctors to get up there and do what they need to do…

So, this means that plastic speculums don’t work. So, they tried with the plastic ones about 4 times (with me screaming in agony as every time is super painful). Then they finally used the metal one and managed to get the liquid up there and have a look.

I then slowly walked back to the waiting room, tears streaming down my face, got changed and my dad drove us home.

I was then unable to get up from the sofa for 4 days.

The most painful thing EVER.

Trust me, I’m not a wimp and I do have a relatively high threshold for pain. Ouch.

three weeks later, I had an appointment with the doctor. No blockages and nothing to report which could explain my infertility.

I have to come back once we’ve been trying for 3 years.

Fuck.

That time of the month

Wondering why I don’t upload more photos? Well, I don’t really document that I can’t get pregnant. Plus, what on earth would I take photos of? Ovulation sticks I’ve peed on? Pregnancy tests I’ve also peed on? Doctors’ letters with test results? My calendar where I write down period days and temperature? No, let’s just stick with the baby picture and focus on how cute I was.

Now, from the title of this page, it’s probably easy to guess what I’m going to be writing about. Well done, you’ve guessed it correctly, my period!!!

When you start trying to get pregnant, nothing phases you anymore. Words like “sperm count”, “sperm viscocity”, “ovaries”, “ovulation” and “fallopian tubes” all become part of daily talk. And “period” is no exception.

My period is a huge part of my life at the moment. I think about it constantly. When I’m not on my period, I worry about how many days after my period I should be having sex, when I’m coming up to my period I’m paranoid I’m going to get my period and I’m upset, and finally on the first day of my period, I cry and cry and cry.

This is currently the first day of my period, so due to form I am balling my eyes out. Not sexy.

Plus, my period is so painful I have to take paracetamol regularly on the first day, I go up a size because I bloat like crazy and I’m super sensitive and angry.

What I regularly cry out on the first day of my period, while shaking my fist up at the sky (I’m not that religious but when you’re going through something like this it’s good to be able to blame something):

– “WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?”

– “I deserve a child more than these bastards who abuse their children!”

– “This is SOOO UNFAIIIIIR!”

– “I hate anyone who has kids right now”

– “I hate all pregnant women”

– “What’s wrong with me?”

– “Why can’t I do the one thing a women is meant to be able to do?”

All these thoughts go round and round in my head and then the bottle of wine gets opened and the pot of nutella comes out of the cupboard. I grab a glass and a spoon and I wallow.

*sip. “WHYYYYYY?” *sip. “I hate myself. I’m now going to put lots of weight on.” *sip, sip, sip. *sound of glass being refilled. “What have I done to deserve this?” *sip. “I hate myself even more now” *sip, sip, sip. *sound of glass being refilled. “I’m drunk.” *sip. “Let’s write down the first day of the period on the calendar and start counting” *sip, sip, sip. *sound of glass being refilled. Text to my husband: We need to have sex on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday next week”. *sip. *sob.

Great life, isn’t it?

Fuck.

My journey so far (2)

So, a year in, still not pregnant, we had moved into our own 2 bed flat, work was going good, hubby and I were going on nice holidays, but one thing was missing.

I decided to go to the doctor’s to see if there was something wrong.

Luckily, he referred us straight away. I was excited to have an appointment with a specialist and hopefully see if there was anything that we could do.

5 months later, I got an appointment. 5 MONTHS!!!!!! That was a long wait. Clearly many ladies out there are dealing with what I’m dealing with.

Saw an emotionless doctor who is clearly blase about these situations. Got a blood test, got a HyCoSy, hubby did a sperm test.

Apparently, all good.

Apparently, I’m ovulating normally.

Apparently, hubby’s sperm has a decent count.

Apparently, there are no blockages in my tubes.

Apparently there is no evidence of anything that would stop us getting pregnant.

WTF?!?

Two years into the process, this is the most frustrating news EVER. If there was something wrong then at least we could fix it!

And don’t fucking say it’s due to stress because I am not fucking stressed, ok?

Fuck.

My journey so far

I’ve been trying to get pregnant for 3 years now. I know it doesn’t seem like that long, but trust me, it’s fucking long. Anyone who says it’s not a long time has clearly not gone through this process. And they should shut it.

Never in a million years did I think that I would ever struggle to get pregnant. Ever.

Both my mum and gran got pregnant super young (20 and 23 respectively) and had to have a shotgun wedding. My mum is 21 on that picture on the main page, and the cute little baby is me.

Clearly, I come from a long line of super fertility, so I thought, when I’m ready, there would be no problems! Why would there be?

Actually, once I started dating, my main thought was: “wear a condom, don’t get pregnant”, “wear a condom, don’t get pregnant”, “wear a condom, don’t get pregnant”. I basically didn’t want to end up like mum and gran and having to get married too soon or dropping out of Uni.

When I started Uni, all I could think of was: “finish your studies, don’t get pregnant”, “finish your studies, don’t get pregnant”, “finish your studies, don’t get pregnant”.

At Uni, I met my amazing hubby (you need an amazing partner if you’re going to get through it all, can’t do it alone!).

I finished my degree and teacher training (yes, I’m a teacher and surrounded by kids every day, that helps soooooo  much) and my first comment to my mum was “I didn’t get pregnant and I’ve now got a degree!” She was proud as she could never achieve what I did (because of me).

Again, I thought, when I am ready, it’s going to happen on it’s own.

After Uni, my main thought was “don’t get pregnant, get career sorted first”, “don’t get pregnant, get career sorted first”, “don’t get pregnant, get career sorted first”.

I then got married and by the age of 28, I had my career sorted. After 4 years, I got a promotion as Head of Department. We were earning a decent amount, we were going on nice holidays, we were going to buy a 2 bed flat and it was time to start trying for a baby.

Again, I thought it would be a matter of months.

A year later, I was like: WTF? my mum and gran got pregnant straight away, why not me? did I leave it too late?

All this time, I was trying not to and now that I wanted to it was not happening.

Fuck.