My Infertility Timeline

Monday, April 22, 2013

This week is National Infertility Awareness Week, so there will definitely be some infertility-related posts on the blog this week! I figured this would be a good place to start, since I have some newer readers who aren't familiar with my journey to become a mother.

I'd like to preface this by saying that even though the title is My Infertility Timeline, Tom is obviously affected as well. The only reason I put "my" is because my body is the one that doesn't work right. I just want to make sure that nobody thinks I'm trying to downplay how this affects him, because it's definitely been really difficult for him as well.

And, as with a lot of my infertility-related posts, there might be some overshares. If you don't want to hear about my sex life, this is not the post for you.

July 2010

     -I get my first Depo-Provera injection
          The previous month, Tom and I had lost our virginity to one another and were moving in together in August, so I wanted to make sure that I always had birth control covered (I didn't want kids until after we were married). I had previously taken birth control pills to help regulate my ridiculously heinous periods, but I would sometimes forget to take them. That's not a huge deal when you're not having sex, but it makes it very unreliable when you are. A Depo injection lasted for three months, and I didn't have to worry about it every day, so it seemed like the perfect solution. I was told that it could take up to a year to get my period back after going off of it, but I was okay with that, especially after a co-worker told me that her friend got pregnant two weeks after going off (I was so much more naive back then, eh?). I had done some research before getting it, and it said that prolonged use (like 2+ years) could lead to infertility, so I figured less than a year's worth of shots wasn't going to do anything negative.

That obviously turned out well.

October 2010

     -I get my second (and final) Depo-Provera injection

January 2011

     -We have a (kind of) pregnancy scare
          I know, it sounds crazy since I was on Depo. In my defense, the shot was wearing off, and I was suddenly nauseous all the time (and had some headaches, which I hardly ever get). I took a test, and when it was negative, I was really sad. I actually cried. I couldn't believe how upset I was.  Our first great-nephew (yes, you read that right) had just been born like the week before, so I don't know if that had something to do with it. We had planned on starting to try on our wedding night four months later, so I opted to not get a third shot so that the hormones could start working their way out.

me and Avery on the day he was born

March 2011

     -We decide to start trying to conceive
          I don't remember what prompted this discussion, but somehow, we started talking about how badly we both wanted to be parents, and decided that we didn't want to wait until May to start trying.

April 2011

     -I had a period
          It was weird, because it lasted four days, and then came back for three days a week later, but I was bleeding again, and I took it as a good sign. Unfortunately, I didn't see it for a long time after that.

 September 2011

     -I got a positive pregnancy test
          Three times, actually. I figured that we were lucky enough to catch my first ovulation, since my period had been MIA for months. We were completely ecstatic, and couldn't help but tell everyone.

October 2011

     -We find out that I was having a hysterical pregnancy 
          At the doctor, urine tests were negative. Blood work was negative for pregnancy as well as diabetes and a thyroid problem, which the doctor had suspected might be causing all my symptoms. I was diagnosed as having a hysterical pregnancy, and it was probably the hardest thing I've ever had to deal with. I was sad, angry, embarrassed, ashamed, confused -- there were just so many feelings and thoughts swirling around, and it affected me in a really negative way. The doctor prescribed provera, which gave me two short periods in November and one in December before it stopped working. She also tells me if I continue to have trouble conceiving, we could try clomid.

March 2012

     -We hit the one year mark, and I still don't have a period that occurs on its own
          I remained hopeful that it will come soon, and became even more active on The Bump message boards than I had been over the past year.

September 2012

     -I reflect on what life is like a year after getting a positive pregnancy test

     -I begin taking vitex to try to bring about a period
          After the depo, and then the provera, I was awfully wary of putting more synthetic hormones in my body (which is also why I haven't tried clomid yet), and decided to explore natural options.  I also started getting on The Bump less and less; so many girls were getting their BFPs, and it was getting too depressing for me.

October 2012

      -I get a period!

November 2012

     -I get a four day period, followed by another four day period two weeks later. I begin thinking that my body might actually be regulating!

December 2012

     -No period. I'm devestated, but decide to give myself another month (without vitex) to see if it returns.

January 2013

     -I have my worst period ever
          And for me, that's saying something. As a teen, my periods were crazy heavy, and ridiculously long (my longest was 27 days, and I averaged 15). My mom wanted me on birth control to help, but my dad and stepmom felt differently, and it didn't get dealt with until I was 18 and in college. This one wasn't quite as long (almost two weeks though!), but it was SO SO SO heavy. Like, at times bleeding through a tampon and two overnight pads in two hours heavy. And then I was sick on top of it. It was absolutely miserable, and I even had cramps for the first time in a decade (as awful as my periods had been as a teen, I was lucky enough to only get cramps twice, though both times they were so bad I couldn't walk).

February 2013

     -I have a nice, normal period

March 2013

     -I don't get a period, and wonder if I might actually be pregnant
          I had a lot of symptoms, and thought I saw a super faint line on one of the tests I took (and had dark pink lines appear after the time limit. It was my fault for looking after ten minutes though -- MAJOR NO-NO!). But tests were negative and my sore boobs went away, though I still get nauseous (but that's normal for me over the past year or so, I've noticed).

April 2013

     -We decide to take a TTC break
          So that brings us up to now. I'm giving myself another couple of weeks or so to see if I get a period back before trying the vitex again, but I decided last week that I want to take a break from the stress of TTC, and Tom's fine with that. Truth be told, we're not in a good place financially, and that's stressful enough without the added stress of TTC. If it happens while we're not trying, that would be awesome, but I'm not going to obsess over possible ovulation dates and basal body temperatures, and the state of my cervical fluid (which I check pretty much every time I wipe, even though mine has proven to be crazy unreliable). I want more than anyting to be a mother, but I just need to take some time to regroup.

It has been a long, tiring, grief-filled, confusing, rollercoaster of a journey, and it's obviously far from over, but I'm definitely not done with it yet. I hope that if any of you are dealing with infertility, that you'll be able to share your story with others this week to help raise awareness (though if you can't bring yourself to discuss your struggles with others yet, I completely understand and respect that -- it's not exactly an easy thing to talk about).

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  1. Aww. I am so sorry it's been so daunting for you all to conceive. I do not discount the man emotions at all. My husband and I have been trying to conceive for 7 years and I know it has affected him just as much as it has me. Have you tried the clomid at all? Any how blessings to you for when you all decide to give it another active go...or even before then. Babydust!!

    1. We haven't tried clomid yet. I've been really hesitant to after the depo and the provera, but if we can't conceive by the end of the year, I'm considering breaking down and going for it.

      Thank you so much for the support!

  2. I'm so sorry you're going through this. :(

    It doesn't seem fair when so many have kiddos they don't properly care for.

    1. I'm inclined to agree, but that's a rant for another day.

  3. Hi-I cant relate too much to your infertility as I only had one m/c before my son (thank GOD!) even though I was told the likelihood of me having children was low due to chronic ovarian cysts and endometriosis that I even had surgery for! Im grateful just to have him healthy and here no matter what the future holds for more children or not-

    However, I have also been overweight most of my life (clinically obese in fact) and I know that plays a HUGE role in infertility! When I started to lose some weight I felt better and my periods were a little better pain and flow wise (im also on the bc pill and was for years before I went off to have my son) and in general am working on becoming a healthier person as I was still quite overweight when I got pregnant and by some miracle I had a fairly good pregnancy (minus being deadly sick the first 4 months and losing 15lbs-hows that ironic for you?! haha) and not getting gestational diabetes-but the birth was another story-bigger women are known to have bigger babies, longer and harder labours and to end up with a csection-well, after 24 hrs of insane/intense natural labour with no drugs really I ended up with all of those-he was a few days early and was 8lbs, 6oz-not that big but nothing to sneeze at either-my cervix swelled to the size of a grapefruit after all that time and I was rushed in for an emerg csection-due to the overhanging skin from being obese I was in the hospital for 5 days with a severe infection and lost alot of blood-in short, getting healthier BEFORE conceiving is the way to go-18months later I am now 5lbs away from pre-pregnancy weight (I gained 60! also a no no as I should only have gained 10) and I have another 50-60 to go to get to my goal weight which is still considered obese but I felt fairly comfortable with myself and healthy-Im not saying being overweight is the sole cause of your infertility, far from it-BUT getting healthier is the first step on helping your body want to/be able to conceive, have a healthy pregnancy AND birth-I would never recommend getting pregnant at this weight again-its just so hard on your system.

    1. Oh, I know weight can have an effect, and that's what really pushed me to start eating better and exercising. I know that if nothing else, losing weight could really help keep my period regulated. And I'd love to be considerably smaller when I get pregnant, both for health reasons as well as having a cute bump.

      But I also know that having a baby at this weight doesn't automatically mean a rough pregnancy. I have a friend who is pregnant now who not only weighs a good deal more than me, but is also pushing 40, and she's had an uneventful pregnancy. While having a baby at my weight isn't my ideal situation, I would take a baby at ANY weight over no baby at all.

  4. stumbled onto your blog via the blog hop at:

    i am so sorry to hear that you are going through this!! i do hope things start to get better for you!!!

  5. I have been doing a lot of natural remedy research as well and came upon something called Fertilaid. I've been researching it for a few months now and have seen almost all positive results. You should look into it!

    Good luck :)

    1. I've heard about it, but haven't looked into it much. I was actually planning on ordering Fertilitea before I started the vitex (which is in Fertilitea), but I got impatient and didn't want to wait for it to ship. I'll definitely look into it though! Thanks for the rec!



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