A Little Insight... Secondary Infertility

by Guest Contributor Lisa


It’s day 38 and I’m still waiting for Mrs. Flow’s arrival even as I’m cursing her for torturing me once again.  You’d think after 40 months of going through this I’d stop hoping.  I try to calm my mind but any sliver of hope gets me planning out the next nine months.  I try to talk myself out of it all morning but the suspense is killing me, so I give in and load my 4 year old into our car and make the trip to the store for two pee sticks.  Sixteen dollars later I’m back in my bathroom.  Dragon Tales will be her distraction this time.  I take a deep breath and hope that month 40 will be different.  I’ve been pregnant before, after all, and I know what it feels like.  There have been hints I’ve been trying to suppress, but I can’t deny that I’ve been nauseous all week.  I’m 6 days late.  This could be it.  I try not to remember that I swore that same thing each month over the last 3 years plus.  I close my eyes while I wait and finally get brave enough to open them.  One line. “Dammit!” Getting mad usually keeps the tears away but it doesn’t work this time.  Luckily I get away with my daughter not catching my sob fest; I clean my face before the half hour distraction is over.  After all, it hurts her too, so I must put a smile on.

Infertility is infertility.  It may be that you have no children, one child or several.  Disappointment is our commonality.  We all feel the emptiness in our arms.  Secondary infertility is something I never expected to happen to us.  The tricky part is how to explain it correctly to our daughter who is also suffering the side effects of infertility

Why isn’t there a baby in your tummy, Mommy?
Are you pregnant yet?
Why am I the only one without a brother or sister?
Are you pregnant yet?
Why is Ava getting another brother when she already has one?
Why aren’t you pregnant? 
When will you have a baby in your tummy, Mom?
Are you pregnant yet?
Will I ever be a big sister?

At times I feel selfish when I talk to my friends who are also dealing with infertility and have no children.  Am I greedy for wanting more?  We are super grateful for our daughter.  We love her to pieces.  We will be content if she is all we ever get.  Our arms are full of love and laughter with her and yet why are there times that they feel empty at the same time?  It’s confusing.  It’s frustrating.  It’s a roller coaster. 

You never know who is suffering with infertility.  Perhaps we could better help each other if we had flashing signs floating over our heads:

Think before you speak!
I just miscarried.

I’m an emotional wreck.
My period just started and I would have sworn I was pregnant

Proceed with caution.
I just saw my baby’s heartbeat in the ER only to hear the
pregnancy was ectopic and had to be terminated immediately.

Smiles Only.
I’m pregnant but not sure if everything is ok yet.

Hugs Please!
I want a baby so badly and have been told
I’ll never be able to get pregnant.

Back Away Slowly!
I just got the results from my infertility treatments;
they were unsuccessful.
Unfortunately, there are no outward warning signs.  I think those who suffer with infertility learn all too well that you never know what someone is enduring silently.  If you haven’t read Corinne’s “What to say and what not to say” list, go read it now.  If you’ve read it, read it again

We who suffer are on an emotional roller coaster like no other.  There are good days.  There are bad days.  There are days you wish you could forget.  My hope is that all who suffer on this roller coaster ride can one day exit it happily with more patience and lots of perspective for the future.

With love, 
Lisa (and family)


Jen said...

Very insightful. Thanks for a great post!

Natalie Catherine said...

such a great post.. thanks for being so open and honest and sharing from you heart! and yes life would be so much easier if we all had signs like that over us!

Keri said...

This was such a beautiful and heartfelt post. I think you've unearthed a great truth about the signs that sadly aren't flashing above our heads but in our minds. And then imagine my surprise, when I finished the story to see your sweet family. I just miscarried a few weeks ago and have a whole new understanding of the sadness that comes from expectations going unmet.

Julie said...

My sister has been dealing with this same issue since my nephew was born. She tried 5 years before he was born to get pregnant, had him and has been trying since he was born 8 years ago for another baby. Thank you for writing about it and letting people know more. My heart breaks for my sister each month that goes by.

Megan said...

It's good to hear such an open and honest account of what secondary infertility is like, day to day. Thank you for sharing.

Rachel said...

Thanks for being open on this sensitive topic. I have many friends who've dealt with this at some point in their lives! So thanks for sharing. I think we all want to better sympathize with others' hardships, and so when you open yourself up it helps those who don't experience it.

Karen said...

Thank you for such an honest post about what it feels like to go through this -- thank you for sharing.

Somer said...

That is a very touching perspective. Thank you for the insight.

Sonja said...

I am also so grateful for this insightful post. Thank you for sharing these thoughts and feelings with us in such a poignant way.

Fertility Chart said...

thanks a lot for sharing such a emotional post. I was very much in tears reading this post . GOD bless you sister .Such things may happen to anyone . We appreciate your honesty about writing your heart out. take care .

Amber said...

My first husband and I tried for a year and a half while he was sick, no luck. Now with this hubby we are trying to have a year or two before we try but everytime I'm late I can't help but go through the same little dance. But its more complicated now, I would love to know I can get pregnant but we aren't ready....

ABrooks said...

This post brought back memories of trying to get pregnant for a year... only to miscarry. Now I am pregnant with my third (due any time). It is good to have some perspective while I am miserable. As uncomfortable as I am now... it was nothing compared to the waiting, hoping and the eventual loss. Thanks for sharing!

Michele said...

We went through several years of infertility with both of our children. No more for me, I don't want to go through the heartache of waiting anymore. I appreciate your honesty and wish you the best. Don't know if you've tried it, but with my first I stopped taking all my infertility drugs and went to an acupuncturist. I was pregnant within 30 days. I ended up miscarrying, but another round of acupuncture and I immediately got pregnant with my son. I tried it again after 2 years of trying for a second child, and was again pregnant within a month. Sometimes you never know.

Minwimm said...

Is it possible to have such a sad yet optimistic post at the same time. I keep asking what I need to learn from my trials so I don't have to repeat them, lately I am thinking there may be more to it than that.

Karen said...

You rock, girlfriend! And you write and teach incredibly well. I love you and can feel your spirit in what you've said. Wouldn't it be wonderful if all children had parents who wanted them as much as you want them?

Shaira said...

I have been through this phase for at least 4 years. My daughter now is 6 years old and I had a miscarriage when she was turning two. I got really depressed losing my child. But my husband and family has been so much comfort to give me hope. We tried for years. Everytime I got delayed I tested but no other line came up to say I'm pregnant. All I think of is that there's something wrong with me. I'm not taking care of myself that's why I lost my baby and now I'm still not taking care of myself that I couldn't get pregnant. I was so depressed then I was diagnosed with polycystic ovary. My ob-gyne has given me meds to take and hope that after 6months of med I could get pregnant. But no promises. I just let go of the thoughts and pressure of having a baby. I just let it go. Then after 6 months, I got pregnant with my baby boy and he's now five months old. We should never ever lose hope. =)


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