“First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage…”
Everyone knows the song, but what if it doesn’t happen in real life? When my husband and I got married, I thought that I had more control over the timeline.
After we got married, we lived in a tiny apartment for a couple of years and just enjoyed “us,” which was really nice after almost our entire dating relationship being long-distance.
Once we bought a house, I wanted a family.
We even left one of the bedrooms empty because I didn’t want to mess with relocating items once we started creating a nursery. I just knew it would be soon. The longing in my heart was so strong. Month after month, the room remained empty. Months turned into years. We got pregnant twice but those pregnancies ended in miscarriages. With the help of a fertility specialist, we eventually got pregnant almost four years after our journey began. We now have a beautiful baby girl who is our world, but it wasn’t without sacrifice and heartache.
What is it like going through fertility treatments? I won’t sugarcoat it. It’s hard. It’s hard physically and emotionally and, oftentimes, financially. We were fortunate in that we didn’t have to do full IVF, but I still needed medications, shots, and frequent testing, and it still presented many challenges.
How do you navigate such a tough time?
Be gentle and forgiving with your spouse.
This is a two-way street. Treatments are hard on both partners. Men, be considerate that your wife has to go through a lot of physical changes, painful testing, needles, and side effects. Women, realize that this is still really hard on the men, too. It’s hard seeing their wife go through so much.
Take time to not think about treatments.
When you are in the middle of treatments, it can seem like your life revolves around them. You have a calendar with when you take certain medications, when you give shots, and even when you have intercourse at times. But, try to find time where you can connect with your spouse by talking or enjoying time together that isn’t focused on treatments. Go for a walk together. Enjoy a meal together. Simply talk. Watch a favorite movie or show.
Do something just for you.
Treat yourself to an extra manicure, massage or a day out with friends. If you enjoy cooking, spend the day creating some tasty treats. Go to a yoga class or for a run. Whatever helps you relax and decompress, make some extra time for it in your schedule.
Creating a family is not always an easy process and sometimes involves heartache that no one should have to endure, but leaning on your spouse during this time can often bring you closer together in the end.