Sunday, February 05, 2006

How Infertile am I?

The nurse who does the blood tests at my kupat cholim is pregnant. Now, normally this would not affect me one way or the other, but, well, today, and it being her, well it does make me a bit jealous. She has a daughter who was born in the same week as my daughter and is now due in about two months. I started trying for my second at around the time she got pregnant - if not even before!

So, what's the big deal? What's the difference? Why do I always feel like this is a race? I did get married later than many of my friends, so why would I even think that I should or could "compete"? And besides, didn't I recently say that my daughter is such a blessing that I would be content if it all ended here? So what's my problem? Well, it's the whole trying bit. I resent that some people (seem to) have it so easy.

But, really, how infertile am I, anyway? Don't I also have it relatively easy? On the infertility scale, I probably rate about a 2, maybe a 2.5, if I wanted to stretch it a bit. I'm definitely not one of the super-fertiles, you know the type - "oops, I just got pregnant, hee, hee, and I was on birth-control!" I don't deny that that situation has its difficulties, too, but it makes the world seem even more unjust to an infertile woman (such as myself?). I'm also not one of those that is able to conceive naturally by just giving it a couple more months, or charting to make sure I don't miss ovulation (some people actually ovulate naturally?). But I've also never even gotten to the stage of IUI, never mind IVF, or *gasp* considering donors or adoption! I once had a cyst aspirated, which, they say, feels like egg retrieval, and I've had two hysteroscopies. But, that's it, in terms of invasive procedures. Just toss a couple of Clomid pills at me, give me an Hcg shot, at BAM! (Well, not every time, but that did work twice.) So how infertile does that make me? Or, maybe my question should be, what defines in/fertility?

Well, not ovulating, which I don't, is definitely an obstacle to fertility. But, I do already have a 15-month-old child and I've been married just short of 4 years. That's not too bad, is it? But she came after two miscarriages. I never understand if miscarriages are a sign of infertility or not - after all, one has to get pregnant in order to miscarry, but still, nothing comes of it, so it's not much of a sucess, is it? In any case, that comes to a tally of three (!) pregnancies in two years. Not too shabby. That fact resulted in my mother's rather ignorant comment that "it seems that getting pregnant was not the issue, but rather staying that way seems to be your problem". Then again, I've never really confided in her about our difficulties, and I've never felt comfortable telling her personal details about myself at all, so who can blame her for thinking that, in light of the facts as they stand?

I'm sure that most women don't play the "I'm more infertile than you!" game, except in their minds, but I wonder if they think, "who is she to call herself infertile - with a baby and a method of conception that has been proven to work for her?" Or is it just me who thinks that way about myself? If I had to answer my own question, I guess I would say that infertility is about needing interventions - whatever they may be - to conceive. Well, I definitely fall into that category. So, I'm a *bit* infertile. About a 2.5. Thanks for admitting me to the club.


At 1:11 PM, Blogger Elster said...

It's different with every child. My first was quick. The second took a long time. We are expecting number three. Also went quick. And no, it's definately not a race. It happens when it happens fr reasons we can never possibly understand.

At 3:27 PM, Blogger SS said...

I know, it's just hard to remember at times. Thanks for the chizuk. I just feel like time is always ticking away - running out.


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