Contentedness and Complacency

Profound Thoughts on Starting IVF #2

Mature woman dreamingI have this feeling that my life is going to change. I think the start of every IVF brings this feeling. I remember it last time.

Which brings me to profound thoughts about happiness and change. For those of you who have never met me, or never knew me before I was trying to conceive (TTC), I’m generally a happy person. And even as a child, I was a “resilient” child. I have faced obstacles like other humans, but I bounce back faster. I’ve always felt lucky to be blessed with such a personality trait, especially as I have watched friends sometimes be dragged down for years after major events like breakups.

However, TTC for so long has made me face unhappiness and adversity for longer (and deeper) than ever before in my life. I hesitate to call it “unhappiness,” because it’s more like “uncontentedness.” I know, it’s not a word, but it’s closest to describing how I feel. I’m not content with my life.

A couple of years ago, I was content and happy: I lived in the bay area which I loved, had an amazing job working with the underserved doing full spectrum family practice, traveled a lot, had enough money for luxuries like the occasional massage or facial, had great friends, was social all the time. And no, I didn’t have a boyfriend, but I was content with being single—emotionally fulfilled with my single friends and occasionally physically fulfilled by a fling here or there. What more could a girl want?

And then I hit age 35.5. And I wanted a baby. And everything changed. Not overnight, but insidiously. And here I am now, living in the same place, working at the same job, with the same friends and family, but clearly not content. Something is clearly missing.

And because the quest for that something—my future child—has taken so long, and has caused me a fluctuating amount of emotional pain on top of a low level of constant emotional vulnerability, I have begun to reevaluate everything. First I noticed my friendships changing, then my relationship with my family, then my job satisfaction.

So here I am, a half day into my second IVF stims, with a new relationship with my parents, a couple of job interviews, and somehow feeling open to change in a way I was completely closed to it when I was living happily content.

So even though this post is about not being content, I believe it has been an incredible motivator for me, and it will change my life. A good metaphor is to imagine myself as Mother Earth, sitting still, on top of these tectonic plates. And then suddenly, a plate shifts and something moves slowly and before you know it there’s an earthquake in India, then one in Central America, then a tsunami in the Pacific.

The shifting of one thing in my life has completely changed everything. And little did I know that when I said my life would change with my first IVF, this is what I meant. I had absolutely no idea the depth of my change would be so profound. And I’m feeling lucky to experience it, amongst all the pain. Lucky to feel human.

And lucky to say, yet again, I feel like my life is about to change.

8 thoughts on “Contentedness and Complacency”

  1. Thank You for this! I needed to know that somewhere else in this world, someone feels and can put into words exactly what I want to say. I will 36 in a week and I an feeling so “uncontented”. I want so much to be a mother. I have began talking with my mother and close friends about the possibility of IVF/donor for a couple of years. But with the coming of my 36th birthday, it is on my mind constantly!

  2. Hi! I read your story and felt i needed to share mine. well, Ive been searching for an “online” family/support of women who are on a journey of single motherhood.
    My plan has never been to be a single mother. I dreamed of husband and white picket fences…lol
    I became pregnant in my 20’s by a guy I barely knew I got pregnant the first time I had sex with him! I was thrilled about the pregnancy, yet I was the only one thrilled! the guy did not want me to have the baby, I later found out he had another child on the way with another woman…(sighs painful memories…) I had no support of my friends and family and recently graduated from grad school, yes I had no money!!! None the less, that pregnancy never resulted in a baby.
    A few years later, I had a myomectomy, and removal of two large fibroid tumors. 2011 rolls around and my Gynecologist, regularly said to me, its time to start thinking about having children. I said oh yeah, lets see if im even fertile! I went through the exams and bloodwork and HSG, low and behold, I have fertility issues. One blocked tube on the right (the dominate side!) and slightly higher than normal testosterone level. She tells me to think about going to a fertility specialist. I though about It for 6 months, I said well, I might as well get my female parts in order for mr. right!!! hahaa! I head to the fertility specialist and during my consultation I found out a few important things: 1. My tube cannot be repaired. Chances are my left tube may not function well. 2. at 36, its a good age to have a child 3. my fertility treatments are covered by my Insurance!!! 4. They can help me find a sperm bank because I dont have a partner nor do i have regular sex. My head was spinning! I was like dude, all I wanted was for you to fix my tube!!! I was disappointed that my tube could not be fixed, I was somewhat happy that the job i complained about for the last few years, has great benefits to pay for IUI’s and even IVF!!!! I also figure with a man or without, It would be a journey for me to have a child, my very fertile years are OVER! I immediately felt guilt for my decisions earlier in my life.
    So, I have gone through 3 failed IUI’s with donor sperm. Even finding a cryobank you can trust was a task. I used a sperm bank close to the clinic. they were horrible with customer service and i said I would never use them again, which i have not to date. After the first failed IUI I found another sperm bank, still in my area, but $100 cheaper. still 2 more failed IUI’s! Since the IUI’s failed my insurance company allows for me to have IVF. Let me also say that although my insurance covers the procedures, I paid the $405, 500, and $770 for sperm viles…. I also paid hundreds of dollars on medications needed that my prescription insurance (different from medical insurance) would not pay for or I had to go through mail order which would not get to me in time so I just paid out of pocket (more sighs) Costco wholesale pharmacy staff are absolute angels… I also have spent over $1000.00 in copays at $30 a pop. As you women may know fertility monitoring is no joke, I have been to the office 4-or 5 days in a week, times $30, you do the math!!! anyway. feeling stressed, I have decided to have weekly acupuncture… I have to manage this stress!
    I have just completed my IVF, my first and hopefully only. I developed 2 eggs which were fertilized by ICSI and my transfer was yesterday 8/25/12. my tww has just begun, im very excited!! wheww Im so glad I was able to share this, whether anyone reads this or not, Im happy I told my story. 🙂

  3. It is encouraging to read the stories of women that sound similar to mine. I am in he tying stage, full of hope and fear at the same time. I too realized awhile ago that I was missing an important part of my life, a child. For years I waited for the right guy to start a family with. Even after a failed marriage at age 41 I had the hope of starting a family. A couple years later I considered single parenting as an option but was discouraged by someone I considered a mentor. They were accepting of adopting but my desire was to conceive and experience pregnancy. I spend time pursuing foster care or adoption but stopped when I realized that was not what I wanted. Two years of Pursing a career change and other things that didn’t satisfy brought me back to choosing single motherhood.
    So now at 46 I am looking forward to being pregnant for the first time through donor egg and donor sperm. The book Choosing Single Motherhood was on my book self four years ago. Picked it up and put it down three times. The last time I picked it up, I made up my mind hat I was going to be a single mother it was just a question of method and time.
    Kim

  4. Hi,
    Reading your article, I felt like I was reading about something someone wrote about my life. I met a wonderful man at 39 y/o who had 5 grown children (he was 13 yrs older than I) and I knew he didn’t want anymore kids; I thought that that was enough at the time. A loving relationship with someone I had so much in common with, what more could I want. So, I packed up my life in NYC and moved to PA to live with him (we got engaged). Well, needless to say, living with him was not easy and over time, I really felt like something was missing from my life—a child. We were together for 5 yrs and we then ended our relationship so that I could explore having a child. Well, here I was, determined that I was going to have a child. By this time, I was 43 y/o, just about to turn 44 y/o. The fertility dr. presented all the negative/risks to me at my age, and the fact that conceiving would be 5-10%. Well, after numerous failed inseminations with fertility injections and money that I didn’t want to spend anymore on an outcome that would likely not be the one I hoped for, I decided to pursue using an egg donor’s egg. Last Dec I conceived via in-vitro with an egg donor and sperm donor and am expecting around Labor Day. I couldn’t be happier. No man, just me and yes, I too have changed, all for the better throughout this process.
    I would like to say, don’t give up. It will happen one way or another. Keep the hope.
    Tina

  5. I have had 3 children via a donor,all by myself,and would never have it any the other way.Not easy,but most relationships are far harder and full of power struggles,lies and often one day draining life-shattering court battles over children,which good mothers now lose a lot of the time.Dedicating a decade to my children only,every free moment,has made our bond extremely strong and beautiful!

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