I’ve long said that trying to have another child after you’ve lost a child is like jumping off a cliff. It’s a big leap of faith, and you have no idea if there will be a safe place to land. No one can tell you whether you’ve been given a parachute or just a backpack. You jump and hope for the best and try to prepare for the worst (even though you really can’t).
We recently decided to jump off the cliff again. It is not an easy decision for us, not only after what we’ve been through, but also because IVF is our best chance at getting a sustainable pregnancy and, hopefully, a healthy living child. If you’ve been through IVF or know anything about it, you know it is not an easy path. It requires shots – lots of them. For me, it meant 4 of them every day. It requires doctors appointments – lots of them. Every couple of days, I have to shuttle back to the doctor’s for an ultrasound and bloodwork. It’s no picnic, but it’s what we have to do because we want another child.
And so we jumped off the cliff with all of the challenges that IVF entails. And that sound you hear is splat. It’s the sound of someone who fell off the cliff without even getting the opportunity to jump. After 1 week of four daily shots and many doctor appointments, our IVF cycle was cancelled. Once again, my body couldn’t do what it was supposed to, and we were forced to cancel the cycle. We didn’t even get the chance to try.
It has been a difficult blow for us. It is harder than I can explain to find the strength to keep going when life keeps kicking you in the gut. And I see what everyone else sees – I’m not stupid. I recognize that the universe, God, whatever you want to call it is probably telling us to stop. But it is impossible for me to accept that this is how it ends.
And now, we endure more tests to determine whether this path is really an option for us. In the end, the doctors could tell us it’s time to pack it in. Or they could tell us that we can try to step up to that cliff again and take the leap. I have to wonder if I have the strength for either of those anymore. But I only have 2 options. I either find the strength to say enough and accept that the only children I will ever have are dead. Or I find the strength to jump, knowing that the odds are against us, and we never seem to get a parachute.