But, we have decided the time is right to begin trying to add number 2 to our family.
Last time, it wasn't so easy. Last time, I was so excited to start trying. I was sure that I would see a happy face, two lines, or whatever the correct symbol was to let us know that our tiny family of two would soon be three. And then six months went by. My sister had her baby. I hid the sorrow on my face as I held my tiny nephew. I was elated for my sister, overwhelmed with love for my nephew and, though I felt horrible to admit it, jealous that my husband and I were not expecting our own.
At six months, it was time for me to "read up" on this business of getting pregnant. I devoured six, maybe seven different books on getting pregnant. I lingered over TTC boards. We changed the way we were doing a few things. We kept trying. I tried charting my temperatures. That whole process completely stressed me out. I quickly realized that I could manipulate the thermometer, and I could never quite figure out the results. I added in OPKs (ovulation predictor kits). My life was run by when those lines would show up. Don't get me wrong, my husband and I had fun in the process, but at some point, my heart began to ache.
At nine months, I had my annual physical. I casually mentioned to my doc that my husband and I were trying to get pregnant. She patted me on my knee and reassured me that it would surely happen soon. I mentioned that we had been trying "a while." She stopped, cocked her head to the side? Nine, almost ten months I mumbled. I saw her glance to my chart. Yup, I was only 27. She smiled at me, a knowing smile that I came to recognize in the months that laid ahead. The smile that said: it should have happened for you by now. She wrote me a referral to the hospital's fertility clinic. I was relieved to have the referral. It meant that I wasn't crazy for thinking that it should have happened. It confirmed that maybe, something just wasn't quite right.
I was shocked to get a call from the fertility clinic a few weeks later, saying that they had my referral and asking when I would like to come in. Tomorrow? Part of our struggle was that my husband and I hadn't told anyone -- ANYONE -- that we were trying. We had been together for seven years, married for five, and as I later found out, our families were making peace with the possibility that he and I may not have wanted children. If they had only known the truth. A few months of testing, and..... nothing. There was nothing obviously wrong with either of us.
The hardest part of our "unexplained infertility" diagnosis for me was that I had to cut back, if not cut out completely, my running. Two days before we received the diagnosis, I ran my fastest half-marathon ever. I had worked so hard to get faster, and it felt so good to hit those miles minutes faster than I had just a few years earlier. In hindsight, perhaps running 30-40 miles per week was not the best for getting pregnant. Some women can, I cannot. I understand that now. I was also advised to find other ways to handle my stress. During this time, I was working at a super intense, stressful, time-consuming and life-sucking job. If you have ever read any book about how to create a good work environment, my job was the antithesis to any advice in that book. The only upside to the life-sucking job was the insurance. It was fabulous and covered everything with the infertilty treatments.