Today we are still super jet-lagged and tired and still having some digestive issues from India. We tried to get at least a couple of things done today - mainly laundry and getting some groceries - but other than that not doing very much.
We did get out and meet our friends at the dog park today. I admit that it was nice to get outside and walk around, and it is always good to tire the dogs out. Our friends asked us it we thought about day care yet (they have already had a bad experience and had to find a new place which took seemingly forever). On one hand I thought it was silly as our children are still theoretical at this point, but on the other hand their point about some day care facilities having a one year waiting period is true. We said that we would need to wait until our children are real and no longer theoretical.
When we got home we talked about when that would be. For Mark, real vs. theoretical happens a lot sooner than for me. When are they real? Is it at a confirmed pregnancy test? Is it after the first trimester? Is it after 29 weeks, when a baby has a chance at surviving outside of the womb? Is it the due date? Is it not until you are holding them in your hands? Or, is it not until they are free of the danger of SIDS or fatal genetic diseases? I simply do not know when they will be real to me.
I am currently very scared that we have invested a lot of time, money and emotions into something that may not come to fruition. The doctor asking us if we have talked about donor eggs was not reassuring us of success. Yes, we have 10 embryos to implant, and I am desperately trying to be hopeful that out of 10, one will make it. But I am having a hard time being hopeful.
The harsh reality is that as women age the number of potential eggs that we produce each month starts to get smaller and smaller. The quality of the eggs also is impacted, with the potential for disorders and genetic issues or the eggs simply not even able to implant and become fully viable pregnancies increasing, and increasing sharply as we reach our late 30s and early 40s.
At 39 my fertility outlook is not as it used to be. My number of antral follicles is going down, my FSH is going up, my egg quality is becoming more and more questionable. Simply put, the number of chances that we have to produce a healthy child with my DNA is becoming more and more slim. I can try to fool mother nature by taking supplements, hormones, doing acupuncture, and being more healthy, but in the end it is simple biology and mother nature is not often fooled. This is not me being a pessimist, this is reality.
I could try to be more hopeful, I could try to be "sunshine and rainbows", but I can't. I know this is hard for many to understand (Mark included). My self-protective policy has been that if I don't get my hopes up in the first place, then I am less disappointed when things do not work out. I don't do this for everything - there are a lot of examples where I have given things a try and when they didn't work out I have shrugged it off and kept going. This is too big for that. This is too hard. I fear that at some point I am not going to be able to simply dust myself off and get back up, at some point this could break me.
This has been hard for Mark too, although he is better at dealing with this than I am. Sometimes I wonder if it is because he hasn't had to endure all of the shots, doctor appointments, hormones, blood draws, invasive ultrasounds, bloating, weight gain, melasma from the hormones, emotional roller coaster from the hormones, etc, etc. Maybe it is because in the end, he's not the problem. I am the one with both a bum uterus and (potentially) bum eggs. I admit that he is generally more optimistic and I am generally more pessimistic, but this is a whole new level in pessimism - even for me.
I will try to draw from Mark's optimism but I know that it is starting to waver.
We really need a win. For both of us.