I’m pained, saddened, and heartbroken. I can’t stop crying. My face is soaked with tears, my heart is throbbing in pain, and my body is shaking from weakness. I keep on asking myself, “How did this sudden turnover from excitement to misery happen?” I wish I could’ve held on, I wish the fetus could’ve stuck to me healthily. At my sibling’s wedding, everyone wanted to know if I was pregnant, even had the audacity to approach me and ask me straight out, to which I abruptly responded, “I prefer to keep these matters private.”
My story goes way back to the delivery room of my first and only child. After an extremely longs stretch of days filled with excruciating labor, I was rushed in to the operating room due to the baby’s dropping heart rate. I was immediately gassed out and then given general anesthesia. The C-section took over two hours of pulling out my child. The first time I held him, he was over 12 hours old. I cried out of excitement, joy. Every day with him is a great gift from heaven that I have never taken for granted.
We tried for another as soon as we got the go-ahead from my OB. I was thrilled to find out that I was pregnant. I came in at 12 weeks for an ultrasound that showed a 7 week old fetus without a heartbeat. I was disappointed, but remained positive. I had a D&C at a Doctor’s office and felt better almost soon after.
I was told to keep trying. I got pregnant again almost immediately. This time, I didn’t want to get my hopes up. I decided that I’m not taking a home pregnancy test. Finally, 2 weeks passed my missed period; I took a home pregnancy test. It was clearly positive. That night, I woke up in excruciating pain; almost worse than the contractions I experienced at my son’s birth. My husband helped me breathe, and calmed me down that everything will be okay. I began light spotting the next morning, and then eventually passed the fetus.
It was horrifically traumatic. I felt as though the picture from the book of a forming fetus was getting flushed down the toilet. I felt as though I was a destroyer, not a creator. I was miserable. I fell into a deep hidden depression. On the outside I acted well; however, in the inside I was hurting. I gained a lot of weight and ate away to cover up my emotions. Then, I decided that I won’t give up…I’ll hold on tight, and try again.
This time I was pregnant. Everything was going well. I even made it in to the second trimester. Until my first ultra sound where there was no heartbeat. The baby measured a week less only at 15 weeks. I was sent to a special ultra sound where they confirmed it. I was scheduled for surgery Erev Succos morning. I was put under general anesthesia where they dilated my cervix and contracted my uterus to take out the fetus. My recovery was slow and steady.
This time it took me a year to begin thinking about trying again. On our first try, I was pregnant, but it only lasted two weeks. I bled everything out. All along I’ve been seeing a Reproductive Endocrinologist, Hematologist, Endocrinologist and my OB, and none had any solutions. The fetuses have been sent for genetic and viral testing, everything was negative.
The doctor said to keep on trying, so we listened. I got pregnant again almost immediately. All my numbers were good, the HCG and progesterone levels were just as expected. I let myself get excited and I began dreaming about holding my newborn just in time for the month of May. I pinned my favorite baby clothing and items that I dreamed of onto my private Pinterest board. I signed up to the baby magazine. I had my eyes set on the stroller that I dreamed of. I already planned spending time with my newborn in May, June, July, and August.
Until I received the phone call with my blood results. My heart sank. Those painful words were too familiar. “Oh, honey, it’s Nurse ________at Dr. __________ office calling. I have bad news…the HCG levels are dropping. You should expect cramping and bleeding very soon. If you soak through more than a pad an hour go to your local emergency room.” I began sobbing uncontrollably. This time, I kept all my thoughts positive, hoping everything would remain positive. I felt like G-d is slapping me in the face! Why? What is wrong with me? What am I doing wrong?
I have been diagnosed with unexplained secondary infertility. I often find myself crying. I cry from joy and appreciation of being so thankful for my beautiful, healthy child, while crying and praying for another healthy baby. For those of you suffering from infertility I feel your pain, I know your pain, and I cry from the same pain that you are experiencing. I hope and pray that very soon we all cry from the same feelings of happiness, as we hold our precious newborn in our arms.
Chanukah is a holiday of warmth and light. As we gather around family and we talk about the open miracle that G-D showed our ancestors, we speak of their triumph against the darkness. As they prevailed, may all of my sisters out there suffering from infertility see open miracles and overcome the pain and the struggles. As we all light the last candle, I am requesting that you bear us in mind and that your prayers reach the heavenly throne. May the Chanukah light continue to illuminate your home and your future.