Left Behind 

Today, I feel left behind. It’s a grave feeling, one that tugs deep down at my soul.  It’s a quiet pain, watching the days and months turn into years, passing by with an empty womb and empty arms, making for an empty heart.  Watching everyone enjoy their growing families.  At times like this, I briefly feel bitterness and anger, but not nearly as much as I used to.  When I feel left behind like this now, I am consumed by hurt more than any other emotion.

Yes, I have triggers that make me feel awful, and for the most part, I try to avoid them. Usually this involves people complaining about their kids or pregnancies, making jokes about getting pregnant, or acting like I do not understand their kid problems because I am not a mom in their eyes (“just wait, you will see”).

But there are also things that I choose not to avoid anymore, like FB pregnancy announcements, bump updates, and newborn photo shoots. I used to run from these, now I try my best to find joy for those people.  After all, these are happy things.  Dont get me wrong, some days it is still too much to bear.

Overall, I think I have learned to make the most of the cards I have been dealt and so, the majority of the time I try to believe this is just a shitty chapter of our love story.  But when I am brutally honest with myself, I know that being childless might not be just a chapter; it might be how this story ends.  Before you tell me not to give up, that no one can stop me from being a mother, hear me out.  Let me whine and listen to what I want, please.

Part of me wishes I could turn back time, which I just told my husband the other night.  If I could, I dont know if I would have ever done IVF. Seriously. I dont care how strong it has made me/us. My husband & I were so incredibly naive. We truly thought it was the ultimate fix.  We believed wholeheartedly we had a simple issue (male factor), and we would succeed the first time.  Never in our worst nightmare did we imagine that two years and over 30,000 later we would be sitting here with nothing to show except broken hearts and dreams. Oh, and wallets, but honestly money is the last concern if you have gone through what we have…FACT.

Anyways, 5 lost babies and now we are being faced with the news that I may never be able to carry our child.  That appointment is just 2 days away from now; something we never fathomed. We are so deep in the IVF trenches it is almost like there is no turning back.  I know some of you ladies here me on this.

I dont regret carrying our babies for the time that I did, but at times I do regret jumping full force into something I really didnt fully understand. I wish so badly that IVF would have been the answer for us, the answer every infertile couple is so desperately searching for.  Maybe it still could be, but not without a lifetime of scars along with it.

Over the years, I have watched each and every one of my close friends grow their family.  Keep in mind that none of these close friends had any kids back at our wedding, when we began our TTC journey. In fact, only 1 of my close friends you that you will read about below was married before my husband and I were.  The rest got married after us and have since easily lapped us many times over.  

My maid of honor, has just given birth to her second child, who was due just weeks before our last would have come into the world a month ago.

Another bridesmaid is delivering her 3rd child tomorrow, who would have also been just weeks apart from the birth of our last child a month ago.

My friend who read at our wedding ceremony just delivered her first born, just a few months before our last child would have been born.

Yes, all 3 of these friends above were pregnant and due within 2 months of when I should have been with our last.  In high school, us 4 were the best of friends.  The 3 of them carried to full term together, but I didn’t make it.

A different one of my bridesmaids underwent IVF and successfully conceived and gave birth to healthy twins after their first fresh transfer.

A close friend of mine for the past 18 years adopted twin boys and completed her desire for a family.

Another friend underwent medicated cycles at home through our same RE, conceived, and gave birth to her son, just a few months before our 3rd would have entered the world last month.

A friend has just had her second child, due weeks apart from when our 2nd would have come, naming him Noah, a name we both loved.

A close friend of my husbands who was a groomsman in our wedding gave birth to his son the day our son was scheduled to be here last month.

Am I happy for all of my dear friends? Absolutely.  It has nothing to do with that.  Remember the title of this post, please.  

Even here, in the blogging world, I am seeing so many ladies graduate on.  Again, I am so pleased for them (because of course that is the point!!), but at the same time, I am sad because I wonder if I will still talk with them as much.  I have seen a lot of bloggers disappear once they finally become pregnant. I pray not to loose that support.  

I think you get the point by now, if not here it is….I feel left behind today.  I want my baby.  Our baby.  I want to get pregnant at home with my husband. I want some of the normalcy all around me to rub off on us! 

I wish IVF would have worked on the first try, or even the 2nd or 3rd try.  I want to erase all my losses away. Why did I have to fall pregnant each time, only to suffer a loss??? It is one of the cruelest feelings one could ever know, to have joy ripped out from inside of you.  

And now, after all this, to be told that being pregnant all those times was basically a tease, that it may never happen again, is the icing on the cake… I don’t want a gestational carrier, I don’t want another surgery, or 10th opinion, I don’t want to adopt, keep putting our lives on hold, or spend thousands of more dollars…I just want it to be easy for me, just for once! Imagine being pregnant so many times but never experiencing it completely.  Like I said, a tease. Empty arms.  

If you are reading this and have not experienced infertility, or infertility coupled with recurrent loss, or loss in general, I pray you never do. Cherish every moment of your pregnancy and your children. I still remember the last time I felt pregnant, before I knew it was all over, and it is something I will never forget. If you are reading this and it is the opposite, and you are like me, my heart goes out to you.  

I want a miracle…to wake up from this nightmare that NO ONE should have to go through…to get pregnant, and carry a healthy child to full term without having a nervous breakdown during those 40 weeks. I want to catch up and experience some of the joy taking place all around me.  Is that too much to ask??? Guess so.  

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41 thoughts on “Left Behind 

  1. I have not suffered the losses you have but understand the feeling of being left behind. My friends have started and finished their families while I just waited. Have to believe our time will come but it doesn’t make the journey any easier. I am here for you anytime xx

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  2. I can absolutely relate to this. I’ve “only” had one loss but I’ve had fertility problems for 15 years and counting. Most of my friends started way later than I did – I was in a relationship from 25-35 and the first of my group to get married. Since then a majority of them have got married and had effortless babies. Even in the last year. It’s a killer. I still haven’t seen some of the babies and I don’t know if I ever will. I really feel as I approach 40 that it’s unlikely ever to happen for me and sometimes I think I just need to get used to never having children. It is hurtful. I really feel for you because I feel it too.

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    • Im so sorry, Nara. I have not met many of their kids either still, or if I have it has been such minimal interaction. I dnt think many understand just how hard it is, and how much even harder it is to explain! I pray it does happen for you, but I know all too well that doesnt change the pain you feel today.

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  3. Love you friend.. I’ve known this feeling of being left behind and though you would never want anyone to struggle, it’s still so painful. I’m here, I’m still reading, and I’m still praying for you. I so wish there was more I could do. 💜

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  4. I can understand everyone word from the depth of my heart. I wish you everything you are asking for, I wish you normal times. More than that right now I wish you peace and strength for the appt. i will be thinking about you tbat day and sending you strength vibes.

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  5. My heart aches for you. Feeling forgotten, lost and left behind in IF hell is absolute torture. When you add the pressure to feel happy for those around you receiving your own deepest desires and dreams it is truly a living hell. I sometimes wish I could live in a cave with fellow IFers (and my husband for obvious reasons) until we all emerge with our babies together. Just know I am here for you. I will always feel the pain deep in my heart. Hugs and love to you.

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    • Thank you, MJ. Im glad what I was saying about feeling happy for others while being miserable for myself makes sense to a fellow IFer, although I wish u or anyone for that matter didnt truly understand bc like u said its hell. I want to extend the offer to you too, and let u know I am always here ❤️

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  6. Thank you for giving voice to this feeling. Often we get misunderstood because people can’t understand that I can be both genuinely happy for my friends who conceive and bring home healthy babies while at the same time having it serve as a reminder of what we don’t have. Sending you prayers, love and light as you head to your appointment.

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  7. This my friend is the worst feelinf, I am so very often in such a similar headsapce. Even though we are adopting in so many ways we are no closer to our child today then we were 3 years ago. It freaking sucks. I wish no one had to endure his heartache and loneliness. That said, know that I’m thinking of you and wishing you strength.

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  8. I’m sorry you’re feeling left behind. I sometimes feel the same way and it takes a while to get past these feelings. After going through so many cycles of IVF, I also find myself envious of those who got pregnant after the first and second cycle. It’s by no mean easy for these ladies to have to go through their cycles but it’s tough to watch them eventually find success while we continue to struggle. Light and love to you my friend. May God give you peace and strength when you go through difficult times.

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    • Thanks, Isabelle. I know what u mean about watching these ladies find success through IVF wondering why it cant work for us the same. Its tough. I have my days were I am okay, for the most part, but lately I feel down about it all. I pray my appt tomorrow can give us something to work with.

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  9. I’m sorry it has taken me so long to comment on this blog. I’ve read it a few times now and it makes my heart sink for you every time I come back to it. It played on my mind the whole of yesterday…. I wanted to respond to what you had written but could not get my brain into gear at all because I just felt so sad for you. This IF thing is so unfair and so cruel. I’m sorry that this is what you’re going through. I’m sorry that you might have to make decisions you don’t want to make. I’m sorry it has been such a long and hard process for you and your husband. I do wish this were not the case. Sending you love and hugs xxx

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    • I totally get the reading a post over and over, not being sure what to say bc I feel so awful for what the person is going through. Im so grateful u ended up commenting bc you understanding how Im feeling helps me a lot. Like u said, its so unfair and I just wish I knew why it was this way. Thanks so much again ❤️

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      • I’m the sort of person who likes to fix problems and when I read your post and could see how much you’re hurting, I wanted to come up with all sorts of ideas and things to say which would make it better for you. Of course I also realised that probably the last thing you wanted was for someone to say ‘have you considered this?’ and all that kind of stuff which is maddening. Needless to say if I ever I find a magic wand, I’ll surely wave it in your direction, but until then I’m here to listen & be as supportive as I can xx

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      • Haha im a problem solver too. Thanks for making me smile with the magic wand comment, because I have been crying this morning to my husband about the pain I feel so deep inside. I told him I dont even want to get out of bed today. I feel like gicing up, although I wont. Thanks again 💗

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  10. I’m so sorry you’re going through so much. I too know the feeling of seeing everyone’s life moving forward while mine seems to be running in circles. I hope you find your way forward soon, be it with or without children. I wish it could have been easier. I’m thinking of you.

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  11. My heart just breaks for you, and I too have the same questions, when is ENOUGH, ENOUGH ?! You and Shane are both amazing people and deserve nothing less then to parent your children on this earth. My birthday is Tuesday and I’m hoping that it brings you good luck on your appointment! I’m always just a text or a phone call away if you need to talk or vent! I care, and I always will. You know I come to you more for parenting advice then other “parents” because I know you get it, and get me. Trust me, even though I carried a baby full term after fertility, I still despise pregnant people! Especially people who just OOPPS got pregnant and aren’t even married! I pray for you all the time and I know there is nothing I can say that will ease your pain but I’m here, I always am, I’m not going anywhere!

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    • I appreciate you always being there for me, Julee. Your kind words, understanding, and positive outlook truly help when we are down. Im glad u feel you can come to me for mom stuff, even though i do not have any children here on Earth. That is something no one has ever done. I hope and pray your birthday brings peace and hope to us. We are so tired. Thank you again for believing in us!

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  12. Oh Hon, I am sorry you’re feeling left behind. I totally get that feeling. First, it was with friends/family getting married and then it was with them having kids. Even if we got placed right now the youngest nephew in the family would be 6 years older then our baby. It is a hard thing and you have been through so much. More than I can imagine. Sending you love, hugs, and prayers!

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  13. I get so much of what you wrote. I have friends on their second children (one on her FOURTH) and here I am… … STILL. No babies, no family. Not to discount my husband and our pets… but it’s not the same. They are all moving on and I am thrown back to the starting line yet again. It’s a lonely feeling and I’m sorry it was under these circumstances that we met, but I appreciate your perspective and hoping for the best and that you get your miracle soon. ❤

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    • I hate that u get it, but at the same time I am happy u do…i think that will makes sense to you! U described it just right-back to the starting line all over again, every hurdle u passed last time has to be done again and with even more anxiety than before. Why cant it be easy for us like it is for others?! Not fair. Okay, I am done ranting now. Im glad we met too 💗

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      • Thank you for your kind words. My husband and I often wonder at how, as physicians, though trained and practiced in delivering bad news, in discussing death and disease, the loss of health and of the life planned with patients and their families, we cannot (canNOT) together discuss our own losses and fertility struggles. It’s all too fresh, though time has certainly passed. I’ve only recently been able to discuss it with myself, as it were, writing about a bit of it. It’s a long dim road, this… we trudge together.

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  14. I so relate to this. And on a side note, don’t worry, I’m sticking around, you have my support and I am always rooting for you.

    When you wrote you wished you’d never tried ivf, I get that. Even now, being pregnant with Smoochie I look at the last four years and I can’t say that ivf was ‘worth it. It’s hard to put into words, because obviously I kept trying and we got here after exhausting a ton of options…. And I am beyond thankful for him. But I guess what I’m trying to say is, maybe if I were a more boundaried or objective person, someone not ruled by emotion, I would have stopped sooner because I would have seen the damage it was doing and decided my long term mental health was more important than having a baby? Like, in a way, ivf has always reminded me of being in an abusive relationship??? I don’t know if that makes sense… But I often wonder if I were different, would I have stopped sooner to save myself? Kind of like the oxygen analogy on an airplane?

    As for feeling left behind, yeah. I’m 38 and prior yo finally getting pregnant, I was scared I’d head into my 40s and my window would be gone. It made me feel really old and out of place.

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    • I am glad to hear you are in it for the long haul! We would miss u if u left. I do get what u are saying about IVF-and it is like an abusive relationship! I have never considered it but so true now that u say it. Im so glad your dream is coming true now before 40 comes. Best wishes! 😊

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