August 23, 2015

On A Tightrope

Welcome to my world.  I've been blogging since 2009 at My UII Blog about my life with chronic, invisible illnesses covering topics ranging from diagnosis & living with chronic illnesses to illness in the workplace and especially awareness & advocacy.  When infertility became part of my overall invisible illness experience I posted several times about it on my existing blog.  But as I spend more time in this world and plumb new depths, I realized that this topic is just so unique it requires it's own forum.

So here we are.  In the infertility world, we frequently talk about being on "this side" of things (going through the infertility cycle of testing and treatments and decisions) or on "the other side" (having a baby, adopting, or living childfree).  I find myself spending a lot of time worrying about what's in between.  It's a complicated, perilous path, certainly not as straightforward as walking across a bridge from "this side" to "the other".  I'd say it's more like walking a tightrope: a terrifying journey, hard to navigate and easy to fall from, at which point you find yourself back at the beginning of the entire cycle.  As anyone who's struggled to conceive and/or been through pregnancy loss knows, getting that positive pregnancy test doesn't make everything suddenly all better.  That test is simply the first step off the platform and onto a seemingly impossible path with months of fear even beyond what every mother-to-be experiences.  And what about people like myself, who know that our diagnoses are incurable, meaning that even if I have one successful pregnancy and birth, when I want another child I'll find myself back on "this side" of the journey, facing treatments and transfers and overwhelming risks?  We walk the tightrope again...or at least, we'll try.

But it certainly CAN be done, and it is done by some, and will be done by more.  And so I pick up my balance pole and pray for low winds as I peer over the edge of the platform on "this side", preparing to inch my way out onto the tightrope stretched before me.  And I'm inviting you along for the ride.

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