Not pregnant but still ‘nuturing life’ (aka gardening)

I started this blog to write about my infertility, at a time that i was still figuring out how i felt about my ‘infertile status’. I haven’t written much on that subject lately because i’ve mostly made peace with the idea that I won’t have children. That’s not to say that i don’t want to have a child. If i am one of the lucky ones with ovarian insufficiency who manages to spontaneously fall pregnant then it will be a lovely surprise. Lately i’ve been stuck in a cycle of:

  1. menstruating, which bringsĀ relief, perhaps my ovaries are up to something after all?
  2. then, not menstruating, jokes about ‘maybe i’m pregnant’ between hubby and I, peeing on a few pregnancy tests (always negative)
  3. still not menstruating, the weeks go by, a little worried thought in the back of my head wonders if it’s all ‘broken’ for good
  4. eventually return to step 1

My rational mind knows that unless my cycles somehow become a little more regular then i shouldn’t put much hope in falling pregnant (based on statistics). My emotional mind is usually more optimistic than this though, and keeps expecting a lucky little egg to be ovulated,fertilised and then implanted.

Edit: I actually just typed ‘until my cycles’ above (instead of ‘unless my cycles’)!! This shows how much hope i have bubbling away beneath the surface, i guess.

And so, we buy multi-packs of pregnancy tests and have used them so often it’s become a little boring.

Here's one from this morning, i tried to make it more interesting by photographing on top of some home-made wrapping paper
Here’s one from this morning, i tried to make it more interesting by photographing it on top of some home-made wrapping paper

I instituted a rule, back when peeing on these sticks was a little emotionally draining*, so that we wouldn’t go crazy using too many, too often. I told a friend about this rule, saying we’re only allowed to use one every.. she cut me off and guessed “oh right, every month”. When i corrected her and said the rule was actually ‘no more frequent than every 2 weeks’ she looked a little shocked and concerned for my wellbeing šŸ™‚

This is the rationale; ‘normal’ cycles are about 28 days, so if more than 4 weeks have passed since my last menstruation then i’m allowed to take a test. After that (negative result) i’m allowed to take another two weeks later, and so on. It makes sense under the assumption of intermittent menstruation possibly meaning intermittent ovulation. It’sĀ possibleĀ (unlikely) that I may be ovulating at any time but then implantation takes 7-10 days and you can’t get a positive pregnancy test before this occurs, hence the 2 week wait (which ladies undergoing IVF or other assisted reproduction know all about!). I’m glad to say that we don’t actually use a test every two weeks that i’m in notĀ menstruating though. AfterĀ 5 or 6 weeks I now figure that it could be a long wait (my record is 4 months) and that my system is too screwy to be producing any eggs. This morning i went ahead and used one (after waiting 5 weeks) because i’ve been noticing more cervical mucus (of the egg-white consistency! hooray, this should be a signal of oestrogen production).

Long story short, i’m not pregnant, but that’s OK.
I’ve never felt a burning need (just a desire of varying strength) to have kids. I know that the desire to haveĀ children is of course a complex and highly personal thing and although i don’t know exactly what i’m missing, i can see plenty of the benefits of having children. One of those has got to be the satisfaction gained from the responsibility of taking care of a growing little life, nurturing that life and seeing it grow. Call me crazy, but I get a small taste of that with my gardening. All without the dread fear of doing anything wrong.

my newest charges
my newest charges

This weekend we went to a plant sale organised by a not-for profit, volunteer-run group that encourages the appreciation of Australian native plants (the Australian Native Plants Society) and we purchased a great selection of carefully propagated and raised seedlings, to get some interesting plants to fill in a few gaps in the garden. I’m still a novice gardener but i’m keen to learn all that i can about these little beauties (where are they best placed? do i need to amend the soil? how much watering will they need? etc etc) so that they receive the tender loving care that they deserve, and then hopefully none of them will die! Ok, so maybe it’s nothing like raising children, haha. Also, i’m not expecting to receive any love back from these guys. Maybe we’ll get a dog (as long as it doesn’t trash the garden!). Regardless, i’m not dwelling on the disappointment of that pee-stick, but embracing our child-free life.

*it’s not just disappointment about not having a kid, there have also been feelings tied up in wanting to know where my life was headed, but that’s a post for another day

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