Sunday, November 27, 2005

My life so far

Catchy title, eh? I think this is a book or movie title, actually, so I can't take credit for it.

My life so far has been really weird. Sometimes I feel a little like Forest Gump. I've been a bit of a wild thing, an atheist, a bartender, born-again, a student, a music therapist, a Californian, Iowan, South Carolinian, Coloradan, Kansan, Texan. I've lived at the beach, in the mountains, out of my car, in a Veterans Administration hospital, and in various apartments, condos and houses. I've been on national television and in a rock and roll band. I've been single, married, single again, and married again. I've been invincible and infertile. I'm a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a wife, and maybe soon a mother. It's this last bit that has been the most elusive and seems like it will be the greatest adventure.

I've also been a queen. Let me relay this story (most Hannahs have already heard it).

Part of our infertility journey has included Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ARTs). This runs the gamut from fertility drugs, to interuterine insemination (IUI), to invitro fertilization (IVF). For various reasons we decided not to do IVF, one of which is that I know several people who have had IVF fail only to conceive without ARTs at a later date (including my "friend" Brooke Shields, apparently).

Anyway, we did 9, count them, 9 IUIs. Nine, I tell you! Although only three of those were done after my surgery to remove moderate endometriosis, my mental health and our desire to pursue adoption led us to the decision not to pursue more IUIs at this time. Needless to say, this IUI routine was a big part of our lives for a year. After that many months of regular trips to the doctor I felt a strong bond to my doctor's office and its Nurse Practitioners. By the time I went for my last appointment, most everybody, from the receptionists to the check-out ladies, knew me by sight or by name. Many of those people were invested in us conceiving our long awaited child. We never did. (Duh.)

So, for our last month of treatment, I decided that I was going to make it fun. I joked with the Hannahs about taking my tiara and being Queen IUI! Believe it or not (and you soon will), I stuffed my tiara and my digital camera into my bag before I went for our last IUI. I told you I could prove it, and here goes.

I set up the self-timer on my camera and took a couple of shots that I didn't like. Mind you, I'm in the dark and wearing a tiara when the door open and in walks my doctor! I don't think he saw my head, because I think he caught my back as I was crouching down by my bag trying to shove the camera into it. I am so glad the camera didn't flash just as he walked in. How would I explain this?

I walked out of there on my last day of infertility treatment with closure. I really felt happy that I had something to show for all those trips to the doctor, even if it was only a picture! This was an important year of my life. I feel like I graduated from college again. I get wistful for those days, but I am ultimately glad that I have finished with that episode of My Life So Far.

Moving on always feels good, even if it is hard.

The Beginning.

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