Thoughtful Thursday: Reminder

May 27, 2010

Thoughtful ThursdayLast week we talked about some revelations about my family history of infertility.

One thing I learned was that my aunt, the child who came after 6 years of my grandparents’ secondary infertilty, carries a name that is a reminder of the family-building struggles. It seems that after many years of trying for #2, including going to doctors who told my grandmother that all it took to make a baby was a man and a woman in the same house, they decided to pursue adoption. In the middle of the adoption process, they finally got pregnant again (proving that untrue old wives’ tale).

The name they chose for the baby was the name of their adoption caseworker! They picked the name because they liked it, but I wonder how often the name itself reminded them of how hard they had to try to have that second baby.

In my own life, even if I wanted to forget my infertility — which I wouldn’t — I have a constant reminder: twins. I suppose that if I had one baby I might be able to go a day here or there without thinking about IF, but because I have twins, I think about how they were created every single day… and a stranger asks me about their origins almost as often.

My other constant reminder: the huge hole in our bank account.

Do you have any ever-present reminders of your family-building struggles?


23 Responses to “Thoughtful Thursday: Reminder”

  1. ^WiseGuy^ Says:

    My blog? It reminds me why I am writing what I am writing.

    A toy that I bought for a baby not yet born.

    The bills I receive every month for the meds I am buying.

    A bedroom that I hope to give to my child.

    Rituals as documented in

    Lunchtime conversations everyday…I am constantly listening to kid tales.

    A refrigerator box that stocks my HPTs. Open fridge door….bend to pick up a bottle of water…glance.

  2. Rebecca Says:

    I really don’t think I do – I guess i’m lucky in that respect ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Elana Kahn Says:

    We also have twins, so that definitely reminds us, but there are still days when I “forget” about our struggle. There’s a good reason for this, but my hubby has sworn me to secrecy :-X (silly hubby…)

  4. a Says:

    The only thing that reminds me is our lack of a second child. Most days, I don’t dwell on that.

  5. niobe Says:

    I’ve mostly moved on from my loss, but I still think about my twins every day.

  6. We also have our twins as a reminder & the empty savings account.

    The other reminder of our infertility journey, is how we have to either disclose or just go along with genetic type questions (eg from doctors about medical history), after needing to use DS to conceive.

  7. Photogrl Says:

    Right now, with being on bedrest and going to the hospital twice a week for NSTs, I’m constantly reminded. Everytime I go in, I have to repeat my history at least twice…”Yes, this is my 7th pregnancy, no, I have one child at home…Yes, it’s twins, yes we had help…”

    You get the idea.

    I’m also reminded how far we’ve come with every kick and roll I feel…in a good way! ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Heather Says:

    Oh boy do I ever! We’re lucky about the cost thing. My health insurance actually covered IVF treatments, up to a cap, which we never reached.

    But we have twins and our children are almost 9 years apart in age. All three of them are from IF treatments. We get comments from people all the time. I’m very honest about it. I want people to know that infertility is so common and it has nothing to do with age. Yes, I had the twins at 38, but we got married at 23 and threw caution to the wind trying to have 4 children before we turned 30 (hahahahaha). I don’t miss going through it. I wouldn’t wish IF issues on my worst enemy (well, maybe?). But I try to remember the things I gained. I learned how to be very healthy. I learned how much strength I had in my character and I try to apply that to other areas of my life. I’m trying to take it as a learning experience that some divine source thought I needed, and not as a punishment.

  9. Kristin Says:

    The extended space between our kids reminds me of our struggles…as does the lack of a much wanted 4th child.

  10. I consider my daughter a pretty big reminder… Seriously though, I re-read my infertility blogs on a quarterly basis and I think they’ll always help me remember. Also, as September gets closer I’ve been thinking more and more about those days and wondering how I’ll handle it if it doesn’t work next time…

  11. Michele Says:

    Every day… Everything I see… Everything I hear… Not a moment goes by that I dont think about it. I look at Bobby and Maya and see that tremendous gift, and also the journey that brought us to be their parents. I’m not sure there is any other way.

  12. samcy Says:

    My empty bank account. The baby stuff bought “in faith” over the last 6 years now stuffed into a cupboard. My broken heart.


  13. Gabby Says:

    Hi. Great post. Lik you, the twins are a reminder, and every time someone asks, it’s a reminder.

    But also similar to your grandparents, our daughters middle name is a reminder. Her middle name is a name we really like, but it also happens to be the name of the street ee lived off of and drove down manta manta times when going to the RE ‘s office. So hercsweet name iscanother reminder for us.

  14. Jezzafuji Says:

    Like many others commenting here, my wife and I were lucky enough to have twins, on our 5th IVF attempt. Unlike others, I don’t tend to think about the money involved. It’s not that it wasn’t a huge amount – in the UK it’s breathtakingly expensive – but I guess all our money thoughts are forward-facing now, such as nursery and school fees. Although it’s still a frightening problem, it’s a nice one to have.

    We also have the ongoing fees payable to the clinic for the embies that we have frozen in storage, and we’re putting off our decision on them and keep paying the fees. The little bill we get each year is a reminder that we’re still ‘recovering infertiles’ rather than just ‘regular parents’.

    I’ve been blogging for almost exactly 12 months to the day, and came at it originally with a view that the twins’ very existence after 3 years of trying might help others who were still treading that precariously rocky IVF path and give them that most dangerous of all emotions: hope. So like so many commenters above, my daily musings are also a reminder of how lucky we are, and how strong own hope is that everyone I read will be successful too. I know that can never be the case, but I will it nonetheless.

    Whenever we interact with respective families, my wife J and I are always reminded that ours was not a ‘normal’ process, but equally that we are but one story in a world of pain. I genuinely don’t know anyone who is not carrying emotional damage or baggage or however you’d describe it. My elder sister’s stillborn baby and Asperger’s son, my sister-in-law’s miscarried first child, my brother and his wife’s 12 IVFs without ever experiencing a BFP. They’ve all carried on – my sister is married and her son and daughter are wonderful, my sister-in-law has three beautiful children, and my brother and his wife have recently completed the adoption of two sisters, 4 and 2, who are a delight. Whilst I might have regular reminders of our own trials and tribulations, thinking of my family and friends helps me realise we all have our challenges to cope with. Reading a blog like LastChanceIVF always inspires me; the way Mrs LC is coping with more slings and arrows of outrageous fortune than Shakespeare could ever have imagined is truly astonishing.

    Finally (and I’m really sorry to go on for so long), I have one flippant reminder. It’s a habit formed from a superstition. When I first knew J was pregnant (and I think even during the 2WW), I started squirting two little dabs of shaving gel into my palm each morning. When we discovered she was having twins, my ritual became fixed in my head – OCD turned into a symbol of hope – the dream might really come true. Now, fifteen months on after the birth of Ollie and Ella, I still squirt two dabs of gel, now as a little reminder to thank whatever gods there might be that helped us succeed.

    I don’t just owe it to myself, to J and to the twins to remind myself constantly what we went through to have such an amazing result so that I love them all with every ounce of my being, I also owe it to everyone who is still on the treadmill, still suffering the hole in their soul, so that I never take our luck for granted. I wish I could change it for everyone.

  15. strongblonde Says:

    our little girl shares the first name (with a different spelling) of our REI. we always liked the name and it just seemed kind of perfect. it reminds me all the time.

    that and the no money thing ๐Ÿ™‚ lol.

  16. Dora Says:

    My gorgeous baby daughter, who looks nothing like me. (I don’t think our chubby thighs count.) And her middle names. She has two, her first is for my friend’s father, my friend who was my known sperm donor when trying unsuccessfully with my eggs, and her second middle name honors her genetic father.

  17. Staciet Says:

    I have my boys.

    Fertility drugs are still around my house. I have a half used pen of gonal f in the fridge. It’s long expired, but I can’t seem to let go of it. There is also a box filled with needles and such in my closet.

    There is a sweet little denim dress in my closet. I bought it the first time I got pregnant, back in 06. I lost that baby shortly after I bought the dress. I see that dress every single day, and every day I think about it all.

  18. Mel Says:

    Well, we have the same one in the fact that we have twins, but while we named the twins after people in our family, we also gave ChickieNob a name that is a sentence when you put all her names together and it’s a comment about infertility. It’s subtle, but it’s there.

  19. My son – the fact that he is four years younger than his youngest niece, while I always hoped my sister and I would have our children close in age. The casual way in which friends with babies talk about trying for a second one and I realize I’ll never be able to think about it that casually. My and DH’s age as first time parents.

  20. Ana Says:

    no visual reminders, but this week when my birthday came around, I had a hard time remembering how old I was (really!) and when it hit me, I got that shock…of how different life turned out compared to my “plans”. Also, whenever people ask if I want another, and I say “yes” because I unequivocally do, but then I backtrack…”I mean…maybe…not sure…we’ll see…”

  21. Besides the fraternal twins, we have a bunch of unused needles I have not been able to get rid of.

  22. Lynn Says:

    The big one? Our lack of a child in our arms.

    My nephew and nieces (he’s 7 1/2 years younger than me, oldest niece is 7 1/2 years younger than him, youngest niece is 7 1/2 years younger than her – youngest niece is now almost 9 and we have no baby to add to the group).

    A group of friends that continually contains at least one pregnant person.

    My co-worker’s 4 year old who asks me everytime she sees me when I’m going to have a baby to play with her and her sister.

    Gifts and keepsakes bought over the years for our one-day little one.

    Holidays – even the small ones.

    My constant sense of time passing without producing anything relevant.

    Sorry if this is too depressing. I’m feeling quite melancholy today.

  23. Nishkanu Says:

    We have an amazing, wonderful baby girl through DE. I tell her frequently how lucky we are to have her. Knowing how hard it was to have her is part and parcel of loving her. And seeing the donor through her is a cherished part of the journey too.

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