I have also shared how my hysterectomy made me question and then redefine my womanhood.
Even recently, I have shared how the reality of not just being infertile, but sterile affected me.
Through the last couple years I have shared about how infertility affected me personally but I wanted to share a little more about how it affect my husband and I as a couple. I have always been quick to say to fellow endosisters to not take my story to mean that it will become their story. The truth is 70% of women with endometriosis will be able to achieve pregnancy. You may need a little medical intervention but the statistics are in your favor. I always want to provide that encouragement!
Our infertility journey was two-fold. My body played a role in our infertility as my cycles had gone bananas and I was ovulating really late so it took some charting (and some meds) to get some timing down. It was thought that endometriosis was not the cause of not being able to get pregnant. We also had male issues preventing us from achieving pregnancy. The combo of the two was hard to deal with.
I worried that my body had failed us.
He worried that his body had failed us.
We considered IVF when we were told that would be our only chance of conceiving and spent months trying to figure out the next step to take. Something in our hearts led us to choose adoption. Soon after making the choice to adopt, my pain became unbearable and we scheduled a total hysterectomy. Once the surgery began, we learned that endo had progressed to the point where even if we had chose to do IVF, my body would have never carried the pregnancy to term. My doctor also believed that had we not scheduled the surgery, we would have been doing it on an emergency basis within weeks.
In the end we learned that his body would prevent us from getting pregnant and my body would prevent us from staying pregnant. It was tough to deal with. Even now that we are blessed to have our daughter, there are still days that we question and we grieve. There are still days when a pregnancy announcement stings. There are still days when infertility still haunts.
In our case, some things that helped us move through this was making the choice to go through it together. It may sound pretty simple but we wanted to be sure that we were truly hearing one another to help us grieve as a couple. There were many days when one of us just needed the other to listen and hear how we were feeling without interruption. In our journey, since both of us had fertility issues, it may have been a little easier to process and its what not just one of us with the fertility issues, so if that is the case I would definitely recommend counseling. Something else that helped us heal together (and this was just last year) was being able to participate in a church service based on Loss and Infertility.
I think there is a misconception that motherhood erases all the memories of infertility and sometimes I wish that it would but its not the case. I am SO thankful to have the support of friends and family that is always there when I need them!