Tag Archives: art

The rotten egg toss

Well maybe rotten eggs are a bit too harsh. My eggs, and we’re not talking about the ones from chickens either, are only “aged” and not actually rotten!  After trying for a couple of years without too much success, I only discovered this issue when I visited a fertility clinic earlier this year.

monopoly-go-to-jail-card_8582The Assisted Reproductive Therapy (ART) process is a bit like a game of Monopoly:  sometimes when you’re two-thirds of the way around the board, you have to pick up the Chance card that says, “Go directly to jail. Do not pass go, do not collect 200.” Wham! All that progress is down the tubes (excuse the pun) and your wallet is the worse for wear too.

There are no guarantees

When undergoing fertility treatment, the first thing you will be told is that there are no guarantees that IVF or ICSI or GIFT or ZIFT (or actually whichever technique you are undergoing) will be successful.  Yet, when presented with a success rate of 80% and the payment of large sums of money, you really do begin to believe that “dammit, this just can’t fail”.

Well it can. In our case, we were in that unlucky 20% of couples where it did actually fail. After six months of running backwards and forwards to the fertility clinic at a drop of a hat, an op to fix the scarring in my uterus thanks to the D&C I had after my previous miscarriage, a truckload of blood tests, hormone pills, stabbing myself with hormone injections morning and night for a period of two weeks, harvesting my eggs, ICSI and PGS, I faced the lonely 10-day wait for the blood test that would show if the implantation was successful.

The odds were seemingly stacked in our favour with all the right conditions in place and a healthy, genetically normal embryo (the only one out of seven) being implanted.  Yet, this is where science leaves the guarantees at the door.  While it can control a myriad of factors, whether the embryo actually implants or not is something that just can’t be manipulated.

This last step of the cycle is the part fraught with the most risk and, in my own humble experience, is something most doctors and specialists downplay to various degrees.

An interesting article on livescience.com sheds some light on why some embryos implant successfully while others don’t.

Our little male embryo and my womb just didn’t make the right chemical connections and sadly, I miscarried.  We were again left distraught, poorer, more desperate … and basically back at square one since we had no more healthy embryos.

Forgiveness

So, I am here asking for forgiveness:  after spewing forth much enthusiasm and positivity in my last blog entry, this post is the polar opposite.

I do take consolation in that, for woman like me, these negative feelings of self-loathing and misery are apparently perfectly natural.  With hope, sometimes we need to face and conquer its evil twin:  despair.

If you are in the same boat, I offer these words of encouragement:  you are not alone.  Every woman and couple undergoing fertility treatment experiences almost the same thing.   The journey of trying to fall pregnant when you suffer from infertility complications is a path I don’t wish on anyone.  Yet, despite being emotionally taxing, it does offer hope to many couples that wouldn’t be able to do this on their own.

I love this visual representation of the fertility path.  If ART was a board game, it would look a lot like this:

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Rebirthing Teatart – a bumpy new ride

When I first started ‘Teatart’ I had lofty ambitions of a blog that was relevant to women transitioning into their thirties. I wanted to share my experiences and anecdotes with brutal honesty and humour.

The truth is that this blog became much more than that.  It became my mouthpiece. When I felt out of control in a world that is essentially out of control, I turned to writing in a safe forum that helped me to make sense of how I felt. From my divorce and my short “wild-ish” stint at being single, to my depression and anxiety, losing my job, having a miscarriage and finally, a second marriage that at first just didn’t seem to be meeting any of my expectations, I wrote it all down.

And then something happened. I began to draw closer to God again (ok, stop rolling your eyes) and my life slowly started to represent a picture of normalcy – or at least as normal as any person’s life can be. I stopped needing my ‘Teatart’ crutch and my blogging gradually reduced to a trickle.

Now, while my life is not exactly a bed of roses, I can boast a good job and a marriage to a man I love with my heart and soul. One gaping hole remains in my life – our lives:  we are yet to start a family after three years of trying. My miscarriage early last year left us devastated and, followed shortly by a second early miscarriage, I felt bitter and angry at the world around me.

imageIn March this year, exactly one year after my first miscarriage at nine weeks, we took the brave and bold step to seek professional help. Thorough researching helped us to shortlist several leading fertility clinics in South Africa, and from there to choose a fertility clinic we felt was right for us.  And so began our infertility journey.

This is where I want to take ‘Teatart’ now. To rebirth my beloved blog with a new focus … at least for now.  I hope I can offer women and couples facing the Assisted Reproductive Therapy (ART) process an inkling of hope, support and precious, shared learnings.

It’s been a bumpy ride – but hopefully one with a healthy bump in sight :) Chat soon!

The tortured desires of a poet

Poetry is my emotional outlet. It allows me to sort through my feelings and put those innermost, darkest desires and secrets on paper, out in the open for further analysis.

They say a poet is often a tortured soul – and in this I can’t disagree. I never write when I am happy, only when I am conflicted, sad, melancholy and just weighed down by life in general. Every poem I’ve ever written so accurately defines what I was experiencing at that precise moment in time – a snap shot so to speak.

As the soppy romantic I am, I feel life’s twists and turns with exquisite intensity. Many times I feel I have no way forward but to simply document what I am feeling in verse. Writing is my weapon of encouragement. It gives me renewed hope to know that in the months and years to come, my poetry will remind me of how I prevailed over my circumstances and emerged a stronger person, if not marginally more battle scarred!

Today I want to share with you my latest piece of poetry, more of which can be found under “Tea Confessions” if you are interested. Nothing I can say will do it justice; it is what it is: my feelings, however inappropriate :)

Lusting, longing, wanting

I want you
Every minute of every day
You haunt my every thought
Taunt my every desire

I want you
In ways that words can’t explain
With every fibre of my being
I crave you, taste you

I want you
You engulf every sense
Until I am overwhelmed
Until I hanker for your touch

I want you
Exclusively, wholly, completely
Everything good, everything bad
I want it all

I want you
Not in another lifetime
Not in another scenario
Now, today, this moment

I want you.

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