My Infertility Journey: Is This the Year Our Family Grows?

A new year brings new possibilities. I’m not one for resolutions, but my husband will tell you that I like to have things to look forward to, whether it’s special plans with my daughter, date night, catching up with friends and family or a vacation. I’m a planner by nature and career, so as 2016 begins, I find myself wondering if this is our year. According to our “plan,” it is.

Our daughter will be turning 3 in less than two weeks. People are, naturally, starting to ask if we plan to have another baby. I always hoped my children would be relatively close in age, and as each year passes, the gap between my daughter and her could-be sibling grows larger and larger. My husband and I agreed after we had our daughter that we wanted to buy a house before we grew our family. We just celebrated a year in that house. Things are falling into place and I’m letting myself believe that this is our year.

I learned the first time we did IVF that setting an exact date only caused frustration and disappointment for my husband and me. Our target date was pushed back a couple of times due to circumstances we couldn’t control. In the end, we only started the process a few months later than we originally hoped. Now I know now that the timing was perfect and allowed for awesome symbolism that calmed my nerves (I started medicine during National Infertility Awareness week, had an important appointment on my dad’s birthday, and my embryos were implanted on Mother’s Day) but at the time those additional months were devastating.

That’s why I’ve decided to call 2016 our year instead of focusing on a specific month. I want to keep the pressure off and keep the chance for disappointment about timing at bay. I want to focus on using the time we wait to continue to prepare our life for another child instead of focusing on the months that I’m not pregnant. I want to spend less time worrying about the unknown and the aspects of infertility that I can’t control, which is most of it, and focus on using my experience from the first time to prepare for what’s ahead. And most of all, I want to continue to make memories and soak in my sweet family of three.

A few months ago, I mentioned that we were going to meet with our fertility doctor to discuss the plan for having another child. I am lucky to say that the appointment went as well as I could have hoped. We discussed the treatment plan, the cost, the odds of a successful pregnancy and when to let him know when we are ready to start. He answered my questions and gave me the confidence I need to face the months ahead and start the process with a positive attitude. Sometimes we ask our daughter if she wants to be a big sister and she always enthusiastically says yes. I know we’ll have a long way to go in preparing her to be a big sister and have to share our attention, so I’m using this extra time to slowly start.

In short, I’m planning and thinking about our goal and deep desire to have another baby, but I’m stopping myself from counting the minutes until it happens. I’m allowing my mind to wander to thoughts of being a family of four, but focusing on my time with my husband and daughter now. I want to be optimistic, to believe in my doctor’s confidence and to remember that my husband and I will face 2016, and the years after that, as a team. Of course, my mind is still filled with questions and I’m constantly thinking of the many scenarios that may lie ahead.

Yes, a new year means new possibilities, and my hope for you is that it brings you the answers and outcomes for growing your family, your health, and your goals that you desire. What does 2016 mean for you?