By KATE TAYLOR
Fertility treatment is a lot like doing the Nutbush.
You just follow the steps; left foot back, right foot back, left ovary stimulated, right ovary stimulated.
It’s fun at the start. You kick off with a whole lot of gusto.
But it just keeps going. And going. Keeping up gets harder, and then you start to wonder if it’s ever going to end, and someone please hand me a frozen margarita and show me to the nearest bar stool already because no amount of calf raises could prepare me for this.
Make that a virgin frozen margarita. Just in case the last cycle worked.
You’ll have to guide me to that stool while you’re at it too because I’m blind.
Being blind doesn’t define me, just the same as undergoing fertility treatment doesn’t define me. Even though on the days of scans, injecting hormones and going to the clinic it feels like this is who I am now. It’s not.
What defines me is in itself indefinable. But there are bits I can pick out. Writer. Wife. Vegetarian. Aunt. Germ freak. Sister. Blogger. Runner. News junkie. Tea drinker. Anxiety sufferer. Daughter. Recovering Milo addict.
I’m not just a 30-year-old who has to try really, really hard to have a baby. For absolutely no medical reason at all. Despite extensive testing.
I’m a spectacularly happy 30-year-old with a brilliant, brilliant husband who keeps me more entertained than an entire season of Modern Family, and an awesome job that keeps me busier than my fingers can type.
So what if ten months of the old-fashioned way isn’t quite cutting it? Same with four ovulation Induction cycles? Ditto two Inter-Uterine Insemination cycles? Give up? Hell to the no. I wouldn’t work as a journalist if I wasn’t at least one third tenacious. Or stubborn. Probably just stubborn.
Figures suggest that at least 15 per cent of Australian couples experience fertility issues. And for that, I have my very own fertility god right here in Ballarat.
He’s part of an elite crack team I’ve gathered around me and between my Dr., fertility nurses, and my acupuncturist, I’m either getting injected, taking hormones, being needled or taking my pants off for a scan on any given day.
It’s been two years now. Really, I could have had one and a half babies in this time if my body capitulated.
And now it’s time to talk about it.
Because there are very few people who do. Every now and then a B-grade celebrity writes a book about it, and most people know someone who has had fertility issues. But it’s all after the fact. Some antiquated form of social nicety dictates that IVF and fertility struggles must only be spoken about post-birth/adoption/surrogacy. After the bad part, that is.