I know, I’ve been MIA. Here’s why.
October 2, 2018 16 CommentsCategory: IVF Journey, Motherhood, My Story
Tags: IVF, Infertility, MS, multiple sclerosis
The last time I posted a blog entry was in May, which I guess was about 5 months ago. Wow, it’s been a long time.
The truth is, our life has been anything but “normal” since then, and after much debate, I’ve decided to finally open up about what’s been going on.
Let me first say that life isn’t always rainbows and smiles. Yes, we all know that – and all experience ups and downs – yet it almost seems socially unacceptable to post about anything other than cute babies, delicious meals, or wonderful vacations. I’ll be the first person to admit that I am guilty of that too. I think we can all agree that it’s easier to focus on the good, right? The truth is that talking about personal topics can be painful and even borders on socially inappropriate (some things are just private.. right?). But in the spirit of continuing my transparency around my MS and authentically telling my story in the hopes of helping others, I’ve decided to share this less than “like” worthy news. So here it goes.
We’ve been struggling to have a second child for a while now, and my doctors believe the progression of my MS is the culprit. My egg quality isn’t what it should be for someone my age, which apparently is common with severe autoimmune diseases. Deteriorated egg quality can make it hard to not only get pregnant but to stay pregnant too.
As a result, we’ve seen several doctors, gotten multiple opinions, have undergone IVF, and are slowly paving our way to the second child we’ve always wanted. This certainly wasn’t in our plan, but this has become part of our journey.
The last several months have been physically and emotionally draining to say the least. Between the seemingly endless medications, hormones, and MS symptoms, I haven’t felt like myself. It’s affected my mood, my health, my relationships, and even my sense of self.
Those who know me well know that I am a determined person who goes after what I want wholeheartedly. But infertility isn’t something you can will away or work hard to overcome. You can only do so much and the rest is really out of your control.
So, over the last several months, we started a more aggressive path to have a second child, which included IVF (in vitro fertilization). While we kept this private, I have been tracking our journey through (unpublished) blog posts since writing has always been an outlet for me. I also knew that eventually – when I felt stronger and more level-headed – that I’d want to share what I’ve learned about the correlation between MS and infertility in the hopes of helping others, because I wish I had known more about this earlier myself. I wish someone had told me about the potential risks ahead. I wish I had asked more questions. I wish I had done more research. I wish I had advocated for myself and our family sooner.
This is the inspiration behind my new series of blog posts that are to come each week. To share with you our experience and hopefully help others gain insight, knowledge, or even support from our situation. Or perhaps, hearing about our experience makes you feel less alone in your own fertility journey or even just sheds light on this very real – very common – problem that affects 1 in 8 couples.
Infertility is painful but something that can make you stronger, bring you closer together and yes, even remind you to practice gratitude every day – even when things aren’t going your way. I’ve learned a lot on this journey so far and look forward to sharing this experience with you.
Stay tuned for follow-up posts each week. Since writing is an outlet for me, I’ve tracked our fertility journey through this difficult period in the posts written here. Due to the sensitivity of the topic, these blogs are not being posted in real-time. However, I wanted to share this experience and my continued journey with MS for others who may be struggling or are in a similar position. This problem is relatable for many and something that needs to be vocalized. I know how helpful it can be to learn and hear from others.
October 2, 2018 at 12:28 pm
You are, as always, so genuine and open, Angie, and so generous to share this to help others.
October 2, 2018 at 2:37 pm
Thank you for your constant support (and for always reading my blogs :))
October 8, 2018 at 1:58 pm
I’ve missed reading about you and what been going on. You are inspriration, love your attitude, outlook and consistency. I know everything will work out exactly the way you and your family hope for. Love you, sending you positive vibrations and some 🙏🙏🙏
October 2, 2018 at 1:41 pm
It’s so good to see you post again. Missed you.. Sorry you are going through this but another baby would be so worth it (easy for me to say). I had all my kids before MS diagnosis but it did take some time to conceive each one and now I’m curious if I had the MS then and didn’t know it. Looking forward to your next post. Thinking of you.
October 2, 2018 at 2:38 pm
Thanks so much, Alicia. Appreciate your comment and that you’ll be following along. Definitely will be worth it, but it’s been quite the ride already. 😉
October 2, 2018 at 3:00 pm
I’m so proud of you – that you are willing to be vulnerable — in the hope of helping others.
October 2, 2018 at 4:31 pm
I wish you and your husband the best of luck. It was so nice to hear your honest reflection again. Please remember that all experiences both positive and those not so much bring those who love us closer together
October 3, 2018 at 9:11 am
Thank you, Lee. Yes, I agree, this has brought us closer together and a fresh perspective on our lives. I am hopeful in the end all of this will make sense and it’ll fall into place. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
October 2, 2018 at 8:33 pm
I personally think the infertility struggles and treatment have been so much more challenging than the MS. Both at the same time is just overwhelming. Thank you for sharing and making me feel like I’m not alone!
October 3, 2018 at 9:10 am
I couldn’t agree with you more. My MS diagnosis was not nearly as difficult as this experience has been. Infertility can break you, have you questioning everything, and really weigh on you mentally and physically. But, you have to keep your eye on the prize and just hope (and pray) that it’ll work out in the end. You just don’t have control over that timing, which for me is always a tough pill to swallow. I wish you the best of luck with your journey and you have to keep me posted too.
October 2, 2018 at 8:56 pm
Thank you for sharing such a personal story. It is such a hard topic to talk about because it is so painful. I can say you are not alone. Infertility has been a part of my story for the last almost 11 years of my marriage. I always imagined a life where I would have kids, but after finding out about my MS, and also the fact that I have fibroids and an enlarged uterus, plus the fact that I’m not getting any younger-almost 38, it has forced me to re-examine the direction of my life in regards to children. I am shocked to hear that it can be linked to MS! I have never heard that before. I have had a hard few years coming to the conclusion of closing the door to the idea of being a mom. There are days I’m ok with it, then there are days I frankly am not. I honestly don’t even talk about it too much because it is such a hard topic to talk to people about, especially those that love you. Telling everyone about the MS diagnosis was hard enough, let alone telling them that this is also a struggle. We have not gone the invitro route as I am just not sure I want to put myself through that. So weird that as I’m writing this I just opened up a Dove chocolate promise, and it said, “You are never too old and it is never too late.” Maybe the universe is trying to tell me something? Hugs to you Angie! ♡
October 3, 2018 at 9:08 am
That is such a hard call, and only one you and your husband can decide.. It’s funny, you think it’ll be so easy when you decide the time is right and then God has other plans for you. I will say that if you do decide you want this, it’s not too late. In-vitro fertilization makes parenthood possible for people in your shoes and mine. It’s difficult – both emotionally and mentally – but for me, totally worth it. You just have to keep your eye on the goal and pull out the strength you never knew you had. Please keep me posted on your journey too.. 🙂
October 6, 2018 at 2:42 pm
Hi Angie, I used to work with your dad, and remember he posted when you started your blog. I just recently was diagnosed with MS myself so I searched for your blog. Funny that the first blog post I read is about IVF. I have been pursuing IVF for over a year trying to have our second child. IVF is so emotionally taxing. I can’t comment on MS yet because it’s so new. But I think when we don’t have control over things, it’s just a huge slap in the face! I like having control! 🙂
October 9, 2018 at 3:12 pm
Thank you for sharing your incredibly personal journey with us. It is definitely inspiring to fellow MSers who haven’t given a thought to having children yet or thought of the possibility of fertility issues in the future. I hope it will inspire others to have their eggs checked and/or frozen if possible. I really hope you get the child you are trying for.