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We always thought we would have kids. We started trying when we believed we were ready. A month went by, then two months, six months, a year. Nothing happened.

Something was wrong, but nobody could tell us what - and they still can't to this day. We tried IVF three times but our results were not good. We were devastated.

Eighteen months after our last IVF cycle, we knew we would not be having our own children. And, somehow, we have moved to a life that is much different to the one we thought we'd have.

This blog is about what we do now we know we won't be having children - the thoughts, dreams, realities, sorrows, and joys that have become our new life path.

I hope you will enjoy what I will be sharing, and I hope that if you are at the point where life without children is a reality for you, that you might find some hope and inspiration here.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Changes...

I went to the doctor recently as I was bleeding excessively around that time…you know what I mean…

I had blood tests and found out that I am on the border line of being anaemic – which, in case you don’t know, means my iron levels are very low and I get very tired. I’m on big time iron tablets now and already, in just a week, I am feeling so much better. It’s only now that I look back that I realise just how awfully tired I have been. It’s a relief, really, to find out that there is a reason as to why I have been so lacking in energy for so long – and that there is something that can be done about it.

The diagnosis I was not expecting, though, is that I am now considered to be in the initial stages of perimenopause. Perimenopause is “around the time of” menopause. It’s like you’re heading toward the ocean for a swim, you’re not quite there yet, but you start to smell the salty air of the sea (but just not as much fun…).

I had actually suspected for a while that something was going on. I’m 41 years old and therefore at the age when things usually start winding down for women.

Ironically – one way to control the excessive blood loss is to have a Mirena (a contraceptive device). Look it up if you want to. Personally, I don’t like the idea much myself and I’ll be looking at other ways first – such as acupuncture. At least now there are choices for me other than to have a full hysterectomy as would have been the case just 15 years ago!

Anyway – I’ve gone off topic as to what I really wanted to write about.

The emotional side.

There’s always been a part of me that believes I could try for a baby again if I chose to. There was still time. I could simply change my mind. Now that choice is being taken away from me bit by bit. I’m getting older and my body is changing and saying to me that the option of having a baby is being removed.

I’ve known for a long time, now, that I won’t be having children – but being able to think that the possibility still exists has provided me with an odd sense of comfort.

I thought I was fine with the whole perimenopause thing – until I started to cry last night after dreaming that we had a child. They were about two years old and I was holding them in my arms as they drifted off to sleep. Our little Jacob had come to visit me in my dreams again.

I woke up with that familiar empty feeling and even reached out in a bit of a panic to try and find our son.

But he wasn’t there.

There are people who say that you “get over” being unable to have children.

But I don’t know that I ever really will. And so long as Jacob keeps visiting me in my dreams I don’t know that I would want to – however bitter-sweet those dreams might be.

6 comments:

BentNotBroken said...

Hi! I can't remember if I've ever commented, but I have been reading for a while. Anyway....I completely understand the whole excessive bleeding thing. In fact when I told my doctor how much I was bleeding (I use a menstrual cup so I had a pretty accurate estimate of the amount) she couldn't believe I was still walking. I also got the peri-menopause diagnosis, though the hot flashes were a pretty good indication that it was already underway. I wanted a uterine ablation but unfortunately due to both insurance and my age that wasn't an option. I ended up with a Mirena because I had to do something (and insurance said I had to try that before they would pay for an ablation). If you're interested I'm happy to share my experience with it, both the good and the bad.

The emotional part, that just plain sucks. It's hard.

Mali said...

Dreams are really tough! They play with our emotions so badly. I'm really sorry you went through that. Transitioning to peri-menopause is a shock, without having to deal with all our emotional issues around children.

I endured excessive bleeding at that time of the month for several years. In hindsight, I wish I'd tried a mirena. A friend swears by hers. I was given some medication that helps moderate it, which worked for a while. Glad you're feeling better. I know what that feeling of exhaustion is like.

Kate Bettison said...

Thank you both of you for sharing that the Mirena might not be so bad as I thought! BentNotBroken I would love to hear more about your experiences. If you can use the contact form to the right then we can have a private chat. x

Kate Bettison said...

Hey BentNotBroken - just wanted to let you know that I got your message, but my email is misbehaving and not letting me send emails at the moment. I'll definitely reply to you as soon as it is up and running again - you've given me some great info and things to think about! x

dorothywasadopted said...

Hi - I've been following your blog as we have gone through a similar, but different, type of journey towards a life without children. I, too, felt like I was closing some sort of door that wasn't ever really open to begin with, when I got my Mirena. Despite all of the infertility and struggles we had with adoption, I carried hope that maybe, it might just happen naturally. Finally making the decision for an IUD was actually relieving. Oddly enough, I felt like I was back in control. No more wild cycles. No more wishing and then tears. The fact is, I can't carry children and since Mirena stops periods, not having that reminder is a small perk. It makes me feel better able to transition into this new reality. Just thought I would weigh in - totally respect your decision.

Kate Bettison said...

Hey Dorothy - thank you soooo much for your comment! I'm actually booked in for the Mirena next Wednesday, and I've been feeling really nervous about it. So your comment has really helped to calm me down. I know that it might not go as planned, but it's worth a try and my experience might work really well! If not - at least it can be removed. You are an angel! xx