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The Long Wait

November 22, 2019

Hello, guys. Long time no see! What a crazy time it’s been.

I’m committed to writing about my journey, but since it’s been too long, let’s skip to the end of the story: it worked. I’ve been a mother for the last nearly-thirteen months, and it’s…

Jaina Esme Sanchez

Jaina Esme Sanchez – Dare you not to smile when she smiles.

For now, I’d like to take an interlude to talk about infertility. About waiting. About hoping. And about all the tests that came up negative before I finally got my big fat positive.

Going into this journey, I was ambivalent about the endgame. I thought motherhood was probably something I wanted. Clearly, I wanted it enough that I’d taken all the steps and started to put some serious money down. I balk and having to spend $60 for a pair of shoes. What the hell was I doing shelling out thousands to try to create a human being if I wasn’t sure?

My desire to have a baby was never a given. I thought I wanted it, but it was never the end all, be all of my life. I never daydreamed of motherhood. I never longed for it. I never ached when I passed a stroller or the baby section in any store. I could easily picture my life without children. I have ambition and drive—plenty of things to do and accomplish.

I went into the experience with logic and rationality on my side. Now was the time to try; I knew that. I wasn’t getting any younger. Adoption had been my first choice, but that was out of reach at the time. Biology wasn’t always going to be an option so it was time to start.

I knew the odds. There is a relatively small fertile window in every reproductive cycle. At best, there’s a thirty percent chance of pregnancy each month if egg and sperm were introduced on the right dates. My first few tries were natural cycle. After that, even with medical assistance, the odds were still less than fifty/fifty. I was committed to trying more than once, but I knew I couldn’t try forever. I’m not a woman of means. I live paycheck to paycheck, and I was already using my credit card to fund my journey.

I’ve read countless stories about the journey through infertility. I’ve read about the emotional turmoil, the despair. That, I thought, would never be me. I knew the numbers and, if it never happened, I would be okay with that. It wasn’t going to hurt. Except for the battering to my wallet, the journey of trying to get pregnant wasn’t going to hurt.

At first, the whole process was matter-of-fact. I went to my appointments. I reported my cycle dutifully. I took the trigger shot. I was curious during the two week wait before I was supposed to test, but I wasn’t overly hopeful or eager.

I was sitting in the hospital, writing the blog post explaining how I chose the Cryobank where I purchased the sperm that eventually became my daughter when I realized how damn tired I was. It was the morning of my third attempt. I’d dropped off the tank of sperm and was waiting for my insemination. I’d finished but posting seemed like too much.

When had my shoulders begun to slump? When had this sadness become a part of me? When had honest curiosity become trepidation, waiting for this try to become another failure?

When had my empty arms begun to feel so heavy with loss and want?

Back then, I found I couldn’t continue telling my story—not until I knew how it ended. While I was still trying, I couldn’t deal with the idea of talking about the preparation, the steps, the cycles while wondering if all of it was for nothing. Was my final blog post going to talk about bitter loss—letting go of all the things my life could have been to embrace a childless existence? Or would my journey end with a new beginning?

The answer to that question is almost thirteen months old.

I’m ready to tell the rest of my story. I’m ready…but fair warning. I can’t write the way I used to. My hands are usually too busy.

Dear Baby,

Somebody once told me that they truly believed people only had the children that were meant for them. The ones that suited them perfectly. I told her I thought that was ridiculous as someone who wanted to be a parent would enjoy any child they had. But now, while I still know I’m right—I would have loved the children you aren’t as much as I love you—I understand what she meant.

I think sometimes about the babies that didn’t spark. I think about the DNA written into each and every sperm and egg that washed away, the possibilities that never were. Who would they have been? What would they be like?

And then, I think of you. I think of the four eggs I started with that cycle, and I can’t be anything but glad you were the one who took hold. You’re perfect. All the things that make up the person that is you are just right, and I couldn’t imagine anything else, anyone else.

As you grow, you continue to show me more of who you are, and I couldn’t be more enthralled.

I ask you sometimes why you chose me when you were just a spark. I love you, Jaina.

Go back to: Episode 4 – It Takes A Village

2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 22, 2019 3:31 pm

    I’m not crying. You’re crying! *sniffle* She’s beautiful, and your journey, all the heartaches and curiosities and failures and big fat spectacular success, is beautiful. Congratulations, Mama. Welcome to the club. We’ve got crackers (and juice boxes!).

  2. Anne Forlines permalink
    November 22, 2019 7:08 pm

    Huge congrats, Kristina!! And guess what? You still write as beautifully as before. 😘

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