When we first decided to have a baby, I was one holistic wanna-be momma-to-be. As soon as the birth control pills hit the trash, so too did BPAs, carageenans, benzophenon, high fructose corn syrup, modified palm oil and all of their chemical based, baby blocking friends. None of that crap was getting near my moon goddess womb! In the absence of said crap, I invited almost daily doses of coconut oil, maca root, acupuncture, meditation and yoga. Our skin care products and pantry got a baby making overhaul and I wasn’t letting anything near me that wasn’t organic, natural or chemical free.
My strategy worked for a time, and then it didn’t and then it kept not working. All in all, the aforementioned plan to kumbaya the shit out of my uterus, lasted all of about six months. The moment I realized we might be having trouble conceiving, I marched into my doctor’s office and said “please give me all the drugs…now…thank you”.
I completely underestimated how strong the desire to be a mother could be. When the possibility of having a baby was threatened, I turned to science and statistics and concrete evidence. To hell with the hippy-dippy, holistic mumbo-jumbo, just get me my baby! The way I see it, I sold my soul to the pharmaceutical gods in exchange for a baby. I have never wanted something so bad that I would do almost anything to have it. If there was scientific evidence that said we would get pregnant if I ate three jars of kimchi , while doing a headstand stark naked, singing “If I Could Turn Back Time” beneath the glow of a full moon…I would do it! Thankfully, a simpler option presented itself, in the form of a tiny white pill.
As with most women, the first drug I took was the dreaded Chlomid. My understanding is that Chlomid is one of the only fertility drugs that a GP can prescribe, which is why so many women start with it. The idea behind Chlomid is that it basically kick starts a woman’s ovulation. A lot of beautiful babies have made their way into this world thanks to Chlomid, but not before it made their mamma’s go a little cuckoo for coco puffs. Messing with your hormones to that extent puts you into something like PMS hyper-drive. My husband lovingly referred to it as the hormonal roller-coaster drug or the ‘glass cage of emotion’ pill. In short, it’s a real treat!
The highlight of my Chlomid experience was the time I decided to toast up a cheese bagel (part of my constant Chlomid cravings for terrible, horrible, non-whole foods). I tossed that little bagel into the toaster with a pep in my step and set about cleaning the kitchen (scrolling through Instagram). When I heard the delightful pop, I came back to find my cheese bagel burnt to a crisp. Someone (read: husband) had cranked the toaster level up to 5, when I usually keep it at 3 and he didn’t put it back! After slamming cupboards, plates and buttered knives, I stormed into my bedroom, slammed the door and ate my burnt, buttered bagel through a waterfall of tears, while silently plotting my revenge.
If the hormonal drugs don’t get you, the injectables will. As if sticking a needle into your own tummy/rear end wasn’t bad enough, those little ‘trigger shots’ are so complicated! There’s like 10 steps to get the needle on the stick and then you have to click it a bunch of times, all the while being incredibly careful to not accidentally poke yourself before you’re ready. Then…you have to insert a needle into your own flesh! Don’t get me wrong, I am not afraid of needles. I met my husband at the blood donor clinic for crying out loud…but it is a whole other thing to have to do it yourself.
As I sat at my dining room table, for what felt like hours, readying myself to stick the needle in, I began to question if we had made the right choice. At that moment, I was pretty nostalgic for my holistic efforts; but in the end, I said these words, ‘whatever it takes’…and in went the needle.
After Clomid and Ovidrel, came Letrazol and Progesterone and our drug journey is not yet over. Comparatively, we are at the beginning of what I can only hope will be a very short journey and I stand in awe of women who have been walking this road for far longer than I. They are heroes to me, as are the partners that stand beside them through the ups and the downs and the ups and the downs…and the ups and the downs. Not everyone will agree with the choices we are making to turn our baby dreams into reality and that’s okay. Today, I’m embracing drugs and modern science, tomorrow, I may go right back to a natural approach. No matter how we get there, I know that one day, I will look back on this journey with the confidence to say it was all worth it. I can only hope that our children will grow to know just how much they were wanted and the obstacles we were willing to face to bring them into this world.
love, lust and baby dust,