8.11.2014

The Will of the Spouses, Part 3

Part 1.
Part 2.

When I wrote about TTA even though we were still TTC that first time, I never thought I'd revisit it once, let alone twice. Upon the second writing, I knew that everything wasn't perfect, but I figured we'd checked "TTA" off of our list and would move on.

Until I met with Fr. D. (the first of 3 sessions, 2 before the roller coaster of last cycle began, 1 in the middle of it), and he suggested that we TTA every other cycle. The look on my face must have given away my displeasure anger at this suggestion, because he immediately reminded me that he wasn't telling us what to do, but rather he was asking me to pray about and talk to The Man about this. I didn't have much to say even to that.

I was not so much angry that he was suggesting it, but rather that it needed to be suggested at all - which ultimately led me to realize that once again he was probably right. And, when I suggested it to The Man, his rather quick agreeable response confirmed this.

And so, here we are nearing the end of another cycle having TTA even though we want to conceive. Is this what everyone says when the say "the trying part is fun"? Because I'm not finding this fun.

While it may not be fun, I do find it necessary and if it can be as fruitful as the first 2 TTA months, then it will be worth it for our marriage in the long run. I also won't lie and say that after last cycle, knowing that AF will for sure be coming and no craziness to deal with won't be a bad thing. I also can see clearly how if we were using these "fertile" days, I would be 1) a nervous, anxious disaster and 2) completely baby focused for the 2ww after.

And yet, I am a woman who has had blocked tubes not once but twice. Time is not my friend. But, for the sake of my marriage, that must come secondary.

One of the benefits we talk about when teaching NFP is the conversation each month regarding goals for trying to space or postpone pregnancy. For us, we only had 1 "gray area" month when we went from TTA to TTC, and that was really only because I didn't think we should let the margaritas we'd had make such an important decision for us. It is only now, nearly 5 years later, with more than 3 1/2 years of infertility behind us that we find ourselves in a situation where each month the decision is somewhat unknown; where each month we are asking ourselves first, what is God's will and second, what is for the good of one another, what is the will of the spouses.

I have no middle ground on this. No ability to shrug it off and say "it is what it is." I vacillate between extreme anger or sadness (they almost always go together) and peace. The anger and sadness come at just how much damage was done to our physical intimacy during the years before NFP, yes I was on The Pill, but that wasn't the only bad decision we made. No decision was made to do harm, but the harm that was done is still impacting our marriage. The wisdom of the Church's teaching on the beauty and holiness of marriage and sexuality only becomes more and more clear as we work to undo all of these knots. The anger and sadness also comes when I consider the lost time, when the thoughts like "what if this was the month" start to enter my mind, only to be followed with cynicism and doubt, because what would make this month any different than the last 45 months? The peace comes when I reflect on the healing that is taking place, when I am gifted with moments where I see clearly that this is the life before me and I want to live it. This man who is patient and forgiving and loves me enough to not let all of this damage our marriage.

To those of you who have commented or messaged privately and are dealing with stuff like this, I wish I could tell you that this was all easy and that it would fix everything. I can't because that wouldn't be the truth. It's hard. I think the hardest part of it all is that there is no guarantee it will "work", there is no guarantee that time of "ease" surrounding our physical intimacy will ever come back. It just seems extra cruel that infertility took that away too.

10 comments:

  1. My heart is broken for you. I know these thoughts and feelings all too well. I hate IF and what it does. Not only do we have to deal with an empty womb month after month but there is a lot more that is lost than that. I hope you can feel Gods loving embrace surrounding you. I will be praying for you and your dear husband.

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    1. Thank you for the prayers. There is truly just so much to deal with. I see so much healing happening, and I am oh so aware that I must just remain open and let God lead and do this work in our marriage. My temptation to grasp and to fix must be one I fight, because I cannot do this on my own, which is tough for a Type-A control freak to deal with. Fortunately The Man is much more patient and calm than I am.

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  2. I give you lots of credit for being about to TTA when you want to TTC...we've never done that unless the Dr told us to. Right now we aren't TTC but we aren't TTA either. We are just letting whatever happens, happen. You and your dh are truly putting God in the middle of this...good for you. Yeah...the "no guarantee any of this will work" just bites. We've put a lot of prayers and money and hope into this adoption journey...with absolutely no guarantee. Ugh.

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  3. ((((HUGS)))) and love to you. Infertility robs a person of so much.

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  4. Ditto what All in His Perfect Timing said. So much. I'm so sorry.

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  5. As difficult as it is, I hope that taking this time truly makes a difference in your marriage and that you continue to grow together.

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    1. Thank you. It is. One step and one day at a time. There is healing, and that is all I can ask or hope for, truly.

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  6. I'm glad you're working on healing your marriage, but I'm so sad that there was so much hurt in the first place. IF is hard enough on us, on our self esteem, on how we look at everything...but to add what you're going through to that, it just seems like so much to face at once. You are very brave to share it publicly but I'm sure you are helping a lot of people feel less alone. Sending hugs and prayers!!!

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    1. Thank you.

      I think without IF a lot of it would have probably just remained under the surface, possibly forever. It's an odd place to be, I'm grateful for the opportunity to heal hurts, but just so sad that they exist to begin with. The Man, well, you've met him, his calm 'everything will be OK' approach is especially a blessing as we travel this specific road.

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  7. It is cruel that infertility affects this part of our marriages too. :( i think you are amazing for being willing to TTA, what a beautiful witness to the value of your marriage.

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