(Have you missed the blog before this one, with our announcement, then watch that first 😉 https://fermontfotografie.nlen/now)
The last year has been an emotional rollercoaster ride. From trying to combine continuous hospital visits with my work, and constantly being busy with babies while wanting one so badly myself (and not knowing whether it would ever happen), to making our personal journey public knowledge.
When we decided to make things public, we were waiting until we could start procedures in Groningen. We had no idea that we have success the first time round, and thought that we’d have a lot more stories to tell in the coming months. We allowed the blog to run behind real time, because I needed to write each blog, have it checked by Denny, and translated by Debbie. We thought that sometime during 2015 we’d ‘catch up’, after the third ICSI attempt maybe…
I can still see us watching Google Analytics Realtime (where you can see how many people are on your website at that moment) when we published the first blog. I thought maybe 50 people would read it, and that would have been fine. We wanted to give people a choice about whether or not they wanted to read it. That’s the reason the FaceBook posts always began clearly with “My Life”, and also the reason these blogs were on a separate page on the website. If you didn’t want to see it, you didn’t have to. 🙂 On that very first night waaaaaay more than 50 people read the blog, and before we knew it we had more than 2000 readers, and that number kept increasing towards the end. We never imagined that would happen!
Once we had started publishing the blogs, Denny wouldn’t let me tell people where we were in the whole process. Everywhere we went, people would ask about it. My standard answer was “You need to read it on the blog.” It was hard to say, “I’M NOT PREGNANT!” when everyone thought I was, or to say, “I DON’T KNOW HOW THE STORY ENDS!” when people suggested I write a book. Because then I’d be revealing information unintentionally. I even received WhatsApp messages congratulating me on my pregnancy, when I wasn’t pregnant. Try calmly saying, “Keep reading the blog…” under those circumstances.. But that’s what I did, once I’d vented my real feelings with Denny (tip: never ever congratulate someone with their pregnancy if they haven’t told you themselves that they are pregnant). I agreed with Denny. Now that we’d said “A”, we needed to continue on to “B”, and tell the story as it happened, without revealing any spoilers.
When we went to Groningen, I joked with Denny: “If this works on the first try, what will we do with the blog? We still have so much to tell, which makes things tricky.” Luckily my egg and Denny’s seed didn’t listen to me. 😉
At the moment that you’re going through this process, it seems to last forever, and everything revolves around having a baby. Sometimes it feels unbearable, because you don’t know whether it’s ever going to happen. If only you could look into the future, because not knowing is what kills you! I think you can only understand what it’s like if you’ve been through it yourself, but even then it’s different for everyone. The strange thing is that once you have that positive test in your hands, everything that happened before seems to fade away.
We are intensely aware of how ‘easy’ this all was for us. There are so many couples who try again and again, and don’t get pregnant. People have sent us their stories, telling of years of trying (not 2 years, like us, but 6 years, or 10 years). Couples who have tried everything and still end up with empty arms, or choose to go with a donor or surrogate mother. When I wrote about “my egg”, “his seed” and “the transfer”, everybody seemed to be positive, but you have no idea how many transfers will nót end in a pregnancy…. The chances that this would work out the first attempt in Groningen were only 8%…. There is so much more that you can experience on this rollercoaster ride. I’m glad we were spared all that, but it is something which gives pause for thought.
The chance of miscarriage is much higher with ICSI treatment, and in a lot of the stories I read, there were miscarriages. Often more than one. I am now out of the ‘danger zone’, and we have been spared that pain too.
My intention was to keep blogging during the pregnancy, and I am going to do so, but not 3 times a week anymore. During the first months I was extremely nauseous. Not just in the morning, but the whole day long. I had to cancel many photo shoots, and could only work a couple of hours each day, if I was lucky. There was therefore no time to write new blogs. Before I got pregnant I thought nothing would be able to destroy my happiness at getting pregnant, but that was sadly not true. I didn’t realize how all-consuming nausea could be, and how the only thing you’re happy about is that the day has come to an end. The weeks were not fun, not for me, not for Denny, and not for my clients. Slowly it’s now improving, but unfortunately during the Christmas holiday in Lapland I caught a nasty flu bug, which made me very, very ill. I hope now that the nausea and flu are behind me, and that I can finally start to enjoy the fact that I am pregnant.
It’s still something that I cannot believe.
I.Am. Pregnant. There’s a baby growing in my belly. We’re having a baby…
Every now and then I’ll be happy to tell you how it’s going, show you some photos, and of course I hope I’ll be able to share the birth story of our baby this summer!
We said it in the video, but thank you all so much for all your kind words, for sharing your stories, and for all the lovely reactions to the blogs. We’d like to end this blog with something a doctor in Gent said to us: “You can run out of courage sometimes, but never run out of hope.”
Go for it, everyone, whatever the result may be.
X Marry and Denny