The truth is:
We have tried to conceive (TTC) for nearly 12 years, but everyday still seems like that first day we walked into a reproductive clinic.

The truth is:
We have spent thousands of dollars during our journey for fertility treatment, but have nothing to show for it, except invisible (and in my case, visible) scars. The only things left over from any of those days are emotional trauma and a roadmap of scars all over my abdomen. I used to hate my scars, but they are a part of our story now, so I have come to embrace them.

The truth is:
I smile all the time just to keep myself from crying. I almost always pretend I’m OK when I’m really not OK, because I don’t want to burden anyone with my problems. So instead, I laugh and tell jokes to mask the pain that I keep buried deep inside where no one can see.

The truth is:
Seeing pregnancy/birth announcements on social media, from family/friends, through work announcements, on tv, etc. is still—even after nearly 12 years of TTC—very raw. I’d say it gets easier, but I’d be lying.

The truth is:
We can get pregnant, but every time we do get pregnant, we lose our baby. And with that loss, we lose what our future could have looked like with each and every baby we lose. I often think about how old they would be today, if they were here. We watch our family and friends celebrate their children’s milestones and with that, it brings wonder of what would have been had things been different for us.

The truth is:
Every month is a rollercoaster. Because I have endometriosis, it starts with debilitating pain. Then, we hit the part of the month where we’re hopeful because it’s that window of time where our chance to conceive has officially arrived again. So, it’s filled with excitement and hope. Then, it’s time to wait to see if you were successful, which is a very stressful time. During that time, I’m emotional (but also hopeful). And then, bam. It either happens or it doesn’t. If it doesn’t, it begins a new stage of grief until it’s time to rinse and repeat the cycle outlined above for yet another month of possibilities. If it does happen, for us, the moment is full of excitement and wonder, but for both of us, it’s almost always overshadowed by immense fear because we’ve had so many miscarriages. And then, it happens again. It’s a constant, never-ending rollercoaster.

The truth is:
We’ve tried it all. From weird baby cocktails to infertility treatment, to multiple surgeries, to naprotechnology, to injections…you name it, we’ve tried it. We will continue to try it, until we don’t.

The truth is:
Insurance hasn’t covered one penny of our multiple infertility treatments, yet insurance will cover non-essential procedures, and that infuriates me. This must change.

The truth is:
Every day, I feel like I walk around with a broken heart, even though I live an extremely blessed life and I have the most supportive, caring, and compassionate husband who loves me unconditionally.

The truth is:
I’ve undergone six surgeries to help improve my quality of life and fertility (for endometriosis/complications from endo) since 2009 and with each surgery, I lose a little piece of myself knowing that the prognosis afterwards is never a positive one.

The truth is:
It weighs on me that I may never be able to give my husband a child. My body is the reason we can’t conceive (or hold a pregnancy), and I worry I may not be “enough” even though he has done everything in his power (and then some) to express to me that I’m more than enough to him.

The truth is:
My husband does everything he can to ease my emotional, mental, and physical pain, and I feel guilty my sadness causes him pain. I can see in his eyes that it bothers him that he can’t do anything to help me. It breaks my heart.

The truth is:
I worry I will never be the person I was before we began the journey of TTC, and the thought is really overwhelming.

The truth is:
I have no idea what the future holds, and it scares me. What I do know is that we have a much stronger marriage now—because of infertility and pregnancy loss—and for that, I will forever be thankful for the struggle, regardless of how hard it has been. And while we don’t know what the future holds for us, we will continue to share our story and spread awareness about infertility to help anyone we can who finds themselves where we have been for over a decade. And that, we know.

Missy M.