Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Myth: Secondary* IF? You have no reason to complain!


The second round with IF is a tough place to be.
It has taken me quite some time to accept that, even though I should have know better.

That said, I am in a much better place now than I was before Linnea was born.
Those dark days of the first round were such a mess.

Does the second round hurt more because I know what I'm missing?
'More' is not how I would put it. How then? I've been mulling this
over for a while, and my conclusion is this:

The second round hurts in ways I couldn't imagine when I was still in
the first round.
(And mercifully so, because it would have been too much to bear).

Remember the movie 'a Space Oddyssey'? A mysterious black monolith
appears and it changes human life.

During the first round, my longing for a child was like that
mysterious black monolith.
A child I wanted, that much I knew. It meant being pregnant. I would
get to push a stroller and gaze lovingly down at the infant inside.
But beyond that, I drew a blank, mostly.

Making it to parenthood was marvelous. Open Sesame, I was finally let
into the treasure cave. I walk around inside with a basket, collecting
pearls, gems, and jewelry of intricate craftsmanship.

Other people wander through the cave, the fill a first basket, pick up
a second, third, ... and continue filling all of them.

I search high and low to find another basket, I move piles of rocks,
wade through pools, nothing. "Be grateful for what you have" - the
other couples pipe.

Finally, I spy a small basket and grab hold of it - only for it to
crumble to dust. "At least you have one" - the others chime.

Think of your friends still stuck in the shadow of that black monolith
- my conscience says.

Why not simply be happy with the basket I have - I keep asking,
urging, berating myself. Because no matter what I decide, the longing

The cave goes on and on, and with every step there are new delights
(but watch your step - there are pitfalls and debris to trip you up -
sheer terror!). Yet as the light sparkles in each finely cut
gem-stone, I can't help but think of what isn't.

So, for me personally, the second round hurts in ways I couldn't
imagine when I was still in the first round.

* Secondary IF: A couple/person who has had a child (or several)
without trouble but who experiences IF when TTC a second (third,
fourth, ...) child.
I'm going through primary IF a second time around.

This post is an international contribution to Resolve's U.S. National
Infertility Awareness Week®.
Some background on infertility:
About National Infertility Awareness Week® (NIAW):


At 27 April, 2011 22:03, Blogger serenity said...

Goosebumps, Lut. You describe it so perfectly.

Thank you.

(and hugs, too)


At 28 April, 2011 02:48, Blogger Sara said...

Yeah, this post really hits the nail on the head. For me the part that totally sucks about round number two is that people (including those who have three or four kids) will smugly tell me to be glad that I have one, as if the one thing had anything to do with the other. Of COURSE I'm glad that I have Eggbert, and of course I'm way better off than I was before I had Eggbert. I am beyond grateful for her, and most days am happy (unlike round #1, when most days I was miserable). However, the desire for another child is always there. I think about it every day. For many minutes every day. It haunts me.

At 28 April, 2011 14:11, Blogger Bea said...

There are definitely different kinds of suckages in each stage. I know, for me, the first failed IVF attempt was a special kind of hurt, different from the failures that followed before we finally brought home PB. How could we expect secondary/primary the second time around infertility to be anything but unique unto itself?

The bottom line is I'm sorry you're going through it.


At 28 April, 2011 17:19, Blogger BigP's Heather said...

Yes! Exactly!

I've been writing and erasing posts for NIAW...

It is as equally painful but in a different way now.

At 29 April, 2011 03:24, Blogger Roccie said...

Magnificent post.

At 30 April, 2011 03:31, Blogger Hekateris said...

So goddamned true.


At 30 April, 2011 10:00, Anonymous jjiraffe said...

This was really well-written. I love the monolith analogy. You really paint the picture clearly. (((Hugs)))

At 01 May, 2011 13:19, Anonymous Krissi said...

I know you...because you were me not too long ago. I thought it was "harder" to go through it the 2nd time as well...knowing exactly what I was missing...and yet now I am overjoyed by how much my life has changed and the reality is so much better than I ever imagined it would be.
Just found you and added you on to my blogroll. Hugs!

At 01 May, 2011 13:23, Anonymous Krissi said...

By the way, I would love to feature your success story on my blog! I know you're still going through it, but it is inspiring none the less to see a parent (from ART) persuing more to continue on. Here's the link to get more info:

At 03 May, 2011 17:39, Blogger Thalia said...

Beautiful post, Lut. I was very lucky not to spend too long on the secondary infertility wagon but it was bloody awful in quite a different way than the first time was. I feel for you.

At 04 May, 2011 03:57, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, this ride sucks.

You said it well.


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