IF Break

When Mr. O and I found out we’d be spending this cycle getting tests done, we decided to take a break from active baby-making. It seemed like a good idea to live like normal people for a few weeks before we jump into whatever medical circus awaits us.

Here’s why.

Back on Labor Day weekend, I was at a friend’s cabin on a lake. It was beautiful, warm, sunny. And I didn’t notice. I floated in and out of conversations, read magazines cover to cover but couldn’t tell you what they were about. On the last day, I was cajoled into going tubing– where one holds on for dear life while one is dragged behind a speed boat. I distinctly remember thinking “I should be having fun right now.” Not “Motherfucker! This is fun!” Not “Holy beejezus, I think I’m going to die!”

“I should be having fun right now.”

That’s how I knew something was off. I normally love that kind of stuff. But it felt more like a duty I had to perform in order to prevent everyone from asking what was wrong. In short, I was not myself and I was doing a marginal imitation.

As I’m sure you’ve all felt at one time or another, I’m tired of being infertile. Not just because I would like to have a baby, but I’d really like to stop googling, reading articles, charting every weird little secretion. After two years of this, I’m ready to think about other things.

So I decided to act like I’m not infertile for this cycle. I stopped obsessively charting my symptoms. I gave up on the trove of vitamins I normally take. I drank alcohol, once even to excess! I also took a break from blogging. (Sorry to anyone who missed me, but it was necessary.)

With my free time, I went out with friends. I watched TV without secretly thinking about fertility protocols the whole time. I read. I made massive batches of tomato soup. I doubled down on my half marathon training. Just in time, I started coaching again. Though I still feel a little bit like a zombie, but at least I recognize that I’m feeling like a zombie. That seems like progress some how.

CD1 has come. And with my RE appointment today, I’m about to dive back in. Ready or not, here I come.



  1. My Perfect Breakdown · September 15, 2014

    I love that you were able to enjoy life and to live! I think that’s on of the hardest things about being in the infertile club – as my husband and I always say, we live in a pregnancy bubble and it sucks when the pregnancy bubble has lasted for over 2 years!
    Anyways, I missed you and am happy to see your return. Although, I hope that you are able to continue living even if you are back in the bubble!

    • thecommonostrich · September 16, 2014

      After two years, I think we deserve a break now and then. If I do get pregnant, I will now officially have spent more time PLANNING it than actually incubating a tiny human. Ah, such is life…

  2. Jennie · September 15, 2014

    I’m so glad you had a nice break. Sometimes it’s necessary! Now you have the energy needed to attack this cycle!

    • thecommonostrich · September 16, 2014

      TOTALLY necessary. I had forgotten what I was like before my IF mania set in. Turns out, I’m still pretty fun. 😉

  3. labmonkeyftw · September 15, 2014

    Welcome back: I had missed you, but had hoped this was a late summer break involving fun and non-fertility related things: I am glad it was!
    Good luck at the RE and with the upcoming cycle. It sounds odd, but being at a clinic where they are keeping tabs on you actually relaxed my fertility stress: I wasn’t the one in charge of timing anymore, which was nice (even if simultaneously highly impersonal).

    • thecommonostrich · September 16, 2014

      There is something nice about getting professionals involved, isn’t there? I went to my RE yesterday, and it was so great to have a plan of attack based on actual science, not my erratic consultations with Dr. Google. I’m hoping medical intervention coupled with my IF vacation will ratchet down my anxiety down a little.

  4. Twelve Week Eternities · September 16, 2014

    Your break sounds amazing, and so, so good for the soul 🙂 I agree about being sick of this journey and the way it rules all – your emotions, thoughts, actions….Wishing you lots of luck for your next cycle!

    • thecommonostrich · September 16, 2014

      It was so necessary. I was starting to lose myself in all this, which is a shame because I’m pretty amazing. 😉 What I also loved is that when I did get my period, it didn’t feel like a failure. It was just my body doing its thing. I feel just a little bit kinder to myself.

  5. RDChef · September 16, 2014

    Amen, sister! If you or others have any tips on how to not obsess, I would love to hear them. My husband and I made the decision to “let go” a couple of months ago, and the first month was great–no crying when I started to spot or get my period for the first time in months. I find myself getting sucked back into the bubble, though…two steps forward, one step back? (We’re not pursuing any medical intervention for now.)

    • thecommonostrich · September 16, 2014

      My only solution to stop the madness was to go cold turkey! Realistically, I know my hyper-type-A personality can never really let go completely. (Kudos to you if you can!) I think I’m just going to strive for more equilibrium from here on out.

  6. lucy50 · September 16, 2014

    Yes, yes. This is why I even take breaks from the blogging community. Charting and googling and symptoms and non-symptoms. It’s all so much to deal with sometimes.

  7. Haisla · September 16, 2014

    Oh my gosh, I can recognise so much of myself in this blog post – that feeling of ‘I should be having fun’.. it’s awful isn’t it!! It’s like you’re absent in your own life. I’m so glad you’ve managed to have a bit of a break, step back and just do stuff and enjoy yourself again. So, so important for sanity-retention purposes!! xx

  8. Pingback: The Perils of Letting Go | the common ostrich

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