Saying it Outloud

July 13th, 2006

At the beginning of our little adventure in infertility, we kept it pretty hush. Our parents knew, siblings, a few friends- that was pretty much it. We didn’t want to talk about it until we were clear where we were and where we were headed. Saves time that way.

In April, shortly after our first visit with Dr. T, we went to Barnes & Noble one evening. We enjoy spending a few hours, drinking coffee and pouring over books and magazines and enjoying the quiet. Shelton made his way to the “Geek” section (computers), I started to head toward the People Magazine. Then I realized that I could make better use of the time that night and went over to the pregnancy section. That seemed like a likely place to find books about trying to have a baby.

And there were plenty of books on how to make one, keep one, raise one, love one, even name one; but no books on infertility and IVF. A cute young couple was standing next to me. I had to assume they were pregnant because she wasn’t showing and I couldn’t imagine any other way you’d get a twenty-something guy into the pregnancy books section.

He wandered away and I asked her how far along she was. She replied about 4 weeks, they had just found out a few days before. She was positively glowing, so excited. She then asked me the same. And I immediately replied, oh, we can’t, we have to do IVF. We smiled nicely at one another and I moved on, since none of those happy, little preggers books applied to me.

I went to customer service and I was lead to the infertility section- a 2’ space at the very bottom of a shelf in the back. Of course, one more place to bury and hide it away. I sat cross-legged on the floor and looked over my options. Two books caught my eye and I read a little, cried a little, by myself, in the back of the B&N. I bought those books and they are listed under the “About IVF.” I highly recommend A Few Good Eggs, I couldn’t read it fast enough.

So that was the first time I had to say it to a stranger. The sentence kind of came out in slow motion as I looked at this overjoyed woman, my age, thrilled to pieces to be buying What to Expect. Lucky her.. I wonder if she knows just how lucky she really is.