As I think I’ve mentioned before, I have two close friends who are both pregnant. One started trying to get pregnant about seven years ago and is finally having a baby as a result of one successful IVF cycle. The other got pregnant after trying for about a month, maybe two. We’re all the same age.

I’ve written before about how different they are in how they approach their pregnancies. As time goes on and their pregnancies progress, their attitudes continue to evolve. The assumption might be that my easily pregnant friend assumes everything will be fine, but that’s not the case. She’s well aware of the risks involved, and is especially concerned about her age (37). She seems to really focus on her fears surrounding childbirth, but at the same time doesn’t feel that medical intervention is necessary. She is planning to deliver at some type of facility, but wants things to be natural and doesn’t want to be ‘hooked up’ to any kind of monitoring equipment. She also has fears about her loss of identity once the child is born.

My IVF-pregnant friend was extremely cautious initially and refused to get excited until several months had passed. While she knows things can still go wrong, she’s starting to get excited. She still worries about premature labor (and I’m sure many other things that she hasn’t said), but she is a lot less focused on age. She also doesn’t seem as fearful of childbirth, and knows that any kind of plan she might create is meaningless if anything unexpected happens. She’s generally a very all-natural kind of person, but she wants as much monitoring of the baby as possible, and knows that the priority is bringing home a healthy baby.

I feel bad sometimes, because I can’t help but roll my eyes at my easily pregnant friend, while nodding in agreement with my IVF-pregnant friend. I try to remind myself, though, that my easily pregnant friend is just coming at all of this with a completely different point of view.

It’s hard, though, in some ways, with my IVF-pregnant friend. She never brings up her pregnancy or baby-related topics, and I can’t help but think it’s for my benefit. I don’t want her to feel like she can’t talk to me, but at the same time, I don’t know how much I can handle. We’re also using the same RE that they did, which is really nice in a lot of ways, because we can swap stories about the place and the people. It’s especially nice for M, to have another guy talk to (ex: what it’s like to drop off the goods for a SA).

I have a few concerns, though. For one thing, and this is hard to explain – I want her to be able to talk about where she is with things now – with her pregnancy – and not feel like she’s stuck talking about infertility treatment. Before she got pregnant, infertility was something we had in common. We’ve known each other for a long time, but have never been super close, and infertility was sort of a connector, in a way (we also both live thousands of miles from where we grew up, so we have that, too). I don’t want to be left out of her progression to another phase in her life, especially if I am not as lucky as she was…which brings me to my other concern. We’re using the same RE, and I have to say that seeing her go through IVF and be successful was motivating to start treatment. My experience with the RE I saw with my ex-husband was terrible, and it was hard for me to consider treatment without thinking of that experience. My friend also went to that practice and assured me that this place is nothing like that. Knowing that made it easier to take that first step. But, seeing her successful with IVF – especially when our circumstances are similar – couldn’t help but make me more optimistic. Seeing someone – in person – made a difference to me.

I know, though, that even if we get to that point, it may not work for me. Even though I feel optimistic, I’m not naive, and I know that it could go either way. I wonder, though, if that happens, how it will affect our friendship, if at all. I worry that she’ll feel guilty or somehow responsible, but then I wonder if I’m just over-thinking the whole thing.

I’m so happy for both my friends, but in so many ways, it isn’t easy.

 

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