This is the second post in a short series on my changing identity as a blogger. Part 1.
How infertility impacted my blogging & social media journey, aka how I found the IF blogging community:
I’ve blogged a few times about infertility (IF) and PCOS, most often embedded in something else. It’s been a big part of my life even though I am one of the lucky ones in that it was relatively easy to resolve. Because the blog started as a family blog/scrapbook it is hard for me to change that purpose. A big part of the drive to share these not so publicly shared parts of my life is because of the community I’ve found in IF bloggers
Way back in 2008 when I first started blog hopping through links and finding new blogs to read I found two communities which ultimately led me to reading IF blogs. One friend had an international adoption blog on her blog roll leading me to the adoption community and a friend of a friend’s sister had a blog sharing the story of her pregnancy and loss of her one-month-old due to Trisomy 13 leading me into the loss community. I found the A & L in ALI, it was only a matter of time until I stumbled into the Infertility community. This was about a year before we even thought about TTC, but I had found my community.
I was diagnosed with PCOS in 2006, when I was 24. I hadn’t even met Rob yet, but I knew I wanted kids someday. My particular symptoms of PCOS are a crazy hormonal imbalance, ovarian cysts (which are thankfully not painful), irregular-to-non-existent periods & super heavy periods with lots of cramping when I do have them. I knew enough then to know you must ovulate to get pregnant. My doctor at the time gave me a few options to manage my cycles and said when I was ready to get pregnant I could take a pill and not to worry. (Oversimplifying A LOT, but at the time it was some reassurance)
Fast-forward to finding IF blogs and I read and read and read. The hardest part for me emotionally was the unknown. There was no way to know if the first cycle of Clomid would work or if we’d need to try IVF. I suddenly had access to all of these stories of TTC and so many different paths. I was pulled in by these stories and sometimes had to remind myself that this was real life – and the endings weren’t always happy. I lurked, I prayed, I hoped for these women. I was too scared to comment. Then, I went off the pill and then went on to 271 day cycle which ended with Provera.*
I thought many times during that nine months of waiting about starting an anonymous blog (as so many IF blogs are) to write through the feelings of fear that came with unknown. But I felt strange because we weren’t actually doing anything yet except for researching possibilities for when the time came. We were waiting because for school purposes, having a baby after my second year was the best option for our family. So, I kept quiet and posted about vacations and dates and cooking dinner.
After the first Clomid cycle, which failed, I almost started a new blog. But I was undecided and couldn’t come up with a good name and the second Clomid cycle worked. So I just kept blogging my normal family stuff now with pregnancy updates. But I kept reading because a part of me identified with these women. I followed their stories and learned from their research on parenting. It took me until Simon was one before I got the nerve to start commenting on blogs. (I have an irrational fear of leaving comments, no idea why).
But I now consider several of these IF bloggers friends. As I read their blogs they inspire me to write about feelings on IF, and parenting, and what will happen when I am parenting TWO! I want to write to be a part of the conversations in this community. I want to move beyond Twitter. I blog because I like it because it’s been a part of me for a long time and the IF community inspires me to be more.
This post is part of PAIL‘s monthly theme Why We Blog. Check out all of the posts on September 27.
*As much as I hated the new doc I had, he did say no need to wait, just come to me to start Clomid when you are ready, so trying to have a “normal” cycle was me wanting to give my body a chance and not jump straight to worst case scenario.