Trick or Treat Yo Self

Coping with a negative pregnancy test, or a “monthly visit” is one of the trickiest parts of trying to conceive.  Originally, I was in “treat yo self” mode when it came to starting another cycle.


My BFNs were complemented with empty-uterus wine, flat-stomach jeans, and no-baby surgery (okay, this one is a stretch, but I did finally get my nose cauterised after Month 4 – had to stop the bleeding from somewhere, amiright?!)  I should probably apologize for that last joke, but I just couldn’t help myself!  Basically, instead of eating my feelings – I was drinking them, or buying them new booties.  This was all my attempt to have something to look forward to if I was facing another negative – at least my pant size is going to stay the same!  When we all really know that we’d trade all the margaritas and skinny jeans in the world to be pregnant (just don’t take away my carbs)!  There are plenty of other ways to cope with the loss of another month though, and there’s one that particularly caught my interest.

One woman mentioned that for every month that she’s not pregnant, she buys a new item for her unconceived baby.  That way, when she does get pregnant and eventually give birth, she’ll have all these adorable little gifts to give them.  She feeds her hope.  Doesn’t that seem healthier than having vices fill your void?  The idea of buying something baby-related with each negative does sound sweet, until you think about the possibility of devoting an entire linen closet to items for an imaginary baby.  A few months ago I read a book that centered around a woman who lived in Chicago (okay…) and wasn’t able to have anymore children (yikes…) so she kept a box of baby clothes for the child she would never have (hmm…) which eventually drove her to kidnap someone else’s baby to raise as her own (a decent plan, but even from where I’m sitting I can see some flaws in it).  I’m not saying that’ll be my future if I start hoarding wubbanubs (trust me, we want our own baby free and clear), I’m just trying to point out that, for my own sanity, this might not be the best route for me.  Plus, there’s the fact that styles change and maybe I’ll find an even cuter headband for a newborn girl once we’re actually, possibly, pregnant.  

My own question has been answered by myself, but it’s not the answer I want.  I wish I could be that woman who was able to find positivity at the end of each month and feel hopeful with the accumulation of impossibly small socks – instead, I find comfort in new clothes and boozy dinners and manicures.  Not sure what that says about me.  Selfish, perhaps?  I just can’t crush the thought that each onesie bought would continue to fill up my jinx jar (still regretting making that last spontaneous onesie purchase during my TWW months ago).  My husband had the same thought when I pitched this idea to him over dinner – I’m slowly bringing him over to the dark side!  Sure, there’s always the option to regift the items to family or donate them if we aren’t able to conceive, but that would still mean I’d have to face an extremely difficult situation of not only giving up, but giving up my box (or tub) of remaining hope.  Clearly I’m getting ahead of myself, but I didn’t get this far in life by just taking things one day at a time!

Curious to hear other BFN coping mechanisms out there (for research purposes, of course – I know I still have FIVE weeks to go).  I think for now, the only place that I’ll be storing my baby-ware is on Pinterest.

One Pink Line

I woke up on Test Day like a kid on Christmas morning – that is, a kid who doesn’t want Santa to visit, but hopes they still manage to get everything on their list.  I imitated self control by going to the kitchen instead of running to the bathroom when I woke up…no such luck avoiding the topic: my husband was literally making buns in the oven.  I didn’t have any, mostly because he used old almond milk in the batter, but partially out of principle  as well – we didn’t even know if my oven was bunless or not!  So insensitive.  After a week of pregnancy dreams and telling myself I’m not  symptom spotting (but really, why else would I be so emotional and irritable?!) test day was finally here.  And I couldn’t ignore it anymore because the reality was, I really had to pee.

You ladies know the drill: open the test, drop the pants, count to five, set a timer and pretend that you’re not going to look at the test until it goes off.

Well: my timer went off.

Bone white.  Stark white.  White-out white.  It was white.  Like any sensible woman I rotated the test around in the light and squinted to try to make one line split into two, but it wouldn’t turn positive for me.  My husband, the eternal optimist, managed to say, “There’s still a chance!” after his face fell at the news.  He makes optimism look so easy.  I, at least, managed to not cry until we went to the Burger Festival (a sentence I never quite expected to say).  I couldn’t blink without seeing a baby or a woman with an adorable bump, and eventually found myself standing off to the side silently crying behind my sunglasses (like an adult) as the band played a crappy version of “Hallelujah”.  All I could see was the image of the one-lined test flashing in my head.

But then – the days passed and…nothing happened.  Hope crept in slowly and cautiously and invaded my mind when I wasn’t paying attention.  I didn’t say a word to my husband because, you know, jinxing. I fell into the trap of thinking about when would I test again, would I announce to him right before work, how am I going to avoid drinking at that Bachelorette party?!  I broke my own rules and continuously searched “negative test at 11 DPO, positive days later” and ignored everything that says you should be able to see a positive on a First Response by that time.  I chugged camomile tea and thought wistfully of Xanax while trying to pretend this wasn’t a huge deal (as a part of my mind kept whispering but the negative test…). Turns out, it was all a cruel joke where my body simply wanted to remind me who was in charge.

When I found out for the second time in one week that I wasn’t pregnant, I greeted my husband with a friendly, “You know what sucks?”  I stood in the doorway and told him all about my “one day late” emotions while he insisted that he had to go to the bathroom, as if there was anything more important than discussing my cycle at 7:30 in the morning.  The conversation was over, we had already been defeated.  I’ve tried to convince myself that the only thing holding me together was that negative test, that it was a good thing.  If I hadn’t tested, I would’ve been ecstatic at the thought of being late, only to be crushed the very next morning.  But if testing early was such a good thing, then why am I still radiating disappointment?