One thing I have always been sure of in my life is that I wanted to be a mum. As a child I used to play with my dolls for hours; as a teenager I was the super nanny in the neighbourhood; and as a young adult I wrote top 10 name lists in my diary for any future children.
I was only waiting to find the Love of my Life.
When I was 28 years old, I met the Love of my Life. Just when I was about to travel through Asia on my own for two months.
I quickly booked my flight and went ahead with my plan. After six weeks he came to find me and we have been inseparable ever since.
Our relationship has been filled with passion, love and adventure: we have always had all that going for us.
On my thirtieth birthday I stopped using birth control: Frank and I were very sure we were ready to start a family. I thought it would be a beautiful moment to ‘conceive a baby’.
The first month went by…then the second… and the third. My belief and self- confidence of becoming a mum slowly changed into a deep and overwhelming feeling of insecurity.
After a year of waiting, we went to the doctor’s. He sent us to hospital. After many physical examinations and months of waiting, we started our first fertility treatments: IUI and IVF. We became experts in areas that had been unknown to us before.
My true story is about love, travelling and fertility issues. Three elements that have played big roles in our lives. The book is about how relaxed we used to be, how we always try to look at things from the bright side, and how we dealt with and made up for our disappointments (another failed IVF attempt? – Let’s book a trip to Marrakech), until the moment I felt genuinely miserable. I realised that the women around me got pregnant easily and we were left behind, empty-handed.
Although she has her own story to tell, my older sister gave birth to two healthy children in the time that we were trying. My friend got pregnant three times in three years. I was really happy for all those pregnant women, but I was fed up and most of all so sad and disappointed that we were not blessed with the miracle of life.
So, what was plan B? Can you still be happy if you don’t get what you wish for most in life? We have always learnt that if you work hard enough, you can make your dreams come true, reach your goals. Our dream though, despite all the hormone treatments and dozens of hospital visits, never seemed to come true.
How far should you go? We were able to create the high points in our lives only to end up on a rollercoaster of hope, disappointment, sadness, acceptance and moving on. The feelings of insecurity were growing, and the feelings of sadness were getting more unbearable every time we found out I was not pregnant.
Although the wish had not been fulfilled yet, we were able to see some light at the end of the tunnel. Suddenly the sun started to shine again and our luck returned.
I hope that you, as a reader of my story, can both laugh about and cry along with the story and that you will find that you can empathise with what we have been through.
Book review Looking for Easter Eggs by Anne Tel
Read for you
Say, you are a woman in your thirties. You live in Amsterdam, you have great friends and a good job, and the love of your life is even more amazing than all of the above. He’s the one you hope to grow old with, and together you’re enjoying life to the max. You’re completely happy, the world is at your feet, and everything is going as it should without even having to really try. Then you quit birth control, because both you and your husband can’t wait to have a baby. Then, suddenly, things don’t go so smoothly anymore: 90 per cent of all the women who are trying, conceive within the first year. But not you.
My opinion ****
In this book, the author, Anne Tel, grabs you by the arm and takes you with her on a compelling tour of her life. A similarity with Bridget Jones is easily made, though the scales plus man in woolly knitted reindeer sweater are missing. She does write about her long journey of fertility treatments in great detail. And oh, how relatable it all is! Time just keeps ticking away while everyone around her is getting pregnant just like that. Anne Tel is very good at describing how hard it is to combine a job with treatments: just when you have that one oh so important meeting, you have to go to the hospital for the umpteenth time. And then, when you have finally decided you need a break and you’re about to take that well-deserved holiday, you find your dream to get pregnant will have to be put on hold for yet another month before you can even start your next round of trying. Meanwhile, in between every month that there is no treatment, there’s always that strong and silent hope that a miracle might happen.
When, after missing out for a month, Anne suggests to schedule in the next round, the assistant, who’s looking in her Big Book of Appointments, tells them they have room for her in January.
‘What!’ ‘January?!!’ Frank and I exclaim at the same time. ‘Our only wish is to carry on, we have lost so many chances this year already. We need one more try this year!’
Having to wait for no real reason is almost worse than coping with yet another disappointment of not getting pregnant. Frank goes berserk and is completely unreasonable to the assistant. I begin to cry silent tears. I don’t want to wait any longer.
We walk back to our car, feeling defeated. There’ll be no more chance this year. The radio is switched on and we laugh about this joke we hear that’s not funny at all. It feels good to be able to laugh over something completely silly sometimes.
This book is a real page-turner. Will the next attempt finally be successful? Anne Tel simply drags you into her story, into her life. The book is not only very relatable for people who are dealing with IVF themselves, it’s also a great read for their family and friends. It paints a very good picture of what it’s like not to be able to get pregnant and in what way the route of fertility treatments seriously affects your life. It’s a real must-read.
Source: Freya Magazine
http://www.freya.nl Freya is the Dutch organization for people with fertility problems.
My advice to you, my readers who are going through fertility struggles as well:
10. Babies are born from love. You need this same love to go through all the hospital treatments.
Source: Looking for Easter Eggs, my story about love, travel and IVF (copyright 2014 Anne Tel)
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