For the past two years of our infertility struggle, my husband and I have for the most part relied on each other for support. No one in either of our families knows what's going on, and it's only been in the last year that I've told my friends, "Hey! We're infertile!" I didn't want the sympathy. I didn't want to wonder what the hushed conversations were about. I didn't want nosy but well-meaning family members asking, "So...how's the baby-making going?" About a year ago, I reached the point where I had to tell my friends. I needed their support. So a told a few, and then eventually a few more. It's such a personal thing, even though now I'm about as open about it as I can be (except with my family). I've realized that I needed the love and shoulder to cry on that only a girlfriend can offer. And thanks to some wonderful real-life and blog friends, I now have that.
But in the beginning, it was only my husband and me. We prayed like crazy, being the good (although recently lapsed) Catholics we are. We cried together (well, I cried and he tried to make me stop crying) and we grew closer together. And let me tell you, there's nothing like injecting your wife in the arse with progesterone every morning to keep the home fires burning!
And then we discovered ladybugs. Or, rather, they discovered us. About six weeks ago, at the beginning of my IVF cycle, I returned to my desk at work following a meeting and found a ladybug sitting in front of my keyboard. I work in a standard office building, in the middle of a cube farm, with no windows anywhere near me. What was a ladybug doing sitting on my desk?
A few weeks later, my husband was cleaning our spare bedroom. On the windowsill? A ladybug.
On Saturday, the day of my IVF egg retrieval, I opened the December 3 window on my advent calendar. (My mom still believes my sister and I are ages seven and eight respectively, and buys each of us an advent calendar every year.) The picture inside was a ladybug.
And then yesterday, while my husband was getting dressed, he noticed something on the floor in front of the bed. Yet another ladybug.
Now, common sense tells me that it's getting very cold here in Western New York, and these ladybugs are just trying to find a spot inside to stay warm. But both of us have only ever seen one ladybug at a time, not an infestation. They're appearing in some odd places-places where they have no business being. And they're appearing at some very curious times as well.
The reason this is interesting for us is that ladybugs have historically been viewed as symbols of good luck. I've know this for quite some time, but didn't know that the reason was because ladybugs were brought over from Australia in the 1800s to save orange trees in California from being destroyed by pests. And they did.
Now, of course we're probably subconsciously searching for any sign-ANYTHING-that would give us hope of a baby after all we've been through. And believe me, our feet are firmly planted on the ground. In fact, mine might actually be buried. But it's fun to play this ladybug game while we wait.
So, are we one step away from seeing the Virgin Mary's face in a grilled cheese sandwich?