The financial strain of IVF

There it goes right down the pan,
the best part of seven lousy grand.
It's such a waste. It's such a shame
to watch it trickle down the drain.

Add that to the other two rounds,
we've splashed out over twenty thousand pounds!
(Let's be clear that when I say 'we'
I'm talking about our whole family.)

My in-laws, my parents and of course us,
have all donated to our infertility farce.
It's a family investment I must say!
Without their help we'd struggle to pay.

I wasn't allowed any NHS assistance
despite completing forms and verbal persistence!
My husband has a child from a previous liaison,
so no help for me - such an unjust reason!

It's tough to take when you graft and pay tax,
help raise a child, creating a haven where she can relax.
This financial side has been so utterly complex.
(We spend our spare cash on my step child and his ex.)

This unfairness I used to find depressing,
but circumstance has taught me to be more accepting.
For many it's no different, life can be shitty.
We've each a different battle, ours is infertility.

It is a little shocking, how much we've collectively paid.
For most, kids are free, you just get jiggy and get laid!
But for us procreation hasn't quite gone to plan!
By now, we should have several, wailing in a pram! 

IVF, for us, hasn't been a great investment.
Zero return, I'd say, is a resounding disappointment!
Twenty thousand pounds in vain, still we're no closer
to solving this issue of no bread in my toaster!

This leads me to ponder how far we'd actually go
to have successful treatment to implant an embryo.
Our friends have sold their house and taken out huge loans
now they have a baby, but they've given up their homes!

But I'm not cut out for life that's potentially so tight budget.
Dabbling in bankruptcy? The risk is just not worth it.
Crikey, just think of life if we didn't have this problem.
What could we spend that money on? A fabulous conundrum!

A flashy little camper van or shares in a luxury yacht 
so that we could take off around the world to somewhere nice and hot.
But all that is beside the point, I'd just like a happy ending,
one where we have a healthy child and no more bonkers spending!


Wedding anniversary

We forgot our anniversary.
No card this year, nor gift.
Is this what happens after seven years?
But, we’re not bothered, cross or miffed.

A text has just reminded us,
as we sit here in our slippers,
that seven years ago we walked down the aisle,
and said our vows to the eccentric vicar.

A special day we shared with friends,
family and each other.
Full of dancing, joy and alcohol!
The day I became a mother.

Fast forward to the present day,
it’s just me, him and the dog.
He’s outside, he’s mowing the lawn
and I’m cleaning the downstairs bog!

It’s slipped our minds what day it is,
but surely it’s not indifference.
It just that after only seven years
we’ve clean forgotten the date’s significance.

Our romance, it’s not dead at all,
it’s just we’re absent minded.
I mean, later on we might even snog
and I’ll praise the gardening that he did.

Seven years, that’s wool or copper.
I’ll get him a jumper in the sale.
He can get me a copper pan.
See, our marriage has not gone stale!

Plus, I’m sure that if it wasn’t Sunday
the postman would’ve delivered
a horde of anniversary cards
and bouquets so beautiful I would’ve quivered.

The truth is, it’s been quite hard work.
There’s been a lot of emotional investment.
We’ve been round the block and back again
to our relationship this is testament.

We should celebrate that we’ve made it here
at times I thought we couldn’t.
But we’ve managed it. Love can prevail
despite worrying we weren’t strong enough and it wouldn’t.

So perhaps this next year of marital bliss
won’t be quite so jolly exhausting.
And in seven more years, that’ll be Ivory,
we’ll be even older, that’s quite daunting.

If he sticks with me, then I’ll stick with him,
even when life’s challenges are hard.
We’re not perfect, but we are soul mates.
Perhaps next year we’ll bother to exchange a card!

Take a picture

Take a picture.
I know it's not the same,
but it'll help you recall this moment
when you felt completely free from pain.
Savour this feeling.
Make an imprint on your brain.
Your planets are realigning 
so your spirit can fly again.

Take a picture.
I know photos aren't alive,
but it'll help you remember the moment
when you realised you will survive.
It's taken it's time coming,
this rekindled joy for life.
Though the sensation may be fleeting,
it's a glimpse of what could be in sight.

Take a picture.
I know it can't capture peace,
but it'll help you recall the feeling 
of a rolling wave of release.
Be a part of what is around you.
Relax your muscles and be at ease.
Let the atmosphere help to heal you.
Feel your confidence increase.

Take a picture.
I know it cannot erase your grief,
but these photos can remind you
of experiencing merciful relief.
Embrace this welcome departure
even if respite is quite brief.
Life can still be beautiful. 
Don't give up this core belief.

Take a picture.
I know it cannot freeze frame time,
but a picture can transport you
when you need a calmer mind.
If you start to feel the struggle
recall the freedom one can find
from a moment that brought you happiness
just pause, reminisce, unwind.

The raging dragon

It ain't over 'til the fat lady sings!
I'm not talking about no opera!
I refer of course, to Aunty Flow.
There ain't nothing one can do to stop her
Oh, when the raging dragon swoops into town,
one must humbly bow to greet it.
She mows down everything in it's path.
Rendering foe powerless and defeated

Before she appears one lives a life
that undulates twixt hope and fear.
Trying to block all thoughts of woe betide
despite knowing 'that' time draws near.
Every cramp and ache is analysed.
Every toilet break a struggle
not to start to visualise
that red river of monthly trouble.

It's minefield of mixed emotions
dealing with this wait.
It's like existing in the twilight zone
whilst the Gods decide your fate.
This limbo land, this purgatory
is like descent into Danté's hell.
This two week wait should actually be
the eighth circle of which he tells.

Externally, I seem quite calm,
but inwardly wracked with anxiety.
The soundtrack to my daily life
is Orff's ode to insanity.
Its an old poem set to music,
lamenting the despair that fortune brings,
cursing the cruel deceit of fate.
So dramatic when the whole choir sings.

As this fortnight drags on and on,
inching slowly towards its conclusion,
I'm hours from knowing if it's worked.
Full of hope, dread and confusion.
My body now is tense and battered.
Will it be worth the struggle and chagrin?
Frankly, I'm a walking wreck,
terrified of failure once again.

Oh, the fat lady has just struck up her tune!
I ain't got tickets to no opera!
Right on cue, it's Aunty Flow.
A cruel witch with not an ounce of mercy in her.
No! The raging dragon has just swooped into town,
crushing my dreams beneath it.
Into dust, I crumble in her path,
spent, worn out, exhausted.