We have had some wonderfully gonad squeezing moments over the last year when we've found out we are not pregnant.
We've had this particular joy around my birthday, ET's birthday, before going on holiday, and the humdinger of course, back on Christmas day.
Christmas day was a particularly spectacular kick in the guts.
After that point I stopped believing the significance of dates in this great plan of ours.
There would be no breaking the news while visiting family, or at Christmas, or on Paddy's day, or on someone's birthday.
After Christmas I lost all inclination to be genuinely hopeful, and resigned myself to the idea that we would be relying on experts to do the job for us.
Cold and calculating perhaps, but easier to handle at a time when energy was getting low.
So I thought.
This month, cycle 13, saw optimisim sneak back in for the first time in months.
We had the turnaround in semen analysis results which told us we could do it naturally, we had our first session with the specialist which took the pressure off our shoulders slightly, and we got our ugly bumping timing and quality absolutely spot on.
It was game on.
Cycle day 27, 28, and 29 came and went, when 26 or 27 is the norm.
Long time unspoken excitement began to bubble to the surface.
Names were written on scraps of paper to visualise them alongside my surname before being hastily torn up and binned.
Minds allowed themselves to wander to the other side of 'trying to conceive', the side where people are visiting you and shaking your hand and slapping you on the back. The side where the almost overwhelming bubbling excitement I feel from time to time really belongs.
This was it. Finally. Surely.
Cycle day 30 came and went. Still no positive test result. Doubts creep in.
As if on queue, on a sunny Friday of a long weekend, it comes to a dead end.
One spot. Followed by the inevitable.
Christmas had left us staggering dazed around the ring, but cycle 13 has callously kicked our buckling legs from under us.
If my brief teenage phase of reading the classics serves me well, I believe there is a reference in Dante's 'Divine Comedy' to a sign over the gates of hell reading 'Abandon hope all ye who enter here'.
I want that sign painted over the gates of 'trying to conceive' world, as it's the only advice that I can see really helping anyone get through it.
The house is emptier than it was twenty four hours ago, who knew such little hope took up so much space.