Saturday, March 31, 2012

FET#2: 2dp6dt


Just like last FET, I will be chronicling daily my symptoms and pee sticks. Just a reminder: I had an hCG booster shot on the day of my transfer. It was 0.6mL.

Also, just for fun, here is a link to my last cycle's 2dp6dt post. Interesting, eh?

Symptom check:
Well, last night I went grocery shopping. For TWO HOURS. Last thing I wanted to do. But since we are hosting yet another dinner party over here tonight, I had no choice but to spend my Friday night at the grocery store. During my two-hour adventure, I felt some slight intermittent cramps. This was about 36 hours post-transfer. Yes, I'm overanalyzing everything. But I don't think I was imagining them. And any other CD19, I wouldn't be having any cramps. I don't have anything going on down there unless I'm ovulating, or AF is ready to arrive. I'm hopeful that those cramps meant my little one was snuggling in.

This morning, even after eating breakfast, my stomach felt a bit queasy. It's just a touch of what I felt like when I was pregnant before. Not full on nausea, but enough of an off-feeling to notice. And sure, it could be meds. But, I hadn't taken any meds yet this morning, and my last dose of Crinone was last evening at 6:00 p.m. So... who knows!

Pee stick check:
I've started out only using dollar store tests. Last FET I used both 88 cent Walmart tests and dollar store tests, but I think that was overkill. I also stocked up on FRERs, which I will start using on 4dp6dt.

Here are my sticks from yesterday and today:


The hCG booster didn't even show up in yesterday's test! And it was a decent hold and everything. Strange. This time around, the booster is coming across much lighter than FET#1. Not sure if that holds any significance or not.

But, like last time around, the 2dp6dt test is darker than the 1dp6dt test. I'm convinced that an hCG booster shot in the ass takes a day or two to get in your bloodstream. Yes, that's my professional opinion.


 _______________

5 days until beta!


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Friday, March 30, 2012

FET#2: the details

I'm not feeling overly creative today, so I'm just going to get right to it.

My transfer was yesterday at 8:00 a.m. Everything went well, and pretty much just like last time. The doctor shook my hand after he (hopefully) impregnated me, and wished me luck.

I got an hCG booster shot in the ass, and reclined for 30 minutes before heading out.

Here is a photo of our soon-to-be baby (too hopeful?!):
Frozen baby v2.0
We transferred a day-6 expanded blast. I'm no expert at knowing what I'm looking at when it comes to photos of embryos, but I think it might be starting to hatch. That's what I'm assuming the double-outside-ring is (on the left side... see it?). But who knows! And sorry for the poor quality photo.... it's a cell-phone picture taken of a black and white computer print out.

I'm on Crinone twice daily, Dexamethasone 0.5mg once daily, baby asprin and a prenatal. If I have a positive beta, I will switch from baby aspirin to Lovenox.

My beta is on Thursday, April 5. I will start testing tomorrow. I will test out the booster shot, and then hopefully watch the lines get darker as my little embryo gets comfortable.

I'm feeling hopeful, but not that excited. I think this is probably normal, given all I've been through. I'm preparing myself for both outcomes, but trying to stay positive.

It's going to be a long week.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

FET#2 update

This is going to be short and sweet (because typing out a blog post on my phone sounds kind of awful!).

I went in for blood work and an ultrasound at my clinic in NYC. My lining is 7.8. Progesterone is 11. The transfer of a beautiful day-6 expanded blastocyst is tomorrow at 7:30.

Yes, I'm a bit concerned about the progesterone level. My doctor says that he's not, as the levels in my womanly parts are higher than what my blood work shows, due to the progesterone suppositories.

I really hope he's right. I feel pretty confident that they wouldn't push ahead unless they thought it would work, right??

More to come tomorrow...

Monday, March 26, 2012

Here's a hoop, now jump through it.

I've been telling Buster this past week that when it comes to trying to have a baby get and stay pregnant, I've always got a new hoop to jump through. Finances, insurance, timing, miscarriage, etc. Always something.

Oh, how I wish that first-paragraph foreshadowing was a clever trick in order to surprise you. But no.

The past two times I've heard from my clinic (via phone, which only happens on days that I have a local monitoring appointment) they haven't called me until 6:00 p.m. That was not going to fly today. So, I emailed them at 12:45 asking if they had received the results from my local clinic. I also dropped a not-so-subtle hint that I would like to be called with my results ASAP. Apparently not-so-subtleness is not my strong suit.

At 4:00 p.m. I was at home, packed and ready to go. Just waiting on my clinic.

Should we start the trip and hope for the best? It is a 6.5 hour drive after all. Or maybe we should just play it safe and wait until we hear from them. But if we do that, isn't that us just being negative? Fuck it, let's go!

So we go. We get 35 minutes out of town (where cell phone reception is shoddy at best), and my phone rings. The clinic.

Good news: my estrogen is where it needs to be at 127.

Bad news: progesterone is not quite 10.

So no transfer tomorrow.

My Prometrium has been upped to four a day. Lovely. I wasn't crazy enough on two a day.

Also, they want to see me at the clinic on Wednesday (versus me having local monitoring done that day). They can get a more accurate idea of what is going on if they do my ultrasound and blood work. My new transfer date is Thursday (for now!).

I will now be missing two days of work, and I left early today for no reason.

Plus, I was a bitch to Buster on the way back home and it turned into a fight.

The joys of assisted reproduction!

_______________

Random fun fact: remember how tomorrow is my mom's birthday? And that had to be a good omen to have a transfer on her birthday, right? Well get this: Thursday is MIL's birthday. Shit.is.crazy.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

DIY Amazingness

Buster hath finished the table! Actually, it's been done for a week or more, but I'm a slacker.

As I mentioned in my last post, we were stressing out over our first official dinner party. It happened Friday night. And it was wonderful! The table looked beautiful, dinner was a hit, the company was nice. But it was a lot of work, and I don't want to do it again any time soon!

So, here are some photos of the table from start to finish. And just a reminder, these plans were based off of a table from Restoration Hardware, which retails for upwards of $3000.

The frame, built of Pine (purchased at Lowe's for about $60):
just wait... it gets better!
Buster ordered the lumber for the top from a local woodshop, because he wanted something that was a bit more durable than Pine. Also, the quality of the Pine wasn't too great at Lowe's, and much of it was warped, twisted, etc. So, he chose Poplar for the top. And it was pricier. Also, we think we were overcharged a bit, and most likely won't use the same woodshop again for our next project (they charged us an extra $100 versus what they quoted... and all they were doing was cutting the lumber. Annoying!). The eight poplar pieces cost us $280.

Here are some photos of the unfinished table (sorry for the poor quality... these were taken with my phone):


All of the wormholes and gouges you see were carefully placed by Buster! He created a couple "tools" that helped him distress, and he beat the shit out of the table. Who knew it would have such a beautiful effect?

We went back and forth regarding the stain color. Initially he had chosen a Red Oak stain:

Red Oak stain on Pine

At first, I really liked it. But then I feared that it might be a bit too dark, and Buster agreed. So he tried out several different stains, and we decided on "Early American":

Early American stain on the Poplar
It's worth mentioning that Buster made me take the above photo of that exact spot on the table. It's his favorite spot. The wood grain coupled with the distress... just beautiful!

And the final step was deciding on what type of finish. I did not want anything too shiny. I would have been fine with no finish, actually. But Buster was adamant that we needed one. He did not want any water rings from glasses or spillage messing up his table. So, we decided on a satin finish. In some of the photos below, it looks shinier than it really is, due to the light overhead. But in person, it's just the right amount of shiny.

(And I apologize for the odd angles. The table is 8 feet long, so it's difficult getting it all in the photo!)

The color in this photo is a bit blown-out, and makes the table look more orange than it really is.

This is a very accurate representation of the true color.


I know the artwork looks off-center, but it is in fact in the center of the wall!  There is a door on the right side of the photo (that you can't see).

And finally, the table set for our dinner party! As you have realized by now, we went for the red chairs from Pier 1. They are wonderful! Comfortable and easy to move. Honestly, the most difficult part of decorating was choosing my placemats and napkins. Initially we had chosen some red leather placemats that match the chairs, but it was just too much red leather. I wanted something more neutral for the placemats, and luckily found some nice ones at Target, along with napkins that I think really tied it all together.


So there you have it! The story of our dining room table. The total cost of materials (stain, finish, lumber, etc) was about $380. Buster put in a week of work on the table. And it was so worth it.

Next up, he'll be making one for his mother. And then one for our friends. And then my mother...

Friday, March 23, 2012

the one in which my head spins

Yesterday was quite the day.

(Warning: long post ahead! Proceed at your own risk.)

I had my local monitoring appointment at 8:00 a.m. My RE was in surgery, so my favorite nurse (Fossil Fran, aka FF) did my ultrasound.

The cyst was still there. That was disappointing to see. Apparently it had shrunk slightly, and the clot in the center was more well-defined. FF offered up the thought that perhaps this means it is clotting and done bleeding, and will shrink away to nothing. Here's to hoping.

On the right ovary, along with the Cyst (yes, it's a pronoun now) were three tiny follicles. Very small. Smaller than my normal follicle size on CD11. Hmmm. Ok.

On the left ovary was one large... thing. At first FF thought it was another cyst, because she saw some echoes in it (not sure what the echoes indicate, but ok). Then she tried another angle with ol' wandy, and in that shot it appeared to be a large follicle. One. The only thing happening on that ovary. She mentioned that there was only one large follicle, and the way she said it made it seem like that's odd. And it is odd for me, and maybe for everyone.

Typical CD11s in the past, I'll have several decent sized follicles, and then end up with only one big 'un at the end.

My lining was triple-striped and beautiful at 9.1mm.

Now an ultrasound alone is just a piece of the puzzle. My blood work was done, and the results would be faxed to my NYC clinic when ready. I can expect my NYC clinic to call me with results anywhere from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

So, let the anxiety commence.

I spent most of the day petrified that my cycle would be canceled because of the Cyst.

I headed in to work, and tried to stay positive. I had a dermatology appointment at noon, so that would be a nice distraction, right?

Except I get in there, and my doc wants to remove a mole from my back. She doesn't like the one little dark spot in the center. So, she slices, dices, and drops it in a jar. And then SHOWS ME. She put it right in my face. Good thing I don't have a sensitive stomach! She then said, "Oh, I hope that didn't make you sick! It's just a mole in a jar!"

Just a mole in a jar??! Oh, that's all? I have a ton of those around my house! No worries, I'm used to looking at moles in jars!

I'm pretty sure it won't be anything serious, as I've had other moles removed in the past and nothing ever came of those. But there's always that chance, right?

After the appointment, I head to Sam's. Buster and I are having my parents and grandparents over for dinner tonight. And I'm stressed. My parents and grandparents have a strained relationship, so that throws some awkwardness into the night. Plus, it's my first time ever hosting a dinner party. I'm a little on edge, to say the least.

I drop a pretty penny at Sam's getting a beef tenderloin, a tub of blue cheese crumbles, and some red grapes. Then I decide that I should just head home at this point, due to lack of storage space in the refrigerator at work.

When I get home, I immediately start in on my to-do list. Cleaning, cooking, etc. Buster and I are both stressed and grumpy, and are snapping at each other left and right. Not fun.

I hadn't heard from my clinic by 5:00, so I email them to make sure they received the faxed results from my RE's office. They respond and say they did receive the fax, and will be calling me shortly.

At 5:30 my phone rings, and it's the study coordinator (who I will refer to as "M"). My stomach is in a tightly-wound knot at this point.

"Everything looks good. You have already ovulated, and we are ready to proceed with your frozen embryo transfer."

Um, what?

It's noteworthy to mention that M has an accent. Not an incredibly thick accent, but a slight accent. Sometimes it takes me just a second to figure out what was just said. This time it took me about 30 seconds.

I asked him to repeat himself.

According to my hormone levels, it appears that I have ovulated. I tried to write down my numbers, but I was in too much shock to do it properly.

The transfer is slated for Tuesday. TUESDAY! Holy shit.

M told me to start up on the Prometrium and Dexamethasone again, as well as continue the baby aspirin. I go back in for blood work on Monday, and after that I will get more details regarding time of transfer.

I then mentioned the fact that this is only CD11 for me. Is it odd that I've ovulated so early? He said that sometimes it just happens this way, and that they don't care when I ovulate, just as long as my hormone levels are where they need to be (which they are). Oh.

And then I ask about the Cyst, since he didn't bring it up. They are not concerned about the Cyst at all. He said it is common with women undergoing IVF, and it will likely just disappear on its own, eventually. Phew. All that worrying for nothing.

After we hung up, I cried. Emotional basketcase? Yep.

I was mentally preparing myself for a transfer on Friday. Tuesday isn't that much earlier than Friday, but enough to throw me off. This is why IVF is rough on a control freak like myself.

All evening long, I was dwelling on this transfer. I was feeling scared. Excited too, but mostly scared.

Over dinner, I asked Buster if he thought it was weird that I'm so freaked out by the transfer happening so soon. He said yes, and that he thinks I should be excited, not scared.

Hmm, perhaps he's right?

As the night progressed, I started feeling more at peace with a Tuesday transfer. I woke up this morning feeling great about it.

Today I decide to email my clinic to get the exact numbers from my blood draw. Here is what they were yesterday, on CD11:

  • Estrogen: 214
  • Progesterone: 2
  • LH: 6

Yeah, I thought the progesterone seemed a bit low, too.

I've been googling all morning. Most charts say that your progesterone should be < 1.5 prior to ovulation. And at 7dpo, it should be > 15. And that a progesterone level of >5 shows ovulation.

Well, shit.

Where does that leave me?? Did I ovulate the morning of my ultrasound/blood work? Have I not ovulated yet? Was that cyst/ovary/thing with echoes in it really just the empty follicle (corpus luteum) that previously housed my ovulated egg?

I'm stressing over this number. M said my levels were good, and that my estrogen was high enough that I can forego the Estrace this cycle.

But what if I really haven't ovulated yet? What happens if the FET is a couple days before it should be? Is that ruining my chances of it being successful?

I've emailed my clinic my concerns, and hope to hear back from them soon. I went from scared, to excited, to where I am now: a nervous wreck.

I want to just let go and have faith in my clinic. But everything I'm reading online makes me think my progesterone levels should be higher.

With all of the evidence presented here (ultrasound, hormone levels, etc), what is your opinion? I'd love to hear it!

I will update once I hear from my clinic regarding the low progesterone.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

i'm a walking cliche

Today's cliche of the day:

Preparing for the worst, hoping for the best.

And some examples of both ends of this spectrum:

Preparing for the worst
  • I told Buster (rather forcefully) that if this upcoming FET is a bust, we are going on a cruise or some other kind of exotic vacation. I don't care if we have to finance the whole damn trip. If I don't get a baby, I at least want a tropical beach to take my mind off of my pain.
  • I have been reassuring myself that even if this cycle doesn't work, I'll be getting a new "baby" in June. And the new pup will keep me super busy. Nothing like a cute and cuddly distraction.
  • I'm already planning my diet/exercise routine for getting swimsuit ready, just in case.

Hoping for the best
  • I made a purchase for our non-existent nursery. It's a fluffy gray owl from Pier 1. And I love him.
  • I have calculated my due date. You know, just so I'm prepared and all. (Oh, and that date is December 15, in case you were curious...)
  • I've planned to do things a little differently this time around, regarding my early ultrasounds (after a positive beta). Instead of going to my OBGYN for the appointments, I'm going to stick with my RE's office. Yes, my RE is typically socially-tragic. But my OBGYN office holds some really, really heavy memories. And I'm not sure I can do it all over again, and risk hearing the same words. So, I'm changing it up.
  • I've been looking up how many weeks along I will (would? could?) be for specific functions we have going on this year. My cousin's wedding in June? 15 weeks. My birthday in August? 23 weeks. Buster's cousin's wedding in Septmeber? 27 weeks. Ok, you get the picture.
So there it is. How I'm trying to mentally prepare myself for either outcome. Will it pay off? Only time will tell.

I have an appointment tomorrow for blood work and an ultrasound. Hopefully everything is still looking good and we are on track for a March 30th FET!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Round two: fight!

Often times the journey to parenthood for those of us facing infertility is compared to a roller coaster ride. Sure, the years have their ups and downs. Very roller-coaster-ish.

But when you break it down, the months have their ups and downs. The weeks do as well. The days. The hours.

Yesterday was one of those days for me.

I had my CD3 monitoring appointment.

(As a brief reminder, since I don't expect everyone to memorize my journey... This is my second period since the miscarriage. Last CD3, my beta hCG came back at 6.5, so we could not proceed with an FET that cycle. And even more reminders: I'm in a clinical trial for IVF, and my clinic is in NYC. I am not, so I have local monitoring done. We have three frozen embryos remaining, and due to the study protocol, they will just transfer one at a time.)

My RE was actually NICE. And not a douche. It was weird. And amazing.

During the ultrasound, however, they found a hemogenic corpus luteum cyst on my right ovary. I've had corpus luteum cysts in the past, but this is a cyst of a different color. A hemogenic CLC (yep, tired of typing it out) bleeds into itself. He showed me the little clot inside of it.

Doesn't that sound fun?

My RE said he wasn't sure if this would interfere with my FET.

And then it was over, and the excruciating wait to hear from my NYC clinic ensued.

Of course I googled "hemogenic corpus luteum cyst" like a madwoman. I barely found anything. Well, that's not true. I found billions of things, but hardly anything helpful.

I was both anxious for and dreading the call from my clinic.

4:30 p.m. rolls around, and I still hadn't heard from them yet. Hmph. So I emailed and  asked if they received the faxed results from my RE's office. I get a response that yes they did, and would be calling me shortly to discuss the results.

Gulp.

Finally, at 6:10 p.m. I hear from them. And...

EVERYTHING IS GOOD!!!

All of my hormone levels are where they need to be. I no longer have hCG in my system! And my clinic is not concerned about the cyst. They think it will go away by my next ultrasound & blood work appointment, which is in one week.

Let the games begin!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I should have known

Friday night, Buster and I went to our favorite Italian restaurant. It's in the next town over, and even though there is nothing else in that town worth visiting, this restaurant is amazing.

Since it was Friday night, there was quite a long wait. So we sat and waited, while playing on our phones.

I was catching up on blogs. One of which was my dear friend Aub's blog. She posted a sneak peek photo from her maternity photo shoot. And it is amazingly beautiful.

I showed the photo to Buster, and he went on to tell me how he doesn't "understand those kind of pictures".

Men.

I tell him that I don't care if he understands them or not, I will be having them done. Because if I ever do get pregnant, there's a big chance that it might be the only time. And I want to remember.

Buster then said that he doesn't think I'll need photos to remember that time. So fucking incorrigible.

I rolled my eyes and told him how I actually emailed a local photographer in late December to see about scheduling a maternity photo shoot for me in the spring.

Cue me crumbling, center stage.

I got really quiet, and Buster couldn't stand it.

"Will you talk to me??"

But I couldn't bring myself to speak, because I knew instead of words, tears would pour out. Buster started to get agitated, so I explained to him why I was sad (even though I really don't think I should have had to explain that... but again, men...).

I told him she never got back to me, which is for the best now, obviously.

And this is why I should have known my period was on its way. Emotional breakdowns in restaurants.

Today is CD2. I go in tomorrow for blood work and an ultrasound, and we will see if there will be an FET for us in March.

I sure hope there will be.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

the furry kind of baby, v2.0

Due Date: April 10
Take Home Date: June 10

WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!

I'm going to be mommy to another beautiful four-legged pup!

I have wanted to get another dog since we got Kelsey (September of 2010). I like the idea of two dogs so that they aren't bored. And I feel like Kelsey is bored often.

Kelsey as a pup.
Usually Buster quashes my "second dog" discussion. Money, time, space, etc.

Now that we are in our new home, though... something must have changed his mind. Perhaps he's been thinking  the same as me: that little princess Kelsey is a little bored by herself. And now that we have the room... why not?

Last July, I contacted a local Golden Retriever breeder. We talked for an hour on the phone. I could tell that she is a responsible breeder. And I wanted one of her pups! So she took my name and contact information, and she said she would contact me when they have an upcoming litter.

I didn't hear anything until three days ago. A litter is expected in April, and I can bring my little pup home in June!

Buster and I went back and forth on this decision. I'm all for it, obviously. And before you get to thinking I'm some kind of dog snob (ok, I guess I am a little), I think Goldens have the absolute sweetest demeanor. Their temperament is perfect for a house that hopes to have kids in it someday.

We discussed adopting a Golden from a rescue organization. I've really wanted to do this for a while. Buster would rather have a puppy, though. I'm not exactly certain why, but I'm pretty sure it's so he can train the pup young. He trained Kelsey, and honestly she's the best dog in the world (have I mentioned that before??).

Last night at dinner, Buster gave his consent. I thought he was joking at first. I can't tell you how big the smile on my face was. I probably looked like the Joker.

Needless to say, I'm shitting-my-pants-excited.

So is Kelsey, although you wouldn't know it from our photo shoot this morning:

"You are bringing WHAT home?"




"I see what you are doing here: playing tug-of-war with me so that you can take my picture. I don't approve."

Friday, March 9, 2012

penalty: delay of game

Well.

Today is cycle day 34. My longest cycle ever.

Sorry for the lackluster update, but I just don't know what to say about it. I'm disappointed, but not surprised.

Based on my pepperoni pizza face, I would have guessed AF should have been here by now. Nothing like having her MIA and having the face of a teenager (although I'd gladly have a face of pimples if I could have my teenage body back...).

____________

It's been nine weeks since my D&C.

I would be 19 weeks pregnant this weekend.

Mondays, Fridays, and Sundays. Each one that passes marks another milestone I'm missing or anniversary of devastation. I want to stop thinking of this stuff on these days, but most of the time I can't help it.

Monday - day of the worst ultrasound of my life

Friday - day of my D&C

Sunday - would be the day a new pregnancy milestone was reached

That's too many days of the week infused with negative emotions and sadness.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

why I blog

The recent events surrounding the creation of PAIL and the aftermath in PAIL's wake have left me lost in my own thoughts.

I've been thinking of why I blog. What I aim to get out of pouring my heart and soul into my created space on the interwebs. And why can I never "choose a side" (ok, this is probably better left for a brand new post, as this pertains to a whole lifetime full of indecisiveness. Or empathy? Both?)?

To address the first two thoughts, I've created a list of why I blog. The items are listed numerically in order of importance (1=most important to me).

  1. To provide an outlet for me. A way to cope with this bitch that is infertility and loss. Writing about what Buster and I have gone through is therapeutic. And free! (Take that, expensive psychiatrist!)
  2. I am kind of obsessed with helping people. I usually cannot say no to requests, and it brings me much joy to help people in any way that I can. I love seeing what people google to find my site. It brings me happiness to know that they probably found some pertinent information on my blog (minus all those people googling "duck boobies" and "unicorn pee". Sorry to disappoint.). If I can even help one person, at all... well, that's just amazing. This journey to parenthood is so difficult for a select few (million) of us. If I can shed some light on something, or give a stranger peace of mind, I'm more than happy to do so. This reason is very close to #1 in terms of importance to me.
  3. Connecting with women going down the same or similar path as me.  Just like real-life, there are people that you click with in the blogosphere. And sometimes when you find that person, AND they are down a similar path to you... well it's like a match made in heaven. I love finding new blogs that I feel a connection with, regardless of where they are in their journey to parenthood.
  4. For support. I know many bloggers might put the support aspect of blogging first. For me, however, I do have a good bit of support in my day-to-day life. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE comments, and I love that people care about my story. But, that's not the driving force that brings me to blog. But it's nice to know that in the times when I REALLY needed support, my bloggy friends (and strangers!) were there for me. And I can't thank you enough.
So there you have it. And now here are some reasons that don't compel me to blog, but I view more as icing on the proverbial cake:
  1. To gain more readers/followers. Yes, it's nice to be followed and read. It makes me feel loved, and I would never turn that down!
  2. To make some extra money. Yes, I have joined the BlogHer Advertising network. That's why there is an ad on my page. But this doesn't make me much money at all (we're talking double digits here). I joined more for the sake of being associated with BlogHer in an attempt to reach out to more women. To help others going down this path. To make women battling infertility know that they are not alone in their journey, in their feelings, in their path.

Next on my list of things I'd like to address:

Un-following blogs when the bloggess becomes pregnant.

I've done this. Is it a bitchy move? Well, yes. But sometimes you have to protect #1. And to be fair, the only times I've done that is when I didn't really feel much of a connection with the blogger anyway. Not sure if that makes it a little better or not...?

I know I've mentioned this recently, but I'm happy to say (once again) that I think I've really outgrown my bitter feelings that IF sends bubbling to the surface. I don't fault anyone who is bitter, though, because I understand. That was me. I own that, and I'm not embarrassed.

Bitterness is expected on this road. For me, it was several exits back. I've passed it, and I'm currently on the Hope Fraught With Sadness Highway. On the horizon, I see the All of Your Dreams Will Come True city skyline, and it is beautiful. 

I had a wonky test one time that I thought might be the start of my BFP. Directly after that post, I lost a follower. I assume it was because they thought I was pregnant. At the time I was hurt by it, honestly. Mostly because, as it turns out, I was definitely NOT pregnant.

But now, I get it. I understand why someone would protect themselves. Because sometimes that's what you have to do. I see all sides to this, and I can see how it is so easy for someone to feel hurt.

Currently, there are some days/hours/moments when I can't emotionally stomach reading a pregnancy blog post. Or a baby post. And often times, I truly adore these bloggers. Many of which I have followed since I figured out there was even such a thing as a community for people like me, and they follow me too And cheer me on. But there are just times when I can't do it. And that's ok. I don't feel guilty about it anymore. I just skip the post and then come back when I am in a better place.

Next on my agenda:

Pregnant infertiles not wanting to post because it may hurt feelings.

I've seen lots of talk about this over my stint in blogland. Recently I've read a lot about this because of the PAIL situation. I know everyone has to do what feels right and comfortable for them, but my opinion is this:
If it is your blog, you should write about whatever you want.

I like knowing what could possibly be for me. I like being prepared. So reading about the things that my pregnant blogger friends are dealing with is some tremendous insight for me.

And because I like being open and honest on my blog, I will say that when I see people say that they don't want to post because they don't want to upset those of us still in the trenches, it's almost more of a sting than if they would just post. Does that make any sense? I know I'm only one person, and I do not embody all of the women "still in the trenches", but I can take it! If I'm not up to reading your post, I will come back at a later date when I can handle it. Your blog is your story, and your story does NOT stop when you have a little person growing in you! 

With all that being said, my feelings are not hurt at all about anything. So if you happen to fall in the pregnant infertile category, I'm not mad or upset. I just want you to feel comfortable being you. And I want to read about YOU. I don't want to read some stripped down, half-assed blog post that skates around real issues.

Because when/if I am ever really pregnant, I'm going to continue to blog here. I may lose readers. I may anger people. I don't know. But this is my place, and I don't think it would be same with just half of my story documented.

And finally:

My thoughts on the PAIL situation.

I understand all sides. I don't think PAIL was started to be malicious, inclusive, divisive, or any of that. But I also can see Mel's point of view (quoted from this post):

"People also pointed out that many smaller blogrolls and projects exist, and no other one is described as divisive, and perhaps that is because membership to those is based on situation vs. what you achieve."

I couldn't agree more with that.

But I don't fault anyone for joining PAIL. I will continue to read all the blogs I adore, regardless of what blogroll they are on.

I think communication is key here, and the lack of communication made a mess of this. Is it fixable? I think so, and hope so.

(On the PAIL-related note, I also agreed with pretty much everything SIF said in her PAIL post. I even briefly entertained the thought of plagiarizing her whole post. Ok, not really, but it's a damn good post.)

Monday, March 5, 2012

well played

Well played, AF. Well played.

You managed not only to allow me to get my hopes up, but also tricked me into wasting precious time and money.

Today is CD30, and no AF. So, I do what any infertile masochist would do: I bought a box of FRERs. At a grocery store. Where they were locked up in a case outside the pharmacy. And I was there before the pharmacy opened. So I had to go on a safari to find someone with a key. Just what I want to do when I'm running late for work!

I'm really surprised they didn't announce over the loudspeaker that there was a woman wanting to buy a pregnancy test, and could someone please meet her at the case. And then they could announce my name, address and social security number. Usually, with my luck, it's that kind of scenario.

I head to the self-checkout with my $13 box of FRERs, some bananas, a bag of Mini Babybel original cheese rounds, some french vanilla coffee creamer, and some Berries & Cherries Nut Crunch (yum!).  I was hoping that the FRERs would scan on sale, but of course, they did not. Well, at least I have a $2 off coupon for next time...

Once at work, I head right into the bathroom with a styrofoam cup and a pee stick. Thankfully I was alone in there.

And the test was negative.

I know, I was so surprised too (sarcasm alert)!

So, I'm not pregnant. And AF is a couple of days late. I'm not surprised at all, but I couldn't resist the urge to POAS, just in case.

You know, "they" say you are more fertile after a miscarriage. But I'm pretty sure that doesn't apply if you are still unexplained after practically 5 years.

Here's to hoping tomorrow brings a day of me bleeding profusely.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

march photo challenge: days 3 and 4

I wasn't planning on combining days three and four into one photo. It just happened.

prompts: domestic & illuminate

illuminating my undomesticness.

I struggled a little with the "domestic" prompt. I don't really feel all that domestic. I cook some (and I'm really good at it. No, seriously!), do tons of laundry, and clean when I must. But (embarrassing admission incoming) I'm kind of a slob. There, I said it.

I hate cleaning. When I was young, we didn't have chores. Awesome life for a kid, not so awesome in the way of getting me into good habits regarding house cleaning.

I actually wish I was OCD about cleaning. I have a friend who is, and her house is always spotless. We have the kind of house that you need to call in advance before dropping by, so that I have time to get things together.

It also doesn't help that Buster is also a slob, and even worse than me. Well, in a different sort of way. My messes usually involve clothes and shoes, his involve empty coke cans and empty cigarette packs.

So in the photo above, you can obviously see a million smudges from Kelsey's nose. When Buster steps outside to smoke a cigarette, she will run to the back door and press her nose against the glass. Perhaps she is actually writing a cryptic message for him to read?

"Let me come outside with you!"

The sun was rising over the barren trees, and the smudgy glass was difficult to avoid. So, I figured my domestic could be more "undomestic".

Excuse me while I go Windex the sliding glass door...

Saturday, March 3, 2012

march photo challenge: day 2

prompt: feet


pictured: Kelsey's two back paws, my bright orange Jessica Simpson purse that I use as my bathroom bag, and a tip of my raggedy old gray fuzzy slipper.

If you'd like to join in on the fun, check out this post on Scrambled Eggs!

Friday, March 2, 2012

the ache

It has been eight weeks since my D&C.

And many of you were right: the pain of my loss does seem to lessen as time goes by. It practically feels like a dream-slash-nightmare. It's hard to imagine that I was actually pregnant at all. Decades seem to have passed. The surrealism of it all makes it easier to cope (that was some other girl in some other lifetime, right?).

But...

My loss seems to have strengthened my desire to be a mother. And instead of desire infused with jealousy or bitterness, it is now more of a desire coupled with sadness.

Three years ago, I was jealous of every pregnant belly. Every pair of tiny hands. Every snotty little nose. Two years ago, I was bitter. Angry. One year ago, I was deeply depressed. Exhausted from failed cycle after failed cycle.

Dipping my toes in the pregnancy water has made me even more determined to make this happen for us. Strength born of sadness. Determination from grief.

And even though I'm more steadfast in my desire than ever before, I also do not assume it will definitely happen for us. I know that there's a chance we will never have a baby. And that makes me incredibly sad. But I am remaining hopeful for what is to come, no matter which path we end up on.

Last night I babysat for W and G. Most of the time, everything is fine when I'm there. I occasionally think how I can't wait to do these things as a mom, but most of the time I don't go down that road. Sometimes I can't help it, though.

As I was singing G to sleep last night, I choked up several times.

When I was a child, my grandmother always sang to my sister and I. One of my favorites was "You Are My Sunshine." Even when I was young, I knew there was some kind of deep sadness mingled in those "happy" lyrics.

And I sing this to G (well, the chorus), along with "Rockabye Baby" and "Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star" (yes, I realize my nursery song arsenal is lacking).

Last night as I was singing "You Are My Sunshine", I became overwhelmed with sadness. I had to fight to keep the tears back, and to keep my mind off of my hopes, dreams, and failures.

I ache for the day I can sing it to my own baby.

_________________

Johnny Cash: You Are My Sunshine

Thursday, March 1, 2012

march photo challenge: day 1

prompt: self-portrait


I didn't have time to whip out a better camera today, so you are stuck with a photo from my phone! I hope to use either my point-and-shoot or SLR (I say "my", but I really mean "mine thanks to work") for the majority of the remaining pictures. But that might just be wishful thinking, and you may be subjected to phone pictures.

If you'd like to join in on the fun, check out this post on Scrambled Eggs!

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