Sunday, December 27, 2009

doubt

I'm here, we travelled and came back in one piece, and I'm still pregnant - 13 weeks, 4 days.

I've been dealing with a lot of doubt and guilt lately. Doubt that I can handle two kids, and guilt that I'm not even enjoying the one I have right now.

There. I said it.

Thing is, I don't do toddlers well. Sure, I'm fabulous with them for a couple of hours, but the day in, day out routine of constant (destructive) activity, alternate defiance and clinginess, and outright tantrums just wears me down. I can't count the number of times I've put Kali down for a nap because I'm tired... of her. I feel like a terrible mommy.

Yesterday I sat down and read my blog, starting from Kali's birth. I was so smitten with her. I loved every moment, even the poopy ones. The fact is that I do infants really really well. I have mad skillz when it comes to newborns. Reading the blog again reminded me that once upon a time I felt competent and fully in awe of my daughter. I need to get some of that feeling back.

And I have to say, Kali is an amazing kid. She's gorgeous, for starters, and she talks a mile a minute (this is both good and bad, I'll admit). She's obsessed with Finding Nemo right now. She still sucks her thumb and lays her head on my shoulder when she's tired, but when she's not... watch out! She's into everything. She thinks my maxi pads are giant stickers. She knows where we keep the popsicles and how to access them (note to self: buy a lock for the fridge). She's never met a puddle in which she didn't want to splash. She's lively and adorable. I love her, and sometimes I can't stand her.

Someone knock some sense into me. I know I'm lucky beyond belief. I just need to feel it.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Thank God I don't have to.

We're okay, folks.

No clue what the spotting was about, but the little June Bug was waving at us today. We saw fingers. FINGERS!

Measuring one day ahead, at 10w0d, and the heartbeat is 146. Cervix is closed and very long. Everything looks perfect.

My heartrate is still on the way down... I didn't sleep much last night and I was pretty wound up.

Thanks for the well wishes and offers of help. Anyone who wants to knock me out until the second trimester is welcome to come over with a baseball bat.

I'm going to bed. Here's a picture to tide you over.

Monday, November 30, 2009

I can't do this again.

I'm spotting.

Before you ask, no, we didn't have sex. I did put in my progesterone, but other than that nothing has been in or out of there in a while. I don't see any mundane reason why this should be.

It's more than just a bit of spotting, it's a smear of pinkish red on the toilet paper. It took five or six wipes to get it to disappear, only to reappear the next time I (obsessively) went to pee.

This is eerily familiar, like my pregnancy with Squishy, we've already seen a very reassuring heartbeat. As with Squishy, we're scheduled to fly out of town at the end of the week. Last time I flew to Spain even though we knew our baby was dead. This time I won't be flying if the news is anything but reassuring. I might not be flying if the news is reassuring, either. As much as I'd miss Mr. December, gone as he'll be for three weeks, I wouldn't like to miscarry in a foreign country. Not again. Not with a toddler.

I'll call the clinic as soon as I wake up tomorrow and beg my way in for an ultrasound. I'll update you promptly after that. Needless to say, I'm totally freaked out.

I know that there are women who spot or even full-out bleed through their pregnancies and deliver healthy babies... that's not making me feel better, though. A good ultrasound tomorrow would still only tell me that as of this second, nothing is wrong. Nothing about the second after that, or the next day, or the next six months.

Holy shit, I'm scared.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Confession

Forgive me, readers, for I have sinned. It's been eight days since my last blog post.

We went back to the clinic today. My heart was, once again, in my throat - but that's okay, because the embryo's heart is exactly where it should be, beating 150 times per minute. That's a pretty awesome heart rate, if you ask me!

Dr. Eyebrows first said the length indicated an age of 8w3d, which was NOT okay with me, seeing as this was eight days after we measured 7w5d... and then he got a better image and announced that it was more like 8w6d. So all is well. The little embie that could is looking an awful lot like a gummy bear. Mmmmm... gummy bears!

We got a couple of pics and some hugs from the doctors and nurses. One of my favourites said she'd better be the first person to hear about the birth, after the grandparents. I'll try to remember to send them a card this time.

I can't in good conscience call this embie either Phineas or Barnaby. Those names just have to go together. Instead, given my due date, this little one will henceforth be known as June Bug.

That is all.

Monday, November 16, 2009

141

It's a heart rate, not a beta.

We just got back from an ultrasound at the clinic. There's one embryo (only one, thank God), measuring 7w6d, with a heartrate of 141 bpm. Everything looks normal.

I still feel more than a little anxious. I need to breathe. I need to focus. Maybe I just need chocolate.

We didn't get a picture... their printer was not working. Okay, not so much not working, but it had become disconnected from the computer and they didn't know how to reconnect it. Dr. Eyebrows asked if I'd like to come back next week and see if we could get a picture then. I take it from his astonished laugh that my "yes!" was pretty forceful.

So... good news, but somehow I'm not feeling it, and hey, you'll get a pic next week.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Hormonal much?

My MIL is spending the day with us, playing with Kali.

Her voice is grating on me. Her habit of over-pronouncing words is driving me to distraction. Kali is young, not hard-of-hearing. I'm pretty sure she can hear all the sounds in that word, given the fact that she can SAY it correctly. I'm just sayin', ya know?

And I'd appreciate it if grandparents were just a bit more able to focus on one activity at a time, instead of talking about all the fun things they're gonna do next. 'Cuz Kali was eating her omelette very nicely until a certain someone mentioned reading stories... I'm just sayin'.

And really, Kali is pretty independent for a toddler. Please do not hover while she climbs the junglegym. She's been doing it by herself since August. Also, it's hard to climb when somebody else's body is just an inch away from yours. I'm just sayin'.

It is difficult for me to conclude my business with the window guy the insurance sent me when someone else keeps butting in with questions of vinyl vs. wood. We've already made the decision. This is my house, and I reserve the right to know my own mind. It's rude to start asking pointed questions obviously aimed at trying to get me to reconsider. I'm just sayin'.

I guess what I'm really just sayin' is that I need to get out of this house, or else MIL does. I can nap through pretty much anything, but sadly her strident voice does not fall into that category.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

jeans

So, I don't have a problem with maternity clothes. I don't find them super-expensive, many of them are really nice, and they fit me well. But for some reason, this time around, I could not find a single pair of maternity jeans that looked good on me. Instead I headed over to Bl.uenotes and bought a couple pairs of sexxxxy jeans that actually looked good. I've been holding them together with elastic bands ever since.

Today I converted my pair of ultra-low-rise flare jeans into maternity jeans. This is what I can do when left to my own devices for, oh, say 1 hour:





Monday, November 09, 2009

With apologies to Stacy...

Sorry. I didn't mean to leave you all hanging. Believe me, I'm not going to abandon the blog. As this pregnancy progresses you'll all be privileged to hear my snarky rants. I promise.

As I've learned before, the best way to change the situation is to blog about it. Since my last post I've had no ovary pain, and even though I still seem to have a rather large belly, I don't feel bloated anymore. In fact, I don't feel much of anything. I'm pretty symptom-free.

And yes, I just typed that with the goal of not being symptom-free for much longer.

I shouldn't lie or exaggerate. I have been getting odd attacks of "I'm so hungry, if I don't shove some carbs in my mouth NOW then I'm gonna puke". But they haven't been frequent, and I can't deny that I'm remembering how desperately nauseated I was at this point in my pregnancy with Kali. Frankly, I found the daily vomiting a bit reassuring.

This time around, I've managed to find myself a midwife. For those just joining us, when I was pregnant with Kali I called all the midwives in the city the DAY I got my BFP. They were all full, not taking any more clients. I was put on waiting lists and ended up in the care of a (wonderful, very competent) family physician. This time I called the day I saw those two shadowy lines... and today I met my midwife. It was a great meeting, but I'm not in the mood to describe everything right now. Suffice it to say, I'm pleased with my choice.

Okay, I will comment on one thing. She asked for the date of my LMP. Accustomed to doctors and their stupid wheel, I gave her the fabricated date I figured out by counting backwards 14 days from my egg retrieval. And then... my jaw dropped as she asked whether I have a regular 28-day cycle, or whether there's any other reason to believe that the wheel might not be right. I was in shock! I just reassured her that my cycle was tightly controlled throughout the IVF process, and that the clinic has not said anything to contradict the due date that we've figured out. Which is, incidentally, June 30.

And, having (mostly) caught you up, off I go to relieve myself of the restrictions of pants. I need to spend some quality time with my sewing machine, some stretchy material, and my favourite jeans.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Mild OHSS?

So, really, this bloating is not cool. I look pregnant - my belly is round, instead of the lumpiness I'm used to. And I have sharp ovary pains periodically, like ovulation pains, but worse. They especially happen if I twist while turning over in bed.

Is this mild OHSS? Should I be concerned?

In other news, my stomach seems to be unhappy... is it still called morning sickness if it's exiting the other end?

As Mr. December often reminds me, I'm so gross.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

so soon?

I have a belly.

Look, I'm not a skinny girl. I've always had a belly. I'm apple-shaped. But my belly is a LOT bigger than it was even two weeks ago. I can't button my jeans - I'm holding them together with a hair elastic, although I'm hoping to finish sewing a belly band by tomorrow.

So yeah, everyone who ever told me that you pooch out about three seconds after your bfp with baby #2 was dead on.

Also, my boobs are bigger and inexplicably warm.

So the question is, how do I keep this pregnancy under wraps for the next seven weeks?

Monday, October 26, 2009

365

That's a doubling time of 39 hours, or 1.6 days. In short, it's fabulous. My nurse was suitably impressed. On November 16 we'll do an ultrasound to see who's bouncing around in there.

Sorry it took me so long to post... Kali WOULD NOT NAP today. At one point she sat on my bed and stroked my hair while I napped, but she wouldn't sleep. It led to some interesting moments this evening.

Long story short, all the information we currently have points to good things for this pregnancy. Of course, that doesn't mean much on a cosmic scale, but I'll take what I can get.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Relief

I feel relieved. After 6 IUI's, our first IVF managed to get me pregnant.

You might think that the relief lies in knowing that I'm on my way to having the big family I've always wanted, in knowing that I'm growing another person. You might think that, but you'd be wrong.

I harbour no illusions that a positive pregnancy test means that in nine months there will be a take-home baby. None. I'm not really counting on this pregnancy to produce a baby. Maybe it will. I hope it will. But that's not the source of my relief, since the idea of this pregnancy brings a bit of anxiety with it.

No, I'm relieved because, for a little while at least, I can stop. I can stop the early-morning trips to the clinic. I can stop injecting myself with hormones. I can stop acting like I'm fine when all I want is to go back to bed and cry bitterly. I get to take a break.

My second beta, tomorrow, might give us a hint as to how long that break will be. Long or short, I do plan to enjoy it.

Friday, October 23, 2009

156

That's our lucky number. The nurse assured me that it's a very good number, especially since we did the beta a day earlier than the clinic usually does. I can't help remembering that my beta with Kali (same dpo) was 637, but, well, I'll take my nurse at her word. Besides, we all know that it's about the rate of increase and NOT about the absolute number. Right? Right?

So, it's official. Please - if you know me IRL, or even on FB, don't mention this. A few key people will be told, but other than that I don't plan to make any official announcements. When people figure it out, they figure it out.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

all hpt's are equal, but some are more equal than others

You were all right. First off, a line is a line. But second, the dollar store tests are insanely faint compared to this:



Do you suppose the clinic would yell at me if I showed up for a beta tomorrow instead of Friday?

vision test.

Mr. December and I can't quite agree. How many lines do you see?



This one has been altered slightly - I increased the exposure and contrast.




It's 14 dpo (11 dp3dt), my urine wasn't super-concentrated, and these shadowy lines came up within 10 minutes. Also, they're definitely pink, and there are two of them. Is it too much to hope?

Oh, and does the faintness of the line have anything to do with the viability of the pregnancy?

Monday, October 19, 2009

I've been a bit despondent...

... and I only just figured out why. I'm so slow.

The worst part of IVF, so far, has been the complete lack of sex. No sex. It's been two weeks. Add to that the fact that I (partially?) observe the laws of Taharat Hamishpacha (which means no sex from CD1 until I'm positive I've stopped bleeding and/or spotting, and even then only after I've immersed in the mikvah), and you'll understand why I'm feeling deprived. It has been a long, long time.

All I can decently say about the resolution of this issue is that I've reminded Mr. December that our repertoire used to be more varied, once upon a time. Somehow, before it would have been appropriate to be consummating our relationship, we still managed more than our fair share of pleasure.

Last night I demanded satisfaction. Nobody was slapped with a glove and there was no duel, but I did get my choice of weapons.

I feel better now.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Who spiked my OJ?

Okay, people. Fess up. Who put Fentanyl in my orange juice?

I slept today until 2:30 p.m. - oh, sure, I got up for 20 minutes to feed Kali and get her dressed to go to her grandparents' house, but as soon as she walked out the door I was back in bed. The next thing I knew, it was 2:30.

I still feel drugged. And I'm not just saying that - I know what drugged feels like! Really, my limbs feel heavy and I feel like I could sleep from now into tomorrow.

Repeat after me:

It's just the progesterone.

(but wouldn't it be nice if it wasn't?)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

the suspense is killing me

Really, I'm not usually this impatient at 8 dpo. Is it the progesterone talking, or have I lost the ability to wait and see? I want answers now! GAAAH.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The score: Sara - 2 Envy - 1

In the last two days I've found out that two more of my friends are pregnant. Based on their own disclosures, they both conceived within 5 months of stopping birth control. They're also those elusive "fertile myrtles" who got pregnant with their first babies the first time they tried. Yes, apparently they do exist.

Anyhow, I was able to be genuinely happy for them, albeit a bit subdued. Envy was nowhere to be seen. For now.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Do not be alarmed, it was just a dream.

A dream in which...

I exited the mall and found my car blocked in by bags of groceries.

Hmmm, I thought to myself, looks like a carjacking is about to go down. I looked around and identified a likely culprit - a skinny blond kid (maybe 15 years old?) in the next car over. I decided that I'd rather face off against the kid than deal with the insurance nightmare of getting my car replaced.

Cut to me in the backseat of the moving car, getting really pissed off because not only has the kid carjacked me, he's eating the snack that I bought for myself to enjoy on the drive home! The gall! It was clearly time to act.

I grabbed both his hands and got them behind his head. Suddenly my big brother was in the car with me, holding the steering wheel while I held the kid's wrists together. My brother steered the car home (to our childhood home, in which we haven't lived for the last six years). We wrestled the kid inside and I called 911.

The first time I called I got a recording:
Thank you for calling 911. Please hold for the next available operator. If you would like to speak to a supervisor, press 2. (in an undertone, I heard the same voice mutter, "they'd better not press 2. The supervisor's not here today.") I called again and this time got a lady who pretty much laughed me off the phone, even after I told her I had interrupted a carjacking in progress. She seemed to think it was no big deal, and told me that they had nobody who could deal with the situation at present.

Cut to the family room. The kid is lounging on the couch with my two brothers (waiting for the cops to come to their senses and pick him up? I don't know). He reveals that he just lives up the street with his mom and sister. Just then, a uniformed guy arrives at the door. He sizes up the situation and charges the kid with "being a dumb criminal" ("you make the real criminals look bad, kid. Don't try this again.") and congratulates me on having thwarted the boy. My dad arrives home and tries to "tip" the officer with a $50 bill. Somehow my brothers make it seem like the officer got the money, but manage to get it out of sight before the officer sees that he's been offered a tip/bribe. He takes the kid home. As they leave, I realize that the officer's uniform says "forestry and recreation" - he's some kind of park ranger. The 911 dispatcher couldn't be bothered to send the police.



Any interpretations, dear readers?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Phineas and Barnaby

On Saturday, we transferred two 8-celled embryos. They were our only two, and I'm thankful that they both seemed to be dividing and growing properly. We were given a lovely picture of the two of them - it's now up on my fridge, which seems silly even to me, but was the only place safe from toddler interference.

The embryos need nicknames. I've finally settled on Phineas and Barnaby... you know, these guys (from Family Guy):



I can just imagine them in there, riding their ridiculous turn-of-the-century bicycle and working out with microscopic little anvils. Oh, and implanting themselves.

Beta will be October 23.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

eggs behaving badly

We just got the fertilization report:

11 eggs
9 were mature
2 fertilized

Yes, that's right. Only two fertilized. The lab said they'd watch them til tomorrow to give the rest a chance, but so far these eggs definitely look like underachievers.

So much for having extras to freeze...

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Just say "yes", kids.

I'd be a poor choice for a high school teacher or a youth-group advisor - in fact, it's a good thing I left that particular job at my synagogue. If I were to teach a class tomorrow, the lesson would be two-fold:

1. Don't waste your money on birth control. That whole thing about sex making babies? A myth! Save up your money, put it in bonds, and you might have enough money for that IVF one day.

2. Say yes to drugs. As emphatically as possible. They're soooooo awesome.



So yeah... the retrieval went well, as far as I can remember. In my Fentanyl-induced haze I was vaguely aware that a needle repeatedly puncturing my ovaries would be excruciating if I wasn't drugged, but I was able to observe it with a degree of detachment. We got 11 eggs all together. They'll call us with a fertilization report tomorrow.

I thought I'd be able to enjoy a quiet afternoon at home with Mr. December, but I fell asleep as soon as we got home and only woke up a couple of times to beg for a popsicle ("no, not that one, that one's pineapple. I wanted Tutti Frutti!!!!"). I'm finally feeling lucid, and sore, and trying to figure out what exactly constitutes "more than slight spotting". If the toilet paper is covered in pink-and-brownish goo every time I wipe, does that warrant a call to the clinic?

Here we go...

We're about to leave for the clinic. Let's hope I only have to go through this once.

I'll update as soon as I can, allowing of course for several hours of general loopiness.

Monday, October 05, 2009

La di dah

I'm sitting up, waiting for Kali to go back to sleep after a way-too-early awakening. No point in going back to bed if she's just gonna start wailing again.

Why am I blogging this? Because otherwise, I'd have no chance to show off how cute and funny my kid is: she's trying to sing herself back to sleep. And her choice of song...

Brown Eyed Girl.

"la la la la la la di dah... la di dah..."

That's my baby!

Sunday, October 04, 2009

coming soon...

This Wednesday... the reproductive event of the season:

Dr. C: Beautiful cycle!
(flash to black; flash to ultrasound image of an over-laden ovary)

When all is known...

Dr. C's assistant: (measuring follicles) that's 1.5, and another.... 1.6, and another...

And all is revealed...

(flash to small counseling room: desk is littered with needles and vials: nurse stands between Mr. and Mrs. December)
Nurse: ... need to abstain for two to three days. So, when did you last...
Mr. December: (blushes) uh... a couple hours ago.


When you've come this far...

(close-up of syringe of orgalutran being injected subcutaneously)

Expect to go all the way.

From the creators of Kali comes a gripping new experience:

THE RETRIEVAL.
all your eggs are in one basket.

THIS WEDNESDAY.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Day 10

Still feeling sick, and Kali has finally consented to nap, so I'll be very brief:

Lining: 0.9
Follicles: 15 of them, smallest is 1.0 and largest is 1.9. There are a bunch of smaller ones, too

I go back on Sunday for more monitoring. In the meantime, I'm to stick with the orgalutran and puregon.

Off to bed now. Happy Friday.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

temporary disturbance in the force

I'm sick. Miserably so... but I have a duty to my adoring public, no? (cue laugh track)

Yesterday I did the day 7 ultrasound and bloodwork. We've got roughly 19 follicles chugging along, and my lining is 0.6. So far, so good. I started orgalutran yesterday - it's supposed to keep me from ovulating spontaneously (you should have heard me laugh when they told me that one...). I go back on Friday for more monitoring. In the meantime, I'm still on 150 of Puregon.

Things I'd like to post about, if only I were feeling up to it:

- Yom Kippur in general
- this Yom Kippur, and the surprising reunion that defined it, in particular
- the many charms of Kali
- a pair of non-maternity jeans that fit and flatter me!
- mikvah
- progress on envy
- the sheer ludicrous beauty of my life right now

... and maybe I'd also do a bit on the google searches that have led people here.

But alas, back to my sickbed I go (*cough* *cough*).

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Envy

Before Kali was conceived, just before Kali was conceived, I wrote about finding joy in the midst of infertility, and how it seemed somehow like I had achieved the task that God had set out for me. It's not uncommon to believe that our difficulties exist for a reason; as a Jew I believe that my soul was given the opportunity to choose its path, knowing everything about it, and therefore the obstacles I face are part of my task in the universe. If only I knew what that task was.

I'm getting a sense, though, of what I need to do next. Not in terms of infertility, but in terms of my soul, my self; I believe this is the year that I am to learn how to control (and, hopefully, discard) my tendency towards envy.

A couple of illustrations:

1. I was 23 years old, and was finishing up my professional internship. While getting ready for work one day a good friend called to tell me she was engaged. Tears sprang to my eyes - she and her fiance had only been dating for a few months, whereas I had been dating Mr. December for six YEARS, and was desperately waiting for him to propose. I managed a breathless "congrats!", hung up, and headed to work. Not thirty minutes into my work day I had a complete breakdown. Sobbing, blubbering, I ran to the nearest room with a door and ended up telling all to my supervisor. Later that evening I confessed my sadness and anger to my parents: "It's like she butted in front of me! I've been waiting in this line much longer! It's not fair! I feel like Mr. D is never going to propose, and that makes me so unhappy!" My parents, particularly my father, were shocked and apparently unimpressed at my lack of sincere happiness for my friend. I was, eventually, able to be truly excited for her - two months later, when Mr. December proposed to me.

2. I was 26 years old and had just had a miscarriage at nine weeks, after seeing a heartbeat and being told everything was perfect. At the time I worked for a very small Jewish organization, and my boss was a wonderful man with a gorgeous wife and four perfect kids. It was about a month after my miscarriage, just about when my depression was at its worst. He told me (as gently as possible) that his wife was "expecting" again (I hate that euphemism, but I'll cover that another time) and that he wanted to be the one to tell me rather than having me find out in public and having to deal with it then. It was kind of him, but I broke down anyway. Through my tears I assured him that I was happy for them, but desperately sad for myself. It wasn't until I got to the car that heaving sobs overtook me. I called my mother and wailed, "How come God can make sure that Dov and his wife get five pregnancies and perfect, healthy children every time, and He can't give me ONE?!?!?!?" Ostensibly because of my depression, but catalyzed by this incident, I quit my job and spent the next eight months shutting out the world.

3. See yesterday's post.


As you see, I don't do well when reminded that other people have what I had wanted for myself. Not literally - I didn't want my friend's fiance, nor would I have liked to gestate and raise Dov's fifth child - but when I see others living experiences I've dreamt of, and been denied, I lose it.

I need not to. I want to be able to acknowledge others' happiness, congratulate them sincerely, and then continue to enjoy the blessings that have been bestowed upon me. I'm well aware that the world isn't fair; in fact, this has generally worked in my favour. But I'm still paralyzed, unable to move into the realm of counting my blessings and falling back on them when fate seems to be thumbing its nose at me. I need to watch Kali climb the jungle gym and laugh with her without lamenting the fact that I'm not also holding a newborn. I need to revel in Mr. December's love (and, dare I say, passion?) without feeling that our relationship is incomplete because we're not well on our way to having four children by age 35.

I know that sometimes I will be sad, and sometimes I will feel incomplete. But my goal for this year is that those feelings not be set off by other people's happy news. I need to kick envy to the curb.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

It begins...

The so-called "second wave" has begun.

Tonight I received an email. Our friend sent around a photo of her daughter (who is about six months younger than Kali) wearing a bib that read: "I'm going to be a big sister!"

This can only be the first of many such announcements; most of our friends have kids around Kali's age (but really, they're all younger) and all of them have admitted to wanting more children.

This friend's second child will be almost precisely two years younger than their first. That's the spacing I always idealized... that particular dream died for me when my April cycle didn't work out.

I wonder how many more such announcements I'll have to smile my way through before I get pregnant again. I wonder whether it will always hurt like this.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Not for me.

There are fabulous stories floating around the blogosphere. Stories about BFNs on pee sticks all the way to 17 dpo. Stories of wonky cycles miraculously ending in pregnancy. Stories of infertiles who unexpectedly conceive baby #2 from sex! in their own bed! after thinking it impossible. I suppose those stories come true for some people.

But not for me.

Hope is insidious, and I was still holding onto it. Maybe the evap line I got was actually a really, really faint positive - wouldn't that be grand? But no, that happy news was not for me. The nurse just called. She assumed I already knew the result. I told her I didn't. "It's negative," she said, "I'm sorry." I bet she was. But not as sorry as I am.

I don't have the luxury of a good cry right now. The dishwasher repairman is coming in ten minutes, and I'm pretty sure I need to empty the dishwasher.

I'm tired of going down this road. So very tired of it. I really didn't think I'd be spending nine months straight at the fertility clinic, but here I am. Again.

When we hit the one-year mark, will they bake me a cake? Or will I have to throw my own pity party?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

to do:

- go to clinic for ritual bloodletting beta blood draw
- call appliance repair company, get them to come immediately and stop dishwasher from leaking into basement
- call telephone repair guy, get him to fix the bajillion phone jacks that, inexplicably, don't work
- call Mr. D's cellphone company, remind them that they can stop billing me now because I CANCELLED MY SERVICE FOUR MONTHS AGO, YOU IDIOTS.
- call insurance adjuster, ask why nobody has come to fix the window that was broken in the storm three weeks ago
- wake, dress, and feed toddler; turn loose in backyard and let nature take its course
- wash dishes from holiday meals, since the dishwasher probably isn't fixed yet
- answer the phone call from clinic, telling me that I'm not pregnant this time either
- cry
- feed Kali lunch
- do laundry
- help bat mitzvah student review her portion and learn new blessings
- make dinner
- clean up from dinner
- collapse into bed; cheer self up by reading Darcy and Elizabeth book

Seems doable, if I get an early enough start. Don't you agree?

Still negative

You read that right. I POAS this morning again. Still negative, although I did get a lovely evap line some 10 hours later. Gah.

I really wish I could've written the opposite tonight. At least I had a chance to reflect and pray today, and am so grateful for so many things in my life, not least of which are Mr. December and Kali... and I continue to be thankful that we have the financial, logistical, and emotional wherewithal to pursue family-building, despite the challenges.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Shana Tova

Tonight at sundown, a new year begins. We'll be celebrating by eating sweet foods (for a sweet new year), hearing the shofar (a wake-up call to take stock and become better people), and being with family and friends.

This morning's POAS yielded a negative, which was upsetting but not devastating. Maybe G-d just wants this happy news to be the kickoff to a new year, not the tail end of an old one. Maybe Monday morning will begin a very sweet year for us.

This year, I am endeavouring to not use my computer at all on Shabbat or holidays... so this is it. I'll be back online on Sunday night, and I'll update you on Monday regarding the beta.

Happy new year, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WORLD!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

10 dpo - negatory.

I couldn't help myself. I peed on a stick. It was negative.

I KNOW that 10 dpo is too early to know for sure. I KNOW that it could be positive tomorrow, on Monday, or even later. I know all that.

But I fear that Dr. Eyebrows is right: the previous IUI's haven't worked because of some other kind of problem, and that same problem will prevent this one from working, too. I fear that the upcoming holidays, this season of happiness, will be spent lamenting the children I don't have rather than celebrating the one I do. I fear that we won't get the happy resolution we're seeking here.

I wish I could go to sleep and wake up on Monday, after my beta. I wish I could just know already.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

It's not about the dishwasher unless I make it so.

A friend of mine just wrote a post about how, as an Orthodox Jew, she really regrets that she can't eat in someone's house just because they use the same dishwasher for both their meat and dairy utensils. She goes on to talk about how many people accuse the Orthodox of caring more about the dishwasher than about the friendship.

I understand that point of view. But I also think that it's not about the dishwasher until I decide that it is.

(full disclosure: I'm pretty sure that I'm the person my friend is referring to, given that we just had this conversation about her eating in my home. Maybe it comes up a lot, but I'm not betting on it.)

Here's my point:

I understand why, for an Orthodox Jew, it's impossible to eat things cooked in my pots and pans, served on my plates. It's like asking a paraplegic to walk up the steps into my house. Impossible. When that person says no, it's not a judgment - it's simply a statement of fact. So I can grouse about how offended I am, about how seriously I take my Judaism and how picky this friend is being. But ultimately, it's a fruitless exercise. Alternately, I can offer a solution or a compromise: eat in my home, but on paper plates. We'll order takeout. Or I can cook things in foil pans with single-use utensils.

It's just as if I invited a person who is wheelchair-dependent to my house with stairs. I could build a ramp. It won't be pretty, or as elegant a reception as I like to offer my guests. There are some parts of my house a wheelchair-dependent person would never be able to see. But we could still enjoy each other's company, a bite to eat, and stimulating conversation. It's not about the stairs, just as it's not about the dishwasher.

There are some of my much-loved recipes that my Orthodox friends will never taste. That's unfortunate, but far from a deal-breaker. Where I come from, hachnassat orchim (welcoming guests) is taken very seriously. It's about accommodating your guests to the best of your ability, and seeing to their needs, not to your own. And so I'm choosing to overlook the small sting to my pride and build the metaphorical ramp. And when we all sit around the table in the succah, breaking bread and celebrating together, the dishwasher won't even be relevant.

spotty at best.

No, wait, that's spotting. Spotting. Which I don't have while on progesterone... except at 12dpo with Kali, and yesterday (8 dpo). Perhaps my body is just enjoying the last remaining way to play with me, but I'd rather think that there's an embryo burrowing in right about now.

Mr. December is home. I'm so relieved.

Monday, September 14, 2009

the absent EPS report, 7 dpo

I can't honestly say that I've noticed any EPS so far. Well, there was that gushing nosebleed, but my sensible side says that's probably attributable to the fact that Kali poked her finger way up my nose in an attempt to wake me up. So the nosebleed means nothing.

Otherwise... no nausea, I'm only as tired as the progesterone makes me, and I'm not all mood-swing-y. I'm just here, kinda plugging along. It's kind of nice. Maybe I should spend every 2ww reading romance novels. Arousal beats anxiety. Every. Time.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

T minus 36

No, not the time til beta. I'm talking about time until Mr. December comes home.

In a fit of organization/decorating, I'm trying to pull a "while you were out" on him... sort of. I cleaned up the vegetable bed, planted fountain grass and decorative cabbage where there were bare patches, cleaned off the porch. The front hall will be getting cleaned up very shortly. I also replaced our rust-stained shower curtain (I can only bleach it so many times) and upgraded to those rolling shower curtain rings (I am so tired of the rings jumping off the rod because someone pulled the curtain too forcefully).

The house will be cleaned tomorrow. I really want him to walk into a cozy, clean, inviting home rather than into the pigsty this place has become.

And on that note, off I go to organize the medicine cabinet.

Friday, September 11, 2009

file under "stupid questions"

Am I safe to assume that being in a near-constant state of arousal is probably a good thing, as it vastly increases blood supply to my uterus?

(Mr. December sent me flowers. I practically swooned. Off to do some reading now.)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I must admit...

I bought the sequel to the sequel. I've read half of it already. With Mr. December out of town, I'm frustrated beyond belief. My sympathies are with teenage boys everywhere.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

the embarrassing truth

Okay, first things first: anybody who is leery of encountering TMI in regards to... um... non-medical stuff about me, stop reading when I tell you to.

We had the IUI on Monday morning. It went well, sperm were wonderfully motile, blah blah blah. I had acupuncture before and after, and honestly, it was fabulous - because it gave me a free pass to nap on a bed in the recovery room, instead of waiting in the waiting room for them to be ready for me. And true to form, they were ready for me a whole lot later than they said they'd be.

TMI coming up here. S'ok with me if you want to read this, but I don't want to make you uncomfortable.

So... the thing about the estrogen high I was on is that it made me... erm... somewhat randy. Okay, a lot randy. And it didn't help that I was reading a Pride and Prejudice sequel that more than hinted about the conjugal habits of Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth. Did I mention that I love reading bodice-rippers? Seriously, it's better than porn. Way better. Poor Mr. December.

Yes, you should pity him. Leading up to the IUI he was required to abstain for a couple of days. Here he was, uncharacteristically chaste, and there I was, really really enjoying my book. I'm not ashamed to say that I demanded satisfaction. And oh, it was good. And hey, I was well within my rights. According to Jewish law, a husband is required to make sure that he pleasures and satisfies his wife. Oh, how I love being Jewish!

It's amazing how happy I am in the wake of a weekend of conjugal bliss. Please remind me of this next time I start to feel anxious or depressed.

Now... where did I put that book?

Sunday, September 06, 2009

One in a thousand.

That's the number of women for whom Suprefact produces the opposite of the intended effect. One in a thousand. And I, dear internets, am that one.

Dr. Eyebrows was playing wand-monkey today. As soon as the probe was in, I saw it: my left ovary, completely taken over by two huge follicles. And my uterus, with a fat-looking triple-striped lining. No wonder my body was getting all estrogenic on me.

"So," I asked, "do we IUI these beauties?"

"Oh, yes." Said Dr. Eyebrows. "And if you get pregnant off this cycle, there's another case study in the making." He admired the perfect 9 mm lining, the gorgeous 2.1 and 2.0 follicles, and then printed off a picture for my file. I have to admit, it is a very pretty picture. I haven't had a response that beautiful in... um... ever? Maybe suprefact should be my IUI protocol from now on.

Anyhow, IUI is on Monday morning. We've decided to go whole hog and sign up for in-clinic acupuncture before and after the IUI. To be honest, I'm not that optimistic - the last five IUI's haven't worked, and what are the chances that was just dumb luck? But you never know. Maybe, just maybe...

Oh, and I shot up (HCG trigger) in a public bathroom again. Surely that counts for something, no?

Thursday, September 03, 2009

dial "N" for "neurotic"

Every time I peed today, I couldn't help noticing that I have a ton of EWCM. So I decided to check out what the ol' cervix was up to... and discovered that cervix is very much open, and high, and soft, and all of the other things associated with ovulation and/or an abundance of estrogen.

So I put it to the internets: isn't suprefact supposed to supress estrogen? If it is, and if I'm on a daily dose of suprefact, why is my body acting like it's on an estrogen high?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

overdue update

Sorry, folks. I just realized that both of my readers are probably waiting to hear about our consultation with Dr. Eyebrows.

We met with him on Tuesday. Basically he feels that if I haven't gotten pregnant after 5 IUI's, there may be other issues - tubal scarring that renders the cilia useless seems to be at the top of his list. Anyhow, he suggested moving forward with IVF.

We had the whole conversation about how many embryos he would recommend transferring. He usually does two for my age group and diagnosis. I'm okay with that. Mr. December, engineer that he is, thinks twins would be super-efficient. I think it's a risk I'm willing to take, but a singleton is my ideal outcome.

Dr. Eyebrows also asked us how many kids we want, ultimately. When we answered "four", he immediately started talking about freezing some embryos now for future use. He went into details of new techniques they're using that get them very similar success rates with a FET as with a fresh cycle. Sounds good to me. And frankly, I'm impressed that he asked. Somehow I always feel like people will assume that two kids are enough, especially in light of fertility issues. I wonder whether he would have flinched if I had told him I wanted ten kids? I guess I'll never know.

He described the protocol - wait until day 21, then start suprefact, wait for my period -

I interrupted right there. I don't get my period on any regular or predictable basis. We could be waiting a long, long time.

For some reason Dr. Eyebrows perked up when I said this. He suggested we do a quick ultrasound to see how things were looking. He determined that it looked like I wouldn't ovulate this cycle (surprised? not me) and my lining was extremely thin (at day 6)... so he informed us we could start right away! And we don't have to wait for a period!

So here I sit, with track marks on my belly, waiting for September 5 - my "assigned day 3". Mr. December feels certain this will work. I tried that attitude last time, and the crash was bad. I think I'll stick with "cautiously optimistic".




ps to Aurelia - I asked Dr. Eyebrows about the tests you mentioned. He felt that the statistical probability was just so low that blah, blah, blah... I didn't argue this time. Well actually, I did. But he kept giving me the "you probably read too much and you definitely worry too much" look, and so I dropped it. Maybe next time.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

arrested reproduction

I must apologize to all of my vegetables. Dearies, I will not allow your fruits to stay on the vine and rot, all for the purpose of granting you children. In fact, I plan to eat you AND your potential babies. MUA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

(harvested two pounds of beets and some carrots today)

Monday, August 17, 2009

What would you do?

Forgot to mention: we're scheduled for a consultation with Dr. Eyebrows on August 25. If we wait for that, we'll essentially lose a month - or we could do a last-ditch IUI, have our consultation during that cycle, and then do the IVF starting in September.

Alternately, we can just go with the protocol that Nice Jewish Doctor has recommended, and skip the consultation altogether.

What would you do?

How does this happen?

Is it just crap luck, or is there something wrong with me? This was our fifth cycle. We had follicles, we had sperm. The timing was clinically perfect. What gives? FIVE TIMES? WITH DRUGS? You have got to be f---ing kidding me.

My nurse just called. She had already asked Nice Jewish Doctor for new orders. He recommends IVF, starting with suprefact on day 21 of this next cycle and adding Puregon after I get my period. I reminded my nurse that I don't usually get my period unprompted, at least not for a couple of months. Whatever, we'll work it out.

I'm just not ready for this. The puregon pen I can handle. But the suprefact shots, followed by the puregon... not to mention my irrational fear of the retrieval itself, and the crazy voice in my head that's screaming WHAT IF I DO ALL THAT PAINFUL STUFF AND IT STILL DOESN'T WORK? THEN WHAT? HUH? HUH?

Right now Kali is napping. Out of sight, out of mind. That fearful crazy voice is taking over. I didn't think it would come to this. In fact, I had hoped to already be pregnant enough that everybody would know. It worked last time with Kali. Why isn't it working this time? Why us?

This feels like a petty problem. We have Kali. She's beautiful and sweet and smart and cute and she's ours. I'm a mommy, something I once feared I'd never get to be. But I'm greedy. I want more. Actually, I want four. (but not at the same time) And I don't want Kali to be 6 years old before I can produce a sibling for her. I don't want these huge age gaps. Two years, perfect. Three years, also fine. Three and a half years... well, if that's the best we can do... but four years or more just seems like such a huge gap to me. And if our gap between numbers one and two is so big, will we ever get to four?

I called my mom after I heard from the nurse. Mom's coming over with a slice of pizza and some hugs for me. I just don't feel like doing anything anymore.

Adding insult to injury...

The blood test was very painful today. That's unusual for me - I have fabulous veins and B. is the best phlebotomist I've ever worked with... but today it hurt. Badly. I cried.

I feel like my nerves are totally frayed. I'm basically okay for the moment, but I feel like anything could set me off. I came home and cried for a while while Kali tried to feed me goldfish crackers and Mr. December stroked my head and said, "next month, honey". Yeah, next month. Where have I heard that before?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Hm. BFN. Hm...

I didn't realize exactly how certain I've been that I'm pregnant. Apparently I'm very certain, because this morning I POAS and saw only one line, yet my only thought was "hm... I guess it's not ready to show up yet". So I guess I'm in BFN denial. I'm sure it's a protective measure, since I let my guard down for about two seconds just now and was overcome by a wave of sadness and disbelief.

Really, how could this cycle not work? I mean, I know it's possible. But we had good sperm, a fabulous lining, one big juicy follicle on each side... and I've been feeling so good about the cycle. And gagging, and almost puking, and yesterday my boobs were sore. How could it not work?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Waning positivity

It's not easy to be positive at 8 dpo.

On IUI day, you can crow about your fabulously fecund follicles, or the fact that dh's sperm are looking "well powerful" this cycle. At 1, 2, 3, 4, even 5 and 6 dpo, you can talk about how it's way too early for symptoms but you just have a feeling it's all gonna work out this time. But once you hit 8, almost 9 dpo, it's hard to ignore the nagging feeling that nothing is happening. Nothing.

So that's where I am, folks. I just don't know. If I were less cowardly I'd POAS already, but I'm too scared to spend the next 6 days cursing the fact that I just KNOW it didn't work and yet I have to keep taking the progesterone.

Anybody have some chocolate?

Sunday, August 09, 2009

gag.

Tonight, on the eve of 7 dpo, I suddenly jumped up from the table and ran towards the bathroom, gagging all the way. When I finally gave myself permission to puke, I dry heaved a couple of times. Nothing more.

I'd love for this to be an EPS, but I can't help thinking that back in January I puked at 3 dpo for absolutely no reason. I wasn't pregnant. I have no idea what was up. Every cycle my body seems to up the ante (as EPS go), so I guess this is the logical next step.

But still, after dry heaving, what am I supposed to think? Sure, I'd like to tell you that this post is just a blase FYI and that you need not comment, but the truth is that I'm in the mood for a resounding chorus of "sounds like a BFP in the works!" It might not be true, but I wouldn't mind pretending tonight.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Pregnant... until proven otherwise

Thanks for all your good wishes... I left the clinic after the IUI feeling very positive. I was quite crampy, which is not normal for me, and then I had some faint spotting, which probably means that my cervix was just feeling a bit sensitive but I'll take it as a good sign anyway. I POAS when I got home to see how quickly the test line would come up (from the HCG trigger). Basically, I'm feeling all the hope that I haven't felt in many, many months. It helps that the stats were so good, too.

But right now I'm just tired. Exhausted. Practically unable to keep my eyes open any longer... and it's only 7 p.m. Progesterone is doing its thing again. I'd better get used to it, though... I plan to be feeling progesterone-crappy for a long time - because I'm pregnant.

(until proven otherwise)

Sunday, August 02, 2009

IUI tomorrow

The stats look good to me:

lining - 10mm
left ovary - 21mm follicle
right ovary 18 mm follicle

I triggered last night and we're going in tomorrow to get inseminated. Wish us luck!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I am so immature...

... but you know what makes me laugh uncontrollably?

The phrase "like throwing a hot dog down a hallway." Seriously. Because this one time I actually pictured it, and started thinking about the futility of throwing a hotdog (even a giant sausage, or to be more ambitious, a huge salami) down a hallway (even a tiny little hallway like the one that runs from my bathroom to the guest bedroom) and WHOA. Uncontrollable laughter.

Really. Take your time. Cook a hotdog. Grab it (no bun, that's cheating, or at least major "hotdog" surgery) and toss it down the hall. Javelin-style is my method of choice, but you can be creative. Watch it fly through the air. It makes no contact with the walls, there is no pleasing friction whatsoever. The hallway is completely oblivious ("um, did you throw it yet?"). And then the hotdog passes the peak of its trajectory and falls to the floor with a flaccid slap.

Can you honestly say that you've tried visualizing it, and you're not laughing? Really?

So this is why I'm chortling tonight. What makes you laugh?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Irrational IVF fear

This is gonna sound really stupid, because I'm sure that there are scarier aspects of IVF (like the sedation, or the bigass needle they poke THROUGH your vagina to get to the eggs), but I'm really scared of PIO. It sounds like a giant scary shot that'll leave me with a lumpy, itchy ass, and I want no part of it.

Aurelia - does our clinic use PIO? Or will Dr. Eyebrows let me get away with the suppositories?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Post-game analysis, delayed.

So when my nurse called with the negative beta result, she asked me what we'll be doing next cycle. I asked her to check with Dr. Eyebrows and get back to me. Apparently Dr. Eyebrows really wants us to come in for another review appointment.

Are you ready for the kicker?

His next available appointment is...






August 25.

In theory, this would mean missing out on one, possibly two cycles. Probably two. You know I'm not a patient woman. Losing two cycles? No thank you! I've decided that while we're waiting for Dr. Eyebrows to meet with us, we'll try another round or two of IUI with femara. I got follicles, as many as I did with puregon, so I don't see that it's a problem.

Or maybe I'll do one cycle with Femara and take the other "off", and just drink lots of Fertilitea so that I ovulate. That might be fun... and cheap.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Adding insult to injury...

I still have crazy EPS. Sore boobs, low back aches, and I'm the queen b**ch today. Seriously, I cannot believe some of the things coming out of my own mouth. It's a good thing Mr. December is a patient and good-humoured man.

At least my royal bitc*iness paid off at Home Depot... we came home with a barbecue for significantly less than they originally wanted. Score one for my inner bi*ch and the bargaining skills she honed in Tunisia.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

BFN.

Today is 13 dpo, and the pee stick is negative. Another day, another negative test, another chunk of money spent on fertility treatments. Life goes on, I suppose.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Et tu, supernose?

I can smell fresh earth. Someone on my street is digging up a garden bed. And here I am in my living room, smelling it like it's right under my nose.

Ah yes, supernose. Harbinger of pregnancy... or progesterone.

My symptoms will do anything and everything not to let me know whether I'm pregnant or just crazy. I think I'll call it the EPS Omerta.



UPDATE at 3:51 p.m.:

I will not be swayed. Absolutely not. Even though when I walk into my recently renovated (i.e. completely gutted and rebuilt) bathroom, I can distinctly smell the odors of smoke and cat pee that the previous owners so kindly left for us.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

did anybody get the license plate...

... of the Mack truck that hit me?

The progesterone is hitting me hard today. Earlier I had that "if I don't eat I'm gonna vomit" sensation. We came home from a trip to the petting zoo, Kali went straight to bed, and so did I. It was 1:45.

It's now 6:17, and I woke up 20 minutes ago. I could easily go right back to bed.

You know, I wouldn't mind these side effects if there was a good reason, namely pregnancy. But dealing with the progesterone and knowing that I'm probably not pregnant, well, that's just bull. I hate it. I hate that I lost three productive hours today when I could have been gardening, or restoring our garden bench, or even visiting with a friend. It just plain sucks.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Proud parenting moment

I thought I was proud when Kali ate a mouthful of dirt a while back. But really, nothing could please me more than what I saw today.

I gave Kali a cup of juice and then went back to cooking dinner. After a while I realized I hadn't heard her in a while, so I investigated. There was giggling coming from the back of the house, and I found her in the hallway near her bedroom.

She was holding a blankie and her baby doll, lying on her back, feet up on the wall, staring at the sunlight dancing off the wall, and giggling.

Other parents have lofty goals for their kids; to know the alphabet by age one, to read Chaucer before nursery school, to bring world peace with nothing but fishsticks and a ball of rubber bands. My main parenting goal is even loftier - I want Kali to become completely able to entertain herself without adult intervention or direction. I'm her mom, not her recreation director.


(this post has been brought to you by big N and little n - what begins with those? Oh yeah, nine new neckties, nightshirt, NOSE!)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

6dpo, and clarification

It's 6dpo... again.

Not that I have anything to report, because our last cycle led me to conclude that there are absolutely no reliable, definitive EPS. No, I'm just kinda keeping count... so that I remember to go in for my beta next week.

It's not that I'm totally pessimistic. In my book, pessimism is saying, "this isn't going to work, because it never works, and I'm never gonna get pregnant." I really do think I'm just realistic. "This probably won't work, because - let's face it - IUI only boasts a 25% chance of working in any given cycle. So it could work, but it probably won't. Whatever." See the difference?

I have a favourite quote about ttc, from my former favourite show on TV: "G-d is going to send us a baby. We just have to do all the paperwork, and be persistent to the point of obnoxious." (Charlotte on SATC)

I can do obnoxious. Embarrassingly well, actually. Please, just remind me not to shoot any obnoxious my in-laws' way... they probably got enough from me when we were ttc the first/second time.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Pessimism, or reality?

So I got inseminated today...

(huh. It sounds like the beginning of a very offbeat stand-up comedy set, but I don't know where to take it from here. Any thoughts?)

Anyhow. The day before the trigger I had a follicle at 17mm, and the next one behind was 13 mm. So really, we're probably just talking about one follicle.

We had 18 million motile sperm post wash, which is pretty decent.

Nice Jewish Doctor said, "it looks really good. I think you've got a great chance this cycle". To which I responded, "um, thanks, but we've heard that before."

"And you've gotten pregnant before," he pointed out. "Try to stay positive. It helps."

Well, thanks, doc. I may have gotten pregnant before, but that was once, out of six cycles that looked "really good".

Am I being pessimistic, or just realistic? And does it really have any bearing on whether or not sperm meets egg, sperm likes egg, egg reciprocates warmly, and they decide to make a baby?

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Be careful what you wish for...

Last night I prayed. I asked G-d, please, for a healthy singleton pregnancy.

I've been on puregon 75iu this cycle, and at day 10 I had 11 follicles. The doctors started talking about IVF conversion or just canelling the cycle. Hence the prayer.

Went in for monitoring today... I have a lead follicle at 1.7 and the rest are all 1.1 or smaller. We'll likely only have one egg to inseminate this time around.

I'm not complaining - not getting pregnant this cycle would be infinitely better than getting pregnant with quintuplets and having to reduce. But seriously, one follicle? I did better on the Femara most cycles. Oh, and let's not mention the fact that we were trying to get at least one follicle on each side, but here we are with a follicle on the right. I could be wrong, but I believe I had one on the left ovary when I got pregnant with Kali.

So here we are. I've spent $800 on drugs and my chances don't look any better than when I was just spending $35 on Femara.

What's wrong with this picture?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

the latter.

The sonohystogram itself was not bad. Definitely less painful than a 10-hour visit with my in-laws.

I saw my uterus on screen. Then, using the doppler ultrasound, we were able to see the saline making its way through my tubes and shooting out the ends. Apparently I have "beautiful" fimbrulae (sp?). The left tube is wide open, and the right is open as well, although not as much. The doc was satisfied with what he could see and assured me that the contrast dye wouldn't give us any additional information.

Bottom line - there's nothing wrong with my girly bits, except for how the ovaries function. No new insight. At least this means we can put off spending $10,000 on IVF... for now.

I was feeling okay, just a bit crampy, after the procedure. Two hours later I was on the couch, unable to move, with a sharp stabbing pain in my abdomen. The doc said it could be cramping, or an effect of the antibiotic, or a mix of both. I'm to call again if I develop a fever or if the pain gets even worse.

I can't help but feel that this has been a total waste of a day.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

sonohysterical...

well, maybe not hysterical... but I'm starting to feel like I might maybe later get nervous about the sonohystogram tomorrow.

Wish me luck. I have no idea whether I'll spend tomorrow afternoon feeling fine and being productive, or lying on the couch moaning. Your guess is as good as - nay, better than - mine.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Passive-aggresive? Or just aggressive?

Thank you all for your comments about the SHG vs. HSG. I wasn't quite ready to confront Dr. Eyebrows about it again, since I did ask and he gave me an answer. So... I called the SHG place to confirm my appointment, and I casually asked the nurse, "this is going to give us a really clear picture of my tubes, right? because my friend said that it usually only shows the uterus..." She replied that they can sometimes see the tubes with the saline test, but that if I really wanted we can do the ultrasound with a special contrast dye so that we can see everything. It costs an extra $150, which is not covered by OHIP. I signed up for that one too.

She asked me whether she should call Dr. Eyebrows and check about the contrast dye. I think my exact words were, "it's easier to ask forgiveness than permission. It's my uterus and my money, so I say do it and just send him all the results." She laughed and agreed.

Now, the prep instructions...
- they want a full bladder for an abdominal ultrasound (boo!). I hate those "full bladder" tests... really hate them. I'd rather have a million dates with the dildo-cam.
- I should take 400 mg of Advil an hour before the test. Hmm... I'm thinking maybe 800mg instead?
- I should have a light breakfast and a light dinner the night before. (she also mentioned that I should try to "empty the bowels" right before the test too. how does she propose I do that? is this a subtle way of saying, "please do an enema?" 'cause dude, the answer to that is NO FUCKING WAY.)
- I've been given an antibiotic to be taken with food. Apparently it's very hard on the stomach. Lurvely.

So, does this sound normal? Weird? Kinky?

I just hope this actually gives us some news we can use.

(oh, and do you think it's too passive-aggressive of me to just request the contrast dye behind Dr. Eyebrows' back?)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

New Plan... and yes, I've learned my lesson... edited/updated

We had a review with our RE, Dr. Eyebrows, today. Here's the rundown.

Cysts: He thinks it's just bad luck that I've had two in a row. The cyst is currently 1.5 cm and looking pretty deflated, so it should be gone soon.

Past cycles: Dr. Eyebrows is of the opinion that IUI should generally work within three cycles. Since that hasn't been the case, he wants to investigate further.

So...

We're going to do a sonohystogram. I'd prided myself on avoiding one of these, quite frankly, but he's concerned that there may have been some low grade infection during or after Kali's birth that may have mangled my tubes. So... we're doing a sono. How bad is it? Be honest...

If my tubes are perfectly clear, we'll do another IUI with injectables only (no Femara). We'll reassess our approach on a cycle-by-cycle basis.

If my tubes aren't clear, we'll just go on to IVF. Mr. December asked about our chances. If we transfer 2 embryos, our chances are about 50% in a given cycle. If I want to do a single embryo transfer, we'd take it to blast (5 days) and then transfer - the success rate of that is about 40%. If we transfer two embryos, our chance of conceiving twins is 30%. Mr. December favors transferring 2. I do not. We'll need an arbitrator, if we get that far.

And now... what lesson did I learn?

I'll admit it... I have been known to take my child to the fertility clinic. I do have a sweatshirt that says "[name of clinic] baby" on it, and I do keep her pretty quiet, but I'm guilty of taking her there. Sometimes it's just not possible to get child care at 7 a.m.

Anyhow, this time the waiting room was empty (big sigh of relief), we had books, a ball, and a sippy cup of juice, and everything was ok... for the first 15 minutes. But Dr. Eyebrows kept us waiting 45 minutes, and by that point Kali was exhausted and cranky. She proceeded to scream for the duration of our review appointment. Both Mr. December and I had questions, so neither of us could leave with her. It was awful. Kali will not be accompanying me to the clinic again unless one of us is under heavy sedation (can you guess which? I think you'll be pleasantly surprised!).

So that's it, in a nutshell. Apparently I'm more infertile than I thought. Damn.

ETA: Yes, we're talking about a SHG, aka saline test, not the dye test or HSG. I specifically asked about the difference, and Dr. Eyebrows told me the SHG would give him enough info. I'm pretty sure that's not the case, but you can't exactly stand up in the doctor's office and shout "liar liar pants on fire!". Well, not if you're holding a screaming toddler at the same time.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

I couldn't help it...

Overheard yesterday in the December household:


Mother-in-law: "I really believe in doing stimulating activities with kids. I really like it."

Decemberbaby: "I don't. I like to sit them in a corner facing the wall. It builds character."



One of these days I should really exercise some self-control.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

it's just like that movie, "Groundhog Day"

I had this title before I went in for day 2 monitoring. I thought this post would be a quick description of how we're starting yet another cycle and it feels very much like the "same old, same old".

But it's not. Oh, it's deja vu all over again, but in the worst way I can think of right now: it's a cyst.

Yup... left ovary. 2.4mm. We have to sit this cycle out, take birth control pills, and try again next month. What a colossal waste of time.

Why does this keep happening to me? Am I going to see this pattern again and again? Are we going to try one cycle, then sit out the next? Anybody? Anybody?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Lazya$$ contractors

We're having our water service replaced today. Here's an actual excerpt from a conversation I had with the water supply guy:


Him: We're replacing your meter with a smart meter that has a remote, so I'm gonna have to drill through the wall somewhere and then tack the wire along your wall.

Me: But we have a drop ceiling. Why can't you just run the wire above the ceiling tiles?

Him: I don't fish wires. I'm contracted to do it this way, that's why I'm explaining it to you like this.

Me: But it's easier to run it above the ceiling tiles... and it'll look nicer too.

Him: (finally looking up at the ceiling and pushing aside a tile) I guess I could do that. But when I get to this side, I'm gonna have to tack it to the wall to bring it down to the meter.

Me: But there's a box right there that's a straight channel down to the meter. Can't we just put it through that?

Him: I don't fish wires, that's not my job.

Me: So how 'bout, when you're about ready to tack it to the wall, you take a coffee break and I'll fish the wire?

Him: (considering it once again) well, what's in that channel?

Me: (lifting ceiling panel to reveal top of channel) one copper pipe. That's all. The rest of it is empty.

Him: Oh, okay. If it's empty I can just drop it down. But if it gives me any trouble, you'll have to come and fish it through.

Me: Perfect. Thank you.



Really? Was it so hard to just use his eyes?

I wonder how many homeowners are too uninformed to hold the contractors accountable?

Monday, May 25, 2009

BFN

I can't honestly say I'm surprised. Worse yet, I'm not even sad. What's up with that?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

8 dpo, and peeing in the potty

So... long time no see. Sorry 'bout that. It's just been so nice outside, and Mr. December finally convinced me to get a babysitter 10 hours a week, and between being outside and getting stuff done, I just haven't been sitting at the computer too much. Allow me to recap for you:

The cycle so far: on CD8, I had a follicle at 2.1 and a lining of 6.8. The lining cutoff to go ahead and trigger is 7, by the way. Anyhoozit, the good doctor decided that we'd better trigger before the egg in that huge follicle got old and decrepit. So trigger we did, against my protestations that nothing would happen with such a thin lining. We triggered, we inseminated with 14 million motile sperm, and I'm now at 8 dpo. I refuse to even document any EPS, because last cycle debunked my last two foolproof symptoms. So... maybe I am, and maybe I'm not. Won't know until the beta.

Kali so far: We have some talking. Kali says "more", "car", "up", "dog" (okay, she says "gog", but you get the idea), "no", "nonononononono", "book", "mama", "bye bye", and "go". And some other stuff... but those are the ones we hear on a daily basis. She's able to walk by herself, but seems to lack confidence. She's a daredevil, an insatiable climber, and a snuggly lovable girl.

We had a poop incident yesterday. I put Kali down to nap in a t-shirt and diaper. I heard her crying an hour later. Went in, smelled poop, and immediately put my hand on her bottom to feel whether the diaper was full or whether she was just farting up a storm in preparation to face-off against her daddy... but instead of a lumpy diaper, I was met with Kali's tender skin. Yup, soft as a baby's bottom. So I turned on the light.

The diaper - completely clean and dry - had been removed and discarded in a corner. Three nuggets of poop had been tossed around, landing at various points in and around her crib. There was a giant pee spot.

The best explanation I could come up with was that she knew she had to go, and being the kid who hates being dirty, took off her diaper so she wouldn't have to sit in her own mess. Day-um. Time for a potty, you think?

So today I bought her a potty. When she woke up from her nap I asked her if she wanted to go peepee with mummy. Nod. I sat on my potty, she on hers, and lo and behold... pee! Later that day I heard her characteristic grunting, asked if she needed to poo in the potty - to which she nodded - and sat her down... poo! in the potty!

I think she actually gets it. When I'm on the toilet, she comes up to me, grabs my knees, pushes them apart like a junior wandmonkey, and watches intently as I do whatever I'm doing (and do you know how hard it is to pee when you have an audience?). Today when I handed her a piece of toilet paper, she patted her bottom delicately and dropped it into the potty.

I am flabbergasted.

Monday, May 04, 2009

CD4

Because really, how many posts can I title "CD1"? It's depressing already!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

the pee sticks don't lie.

I'm not pregnant. Again.

My nurse asked "so... do you want to do this again right away?" I guess there are people who need to take a break. I know some of those people. But my response was, "I'm not gonna get pregnant any faster if I sit on my ass and do nothing, you know."

Stick with me. I anticipate that CD1 will be on Thursday or Friday. And then... back on the rollercoaster.

(If I devour a dozen soft & fresh cookies today, can I still blame progesterone and hormonal crap?)

Monday, April 27, 2009

forgery

trying to conceive is about to get way more difficult...

I just POAS again, because I'm a glutton for punishment. Mr. December grabbed the test excitedly and ran to the kitchen, claiming he needed to see it in brighter light. I followed him good-naturedly. I looked down.

Two lines.

My heart skipped a beat. I felt elated. I saw -

A red marker in his hand. He forged a positive pee stick.

So yeah, ttc is going to be more difficult this time around, what with his [DELETED, because really, this was too violent and just disturbing for me to look at. I mean, really. If he typed something like that about me, we'd all be horrified. My apologies to Mr. December].

the test and my mood

both negative.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Oh, come ON.

More gushing nosebleed fun today. At least it happened in the shower.

Feeling nauseated now. Bah.

I don't mind any of this, as long as there's a good reason behind it. For our purposes today, "good reason" will be understood as "embryo which has implanted properly in the uterus and plans to hang around for about 9 months".

Mr. December thinks "we" should POAS every morning so that we can tell what the sensitivity of the test actually is. I think he feels like the lines are holding out on us. Finally, he's in my corner. I never thought I'd see him squinting, tilting the test from side to side in the sunlight... but there he was this morning. My hero.

still negative

I guess that control line likes the single life. Sigh...

Saturday, April 25, 2009

numbers

days past ovulation: 11

gushing nosebleeds since this morning: 2

average resting heart rate: 102

negative pee sticks: 1

positive pee sticks: 0

people whose gut feeling sides against the pee sticks: 2

days until beta: 3

Thursday, April 23, 2009

9 dpo

Kali leaning on my boobs is alarmingly painful. My resting pulse rate has been between 100 and 120 all day long. I feel vague uterine achiness. Mr. December patted my lower abdomen and said, "hello, baby!"

If this is all just progesterone, I will scream.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

At least the aardvarks are entertaining

We're sick. All three of us. Kali's nose is running, she's sneezing, and she's teething to boot. I've got the worst sinus cold ever... and Mr. December is gearing up to join us with a sore throat. At least our S.andr.a Boyn.ton CD arrived in the mail today. The intermission Aardvarks are fabulous.

It's 8 dpo, and no symptoms to speak of. Well, actually, my boobs were kinda tingly yesterday, almost like how it felt when my milk was coming in... but come on. Can't possibly be. My pulse is up around the 80-90 range, but that's probably because I'm sick. Nothing doing here. And yet... I can't help feeling optimistic.

Somebody slap me before I start blowing sunshine out of my ass.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

not guilty by reason of progesterone

I felt a very subtle shift this morning when I woke up. I was in, as they say, "no mood".

Then I was hungry. Then tired. Then, completely lacking self-control, I ate every carb in sight. And then I realized that I look FAT, as in obese, and I didn't yesterday, and it's physically impossible to gain 10 pounds in one morning.

It all adds up. It's 5 dpo and the progesterone has hit me full-force. I feel like shit. I feel no motivation except to retire to my boudoir and sleep.

7 more days until I start peeing on things. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

you will be inseminated - resistance is futile.

We had our IUI this morning. We had 16 million motile sperm post-wash, and at least three mature follicles, and the doctor said our chances look good. Really, though, do they ever tell you your chances look bad?

So my insecure, pathological concern right now is, I didn't feel ovulation at all. What if I didn't ovulate? And now, as I type this, I have the most painful ovaries ever. So what are the chances that it took longer than usual for the trigger to work and I'm only now ovulating? And if that's the case, and we inseminated 6 hours ago, what's the chance that the sperm are still waiting around in my ute?

*sigh*

14 more days to beta.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Badass.

I feel like such a badass.

Last night, and the night before, I snuck away from the seder table to shoot up in the bathroom. 50 of Puregon.

It stung. Badly. I would have yelled, but Kali was asleep in an adjoining room and I didn't want to wake her. That in itself was a sobering and steadying thought. Whatever it takes, however much it hurts, having a baby asleep in the next room is worth it.

Nevertheless, when Mr. December came to find me and ask how it went, I had to express myself. "That fucking stings like a motherfucker!!!" Yep, I'm an eloquent, articulate university graduate. Can you tell?

This morning's stats:

Lining: 7 mm
Follicles: 1.5, 1.2, 1.1, 1.3, and some tiny ones

Nice Jewish Doctor has advised us that our chance of multiples is much higher this cycle due to the Puregon. He figures we'll end up with three or four mature follicles. I seriously doubt we'd end up with anything more than twins, since last time we had 2 gorgeous follicles and only one baby. We'll see.

Next monitoring appointment is on Sunday morning. I don't celebrate easter, but I still think it's cool that we'll be doing an egg hunt that day.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

perfect timing

I got home last night. I got my period this morning. How awesome is that?

Femara starts on Saturday, and I'm going in on Wednesday for monitoring and to pick up my drugs.

Because, you know, a passover seder isn't a seder without someone shooting up in the bathroom...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Cease and de-cyst!

Ding-dong, the cyst is dead
Cyst old cyst, the big ol' cyst
Ding-dong, the big old cyst is dead!

After discussion with my doctor, we're going to do Femara and injectables this cycle. I've never done injectables before. Is it like doing a trigger shot, or scarier? Be honest.

Question: how long does it take to get your period after stopping the Pill? I don't want to get my period while I'm on vacation, but if I could time it for my first day back that would be great.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Toddleriffic

Kali is a toddler now. I observed this while watching her lie down on her stomach, kick her legs, and cry simultaneously. She grabs toys from others and chases little boys around, yelling, until she catches them and gives them gigantic hugs. Most of the boys are afraid of her.

The honeymoon is over. I now have a toddler who behaves like a caveman (don't they all?), and it's time to civilize her. Better prepare the time-out corner.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Benched.

Did I say "here we go again"? I was wrong.

There's a cyst of 2.9 mm on my right ovary. I can't cycle this month. I'm now on birth control pills (oh, the irony!) to try to shrink it.

So... nothing to see here, folks. Absolutely nothing.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Monday, March 09, 2009

Well, duh.

I'm not pregnant. When the nurse called and told me that the test was negative, I said, "yeah, I know."

"Oh," she said, "did you already start bleeding?"

I rolled my eyes. "No, but I've done this many times, and I've been pregnant twice. It was pretty obvious. The three HPT's were a bit of a clue, too."

I'm amazed that a clinic that deals with infertiles all the time isn't more accustomed to those of us who really know our bodies.

Mr. December convinced me to take the progesterone last night "just in case". So I guess we'll be seeing AF sometime around Wednesday.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

14 dpo

BFN. I really want to stop the progesterone tonight. Does anybody have a sane reason why I shouldn't? Aside from "well, you might still be pregnant..."? Because people, I've been pregnant twice before. I'm definitely not pregnant right now.

Friday, March 06, 2009

12 dpo

Still nothing. I'll keep you posted, but don't hold your breath.

(oh, and my abs feel really really tired, like I've been working them hard. Except that I haven't. So what's that about?)

Thursday, March 05, 2009

new math?

Sorry about the bad math last post. I was only 9 dpo. Apparently simple addition *is* that hard.

I peed on a stick this morning (11 dpo). Negatory.

Progesterone is fucking with me. Last night I had honest-to-goodness nausea, including the whole "mouth filling up with saliva" thing. Also, I have reached maximum bitchiness. Even Mr. December said I was behaving like a toddler... and he was right.

I know that 11 dpo is technically early, but I feel very certain that this cycle was a wash. I can't believe I have 4 more days of progesterone hell until the clinic will let me get off this train.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

stuffy

My nose is stuffy. Not like "it's congested and I can clear it by blowing my nose". Nope, it's more like "my nasal passages just feel narrower somehow". I remember this feeling from last time I was pregnant, but it sure as hell wasn't an EPS. Mind you, last time I was pregnant the 2ww passed in a blur of being majorly sick. So really, I don't know. I sure as hell don't think I'm pregnant, but that's probably just a defense mechanism rather than an actual intuitive feeling. After all, I have had an awful lot of pelvic twinges lately...

What I do know for sure is that I have almost another week of progesterone hell. I was so tired this afternoon that I took a nap, and then was awake enough to hear Kali crying, then wailing, then screaming, but I couldn't actually move my body. That was trippy, and not in a good way. I'm bloated to the point where I can't wear my jeans unless I unbutton them, so I've been wearing yoga pants all day.

It's 10 dpo. Five more days til beta. Shouldn't I be feeling something - one way or the other - by now?

Monday, March 02, 2009

Um, yeah... no.

As of right this second, I'm pretty sure I'm not pregnant.

Yeah, I know things can change quickly, and it's only 8 dpo and maybe implantation hasn't even happened yet but will... but I'm really really not feeling it at all. Even my evil progesterone symptoms seem to be gone for now.

I have a to-do list as long as my arm, but I'm seriously considering going to bed. It's not exhaustion, it's escapism. Is that so bad? (don't answer that)

It's sunny and beautiful out, but freaking cold. I need spring. Or a positive beta. Either way.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

been there, done that... I think.

It's 6 dpo. Okay, scratch that. It's after midnight, so I guess it's 7 dpo. Is it too soon to think anything of the wretched cramps I'm feeling?

I'd love to be all hopeful and blow sunshine out my ass. But really, the chance of pregnancy in any given IUI cycle is only okay. Besides, my pulse is still slow and I've yet to have a gushing nosebleed - my hallmark early pregnancy sign.

I won't POAS. Partly because I don't have any tests left after last month's mindfuck, and partly because I just don't want to. So there. I'm supposed to get my beta done next Sunday (although I might go on Monday instead, because they won't run the bloodwork until Monday anyhow). Maybe I'll POAS on Monday morning. If I am, by some miracle, pregnant... it'll be a good day to find out. Purim is Monday night. It's the holiday when we're commanded to get drunk off our asses (along with other, perhaps more noble, religious observances) and I'd hate to accidentally pickle an embryo.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Frenemy.

I know that progesterone is a good thing - at least for any developing embryos I may be harboring. But... man oh man, I hate progesterone so much. It's my best/worst frenemy.

I'm hungry. all. the. time. I can feel my pants getting tighter and my ass getting fatter. And thanks in advance for the generous suggestion that it might just be bloating, but... really... it's not. It's the food I keep eating. Thanks, progesterone.

I'm exhausted. I keep napping whenever Kali naps. Sometimes I put her down when she's not even tired in the hope that she'll at least lie there quietly so I can catch a 30-minute nap. Thanks, progesterone.

And I'm irritable with myself, because I know how blessed I am that I'm able to pursue treated cycles like this.

At least the sex is really, Really, REALLY good. Thanks, progesterone.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

This time around

Nothing to see here, folks.

Oh, sure. I'm exhausted and basically pass out as soon as Kali goes down for her afternoon nap. And yeah, there's a big honkin' zit on my chin. And I wake up so hungry that I feel like I could puke. But don't let it fool you, that's the progesterone talking.

It's so different this time around. I'm not sure if it's because the anxiety is gone (I'm pretty sure I'll get pregnant, at some point), or because I'm older and wiser (ha!), or because I know exactly how much progesterone fucks with me. But it's different. I'm not even thinking about the 2ww most of the time. I'm certainly not obsessing about possible pregnancy symptoms... yet. Maybe in a few days. Maybe once we hit 7 dpo and implantation could have potentially happened. But 4 dpo? Nope. If the egg fertilized, it's still floating around lazily, like an arts student during the summer after university.

Aw, look at me. I'm getting all poetic.

Anyhow, I'm off to wake Kali up. She stayed up (in her crib, in a dark room, with the white noise machine going) until ONE O'CLOCK IN THE MORNING talking to herself. I have no idea why... but it can't happen again. Mummy needs her sleep. So I'm going to cruelly wrench her out of her bed, take her to the drop-in centre, and make her run around with the other kiddoes. Hopefully that will encourage some serious napping... and sleep begets sleep, right?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

I'm crampy.

Mr. December and I can now say, if this cycle is successful, that the day our second child was conceived we had a really lovely date prior to conception. We had a leisurely brunch, browsed at the bookstore, took a walk through our old 'hood... in short, it was very nice.

Post-wash, we ended up with about 20 million motile sperm. Morphology was around 20%, which I gather is not great. At last check my lining was 0.7 and growing, and the follicle was 2.1. The chance of this cycle resulting in a pregnancy is about 20%, possibly a bit more since we already know that I can get pregnant.

But numbers don't matter at all. I learned this when I became part of the "tiny percentage" of pregnant women who miscarry after seeing a healthy heartbeat. All the sperm counts, lining measurements, and percentages really don't matter. Ultimately either I get pregnant, or I don't - and for me it really won't matter how it would have gone for the majority of the population.

So here I sit, trying to remember whether I was this crampy after IUI last time, and wondering whether it's a good sign, a bad sign, or a sign of nothing in particular.

Let the obsession begin!

Friday, February 20, 2009

MOTIVATIONAL POSTERS ONLY MODERATELY MOTIVATING: UTERUS

TORONTO - In today's interview, the uterus belonging to Decemberbaby* indicated that motivational posters are not particularly hepful.

A poster reading "do your part - grow a decent lining" was installed yesterday in order to encourgage the uterus to increase the thickness of its lining from 0.4. Investigations this morning found that the lining is now measuring between 0.6 and 0.7. Doctors were satisfied with this measurement, but Decemberbaby is less enthused.

"Last time we did [Femara and IUI], the lining was at 1.0. I've always thought that thicker was better," she sighs. "I thought the poster would help, and it did, but perhaps not by enough."

Time seems to have run out for the uterus to live up to Decemberbaby's expectations. In an ultrasound earlier, the dominant follicle was found to measure 2.1, indicating that it is time to trigger ovulation.

Only time will tell whether yesterday's motivational poster will be replaced by a demotivating poster reading, "Failure: When your best just isn't good enough."

Intrauterine insemination is scheduled for this Sunday.
_______
*Not her real name

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Deja vu all over again

Okay, here's the CD10 scan update:

Left ovary: 1.0, 0.9, and eight smaller ones
Right ovary: 1.7 and a bunch of smaller ones
Uterine lining: 0.4

I'm happy with my ovaries. They're doing a good job. But my lining? I think it's underperforming. Is it not motivated enough? Do I need to put up a poster?



Last time we did this (two years ago), my lining was pretty abysmal until CD13... when it jumped from 6.3 to 10 overnight. But my dominant follicle was smaller then, and I'm worried that the lining won't quite catch up to the follicle before it gets overripe.

I'm already on baby aspirin. I guess all I can do is wait and see...

More tomorrow.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Nothing to see here...

Life is boring in a very, very good way. I'm on my third dose of Femara... I have monitoring again on Monday morning. Kali is adorable as ever, although she's sick again and has crazy separation anxiety to boot. Mr. December and I went to a movie tonight.

Oh, I guess there is one remarkable thought I had recently. Tonight we went to Toys "are" Us to find Kali a baby doll, since she's so intrigued by other babies. Why is it that all of the baby dolls *do* something? They coo, or giggle, or talk, or pee. And they all seem to do it when they sense movement nearby. Seriously, it was the creepiest aisle in the whole toy store. What's up with that?

Needless to say, we did not buy Kali a doll. I think I'll have to go to one of the higher-end toy stores to find a doll that isn't technologically advanced.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

CD1

As it turns out, my beta was completely negative. I have absolutely no idea what happened, and I don't really care. Today marks the beginning of our first medicated cycle for kid #2, and I have a very good feeling about all of this.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Early morning

I got my ass to the clinic this morning for a beta. Amazingly, it took 5 minutes, in and out. Well, the bloodletting did. I won't have results until later today.

Mr. December stayed downstairs in the lobby while I went up to the clinic. Afterwards we walked to the library, but it's closed on Mondays. Bummer. Kali and I shared a steamed milk and apple cinnamon crumble instead.

I don't get it. I just don't. My period is 4 or 5 days late, based on when I ovulated and my usual luteal phase length, and all the HPTs - digital, expensive, dollar store - say I'm not pregnant. So what the fuck is this?

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Nothing new under the sun.

Same shit, different day.

Just when I'm ready to start a medicated cycle, my body goes all FUBAR.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

FYI

My period is still AWOL.

I can hear the dollar store pregnancy tests. They're calling me. All 8 of them. Maybe I'll take two tests and blog it in the morning.

*eye roll*

This is getting old. And my boobs are getting in on the act, which is soooooo not funny.

Friday, February 06, 2009

BFN X2

I held my pee for 4 hours... it looked nice and concentrated. Anyhow, both the digital and the regular test say I'm not pregnant. My period is still awol. I still have zero symptoms either way.

Today is 16 dpo.

Still nothing.

I called the clinic this morning and told them I want a beta. Naturally, they only do betas before 9:00 in the morning... so I was too late to get one today, and they won't do a beta on the weekend. I might buy an expensive pee stick today (although it might kill me to do it) - otherwise I'll just wait til Monday.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Insidious hope.

CD1 should have been yesterday. Or today, at the absolute latest. Yet there's no sign of it anywhere.

On the downside, every HPT I put my hands on (ok, every HPT I put my urine on) is negative. Even this morning, 15 dpo, before I had the chance to dilute my pee with the customary morning glass of passionfruit juice.

Mr. December doesn't get why this is pissing me off so much. I tried to explain that obviously I'm not pregnant, so the delayed onset of my period can only drive me crazy. I am! No, I'm not! Wait, I am! No, I'm not! It's enough to drive a normally sane girl around the bend.

So far, to hasten the arrival of a new cycle, I've done the following:

1. Slept naked on clean, brand-new, white sheets that should never under any circumstances come in contact with bleach.
2. Taken numerous HPT's.
3. Ensured that my cupboards are absolutely empty of pads and tampons.
4. Filled my femara prescription.

Have I missed anything? A job interview, to which I wear tight white pants with no underwear?

And now I find myself running through my mental list of women who didn't get their BFP until 17 dpo. Like I need more insidious hope. Gah.

I'll check in again tomorrow and let you know how the wait is going.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

3 more days...

... until CD1. I think.

I'd love to think that I got pregnant on my own this cycle, but my body isn't even offering me any imaginary symptoms to cling to. Nada. So I've got my prescription for Femara and as soon as a new cycle announces itself I'll be filling it.

I've been thinking about my last post, and about going back to the clinic in general. The thing that was so nice and comforting was that nobody asked us to "prove" that we're infertile. No "well, you've been pregnant, let's see if you can do it naturally this time". No "your ovaries look fine, come back in six months." None of that. Just action plans, schedules, and "welcome back". As much as you never want to have to go back to the fertility clinic, it's a place where you don't have to prove anything. They want to get me pregnant as much as I do... and I guess, in itself, that's a good enough reason not to wait.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Why not "just relax"?

Okay, finish rolling your eyes at the title. I can wait.


But seriously, people. This time around, for me, it's a valid question. With my last few cycles being reliably 28 or 29 days long, with easily identifiable ovulation pains, with an ultrasound to confirm that I ovulated and that my ovaries look - in Dr. C's words - "very fertile"... why exactly am I signing up at the clinic again? Why not just relax?

For starters, I think it's lovely that my body is getting all predictable now, but I don't believe it will last. Years ago when I went off the pill I had about 4 predictable and regular cycles. Then my body went back to 75-day cycles, conflicting ovulation signals, and symptoms that suggested pregnancy except that I NEVER OVULATED. A big part of me believes that my body will fall into its old patterns again - so if I didn't get pregnant on one of those first cycles (and I didn't) I'd be shit out of luck. So I'm being proactive and outmaneuvering my body by getting started with the clinic before it can get all fucked up again.

Devil's advocate types are probably shaking their heads and asking, "Isn't it possible that being pregnant and then nursing may have fixed what was wrong before? Aren't you maybe in a wee bit of denial? Maybe you're a fert now!"

Yeah, maybe. And yeah, denial is a river in Egypt, but I can still pay for a cruise and hang out there for a good long time.

And then there's the issue of miscarriage. I know (in the logical part of my brain) that the miscarriage I had was probably just normal, one of those things. It happens. But the illogical part of my brain wants prevention in a major way - progesterone suppositories - and an early warning system - ultrasounds, beta HCG series - so that I don't get blindsided like that EVER AGAIN. It was bad, it was depressing, I lost a year of my life to that shit, I'm just not going there.

For those of you playing "psychotherapist: the home game" you might have noted that there's a common theme here. Yes, you're right. There's a one-word reason for going back that explains everything:

Fear.

I'm afraid of not getting pregnant. I'm afraid of getting pregnant and miscarrying and becoming a bitter shrew.

And that's why I'm back in the stirrups again. Just in case you were wondering.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Back in the stirrups again

Well, here we are. Kali is 13 months old. Today we headed back to the ol' clinic to get started on kid #2.

It felt like going home, really. Same nurses, same doctor. They've redecorated, which is nice, and there's a new doctor on board, but basically it's the same.

We took Kali with us. I know the issue of babies in the waiting room at clinics has been done to death, so I'll be very brief and say that I wouldn't take her during monitoring hours, we took her to show off to the doctors and nurses, and I made her a little "I'm a [insert name of clinic here] baby" t-shirt so that any new patients would understand that we're not just a couple of fertile jerks. In predictable toddler fashion, she wasn't thrilled to be there. I had hoped for better behaviour... but what can you do?

Now, the appointment: our labs are all back in, everything looks good, and we're ready to get started as soon as my period gets here. Femara and IUI worked before, so that's the plan... except they now start with 5 mg of femara instead of 2.5. That suits me just fine since I got pregnant with Kali when we upped my dose to 5 mg.

While we were there, I mentioned to the doctor that I'm curious to know what my ovaries have been up to lately. He agreed to do an ultrasound.

Ovaries? Check. Uterus? Check. All present and accounted for. And hmm... what?

The lining of my uterus claims that I've ovulated. Spontaneously. Cool! And... wow! My ovaries have no cysts!

So really, why are we back at the clinic if my body can do this on its own? I'm still struggling with that one. I think I'll leave it for tomorrow's post. In the meantime, if you're a returning reader, welcome back.