December 03, 2012

Christmas Time is Here

I love Christmas. No, I mean I *LOVE*  Christmas! I'm one of those crazy people who listens to Christmas music starting in November. I wear reindeer antlers to work every day in December. I shrieked with glee when M and I finished putting up Christmas lights on our house for the first time. I have to resist buying tons of new Christmas decorations every year. I am probably an elf that was accidentally raised by humans, truth be told.

Last Christmas I was a little less enthusiastic, unfortunately. I was coming up on a year of TTC, My Great Uncle passed away in early December, and the day of the funeral I got a call from my GYN's office telling me I had failed to ovulate *again*. All that pretty much set the tone for the rest of the month.

This year I got smart - take a break over the holidays so infertility doesn't drag poor Santa and baby Jesus into its black hole of sadness and bitterness. So far, its working out really well. I'm hardly even flinching at baby related things anymore. I was a little worried that Christmas was going to become harder and harder to take every year because so much of the traditions and rituals revolve around children. Instead, I am working to find ways to make the holidays special for M and I no matter what our situation.

In my last post, I talked about focusing on the opportunities I *do* have instead of the ones I am being denied. M and I both have stable, good paying jobs and we have been smart with our finances. That means there's plenty of room in the budget for Christmas spending. The only kids I'm related to to spoil are my nephews, but that doesn't mean there aren't other opportunities to give a child a merry Christmas. The church I attend in my new hometown participates in a program where members "adopt" a child whose parent(s) is/are in prison. They are living with a legal guardian of some kind and money is often tight in those situations. I opted to adopt two kids because, what the hey, I don't have kids of my own to spoil so I might as well spoil these kids who've got it pretty rough. One of my kids asked for arts and crafts so I had a lot of fun going through the craft store picking out a bunch of activities, crayons, coloring paper, etc.

I've also stepped up my charitable efforts in other ways. I try not to pass a Salvation Army bell ringer without donating at least a few coins, so this year I'm trying to put at least a dollar in the bucket every time I pass one. My sister is still adjusting to life with my new nephew, so she hasn't had time (or the energy, really) to get any Christmas baking done. My poor mother works insane hours at the hospital, so she also has little time to spend in the kitchen. So this past weekend I was in the kitchen almost all day, everyday getting a head start on all the cookies and candies we make special for the holidays. M and I hosted all the family for Sunday dinner and we sent each household home with stacks of tins full of treats. I was very happy to be able to do that. Especially the fruitcake I made for my sister - if you think you hate fruitcake, its probably because you've never tried this fruitcake.

So, what traditions and rituals do you have that make this (or any!) holiday special for you? We may not have Elf on the Shelf or school Holiday pageants to fill our time, but there are SO MANY ways we can still make and share merriment! Never forget that! I am keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers as usual and hoping the end of 2012 brings you nothing but good things. I know there are several people (myself included) who are thinking about the next leg in our journeys to build a family and I am particularly praying for insight and peace with whatever decisions we make.
  

November 23, 2012

In All Things, Give Thanks

2012 has been a very challenging year for me. I would like to say it has been the most challenging of my life, but I don't think that's necessarily true. Infertility, financial worries, and M's 9 month long job hunt stole a lot of happiness from me, but at the end of the day, I always had M to hold me while I cried. That alone makes my life now 100 times better than my life before he and I got together.

My bible study class is having a very positive impact on the way I think about and contextualize my infertility. I have always thought of it as a *battle*. I am a *warrior* and this is a fight with a definite position of winning or losing. I was willing to fight tooth and nail for the future I thought I wanted, thought I had to have or else what would become of me?

Its hard to describe how my position has changed. Of course I want a family, of course I want to know what it feels like to be pregnant, to give birth, to breast feed my child. But you know, I also want to tour Europe, start a garden, fix up my house. And very much like wanting to travel and better myself with productive hobbies, my life can still be perfectly fulfilling if I want, but don't have, children. I was focused on the doors that were shutting in my face before and now I can see the doors that stand open now or even the ones that have the potential to open later.

Everyone talks about how having a family requires certain sacrifices and obviously most people are only to happy to make those sacrifices. But through no fault of my own, I may not be required to make such sacrifices. Which may leave me in a unique position to be able to do any number of things that would be too complicated if I had kids to consider. I might be called upon to help out friends or family in a way that only someone without children could - and won't those people be so grateful that I could be there for them? We could spend more money on charitable pursuits and have enough savings to be of help to my nephews or my brother if need be. I could have enough time to start a little suburban homestead with my new, huge backyard full of garden beds.

I refuse to let my infertility be a defining feature of my life and self-image. There is plenty of lemonade to be made from these lemons (oh how cliche...). I was even thinking the other day that by the end of 2013, I will know if bio children are out of the question and I could go back to grad school. I always wanted to be a marriage and family counselor (fun fact: I have completed one year of two different grad programs) and my journey has led me to focusing on marriage counseling for couples dealing with infertility. I never would have considered that before going through all of this, but it makes perfect sense now. I've always felt that people who have gone through a particular trauma are uniquely qualified to counsel for that problem. For example, I could never counsel for addiction because I have never dealt with that personally, so who the hell am I to tell someone "you are stronger than this, you need to take responsibility for this" etc.? If I were in therapy, I would respect the words of my therapist more if I knew they had been where I am. Does that make sense?

Anyway, this was my very long winded way of saying that, despite the darkness of this year, I came to Thanksgiving truly thankful for *everything*, including my struggle with infertility. I think that is some serious progress.

I hope you all had a good Thanksgiving and weren't too harassed by family drama or any conversational landmines care of your infertility experiences. I know the holidays can be a particularly complicated time of year for our community. I am praying for each and every one of you - for strength, for patience, for healing, for rainbows at the end of the rain clouds. It may sound hopelessly optimistic, but I know whatever the end of your journey looks like, there *will* be goodness to find in it.

Oh, and I almost forgot! I started reading a new book after I happened to pick it up while browsing at the book store: What Alice Forgot. I was already in love with the story before I figured out there was an infertility sub-plot. It is *very* well written and I would describe the plot so far as a cross between The Vow and 13 going on 30. If you are looking for a good book to distract from your current cycle or the craziness of the holiday season, I *highly* recommend it.

November 14, 2012

*tap tap* Is this thing on?

Well hello there!

So....what's new?

Actually I *know* what's new with all of you because I have been reading your blogs which are regularly updated because you guys don't suck. I suck because I've been out of it for almost a month Cross my heart, I have been reading, thinking, and praying about all of you! Sometimes I want to leave a comment, but no sufficient words come to me. That is an awful feeling for me, I am *never* at a loss for words.

I won't lie though, having big things other than infertility to occupy my time and mental energy has been just a huge HUGE relief. I didn't even make a face OR inwardly scream when I found out the pregnant girl in my bible study group is carrying multiples. I actually felt bad for her that she is having a high risk pregnancy and committed to praying extra for her.

The house is big and wonderful and ever so slowly coming together and becoming ours. There are dozens of projects I would love to do over the course of our ownership, and hey - if we don't have children I would probably have the time to actually get most of them done. My baby nephew is my new favorite human being. I took a week off work to spend with my sister and my nephews and it was *awesome*. Hours and hours of holding my baby Bradley bear and marveling at how smart and creative Alex is (Alex being the older brother who is 8, almost 9). I am seriously the luckiest aunt in the world.

Taking a break has so far been great for me. I have enough self-esteem problems without throwing my inability to bear children into the mix *every* *single* *day*. I've been dealing with some kind of allergic reaction on my skin all year and I FINALLY think we figured out the culprit: I am allergic to normal laundry detergents and softeners. So I bought all new "Free and Gentle" or whatever detergents and such, spent a whole weekend washing every scrap of clothing I own, and am experiencing exponentially less discomfort. I would really like it if by Christmas I didn't look like a leper anymore. I would also love to shave my legs finally.

Okay, so there's my update. I promise I am keeping up with all of you and I will try to find more things to talk about while I chill from TTC!

October 24, 2012

New New New

New house

New nephew

New....hair!

 Okay, I realized after I wrote the rest of this entry that I should give you guys a "before" picture as a reference for my hair. This was Halloween 2 years ago (I was Alice in Wonderland). My hair is naturally dark brown and the only color altering I have ever done was a temporary home dye of red (that didn't work well) when I was 13 and using Sun-In to lighten it in the summer (it turns a very pretty golden brown, but lately I don't sunbathe enough to do it).


This was my hair last night after I got home from the salon. I had to wet it and work in a bunch of hair moisturizer after everything I had just put my curls through. Look at that one eye squinching up more than the other - ugh, I get that from my dad. We have the same smile face.





And this is my hair this morning - holy cow red! I haven't washed it of course. I know you aren't supposed to wash right after applying color and I only wash my hair every 2-3 days anyway (its a curly girl thing, trust me, I am not grody and greasy). When I go back in December for my stylist to touch up my roots she's going to add low-lights and high-lights. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out!

So now you can put a face with a blog, weird huh? I always think its strange to see what a blogger looks like after months of reading and coming up with some imagination of what they look like. I never seem to get anywhere close to reality with my impressions, LOL.


October 22, 2012

Good Things Come in Threes?

New house, New nephew, no BFP. ::sad trombone:: Better luck next time, eh?

Closing on the house went fairly smoothly, not too much paperwork to sign, and I think we were done in an hour. Afterwards, I was mentally wiped so we went out for pizza and root beer (since I couldn't have regular beer).

The next day my nephew was born! Bradley William took his first breath of air at 4:27pm on October 18th and I got to be there for all of it! I was *so* happy! He weighed 8lb 12oz and was 20.5 inches long. He also barely cried at all, which really surprised me. He started nursing only minutes after the umbilical cord was cut - he latches on like a champ. His very first article of clothing was a onsie that read "I was worth the wait". The next day he sported another one reading "I am an answer to prayers". I could seriously cry!

Unfortunately, Friday, I woke up to a still very high post-O temp, but very clearly red spotting. I went out for breakfast, distracted myself with Words with Friends, and only let myself cry once I was driving home. Five minutes of crying, guys. I have managed to compartmentalize my anticipated, but still upsetting, BFN into 5 minutes. I don't know whether that should make me happy or depressed... I tested Saturday morning to confirm (mostly because I really wanted to be able to drink to deal with the stress of all these changes) and moved on with my life. Interestingly enough, while playing Words with Friends to distract myself from another failed cycle, I accidentally spelled out with my letters "Fear Not". I decided to take it as a sign of comfort from God and after that made an effort to focus on all the good things that are happening in my life right now.

We weren't supposed to get the keys to the house until this evening, but Sunday around noon, the sellers called us to say they were cleared out and the keys were hanging in a hiding place on the front porch. I wanted to drive straight over, but I had a Zumbathon I promised to attend that was a fundraiser for a baby girl who needs a liver transplant. So M loaded up his car with packed boxes and a I told him I would be down to the house as soon as I could. Between the Zumbathon, my new nephew, getting the house early, and preparing for another long TTC break, I was physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted by the time I get to the new house. I curled up on the stairs while M, his mom, and her boyfriend carried things in from the cars. I looked around at all the walls, floors, and fixtures I could see and kept thinking "this is *mine* now!" The first thing I unpacked was the Fall themed wreath for the front door and hung it in its place of honor.

There's still so much work to do. Have to schedule all the repairs the sellers agreed to pay for, have to clean the floors before the furniture moves in on Saturday, have to finish packing... The rest of 2012 is going to fly by in a blur I imagine and I only hope I'm able to spend enough time with my sister and the baby.

One good thing about taking a TTC break for the holidays: I can finally get a steroid shot for these crazy hives!! Ugh!!!!

October 17, 2012

Loss

If I never manage to conceive a child of my own, if I give up on this struggle without ever seeing the coveted two lines on the test, I will try to remember *every day* how lucky I am to have never known personally the pain and grief of a miscarriage. I would hope to heaven this thought can temper my sadness and bitterness. Because I have known *too many* women who have experienced that loss, including my sister, and it nearly kills me every time. I don't know how I could go through it myself. I may never realize my dream of motherhood and there is pain and sadness there, but from my position, it seems so far off and blurry - like a dream that isn't happening to me. But to have that dream realized, however briefly, and then *cruelly* snatched away is a pain more severe than I can imagine.

To those of you who have lived through that hell, or are going through it now, you have my deepest sympathy and my greatest admiration for your ability to keep going everyday. You are so much stronger than you know, stronger than I could ever imagine myself being. And I know that is no real comfort, but I still felt that I had to say it.

October 16, 2012

Word Vomit

I have a lot of thoughts swirling in my head today, so this is probably all going to be a bit scattered. My apologies.

A few Sundays ago, my pastor did an entire sermon about growing the church through marriage and children. Can I tell you that was my *least* favorite sermon since he preached about the necessity for private confessions? He stuck a little blurb in near the end about how those of us who have tried and failed are basically off the hook, but that actually made me feel worse, not better. My mantra for the rest of the day was "I guess I'll just live out my childless, useless life." My sister even got up and walked out until the sermon was over, it upset her that much. The fact that the rest of the world can hurt an infertile so deeply without even knowing what they did is...well, its maddening.

I am trying so hard to get to and stay in a place mentally and emotionally where I will be okay without kids, but one wrong utterance from one of "them" can send me into a bitter, spiteful tirade. That's not how I want to live out my life. How do I temper my own disappointment in how my life is turning out *and* gracefully and forgivingly handle the random barbs from people who don't know any better? Will it ever get easier? I feel safe within our online community and am able to be even keeled and speak hopefully about the future regardless of whether I have children or not. But out in the real world, I struggle. And I don't want to wear a banner all my life that announces to everyone "I'm scarred from years of unresolved infertility, please think before you speak to me". This issue even scares me off from opening up about my struggles to people because once you open that door, its hard to close it again when the person you confided in starts spewing all those cliche platitudes we all hate so much. I *want* to believe in "normal" people's ability to be understanding and supportive. I want to be able to trust the greater Christian community to support me and pray for me, but in an effort to be "helpful" they can do so much damage.

How can I open up to my bible study group about my experiences when one girl just announced her pregnancy? She's 8 weeks. I was aghast that she would confide in people outside her closest circle that early. I for one wouldn't utter a word until forced to. But if I open up about my infertility, then I risk weekly requests for updates that I have no interest in giving. I suppose I could out myself by spouting some infertility manifesto that explains my situation but also provides a lengthy "Do and Don't" list for them to follow. That sounds very militant and unfriendly though, doesn't it?

On a completely separate note, my sister will be delivering her baby on Thursday. They settled on being induced because the baby simply refuses to stay engaged in the birth canal or whatever. I am so excited and so thankful for this blessing and I just hope I'm not a big emotional mess that day. This may be the closest I ever get to the childbirth experience.

I'm hoping that settling into the new house, helping with my nephew, and the upcoming holiday season will keep me nicely distracted from any lingering negativity as I enter yet another TTC break. In January we will have been trying for 2 years. I never once thought it would take this long or that I'd be this close to giving up. Three IUI cycles and I'm tapping out, throwing in the towel, washing my hands of my responsibility to raise Good and Godly Children, until such time as I am ready to start researching adoption. I still don't know for sure if it is the right path for us, but I will prayerfully consider it.

Hmm, I promised this post would be happier than the last one, didn't I? Hmmmmm........

Please enjoy this oldie, but goldie funny animation: Ebaum's End of the World

October 12, 2012

So Jaded

Barring any catastrophes, we will be moved into the new house in time to host a Halloween house warming party. I'm very excited about this and am already mentally planning it. I was pouting about not being able to drink last night and M asked "are you going to know if you can drink by the party?". "Oh, well in advance," I told him. Then I smirked, "What a bitch that would be to try to avoid drinking at my *own* party without letting on because I'd be *so* early pregnant, it would be stupid to tell anyone". Then I added, "Good thing I won't have to worry about that, because I'm not getting pregnant". M gave me a look, but didn't say anything.

Once upon a time, I used to tabulate my prospective due date in any given cycle. I payed money to be a VIP member ("Tip the odds!" they say) on Fertility Friend and would symptom spot like a crazy person as though I could *will* myself to be pregnant. I would give up caffeine, alcohol, and any non-pregnant friendly foods, like acting pregnant could somehow *make* me pregnant.

Other people will still say to me "When you have kids...". I never make that mistake anymore. It will always and forever be "If". I can't daydream anymore about the day I get a positive pregnancy test. Or wishfully plan how I would surprise M with the news. I refuse to mentally decorate any of the bedrooms in my new house as a nursery. Rather, I am planning my existence without children. A year ago, I may have thought that kind of thinking to be counter-productive. "Have to stay positive!" people tell me. No I the hell don't. The only thing I can be "positive" of is my continued infertility. The pills, the shots, the ultrasounds, and timed intercourse are all perfunctory at this point and the only future I dare to consider is the next cycle, the next round of meds.

God that sounds depressing. I swear I didn't mean for this post to sound so dark. I don't *feel* dark. I just feel...well, I don't want to say hopeless, but certainly something less than hopeful. As though I am doing all these medicated cycles and agreeing to IUI only to prove to myself and the world that I did what I could when inevitably nothing works. That will be some small comfort. Again, that is coming off *way* more despairing than I intend. I can't really explain myself.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, it is strange to be in a place where I have no illusions or fairy tales left where children are concerned. The reality of my situation is what it is, and there's no sense in being overly emotional about it. So much so that the absence of any emotion gives the appearance of being sad or depressed, even though I'm not. Does that make sense?

The first year and a half of dealing with IF was such a roller coaster, I really don't want to move forward into my new future, new house, etc. letting IF continue to muck up otherwise happy events. TTC holds no pure joy for me anymore, but at least that means it holds no deep sorrows either.

To end this post on a non-Eeyore sounding note, I've been thinking about how some women "test out" their trigger shot. I've only triggered twice and have never tested out the shot. I was wondering what you all do? Have you ever tested out the shot? Is there a particular reason why or why not? I have considered doing it and then chickened out because I think I would have a very emotional reaction to a positive pregnancy test, even if I *knew* it was just the shot. I think it would just be even more crushing to watch the positive slowly fade away to a BFN instead of becoming a true BFP.

I promise my next post will be more pleasant and up-beat!

October 09, 2012

So Much Time and So Little to Do!

Really, the reverse is just as true: so much to do and so little time! Is it possible for time to be moving too fast *and* too slow? Have I asked that question before...?

I'm really bad at waiting. Not my forte in the least. Currently, I am waiting to get the roof contractor contact information so we can pick out shingles for the new house, waiting to hear from the bank about any other forms they need from us, waiting for my sister to go into labor, and waiting to take a pregnancy test.

This is not your average "Two Week Wait". This is an annoyingly monstrous two week wait where I am simultaneously waiting for 3 big, life changing events: Baby nephew, New house, Pregnancy test. It will be interesting to see how quickly I lose my shit in the next several days...

October 05, 2012

A Long Awaited Update

I had thought that I would be able to write an update on Wednesday this week with all sorts of good news. The sellers' response to our repair requests was due on Tuesday, and my mid cycle u/s was Wednesday morning.

But the news never came about the house. We waited. And waited. And waited some more. And FINALLY this morning, I received the official response. So now, I am making my big happy update:

American Foursquare built in 1919
WE'RE BUYING A HOUSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The sellers agreed to most of our repair requests - the biggest being a new roof. I am over the moon excited about this! And on top of that, they are making an effort to stick with the original closing date of Oct. 20th! I may be living in my new house by Halloween!!

My u/s on Wednesday went really well too. I've got a 17mm and two 13mm all on the same side. Dr. B advised to use OPKs every day through Saturday. If I surge before Saturday, I need to trigger that same day. If no surge by Saturday, trigger then.

This is my 3rd cycle post-surgery. And my 3rd cycle in which the drugs are working and getting me to ovulate. If we aren't pregnant this month, Dr. B wants us to move to IUI. We did one, back in March - my first cycle with Dr. B. The BFN after that cycle was pretty devastating. Knowing how much an IUI ratchets up the emotional involvement in a cycle, I told him I want to wait until after Christmas to start them.

Obviously, my elation over the house and continuing happiness with M's new job are making the infertility much easier to handle. I still don't want the potential emotional roller coaster ruining my first Christmas in my first house. As I've said, so many blessings have been heaped on us in the past two months, I almost feel guilty asking for a miracle baby too. I'm comfortable with letting all this play out in God's time for now and hopefully I can sustain that level of...trust, I guess.

September 27, 2012

More IF Music

I am not a fan of what I would call "praise" music in the Christian Genre. It takes a special song to needle its way into my heart despite my initial reservations when I know its "praise music". But this song just makes me want to cry and cry...in a good way, if that makes sense. Its definitely being added to my Infertility Music Mix.

Please to enjoy...

September 25, 2012

Back in the Stirrups Again

I did get to squeeze into the schedule for today and have an u/s. We are good to go for this cycle, mixing things up a bit with clomid CD5-10, including a double dose today. Also we are doing a trigger shot this month, mostly because I've got one hanging around the back of my fridge and its going to expire in a month.

The Guru told me he feels like we are in the fine tuning stages of treatment with me, rather than wildly vacillating trying to figure out something, anything that works. That actually made me feel pretty good. Plus one of the songs from my infertility mix played on the radio while I was headed to my appointment. I count that as good luck, not that that's worth much.

I have a new obsession lately: audiobooks. Now that they are available in digital form, its so easy to borrow an audiobook from the library and load it on my iPhone! Okay, that is a patent lie. In theory, it is easy. In practice, the first audiobook I got required about 4 hours of screaming, raving, coercing, and willing myself *not* to throw my laptop at a wall. First the audiobook software didn't like my computer, then when I solved that problem, my iPhone decided to be a total butthead and refuse to tell me where the files were that it had *just* downloaded. There's even a handy dandy section in the iPod app *for* audiobooks, but of course it wasn't in there. The first book, "Bossypants" (so funny, you MUST read!!) turned up as an empty playlist in my iPod. Using the phone's search function, I was able to pull up the audio files and play the book, but now that I'm done, I have no way of deleting it because my phone doesn't actually *show* the files wherever they supposedly are being kept. Its a very strange problem that I'm sure I'm not articulating well...

The second book was much easier to download now that I knew the weirdness I'd have to deal with. It loaded onto my phone as an album in my iPod, which is nice in that the phone is actually showing me the files in a location where I can then delete them, but its unfortunate because the files play like a song and not a book. I don't get certain controls like rewind 15 seconds, fast forward 15 seconds, and double-time the talking speed. Oh well, at least I can listen to The Hunger Games while I drive, work, cook, crochet, and lay in bed trying to get sleepy. Yes, I am very late to the show, but I'm *finally* reading (listening to...whatever) The Hunger Games. I plan on watching the moving once I've finished the first book.

The Guru briefly discussed our future treatment plans before ending my appointment. We agreed that if I'm not pregnant by the end of the year, we should bump up to IUI's, probably still going with whatever protocol is getting me to ovulate. We do still have the minor issue of M's not so stellar swimmers to contend with, afterall.

Super fun times here guys, I cannot even tell you. Poor normal people, sitting out there, getting pregnant at home without specialists, nurses, drugs, bloodwork - I mean, c'mon, where's the fun in *that*? Amiright? ;-)

September 24, 2012

Infertility Continues to be Cruel

Am I crazy, or just *very* empathetic, for literally crying when I heard the news? I don't care who or what it is affecting, the injustice of infertility makes my heart cry out for them all: "How long, oh Lord, how long??"

My ten year high school reunion was this past weekend. I remember thinking I had plenty of time to get big and pregnant for this ridiculous social event. Cute, huh?

Fortunately there's weren't too many bellies to avoid, and none of my close high school friends are pregnant, so I got rather lucky. I can't help wondering what the 20 year reunion will be like...

One of my girlfriends flew in from New York for the event. We keep up on Facebook, but don't actually have full conversations often. She talked about wanting to get married and hoping her boyfriend of 3 years will finally *finally* propose. She has given him a bit of an ultimatum and described how she sees two futures in front of her: one where he proposes and they can move forward with their lives together - the other where she has to leave him because she's not willing to wait forever. She said its weird living as though both of those futures are true simultaneously.

Don't I know it. I live everyday walking the weird line between a future with children (more likely *child*) and a future without them. I simply don't know which one will come to be, so I have to live and prepare for them both at the same time. It is difficult, but I try to remind myself frequently that no matter what happens *I will be okay*. In this one small respect I guess my faith has grown. I trust God to put me on the path I need to be on and to make me able to handle whatever happens on that path in regards to children.

I'm not sure if there will be a cycle in October. Friday AF showed up much later than she normally would and I completely forgot to call the RE's office to leave a message for an ultrasound. Today is CD4 and I left a message this morning asking about it. I don't know if they will squeeze me in on CD5 and start my meds same day, or if they'll just tell me to sit out a cycle due to bad timing.

At the moment I don't really care. I'm in a terrible mood, work is not helping, and I am so sad that M and I may have to walk away from our dream house because it needs a roof. We submit the post-inspection paperwork to the sellers today and they could take up to 8 days to get back to us. I've gotten a lot better at dealing with disappointment, but it still sucks. We'll just have to see what happens...

September 19, 2012

I am Becoming Immune

After a year and 9 months of this bullshit, I am finally becoming numb to the monthly BFN. It helps that I have figured out the warning sign my body gives me before AF arrives. I always always spot a few days in advance. In more naive times, I would obsessively scour the internet for "proof" that spotting did not necessarily count me out for a BFP. And honestly, you can search for anything online and find "proof". I could probably google "Exercising causes growth of third eye" and would get some hits. But the fact of the matter is, even if *other* women may spot and still get a BFP, I never have. And I have come to accept what the truth is for me personally.

That's hard to do, isn't it? Millions of women get pregnant everyday and we all hear plenty of "helpful" anecdotal advice from some one else's personal experience. But that's *their* experience. *Their* body. Not mine.

Now that I am well and truly over the fact that I will not be a young mother like my mother was, I feel like I could do this kind of forever. I'm not exactly emotionally invested in every cycle the way I used to be. Is this good? Possibly. Is it maybe a little sad too? Probably. Such is life with infertility, huh?

So, let's do another cycle, eh? What do you think: clomid with a trigger or femara with a trigger? I'm ready to be done with clomid and I can finally afford the more expensive femara. But I'm concerned about dosing. Have any of you switched from clomid to femara and did your Dr. seem to know that 100mg of clomid equates to so much femara? Or do you have to start all over again with low doses, increasing each cycle until it works? Cause I don't think I'm up for that... I stand by my promise to myself before my surgery this year: if I can't reliably ovulate each month by the end of 2012, I am taking a big ass break and thinking things over.

I had pretty much fallen off the wagon of taking my metformin reliably for about a month and I'm finally back on schedule. So proud of me. I remember when I went off BCPs and spironolactone in order to TTC, I thought "wow, I will finally stop taking so many freaking pills!" And I am now Laughing My Fucking Ass Off at how young and stupid I was. I am now taking 10 pills a day - more than that while I'm taking clomid!

I feel like this post is kind of all over the place, with non-existent segues between topics... Let's throw one more out there!

Do you know what it takes to get on the show House Hunters? I love that show and I told M when we started looking at houses for real I wanted to apply to be on the show. So after we put an offer on our dream house, I went to the HGTV website and followed the links to the application for the show. Really thought that was it. A week later, I got an email from one of the casting directors for the show! They wanted to know more about us and our home shopping story. So I emailed back a more detailed explanation of our situation. I got another email back! They like our story and are very interested, now please fill out all this paperwork and make a 7 minute video bearing in mind all of these questions and requirements. Also, make your realtor jump through a bunch of hoops and remind her we will pay her NOTHING for her time and trouble. Wow. Why did I think the process would somehow be simpler than that? It would take me at least 2 weeks to get all this completed and by then we'd be closing on the house and moving. There's no way we'd be able to take 5 days out of our work and personal schedules at that point to do all the filming they need. Small dream of reality tv: crushed. Ah well, its a silly dream anyway ;-) I will still get my house.

September 16, 2012

Quick Update

My RE's office never called last week, which means I really did ovulate afterall. Today I noticed some very faint spotting, right on schedule according to prior cycles. That means I can pretty much assume this cycle is a BFN, but I already expected that. I guess we move on.

In other news, we signed all the paperwork and are under contract for our dream house! Inspections are this coming Thursday and I'm hoping and praying there are no major problems. I may not be able to control my fertility, but I do have some control over where I live!

September 12, 2012

I'm a Bad Bloggy Friend

I swear I'm still here. And I swear I am keeping up with all of you. My heart swells with joy for some and with sadness and empathy for others. Even though I haven't been commenting, I am here and I love you all.

My weird-ass cycle will soon be coming to an end. I am 7-ish days post O? All my temps since late last week have been in the post O range for me. This morning I finally decided to get blood drawn for a progesterone check. If Dr. B's office doesn't call me, then I will know I definitely ovulated.

I don't hold out any hope for being pregnant. The cold I had (of which the cough still lingers a little) really messed with my symptoms and my timing, so we probably didn't have sex within the window but once. At this point I would be happy with proof of ovulation. Even if I did have a good ovulation I think I want to discuss using Femara and a trigger shot for the next cycle. At least I'm not stressing and freaking out.

Well, not about TTC anyway. Instead I'm stressing over house hunting. We decided to put an offer on the house we fell in love with. The seller's countered the next day and, after discussing with many people, we decided to accept! We sign the contract tonight and then its onto inspections! Holy cow this is going light-years faster than I expected! Maybe infertility has caused me to assume that all major life changes will move at a glacial pace, LOL. But this one certainly isn't.

I can't tell you guys just how scared and excited I am. Finally, finally, finally after all the waiting and heartache of the past year, a few things are going right. My husband has a very good, well paying job and we are buying a house! One month ago, if you had told me I would be about to sign a contract for the house of my dreams I would have scoffed. But here I am. So I think making progress in other areas of our lives makes the infertility much more tolerable for me. It certainly was easier to house hunt without having the immediate concern for children. The house we are buying is so perfect: space that just the two of us can use and not feel big and empty, but room for a child or two if we were so lucky.

I think I have prayed at least once a day for several days to express thanks and my feelings of total unworthiness for all the blessings of the past few weeks. It seems selfish to also ask for children, but ask I do.

I'm probably going to maintain a once a week or so posting schedule for a while. Work is so much busier now that school is in session and then also all the extra tasks in finalizing the house purchase. Plus *moving*! Hopefully in October. And then my sister will have the baby, so I'll be helping out with that. I imagine the rest of 2012 is going to fly by (and honestly, that would be great because the early half dragged on for an eternity). But I promise I will always stay up to date with each of you and keep you all in my thoughts and prayers.

September 07, 2012

So Confused

After my last post, things got even weirder. I decided to use an OPK on Tuesday, kind of for gee whiz. It was very VERY positive, no doubt about it. So I was like "Oh....uhhhh....I guess we have sex tonight?"

Signs and symptoms have still been vague or absent. I've had passing breast tenderness and I did notice more EXCM on Tuesday. But I temped every morning this week and it was stubbornly low. Last night I was counting in my head and decided that next week, maybe on Tuesday, I should go get my progesterone tested just to give the RE's office some definitive proof one way or the other about this cycle. I dutifully popped the thermometer in my mouth this morning after making sure I didn't wake up with my jaw hanging wide open: 98.58. That is very definitely in the Post-O temp range for me.

Seriously? This is not conclusive data, this is just *annoying* at this point. Whatever. I will continue to temp to try to track a trend (or lack thereof) and get my blood drawn Tuesday or Wednesday. I am so ready to just move on to Femara with a trigger shot. Clomid and I have never had a good relationship and its only gotten worse. Lyingpieceofshitbitchpills...

In more certain and pleasant news: More house hunting on Sunday!! We have fallen head over heels in love with a house already, but the list price is at the top of our range. We decided beforehand that we would only be willing to purchase at the top of our price range if the home was completely and utterly move in ready - didn't need a thing done to it. This house does not quite meet those specifications. We are concerned the sellers won't negotiate, so I am preparing myself for a big letdown with that just in case. At least M and I are agreed that we would walk away from that house if the sellers don't negotiate.

Oh, other good news I almost forgot about. Well, this is actually a mixed bag of good and bad. I don't have a gluten sensitivity!!!! I can eat stuff!!!! ........Wait, why am I so itchy then?? Hopefully the dermatologist can give me some answers at my appointment on Tuesday.

September 04, 2012

Bad Timing

This rotten cold I've been fighting since last week is ruining my cycle. I got what I thought was a positive OPK on Saturday, worked up the energy for sexy time, then failed to remember to use an OPK on Sunday and simply had zero interest in sex the rest of the weekend. Hard to feel sexy when you are a giant, coughing snot-ball :-P

I did remember to use an OPK on Monday and it was definitely negative. But, if I have ovulated, nobody told my temperature. Or alternatively, the fitful, mouth-breathing sleep I've been getting is messing with my temps. 97.58 this morning, well below my typical post-O temps.

Not really sure where this leaves us. I did not get many tell-tale ovulation symptoms like last month, but again, being sick really screws with my ability to tune into my body. I guess I'll just keep looking for a temp shift this week and call Dr. B on Friday if there's nothing.

Its hard to be surprised by any of this, if it turns out I didn't O. My body is just *so good* at being fucked up. If this cycle is a bust I'm going to ask to try femara with a trigger shot. I still have a leftover shot hanging out in my fridge anyway. If I can't get regularly ovulating by the end of the year I am taking another break and strongly considering ending our attempts for a biological child. I just can't let this problem rule and ruin my life. What is the point of beating your head against a wall that shows no sign of breaking or budging?

Adoption still sits out there in the ether as a future option. My employer and M's employer both offer adoption assistance, which is why it is not cost prohibitive as opposed to IVF. I think I would wait until I turn 30 at least to move forward with that though. It would probably take that long if not longer to change gears and think about having a kid without ever experiencing pregnancy, without my family's traits being in there somewhere...::sigh:: Ah well, we will cross that bridge when we come to it. Maybe I'll just live out my life as a fabulous aunt to two very lucky nephews, heh.

August 30, 2012

And its 16mm in the lead!

Next cycle, I think I might come up with goofy horse names for the top 5 follicles or so - then if I have to have a repeat scan I can amuse myself with a horse race narrative in my head XD Anything to keep infertility funny, ya know?

Well, the good news is, one folly took the lead and is still growing. I was kid of hoping for a two-fer, but beggars can't e choosers. I have managed to, so far, avoid the Femara discussion. The Guru told me to start OPKs Friday or Saturday and I may ovulate Monday. We'll see. I suppose I should start writing down my temps each morning in order to get a better idea of when/if I ovulate. Labor day may be Sexy Time day in my household ;-) Yeah, that was a lame joke...

So I've been researching gluten-free diet restrictions, in case my skin biopsy comes back positive for dermatitis herpetiformis. Not cool, guys, not cool. Goodbye pizza, goodbye fake crab which I lovingly refer to as K-rab, goodbye beer unless I can track down one of two non-shitty gluten free beers available in the U.S. Thank GOD I don't have celiac disease where gluten could give me all kinds of scary symptoms. I think, I HOPE, if I give up the major gluten offenders (many of which I have already cut out or cut down on to be low carb), then I can still get away with sauces, dressings, marinades, and other tasty liquids which are laced with gluten. I just might get a little itchy if I over-indulge. We'll see if that is in fact the case. This is going to make eating out at restaurants very....interesting.

Also, did any of my fellow PCOSers see this? I don't watch Dr. Oz or The Doctors or any of those medical daytime talk shows, so I guess I'm behind the curve. But my PCOS Awareness group on FB posted the link to this research article. I'm willing to be a guinea pig! Found a reputable lab that sells this supplement online and am thinking of trying it out. Its just so damn frustrating to be eating WAY healthier than the average American and STILL be over-weight! My sister has lost around 15 lb. during her pregnancy, despite not changing her diet (she already ate well) or exercise. Her doctors keep reminding her "While you're pregnant, the PCOS is kept in check, all your hormones are behaving themselves, so it makes sense that you would lose weight". How sick is this disease??? Ugh!

Anyway, happy Labor Day weekend to my fellow Americans, and regular happy weekend to the rest of you!

August 28, 2012

Follicle Update

I gotta tell you, M getting a job has done *wonders* for my ability to cope with infertility. My CD12 ultrasound was today (although I think I'm actually CD13....look at that! I'm not even sure what CD I'm on!!) and the ovaries appear to be behaving themselves. Each one has a 13mm follicle and several smaller non-contenders.

This is good, but not as good as last cycle when I had my u/s on CD11 and had a 15mm follicle. The PCOS Guru suggested I come back for another u/s on Thursday to make sure the follicles keep growing. If M didn't have a job, I would have had to say, "that would be nice, but there's no way I can afford it" - so thank GOD I was able to say "Yeah, that sounds like a good idea". If the 2 front runner follicles stagnate, I know they will want to stair-step me. I'm not sure how I feel about that...plus I will want to discuss with them whether clomid just isn't going to be a reliable option for me and should we just move on or not.

Under previous conditions, the not knowing would be making me bonkers right now. Thankfully I am feeling okay. No matter what happens, M and I are moving forward with our lives. Whether there is a baby in our future or not, I know we are going to be okay. Doesn't mean all the people getting pregnant around me won't affect me or ever upset me, but I know in the long run I could be okay.

We got a pre-approval letter from one of the banks we are thinking of getting our mortgage from *and* we've chosen our realtor, so we are all set to go look at houses this coming weekend!

Oh, one other health note: I finally got a referral to a dermatologist for the mysterious itchy patches I have been battling on and off since February. They took 2 biopsies and the Dr. thinks its from a mild gluten allergy. Aren't I just sooooo lucky :-P ::sigh:: It can be a little tricky going low carb and gluten free. A lot of the gluten free products I've seen at the grocery have more carbs than the low carb equivalent products...

August 24, 2012

When it Rains, it Pours

Oh, hello there.

Sorry about the absence, everything just came down all at once and I haven't had time to catch my breath until now. I have been reading and keeping up with each of your journeys, but I haven't been commenting much.

M started work this week. They are going to keep him very busy. Next week they have him scheduled for training for 10 hours every day. Yay overtime! But Boo, no husband time :-(

On the housing front, we have picked a realtor and are now moving forward with getting pre-approved for a loan from 3 different banks. I like to have options because I'm a control freak like that. We are so busy that we don't have time to look at houses with our realtor until *next* weekend. Ah well, such is life. We are still hopeful that we will move by November or at the latest, by the end of the year.

In cycling news (nope, not that kind of cycling), I'm back on 100mg clomid again - crossing my fingers that it works 2 cycles in a row. Interestingly, Dr. B wanted to up my dose to 150mg (my CD3 u/s was with the PCOS Guru, so we were just reading notes from Dr. B in my chart) - I'm assuming because he knows my history of ovulating on a certain dose one month, but failing the next. I can understand that, but I feel like the ovarian drilling surgery "reset" my body and I'm still learning what my new baseline is, you know? I reacted that way to clomid *before* the surgery. I would like to see if surgery has corrected this response because if it hasn't that will tell me a LOT. If I don't ovulate this month I will probably ask to switch to Femara.

This weekend will be rather emotional for me. My sister's baby shower is tomorrow and her friend asked that we each write a letter blessing the baby. Just thinking of things to write makes me well up with tears. I'm helping with the food for the shower, so I have a lot of work to get done tonight so I can just assemble food tomorrow. But assembling food had to be pushed back to the late morning because I told my mom I would go to the vet with her. One of her dogs is very old and took a turn for the worse yesterday. She is thinking they will tell her its time to put him to sleep so he doesn't suffer :-( He has lived a long life and all, but I definitely don't want my mom to go alone because she loves her dogs like family. So that's not going to be a fun way to start my day and then try to perk up for the baby shower... ::sigh::

Have I mentioned that I need a vacation? Really bad. I didn't take more than a 3 day weekend at any point this summer because A.) I'm saving up leave time to spend with my sister and the baby, and B.) We had no money to go anywhere or do anything anyway. And now, with all the stress (good stress, but still stress) of FINALLY moving forward with our lives and EVERYTHING we put on hold until now, I just really need to get away somewhere quiet and calm where I can rest and reflect on everything.

My next u/s is on Tuesday to check for follicle growth and I'll update you all on that since it could make or break my cycle.

August 16, 2012

That is One ANGRY Uterus

CD1, finally - and with a vengeance. My uterus is so mad it feels like its strangling my intestines! Thank God for ibuprofen otherwise I'm not sure I could have stayed at work. So my luteal phase post-surgery is still a LONG and healthy 16 days. Yay for definitely NOT having any luteal phase problems. But seriously - 16 DAYS! This is why I test every month even though I hate testing. Because if I didn't I would be waiting SOOOO long before having that conciliatory glass of wine each month.

Now we will see if my body can produce the same results two months in a row - cross your fingers!

And in the mean time, I can have fun house hunting!

August 13, 2012

Crazy Monday

My head is in a million places at once today. I considered not even updating. But its so therapeutic to get things out and written down...so you get bullet points since I am incapable of a narrative that makes any sense.

  • Girls' weekend was a lot of fun and I got started on the baby blanket for my sister :-)
  • Got a BF...N?P?N? on Sunday, so  tested again this morning to get a clearer answer: BFN, for sure. Not really upset about it since I am overwhelmed with the thought of M's new job, house hunting, moving, and getting settled in a new community.
  • Drove around a little of the city we are thinking of moving to in order to get a feel for the neighborhoods. There was even an open house at one of the houses I liked online! It was so cute! And very reasonably priced :-) But we can't get ahead of ourselves. Need to get pre-approved for a loan, find a real estate agent, all that jazz. I will go crazy with everything that needs to be done!
  • The official job offer came this morning for M. He was actually offered the higher end of the range he told them, which is *awesome*! I'm so excited for him!!! He starts work on the 20th!
  • Its a good thing I got good news from M this morning, because *my* office is a cluster-fuck. I walked in this morning to several changes that none of the admin staff were made aware of and an office supply cabinet that looked like it had been beaten with a baseball bat. Apparently the "higher ups" in my dept wanted to move said cabinet and it "fell apart" (because it was FULL of SUPPLIES which should have been REMOVED before they tried to MOVE IT!). So I and the only other employee present today spent an hour cleaning up a huge mess that we didn't make and no one ever said "sorry for the mess" or "thanks for cleaning it up". I am beyond fuming about this and many other things. Don't really want to get into it here.
  • Because of the mess I walked into this morning (also had my nephew with me because my sister had a doc appointment, so I had to play it cool and act like everything was fine), my brain is totally scrambled. I can't seem to get any work done and there is SO MUCH to do, both for the dept. and for my personal life. I'm screwed.
See what I mean? All over the place. And a mix of good, bad, and just plain frustrating. I'm really hoping the day improves so I can focus on happy things like house hunting.

August 09, 2012

Now that I have calmed down a little

So the interview I wrote about that was on Monday? That is the place that offered M a job! :-D

He surprised me at work and I burst into tears as soon as he told me. I cried so loud, people wandered in asking if everything was okay, haha! I said it was MORE than okay!

I seriously feel like I have won the lottery...My thoughts are all over the place. *Everything* has been waiting on this. We can buy a house - hell, we *have* to buy a house (M currently will have an hour commute to work from our apartment), we can get a dog, we can pay off debts, we can start saving for a vacation, a baby, a new car! OhmyGodohmyGodohmyGod!!! Its just too good to be true!!

Everything I was worried about, everything we had to cut back on or go without completely, feeling like our lives were at a stand-still - its all over! I can breathe again! Its like Tami said in a comment: 10,000 lbs have been lifted off my shoulders. We are going to be okay. We are going to be okay!!!

I feel so relieved, so giddy, so...unworthy of this level of happiness - I seriously think I would be okay if it took us another year to get pregnant. This is enough, this can sustain me. This forward momentum in our lives just clears away all the shadows of doom and gloom.

I can't wait to start house hunting!! Thank God we didn't have to tap into the money we set aside for a down payment. There are several lovely houses in the area we would be looking that are well within our price range. I don't want to be house poor, so we are being conservative with the amount we want to spend. We've only ever lived in apartments, so there's going to be a big learning curve. Bills will go up, I know - electric, gas, WATER (we pay a flat rate right now). But I am so ready for the challenge! We got through under-employment, we're surviving infertility, we can handle anything ::beams:: Are you sick of my enthusiasm yet??? LOL!

Thank you all for being out there in blog-land to offer encouragement and kind words while we were going through this. It was almost as big an obstacle as infertility. It has meant the world to me to have somewhere to go and vent my frustrations about life, not just my empty uterus. You girls are so good to me :-) Thank you!


Not Every Prayer is About Infertility...

MY HUSBAND HAS A JOB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

August 08, 2012

9DPO: An Interview and Symptoms

M had another interview yesterday. My stomach was in knots all afternoon and I couldn't focus on *anything*. He finally called me an hour and a half after his interview time and put me out of my misery XD

The interview went well, he feels confident about it. But he was the first person and we don't know how many others are being interviewed. We also don't have a very specific time frame for when they want to have the position filled - just "soon". Well, soon to me is by the end of the week, and somehow I don't think that's what they meant. I hate ambiguous time frame terms...

So we get to go back to waiting. Wait for a phone call, wait for an email, wait for a letter. Wait for spotting to start, wait for my temps to drop, wait to test...

Thank God its Wednesday. Every day moves me that much closer to testing and ending the "What If" misery. I am not a symptom spotter for the most part. Partly because I rarely get any symptoms other than sore boobs and partly because a 2ww with any real shot at being pregnant, for me, is more rare than a Blue Moon.

Having said that, I am, at the moment, trying very hard to NOT tell myself that my extreme lethargy, recent sensitivity to odd smells, and queasy stomach are related to an egg and sperm combining and happily snuggling into my uterus. That is not happening... ::sigh:: I think. I don't know. I'm probably making it all up in my head. Its not gonna stop me from making excuses about not going to my work out class this morning...I'd rather go for a walk anyway.

Why is the second half of the two week wait so much harder than the first???

August 06, 2012

7DPO and Counting...

I went in for my progesterone blood draw this morning. Fastest visit to the lab *ever*.

My temps are still high and, even better, not a hint of spotting yet. On my few non-medicated cycles, I usually started spotting around 7DPO. I think its symptomatic of poor ovulation quality and a crappy corpus luteum progesterone output. On medicated cycles, I don't usually spot until 12 or 13 DPO - probably due to a better egg and corpus luteum. But I always *always* spot before my period, medicated cycle or not.

So, not spotting today is a good sign of strong ovulation, but I won't allow myself to hope for more than that just yet. I will probably test on 13 or 14 DPO. If there's no spotting up til then, I will be very anxious to see what the test says. f I am spotting, the test is a perfunctory act to clear my conscience before I start drinking.

Ooh, I just looked at the calendar. My sister and her BFF always plan a "Girls' Weekend" in the summer. We all get together at someone's house on a Friday, kick out all the boys, and hang out for 3 days straight crafting, cooking, and watching movies. Its this coming weekend, which means if I test on 13 DPO (Sunday, 8/12), I'll be among friends whether good news or bad, alcohol can be on hand, and I'll have a whole day to recover before going to work. That sounds like the best possible scenario, even if one of the gals there just found out she's having an "oops" baby (apparently, condoms don't work well enough). She's not exactly in my "cohort" as it were, so for some reason that means it bothers me less.

Cross your fingers that I make it through the week and weekend with NO SPOTTING!

August 03, 2012

Hope

Every morning I wake up, glance at the clock and grab my thermometer. While I wait for the beep, I keep my eyes closed and I chant to myself low numbers, preparing myself in case I don't see what I want. But every morning so far has been higher than the last! And that's with a fan blowing across me all night (darn hot flashes!) *and* waking up about 30 minutes earlier than usual.

Also, I am exhausted! Thursday in my workout class was hell on Earth because I had *no* energy. I'm getting better sleep now that I have a fan blowing on me, but I still feel like I could go to bed at 7:30. I am telling myself this is because I have tons of progesterone coursing through my system. Monday I will go in for blood work  to confirm ovulation. I'm not even worried about it - look at me! That's real personal growth, LOL! I know the number will be good - I am curious about what it will be, exactly. My RE's office won't call me if the number does support ovulation, so I guess I'll have to wait for my next CD3 ultrasound to ask what the number was.

But then, I can always *hope* there won't be a next CD3....

August 01, 2012

Two Week Wait!

I made it!!! Negative OPK yesterday afternoon and a second high temp today has me convinced I may have actually ovulated *and* gotten in well-timed lovin' with M. I actually have some reason to be hopeful for a positive outcome! That's only the...second time this has happened in a year and a half of TTC! Maybe three...regardless, the statistic is abysmally low.

I can't even tell you how happy this makes me, but I guess I'll try! This means the surgery has helped - the ovarian drilling was definitely worth it! I think I would recommend the surgery to other PCOSers who are in the same boat as me: a "thin" PCOS (I am not thin by normal accounts, but according to the PCOS standard, I am), on metformin with little improvement, poor or no response to clomid, and hyper Poly-cystic ovaries (I had a ton of tiny follicles every month, more than your average PCOSer). The time I had to take off in order to do this was definitely worth it. The tiny little scars on my tummy are *totally* worth it. I guess the real test, however, is going to be next month. Will 100mg clomid without a trigger work twice in a row? History says it will not. When I have ovulated on clomid, it has never worked the second month. Although, I can always hope there won't *be* a second month of clomid because we got in 2 nights of sexy-time right before I (hopefully) ovulated. The only other cycle that gave me this much hope was my IUI back in March.

I'm back in the game, baby!


July 30, 2012

Seeing Double

Oh, hey, so *that's* what a positive OPK looks like! I mean, I've seen hundreds of pictures, but never one in real life. So I finally got a positive yesterday! Now I just need to make sure M and I do the deed every day or every other day until I see that temp spike. This morning it was still low (97.33) and I know the general range for my post-O temps (97.8ish and above) so I'm crossing my fingers that this is actually going to happen. I still have a bit of the heaviness feeling and pain when I sit/stand, but not as much as yesterday. I will certainly keep you all posted!

July 29, 2012

Tick Tock

I didn't pee on a stick yesterday. The OPKs have been so faint as to be laughably negative. And every time I pee on one and see a barely-there line, I feel guilty for wasting the $18 I spent on the box. So I didn't use one yesterday because, at the time, I thought I should conserve them. Then I got to thinking about it and realized if this doesn't work this cycle, I won't be using OPKs in the future because I'll be using a trigger shot...Duh. So I may as well use up all 7 pee sticks now since they only have a shelf life of a few months.

In anticipation of today's OPK results, here's where we stand with symptoms: My temps are *way* way down, which is rather odd. Might be because the hot flashes cause me to throw all the blankets off and then I freeze in my sleep. Or maybe my temps are just legitimately low. Cervix is high and medium for the second day in a row. And hey, *there's* the EWCM I was looking for! A very good amount, that makes me happy. In addition to all that, today I have this strange sensation like I can *feel* my ovaries. There's a heaviness and when I move to sit or stand it is uncomfortable.

Today is CD17, so if I ovulate very soon I am still in the acceptable range that my RE's office likes to see. If I don't ovulate by the end of the week, then I'm going to assume its not happening and I'll have to go back to Dr. B, tail tucked, and admit we should have used the trigger. ::sigh:: oh well.

Other than that I've been enjoying the Olympics all weekend! Loved the opening ceremony - the lighting of the torch was *so* cool and unique! I've watched women's volleyball, beach volleyball, cycling, swimming, and gymnastics. And men's swimming, volleyball, gymnastics (Oh Jonathon Horton, you may be shorter than me but you are soooo cute!), crew, tennis, and soccer. I may even try to live stream events at work so I can listen while I do paperwork. I love the Olympics!

July 26, 2012

Torture

Update: This evening I have learned of two dear blogging friends going through miscarriages right now. Suddenly my petty little complaints seem so insignificant. There is much to be thankful for and I'm so glad there is a community of women who can keep me grounded when I start to spiral into overdramatic thought trains. But I'm so devastated and heartbroken for my friends... No one deserves to go through this, especially not *multiple* times and *especially* not when you are already battling IF. We do not live in a fair and balanced world, my friends. We live in a sinful, hopelessly unbalanced, and completely jacked up world. All I can do is pray that eventually we will all get the think we most long for...

Sleep deprivation would be a very effective method of torture on me, if I were ever so unlucky as to be in that situation.

I'm having a crappy week and I blame sleep deprivation for my bad attitude. Sleep deprivation thanks to the incessant hot flashes that plague me hourly throughout the night - never permitting a sufficient amount of REM sleep. Hot flashes thanks to my little "miracle" drug, clomid. The clomid which appears to be failing me spectacularly.

I went out and bought a box of OPKs like I promised Dr. B. I didn't get the digital ones because HOLY CRAP EXPENSIVE! Especially considering its something I'm going to pee on and then throw away! So I went with the traditional ones, being that I have no idea if this will even work. I dutifully peed when I got home from work. Decidedly negative. I've been keeping an eye on my CM and cervix and all that and I'm concerned. I have the tiniest bit of EWCM only sometimes during the day and I swear my cervix is changing position and firmness multiple times a day. This is nothing like last cycle where I had *gobs* of EWCM for days and my cervix very clearly changed position and softened right when my temp rose.

So now, thanks to my bad mood courtesy of no sleep, I'm convinced this isn't going to work. In fact it is never going to work (except in a month where I've completely given up and we have no sex, *then* I will magically ovulate). Because... I don't know, because God enjoys screwing with me? Because this is his way of saying "No, I'm not going to let you have children, that's never going to happen"?

It doesn't actually bother me that much that this cycle might not work. I knew it might not. Its just one more thing not going my way heaped up on the pile of other things that are definitely *not* going my way - that's what gets to me.

M still hasn't heard about that job this week. With only 3 candidates, you would think by now they'd have made their decision, offered the job, and be contacting the losers to say "thanks, but no thanks". Instead we get more silence. I hate the job hunt. I hate how rude and inconsiderate 95% of the places we apply to are. Is it so hard to send out a form letter in a timely fashion to let people know they can stop holding onto that shred of hope that an offer is coming? Every time M has interviewed somewhere, we never hear another word from the company. No call, no letter, no email - nothing. I thought it was standard business etiquette that if you have an interview, you at least deserve a form rejection letter. Silence is just cruel.

I'm sorry this post is lacking in puppies and rainbows and glitter farts. I'm just not feeling very resilient and hopeful today. I am feeling resentful and pessimistic, instead. If I could just get some damn sleep I *know* I wouldn't feel this bad.

July 23, 2012

Cycle Day 11

So I had my debated follicle scan today. Had to remind Dr. B again that I don't want to do a trigger shot. But *this* time I was speaking coherently and in fluent adult English! Score one for me! Let's look at the numbers:

I have a few follicles in the 10-11 range, two follicles that are 12, and one show off measuring 15!

15 on CD11!

That is *huge* for me!

Dr. B thinks ovulation is still about 3 days off (if it even happens without the trigger shot). I promised to use OPK's to indicate when I ovulate and they gave me a lab form to get my progesterone tested one week after apparent ovulation.

So I guess we shall see...

I actually haven't ever used OPKs because I know they can be unreliable for someone with PCOS. I'm going to give them a chance this cycle in conjunction with temping, that way I will have a clearer picture of what's happening.

So, all in all, a *much* better appointment than last week.

In other news, I bought M adult gummy vitamins because he complains about having to swallow the "horse-pill" vitamins Dr. B suggested to help with the swimmers. Big Baby.

Also in other news, M should hear about a job sometime this week. I am praying multiple times a day that it is good news. I had a dream that he told me he didn't get the job and I remember thinking "I wish this was just a dream" - which is weird, since it was...

July 19, 2012

Drugs are Bad, Mmkay?

I finally heard back from my RE's office. I had to leave a voicemail this morning because I still hadn't gotten a response to my email. Their email system has been having problems, the nurse informs me. Well that's unhelpful.

I did manage to convey to the nurse that, while I understand the purpose of their using the trigger shot, I just went through surgery to try to never have to use one again. I said I'd really like to see if my body can do this with less meds and besides, this is all very expensive and I can't afford to keep doing it. I did agree to keep my u/s appointment for Monday so we can see if the clomid is affecting follicle growth. If this cycle goes well, though, I only want to do the baseline u/s for the next 2 cycles. If it looks like I'm ovulating, but am still not pregnant in 3 months, I will be willing to talk about increasing meds and monitoring.

Deep, cleansing breaths. I can't believe I'm already getting bent out of shape. God these meds *suck*. I always feel like I'm on the defensive when I talk to my RE's office and that really hinders my verbal communication abilities. I feel like I come off as a whiny 4-year-old instead of an intelligent 28-year-old who has well developed opinions about her fertility treatment options...

I'm exhausted now. Between my workout and that phone convo (and the hot-flashes waking me up 10 times last night...) I'm wiped. How am I going to get through this cycle without going crazy? And then, how will I get through the next and the next? (Because I refuse to believe I will be so lucky as to get pregnant "quickly"). For now, I can go lose myself in Big Brother gossip, at least.

July 16, 2012

The Good, The Bad, And The Confusing

When will I learn that my RE appointments never go the way I think they will?

Let's get all the good news out there first: My ovaries look good! roughly 12 tiny follicles on each (which is amazing for me). The Guru was very happy to see such a strong response so soon after the surgery. Apparently, it can take up to 6 months to feel the full effects.

Also, M's interview went great this morning *happy dance* They are interviewing 3 people total for the job and will make their decision in 2 weeks. Another 2ww, go figure. Well, I've gotten pretty good at those, I guess.

The Bad: Me and 6am are not good friends. Me and any time before 7am are barely on speaking terms, really. But that's what time I had to be up to get to my appointment. As such, even after draining my coffee mug in 20 minutes, my brain was still 90% non-functioning during my appointment. This is bad because things happen very fast at my RE's office. They come in, Wanda goes up the vag, they talk for a minute, and then they're gone! So if you've got questions or concerns, you have to jump right in and demand they stop for two seconds.

I am not capable of doing that when my brain is 90% non-functioning. I knew that Dr. B had already noted in my chart I should be prescribed 100mg clomid this cycle. And I've already mentioned how I was willing to go even lower and slower with getting back on the clomid-crazy-train. But since it was the Guru at this appointment, I decided it wasn't that big of a deal. You know what *is* a big deal? Finding out from the nurse that they expect me to do a trigger shot this cycle. Excuse me, what??? Cue....

The Confusing: So, I just had surgery and took a 3 month TTC hiatus to come back and do the same damn protocol as before??? Because that makes ZERO sense. At my post-op appointment with Dr. B, we discussed scaling back on treatment because we need to see what my body is doing now that there's less toxic levels of testosterone floating around. So how will doing the SAME THING show us anything at all? I have proof that I just ovulated on my own, without drugs! It was my understanding that we'd do 100mg of clomid and see what happens. If that doesn't work, then of course we would up the dose or include a trigger. But to do that as the very first intervention seems completely unnecessary. I am finally in a good head space where I am willing to slow down and try to keep my sanity while we go through this and they are stepping on the gas.

What I should have said to the nurse was "I'm sorry, Dr. B never mentioned this to me. I think there may be some confusion. Can we please make sure that this is correct information before proceeding. I don't want to use a trigger shot on my first cycle back on meds if I don't have to."

Instead, I looked bewildered at her and said "What...? But...I had surgery...I thought I wouldn't have to do that..." To which I got a mostly brush off response of "Oh, its fine, we do this so you know exactly when you ovulate for IUI or even for Timed Intercourse. Ok, let's go draw some blood!"

Okay, that's very nice and all, but I don't. want. the. shot. I will have to have another expensive ultrasound in order to use the shot. I am draining my savings account as is, I don't need help. But none of these words came to me this morning. Instead I stood there feeling stupid and confused.

Then, just to solidify that they think I'm a moron, the nurse tried sticking me in the vein I told her NOT to use, so I got stuck twice for my useless pregnancy test. And they scheduled my next ultrasound (the one to check for follicles to time the trigger shot that I don't even want) for CD11. Only because I said with CD12 we might miss the boat.

All in all, a frustrating visit. I don't understand why they rush and talk about my treatment assuming I'm already aware of what's going on. How would I know what we were doing before now? I *thought* I knew, but clearly that isn't happening. And I wish to God I'd had the mental faculties to just say "Stop! Wait! I am confused and we need to talk about this!" I've tried various strategies to help me keep track of my questions, concerns, and comments during appointments, but none of them have worked. I always let myself get plowed over while I sit there lost and confused and they rush around me.

My sister told me to write an email to the generic nurse address for the office. She was at my post-op appointment and agrees it isn't right that they have me doing a trigger because we never discussed that. She told me to ask them to have Dr. B review my chart and ask if I can forgo the trigger so we can see if clomid alone is enough.

Am I crazy? I mean, I know they are used to doing more serious drug protocols at this office, but that doesn't mean I *have* to do it that way, does it? I don't like the way clomid makes me feel and that stupid trigger gives me pregnancy symptoms - so if I can minimize their use, I really want to! Nevermind the financial aspect of it all.

July 13, 2012

My Lucky Day

I was hoping to hold off and update once Dr. B's office has called me back, but as usual, I'm still waiting for that call. I'm certain that the moment I click "publish" they will call though, so here we go:

Today is CD1! That means I had the shortest luteal phase EVAR at 13 days. AND the shortest cycle EVAR at 23 days! What? 23 days?? That is crazy talk! I'm really excited to get a look at what my ovaries are doing and talk meds options with Dr. B. I would be perfectly happy to go all the way back down to 50mg clomid and see what happens.

Also, if a medicated cycle works well, I think I will ask if we can forgo CD3 ultrasounds for a while. Mama's not made of money and if I end up paying that $470 lab bill (fucking Anthem bastard pieces of shit) I don't want to be throwing money away on ultrasounds I don't *really* need because my ovaries have decided to play ball. *Hopefully* Dr. B will agree to this. I mean, we are talking about a low dose of clomid. I did that for 4 months with my GYN and she never monitored a thing.

I feel really good, guys. I feel really positive and hopeful. I feel there is a good chance we could be pregnant by the end of the year. And if not, no one can say I didn't try hard.

I'm going into the weekend with so many possibilities on the horizon: M's interview on Monday, getting back into TTC... Its a good day. I always have good days on Friday the 13th!

Update: Told ya. I have an appointment on Monday morning. Which is a little difficult because I am one of only 2 people in my office next week and the other person is brand-spanking-new, but we'll make it work. Apparently Dr. B had already placed a note in my chart saying to try 100mg clomid. I would try to change this, but the Guru, not Dr. B, is doing my u/s on Monday. Ugh, so whatever, I guess we'll do 100mg and I'll talk to Dr. B about my CD3 u/s some other time? Also, they are going to make me take a pregnancy test?? Umm...I'm bleeding and cramping like its going out of style, ain't nothing growing in there *anymore*! They never had me do a pregnancy test before...odd.

July 12, 2012

Setback

Got a letter from Anthem yesterday. After writing an appeal letter for the bloodwork done in March, having my boss write a letter confirming why I was in CA, my doctor's office write a letter to say the bloodwork was time sensitive and had to be done while I was in CA, and submitting all the documentation, they are still denying coverage. No matter what I say or how I say it, Anthem insists that out of state is out of network and will not be covered unless its an emergency. I hate health insurance. I mean, I'm grateful for my coverage, but I hate health insurance companies and their asinine rules.

I can request a second appeal, which I will, but I know the answer will be the same. Mostly I just want to buy some time before having to write a check for $470. That's a little more than 2 weeks pay for Matt. ::sigh:: We just keep digging in deeper. I really hope he gets a job soon.

My temp dropped today, so AF should arrive soon. What happens if CD1 is Saturday? I need to have a CD3 ultrasound to see what's going on with my ovaries and I can't just show up on Monday and am not likely to get an appointment the same day I call... ugh, I'm so annoyed over the thing with Anthem I don't even want to think about it.

July 10, 2012

CD11, No CD13 - No, wait! CD11...

Update: Holy crap, this is my 100th post! ::throws confetti in the air:: Yay! 100 posts of some whiny infertile bitch complaining about her petty first world problems!! LOL

My temperature pattern is sending poor FF into fits. Today it changed my ovulation date for the 3rd time! Initially it had told me CD11 (and with solid cross-hairs no less - a luxury I rarely get!). After entering a few more temps, it switched to CD13. It stuck with that idea for about a week and then this morning? CD11 again. I'm not quite sure why it can't seem to make up its mind. I don't know if it was the big dip and slow rise I experienced in my temps over the past few days, or maybe the spotting. Who knows. All I know is, I am expecting this to be the shortest cycle EVAR! Like, not even 30 days. Its pretty crazy-pants.

Some of you had mentioned that clomid can help with luteal phase spotting and I hope that's the case for me. Aside from being a very early sign that a cycle most likely did not work, its just really obnoxious to deal with. M would be very happy if there was no more luteal phase spotting as I am disinclined to acquiesce to sexy-time when I feel gross.

Speaking of M, he continues to receive bad news followed by good news. Well, this time the bad news was entirely his fault: he did not turn in his timecard on time and therefore we get to wait until the *next* payday to get his check. Great. Dumbass. We needed that money. But we will just borrow from our savings account (again) and pay it back when we get 2 paychecks in one. The good news is that he has another interview! With a big company that has very important defense contracts! And which accidentally exploded a while ago!.... okay, that last part is not very good news. Apparently, the facility he is interviewing to work at is designed specifically for explosives. I don't even want to know what kind of government research is going on there. A job is a job at this point.

So that's what's going on with me. Big Brother starts Thursday ::bites fist in anticipation:: so that should be sufficient to distract me until AF arrives and I can call Dr. B's office. And get back on the clomid train to crazy-town!

July 09, 2012

The Sunny Side

I could be bummed about the fact I started spotting a few days ago. I am choosing instead to look on the positive side:
  1. My temps have been elevated for about a week now, so it appears I really and truly ovulate 
  2. I don't have any HPTs in my home mocking me - good thing I had already promised myself I would not buy any unless I didn't start spotting
  3. Spotting during the second half of my luteal phase appears to be a regular thing for me - now I will know if I *don't* spot, I can get a little hopeful
  4. In another week-ish I should be able to call Dr. B's office. I am hoping and praying that we can stick to 100mg of clomid or less and it will enhance my (apparently) existing ability to ovulate now.
  See, many things to be thankful for. Who cares that this cycle was a "bust"? We weren't really trying anyway and I can still hope that we will be pregnant by the end of 2012.

July 06, 2012

My Summer Guilty Pleasure

I am not a fan of reality TV in general. The kind of "reality" programming I enjoy watching is drama-free cooking shows, home buying shows, and home renovation shows. And Wipe Out before it became impossible.

But there is one drama-filled, social experiment gone wrong that I have a love/hate relationship with every summer: Big Brother. I can't help myself! Every year I get so excited to have something to watch 3 nights a week and tons of blog reading and obsessing online. And every year the cast is mostly a big disappointment and production *clearly* interferes with the game to push their agenda and the story lines they think America wants to see. But I Can't. Stop. Watching!

The cast list is out for the new season and I have thoroughly investigated each new victim. In addition, there are 4 returning House Guests from previous years (I'm so sick of them doing this). But despite my reservations about the cast and the ridiculous "twists", and the ugly house decor this year, I will faithfully sit in front of my TV every Thursday, Sunday, and Wednesday through the end of the summer.

So what's your guilty TV pleasure? What do you judge yourself for watching but you can't seem to stop yourself? Any other BB fans out there?

July 02, 2012

That Girl

I'm going to make a confession here and I ask that you please not judge me. When I entered my temp into Fertility Friend today, it gave me solid cross-hairs. That's not the confession. The confession is that, after many false cross-hairs, I don't put enough stock in them to act like I'm in the two week wait. I just popped 800mg ibuprofen for a killer headache. I washed it down with some caffeinated soda. If I feel like it, I'm going to have a beer sometime in the next two weeks.

I cannot go back into the same obsessive patterns of behavior I used to do. Only to be let down again? No, not gonna happen. Now, I'm not going to intentionally do anything crazy. I'm not gonna go on a bender. A friend's birthday is coming up and M already asked if I would be the DD so he could relax. I'm cool with that. But I'm not going to cut out ALL caffeine, ALL alcohol, ALL N-SAIDS or whatever drugs it is people stop using when they hope and pray they might be sort of maybe very early pregnant. I did that, every month, for many months. All but 2 months it turned out I never even ovulated. Screw. That.

People who drink coffee still get pregnant. People who have a glass of wine with dinner still get pregnant. When you find out you are pregnant, then you stop doing those things.

I've tried doing things one way, now I'm going to try a different way. If I go back to my control freak tendencies, I'm just going to spiral out of control and then go on a rampage when, in 7 days, my temps tank and Fertility Friend takes away my cross-hairs. Fortunately, there are no pregnancy tests in my home. I will not be purchasing any unless my temps stay elevated for 16 days and I don't start spotting.

I know that cutting out non "pregnancy approved" items during the 2WW is the smartest route to take when you are actively TTC. I've just been burned too many times to believe this is for real. Please don't judge me for taking this little risk. I have to do it for the sake of my sanity.

July 01, 2012

Lights Out

Approximately 30 minutes of storm on Friday has created a power outtage cluster-fuck in my area. The last time we lost power at our apartment (due to a winter storm), it was out for 3 days. We're camped out at my sister's house and are slowly bringing more and more things from home. First it was stuff from the fridge we didn't want to spoil. Then it was our cat and his supplies (its just too hot and humid to leave him in the apartment). Then we decided we couldn't sleep at home because it wouldn't get cool enough at night to be comfortable, so we grabbed shower supplies, a change of clothes, and pillows. We've already checked for electric this morning (none, of course) and when we go back to check this afternoon, we'll have to bring our laundry hamper back to my sister's so we can wash clothes for the coming week. This is seriously NOT fun, but thank God we had somewhere to go. Yesterday was one of those days where "low carb" went right out the window. I'm doing much better today.

I'm a little frustrated because I had sexy-time plans for Saturday morning and that totally did not happen. I'm not letting it destroy my mood though. What will be, will be, and no one can claim I have any control over the weather. I am CD13, I've had EWCM for 6 days now and I still can't decide if that's a good thing or not. At least I've managed to temp every morning. I'll just keep on that and wait to see if there's a thermal shift sometime soon.... I have had other symptoms: pain in my ovaries and some nipple tenderness, but I'm trying to ignore all that and just go with the basics, CM and BBT.

For some entertainment today we're going to a few open houses - sure hope they all have power!

June 28, 2012

Normal

So here's something I know most of you can relate to: I have no earthly idea what it is like to be reproductively "normal". Let me explain why I'm thinking about this.

I am still producing gobs of EWCM. My cervix feels medium/high-ish and is getting softer. I've been struggling with my brain telling me I *have* to have sex now now NOW or I'll miss my chance maybe possibly and OMG what if this never happens again?!?! Old habits die hard. But Saturday will be CD12 and the weekend is when M and I are more likely to have sex anyway. For a "normal" person, fertile symptoms around now would mean that sex over the weekend could produce a pregnancy. I simply can't fathom that. Fertile symptoms for *days* leading up to ovulating as early as CD14?? That sounds like a fairy tale.

I am totally familiar and well versed in the crazy shit a PCOS body is capable of doing. Spotting non-stop for weeks? Been there. Bleeding heavily for days and days? Done that. Absolutely nothing at all for months on end? So old hat. But "normal" fertility? I'm kind of at a loss. I sort of remember what I read in Taking Charge of Your Fertility - I mean I know how this is basically supposed to work. But I'm not super close with any Fertiles that I feel comfortable asking them "So, when do you start to notice EWCM in your cycle?"

And I don't know if my body is behaving like a PCOS body or a "normal" body right now. That is hard for me. It is safest to assume that I'm as not-normal as ever. But there is the chance that the surgery really did help and all that toxic testosterone is out of my system for now...

I have learned so much patience and pragmatism this year, yet I'm clearly a long way from learning patience with my body and my cycles.

In other news that occasionally distracts me from thinking about ovulating, things are really picking up in the job search for M. We hope to hear back about scheduling two more interviews next week! I am praying so hard that he gets a job by the end of the summer!!

June 26, 2012

Ray of Sunshine

Wow, June has *flown* by! Next month I can go back to fertility treatments, crazy!

God is, however briefly, smiling down on M and I the past few days. He had that interview on Friday which went well (calls are being made today and tomorrow for second interviews). And today he got called for an interview with a company *much* closer to home. We would not need to move and I could keep my job. I'm so excited to finally see some activity and responses to all of M's hard work! Seriously, this is the most action we've had on the job front since he started his search.

As for my lady bits, I still can't figure out if or how well the surgery has helped things. I did get AF on my own, but I was doing that back in the winter, too. And AF doesn't prove that I ovulated since so many PCOSers have annovulatory bleeding (I never did before January, 2012, but apparently this is my new norm). The spotting has finally stopped (there is way more spotting since January than I've ever had, also) and even though I am only on CD8, I have EWCM. It is very obvious and there is tons of it, I could not possibly be mistaken. I'm frustrated by this because it seems way too early in the cycle for this to be a good thing. It is more likely proof that my hormones are still out of whack than it is a sign of impending O. But then, I am rather jaded when it comes to my body, aren't I? I am still temping and I decided this cycle I would actually chart them, just to see. I refuse to put any pressure on myself to TTC this cycle, though. No scheduled sexy-time for this lady! I'm sticking to a "wait and see" attitude. If my body O's on its own, then it is likely to do it again and I can try to catch the egg *next* time.

For now I'm focusing on finishing strong in my weight training class, making steady progress on my afghan so I can start my other projects for my sister and the baby soon, and drooling over real estate in our area. M and I have decided to start going to open houses when we see something we like - just to get our feet wet and see what is available in our price range. So far we have not been disappointed and are more desperate than ever for a job so we can become home owners. I'm very happy that the money left over from his trust fund puts us in a good position as far as a down payment goes. In our area it still appears to very much be a buyer's market and I hope it stays that way for another year.

Today I feel really positive and hopeful. Something good is on the horizon for us, I'm sure of it.

June 21, 2012

My Infertility Music Mix

Is it crazy ironic that I posted "When God closes a door, he always opens a window...Now where's that damn window??" on Facebook and literally 4 hours later my husband got an interview request somewhere? Yes, incredibly, weirdly, but serendipitously, ironic. The potential job is 3 1/2 hours away from here, so we would have to move and I would have to find a new job, but we will discuss the pros and cons of that bridge if and when we come to it.

The real purpose of this post is to share my latest playlist on my Ipod. I've been gathering a list of songs for an "Infertility Mix" for a little over a month now. Now that I have it pulled together, its really more of a personal growth mix, but that personal growth has been accomplished through my struggles with infertility, so I feel the name is still apt. There aren't actually any songs about family or children or infertility specifically on it, but the songs I've chosen do speak to me about my struggles. So without further ado....

My Infertility Music Mix (in no particular order)

1. Airplanes - B.O.B.

2. Down to Earth - Peter Gabriel

3. For the Moments I Feel Faint - Relient K

4. Forward Motion - Relient K

5. Landslide - Glee cast version

6. Let My Love Open the Door - Pete Townsend

7. Overkill - Colin Hay (his solo version, not the Men at Work version)

8. Pressing On - Relient K

9. Shake it Out - Florence and the Machine

10. Some Nights - Fun (I am currently uber obsessed with this song)

11. Those Words Are Not Enough - Relient K

12. We Found Love - Rihanna

13. The Cave - Mumford and Sons

14. Away From the Sun - 3 Doors Down

15. Brick - Ben Folds Five (I know this is a song about an abortion, but considering it is from the point of view of a person who did not want the abortion to happen, its really a song about loss to me.)

Do you have music that speaks to your IF struggles? Or a particular song that can lift your spirits and help you carry on on a bad day? I encourage you to check out the songs on my list that you haven't heard - obviously I love them all!

June 20, 2012

Answers and Moving Forward

My IF journey seems mirrored in my husband's job hunt. So many hopes and dreams - so much we did right. And yet so much that we have no control over, no matter how much it vexes us.

The dreaded rejection email came from the position at my university. To say that M is upset is a grave understatement. I was pretty much expecting this outcome when the last thing we heard was they should be scheduling interviews. After a week of no phone calls, I knew it did not mean good things. It still sucks.

I've taken it in stride and its whatever, you know? Nothing we can do but move onto the next thing. But then, I've been learning this lesson for a year and half now with IF; I'm used to it. M is just beginning this journey. And its so hard to watch someone you love having to learn the same lessons you have. I *know* how hard it is, I *know* how much it hurts and how much you just want to scream at God "WHAT AM I DOING WRONG???"

M is very good at getting into a mood and stubbornly staying there. He's also very good at blaming himself for things that could not possibly be his fault. I still try to find ways to be supportive and shore up his self esteem. Mostly these things don't seem to affect him, but all I can do is try. I feel....grateful(?) that I was given my own monumental struggle so that I could be in a position of compassion and empathy for him - that's my job as his wife, to stand next to him and weather the storm too. He's done it for me this whole time with IF and now I can try to return the favor.

I know things won't always be like this and when you least expect it, something turns up. Heck, that's how M and I got together, just when I was feeling that I'd never find the right guy. But in the moment, when you are living every day with the wondering and the waiting, its so hard to keep in mind this time is a blip on the radar. It doesn't feel like a blip, it feels like life has ground to a halt and everything is stagnant. We feel like we're waiting for life to get moving again when really we should be living the life that is around us right now. A job will come, a house will come, children or more pets will come. For now, we just have to live the life we have, pray, and be patient.