Please note on your readers that I have a new blog: http://nowaystosayit.com.

If you have any questions, you can email me at katieschaber (at) gmail.com.

Thank you for all of your support over the years! xo

Friday, October 30, 2009

4 dpIUI

. . . and I am weepy.

I am a weepy, emotional mess.

I've cried (or have been close to crying) three times this morning:

1. One of my best buddies called me at 7:15 a.m. He and I don't talk on the phone regularly, so I knew something wasn't right when he called. He called for advice: He caught his girlfriend of seven years with another guy. When he first told me, I got choked up. What? I was sad for him, but I didn't realize it would make me so emotional.

2. I did my usual morning news read through the local papers' online Web sites, and came across this story about how police are trying to track down a person who abandoned their baby in a trash can. The baby is doing fine, and the article is completely void of emotion, yet I found myself with tears on my cheeks thinking about this baby girl.

3. When I did my morning check of the TTCYFC board, I read that one of the long-timer girls was pregnant after her second IUI. Again, tears. HAPPY tears! I just kept saying to myself, "It's so wonderful!" Now, I normally get happy for every long-timer who gets their BFP, but I hardly ever cry about it.

Damn hormones. I hope the people at Olive Garden are nice during lunch. I'm bound to cry if they run out of breadsticks.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

3 dpIUI

Here's an update:
  • I'm fat. And by fat, I mean I can no longer fit in my pants. (Case in point, I'm sitting here with my pants unbuttoned at work. Luckily my shirt is long enough to cover this.) After taking the Clomid, I gained 3.5 pounds. I'm very confident that number is now up to 5.
  • The pain in my left ovary is gone. It lingered for a little while yesterday, though it wasn't nearly as bad as it was on Tuesday. I couldn't even walk. Now, other than my massive, bloated stomach, my middle section is feeling back to normal.
  • The progesterone is not make me feel cranky. Instead, it's making me feel tired. And calm. And happy. I've had a pretty relaxed attitude this week, and I think my husband can attest to the fact that my mood swings have dwindled.
My plans for the next few days:
  • Tonight: Watching game 2 of the World Series and pigging out on pizza, which obviously won't help with the weight issues.
  • Tomorrow: Busy day at work, then going on some sort of date night with hubby. Not sure where yet.
  • Saturday: Getting an oil change in the car, meeting up with friends to watch the Florida-Georgia game, then watching game 3 of the World Series and giving out candy to trick-or-treaters.
  • Sunday: Laundry, hitting up the new H&M store in town, watching game 4 of the World Series, and spending the day perfecting the Philly cheesesteaks we are having for dinner.
Next week should be fairly busy, too. I'm trying to do anything to keep my mind off of my uterus!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

what is normal?

I want to preface what I'm about to write with this: I don't wish infertility on anyone. I am genuinely happy for every single woman in my life--and there are eight so far--who have gotten pregnant since we started trying to get pregnant. I've helped throw one a baby shower and visited her in the hospital after her baby was born. I would never, ever wish what I'm going through on anyone else. Ever.

But it doesn't help when I hear that said individual (who I visited in the hospital and helped throw a baby shower for) is already trying for baby #2, when baby #1 is exactly six months old. It's bad enough that I have to endure the constant e-mails about how precious her baby is and how much she LOVES being a mom. Now I know I will see one any day now about her being "blessed" with baby #2.

The kicker in this is that she knows. She knows everything. She was there at the very beginning when Joey and I were diagnosed. Does anyone have any courtesy anymore? Any respect? Don't worry. You don't need to answer that. In reality, we all know the answer. There are people out there who don't understand and never will. Congratulations. I'm so happy it's just so easy for you to decide that you are going to make a baby, right here and right now. Really. It's thrilling.

WHY ME? It's the question each of us ask ourselves over and over again. I feel chained to this infertile identity and the key is on the other side of the room. Sometimes I just wish I could be normal, but really . . . what's the good in wishing? Because when I put my feet back on the ground and get a grasp on reality again, I know that wishing is useless. This is who I am. I will never be normal.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

1 dpIUI

I’m feeling pretty wretched today. My left ovary is killing me. At first, I thought it was ovulation pain. But there’s no way. The pain is too intense and too constant--it’s been ongoing since I woke up this morning. Leave it to the left one to always screw things up for me. I hope it goes away, or this is going to be a miserable 2WW. Has anyone else experienced this after an IUI? I’m guessing as long as I don’t have a fever and I’m not bleeding, my ovary is probably not going to rupture anytime soon.

My goal is to not obsess over any potential pregnancy symptoms during this 2WW. It should be pretty easy, seeing as how I gave up looking for IPS a long, long time ago. But in any case, I wanted to ask for suggestions on how to keep myself occupied during this wait if my mind starts to stray. So far I’ve made some plans to see friends, but nothing big. I do plan on rereading New Moon, too, because I’m a nerd and incredibly excited for the movie to come out later next month. Also, my Phillies are in the World Series, so that should provide me at least four nights of entertainment. Any other ideas on how to spend the 2WW?

On the agenda for night one: hubby is picking up my favorite kind of cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory. I’m looking forward to a night of lots of calories and most likely watching House Hunters on HGTV.

Monday, October 26, 2009

one and done

Welp, the IUI is done. The post-wash count was 11 million with 68% motility. Not the best, but I guess it could always be worse. The procedure itself was very fast. He actually did a quick u/s first to check my lining. The estrogen worked because my lining was over 7 mm.

Now all that's left to do is to sit back and wait.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

IUI 101

I have some friends and family members who read my blog and a few have asked me what exactly an IUI is. So, here is a link that better explains the process. My IUI is being done in conjuction with an ovulation-stimulating drug (Clomid). Just to keep up, here's what I've taken so far and will be taking during the rest of my cycle:

Cycle days 3-7: Clomid (50 mg)
Cycle days 10-11: Estrogen
Cycle day 11: Ovidrel (trigger shot)
Cycle day 14-??: Progesterone (50 mg)

Hope that helps!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

attention wal-mart shoppers

I'm not a frequent Wal-Mart shopper. No offense to those who are, but Wal-Mart just makes me go a little mad. The general chaos gives me too much anxiety. However, Wal-Mart has amazing deals on prescriptions. I got my Clomid there for $9, and so I went back last night to get my prescription for estrogen filled.

When I handed the prescription to the tech, he looked confused. He consulted with another tech for a minute and then came back to discuss the situation with me:

Tech: I'm sorry. We can't fill this without speaking to your doctor.
Me: Why not?
Tech: Well, what's he's asking for . . . we don't have it in that form.
Me: I don't understand. They're estrogen tablets. Two millgrams. You don't have those?
Tech: No, we have them. But, it's the instructions. He's instructing you to use them . . . incorrectly.
[Me (flashing back to my conversation with Nurse L)--Nurse L: Now, these are tablets, but because your uterine lining is too thin and we don't have much time, Dr. M wants you to insert them vaginally. I know it's weird, but it'll help.]
Me (to Tech): Oh, no. You see, I know they're tablets, but . . .
Tech (interrupting): Yes, but they are supposed to be taken orally.
Me: I know, but there's a specific reason why . . .
Tech (interrupting, again): I'm sorry, but he shouldn't be instructing you to take them this way. They should be taken orally.

By this time our conversation was pretty heated and neither of us were exactly whispering.

Me: No, you don't understand! I am SUPPOSED to take them VAGINALLY.
[Me (thinking to myself): Shit. I said "vaginally." Loudly. At a Wal-Mart counter. I am so white trash right now.]
Tech (face bright red): Hold on one moment.

Minutes later, I was talking to the pharmacist (a female, thank God):

Pharmacist: How did your doctor instruct you to take these?
Me (seriously? do I have to say this word again?): Vaginally.
Pharmacist: Can I ask why?
Me: I'm having an IUI on Monday. Clomid thinned my lining and they are trying to thicken it before the procedure. They said this would be faster than taking it orally.
Pharmacist: Okay. Give me ten minutes to fill it.

What we do for infertility (and $4 estrogen pills).

Friday, October 23, 2009

IUI#1 is set!

It's happening!

I trigger at 9:30 p.m. on Saturday night.
Joey goes in at 7:45 a.m. on Monday morning to give his "sample."
I go in at 9:15 to have the IUI.
9:15 a.m. on Monday, October 26, 2009. 10/26.

The date is a little ironic considering this post, don't you think?

yes or no?

I have two dominant follicles--one on my right (19mm) and one on my left (20mm). The problem is that the one on my right has very uneven edges and is abnormally shaped, which could mean I'm either about to ovulate or I've already ovulated. They took some blood work for a progesterone test and will call me in a few hours with the results.

If the blood work shows I haven't ovulated or I'm not ready to quite yet, then I'll trigger on Saturday night and the IUI will be Monday.

I'm happy the Clomid did it's job, but on the other side, it thinned my lining. So in addition to everything else, I have estrogen suppositories to take tonight and tomorrow that will hopefully thicken my lining.

If I had to guess, I would say they are going to cancel the IUI. But I'll know for sure in a few hours.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

miracles and memories

The Phillies are back in the World Series!

I am a huge sports fanatic (or you could call me a phanatic). I went to the University of Florida, so with college sports, I bleed orange and blue. But I was born and raised in South Jersey where it was live or die with the Phillies and the Eagles.

When I was young, and my grandparents were still alive, we would go over their house on the weekends and you could bet money that the television would be tuned into a Phillies game. My pop-pop would be sitting in his spot at the very end of the couch. It was a hideous couch: a brown, orange, and green paisley-patterned, 1970s travesty. It lived through two parents, four children, and eleven grandchildren. I loved that couch. It comforted me. I would curl up on it next to pop-pop and we would watch the games. When I got older, he would occasionally let me take a sip from his beer (always a canned Budweiser) when no one was looking. It didn’t matter how badly the Phillies played, it was the feeling that everything in the world was right that made me love those weekend visits. Pop-pop was my hero.

As I grew older, and we moved away from South Jersey, I lost track of the game and my family. Weekend visits turned into holiday visits. Baseball games turned into Barbie dolls, then clothes, then boys. The Phillies became a distant memory.

Until last year, the Phillies never won a World Series in my lifetime. Their only title before 2008 came in 1980, five years before I was born. My pop-pop didn’t long enough to see their second World Series. He died on January 25, 2007, almost ten years to the day that mom-mom passed.

When mom-mom left us, I was given a few pieces of jewelry to remember her by. When pop-pop left, I had baseball. I started watching again, believing again. It wasn’t just about being a fan. It was about my pop-pop. I knew that, even though he wasn’t here with me, we were still watching the games together and hoping for that miracle.

I don’t know what’s going to happen next week with our IUI. What I do know is that regardless of what happens, I will still have the Phillies and the memory of my pop-pop. And I hope that, someday, I can pass those memories along to our miracles—our children.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

welcome, ICLWers!

I’m an ICLW virgin, and I guess I will start off by sharing my story:

My husband, Joey, and I started TTC right after we got married (in May 2008). We had been together for nearly five years and we knew we wanted to start a family. I was so naïve. I honestly thought it would be three months, tops, before we got pregnant. Obviously, I was wrong. By February 2009, I was jaded and heartbroken over our lack of success.

During my routine gyno exam that month, my doctor asked if we were trying to get pregnant. I said yes, and she agreed to start testing. After a 4.5 cm cyst on my left ovary, cervical dysplasia, and less-than-stellar SA results, Joey and I weren’t feeling much better. So, we decided to move back home to Florida. We were living in Nashville, TN, several states away from our family and friends, and with everything upon us, we were ready to come home.

We finished testing in May, moved home and started new jobs in June, and had our first RE appointment earlier this month. I wish I could say that we know more now than we did in February, but we really don’t. We are still waiting for blood work results, but PCOS is virtually out. My RE suspects endometriosis, but multiple sonograms, ultrasounds, and an HSG show that it’s not causing any abnormalities in my uterus or on my ovaries, and my tubes are open. And, as far as we know, I do ovulate sometimes.

Right now we are getting ready for IUI#1. I finished my last dose of Clomid yesterday and I have my next u/s this Friday (10/23). If all goes well, IUI#1 will be early next week.

My emotions go through waves. I went through a long period when I was very angry, but now I’m stuck in sadness and guilt. To say that this process has been a rollercoaster is an understatement. I’m a planner by nature, and it’s been a challenge to come to terms with the fact that I have zero control over my body and what it decides to do.

I think that pretty much covers everything. I’m looking forward to “meeting” lots of new people this week!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

good vibes

Could everyone please take a minute and say a good thought or prayer for my friend, Paula?

Paula and her husband found out this weekend that, after nine years of trying, they were finally pregnant. They had pretty much given up hope in having a biological child (her husband has a child from a previous marriage) when they got the good news. It was a total shock and she was beyond excited.

When she went in for her ultrasound yesterday, the doctors told her that the pregnancy was ectopic. Tests today confirmed that she has blood in her abdomen. They will be operating on her within the hour.

Please send some good vibes to Paula, if you can. She's the sweetest person in the world, and her amazing success story became a complete nightmare in less than 72 hours. I can't imagine what she's going through right now.

Monday, October 19, 2009

i'm terrified

I'm not nervous about the IUI (okay, maybe a little). I'm not anxious or excited.

I'm terrified. I'm a worrier by nature, so this . . . this worries me.

I am flat out, 100%, scared shitless.

On one hand, this could work. This could be the end of the road in trying to conceive our first child. We could get this on the first shot, and I would be beyond thrilled. I'm more than a little nervous about the risk of multiples, though I know my RE will keep a good eye on things for me, but other than that, it would be such a relief to have this over and done with.

On the other hand, this could be just the beginning. How far into this do we want to get? For my husband, it's financially. For me, it's emotionally. I'm so emotionally vested in having a child. It's what I've always known I've wanted. What really pushes me over the edge most days is knowing that it's my fault. I'M the one that can't get pregnant, not Joey. I'M the one who can't fall asleep at night without thinking about how I'm going to deny my husband children because my uterus is a giant failure.

If this doesn't work, I am a giant failure.

When I was little, I dreamed of growing up, getting married, and having a big family. What will happen if part of that dream dies? Some days I think, "I could do childfree living. It could be fun. We could travel, see the world, and spend our time enjoying each other's company." But when I look deep inside my heart, I know that a part of me would always be missing. I might be happy someday, but a piece of my heart will always be dead and lifeless.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

day 3 of clomid

No hot flashes, no sore boobs, no headaches. What gives?

Every woman I've ever met complains about Clomid and the awful side effects. But so far, my body SEEMS to be doing okay. I'm slightly bloated, but (news flash) I'm always slightly bloated. Plus, my period hasn't ended yet.

Of course, it doesn't meant that during this Friday's ultrasound I won't go in and discover that the Clomid ate my ovaries.

Can I sue for that?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

stupidity

My blood work this morning was a mess.

First, they completely ignored the fact that I had an appointment. But that wasn't what got my blood pressure going.

The (incompetent) women working the front desk tried to tell me that the doctor didn't write down how long to test my glucose levels, and that they couldn't do any of the other tests on the sheet if one was written down wrong. What? I sat there and argued for about a minute until I realize that my efforts were useless. I huffed and puffed my way out the door.

I get to the light to turn onto the main road, when, out of curiosity, I looked at the lab sheet. I SWORE the time limit was on there. And I was right. Good thing I looked at the paperwork before I drove 45 minutes back home, because it said in huge bold/capped letters "TWO HOURS" right next to the line about the glucose test.

I was so irritated that I called the girl at the desk illiterate. The guy in charge came over and apologized profusely when I was getting my first round of blood drawn. The hilarious thing is that I apologized for getting upset (though I never yelled), but none of the women that "misread" my form apologized once.

To top off my experience, the other four people in the waiting room were all trashy pregnant women. So I got to stare at pregnant bellies for three hours.

FML.

Friday, October 16, 2009

my biggest fear

Pending my blood work results, the diagnosis is "unexplained infertility." Exactly what I DIDN'T want to hear. I wanted there to be something to fix.

He thinks I do have endo, but he doesn't think that's what's causing the infertility. No signs of PCOS on my u/s, but he'll need the blood work back for a confirmation.

So the plan has changed: I start Clomid today, I go back next Friday for an u/s to check my follies, then inject and IUI#1 the following week.

If this doesn't work, then I don't know what to do.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

cycle #18

Cycle #18 started today. This means that we've officially been TTC for 1.5 years.

Damn. That's a long time.

My u/s and pelvic exam are on Friday morning at 7:45. As Joey said, "Dr. T is very brave for wanting to do a pelvic exam on you on the third day of your cycle."

Edit: I almost forgot.

Joey got a new job yesterday! He'll be working at a bank doing customer service/teller duties. Do you know what this means? Normal hours. I've been with my husband for six years, and I've never known what it's like to have him home every night of the week.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

blank

AF is actually listening to me for once in my whole life. I willed her to stay away long enough for my RE appointment, then when it was over, I begged for her to come soon so I could get a move on with our plan. What happened this morning? I started spotting. :) Flow should start tomorrow, which means I'll have my u/s on Thursday or Friday morning. (And I PROMISE I will make my follow-up pap appointment as soon as flow starts, too!) I also made an appointment this morning to get my blood work done. I have to be there Saturday morning at 7:45 a.m. I'm going to need a serious nap afterward.

On a much sadder note, my heart is heavy this morning for my friend, Kelly. If you'll recall, she went through a scare a couple of weeks ago when she and her husband almost lost their third baby. Yesterday, during what was supposed to be a happy check-up, they found out that the baby is no longer growing. I can't imagine what she is going through right now. Losing one child is tragic, losing two is a nightmare. Losing three? Unimaginable. Please keep Kelly in your thoughts as she and her husband try to cope with their third loss.

Monday, October 12, 2009

it's a plan, stan

My appointment was at 2:30, but Joey and I got there a little early. We were taken back right away and I met with a resident OB/GYN from the local hospital that specializes in care for women and babies. My BP, pulse, and weight were taken, and the resident asked me a few questions about my history with TTC.

Then, we were led back to the exam room. I was chided for not having my six-month follow-up pap (multiple times), and I'll be making my appointment this week since they couldn't do it there. The resident did do a very brief pelvic exam before she led us back in to meet with Dr. T.

Dr. T was amazing. We were in his office for about an hour. He went over all of my previous test results from my doctor in Tennessee. Here is what he thinks:
  • Endo is still a possibility, but he also thinks I could have PCOS. I have to go in on CD 2, 3, or 4 (which should be any day now, since AF looks like she's about to arrive) for an u/s and a second pelvic exam that could give me an official diagnosis.
  • Blood work. Lots and lots of blood work. Luckily, there's a place here that does it on Saturdays, because one of the things he wants me to do is a glucose test. He said it might also shed more light on whether or not PCOS is a possible cause of my infertility.
  • He wants Joey to have another SA and start taking 800 mgs of folic acid. His current multivitamin has 400, so we'll have to get supplements, but he's confident that Joey's morphology isn't the major issue.
After my exam on CD 2, 3, or 4, I'll go on Clomid (monitored) and progesterone. We'll do this until the end of the year. If we still haven't gotten pregnant by January, then he'll do a LAP and we'll move on to IUIs.

Speaking of IUIs, the financial people at this place are awesome. While I met with the doctor, they called my insurance and worked through my coverage. My insurance agreed that, though they wouldn't pay for medication or actual procedures with the IUI or IVF, they would pay for all monitoring. This means that if we have to move forward with IUIs, they will only cost us about $380 (plus meds). Much better than I imagined.

They also do a pretty interesting deal with IVF. If you have viable eggs (and they are sure I do), they will let you do a "swap": you give another couple half of any eggs they retrieve and that couple pays for half of your IVF treatment.

Overall, I feel good. I'm ready to hit the ground running. Mostly I am just so thankful to all of you for your thoughts and support today. The comments and the e-mails and the text messages have been amazing! And for all of you who are on this journey with me, know that I'm rooting for you just as hard!!!

More later . . .

Sunday, October 11, 2009

d-day

Tomorrow is D-Day.

I'm getting extremely nervous. Tomorrow is the day that kicks off everything. Tomorrow is the beginning of the end, and I know this road has two very possible endings:

Fork right = baby
Fork left = child-free living

I sure as hell hope this analogy is like real life, where my car pulls right.

Friday, October 9, 2009

all in my head

There's this reoccurring dream I have.

I take a pregnancy test. This one, out of the hundreds I've taken, has two lines. I rush out to Target and buy this package of bibs, which I've been eying since we started on this journey. I take out the "I love Daddy" bib and put it in a box along with a photo of the pregnancy test. I wrap the box in generic colored paper and swing by the liquor store to get Joey a six-pack of his favorite kind of beer. He's surprised to see me awake when he gets home from work a little after midnight. He opens the box and discovers our good news. We're pregnant! We're going to be parents.

Then, I'm standing in front of our families telling them the good news. We're pregnant! We finally did it. I cry. My mom cries. Everyone hugs us and congratulates us. They know how long it’s taken us to get here, and they couldn’t be happier.

Then, we're in the OB's office. We're getting ready to hear the baby's heartbeat for the first time. Joey is holding my hand and rubbing my belly. We hear the heart. It sounds so beautiful. We also get to see our baby for the first time. He or she is already the cutest baby on Earth, in our eyes. We get several ultrasound images and a recording of the heartbeat and listen to the recording the entire drive home.

Then, we tell our friends. They are so thrilled for us! It doesn't get old saying, "We're pregnant!" over and over again. It never will.

Then, we find out the sex of the baby. It's a boy (or) girl! We can finally go crazy at Target and Babies R' Us picking out nursery colors, cute clothes, and registering for everything we need to make Baby Boy (or) Girl the most spoiled baby ever.

Then, my family and friends throw us a baby shower. I wear a cute maternity dress and get to ooh and ahh over blankets, tiny shoes and socks, pacifiers, and stuffed animals. I'm the happiest girl in the world, because in just a short number of weeks, I'm going to be a mom.

Then, my water breaks. This is it. It's happening, and our baby boy (or) girl is about to arrive. It's nighttime and Joey rushes home from work to take me to the hospital. My mom and Joey's parents meet us there and we wait for the little one's arrival. When it's finally time, I feel like I did when I first found out I was going to become a mom: overjoyed and overwhelmed. I cry. Joey cries. We hold our baby for the very first time, and we realize that there is no better feeling in the whole world.

And then, I wake up.

Because it's just a dream. Or maybe, it’s a nightmare.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

where's my money tree?

I drive far to work. Very far. I'm in the car for about three hours each day--130 miles round-trip. So imagine my reaction when I pull into work last Friday and my check engine light comes on. My first thought: Am I going to make it home this afternoon? I took my car to AutoZone and they ran a diagnostic which came back with four possible causes for the light coming on. None of them were a huge concern, so they turned off the light for me and I was on my way. Joey and I spent Saturday cleaning the mass air-flow sensor in my engine, what we thought was the source of the issue, and the light never came back on.

On my way home from work on Tuesday, the light came back on. Obviously, the MAF sensor was not the issue. So we decided I would drive the Jeep (brand new and completely reliable) this week while Joey arranged for a mechanic to take a closer look.

The first mechanic Joey took it to this morning also did a diagnostic, but never opened the hood to look at the engine. He just said, "Oh, it's probably an oxygen sensor. No big deal. I'll just turn off the light for you and you can come back and get it replaced whenever." Since we had already planned on spending a little bit of money, Joey decided to take it to this guy he knows at the local Toyota dealership because we knew we needed a transmission flush soon.

Uh, yeah. $527 later, we still don't have an answer for the check engine light issue. BUT my transmission fluid is no longer BLACK and there's no chance I'll break down on the middle of I-95 anytime soon. Apparently the other mechanic missed the belt that was cracking and the timing chain that was "off"--two things that would have left me stranded on the highway with no warning.

We need all of these problems like I need a kick in the face. I realize we needed to fix these things, but this is just $527 less we don't have in our baby-making fund. NOT our baby-savings fund, our baby-making fund. How do you cope with having to pay to make a baby? It's just not fair. Other couples get to save for their perfect nursery and their fashionable baby clothes. We don't even get to think about that yet.

Fuck infertility.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

99 problems (but a baby ain't one)

So I figured I should write a blog post today since today is October 7 and I have written six blogs so far since the month began (although it works out to one per day, I actually skipped October 4 and wrote two on another day). Part of me thinks I want to keep up this one post per day thing. The other part of me doesn't want to commit to the effort, try and think of new topics each day, or just doesn't think people care about what I'm doing that much to want to read a blog a day.

Regardless, here's my thought for today:

It started either yesterday or the day before. I was getting a pop-up ad when I logged into the TTCYFC board I frequent. Keep in mind that this board is for people trying to get pregnant, and a large percentage of us have been diagnosed with infertility. Today, I decided to say something about it. The ad is a picture of a mother holding a [freaking adorable] little baby. In big fat letters at the top it says:

Keep track of your pregnancy!

I tried to be nice when I pointed it out, but I think my post came across a little like a bitchy, bitter infertile. (Um, but I am one of those. Right?) It didn't make me cry, or make me angry. It just annoyed me, kind of like the coupons I always get on my receipts when I shop at Target. They are always, without fail, coupons for baby formula. As if it isn't a slap in the face enough to walk past aisles and aisles of beautiful, tiny pink and blue merchandise.

The ad hasn't popped up since (thanks, Melissa!), but I know that everywhere I turn, there will always be signs of what I'm missing.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

i'm not the virgin mary

This morning, I was reading an article about Jon Gosselin getting reamed by Nancy Grace, and I decided to scroll down and read some of the comments. For some reason, I’ve always enjoyed reading the comments on news articles rather than the articles themselves. It’s interesting to me how some people react (and overreact) to the story, the person in the article, and other people that comment.

It was one comment in particular that caught my attention this morning:

“Infertility is God's way of saying ‘you shouldn't procreate’……now we see why.”

I’ve always known there are people out there who felt this way. I’ve had some people hint to it before by saying that if God wanted me to have children, then I would have them.

I’m not an overly religious person. I was born and raised a pure-bred traditional Roman Catholic. I was baptized, received my first communion, confirmed, and married in the Catholic Church, but I am certainly not a do-or-die, live by the rules Catholic. I (gasp!) lived with my husband before we were married. I haven’t been to confession in . . . six (?) years. It’s not that I don’t love God or don’t believe in him. I do. However, sitting in a church every Sunday isn’t going to get me a one-way ticket to heaven, nor is it going to deliver a brand new baby on my doorstep.

I prayed very hard when we first starting trying to have a baby. As the months went on, I began to beg, plead, and bargain with God. Like the video I posted, I was willing to give up anything and everything to have a child. I still am. But now, things are different. I still pray, but I no longer pray for a baby. It’s just not in me anymore. God is only going to take me so far in this journey. There will be no immaculate conception. There may be a miracle, but I need to do my part, too. I need to use the resources around me to achieve what I want.

So my response to the individual who left that comment on the article is this: I feel that God has given me this challenge because he knows I can overcome it. Am I happy about that? No. I’m very unhappy about it. But I’ve accepted the hand I’ve been dealt. I don’t think God wants me to ignore all of the wonderful doctors and the advanced medical procedures they have because he doesn’t want me to get pregnant. When you have a cold or you break your ankle, do you simply pray to God and hope that he heals you? When you are diagnosed with a disease, do you sit around and wait to die? No. You get help, you fight it, and then you heal.

Maybe, in the end, I won’t have children. But at least I’ll know I tried my hardest to beat this challenge.

Monday, October 5, 2009

um, no

Excuse me while I let the blood drain from my face.

My cell phone just rang. It was my RE's office. They were calling to let me know that "oops!" they accidently scheduled my doctor for surgery that morning. Would I be willing to move another day?

Hell. f***. no.

I made that appointment TWO months ago. I've been waiting TWO months for this.

No, scratch that.

I've been waiting SEVENTEEN months for this.

I just said, "Um, no. I made my appointment two months ago and I already have the time off work."

She apologized profusely and told me she would call me back. Within minutes, she had me scheduled for 2:30 the same day.

Whew. Breathe in, breathe out.

7 days

Exactly one week from today, we’ll be moving (figuratively speaking, of course). We’ve been stagnant for about four months in this TTC journey, and I’m ready to break through the wall that’s holding us back from the finish line.

For a couple of days, I thought AF would show up early. I was wrong. As of this morning, there was no sign of her. But as soon as I post a “I think AF is actually going to stay away!” message on the TTCYFC board, I start cramping. It’s like she has me on radar:

“OMG, like, did you actually think I forgot about you? No way in hell. I plan on coming to visit at the LEAST convenient time, then sticking around for about a week to make you one cranky bi-atch.”

And yes, I do imagine my period speaking to me in a Valley girl voice.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

powerful video

Thank you to Michelle and Elizabeth, who posted this powerful video on the TTCYFC boards. Warning: You may want to grab some tissues before you play this.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

october

October is a very important month for me.

It is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It's also the month of my mom's birthday--a day when she can celebrate another year of being alive.

When I was 14, my mom was diagnosed with stage two breast cancer.

She found the lump in her armpit during a routine exam. Her doctor thought it was an inflamed lymph node and wrote her a prescription for antibiotics. When the prescription ran out, the lump was still there.

The lump was removed on Monday, February 14, 2000. On Friday, we found out it was cancer.

I watched my mother go bald. I watched her suffer through six months of chemo, some of which left her unable to walk, eat, or bathe herself. It watched her go from a vibrant young woman, to a sick, old cancer patient.

But the six months of pain and suffering were worth it. She survived. Many others don’t. Over 40,000 women will die this year from breast cancer.

PLEASE ladies, go get your mammogram. Don’t become another unnecessary statistic. The two minutes of discomfort of getting your boobs smashed in is better than a lifetime of worrying whether or not your cancer will return, or of the pain you will cause your family if they catch the cancer too late. If you catch it early, you have a 98% chance of beating this disease!

It’s not too late. Schedule your appointment today.

PS: In case you haven't noticed, my blog is PINK for the month of October. For more information, visit http://pinkforoctober.org/,