Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Mr. Pink Paws and Christmas Day

Well, I hope that everyone had a nice holiday, if you celebrate (and, if you celebrate Chanukah, hope you're still having a nice holiday!). Ours was pretty uneventful, for the most part. We sang at Midnight Mass (which for some reason our church has at 10pm.....it ends by midnight), then we went home and opened presents, because I had to get my ass up at 6:30 and sing the 8, 9:30 and 11am Masses. Then we trekked up to my parents house for the foodfest and family interaction.

My aunts and uncles were there, minus one uncle, who freaked out that his divorce became final the day before Christmas and was holed up in his apartment in SoHo, which was pretty stupid, in my opinion-they've been seperated for 3 years and, quite frankly, he missed the yummy food, but, whatever. My one uncle and aunt have two kids, one who's 8 and another who's 20 months old-holy shit, he's like a cross between the Energizer Bunny and Baby Taz! It was exhausting just watching him buzz around the house and terrorize the dog, who kept running away from him like he had the plague. We got lots of goodies, but one of the best is tickets to Billy Joel's concert at Madison Square Garden in February-they're really good seats and it's a sold-out show, so that was cool. It was kind of sad, though-since my parents are moving in June to Barnegat (down the Jersey Shore, across from Long Beach Island), we all realized that it was our last Christmas in the house.

It was weird, though-occasionally I'd think "you know, if I hadn't miscarried, I'd be showing by now and probably getting baby stuff instead of another purse from mom", or "if that last cycle of IVF had worked we'd be announcing that I'm pregnant today"-but it wasn't as horribly depressing or upsetting as I thought it would be. I think that I'm more at peace with all of this now. That doesn't mean to say that it's always easy, because it's not, but I'm more accepting of it all. This is my lot in life, and I need to make the best of it. I can't pretend that it hadn't happened, or that it hasn't affected me in some way, but I won't let infertility rule my life.

We decided to re-do the living room in our house as an anniversary present to each other this year (yeah, boring old married couple shit, right?), so we got a new couch, tables, repainted-all that happy horseshit. Sean wanted it done by Christmas, so when we put up the tree and decorated it would look fabulous (and it does!). I always try to get a few more ornaments every year to put on the tree, and this year I found this great tree-skirt at HomeGoods-it's a deep red velvet with green and gold bands at the edge, and it looks great against the light beige carpet and the tree (decorated with red, white and gold ornaments)..........I'll have to take a pic of it before I take it down.

Our cats like to hang out underneath the tree for some odd reason-I guess we're lucky that they don't like to climb it-and just crash on the tree skirt. Every year when we take the tree down we have to clean the tree skirt, because it's full of kitty hair. One of our cats is an orange tabby (Peaches) and the other is a tuxedo kitty (Buddy). Last night we noticed that Buddy's paws were a distinct shade of pink-in fact, every white part of buddy's body (except his face) was pink. What the fuck? we said to ourselves. We originally thought that it was because he was rolling around on a red cardboard box we had in the living room that had decorations in it, but we realized that we took that box down to the basement last week. We finally figured out that it was from the fricking tree skirt! I was getting upset about the state of his (normally) white fur, especially since Sean started calling him "Pinky Bud-a-dero" and whistling the "Happy Days" theme. It looks less pink today, probably since he's cleaning his fur, but I'm trying to keep him away from the tree. So far, it ain't working.

So here I am, still in my pj's, with a cup a coffee, my laptop, and nothing planned for today, except for a trip to the supermarket. Ain't Winter Break grand?

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Etiquette Updates and New Arrivals

Well, I finally heard from people. Sean was right (for a change)-I was overreacting.

K actually hasn't been around-she does professional caroling gigs at this time of the year, and since we're not doing the annual holiday performance of "Joseph", she's been singing at gigs up the wazoo-she had 8 in the last five days alone. But, we do have people coming, so yay! Now I can play Martha Stewart/Rachael Ray/Nigella Lawson-I really do love to cook and entertain. If I ever had to make a career change I'd open a catering business, but that's another story.....

L (who did IVF at the same time as my first cycle and got pregnant with twins) had the babies on Monday night, after being induced at 36 weeks. Her daughter's birth was fine (natural), but her son was caught under her ribs and wouldn't move down, so she ended up having a c-section with a vacuum extraction. He had fluid in his lungs and was jaundiced, so they had him in the NICU with IV fluids. I went to see her today-she's in pain from both the vaginal birth and c-section, and still swollen, but she looks great. I got to see her daughter, who's so tiny and cute-holy shit, she's also got a pair of lungs on her too! But so cute!

I was actually okay about going to see her, surprisingly. I thought that I wouldn't be able to do it, but I really didn't feel any jealousy or sadness. Perhaps it's because she went through infertility and made it through-I'm not sure. But, she was so happy that I went to see her today-she knew that it might be tough for me-and was so appreciative. Of course, the box of Godiva chocolates helped, I'm sure.....heh.

Anyway, the week is winding down-my concerts are over, there's only a day and a half left of school, the gifts are just about done, and the stockings are stuffed (yeah, I'm a dork about that). I'm really looking forward to the week off to recharge for the new year ahead. And, let's face it-it looks like I'll need all the help I can get for 2006.

Peace out-I'm off to stuff my face with some pasta.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Celebrations and Etiquette

So, I have a small dilemma. Of course, I could be overreacting, but, perhaps not.

We usually spend New Years with a certain group of friends that we met through the theatre circuit. We've celebrated each other's weddings and have hung out together for the past 8 years or so. We started celebrating New Year's together in 2000, the year that Sean and I were married, and alternated between our house and another friend's house ("K"). K was married last year (I sang at her beautiful Vermont wedding), and she hosted the holiday last year as she had the new home. So, this year is supposed to be my year.

Although I'm really not in the mood to celebrate the holidays, I thought that perhaps planning this party will put me in the spirit, so I sent an email out last Friday to our regular crew of 12 to find out who was planning to come. The last time that I saw or spoke to any of them was around Halloween, when we went to K's house for a pumpkin-carving party, and of course my IVF woes kept me busy after that (I was on Lupron then) As of today, I have only heard from two couples, and they aren't sure whether or not they are able to come.

Now, here's the thing. K is the type of person who is a stickler on etiquette-I wouldn't be surprised if she had a signed copy of Emily Post's Guide to Etiquette stashed under her bed. She has yet to contact me (I even called her and left a message before I sent out the mass email, and haven't heard back from her). Now, I could say that perhaps she and her husband are away, but she's addicted to technology, and carries her laptop everywhere-she can't live without her email-so I can't say that she hasn't gotten it. I've also seen her on IM, but she hasn't even IM'd me. If it were her throwing the party and nobody responded, she'd be upset (she's actually commented about that kind of behavior before with other people). WTF?

So, what do I do? Should I send another email, saying "Yo, WTF'? Ignore it and accept that everyone is perhaps blowing me off, which is really shitty and horrible? I don't know how to handle this. I am a little bit upset about it-I mean, respond back with a simple "yes" or "no". I feel like people are seeing if they have anything better going on first, which is really crappy if true because we've spent the last five New Year's together.........if they wanted to stop the tradition, just say it, you know? It would make me especially sad to stop it as it would be a great distraction for me-having to shop and cook and make the house all pretty knowing we were having a party is fun. And then, it makes me wonder-if they do want to stop it, is it because I'm a different person? Maybe I'm not fun to be around anymore, because of all this infertility shit? Maybe these people are just "fair-weather friends"-you know the type, the ones that are around when the going's good, but when you're going through shit, they are suddenly MIA-and I'm expecting way too much from them? Who knows.

I have no idea what to think, or do. New Year's Eve is about two weeks away, so I need to know quickly. I know that I need to just get the balls and just find out, but I'm afraid of what I'll hear.

Sigh.....just so complicated.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


This is the hectic week for me-I had a concert last night at one of my schools, a senior citizen's performance this afternoon, and a concert/dress rehearsal tomorrow at my other school. Once this week's over, then it's smooth sailing until Winter Break.

Of course, theoretically, it would be smooth sailing if I actually finished my Christmas shopping, decorated the house, and actually put up the tree. Right now that ship is marooned. I have no desire to even start.

I totally don't feel like doing much of anything, apart from sacking out on the couch and watching "Oprah". I feel like shit, I look like shit (the 7 or so post IVF pounds are annoying the shit out of me-it's just enough extra weight to make all of my pants uncomfortably tight), and I just want the holidays to be over with, which is a shame, because I usually love this time of the year. I'm just crabby and all I want to do is sleep. Perhaps, if I could actually sleep and not wake up ten times a night, I would be less exhausted.

18 days until the crappiest year of my adult life is over. I never thought that I'd be happy to see the back of 2005. It was supposed to be a year of hope, but it turned into a year of shit, disappointment and aggravation.

As you can tell, I'm in a shit mood. I've been edgy and pissy for a week now-as if I'm on the verge of just going ape-shit on someone (which is why I've been pretty quiet-I don't want to end up institutionalized). Everything seems to be closing in on me-my infertility, my age, my job situation (although okay, it could be better) my relationships with friends (more on that later-it's too complicated and long for this entry) and family. I feel stifled.

I just wish that I could be happy and naive again. I wish that I wasn't so jaded about everything.
I'm just a bitter barren bitch. Bet you can't say that five times fast.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005


You're all the best.

Smooch smooch and hugs.

It's nice to know that I'm not going insane-that what I'm feeling is not the result of delusion or chemical imbalance, but is common among us. It doesn't take the pain away, but it does make me more aware that I'm not alone in the fight-you're all beside me, with paper gowns on (tied in the back and naked underneath, of course), speculums and dildocams in hand, facing the enemy that is our own personal nemesis-the dreaded infertility.

I only wish that we knew a magic spell to take all of it away, but we don't. However, having all of you around for support is a comfort and a blessing. Thank you for reading my whiny posts, for listening to me bitch, for being, well, you-for the kind words and the sarcasm, and for making me laugh.

Infertility still SUCKS, but it's been much easier to bear since you all came into my life. Thank you, again.

Rock on, girls!


Sunday, December 04, 2005


It's been a few days since I've updated, but there isn't much going on that you already don't know.

I'm miserable. I'm still infertile. I'm still stressed. Yay for me.

Usually, I love preparing for Christmas-the whole ritual of dragging the tree and ornaments and holiday decorations up from the basement, buying a wreath from the church Caritas group and hanging it up on the house, shopping, preparing for concerts-it's comforting and familiar. Now, it just makes me sad and angry-what's the fucking point? I tell myself. Is there a point?

I see pregnant women and babies everywhere. I feel like that they're stalking me, mocking me with their bellies and Graco travel systems and diaper bags. It's like a blow to the side of the head sometimes. And, the shit kicker of it all is that, no matter where I go, from the mall to the post office to the women's public restroom, I can't escape them.

I feel like life is moving forward around me like a stream, and I'm stuck behind, like stagnant water-infected and unclean. I feel like the people I know look at me and think that I'm a failure for not being able to do the one thing that's supposed to be "natural" and "normal" to every woman. There are some days that I wish that I could just reach into my body and rip out my womb and thus release that contamination from me and make myself pure.

There are the okay days; the days that I don't have this baggage constantly buzzing through my head like a bee's nest, but those days are few and far between. More often than not, I feel such bitterness about all of this-that I can't get a break. I try nowadays to keep my mouth shut, because I'm afraid I'll say something that will give away just how much of a nasty bitch I am inside of my head.

The four weeks of Advent is a time, in the Catholic Church, of waiting, of expectation. We, as Catholics, are waiting for the announcement of the birth of the Messiah, the Chosen One. I feel this more so this year as in previous ones. I am in a constant state of waiting, of expecting something to happen that will miraculously change my situation. I feel as if I'm in Limbo, unsure of what the future holds for me. Is it my fate to die without seeing my children, or grandchildren? Is this the way it's supposed to be-just me and Sean and the cats, for the rest of my life? To know that what my life now is what it will be for the next 50 years or so? And, can I be satisfied with just that, and nothing more?

I don't know if I believe in miracles anymore. I'm too afraid to let that bitch Hope back in and believe that things will work out for me.

Sometimes I wish that I had the power to glimpse into the future. Maybe if I could, everything would be so different-the choices I made, the relationships I had. Maybe I wouldn't have taken so much for granted. I just wish that I knew what the future had in store for me and my fucked up reproductive system-it would save me from this constant uncertainty. I think that it would help me accept things more if I knew how they would end up.

Unfortunately, life's not like that-there's no way to predict the future. I was told one time, after expressing curiosity about seeing a psychic, that people who see into the future only see one path that your life can take-and that it's up to you to choose whether or not you want to go down that path. Would I have chosen the path that I'm now on? That's hard to say. In one sense, maybe-I don't think that I'd have the relationship with Sean I now have if this hadn't happened to me. I don't think that I'd realize just how badly I want my own children. But, truly, I don't want this cross to bear. I'm not a bad person, I didn't do anything horrible to deserve this pain and emptiness. So, why am I singled out to go through this? Why me, and not someone else? What is the reasoning in the Grand Scheme Of Things to make me barren?

They're questions that I can't wait to ask God one day. Hopefully by then I'd get a straight answer out of Him, since He doesn't seem to want to provide me with one right now.

Lately I feel much like a kid who's being bullied in the schoolyard-you know that kid, the one who doesn't quite fit in. Unfortunately, because they're "different", they get the shit kicked out of them, physically and psychologically. And, these kids begin to wonder if they really are the freaks that the bullies make them out to be. They start to believe the bad press.

I guess I 'm just tired of feeling like a freak, that I'm not like everyone else.

I just want to fit in.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Who Said Escapism Is A Bad Thing?

Thanks again for the wonderful comments. It makes me feel much less mental than I think I am. It does help, truly.

Sean and I decided that we need to get away, just the two of us, with no pressure to do anything or go anywhere. We've been through so much in the past year or so, and I feel that we need to reconnect with each other and remember why we're together, and to be happy again. Sean was the first to mention it, actually-he suggested Disney World, since I'd never really been there (well, I was, for a half-hour, but we'll get into that at another time....), but it was way too expensive. Plus, there would be tons of kids there (we're limited as to when we could go, given my school schedule), and that wasn't the point of this holiday. So, I was looking online and went onto the Royal Caribbean website-they had a 5 day cruise leaving out of Tampa to Mexico that was just up our alley. Plus-the only thing they had left on the boat was Junior Suites, and they were DIRT CHEAP....so we went for it. We figure that this is our time to pamper ourselves-fuck it all.

We also talked about our appointment last Friday. He kept reminding me that there is no pressure right now to make any choices, that we still have some time. I think that I'm leaning towards the laparoscopy, but I'm afraid that, given that Murphy's Law is somehow attached to my life like a bad hairpiece, they'd go in to see what's cooking and I'll somehow end up with major work, they'd have to do a laparotomy, and I'd end up in the hospital for a few days. Yes, I'm probably worrying for naught, but you know what they say-prepare for the worse, hope for the best. Although, that would also mean going out on disability, which would mean no school.....hmmm......

Seriously, I know, deep down, that it's the best thing to do-my mother told me that she thought that I should have done it a long time ago-but, of course, it isn't at the top of my list of "Things I Want To Experience Before My Ovaries Dry Up". Oh, well.....life ain't easy.

I'm just trying to make it through each day-every day that I don't have a nervous breakdown is an accomplishment. It's not easy, but I can try.

Friday, November 25, 2005


I had my follow-up appointment (also known as the "why I didn't get pregnant" appointment) this morning with Dr. Vest. Since Sean was off from work today (LOVE Thansgiving weekend!) I dragged his ass along with me. Hey, If I have to get up early, then he's not allowed to sleep either!

So, we went over my file, and the cycle. He told me that there was no concrete reason as to why my eggs weren't as good as the last time. But, he kept saying that I did get pregnant back in August, so he has hope for me still. He also said that I am still young, by IVF standards-I am also, apparently, a lot younger than most of the patients that he sees. He did recommend that I entertain the thought of a laparoscopy though, to see what the hell is going on in there-if there is fluid in the left tube, he wants to cauterize the tube from the top; that way, the fluid can't back up into the uterus and fuck things up. He is hesitant to do this, or remove the tube, however, since the last HSG I had, 18 months ago, showed that the left tube was slightly open-to his thinking, there's always a chance that I could get pregnant naturally. But, in those 18 months, the tube could have completely closed-so what good is it, right? But, he feels that repeating the HSG really won't be beneficial, that if I have another procedure, it should be a lap.

Now, as to the right tube-I have a proximal blockage (a blockage that's at the top of the tube, near the uterus. In researching this, it's the easiest type of blockage to try to correct surgically. We have no idea whether the entire tube is blocked or not, since the HSG I had only showed that the contrast dye could not be visualized-it never went into that tube. Dr. Vest is interested in seeing what's up with that tube-ideally, if the tube is only blocked at that one spot, and open the rest of the way down to the ovary-it can be fixed and we can try this the old fashioned way. What a thought.

As to the medication cycle, he doesn't want to change my medications, since he thinks that I respond well to the Follistim. He did suggest that we might try an antagon cycle as opposed to Lupron-I'd go on birth control pills the cycle before, then start the Follistim on day 3, then add the Antagon. It would be less shots, but birth control pills SUCK. Argh.

I did ask for my medical records, though, at the end-my gyn did ask me to get them when I was there at the end of August, but I was so messed up after the miscarriage that I totally forgot to ask. Nursey P suggested that I should get the copy (which is good to have) and I can make copies on my own, so we arranged that. Dr. Vest did take a lot of notes, but told me repeadly that I need not make any decisions at this moment-he feels that I need some time to take this all in and make my own choices. Which he's right.

Yesterday it all finally hit me-the enormity of my situation, the fact that this will be the fourth holiday season that I am childless, and that there's such a void in my life these past three and a half years. We had to sing at a Thanksgiving mass, and one of the pieces, Abide with Me, just choked me up. I literally ran out of the rehearsal crying-it was a breaking point. I felt like a hypocrite, that I was singing words I didn't remotely believe at that moment:

Abide With Me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.

Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
Earth’s joys grow dim; its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see;
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.

I need Thy presence every passing hour.
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s power?
Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.

I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.

Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.

I did manage to get myself together for the mass, but it was tough. I was going through the motions. Afterwards, A stopped me and asked me if I was okay, and I just broke down. He told me that when he saw me run out, he knew why (we hadn't told anyone yet that this cycle was a bust). He said that he thought to himself "She doesn't feel that she has anything to be thankful for", and he's right. But it felt good to let it out, at least for a little bit. And I felt so bad, because A has his own problems to deal with-his dad is very sick and in a nursing home two hours away, and he's been going back and forth to PA weekly. But he told me that I need to take a break, because he can see that I'm starting to unravel emotionally. Which is true-I feel like I'm on a carnival ride that won't stop to let me off, even though I desperately want to. A also said that I need time for me, to heal. Sean even suggested that the two of us go away on a vacation, to unwind and take time for us, without infertility trying to worm it's way in. Which kind of excites me-escapism is always a good thing.

I'm tired of feeling sad and angry. I hate having to make decisions about whether or not I should have more surgery and try this again. I finally asked Sean what he thought, since he tends to avoids answering these questions-he feels that he doesn't want to influence my decisions about my own body. But, I cornered him about what the doctor said. Sean said that he feels that I should go through with the lap and at least find out what the problem is, and if something could be corrected, at the very best, or removed to better our chances of another cycle, if we go that route. And, I know he's right, deep down. But I'm so tired and scared and bitter and frustrated and I just want to avoid it all.

But I can't-it's like a festering sore that won't heal. And, that 's what I resent most of all-that it won't go away and just leave me alone.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Gobble Gobble

I was trying all day today to think about what I'm thankful for this year. Boy, was it a tough one, considering the hell I've been through in the past six months. Honestly, I will be happy to see 2005 over and done with, but for now, we still have to deal with it for a bit longer.

And, to be quite honest, I'm not feeling very thankful right now. Actually, I'm pretty pissed off at the entire world at this point in time. And that's okay, as far as I'm concerned-I'm not going to wax poetic on bullshit that I don't feel right now.

So, tomorrow, when everyone is going on and on about how great it is that family is getting together, blah blah blah, I will be in front of the fire with a nice bottle of Shiraz getting well and truly out of my brains. And I won't feel even remotely bad about it.

Because that's what Thanksgiving is all about-getting pissed, eating lots of food, and passing out on the couch afterwards.


Happy Thanksgiving to all........may your turkeys be moist and that lovely triptophan zone you out.

Monday, November 21, 2005


Yep, it's official-Nursey P told me that the beta is negative.

Nothing, nada, zilch, zero, niente.

Not pregnant.

I think that I'm handling it rather well, thankyouverymuch. Of course, my period starting around 12:45 this afternoon was another tip-off, if you know what I mean.

M is coming over-the local sushi place has half price sushi today and tomorrow, and the wine will be a-flowing. Of course the Tylenol with Codeine is also on hand, should I need it.

Now is the time to take a hard look and ask myself if I really want to continue this torture to my body. I've now been through two fresh cycles of IVF and one FET, and still no baby. What makes me think that another fresh cycle will work? The eggs they retrieved from this cycle were obviously crap-at least, crappier than the first round six months ago. If you think about it, I've had a total of 35 eggs retrieved in the last six months through IVF, and 4 more through natural ovulation, so 39 eggs have been lost-that's over three and a half years of eggs gone from my body. And, since we all have a finite number of eggs in our bodies, does it stand to chance that those were the eggs of someone who's almost 37? Does that effect the quality? Who knows.

Obviously the acupuncture did nothing in the way of helping, except for a paid sleep in the office.

If I do this again, do I want to continue seeing Dr. Vest? Sure I like him, and the office staff, but liking them has nothing to do with getting pregnant. Should I decide to do this again, perhaps I need to go to a bigger, more well-known clinic, like RMA or IRMS or Cornell? Do I want to become a number? I've heard mixed things about the lab/clinic that Dr. Vest uses for his retrievals and transfers-could that be the problem-a shitty embryology lab?

Here's another thought-If I do go to another, bigger clinic, I have a sneaking suspicion that they'll recommend removing my tubes altogether (or, at least clipping them) to prevent the hydros from fucking up anything. Do I want to have surgery again? A laparascopy (or, even worse, a laparotomy, which would require inpatient time in the hospital) means time out of work-probably a few weeks, at least. Yes, I am tenured, and my job isn't in danger, but do I want that to happen? A lap is a scary thing to think about-and since tubal repair really isn't an option for me (my tubes are blocked distally, which means at the bottom, at the fimbrae, so I'm pretty much fucked)-fimbrioplasty has the lowest rates of success and the highest risk of ectopic pregnancies-plus, it usually scars back up again anyway.

So, my friends, I am at a crossroads. I never, ever thought that I would still be here, three and a half years later. I never thought that I'd still be barren as the desert. Hell, I never even, in my most horrific nightmares, believed that I would have to do so much to just have a baby-pump myself full of chemicals that maybe will give me cancer in twenty or thirty years (let's just up those odds, right? Especially since my grandmother died of ovarian cancer at 61), go through surgery, the indignities of various people (mostly men) having to look up my cooter, have a gallon of blood removed from my body, having people stare at me when I have to shoot up in public places, having to rely on other people to stick my ass with huge needles every night, to ending up feeling inadequate and diseased and not normal. And, for what, I ask myself? What good did it really do?

I have a lot of soul-searching to do, a lot of questions that I need to make myself answer. Before I know what the next step is-whether it be continuing this IVF journey, or to call it quits and make the committment to living without children. Because, you see, adoption isn't really an option for me. I'm not opposed to it at all-in fact, my great-grandfather was adopted-but I don't know if I could bond with a child that isn't biologically mine. Plus, we can't afford to adopt (our IVF attempts are all covered 100% under our medical insurance-NJ is an IF-mandated state), which makes it that much harder. And, if I may be totally selfish about this next statement-I want the whole package-the morning sickness, stretch marks, waddling, maternity clothes experience that comes with pregnancy. I want to be able to feel the kicks, punches and flips that a baby would be doing inside my body. I want the ability to choose whether or not I'd want an epidural or "natural" childbirth experience. I want the experience the feeling of pushing a child out into the world-and adoption can't give you that. Yeah, like I said-it's totally selfish, but it's honest........and I am nothing, if not honest.

Peace out-I'm off to crack open that bottle of YellowTail and get a spicy tuna roll.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

13dp3dt-Keeping Busy

Thanks ladies for the kind words. I know it ain't truly over till the red lady sings, but I'm gonna take a wild stab in the dark and say that I'm out of the game this time.

Of course, if I'm wrong (which is unlikely) I'll gladly eat my words and say that I was wrong.........and that, my friends, rarely happens here in this household, because I am ultimately right (and aren't we all?).

Anyway, I had to cantor today, so I spent my time in church from 9am to 3:45pm (three masses and a Vesper service). It was pretty difficult to get through today, because today is the Feast of Christ the King, so the readings were the 23rd Psalm ("The Lord is my Shepherd, there is nothing I shall want....") and one of the hymns was "On Eagle's Wings", a Catholic standard (used most often at funerals)-great, wonderful. It was oh so much fun to try to get through those pieces without having a breakdown in front of a whole congregation of people for 8 hours.

Plus, tonight I have to start my grading process-all 800 kids. FUCK!!! This blows. And you KNOW that these classroom teachers will be on my ass starting tomorrow. Heh-maybe I should let the progesterage out.....

After Vespers, Sean and I went to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which was really really a good movie-honestly, I think that it's the best so far. Unfortunately, we had to sit near not one, but two nasty popcorn munchers-one next to me and one behing me. I actually had to switch seats with Sean because the guy next to me was making me nauseated with his smacking and snarfing noises. Otherwise, it was a great show.

I'm really trying not to worry about what tomorrow will hold. That doesn't mean that I'm not upset, angry, and devestated, because I am. But I refuse to let this control me right now.

There will be plenty of time to fall apart later.

Saturday, November 19, 2005


One HPT (Answer Early Result)=BFN

I'm not really that surprised. I had a feeling that would happen-or, wouldn't happen-this time around.

Not even a "hmmm, is that a second line" debate with the husband. Just one line.

*sigh*-looks like the only waiting I'll be doing is waiting for the red flow to start.

Hope has now officially left the building.

Friday, November 18, 2005

11dp3dt-The Waiting Game

Yeah, I'm starting to get a little antsy in the pantsy about whether or not this round has worked.

I'm not sure whether I'll test tomorrow or Sunday (or both). I don't have any Evil Pee Sticks lying around, so that means that I'll have to go and buy some-any suggestions on good ones? I hate having to interpret those fucking things. You know, you look at it in different angles, in natural vs. bright light. It's like a psychic interpreting tarot carts. But, it's a necessary evil-there is NO way that I'm not going in prepared, or at least semi-prepared (because there's always a chance that it's wrong), since I have to sit through a faculty meeting on Monday afternoon. Which REALLY sucks, considering that we have a shortened week (Two and a half days). Jerks.

I'm really tired today-I took a nap after school today-and have a slight headache. Had some more weird brownish spotting (if I were looking for a Crayola color, I'd say it was a shade of Raw Sienna) on the pantyliner that I've taken to wearing, but not heavy-just a streak. No cramping today, though, which is a good thing, I guess. I also noticed that the boobs don't really hurt as much today-usually they're really heavy feeling and sore, especially when they're released from the tit-sling-all due to that lovely progesterone).

Tomorrow afternoon we're going to see the new Harry Potter movie-woot! We were going to go tonight, but it's going to be a nuthouse at the theater, and, quite frankly, I don't want my progesterage to kick in. So, hopefully we'll see the movie and have a decent dinner, then I'll get my ass shot that night.

So, that's it-I'm really happy that it's Friday, all in all. The week went by pretty quickly, but this weekend is really gonna drag, so I need to make sure that I'm busy as possible, so as not to obsess.

Waiting sucks.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

10dp3dt-Top Five

Top 5 Reasons That I Think I'm Pregnant:

5. Strange hunger issues-I'm starving by 10am after eating a full breakfast at 8am.
4. Boobs are HUGE and sore as hell.
3. I have tons of veins on my chest and boobs that are close to the surface.
2. Light pinkish to brownish spotting, only when I go to the bathroom (and "#2" at that).
1. Cramping

Top 5 Reasons That I think That I'm Not Pregnant:

5. Strange hunger issues-I'm starving by 10am after eating a full breakfast at 8am.
4. Boobs are HUGE and sore as hell.
3. I have tons of veins on my chest and boobs that are close to the surface.
2. Light pinkish to brownish spotting, only when I go to the bathroom (and "#2" at that).
1. Cramping


Ladies, firstly, thanks for the comments. I'm really hoping that it really is implantation spotting. But, I have the growing suspicion that all is not well, and the cycle is a bust. Which blows, but hey-they weren't good embies to begin with, and, let's face it-why should I get any good luck coming my way?
Had a little more spotting this afternoon. I noticed today, for the first time, that I see this spotting (browish reddish pink) only after I feel cramping. The cramping feels very similar to the type of cramps you get around your period. So, I don't know if I'm doing too much at school (too much walking/stairs) or what. I also don't have any spotting in the undies-it's only when I go to the bathroom and wipe after I do my "business". No blood in the toilet, either. So, I don't know what the hell to think.

T-minus 4 days and counting, until we all know, one way or another.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

9dp3dt-Out, Spot!

This afternoon, after having a nice lunch (leftover homemade eggplant parm, bread, and fresh pineapple). I go into the bathroom to take a pee. When I went to wipe, there it was-a streak of blood. Not blood in the sense of dense, red, but a pinkish mucus-tinged streak.

After my mini-freakout, I called the RE's office and spoke to Nursey P. She said that it's normal to spot, that sometimes it's "implantation spotting". She said that even if my period starts, she wants me to continue the PIO and still go for Monday's beta-apparently some women will get what they think is a period, but they're actually pregnant. She reassured me that I'm doing all I can right now, but that there isn't much else that anyone can do.

Fuck. Fuckfuckyfuckityfuck.

So now I'm obsessively going to the bathroom and checking. I peed again after my last class at 3:10pm and there was no blood, just that EWCM again. Then I came home, peed again and saw a small streak of brown in the mucus. I'm still feeling a little crampy this afternoon, but not painful.

Yes, I know that it's still too early to tell, really. I know that Nursey P might be right and it's implantation bleeding. I even know that every sign I have can be interpreted as pregnant. But, they can also be interpreted as "not pregnant" either. I'm afraid to pee on the Evil Sticks-what if they're wrong,? What if they're right?

I hate not being able to trust my own body. I hate that I even have to go through this, when so many other people can just spread their thighs and enjoy it. I hate not knowing.

I'm trying so hard to be positive about this whole journey, that what is meant to be, will be. But when that little bitch Hope moves into your life, she doesn't necessarily want to pull up stakes.

Five more days to go. Five more days.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

8dp3dt-Crampy Coochy

Today is crampy day-I'm having period-like crampiness, but there's no bleeding. In fact, there's a mucusy-like discharge coming from down south. I noticed it beginning last night, on the toilet, as I went to wipe. There was this...............well...........there was this whitish mucus hanging out of my cooter (yeah, it's TMI, but it's a part of this journey, right?). It reminded me of EWCM, but a little thicker (thick enough to hang out of my choch). It was kinda gross and threw me for a minute. But, since then, I keep thinking that I'm spotting, and I go to the toilet and it's this EWCM.

Now, the last time I had similar discharge, back in July, I was also on the twat rockets, so I attributed it to them. Now, who the hell knows-I guess the progesterone is making everything all riled up in repro-land.

I haven't tested again-there really isn't any point in doing it, at least until Friday or Saturday. I don't want to make myself any more insane than I already am. I just wish that I knew already. I hate obsessing over these signs and symptoms and trying to deduce whether they are "real" or not.

Today Jenna came over with M to give me my shot. When she walked in, she told me "I have something for you". "You do?" I asked, "What?" She opened her hand to reveal a Spider-Man bandaid, just for me. She said, "Mommy said that I can put this on your tushie after you get your medicine"............so cute.

I also was catching up in Bloglandia and saw Thalia's sad news-if you get a chance, please drop her a line..........she needs all the support you can give. It just really sucks.

Totally and utterly sucks.

Monday, November 14, 2005

7dp3dt-T-Minus One Week and Counting

One week until beta day. Wow.

This will probably be the worst week of all. The week which will crawl by.

Today's annoying side effect is heachache-I've had a headache since yesterday afternoon. No amount of Tylenol that I've taken in the past 24 hours (no, I didn't OD) will take away the pain-it just dulls it a bit, but it's still making it's prescence known. Blech.

I also haven't been sleeping that well in the past few days. I keep getting up in the middle of the night, usually to pee. Last night, my eyes snapped open at 4:30 am, and I tossed and turned (after peeing) for about an hour, drifted off, then heard the alarm go off at 6:05am-lovely. So, I've been feeling like a zombie all day today.

I did an HPT this morning, just to see if the HCG shot was out of my system yet. It came up negative, so I'm pretty sure that there's nothing there anymore. That way, when I test at the end of the week (I decided to fuck it all and just do it) I won't worry that it's a false positive or anything. Of course, seeing a BFN sucked, but I do also know that it's waaay too early to see anything-if it took, implantation would have taken place anytime after 5-6 dp transfer.

I went back to work this morning, which was okay-it's just exhausting in general, but add IVF to the equation, and it's just a hot mess. If I can just get through the next week, then it'll be Thanksgiving Break, and I can gorge myself on turkey (and wine, if the beta's a negative).

Did I mention that I hate waiting? Argh.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

6dp3dt-Hungry Hungry Hippo

Here's today's slightly annoying symptom of the two week wait-hunger.

Here's an example: I woke up this morning at around 6:45 (ungodly, I know, but I had to cantor the 8, 9:30 and 11 am masses this morning), and ate breakfast at 7:10 or so-a bowl of Cream of Wheat, a bowl of fresh pineapple and a cup of Irish Breakfast decaf tea, with some juice to wash the prenatal down. Went off to church, and by 10am my stomach starts to cramp and growl:

"pssstt......pssstt........FEED ME!!!"

Holy crap, I need to eat something-anything. Luckily the Parish Families had coffee and donuts after mass.......so I scramble downstairs for a hearty slice of crumbcake.......ah......better.

Then, two hours later, after the 11am mass, there it was again:

"psssst.......hey...........HUNGRY!!!" *insert nasty stomach growling/grinding noises here*

"Uh, hey, didn't I just feed you some crumbcake?"

"yeah, but it's not cutting it, bitch-we need FOOD!"

"Okay, right, hold up there.......I'll figure it out"

Off I truck to go grocery shopping. I decide that it's really not in either my best interest or my wallet's to go to the A&P hungry, so I make a detour to the Golden Arches for a cheeseburger.

Go and shop, tummy full. Get my goodies and come home around 2:30, unpack and put away groceries. Turn on laptop, and hear:

"pssst............hey..........we're baaaaack...........guess what we want............"

"Holy motherfucking shit, leave me ALONE! You just had McDonald's, for fuck's sake! That wasn't enough??"

"uh...........that was, like TWO HOURS ago.....you've gotta be kidding...........you'd better feed us or else we'll give you a MONSTER headache..."

"All right ALL RIGHT!!! FINE!" (reaching for the bag of Green Mountain Gringo Tortilla Strips)

Now, this conversation between me and my stomach has happened only once before, about three months ago. Do I dare to hope, to dream? I want it to be true, but I'm afraid to hope.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

5dp3dt-Miss Crankypants Checking In

My irritability has really kicked in today. Basically, just the mere fact that my husband lives and breathes is particularly irksome today.

Right now, he's watching "Rocky III"..........can we say WORST.......MOVIE.......EVER! Oh my good God, I just want to put my foot through the tv right now-it's like nails on a chalkboard listing to Sly Stallone's bad acting and the even worst writing. Of course, Sean's in 80's flashback nostalgic heaven, so I don't want to totally freak out. So I'm trying to keep my mouth shut (except for the ocassional backhanded inserts of "dumb movie" at least once during each scene-I can't help it).

Let's see, what signs and symptoms can I obsess over today? Hmmm.......I had slight crampiness today. I'm congested, but I think that it's my allergies. I'm bloated, really bloated. Like, I look about five months along bloated (fucking progesterone). I have a pain right under my ribs on my right side, like a constant stitch-slightly irritating but not painful. I'm tired, bitchy, and my ass looks like a wondrous technicolor dreamcoat of purples, pinks and yellows (depending on how old the bruise is). Oh, yeah, forgot about that constipation too. I'm eating apples and fiber like a champ. It's REALLY gonna suck when that resolves itself.

Yeah, that's about summing it up. I'm a crankypants moody bruised bloated crampy stuffy poop-stuffed woman. And, there's only 9 more days to go.

I am totally gonna test next weekend-fuck it. I can't deal.

Friday, November 11, 2005

All Gone

There were no embryos that made it to day five, so there wasn't anything to freeze.

Sucks. I really didn't expect any to make it, since they weren't really good. But it still sucks.

I really hope that it worked this time. It's like God is telling me that I don't need any left, that this is the last time.

Whether that means that I'm pregnant and it's all good, or I'm not pregnant and I won't be doing this again, remains to be seen.

Just. plain. sucks.

4dp3dt-Progesterone-Induced Dreams

This morning I woke up from a very vivid dream, thanks to that wonder-drug, progesterone. In my dream, I was cleaning a kitchen-specifically, what looked like a grilltop stove, which was filthy and greasy. I've never seen this kitchen before. My mother-in-law was there. She was talking about how she was pregnant, and that it "just happened" and that Big C (her husband) was so happy. She said that "the next thing we knew, it happened AGAIN". Throughout this whole dream, I didn't react at all or say a word to her-I just let her babble-but kept scrubbing the grease out of the stovetop and countertop (I specifically remember scrubbing in the corner of the countertops). Then (I never saw her, it was as if I had my back to her) she shoves a baby at me, as if to show it off. I just got a glimpse of a foot covered in those one-piece outfits before I woke up.

It totally reminds me of a dream I had two months ago about my own mother being pregnant. But, it was weird, I wasn't angry in this dream, more resigned and trying to avoid the conversation than anything else.

What does this all mean, you ask? I have no fucking clue. I just think that I'm screwed up. I wish I knew someone that I could ask about them, who could interpret them for me, so I could actually see if I need to be committed.

Any thoughts or suggestions?

I hate progesterone. But, at least it doesn't give you a hangover afterwards.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

3dp3dt-Progestesheen and the Hunger Pangs

Sounds a lot like a Vegas lounge act, doesn't it? Or the opening act for a doo-wop revival tour.

That lovely greasy shine to my skin and hair has begun, otherwise known as "progestesheen". God, I love this drug-Sean has now taken to calling me "his little oil slick". He'd better not even try the "greasy Italian" jokes, or else Progesterage will set in and I'll tear his arms off.

Well, at least I don't have to moisturize as much, right? I'm saving money on body lotion. See, infertility can be money-saving (NOT)!

The hunger has set in, as well. I remember this from the last time-I get hungry within a few hours after I eat, and have to eat something again. For example, I had breakfast at 8:45 this morning-three slices of bacon and a two egg omelet with cheese and tomato, and then by 11 I had to have something, so I ate a bowl of fresh pineapple (yum), one of those little Laughing Cow cheese and cracker things (if you're not sure what I'm talking about, they're really good). At 12 I ate a piece of the personal pan pizza I ordered for Sean last night. And, I'm meeting a friend for lunch at around 1:30.......geez..........can we say obsessed with food? I know you can......gooood.

Of course, the last time I had hunger pangs like that I was pregnant, so could it be? Doubt it, it's too early-it's gotta be the combo of the fucking progesterone and the leftover HCG shot. Shit. I need to watch myself, or else I'm going to start looking like an oompah-loompah (doompidy-doo!).

I've still got a bit of a potbelly, but that's also due to the lovely drug cocktail running through my veins. At least I can fit into my jeans, albeit the low rise ones that let my belly hang over. I've just gotta wear loose shirts over it all, or else I really look about three months along.

Sheesh-all these damn drugs simulate pregnancy, to the point that you're looking and feeling pregnant, and you have no idea whether or not you actually are-what a mind-fuck, right?

In other news, we're out of school for the next two days, due to teacher convention, which is nice. I mean, I haven't been back since the retrieval, but it's still nice to know that I don't have to call out sick or anything. I do have a lot of shit to do, like grocery shopping, but I'll try to take it easy all the same.

It's only been three days past the transfer, and I still have 11 days to go. I hate waiting.

Patience is not one of my strong points. Sucks to be me.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

2dp3dt-Progesterone is Still My New Best Friend

Today feels like a good day, so far. I'm feeling better-much more so than in past days. I think that the bloating is finally going down........I think that the progesterone is making me.....uh......well, let's just say that it's not fun to go to the bathroom. Within the past two days, I ate an entire bag of Whole Foods sliced apples, as well as a container of celery (didn't eat the carrots, don't like 'em) packed in water. I don't know what it is, but I crave foods with lots of water in them, tomatoes, apples, celery. I guess it's my body telling me that it needs more water. Holy crap, those apples were GOOD.......well, if that doesn't help, nothing will!

It reminds me of a prior post that Cat wrote about the lovely word play on the wonders of fertility medications. So, here's another one:

Progestipation-lack of digestive "movement" due to the massive amounts of progesterone surging throughout your body and, conveniently, slowing down your digestive tract.

Heh. Feel free to add your own. I've been told by my mother to get used to this, if I do get pregnant..........greaaaat. Can't wait.

Today M can't do my PIO shot, because she has to stay late at the hospital for some meeting, so I had to ask my mother-in-law to come over. Yes, I know, I said that I wasn't going to involve her, but sometimes M can't always be here on time to do the shots. And, my mother is over an hour away. And I'm not about to let Sean near my ass with a needle. Plus, my parents and his dad knew that we were doing the cycle, and I felt slightly guilty-especially if this works and we do get pregnant, she might get upset that she was the only one that didn't know. Sean didn't even have to remind her to keep it quiet-right away, she told him that he doesn't need to worry, she was only going to tell Big C (her husband) and that's it. I guess she finally gets it.

Anyway, I feel good today, good enough to possibly venture out for a bit. I'm still a little sore, and can't do sudden movements (like I really want to, anyway), but it's all good.

So far

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

A Mixed Bag-1dp3dt

The transfer went okay. Unfortunately, the quality of the embryos weren't good as the last fresh cycle. Out of 18 eggs, only 6 made it to day three-three grade-2 embies and 3 grade-3 embies. The last fresh transfer we had were two "perfect" Grade-1 8-celled embryos.

Dr. Vest recommended, because of the quality, transferring three embryos instead of two, to maximize our chances. So, we transferred in two Grade-2 7 celled and one Grade-2 6 celled embies. I was a little apprehensive about it-what if they all take? But, unfortunately, the likeihood of that seems pretty slim. We still don't know if the other three will make it to tomorrow (they only freeze embies at day-5)-given the quality, I seriously doubt it.

It was kinda cool to see the embies going in on the ultrasound machine (he does transfers using guided ultrasound). It was also gross to see that my ovaries are still enlarged, and that I'm still at a risk for getting OHSS-I'm still drinking like a fiend. I'm sore as hell, though-I didn't feel that way the last time, but that was because at that point my stomach was so distended that I wasn't feeling anything but pressure and the lack of breath. So Tylenol has become my NBF (new best friend)...

I'm also slightly nauseated, like there's food that's sitting above my breastbone. I've never felt this before; but, then again, this is the first time I'm doing the PIO shots from the very beginning-maybe it's from that? I took two Tums because the agita was gross this morning.

So, here we are. It's weird, but I'm thinking that it's my last chance. I don't know if I could go through a fresh cycle a third time-it's so physically, emotionally and psychologically draining. Now it's the two week wait. I think that I will cheat this time and take an HPT the day before the beta, which is on 11/21. It's either gonna be a great or a shitty Thanksgiving.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

And the Bloating Begins.....

Yep, it's started. I sort of expected it to, you know, with 18 eggs and all.

But, the good news is that so far, it isn't horribly uncomfortable, like the last time.

I'm drinking like a fiend-I've had 1.5 liters of Pedialyte, 2/3 of a carton of pineapple juice, water (I'm trying to alternate the flavored fluids with water), a glass of V-8 juice (low sodium) and I've been peeing like a racehorse......and, so far, it's been clear as the toilet water.

The only bad thing (and which is why I need to back off the pineapple juice) is......well.......my bowels aren't exactly happy with all this fluid intake. I think that it's the combination of the antibiotics and the citrus, and it's doing a number on my digestive tract. So let's add that to the equation, shall we? Sore cooter, sore butt, sore belly. Ain't IVF fun?

Other than that, I feel pretty good, much better than I did at this stage of the game last time. I'm hungry, I can breathe, I'm peeing extremely regularly. I am bloated, definitely, but nothing like the last time. I'm feeling more discomfort in my ovaries/abdomen this time, so I'm doping up in Extra Strength Tylenol and it's keeping the twinges at bay.

Sean's been a real trooper through this. He's being the "drinks nazi"-making sure that my fluid intake/output is adequate, cooking breakfast and dinner, making trips to the store for more Pedialyte and Ensure (I read somewhere that it can help-it's high in potassium and protein), and provides moral support. He's gonna make a great dad, someday.

So far, the transfer is set for Monday morning, 10:30am. Assuming that everything's okay (no call, but they usually don't unless there's a problem), we'll put back two embryos in, with possible assisted hatching. We won't do more than two due to my age (33) and the fact that I have a strong history of twins in both sides of my family (three sets on my dad's side, two on my mom's side-one of them being her brother and sister), but as long as one takes, that's fine with me.

Friday, November 04, 2005


and woozy, but finally home.

They got 18 eggs. I was a little uncomfortable afterwards, so they gave me some Demerol.

I was fine until the drive home, then got carsick (there was a fair bit of traffic on the way home). Luckily, Sean had a plastic bag in the car for me to barf in.

Otherwise, I feel okay, but tired.

I'm armed with plenty of Pedalyte and drinks-lets hope it's enough to stave off the OHSS.

I'll post more later, once I'm more awake.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Ready to Roll

I went this morning to Dr. Vest's office for my scheduled monitoring. Of course, during this whole process the waiting in the office for bloodletting and wanding hasn't been bad. But, because I had to go to work today, the office was packed. I got there at twenty to eight and left at twenty after nine, which got me to work at five to ten-argh!

So, here's the news. There are "10+" follicles on each side (I think that they said around 24-26 again), ranging from 13-15 mm in size. The not so good news is that my E2 levels are as follows (according to blood draws):

Tonight's protocol is-75IU of Follistim at 8pm, then HCG trigger (10,000 units) at 11:30pm. Retrieval is set for 10am Friday morning.

Needless to say, I'm scared shitless that I'll get OHSS like the last time. Nursey P. said that the levels are "a little high", but they wouldn't let me go through this if I was going to be in danger. I looked online and I found out that the E2 levels should be 100-200 per follicle, so, assuming that I have 26 or so, that would be accurate enough.

Going through all that shit again is a sobering thought, though-it takes all the excitement out of the egg retrieval.

This time I'm going to be prepared. I'm going to look up info to see if I can try to prevent it-my mother-in-law said that pineapple juice was a natural diuretic. I thought she was full of shit, but I looked it up, and, lo and behold, she's right. I'll get some of that, Gatorade (although it makes me want to barf), Pedalyte, and lots of water. Tonight, tomorrow night, and every night after ER, I'll measure my belly and weigh myself to see if there's any excessive weight gain. And, I'm not going to be a martyr-if I feel like shit on Saturday or Sunday, I'm going to the emergency room-fuck it.

Dr. Vest has been really great about this whole cycle. He was there early this morning so he could see my ultrasound-he made Mr. Techhie do it twice so he could see the sizes himself, and told me that he didn't want to wait any longer than Friday to do the retrieval. He's made sure to keep me in the loop and doesn't dismiss my concerns. He's awesome.

Now, if I could only get and stay pregnant-then he'd be a hero, at least in my eyes.

In other news, I was woken up at 4:45 this morning to the sound of Peaches retching, conveniently, she was on our bed (and on my side, no less). Sean tried to move her out of the way and onto the hardwood floor, which partially succeeded-she only got a blob on the beautiful quilt that I got from Eddie Bauer. Still, I had a feeling that it was gonna be that kind of day.

So, anyone out there who's reading (and, thanks for the comments about my breasts and their anger issues-we've decided to go to counseling to address their "issues"), please say a prayer to whomever you talk to, that it will end up okay for me.

I need all the prayers that I can get.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Angry Boobies

Okay, I really don't remember whether or not this happened the last fresh cycle I had, but my tits hurt. I mean really HURT. They're tender, veiny, and my aureola and nipples are big and purplish. Yeah, it's TMI, but tough shit-y'all can deal. We've dealt with much worse, right?

Sean said this morning that they look ANGRY, and he's right. Like they're saying "Hey, what the FUCK? Don't you think we have enough to deal with? It's bad enough that we're normally large and can't find clothing to properly fit us, that we're not properly "perky" and, when released from the tit sling, droop like some exotic Amazonian Indian right out of National Geographic, or that bra shopping is akin to having a colonoscopy without anesthesia....you're pulling THIS shit!?!?

Let's add to the mix that I'm bloated in the belly (the pooch is starting to show), sore and bruised as hell because I had a "bleeder" last night with my Follistim injection, and exhausted.

Not a pretty picture.

So, my angry boobies are making their unpleasantness known today. I wish they'd just shut the fuck up-my ovaries are being divas and tap dancing across my abdominal cavity.

Take a number, girls. The follicles are further up on the food chain right now.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Med Update

Just got the call from Dr. Vest's office-I got to talk to him for a few minutes-he's so nice!

Anyway, tonight I take 150IU of Follistim and 5 units of Lupron, then decrease my dosage tomorrow to 150 IU of Follistim in the evening only and 5 units of Lupron, then go back on Wednesday for another scan and u/s. Dr. Vest said that I'm progressing nicely, but he wants to be really careful and not give me too much FSH.

I have a sneaking suspicion, which will probably be confirmed Wednesday, that I'll trigger on Saturday, with ER being Monday. I'll be surprised if he has me trigger on Wednesday, unless my follicles explode between now and then. Then again, the trigger shot will up my estradiol levels, so they'll know if I'm ready.

And, I am getting to that point-I want to get the show on the road.

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

So far, so good.

I have 16+ follicles (at least, 16 that are bigger, the rest are small). The follicles on the right side measured between 10-11 mm, and the ones on the left measured between 8-9 mm. My E2 levels were around 935 as of Friday, and my endometrial lining is at 8mm. Nursey P. seems happy with the results-she said that it's just right for the timeframe I'm on. She also said that the follicle sizes are probably why I'm feeling a bit uncomfortable. I'm starting to get pains around my lymph nodes around my groin area (which usually happens during a normal cycle, around ovulation)-it was pretty bad last night, and I had to get up and take 2 Tylenol just so I could get some rest.

I decided to call in sick today too. I almost didn't, because I love Halloween celebrations at school, but I don't think that I'd be very comfy moving around all day (we have a parade around the school for half an hour). Plus, I'm getting to that stage where any pants with a waist feels tight, and since I can't wear sweats, it's better to laze about on the couch until my acu appt this afternoon.

So, good news so far-Let's hope that it continues. I'll update more this afternoon when Nursey P calls with the results.

Happy Halloweenie!! May you get lots of treats and no tricks today!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Our Story, or, Why My Husband Rocks.

I decided to take the challenge and enter my submission in The 2nd Annual Infertile Bloggirl Engagement Ring Fashion Show, brought to you by Jaime.

Firstly, here's the story.

I met Sean at the age of 17 (almost 18, really). We were in the University Touring Choir together; he, newly back from the choir's tour of Italy and their Papal Invite to sing at the Vatican; me, a green freshman who was in a bit of culture shock. During rehearsals, we sat in a sort-of U-shape-the sopranos on the right, basses in the middle on the bottom rows, tenors (of which Sean is one) in the middle on the top rows, and altos on the left. Being a freshman Soprano II and sitting in the top row on the left, I had a clear view of him every Wednesday night. My friend Jen and I used to remark on how cute he was (and tall), but we both thought that he must have been a little stuck-up, because he never really talked to anyone and had overly perfect singing posture (a sure sign, we thought, of someone who thought that they were a "super-singer"). Of course, I was totally wrong-he's not at all stuck-up, but shy and quiet and low-key, someone who would never make a spectacle of himself (like me).

Sean had been a freshman the year before, but had left school at the end of the year to work and figure out what he wanted to do with his life (a nice way of saying that he dropped out because he never went to class and probably would have failed out anyway). At the time, we didn't know or care about that-every Wednesday night was spent with us stealing looks at him during the two and a half hour rehearsal (and getting yelled at by the director for not paying attention.

As time went on, and I became a Music minor, then switched to a Music Performance major in school, I was in contact with him more, since we were in Madrigals and Choir together (My university allows community, alumni, faculty and staff members to sing along with students). I got over my crush, pledged a sorority, and got involved with fraternity boys who drank too much and treated me like shit; he hooked up with an alto from the choir who looked like an oompah-loompah (and I'm not saying that to be a jealous bitch-she was hideous), and dated other girls. By my senior year, we were friends-he was my page turner at my Senior Recital, since he was the only guy I knew who actually owned his own tuxedo, we, as a part of a larger group of Madrigal friends, hung out together on our last tour of Canada in the Spring of 1995. I was dating this frat guy (we'll call him Fat Bastard, because, well, he was) who was two years younger than I for over a year by then-at that point, not happily. He was a nice guy to start out with, but his love affair with Coors Light got in the way of our relationship, if you get my meaning. That, and the verbal abuse that I dealt with. But, that's another story.....

By that fall, my relationship with Fat Bastard had deteriorated-we were fighting constantly, I wanted to go out with my friends, but couldn't because he wasn't of age yet (not that it stopped him from drinking), he was jealous, we weren't happy. A week before our two year anniversary (and two weeks before my 22nd birthday), he called me and told me that he "wanted out and wanted to enjoy his senior year" without the baggage of a girlfriend.

I was devestated. I went on a drinking binge, depression, the normal breakup trauma. Then, one morning about a month later I woke up and realized that I wasn't really that upset-in fact, I was relieved. Then, as the days went on, I decided that I needed to wade into the dating world again. I was still singing in Choir as an alumni, so I still saw Sean weekly. The idea started to float into my head-hmmm......well, we are friends, and if it doesn't work out, then it's okay, because we can still be friends. But, I kept it to myself for a bit.

At a concert two weeks later, I ran into my friend Priesty-Boy Jim (so called because he was a seminarian and is, well, a priest now), and was talking about getting excited to see my "cute boy" the next week.......and, well.........he weaseled it out of me. And ended up getting more excited than me and announced that he was going to set us up on a date.........WHOA!

Yes, I was actually set up on a date by a man who was taking a vow of chastity. And had a wonderful time. And never looked back.

Fast forward three years. Sean and I both knew we wanted to get married, but he had finally figured out that he wanted to go back to school and finish his degree in Theatre Design/Production. We both knew that it was at least another two years of school for him, but we were prepared to wait. Still, it didn't stop us from going ring shopping "just to look", and just to dream. We joked about friends who had elaborate ways that the "question" was popped, and he was adamant that he would never do something like that in public. Little did I know that he had already picked out the ring, and bought it, and was waiting for the right time.

At the time, I was playing Sarah in Guys and Dolls in a small theatre in NJ, and had to perform on my birthday. Sean wanted to take me to this really nice restaurant for my birthday, and we were going back and forth as to when we'd go. One night, he called my apartment and said "Hey, let's go next Friday night" (which was Oct. 2nd), and, since I didn't have a show, agreed.

The restaurant is located in an old Victorian, and, at the time, was known for it's food and atmosphere. It's also expensive as hell. He picked me up at my apartment promptly, looked gorgeous, and off we went. We had a nice meal, a bottle or two of wine, talked, held hands-all that romantic stuff. I kept noticing that there was this man, a few tables down, who kept staring at us-I had mentioned this to Sean, but he said that I was being weird. But, I kept thinking that maybe I had food in my teeth or something, or was being gauche in some way (it's that kind of a place).

While waiting for dessert, he told me that he had a birthday gift for me. As a tradition, we always give each other two cards for an occasion-one silly one, one romantic/serious one. He hands me one card, which is beautiful and romantic and lovely, and my gift, which was this cute Classic Pooh figurine that had a compartment on bottom (and yeah, it was empty). He then handed me the second card. I opened up the envelope, slid the card out, and looked at the front, which read "Best Wishes On Your Engagement". Still not getting the hint, I opened it, and read, in his handwriting "See Sean for details......". I looked up to see him, on one knee in the middle of the restaurant, with an open ring box in his hands. I said yes (after freaking out and him having to ask twice).

Oh, and that guy that was staring at me? He was the owner of the restaurant, who was in on the secret. He came up and congratulated us, and brought us a phone and told us to call anyone we wanted to share the news.

We were married two years and five days later, by Priesty-Boy Jim (then a newly ordained deacon and one year away from being a priest) and, despite infertility throwing a monkey-wrench in our plans, we're still going strong.

I'm a lucky, lucky girl.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Stims, Day #5-Bubble, Bubble, Toil & Trouble

I am starting to get a little uncomfortable and bloated. I'm definitely getting those ovarian growing pains now, and they're more noticeable. I'm trying my best to drink a lot of water, but all I feel is sloshy and slightly nauseated. I've noticed that I get really thirsty as well-don't know if that's the stims or not.

My belly is also getting those lovely telltale bruise marks-I can play connect the dots now. I'm also exhausted-today I did absolutely nada. I got up at 7:30 so I can do my shot by 8am, then went back to bed and woke up at 11:30, then laid about for most of the afternoon. I figure, since obviously all of my bodily energy is going into making eggies, I might as well just lay there and let it happen, right? Plus, they have all the good movies on cable on Saturday afternoons.

Tonight we get to "fall" back and move our clocks back one hour. I love this time of the year, because that means that I get an extra hour of sleep on a Sunday morning, especially since I have to cantor at 8am tomorrow. Of course, the thing that I hate is that it will get darker earlier-boo. But, Halloween is on Monday, so I need to get on the ball and get lots of candy to satisfy the little rug rats that ring our doorbell. I'm a bitch when it comes to trick-or-treaters.....I make 'em say it instead of standing there with bags outstretched. I also don't give candy to the punk-ass teens who show up without a costume. Yeah, I know, it's horrible, but it's the hormones talking, not me......

Maybe I should be a hormone for Halloween. Or, at the very least, a psycho-lunatic bitch.....

Oh, wait, that's me. Never mind.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Changing the Dosage

Nursey P. just called me-I'll continue my 225 units of Follistim and 5 units of Lupron for tonight, but starting tomorrow (and lasting through Monday), I'll be on the following protocol:

A.M.-225 IU Follistim
P.M.-150 IU Follistim + 5 units of Lupron

I totally forgot to ask her my E2 level, but when I go in on Monday I'll ask her for the numbers. The good news is-NO Repronex-woot! I don't think that I can add another injection to the fertility cocktail, if ya know what I mean. Especially one that I have to mix myself......I didn't do very well taking Chemistry in high school......

Have a great weekend, all----may all your follies be large and your linings be thick.

Here's The Dirt

My follies are all between 7-8 mm in size. Mr. Techhie told me that he stopped counting after 10, so I don't know if that means that there's more than 10, but there were at least 10 that I could see on the screen.

I tend to produce a lot of eggs-with my last fresh cycle, I had 24 follicles, and 17 mature eggs were retrieved. Mr. Techhie called me the Italian Egg Factory. He also said that if the Martians ever came to take people, I'd be number 1 on their list-they'd treat me like a queen and get me to produce lots of eggies. I remarked that hopefully they could do it without me having to shoot up twice a day, I'd be waiting in the nearest cornfield.

Of course, since I've been prodded, I'm now a little sore. By Monday I'll be a nice bloated mess-can't wait!

I also had the bloodletting, and also had to go get my pre-admin testing for the ER. Dr. Vest told me that I need to come back in for another wanding and bleeding, and that he'd be able to get a better idea as to when the retrieval will be, but that the earliest he can see is next Friday.

So, that's about it, for now-Nursey P. will call me this afternoon with my E2/LH/Progesterone results, so I'll post about that in a few hours.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Hey Good Lookin'-Whatcha Got Cookin'?

Day #3 of FolliSTING-fuck, I forgot how much that shit stings. I had a couple of "bleeders" (the puncture site started to bleed afterwards), and I'm getting a little bruised. My belly is starting to look like a junkie's-maybe if I play Connect The Dots, I'll find a cool Halloween picture....

I think that something's cooking down in my nether regions-the past day or so I've been getting slight crampiness in the ovarian area. Plus, I got a little moody yesterday. I'm still exhausted, and I'm getting really hungry all the time, so I need to be careful, or else I'll be as big as a house. I also have to make a conscious effort to drink more water, otherwise I start to get a headache.

Tomorrow I go for the bloodletting and crotchnoculars, then I stay to see Dr. Vest for an exam, then I assume he'll clue me in as to when the ER will be. Then, I need to get to the pharmacy to refill my Lupron and then also get my progesterone in oil refill-oh, goodie!

I just want to get this all done-I'm ready to move forward. Let's hope my ovaries will heed the call and cooperate.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Stims, Day #1

I started my Follistim this morning-225 IU, twice daily(am and pm).

I forgot how much the medication stings-yeouch. For future reference I hereby christen the meds Folli-STING. I also stuck myself this morning in the finger right before I dialed the dose-I usually don't take the cap off of the needle until just before I inject it......why I did that, I have no idea..........anyway, I then had to take the needle off and put a new one on and start again. But, I did it. Now, only three more days to go until ultrasound number 1, and we'll see what's cooking in there.

I'm exhausted today. The rain and yuckiness of the Nor'Easter outside doesn't help-I just want to crawl into bed and read a good book, especially now that the heat is FIXED (happy dance inserted here). I feel like I can't wrap my brain around things today, and I'm not sure if it's the meds or the weather-probably a combo of both, right? Today is a blech day. Even the kids at school seem to be blah, which is unusual for them.

I need to think about what I'm going to be for Halloween this year. We have a parade every year during school, and last year I dressed up as a cat (that way I could get away with wearing a black tracksuit to school-heh) with ears on a headband and a tail, and made up my face with makeup. So, I've gotta think of a costume that I can wear a tracksuit or something, because by Monday the old ovarian bloat will start to kick in. I have a tan tracksuit, so maybe I can be a lion? I dunno-I'm not usually good at these things. Any suggestions that don't require going to the costume store?

Blech-it's that kind of day. Just blech

Monday, October 24, 2005

The Calm Before the Storm

but Sean finally got the transformer! He actually got the wrong one at Home Depot, so he had to call to find the correct one. Hopefully the heat should on tonight!

According to the thermostat, it's 59 degrees in the house-yikes!!

I went this morning for the bloodletting and dildocam, and heard back from Nursey P this afternoon. Starting tomorrow, I add 225IU of Follistim twice a day, and have to cut back my Lupron to 5 units a day. I was a little concerned initially about the amount of Follistim, since this was the same dosage I was on back in March and April, and I developed OHSS, but the fact that they're reducing my Lupron shows that they're trying to get my follicles to get bigger sooner, rather than later-that way, they can back me off the meds if need be. The party starts here.......

I had my acu appointment this afternoon. I was fully prepared to undress, as usual, when the nurse told me not to, because the doctor was going to "do the ears" today-huh? They're gonna stick needles in my ears? But, it wasn't really bad, just weird, and, after they were all in, oddly relaxing-I had a bit of a doze. He told me that he's going on vacation in two weeks, and that the office isn't going to be open...........shit. That kinda sucks, but I'll deal with it. Maybe I can find someone else to go to for that week, if it's around the retrieval.

Other than that, it's the calm before the storm. I go back to Dr. Vest on Friday for more blood and another dildocam (or, as my friend Ken calls it, Crotch-noculars-heh), then I have to stay for a physical exam, so there's another Friday (the third in six weeks) that I'll be out for doctor's shit. That's the only thing that sucks about being a teacher-it's not a nine to five job, so for me, coming in a 10 am from the doctor isn't an hour late, it's two out of a six and a half hour workday-a third of the day. Or, three classes. So, that's another sick day that I need to take-sucks.

What can you do, right?

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Pins and Needles

So, I never actually posted about my journey into acupuncture, so now that I have some free time, and I'm wrapped up in my fluffy robe and down throw, it's time.

The reason, btw, that I'm in my fluffy fleecy robe, down throw, sweatsuit, socks and the laptop firmly on my lap for the heat, is this-we (or should I say, Sean) tried to fire up the furnace today, since it's rainy and cold as hell. It's been really cold the past few days, but Sean needed the time to clean out and refill the furnace, and put in a new, digital Energy Star thermostat, so I've been trying to be nice and not complain that my fingernails are now a lovely shade of blue. Anyway, in firing up the furnace, he blew the transformer on it, so he's now off to Home Depot to buy a new one............

It's still cold as hell......but, I digress.........

So, acupuncture is pretty relaxing, and not at all painful, really. The guy that I'm seeing has been practicing for over 30 years, is very nice and has experience with IF and IVF patients. The first appointment was odd, though. They brought me in, checked out all of my pulse points, and noted areas that were "cold". The acu doc noted that my feet and hands tend to get cold-apparently, your energy flow begins and ends in both your hands and feet, so if those areas are cold, your energy is not flowing evenly and correctly. We discussed what I wanted to accomplish with acupuncture, and he recommended coming in twice weekly until after the transfer. The first time he put the needles in were weird, because you didn't feel it (I actually kept my eyes closed until he was finished). I get them in my belly (about 5-6), shins (3-4 each), feet (2-3 in each-those are a little uncomfortable) and forearms(1-2 each). Then he leaves me to stew (marinate?) for 20-35 minutes, at which time I'm relaxed and want to drift off, but am scared shitless that I'll shift and hit one of the needles (yeouch!). Then he comes back in, takes them all out, and I'm done until the next appointment. All done in a professional, conversational manner.

Here's the part that I first thought was really weird, weird enough that I almost left at the first appointment, but now could care less......................he's blind.

Totally blind, and no, I'm not setting up a rude joke. He really is-he was in an accident as a child, had 10 surgeries to try to repair the damage, and was totally blind by age 20.

I'm sure you're wondering "How the fuck can he do what he's doing?". Well, apparently a lot of acupuncture has to do with touch-for example, he would massage certain areas on my shins and feet to see if they felt tender to me, and if so, that's where the needle went in. He also has a nurse assistant who helps him and makes sure that he's got what he needs. Also, he's been doing this for a long time, I'm sure that his other senses are heightened to compensate for the loss of his vision.

I'm not worried anymore about it-he has a busy practice, and, as I've been telling people about my appointments, I've heard nothing but good things about him. I feel relaxed, and I'm not getting the horrible headaches and hot flashes with even the remotest frequency that I did the last time I used Lupron. I feel more focused than I have been in a long time. To be honest, I could care less if he can see me or not. The important thing is that it helps me.

Plus, there are some advantages to having a blind acupuncturist-you don't have to worry that your legs and cooter aren't perfectly groomed, or if you have a zit or a bad hair day, or that you've got on your period panties because you forgot to do the wash. He's there to help me get pregnant. And I'm there to focus on the task at hand.

All in all, it's a fair trade, isn't it?

Keeping My Head Above Water

I have found out in the past three days that not only one, but two of my friends are pregnant. Both of them are IF patients. Both of them have had their share of heartache.

One of them is my friend T, who I went to the Feast with on Sunday. Of course, she didn't know that she was pregnant then, but she's been trying for #2. The other one is a theatre friend of mine, and, from what I understand, has been through the wringer with IF issues.

We went to a pumpkin-carving party (I had never carved a pumpkin before-yes, I know that I'm a loser) at a friend's house last night. Sean met us there, since he came from work, and these friends live locally to us and was nice enough to pick me up so we wouldn't have to take two cars. Now, they know all about what we've been doing-in fact, the last time we saw them was at a party over the summer, right before we found out that we were pregnant (and later miscarried), so they didn't know what the update was with us. So, I gave them the short story as we were getting out of the car, and that we were gearing up for IVF#2. I suddenly remembered that I had extra St. Gerard medals in my purse (one of the volunteers gave me a handful of them), so I pulled one out, gave it to her, and told her to keep it with her. She then told me that she was pregnant, and due in April. She's 14 weeks along.

Not to say that she's had an easy time of it-she's scared shitless, had a spotting scare this week, and has been through one miscarriage already, back in the beginning of the year. I really am happy for her, but it brought it home to me that we would have been due within days of each other, had my baby made it. That it would have been the both of us sharing this news to our friends, instead of just her.

I am glad that she told me before she made the announcement last night-it was less of a shock that way. However, it didn't make it easier to see everyone's reaction as she broke the news. It tore my heart apart. I actually had to leave the room at one point because I thought that I was going to start bawling, and I didn't want to ruin that moment for her and make her feel badly.

It also didn't help that I, in the midst of this celebrating, had to do my nightly shoot-up. It brought my situation home to me in a way that I never realized before.

I know that I need to focus on this cycle and not let anything distract me and get in the way-it's so easy to fall into that pit of despair and wallow about in it. I also know that the Lupron doesn't help-the past day or so has been a bit emotional, and the drugs magnify everything 100 fold. I think that the old bitch is about to make her comeback tour through my uterus (although Nursey P informed me that it really isn't her, it's her cousin, Lupron Bleed). The acupuncture has been helping, but it isn't going to permanently prevent my emotions from going into high-gear. It can't take the hurt away.

I've gotten quite good at crying without making any noise, so as not to wake Sean in the middle of the night. He's seen enough tears from me.

Infertility has taught me that, along with other hard truths, like not to expect anything, so you'll be pleasantly surprised later. That you really shouldn't compare yourself with other people, because everyone's story is different.

And that, when it really comes down to it, it's all easier said than done.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Birfdays are cewl.........yo...........

Today's the big 3-3 for me. Of course, we all aren't where we expected to be at this point in our lives, but whatever.

I actually had a very lovely day. I met two friends from work at the butt-crack of dawn for breakfast and fun, then taught all day. The kids were so cute-one class made me a birthday card, a group of kindergarteners first graders sang a rousing off-key rendition of "Happy Birthday", and generally everyone was very nice to me, which is a definite breath of fresh air from the crap school, where nobody even acknowledged me last year on my birthday.

Sean got me the first season of The Muppet Show on DVD (he ROCKS) and some quirky cow stuff, lots of cards and cool stuff. Special smooches to Cat and Shelli-you guys are awesome!

And, I even got an acupuncture appt today-there was a cancellation-how good is that? I'll have to write more about what's going on with my acu later on-it's pretty interesting.

All in all, a great day. Of course, I still didn't get that one special gift that would have made my birthday complete, but, looking back on my birthday post from last year, I feel like I'm in a much better place than I was. I know the drill........I'm a hardened veteran in this infertility war, and I'm determined to win.

And, I don't mind late birthday gifts..........better late than never, right? Especially the gift of life-getting that gift makes it the best birthday of all time, no matter what day it really is.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

The Power of Prayer, and Faith

So far, the belly-jabbing is going well. The first night was a bit weird, and I hesitated, but now it's strangely and disturbingly familiar to me, like riding a bicycle......

Sad, isn't it?

We had a pretty full weekend. Saturday was major cleaning day-dusting, vacumming, washing clothes and sheets and hanging stuff on the line, since we FINALLY saw the sun after eight days of rain. Then we picked up Shelli and Narda at the train station and trucked on down to the McCarter Theatre to see Gem of the Ocean. It was such a powerful and wonderful piece, and there were many times that I was moved to tears. We got a bite to eat afterwards and dropped them off at the train station. It's great that I'm lucky enough that we live close enough to each other to be able to hang out.

Today I had to sing the later two Masses, then we went, along with our friends, to the Feast of St. Gerard in Newark. For those of you who aren't familiar with St. Gerard, he is the patron saint of motherhood in the Catholic Church, and the National Shrine is literally a 25 minute drive from here. People come from all over the U.S. and even Italy to the Feast, and wait in lines around the plaza to make donations and venerate the saint's statue (which is life-sized). It was overwhelming at times to watch the men and women climbing the dais where the statue was, bringing flowers, offerings of money (some people brought capes literally made out of dollar bills, which they draped around the statue) and objects such as handkerchiefs and baby clothes to hold to the statue. The most emotional thing for me was to see mothers with babies holding their children up for special blessings. Sean, being non-Italian and not a cradle Catholic like myself, had never seen anything like it before.

My friend (who had problems TTC her first child, prayed to St. Gerard, and is now having problems TTC her second) and I patiently waited, with our dollar bills and scraps of cloth, to climb the dais and touch the saint's statue, to receive special blessings that our procreational endeavors will be successful.

It still brings on my usual questions and struggles of faith-I try so hard to believe that things, like prayer and acupuncture, will help you. I want so badly to believe that. I've heard stories from other women who have prayed and had faith and that their prayers, although not answered right away, were ultimately answered by St. Gerard and they had healthy, happy children, whether they gave birth or received them through the gift of adoption.

Seeing that crowd of people holding dollar bills, flowers, bits of cloth, pictures and babies to a statue made of plaster, blessed by the Church and containing the saint's relic, asking for St. Gerard to intercede on their behalf, or thanking him for being blessed with their children, or grandchildren, showed me today that miracles can happen, if you believe. That prayer, whether it be from people you know, or have never met, is a powerful thing.

Maybe it's entirely coincidental that I'm cycling around this Feast Day, or maybe not. Maybe it's not about receiving special blessings, making donations, eating great food (and I mean GREAT Italian-American food), and getting blessed religious articles. Maybe it's about giving up your burden for someone else to carry. Even if you can't physically see that person.

Maybe that's what faith really is. And maybe that was the real reason that I was there.........for God to show me an example of what faith and prayer really means, and to give me the fortitude and strength for the battle that lies ahead.

Bring it on, Lord. I'm ready.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Okay, people.........

We're moving forward! Nursey P called me around three with the results.......I did ovulate (I could have told her that), so we proceed with 10 units of Lupron tonight.

The needles are small-insulin size, and are subcutaneous, so they go in the stomach, so it won't be too bad..........of course, ask me that at around 8pm when I have to do the shot........

Here we go again!

Round Two Begins

I went to Dr. Vest's office this morning for the usual bloodletting and dildocam poking, and all went well. I have to call Nursey P this afternoon to find out the results of the progesterone test, and, if all goes well, I start with 10 cc of Lupron tonight.

I also went to Schrafts to pick up my meds-I almost fell over when I saw the woman come out from the back with a HUGE box and two bags. I'm not exaggerating, the box was the size of a toaster-oven. They must have seen the look of panic on my face, because they said "don't worry, it isn't filled with medication, it's just the stuff that needs to be refrigerated."

Great......that makes me feel oh so much better. That and the $55 I had to fork over. I did the internal happy dance for my prescription coverage and the fact that I live in a state that mandates health coverage for IF-otherwise I'd literally be paying 100 times that amount.

In unpacking the Box From Hell, I noticed that they repackaged the Follistim cartridges-they actually give you more needles-woot! So, I have 8 vials of Follistim, one Lupron kit, one vial of HCG trigger, two boxes of Repronex (which I didn't need the last time and have added it to the two unopened boxes I already have. If I don't need it this time, will try to donate to an IVF clinic), and enough needles to stick half the population of Northern New Jersey. The only thing that's missing is the lovely Progesterone In Oil vials, which I forgot to renew, so I need to call the pharmacy back and get those and the 18 gauge sharps to draw it up. Luckily for me I won't need that for a few weeks, so it's not a big deal to get it right away.

Tomorrow night Sean and I, along with Shelli and her partner Narda, will be going to the McCarter Theatre in Princeton to see Gem of the Ocean (written by August Wilson, who passed on a little over a week ago). Narda stage managed the Broadway production (which starred Phyillcia Rashad, who's also in this production), and had also worked on other plays written by Wilson. They were talking about possibly going backstage afterwards to meet her (ACK!!), so that would totally be cool. The only shitty thing is that I have to cart my Lupron with me to shoot up at McCarter. Thank God I know the CM of the theatre (he was my Frederic when I did Pirates), so I'm going to try to find him to see if I can find a quiet spot somewhere instead of using the ladies room.........that's all I need.......some old biddie freaking out as I comandeer the bathroom countertop.

Four hours to go until the phone call. I'll post an update when I hear.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Rainy Days

As much as I know that we need the rain and all, it's getting more than a bit annoying.

We are at day number 5 of rain, and boy, is it coming down. It's starting to flood the streets. It's that kind of cold rain that gets into your bones and makes you freezing cold, even when you're indoors.

It's the kind of rain that makes you want to curl up in your flannel pajamas in bed and read a good, trashy novel.

At least it isn't snow-at least you don't have to shovel rain.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

New Look

Like it?

I got bored and I was sick of the blogger templates that are on the site, so I found this one.

I do want to change the font on the title and make it bigger......anyone know how to do this, and be able to explain it to a html-idiot like me?


Monday, October 10, 2005

Let the Poking Commence

I called one of the places this afternoon about doing acupuncture. The office seemed really nice when I called saying that I had questions about using alternative medicine along with IVF, and they said that the doctor would call me back. He took the time and answered all my questions, and it turns out that he gets referrals from the clinic that Dr. Vest uses very frequently, which is good. So.......I have my first appointment on Thursday evening. It's kinda scary and not anything that I've ever done before.

But it seems like it's the right path to go down, if you know what I mean.

Bedtime, folks-school is tomorrow. Thank God for Christopher Columbus.


The Low Down

Here's the deal:

I met with Dr. Vest this morning. We're moving forward with fresh IVF cycle #2, and quickly. How quickly, do you ask, since it seems like IVF calendars move slower than slugs?

If all goes well on Friday with my progesterone draw and ultrasound, and I get the "all-clear", I start Lupron shots on Friday, which will be cycle day 21.

Holy motherfucking shit. But, it's a good holy motherfucking shit.

We're not changing the protocol at all, it will still be 10cc of Lupron once a day, then once I get the auld red harlot, Follistim, then the trigger shot. We're going to do the PIO this time and not fuck around with twat rockets and the gross Crinone gel-what's the point, when the PIO works? The shots weren't that bad-they really didn't hurt that much. Probably because my ass has a lot of fat in it.

They're going to watch me carefully because I did hyperstim the last time, but it looks like that they'll start me out on a lower dose of Follistim. My estrogen levels literally went from 3700 to 7200 in two days (I had 24 follicles, but STILL) so I made sure that they're going to really monitor me, because I do not want to go through being so sick and having to get fluid drained again-NOT fun.

I called my insurance company, and my Lupron authorization is still valid, but the Follistim needs to be re-authorized, so Nursey P needs to call them tomorrow. Otherwise, it's going to happen.

I still need to call about acupuncture. I narrowed it down to two places which are local to me and, after looking at their websites, have experience with IF patients. I definitely want to do it-if anything, it will help with the stress.

It's finally autumn and colder outside. I got to wear a sweater for the first time so far, and I'm making a pot roast tonight (yummy!) with potato dumplings (Sean loves them-it's the Eastern European/Austrian in him) and rolls, with salad.

I love autumn-it's my favorite time of the year. I met Sean during autumn, was married in autumn (just celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary on Friday), born in autumn........and perhaps I'll conceive in autumn.

And then, this favorite season of mine would be even more special to me. Hopefully.