Saturday, May 28, 2005

Party Day

It's a glorious morning-in fact, I think that this is the first Memorial Day weekend in a few years that hasn't been cold and rainy. Sean's out doing some carpentry work (yay, extra $$!!) and I get the house to myself for the morning.

Of course, today is D-Day-'Lil Man's surprise party. We're meeting my father-in-law and his new girlfriend at 5:30, along with 'Lil Man and the Dementor (heh, that totally sounds like a porn movie title, doesn't it?)

Honestly, I can't wait to get this over with. I'm sure that once I'm there it will be fine, but I don't want to deal with my mother-in-law right now. I talked to my mom about it yesterday, and she said that I shouldn't deal with it in the future, just tell her to talk to Sean (she does that with my grandmother, and I guess it works for her), but I feel like that's just avoidance, in a way. Plus, I have the strangest feeling that one day I will have to deal with it, and I don't want years of anger to overflow like lava out of an exploding volcano. So, I'll put on a happy face for today, since family will be there.

The thing that I'm stressed out about is that his family, or, more specifically, his mom's family will be there-the ones that she blabbed to about our IVF cycle (and also blabbed that the cycle failed, btw). Firstly, I don't want to answer any questions or get expressions of sympathy-I don't really want to talk about it. It's over and done with, it didn't happen, and talking about it only brings up the pain all over again, and this is supposed to be a happy occasion. Secondly, I don't want to talk about it because Sean's father's family will be there as well, and they have no idea what's going on, and then I'd have to explain all over again-there are enough people who are involved in my reproductive affairs, and I don't need to add yet another buddy group, thankyouverymuch. Also, one of 'Lil Man's friends will be there, and he and his wife had a miscarriage around Christmastime, and we don't need to make anyone uncomfortable. Then again, since 'Lil Man has also seemed to have inherited his mother's panache of airing the family laundry (he told Sean's friend that we were going through IVF and the OHSS aftereffects after they had invited us to a party at their house. I didn't know until his friend called us up to see how I was. You should have seen the fight it caused later on between Sean and I), his friend probably knows all the gory details of our story. It's like having your freshly washed period underwear put on the clothesline for all the neighborhood to see. Nice.

In-laws. Don't you love them? I'd rather have a flesh-eating virus sometimes. At least heavy-duty antibiotics can cure that.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Save the Drama for Yo Momma

My brother-in-law's birthday was yesterday (the big 3-0) and there's been big-time drama surrounding this impending, uh, "celebration".

My brother-in law (we'll call him 'Lil Man-you'll soon see why) has a serious case of arrested development. He's totally babied by his mommy and has a girlfriend that is exactly like his mom. Now, 'Lil Man "tried" to be an actor for awhile......I put that in quotes because he really wasn't willing, in my opinion, to do what it takes to succeed-he wouldn't go on tour (it would take him away from his girlfriend, who I dubbed "the soul-sucker", but I think that I'll call her "The Dementor" from here on out), wouldn't pound the pavements-he wanted the "big-shot producer/director to come up to him off the street and offer him a role" scenario-yeah, right-like that happens every day. He had some opportunities, like auditioning for the National Tour of "Oklahoma" and also for The Blue Man Group, but the Dementor talked him out of it. So, he has been working at Starbucks, and lives with the soul-sucker in her mother's house......are you getting a mental picture.....and watching his friends develop their careers, marry, and buy real estate, and letting life pass him by.

So, his 30th birthday was approaching, and Sean thought that it would be nice to have a surprise party for his brother. We talk to his parents about it, and decide on a party of mostly family (we added two friends of his, but they are friends that he grew up with and are still close to) at a Japanese restaurant. We decide to split the bill three ways (us, mother-in-law and father-in-law) and we thought that we could have the party on his actual birthday.

Here's when the "fun" begins.

The Dementor goes and auditions for a show and gets a part. The show runs through his birthday weekend---she says that she didn't "realize" that there was a performance on his birthday, but I personally think that she's full of shit--so having the party on his birthday now out. We scramble for a different date, and come up with the 28th of May. Memorial Day weekend, which sucks but hey, it's better than nothing.

Now, the Dementor, who is not putting any $$$ in on this party (nor did she offer), decided that she wanted to "help" by making invitations. On the computer. Or, more specifically, on the $1200 new Mac laptop that she had just bought two weeks prior.

Yep, you read that correctly. Am I bitter? Hell yes, especially since I also saved up for a laptop, was about to buy one, then found out that my health insurance didn't cover embryo freezing and I had to cough up all that cash to make sure my totsicles would stay frozen. Priorities, you know.

So, we finally get together to do these invites (she canceled twice, btw), and she has no clue what she's doing. And, she keeps making these "we" suggestions: "We should make it look like this" and "Maybe we should call and confirm at the restaurant about the date and time". As I was literally doing all the work. But, I was good, I didn't make any comments, like "We should shut our mouths, especially since we aren't contributing". Even Sean marveled at my self-control. Needless to say, I ended up taking them home (she had to leave early) and doing them myself. I also bought the paper, since she never got any. But, to be fair, she did buy all eight stamps and addressed the envelopes herself.

Okay, so the invites are out, everything's going well. Then the Dementor tells my mother-in-law that all of "Lil Man's friends would be "so disappointed" if they weren't invited. So, my mother-in law, feeling guilty, starts talking about having another party at her house for just his 25 friends. Are you fucking kidding me??? Sean put the kabosh on that right away. Then, mother-in-law decided to just have something small (BBQ and cake) at the house for immediate family on his actual birthday to throw him off. Okay, sounds good, right?

Now, right now our financial situation really sucks. Big time. We're in the process of refinancing, and we don't have two nickels to rub together until payday, which is on the 31st. Yeah it sucks, but that means tightening the belt a bit. So, feeling bad, we didn't get 'Lil Man a gift, just a card. We rationalized it by saying that the surprise party is our gift to him. 'Lil Man mentioned to mommy that he was "bummed" that we didn't get him anything. Mommy called us on Saturday night (while we had company) and said that she had to "get something off her chest". I was the dumbass who picked up the phone.

So, she goes into her whole thing that 'Lil Man was upset, and that it "weirded her out" that we didn't get him anything. I tried to explain (without going into financial detail, since it's none of her business) that the party is his gift, and she said "yeah, but today's his birthday", and was going on and on about it. I tell her that money's really tight for us right now, but she doesn't want to hear it. So, I just put Sean on the phone, because I truly didn't want to deal with it. And he let her know the same thing. You know what she says? "Oh, well, you should have just let me know, I would have given you some $$ to put in a card for him" WTF!?!?! ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING? Thank God that Sean told her that he didn't need to be bailed out by her, and that his brother needed to realize that it's not about getting a gift, and that we never get anything from him on our birthdays (because he's crying poor, but mommy still pays a lot of his bills) except a card, which is fine with us. So she says "well, maybe I shouldn't have called. It was a bad idea", and Sean agreed with her.

I still can't believe that she had the balls to call us and question us as to why 'Lil Man didn't get a birthday present. That's just rude and tacky. It's frankly none of her business, and is typical of her. She gets upset about things and totally blows them out of proportion and makes a big deal with things. She did this with our wedding, when she was too busy being "in love" and talking about wanting to get remarried to help with things like a guest list and table placements, and she did shit like this with me and my infertility, when she told all of Sean's family that I was doing IVF without asking my permission first, and let me find out that they knew on my own in the middle of Easter dinner. It shouldn't shock me, really, this passive-agressive personality of hers, but I'm getting weary of her butting her nose in where is doesn't belong. And, if we have kids, it will only get worse. Right now, I just let Sean deal with her, because he's used to handling her when she gets like that. But, I let it be known to him that, if we can have kids, I will not put up with that bullshit, not when it comes to my children. And I would no longer be silent.

It's so totally opposite from my own family. My parents respect our privacy, and, we tell each other exactly how we feel, maybe to the other extreme, since we're always arguing and annoying the piss out of each other. But, we don't play bullshit mind games, and we don't question each other's motives. This wouldn't have even been an issue had the party was held yesterday, but it just brings home the fact that you not only marry the man, but his family as well.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Blah blah fucking blah

Well, the concert went well, despite the fact that out of the 11 boys that I normally have in my chorus, only 4 of them decided to show up for the evening performance. Whatever. I was pretty pissed off, especially since two of them were playing outside in the ballfield when I got to school that night, but that's my lesson for next year-don't take everyone, especially if they had the balls to miss a performance. Thank God that the ones who were knew their stuff. It turned out pretty good, nonetheless.....

I started rehearsals tonight for a summer show that I'm doing ("Oliver"). I was a bit apprehensive at first for doing this show-I ended up taking a part that I wasn't sure about (the Widow Corney), and I was bummed out that I didn't get the part I really wanted (Nancy, of course), but hopefully it will be a good show. There's a zillion kids, which should be interesting.

Other than that, nothing new going on. Just waiting for vacation and then, my FET cycle. Hopefully this one will work.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Oh AF, where the hell are you?

OK, so I'm on day 53 of my cycle, and still no sign of my period.

And, before you get all, I'm not pregnant. You'd actually have to have sex for that to happen, and, quite honestly, there's way too much that's been up my whoo-ha within the past eight weeks--I don't need anything else in there right now, thankyouverymuch.

I've been off the Provera since the 7th, and Nursey P said that I'd get it anytime from the day after I started the pills to up to 10 days after I stopped......I think that would be by the 17th. I guess if there's nothing I'll call the RE again and see what's up.

I'm bloated, bitchy, occasionally crampy and starting to get some zits, but no period. I did spot for like a day, but that's it. Fuckers. I hate waiting. This sucks.

Other than the waiting game, nothing else is going on right now. Oh, yeah, on Mother(fucker)'s Day I spoke to my grandmother, and when I wished her a Happy Mother's Day she said "And the same to.....oh.....". Great. I know that she didn't mean anything malicious about it (she's 86 and starting to get a touch of senility), but it still made me feel like shit. Figures.

On a semi-good note, we leave for vacation (Bermuda) in exactly 41 days-woot! I can't wait. We both really need this vacation, mentally and physically. Hopefully I'll get the old whore soon so it won't fuck up my vacation-carrying tampons and various anti-cramp medications with you to a tropical island really really sucks major ass. Especially when you're going with three guys (yes, including my husband-what kind of a girl do you think I am??) and want to wear a bathing suit.

So I'm calling out a missing person's report on my period: Name: Aunt Flo (or AF) Description: brown to red coloring, medium flow, very little cramping (but of course, due to all the hormones I'm sure it will be horrific), usually arrives within 28-30 days, and stays for about 5 days. If anyone's seen her, please tell her that she's long overdue here in New Jersey, and to get her lazy ass over here now, before she gets a serious beatdown from me.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

You go girl!

Just heard some great news from Shelli-a birth mother is interested in her and Narda!!

Check out her blog:

I'll put in some white voodoo in for the both of you....I hope that this is is the one!

Casting against type

My friend called me yesterday afternoon (the one who's having the first birthday party), and she told me that she knows that it's a tough time for us right now, and that she doesn't want us to feel obligated to come to the party. She is also an IF survivor (she was lucky and had an insemination that took the first time, but they tried for awhile) and she said that she's been in the same situation, and how it's hard to be around babies and celebrating birthdays right now, and she and her husband won't be offended in the least if we don't show up.

It makes me feel a bit better for not wanting to go. Right now I don't want to go anywhere or do much right now. Actually, it's 7pm and I'm sitting in my pj's. It's just that I can't be bothered anymore.

Sean said that he's worried that I'm depressed. I don't think that I am. I'm angry, bitter, sad, emotional, and I want to punch things at times, but I don't want to jump off a bridge or anything.

I feel apathetic. Actually, I don't really want to feel anything right now, to be honest. It's just easier.

In other news, I started the Provera on Tuesday night. So far, no period. With my shitty luck I won't get my period for two weeks (Nursey P said that you could get it anytime from the day after you start the pills up to 10 days after you stop them-fucking great). I also had a shitty rehearsal today at school with my choir kids. Some of them have fucked around in the past few weeks and now they don't know the music for the concert (which is May 16th). I don't even bother to get upset-they could see it on my face that I was not a happy camper. They only have one rehearsal left, so hopefully the rehearsal will scare the shit out of them enough to actually memorize the pieces.

Such is my life at this point in time. Why should anything go right, or be easier for me? It would be casting against type, at least for me.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Fair-Weather Friendships

Nowadays I just have random thoughts running rampant in my brain, and some irk me more than others. I'm not sure if they're legitimate or if they're just leftover hormones, but here's one of them:

What the fuck happened to some of my friends through all of this shit that I'm going through?? Where did they go when I needed them?

Now, let me try to explain my network of friends. I can categorize them into groups:

1. Friends from childhood/school/college
2. Friends from Church
3. Friends that I've met through work
4. Friends that I've met online through sites like Fertility Friend.
5. Friends made through acting experiences at a particular theater.

I have no problems with friendships from categories 1-4-in fact, they have been amazingly supportive, sensitive and nothing but kind. Category #5, on the other hand, leaves much to be desired.

A little background for you: Most of the friends in this grouping I've known for almost ten years. I've celebrated weddings (I have been in them, and they were a part of my wedding), dinners, vacations, and parties with these people. They all knew what I was going through with infertility from the beginning. They've seen me get upset and cry over all of this bullshit. Now, ask me how many of them have called me, even once, to see how I am, or what was up, since January.

One. Just one, and she called me right after my embryo retrieval, as I was beginning to hyperstimulate. I think that I actually called her first, so I'm not sure if I should even count her.

Not anyone else. Not a card, not an email, not a phonecall. These were people that, up to this point, I considered pretty good friends. I am now wondering if they meant more to me than I obviously did to them. And this realization really sucks.

I know that infertility is a mysterious, scary thing to those who aren't going through it, and it's not easy to understand. And it's not like I was constantly talking about my reproductive problems to them-in fact, a lot of the time they were the ones to bring it up in conversation.

This whole obsessive thought came about because I got a general email from one of these friends saying that he was thinking of having a Memorial Day bash at his house and he wanted to see who was interested. I really had the almost uncontrollable urge to send a mass reply saying that I wouldn't go, because I wasn't interested in being a "fair-weather" friend anymore, but I chickened out and so haven't replied yet.

It just pisses me off. I feel a little betrayed by these people. I'm not saying that I want people to kiss my ass, but they knew that I was going through IVF and they didn't even acknowledge it. It just hurts that I thought that these people were better friends than they turned out to be, in the end. And I feel stupid, as if I should have known, deep down, that they would be this way-it's like my eyes have finally been opened.

I feel as I've been shunned, alienated, from a group of people that were once good friends, but now are in this ambiguous category that I have yet to name- "People who once were close friends that I'm not sure are anymore"? "People who are self-centered"? What do I call them now?

Just chalk this up as another casualty in the psychological and physical warfare that is infertility.

Mixed reactions

I'm not sure whether I ever wrote about this or not, but while I was doing my IVF cycle, a friend/work colleague (let's call her "L") was as well-we were literally within days of each other in our cycles. She was diagnosed with "unexplained" infertility, but they found when she did her IVF that she had, at 29, the eggs of a 40 year old.

L told me yesterday afteroon that she got a positive pregnancy test. She didn't tell me right away as she didn't want me to feel badly, which was very sensitive of her-IF patients are, if nothing else, overly sensitive of others feelings.

I am happy for her, I really am. She deserves it. But, why then am I so sad and upset?

Because it's not me. I had those "perfect" embryos and nothing happened. She had shitty eggs and got pregnant. I've been trying to have a baby for almost three years now and am still trying in vain. She has what I so desperately want.

I was really starting to feel a bit better about my failed cycle. I was thinking that maybe those three blastocysts in the clinic freezer were meant to be there, that they were meant to be the ones that implant. Now I don't know what to think anymore. It just brought everything back with a vengance. Maybe I wasn't really over it after all-I was just putting a lid on my emotions.

Also, another colleague who had IF problems just gave birth today, and I got invitations a baby shower and two first-birthday parties for the next two Saturdays. I so do not want to see happy mothers and babies right now-it makes me want to punch something. I was even supposed to cantor the Mother's Day masses this weekend, and I had to switch with someone, because I can't deal with it right now. I'm not a mother, and there's a real possibility that I might never be one, so why have to sit through the priest asking all the mothers to stand for a special blessing? In fact, that was how I was sorta planning to tell people at church, if I had gotten pregnant-by standing for the blessing. Guess that aint' happening this year.......

Unfortunately, my parents 34th wedding anniversary is also this Sunday, which is Mother's Day, so I have to call them for that. But I'm not doing cards this year for anyone-I just can't. I think that I might vomit if I have to write them out.

So, am I an asshole for not going to any of these happy events? I feel slightly guilty, but I am afraid of how I'd react at these parties. I also don't want to deal with anyone's insensitive/ignorant comments and questions about my reproductive life, which inevitably happens at these types of things. I don't want to have a meltdown in public.

I just feel as if I'm walking a fine line with my sanity right now. I don't know how much more of this I can take.

Monday, May 02, 2005

The dreaded follow-up

I saw the RE on Friday afternoon about my failed IVF cycle, and we discussed different options.

I ended up having Grade 1 8-celled embryos that were transferred-they were, as far as the lab were concerned, considered perfect. Apparently not perfect enough to implant and actually grow, but that's another story. I asked the RE if having OHSS had anything to do with the failure, and he said no, that people who get OHSS are more likely to get pregnant, which didn't make me feel any better. He was very nice and sensitive about the situation, though. Since I have fairly normal cycles, he suggested having a natural-cycle Frozen Embryo Transfer (FET for you acronym nerdies) in July-the "natural-cycle" meaning that I don't have to take any more fertility medications-thank GOD. So in June I get to have a "mock cycle" where they take blood at different points and make sure that my hormone levels are normal enough to be able to do this without taking more fertility drugs. Hopefully my body will cooperate.

I did let the RE know that I hadn't gotten my period yet, which he was concerned about. So concerned, in fact, that he made me go for another blood pregnancy test yesterday (as if the first one wasn't enough). Of course, it was still negative (surprise!) and my progesterone was at 0.5, so they gave me a prescription for Provera to take so I get my period (oh goody!). I have no idea what's going on with my body right now, and it frustrates me to no end.

I just wish that they had more answers for me as to why it didn't work. Of course, realistically, there is no real answer-everything went well, as far as IVF goes. Just as with doing it the old-fashioned way, there's no guarantee that it will work right away.

But I need answers-I crave them. Maybe it would make this whole nightmare easier to accept.