Thursday, December 30, 2010
"So, when are you guys planning on having kids?"
It was the first time I have been asked this question while pregnant. I didn't know exactly what to say. I did kind of want to share my news with her, since I won't see her for a couple of months when she goes out on leave. So, I told the truth:
"Well, actually, soon... I'm pregnant!"
She was super excited... after freaking out, asking how far along I am, etc., I shared with her that I am not sharing with many people until after the first trimester, as we've lost through a miscarriage, and it's been a really long, tough road to conceive. This was her next comment:
"Yeah, I know people who have lost, and it's no fault of your own. It's God's way of saying that the baby wouldn't have lived a healthy life. And I know a lot of people who have gone through infertility... I could share a lot of stories."
For some reason, I had to stop myself from going into defense mode. I reminded myself that A was only being supportive and kind, but I wanted to scream, "Do you KNOW what we've been through? I know more about miscarriage, pregnancy, and infertility than you'll EVER know, so don't try to tell me your thoughts on stuff that I've actually gone through that you have never had to deal with."
Of course, I didn't say that. I brushed it off and changed the subject back to my pregnancy and not the loss, but I seriously don't think I'll ever shake the fact that IF will always be a part of my life. I need to assume positive intent when people make comments, and not get so internally defensive.
I think about what I will be like when I am in my second and third trimesters. I have always been so sensitive to women who talk non-stop about being pregnant, resting their hands on their giant belly. I just know that I will be conscious of who is around me when I say things about the baby, being pregnant, etc. I think it's a sensitivity chip that those of us who have dealt with infertility don't ever lose... and I think it's a good thing. It reminds me that there are so many of us who have experienced the same struggles, whose hearts break when they have to listen to a story about breastfeeding or picking out the car seat. Not to say I am not excited for all of these things... I totally am, and can not wait. But because IF will always be engraved in my heart, I will choose my comments and actions carefully and tactfully.
In ICLW news, I officially dropped the ball this month. Seriously, I think I checked out two new blogs and commented on only a few of my blog buddies' posts. I promise to be better next month :)
Mel will be posting the Creme de la Creme list on January 1! I am so excited to check out the posts... it's my first time participating, and I am already planning my day around being next to my computer.
And... instead of a New Years' Resolution, I will be posting my personal Start, Stop, Continue list on January 1. Stay tuned!
Mr. D and I have a wedding tomorrow, 12/31, and will be ringing in 2011 at a local reception site. Not quite sure yet how I am going to hide the fact that I won't be drinking. But, I've covered it pretty well over the holidays at several family get-togethers, so hoping I can pull one or all of the following tricks:
- Have Mr. D drink his cocktail 1/2 way and then switch with me... continue as the night progresses
- Pretend I am sipping wine by just touching it to my lips, but not actually drink it
- Dump most of it out in the sink/toilet
- Dump the beer out of a bottle (or have Mr. D slam it) and fill with water
Here's to 2011... it's going to be a GREAT year! Not just for us, but for my blog friends, too... I can just feel it :)
Monday, December 27, 2010
I was so scared to buy anything related to being pregnant, for fear that I might jinx it. I am really pushing myself to not be so worried and paranoid that something is going to happen. It's in God's hands, and I am doing everything in my control to protect this little one. I have to trust that everything is going to be fine, and each day that passes, the better and better our chances that our baby is just fine. And, if not, I trust that God will take care of us.
And, I figure, I really do need to focus on what is happening with this new life... it is real, and I shouldn't be thinking that it won't last! This baby deserves all the attention in the world... after all, we waited for a long time to conceive this miracle :)
Thursday, December 23, 2010
We saw and heard the heartbeat! The ultrasound tech found the gestational sac right away, and zoomed in on the baby. When she expanded the image, I could see a little flicker and knew it was the heartbeat. She pointed at the screen and said, "that's the baby's heart... it's beating!" It was the most amazing sight, and when she cranked up the volume, the sound of that amazing beat just about melted my own heart.
I am measuring 6w4d, and the heartbeat was 135 bpm. I just knew I was a couple days further along than my first ultrasound tech told me I was, and today's ultrasound tech was amazingly detailed. We must have spent 30 minutes in the room as she explained every image on the screen. We are amazed at the life we've created.
And I got pictures! All four pictures show my uterus, gestational sac, yolk sac, and embryo. The yolk sac and embryo have now split into two... last week, the two were together. I could have laid on that table forever listening to the beautiful sound of my baby's heartbeat.
It is, by far, the best Christmas present I've ever had. :)
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
If you've never been here before, WELCOME! You can check out our story here. Basically, long story short, Mr. D and I have been married for 4.5 years. We tried for 2 very long years to get pregnant. After multiple rounds of Clomid, a miscarriage, procedures, surgery, tracking, and months of disappointment, we were over-the-moon to find out on December 2 that we're pregnant! We're still in shock. But, happy shock :)
So... it's the holidays! I am done with work until Monday! WHOO-HOO! Man, does that feel good. I am ready for Christmas. Mr. D and will be spending the holidays with our families... both live about 20 minutes away. I can't wait to sleep in tomorrow, relax, and enjoy the season over the next few days!
In baby news, I am 6w1d, and keep plugging along! I am feeling funny stretching sensations in my tummy recently, and on top of being exhausted, having huge, aching boobs, and continuing to pee every couple hours, I am definitely pregnant! We get to see the little bean again tomorrow at our 1:00 p.m. ultrasound. I can not wait.
Happy holidays, blog ladies and gentlemen (I doubt there are any guys who read my blog, but if so, rock on!)!!
Friday, December 17, 2010
I have been trying so hard NOT to get excited, but I am starting to realize that I will obviously do everything in my earthly control to protect this little one. But everything ultimately is part of God's plan, and it's out of my hands. I just need to trust. I need to have a little faith. :)
So, I am feeling a bit more relaxed and definitely allowing myself to be more excited. It's real and I am pregnant!
My doctor called today and ordered another ultrasound for next week - yay! She said that the first ultrasound was early and she really wants to be able to detect a heartbeat to ensure we are in a good place. Mr. D and I have the day off on Thursday, 12/23, so I scheduled our appointment for 1:00 p.m.
If we do see/hear the heartbeat, we are considering telling our parents at Christmas, since the chance of miscarriage dramatically decreases after that important milestone. I am still skeptical about this... we ended up telling my parents at the beginning of my first pregnancy, as we were going to Mexico with them the next week (they needed to know why I would be declining margaritas), and we ended up having to tell them that we lost the baby. It was terrible.
I am still stuck on waiting until 12 weeks, but if we do hear/see a heartbeat, maybe we would share during the holidays only with our parents. Thoughts from my blog friends? Wait or share?
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
She measured a lot, checked around a lot, and basically, let us revel in the sight of our little bean.
All we could really see is the gestational pouch and yolk sac. I asked if we would be able to see the heartbeat, and she said rarely has she been able to pick up on a heartbeat prior to 6 weeks. She said even a woman who is 5 weeks, 6 days pregnant may not have a baby heartbeat that is detectable. She measured me at 5 weeks, 1 day. I was kind of surprised, given I got my BFP 13 days ago... I thought for sure I was a little more far along. I was guessing right around 6 weeks, give or take a day. But, 5 weeks, 1 day it is, and I am so happy that we were able to see the little one. Our baby is officially the size of an appleseed :)
So, not sure if I will be called back for another ultrasound to check the heartbeat prior to my first official appointment.... man, I hope so. I am waiting for my Doctor to call back. Either way, Mr. D and I are thrilled.
We keep praying that this little one continues to stick and thrive inside of me. My boobs still feel like they've been used as a punching bag, I am fast asleep by 8:30 p.m., and I think I am peeing a bit more frequently. I think these are all good signs :)
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
After seeing my high beta from last Thursday, she ordered an early ultrasound. WHOO HOO! So, tomorrow at 9:15 a.m., Mr. D and I will be marching into our clinic, ready to see our little one on the screen for the first time. I am praying that we see our little bean and see/hear his/her heartbeat strongly pounding.
Man, this IF stuff messes with my mind. Most women I know who have been pregnant are completely satisfied with their pee-on-a-stick BFP and don't think twice about the baby really being "okay." They just think, "oh, I am pregnant - cool!" They don't need to see the baby on an ultrasound to believe the baby is growing. And even if they do see it, they just figure everything is okay from that point on.
But I can not associate with most women. I am an IFer for life. It will be a huge milestone if we see that heartbeat, and even that will not stop me from worrying every day, just praying that our little one is safe and sound inside of me. I think IF will leave a permanent impression on my life, and I will not rest until I bring home our live, healthy baby.
Friday, December 10, 2010
Beta on 12/9... 7 days later. Results came in this morning =
I am doubling every 1.2 days or so. I can't believe it. I prepared myself for the worst... somewhere in the high 300's, thinking that I was just jinxing myself to pray for something in the 1,000's. No more HSGs needed... we're moving on to the ultrasound since we've now well-surpassed 2,000.
The nurse triage was super busy today - they had some nurses call in sick - and the nurse who called me was from a sister clinic. She said after reviewing my file, she knew I struggled with infertility and she needed to prioritize her call to me (thank you, thank, you, THANK YOU, kind nurse Maureen).
She told me that my results were "really good", and when I asked for the number, I literally about fell out of my chair when she said 3,328. I made her repeat it to me, and she goes, "yay! I knew you'd be excited - congratulations!"
So, onto next steps! I have never made it this far and still am in shock. I think I will continue to be in shock until I see our beautiful little bean on an ultrasound.
I can not tell you enough how much I appreciate my blog friends... you gals are the best and I so appreciate your support, thoughts, and comments. Thank you!!
Happy weekend, ladies. We're preparing for some major snow tonight and tomorrow here in good ol' Minnesota (some reports say up to 12 inches!) ... should make for a white Christmas :)
Thursday, December 9, 2010
I still can not believe I am pregnant. Other than my aching boobs, here-and-there crampy feelings in my stomach, extreme tiredness at night, and increased urge to pee (let alone the three very positive HPTs) as "signs" that I am indeed pregnant, I am shocked that I have a little bean growing inside of me.
I went in for beta #2 this afternoon. I get results tomorrow, and I hope more than anything that my numbers went up. I am praying that this is not all just a dream.
After stopping by the Dr. office for beta, I had an indescribable need to go to our church and pray. Mr. D and I go there every Sunday for Mass, pray before meals and bed, but I've never felt so inclined to need to be at church. So I went. And I prayed. And I sat in the pew for awhile. I sat next to one of the stained glass windows, and gorgeous rays from the sun shined through a portion of the glass onto me. Nobody was there, and it was beautiful. Peaceful. And it gave me time to think, pray, and trust.
I'll post results tomorrow; thanks for the continued prayers and comments. My blog friends are the best!
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Then I asked her about another beta, thinking that I would go in this week to test again. She told me, "No, that won't be necessary. We have on record that you are pregnant with a 55 HSG."
So, then she's like, "So, since you are about 1 week pregnant, go ahead and set up an initial appointment on week 10 or so."
I tried to explain my dates... yes, my last AF was 10/23, but I am sure I ovulated on 11/18 or so, which would put me right around 4.5, almost 5 weeks. AND... my real Dr. had told me months ago that once I got pregnant, to call her, and she would ensure we test HSG to ensure it rises appropriately and do an early ultrasound.
So, she told me that she'd call me back. A few hours later (4 to be exact, but who's counting), she called and told me that my Dr. ordered another HSG test for me to complete this week. She wants to see me hit 2,000 before an early ultrasound. So, if I am not at 2,000 later this week (not sure I will be), I am supposed to go back next week and keep testing until I hit 2,000. Then, I can schedule my ultrasound... thankfully, before Christmas :)
So, I feel much better. We keep patiently waiting and praying that this little bean is growing just perfectly inside of me. For now, I am great with the plan... much better than waiting several weeks with no action.
Please keep us in your prayers for a high beta on Thursday afternoon! I should have results back on Friday.
Thanks to my gals who left me such nice comments this week... your support is so wonderful!
Happy week, everyone!
Sunday, December 5, 2010
My beta last Thursday came back as 55, which my nurse, Beth, said is "barely pregnant." But, still pregnant :) I think she and my Dr. were a bit concerned that my last AF started on October 23, and I am just now getting a beta of 55. However, I know I didn't ovulate until November 18 or 19, so a beta of 55 is okay. We are praying my numbers rise. My Dr. is waiting for my progesterone results to come back - I should have them mid-week, and then I am going to request another beta (I am thinking she'll prescribe one, anyway). The Dr. I've seen for years is coming back from maternity leave tomorrow, and I can't wait. She knows our whole struggle, and I remember her saying that when I get pregnant, she'll run any test she can to ensure everything is okay.
I peed on another First Response this morning and the lines were much darker than Thursday morning. Thursday's lines were definitely there, but today's lines were super dark. Mr. D was very excited to see that, as was I.
We're just keeping our fingers crossed and praying that this is it.
Thursday, December 2, 2010
But - for once throughout this whole TTC journey - I listened to my body. I thought I felt like my body ovulated around Day 30. But, who ovulates on Day 30? Seriously, that is so late that I thought I was crazy for thinking my body was ovulating so late in the month (for me, anyways).
But, I thought, what the heck. We're going all out and trying just like we would any other month.
And, then... this morning, around 7:00 a.m., on the 42nd day of my cycle, but 12th day DPO....
I peed on a stick. Well, two sticks, actually: a ClearBlue Easy digital and a First Response Early Result.
And both tests were positive :) Pregnant!
I truly can't believe it. Mr. D and I stared at those tests for, what seemed like, several minutes before freaking out.
The day has been a blur. I called my Doctor, was quickly seen for two blood tests (HCG and progesterone level), and prescribed progesterone suppositories.
I am keeping myself from being extremely excited about this BFP until I hear some test results and progress a bit... I keep thinking, "don't get your hopes up, this could not work out, like last time, and then you'll be so sad." It's awful to hold myself back from a natural feeling of complete excitement and happiness, but once an IF-girl, always an IF-girl. I need to take it easy and let what's meant to be happen. Mr. D and I keep praying that this is real, and we have a sticky, healthy baby. For those of you I know in real life, please keep this only to yourself :)
This is an incredible blessing. :)
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
This year, there is just so much for me to be thankful for. Below is my top 10 list, in no particular order. I am thankful for:
1. Mr. D. Everything he is and everything about him is amazing. I will never love another person the same.
2. Our dog, R. He is kind of like our cute, fluffy, cuddly kid... he is the center of our home!
3. Our jobs. I love mine, Mr. D loves his. We work for amazing companies and we are proud of the work we do. It is so rewarding to love your career!
4. Gary and Sheila, a couple we've never met. They purchased our home over the summer in a crappy market. It was a miracle how smooth the whole process was, and the fact that they actually bought our place after it was on the market for 8 days, amongst all of the other homes for sale in our area in the overly-saturated housing market. What a blessing.
5. Our families. Great parents. Great sisters. Love their support, warmth, and care.
6. Warm coffee, some cream, and a little sugar... in the morning, afternoon, or whenever. Regular or decaf. It's all good :)
7. My blog and blog friends. When I started this blog, I had no idea what to expect. I have found my little spot on the internet to call my home, and I love that I have started virtual friendships with those whom I care about.
8. Our Catholic-based faith. Two years ago, we made it a priority to go to church every Sunday (before that, we were laid back about our attendance). Wow, do we love going to church. We love God and make our faith a priority each day.
9. Our financial planner, mortgage financer, and realtor. We are learning so much about our total financial well-being, and we feel so good about the decisions these key people in our lives have helped us with.
10. Our belief that someday, somehow, we will be parents. We have certainly been through a lot of steps we never thought we would, but it makes us know even more that we were meant to raise a family and have children. We can't wait for the day to come.
Happy Thanksgiving, my blog friends!
Sunday, November 21, 2010
It's so great to have support in blogland, and I love comments! Leave me one, and I'll be sure to visit your space, too.
The quick, down-and-dirty story:
Mr. D is 30, and I am turning 30 next month (gulp). We've been in love for 6.5 years, married for 4.5 years, and trying to welcome a little one to our lives for 2 years. Tried lots of things... and failed at most. We conceived naturally last January and lost around week 7. Since then, we've experienced tests, procedures, appointments, confusion, prescription drugs, massage therapy, surgery, and more. My Doctor and RE keep shaking their heads, not really knowing what to tell us. We are a happy, healthy couple with no complications at this point (praise the Lord). We are investigating IVF as a next step, but trying on our own for the next couple months.
So, that's our story in a nutshell. We have so much to be thankful for, and can't wait to build the family we want so badly and have been patiently awaiting.
Last week at work, I met up with a woman who I've known for a couple of years. We used to work together, and I hadn't talked to her in almost a year due to different jobs we've both taken on throughout our company which took us on different paths, to different locations, etc. Anyway, she just came back from maternity leave after having their first baby. We caught up on work gossip, chatted about life, and then she finally asked the dreaded question I could just tell she was dying to ask:
"When are you going to start a family?"
In the past, I have responded to this question to different people in multiple ways. Usually, I lied and said something to the effect of, "Oh, someday we'll think about having kids, we're just really busy with our careers...." Blah, blah, blah. And then I would secretly, inwardly, want to cry (or sometimes I would go in private and shed some tears).
But for some reason, I felt like being really honest with her. Still not sure why... she's not a close friend by any means, but I felt like getting it all out.
I smiled and told her that we have been working through years of infertility issues, and while Mr. D and I want nothing more than to have children, we just haven't been able to conceive and have a child yet.
I think I kind of shocked her with my blunt response... she looked embarrassed. She kept apologizing and saying that she never should have asked. She literally looked like she wanted to crawl into a corner and hide from me.
But to me, I was glad she asked. And I told her that I was happy she asked, and that I was happy to share. And I meant it.
It is the first time I remember telling someone confidently about where we are at and feeling okay with it. Not feeling ashamed or sad or disappointed. Sure, it sucks, but I've decided that - in the right situations - I need to push myself to talk about it and be okay with where we're at. Mr. D and I don't have a choice whether we want to deal with IF, but I do have a choice about how I manage it.
I walked away from that conversation feeling really good. I was proud of myself for finally dealing with how I was feeling by expressing the facts, not just shoving reality under the rug and telling people what I think they want to hear.
Confidence is a good thing :)
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
For months... years, actually... I have been tricking myself into believing that "it's just this month that it didn't work", or "everything's going to be fine next time around" and "it will work next month." I would modify a slight step in our process, cross my fingers, and hope for the best. But after everything's been tried, time and time again, I now realize that I have been trying to talk myself out of IF... like everything will just work on its own. But, I know deep down that it's just not going away.
Every month had a reason, and I chalked it all up to random excuses to pacify my aching heart and confused mind:
- I probably didn't track well enough...
- Maybe we didn't have sex on the right day...
- Maybe I ovulated during a different day this month...
All the excuses in the book that all of the best-of-the-best-IF-gals have had. But I do need to face it. We really do have a medical condition, and that is IF.
It's late in the month, with no confirmed ovulation, no AF, and nothing really with this whole stupid, horrible process to look forward to. We really just need to bite the bullet and start injections, but I've been talking myself out of it... kind of like I think things are "just going to work out." And while I believe in miracles and that this whole IF journey is truly out of my control, I know that our chances are slim without some kind of help.
We've received help, but now, I guess we need even more.
Friday, November 12, 2010
Another bill from my damn surgery a couple months ago that doesn't guarantee anything and hasn't proved one thing yet.
When will this crazy rollercoaster stop?
$199.42. Whatever. Check's already in the mail, and it doesn't even close-to-phase-me.
We've now WELL-surpassed several thousand dollars this year in IF-related expenses with nothing tangible for Mr. D and me to relish in, except for pure frustration and confused shoulder shrugs.
All of this guarantees nothing. No baby. No answers. No happiness yet.
Mr. D's tired.
But, we believe. And, that's all that matters.
It's not about us. It's about what we believe.
And we believe we will be parents... some day, somehow. It will happen.
Monday, November 8, 2010
This time, $581.25. That's well over $1000 for a procedure and medicine that doesn't even guarantee that we'll be able to have babies. And we have good insurance! How do people with not-so-good insurance do it? I am going in for IUI next month - PRAYING that I don't need it and that we get pregnant this month - and I still need to figure out how much we get to fork over.
I don't care about how much it costs, I would just much rather be spending my money on carseats, strollers, daycare, baby furniture, and college funds.
I've changed my mind... I don't like getting the mail anymore.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
I never knew that such a supportive, wonderful community existed, and it has been incredibly helpful for me to write, post, and engage in others' blogs and experiences. It's kind of therapeutic for me to just write... even if my post isn't all that good. And I've found that it's even more therapeutic to engage in the community.
I submitted an entry to Creme de la Creme 2010, hosted by Stirrup Queen herself, and encourage you to do the same. All of us have the responsibility, in my opinion, to drive awareness and support of our community.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Okay, changing the subject.
You know what I love? Getting the mail. Maybe it's because everything is so digital now that Mr. D and I rarely get pieces of unsolicited, personal mail. Mail is rarely fun anymore. I'm kind of addicted to getting the mail. After work each day, I rush to the mailbox to see what's inside. I was expecting bills and junk mail, but yesterday, the mail surprised me. Guess what showed up in my mailbox? Three things:
1. A bill for my lapraoscopy surgery. More about this in a second.
2. A box of Enfamil formula from a popular "new mom" magazine. Barf. Ever since I signed up on one - yes, one - "new mother/baby" website when I was expecting back in January, I receive magazines, pamphlets, coupons, packages, and other random baby-related mailings. I tried to remove my address from their website, but somehow I still get horrible, painful reminders sent to me through these lovely, cute care packages. I've checked back with this company to ensure my address has been deleted, and they've assured me that they don't have me in their system. But, obviously, somehow, somewhere, they do. It's like a mean, gut-wrenching, dirty trick every time I see a package and get excited, only to be saddened that it's another damn reminder of something I still can't use. My advice? Don't sign up for anything baby-related until after the first trimester.
3. An autographed book sent to me by a well-known speaker and leader in the MN area. I went to a speaking engagement of his a few weeks ago, and he sent me a copy of his book. I can't wait to read it.
Back to #1 above. I already received a bill a couple of weeks ago. Not really looking at the specifics, I assumed that it was the one-and-only bill I would receive for the surgery. After all, I had confirmed what I thought to be my portion of the surgery cost with my insurance company prior to the procedure. The bill was for $48.24. No problem. Paid. Done.
Well, not really. I guess that was just for the anesthesia. The surgery, separate from the first bill, was over $1000, and we owe $312.52.
I am going to be chatting with the insurance people soon... with potential IUI and - maybe - IVF coming up, I want to make sure we know what we're getting ourselves into financially. We've been saving a lot, and can figure out whatever we need to in order to make this happen, but boy, does it get pricey. I haven't keep track, but between co-pays, procedures, HPTs, ovulation kits, monitor.... and the list goes on.... we've had to have hit the $3000 mark this year.
But if all of this allows us to conceive, carry a baby, and bring a child into our family...
It's beyond worth it. Financially, emotionally, physically, whatever.
We just want a family.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
I'm back to using CBFM and hoping that it can even detect a peak this month. I've been away from my beloved CBFM for several months now, and it was weird to start peeing on testing sticks and sticking them into a machine again this month. I am just praying that my body is back on track and we can actually get this whole conceiving thing going. I am tired of talking about it, stressing out about it, and tracking every my every move.
I just want a baby. Please, Lord, help us. We are strong people, but it just feels emotionally that we can't take this much longer.
On a fun note, my good friend, Katie, who is so wonderful about checking in on me and reading this blog, turns the big 3-0 today. We are two months apart in age, grew up next door to each other until we were about 6 years old, and both have sisters who are almost 6 years younger than we are (they are also two months apart in age). We lived two houses apart, and not one childhood memory I have doesn't have Katie in it. Katie's family moved away when we were in kindergarten, and the one memory I have of my father ever shedding tears was when he hugged Katie's dad the night they left (my mother and I were crying, too, which, in turn made my baby sister start crying). My best friend didn't just move away; everyone in my family was touched by their family, and it's amazing that we still have a special bond with them today.
When I created this blog, I thought about how to start it off, and couldn't think of a better way than to recall my first memory of wanting to be a mother... back when Katie and I were kids, playing in my basement. Check out my first post where I reference our special friendship.
Happy birthday, my friend. I can only pray that my children have the same long-standing, over many years and many miles, true friendship that we have.
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
I just know - in my heart of hearts - that people know I am dealing with IF... even without us verbally sharing it.
After over 4 years of marriage, remembering our vows during our wedding to happily accept and welcome children to our family, and after telling people that we "absolutely want kids someday", it sucks that so many people in our lives know that we want to raise children. It sucks because we are so private about our IF journey. We aren't sharing with family or most of our friends, and although I sometimes think about sharing our struggles with a few more select people, we're just not there yet. We probably won't ever be, and we're both okay with taking the private road.
I wish that some people didn't already subconsciously know about our struggles - even without us sharing anything with them. Either their intuition is amazing, or they are making complete assumptions... right or wrong.
People look at us differently. If they don't ask, they undoubtedly wonder and give us "the look" when conversations turn to strollers, Baby Einstein, and burp cloths. Even my wonderful Mr. D, who lovingly really doesn't notice much with regards to how other people are perceiving us, has started to pick up on the subtle signs that I've noticed for years.
This weekend was another crappy situation in our IF journey. After Mr. D's birthday celebration, we had a wedding on Saturday night. The seating chart was predetermined. And what do you know... Mr. D and I were sat at the singles-and-dating-or-maybe-even-engaged table. Our actual friends were sat at the isn't-it-great-to-be-parents table. After dinner, our friends came over to our table to chat, with visible looks of "I'm-so-sorry-it-must-be-so-hard-for-you-to-be-here-and-not-with-our-group." I also received the question from the women/mothers:
"So, are you guys planning on having children?"
I answered with the generic, typical answer, as they all nodded their heads and told me - like I already didn't know - how wonderful it is to be a mom, but how great it is that Mr. D and I are taking our time.
What I wanted to say is:
"I know all of you know - please just stop making me feel worse and don't ask anymore questions, damn it."
But instead, I had the privilege of lying:
"Oh, I bet it is just wonderful to welcome children to your family! Mr. D and I have just been so focused on our careers and travel... maybe someday we'll be blessed with children. Who knows!"
I hate IF.
Sunday, October 24, 2010
That's what happened Friday morning. Said a quick prayer, peed on a stick, hoped for the best, and saw that all-too-familiar negative sign. About two hours later, as I am sipping my coffee and checking e-mail at work, AF stopped on by. Wonderful.
So, CD2, and here I am. We decided to not rush into our IUI/IVF next steps... it was all so overwhelming, and while we are excited and ready for either or both of them, we have so much going on in the next month (weddings, birthday parties, weekend outings, etc.), we just didn't have the energy to try and figure it out quickly.
We're trying to decide if I should take Clomid this month - about 4 months ago, Dr. prescribed it and I had taken a hiatus from the meds. I thought that our insurance would be changing coverage on prescriptions, so I went ahead and filled the prescription at the time, so I have it available if needed. Those damn 5 small, white pills haunt me every time I open our linen closet where our medicine is... not sure if I'll take it this month or not. I am back to my CBFM, and I might just forego the Clomid. My RE, Dr. E, would be happy... she's not such a Clomid fan, and when she heard I was on it for several months this year, she said she would do everything in her power to not have me take it again. I didn't really care one way or another, but she obviously doesn't like it.
Other than that, not much else to report. Mr. D's 30th was a huge hit... prime rib turned out better than ever :)
Have a great week!
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Never been here before? Welcome!!! I am SO glad you stopped by. Check out our story here.
I only get comments on my blog from a few people... so, come on peeps, leave me some comments to know that my blog isn't only visited by 2 people (but I do love those two people and their comments :P)
And, note... I rarely talk about anything non-IF related on this blog. But today I feel like it :)
Mr. D turns The Big 3-0 tomorrow. He's so not interested in his birthday. He could care less that it's his b-day, let alone that it's kind of a big birthday.
So, instead of parties, surprises, or anything crazy... Mr. D has told me over-and-over that the only thing he wants for his birthday is prime rib for dinner.
Cooked by me.
Now, I am not a fantastic cook. I'm not bad, but I'm not great. I like to cook, but it always feels like I have a certain window of time that I have to execute a meal, and I just pick the shortest, best way to cook whatever we need. Sometimes it turns out great, sometimes okay, and once in awhile, crappy.
But prime rib is my specialty. I've made it 4 times in the past, and if I do say so myself, it's DAMN good. (Let me know if you want the recipe.)
But it takes - from prep time to actually serve time - 6 hours.
So, I took a half day tomorrow. My 8-lb. roast needs to be in the oven by 1:15 if we want to eat at 7:30.
Dinner is at Mr. D's parents' house - his parents, sister, brother-in-law, our dog, and me. Should be a fun afternoon/evening.
I am on CD30 and am taking a HPT tomorrow morning. I am officially 2 days late, but with the surgery this month, I'm not even sure I ovulated.
I'm just praying that I did.
And praying that I got pregnant.
That would be one amazing 30th birthday present.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
I think it's more about the company of the guests than the actual act of showering the new mother with gifts. That part is actually okay... it's fun to see the momma-to-be, buy them a gift, etc. What I personally think is horrible is the conversations that happen at the shower by women who have been invited to celebrate.
The baby shower I attended today brought together about 15 women - 12 of which have children or are pregnant. There were 5 babies in attendance. ALL I LISTENED TO for about 2 hours was recommendations for baby lotions, what type of bibs work better than others, pacifiers, socks, breast pumps, and-on-and-on-and-on-and-on. I was ready to rip my hair out. I had to excuse myself to the restroom or kitchen a few times just to get away from the conversations. I was asked if I ever plan to have children, and when I said, "Yes, someday," I was greeted by awkward stares, sad smirks, and assuring looks. Another mother (who is younger than me) said, "Children are such a wonderful gift, and if you're not ready, it's okay, because they really do change your life. make sure you're ready before you have them!" The other women quickly nodded their heads in agreement as they kissed their kids' foreheads or rubbed their pregnant bellies. No shit, sherlock - I am well aware of how children change your life, and I never said I wasn't ready, damn it.
The woman who asked me if we were going to have kids later apologized to me in private and basically said that it's none of her business and she shouldn't have asked. She said that if I am one of those women who never have children, then, that's okay, too.
Thanks for the reassurance. "Screw you," is what I wanted to tell her.
So, I think I am done with baby showers. I actually am invited to one next month that I already RSVPed to, and I am going to send my regrets tomorrow.
At this point, I need to focus on self-preservation.
Friday, October 15, 2010
Here's to all of our dreams, hopes, and prayers. We'll get there.
Funny that I achieved a big milestone today.
This afternoon, I saw my doctor who performed my surgery for a post-op visit. I officially will not see her anymore - that is, until we conceive. Ironic to me this door of our IF journey closed on National Pregnancy & Infant Loss Day.
After a quick conversation about my progress since surgery, a cervical exam, some gentle pushes on my tummy, and check-up of my raw incisions, she pronounced me "healthy." It was something I pretty much already knew, but it was nice to hear from her that I'm all set to go. I kind of felt like Mr. D was great in the first place, and I have now finished my homework (surgery) to get me in the same place. We (and our internal organs) are as healthy as we can medically be, and we're officially ready to go.
I've now graduated from the OB/GYN clinic, as there's nothing else they can do for us. We won't be going back until we're pregnant. We're on to our full focus being with our RE.
There was this weird pause after my exam. I am sure my doctor was thinking, "What do I say? Good luck? Best wishes? Glad I didn't have to take out one of your Fallopian tubes?"
But instead she said:
"You are in my thoughts and prayers. We'll all be talking to The One Upstairs [as she pointed upwards] and hoping that the next time you come in, you have exciting news to share."
I held it in long enough to say "see you soon" (not goodbye) and walk out of the clinic.
And then the tears began...
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Our appointment this morning was with Dr. E to discuss next steps.
So, let me just say that it's amazing to me how Doctors remember their patients. We've met Dr. E only once before, and the first thing she asked me was, "Was the lapraoscopy a better experience than your horrible HSG?"
I get that Doctors make notes of meetings they have with patients (they actually snapped a picture of Mr. D and me to put in our file on our first visit), and likely remember a lot about the patient specifics, but I was impressed. According to several print and online sources, I am seeing one of the three top REs in Minnesota. So, she's a busy gal. She must see 100 infertile women a week. It made me smile that she actually remembered us.
Or, maybe she just remembered how horrible the HSG was for me.
Anyway, we reviewed the pictures and summary of my surgery. Apparently, I have "beautiful" reproductive organs with no adhesions, endrometriosis, blockages.
Seriously, let me pause here. What a blessing. So many women deal with issues with their reproductive organs... I am so incredibly thankful that mine are in good condition.
Dr. E basically told us - in so many words - that between Mr. D's semen analysis, and the condition of my ovaries, tubes, and uterus, we are perfect candidates to conceive and be able to carry.
The one item that is outstanding - that she can't help us test without further trial of different treatment plans - is the functionality of my tubes. Both tubes are clean, healthy, and clear, but nobody knows if they are actually serving the purpose of carrying eggs to my uterus.
We started talking through IUI and IVF options. Mr. D and I were prepared for Dr. E to tell us that we needed multiple rounds of IUI, which is common in infertility treatment. But, given our health, ages, good results on testing, and overall good structure for conceiving, she recommended the following treatment plan:
1. IUI - as soon as I get my next period. If pregnancy is not achieved on first cycle....
We walked away with a TON of information, pamphlets, referral for counseling, and financial resources. I've breezed through all of it, but overall, we are pleased with the recommended approach and will be starting IUI cycle #1 as soon as AF arrives. Of course, we'll be praying that AF never does arrive, and we conceive this month, but while we are hopeful, we are also trying to be planful for Plan B.
If we do not conceive with this cycle, I should get AF around Wednesday, 10/20. If that is the case, I call the clinic that day for next day baseline ultrasound, and begin the process. If IUI #1 is unsuccessful, the recommendation is to move to IVF.
After 21 months of this IF crap, we are completely onboard with this approach.
And so it begins. I still close my eyes sometimes and think, "Really? Are we REALLY going through all of this??"
The answer is yes. I'm not sure what I think about it all yet, but I know this is our path.
We just hope the path leads us somewhere.
Saturday, October 9, 2010
We walked and talked, and at the end of the day, we feel good that we are on the same page. Not that we weren't aligned in our opinions of next steps, but it felt good to verbalize it to each other. Our RE appointment is Wednesday morning, and we are both committed to taking Dr. E's recommendations and asking for the next step to be IVF. We are aligned in our thinking and financial expectations, so I guess the next step is to see when it can happen. I'm hoping soon... as in November. Not getting any younger :)
I'll post more about my two Doctor appointments this week - follow up from the lapraoscopy and our RE visit. I hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful season!
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Now, please don't get mad at me before reading my post. It is not that I don't support IVF or anyone who attempts/conceives this way... I absolutely do, and love the decisions that have been made by my friends to embark upon this journey.
It literally just hurts my own heart as I type those letters. I.V.F. Really? IVF is something for me to consider at this point?? ME??? How the hell did we get here? I keep wondering if somehow we are missing something, or - even better - that, magically, that maybe next month will be 'the month.'
But after 21 months of actively trying, and although I believe in God and the fact that He does really make miracles happen, I am not confident it will happen on our own.
So, I called our insurance provider and RE today. Basically, long story short, with the lapraoscopy and other procedures I've had done this year, we have far exceeded our deductible for me. Not a surprise. But, what I learned is that all types of IF treatment are covered under our current medical plan at 90/10.
Here's the kicker: in order to not meet another deductible and take advantage of the deductible we've already met in 2010, egg retrieval and transfer would need to occur on or before 12/31/2010.
I am looking for support... leave your comment or thought. It's been a long journey, and we are in the midst of making some tough decisions. What should we do?
Saturday, October 2, 2010
We went to our new secret find... a super-small restaurant that allows customers to bring in their own beverages. For us, this meant a couple bottles of Pinot Noir. It is quaint, authentic, Asian-meets-middle-eastern-meets-chic-fancy-cuisine at really cheap prices, and it is AMAZING. The whole restaurant has 8 tables total and can hold a maximum of 32 customers at a time. A reservation is a must... however, many passers-by came in last night to see if they could score a spot, which couldn't be accommodated on this particular Friday night. The best part is that not a lot of people yet know about this restaurant - you would drive right by it in the busy city and never see the small reference of a sign. If you live in the Twin Cities area and want a tip for amazing food, post a comment and I will let you know where to go (and my recommendations of what to try)!
After our bottles of wine and wonderful food, we stopped at a fun old-school-mafia-type-bar (that we've been to many times and LOVE) for a night-cap... a dirty martini for me and white russian for Mr. D. It was at this bar last night that I fell in love with Mr. D all over again.
We talked about 2010 so far... our pregnancy, the miscarriage, our heartbreak, job changes, saving more money than we spent, selling our house, numerous doctor and specialist visits, looking for our next move, my procedure last week, and my recent recovery. It's been a lot. There have been terrible events and wonderful blessings that we've experienced this year. It's been stressful. It's been emotional. There have been tears shed, and not just from me.
And we still don't have the one dream we've been trying to accomplish for so long... a child.
The best part is that Mr. D brought all of this up... it was like he was trying to emotionally get everything off his chest. And that's when I realized, all over again, that I'm not in this alone. He lives and breathes this just as much as I do... he just shows it differently, and picks-and-chooses the times that he really wants to talk in-depth with me about what we are going through.
It's at the times that he lets it all out that I love him all over again.
Monday, September 27, 2010
Just been hanging out, not doing much, but letting my body recuperate. I slept pretty much all day on Friday (thanks to some wonderful pain relievers), slept a lot on Saturday, and had my first outing to Cub Foods on Sunday. Probably shouldn't have pushed it and left the house, but I needed to get the heck out off the couch. I paid for it, though - I was pretty uncomfortable and ended up laying on the couch all night after the quick outing.
I am working from home today and feeling much better after another night of sleep. My boss knows about my surgery and has been super cool about letting me do whatever I need. So, I am taking it easy and will probably be ready to go back tomorrow. My incisions are looking good, and my stomach is less bloated and is deflating after having gas pumped into me during the procedure. I keep asking Mr. D., "do you think my stomach looks smaller than yesterday?" Of course, he tells me that he can tell a difference, but I am thinking that he is just being nice :)
Enjoy the week... autumn has sure arrived where we live, with lovely colors, leaves starting to fall, and crisp, cooler air to match. I am praying that the change of season means a change of luck in our TTC efforts and a little one will be on his/her way soon.
Friday, September 24, 2010
The lapraoscopy is over. Here are the highlights:
- Went in to the hospital with Mr. D @ 9:15; went through pre-op procedures
- Was dressed and on a hospital bed by 10:00
- Met about 20 nurses, doctors, anesthetists. I shed a few tears out of nervousness.
- Got an IV, got wrapped up in super warm blankets
- Mr. D came up to meet my primary Dr. and surgeon, we were both explained exactly what to expect
- At 10:40, gave Mr. D a kiss and was wheeled into Operating Room #7
- Moved from warm comfy hospital bed to cold, small skinny surgery table
- Was given medicine through my IV to relax, and I don't remember anything after that...
2 hours and 20 minutes later:
- Woke up in recovery room
- Dazed on-and-off for about an hour - several nurses and my Dr. came in to talk with me, and I barely remember what was said
- At 2:00 p.m., moved to stable recovery, where Mr. D came up to be with me
- Dr. had already had a consultation meeting with Mr. D, so he knew all the specifics and had some pretty nasty internal pictures of my reproductive system to show me
- Couldn't be released until I could pee, which took about 2 hours. I had a catheter during the procedure, so I had to prove that I could pee normally. I had nausea on-and-off the whole time in stable recovery... threw up Saltines and water twice.
- Was released at about 4:30, and I was home in bed by 5:00 with some pretty impressive pain, but also some pretty impressive painkillers.
Now for the good news :)
I still have both tubes. When Dr. went in, she said the right one was more dilated and open, so when she shot the dye up both tubes, just like with my HSG, all dye spilled out the right. She used another instrument to (sorry, TMI here) clean out my left tube and shoot more dye through. It worked! So, dye was shooting out both, which means that both are in functioning, healthy order.
Mr. D. said he was nervous after I went into surgery. My Dr. had said that if everything looked good, she would come talk to him about an hour after surgery. If there was more work to be done (aka: tube removal, problems that required longer procedures), it could be anywhere from 1-3 hours. The Dr. went to talk to Mr. D about an hour and 15 minutes after surgery, so he relaxed and knew everything was going to be fine.
No endrometriosis or adhesions anywhere, which was what my Dr. thought she would find. I am left with two incisions: one in my belly button and one about 5 inches lower... right where (again, sorry TMI) your pubic hair would start.
I'm feeling okay...my right shoulder KILLS (I guess that is the gas trying to "escape" my body... weird, but normal), and my tummy hurts more today than last night.
I'm off to catch some ZZZZs.... thanks again to everyone for their prayers!
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
It's been such a weird time for me.
Surgery on Thursday. I had my physical this morning and blood drawn... overall, I am healthy, thank goodness. Not that I would have thought anything else, but it's all solidified and confirmed now.
I'll blog after surgery... Mr. D and I have to be at the hospital bright and early Thursday morning.
Now more than ever, I am looking for prayers. Please keep us in your thoughts as we pray for a great outcome, easy recovery, and easy road to conception.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Only a few people in my personal life know about my blog. I only wanted to share it with select people who I know, and let other bloggers stumble upon it. The friends with whom I shared our journey are my true, closest friends in life.
Guess who knows nothing about my blog, our issues, or attempts at next steps? Not my mom, sister, or any family members.
I've been sharing more and more with my co-workers. I wonder sometimes if this is because my co-workers are kind of like a pseudo-family, but not close enough to me, by any means, to be really a part of my family and friend network.
Because I had to abruptly change the pre-scheduled two days off of my work schedule due to my upcoming surgery, there were a few eyebrows raised. And for those who I felt should know, I shared. Oddly enough, it wasn't even tough for me... I just straight out shared what is going on. I told about 4 co-workers this week - whom I trust - about the high-level struggles we've had. And it felt so good to share. It's like a weight is lifted from my chest every time I share... not because they feel sad for us - that's not what I want at all - but because they might actually feel for us. For them and for me, it's no longer a secret, and it feels good.
So, why has it been hard to share with family? Not really sure, but it just has.
As I've been preparing for next week, I've been thinking a lot (as with any surgery), "what if something goes wrong?" Now, I am truly not paranoid. I know I will be fine. I highly doubt I will die while under the knife, but of course, these things cross my mind... they cross everyone's mind when they are put under. Sure, I'll be nervous, but not too freaked out.
But what if something happens to me during the procedure, and Mr. D needs to get in touch with my parents. Or sister. Or his parents. Or his sister.
None of them know.
Of course, the worst scenario plays in my head... Mr. D has to make the dreaded call to my parents to let them know that I went into surgery and things didn't go well. Nobody in our families would even know I was having surgery in the first place, let alone that I was under-going a procedure on my fallopean tube. I think my family would be devastated that I didn't tell them.
I would love your thoughts... anyone out there who is close to their families and had to think through how/when to tell them just enough information so that they know what you're going through?