The Journey to a Little One to Call Our Own

One gal's experiences dealing with IF, pregnancy, the birth of our first son, parenthood, and doing it all over again with our second son... here is our journey.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I Know That Everyone Knows

I don't think I am necessarily paranoid.

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


It never fails. I hold myself off as long as possible to take an HPT, and literally, one minute after I do, AF arrives.

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

Mr. D's Birthday

It's IComLeavWe. International Comment Leaving Week. Check it out by clicking on the icon on the right navigation bar.

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

Baby Shower Blues

I am officially going to personally refrain from attending another baby shower until I have a child of my own. I can't think of a way to become more depressed than to completely submerse myself in a situation with a bunch of women talking about how fantastic it is to be a mother. And that's exactly what I experienced today.

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

Farewell to my OB/GYN

NOTE: Today is National Pregnancy & Infant Loss Day. It is SO important to those of us going through IF, pregnancy, infant loss, or anything in-between that people actually recognize that fertility in any capacity is important, and we need to support one another and be supported.

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

I.U.I, I.V.F, I..... what?

My follow-up appointment from surgery was rescheduled to Friday, 10/15, due to my Doctor being sick on Monday. Overall, I am recovering just fine, and I barely even notice that I still have fresh incisions.

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....
2. IVF

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

On The Same Page

Mr. D and I did some level-setting today, and it feels really good. It was a GORGEOUS autumn day here in the Twin Cities - about 85 degrees - so we took our dog for a little outing to a lake in the city.

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!

Mrs. D

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Crossroads of What to Do From Here

As we contemplate next steps, I've been doing a lot of research. As any IF'er knows, part of the inevitable research, although I absolutely cringe as I type this, is IVF.

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

Date Night

Mr. D brought me out for a date night last night, and it was so incredibly needed... for both of us.

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.