I could do this all day long

One hour ago I decided this did not work.

One minute ago convinced that it did.

This is the hardest part for me – between 6 days past ovulation and testing time (probably day 10 because even though I know I should wait until day 12 – I just can’t help myself).  I’d like to think optimistically but history has told me that this is a very unwise thing to do.  So, I’m planning for the failure and what I will do thereafter – get bunion surgery, get the polyp removed from my uterus, drink a bottle of vodka and have a consult with Dr. Schoolcraft at CCRM in Colorado.  He is calling me on the 18th of this month and I’m looking forward to his input.  Their stats are just amazing for my age group…and as I approach 41 – there is no time to mess around.

Progesterone in sesame oil

I’m getting this injection 1x per day in the rear end.  The shot is long – in fact, here – have a look – the longer syringe is the the one – it is about 1.5 inches long – long enough to hit the muscle.  Trust me – it is scary to look at and the oil goes in painfully slow….  What I love the most about these shots is that the oil forms a hardened lump underneath my skin – after many shots I start to get a little shelf on my buttock.  It takes a very long time to go away.  About six months, actually.

I’m still feeling crampy and I have dark blue veins covering my breasts.  Then again – I’ve been here before only to have it disappear but for now, something is trying to do something.  I’m sure of that.Needles and their friends

More tricks….

Please consider the title of this blog. If you don’t want to hear about my boobs, stop reading now.

Ok my boobs are huge with big, blue veins all over them.  This could mean nothing but..it could mean something.  Every time I’ve been pregnant (8 times!!) this has happened.

I’m also cramping and exhausted.

C is urging me to pee on a stick – I’ve now had to repeat to him 3x that 7 days past ovulation is tooo early.

A little message to the Supporters of California’s Proposition 8

You should be ashamed of yourself.  Get off my blog.  Shoo!  Go away.

Go sit yourself in the naughty corner and think long and hard.  You want to tell others who they can and can’t love?  Who they can and can’t marry?  Who they can and can’t be?

Y’all make me sick.

We’re going to march this Saturday – this proposition won’t stick.  Soon there will be an amendment to the constitution that will declare it illegal to discriminate against gays/lesbians/transgenders on the basis of their sexual orientation.  You watch.

What people say and why they shouldn’t….

1. You should adopt and then you will get pregnant.

Yeah – ok your cousin’s best friend’s sister did this TWICE and was able to get pregnant after she wasn’t “focusing” so hard on having a baby.  Um.  Whatever.  Everyone has these stories and while I am glad to hear that things like this do happen – consider a woman who has been through 10 failed IVFs, multiple IUIs and a second trimester miscarriage – I know lots and lots of them.  So please, I know you are trying to be helpful but you aren’t.  You are being annoying and if you tell me that story one more time I am going to punch your head in.  I’m serious.

2. All my husband had to do was look at me and I got pregnant – I’m so fertile

You are very lucky and I wish they gave our medals for such amazing feats!  I worship you!  May I just ask, what does this have to do with me?  Nothing – oh right!  Weren’t you just asking how my fertility treatments were going?  Silly me – I guess you wanted to talk about you!   I’ll let it pass this time but NEXT time I am going to spend the next hour talking non-stop about my e2 levels for each and every day of my last six cycles and exactly what they mean – we’ll go over them in detail and I’ll bore you (hopefully to death).  I also have photos (REAL PHOTOGRAPHY) of my ovaries – that will surely finish you off.

3.  You can have some of my eggs.

You are 40 years old and just because you eeked out one good egg does not mean you are the goddess of all fertility.  In fact, did you know by chance that most of your little eggies are rife with chromosomal abnormalities by the age of 40!?!   To answer your question, no I don’t want your old eggs – I’ve got enough of my own.

4. You can always adopt.

Fuck off.

5. You can always buy a dog.

Seriously fuck off.

6.  My husband has super sperm and that is why I am able to get pregnant.

Good thing too – because he is no fun to look at.

7. If you just relax it will happen.

Good thing I didn’t listen to this particular bit of assvice or I would not have my son.  This bugs me the most.  Let’s have a little biology lesson, shall we?  When you have abnormal sperm meeting abnormal egg it results in either no conception or an abnormal embryo which more than often results in NO PREGNANCY.  When you have one normal egg and one abnormal sperm  – you get the same glorious result.  When you have one abnormal egg and one normal sperm – the same result again!!!  And throw in a few bad timings (normal egg and normal sperm but didn’t get a chance to meet) and a few implantation failures and a few chemical pregnancies….not to mention blocked fallopian tubes, low sperm count, premature ovarian failure, endometriosis, bi-corniate uterus, asherman’s syndrome, etc. etc……please never mention relaxing again.  No amount of relaxation is going to give me (and many women) a child.  That is why were are seeing a doctor!!

8. These days it is really easy for a 45 year old woman to get pregnant – the technology is amazing. Everyone in Hollywood is waiting to have babies later in life.

You need to google “donor egg”, my friend.

9. So many people are having trouble conceiving – it must be God’s way of culling the population.

My friend really said this….I let it pass – it was her birthday!

10. Maybe it just wasn’t meant to be

Thanks, mom.  I’ll get back to you after my therapist appointment.

11.  Are you pregnant yet?

Dickhead – stop asking met his question!  You’ll know when I am pregnant because I will be shouting it from the rooftops.  If I had cancer would you be asking me “hey how is that cancer going”….the answer is hopefully no.

12. So how many embryos did the doctor IMPLANT and doesn’t that mean you could have like sextuplets?

A doctor transfers the embryo into the uterus – they choose whether or not to implant (please get that right because you sound stupid) and no, it doesn’t mean anything.  I tranfered 21 embryos into my uterus to get one little boy.  Think about that.

Ok – time to play with DS – he is finally getting bored with Thomas the tank engine.  I’m not bored (or done with this thread however).  I’ll be back with more nuggets of wisdom from non thinking fertile friends and enemies – oh yeah and FRENEMIES!

Friends and other morons..

Let me preface this post by saying that I have extremely supportive friends – both IRL and online.  I don’t mean this as a big fat whinge but I need to get it off my chest for once and for all.

Because I kept my struggle to have a child pretty quiet (well, not if you were my co-worker back at Credit Suisse in 2006!).  People don’t really understand – and it has taken this blog for some of you to realize the depths and lengths we have gone to have a child.  Compared to many others, we didn’t have to struggle too long.  Thanks in part to my RE who believed that I should have back to back cycles (many REs make you wait a month between each failed cycle to give your body a rest – but my RE thinks focusing on the negative cycle during your downtime is psychologically detrimental – I tend to agree).

After our third IVF we had success….and for that I am eternally grateful….and I am also grateful (believe it or not) for our infertility.  I really feel that I am better mother for having had to contemplate never having a child of my own.  I feel so appreciative and blessed.  Had I conceived with ease….I might not have realized how desperately I wanted to be a mother and I wouldn’t be able to appreciate the miracle who calls me Mama.  Who knows though.

I’m blabbering.

The other day a friend of mine asked how I was doing and how fertility treatments were going.  When I told him that I was doing an IUI he seemed very ready to tell me “you have one beautiful child already, why don’t you just adopt” – which really took me by surprise.  It isn’t the first time I’ve had friends and family tell me that I should grateful for the child that I have and stop chasing after another one.  I’ve even been told (by several people!) that I can always get a dog.

The level of insensitivity that it takes to make such comments baffles me.  The assumption behind these comments must be that I am being greedy for wanting my son to have a sibling – perhaps they think that I am “never happy” or selfish for not adopting when there are “so many children that need a home”.  Blah blah.  Not one of these people who have made these comments has ever walked in my shoes.  Every single one of them has been able to easily make their reproductive choices.  Every.SINGLE.one.OF.THEM.

I know I put myself out there by talking so frankly about what we are going through (especially me) but if you don’t have something supportive to say to me – just shut up.  This process is hard enough and I don’t need jackass comments from clueless morons.

Incidentally we are not adopting because my husband is not “keen” on the idea.  He is afraid that he might not love another child the way he loves his biological one.  Who am I to argue with this?  I would never convince him otherwise – because what if it is the truth?  I know I could love an adopted child as much as  my own – but we are a partnership.

I’m going to compile a little list, my friends – and I’d like you to read it and digest it and educate yourself on the feelings of the infertile.

Until you have walked in those shoes and down that path – you couldn’t possibly know an innocent question like  “so when are you going to have kids” might send someone to the bathroom for a good old cry.

*and to my friend who made the insensitive comments – I forgive you and still value our friendship.

the mind plays tricks…

I just took a bite of a chocolate chip cookie and immediately felt the urge to vomit all over myself.

Too early.

Right now I am 5dpo, 5 days past ovulation.  If anything fertilized…and that is a BIG, HUGE IF – we would be a the blastocyst level right now.  Embryo would have over 100 cells or more and be getting ready to hatch – I mean technically it is possible that something is trying to implant itself into the side of my uterus right this very second but improbable.

I hate having hope and so I dismiss it.  Much easier to assume this is not going to work than convince yourself and be let down.

Anyway – I’ll go and try to eat another chocolate chip cookie and see what happens.  Followed by a quick visit to IVFconnections (where I’ve been spending far too much time these days).

Apologies…I’ve been a little preoccupied

Sorry for the delay – after all the excitement (and I mean excitement!!) of November 4th I’ve been feeling exhausted and a bit muted.

Where was I?  Oh – November 4th, 2008 – election day and insemination #2.

The morning started out horribly – basically a disaster.  We’d arranged for C to take his sperm to the clinic at 7:30am to be washed and I was to show up at 9:30am for insemination.  At 7:50am C told me that the task was impossible….there was no way he would be able to produce another vat of semen.  He tried and failed.  I started to google “life span of washed sperm” and the results were confusing – it seemed that 24 hours was the maximum …and I was due to ovulate SOMETIME that day – if we didnt’ have another batch to greet these eggs on ovulation – the entire cycle might be a bust.  I started to get a bit hysterical but caught myself.  Poor C did not need the added pressure…and so I told him to go to work, get a few things done and return around 10 to try again.  In the meantime I prepared myself to vote.  Lines were long in Atlanta and I didn’t want to get stuck in a five hour wait.  My friend Amy and I went together with Alex in tow.  As we voted, C returned and worked on getting a sample…

Voting was a great experience – never before have I been this excited about a candidate.  I worked hard to get Barack Obama elected – talking to just about everyone I met, haranguing our Republican handyman and all of my Republican friends..  I registered about 20 people to vote and worked on the phone banks (very not like me).  By November 4th I was ready for this election to be over.

When I returned to the house C informed me “I was able to get some sperm for you but it was very difficult – in fact, I think I’ve bruised myself” which made me laugh.

Two hours later I went to the clinic and was told that C’s specimen was over 80 million sperm – which is just amazing considering he had similar numbers the day before.  In they went….and now we wait.  I think I did ovulate later that day….on election day.  If this did work – what an amazing day to be conceived!

So far I don’t have many symptoms – which is natural you might say but every single time I have been pregnant I’ve felt certain things early on – from the day after conception.  I do feel like my uterus has something in it – a certain fullness…and my breasts are killing me but that could be the side affect of the progesterone.

Anyway – muted post but I’ll write more when I am less tired (hey, good sign!)…and tell you about my amazing election night party – and the break-in we had at the house this week (while C was away in California and I was alone with our son).

I’m still pissed off about Prop 8 and feel like it is time to get more involved in helping my gay and lesbian brothers and sisters in their struggle for equality.

Sperm.

Today we did our first of two sperm injections.  We had to take our son with us – which proved to be a huge nightmare.  I’m very sensitive to the feelings of my fellow infertiles and strongly believe that a child has no place in a fertility clinic.  It never really upset me but had I had several failed cycles, I don’t think I’d be able to bear seeing one at the doctor’s office.  Anyway – he came along for lack of child care options.  C and I took turns keeping him occupied and tried very hard not to let him tear the entire waiting room apart (no luck).  C gave his specimen and we then went to McDonald’s to wait for them to prepare the sperm – spin it free of white blood cells, crappy sperm, etc.  When we arrived back 2 hours later they were ready for me.  When I saw the nurse she said, “well your husband has a great sample for you – he has 85 million sperm ready here”.  My jaw nearly dropped to the ground.  85 million post wash!  That is 120 million pre wash – just insane.  Let me put it this way – you only need 20 million post wash for an IUI to have a good chance of being successful.  The nurse advised me not to tell him because, as she said, he would get a big head.  I agreed…but ended up telling him.  I’m not sure why I did this because I’d much rather have him believe that his sperm are the reason we are doing these procedures but, I guess it isn’t anymore!

On to the insemination, I normally don’t see my doctor during cycles – this is a large practice and the doctors all rotate for procedures.  Of course I know my doctor and have had many chats with him but I am just not used to spreading my legs and finding him down there – if you know what I mean.  It is so much easier when I don’t really know the person.  So, in walks Dr. S – who is rather young and handsome and all of a sudden I realized that I had not even bothered to make myself acceptable for viewing (to put it delicately).  The poor guy basically had my entire womanhood in all its glory right in his face – and I was cringing the entire time.  In the middle of the procedure – after he had inserted the speculum – he asked the nurse to hold down on my bladder as he was having trouble inserting the long tube into my uterus.  And then the nurse says, “oh be careful not to pee on the doctor”.

Oh darn – just what I had in mind to do.

I was so glad when that shit was over.

I was also glad that my doctor seemed stumped by my “excellent response” to low dose stims.  When I asked him what he thought about all of this and how it could benefit future IVF cycles should I not get pregnant he said he would have to have a think about it.  Well I already thought about it and came to the conclusion that I have spent thousands of dollars on medication and probably damaged perfectly good eggs because of a protocol that was all wrong for me.  Thanks doc.

So – IUI part 2 is in the morning.