Dec 22, 2011

Christmas threw up in my house

And more specifically, Christmas wrapping threw up in my house. 

For the third Christmas in a row, Mr. Slick and I waited to purchase gifts for our parents (3 sets!) because we were SURE that this year we would be able to buy them cutsie, "I love grandma/grandpa!" onesies or put an u/s picture in a frame. And for the third Christmas in a row, we have had to come up with alternate gifts. Completely our fault, by the way. That's just the thing with infertility, it breeds endless hope. 

So, even though we found out a few weeks ago that we were NOT going to be gifting adorable baby clothes, bibs, or blob u/s pictures, I still had to frantically shop yesterday - for pretty much everyone, allllll 20something gifts I needed. It was my own selfishness that made me wait so long. I needed to wallow a little and feel sorry for myself, I guess, before I could decide on alternate presents. And it was this waiting that led to frantic gift wrapping that I'm not even going to pretend I'm done with. I'm only about halfway done and the upstairs den is already covered in scraps of paper, ribbon and those little bits of tape that randomly appear after mass wrappings. 

When will I learn that procrastination leads to chaos? Maybe next year I'll throw everyone for a loop and buy them cutesie, I love ______, dog clothes. Yes? No? Would it be cruel to get their hopes up like that? Yea, probably. Sigh.

Dec 18, 2011

Etiquette - such a strange word to spell and say

Infertility EtiquetteBecause of recent events I have decided to dedicate this post to things to avoid doing or saying to an infertile woman. 

1. Just relax - yea, because relaxing will cure her endometrosis, pcos, or make her husband's sperm swim. Please don't minimize the situation and I'll try my hardest to not minimize yours. We are all fighting our own battles. 

2. But you're soooo young! - Infertility doesn't care how old you are and it's definitely one of those things that doesn't get better with age. I sometimes think I can hear my eggs and ute shriveling up...might just be gas though. 

3. You should just adopt, then you'll get pregnant! - this is incredibly rare and condescending and please don't minimize the huge emotional and financial risks of adoption. That's a whole 'nuther can of worms. And did you know that of the people who DO decide to go this route, only ~5% of them end up becoming pregnant on their own? 

4. You should just adopt. - Oh, you mean that because of my barren ute, I am less worthy of the entire parenting experience? Is that what you meant? Because that's how it can come across, especially to a woman who may or may not be pumped full of synthetic hormones and ready to esssploooode with emotional rage. You're welcome in advance for that warning :) Adoption is a wonderful family building option (one that Mr. Slick and I have always planned on pursuing, even before our IF diagnosis) but it's not for everyone. Respect that, yo.

5. You should just enjoy your life as is! You get to sleep in late, don't have to save for college funds, don't have to deal with morning sickness or stretch marks! You're the lucky one! - Bish please. I'd trade places with you in a minute. Please do not take for granted the wonderful gift you have been given. And while we're at it, don't offer me your kids in a humorous way..."Wanna borrow mine? They drive me nuts!"...I may take you up on this offer and then run away to Mexico. Kidding...kind of. 

6. Maybe God doesn't want you to be a mother/parent or God will give you a baby when he thinks you're ready. - This one is the most hurtful to me personally and it's the one I hear the most often. Please don't let your infertile friends think that God is punishing them for some unknown sin and that they think crack whores and child molesters are better parental candidates than them - yep, because that's what I think when you tell me this. You are basically saying that God allows people like that, people in awful positions to become parents, people who beat and abuse their children are more worthy than I am to become a parent. I know you don't mean it that way, but that's the way it can, and does get interpreted. 

7. There are worse things in life. - Yes, there are. But why don't you just go shove it. And remember this advice the next time you find yourself feeling hopeless and worthless. Oh, and you better believe the next time you complain to me about anything you'll get this response riiight back. 

8. Oh wow, I would never pursue treatments, it's like playing God. - Unless you've been in this position, you don't have room to judge. And since you're throwing in the God card, you shouldn't be judging anyway. And if it were like playing God, then I would already be pregnant. My wonderful RE has created three wonderful opportunities for me to get pregnant and I still didn't. How is that playing God? 

9. Ya need a sperm donor?? ::waggles eyebrows:: - I haven't had anyone offer this but someone I know has. Unless you KNOW that they will understand this is a joke, please steer clear. For the record, I probably would have laughed in your face had I been propositioned to be sperminated by someone. 

10. Remember your audience while complaining about your pregnancy symptoms or children. - I don't have personal experience with pregnancy or children (besides my students) but I'm sure some things are downright miserable sometimes. Just remember, someone would trade places with you in a heartbeat if possible. That doesn't mean never complain, that just means if I just had another failed cycle don't say to me, "Well, at least you don't have to deal with this awful morning sickness and back pain, ugh!" And, yes, someone DID say that to me. 

This to do/say: 

1. I'm sorry. 
2. Give a hug. 
3. Share your good news, we're still capable of being happy for you! Even if sad for ourselves. 
4. Ask how they would like to hear your news of pregnancy (if there's a possibility you'll get pregnant first).
5. Remember the mother's of lost babies on Mother's Day. Even if they didn't get their take home baby that doesn't make them less of a mother (this applies to Father's Day also!). 
6. Support their decisions to start/stop treatments. 
7. Oh, and you can't go wrong with chocolate and pedicures. 

Dec 15, 2011

The (new) plan

I went in for my follow up appointment yesterday and my RE said everything I was hoping. 

My questions were: 
  • Could there be any scar tissue from my LAP last April when my septum was removed? 
    • She suggested doing a SHG to check for this before I could even ask - it's scheduled for the 27th, woot woot!
  • Do I need to repeat any b/w?
    • She answered this before I could ask - all b/w is current - we would repeat if I had by this point an unsuccessful pregnancy 
  • Should we try a different form of estrogen than Estrace? Like Vivelle patches? 
    • She said we could be more aggressive with estrogen from the start since there were slight lining issues last time. We'll likely do Estrace + something else (maybe the patch, maybe another oral medication). We're aiming for a 9-10mm lining this time. 
  • Embryo Quality?
    • Before I could bring it up, she raved about our embies and how wonderful they looked and thawed. So, no embryo quality issues are evident.
  • Baby aspirin? 
    • She said she's not for it or against it but there's no harm in trying, so we'll be adding in a baby aspirin next cycle. 
  • Could my PIO allergy (to the oil, not progesterone) have had a negative affect on things? 
    • She also answered this before I could ask - No, P4 levels were still fine. My allergy did not affect the absorption of the progesterone, just made things painful and uncomfortable for me. 
  • Can we time things for another FET over spring break or should we wait until June since I don't have anymore time off work this school year? 
    • She said we could do either and she would be supportive either way. Of course, this is all pending the SHG results. 

Anyway, she was wonderful and is being proactive instead of just chugging through another cycle without checking things out first. She said she doesn't want to leave any stone unturned before putting us through another emotional and physical roller coaster. 

So we're on a break for now. But when you're already 2.5 years into the process, a break here or there isn't terrible, I guess. We'll likely be cycling again in March or June. But for now I'm enjoying my Dr. Pepper :)

Dec 12, 2011

Refrigerator full of pictures

I have a refrigerator full of adorable pictures. Kids sitting with Santa, kids in adorable holiday outfits, kids draped with Christmas lights. Only thing is, none of these are my kids. 

How many years can I get away with putting a Christmas hat or antlers on my dog and taking a pic before he plots my death and executes the plan while I sleep? (he wouldn't come near me for nearly an hour after last year's torture - I can't believe I don't have evidence of this on my computer)

Maybe I'll just start hoarding dogs and each year I can feature the new one. 

OH! And maybe if I get enough I'll have enough to send out a personalized calendar each year. 

Jan - cute puppy in the snow
Feb - cute puppy with hearts
March - cute puppy in green
April - cute puppy in rain gear
May - cute puppy in flowers
June - cute puppy at the beach
July - cute patriotic puppy
Aug - cute puppy swimming
Sept - cute back to school puppy
Oct - cute puppy with pumpkins
Nov - cute puppy with a turkey
Dec - cute puppy with hat or antlers

Ok, I feel better now that I have a fallback plan. 

Dec 10, 2011

And then the tears came

Yesterday I did not cry. I couldn't, there were no tears. Around 3 the RE's office called and left a message. I assumed it was my beta results. Mr.Slick and I agreed to listen to the message together. So around 5, we did. 

It was a message asking us to call them back. Well, this is different! They've always just left the bad news on my voice mail. I prefer it that way anyway. 

So, I call back and the nurse isn't available but the receptionist explains that she'll call back soon so they can explain everything to me. I think, you mean there's something to explain??? 

I got the call back within 10 minutes and the nurse explained that my beta was negative. She explained that they ran a blood test checking for hcg, the pregnancy hormone and my level was zero. Thanks for that explanation. Obviously I'm too dense to understand that message through a voice mail. Obviously, by looking at my chart you could see that I've never gotten a negative beta before ::insert sarcasm here:: I know I'm just nitpicking but I wish they had left a message. 

This morning when I woke up the tears came. Well, they were already there - my pillow was soaked. I cried in my sleep, I think. 

I went through all that pain with PIO for nothing. I had to start them giving them to myself in my thigh. After 4 days the pain was excruciating. I was told by a few nurses (not at my RE's office - other nurses) that it's normal to experience a little pain and discomfort when self injecting IM shots. I figured myself to be a big wimp and tried a few more days of it only to experience a rash and swelling of the legs. 

When it got to the point where I could no longer walk, I made Mr.Slick do it. He's deathly afraid of needles but because he loves me, he did it. After 4 or so days the pain started again, but this time up my back and down my legs and the rash started too. This time I demanded that one of these nurses actually look at my hip. She then realized that this was not normal, she actually teared up from looking at it. She had me make a call to the RE's office and they called in a new rx, with the progesterone mixed in a new oil. Turns out I'm allergic to the other one. I could not walk, sit, sleep, drive, ANYTHING for almost two weeks without extreme pain. 

All of that pain would have been worth it. But now I have nothing. 

Dec 1, 2011

And now we wait...

I consider myself a pretty patient person. Painfully so sometimes. I mean, I DO work with 13 year old all day, right?

Now, I'm painfully, patiently waiting for my beta that is in 8 days.

Yesterday we transferred two beautiful 4AA embies (see this for explanation of grading). The transfer this time was much more tolerable without OHSS. I even made it the entire 20 minutes to pee this time instead of having a date with the bedpan at the 10 minute mark.

So, y'all please help remind me that I'm a patient person and I can wait until my beta. Please?