Thursday, July 30, 2009
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I went to pay my fee and didn't know you couldn't run your debit card for thousands of dollars. I had to go get a cashier's check but it was a good 45 minutes until the bank lobby opened. So my dear grandparents live close to the bank and got to witness a total meltdown. I cried so much I had mascara marks on my cleavage. I went to the bank and asked for a cashier's check for $8,883.00. The woman stared at me and I told her what it was for. She said "just for one treatment?" I told her this was only at the doctor, I still have to buy meds and pay the hospital. She told me she really hopes it works, which was sweet. I was about 60 seconds from another meltdown so I left just in time, went back and handed over the dough, and then went on to work.
The crappy part, I still don't start stimulation shots (the good stuff where I will get lots of eggies to pull out) until the 9th!! I am so ready to get going, I was hoping I could start this weekend, but no. When I do start, I will be taking 3 shots to the stomach every night for about 10 days. The date that I will be praying for egg retrieval is August 19th.
I have got to calm down!! In the next weeks I am going to go to yoga, which I can only do until the 9th. After that, I am treating myself to a massage once a week and will be attempting to spend time each evening calming my mind. My goal is also to take each step one at a time because I keep thinking towards the future, but I need to think about today.
New goal: calming down and relaxing!! If I don't find a way to get a hold of myself soon, I am going to make bald head Britney Spears beating cars with an umbrella look like the small time. Not good.
Monday, July 27, 2009
I don't know what in the cocktail of drugs I'm taking is making me exhausted, but I just woke up from a nap that started at 6:30! I missed most of the Bachelorette but at least saw that she picked Ed. I woke up in a sweaty heap and totally confused about where I was. I have my fingers and toes crossed that tomorrow morning they will tell me that we are ready to stim (unlikely though, just started Lupron on Thursday). Hubby is being such a good nurse though, out of 5 shots, I only have one bruise so far! Yay!
Sunday, July 26, 2009
I would love more than anything to go back to the days where I felt like that and really believed it! I knew it would be just fine if I couldn't have kids because I would just adopt also. Obviously, I'm not fine and this has been heartbreaking. I recall the day that my OB told me it would probably take us about 4 months to get pregnant, so I got off of birth control pills 4 months before our wedding and was thrilled when babycenter. com calculated that I would be ovulating on our honeymoon.
Oh, the lessons I've learned since then . . .
Saturday, July 25, 2009
If you know me, you are about to be in shock and awe. If you don't know me, this will be really boring and average. I was productive all day! You heard right, ALL DAY!!! You will never believe this, but I repainted my kitchen on my own. No help from handy Mike. I taped, primed, and double coated my kitchen in a gorgeous coat of new red paint. My favorite color! Mike and I wandered Home Depot drooling on kitchen cabinets. I reorganized some of the donated clothes I received for fosters and moved them down to the kids rooms. I collected to bags of trash from the upstairs living areas. I'm a disgusting slob, so I know two bags of trash sound terrible, but not so much for me.
I have to busy myself so that my heart doesn't explode from the anxiety that I'm feeling. I'm getting so scared that this won't work. I am trying to change my attitude and be confident, but it's getting tougher and tougher. And I haven't even started stims yet (if you are a non-IFer, that means injections that stimulate your ovaries. If you are a non-IFer, "IF" means infertility).
Other random thoughts I've had today:
- I am truly obsessed with Lady Gaga's "Love Game" song and video. She's a bad ass. The only sad thing is that I have young children at my work who like this song and it is incredibly disturbing to hear a sweet little one singing "I wanna take a ride on your disco stick." Yeah, gross . . .
- Does anyone watch MTV's "16 and Pregnant?" Because I'm a masochist of the worst kind, I do. I absolutely loved the teenage couple who gave their baby up for adoption. So brave and amazing! I was moved to tears a few times. When the adoptive couple came in and said they tried to have a baby but haven't been able to I thought of all of what they'd probably been through and it saddened me. The other girls, though, were awful. Dumb as hell! I'm not just saying that out of jealousy because some 16 year old idiot got knocked up by accident (using a condom takes a rocket scientist), but truly because they just act like morons. Especially a young one named Farrah. She needs a good, hard bitch slapping. If you hate yourself, here is the link to watch the finale where there is a little bit of all the dumb asses.
-On Thursday I drove by Planned Parenthood and there were all these people standing outside of it with tape over their mouths and their hands in the air praying. Come to find out they are religious protesters of Planned Parenthood. First of all, we should have all prayed that the aforementioned fertile young ladies had found a Planned Parenthood somewhere. Secondly, I wonder how many of them are foster parents? As a foster parent myself, I do not believe that you have any right to stand outside of anywhere to protest abortion if you yourself are not doing anything about it. If you are not taking care of the many unwanted children who were abused and neglected by parents who should have never been parents and attempt to deal with their needs, I think it's a little hypocritical. I know everyone is not cut out to be a foster parent, but actions speak louder than words. I guess I should say, actions speak louder than standing around with tape on your mouth. Just to be fair, I think I'll stop and ask next time. Anyhow, that was on my mind for a bit today. I'm sure this will anger and offend some of you. Sorry. I wish all people who got pregnant by accident and can't handle it would give their baby up for adoption, but that's probably not what will happen. Sad.
- I can't believe summer is almost over! I actually have had a wonderful summer and is sad it's over, but praying that it will lead to a new chapter, the best one ever, in my life. Last summer I was sad the whole time, this summer I enjoyed myself. Below you will find a photobucket slideshow for some highlights!
Friday, July 24, 2009
Question of the day: Would you ever trust a man that looked this crazy to poke you with a sharp object?
A little sweeter now! I tried to take the picture as he was doing it, but screamed and told him to stop so that I had time to close my eyes.
Nope, we're not starting a meth lab! These are the supplies for the current injections.
I am super crazy. Crying like a little toddler at the drop of a hat! Flipping out over nothing! Yesterday I fell asleep at 7:00 p.m. after crying, eating a box of Oatmeal Pies, and downing my Metformin and prenatal with a beer. It's getting serious around here!
I am so ready to get this going and super anxious for my appointment on Tuesday to see what they say and find out about what type of protocol I'll be on. The waiting is killing me!
Sad news, we will not be getting the three fosters. :( Two agencies placed them the same day so they were already placed with someone else when we were asked. Sigh . . . .
Good news, I had a wonderful dinner with hubby and my grandparents. I indulged in lots of soon to be no-no's; fish, wine, and chocolate. Yummy!
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Good news also came today! We received a call about placements from our foster agency. We will soon be housing twins and their sib. We are so happy to have kids back in the house, as our other kiddos just left! Now I can busy myself cleaning and reorganizing in the coming weeks, just waiting (and waiting and waiting and waiting) to get started on stims for IVF.
I'm sure I will speak of my fosters in future posts, so to protect their identity they will be called Thing 1, Thing 2, and Sweetiepie (I can only hope that will be true after the last month of expletives I received from the others). Being able to parent and enjoy living a family life even with our infertility struggles is such a blessing. This led me to try to turn my frown upside down by thinking of all the other things that are blessings in my life I need to be thankful for:
1. The best husband a wife could ever dream of.
2. An awesome and supportive family.
3. Fabulous friends who listen to my whining and crying and don't judge.
4. My health. Other than this garbage of a reproductive system, I am athletic and healthy!
5. My furbaby, Rocky, even though he still pees on everything in the house.
6. My job.
7. My husband's job.
8. My sense of adventure and the many vacations hubby and I take together.
9. My kiddos at work.
10. My home.
11. The fact that we can find a way to (sort of) afford IVF.
12. My online support community, couldn't make it without them.
13. My drugs (prescription people, don't get any ideas).
14. My new RE who I like so far.
15. My vehicle that always gets me from point A to point B.
16. My foster family (even in the tough times).
17. A beautiful evening and dinner on the back deck with my hubby tonight.
18. The fact that I have a good spare kidney to sell on Ebay just in case this IVF doesn't work.
I'm going to go to bed on that note and try to remember all these things in the morning!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
We have worked for months to figure out a financial plan to go through this at least twice. We have (sort of) figured it out. But it still drives me insane!! We are going to completely drain ourselves for this, I mean set ourselves back for years. But then I create arguments with myself, like "I would spend $12,000.00 on a car." So I think a car vs. a human life?? No problem, I can handle this. Reality sets in some and then there are more arguments. When you go to a car dealership and give them $12,000.00 for a car, you actually get a car. Simple, correct? When I go to the Reproductive Resource Center and give them $8500.00, the pharmacy $2500.00, and the hospital $1500.00, I might get nothing but a broken heart, empty bank account, and fat ass. Or, by some miracle that I honestly can't imagine at this point, I may get a beautiful healthy baby. I need to remember that, but in the panic I am currently in, it's hard. Plus, I've already spent $10,000.00 on treatments and procedures that didn't work.
The other thing is, this fucking pisses me off!!! (please excuse my language) People get pregnant, everyday, for FREE!!! They just have sex, and then get pregnant. I know this is simple biology, but it completely blows my mind. I cannot imagine it. That would be so amazing. Most normal people have no idea how great they have it, they can create miracles themselves. It's crazy! I have anovulation, wonky progesterone levels, and possible endometriosis and luteal phase defect. I just can't comprehend that most people just sit around, and drop out a healthy egg. Literally, it gives me grey hairs at 25 to comprehend the simple biology of 80% of human beings being able to reproduce. I don't get it.
With the weight of all these thoughts, I panicked and cried like a baby. My husband does extra work in the evenings and he was leaving and almost forced me into his work vehicle. He didn't want to leave me here because I have now officially freaked out. But, of course he has to go because we have a fucking $12,000.00 bill coming up!!!! (again, sorry with the language)
Chicken soup, unfortunately, is not hardcore enough for my soul this evening. So I binged on Taco Bell (Toxic Hell as my hubby calls it). I'm seriously considering ice cream as well. I normally only eat Taco Bell if I'm extremely drunk so it's feeling kinda wrong right now. Hopefully it will put me in some type of coma that will allow me to wake up on the right side of the bed tomorrow and start fresh!!
One quality aspect of my day is that I received a letter in the mail from my state senator. I write my senator and my representative frequently begging for support for several bills that would require all insurance companies to carry infertility coverage. He actually sent me a letter. I know this may mean that he is sick and tired of my emails, but I still appreciate it. Haven't heard anything from my state rep. I will forgive him though, seeing as how our country is in a terrible economy, we are at war, more people are unemployed and in poverty, there's a hole in the ozone layer, and people are pointing nuclear weapons in our direction, he may have some more important things to think about besides my desperate need to have funding to procreate.
I think it's important though, so I will continue with my annoying and incessant trail of emails, just to soothe my infertile soul!
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Birth control pills
Valium (I don't mind this one)
I'm going to be tacky and also let you know the estimated cost of these meds:
Yep, I'll let you absorb that one for a moment . . . It took me a few months to be okay with that!
Now, most of these include a side effect of "weight gain." Here is the before picture of my ass:
It's not a size 2 ass, but it's still a pretty nice one and I work out regularly to keep it that way. I'm going to reserve a shred of dignity and never post an after photo. So if you see me around and think to yourself "wow, how did her ass get so huge?" you can now assure yourself that it wasn't donuts, it's for a good cause. Really! I'm serious!
On a side note I will mention that I absolutely adore donuts, so maybe it might be partially the fault of donuts.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Cue the trippy music and travel back in time with me. I was driving to work and heard on the radio that Nicole Richie's first pregnancy had been confirmed. I was livid with anger because I had been trying a whopping five months with no success. Infertiles (yes, I am refering to us like "the others" on Lost) are notorious for judging fertiles and if they deserve children or not. I know what you're thinking, but don't act like you don't do it Mrs. Fertilepants "the reason I get pregnant all the time is because I don't try and you do, which is why you can't get pregnant. Have you tried hanging upside down from the ceiling fan for 15 minutes?" I was thinking great, that anorexic nut job can get pregnant and I can't? I thought anorexics were infertile? Not very nice, but jealousy is a bitch.
So here I am today, looking at her 7 month preggo belly with her second child. That hurt a little bit, but surprisingly not as much as the first time. I swore off tabloids for a period of time, it hurt, because I was so sick of the the baby stories. I was okay though, today, sort of, a little bit, kinda. I'm just proud to be in a place where it feels like a swift kick in the gut, but doesn't ruin my day. Trust me people, that is a big step.
In other news, I went shopping again today. Something I rarely ever do due to the upcoming crazy bill I will have for IVF. It was glorious! They were having a great sale on expensive jeans and I pulled them out with joy thinking what a great find. But then I stopped, because hopefully I won't fit in them soon (and not only because I am about to get fat from stim injections and the steroid, but because I will be rocking my own Nicole Richie-esque belly).
So, like Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz clicking her heels together and saying "there's no place like home, there's no place like home," I stood in the department store stating "I will be wearing maternity pants, I will be wearing maternity pants!"
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
I have been Little Miss Sunshine up until today. I'm hoping tomorrow I will return to that. I've only tried to think happy thoughts, but thinking that this two month long process might not work sucks. Thinking about the big fat check I'm going to be writing soon sucks.
But thinking about my future little baby is awesome, so I'm going to recover from the emotional shopping and eating I did today, and hopefully wake up with those happy thoughts tomorrow!
Sunday, July 12, 2009
This dream has always had the power to completely ruin my day. I know that scientifically dreams are meaningless and are not predictors of the future. But it has always bothered me.
A few weeks ago I had a dream, not a nightmare. It was after the IVF was complete and I had an ultrasound. There were two little babies, perfectly formed and healthy, floating around in my body. It was already 12 weeks and I felt good and confident. I felt the joy that I've been waiting to feel for years. I had a fabulous day that day! As soon as I woke up I told hubby all about it and felt excited for the possibilities.
Scientifically, I know this is no premonition of things to come in the future. But I'm going to treat it as a little gift from the universe to keep me going towards my dream of being a mommy! If only in dreams, I got to experience that joy for a moment.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
A. First of all, adoption is an amazing thing that I would love to do. So many families have been put together because of adoption and it is a beautiful thing. I totally get this question and why people ask. I am currently a Foster Parent and hope that one day a child will be placed in our home that will be part of our forever family.
Secondly, nobody "just" adopts. It is a process. It is an expensive process, just like ART. Someone comes to your home and analyzes everything about you. Your relationship, your childhood, your family life, your home and your finances. There is a myth out there that there are millions of healthy newborns just waiting to plucked from bad homes to adoptive families. Nope. There are many children, namely teenagers, who need to be adopted. That's not what you had in mind was it? Can you imagine how difficult it would be to put a child up for adoption? Giving your child up for adoption is not for the faint of heart, it takes only the strongest, bravest and most amazing women to be able to know they can't care for their child, give birth to them, and then place them into the hands of new parents. This is not something that happens everyday. Whether you adopt domestically or internationally, you wait, and sometimes wait and wait and wait . . . . I believe the average for most agencies we looked into was a year for most people. A year after you get done with the Home Study process and paperwork nonsense. Thank you for asking this question, because it is reasonable, but please don't suggest this to someone struggling with infertility. It is one of those questions.
Lastly, this is a personal choice. Hubby and I still have a chance at this point through IVF to make a baby together. To look at our baby and decide if she has my nose or Mike's eyes. If he has Mike's ability to do math or my ability to run far. Is that Grandpa's sense of humor? Or is that Grandma's curly hair? We still have a chance, and we are going to give it to ourselves, but if at the end of this journey we come out empty handed (not gonna happen, not gonna happen) we will be pleased to build our family through adoption.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Medical version: http://www.communitymedical.org/144.htm
My version: I am pumped full of meds so that the doctor can go in and take out as many eggs as they can get. Hubby spends more time with the Playboy and gives them a sample. My eggs and his soldiers meet in a petri dish. The play together for 5 days hoping that they turn into healthy embryos. Then 2, only 2, are put back into my body.
And then, ta da!!!, I'm pregnant. Okay, that's just wishful thinking. Then I will wait 8 excruciatingly long days to find out if my wishful thinking is correct.
HOW DID I GET HERE?? I swore, I mean crossed my heart and hoped to die SWORE, I would never do IVF. When I learned about IVF all I could think about was something from the SciFi channel and some little freaky science project baby. Oh, the imagination ran wild! The price tag on it was the nail in the coffin. $12,000.00 for a single procedure? Really? I am 25, only 2 years out of college. I don't even have a $12,000.00 car. Everything about IVF in general was a big fat HELL NO!
Flash forward to 8 months of failed oral meds and 3 failed IUI cycles (see previous post for details). I laid in my bed and accepted my fate as someone who will never have a child and spend the rest of my life in misery hoping the next will be better.
As was previously mentioned, this lifestyle got old. I fervently scoured the internet for information on adoption. Wow, was I shocked at what I found! I'll leave you hanging on with suspense as we explore that in another post . . . .
Another roadblock was hit, hard, when we found out adoption wouldn't work for us at this time. I called a therapist and began having frequent appointments where I cried and explained my feelings to a stranger. It helped a little, but not a ton. I then did one of the other things on my list of things I swore I would never do, I called the doctor and got hooked up with some happy pills. I felt like such a cheater! But it was an excellent decision, as my doctor explained, each time I have failed at becoming pregnant is a trauma. She told me it was ridiculous to think that I didn't need the drugs. She also told me that she suffered with infertility for years. I was so thankful for that appointment! On top of that, I joined a support community. It is full of amazing, wonderful, inspiring, and best of all, NORMAL, women going through IVF. They took away all the images I had in my mind of a crazy procedure like this. I was filled with real information, not nonsense that you find on the internet. And many were successful. The excitement started sinking in, that I could have a baby after all these failures!
I made my appointment with a new specialist. The last one was not awesome. He frequently asked me what my name was. I know this might be picky, but I have a standard in life that if you are going to be in my vijay, you need to know what my name is and be able to recognize my face. The first time he came in with my hubby's speciman he put it in my face and asked if that looked right. Holy shit, I'm supposed to recognize my husbands sperm? I made a mental note to explain to Mike that if we have a kid that comes out African American or Asian I swear it was a professional mistake and there were no extracurricular activities involved. Turns out the unobservant specialist didn't show me the side of the vial with the label on it. Yeah . . . .
The new specialist is amazing! She hugged me when I walked in and we had a great chat. They spent tons of time explaining everything. We met everyone involved, the IVF coordinator, the nurse, the embryologist, the business manager. It was so bizarre, after all the doubts I had about ever doing something like this, we didn't even have to go home and talk about it. We left smiling and confident and definitely ready to give this a shot!
I feel so full of hope for the first time in a really long time! I am in the very beginning stages, which for me is taking birth control pills. Birth control pills while trying to get pregnant, hmm . . . . What it is doing for me is giving my ovaries a rest before I am pumped full of the aforementioned drugs.
So here we go . . . .
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
1. Sensitivity training. Even though I know in my heart that you are just excited, it can sometimes be brutally painful to look at pictures of your uterus on Facebook or hear how you get pregnant just by looking at a (fill in the blank with your word or choice). Watching people rub their bellies or going to a dinner where the only thing people talk about is their pregnancies can lead to days of misery for someone like me, which leads me to #2 . . . .
2. 20% of people have issues with infertility. Maybe you know someone else who is not so forthcoming with this information who you care about who is also silently suffering. Most infertile people do not share this with others and that is a personal decision. But if they do, I hope I can inspire you to show support for their struggles by airing out my dirty laundry on the internet.
3. Education. I had no idea what some people have to go through to accomplish parenthood. I have learned many hard, but good lessons. There are all different ways to achieve this if you are struggling. I am a regular person. I am not OctoMom. I am not rich. I do not desire this to control what type of baby I have. I just really want to enjoy the experience of becoming a parent, but my body refuses to perform the functions necessary to get there. And also, I don't need to just relax, I have a medical issue (in case you were thinking of saying that). Most medical insurance companies do not cover this because it is not treated as a disease so maybe you can learn a little and realize there is a lot to going through infertility.
4. You may be where I am. If you are struggling with this, I want you to know that you aren't on your own. Infertility sucks, it is up and down. I have no idea what I'm doing with this IVF and hope that I can help someone else out by providing real life information about the process.
5. You might be nosy. Hey, maybe you just want to read about someone else's business! That's cool, I do it all the time. Maybe you are one of the people who have asked me 7 million times when I'm going to have kids, so here is your answer (don't worry, I forgive you).
6. Therapy. Getting it out makes me feel better!
In the end I know, you may not care at all. You may read through this and say, "I still don't care and it's not my business." That's fine too. Thanks for checking in and I hope you never go through this.
Now, you are in serious, true love and getting married! You and your fiance start making plans, meet with the OB to ask what to do, start taking vitamins and ditch birth control forever. A variety of names are picked and the room of the house that will be the nursery is chosen. When you see a pregnant woman or a little baby, you can feel the butterflies and get that little sparkle in your eye knowing that you are about to be in that same glorious situation.
Then you start trying. The trying period is wonderful, lots of you know what. But then the months start ticking by . . . wth?? You think to yourself, doesn't this happen by accident all the time? So you head back to the OB and they tell you you're young and impatient, any average person only has a 20% chance of getting pregnant a month, maybe you could try something natural, like acupuncture.
You lay on a table with needles poking out of spots of your body that you never thought possible (my forehead, my ear, what??). You think happy thoughts and listen to music that sounds like waves crashing on a beach to relax. But you still see that negative time and again. So finally the doctor agrees to humor you and see what the deal is. Lo and behold, you have infertility issues! Let the games begin!
You feel the sting of being inadequate and broken. You send your hubby in with a plastic cup and a Playboy to see if he is broken as well. You take an oral medication that makes you sweat like a whore in church (although it's winter) and get blood drawn every month for 8 months, no baby. You cry and cry and then move on to a specialist. The specialist is particularly important because now you will no longer have to go to the OB's office and stare at hundreds of pregnant women while you wait (or wait in the bathroom hiding from them so you don't have to publicly humiliate yourself with a freakout). You then pay the specialist big bucks while your hubby injects you nightly in the stomach with meds, you go in every few days to see if you are ready to make babies, then your hubby gets to once again use that fabulous plastic cup so that the doctor and wash out his little soldiers and then artificially place them inside your lady business. Romantic, right?
You try this three times, no baby. You spend days in bed crying into your pillow as friends and family celebrate their new pregnancies. You cry so much that your mascara swirls all over your face and you could become the body double for the Joker in Batman. You stay in bed so much that the only thing that makes you leave it is the fact that you need a job and there are bills to pay. You think about Darwinism, and what is really the purpose of my life? You wonder why God hates you and why druggies can have babies but you can't. You think back through your entire life and think of all the imperfect behavior you had and wonder if this is divine retribution. You pray that your husband will leave you so that you won't be responsible for him not ever having a biological child. You alienate friends and family. You feel, basically and bluntly, like a piece of crap.
But this gets old. You want to be happy again and enjoy life. But you never stop wanting to hold your child in your arms and fulfill your dream of being a parent. So you make a decision . . . . .
This has been my life experience for the past 2 years, 5 months, and 1 week. We have recently made the decision to go with the big guns, IVF. I want to share this experience with you.