My first good cry

What you are about to see may tell you more than you need to know about me. Namely, I laugh at the expense of other people. I do. I admit it. I am not ashamed of it. It’s just part of who I am. So when my husband showed me this video, I laughed so hard I cried. And then I cried some more. And then I made lemon bars.

Thanks again for all the love and support. It has propped me up in significant ways. Puppies are not here just yet, but last night I did feel two moving around in my dog’s belly. It was amazing and scary like some alien was going to burst forth from her stomach and hold my hand. Promise puppy pics when they arrive. I figure puppy love is best when shared.

dfb

PS: this one is another video I watched about 25 times today. If you like 80s stuff (Journey) and baseball (the Yankees), this is awesome. Even if you hate the 80s and baseball, this is a pretty solid parody. Go on and jam out with your bad self. I did.

Grapes In My Belly

My final pre-retrieval ultrasound went well. My lining has been glorious. My ovaries have been working hard. My blood work is on target. I now know all of the nurses at the clinic … and there are many. I’ve also seen my acupuncturist four times this week. I now have his cell phone number. It’s funny how IVF will bring strangers into your family as they all hope, we all hope, that our efforts will result in a baby.

So here are the gritty details: the doctor is hoping for eight eggs. There’s a chance it could be ten, but eight would be fabulous. Last time around I had four follicles and one was empty, so that gave us three eggs. Not good. This time we have way more follicles. It’s just that only 8-10 will be ready. There are some stragglers who won’t make it. (Did you know a ready-to-go follicle is the size of a grape?) I know that we have done everything we can to make this successful. My body is rested, a little heavier (ugh), a little more hormonally balanced. I have been at ease with everything in the process and am ready for what comes next. But, right now I am currently waffling back and forth between feeling great about how much better this cycle has been and feeling awful as we move out of the honeymoon phase and into the waiting phase of this process. I even bagged out of a BBQ today so I could stay home and watch RomComs all afternoon. I know I’m also remembering the last IVF and what happened after retrieval. I don’t want to focus on that, but it’s hard to forget such an intense emotional experience. So my goal for the next few days is to use that experience to drive me forward. To help me keep things in perspective. To remind me that life is good, and will be good.

I have my dorky meditation CD ready to go. I’ve got great books on my Kindle. Tickets to a ballgame tomorrow. Some dinner with friends. Plenty of small things to keep me busy.

Trigger comes at 8 P.M. It’s go time.

dfb

My last supper

This was it. Except mine was reheated leftovers from the night before. I had visions of my last pre-IVF meal being a hot dog with pop chips. It came to me in yoga class. The salt, the deliciousness of a good all-beef hot dog. The guiltless pleasure of pop chips. But when I got home and realized we had leftovers, I decided to dive into those instead. I hate throwing away food. And to go with my tasty reheats: two glorious classes of wine. I had previously promised myself that after a dinner party last Saturday night I would cease drinking alcohol. But then we had an amazing meal on Tuesday, and a crisp white wine was in order. So with the hubby away at guys night chomping on steak and kicking it with some high class bottles of wine, I decided to partake a bit myself. Not the best combination, reheated chinese and merlot, but it was delicious.

I lied in my previous post. Sorry. I actually inject the cetrotide today. Then I have to wait for CD1 at which time I call the doc and head in for my baseline ultrasound. Then the big meds begin. I feel both at ease and emotional about this second try. I now know that there are two outcomes: pregnancy and no-pregnancy. The first time around I expected only one. I know the routine of the meds, the sting of the needle in my ass cheek, the acne that will burst forth onto my face with the strength of ten hormonal adolescents, the weird satisfaction I get from injecting a tiny needle into my belly because it reminds me that I am stronger than I think I am. But then there are the emotions, the unknowns, the moments of grey and waiting and hoping and forward thinking. Those are the things that will drive me into the ground. But at least I know that’s coming.

So, after a fabulous last supper and an amazing last pre-IVF day (which included a 3-run walk-off home run at the baseball game I went to), I’ve decided I’m going to swing away. For you non-basebal lovers, this means I am going to step up to the plate and not worry about where I’m going to hit the ball. I’m not going to bunt. I’m not going to question. I’m going to drive the ball as far as I can and with everything I have. I have taken six months off of running, I have thrown myself into yoga and meditation, I have been drinking my mud martini twice a day (chinese herbs), going to acupuncture, visualizing myself giving birth, seeing Hubby as a father, thinking all the right things. And now, I’m going to make it happen. I’m going to swing away and come up pregnant. There, I said it.

dfb

A slight crack in the wall

The last ten days have been crazy, to say the least. Hubby and I flew across the country for a wedding, shipped our dog up north for a breeding (let’s hope at least she can get pregnant!), headed into the backcountry with seven high school seniors, and sat through a graduation ceremony. Sheesh. And into the mix was thrown yet more news of someone else’s pregnancy. What the fuck? There is something going around. There is something in the air. Women in my life are getting pregnant by mistake, with ease, and with no thought. Again, what the fuck?! I am playing by all the rules, taking care of myself, going to acupuncture, drinking nasty herbal cocktails twice daily, feeling the zen in yoga … but I can’t pregnant. So I had a pity party for myself yesterday which involved a few of the following: 1. shopping for cute outdoor accessories for our back patio, 2. eating an amazingly delicious swirl soft serve cone dipped in hard shell chocolate!, 3. having a few beers with friends, and 4. organizing a summer BBQ for next weekend.

It’s funny, just when I think I am centered and in a place of acceptance about our currently infertile situation, I become overwhelmed with it all. The grey area, the land of if, just consumes me. Do you know that feeling? I know all of this is also being compounded by the fact that we’re ramping up for our second IVF, and I’m scared shitless. I know that I have done everything in my power to set us up for success, but so much of IVF is not within my control and that’s the hard part. That’s the part that cracks my armor of self confidence. That’s the part that brings me to my knees.

To help seal up the cracks I have much to look forward to in the coming weeks. Namely, my BFF is coming to town with her boyfriend and we’ll have a glorious weekend together! There’s also baseball. Lots and lots of baseball games. I am wildly in love with the sport. Nothing like a Wednesday day game to remind me of the good things. Throw in a hot dog and some peanuts, and all is right with the world.

In other news, I loved ICLW. What a treasure to have so many new visitors to the blog and to read the stories of so many other women. Is it weird to find comfort in other womens’ struggles? To find some sense of a shared experience for this entire sucky process? So to those of you who blog and those of you who commented here, thank you. I am so grateful for finding this community of women. I’m sorry such a shit thing has brought us all together, but I do believe I am stronger because I know all of you.

dfb

A swirl of emotions

First off, I read this post and then headed over to what was posted about infertility etiquette. What a great website. What a great piece that I’d love to share with many people. Who knew it was Infertility Awareness Week? I’m aware of my own issues, and definitely have been struggling with them over the last few days. Here’s what I’m feeling:

1. Talked with the IVf coordinator who works with my doctor. She is super nice. She gave me the briefing, all of which is not new the second time around. I have this great sense of confidence in myself because I know what’s coming. My hubby knows how to give injections like a pro. I know what meds go where and when and why. But …

2. Talked with the financial lady. Again, she was super nice, but this is where my confidence and my positive outlook started to fade. I still cannot, not even a little bit, get over the upcoming cost. What an impact this will have on our life. I do wish we lived in a state that mandates coverage for IVF, but we do not. We have nothing. Not even office visits are covered, so as the financial gal rattled off the details and the numbers added up, I felt myself doubting this cycle, doubting our desire to become parents, doubting my faith in myself. It’s an awful feeling. My hubby has said we just need to embrace the cost. It is something we cannot control, but IVF is something we’re committed to one more time. But still. When all is said and done, we’ll be in close to $16k. Mix in the $14k we’ve already spent this calendar year and I feel horrible. Like make myself sick. Throw-up. Cry at random times. Horrible.

3. In the midst of all of this shit came some pretty wild news: the students at the high school where I teach voted me as the graduation speaker. My school does not invite outside speakers to graduation, rather one graduating student and one faculty member address the students and parents and friends. I got the news last Friday and at first I was in such a grey mood from previously mentioned thoughts that it didn’t really sink in. But then I saw some students who were excited and eager to hear me speak, and I thought — this is pretty fucking cool! That’s when I realized that I am hormonal without the help of meds, I am emotional as we head into IVF #2, but I cannot let this cloud every aspect of my life. I must compartmentalize all that I am feeling about my infertility, deal with those feelings, and then let the other parts of my life shine through. It is those other parts, those parts that are pretty fantastic, that will carry me during my times of doubt and dismay.

4. So it was in yoga, this evening, that I had this clarity. (ding! ding! ding! I get it why my BFF has fallen head-over-heels for yoga and dedicated much of the last decade to mastering it and teaching it.) As my teacher said — Embrace who you are. Accept where you are. I let out a HUGE sigh as I recommitted to both of those ideas. I am not good at this right now. I want to fast forward five months, maybe even just two, so I know how this all turns out. But, seeing as Doc from Back to the Future is nowhere to be found in my life, such a feat is not possible. So instead, I will continue to breathe into what I’m feeling and figure out how to let it all go …

dfb