Friday, December 26, 2008
Will write about my mini pre-Christmas 'breakdown' when I'm back home and not blogging at my in-laws. Yes, December is the cruellest month for Barren Babes as we attempt to receive these announcements with courage and grace while keeping our pain and broken hearts hidden away. Chins up. Be strong.
Friday, December 12, 2008
When I spoke with her about going on bcp for the upcoming treatment today she got a bit, well, weird. She started grilling me. Then she asked if this is what we really wanted and if I knew what I was getting myself into. Ummm, yes, Mother, that's why we've sunk tens of thousands of dollars in treatment. (Okay, I didn't actually tell her this, but one would think this would be obvious.) Then she proceeded to tell me that babies cry all the time and you have to get up at night and feed them, and was I ready for that? Jeez, my Mother is treating me like I'm 18 and trying to conceive. Yes, babies cry and wake you up but usually that's for the first four months, right? Plus, I have been waiting to hear a baby cry for six years and I will remind myself of this each time I get the honor of waking up to feed it, that is if I get the chance to have one myself.
After the call I turned to cleaning therapy and got all my frustrations out on the vacuum. Then I went to the gym and now I'm blogging. Starting to feel better, but unfortunately I was reminded that I cannot count on Mother Dearest for any emotional support. She wasn't there for me before and she won't be there for me in the future. I do love her, but unfortunately I cannot count on her. Not sure what disappoints me more, her lack of emotional support or my foolishness in thinking that maybe this time I just might be able to count on it from her.
Now I must prepare myself for the next couple of weeks at home with her this Christmas. Perhaps I should start building up the walls again to protect my feelings and definitely pack the journal.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Need I mention that I was anxious going into the examination room and had to run to the restroom. Anyway, I completely forgot that the nurse had to take the usual vitals: weight, pulse, blood pressure. Not happy with my weight situation as I've been working out for six weeks and I have not dropped any pounds -- apparently muscle weighs more than fat, so I guess it's equalizing at the moment...That's my weird logic. Pulse was fine, but then there was the blood pressure. Apparently my blood pressure was quite high. I reasoned that it was my 'white coat' anxiety.
High blood pressure runs in my family, although it's not something that I really wanted to inherit. Guess I really do take after my Mother and her side of the family. The doctor took my blood pressure before I left and it had come down, but not low enough...So, now I must find a GP (another fun thing about relocating) and see if I can get this BP lower.
Friday, November 14, 2008
The new stylist was great with the color, but the cut was scary as her English is not the best so communication was tricky. Luckily I had brought a photo from a magazine to give her an idea, so it was somewhat similar to what I wanted.
Hair styling aside, I got the usual question, "Do you have children?" Hmmm...yes, it's not my favourite question, in fact I hate it, but at least I don't breakdown when asked now. I kept my chin up and said no, but that my Darling Husband and I were trying. Then I was asked how long. I replied six years. Surprise, surprise I received 'advice' that I don't really believe works. You know the one, I know someone who was trying for 13 years and 'just got pregnant'. Yeah, right.... Then to top it all off, I received the infamous, most annoying advice ever given to any woman suffering from infertility, "Just relax!" Argghhhh!! "You're going to Hawaii in a couple of weeks, you never know what may happen while you're away! hahahah" I just smiled politely and nodded. Honestly, I just don't have the time or patience to deal with people who have no understanding of the medical reasons behind infertility. Now I need to find myself a gay male hair stylist...
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
So, I picked up the phone and called the number on the clinic's website to set up an appointment as a new patient. I was put through to the person that coordinates new patients. Unfortunately, I did not get to speak to a 'live' person and was put through to voice mail. I hate voice mail and answering machines, but I did leave a message stating my name and phone number three times.
It's been almost two hours and I haven't heard from this person. Have I mentioned that it drives me nuts when people don't return phone calls? After dumping my frustrations on Darling Husband, he suggested that the person probably wasn't at work today and they'll phone me tomorrow. Well, I'll wait until tomorrow and I'll try phoning again. This is the part that I hate most of all about relocating: trying to find new doctors and/or specialists. Guess I have to be stronger and more patient...But it is frustrating when today I am ready to try again...I want to get the ball rolling...I want to set up an appointment.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
The Peter Campbell character initially was repulsed by the idea of adoption, but his wife pointed out that one can love a baby that is not genetically related to you. His mother's reaction to adoption was to threaten to cut him out of her will. Gee, I had no idea that adoption was not widely accepted back in the early 1960s.
On the flip side, it was funny to hear Peter Campbell's brother say that he and his wife 'hoped to become one of those childless couples that everyone invites over for dinner.'
Here's hoping that the Mad Men writers continue to feature how these characters cope with the challenge of infertility.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
One of the more difficult aspects of moving to a new city is finding new doctors. I especially need to find a new acupuncurist as this relocation was so stressful on myself that I completely missed a 'cycle' in August....after dropping cash on a handful of pregnancy tests. Need to find a GP and I'm thinking about finding an RE as well. Not sure in which order I should do that one. DH and I have been thinking about trying IVF. I really don't know if I want to finally throw in the towel with ART. A big birthday is fast approaching and I'm not sure how the ART community treats women over a certain age. Funny enough, the older I get the stronger and more confident I become. I feel more capable of being a mother now than when I was in my twenties. If only my ovaries would cooperate!!
Friday, September 26, 2008
You see, our Truly-Fertile-Friends are expecting their third child. That means three children in three years. And, yes, they are Catholic. Do married Catholics really practice this no-birth-control thing down to the letter? Seriously, this couple is not 'rolling in the dough' -- at least from our perspective. So, why do they keep having children? The world knows they can procreate.
Yes, I am on the jealous side. Although I was more jealous with their first child as it was born just a few months before my 'ectopic' pregnancy was due. (It was like daggers through my heart when I saw the baby for the first time at a dinner party -- really had to fight the tears and put on a smile.) With their second child I was a bit sad, but not devastated. Now with their third, I feel nothing, although I was 'gob smacked'. Shocked. Three children in three years.
My big question is: why are some people 'blessed' with seemingly boundless fertility and tons of kids, and others can't even have one? Why? My only answer is that life is difficult and far from fair.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Thankfully, this big change in our lives has taken my mind off of the recent cover of a certain gossip rag with 'you know who' and the twins. Although I have read on a gossip blog that AJ has denied using IVF...yeah, and most severely underweight women conceive twins easily. Grrrr! She is just part of the Hollywood Stroller Brigade (eg. Julia Roberts, JLo, etc.) with twins who deny use of IVF. There is nothing wrong with using IVF, and 'stars' who use it to get pregnant should not be ashamed. Are we that use fertility treatments abnormal? No, I think we're more of the 'norm' today as more women delay starting families.
Anyway, with this upcoming move I've started thinking about maybe...trying fertility treatments again. Perhaps it's because there will be new doctors who may have other opinions/options, or maybe it's because of the acupuncture -- which has made me feel brave, strong and regulated my cycles. And so it continues. Just wish I would have a 'miracle' surprise without injections and without a medical team of doctors and nurses.
Monday, July 14, 2008
What is really sickening is the amount of money that these magazines are offering the Pitts just to put these babies on the cover. Why? Because people buy these magazines in droves. Why? I really have no idea. These are babies plain and simple and that is all. Their claim to fame is that they were born to famous parents.
Let's all stop this Hollywood-baby-mania by boycotting all magazines that feature photographs of babies and/or toddlers on their covers. Let's refuse to believe that pregnancy is glamorous, and having a baby is the latest 'fad' and 'accessory', because this is what the gossip mags are selling.
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Fertility Treatment In Developing Countries; A Cycle Of IVF For Less Than $200
ScienceDaily (2008-07-09) -- After 30 years of IVF, the rewards of treatment are still largely confined to industrialized countries and those who can afford it. Now, a Special Task Force of European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology has set about the immeasurable task of making fertility treatment more accessible to developing countries through a program of pilot projects, professional awareness and involvement of government and non-governmental agencies. ... > read full article
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Must confess that for the past four or five years whenever I go to a bookstore I usually find myself drawn to the 'Women's Health' shelves...more specifically the 'Inferfility' section. Most of the books I have purchased over the years are now in a box in my closet, but I keep looking for hope in the pages of the latest book on the topic of overcoming infertility. This time I just spent a couple of minutes seeing if there are any new editions to the shelf and then I wandered away. Perhaps my mind is just not into reading another book about infertility.
After grabbing a copy of 'Chasing Harry Winston' by Lauren Weisberger -- because I need a light, frothy novel after reading a Janis Joplin biography -- I went to check the magazines for the latest Conceive issue. I've been buying this magazine since I discovered it about three years ago, and so I added a copy to the other magazines I was about to purchase. Then I had a change of heart. Did I really want a magazine centered on getting pregnant? So, I didn't buy it. I felt really proud of myself at the time and told Hubby about my decision. He commended me and reminded me that maybe it was time to 'move on'. Yes, I suppose it is time to 'move on'...but why am I now obsessed with buying that issue of Conceive?
Monday, June 2, 2008
So much estrogen packed into one movie theater early in the morning...The theater was packed full of women so it was no wonder that DH was desperate for java. We arrived early and sat at the end of a row. For some bizarre reason I am a magnet for pregnant women. Yes, two pregnant women sat beside me. What could I do? The movie was about to begin in five minutes and seats were filling up fast. I squeezed DH's hand as the second of the pregnant bellies passed by me and he told me to relax and then reminded me that the movie would soon begin.
Loved the movie not only for the story, but really for the amazing fashion and product placements. It was like one long fashion advertisement. Oh, and that apartment they bought...where did they find the room to make that huge clothes closet? Yes, the closet that every woman salivates over. The closet that only exists in my dreams. Ahhhh. I'd move to Manhattan in a heartbeat if I could afford to live in that apartment.
My only complaint regarding the movie is Charlotte's miraculous pregnancy. Didn't her doctor tell her that she only had a 5-10% chance of conceiving? (Hmmm, or am I confusing her reproductively-challenged life with my own?) It's annoying that they are perpetuating the myth that barren women can conceive once they adopt a child. Is this a scientific fact that has been studied? No, it's just a tidy way to give a character a 'happy-ending'. Personally, I think they should have left Charlotte with her beautiful adopted daughter and added drama by giving her a crisis of faith by either: having her husband come-out as gay or having him suffer from a fatal disease. Thank God that Samantha, and hopefully Carrie, will never have children. Some lives are meant to be 'R' rated, i.e. Adult Only.
P.S. We actually saw someone bringing a girl about ten into the theater. What kind of mother would do that? Has she only seen the TBS version? I actually miss the HBO sexed-up series....maybe I'll have to breakdown and buy it.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
Darling Husband and I spent most of the day relaxing by the resort pool...which was full of families with young children. Guess they decided to make a weekend adventure out of Mother's Day. Surprisingly it was most helpful to DH and I because the majority of the children were loud and unruly. One does not yearn after rude children.
Dinner that evening was a bit of a nightmare. We arrived at the restaurant around 7pm, thinking that this would be late for dining with small children, but we were mistaken. We were surrounded by tables of small children. They were everywhere. When I asked if there was a quiet table, I was told no unless we wanted to sit in the bar area -- which was a windowless room featuring a giant screen television. We decided to tough it out...with a bottle of red wine to ease the pain.
Another weird thing was that as soon as we were seated at the restaurant I was asked if I had children. Hmmm, let's see: I am there alone with my husband on Mother's Day....isn't it safe to assume that I do not have children? When I curtly replied that I did NOT have any children, I was wished a Happy Mother's Day. When did Mother's Day become a big holiday? Perhaps it's a Marriott thing, I don't know, but DH and I found it bizarre. Guess we should have stayed in our room and ordered room service. Let's just say that the bottle of wine helped me survive that meal.
Friday, May 9, 2008
The coincidence of miscarrying on Mother's Day weekend is never lost, and each year I am constantly reminded of the grief and pain of that experience. Hopefully the sadness will subside with each passing year. Perhaps what really strikes me is that if I hadn't miscarried I too might be celebrating.
The bright side of this weekend is that Darling Husband has a conference out of town at a resort and I am going along with him. So, I will phone my Mother on Sunday, but after that I will hang out by the pool and get pampered at the spa. Maybe I'll even get wild and have a martini.
Yes, Mother's Day sucks sometimes, but sometimes you have to kick back and enjoy life. I'm taking back Mother's Day this year for myself and celebrating the joy of being alive. No one is going to make me feel crappy for not giving birth or raising a child, because I'm not going to let it happen.
Like many women, I love going to get my hair done. I totally unload on my 'hair god' and he knows all about my fertility challenged life, not to mention that I always feel great with updated color, new cut, and styled hair. So, I was surprised when I arrived, sat in the chair and happened to notice the baby in a 'carrier' at the feet of the lady next to me getting her hair cut. Happily, I did not get emotional or teary-eyed. But, I was a bit annoyed because it took something away from my salon experience. Everyone spoke in hushed tones so as not to disturb the baby, thus making it next to impossible to chat and giggle with my 'hair god'. Then it was the 'baby talk'. I'm not going to get into it, but really annoying when you're in a very adult place. Not even the soothing new age music can keep a baby from crying.
Personally, going to a hair salon is a relaxing and enjoyable time away from my life, and having the baby there did not make for a wonderful experience. It makes me wonder why the mother felt the need to bring the baby. She could have waited for the weekend when her husband was home, left the baby with him, and then she could have some time for herself...at least, that is what I would do. Makes me wish there could be 'adult only' places. Hmmmm, wonder if there are any licensed hair salons that serve alcohol...for patrons only of course. Tipsy stylists could be dangerous, and make for some crazy hair styles.
Monday, April 28, 2008
When the disappointment strikes I comfort myself by indulging in sushi and alcohol, and so Darling Husband and I went out for sushi and I had a yummy lychee martini. We also went to see a couple of live bands. Nothing like raw fish, booze, and live music to boost one's spirits.
Must comment that I actually encountered a very pregnant belly (wearing a tight shirt...why do women do this?) at the music venue. I totally was not expecting to see a huge pregnant belly and felt a sinking feeling in my tummy when I saw her. But, what really made me happy was that Darling Husband instinctively knew I would be affected by this sight and reached out and put his arm around me and rubbed my back. It was his kind and empathetic action that prevented me from emotionally reacting.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Another 'Dallas' character with fertility issues was Pam who suffered from a couple of miscarriages. But then -- and I can't remember the specifics -- she was either told that she could not carry a baby to term, and/or she was the carrier of a genetic disease.
If you do happen to catch these episodes from the 70s, please note the way that infertility is portrayed as a type of 'hysteria' that affects the mental health of the 'afflicted' character. I wonder if this was really how society viewed the plight of Barren Babes just 30 years ago.
Monday, April 21, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
It's been two weeks since my last appointment and hopefully this cycle will be more 'normal' than my last few: either too long or too short. I started going to regulate my cycles, but I've become addicted to the peaceful feeling that I get after an acupuncture treatment. It's a sense of 'balance' and that everything in life feels okay. It feels like I can face any adversity and all will be well.
Because I get that total sense of peace and relaxation after an acupuncture treatment, I try to organize and have household work finished before the appointment and always plan ahead and have leftovers ready to re-heat for dinner. Darling Husband doesn't mind too much because he knows I will be totally chilled-out tonight.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
While on the high school alumni page I noticed the latest phenomenon on Facebook, namely people posting a photo of their baby where the mother's face should be. I understand people posting a photo of their family with parents included, or even the mother/father holding the baby. But, why put your baby's face where your face should be? People go on Facebook to keep in touch with friends and reconnect with old friends -- even frenemies. No, I do not want to see a picture of your baby on your Facebook page. If you want to post photos of your baby then bury them in the photo album section where those who are really interested can actually see them. What is with all the Mommy stuff on Facebook? Is it not supposed to be about you?
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
I stopped and blurted: "Oh, acupuncture.." while grabbing a pamphlet to take home and that is when our conversation began. She asked if I had tried acupuncture and then told me that she started going last year to balance her cycles as she and her husband had been trying to conceive for over two years. Then I told her that I had started going to acupuncture for the very same reason and that Darling Husband and I were having difficulty conceiving. It actually was wonderful talking to her and hearing about all the frustration she went through; all the stupid advice people give you (eg. go on a cruise or have a margarita) and the rude questioning about why you don't have a baby. She admitted that for the first four months of her pregnancy she didn't want to talk about it because she was in shock that she actually was pregnant.
Before leaving I asked her due date and wished her well knowing she had travelled down the same path as me and was now veering onto another course that I have yet to find the directions for...and maybe never will.
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
He replied that he had not heard of any news, but he discovered that a former workmate and his wife had a baby from checking out the workmate's Facebook page. (I am soooooo hating Facebook these days as people my age are using it as a tool to show pregnant bellies and track their pregnancy, but this may be another post.) Then he asked what date I wanted to move back home because he is really hating his job and misses old friends, and wants to start his own consulting company where he has more contacts.
Maybe I was ready to handle the baby thing, but not at the same time as the whole 'pick-up and move' thing. Just thinking about his old workmate and wife 'getting' my dream made me slide down the slippery slopes of sadness. All I could think was 'where is my fairytale happy ending?' let alone when to give notice at our apartment, and whether to pay people to pack our things -- I want to and Darling Husband does not. Ughhhhh! Shed a few tears and had my hour or two of sadness. Still, I want to know where is my 'fairtale' ending? This real life is difficult.
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
Friday, March 28, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Friday, March 21, 2008
A year later I am beginning to realize that it's okay not to get pregnant. It's okay if I don't give birth. The big surprise I'm discovering within myself is that it's okay not to be a mother.
All my life I thought it was the most natural thing to get pregnant and give birth. Unfortunately, infertility robs any piece of natural order out of motherhood. Growing up we are led to believe that pregnancy, giving birth, and becoming a mother is the ultimate thing a woman can do in her lifetime. Now I am beginning to realize that maybe it is not. It's okay not to pin that motherhood star on your wagon. I have finally discovered that I really should not base my self-worth on my ability to conceive and bear a child. It's okay not to get pregnant. It's okay if I don't give birth. It's okay not to be a mother.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
The lure of open houses is that it satisfies a certain curiosity about how your 'neighbors' live -- especially how they decorate their homes. We saw a couple of gorgeous town houses. Ironically, we came across baby rooms in both. There must be something in our neighborhood that makes people want to flee once they have babies. I have noticed lots of baby carriages but nary an older toddler. Guess they're spooked to have children grow up in an urban environment.
Back to the baby rooms and baby paraphernilia. I must admit that it really did not bother me. In the recent past it would have provoked many emotions, from sadness to envy, perhaps even feelings of being incomplete or being inadequate as a woman. Yes, sometimes I did feel inadequate. You know the feeling: why can't I have this baby room and fill it with a baby? But, honestly, last Sunday I didn't have those emotions when seeing the cradles; I just thought how cute the items were and that was it! Darling Husband and I spoke more about setting up a home office where the nursery was. It wasn't until later that I realized that I had not reacted emotionally to all the baby stuff. Maybe the longing is on its deathbed, but I am so happy it's no longer consuming me.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
An infertility diagnosis can sometimes spell disaster for a relationship. We try so hard to get pregnant and have sex scheduled to coincide with peak times around ovulation that we lose sight of the romance. Now is the time to toss aside the baby-making focus and look at your relationship with warmth and romance. Let's bring back that loving feeling and nurture the intimacy that has grown through the infertility struggle. Life's a journey and it's amazing to have someone to share it with, through the laughs and the tears. OMG!! Sorry, I just realized how sugary that sounds. Perhaps I'm just caught up in the spirit of the day.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Apart from the herbs, I love the whole acupuncture thing. There was a tiny amount of pain when he placed the needles, but then a certain amount of warmth if that makes any sense at all. Loved the relaxing asian music playing, but was a tad annoyed at how chatty my acupuncturist is. Afterwards I was incredibly relaxed and mellow and I had the most restful sleep I have had in a long time. Thank God my next appointment is tomorrow because I'm feeling very much like the poster-child of PMS today.
Friday, January 25, 2008
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Monday, January 14, 2008
The box also contains a folder of newspaper clippings of articles regarding, what else but infertility and adoption. It used to contain clippings about decorating nurseries, but I've tossed those. I've also tossed a copy of the magazine 'You're Pregnant!', which I bought when I was about 6 weeks pregnant and before 'it' stopped growing. That magazine just mocked me and my single follicle everytime I opened the box, so out it went. (Secret: sometimes at magazine stands I cover up the pregnancy mags with other periodicals because I can't stand to look at them.)
My box is hidden away in the closet much like my status as a barren babe is to most people we know -- aside from close family and very close friends (mine...hubby finally told his parents my barren babe status at Christmas). I never went as far as buying baby clothes, but we have names picked. The names are kept in my heart and mind, although I've never told anyone or been really possessive about our choices. Alright, I was saddened when a friend named her son the name we had chosen, but who am I to protest since the odds of my husband and I ever using it fades with time.
We also have drawers containing prenatal vitamins, zinc, syringes, some left over medication for IUI in the refrigerator, and a container of used needles underneath the bathroom sink. As of today we are at an impasse as to when to discard these last few items because then it really does signal that we are ending this part of our journey. In my heart I realize this part of the adventure is over, yet I can't actually bring myself to let go of these items.
The article ends with the couple pursuing adoption in China, which has the guarantee of a child at the outcome instead of the heartwrenching uncertainty of fertility treatments. We are still at the crossroads on this decision. Family and close friends suggest adoption, and yet that is not an easly decision, but the box remains in our closet.