Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Just a Few More Days

Just a few more days and Christmas will be over for another year. It has been incredibly difficult this year and I have been full of sadness this past week.

We went for our first visit with our adoption practitioner, who is wonderful, on a snowy morning last week. Of course, I cried going over my history and losses, but the most difficult part was when she warned us that there aren't that many babies put up for adoption in our province. In fact, it's gone down considerably in the past five to ten years. She did tell us there are other avenues to take such as international adoption or adopting from the Children's Aid Society. Then she gave us piles of forms and information an inch thick. I am feeling overwhelmed with sadness as Christmas approaches. The adoption process feels like it is moving further from our grasp the more we proceed.

DH and I avoided an open house on Sunday at a couple's home whom we knew from when we were dating; DH was friend's with the wife and I am not keen on her since she freaked out that we were going to choose the same wedding date as they did 8yrs ago, so we chose the the week after and this couple chose to skip our wedding and go on their honeymoon instead, oh, and they also married in a church that neither attended just because it 'looked good'. They have two children and wrote a sugary newsletter for Christmas. Why do people like this have children easily? Why?

I will be so happy when Christmas is over.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Time Again

It's Christmas time again. I was over-the-top excited at the end of November when one local radio station began to play Christmas music 24/7 and I put up our new Christmas tree. But, the blues is starting to creep in. Perhaps it's the endless nights and lack of sunshine, or maybe it's the way the holiday cheer seems to highlight who or what is missing from one's life, but Christmas can be tragic, sad, and happy all at once. There's a radio promo from a new-mum excited about her baby's first Christmas that started it. Then I went shopping at the mall and was taken aback by all the little babies in carriages and strollers. The craziest part is hearing Christmas music with references to baby Jesus and I get emotional with the baby references. It's my pity-party this Christmas because I should have had a baby at this point, but no one is paying any attention to this but me.

On the adoption front we are meeting with our adoption practitioner tomorrow as we are about to start the home study. Hope all goes well. We attended an information session at an international adoption agency about three weeks ago. Not sure if this is the route we are to take, but hopefully our practitioner can offer words of advice. We've also signed up for the PRIDE course that starts this winter. I am a bit scared by the uncertainty of adoption. We are doing all we can in our power, but this does not guarantee we will be parents in a year or two and the uncertainty may drive me crazy.

Since this is our first winter with snow in five years I've been obsessive about shoveling the front steps and driveway. A couple of weeks ago, as I was sprinkling some ice melt stuff on the driveway, our next door neighbor came over and introduced herself. She mentioned how we must find the house so big since it's just the two of us. Well, I decided I was going to upfront and honest, so I told her that we are hoping to adopt. Her face lit up and she exclaimed that her two teenage children are adopted (from Russia) and that another family two houses down have two adopted teenage daughters from China. We had a big chat about adoption and I met her son who gave me his two cents on being adopted. Guess fate meant for us to buy this house on this street.

Friday, November 12, 2010

My In-Between Life

The past couple of weeks since we moved have been crazy. We still haven't unpacked all the moving boxes as the movers only unpacked our china and dishes, and so we are living in-between boxes -- empty and full. In-between feeling settled in a home and living in a new house. It's ours, but it doesn't feel like 'home' yet, if that makes any sense.

Strangely, this in-between feeling is familiar. It's the world DH and I have been living in since we first started trying to conceive eight years ago. We want to be a family with children, and everyone around us is having children, but we're not there yet. Our married life has been about living on the periphery of what our friends/family have achieved, and almost getting it but having it 'snatched' away with each pregnancy loss.

As we enter the world of adoption I think this in-between life will continue until we have the adoption papers signed. There is a multitude of tasks we must check off before that point and it feels like we're about to climb Mt. Everest.

The workshop we attended last weekend opened our eyes to just how 'open' an adoption can be (bit scary for newbies). We also realized how far behind we were compared to most of the couples in attendance: the majority have completed their home studies and PRIDE training. I had to ask the couple we were seated with what PRIDE training is. It stands for Parent Resources for Information, Development and Education, and the province of Ontario requires this training for all adoptive parents before the home study can be signed off by the adoption practitioner/social worker. Guess we need to find an adoption practitioner/social worker, but we've got an information session at an international adoption agency this week so maybe they'll be able to recommend someone.

Looks like we'll keep living this in-between life of unpacking and getting settled as we begin our adoption journey. Hope we can get unpacked and make our house feel like a home before the home study starts.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Lily Allen

I survived October! Thank God it's over. I'm still unpacking boxes and probably will be for the next three weeks. Looking forward to the open-adoption workshop this Saturday -- guess I should think of some questions.

Yesterday, I was saddened to read online about singer Lily Allen's miscarriage at six months (is it a miscarriage that late or a stillbirth?), and then the article referred to her previous miscarriage that ocurred just over two years ago. Oh, God...I had a meltdown after reading about her tragic loss as it brought back a wave of memories of my own miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies. I hope that people will become more open about miscarriages and realize that it's not a taboo subject to be avoided. If more women were open about miscarriage then it would take away the feelings of isolation and -- at least this is how I felt -- failure. A month ago I believe that Giuliana Rancic came forward with her miscarriage story on 'The View' (I missed it...it was my due date) and I applaud her for her candidness. Here's a great story 'The Lonely Pain of Miscarriage' from The Guardian by Cathryn Scott. Nothing is lonelier than miscarriage.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Help Me Make It Through October

It's October 28th and I thought I had made it through October (moving month) somewhat unscathed. Earlier in the month I had mini-meltdowns around what would've been my due date. I would lock myself in the bathroom and have a quick cry like Holly Hunter's character in the movie 'Broadcast News', and then feel better for a little while. But, moving in the middle of all this emotional stuff is tough, and suppressing feelings is not healthy.

Also added to this mix is our wedding anniversary (8 years) and my birthday, plus a diagnosis of eustachian tube dysfunction (not deadly, just a constant earache) and a little bladder infection as a cherry on top. I was on so much medication when the movers packed our stuff that I really felt no stress...or much of anything for that matter. We spent a few days at a bed and breakfast before flying back to Canada, and then the last four nights we have camped out at our new place sleeping on an air mattress. Needless to say we were ecstatic to get our furniture and stuff today.

The house doesn't quite feel like a home with all the boxes piled around our furniture, but I was so excited after the movers left. I was busily trying to put stuff in its place later in the afternoon (as my parents are coming over tomorrow for my birthday) when DH pulled me aside and said he had something to tell me. He looked uncomfortable and grim, so I asked who was pregnant. 'Not pregnant, but something else," he replied. Oh...one of his contractors at work (someone he deals with frequently over the phone/email) just had a baby...well, his wife had one...three weeks ago....around the time of what would have been my due date. Yes, I had a meltdown. A major meltdown. Why did he have to tell me the night before my birthday. I love DH, but his timing sucks...he then admitted that he forgot it's my birthday tomorrow....He knows, but he just forgot when he told me the baby news...then he admitted how difficult it is to hear this guy go on and on about a new baby. Sometimes people are self-involved and don't have a clue how to put two and two together and figure out that maybe DH and I have had problems conceiving, and just assume that we don't want children.

Oh, God, now 'Up' is on television. Must have another good cry before my head hits the pillow. Here's hoping I make it through the next few days until we say goodbye to another October.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Closing Day Approaches

I don't know what I was thinking when we decided to buy a house in July. The plan was to go and check out houses and go back at Christmas to look again. But, we found one we both loved and decided to be crazy and buy it. Don't get me wrong, I still love it and I am excited with the thought of living there, but we have had a lot of stuff to deal with this year: a miscarriage in February and our last FET in June.

This month has been difficult for me as (what would have been) my due date fast approaches. Thoughts about being pregnant and what might have been keep surfacing and I find myself tearing up at odd times. I try not to cry in DH's presence and end up in the bathroom wiping tears with toilet paper. DH has been stressed dealing with moving companies, as well as the bank back in Canada regarding our mortgage, so I don't want to burden him with my sadness. Once I am past the first couple of weeks in October I will be better, or at least that is what I keep telling myself.

What has helped me lately is the cathartic process of decluttering -- getting rid of stuff/junk we do not need. It really is a freeing process, and one which DH had difficulty with. After a couple of disagreements/fights, he agreed to part with an Ikea bookcase he's had for 20 years (and it did show its age) as well as photography magazines dating back to 1987. He finally realized that it really is just stuff, and that we have to get rid of the old stuff in order to begin again. I have also taken some of the books I have collected about optimizing fertility and trying to get pregnant to a second-hand bookstore -- no sense moving those again, especially the Taking Charge of Your Ferility book. A new beginning awaits us.

Once I pass the due date I will feel better (this is my new mantra), but why does moving thousands of miles have to be so difficult and stressful? We will get through this. Once we have moved, and our stuff has arrived safely, then I will allow myself a good cry. Until that time I must be strong and get through this.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

HRT Rocks

It will be two weeks tomorrow since my appointment with the gynecologist. The appointment itself got off to a rocky start when I had to wait for an hour to see the doctor, who excused her tardiness by exclaiming that "she's had all these pregnant women today!" Oh, boy. Yep, the tears started and I had a meltdown when I had to give her my history of prior lost pregnancies because it never gets easier talking about them -- especially after spending 45 minutes surrounded by pregnant bellies.

The doctor was skeptical that I am in menopause and thinks that all the lupron has suppressed my ovaries from functioning properly. I explained that the first RE I saw in Canada predicted that I would begin menopause in my early forties due to my high FSH. She was hesitant about prescribing hormones, but I told her I was through with trying to conceive, and I pleaded my case about hot flashes, mood swings, belly weight gain, insomnia, and the stuff nobody talks about: low libido and vaginal dryness. I'm only 41 and I'm not ready for all this stuff. When I told her about being on estrogen patches during the embryo transfer protocol and how amazing I felt, she chuckled and said, "of course you did! You were on estrogen!" She told me she could write me a prescription for a low-dose patch and that I would also have to go on a low-dose progesterone so my lining wouldn't build up too much.

Since it has been two years since my last pap smear I also had one of those. In the past I have suffered through some horrible ones and was surprised at how pain free this one was and complimented the doctor who told me it's probably because of all the fertility treatments I've had. Guess that's a hidden benefit.

The doctor was okay, but since I'm moving I don't have time to find another one. Plus, I'll have to find one back in Canada (hopefully I'll be able to get a family doctor first). I will definitely look for a doctor fresh out of med school since my current GP graduated three years ago and she's awesome. Plus, when I mentioned to the gynecologist (50ish) about pursuing adoption she asked what country was I looking at? I told her I was looking into private adoption in Canada and she seemed surprised, whereas my family doctor had told me that she had helped a handful of patients adopt.

The hormone replacement therapy (HRT) has been wonderful. I feel like myself again. No more PMS-like mood swings and the libido is back. The only thing it doesn't quite solve (so far) are hot flashes, which I still get although not as frequently and not as severe. I am paranoid about breast cancer so I'm checking everyday. Maybe I'm being too paranoid, but I noticed a rash/chafing around my nipple and I'm not sure if this is abnormal or from exercising.

I feel normal and have energy again. For the next couple of months I'm really going to need that energy to get me through our move across the continent.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

TTFN Aunt Flo

Aunt Flo is about a month overdue. Usually I dread the monthly visits, but now I long for the arrival.

I tried a home pregnancy test two weeks ago (ok, I was really optimistic for a week before that) and it was a big fat negative. Then I began noticing these strange hot flashes that would randomly occur during the day and some nights I would wake up in a sweat. I mentioned this to my acupuncturist and she advised me to make an appointment with my doctor as it might be a change in hormones. Oh, boy.

A week ago today I went to my doctor and told her my story; the whole story of the embryo transfers and the pregnancy losses -- that's when I had a mini meltdown and shed a couple of tears. She asked if we were going to continue with the fertility treatment and I said that was it. I told her we are looking into adoption and she was really supportive. She also told me that she has helped five of her patients adopt. Guess I never thought about doctors acting as liaison between patients want to adopt and patients who want to give up their baby for adoption. I must remember this when we move back to Canada.

She told me she wanted bloodwork drawn to see if I might be pregnant or if my hormones are crazy, and if I might be going into early menopause. Yikes. I replied that if I was going into early menopause then I wanted hormone replacement. So, I got the bloodwork drawn and the results came back: my estrogen is low and my FSH is 53! Agggh! I'm only 41! Yes, I am in early menopause. Oh, boy. Luckily I had an appointment for acupuncture later that day and that calmed me down. My acupuncturist pointed out through my tears that at least I have taken action and I am doing something about it.

I made an appointment with a gynecologist (who my doctor referred me to) for this Thursday. Hopefully she will tell me all about early menopause and hormone replacement therapy because I am freaked out about the negative impact of low estrogen on my body. So, I guess this may be good bye for Aunt Flo and me.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Unwanted Advice

This morning I went to get the hair refreshed with more highlights and a cut. My stylist is an amazing colorist, her cutting and styling are okay, but her advice and comments on my life are unwanted.

While I was sitting in the chair with foil sprouting out of my head like a giant sprocket, I told her about DH and I moving back to Canada and the house we just bought (thought I'd warn her that I won't be a client in a few months). She didn't understand why we bought a four bedroom house and I explained that three bedroom homes are difficult to find in the neighborhood we looked at (her English is not the best). I decided to mention that we're thinking about adopting and that is one of our reasons for moving back to Canada. Then she gave me a quizzical look and asked, "You want to adopt? Really? How old are you?" Gulp. I told her my age (41), and she told me I was too old to adopt (gee, as if I hadn't already thought of that) and that I wouldn't want a child when I should be thinking of retirement (gee, how supportive!). I was speechless and I bit my tongue...then I asked her how old she was when she had her youngest: 39. It was then that I realized that she was transferring some of her feelings about having a teenager, and thinking about retirement, onto myself and my situation.

The rest of my time in the chair was quiet because I really did not want to hear anymore of her unwanted advice. Just because someone gives you advice does not mean that you must believe it, or follow it. I think I'll follow my own path and that suits me just fine.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Back Home

We landed back home last Monday and it has taken me a week to rest from those ten days away. The first weekend away was crazy as we saw about 16 houses in two days. I met an old friend for dinner that first Saturday night and chilled out over a Tom Collins while catching up with gossip. She happens to be single and childfree at the moment, although I tried my best to set her up with DH's good friend as they met us after dinner for drinks. No luck.

By the end of Sunday afternoon we had seen homes in a funky neighborhood close to downtown where we had both lived separately and together, and in the suburb where he had bought our first home together. We were torn between a suburban home and a semi-detached house close to downtown, so we decided to check out the open house at the semi we had seen Saturday. When we arrived the realtor told us it had been conditionally sold the day before. Our decision had been made for us.

We made an offer the next night on the suburban place, and after some back and forth, they accepted the negotiated offer. It's a typical four bedroom house built in the late 90s, with a bonus loft over the garage. DH was ecstatic to discover the homeowners want to leave us their pool table that's situated in the loft -- me, not so much, but it makes him happy. For me, it was the only house we saw that felt like home. The backyard is small but private thanks to hedges and trees, and there's an oak tree in the front (DH's favourite). It's on a quiet crescent in a great neighborhood, where we had initially wanted to buy eight years ago but there had been no homes for sale at the time. The best part is that it's a ten minute walk away from my sister and her family. I've already told my niece and nephew they can come over for lunch, or drop in after school, as it's close to their school thanks to a path through a little park.

The closing date is September 30, which is around the time the baby would have been due. I totally forgot about that when we were picking dates, but then it hit me several days afterward when I was reading 'Firefly Lane' by Kristin Hannah. It's a light read and I was blindsided by a character's sudden miscarriage with major blood loss, and I had a mini-meltdown. All the sad, painful memories came flooding back. I then thought about how far along I would be have been in July and when the baby would be due in early October.

Instead of giving birth to a baby I will be giving birth to a four bedroom, three bath home. Instead of buying a crib, stroller, baby-stuff we will be buying appliances, paint, tile for the laundry room, and harwood flooring for upstairs. I will anxiously await the workmen to install hardwood on the staircase, while each night I will be exhausted from painting and decorating instead of feedings and changing diapers. Now I am glad the closing is around the due date because we will be busy starting this new exciting phase in our married life. A new beginning.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Homeward Bound

At this moment I should be packing my suitcase, but I can't stay in one spot for more than two minutes, meanwhile our bed is piled with clothes that I need to edit. We are flying home to Canada tomorrow for a visit. DH has a meeting next week at the Canadian office and I thought I'd go along to visit my family.

We will also be looking at houses this weekend with realtors (one downtown and one in the suburbs). I told DH last weekend that my heart wants to move back to Canada so we can seriously look into adoption. He has yet to receive a written offer from the other company, so he really doesn't know how to approach them about declining since the person who offered it to him is in another continent for a month.

This interest in adoption is influencing our choice of homes. Three weeks ago we were looking for a cool townhouse in a funky neighborhood close to downtown, but now I'm throwing a wrench into it by insisting on a backyard. I need a garden. Unfortunately there aren't many homes close to downtown with backyards (that are within our budget) on the market right now, and so we've had to cast the net out to the suburbs.

Today I am excited about the future and the possibility of adoption. I realize that my age (a youthful 41) may be a drawback, but it's now or never time. Now I must decide which clothes to pack. Wish me luck!

Friday, July 9, 2010


A week ago I was trying to pack my bag for our weekend away in the big city, when DH came home with the news that he received a phone call from the company he interviewed with two months ago and they gave him a job offer...and they wanted him to make a decision in two days. My stomach sank as I tried to keep it together and pack. I really wasn't expecting this news.

While DH was driving the car my teary eyes were hidden by my dark shades because I really didn't want him to know how disappointed I was that we weren't going to be moving closer to home. I had talked myself into moving back and maybe looking into adoption, but the job offer is in the US so that wouldn't be a possibility.

After we checked into the hotel we went out for sushi and I had a big glass of sake. DH was trying to talk me into moving back to Texas (where the job is located and where we had lived several years ago). I was just having a difficult time processing everything that had happened the last week, and so I needed some retail therapy, and then a chocolate martini when we went back to the hotel. We drew up a pros and cons list and the new job won. The only drawback was the salary/job title, but we decided not to make a decision at that moment.

The Saturday involved oodles of retail therapy that included, among other things, a funky pair of cork platform sandals with magenta straps (that perfectly matches the magenta Coach bag I bought earlier this year). Had a difficult moment in Banana Republic when a woman walked in with a giant stroller that contained twin babies. My reaction was to move away from her as quickly as possible, but it felt like she was following me because she was there everytime I turned around.

Conversation at lunch and dinner revolved around the dilemna of whether DH should take the job offer, or stay in his current position and approach his boss about a possible move to the Canadian office. As much as I love my husband he was really stressing me out because he couldn't make up his mind, and so I had two martinis over dinner (and another one when we got back to the hotel). Maybe it was the alcohol talking, but after DH and I ordered dinner we noticed the waiters adding two high-chairs to a long table next to us. I piped up and told our waiter that we wanted to move to another table because we wanted a quiet, romantic table, and they complied. Honestly, at that point if a couple of babies were seated next to us I would have had a meltdown.

Through the alcohol haze and retail therapy of the weekend, DH decided to verbally accept the position in Texas if the salaray was increased slightly. When he phoned on Monday and told the prospective boss this, DH was surprised that he did bump the salary. But, he later realized that he forgot to tell him about the visa situation (there are actually 2 years left on it), so he sent him a quick email explaining that he couldn't start working until the visa is transferred. Meanwhile, on Tuesday he spoke with his current boss about the possibility of transferring to the Canadian office and he had no problem with it, so that evening DH comes home and tells me he doesn't know what to do.

The past few days have been nerve wracking for me. DH keeps changing his mind, and he keeps asking me what he should do, and I don't want to tell him what to do because I know I will get blamed in the future if he is unhappy. He is also waiting for a written job offer, which still has not appeared (maybe they've stalled regarding the visa situation). Plus, I am still grieving that I will never give birth as this fact slowly sinks into my consciousness. I still have strange moments where my eyes fill with tears when I see babies on television, or when I read about another pregnant celebrity, or when I hear about some meth-head woman trying to sell her baby for $25 in a parking lot.

Acupuncture was a godsend on Wednesday because it calmed me down and I was able to listen to my inner voice. It made me realize that in my heart I would like to move home and be closer to family (especially as my niece and nephew are entering their teen years), but I don't want to rush into it and buy the first house we see. The realtor has been sending us email alerts of homes on the market and I haven't seen anything I really love. The worst part is clicking on the photos and seeing baby rooms with cribs. Unfortunately, that makes me not like the house. I know it's silly, but when I see a crib it makes me think of the miscarriage and how far along I'd be at this moment -- probably buying a crib and preparing a nursery. At least in my heart I know what I want, but as for DH who knows...

Thursday, July 1, 2010


This past week has been a rocky road for me as everday brings a new emotional rollercoaster. One hour I'm happy with life and the next I'm crying. I'm blaming hormones as I quit them a week ago and started bleeding three days ago.

Last hour I had a meltdown when I received a call from an RN at our health insurance provider offering a pre-natal service over the phone for if/when I get pregnant. I thanked her and told her we are no longer doing fertility treatments, but I would use the service if I suddenly were to find myself pregnant. She then mentioned that we could try adopting because she had heard stories of women who had adopted and then found themselves pregnant. (ARGHHHHHHHH!!!) Well, I told her that DH and I are in adoption limbo: we are Canadians living in the US (as DH tries to climb the corporate ladder); because we aren't American citizens we cannot adopt in the US or use an American adoption agency for a foreign adoption; but, on the other hand we cannot adopt in Canada, or use a Canadian adoption agency for a foreign adoption, because we don't currently reside in Canada (this is only available to Canadians overseas in the military or diplomatic service, NOT to those in the business world). At this point my voice started cracking and then it went downhill when I told her about my miscarriage a few months ago. Yes, I cried on the phone to a complete stranger. Oh, boy...still can't believe I did that. In the end I did manage to pull myself together and ask about getting my acupuncture covered as it is not covered if it is for fertility, but she did tell me to try and get them to start a new chart for me under 'general well being'. Hmmm, so acupuncture for something specific like fertility is not covered while acupuncture for 'general well being' is. Crazy.

The meltdown I just mentioned is an example of how my mental state has been this past week. DH has seemed to bounce right back. He was sad when I told him, but he's been trying to keep my mind, and his, off of things by organizing a trip away this weekend. We're off to the City and a bit of retail therapy, and since my waistline isn't quite back to normal yet thanks to all the hormones I will concentrate on shoes and bags. Plus, there's nothing like a hotel room for bringing out the amorous side. It will be wonderful to get away from the mundane details of life for a couple of days.

This past week DH has booked us a flight back to Canada to visit family later in July as he has meetings in the Canadian office at that time. No problem since I'm not pregnant. He's also contacted a realtor there about looking at houses while we're there. Whoa. This is a lot to absorb the week after my negative pregnancy test and deciding to end fertility treatments. I still can't think straight. I guess if we did move back then we could possibly look into adoption, although at 41 I'm not sure what our chances are of adopting a baby/young child. My head is still spinning and DH hasn't even asked his boss yet if he can transfer to the Canadian office. The dilemna is that DH's visa expires in 13 months so we need to know whether to start the Green Card apppication now or pack our things and transfer back.

Yes, this past week has been crazy for me. I've been trying to lose myself in cleaning therapy and movie therapy, both of which help me immensely. It's just that I'm coping with a number of things at once and trying to keep my head above water. Guess I'll just keep treading.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

It's a Negative

The result is in and it's officially a negative. Guess our one good embryo did not want to stay. I just found out an hour ago and had a good cry. The nurse asked me if I wanted the doctor to phone me and talk...Um, NO. I can't imagine what he would say to me except to try again with another egg donor, but at this point we're too drained financially and emotionally to go through it again. Not sure if we should make a WTF appointment since we're not planning on doing ART again. I haven't phone DH yet, and my acupuncturist wants me to phone her with the news (good or bad). Now I'm wondering if I should continue on the acupuncture path or call it quits. Lots of thoughts running through my head...just wish some of them were clear and logical.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Dreaded Wait

Tomorrow is the day I go for bloodwork to see if our one good embryo decided to stay in my uterus and grow. Lately I've been looking out for any physical changes that might indicate that I'm pregnant.

Yesterday I was convinced that I was because I awoke to the taste of vomit in my mouth. Yes, it wasn't pleasant but I guess DH's spaghetti sauce from the night before did a number on my tummy and acid reflux made an appearance. All day I was feeling nauseated, but today I feel wonderful. I keep looking at my breasts in the mirror after I shower to see if they've changed, but nothing so far. I'm tempted to try a home pregnancy test, but since I've had a history of chemical pregnancies I don't think it would really help.

It seems like every hour I change my mind whether I might be pregnant or not. Honestly, I must confess I've been looking at baby stuff online because this might be the last time I can do this with some hope in my heart. If it is negative tomorrow I won't be able to look at baby stuff again without feeling a tinge of sadness...but no regret.

Monday, June 14, 2010

One Good Embryo

The FET was yesterday morning and I was so excited that I could barely sleep the night before -- even though I went for acupuncture Saturday evening. While DH drove to the clinic I had a sudden sense of dread: this is the final FET we will do. It was beginning to feel momentous and I had to calm myself by focusing on the moment.

Sunday proved not to be the best time to undergo an embryo transfer. DH and I were relaxed but the nursing staff was rushing the process because they wanted to (or so it seemed) finish and enjoy the beautiful weather. The worst part was when the embryologist came to talk and told us that out of five frozen embryos only one survived! The good news, we were told, was that this one embryo had 7 cells and looked great, although I took little comfort in the knowledge that our one embryo looked super; instead I fought back tears and tried to hide my disappointment. One embryo. Later yesterday afternoon I realized that we were lucky to have one good embryo instead of none at all. I can't imagine how devastated we would have been if we had received a phone call saying that none had survived.

One embryo...DH keeps reminding me that it only takes one. Here's hoping that this one good embryo likes my uterine lining enough to stick around for some time.

Friday, June 11, 2010

You Make Plans and God Laughs

The ultrasound at the clinic went well this past Wednesday. My uterine lining is at 9.6 mm and the FET is set for this Sunday at eleven in the morning. Yesterday and today I have been cleaning like crazy. I don't want to do any housework until the pregnancy test on the 24th. DH states that he will help out, but men (okay, those that are straight) have a different standard of clean compared to women. My thinking is that if I scrub everything in the bathroom then it could possibly last for a few months without getting too grimy. Trying to be optimistic and planning on resting for the next couple of weeks. At the moment I'm excited about date night with DH. Take each moment as it comes.

On a side note: Real Housewives of NYC is a guilty pleasure of mine. Last night was part one of a reunion and the ladies have been extra caustic this season, especially Jill, although I would love to have pinot grigio with Ramona and Sonja someday because they would be a riot. There was a moment last night when Bethanny was talking about her surprise pregnancy (very jealous; why can't I have one?) and Jill said "you make plans and God laughs." I love it. This is perfect for me. At this point in my life I had planned on having two or three kids, but God must have found that one profoundly funny and laughed hysterically for years...eight to be exact.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Good Quote

Yesterday I picked up a magazine in the clinic's waiting room and flipped through it. The bold lettering of "On her struggles with infertility" jumped out at me; it was the June issue of Ladies' Home Journal featuring excerpts from Laura Bush's memoirs. Thanks to being hepped up on estrogen I got teary-eyed after reading the paragraph. My first impulse was to take the magazine, but I realized that wasn't right and that other women might like to read it as well. So, I left the magazine open to the paragraph and bought myself a Ladies' Home Journal yesterday afternoon. Like others struggling with infertility, I find comfort and strength knowing that I'm not alone...that others have travelled the same road. Just wish more women in the public eye who have gone through infertility would be more open and vocal about their experience.

"...each milestone came and went. The calendar advanced, and there was no baby. The English language lacks the words 'to mourn an absence.' For the loss of a parent, grandparent, spouse, child or friend we have all manner of words and phrases, some helpful, some not. Still, we are conditioned to say something, even if it is only 'I am sorry for your loss.' But for an absence, for someone who was never there at all, we are wordless to capture that particular emptiness. For those who deeply want children and are denied them, those missing babies hover like silent, ephemeral shadows over their lives. Who can describe the feel of a tiny hand that is never held?"

Laura Bush, Ladies' Home Journal, June 2010

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Another Week?

DH and I went for a 'pre-op' appointment today for the FET and it appears that my lining isn't cooperating. At 7mm my uterine lining isn't optimal for a transfer next week so we will be pushing the transfer date back. Since we only have a few embryos left -- and this will be our last FET -- I'm glad that the doctor is being cautious. The only horrible part about pushing dates back is that I have to continue being on lupron and three estrogen patches a day. My fingers are crossed that we have enough lupron left in prior vials to last until next Wednesday (when I go in to have the lining re-checked) since we have enough syringes.

The other horrible part about being on three estrogen patches until Wednesday is that they turn me into a banshee. Last night my calmness from acupuncture was disrupted when DH and I got into a fight over something as trivial as making chocolate chip cookies (I was craving them), not from scratch but the ones you slice and pop into the oven. It was incredibly irrational but I could not contain my emotional outburst: every little irritating thing that I had been ignoring came spilling over the top like a volcanic eruption. DH was scared and suggested that we cancel the transfer. Finally I got the emotions under control but I hope our relationship can withstand my emotional outbursts for another week.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Estrogen Days

Today I bumped up my estrogen intake. I'm on estrogen patches instead of pills and they are a gift from God. The pills gave me terrible headaches whereas the patches just make me woozy whenever I add an extra one, and today I am on three. Before the last FET in January I scratched the car on the curb when I was on three patches and so I've decided not to drive this week. DH will chauffeur me to and from acupuncture tonight.

According to my accupuncturist I am supposed to relax and not undertake anything stressful before the transfer. This is easier said than done with me. Since I will try to stay off my feet after the transfer until the pregnancy test I have been trying to do some extra cleaning. DH will take over the cleaning duties, but he cleans as quickly as possible and ignores dusting. Perhaps I should introduce him to the feather duster in the closet. I am also going through my closet and purging clothes that no longer fit or that I haven't worn in a year. This is difficult for me because I get sentimental about clothes. I still have a pink wool sweater set that I bought right after I first started dating my husband 10 1/2 years ago -- back when I was a size 4. Yes, that was many sizes ago but I can't part with it even though I'm giving all of the unwanted clothes to Goodwill.

The estrogen makes me overly emotional. Tears start flowing whenever I hear a sappy song on the radio, or something sentimental on television. We finally watched the finale of Celebrity Apprentice last night and the tear floodgates opened when Bret Michaels limped onstage. An hour ago I was reading a gossip website that listed new celeb pregnancy announcements and I started tearing up. It is good news that Celine Dion and Mariah Carey are pregnant since they are around my age, but I just started feeling sad...sad about the miscarriage in February. I've been so optimistic about the FET next week that I haven't thought about the miscarriage in a long time. Now doubt is starting to creep back into my thoughts about the FET. All I can think about are the odds of it working again twice in a row. Maybe I'll feel better after acupuncture tonight.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Lupron Days

Started lupron just over a week ago and it's like riding a bike. You never forget how to do it -- the process stays imprinted on your brain -- but, the first couple of times trying it again are a bit wobbly. Yes, I admit I freaked out about pushing the needle through my skin, but after a week I'm fine and it's all part of the routine now.

The thing I hate most about lupron is that it sucks the life right out of me. I have no energy and I really have to force myself to go to the gym. Although once I'm there the treadmill is addictive, and I've started doing 3 to 3 1/2 miles at least three times a week. I have noticed a change in my body shape, which is wonderful, but the drawback is chafing in some unusual places. Guess it may be time to invest in a sports bra and see if anyone actually makes sports underwear.

Today I'm awaiting Aunt Flow's arrival because I'm set to start estrogen tomorrow, and I'm not sure if I can begin the estrogen without my day 1. The hormonal rollercoaster ride is set to begin. Honestly, I'm getting tired of all the hormones and am secretly happy that this is the last time I'll be doing all of this. Although, I did hear that actress Kelly Preston is three months pregnant at age 47 so maybe I should never say never.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Sunny Days Ahead

The past couple of weeks have been crazy with the in-laws visiting, leaving (whew!), DH's job interview and week-long business trip. We also moved the embryo transfer date to early June plus Mother's Day this year fell around the anniversaries of my sister's death and an earlier miscarriage. So, I've been up and down and all around emotionally these two weeks and I am just beginning to feel steady and even again.

The in-laws left three weeks ago yesterday and it took me a week to recover. I have delayed writing about their visit because I needed some distance. You see, if I had written the day after they left it would have consisted of nasty, hateful comments and I don't want to fill my life with hate. The strange part is that I had a good conversation with MIL when we were alone and I told her about trying another embryo transfer -- she understands how I feel but emphasized how disappointed DH was when I had the miscarriage (notice how it's all about her son and not me). The last few days we went on an overnight trip and I began to push back when she made negative comments. I did snap at her when she began clipping her fingernails in the backseat of our car (Oh, my God! Who clips their nails in someone else's car or in public for that matter?). To my credit I held my tongue when she was smacking gum in the backseat and made a fuss about having the window down because it messed her short, straight hair (okay, I did push back on that one). But, the main reason I just don't care about my in-laws anymore: during a toast on their second-last dinner with us, my FIL thanked DH for all his hospitality with nary a mention of yours truly. With that, I mentally wiped my hands clean of these people. I love their son, but I really don't care about them, and the last day was great because there's no stress when you don't care. (Perhaps now I should mention that DH finally revealed that the reason he arrived at the church just two minutes before I did on our wedding day was because his parents arrived late at this hotel room and made him late; also, both his parents refused to give the speech at our wedding dinner welcoming me to his family and his sister gave it instead, perhaps I should have clued in at that time to their ambivalence towards me.)

A couple of days before the in-laws departed, DH received a phone call from a former colleague wondering if he'd like to interview for a position at the company where she works. This company is in the city where we lived before this one about a thousand miles away. Once the in-laws left we were able to talk about it and decided he should go for the interview and he did a week ago yesterday. No word yet, but DH did worry about the 'what ifs' with the embryo transfer in late June. Oh, the 'what ifs' can really make you anxious. So, I phoned the clinic and asked if we could move up the transfer date to earlier in June and it is now scheduled for June 7, and I start lupron tonight! DH's former colleague texted that they really liked him and his potential boss is thinking about making him an offer, but that was two days ago and with this economy who knows what may happen. I'm trying not to think about it because I need to focus on being relaxed.

I survived Mother's Day by ignoring it. Don't worry, I phoned my Mother as she lives hundreds of miles away. DH and I went for brunch at an Irish pub in a nearby college town and then checked out an antique fair that was going on. Bought a black satin evening bag from the 60s with a rhinestone clasp as well as a couple of scarves -- including an 80s Adrienne Vittadini silk scarf.

I am feeling a bit nervous about the lupron shot tonight, but I am sure the first shot is the worst and I just need to get back into the habit of doing it.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Expected Arrival

The in-laws rented a car and went on a little side-trip exploring in the mountains for a couple of days. Can't write a long post in case they arrive back -- because they know nothing about this blog -- and because I have no idea what time to expect them back. My FIL is obsessed with this new GPS software program he got for his laptop, so he is making my MIL sit with this huge laptop on her knee for the trip. Oh, boy. Hopefully they will find their way back to our place. God give me strength. Tomorrow we are playing tourist again and I will be in the car with them for a few hours. Have I mentioned that my MIL talks just to hear her voice in the car? She just chatters away, but not really having a conversation with anyone...just thinking out loud. I thought I was going to lose it with her last weekend. But, the worst part is when she puts on a little girl/babyish voice when speaking. Not cute when you're speaking with other adults, and especially not cute when you're over 60 years old. How should I react to a baby voice out of my MIL? My Mother told me to quit talking like that when I was 12. God give me strength. Just five more days.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

In-Law Visit Countdown

Three days (not counting today) until the in-laws come to visit. I should be stressed but I'm not. Currently I'm getting over a nasty cold and just beginning to feel good again, and feeling somewhat guilty about not making it to the gym during my sick days. I really need to dust but maybe later. DH has planned the menus as per my request since they are his parents and he knows what they like to eat. It's strange but I don't really care anymore about their visit. The epiphany is that I am not responsible for their happiness, and my MIL will not like anything so why bother? Perhaps this isn't the best attitude but I'm protecting myself. DH also told me not to listen to anything his mother says as that is what he does. Fun times ahead.

Monday, March 29, 2010

On Track for The Last FET

DH and I went to the clinic this morning to meet with our nurse/coordinator to schedule the last FET. Since my first cycle after the miscarriage has been long and strange (3 weeks later and I'm still spotting) I decided that I did not want to rush anything and opted for a late June transfer date. Hopefully this will give me enough time to get into a bit of shape at the gym, and enough time to build my strong 'house' (as the acupuncturist refers to my uterus). The in-laws are scheduled to visit between April 16 and April 26, but I decided that I am not going to stress about it. In fact, I told DH that he is in charge of this visit: he must decide the menus, he must clean/tidy the spare bedroom and bathroom, and he is in charge of entertaining them. In other words, I am not responsible for their happiness and will do my best to keep a smile on my face no matter what my MIL may say.

DH and I finally got around to watching the movie Revolutionary Road. It had been on the PVR since late January and it was about time. Oh, boy. I had some idea that it was bleak, but that ending was quite upsetting for me post-miscarriage. The shot of the blood dripping onto the floor was the end of me. DH told me not to look, but I looked anyway. Don't think I'll ever watch that one again.

Just want to wish everyone a Happy Passover and a Happy Easter!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Building My 'House' Through Acupuncture

Last Saturday I went for my first acupuncture appointment. I spoke with the acupuncturist about my fertility issues, recent miscarriage, and desire to try a frozen embryo transfer in a couple of months. She told me that I could only try FET in late June at the earliest as I needed to 'build a house' for the embryo; a strong house that won't break when under stress. Her course of action is to strengthen my immune system and make my uterus strong. I really like that point of view as preparing the uterine lining for a transfer is the main focus of the fertility clinic, and acupuncture will help. Of course, since the appointment DH has been teasing me about building my 'house'.

The acupuncturist also gave me instructions that I must follow. Unfortunately I had some difficulty understanding her English because she has a thick Chinese accent, but I think I managed to get the most important ones. The first one is that I am not allowed to drink any coffee, even decaf, but I can drink green or jasmine tea (not black tea). The second is that I am not allowed to drink cold liquids (not sure if this applies to food). The third instruction is that I am supposed to keep my abdomen, kidneys, and feet warm. Apparently cold is not good for 'young qi'. I really must do some research on this, but I've decided to try her instructions because I have nothing to lose and I love the idea of 'building my house' for the embryos.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

WTF Doctor Appointment

Late yesterday afternoon DH and I went for our 'WTF' doctor appointment to discuss the miscarriage and what the next steps will be. I nearly fell off my chair when the doctor told us that a gestational surrogate could be a solution to my repeated pregnancy loss. Not that I have anything against surrogacy, but musicmakermomma's doctor had recently suggested the same thing to her. Then the light bulb clicked in my brain: my doctor is giving me a textbook answer/suggestion. I can see it now in a RE textbook: when a patient is left with several frozen embryos after a history of unsuccesful transfers and/or early unexplained losses, suggest using a surrogate. I was rankled by the suggestion and told the doctor my 'situation': an old friend recently volunteered to be my surrogate, but she is in Toronto (single, with a toddler) and I'm on the US west coast, and I think it would be too complicated on so many different levels to involve her, eg. what if it worked and something were to happen to her (since she's a single mother); what if it worked and she had a miscarriage or if it didn't would I blame her? And would that come between our friendship. Also, I told the doctor (as selfish as it sounds) that I'm doing all this to experience pregnancy and childbirth, and that if I can't then I might as well go the adoption route.

We honestly did not learn anything new at this doctor's appointment. He said that the miscarriage wasn't caused by the mercury fillings in my mouth, or by anything I did, but rather because of something wrong with the embryonic structure. The only thing we haven't tested is DH's karyotype, but at this point it's irrelevant because we already have the embryos so it doesn't make a difference if there is a problem. At the appointment I could see DH's eyes well up when this subject was discussed, so I tried to lighten the mood by joking that maybe my body is 'allergic' to DH's genetic structure and so it rejects the embryo, but the doctor disputed this and said it probably wasn't valid. Sheesh, I can't get a break anywhere.

Proudly, I did not break down during the appointment, although I had to bite my lip to stop tears when the doctor spoke about the miscarriage and my previous four losses. I am worn down and close to tears by the fact that modern medicine's answer to recurrent pregnancy loss is that it is due to a genetic problem with either the sperm or egg.

DH and I agreed prior to this appointment that we would like to try one last FET to use up all five embryos. We usually lose two during thawing, so then we would have three. I asked the doctor if it would be possible to transfer three embryos and he went into a long ramble about how dangerous a triplet pregnancy is and then on about the octo-mom and her crazy doctor. He won't transfer more than two embryos.

At this point I need to phone the nurse/coordinator and set up an appointment to decide when to do the FET. Not sure when to do it, but I know I need more recovery time so it may be pushed out to late May or early June.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Going to the Doctor

Later this afternoon DH and I have an appointment with our doctor at the fertility clinic. Hopefully he will be able to provide some answers as to why I miscarried and if we can transfer the remaining frozen embryos. I assume that he will say that he doesn't know why I miscarried and that these things sometimes happen, and that we can try again. We have five frosties left and we usually lose two when they are thawed, so that leaves three. I am hoping we can transfer three, but I'm afraid that we won't be allowed to do this as our doctor is board certified and is against transferring more than two at a time. He always cites the danger of multiple births, but so far my record shows that only one embryo implants when we have two transferred...I have no idea why this happens.

I also want to ask the doctor whether the mercury in my fillings may have caused the miscarriage, or maybe the new skin cream I started using a few days before the loss happened may have affected the pregnancy. My mind is full of irrational thoughts like these. It would be so much easier if there were a tangible cause that I could point a finger at instead of the 'we don't know what causes most miscarriages' line.

On the in-laws visit front, reportedly they are coming mid-April but they haven't bought tickets. Of course, as luck would have it, the date they want to visit overlaps with a business trip DH has on the other side of the continent. Hope he explains this to them since I would assume they want to spend time with their son. God give me strengthe. At least I know that I definitely do not want to be on hormones when my MIL is in town.

As for our weekend away, it was lovely and very relaxing. So wonderful to be in the 'woods' with no sound -- except the noisy neighbours in their hot tub. We really enjoyed the wood fireplace, which made us realize that we need a fireplace in the next place we live in the future.

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Aunt is Back in Town

Yes, Aunt Flow finally arrived this morning. At first I wasn't sure if it was spotting, but after showering I knew AF was here for the weekend. Of course, as luck would have it, DH and I are going away to a country inn this weekend for his birthday. Originally I was hoping it might be a 'romantic' weekend for us, but AF has put a damper on that and I'm disappointed. DH made me feel better by telling me that we have the rest of our lives to be 'romantic' and we'll have other 'dirty weekends' to look forward to. Bad timing is a major theme in my life...

In preparation for this weekend I went and got my highlights touched up as well as a cut and style. M is the best colorist I have ever had, but she takes forever -- for full highlights (I usually get partial, but it's been over a year since I've had all the hair done) it took her 90 minutes. My stylist is Vietnamese and her English isn't that great but we try our best to communicate, so in the course of 90 minutes we chatted and I decided to open up about my miscarriage. She felt bad for me, but then a few minutes later she asked me how long DH and I had been married and I told her over seven years...then came: "Why didn't you start sooner?" Oh, boy. I felt tears starting to rise, but I held back and replied that we've been trying for seven years. That made her speechless and I buried my nose in a People magazine (actually, the one with Celine Dion talking about her IVF struggle). But, M does have a heart when she scurried me over to the sink to take out the foil after a woman with her baby came in to get her bangs trimmed in the chair next to us. Maybe she saw my eyes start to water and my lips quiver as I bit down to stop the tears as I heard the woman talk about her baby. When I got back to the chair, the woman and baby were gone and M told me about her sister-in-law who had a baby at 42 after three miscarriages, and then about a client who was married 13 years before she had her baby. Honestly, I love getting my hair done because it makes me feel wonderful but I really had not prepared myself for running into babies at the salon.

DH is wondering when I'll be done so we can get out of here...not sure how he'll react when I tell him I haven't packed yet. Nothing like the adrenaline of packing at the last possible moment. Hope everyone has an amazing weekend and I'll drink a glass of wine for everyone out there (my first since Christmas!!!).

I bought a lovely blouse by Sweet Pea, and some Estee Lauder products (because it was a bonus event at Macy's) during my retail therapy the other afternoon. Love the Sweet Pea by Stacy Frati blouse because it is so flattering to my post-miscarriage tummy.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Feeling Good...Finally

It will be four weeks tomorrow since the miscarriage and I am finally feeling good again. Time is a great healer. Don't get me wrong, I still have emotional moments but everyday is getting a bit better.

Thanks to everyone for the advice on what to do about the in-laws visiting. DH and I had many discussions about it over the weekend and he phoned his parents to tell them not to book any flights until we meet with the doctor next week. As DH pointed out I may not be able to start an FET for another 2-3 months -- we'll have to ask the doctor about that next week. Not sure how long it takes to recover from a miscarriage (or when I should expect Aunt Flow to make a visit), plus I need to recover emotionally from this loss before trying the FET. Here's hoping the doctor will have answers next wee.

Tomorrow I am planning on a bit of retail therapy to pick up my spirits. I must remember to stick to the sales racks since we have to save some dollars for another FET. Although, I must admit that I bought an amazing magenta Coach bag over the weekend. Okay, it was at an outlet and was marked down 70% (maybe because it's magenta) so I don't feel too guilty. Now, what can I wear a magenta bag with?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Olympics Withdrawal & Possible MIL Visit

I am really missing the winter olympics right now. Watching the winter olympics on television helped to get my mind off the miscarriage as I could really lose myself watching the different competitions. This week I've been trying to watch old movies on TCM, but it doesn't have the same effect.

What is really weird lately is my lack of interest in fashion magazines and shopping. Usually the mere thought of retail therapy is enough to rouse me out of the deepest valley, but it is not working. DH came home from a trade show yesterday with a $50 Bloomingdales gift card he won because he wore a giveaway button (??). It made me happy but not exactly excited.

The other strange thing is my lack of appetite, but this could be an after effect of the miscarriage from the drop in hormones and loss of blood. The silver lining is that I think I am losing weight, but it's strange not to feel hunger and it lands me into trouble when I forget to eat.

Last night after DH gave me the Bloomingdales gift card -- and announced himself as the world's greatest husband -- he broke the news that his parents want to come and visit. OMG! I said sure and that July/August would be a good time, and he said they want to come in May/June. You see, we have 5 frozen embryos left and we were thinking of trying another FET, but we're not sure when that will be or when I will be medically allowed to do it. DH thinks the visit would be better sooner rather than later, but I told him that his parents (mother specifically) stress me out. Lots of stress equals no pregnancy. So, I gave him orders to tell his parents they can visit us anytime between now and the end of April or July/August, and to be straight up with them that we are trying again. I refuse to let them visit us within three weeks of a transfer, especially since this will be our last try. Have I mentioned how I can't stand my passive aggressive MIL? In fact, my SIL has cut my MIL out of her life...and DH sees no problem because he is the golden boy. I can't let her ruin this. What should I do?

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Yesterday was two weeks since the miscarriage, and today I decided to try and get back into some sort of routine. Started going for a short walk in the morning -- even though it is tiring it does brighten my day and I've got to regain my stamina. I got off the sofa and did two loads of laundry. Being busy does help to get my mind away from sad thoughts.

Honestly, I am not as sad as I thought I would be. Instead I am feeling empty and a sense that something is missing. I have cried, and had a few teary nights right before bed. Nights are the worst for me and it's been like that since my twenties. I've cried myself to sleep far too often and have ruined many a pillow with my tears.

DH holding me usually calms me down. He is terribly unhappy at work these days and I listen to him as he vents his frustration in the evenings, but I just can't be there for him to make him feel better because I've got to make myself better. Sometimes it's difficult being someone's rock when you're on quick sand.

These days I try to find happiness in small things and hope to fill my emptiness with them. I have a large vase full of red and orange tulips that brighten my spirits and make me smile. The winter olympics have been a godsend and I watch NBC coverage during the day and in the evening. Take each day as it comes because each day it gets better, and soon this empty feeling will be gone. This too shall pass.

Friday, February 19, 2010


Last week at this time I was physically drained and feeling like a zombie -- and, looking like a vampire due to the blood loss. Today I feel emotionally drained. The tears come at weird moments like watching the winter olympics and thinking I'll never have a little one to take to ski hills, figure skating, or hockey. Much like the overcast skies I feel blue, or maybe I have a case of the "mean reds" like 'Breakfast at Tiffany's'. Retail therapy might be just the cure, but I'm afraid seeing pregnant bellies and baby strollers might induce an emotional breakdown. So, today I'm trying cleaning therapy to brighten my day.

Monday, February 15, 2010


Funny how a week ago today I was so happy -- DH and I had gone for an ultrasound prepared for the worst, but surprisingly pleased to see that everything was going well. The doctor even said it looked like a picture in a textbook. The little 'bean' was throbbing and bouncing a bit, but the doctor managed to give us a picture to take home. I didn't dare put it up on our fridge, but instead put in a folder my agenda. I haven't looked at it since and I don't know if I can look at it again.

The next day I started spotting. I had gone for a short walk and felt great; it had been the first morning in weeks where I woke up feeling good. I phoned the clinic to notify them about the spotting and promptly reclined on the sofa. An hour later I went to the bathroom and there I had this sharp pain in my lower back and then I noticed the toilet was full of bright blood. Oh, God. I phoned the clinic to tell them that I was bleeding heavily; someone phoned back to tell me that the doctor had an opening later in the day, and then I phoned DH at work. It was at this point that I noticed the blood on my legs...it had soaked through the pad and through my clothes within a half hour. Oh, God. I spent an hour sitting on the toilet with blood gushing out. I knew that this did not bode well for the pregnancy, but I was beginning to get scared for myself. At this point I had absolutely no pain, so it felt strange to be losing so much blood with no cramping. Luckily DH came home at some point and helped me fix myself up to go to the doctor's office.

We placed a dark brown towel on the car seat before departing. I didn't feel that bad, although the bumps did bother me. After signing in I dashed into the bathroom to notice that I had saturated the two pads I had put on 40 minutes before. Luckily I made it to the waiting room moments before someone came to get us. The next few hours are fuzzy for me. I had a meltdown in the room with the ultrasound when the nurse asked me to undress from the waist down as I was bleeding so much, but I did it. Sitting there with blood dripping down to the floor scraped away any ounce of dignity I had left.

The doctor gently informed us that this may not be good news as he proceeded to give me a vaginal ultrasound. From here, it gets crazy as I saw the sac first and couldn't believe it. What? How could it still be there? The doctor measured everything and said it was at the correct size and had grown in two days and there was cardiac movement. I was stunned that I could be bleeding so much and pass so many clots and it was still there. The doctor mentioned something about a torn/ruptured blood vessel on the placenta. He had another appointment but asked that I rest there to see if the bleeding would slow down.

At that point, I had calmed down thinking that it was still inside of me, although the doctor did call it a threatened miscarriage. A million thoughts went through my head...if I was going to be on strict bedrest then how would I deal with all this bleeding? What was foremost in my head was: when will this bleeding end. While I lay on the table holding DH's hand the blood kept coming out of me in gushes. I asked the doctor about my bleeding concern when he came back to check on me and he replied that it must heal and that some women experience heavy bleeding in pregnancy. Oh, God. But, when I got off the table to clean myself up and get dressed I suddenly felt weak...like I was going to faint. I fell onto the table and asked DH to get someone. This is when it really gets fuzzy for me.

I remember feeling really warm and cold at the same time, which explains the clamminess. The doctor asked if I had fainted and he had a worried look on his face and said that the pregnancy had probably passed. He then did another ultrasound and I could tell before he said anything that there was no longer anything there. I can't really remember the details of what he said -- it was like everything was happening far away from me but I was right there. Then, I had another weak turn and thought I was beginning to pass out on the table -- I felt weak, hot, everything was going gray, I began seeing stars and I could only hear DH calling my name over and over. The doctor took my pulse and blood pressure and said something about the placenta blocking the cervix with blood pooling behind it and thus creating pressure on my cervix. Then I remember him taking out a speculum, warming it with hot water, placing it inside of me and then he 'wiped' my cervix and pulled the clots that were blocking it. All I can remember is that I immediately felt better after he did this. And then the cramping commenced. It took me about an hour to feel well enough to leave. DH brought the car close to the entrance and helped me out.

Thankfully the bleeding subsided later that night and became more like a regular period, although the cramps felt like someone stabbing me with a knife through to my back. A heating pad and a couple of ibuprofen helped with that.

Six days later and I finally feel like myself again, although I'm just beginning to deal with the emotional loss. It happened so suddenly that I could barely cope with what was happening to me physically let alone emotionally. I just knew that I wanted to write it down so I would never forget what happened.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Mama Mia, a Fight

Late yesterday afternoon, while DH was busy doing laundry and making lasagne, I willingly tried to help him on the food front. Of course, he hates it when I try to cook with him as I invariably make comments about how I would do it. Adding more nutmeg to the ricotta cheese than the recipe called for really ticked him off. In my defense, he had added more ricotta than what was in the recipe -- I use a recipe as a guideline, not the rule. Heated words were exchanged and I stormed off to our bedroom only to discover a bed strewn with laundry fresh from the dryer. Mama Mia!!

In retrospect I realize he was only trying to help, but between my freaking out about wrinkled laundry (I hate to iron) and his freaking out about multi-tasking (maybe it's a guy thing) we ended up fighting. Unfortunately, since my parents never fought in front of me while I was growing up, I never learned to fight 'well' and either walk away or begin to cry. And so, I began to cry. Then it felt like my blood was boiling and that made me more upset. It was totally irrational and I couldn't explain why I was upset, but then I couldn't stop.

After I finally did stop crying I was scared to death that I had harmed the pregnancy. I am so emotional lately, but is it possible that my emotional outburst and spike in bp could end my pregnancy? Just feeling really guilty today. I have no pregnancy symptoms except sore breasts and an aversion to red meat. Must remember to stay calm until at least the ultrasound next week.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Double Positive

I went for more bloodwork this morning at the clinic, but I wasn't as nervous waiting for the results because, really, there's nothing I can do at the moment to influence the outcome, and bad news is what I'm used to hearing. So, imagine my shock when I got the phone call and found out it had doubled! I was stunned and couldn't believe the hcg was 151. I have an ultrasound scheduled at the clinic for the second week in February, and no more bloodwork until that time...which freaks me out a bit. You see, four years ago we had a 'spontaneous' pregnancy and I went to my GP and had bloodwork drawn twice, and then I made an appointment with an OB and discovered at my first ultrasound that the pregnancy had stopped growing. Until I see something on the ultrasound I can't believe this actually worked.

I told DH and he is beyond happy that it worked this time and that the beta doubled. The only problem is that he wants to phone his Mother right away and tell her the news. Oh, boy. This is the woman who gushed about DH's friend's baby over Christmas dinner two years ago (and who follows this baby's mother's 'Mommy' blog). I talked him into waiting a couple days until the weekend when he does his weekly call home. Once she finds out she'll be bugging us to move closer to 'home'. Must stay happy...must stay calm.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


Yesterday I went for bloodwork at the clinic to see if the embryos implanted. Waiting for the phone call is torture. I passed the morning by watching 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' on the dvr. Of course, I cried at the end when they're looking for Cat in the pouring rain and they find the cat and embrace. A few minutes later, after I've wiped the tears and blown my nose, the phone rings. Thanks to caller i.d. on the television I see that it's the clinic. Oh, boy. While composing myself I pick up the phone and hear the news. Oh, my God, it's positive! My hcg was 64. All I could say was "Really?" I've never had the hcg that high. Tomorrow I go for more bloodwork to see if the numbers keep rising. The weird thing is I'm not excited. I know that at this point nothing is guaranteed, so all I can do is cross my fingers, pray, and hope that the numbers keep rising.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sofa Days, Part Deux

It's been five days since the FET and hanging out on the sofa is highly overrated. Don't get me wrong, I do love watching movies (especially the oldies on TCM), reading magazines/books, going online etc., but I am really getting antsy. It's a hereditary thing that my Mother and sister both suffer from: we can't stay still for very long. I have a feeling that Martha Stewart suffers from this affliction as well. Wish I could lie down and stay that way for hours, but I can't...and I have been off caffeine for over a year. Just a couple days to go until I can go for walks again.

I added a section on the side of this blog listing movies that feature a barren babe and/or couple. Those listed are the ones that I have seen, but I'm sure there are others that I'm not aware of. Please let me know if there are other movies I should add to the list as I, and I'm sure many other barren babes, find comfort in watching them and seeing the characters go through many of the same emotions that DH and I have. Some of the movies have a subtle fertility-challenged tone to them such as 'Beetlejuice' and 'Out of Africa', others like 'Maybe Baby' are all about trying to conceive, while some like 'Penny Serenade' and 'My Blue Heaven' are oldies that show couples adopting. 'Penny Serenade' never fails to make me cry, but then so does 'Immediate Family'.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Sofa Days

The FET was on Thursday morning and I've been spending most of my days on the sofa since that time. DH is off to watch a rugby game and I'm watching some awards show on VH1. I really want a big pot of tea, but not sure if I should risk it all by lifting the kettle as the clinic has me totally paranoid about doing anything strenuous. I am feeling hopeful, although my cousin's sudden death has given me perspective on our situation: life is precious and can be gone in a moment.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Riding the Emotional Rollercoaster

One week to go until our final frozen embryo transfer. I started the new year feeling optimistic that no matter what happens DH and I have each other and we will have a wonderful year and decade. There is a finality to this FET, but I like knowing that this will be our last try before the decision is thrust upon us; a sense of control in the out of control universe that is infertility.

Yes, everything was going smoothly until I increased my estrogen...then my loopy, emotionally unstable personality emerged from hiding. I definitely will not be missing this side of fertility treatment. Yesterday I had a meltdown at a department store: saleswoman was nasty to me, then I had to wait 30 minutes for the seamstress who then told me she couldn't shorten the coat sleeves because they had cuffs. Yes, I was that crazy woman crying in my husband's arms in the winter coats section. The silver lining is that I found an even better coat at Nordstrom's where the saleswoman was super friendly and most helpful. Guess the moral is that I should not be in malls while under the influence of high doses of estrogen.

This morning while waiting for the coffeemaker to brew my decaf the phone rings and I notice it's my parents number. Strange because my Mother never phones in the morning. Never. Something is wrong. I pick up the receiver and she tells me she has bad news. My stomach drops and I bravely ask who it is while thinking which elderly relative it might be. Then she proceeds to tell me it's my 50 year old cousin who dropped dead of a heart attack last night. I was in shock. Although I haven't seen him in a couple of years, he was always slim and in good spirits. He definitely lived life to the fullest, but what we put into life is not alway what we get back from it. Life is unfair and I was a weepy mess this morning. DH had lunch with me and I went to the gym for some therapy on the treadmill -- honestly, 2 miles on the treadmill can get your mind off anything.

This is my life at the moment. I really want to be home with my family at this time, but it's thousands of miles away and we just flew back from there last week, plus I have a FET scheduled for next week. Guess I have to suck it up and be strong...but I really want to sit down and cry.