Life Family and the Pursuit of Sanity

or… adventures in infertility and babies and family drama!

I love to flip flop September 29, 2009

Filed under: Infertility — arminta @ 7:00 pm

Not the kind of pre-sommersault that toddlers do, but the changing of my mind faster than the weather can change in the midwest. (FYI, the weather here is unpredictable, especially in the Spring and Fall, it’s nothing to have a few days a year of snow in the morning and shorts in the afternoon or vice versa. Last weekend temps were in the high 80’s, this weekend they were in the low 60’s)


Anyway, enough with the weather. My point. I change my mind a lot. And of course you get to see it real time here. So, I was all “never trying again, complete waste of time” then I was all “not trying until 2010” then I bought a box of OPK strips. Now before I go further, G’s expectation was try naturally but no more treatments until January. So, we’re going more with his expectation.


Since, we’re doing this all on our own, and since the fancy doctors have only gotten us dead babies at a faster pace, I’m kind of going with my own protocol here.


I’ve got two issues, clots and my progesterone isn’t great. This is assuming I’ve ovulated at all. But, I seem to be ovulating at least sometimes with the Metformin. I wouldn’t say every cycle, but since my first Clomid cycle, my cycles (except when pregnant) have been 28-32 days. I have never been that regular. I’ve also seen temp rises.


So, my thought is:

1) Keep on the 2000mg Metformin

2) Double the aspirin

3) Start Heprin at ovulation

4) Start Progesterone cream at ovulation


Or, I may just say “fuck it” and not try at all. Who knows?


It was PMS September 28, 2009

Filed under: Infertility,Who Dey — arminta @ 1:26 pm

Maybe not entirely, but mostly. And boy was it ever. My I was in a foul funk of a mood. Thank the goodness that seems to be passing.


The proof of it’s passing came this weekend. Hurricane Uncle R and Hurricane Sister (along with tropical storms C and c) hit my freshly cleaned house on Sunday. The damage included beer bottles (mmmm beer) on my freshly decorated mantle, breath strip packages on my end tables, lids and food all over the kitchen, brownie bit on the living floor and last but not least, a shoe print on my sheet. Shoes. In the bed. Ahhhhh! But, I didn’t lose my shit. No family members were harmed, or shouted at or even given dirty looks. OK, some family members were given dirty looks, but c’mon, a shoe print on my clean sheet? I think a dirty look was warranted (Big C, stink eye right your way…).


As proof that I am a stark raving lunatic, though, I bought a box of OPKs. Apparently, my subconscience wants to try again for some crazy reason. I don’t know how this happened. I was at CVS. I was buying things a woman might need on CD1 if she was an idiot that left her diva cup and luna pads in her purse, on her dining room table, and she were say 45 minutes away at work. I found these products, then moments later I was in my car and my bag had OPKs in it. It was magic. I tell you the truth those little buggers walked right into my bag all on their own. But we all know that I will pee on them. I’ll pee on them all. And I’ll screw my hubs when the lines tell me too. Because I’m a good little infertile. I do what I’m told. I test and screw and test because how else will First Response stay in business?


In completely unrelated news… THE BENGALS BEAT THE STEELERS!!!!!!! At Paul Brown. Oh, right, I forgot to tell you, I’m a big time football fan. I love one team, who normally doesn’t fail to disappoint (but my Bengals look so good this year) and another team who normally doesn’t fail (OSU). In case you weren’t aware/haven’t guessed: I’m from Ohio! Back to the glorious event… I had the boys chanting “Down, down, down. Big Ben is going down.” All day. And we got a beautiful sack and a sexy interception. Now, I know I’m bound to regret being this optimistic/hopeful later and this is all subject to change, but right now, today, it’s a good day to loves the Bengals. See how football is like infertility? The season/cycle starts of great, clean slate. You win a couple of games/ultrasounds, sometimes even big ones (like seeing a heartbeat). Hope swells, you can almost see the rings (baby) coming. But, there are no guarantees. Sometimes wild cards win the championship and sometimes the undefeated powerhouse gets taken down in the play-offs.


Yes, I can find an infertility parallel in anything. It’s a gift, and a curse.


Reflections of Pregnancies Past – #2, #3 and #4 September 26, 2009

Filed under: Miscarriage — arminta @ 1:08 am

** Insanely long and I don’t expect anyone to read, unless they want to…”


I have never attempted to document or tell anyone else much detail about these miscarriages. Not because they were unimportant to me, but because the pregnancies were all found after the baby was dead, or was already dying, so no one knew I was pregnant (not even G to some degree). Two and three also all happened during a period of timing where I wasn’t on birth control, but wasn’t truly TRYING to get pregnant, just not trying to not get pregnant. I wanted to get pregnant, but I had been seriously trying for two years with no results, so we were “relaxing” (because everybody gets pregnant if they just relax and stop trying). None of the babies had nicknames. I feel bad for that now. Sometimes I wonder if Blueberry Bean’s death was a form of punishment for not taking good enough care of his four brothers and sisters. (I KNOW that’s nonsense, but it doesn’t stop me from thinking it.)


I was 23 when I got pregnant for the second time. I knew I was pregnant almost right away, even though it was 8 years since my last pregnancy. I went on a pretty strict diet and lost 60 pounds in three months. When I came off of the diet, I kept the weight off for a while. during that time, I got pregnant three times. So, maybe my fat ass does have something to do with the difficulty conceiving. Back to the story. In May of 2003 I strongly suspected that I was pregnant, so I took a test. But the control line didn’t show up, defective, fuck! I told G about the control line and that I would get another one. This was during the time in our lives when $10 was a lot of money. So, getting a second $13 test was a major investment. I got the test, but woke up in the night having started my period. In the morning, still bleeding, I decided that since I’d bought the test, I might as well use it. It was positive. So, I knew from my previous experience that it would “work itself out”. I was five weeks pregnant. I would have been due in January 2004. My sister was pregnant with Big C while I was pregnant. I couldn’t bring myself to tell anyone. I told G the test was a fluke. Everyone was under enough strain with my sister being pregnant and my Papaw having just died (and we took care of him, he did not die in a hospital, he died at home with his family, so that was a lot more stress on us). I suffered alone. Trying to placate myself with thoughts of how maybe the second test was defective, too. (In future discussions with ob/gyns and RE’s the consensus is that the test was not defective and I was five weeks pregnant.) That child would be five, getting ready to turn six in January. He would have been just a couple of months younger than Big C. They’d have been best friends.


I didn’t get pregnant again until February of 2005. At the time I was working for a very screwed up little company. One of my coworkers was sabotaging my work and reputation for her own purposes (code for she wanted to be the only chick in the office because she was screwing one of the guys). It was a very stressful working environment. I was 6 weeks pregnant before I even realized it. I called my gynecologist to confirm the pregnancy and check that it was OK (because at this point I was quite sure that there was something wrong with me beyond the PCOS). My appointment was on a Thursday. On Wednesday I had a meeting with my boss where he informed me that he had been given an ultimatum, and chose the other person because she didn’t have a non compete and I did. I started bleeding that night. The next day at my appt. the doctor did find a heartbeat, but it was only 50 beats per minute. The bleeding picked up and the beta numbers were dropping. Again, I told no one. I told G that the test was positive, but I was bleeding again. I didn’t tell him about the heartbeat, and dropping numbers. I didn’t want to upset him. To this day part of me blames that toxic co-worker for the death of my baby girl (obviously, I don’t know that for sure, as I had no D&C and thus no genetic testing, but that was my feeling at the time). I would have been due in November of 2005.  Today she would have been 3 getting ready to turn four. Almost exactly half way between Big C and Little C.


There was another long space between pregnancies 3 and 4. I didn’t get pregnant again until March of 2007. Except for Blueberry Bean and Spring Baby all of my pregnancies were spaced so that the pregnancies would not have overlapped. Meaning, I really could potentially have had four children. With number four, we were back to temping and using OPK’s. I ovulated just before Easter. My Gran went in for an elective back surgery the week after Easter. She died in the ICU two weeks later. The last thing I said to her was that I was pregnant. I asked her to stay with us long enough to see my baby be born. Apparently, since two of my cousins and my sister were also pregnant that wasn’t a big enough draw for her. So, that year my sister had Little C, my “twin” cousin A (who is 10 days younger than me) had her boy and my little cousin M had a little girl. I had a miscarriage. At five weeks. Again, with the rash of viable pregnancies and the stress of losing Gran, I told no one, except G & Gran. But, I told my Gran first. I like to think she died thinking that I was finally going to have a baby (I mean, hell, I was 27 that’s OLD according to her standards of child bearing. I should have been on at least #3, if only she knew). I would have been due in December of 2007. That baby would still be a baby. He’d just be getting ready to turn two.


I actually feel a little better getting that all out. I’ve been thinking about creating a memorial for all of the children in our home somewhere. We have a small tribute to Blueberry Bean in our spring 2009 memory book, but I’d like to honor all of them. I’ve been thinking about the Japanese concept of mizuko (their name for an unborn/miscarried/aborted baby), since Mo brought it up today. The Japanese have a Buddhist tradition involving shrines for honoring the mizuko. I think it’s nice.


Why do I have to have a period, if I can’t have a baby? September 25, 2009

Filed under: Shitty PMS — arminta @ 7:21 pm

So, I know I bitch a lot. It’s pretty boring, even to me. I wish I had some original thoughts. But I don’t. My thought process is basically a circle of what sucks (especially my body and infertility in general) and how powerless I am to do anything significant about it. Obviously, that’s not working out so well.


It occurs to me, as this is cycle day one, that my recent funk may be partially or entirely a product of PMS. So, I shall medicate it with popsicles and chocolate and attempt to wait it out. I’m hoping that in the meantime things go smoothly and I don’t lose my shit again 🙂


Of course, thus far the things going smoothly and not losing my shit plan isn’t going so well.  But hopefully it’ll get back on track tonight. Hopefully.


et tu The Office? September 24, 2009

Filed under: Infertility — arminta @ 12:22 pm

One of my favorite TV shows is on tonight. I still haven’t decided whether or not I want to watch it. It’s funny, I’ll laugh. But, I’m quite sure that I’ll also cry. Because once again, a Hollywood product that has absolutely no need to use pregnancy or babies to be itself has incorporated fertility into it’s plotline. Seriously, what do babies have to do with selling paper? I’m all about the Jim and Pam, really, I am, I’m just not all about the Jim and Pam being baby obsessed.


Please don’t misunderstand. I know that there’s no way that I’ll ever be able to completely avoid those things which hurt and sting. I know that procreation is a part of life for most people. I know that there’s no escaping it. I just wish that I could for 30 minutes on Thursday night.


OK, rant over, I’ll quit being a whiny bitchy bitch now.


All Done September 23, 2009

Filed under: Infertility — arminta @ 10:43 am

Little C has this new thing, when he’s done eating, playing listening to me etc… he just stops and says “All done” and then walks away. I was watching him this weekend, thinking how nice it would be to be two again. When you’re done, you’re just done. There’s no thought to the what if’s, or the should’s. You’re just done. The other great thing about being two? If you change your mind later, no big deal.


Lately, I’ve been pondering being all done with fertility treatments. I’ve been thinking about adoption and hey if we end up with two, great, if not, great. I’m really FAR too much of a control freak to really let go that much, but sometimes I want to. I miss having a life that didn’t include never knowing if I was pregnant (or how long I’d be pregnant). I miss having a life.


Oh, I have all the outward signs of having a life. I have photo books full of smiling faces (if you look closely, you’ll notice that I’m in 1% of the photos and am usually not smiling, though). I go places on the weekends. I shop. I work. I talk to people on the phone. But, most of the time, I’m not really there. I’m really well protected deep inside myself going through the motions, but not really “there.”


I miss being there. I miss going entire weeks, let alone days, without crying. I miss being happy. I miss having sex with my husband because I want to, not because I might possibly be ovulating and every sperm counts. I miss my life. I want to be all done with this nightmare. I want my baby back.


Mo at Life and Love in the Petri Dish said something yesterday that just hit me spot on regarding this whole all done predicament: “I think that without realizing it, I’ve been unconsciously hoping that someone will be able to tell us that it just is not going to happen, so that I can stop with a clear conscience that I didn’t give up too early, just when we were about to succeed.” That really hit me, because while I have been ready to stop, I was ready after Blueberry Bean, G isn’t. I don’t have permission to stop, and I don’t have a doctor saying that there’s no hope. My doctors are saying just the opposite, there is hope, just hang in there. So while I want to be done, I can’t quit. Which means the only way to be done is to get pregnant again, and manage to carry it full term. I’m scared shitless of getting pregnant again. I feel like Charlie Brown kicking that goddamned football.


On the other hand, Little C also says things like he wants candy and he’s going to Harry Potter’s house, so perhaps I shouldn’t be making any life altering decisions based on his ramblings.


I don’t care what they say, keeping busy does not chase away the infertility blues September 21, 2009

Filed under: Infertility — arminta @ 11:12 am

Also, I am excessively long winded.


This weekend was one of those marathon never sit, never stop, never quit kind of weekends. Friday night I worked late, met G and Big C for dinner, went home and stripped my bed sheets at 11 pm and completely remade the bed. What kind of crazy people keep a six year old out until 11 pm, anyway! Yeah, and also, Big C is six! Six! It’s unbelievable.  Behind us at the restaurant there was a fussy newborn. New newborn. Seriously, it (didn’t trust myself to look directly at the baby, and thus gender was not determined) still had the less than a month old feeble newborn fussy cry. The cry I’ve been waiting 7 years to hear. It’s so hard. When I’m prepped to see babies I do OK. When I know it’s coming I’m fine. It’s when I don’t expect it. When it’s not part of the norm for that situation, or when I have to focus on something else that it really throws me off. I’m like Edward from Twilight. When I’m prepared and/or love the baby enough I can handle it. Otherwise it takes constant self control to not burst out in tears railing about the lack of fairness in the world. OK, so not exactly like Edward. How sad is it that I relate more to a fantasy character in that book than the “every girl” character that girls/women are supposed to relate to?


Right so, Friday was go-go-go. With a pinch of pain. Saturday was go-go-go with constant reminders. We went to a local festival. A festival of which the focus is pork. As I’ve made very clear, pork is really the only meat that I like. I can tolerate others, but I’d take a BLT over a porterhouse any day of the week. The highlight of this festival for G is the smorgasbord. As in all the pork you can eat for $13. $9 for children. The highlight for me is the craft show. I do a lot of Christmas shopping there. This year, the craft barn (it’s a rural festival) was PACKED wall to f’ing wall with strollers, babies, baby related goods, and round bellied pregnant women. To me they all looked 28 weeks pregnant (if you’re counting along, you’ll know that’s where I should be with my Bean). I knew they were going to be there. I know it’s no different from last year. But last year, my BB wasn’t dead. Last year I had hope. Last year I was new to the RE scene and just knew I was going to be pregnant by Christmas. Gag me, right? I held my strength, though, and still managed to get a lot of shopping done. Then, I went home and cleaned my house. I dusted places that haven’t been dusted in two months. I don’t know what got into me.


By Sunday, I had to be so beat that I stayed in bed all day right? I mean, after spending 8 hours surrounded by pork and spit shining my house and everything the day before. Surely, I slept in? Yeah, no. No, I was up and ready to go to the Ohio Renaissance Festival early on Sunday. We stayed there from noon (yeah, G wasn’t so bright and early) until closing then I went to the grocery. So busy again. The Renn Fest was a lot more fun than I expected, too.


What is my point, other than delivering a boring play by play of my weekend? I was constantly on the go this weekend. But that voice in the back of my head didn’t shut up once. You know that voice. That what about adoption? Is there a chance IVF would work better than TIC or IUI? Once the house sells we’ll have XYZ money, maybe we could this or that? I wonder if any of such and so’s teenage friends are knocked up and are open to adoption?


Blah, blah, blah. Broken fucking record that never ever stops. No matter how busy, no matter how otherwise happy, no matter what it keeps going.