Tuesday, June 30, 2009

10 dpo, 4 days to go

I keep forgetting that I have that little ticker at the top of my screen, counting down the days for me. Somehow Saturday seems like more than 4 days away.

Some friends have been planning a 4th of July camping weekend at Lake Tahoe. I originally told them my husband and I would be interested, but then he said he couldn't go because he has to work.

Unlike most of my friends, who are driving up to the mountains on Friday, I don't get Friday off. Instead, I get a holiday credit to use whenever I want,and considering vacation plans, upcoming knee surgery, IVF, and Christmas in Italy, I need to save those days whenever I can. Also, I want to be home Saturday morning to do the HPT, I'd really rather not do it in a tent. Even more importantly, I want to be with my husband when I do it.

But I don't really want to sit around all weekend while my husband is working. So I've almost decided to drive up by myself on Saturday, after testing, and spend the weekend with my friends. I'm not a big 4th of July fan, but my husband is not American and REALLY doesn't care.

And if the test is negative, as it almost certainly will be, I really don't want to be sitting around at home while my husband works and my friends are partying and hiking at Lake Tahoe. That will be so depressing.

I think I just talked myself into it for sure. Lake Tahoe here I come!

... in 4 more days. Sigh.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Crazy 8's (9dpo, 5 days to go)

Note - this last week flew by, and so did the weekend. Here's to hoping that this next week goes just as fast =)

Whoops! Just saw that I was tagged by Mugsy over at Drive Fast. Take Chances for this meme, and didn't realize it until now.

I've seen this meme floating around and thought I should do it anyway, so here goes:

The rules:

Mention the person who tagged me - done
Complete the list of 8’s - done
Tag 8 bloggers & tell them I tagged them - probably not, but feel free to do it if you like!

Eight things I am looking forward to:
Trip to Alaska, August 2009 (yay!)
Knee surgery (or really, having a fixed knee)
Going to Italy for Christmas
The first heirloom tomatoes from my garden
Swim practice after work today
Taking my future children on outdoor adventures
Doing at least one triathlon this summer
Girls backpacking trip with my college friend later this summer

Eight things I did yesterday:
Watered the garden
Made goat cheese (yum!)
Saw my first almost-red tomato
Sat in the swimming pool reading about Alaska
Had an "Addicted to Chocolate" shake at Ben and Jerry's
Got a new swimsuit and goggles
Visisted my friend's vegetable garden
Went for a bike ride before it got crazy hot

Eight things I wish I could do:
Get pregnant! (duh)
Get first place in a triathlon
Be more assertive
Play the cello (or violin)
Grow lots more vegetables (potatoes!)
Buy a nice house for a decent price in Davis (ha!)
Have livestock (chickens, goats, etc.)
Find a job that I really love

Eight shows I watch:
I don't watch ANY of these regularly, b/c we have no cable/digital TV or whatever you need; we watch stuff online, get netflix, or borrow from the library. Also, I just don't watch much TV. So these are a few shows I've watched occasionally in the last few years (not even sure if some of them are still on!).

That 70's Show
Gilmore Girls
The Simpsons
Trading Spaces

That's all I can think of, sorry =)

Eight favorite fruits:

Eight places I’d like to travel:
New Zealand
South America

Eight places I’ve lived:
Saratoga, CA
Roseville, CA
Granite Bay, CA
Berkeley, CA
Boston, MA
Paris, France (just for a summer)
Davis, CA
Vinadio, Italy (for short periods, it's where my husband is from)

People I’ve tagged:
No one! I think everyone else has already done it, but if you haven't be my guest!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Here's a little bit of trivia ... if you look closely at the picture in the previous post, you will see my identical twin sister, just to my right. Cool, huh?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Show and Tell - Swimming

This is my Show and Tell - a picture from the triathlon where I got 5th place! That was one of my proudest days. That's me in the middle, in the light blue triathlon suit.

I was a high school swimmer, so when I read an article while in grad school about triathlons, I was immediately intrigued. That was about 7 or 8 years ago. Since then, I've completed 5 triathlons and 2 relay triathlons.

Swimming is still a favorite activity for me. Two months ago I joined the Davis Aquatic Masters swim team (which has been kicking my ass, btw), and I almost always leave the pool feeling refreshed and re-energized. Once in a while, the workout really kicks my ass to the point where I leave feeling a bit drained and worn out.

Today, there were two pregnant women at practice, who I've never seen (one of them maybe I just didn't notice she was pregnant, she was not THAT far along). She totally kicked my ass at practice. Then when I got out of the pool, yet another VERY pregnant woman accompanied her husband to watch his practice. Where did all these pregnant women come from?! I just wish I could block them out until the 4th of July.

Still - swimming is awesome, and so are triathlons. That's the moral of the story.

Head over the Mel's Show and Tell to see what everyone else is showing.

4 dpo, 10 days to go

I am twiddling my thumbs and dying of anxiety here. Where is my zen?! I need my zen.

In other news, since there is nothing at all going on for me in the ttc world, I thought I'd share a little bit more about my crazy disfunctional family. If you're not interested, skip it. Sorry! But it's the daily drama that's keeping me screaming, crying, and shaking my head in disgust.

Where was I? Right - I think I've mentioned that my mother and my sister-in-law hate each other. My brother is basically a grown-up baby who got his not-so-grown-up-baby girlfriend pregnant (apparently by accident) three and a half years ago. They got married - she wasn't old enough to drink at her own wedding, which was convenient since no one thought to bring anything to drink to their potluck shotgun wedding, not even champagne for toasts.

Two years later, despite the fact that they have huge college loans (well, just my brother, my SIL never went to college and maybe didn't graduate from HS, not sure), massive credit card debt, and two cars that they couldn't afford, they decided the time was right to have a second child. One and a half years ago, right when my husband and I started ttc. I was appalled at their lack of judgment and complete disregard for their financial situation, but excited that at least my kid would have a cousin in the area around the same age. (Hahahahahahaha!)

Incidentally, my brother wrecked BOTH of their cars within the last six months, and they bought two really nice, expensive, used cars (i.e. leather seats, CD changers, 4wd, etc.) - which, because no company in its right mind would give them a loan, my mother had to cosign for.

My nephew is now 2.5 and my niece is 8 months old. My SIL decided she'd had enough of my mother (who, admittedly, treats her like shit), packed up her car and her kids, and drove off to Washington, leaving my brother to clean up the mess and follow when he could. Which is apparently this weekend.

My mom, who has now "had it with in-laws" (including, apparently, my husband), wants to have a going-away dinner for my brother the night before my SIL arrives to help him pack (so she doesn't have to see her). And she didn't invite my husband either - she just wants the "core of the family".

She still sees herself as the center of a nuclear family with kids, despite the fact that her youngest kid is about to turn 29, two are married, and one has two kids of his own. I think she looks at my husband as sort of an annoying boyfriend who hangs around too much, and his family are interlopers who try to steal us away for what should be "family holidays" (i.e., with her).

So that is my gripe of the week. I have dealt with a lot of guilt about disliking my mother, and I have mostly gotten over it. While I admit that I love her in the sense that she is related to me and raised me, and I wish her no ill, no one ever said that you have to LIKE your relatives, even your own mother. And I am finally coming to terms with that, and feel at peace with it.

While this generally has nothing to do with ttc, my mother (and the rest of my family) is a huge source of stress in my life, and of course they will be family to any future children I may someday have, so there are some connections there.

To sum it up, thanks for reading this far!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


I didn't POAS. I'm still giving myself HCG supplemental injections, so I'd get a positive for sure.

But I went to the dollar store to buy at least a few HPTs (or maybe more if I wanted to test out the HCG), and they didn't have any! Where the HPTs had been were now piles and piles of OPKs! I mean, WTF? Probably some idiot had no idea there was a difference. The dollar store variety of HPTs and OPKs look pretty much the same, only the name on the box is different. What a bunch of morons.

So I will not be testing out the trigger, and I WILL be waiting for the 4th of July to test. Although - when I had the IUI, it was with a different doctor and nurse than I usually see because it was on a Saturday. And she said, as we were walking out the door, "Make sure you don't test before 16 days!"

Um ... really? Because I thought 14 was pretty standard. Whatever, I'm testing anyway.

I was so sure I'd be able to maintain my zen from last cycle, but it is nowhere to be found. I'm impatient, irritable, and cranky. I'm usually annoyed with most of the people around me, including my wonderful husband. And I know that next week is going to be much worse.

I am so very happy for all the bloggers who are getting BFPs right now. Especially since many of them are third-time IUIers, and that gives me so much hope. Still, psychologically, I'm having a hard time with the fact that most of the blogs that I follow have transitioned, in the last 2 days to 5 months, from IF blogs to pregnancy blogs. But I'm trying to be optimistic and think that maybe that means that my turn must be coming soon, too.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Rambling and ranting

My IUI on Saturday went pretty well. I guess. The doctor had a hard time getting the catheter in, but after a few tries, I assume all was well. I always have a bit of cramping when the catheter goes in, and for a little while afterwards, but otherwise I felt totally normal.

AND I gave myself my own injection again yesterday! I'm so proud of myself. I am on yet another, different HCG (which apparently doesn't have a brand name? I'm confused about that), and the injections actually hurt. Which is why I wanted to do one myself, to see if it was my husband doing it badly, or the medicine itself. Anyway, it still hurt, so I guess it wasn't my husband. At least I haven't ended up with those awful welts I've had before.

Now I wait until ... Wednesday I think? ... to do the last injection and start the progesterone. I'm trying to decide if I should buy a bunch of dollar store tests and test out the HCG until it's out of my system, but I'm not sure I can really be bothered to do that. I'd rather just wait and try to forget about it.

I change my mind every day about whether I am optimistic or pessimistic. I am having crazy dreams about actually being pregnant, or actually getting a positive pregnancy test, or finding out about a pg test that is made especially for infertiles because ... well, I'm not sure why, or how it was supposed to be different. All I know is I was excited about it in my dream.


I had a group of friends over yesterday and we made and canned pickled vegetables, and then had a big delicious dinner. One of the friends is pregnant, and she and her husband were driving me NUTS.

I am not one of those people who will follow every pregnancy rule perfectly, because I think there's such a thing as being too cautious. I will not be stupid and get drunk, or eat raw fish, or go on a rollercoaster, or put anything besides my feet in a hot tub.

But I will probably have occasional sips of wine (especially a TASTE of VERY low-alcohol moscato late in my theoretical pregnancy when it wouldn't really matter), I will not have my husband test the host's meat with a meat thermometer to ENSURE that it is fully cooked while loudly announcing that his wife is pregnant, etc. I will not constantly draw attention to myself lamenting really trivial things that I shouldn't (but probably could) eat while being obviously thrilled that everyone is looking at me and my pregnant belly, all the while KNOWING that another person in the room, whose guest I am, is INFERTILE.

WHY do people behave that way? I know they're excited about having a baby, and I'm really excited for them, but the more I see them, the less I want to be around them because they seem to completely lack any sensitivity. I'm absolutely dreading their baby shower, and I'm considering not going.

The problem is, if/when I finally get pregnant, I want people to be there for me. I don't want to be the jerk who was completely unsupportive of everyone else, and then if it ever happens for me, I expect everyone to celebrate with me even though I wouldn't celebrate with them. I want my kids to grow up with my friends' kids, and turn our adult-themed evenings eventually into family gatherings.

I don't feel I've been as deeply affected by infertility as some others, although it's hard to say. But I think this experience has changed me, not necessarily for the better, and I'm worried about spending the rest of my life bitter and angry and resentful. I hope the joy of having a child, should I be so lucky, will make this whole experience worthwhile in the end.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Dude, seriously?

My monitoring ultrasound this morning didn't go as expected. I expected to have one crappy follicle on the left. Instead, on the right, I had one large follice (24x22), one good borderline follicle (around 16), and two slightly smaller ones. The doctor said if it wasn't for the large one, we'd put off triggering another day. She also said that at the size of the three "maybes" there could be mature eggs in all or none of them. So I have 1-4 chances this month.

I honestly was expecting bad news, was braced for it. I am so not in the mood to be hopeful. I've been doing somewhat better with the hopeless attitude of the last few weeks, despite my nearly constant urges to cry. At least I wasn't building up my hopes for a big fall. Which is what I KNOW is going to happen.

I want to continue on my merry way, planning my summer vacation (more on that in a moment), my knee surgery, and my fall/winter IVF. I do NOT (and I WILL NOT) look up a possible due date. NO WAY! This is going to fail, I'm sure of it!

Except, sigh. I'm NOT sure of it any more, and I don't want to feel this way. I want hope to go away and, if not die, at least be comatose for a while. Let me enjoy the beautiful weather and the hopefully relaxing weekends.

As a plus, we're going on vacation! To Alaska! I'm so excited! We were considering yet another trip to Italy to go to a cousin's wedding, and maybe a few days of "real" vacation (i.e. just the two of us, without all the relatives and friends), but it was too last-minute and too expensive and too much time off of work. And we have a friend working up at Denali National Park, and we thought ... let's go! A couple days of hiking, maybe a helicopter trip, a day of fishing, maybe an overnight backpacking/camping trip, who knows? The possibilities are endless.

So ... that's what I'll be focusing on. Planning my vacation. And trying to forget about this stupid IUI.

Just for posterity, and anyone who's curious, today is CD 13, the last day of estrogen, and the day of my HCG trigger shot (tonight at 10:30). IUI on CD 15 (Saturday) at 10:30 am. HCG supplements on CD 16 and CD 19, and progesterone starts CD 19 and goes until the end (CD 29ish).

And to satisfy my curiosity, here's a couple questions for y'all. Do you know (from experience or from reading/learning/research/hearing about it) if those follicle sizes sound good? Is there a chance of more than one egg, and if so, how great of a chance? Is it unrealistic to hope that one big, one medium, and two smaller follicles might mean a higher chance of actually conceiving?

Monday, June 15, 2009

Happy Anniversary to me!

Tomorrow is my anniversary! My husband and I got married two years ago, on a beautiful sunny day in my mother's backyard, my dream wedding. More importantly, I married the best, sweetest guy in the world and I'm so happy that we are still hopelessly in love, 5 years after we met and 2 years after we got married.

That's really the only exciting news of the day. I just finished up with Clomid yesterday, and started estrogen. I'm a little nervous about remembering to take those super-small pills twice a day ... yikes!

Today, I leave for Stanford for my husband's company's conference, where tomorrow I'll watch him speak, visit with old friends, go shopping, and then go out for our anniversary dinner. The only negative thing is having to get up early for the conference tomorrow, and then super early on Wednesday to drive back to work in Sacramento. But it'll be worth it!

Follow-up u/s on Thursday morning (by myself, boo) to see if we managed to squeeze out more than one follicle this month (the million dollar question - was I right about the Clomid dosage, or was my doctor right? - tune in Thursday to find out!). Hopefully IUI on Saturday (or Sunday).

Then (check out this optimism) negative HPT on July 4, AF should arrive around July 6-7 after I stop the progesterone, and we can plan on IVF in ... September? Probably more like October.

As an aside - I'm expecting a pregnancy result on yet ANOTHER major holiday ... it's been Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and Mother's Day so far, and all BFNs. So far the trend is NOT looking good. I feel like if we do IVF I want to time things specifically to NOT fall on a holiday, just to avoid what seems to be a huge jinx factor.

On the other hand ... I'd much rather test on a Saturday than a Sunday, which has been the due date the last few cycles. If I am supposed to test on Sunday, I waste my whole Saturday dealing with the anxiety. Or I test anyway, and then I get all anxious wondering if it could still be positive the next day. Much better to plan to test on Saturday.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Show and Tell: My garden!

It's Show and Tell Time again!!!!! And here's what I've been promising:

Voila! My garden. Tomatoes are front and center, in three rows with all the stakes. At the very left edge of the picture, you can see the pepper plants. Behind them are the cucumbers, then eggplants, then carrots, and in the far corner, the green beans. Those other fences in the background are the edge of my plot. Outside of the frame on the right, are melons, butternut squash, more carrots, some beets, and zucchini.

If you click and enlarge it, you can also see some onions.

Go over and check out what everyone else is showing!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A sorry start

I had my ultrasound this morning, so I slept in a bit and went for a run.

Past the local elementary school.

I saw all the kids riding their bikes to school, many of them with their parents. I saw the cars pulling up to drop off the kids, the parents talking and laughing to each other. I passed through, crossed the pedestrain bridge over the freeway, against the flow of more and more kids heading to school. Finally I arrived at the park, which was mostly empty at 8:30am. Empty except for the stay-at-home moms and dads, out for walks with their babies, taking them to the playground. I thought how maybe these people would have been my friends, in another life. In a life where I could get pregnant.

I can't seem to make friends where I live. It's a beautiful university town, a wonderful place to live. But it's not a great place for young working singles or couples without kids. It's full of young families, and college students, and older couples. I actually have made some friends - but most of them have gotten pregnant and moved on, or have job offers at other universities in other cities and have no kids to tie them down - so they're moving on, too. It seems like it's only me who is stuck here, in limbo.

The clinic was 45 minutes late, as usual. So much for my hopes of not missing TOO much work. Everything looked good. The doctor handed me my prescription ... for 100 mg of Clomid. I mentioned that I thought we were upping the dose, and she seemed to have no idea what I was talking about. She said no, we were just adding estrogen to make implantation more likely.

This is another left ovary month. Last time, I got only one follicle on the left at this dosage (followed by a big cyst). I don't have ovulatory problems, that I know of - I would likely have one egg without all these medications and ultrasounds. Why am I paying a thousand dollars for a great possibility of having one egg? After a year and a half, it's pretty clear that one egg and some sperm give us about a 0% chance of pregnancy.

I left in tears, and cried all the way to work.

But at least I pretty much know how the next year will go. We'll be on vacation in July, so we'll skip that month. At that point, I think I'll schedule my knee surgery for September/October, and we'll start IVF hopefully in October/November. Which means the earliest I can expect to possibly have a baby is summer 2010.

My life is essentially on hold for a year. What can I do in a year to move towards the life I want? Should I go back to school? My sister is starting a certificate program. Should I do that? I just feel I need to be working for something, heading my life in some direction, since the direction I chose isn't working out. I need to feel a greater purpose in my life again, something beyond spending every weekday waiting for the weekend, and every Sunday night dreading Monday morning. Life HAS to be more than that, doesn't it?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Um ...?

UPDATED: Test was negative. Of course. I feel suddenly very sad.

Original post:

AF arrived at 4am on Saturday morning, at least 2 days early. I was not expecting it and totally unprepared. I also had a lot of cramping.

This morning (Monday), I got up, prepared for a new week and to call the clinic for my baseline, and voila. No more period. Um ... a 25-day cycle with tons of mid-cycle spotting, followed by a 2-day period? And actually, my last period was only 3 days, too. WTF?

The clinic scheduled me for a baseline tomorrow, but asked me to take a HPT today. Of course, I had just peed, so now I have to wait until I need to pee again to take the test.

I hate this. I had no expectations, this month just flew by, I had a great time. I also spent the last few days eating sushi, oysters, and cheese, and drinking tons of wine. I was ready to look to another treatment cycle with a peaceful heart. I don't want to take a HPT. I especially don't want to wait a few hours to be able to take it. I don't want to have that little bit of hope show up that will make my disappointment so much greater.

OK, I'm being a little melodramatic. I'm still excited about starting a new cycle. I hope I've learned a lot about hope, expectations, disappointment, obsession, and patience from this break cycle.

And btw, I'll post a pic or two of my garden when I get home this evening =)

Monday, June 1, 2009

Happy June

Despite my last post, this has turned out to be a really nice break for me. I REALLY like not thinking about infertility every damn day. Time is passing in a more normal manner and at a more normal speed. I'm doing fun things and enjoying them. I joined the swim team and I'm loving it. My garden is TONS of work, but I'm trying to mulch it to stop the weeds and then hopefully things will calm down.

In the meantime, my next cycle will start next week, and I'm not sure what we'll do. I'm a little worried that my husband won't be around for the potential IUI, because he has a conference that will end theoretically one day before the IUI - assuming AF will arrive on the day I'm projecting.

We got the SA results back - completely normal. Honestly, I was a bit worried, but also I think in some ways would have felt some peace about them finding something abnormal. At least we would have something to fix!

For my part, I have been spotting off and on for over a week. That has never really happened to me, except possibly one time when I was a teenager (my cycles have always been so regular that I actually remember having mid-cycle spotting 15 years ago, crazy). I'm not going to worry about it, although I will mention it to the doctor next week, if/when AF arrives.

Blogging every day or even every other day was wearing me out emotionally. I'm coming back, I think, now that we'll be getting back into treatment, but it will be sparse. I just need to be less obsessed, and cutting back here seems like one way to do it.

Hope all's well out there in the blogosphere.