Thursday, December 30, 2010

I can’t fight this feeling anymore…

What will I become?

I keep trying to feel nothing. Nothing at all.

If I feel nothing, nothing at all will I be able to avoid the pain, the pain if I fall?

As I try to feel nothing, nothing at all, my world closes in around me, I fall to the floor.

The emptiness that surrounds me, a giant gaping hole, as I sob and sob

I scream “I can’t cry anymore!”

“Please God I can’t cry anymore”

As I try to feel nothing, nothing at all there’s a flutter inside.

Could it be hope, is hope still alive?

I dream of what could be and all its possibilities.

For a moment I smile.

But what if it’s not meant to be?

As I try to feel nothing, nothing at all I can’t help but wonder “What’s going to become of me?”

*Note – I have never claimed to be a poet or even a writer for that matter. As I struggle with the question “What’s going to become of me?” these are the words that came to me. So I thought I would share.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Say What??

How to speak Moronic:

We’ve all heard the sayings. “We” meaning my wonderful Sisters in Fertility who are TTC. We hear the same sayings time and time again. For the life of me I can’t figure out why people find “this advice” in anyway helpful but they are always ready to give it. Quickly I might add. It just comes flying out of their mouths like there is some kinda of “Asinine Shit” center in the brain that can’t be shut off in time. And once you are around a lot of people uncomfortably discussing your plans to have a baby the “Asinine Shit” center of the brain overfloweth.

The holidays provide many opportunities for these awkward conversations to blossom. From the company Christmas Party to gathering at mom’s house, all eyes, ears and mouths spewing Asinine Comments will be focused on you.

I went to V’s Company Christmas Party this week. The group consisted mostly of women and it didn’t take long for the “Ever so helpful. Why didn’t I think of that sooner” advice to come my way about my quest to be a mother. Now I know that this is all because they want to help and have the best intentions but after a while, after you have heard the same moronic advice over and over, you end up giving you’re honest feedback. So here are some of the answers I gave…

Well some I gave verbally and some I screamed in my head, and for some I smiled and said “Thanks. I’ll try that”.

The number 1 Asinine Comment from the Asinine Shit Center of the Brain is (and it’s no surprise):

What you need to do is relax! Just relax! Have a couple of drinks and relax…

Why is “Relax” the number 1 Asinine Comment people give you when you tell them you are trying to conceive? And why would this advice be even remotely helpful to a single woman of 42 TTC when the object of my baby making affection is a catheter? So I proudly told them: “Yes, I could do that! I could get drunk before my insemination or transfer, show up at my RE’s office and try to make it relaxed and romantic.”

In my best, sexy, slurring, drunk voice I explained how I could make the moves on my RE:

Me: “Wow, Dr. Wow you look…you lookkkk…so hot…hot with that vaginal ultrasound” “I’m just gonna slllipp in the other room and taake my pants off”

Wink! Blow kiss! Pull off pants and return to the examining room…

“How do you like my paper gown?” “Sexxy”

As I skootch onto the table:

“I’m gonna put 1 leg here (moving my legs ever so sexy into the stirrups) and the other here (wink). How do you like that? (blow kiss) Now I’m jussst gonna lay backkk, relax and let you, that speculum and catheter have your way with me! Because you are hottt and I am relaxed and we’re gonna make a babbby”

Dr. Wow:

Number 2 Asinine Comment from the Asinine Shit Center of the Brain:

You’ve got plenty of time…

Oh for the love of God I DO NOT!!! In case you missed it the 1st time, 2nd time or 3rd time I AM 42!!

But wait I know the next answer to that: “My girlfriend had her 1st baby naturally at 43!”

She is the exception not the rule. So I politely remind them: “After age 35 your fertility falls off a cliff. And it only gets worse as you get older. 80% of women 38 and over will need some form of A.R.T. to conceive and that number only increases with age. But I am so glad to hear that your friend was one of the lucky 20%.” And in my head I was screaming: “I wish someone had told me the facts instead of blowing sunshine up my ass by saying You’ve got time!”

Now there was one comment that did somewhat make sense and made me feel a little better.

“You didn’t know. How were you to know you weren’t going to meet the guy?”

And that’s true. I had no idea that I wasn’t going to meet the guy. I held out. I held out way too long!! And in the process of holding out I would always get Asinine Comment # 2 “You’ve got time” and also during this time I would get those wonderful unprovoked Asinine Comments on dating and looking for the one. I would get:

When you least expect it…

It’s cousin: When you’re not looking…

I can honestly say there are many, many times that I have been “least expecting it” over the last year since I’ve put my full focus on TTC. And I have completely stopped looking. I wasn’t sure what to put under Hobbies on my Match profile anymore: “Likes long drives to the RE office and injecting hormones daily”, so I decided to delete my profile all together. So I am clearly not looking and guess what; it still hasn’t happened. And that’s okay because based on this advice I figure that one day I will be sitting on the toilet with my eyes closed when the man of my dreams bursts in, I will somehow be relaxed enough to make love and then I will magically be pregnant at 45!!

You’ve got a friend!

And we all know they know someone:

My friends’ unlce’s sister ‘s cousin got pregnant when she….

Stopped trying…

Just relaxed…

Adopted a baby from China…

Got drunk and accosted her RE!

So based on what happened to their friend’s uncle’s sister’s cousin I will get pregnant after unsuccessfully trying to seduce my RE and successfully adopting- just not sure where the relaxing and least expecting it comes in on this one…oh okay I will successfully seducing my RE in the oh so relaxed atmosphere of the examining room and then finalized my adoption only to find that I am pregnant from the drunken tryst! Hey it could happen!!

But in reality everyone is just trying to help (how this helps I have no idea) but they are trying.

Don’t Speak…

And some people just should be allowed to talk at all.

There is one comment I have shockingly gotten twice. Once from a man (understandably guy’s are pervs) and most recently from my mom’s wacky female friend (not sure why a woman would say such a thing) but this one truly belongs in the Asinine Comments from the Asinine Shit Center of the Brain Hall of Fame.

“Why don’t you just go out and be slutty and sleep around?”

When my guy friend said it, it was more like: “You’re missing all the fun. You should go out and sleep with every guy in sight”

My mom’s wackadoodle friend said it after my mom announced I was doing another Series. Cycle mom not series, cycle. So then my mom’s wackadoodle friend said something like: “It would be a lot cheaper and a lot easier if you were slutty and went out and slept around”


Do I need to dignify that with a response?

And to think the advice used to be “If you’re going to be slutty and sleep around use protection” (As it should be!) And in honor of my slutty days of Christmas Past, I followed the latter advice.

So with a big smile I turned to my mom’s wackadoodle friend and I said “Thanks! I’ll try that!”

But all joking aside that comment is just too Asinine for a response!

So in honor of the holidays when we are subjected to having to converse more than we would like, what are some of your favorite Asinine Comments from the Asinine Shit Center of the Brain?


Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Long and Winding Road….

Sio (the ex) has a girlfriend. It’s not just a girlfriend. He’s fallen in love. This shouldn’t bother me. I left Sio 6 YEARS AGO!!  I do not want him back. I honestly thought that when I left Sio 6 years ago that I would meet someone right away, get married and have children. All the things that I wanted that Sio wasn’t ready for I figured I would get if I left him and moved on. But the road hasn’t been that easy or that simple and I am still on my journey towards my family. But Sio, Sio’s met someone. Sio’s fallen in love. Sio is moving forward and it is bothering me. It’s bringing me to tears. I’m melting down at the site of their "We're a couple" Facebooks pics, at the sounds that their “I love you” “Can’t wait to see you” posts whisper in my ear and at the thought of him loving someone else.

I mentioned this meltdown to M2 at her family’s Annual Christmas Brunch held every year on the Sunday before the Sunday before Christmas.

I said to M2 “Sio has a girlfriend and it is really bothering me”

and M2 said “Why? Didn’t you break up with him for good reasons?”

Me: “Yes”

M2: “Do you want Sio back?”

Me: “No”

M2: “Is it because he should be miserable and spend the rest of his life pining away over you?”

Me: “No! God no!” (well maybe a little!)

It’s because he’s experiencing those beautiful, wonderful moments of meeting someone that gives you butterflies, the excitement of going out for the first time and the second time and the third time, that first kiss, second kiss, third kiss, the moments when all you can do is kiss, the lingering stares, the expanding touches, the holding hands, the resting of your head on their shoulder and that sigh of relief when you finally know that this is really going somewhere. He has that. And I guess what I am really crying over is the fact that I don’t!

Would any of this matter if I hadn’t miscarried and I was carrying for a newborn now? Probably not. Is all this emotional release truly related to Sio’s new love or is it a side effect of BCPs and Lupron? Most likely a little of both. Is it because deep down I do want Sio back? No. There are many, many wonderful things that I have in my life now that I wouldn’t have if I had stayed with Sio. My sobriety is one of them. If I had stayed with Sio, I would stuck in the same place in my life never moving forward. When I was with Sio I drank too much, smoked too much and partied too much. I knew that wasn’t the life I wanted. I knew I had to move on and I knew that moving on meant leaving Sio behind. Sio and I aren’t meant to be. So what is it?

Could it be that this is just a deafening reminder of the single side of this journey? Bringing to the forefront the unmistakable fact that I am lonely? Bingo!

My loneliness was all too evident when I had the Itch Scratcher come over the other day. Yes, I caved. The Itch was too unbearable I just couldn’t keep scratching it myself (well in a little confession, I’ve caved a couple of times now). So, I called the Itch Scratcher. Well, actually he called me but either way the end result was some good old fashioned Itch Scratching. And it was good. It’s always good but after he left I knew I would probably go back to scratching my own itches for a while because I want more. I don’t want more from the Itch Scratcher himself. I want more in the form of a relationship. I want what Sio has. I want to fall in love.

This time last year I had decided to take motherhood into my own hands. I was with Dr. Doom doing IUIs with Clomid. The insurance company didn’t want to cover my expenses. They stated it was because I was single and they couldn’t prove I had fertility issues without a semen sample. Since I was with Sio for 5 years and some of those years off Birth Control, I asked Sio if he would provide a sample so I could get insurance coverage. I wasn’t sure what his response would be. And he said as a matter of fact “Sure! A cup, a towel. It’s going to go some place that day anyway! Besides I always wanted to do it in a doctor’s office!” He’s funny and we laughed and I said “You really do love me” and he said “It never was a matter of not loving you.” And I guess in that moment I did feel loved and I didn’t feel so alone. I ended up not needing that sample because my test results came back so abysmal but it was nice to know that I could turn to someone. To my Sio.

Flash forward 1 year later and I am alone, painfully alone, following my Path to Motherhood and the one person that I could turn to has fallen in love. I am happy for him. I really am. I guess it’s just that when you are taking the road less traveled it would be really nice to have a travel companion.


Monday, December 13, 2010

Praying for Someday…

Throughout this journey I have always had a plan. From the moment I heard those words: “Practically zero percent chance…” I knew they were wrong. In my heart I knew it wasn’t true. My 1st plan of attack was to prove Dr. Doom wrong. And I did. And then it fell apart. After my miscarriage my plan was to get pregnant again as soon as I possible. It was the only thing I could think of doing to stop the pain (and it still is) so I decided to move directly to IVF. After my 1st IVF cycle failed my plan was to change my donor, double up my holistic efforts, start meditation tapes, go to psychics, lite candles, use a dreambox, rub a pumpkin on my womb (yes I rubbed a pumpkin on my womb!) etc. All to ensure success. I stopped going to my acupuncturist Violet and enlisted the services of Dr. Wang (thinking that old Chinese medicine men held some kind of ancient secret). I was certain this plan would work. And then IVF cycle 2 failed and I was back to square one. I had no plan. I had no idea. Should I triple my holistic efforts (I wasn’t even sure how to do that)? Change donors again? Take this? Increase that?

I was on the phone with Sissy M explaining all this to her and she says: “I guess you are just going to have to let go and let God”. I was looking for answers. Her response pissed my off at the time. My reply was (and I quote): “Like I have a fucking choice” but that was exactly what I was going to have to do...

I’ve realized that there is nothing I can do or not do that is going to change the outcome of this last cycle. It is either going to work or it’s not going to work. I cannot change that. I went back to Violet because I feel more at home with her. I went back to my old donor because the other donor didn’t have any sperm available. Normally that would have freaked me out and made me think this cycle was doomed. I’m letting go and letting God. I still continue with all my supplements but I am not as strict. I figure a tiny drop of regular coffee mixed in my decaf isn’t going to ruin me. I’m letting go and letting God. And my plan? My plan has become prayer. Every night before I go to bed I pray. Well I don’t know if you could actually call it prayer anymore. I mean let’s face it; it’s more like downright begging. Where is the line between praying and begging? Yeah, it is downright begging but I figured it’s the only shot I have. So every night before I go to sleep, I thank God for all the good in my life, ask him for the strength to carry on down the path that I am meant to take and then pray (beg and I mean beg) to become a mommy. I beg God for my family. So yes, my new plan is begging…

And somehow the being thankful, asking for strength, praying and yes the downright begging has given me a little sense of peace.

But there are some things you cannot avoid. No matter how hard you try or what you do you will eventually come across, run into or find yourself face to face with the constant reminders of your empty womb, childless existence or single life. Reminders are all around you. I would imagine the only way to avoid these reminders would be to work from home, always order delivery so you never have to go to the supermarket and around the holidays you would have to order all your gifts online in order to avoid the place where all reminders like to convene; the MALL!!

Yes, the other day I ventured out into the Holiday Torture Land and hit the mall with Sissy L. As we walked past all the various stores we pointed at shoes and purses, checked out the newest gadgets, “Ohhed” and “Ahhed” at the little mittens, tiny coats and little hats. We walked past pregnant women, a sea of strollers, happy couples and happy families everywhere. Teary eyed I watched the little ones sit on Santa’s lap and at lunch at the table right across from us a woman with twins put her adorable little babies into their highchairs and fed them lunch. I looked with longing and Sissy L would say “I can’t wait” and would declare “Me too!” But somewhere underneath it all was the fear, the overwhelming fear that it may never happen for me. I think Sissy L sensed this because later on after our trip to the pet store to “Ohh and Ahh” over the adorable puppies and fight the maternal urge to bring one home (to be a mommy to something), we were sitting at a little coffee shop drinking our Ginger Spice Lattes (yes it was decaf) and watching all the families walk by and Sissy L leaned in and said “Someday there will be a woman looking at you with your adorable children wondering when it’s going to be her turn”.

And I realized that is exactly what I have been praying for all along; my someday. I am begging for it to be my turn. I am praying for someday!


Monday, December 6, 2010

…to be okay

When looking for a new design for my blog I went onto a website called Deviant Art. I scoured through pages and pages of artists and photos. There’s some amazing work on there. I was looking for something I could relate to. Something, I didn’t know what, something, something that said me. I just knew I would know it when I saw it.

I would email my blog designer Barbara “What about this one?” What about that one?” and she would respond; “I like this one” or “I like that one”. We decided we liked a beautiful piece of digital art by Selenart; the clock and the butterflies but then I came across another beautiful piece of digital art by Julia Starr. The title of the picture was “…to be okay”. The title grabbed me. The picture grabbed me. I emailed the artist. I gave her a brief summary of my situation, a link to my blog and I asked for permission to use her artwork. She said yes and we decided to do a combination of the 2 pieces. But there was more than just her permission in her response. Her response still resonates with me:

“Yeah ,you can totally use it :)
I read some of your blog but I am in hurry at the moment lol. But it was interesting. In a way you're similar to my mom. She always wanted to give birth to her own children
but my dad was infertile, so she became fascinated in adoption and adopted 6 kids over the last 27 years. She has been single for a long time. My dad was never a very good loving person,
and was very greedy about adoption. But it's just the fact that the child is getting a loving mother :)
And from the way you sound, I think you'd be a great mother! :)
I have to go, but I will certainly read more later!

Wow! And in my head, I can’t stop singing “It’s a Small World after all! It’s a Small World after all!” But more so her email is a reminder that being a mother has nothing to do with biology. I knew that to be true of a father from my own personal experience of growing up without a dad. I guess I needed to be reminded it's true for moms too.

If my last IVF cycle doesn’t work and I have to use my Alternate Path to become a mom, I will not be having my biological child and I need to be okay with that.

One day I am convinced that I am fine and whatever the outcome I will be okay and the next I am full of tears and pain not knowing what I'll do if this doesn't work...

I received my BFFs Christmas card in the mail which had both her children BBG (Beautiful Baby Girl) and BBB (Beautiful Baby Boy) on it all dressed up in their Christmas best and I was looking at their perfect little faces thinking BBG looks like my BFF and BBB looks like his dad and I lost it. I couldn’t stop crying. I couldn't stop pleading with God and I realized I am not okay.

Later on that day, I was driving to work and I started thinking of my Alternate Path. I started thinking of all the reasons I want to be a mother and not one of those reasons is so my child can have my eyes. That doesn’t matter. I started wondering what my child will look like and I smiled. I am okay.

I think about others going through infertility with PCOS, Endometriosis or Male Factor Infertility and I know that I don’t have any of those issues. I wasn’t robbed of my ability to have children. I have DOR due to Advanced Maternal Age. I did this. I waited too long. I took my fertility for granted and if I never get pregnant again I need to be okay. I need to find a way to let myself off the hook. I need to take full responsibility and then forgive myself. If I don’t forgive myself I will never be okay.

On the Fertile Thoughts Board one of the girls who struggled very hard and finally got pregnant just had her beautiful twin baby boys. And two other girls, who like me, are considered to be of Advanced Maternal Age, both struggled cycle after cycle and both were showing off their belly pics as they enter their 2nd trimester. This reminds me that the process works. It gives me hope and I have to let myself be okay to have hope again. I’ve lost that. I’ve been so consumed with the thought that this might not work that I haven’t let myself believe that this might work. I need to be okay with believing.

I need to find a way to be okay no matter what the outcome is.

As I sit here looking out my window as the first few snowflakes starting to fall, I look at the barren trees against a cloud filled sky and never thought that I would be barren too. I wonder if the trees know that come spring they will bloom again. Is that why the trees don’t seem to mind? Is that why they keep growing, reaching towards the sky? Is that why they’re okay?

“But it's just the fact that the child is getting a loving mother :)”

Can my journey towards motherhood keep me growing; keep me reaching up towards the sky? Can knowing that in the end I will be a loving mom make me okay?


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Where's that confounded bridge?

On Thanksgiving Day I was forced (yes, forced) to reveal my Alternate Path to my family. My Alternate Path is the next step in my journey towards motherhood should my Current Path not lead me to my destination. My Alternate Path is something very personal to me. It took a lot of crying, a lot of soul searching and a lot of researching before I became happy (and actually excited) about my Alternate Path. But I was only going to reveal my Alternate Path if I needed an Alternate Path. I still have one more cycle and I am praying that this is it. I am praying that I won’t need an Alternate Path. I am praying that the Current Path leads me to motherhood!

“I would never be content or happy not being a mother at all…”

I read those words on S.I.F.’s blog and they have been ringing in my ears ever since. My heart embraces those words. Those words hit home because I know that the same holds true for me. I know that becoming a mom is a “non-negotiable”. It was in that moment, that moment when I read and re-read those words, that I realized I needed a solid Alternate Path. I needed a new path in case the one I was on ended at a dead end. I figured the best way to move past the pain that I may never carry my biological child or the pain that I may never be pregnant again was to have a solid path laid out in front of me. I needed a solid path to motherhood and that is what I have been doing for the last month. I have been finding my way. Finding my path. And if it’s my way and if it’s my path, don’t you think I should be the one to tell people?

I made the mistake of including my sister, Sissy L, in discussions about my Alternate Path. I brought up the topic of my Alternate Path to V when we were out to dinner. Sissy L was with us. I included her. I didn’t think that my sister would tell others. Now I did not state that my Alternate Path was top secret so in that respect it is my fault. I just didn’t realize she would take my Alternate Path and make it her topic of conversation but I should have known better. Ever since we were little she’s tried to retell my stories and when she does they never seem to come out right. I can only image how she butchered the tale of my Alternate Path. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not mad at her. I just wish that it was me telling my friends.

But either way, it doesn’t matter. She revealed my Alternate Path and now my Alternate Path was out there! Close friends knew. Friends that I wish I was the one who told but instead my sister did. I had to reveal my Alternate Path because others knew and my mom would be so upset if she wasn’t told by me.

* Lyrically, the bridge is typically used to pause and reflect on the earlier portions of the song or to prepare the listener for the climax.

So I knew Thanksgiving Day would be the perfect time to reveal my Alternate Path to the rest of the family. I tried to avoid bringing up the topic of my Alternate Path by leaving information about it directly dead center on my coffee table. I figure one of them, my mom or my other sister, Sissy M, would point it out and say “Michaela, what’s this?” but nooooo, the giant elephant just sat in the room the whole time. And Sissy L kept making side comments the whole time. It was like she had Alternate Path Tourettes! Spurting out random words here and there! Till finally the moment came when I started to tell everyone what my Alternate Path is if my next cycle doesn’t work. And as soon as I started to tell the tale my mom cuts me off and says: “We’ll cross that bridge when we get there” and I looked at her and said: “I can’t do that. I can’t do that knowing that the bridge might collapse underneath me. Knowing that I can be dropped into the darkest abyss without some way out, I can’t. I can’t cross that bridge when I get there.” I know my mom is just trying to protect me by avoiding talking about it. If we all act as if it’s not there maybe it will go away and then we won’t have to face the giant “What if” staring right at us. But it won’t go away because there is a very real chance that this next cycle won’t work. There is a very real chance that I might never carry a child but there is no chance that I won’t become a mother. So I told my family my Alternate Path. They all embraced it.

This is my journey to motherhood. No matter what path I end up taking, no matter how many bridges I need to cross I will in the end be a mom. I need my Alternate Path. Right now my Alternate Path is my security blanket. It's a way to protect my heart. And in planning my Alternate Path it is my time to pause, reflect and prepare for the climax.


Thursday, November 25, 2010

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was "thank you," that would suffice. ~ Meister Eckhart

My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving. It always has been. For me it’s the one day in the year where you can just put everything aside, breath, relax, look around and say “thanks”. I am by nature a grateful person. I embrace this holiday. I treasure it and I live by it. But I am having a hard time…

I’m having a hard time letting all the things I am grateful for and all the things I am thankful for easy the pain of what I am missing.

Every night I thank God for all the good things in my life. Every night. Not just on Thanksgiving. And I am truly grateful. I am truly thankful. But that doesn’t close the hole. It doesn’t easy the pain. It doesn’t heal the wound.

So on this day as I count my blessing, celebrate the day and laugh with my family, I will put aside the hole in my heart, breath, relax, look around and say "thanks"!


Thursday, November 18, 2010

On the edge of cynicism:

I’ll be the 1st to admit that when someone starts talking about Jesus as their savior and quoting the bible my 1st reaction is a giant eye roll. It’s an unstoppable reflect. I don’t know why. I believe in God and Jesus. I respect all religions. I don’t mean to be cynical. I try to think back and I try figure out what has made me this jaded that I would roll my eyes at the Lord’s words and I have nothing. (*Actually I just rolled my eyes at typing that phrase “The Lord’s words”). I guess it evokes mental images of the extremes. Extremes you are only exposed to with age because I don’t recall sitting in church when I was little and rolling my eyes. When I was little I would go to church with my grandmother. She was a deacon in her church. Church was a place of utmost respect. She always made you stand up straight and sit up straight. You had to sit with your ankles crossed and your hands folded on your lap. There was no acting up. There was no fussing and there was no fidgeting. If you fussed, if you fidgeted or if you slouched you got a pinch on your leg. A good pinch! I guess it was an old fashioned form of shock therapy delivered with a stern scowl by Grandma H. But it worked. There you were drifting off into space, starting to slouch and PINCH! Or if you started fidgeting, tapping your foot, playing with your hands: PINCH! It got to the point where if Grandma H just slightly moved you automatically became erect and still in your seat.

And my respect for the church was evident this Sunday when I returned to church for the 1st time after my miscarriage. Now mind you, I am not a regular "church goer", but I didn’t go into church rolling my eyes. Although I do find the whole shaking of everyone’s hands and saying “The Peace of something or other be with you” a little corny, I am not checking out the backs of my eyelids when Pastor Don reads the scripture. I listen intently. I sit up straight with my ankles crossed and my hands folded on my lap. But then again Pastor Don doesn’t just drone on and on reading passage after passage from the Bible. He reads one or two small passages and then goes into how they pertain to life with amusing stories, funny anecdotes etc. all relating back to the lesson of that scripture. I don’t know if all Pastors/Reverends/Priests do this. I don’t recall if Reverend L did this when I was little but then again I was too busy focusing on sitting up straight, crossing my ankles, folding my hands on my lap and not fidgeting. Doing all of that and in my mind trying to finding a way to do it while sleeping! So at church today when I would feel myself slouch I would sit up straight, cross my ankles and fold my hands on my lap. When I would start to fidget I would sit up straight, cross my ankles and fold my hands on my lap. I was not rolling my eyes. So, if anything church makes me sit up straighter!

I will admit that I am not “up to date” on the proper rituals of the church. This was evident when I went to a Catholic Church for the first time with my ex Sio for his Aunt’s funeral and thought that the kneeler was a footrest. Yup I asked him, in the middle of the funeral, if he would like me to put the footrest down. And with a look of confusion and then amusement he goes: “What?” and I said: “The footrest…would you like me to put the footrest down?” and through his laughter he says: “It’s a kneeler. You kneel on it to pray!” So, of course now as I look around the church I notice several women kneeling and praying. We laughed. We laughed out loud in church but continued to pray! And I never felt like rolling my eyes once that day. But then again the whole sermon was in Spanish so I had no idea what the priest was saying.

Even 2 years ago when my beloved Grandma H passed away and my sisters, cousins, aunt, mom and myself were sitting in church, the same church Grandma H brought me to when I was little, I didn’t feel jaded by God’s words. I felt at home. Right at home considering that my sisters, my cousins and I burst out laughing in the middle of the church. The Reverend was preparing to start the service and he went to move the collection plates out of the way. As a joke he passed the collection plate to my sister M. The looks, and I say looks because her face went through a couple of emotions in about a minute, were hysterical. First she was like “Oh” and she starts looking in her purse for money and then her face was kind of pleading like “someone give me some money” and then it went to anger like “How dare you ask for a collection at my Grandma’s funeral” and then the Reverend let her off the hook and said with a smile “I’m just kidding” and we lost it. Burst out laughing until my Aunt N yells “Girls! We are in a church!” I felt at home. So, why do I have this unstoppable reaction to roll my eyes …

And church isn’t the only place I do it. I roll my eyes at sappy songs. I find Rascal Flats way too whiney for my tastes. You’re a bunch of guys. Quit whining and act like a man! And I truly want to throw Celine Dion overboard every time I hear that song from the Titanic.

Don’t get me wrong I’m not without feelings. I bawled my eyes out several times during Homeward Bound when the dogs and kitty cat get lost and are trying to find their way home. I cried like a baby when ET’s heart light started glowing beneath the clear plastic, alien body bag.

So what is it? What constitutes my eye roll?

Do I direct my cynicism to certain aspects of my life because it reflects areas in my life where I’ve been burned? That is a justifiable assumption. I’ve been burned more than once in love and God and I are still working on some serious burns.

Maybe being cynical is really a protection reflect? If I keep everything at arms distance in the “seeing is believing” mode I won’t get crushed when it doesn’t come into my view.

And if I get burned on my last IVF cycle will I then become cynical about A.R.T or older woman trying to have babies? Will I roll my eyes at their stories instead of providing my insightful (and witty) advice?

If I do not get pregnant, if I never carry a child will I forever be jaded and cynical about pregnancy and birth? Will I completely lose myself in anger and resentment?

I like who I am. I like that I can find humor in trying situations. I like that I can celebrate and rejoice. There is actually a part of me that doesn’t want to move forward. That doesn’t want to do this last IVF cycle because I’m afraid. I’m afraid of falling over the edge. Over the edge of cynicism.

Will I be able to laugh, celebrate and rejoice or will I be rolling my eyes?

*Note the church in the picture is the First Presbyterian Church of Stanhope NJ. The church that Grandma H would bring me to when I was little.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

A fear like no other: The return of Whiffer!

When I was little I used to play softball. I played on the Little League team and then played well into my teens. Anyone who plays softball knows that feeling of striking out. When strike three either whizzes past you or you swing and miss, its defeat. It’s even a greater sense of defeat when the game is on the line. Runners are in scoring position, the pitcher winds up and…bam…strike 1. Now your heart starts to race. You tell yourself its okay, you have 2 more chances. You wait for the perfect pitch and there it is. You swing. You miss. Strike 2 and it’s all on the line. One more strike and you are out. Game over. It’s pressure. It’s a lot of pressure and you are out of chances. How will it end? Will you watch the perfect pitch whiz past you? Will you swing the bat and miss or will you hit it out of the park? When I used to play softball at one time or another, I did all three. And although sometimes I struck out, I also knew that I could get a hit. My fear of the strike out didn’t overwhelm me. But there was one place that it did.

My overwhelming fear of the strike out didn’t come to me on the softball field. My fear of striking out showed up in my own backyard. My childhood friends and I used to play Whiffle ball in my backyard and there was one friend who when he pitched I could NEVER hit off of him! And that pitcher was cousin Bb. Yup cousin Bb struck me out every time. He wasn’t really my cousin. He was my childhood best friend LL’s cousin but I called him cousin anyway. I did that with all her cousins. I don’t know why initially I couldn’t hit off cousin Bb, maybe it was a childhood crush or the fear of embarrassment was too strong but there I was: strike 1, strike 2, strike 3 YOU’RE OUT!! Each and every time. And always at the hands of cousin Bb. Cousin Bb even gave me a nickname. Yup, I was called Whiffer! And the longer this went on the more terrified I became of batting against cousin Bb. There were games that if cousin Bb wasn’t pitching, when I got up to bat he would run to the mound (with the chant of Whiffer rising up through my yard) and 1, 2, 3 strikes I’m out and then trot back to the position he was playing. Just like that boom. The more this went one, the greater the fear became.

I’m down to my last IVF cycle. I was sure when I bought the 3 cycle package that I would hit it out of the park by my 2nd try. After my 1st failed IVF I was okay. I had 2 more chances. But now, now I have 2 strikes and the pressure is on. The fear is rising. I have 1 more chance and I can either hit it out of the park or swing and miss. I am terrified. It’s pressure. It’s fear. Which could be followed by the ultimate defeat and it’s in my own back yard. Am I destined to become Whiffer again? I am praying hard that cousin Bb isn’t pitching. I’m praying hard that Whiffer doesn't return.


Friday, October 29, 2010

All the signs pointed too…, Never text while crying, Hey Jealousy and A Date that was Due…

It has to be a sign:

Everything leading up to this cycle, everything about this cycle all pointed to success. Although I am struggling with the “Everything Happening for a Reason” and the “Meant to Be”, I truly believed that this cycle would be a success. I truly believed all the signs that pointed to success. With every sign: my baseline showing no cyst = sign, the fortune teller saying I will get pregnant once my left ovary starting working again and my left ovary finally producing eggs this cycle = sign, the fortune teller saying I would find out I am pregnant (3 months prior) on October 18th = sign, Leroy being 9 days late making me have to skip the August cycle and do the September cycle making my pregnancy test fall exactly on October 18th = sign, the Math FINALLY falling in my favor = sign, my mom coming with me to my ER = sign (really good sign in my book!) and so many other signs, all of it, I believed it more and more. I believed it was God trying to show me that this was going to happen and that I just need to trust in God and it would all work out. And I trusted. I trusted that God would not send me all of these signs only to let me fall. And I focused. I focused on a positive outcome knowing in my heart that this was it. And I let go. I let go of all negative thoughts. I wouldn’t let myself even for one second entertain the thought that this wasn’t going to work. And I believed. I 100% completely believed. I believed so strongly that I knew I was pregnant. I knew I was pregnant until about 5 days past my ET when all the signs in my body pointed to no. But I tried to ignore those signs b/c God gave my so many signs up until then so I made myself believe that this was just a test and I had to trust, focus, let go and believe even stronger than before. And I did and it turned out that I’m not pregnant. And now I am having a very hard time trusting, focusing, letting go and most of all believing.

Thank you for thinking of me. I’m not pregnant. I am very sad:

Yes, that is the text I sent out to some close girlfriends on Monday October 18th when I found out that I wasn’t pregnant. I cried when I typed it into my phone and I cried when I hit send. I cried for hours on end that day but one text in response to that text actually had me laughing!

“I am so sorry to hear that. I lost my phone last week and don’t have everyone’s number yet so, who is this?”

What? Huh? A return text from who? From TM? I thought I sent the text to TT…oh no…I thought I sent out the text to some of my girlfriends from work and instead of sending it to TT I sent it to TM who is a guy I used to work with about a year ago! I just sent this guy, a guy I hardly know, a text saying “I’m not pregnant”! I quickly tried to move past it by texting “Sorry I meant to send this to TT” His text back: “Who is this?” The jig is up…I respond: “It’s Michaela”. And now the text messages continue: “Hey sorry to hear that. I didn’t know you were trying to have a baby. At least you get to keep trying. That’s the fun part!” Yes, TM I do get to keep trying and NO it is not fun! But I didn’t want to text him that. This guy already (now!) knows more of my business than he needs to so, in trying to put an end to my embarrassing text moment and I text back “Thank you and I guess you didn’t really need to know any of this. LOL!” A little LOL thrown in there to lighten things up and we should be done…nope…his text back: “I guess not! I didn’t know you were romantically involved to the extent babies were involved. They shit and cry a lot anyway!” Why do people with children always have to say something negative about children or babies to people trying to have a baby? Is it an involuntary reflex?

Oh the text I wanted to send back. The one about my struggles and being single. The one that tells TM in no uncertain terms to cherish his little baby and every little poop he produces b/c not everyone gets that chance. But I didn’t. My text back was: “At least accidentally texting you made me laugh today”. And it did.

If I hadn’t blown the whole thing years ago I might not be alone:

I’ve been many things in my life. I’ve been jealous, jaded, shallow, bitter, petty and angry. Yes, I will admit that I have at one time or another been all those things but I have never been all those things all at once until now. And I can’t seem to help it or stop it.

A lot of the women on my Fertility Boards who’ve gotten pregnant after I did are having their babies. I am jealous.

When they announce their betas, if it is low I automatically think the worst. I am jaded.

They talk about names they’ve picked out, decorating their nurseries and their baby showers. I automatically negate their choices. I am shallow, bitter and petty.

I think about the time I’ve wasted over the years. I think that if I had only tried to have a baby years ago, I wouldn’t be in this situation. I think about my miscarriage. I think "That should be me!" I am angry!

I do not like this person I’ve become. I don’t like feeling or thinking this way.

My due date:

Maybe a failed IVF cycle right before my due date has exaggerated all these feelings and I am really not that bad of person? One can only hope. But Sunday October 31, 2010 was the day I should have had my baby. My Angel. On a day where everyone will be wearing a costume, pretending to be someone else, I too will be pretending. I will be pretending to move on. I will be pretending to move forward. I will wear a mask. A mask with a smile on it when in reality I am sad.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Last Stop!!! Lostville!!

This is actually a post I didn't want to make. I wanted to find some humorous way of expressing how I am truly feeling right now because I've always been one who tries to find the funny side of life...Instead I have to rely on my other side. The side that just tells it like it truthful side so, for those of you wondering where the Crazy Train left me off...well, it wasn't Disney! It feels like it stopped in the middle of a very long, dark tunnel and I am walking around trying to find the light at the end of the tunnel. And it is not there. There is no light at the end of the tunnel. I am lost in the dark. I’m trying so hard to see but I have no idea where I am suppose to go and what I am supposed to do. You see, the Crazy Train, when it stops, even though your IVF cycle has ended unsuccessfully, you still feel lost, left off in the middle, you don’t feel like this is your final destination but you don’t know what direction you are supposed to go in either. The sadness is overwhelming and self pity becomes prevalent. I have never been one to wallow in self pity but when you are stumbling around in the dark unable to see you tend to get a case of the “Why me’s”. “Why is this happening to me?” Which then makes me wonder if I am paying off some karmic debt? You are lost in a maze of questions, worry, fear and self doubt and you just can’t see a way past it. A way past the sadness, a way past the pain. You can’t see the road you are meant to travel and you can’t see the future you so desperately want…you are stumbling around in Lostville.

And although I only found out yesterday that I’m not pregnant it feels so long ago. I find myself staring off into space, drifting and remembering my last cycle like was in another lifetime. I am mourning. And I know I need to pick up the pieces and move on but I don't know which direction I'm suppose to go in. I am trying so desperately to find the light. To find the ray of light to illuminate my way but I’m grappling in the dark, reaching out, straining to find that glimmer of hope. The problem is so hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel when your eyes are full of tears.


Monday, October 11, 2010

An Autumn Harvest in the land of Dixie, Call Me on the Line, Time to Transfer and The Crazy Train:

I normally wouldn’t put in a disclaimer in for one of my posts. I do believe in “Read at Own Risk” and those that know me know that I am a “tell it like it is” kinda gal. Sugar coating is not my strong point and sparing no detail is. But I do realize that not everyone reading my blog really knows me and those that do know me might want to be spared certain details. So, for those of you who don’t wish to know exactly what happens when the doc gets up-close and personal. I would advise you to skip this post…

Sorry this is so long.

Please consult the acronym list for definitions of certain abbreviations.

If you come from the land of cotton…

The fertility clinic that I go to has two REs. There is Dr. A who I call Dr. Wow and then there is Dr. C who, let’s just say, I call him Dr. Corny. Now, Dr. Wow and Dr. Corny alternate the days they are in the office. So for my regular monitoring visits I am never sure if it will be Dr. Wow or Dr. Corny doing my ultrasound. If you can’t tell from my sweet, little nicknames, I don’t really care for Dr. Corny. I prefer Dr. Wow.

My last 3 monitoring visits, it was Dr. Corny. I was starting to miss Dr. Wow but I knew he would be doing my ER or so I thought …

On the day of my ER, my mother drove me. On the way I told her it would be Dr. Wow doing my surgery. I assumed it would be Dr. Wow. After all Dr. Wow was my doctor NOT Dr. Corny and Dr. Wow did my last ER. I explained to my mom how I preferred Dr. Wow and how Dr. Corny got on my nerves. And of course my mother asked what was wrong with Dr. Corny. I explained to her about certain “demeanors” that he has that drive me crazy…like how he has a southern accent…I’m not a fan…so when he comes in he says: “How ya’ll doing this morning?” and then gives me an off to the side, halfway handshake (I hate halfway handshakes) I’m already starting to cringe. And it’s not just a southern accent; it’s a perky southern accent. I don’t do perky. Especially before 9:00 am! He says things like “Alrighty then feet in the stirrups” and always pats both stirrups with his hands. Once you lie back and put your feet in the stirrups he’ll say “Now skootch on down” and then proceeds with “Alrighty then, you’re just gonna feel my hand first” and then he “adjusts” my cookie so he can insert the vaginal ultrasound. He’s even annoying when he does your ultrasound b/c he has to point out everything. I don’t know about the rest of you but when I look at the screen all I ever see is some gray fuzz, static and an occasional black dot. But Dr. Corny is always “Ohhh, there’s your bowel, ya see that. There’s your lining, ya see that and here’s your ovary, ya see that” and I want to say “NO! No I don’t see it” but I always say “Uh huh!”

To all my southern readers, southern friends and southern folk in general I mean this in no disrespect but I am a Jersey Girl (with an equally annoying accent) and there is only so much southern hospitality and southern charm I can take. Dr.Wow is more “down to business”. He walks in says hi, has you lie back, inserts ultrasound, looks at what he needs to look at and he’s done. Dr. Corny is like a some kinda of Dixieland Mary Poppins! It’s just too much perk for me!

Now of course my mom and I are laughing about this as we are heading to the doctor’s office for my surgery. Once we get to the office and I sign in, I see Dr. Corny walking around in scrubs. I am puzzled. I look at the receptionist and I say (in horror) “Is it Dr. C today?” and she says “Yes, why?” Now I can feel the tears starting to build. I choke them back. I reply “I thought it was going to be Dr. Wow” and she tells me Dr. Wow is away. My mom and I go to the waiting room and I start to cry. I know Dr. Corny is an excellent, capable doctor but I can’t seem to fight back the tears. And you have to remember that I am on a lot (I mean A LOT) of hormones! The nurse comes back to bring me to the prep room before my surgery and she sees I’m crying. I tell her I’m okay and then my mom has to tell her I’m upset b/c I want Dr. Wow…now I am trying to stop my mom from doing this. I don’t want everyone to know that’s why I’m upset…especially Dr. Corny…he’s about to do some very delicate work in the downtown area…I don’t need him thinking he brings me to tears! The nurse assures me everything will be okay. And of course it was.

Dr. Corny came in with his usual Dixieland Perk and introduced himself to my mom. Once he left of course we started laughing because he presented all the “demeanors” to my mom that I was telling her about. And I am whispering to my mom “You see! You see what I am talking about!” And my mom says “Well, he is a little upbeat!” and we started laughing again. I actually felt a lot better.

As I was lying completely naked and barely covered with my feet up in the stirrups waiting for the anesthesiologist to put me out, in walked Dr. Corny and said “How ya’ll feeling?” I said “Good” and he said “Alrighty then I’m just gonna put the speculum in” and all I remember was lying there, with the speculum hanging out of my cookie, thinking “Hurry up and put me to sleep” and I was out! Dr. Corny retrieved all 6 eggs.

I will say this as a side bar. I did wonder if people talked at all while under anesthesia so I asked the anesthesiologist, and he said “Yes but I never tell” so of course now I am fearful that I might have unconsciously called Dr. C by his nickname Dr. Corny while I was out so I said to the anesthesiologist “Did I talk while I was out?” he said “I will never tell” UGHHHH….when your doctor is that up-close and personal you don’t want to be calling them Corny!!

After your ER you go home and rest…pass out again is more like it. And all you can do is wait until the next morning when the doctor calls to give you your fertilization report. It always seems like forever before they call and they always seem to call at random times. It’s never an exact time or time frame. Dr. Corny called me at 10:30 am with my fertilization report. Out of my 6 eggs, 5 were mature and 4 fertilized…this report was much better than my last one…and now all you can do is wait until Day 3 after your ER (ER counting as Day 0) to see how your embryos (which I like to call my embabies) are growing and when your transfer will be. So I waited the whole next day and the following morning for my call…

Well the last time you called…

Needless to say, I didn’t get much sleep the night before my transfer. I was up at 7:00 am pacing the floors waiting for my call. I knew they wouldn’t call that early but I couldn’t sleep. I had this overwhelming (but not completely unfounded) fear that none of embryos made it to Day 3. On my last cycle none of my embryos made it to a Day 5 transfer, this is the reason why we are doing a Day 3 transfer this time so the chances of my embabies not making it to Day 3 were very low but still the last time…9:00 am the phone rings…I answer…it’s Dr. Wow and all the sudden I was wishing it was Dr. C. The last time Dr. Wow called me it was really bad news…”How are you feeling?” he says. “Nervous” I said. “Oh don’t be” he said and then I said “Well the last time you called me…” and I started laughing. He reassured me and said that he would have the nurse call me to let me know what time I should come in for my ET. And then he said something that really made me pause…right before he hung up he said “And I will be doing your transfer so you don’t have to worry”…"so you don’t have to worry”…UGHHH…insert curse word here!!!! FFFFF, SSSSSSS, DAMN everyone in that office knows I cried when I was told Dr. C was doing my surgery. If they even told Dr. Wow who was away that day what are the chances Dr. C doesn’t know!!!! Now I really feel bad.

And the wait goes on…

I don’t think the doctors, nurses or receptionists realize how agonizing the wait is for the phone call…your stomach is in knots the whole time and you are on the edge of your seat…10:10 am the phone rings…the receptionist wants to know if I can be there at 11:00 am. I live 20 minutes away. I still need my prep time so I rushed to jump in the shower. There are certain things a gal must do to be “presentable” before a doctor’s downtown visit. And although Dr. Corny was in the vicinity on Monday, I still had to follow protocol and get my cookie ready for today’s visit. Now I cannot speak for everyone but I make sure my legs are shaved, my armpits are shaved (Why? I have no idea! That is the only area they don’t get to see!) and the carpet is groomed from front to back. Well, me personally, I have hard wood floors so they are shined from front to back. Cookie prep done and I was off to my ET.

Transfer Time…

I had no idea what to expect after all this was my first transfer. I was told to drink about 16 ounces of water before you got there. They want you to have a full bladder. I bought the largest bottle of water I could find and began drinking it on my way to the doctor’s office. Once I got there they bring you into the same room where you had your ER but this time you are awake for the whole procedure. Dr. Wow comes over and discusses how many embabies we should transfer. We decided on all 4. The embryologist gets the embabies prepared while Dr. Wow rinses your cervix. Now they want you’re bladder to be full for this procedure. They say it helps them see better on the ultrasound machine and I clearly thought mine was full but when they looked on the ultrasound they said it was not. But man did I feel like I had to go….oh no…I am a very regular person and on this morning with all the phone calls and waiting I did not take care of my morning business. There is a little fear I have when going to the downtown doctor and that is a fear of an accidental release…now with my transfer ready to start…a delicate procedure…I am fearing that accidental release and trying oh so very hard not to clinch at the same time…

The embryologist comes in with a picture of my 4 embabies. I am in awe. I am in love. I forget about the pressure, the procedure, the speculum and I lie there looking at their beautiful picture. Dr. Wow says to me “That’s baby’s first pictures.” I said “I will put it in my baby book.” Dr. Wow says: “First page” and I say “No, I took a picture of all the needles I had to give myself. That’s going to be the first page. So when my kid acts up I can pull out the book” and now we all start laughing, me, the nurse and Dr. Wow and with that laugh the downtown pressure seems to drop a little bit and my fear of an accidental release came back rushing back. In my mind I am thinking…don’t clinch, relax and for the love of God don’t fart! But 1 second later he was done! I let out a deep breath and I am glad that is all I let out!

All Aboard (ha ha ha ha ha ha!) yes you can cue up Ozzy!...

I’m going off the rails on a Crazy Train!

After your ET you enter into the 2ww and board the Crazy Train…

I knew I would be boarding the Crazy Train as soon as my ET was over but what I didn’t realize was how fast the stop to Looneyville came up. I figured I would reach Looneyville by day 3 or day 4 after my ET. I reached Looneyville in a record 30 minutes after my ET. Since my “morning business” was put on hold for my ET and now my bladder was finally filling up with all the water they had me drink, I felt that all was about to let loose. As I lay with my feet up waiting for the nurse to tell me it was time to go, I tried really hard to “hold” things in. You have to remember that there is another woman in the bed next to me, separated by a curtain, waiting to go in for her ET. And as much as I thought I could quietly let myself “release” some pressure, I also knew I was lying there without any bottoms on so I didn’t want to risk the acoustics boosting the noise level. So I uncomfortably continued to “hold” things in. Finally the nurse came in a said that I could get dressed. I rapidly asked if I could go to the bathroom. And before she even finished I was dressed and headed to the bathroom. I figured I would pee and maybe shoot off some warning shots of what’s to come and then go home to finish my business but no…my business had a mind of its own. It wanted sweet release right then and there. Now I know you are probably thinking “Okay, so what…you took a poop at the RE’s office” and on any other given day I wouldn’t think twice (or give 2 you know what’s!) about pooping in a doctor’s office. But once I started feeling the train (my poop) about to leave the station…the Crazy Train pulled up to Looneyville! I was afraid to poop. I was afraid to push. I was afraid I would push my embryos back out! I know it’s crazy! I know it’s silly but did I not just say I pulled up to Looneyville. So there I am in the bathroom, trying to poop without pushing! You might wonder if that is even possible. And although this was an experiment that I didn’t mean to partake in, the answer is no. No it is not possible to poop without pushing. It’s only a matter of the level of pushing. Pushing becomes involuntary. And now I was completely paranoid that I had “pushed” out more than poop. I was completely paranoid that I pushed out my embabies. I tried to reassure myself that it wasn’t possible to push out my embabies (and it’s not) but I had already boarded the Crazy Train and reached my 1st stop in Looneyville. I will have to say that over the rest of the day I had to curse my very regular, cleansing bowels two more times and rest assured my conclusion from my experiment in the bathroom in the doctor’s office still holds water…no you cannot poop without some level of pushing (*fast poopers not included in this experiment).

I am now 4 days past my transfer. I am still on the Crazy Training and so far it has pulled into Looneyville, it has pulled into the This Isn’t Going to Work Station and it has pulled into Over Analyze Central! I have 7 more days to go and I can only imagine the stops that the Crazy Train has in store for me! But I am on that train and there is no turning back. When the train stops I will either be in the Happiest Place on Earth or the Saddest. And I will have no choice. I will have to get off!


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Everything happens for a reason – What if the reason sucks!?

I used to think “Everything happens for a reason” I used to believe in “meant to be” but when you are trying to figure out how you ended up alone with the fear of never having children and you pour over your life with a fine tooth comb and still can’t find an acceptable reason the only conclusion you can come up with is “Maybe everything doesn’t happen for a reason or maybe the reason sucks!”

In the dissection of your life, you start to think about the good things that just didn’t work out and you say “Wow, I wonder what would have happened if I went to a different college, if I gotten that job, moved away, dated so n so, married so n so” etc and you can see some of the reasons you ended up where you are now: If I had gotten that job or moved, I would have never met V or MA and I wouldn’t BFFs, M2 and I would only be mere acquaintances. I wouldn’t be as close to my sisters or mother. I would be divorced and struggling. I wouldn’t have my condo, I wouldn’t have experienced going to school in Manhattan or a whole host of reasons and then you think “Well, maybe everything does happen for a reason”

Then you start to go over bad things that have happened in your life. Are there some things that you can put into perspective and possible see the reason you had to go through that experience? Yes, there are. I can almost see why I’m having children older. I can’t quite understand the single thing but I can see the reason for the older. I always said that I didn’t want to be one of those mothers who drank and smoked and felt their kids got in the way of going out. I didn’t want that. I wanted my party days to be well behind me when I became a mom and it took me longer than most. “You’re out of time” is the reason I cleaned everything up. And maybe I needed that wake up call. I can see that reason. I can live with that reason. But I still to this day can’t figure out the reason my father left me when I was little. Was that to prepare me to be a single mom? Because if that’s the reason then that reason really sucks! And my miscarriage…there will never be an acceptable reason…ever…

So, yes, there are times when you can see the reason but there are other times where there is no clear answer and without out that answer then there is no reason. Or maybe the reason is that unclear, very vague answer your mother would give you when she had no good reason: “Because. Just because”. What if the reason is “Because”!!

I usually get the old standby reasons: “It’s because are so strong” or “You are stronger than most” So, if I was weak I wouldn’t have to go through this heartache! What kinda reason is that? “God is testing you” Well, you know what….go test someone else! I’ve had my fill thank you! Why don’t you go pick on someone weak! On that one I’m just kidding. In that case I’d rather it be me…could that be the reason? Or there’s the ever so popular: “God only gives you what you can handle” So when is it enough? When have you reached all you can handle? When do you get to cry “Uncle”? I think the big guy’s missed the boat on this one b/c I’m at my limit!

To me the above are not reasons…and if they truly are the reason then the reason does suck!

How can you look a woman in the eye and say that there is a reason she can’t have children? There is a reason she has recurring miscarriages? There is a reason her hopes and dreams might not come true? But a) you might never find out that reason or b) the reason may suck! I really don’t think that I believe that “Everything happens for a reason”. If it was true then all of this is happening because of some vague, cryptic reason …I just don’t buy it! And if you never find out the reason then what’s the point!! Or if the reason is just “Because” then there is no point!

And as much as I don’t get it. As much as I don’t buy it. As much as the “Everything happens for a reason” excuse has flown out the window for me, I continue to ask God to show me the reason. Every day I ask him to please show me what I am supposed to do and what I’m supposed to learn. I ask him to please show me why I am at this place in my life, why I am at this scary, emotional place and I keep asking him what the reason is! I keep asking for a reason greater than Because!


Saturday, October 2, 2010

An Update and an Award!!

The last we saw our fair maiden, she was off to the supermarket to pick up some ice cream in an attempt to “cool things off” and we were left with the lingering question: Pervert or Mass Egg Producer? What did the ultrasound reveal? Hmmm, well…I think the jury is still out. The ultrasound showed 6 Eggs. Not bad for a woman of advanced maternal age (oh how I hate that phrase!) with a diminished ovarian reserve but not quite the number of eggs I was expecting given my “condition” and of course not quite the number I was hoping for after reading about other woman and their 10 plus (some 20) Eggtravaganza! So, I would imagine that there are 2 factors “heightening” the situation. One being the extra Eggs and the second being that I am a woman of “advanced sexual age” (much better term and one with a huge bonus woman have to look forward too as they say goodbye to their 30s). Mix those two together and bam...increased (extremely increased) “sensitivity”! The conclusion: I am a red hot, sexually charged, semi-perverted (I can live with that!) ravishing woman who’s trying to have a baby! And I’m feeling very fertile!

Next up: an Award!

S from Ticking Clock and Shannon from Chasing Rainbows nominated me this week for The Versatile Blogger Award! S I met through my new found blog world that I am now happily immersed in and Shannon and I met on the Fertile Thoughts Single Sisters in Fertility thread. S is starting her 2nd IUI (2 is a charm and my fingers are crossed for you!) and Shannon is now pregnant from her 4th IUI! Shannon I couldn’t be happier for you and I can’t wait to meet little Chiquita.

Thank you both for the nomination!

Now here are the rules to those who I award the Versatile Blogger Award to:

The Rules ~
•thank and link back to the person nice enough to give you the award
•share seven things about yourself
•pass the award along to seven other bloggers who you think are fabulous
•contact the bloggers you chose and let them know about the award

Okay now here is the fun part!

7 Things about me…

1. I used to make pizzas for a living.
2. I sometimes look under my bed before I go to sleep. I have no idea what I would do if something or someone was actually under there. Crap myself is probably it!
3. When I eat a piece of lunchmeat, I always make it into a smiley face first.
4. I have double jointed toes (weird!).
5. I can sleep anywhere, at anytime, with any noise level.
6. When I take a shower, I make the water as hot as I can take it! I come out looking like a lobster.
7. I’m not afraid of growing old. It’s growing old alone that scares me.

And here are my nominations – I am new to this wonderful world of blogging and I know there are many, many wonderful blogs out there I have yet to discover. If you have one those amazing blogs I have yet to discover, send me a comment (or follow me!) and I will gladly give it a read and follow you. As I said I am fairly new to this wonderful world of blogging but so far I love what I have discovered and now I nominate:

Shannon at Chasing Rainbows
Charity at Charity's Journey to Single Motherhood
Hopeful at My (hopeful) Journey to Motherhood
S at Ticking Clock
Katie at from IF to when
The Baby Chaser at The Baby Chase Project
SIF at Single Infertile Female: Now What?
Erica at Parenthood for Me

Happy Blogging!


Sunday, September 26, 2010

Side effects can have a certain affect…

When I was in my late twenties, I got baby fever really bad. Every baby I saw made me want one and I felt a definite rise in my already high libido. I remember telling my mother about this new found “friskiness” and her stating “You think its bad now, wait until you’re in your late 30’s early 40’s” and I distinctly remember thinking “There’s no way this could get any more intense”

Well I was wrong. In my early to mid 30’s I was with my ex Sio. Although our relationship was missing a lot of things and we brought out the worst in each other, there was one aspect that was never lacking, dull, boring or without love and that was our sex life. We had an amazing sex life and with the onset of my increased sexuality it was definitely good timing for me. It was definitely more intense than it had been in my late 20’s and I knew this time that there was NO WAY “it” could get any higher. Well let’s just say the old saying that “Your mother is always right” still holds true! Boy was she was right and then some. Over the last 6 years I have been predominately single. I have dated and had some short lived relationships which didn’t pan out but my libido, has been and still is on the rise!

I do not claim to know exactly what men go through with their heightened libidos but with the constant urges (and I mean constant ) and heightened sensations I can only imagine that what I am going through is comparable to that of an 18 year old boy.

Now I will say over the last couple of years I have scratched this itch with the help of my Friend with Benefits (FB). And although I longed for “the guy”, “my guy” to share all of this extra special fun with I knew that at least I had FB and he always “came through”.

The reason I bring this up is because recently, I ended things with FB. With the start of my new IVF cycle I felt it was time to move on, to clean house, to focus on becoming a mom and look towards the future which did not include my “afternoon delights”! To leave the past behind and start new even if it meant having to go without my “itch scratcher”! I also felt in some way that this might open me up to finding “my guy”. I ended it with FB at what I am finding to be the worst possible time.

Oh, if I had only waited a few weeks to do so…

All IVF cycles start with suppression. You give yourself a daily shot of some kind of medicine, usually Lupron, which is designed to suppress Leroy. Many people have different side effects associated with Lupron suppression. Some get headaches, some insomnia, some get forgetful (they call Loopy Lupron Brain). I (considering myself very fortunate) haven’t had any of these side effects…well if I did have Loopy Lupron Brain it would be hard for me to tell b/c I can be silly sometimes naturally…So as my cycle progressed I found myself very happy that I hadn’t had any side effects from the meds.

Or so I thought…The next step in an IVF cycle after suppression is stimulation…for those of you who can read between the lines, you might see where this is going…

During stimulation you give yourself 1 to 2 shots a day of some kind of medicine, usually Gonal F or Follistim, to stimulate your ovaries into making as many eggs as possible. The increase in eggs will cause an increase in estrogen which has a direct affect on your overall “friskiness”. As a matter of fact this is one level of “friskiness” that I don’t think even my mom knows about! And although there are many other side effects from stimulation that I hear woman complain about: cramping, bloating, gas. I have heard very few mention this uncontrollable itch!! And I am without my “itch scratcher”! The itch has truly been out of control these last few days. Not only am I ogling the hot waiter at work...I'm ogling the ugly waiter, the bar guests and random men on the street! And in my dreams…well let’s just say in my dreams all itches are scratched and then some. Aren’t dreams fun!! Now I know I have options, I could probably call FB and I am sure even Sio would be happy to oblige and of course I could take matters into my own hands (okay I already did that) but I just feel that all of this heightened activity is being wasted! Here is another time in my life where I wish I had “my guy” to share this with. You know that someone special who would appreciate this in all its heightened glory!

Now in some attempt to quiet this itch I ended up eating a whole 1/2 gallon of ice cream (the good stuff not the diet stuff) between last night and this morning. Yup I had ice cream for breakfast! So on Monday I will find out how many eggs I have...I really hope it's a lot because I feel that if it's not then I'll have no choice but to admit that the only reason I am feeling this way is because I am a pervert. That it is not the affect of certain side effects and I will end up on a diet consisting solely of ice cream! Which I am now on my way out to get some more!


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

My Dreambox

One of my oldest and dearest friends M2 (yes that is M squared because we were called the M&Ms growing up) went to Alaska for her summer vacation. This is a trip she has always dreamed of taking. A trip I remember her talking about many times over the years. Traveling to Alaska was a dream of hers that became a reality this summer. So, I thought it was ironic that on her dream trip she got me a Dreambox.

M2 invited me over to dinner and I knew with dinner, her return from Alaska and my birthday just passing that presents were in order!! I was excited to see what she had picked up for me in Alaska and I was pretty certain that it would be a doll. I started collecting dolls when I was very young partly influenced by M2’s mom S2. Yes, we call M2's mom S2 (S squared) b/c both M2's mom and my mom have the same name…so they are known as S2.

So after a lovely dinner (M2 always makes good grub!!), out came the present bag! I gleefully reached in to pull out my Alaskan doll but my hand grabbed onto something else in the bag. It was small. I wasn’t sure what it was so I slowly pulled it out of the bag. It was a small, circular wooden box with a dragonfly carved on the top (I love dragonflies) and a little blue gem embedded in it. “This is beautiful” I said. M2 said “Wait there is a piece of paper that goes with that. You have to read the piece of paper.” I fished around the bottom of the bag and pulled out the accompanying piece of paper. I read what was written on the paper out loud:

“The Legend of the Dreambox (often attributed to Lemuria) suggests writing down your fondest dream, greatest desire, strongest wish on a small piece of paper, putting that paper in a Dreambox and placing it beside your bed. Every evening as you retire and every morning as you rise, hold your Dreambox and think on your dream, believing with all your heart that it is so. Legend has it, if done faithfully…your dream will come true.”

M2 said “As soon as I saw this I knew I had to get it for you!” “I love it!” I declared. “I know this can only help”. I will cherish my Dreambox. Then I reached back in my present bag and pulled out a beautiful Alaskan Eskimo doll to add to my collection. Some of my favorite dolls have come from M2 over the 30 plus years we have been friends. Yes, it's been well over 30 years that we have known each other. Her mom and my mom were best friends when we were growing up. We met when we were 3 years old. We went to Kindergarten together, dance classes together, Elementary School, Middle School and High School together. We were even college roommates; having a friend like M2 for all these years is a dream come true in itself. Having her support and friendship through everything is a blessing. The night went on with lots of laughter, talks about my cycle, work, men and other issues like we always do. A true girlfriends get together. The best kind.

Once I got home I placed my doll in its new home on my bookcase next to some other favorites and I sat down with my Dreambox. I thought about all the different dreams, greatest desires and strongest wishes I have had over the years and what I might have put into this box if it was given to me 5 years ago, 10 years ago, 20 years ago and how they all have easily faded but one dream still remained the same so, I pulled out a piece of paper and I wrote:

“I easily get pregnant. I have a healthy pregnancy. I have a beautiful, healthy baby. I am a MOM!”

I neatly folded up that piece of paper and placed it in my Dreambox. I put my Dreambox next to bed and faithfully, every evening before I go to bed and every morning when I rise I hold my Dreambox , I say out loud “I easily get pregnant. I have a healthy pregnancy. I have a beautiful, healthy baby. I am a MOM!” and I know in my heart that it is true. Now let’s see if Legend really has it!


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Remembering 9/11…

I really didn’t have any intentions of writing about my feelings from 9/11. It is the most tragic thing I have ever experienced and I know that all feel the same. I wasn’t going to rehash the event and talk about where I was when the Towers fell but you see as much as I try to push all those emotions to the back of my heart and mind they coming rushing back with every name being read and every image of the Towers that I see. Today is a hard day. It will always be a hard day.

As I sit here praying that I can create a life, a life to teach, love and protect, I think about those who lost their lives on 9/11/2001. I think about all the mothers and fathers that lost their sons and daughters. Aunts, uncles, cousins, brothers, sisters and friends were lost that day. I lost a friend that day. I can’t even imagine how 9 years has passed so fast. 9 years…the pain is still fresh, the memories feel new. I can still see the horror on people’s faces a we (me and my boyfriend at the time) watched the Towers fall. We stood on the hill outside my apartment which has a panoramic view of Manhattan and we watched the Towers fall. That day and those images are forever burned into my heart and my soul.

I hope to teach my child one day about the bravery of the men and women of 9/11. To teach my child about their strength and their sacrifice. To teach them honor…

This is my quiet memorial in remembrance of those lost on that fateful day and a special remembrance of my brave friend who called her mom to tell her she loved her before the 2nd Tower fell. There is not much one can do on this day but say a prayer and remember…Today I am praying and remembering.


Friday, September 3, 2010

Do the Math!

I’ve always liked the phrase “Do the Math!” It’s a phrase that suggests higher intelligence and knowledge. It suggests that the person saying it knows something that you don’t and if you could only Do the Math you would see it for yourself.

I was watching Criminal Minds (I am addicted to this show) the other night and the FBI agent is interrogating a suspect and leans in and says “I have 5 dead bodies and I am only looking at you. Do the Math!!!” It’s has authority. It’s definitive. Math doesn’t lie.

There is also that famous scene in When Harry Met Sally when they are discussing women faking organisms and Sally says: “Its just that all men are sure it never happened to them and all women at one time or another have done it so you Do the Math.” It’s a little condescending with a “smarty pants” edge.

But it also implies that answers can be obtained through calculating numbers. And that is why Doing the Math is something I can’t help but do! I've always been very good at Math. Math was something I easily understood. I actually couldn’t understand why other people couldn’t get it. It was simple to me: plug in the numbers and you have your answer. Boom just like that. It’s not subjective and as I said, Math doesn’t lie. There are no alternative answers or view points when it comes to Math. And I can’t help but to Do the Math. I think in numbers and percentages. When I am cycling, I Google stats so I can see where I stand. I Google stats so I can see where other ladies who are cycling stand.

One of the gals on the Fertility Board once posted that 33% of IUIs are successful. Of course that number stuck in my head and back in January 5 gals on the board went in for an IUI, 3 on the same day…so that stands to reason that 2 girls would get pregnant if 33% are successful (it’s 1.65 but if you round up then it’s 2). When the BFNs started rolling in I started thinking to myself hmmm could I be the 1 out of 2 and then 2 gals got their BFP and I knew that Leroy was on his way and he was.

Is this reasonable thinking? Mathematically it works but why would having 2 girls get their BFP have any effect on my BFP. I doesn’t but I can’t help but to Do the Math.

About 50% of all women will get a BFP on an IVF cycle. So when 5 girls on the boards were doing IVF basically at the same time I figure 2.5 (yes, that is correct 2.5) would get pregnant. And the fact that it is 2.5 makes you wonder do you round up or down. How do you get a .5 pregnancy…and this is where Math sucks…2 women got pregnant and 1 had a chemical pregnancy. That equals 2.5. I don’t necessarily like numbers or the Math but I still ended up doing the Math and once again the Math didn’t lie.

I think in actuality I hate the numbers. I don’t like thinking about them. I don’t like using them to figure out who will get their BFP and who won’t and mostly I don’t like the numbers because my numbers are so bad. I’m afraid of cycling with certain gals because their numbers are so much better than mine.

The other day was my 42nd birthday. I am now 42. I have now hit the age where success rates are much lower. Where my numbers suck and for once I wish Math would lie.

But here’s the thing: there is also the other side to the stats and the percentages. 30% of women over 40 WILL get pregnant with IVF. I could be one of the 30%. Dr. Doom gave me a practically 0% chance of conceiving with an IUI and I did! Ahhhhh I beat the numbers that are working so hard against me. Could I beat them again?

Over my birthday weekend I went down the shore with one of my BFFs. I stayed with V and her husband at their beach house. Their beach house is located on a little island just outside of Atlantic City. So one night we were sitting on her porch playing poker (of course this wasn’t in the casino, no of course not, but that is bunch of other numbers I won’t go into) and we were playing 7 card draw blind! So basically you can’t see your hand until you flip your cards over. I had flipped 3 cards face up resulting in a pair of Kings for my hand with 4 cards remaining face down. V had to flip her cards until she beat me or folded. She flipped her cards one at a time and got a Straight! She pushed a huge stack of her chips forward to place her bet. The others folded. It was now up to me. I pushed a huge stack of chips forward to call her. I still had 4 cards face down to complete my hand. Her husband said: “You’re going to call her, do you know how hard it is to beat a Straight. The chances are next to zero” Hmmm where have I heard that before! I said “Yup, I’ve got to see the rest of my hand. “ I flip my next card it’s a King! And I declared “I have 3 Kings” and V’s husband said “That still doesn’t beat a Straight” so, I continue to flip my cards, next card, nothing and then the next card…drum roll please….it’s a King and I say “But 4 Kings beat a Straight!!!!!” And yes by God it most certainly does! I beat the odds, I beat the numbers, I fell on the side of Math we all hope to fall on and no I was NOT in the casino where I would have won a ton of money. I was on the porch where I won a bunch of chips that ended up going back into a case at the end of the game BUT I did go for it! I went for it blind, against the odds. I had to see. I couldn’t just fold without seeing.

I know in my heart that I am going to get pregnant, with my own eggs and have a beautiful, healthy baby but I can’t help but to Do the Math!

Today is my first shot of Lupron to mark the start of my 2nd IVF cycle. I am now 42. If you Do the Math, the odds are against me, the numbers aren’t good but sometimes you just have to go for! Sometimes instead of Doing the Math you have to say Screw the Math!!

"It's impossible." said pride. "It's risky." said experience. "It's pointless." said reason. "Give it a try." whispered the heart.



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