Friday, December 28, 2007

Hello old friend...


Hi there-it's been a while! I've dusted off the cobwebs around here, and with my fireplace and cup of peppermint tea keeping me warm, and my adorable fur-baby sleeping (err, make that snoring) next to me-seems like a good time to sit down and have a chat!

A belated happy holidays to all! I am sorry that I was not around to be more of a shoulder to lean on, or to rejoice happy news with you. I will make my absence explanation short and sweet: I got what I wished for. (see: holiday sizzle)

Along with the sizzle, I needed to focus on our relationship and live outside my head. I tend to live inside my head a lot when I blog--not that it's a bad thing, I just needed to have some serious couch* time with Mook. More about this in a bit...

A huge thank you for the immense support I received with the CD! I had so much fun getting all the orders together, and the sweet comments have really touched me. We are so very humbled by the support we have gotten through this community. I am excited to say that the CD sales paid for our round of FET medication! THANK YOU SO MUCH! We are truly grateful for all of the support! Our hope is that you will enjoy the tunes for many holiday seasons to come!

So, with only days to go until 2008, I didn't want to leave 2007 behind without saying a respectful farewell. Needless to say, it hasn't been my favorite year, but there has been a lot of good that has gone along with the not so good--and I don't want to reflect back on this year and see all sad. So let's just get the sad/bad/mad out of the way, shall we?
  • We found out on January 19th of this year that we would face big obstacles in having a child without medical assistance, due to male factor infertility
  • We struggled with our relationship for the weeks following the diagnosis-learning to deal with the cards we had been dealt
  • In March, our hearts were heavy after the failed IUI
  • I had a tough battle with pneumonia in April
  • My eggs turned a year older in May
  • Our hearts were even heavier after our first IVF/ICSI didn't give us a BFP in July
  • A close family friend passed away in September
  • I contracted MRSA in my blood-draw spot from the IVF
  • *Mook and I had some serious couch time this month
That's "our place" where the heavy conversations happen--and this month, we kept the cushions warm. I won't go into all the details, but it put us both through the ringer. The nasty cycle of throwing punches, receiving them (not literally of course...) and then it would start all over again. We are in a much better place, and thank goodness a new year is on the horizon--we need a fresh start! Do you have your own "couch place"? Is it on your couch, in the kitchen, in the car....?

Enough sad/bad/mad. The good:
  • We found out on January 19th of this year that we would face big obstacles in having a child without medical assistance, due to male factor infertility. We had an answer!
  • I grew closer to my husband in the weeks that followed our diagnosis.
  • I started this blog and became connected to so many fantastic people
  • We vacationed in Las Vegas!
  • The Braces Bunch was born!
  • I celebrated another year of life
  • I recorded my first CD
  • We vacationed in the Florida Keys/Disney!
  • We had 3 embryos to freeze!
  • I got to meet some great bloggers
  • We took a much needed break from pills/shots
  • I recorded my 2nd CD!
  • I celebrated the holidays with sizzle, good food, friends and family
So farewell, 2007. I am thankful for all you taught me-and I go into 2008 wiser, more compassionate and ready to face new adventures. Happy New Year to all the wonderful women (and men!) that mean so much to me!

Oh, and it's CD 1. Start thinking thawing thoughts for us, please :0)

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Tunes for your Tinsel!

We all gripe and moan when we hear that first Christmas song on the radio the day after Halloween...a tad early when I haven't even begun to take down my pumpkins and put away my costume!

But....I have to admit: the minute I hear my favorite holiday tune (The Christ.mas Song-Nat Kin.g Cole), I'm instantly transformed into the holiday spirit-even if it's the day after Halloween!

Since there are still 21 days left until Christmas, and you've been passing station after station of 24 HOUR NON-STOP CHRISTMAS FAVORITES (overbearing, isn't it?) I hope that you aren't tired of of them quite yet...



Let me tell you a quick story.....

I've always had two big dreams:
1) To be a mom
2) To be a professional singer

As you may know through reading this blog, it has been a bit of a struggle to achieve that 1st dream.

The second dream: I may not ever have the number one album on the Bill.board charts, but I have been fortunate to be able to record and perform music that means so much to me. Music/singing is a true blessing, and I am thankful that through Shop to Make Mom or Pop, that we can save the money that is raised to go towards dream number one.

So here is the scoop on how dream #2 will help me with dream #1:

What: A professional recording of holiday music on my CD : "You, Me and a Ch.ristmas Tree"

Who:
All music is original recordings of holiday classics with beautiful instrumentals and my vocals (there is a very special guest-artist appearance on one of the tracks!)

When: Available NOW!

How to order: The cost of the CD is $16. I will be able to accept pay.pal payments (credit cards may be used through pay.pal) and checks. Shipping is $2 to US and $4 for international. Please be sure to list an e-mail address or include one in the comment section/e-mail to me if you do not have an e-mail link associated with your blog. This is how I will get the pay.pal information to you! (You can simply e-mail me if you don't wish to leave a comment here--I welcome both!)

Final Details: There may be some questions that need answering past what I have listed, so if I start getting specific questions I will post an extended FAQ here. I am glad to answer anything you want to know. Thank you again so much for your interest!

This means so much to both Mook and I, as we want so much to be a MOM and POP! We are one of many couples who has to deal with no/zero/nada insurance coverage-so every little bit helps!!

*Updated: A FAQ Section*

1. Where do I mail the check/who do I make it out to/how much?
I will e-mail you my mailing address and name if you leave a comment/or e-mail me. Please figure in the shipping ($2 for US and $4 international) to get your total along with the cost of the CD: $16



A big THANKS to Mel for giving all of us an opportunity to shop! What more could you ask for?
Be sure to visit the other shops set up at Shop to Make Mom or Pop!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Because my bug sneezed


This was one of my favorite books growing up.

If you haven't had the pleasure of reading it, this little bug sneezes and causes a chain reaction of all sorts-some good, some bad. In a sense, my bug sneezed yesterday when I decided I wanted to add a few things to my blog...which turned into more changes, and then a few more...

So because my bug sneezed, I have a quick favor to ask of you...

As I worked on a PC yesterday, it all looked fine and dandy, but when I got home and pulled it up on my MAC, it looked a bit off (the header especially--still working on the rest)

Can you tell me if it looks OK on your computer-of-choice--esp. some of my MAC buddies? And any suggestions as far as getting the pixels/size correct. If not, I'll just make do!

I'm loving all the "blog you very much" posts! Ill be linking all the posts soon, once my bug stops sneezing....

*achoo*

Monday, November 26, 2007

Blog you very much!

A sincere thanks to each of you who swung by to wish me well--I am glad and thankful that I seem to be close to feeling 100%. A definite cure is heading home to the comfort and care of my momma--and that's exactly what I got to do over the holiday. Along with her care, it was healing just to be around those I love and cherish the most.

This holiday season is the first that Mook and I have the knowledge of the hurdles we have to cross in order to have little ones opening presents on Christmas morning. This time last year, we had innocence--we hadn't quite reached the 6 month mark, and had such high hopes that by this Christmas we would be well on our way. Does it hurt? Yea, to say a little is an understatement, but we are still very much into the spirit. As I have mentioned before, I am lucky that my husband is my best friend and has a child-like spirit, so we are just a bunch of big kids getting ready for Santa to visit! You can bet we both have "a child" at the top of our wish list!

It's getting close to the time where I will be getting out the notebook (where the med check list, appointments, etc. are held) in preparation for our January FET. I'm anxious about this for many reasons-all the "what if's" rolling around in my head. I asked Mook on our way to my parents house how he was feeling about the upcoming cycle: "Really good." Gotta love his positive spirit! Of course I'm ready to have a plan for after January--I'll just leave it at that. I don't want to sound negative. Mook and I differ quite a bit in that area--which I guess is a good balance. He likes to live in the now and I like to live 5 minutes from now. One step at a time, right?

In cycle news, Coco and I have decided to part for the holidays. I'm on cd 24, so for the last month before our lives are dictated by our RE again, I will not be counting, watching for peak, etc. I want some holiday sizzle in my love life!!

It was heart warming to read so many thankful posts over the blogosphere the past few weeks. I am disappointed that I was not able to keep my promise of a thankful-a-day post-and I apologize for laying low in blog surfing, but to send it out with a bang I would like to say that I am thankful for the reason I am a blogger in the first place.

I thought a lot about our little corner of the world where we all share our struggles and strife and get so much support. It was astonishing to see how many of us thanked our blogging-friends and really include our blog-friends as a part of our circle of friends/family. It made me think back to the first blog I found and read that made me really feel like I wasn't so alone.

That person is Amanda at Manana Banana. She isn't blogging much these days, but that is due to being busy with her adorable little Adam. After spending days going through her archives, I decided that I wanted to document our journey as eloquently as she has done. That's when I approached Mook and asked him what he thought. I was nervous to approach the subject, since I knew we would airing a lot of our struggles, and it IS a personal journey. He was very supportive, and I love the fact that he knows it's comforting for me. I am thrilled to have gained such a supportive family through blogging, and I'll say it many more times--THANK YOU to all of you. Thank you to Amanda for being so willing to share your story. Thanks for inspiring me.

So here's your chance to say THANKS to that blogger who inspired you. Share your blog's birth story. Post it on your blog, (feel free to use the logo!) and then e-mail me or leave a comment here, and I will keep a running list (no cut-off date!) of Blog You Very Much posts!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Please pass the salt

Well, I am disappointed that I could not stay on track with my thankful-post-a-day...but I have a whopper of a thankful post today.


For the past four days I have been thankful for these:

Those little blue pills have kept me from being one sick girl. On Thursday evening while taking out my winter-wear, I was trying on a sweater when Mook and I both noticed that a spot on my left arm, right near the bend in my elbow, was very red/swollen/and raised.

That spot was on top of the powerful vein that was poked and prodded so much in July. July, as in the-month-we-would-rather-forget. I immediately called my oh so smart mom to find out what I should do--not knowing if it was serious enough to go to the ER, or just wait until the morning to see my doctor. I wasn't feeling bad, but I started to get a bit nervous--my mom and I decided it was best to wait to see my regular doctor, so I just took some tyle.nol and went to bed...

Well, the first jolt of the next morning was the news that my general practitioner's office had closed...guess it's been a while since I've been there! So off I went to a doc-in-the-box. I was ushered into a room and was told to keep my arm elevated-no problemo. Then the doc walks in--and he was this actor's twin! Very strange...
(Updated: As Debbie pointed out, he has been on Grey's this season-so the conversation below is kind of like a twilight-zone episode, right?)

The conversation (where the SALT comes into play) went like this:

--------------------------------------

Twin Doc: So how long has the spot looked like this?

Me: I only noticed the redness last night, but I have had a small spot there since July...(I get cut off here)

Twin Doc: So what happened in this spot in July?

Me: Umm, I had a lot of blood drawn from that vein for IV...(again I get cut off)

Twin Doc: An IVF procedure? Yes, I know what that is. So how far along are you?

Me: (Taking a deep breath) It was not successful.

Twin Doc: (insert the salt getting rubbed into the wound--a literal and figurative wound). Well, that's too bad--not a great reminder to have an infection then, is it?

Me: No sir, not at all.
----------------------------------------

And then the test results come back from my panels: I have Level 1 MR.SA.

Lovely.

I've had a low grade fever and a headache ever since, but I've been fine--just more of an emotional ill-feeling than anything else. There has been a big out-break around this area, with some scary stories, so I am very glad I went to the doctor. Basically that injection site never healed properly-and I'm watching it closely, as it still hasnt healed completely--I will get an update from the doctor after I finish this round of medicine.

Whew, enough about that. Onto more happy updates--despite the little "bump" (ha, pun intended) in the road, we were able to take a road trip to Willia.msburg VA--a lovely fall weekend! Best of all, I got to meet A from A Somewhat Ordinary Life. She is fabulous--such a warm, caring person--and one cute pregnant lady! And no worries, I made SURE with my obgyn that A would be in no danger being around me with the mr.sa.

So I may have to duck out of the every-day NaBloPoMo until I feel 100% --hopefully soon! This deserves more time and mention, but quickly-thank you so very much to Jenna and those who have listed me among the deserving of a Flame of Fortitude. Thank you...

Thursday, November 8, 2007

This is what...


...90% off Halloween costumes looks like:

This lovely picture includes: One black wig, one muscle man costume, and one goofy husband.

Today, I am thankful that Mook makes me laugh on a daily basis. We both have a child-like mentality when it comes to having a good laugh-- and this really comes in handy on the tough days.

Some daily clicks for you:

If you didn't already know...

She deserves it!

I strive to be a coffee bean on most days. What are you?

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

What's all the Bzzzzz About?

I have to say, I am not enjoying all these LONG promos for Jer.ry Seinf.eld's new Bee mo.vie...I mean, good grief-how desperate are you to be back in the lime light?!

When I first saw a preview before the last movie I saw in the theater, I was kind of excited. I think I have mentioned before that I love bees, so I was thinking it would be so much fun to go watch a movie about a funny bee doing funny bee things. Ehh, not so much any more.

But, I am thankful for my awesome collection of items of bees/things with bees on it! The collection started after a long-ago conversation I had with my sister. I had just gotten out of a really crappy relationship, and vowed to never be treated that way again. I said it would be great to be treated like a queen! And not in a "bow down at my feet" kind of way, but I knew that I deserved some "sweet honey" :0) Of course, in return anyone (not just in a romantic relationship) who treats me kindly, I return that many times over--the saying is true: "Kill 'em with kindness!"

It also worked out that my last name began with a "B", so that's where the qu.een bee admiration was born. My sister is 'Lil Bee, I remain the queeny, and my mom is Mommy Bee! It's been fun finding things over the years, and always having that reminder to be sweet to those I come in contact with, and hope that I receive sweetness in return!

So be sweet today and go over and vote for Mel! What a fantastic representative of our community!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Does a body good...

...Breakfast, that is. Today I am thankful for these two delicious items that start my morning off right! If you haven't found these Qua.ker Gra.nola Bites yet--you must find them.

Go on, leave your desk/couch/bed and go get them. I'll wait right here.....

Good-you're back! They are good, arent' they? I told you so! For my weight-watching buddies, these are only 2 points, and are very satisfying.

Of course you can't ignore the in the photo--my grande non-fat 2 spl.enda mis.to. Yes, that's the drink that the Oracle called me "fat" for ordering. :0)

Thanks for all who chimed in yesterday about my cramps--I did speak with the Rhino and he has prescribed a stronger medicine for next month-I still have to call if it gets that bad. At that point, I may go in to have a conversation about more steps to take. I'm satisfied with the response he gave me--he doesn't want to jump the gun, but given the fact that we are "actively trying" (an understatement) to start a family, we want to make sure that we address all possible hindrances.

Had my weigh-in (on my home scale) this AM--not bad, not great. I maintained--but I figured as much, so I'm happy the scale didn't go UP! Thanks for all the pats-on-the-back! It keeps me motivated to keep on track=)

A few things for you to check out today if you need a distraction:

Yet another study telling us to relax...

A guilty pleasure for sure--and I just realized that I don't have this channel anymore, so I'm going to have to hope that they show re-runs on another channel. Premiers tonight!

And finally, I know we have all experienced this:














A reminder: keep de-lurking :0) Thanks to those who have!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Mmmm Monday!

I take these beauties for granted--grapes are soooo yummy. These are what I am thankful for today--they have kept me going through my 3pm slouch in the afternoons--when I don't want to have more caffeine, but when I need something to get me through to dinner!

I have been doing Wei.ght Watch.ers for 3 weeks, and these are a life saver-only 1 point for a full cup. I know they have kept me from grabbing a handful of candies with M's printed on them :0) Better yet, I am happy to report I have lost 11 pounds so far! Tomorrow is weigh in, and I hope that I won't be disappointed since the aunt is in town--I tend to grab things with extra calories this time of month...

Since it's a "Mmmm Monday" I thought I'd share some "yummy" websites/links I found over the weekend.

First, for you Star-buck-aroo fans, see what the Oracle has to say about you based on the type of drink you like. Go here. It's not meant to be very flattering--the oracle told me I was: Fat. Nice! A nice giggle for a Monday.

Second, how cool are these!? I might have to invest in those for the winter...I love walking around barefoot, and now I can at least think that I am!

Lastly, do you eat at your desk? Need to clean up after yourself? Then you need this! So cute! It wouldn't make me feel so bad about making a mess!

I called my Rhino* this morning...waiting to hear back. I am nervous that he is going to recommend a more invasive solution for the cramps. He told me back in January that since I have a history of some painful cycles, he might suggest finding out if I have endo. I just don't know if I'm ready to take that big of a leap. Can't he just prescribe 2 glasses of wine and be done with it?


*If you missed my weekend posts, be sure to scroll down for the definition of Rhino in our house!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Sweetness...

Our fur-baby is feeling much better...we definitely got the pick of the litter when we adopted her. She can be a handful, but we love her-so today I am thankful that she is ours and for all the joy she brings us.

I'm feeling much better today--keeping the meds and the hot water close by though! It's hitting me more today that this cycle didn't work, but I'm still in a positive mood--just glad to be back to a more normal cycle after a few wacky ones after the ivf.

Hope it's been a good weekend for everyone--I have a busy week ahead, so I'm hoping the cramps are gone for good! Looking forward to seeing what the Rhino* says tomorrow...



*If you aren't sure what the heck I mean, be sure to see yesterday's post! :0)

Saturday, November 3, 2007

The saying is true...

Pictures are worth a thousand words...

Needless to say, today is CD 1. So today, I am thankful for my hot water bottle and pain-killers. Ladies (and gents) I have never had cramps like I have had today.... it-is-bad.

I am going to call my gyno (or as Mook calls him, my "Rhino"--he hates the word gyno, so we chose something that rhymed) on Monday. I was this close to going to the ER. Sooo painful...


So it looks like CoCo will be with us for another cycle...but that's OK. I think the severity of the cramps have kept me from thinking about this cycle not producing 2 lines....

Friday, November 2, 2007

Day 2

Cutting it close, but I made it...

Long story short: 

Computer died (but I have a purty new one, so it's OK!) I am now an apple-gal thanks to my intelegent sister who has shown me the light.
Fur-baby got sick this morning--poor thing has been pitiful all day--had to step up the mom duties!
I did some major house cleaning (including ironing-which I loathe) and I did so, while listening to Disney tunes, so it wasn't all bad...

Today I am thankful for good friends--those include ones I have never met, but receive immense support from. This is what I found waiting for me on my doorstep when I got home today:

Thanks, Kim for the beautiful ceramic tile. A perfect reminder for my November to Remember!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

November to Remember

A post a day. That's what NaBloPoMo calls for! So over here at Reproductive Jeans, it will be a November to Remember. All 30 days of it!

This is the perfect project for me, since:

1) We are still depending on CoCo to help us make a baby (Coco, I love ya--but I need another distraction...)
2) I've decided to really embrace a new attitude of being thankful and happy* about things/people in my life.
3) Since November is the month of Thanks-giving here in the US of A, you all will get a glimpse each day, of something I am thankful for.

As many bloggers will be doing, I welcome any questions you want to ask to get to know more about me....and I strongly encourage lurkers (yes, you!) to comment-say hi! I won't bite--I promise! I'd love to come check out your blog**!

So without further adieu, here is what I am thankful for today, November 1st 2007:


The last piece of Halloween candy that was left in our house this morning-good little trick-o-treaters took the rest, thank goodness!



*I reserve the right to have my blue days. Trust me, it ain't all sunshine and kittens over here 24/7.
**Your blog doesn't have to be IF related-I am capable of having conversations that don't revolve around ovaries and sperm. :0)

Monday, October 29, 2007

Guest Blogger: CoCo


Goooooood morning, blogosphere! Happy Monday! Can you tell I've had my caffeine fix today!?

So further introductions are needed: as I mentioned, my name is CoCo, and I am one of JJ's closest friends. Well...she uses the the term "friend" loosely when she talks about me...but let me tell ya, JJ is so excited to see me every morning! But tell me, is "crap" a new way of saying hello? Cause she sure uses that word a lot when we talk...

I see that an update is needed-it's been a good 2 weeks since JJ checked in. So, an update you shall get--all through my eyes, of course! I must say thank you on behalf of JJ and Mook for all the lovely anniversary wishes--she definitely appreciates them all and I know she couldn't be going through this journey with just ME as an ally! I know I give her a hard time a lot, so it's good to know she has support when I'm not being so nice. Shame on me...

Anywho-I got to travel along for the anniversary trip to the beautiful NC mountains! Wowee, what a trip. JJ and I really connected--I guess it had something to do with me asking her to POAS on CD9-I know she was worried I wasn't going to ask until it was too late! Not to fear, I was not going to let her down! It was fun to hear her scream: yippee!--even Mook got excited. I think he is still amazed that I know so much about ovulation. I don't want to brag, but...

I decided to hang out in the condo most of the time though--I wanted to give JJ and Mook some time to reconnect and have good time without worrying about me. They got to go shopping in the cute little shops around town, enjoyed beautiful fall weather, had some great food and Mook gave JJ the most beautiful sapphire and diamond band to celebrate their marriage-what a sweetie he is.

I happened to catch a conversation they had one night after coming back from the bar at the lodge. Here's the story-it was almost closing time, and JJ and Mook were the only ones left in the bar--they were enjoying a glass of wine, and the bartender was making small talk with them-asking where they were from, why they were there, etc. Mook smiled and said that they were there celebrating their anniversary--and the bartender commented that he had just met another couple celebrating their anniversary. He said that they were going to have to cut their trip short to go home to take care of their sick child. He asked if JJ and Mook had any kids, to which they just half-smiled and shook their heads, no...to which the bartender said "Well BE HAPPY!" He continued to say, "Look, you guys look like you are young-enjoy your freedom and have fun. You don't have to worry about the stress of going home on a moments notice and loosing out on a trip you have looked forward to for months." I could tell when JJ and Mook were talking about this later on that night, that it was what they needed to hear at that moment. Yes, they want a child(ren) SO very much, but it calmed them to think that they were able to enjoy slap-happy comments from a bartender who will never know how appropriate his words were...

Sadly, we all had to get back in the car and head back to reality-but we did take the Blue Ri.dge Park.way home--and I got to see a beautiful view! Want to see a picture? I had to take one for my scrapbook:


Life after the trip has had it's ups and down: more ups though, I think. I was able to give JJ one day of "High Fer.tility" and 2 days of "Peak" so she definitely smiled at me those days--she didn't use the word "crap" at all! I know that it has been a comfort to her knowing that she is ovulating, and is giving Mook's swimmers the best chance to make contact! This morning I gave her a reading of CD25. So it's getting close to the end of a 2 week wait. She mutters in the morning that she has no symptoms, but is still thankful that she feels like she had a chance to make the most of those fertile days!

They continue to be happy for their friends who announced their news a few weeks ago. Mook is struggling with some job stress, and they are hoping that it all works out for the best. A few house-hold items have gone on the fritz (le toliet) and that caused a night of "going to bed mad." They have talked a few times about upcoming plans--it's almost time for JJ to call her RE to schedule the FET--and they are both very anxious about that. I am hoping I can help them have success before any more medical intervention--so cheer me on! Speaking of cheering: JJ says congrats to all her pals that have had recent success, and even though she hasn't been able to comment much-she wishes you well. And sends big hugs to those who are having some tough times.





Whew, blogging makes me tired. I think I'll take off now--I need to go gear up for another cycle. Well, honestly I'd love to take a vacation in the deep dark corner of a bathroom cabinet-maybe I'll get my wish....



Thursday, October 11, 2007


"Where there is hope for the future, there is power in the present."


Thanks to my wonderful, supportive mom for sharing such a great reminder. She heard this in a sermon while they were trying to get pregnant with me. My mom has been very supportive since we started this journey, and I want to share a snippet of an email she sent me this week--one of the most powerful connections I have ever felt to my sweet mommy....

"....I have always felt your yearning, but it just really hit me hard for you the other night....I could just truly, truly feel and sense your emotions Sunday night. Also, yesterday I got out the diary I started for you when I found out I was pregnant with you. It brought back sooooo many memories.....memories I can't wait for you to have.....it reaffirmed for me that it will happen for you. I don't know when, but I just know in my mommy heart it will."


The reason for the emotions on Sunday night: our best friends came over Sunday afternoon to let their 5-year-old check out our Halloween decorations...we did our usual small chit-chat, I showed her the awesome wine-cooler Mook got me for our anniversary (this sucker holds 40 bottles!) and since she's my wine buddy, I told her she could come partake anytime...well, that's when the news was announced. She started crying...and then, I just knew.

Pregnant.


Mook had actually known for about a week--they wanted to be sensitive to what we have been through, and I really do appreciate it. There are friendly fertiles out there=) We knew they were trying-so it helped pad the shock a little-and they weren't sure she'd be able to--she's had some medical issues since having her 1st.

Of course I burst into tears when they left--SO bittersweet for me. I was so thankful for their gentle way of telling me, but so sad that it wasn't me sharing the news, and reinforced my struggle with being idle. Mook came back inside to find me sobbing in the "extra" bedroom...he thought I might be mad at him
for not preparing me--but I wasn't at all. I knew he needed the time to process the news as well--he said he came home that night after they told him and cried--well of course that made me cry harder. We just sat side by side for a while, feeling such mixed emotions. Later that evening, we shared a toast over 2 glasses of wine, both of us saying the exact same thing: "To what lies ahead..."

We are heading into the mountains to celebrate our anniversary...and enjoy some happy emotions!

:Trying to gain power in the present:



Thursday, October 4, 2007

Kindness is...


Many thanks to April for the "sweet" gift, just when I needed it most--and sadly, right after this picture was taken, the right corner mysteriously disappeared...........

Ok, so I admit it gals (and gents): I'm at that place where I feel like I'm waving at everyone as they run past me, sitting on the curb holding my knees. Saturday's events have continued to haunt me more than I would like--I would do the same thing again, but it's been a painful reminder this week. Yes, hormones are playing a part since the dear aunt is due anytime now...

I tell you all we are fine, that we are enjoying this "down time", which we are....but.

But....
I can be sitting at my desk, driving home from work, or brushing my teeth, and I get this feeling that I can't breathe. It's not fun. I get sad, I get scared-pretty darn scared. What if this doesn't happen for us?

I don't like sitting still-it's not in my DNA to be idle-just ask Mook. I'm always looking ahead, planning for something, and since we are just sort of idling right now, it makes me a bit antsy, bitter and sad. It makes it hard for me to be joyful for others. It makes me wallow in self pity. And that is not who I like to be. I like to be a helper, a confidant, a shoulder...but I guess after a while, a helper needs to be helped-right? (heeeeelp)

So I need to re-group a bit-I need to be OK with being still....



Hello to the new blogs I found through Lori's Chain: I started at Von's blog and got to: Tracy then to Meg then onto Lut C and then to SquarePeg and lastly to SoCo Glad to have "linked" over to all of you!

Monday, October 1, 2007

"JJ runs down the field as an open receiver..."

Well, as you can clearly see by my little ticker on the right, I did not reach my happiness challenge goal, but it was a good effort--and I will continue to work my way to goal even though it's October-wow, it's already October?!

My goal was to walk every morning--and although I love the good feeling of walking and the results I began to see--some mornings were just hard. Sleep can do funny things to the mind--especially if you are going to bed at midnight and then setting your alarm for 6:30am. The walks that I did take allowed for some "me" time, and that I am grateful for. Some days brought tough reminders, but even those helped me to be honest with myself about the pain I felt from our failed ivf cycle, and about the hope I have for what lies ahead....

So I will plow ahead--and be realistic--it might not happen every morning, but I'll remember how good it feels when I do wrestle my internal sleep-o-meter to get up and GO!

-------------------

Our weekend was pretty good-we went tailgating with my in-laws, got to see our Alma mater play a great football game, kept our windows open ALL day (mmm fall temperatures), did the "fall cleaning" in the yard and inside. It was great being able to be outside in such great weather--we do need rain badly, so I will welcome some gray days, but I'll take advantage of the sun while I can!

Being at the football game this weekend, I ended up having to take some game-terminology literally. And I had to put my pride/feelings in check for 2 reasons: helping a fan of the opposing team, and this fan was pregnant.

Yeah, two biggies in a span of 15 minutes.

I'll back up a bit: there was no shade on either side of the stadium, so well into the 3rd quarter I was beginning to feel like a sardine---the game being sold out, we were all packed into the bleachers quite intimately. I needed some personal space and some shade! I decided to walk off towards the back of the stadium where I wasn't subjected to small kids running around and lawn-blankets full of babies/families.

But fate had a bigger plan for me than running into the occasional adorable two-year-old...as I was rounding towards the restroom area, I felt a hand grasp my arm--a bit startled, I turned to see a woman I didn't know, doubling over as she grasped tighter on my arm. OK, my first thought is: great, I've got a drunk, annoying fan from the opposing team about to puke on my shoes. Fantastic.

Umm, not so much. Yes, she was about to puke. Yes, she was from the opposing team, but she was not drunk--probably hasn't had a drink in about 4 months. A sweet face looks up at me, hands me her cell phone and croaks "Please just hit send-tell my husband Dave to come get me at the ladies room. I'm pregnant, and I feel very sick." I do just as I'm told-and unfortunately Dave is on the other side of the stadium. So I lead her over to the shade, and help her sit--I get her a bottle of water and she goes right back to grasping my arm. We don't talk much-just the occasional, "are you feeling better?" Dave finally arrives--he thanks me, she gives me half smile--and then I back away. He has already alerted the EMS on hand to come assist her--they quickly get her on a stretcher, and then they are gone...

I just stayed in the same place for a while--not really knowing what to do. I kept looking at the spot where she sat. Wondering if she would be OK. Wondering if her baby will be OK. She wasn't too far along, I'm guessing--but you could tell she was pregnant. I felt so many feelings in that span of 15 minutes, its overwhelming to think about. And I hate to admit that jealousy was still one of those feelings. I know at one point I even looked down at her wrist to see if she might be wearing a pomegranate bracelet...

I hope and pray she is OK...and that the baby was fine. I know someone else would have done the same thing if she had grasped their arm, but I was meant to be the open receiver that day...


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

2 Lines? Now what....

I never thought that I would notice that little phrase in every day conversation, i.e.: "You misspelled that word in 2 lines of the press release." or "Did you see the new intersection today? They just painted the 2 lines." I guess when you want to have something SO bad, that you start to find it everywhere...except where it counts.

Anywho, I did see those 2 lines. No, no don't freak out--we aren't a "miracle conception" couple after IVF (yet), but I did see a very dark 2 lines on my opk this past Friday. Thanks to Ms. Gabby (who just got a BFP!) I got to try some new opk tests, and started "dipping the stick" on cycle day 14. I saw a very faint line-so I was encouraged that these were gonna work! I still am not (and don't plan to) temping, and honestly didn't plan to use the dip sticks this time either--but I have morbid curiosity sometimes, so it got the better of me. So Friday came, and on CD 17 I got 2 lines that were dark-what a lovely sight. For a moment, I let myself smile--for the pure fact that I can't wait until I see those 2 lines on the "other kind of test" (that shall not be named).

But onto the "Now what..." Welllllll, Friday was not the best or ideal day for those 2 lines to make an appearance. As Mook and I got on I-95 headed north to D.C. (for the D.C. get-together!) I slyly say: "So umm, Im about to cook an egg." Of course his look was priceless-what crazy pills are you taking? But, since we are both so versed on all this baby-making lingo, he soon realized that I was using fancy-talk to tell him: it's time! Then it became apparent to both of us that we wouldn't really be able to take advantage of that over-easy egg this month. One: we were going to be staying with a friend Friday night (who has 2 small children that like to roam...) and Two: with family the next few nights, and Three: we were going to be dead tired from all the running around we were going to do over the next few days.

It is a hard, hard thing to accept that you won't or can't take advantage of every cycle you have. Sunny has had a similar experience this month too--and I know she and I feel similar about the disadvantages (and some advantages). Obviously, there will be no baby made this month. But, I gained a few things too--I don't have to stress over the next 2 weeks-at ALL. No what if's or maybe it happened. Hopefully my cycle is getting back on track, too. I can just let it go....and pray that I get 2 lines next month.

So maybe we could have skipped a trip to DC for a "maybe baby" month, but I am SO glad we didn't. It was a great trip--we packed a lot in! I got to see friends I hadn't seen in a long time, got to visit with my family, and meet some of the bravest and coolest women I know! It was surreal to be able to sit down and chat and enjoy their company. All of us come from different backgrounds and experiences, but we all get it. And that is a great feeling--knowing I didn't have to explain myself, or feel guilty for any feelings. Mook got to meet many of the ladies too! We headed over to LJ's house for football, and had a great time hanging out with LJ, DMarie and their significant others! Thanks girls...it was fun!

Things are pretty quiet for Mook and me...which is fine by us. Getting projects done, sending out some tunes for the BB girls, working on my happiness challenge, and enjoying my daily coffine (coffee in the AM, wine in the PM). We are thankful for the DIY time, and still hope. Hope that we can remain thankful for the blessings we do have, and for the blessings we hope to have...


Mt. Vernon at twilight--an evening with :just us: and it was perfect...

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Empty and Full

Life is all about balance isn't it? You lean one way, and something or someone has to lean back in order to keep you standing. But what if I want to just sit?

Well, there are definitely some days (like today) that I just feel like sitting, but I have to say that I am trying to stand, and doing my best to stay balanced mentally and physically: and my happiness challenge is helping with both! My ticker to the right is moving, albeit slowly sometimes, but it's moving....and I am loving my morning walks. The temperatures are cooling, and I can't believe I let other things (like sleep!) keep me from having that "me" time in the early hours of the day.

But.....

A difficult thing happens on my walk: as I finish, I come around the corner towards my house, and it's the time when the school bus is stopping at my corner. Where my child could be boarding the bus. But it's an empty bus stop. Last year when I was being good about walking, this corner stop made me giddy-I had such happy thoughts about envisioning little JJ or little Mook getting on that bus. This year that empty stop is a reminder of 2 things: the baby I don't have, and the weight I have put on because of infertility.

There have been quite a few of you talking about the tighter pants, and this morning I was forced (Ill get to that in a minute) to get on a scale-and its the largest number I've ever seen. That just makes me screamin' mad! Because I know that its all IF related. What a lovely kick in the pants (ha, pun intended) that I have gained the weight, and now it's reminder of what I don't have. Food is definitely my comfort-I get excited when I think about going out to a restaurant I love--it's literally a chemical endorphin in my brain, and I have dealt with keeping it at bay for many years! I guess it will always be a battle...but my pants need to fit again!

So the reason I had to weigh myself this morning: it was my annual exam at my obgyn. Let me just tell you how excited (not so much) I was to go in this morning. First, let's talk about the name of my practice: _____ OBGYN & Infertility. Of course when I started going there, I didn't think about the last half of the name. But of course now...well, you get the idea. I am thankful they have been able to work with us up until referring us to an actual RE-my Doc moved very quickly to get things rolling for us. So no complaints. But oh lordy, today there was a full waiting room-all round, perfect, ready-to-pop bellies. There were a few of us with flat (umm, mine's not so flat) stomach's. I got called back pretty quickly, thank goodness-another plus. So then it's time to step on the scale. Yikes...I mean I was prepared for the worst, but not that number. Phooey. Then into the exam room: full and I mean full of baby pictures, announcements, etc. I almost started crying-but Doc was back in the room. And into the stirrups I went-the first time since ER. Then all he wants to do is chat while he's excevating my cervix...thanks, but I'll just lay here and stare at the ceiling.

So an empty bus stop and a full waiting room-both reminders of a long, hard and painful road, but a journey that's not over yet. No one has physically handed me a piece of paper that states I have to or need to stop dreaming of having my child wait for that bus, and being that ready-to-pop woman in the waiting room. So I promise to start turning that corner with a smile back on my face, and I will make more of an effort not to sneer when I see a bulging belly headed my way=)

OH! And just to make you shake your head: check out this article. AND do I have permission to delete an email from ba.by zone called:
"When everyone is pregnant.........except you"

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Oh the trickery....Part Deux

Want AF to drop off her bags? Just phone your RE and ask "Is it normal that I am 7 days late?"

*Sigh* I bet you can figure out the rest...

I honestly did have a little bit of hope. But since I did not use any OPK's this month, no temping, no counting, it was all just hope. I am pretty sure I O'ed on CD 24 (very late for me) so we missed the window by a good 10 days....I don't think that Mook's swimmers can last that long.

Another way to get AF to drop in is to have your annual check up scheduled with your obgyn. After having to wait a full month for this appointment, I now have to wait some more-can't be slung up in the stirrups when the aunt is in town.

And I never once POAS. I just didn't want to. Can't handle that one line staring back at me...

Enough moping: we had a lovely long-weekend. Simply relaxing-and FUN! I like fun! If you look to the right, you will see that I have added 6 miles to my walking ticker. We also kayaked over 7 miles yesterday-it was an awesome trip-just what we needed. I got to meet Sam for coffee--it was so great meeting her--we hope to get together again soon! Best of luck to her with her FET this week=)

So onward and upward! A new cycle...new hope, right?

Friday, August 31, 2007

Oh the trickery....

Lovely to see you all offering support to the Preacher O cause! Maybe, just maybe, I'll get a response. And I encourage you all to submit letters too! The more the merrier=)

So the 2nd part to my "Pay it For.ward" duties: I am on the quest to start a RESO.LVE support group in my area-one does not exist, let alone ANY support group. I live in a pretty big area, and while the eastern part of my state has done its job, there is nada over here. So I am going to change that. I have already spoken to a representative, and have all the info I need to start the quest. I'll be working on that a bit this weekend...wish more of you lived near by!

Speaking of near by, I am so very excited to be meeting up with Samantha from Southern Infertility this weekend! We dont live far enough away for it to be burden on the gas-money, so we are going to have coffee Sunday-I can't wait!

And can I just take a second to say: how come I don't have the luck of THIS woman....

So what is the trickery, you ask? Well I will tell you. But very quietly--because someone might be listening (that someone is my least-favorite aunt).

She's not here...and it's the longest cycle yet. BUT, please talk me down (there is a 2% chance it happened this month ladies and gents) and tell me that after an IVF cycle, your body can be a little screwy, right? Anyone else experience this? And no I will not be POAS...I can't take that heartbreak. (edited in for Jenna: zilch on the symptoms-other than I think I just O'ed really late this cycle...had strong cramps on CD 24, and then it's been EWCM since then. Knockers aren't sore. Only sign is that AF isn't here...)

Ok, that's out of my system....I have NOT been good to my body this past month--but heck, I wanted to indulge a little: wine, coffee, wine, some chocolate, did I mention wine? Working long-ass days...I mean really stressful long days. So that has to add to my body being off a bit...

I love me some long weekends...and I tend to enjoy them to the fullest! I start my first Happy Challenge tomorrow--good to start these things on a weekend=)


P.S. Check out our "One step at a time" list. You will see our contemplating has brought us to a decision (for now)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

MF Clicker AND JJ vs. O!

Good afternoon! I am reporting to you LIVE from the Blogosphere! I am JJ, your Male Factor / Donor Insemination clicker! I am here to serve YOU! Breaking news I need to know about? Have an issue that needs a tissue? Let me help you get the word out! I have about 12 MF blogs I read regularly, but there may be more out there that I don't know about. Is it you? Or do you know someone who needs to be "clicked"? Leave a comment or email me! I will get the news over to Mel for the Lost and Found Connection!

Now back to your regularly scheduled programing....



In other news:

I have had time over the past few days to think about "paying it forward" after watching the O episode...and I am doing 2 things. One I am still working on, but here is the 1st attempt in my goal to educate. Let me know your thoughts...

Dear Editors,

I am one of many.

Many that need support.
I am speaking on behalf of a group of women and men that are dealing with the big "I" word: infertility.

I recently watched a re-aired segment from January of this year on Women in their 30's where you profiled a young woman, Jenna who wants nothing more than to be a mother. I am a woman who has been touched by her courage and strength to come on the Oprah show to talk about her journey.
My husband and I are also dealing with infertility. For us, our story is a little different-but yet our goal is the same as Jenna's and her husbands: to become parents. My husband and I are dealing with male factor issues being the main cause as to why we are struggling to have biological children.

My request is that the team at the Oprah show and magazine let our voice be heard. I want to help educate and offer support to any woman and/or man struggling to have a child and to educate people about the hardships infertile couples face.
Please consider contacting me to do a feature story. I am very willing to share our journey through the road of fertility treatments.

My husband and I believe that by educating people about a condition that affects 2.1 million couples in the United States will help those who might not know what options (such as ART treatments/adoption/foster care/child-free living)would be best for them.
Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you.

Response from O's team:

Dear JJ,

Your message is important to us. Unfortunately, due to the volume of e-mail messages we receive every day, we cannot guarantee that you'll receive a personal response.

Thanks again for writing to us!

Sincerely,
The Oprah.com Staff
www.oprah.com

Cross your fingers I get a "personal response"....

Friday, August 24, 2007

Preacher O

Did you all know that Opr.ah was a preacher?

I just finished watching Jenna on the O show (thanks to the DVD Tour!) and she sure wanted to (and did) preach to Jenna and her husband during the after show...

I am posting this only minutes after watching--and I have to say I feel motivated to educate. This show, as well as the segment on the To.day Show, reaffirms my belief that there is still such a lack of knowledge about the feelings and experiences we all go through. I will continue to give more thought to how I can play a role in this...(any suggestions welcome!)

So back to the preaching: O did a lot of it. Especially in the after show--she spent a good 5-10 minutes harping on the notion of "letting go, and letting Go.d" I do believe in this statement--I have Christian beliefs, but I don't agree with how it is used to be a shield-statement when someone may not fully understand how to respond to a situation. Infertility is one of those "situations." It is a taboo subject to talk about-a hard topic to admit dealing with. I felt that O was using this method of telling Jenna to "let go" and not really listening to the pain and void it causes her. She told Jenna she needed to relax-that dreaded word. She tried to tip-toe around that word too, saying she wasnt using it in the way we all know and love, but to tell her to accept that Go.d may have another plan for Jenna, and that until she fully lets go of the dream of being a mother, she will not realize her full potential. I wanted to scream...

Yes, I admit--I get wrapped up in this journey--we ALL do. But it's not fair to tell me to let go of that journey just to "see what else MAY happen in my life" I have a hard time with control issues and living in the now--I realize that I need to appreciate the life I am blessed to live each day. I do my best not to take that for granted. But I CANT dismiss the feelings of wanting to ADD to my life. But I don't know if and when that will happen...

O says over and over that Jenna needs to "be at peace" and to be at peace for many of us, that will be the day we have a child in our home. It should be enough for anyone, even the mighty O, to understand that peace can have many definitions.

For me, it was hard to watch the To.day show segment--I saw it when it aired-and it broke my heart to see that Jenna was still left wondering when and if she will have children. The other 2 women did have children after adoption and one had a child the month before going forward with IVF. I wanted so bad for Jenna to be able to share that she had crossed over the IF threshold...

Since we are dealing with male factor, my hope is that someday soon a man (celebrity or not) will feel comfortable enough to express their feelings and challenges they face of being part of the statistics. I've been blessed with a husband who communicates with me, and have read some great male perspective blogs, so I know that these men (mine included) deserve all the support we can give them.

Thanks again to Jenna for being so open about her journey-and continuing to be a great resource to us all! I'll send the DVD back on its journey when I get the next recipient!

To read Heather's thoughts on the segments, go here: BigP and Me
And for more info about the DVD go here: Jenna

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Rockin' and Rollin'

Many thanks to Caro for giving me a rock-n-roll shout out for being a Rockin' Blogger! Be sure to head over to offer her a congrats and support as she has recently gotten a BFP and waits in limbo for more concrete answers...

So now the hard part. I have to pick just 5 of you to rock this bling on your blog--but I have faith that this will get around to all of the awesome blogger girls through the connections we all have.

My girl Leah (Tales from My Dusty Ovaries)--she is fairly new to this thing called blogging, but you would never know it...she has been an awesome addition to my support group, and I appreciate her wisdom and calming words she always has for others.

Ms. Sticky Bun -she's so connected. That is the best word for her-she is concerned for all her cysters and really shows compassion in her posts and comments. She has recently been blessed with a BFP (twins!) and she continues to be compassionate to those waiting for a BFP.

LJ (Looking for Two Lines)-what a powerhouse! She organizes blogger get-togethers, worked with a world's worse boss (she should have won!) puts in time at work and home-and still manages to post thought-provoking ideas and feelings. I would be pulling my hair out...she's great!

My Reality-she's my buddy=) She's been so willing to help me organize Picture Pages (coming back soon!), has been such a support to MANY bloggers, is so honest in her posts, and continues to push ahead with her quest for a baby--she's got positive determination, and I admire that!

Lastly (and not least) Kristen at Sticky Bean. I am fairly new to her blog, but I already feel so pulled in by her honest posts and the connection I feel. She has been through the ringer, and I am inspired by her courage and willingness to move forward!

Truly, I am inspired by each blog that I read--I could not imagine going through all this without each of you! So to these 5 ladies, a BIG hug for the inspiration you give me--now go nominate your 5!



Monday, August 20, 2007

Umm...2 steps forward....2 steps back

Remember that Pau.la Ab.dul song? Man, those were some good Skate.land tunes back in the day....please tell me there are some of you out there that frequented a roller skating rink in the 90's--that was ALL the rage in my town--I could skate circles around ya=)

Whew, I could have gotten really off topic there--but the title of my post is true. How do we begin to move forward? What are our next steps? I am a planner....I need a plan. So Mook and I have discussed our next steps quite a bit...to the point where we need a break. I go back and forth about doing the FET before the end of the year--but the more I look at our calendar, and with the holidays, I dont want to put even more stress on ourselves. I am currently stressing about the cost of 'babysitting' my three frozen babes--I don't like to think about that cost coming in soon. I also don't want to rush into that decision just for cost alone--that won't be good for all involved.

So the stepping backwards part: going the good ole DIY road. Oh it just gives me the heeby-jeebies when I really think about it. Isn't that how we started this whole process? It seems almost silly to think we should go back to no meds, no doctor appointments...and what I am debating is how 'technical' I should get with our DIY's--I dont want to mess with the temping--that just makes me crazy. So my question is for all your gals *and a few gents* is what is the best ovu.lation test I can get--and where--is E-Ba.y too weird?? I am willing to go to the big guns as far as Clear.blue monitor, IF that is the best thing to do. I know that I DO ovulate...I just need to know when so we can get Mook's swimmers there at the right time!

And I could change my mind tomorrow...who knows. We had a few tense moments this weekend when we really weren't on the same page--and thats hard for me. It's got to be the both of us being 100% committed to whatever the decision is. He is the one that suggested putting off the FET (we were thinking October) and just letting it be....he's admitted that the stress and unhappiness that this failed cycle has put on both of us (esp. me) has worried him--and he thinks we need more time to heal. One smart man I've got. I want SO BAD to move on and have our baby. He's being the calm in this storm...we just have to "ride it out...and get to shore eventually."

But then I want to throw myself on the floor, kicking and screaming that "I don't wannnna wait!!!" And I don't. But he and I have got to make it through this together, so we'll come to an agreement, and then move on...that decision may not come today, but soon...

So any suggestions/advice/etc would be much appreciated. Help me feel more at ease about making this FREE time (and I mean free from meds, wandmoneky's, etc.) enjoyable and maybe even....... successful?(wow, is that you my long lost friend hope?)

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Arrivals & Departures

I drove home in quite a haze the other night (I don't recommend this).

I had just had a pretty tough day at work, an unresolved issue with my sister, and had just finished dinner with a friend IRL that is starting IVF in September. To say I was feeling "trapped" is an understatement....

We live close to a major airport, so I pass by it every day to and from work. As I tried to blink away tears while driving (again, I don't recommend), I looked upward--you know that useless trick to try to stop yourself from crying which never works--and saw the same scene I see on many occasions: a pl
ane taking off on it's way to somewhere-land. But this time it hit me a little different. So as I blinked back to clearer vision, I imagined being on that plane and flying off to another life...

Ok. Let's stop right there--before anyone (especially Mook!) thinks I'm running away, or am in a serious state of unhappiness, just bare with me and keep reading.
__________________________________________________________________

I departed life as I knew it in my "comfort zone" the day I left for college. I arrived not knowing a soul, but guess who I met the first day. (a hint: he's the handsome fella in my life). We became fast friends. We ran into each other many times over the next few years and had some of the same friends. When we both arrived to the first class of our senior year, we began to realize we were meant to be much more than "pals".

I departed college without Mook. We went in separate directions to live life...we remained good friends, but knew we needed to experience life outside the college walls. So life went on. But one day, Mook arrived at my doorstep to visit. Both our lives changed for good that day...

I departed the life I had been used to, and began my life with Mook. I arrived in a new place, a new job, and knew that one day soon Mook and I would be nice and settled in with a family of our own.

We departed on the journey to become parents. We arrived at the decision together that no matter what happened, we would have each other-and that was most important.

And here we are...still desperately trying to arrive. We aren't ready to depart the idea of having children....but when will we get there?

We have endured layovers, long ticket lines, lost luggage and again, we sit and wait in the terminal. We sit next to others who are waiting like us. We don't talk much about why we are waiting, or the pain it's causing us, but we understand...we share a half-smile during eye contact. We also watch people board the plane--they look so happy! Their journey is about to begin, and we want so badly to run to the door before it closes.

So that "other" life I was flying off to...it was a miserable one. A life where I didn't have Mook. One where I had made other decisions that took me away from the things that I cherish most: my family (even when we fight), friends who love me, and the strength to go through this journey with my best friend.

Yes, infertility sucks. Really sucks. But I wouldn't trade my life for a plane ticket to somewhere-land. That's not where my heart is. It aches right now for what we are having to endure, but I know that I am a better and more connected person today than I was a year ago. And I'm meant to be here. Meant to be with Mook--everything that brought us together, and the fact that we are growing stronger through this.

I'll wait in the terminal as long as it takes...


Thursday, August 9, 2007

Tunnel Vision

Definition: In medical terms, tunnel vision is the loss of peripheral vision with retention of central vision, resulting in a constricted circular tunnel-like filed of vision.

(long post ahead...walk with me through the tunnel)

Wow. You all are amazing...I have been away from blogs/emails for a few days, and to come back to see 100 comments simply brought tears to my eyes. Thank you from the bottom of both our hearts. The virtual hugs and support we have felt from all of you have been a big part of our beginning to heal-seriously. So thank you many times over...

Where to begin....I guess beginning at the end is appropriate. I'll never forget that moment-all the imagining and hoping becomes so final when that call comes in. I didn't cry on the phone, since in a way I could tell the moment she said my name...and I felt my heart break into a million pieces--that was literally what I saw as I closed my eyes to listen to the rest of the conversation. "We just are at a loss....everything went so very well with your cycle." Everything but the end result. I went ahead and asked for a follow up, since I'm a person who needs closure. It happened last Wednesday...and I'll get to that.

A few co-workers knew that I had to go for "follow up blood work" so I was prepared to leave whether good or bad...I packed up my desk as quickly as possible, and as soon as my car door shut with me inside, I cried like I never have before. To feel a new emotion like that for the first time is scary and uncharted--I have been extremely lucky that I have not lost someone close to me, but honestly I know what that must feel like. It definitely is a mourning process. Then making the call to Mook.......just so hard. Then I called my mom and we cried together...then I just went home and sat. Posted for you all to know what was going on...and then I just let it sink in. I needed to deal with it--so I packed up all the meds, the needles, the picture of Pearl and Jam and took it into our hopeful-nursery. I just laid on the couch and sobbed again...it was like detox. Just letting it all go...

Mook came home from work...and we just sat, talked, I cried some more, and another new emotion happened. A positive one--a new bond in our relationship. I don't think we have ever felt so close--even on our wedding day. I hate that we had to experience a sadness like that, but I had never felt so close to him.

And of course I mentioned that our pet fish died...we bought that fish the night we got engaged. It sounds so silly...but that was just something that pushed me over the edge. The rest of the week didn't get much better...

I didn't take any more time off work...I know for me, I just need to get back into a routine. Not that it makes it any easier, but it got my mind back on track. One of the hardest things has been dealing with the feeling of not having a purpose or a goal-ART procedures in general get you so wrapped up in schedules and timing, and then all of sudden I wasn't taking shots or popping pills, and it became eerily still at our house. I don't deal well with still. I knew that it might not work. I knew that I might not have a baby in April of 2008. But I still wanted to look at the next 9 months with purpose...and then the feeling of "now what" dug in deeper and deeper.

I immediately wanted to know WHY WHY WHY WHY it didnt work. I started emailing a few of you about PG.D and FE.T's and wanted to soak up as much information to go forward. Especially since we were so "text book" this past time--that obviously meant squat: I no longer believe in "text-book." I got a card from Leah yesterday (thank you!) and she summed it up--all you can do is say "SHIT!!!!!" I wanted to spat that out at our RE, but as soon as I walked in the door, I was back to having a purpose: why didn't it work, and what is our next step. Of course they can't give you an answer, as all of you who have been through this, know. He said he was so pleased with all my levels, the follicles, the retrieval, the transfer...blah blah blah.

So some of the possible answers: the 2 they transferred ended up being in the "slower progressing" category and possibly not strong like the 7 that didnt make it to freeze. It's possible we need to look into PGD--Mook's numbers did not increase (I ended up calling to get the wash numbers) and the lower the count, the higher possibility he has for abnormalities-chromosomes, etc. Then there is just plain old mother nature--not meant to be, or other "unknowns"--and that is the hardest answer of them all.

And of course we have our 3 frozen blasts....could they be "the" ones? Our embryologist and RE suggest going forward with the FET before doing another fresh cycle (which I'll get to in a minute). One-it may get us to our goal. Two-it may answer if we really should try PGD.

Mook and I decided after the LONG week that we would go to our safe-haven: the beach. It was there that we talked about our next steps--we ranked them in level of interest. And we are spot on with all our choices. As we discussed these choices, a very cute couple walked in to where we were having breakfast, and the girl was very close to my age, and very pregnant. I heard the waitress gushing over her and asked when she was due: "October--and we can't wait" I. lost. my. shit. I had to basically RUN out the door....and I am usually "ok" with pregnant women around--or even little kids. I mean it's hard, but I have usually been able to smile and walk on--but oh my goodness, I will never forget her. She was who I wanted to be. Mook just held me, and we walked back to the beach house...I haven't seen Mook cry about this yet, but I know he was close at that moment. I told him as long as he held onto me in these tough moments, that I would cry for the both of us.........

Are we ok? Yes. Are we sad? Yes. Are we scared? Yes.Are we down for the count. No.

I want to catch up with all of you--I know there continue to be a lot of BFP's out there. I know I'm not the first, and won't be the last to say that I am happy for all of you--but please know it's hard for me to read and comment right now. I want to be you. And I want and need that jealousy to subside--but please know that I wish nothing but the best for you.

To all my ladies waiting with me-you are not alone. We will continue to hold on tight to each other and provide support and get everyone to that "other side of IF"!

I feel like I have more to say...but I'll save it for another day. I just can't thank you all enough for the love and support--and I hope that I can offer the same to you. Just know that I am here...healing, and couldn't make it through the tunnel without you.


I'm on my way through the tunnel...I see the light.
Now I just have to keep on walking...will you walk with me?