Friday, March 30, 2007

tug twice then twist

I had a solo lunch today at a local deli, and as I grabbed for some napkins I bumped into a very pregnant woman--she looked to be a few years older than me. I apologized profusely--I did not bump the belly thank goodness! She was very nice about it, and even struck up a small conversation about the crazy weather. As we said our goodbyes, I was having this imaginary conversation in my head that involved me asking her: "Did you struggle to get pregnant, or did it come easy for you?" Her imaginary response being: "Oh you have no idea what we had to go through to get here--I wouldnt wish this on anyone." Which would carry onto a full conversation about her getting pregnant and what Mook and are going through....sharing stories/strategies/doctor recommendations....and then we would exchange numbers and she would keep in touch to help me with any questions I might have.....

So what kept me from having that conversation? For a few reasons: one being pure respect for her privacy...but the second reason is because I would be afraid of the other side of her answer: "Oh, we got pregnant by accident!" or "Haha, yeah we got knocked up the first try." Then I would feel hurt and we didnt share the same journey.

But I know there are those "lucky ones" out there who DID struggle to get pregnant that want to share their story and even those who are lucky "the first time" BUT not naive to how hard it might be for others. I echo the comments made on the town criers about a secret handshake/ear tug/nose wiggle--I just wish more of those were around me!

When (not if) I get pregnant, I want to have a shirt made: "Do you know how hard it was for me to get knocked up" All other suggestions welcome--I'll have a closet full! Suggest, suggest, suggest!

PS-Still no "signs"

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Preparing for rain...

Last night was pretty powerful in our house. My lovely sister recommended (or rather demanded) that Mook and I put " the Giants" at the top of our Net.flix qeue. So I obeyed....and by the first 3 minutes of the movie, I was glad I did.

Go out and rent it. Buy it. Buy 10 copies and give it to your friends. This movie was made on a shoe-string budget in Georgia...a church music minister co-wrote and co-directed it and had support of his entire congregation-they brought in very few "professionals" and almost the whole cast and crew volunteered their time to make this movie. It centers around a struggling football team, the coach and his wife's own struggles (think negative pregnancy tests) and the turn around in attitude and faith. No matter if you believe in God, Buddha, or the mailman--please watch this movie. My subject line "preparing for rain" is a strong message throughout the movie--underlying is the fable about two farmers who prayed for rain--one who did not prepare his fields to receive the rain; the other who did. Guess who received the rain? One line that just made me weep was: "How can I miss someone so much, who I haven't even met...."

I know deep in my heart and soul that Mook and I want a family very much. I know that God knows we want a family very much--and He also knows when that will happen for us. I know I waste time fearing that I won't ever get pregnant--I fear that for some reason we don't deserve it--I fear that I will disappoint Mook and my family--I fear that I won't even be a good mom--so many fears that I can give up.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

End of sermon=) I hope you find your faith today, whatever that may be...and hold on tight!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

My "Ras" Hurts...

And by "Ras" I mean my Re.ticular Activa.ting System. Have you ever noticed when you are thinking about buying a new car (let's say a VW Bug for example) that you begin to see VW Bugs everywhere!? Well, since Saturday-I have been seeing a lot of things with 2 lines...those 2 lines that I envision seeing next week! This morning's "sighting" was when I was driving to work and looked up to see 2 airplane streaks right next to each other--big thick lines--and the moon was right above it. And on Friday night, when I was outside playing with our dog--I looked up as I was walking inside, and the moon was behind some clouds that formed a cross...very cool!

So here I am. 3dpiui--no symptoms--isn't it funny how we all want to be barfing and bloated. Yes, I know it's early to see any symptoms--I just want them! I do have to say (and this might be too much information...but I want to share in case I am not the only one) that I have had major constipation pains since Sunday afternoon--I mean bad enough I had to stay home from work yesterday! It is still lingering a bit...we called the on-call doc on Sunday night--the Doc that did the IUI was pretty certain it was not a side effect, so that made me feel better--but I swear I didn't eat anything strange or out of the ordinary this weekend. Who knows...

Saturday was a beautiful day here in the south...woke up feeling good and we were at the hospital in plenty of time. Again, I am so thankful our first experience fell on a Saturday-no rushed feelings, and Mook and I were together through the whole thing. But poor Mook. Talk about having to "perform" on the spot...I know the pressure that he was feeling was big. He admitted to being nervous-so was I! But he was a trooper--he gave it his best "shot" (ha-no pun intended)

But woah, there were a LOT of babies being born on Saturday! The maternity ward (where we were to report) was hoppin'! I was most anxious about getting Mook's sample to the lab in time--no dilly dallying! The check in nurse was very nice, and the lab technician came pretty quick and took the boys back to the lab--she explained it would take about an hour, and that we could go shopping and come back. Umm, I was not in the mood to shop. I just wanted to plant my rear on the seat and wait to be called back! I had all kinds of thoughts going through my mind as we waited--do you all ever think about how the lab technicians are feeling when they do these procedures? Are they having an off day? What if they do something wrong? I just wanted to beg on my hands and knees as the lab lady took the boys back..."pllllleasssse make them swwwwimmmmm and make sure there are lotssssss of theeeeeemmmm!"

We headed back to the room about 11:15...the nurse and doc on call were so nice--the nurse joked with us saying "I have 4 kids at home--are you sure you know what you are getting into?" Maybe on another day I would have been upset or offended, but she made us smile...we DO know what we are getting into!=) Mook sat right beside me and squeezed my hand...Dr. L said Mook's boys had "very good motility" (YES!) but we were still looking at a reduced count-(about 8mil) But hey, 8 is my lucky number. I don't want to focus on the "numbers" too much-simply b/c I know that Mook was under a lot of pressure, and we will just hope that pack of good swimmers made a great attempt!

Dr. L said my cervix was in great position--yay cervix! Hopefully my "home" monitoring did the trick with just using the OP.K's--if we do this again (Im thinking positive!) I will ask about monitoring. So then the nurse and doc left us to whisper sweet nothings into each other's ears and have some peace and quiet--and as soon as the door closed, I started weeping--happy tears. Just so glad to be at this point. For a chance. For the fact that I have a wonderful husband who is with me every step of the way. After our 30 minutes was up, we headed out to get some lunch and ice cream as a treat!

So I enter the race...the 2 week drag. It will be long, it will be hard, but we will just take it as it comes--I am nervous that due to my untimely "gas bubble" that I have been pushing on my lower extremities too hard--I have this fear that I have somehow damaged the chances...but our organs are strong right? Right?!

Thanks for ALL the positive vibes and thoughts--I can feel them all! Tick tock....tick tock....

Friday, March 23, 2007

hope remains...

No coffee this morning. Not more than a sip of water from 9am-1:30pm. At 1:19, I trotted down to the bathroom with hope that I would finally see a 2nd pink is almost impossible not to look at those damn tests every 30 seconds--mine clearly states I can have results show up to the 10 minute marker--thats a LOT of seconds!

Nothing at first....then a trick on the eye...then some pink...and more pink. Holy crap I didn't miss it this month! I was getting very nervous ladies and gents--my lowest temp according to BBT was on C.D. 9--that's WAY early for me. That panic that set in early this week kept growing, as I passed each day with no 2nd pink line. I had tested as usual since C.D. 11....and as of last night, I was pretty bummed. Have I mentioned how much I love my Dr's office? They called me yesterday as a "reminder" that I should be testing to watch for my "egg drop" the time I was pretty annoyed with the call since I was already on pins and needles...but it was very nice of them to treat me so delicately...much appreciated. So I called my very kind nurse this afternoon after I saw that 2nd line--it wasn't "as dark as the control line" as most tests tell you, but it was darn close! I decided to call Ms. Kind Nurse and just ask her if I should wait and test again tomorrow....but to my delight, they take that as a yes, you are about to "egg drop" so come on down!

We head to the hospital tomorrow at 10--so convenient this first round for us in on a Saturday...that is a big help--eases our fears, and puts less of a time crunch on us. Dr. D will not be the one doing the IUI, but another doc in the practice who I have heard good things about-hope she is gentle! Let's all hope Mook's boys feel like swimming some laps tomorrow!!

I have promised some of you all who were interested, the names of the supplements Mook is on--I can in no way promise that these work yet, since we won't really know until the 3rd romance in a cup in May (we may get a slight idea tomorrow). But regardless, I feel it's worth a shot! Supplements: Carn.itine Syn.ergy 500mg, Meta.bolic Syn.ergy, Arg.inine 750mg, Kr.ill Oil, and Zin.c Supreme. Hope that helps!

Thanks for all the positive thoughts and comments...I am still going to ask tomorrow if it will be better for me to have monitored cycles to make sure we catch "the" day in a timely manner!

Keep fingers, toes, eyes, etc. crossed for us! =)

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A small battle...

There are plenty of times that I literally hear "two sides" of my brain trying to tell me something...and I feel I have entered that battle zone in the past few days...

I am on cycle-day-12...approaching the I.U.I time line....every other cycle for the past 6 months, I have been and and taking o-p-k tests....and have been getting good results.

So why am I panicking?!! Today, I entered my temp into fertility.friend and it said that I ovu.lated 3 days ago....hmmmmmm. Where I do not believe this to be true (since none of my tell-tale signs are visible: CM, low dip then rise, etc) it is just adding to my nerves that I am going to miss "the" day. Has anyone else experienced this with FF?

Yesterday, it was pretty clear on my test that there was no ovu.lation coming...and I will continue to test for the next 6-7 days, since I have gotten a positive result in that time frame in the past. But now I know I am going to be staring at the test in every kind of light, angle and grab a magnifying glass to make sure I am getting 2 pin.k lines!! I have just been using the Dol.lar Tree brand--Dr. D said those are just fine--but sometimes I get nervous they don't show the same results as some of these high $$ ones...

I know it is best to keep the nerves at bay through this whole upcoming process--the more calm and relaxed my body is, the more likely it will work like a well oiled machine.

Whew, just had to get that off my chest! Nerves are normal...just have to keep positive and test like I have been for a while now...and trust that I will get the signs necessary to go forth with our first IUI!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Would you like "chi" with that?

C.h.i: the circulating life energy that in Chinese philosophy is thought to be inherent in all things; in traditional Chinese medicine the balance of negative and positive forms in the body is believed to be essential for good health.

Monday night, Mook and I met with Dr. T, a natur.opa.thic health practitioner--we had a recommendation from one of my co-workers, so we were less wary that we were going to get a dose of voo-do meds!

Highlights from the appointment:

Dr T spent an hour and a half with us going over our health history, what our challenges were, and what our goals are. Mook and I both felt more like a "person" than a "patient."

Dr T was very willing to listen to our concerns regarding Mook's first "romance in a cup" versus the 2nd. We told him about the medicine that he had been on to treat his hea.rt-burn, and that our doctor's told us that there was no correlation between the fact that his count was 5 million the 1st analysis when he was on the medicine and 24 million the 2nd when he was off the made us feel good that we weren't suspicious for the wrong reasons! He said that there was "absolutely" a correlation--all medicines react with our natural body hormones and functions.

To Mook's delight, he does not have to do acup.uncture right now--Dr T feels that he is a great candidate for vitamin therapy to help him boost his numbers. He went over study after study that linked the vitamins he prescribed with successful boosts in sperm count! We got to go home with lots of reading material on these studies, as well as the information on each supplement.

Overall, we were very pleased with the appointment--another step in the right direction. We know each thing we try/do/research isn't the answer, but it will be a combination of things. It would be great if we had walked out with a 100% guarantee that this will do the trick, but hey-at least Mook and I have a better idea of what to eat/do to keep our bodies healthy!

I have rescheduled Mook's 3rd "romance in a cup" for early May, so we can get a better indication if these supplements are helping! So now we both have a big pill sorter to make our lives easier-cause let me tell you, I'm pretty sure we could circle the globe a few times, and still have some left over....

A special thanks to The Town Criers and Cyclesistas for sharing our blog with the community-hope to see some new "faces" =) Have a good one!

Thursday, March 8, 2007


Or at least that's what we can hope for! Whenever I hear the word "goal" the word "touchdown" filters through my mind. One of those strange brain associations! And I'm not that big of a football fan...

So yes, we have a goal to look forward to after yesterday's consult with Dr. D. Mook did his best to get to the appointment-but was not able to get there due to work and I-40 traffic. No biggie--thank goodness Dr. D didn't throw any curve balls, and the appointment pretty much went as I had expected: Here are your options, what would you like to do, and let's go for it! So I was able to meet Mook for coffee afterwards and give him the scoop.

We have decided to go forward with IUI number 1! No extra hormones or medicines involved this round. Dr D feels that my workup shows that I don't need any further tests right now, and after one last talk with Mook's urologist, he doesn't feel the benefits of putting him on Clomid will do us a lot of good right now--and Dr. D agrees. So non-medicated we shall go! If all goes as planned with my cycle, we are looking at the end of this month.

We are both fully on board with this decision. We know it is by no means a guarantee. We are still looking at only a 30% chance, but we will take it! We feel it will give us a good introduction to the procedures we may have to go through in the future. It's only going to disrupt our lives one day out of the month, which is good for both our work schedules. The downside continues to be that our insurance does not cover jack-squat. But we are going to make it work somehow-we just have to sit down with our budget and re-adjust.

Some other things we are considering: having Mook take Py.cnoge.nol and I talked to an acupuncture clinic today that one of my friends has gone to for her heart issues. The office staff that I talked to were so nice, and the doctor called me back within minutes to answer any questions. Have any of you all done this/considered it/researched it? I am reading as much as I can from what the doctor recommended, but I wonder if any of you have had personal experience. When I first called Mook to ask him if he would be OK with it, I wish I could have seen his face when he asked me "Umm, where the heck will he be putting those needles?!" I quickly assured him it was NOT going to be where he thought. The clinic is open on Saturday's too which would help us out a lot! It would be great to get the count up even a little for the first IUI!

So that's where we are...we hang onto hope-we don't want to loose sight of what is meant to be for us will happen. The control issue for both of us is challenging-wanting to have more of a guarantee. We continue to have an open communication about everything, and our families are up to date as well--we encourage them not to walk on egg shells around us. We want to enjoy the life we live every day, and not look back 5 years from now and have no memory of what we enjoyed or did for fun. Fun can still exist in the challenge to overcome infertility! I hope I don't come across as naive or in denial--because I know very well that this road could be covered with disappointment and heart break. But I won't give into that yet...we still see the light at the end.

Wishing each of you a happy thought for today...since there has been a lot of talk about "life before infertility" I hope for all of us that we can co-exist with the person we are now with the knowledge we have all learned (we could all be doctors!!!) and the person we were before. We are a community of survivors, and our lives are forever changed by our experiences...

P.S. Still holding onto that glimmer of "Vegas" hope....*EDIT* Looks like I jinxed myself-haha! AF has arrived.

Friday, March 2, 2007

And we're back...

I often find myself saying, "I need a vacation from my vacation!" And regarding this trip, that is the case! We did head to Sin City-the fabulous Las Vegas-and since neither of us had been before, we made sure we fit a lot in while we were there! The time change was hard at first, and since the city really doesn't come alive until after dark, we were out late every night and walked a lot! So this weekend, I will be taking advantage of my own bed and pillows!

We had a great time--got to see everything we wanted, saw some great shows, and just enjoyed being together. Our flight back was a bit choppy--the winds out there were fierce the last 2 days we were there--and it was strange that the weather there was the same as it is here in NC. I wish it had been a tad warmer, but it made for comfortable outdoor walking.

I got a + OPK the 1st day we were out there--yippie! Lucky already! We didn't end up using Pre-Seed. I just didn't feel the need to use it-so we just went the old fashioned way! I have been charting temps again this month--it has been a little hard past O since being on vacation in a different time zone made that a little tricky. I am 7DPO, but so far no blaring "pregnancy signs" but I honestly haven't thought too much about it--this month was our "fun" month. I simply charted to have "proof" for the doc and RE. So it would be great to see a BFP, but not placing all my chips on the table=)

We head to my OBGYN this Wednesday--Mook hopes to make it--but his work schedule is tough. But I hope to have my list of questions all ready to go. I have read the list of questions on the town criers blog, so that has helped--thanks! I think we are both ready for the next step, whatever that may be--we know we might have a long road ahead, but we will take it one day at a time.

I want to share a special moment I had yesterday.....I listen to a lot of books on tape during my commute to work, and recently I checked out "True Believer" by Nicholas Sparks--I enjoy his books for many reasons: 1 since I grew up going to the beach in the Outer Banks, 2 his method of writing is beautiful and 3 I had a seizure 8 months before I got married, and during that time I read "The Wedding", his follow up to "The Notebook" and that book gave me the idea to ask my mom to be my matron of honor--oh it makes me cry thinking about it now! I mention this, because without me knowing, I seem to pick books written by him at appropriate times in my life. Not really knowing what "True Believer" was about, I just checked it out knowing I would enjoy it. Well, little did I know that it touches on male factor infertility! I was driving to work yesterday, going on little sleep, when I got to the part in the book where the character is telling his love interest that his wife left him because he was not able to give her children. I had to pull over I was crying so hard! It just hit me for some reason--just for the simple fact that it touched me, and for the fact that I am once again humbled and thankful that we have a chance to have children of our own. Our hope is still strong because of the wonderful world of medicine and the knowledge that we have options. I told Mook this last night over dinner--he looked at me funny, simply for the fact that I had to pull over because a book made me cry. But I told him how it unexpectedly touched me, and it gave me a chance to reaffirm my devotion and love for him while we go on this journey together. A very special moment...

Two more things before I go...I gave up celebrity websites/magazines/tv shows for Lent--and it has been so hard! But I have all this extra time now....haha! Just when Britney shaves her head, I give up watching it unfold! *sigh* And 2nd, for those of you interested, my mom sent me an awesome website today that gives you your "birth verse" and mine is very, very appropriate, since I tend to have control issues!

"Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you."
1 Thessalonians 5:18

I hope you are inspired by yours as well...

Happy weekend!