Thursday, December 26, 2013

Still alive

Hey, so, yeah...it's been a while.  When last I blogged a little over a month ago we had just met with Dr. Braverman to hatch our master plan. Then, lots of things happened:

We ran away for Thanksgiving as tradition dictates (we've done it every year except 1 since we've been together) to Niagara & Toronto.  

Then early this month Vid's mom took a bad turn & ended up in a coma for 4 days which she somehow managed to come out of.  Seriously.  So he's trying to figure out a way to get over there sometime next month for another visit.  

My job has reached the point of intolerability.   I seriously cry when I wake up in the morning several times a week.  My therapist actually suggested I quit if it were financially possible. Yeah, no.  But I am sending out resumes into the ether, hoping to land something less stressful with increased pay.  Should be easy in this economy, right?  LOL!  

And my niece came home last week after 3 months & 3 days in the NICU, with a mic-key button, which is wonderful news but also a challenge obviously.  It remains to be seen what kind of delays, if any, she will have as a result of her premature, traumatic birth.

Then Christmas was yesterday.  It was pretty chill actually.  So.  Much.  Food.

So yeah, lots of things.



Today we did immunology bloodwork.  Thankfully, the company Dr. B uses is actually headquartered nearer to us in Boston so we were able to do it at their main office & therefore didn't have to drive 3 hours to NY.  Yay!  We did what they call the "Fertil panel" (no "e"; fancy!) & should get results in 4-6 weeks.  I had 12 big vials & 16 little vials taken, while Vid had 1 big & 4 little taken.  Guess which one of us closed their eyes & sweat like a pig for the duration of the bloodwork while their spouse kept rubbing their back so they wouldn't pass out?

Yeah.




Sunday, November 17, 2013

A meeting with the Pope (kind of)

We took a day trip to NY to meet with His Holiness, Dr. Braverman, yesterday.  We left @ 5 am & thankfully the traffic gods smiled upon us, as wel as the weaher gods.  Afterwards we went shopping @ the giant Indian grocery store nearby & had a nice South Indian lunch (Vid's people) before heading back home.     
 
Overall, it went well. DH was impressed with his office set up (4 monitors = comp sci prof's dream) & his liquor bottle collection, LOL.  He was very approachable with a good sense of humor & also wasn't afraid to use big words with us.  I like big words!

We're starting out with testing for karyotyping & basic immune stuff. He's also testing my AMH. The nurse will call to set things up next week, hopefully locally to us, or @ least nearby in Boston where Reprosource has an office, which is way closer than Long Island.  He says results should be in by around New Year's or so.

For IVF #2 we did "low & slow" with a Clomid kickstart, adding Follistim, Cetrotide & Menopur which by far gave us our best results. Based on this he thinks we need a flare type protocol but is not sure about micro flare Lupron given wh...at a disaster IVF #1 was. He also suggested maybe straight Menopur.

He did a pretty in depth exam/ultrasound & found something interesting: the blood flow in & out of my right ovary is very restricted. He asked if I knew how many eggs were retrieved there vs. left as well as mature eggs out of left vs. right & I said I don't know. I told him I feel it when I ovulate out of lefty but never out of righty. While he doesn't suspect endo it's in the back of his mind & depending on other tests I might have another lap.

When it comes to my weight he does not think it's what's preventing me from becoming pregnant. He does suggest going back on Metformin since it can normalize leptin levels which tend to be higher in obese folks who don't have IR. Leptin affects the release of LH among other things.

For the hubs, based on his sperm frag test & low morph he says to try the FertilAid & see what happens. Clomid might also help with the morph. Ensuring my other half takes his pills will likely be the most challending part of all.  He doesn't think Vid being the product of a cousin marriage is an issue. Also suggested a course of antibiotics prior to cycle which we also did with IVF #2.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

More about the war on infertile fat people

 
Over the years I've been blogging you know how passionate I am about advocating for better treatment of those of us with elevated BMIs who are also dealing with infertility.  Too often, otherwise healthy fat folks are told to lose weight & magically we'd get pregnang on our own.  I've posted several articles written based on data gathered from studies on overweight & obese women.  This time, it's the men's turn:
 
A study cited in Renal and Urology News (November 2013) found that "While those who underwent surgery had increased sexual function as well as increased luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, and testosterone, their semen parameters went completely unchanged."
 
So just like the study I wrote about a year ago about women who underwent gastric bypass surgery not having their fertility improved by the surgery, the same apparently goes for men.  Furthermore , just like their female counterparts, infertile men had a libido increase that may be explained by the fact they were given false hope that this surgery would allow them to finally become a parent.  Once again, if the researchers followed them more long term, the level of sexual desire probably decreased with each cycle they didn't impregnate their partner.
 
I'm not minimizing the fact that obesity likely does play a part in some people's infertility.  We all know it's associated with many medical problems besides an inability to conceive.  However, if an overweight or obese person doesn't exhibit any of the associates comorbidities, then why suggest people go through ultra-invasive, extremely risky surgery to correct a problem when there appears to be no evidence it will acheive the desired, supposed affect of improved gamete quality?

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Infertility conference recap

In all my years as an infertile I've never attended the Resolve of New England.  I've always wanted to but the cost made me pause.  Then, I found out you could attend for free if you volunteered.  So, I did.   I was a room monitor which basically meant I did a head count of the room, collected feedback forms @ the end, kept the speaker on time & trouble shot any issues that came up.  Using "strategery", I volunteered to monitor the sessions I wanted to attend for information purposes, so it was a win for RNE as well as myself. :)


I met the new doc @ my RE's office & she's super chill. Probably my age? From Greece originally. She's also on the board of RNE. I told her about starting up a peer group in Providence soon & she said she would be willing to let me use office space for it.  Did I mention that I am going to be a peer leader?  Yeah.  Because I don't have enough going on.  But seriously, I'm looking forward to it!


I met the dude who invented the sperm frag test Vid recently had done! He gave me a sperm pin, lol. I got a ton of cool swag (pens, sticky notes, lip balm, stress relief egg, a book on love & infertility).  Here's a pic to prove it really happened:




I also met a really nice Indian couple who were also unexplained & had gone through 5 (!) IVFs so far. I've already been e-mailing back & forth with the wife. She is also thinking about going to Braverman for immuno testing too.


Some stuff I learned:
  • 2nd hand smoke is as detrimental to gamete quality as smoking yourself is. Yet another reason for me to be looking for another job since most of my patients are smokers (people with a mental health dx smoke @ a rate 3x that of the general population).
  • PICSI does not increase fert but does decrease m/c risk.
  • B6 levels are naturally higher in fertile women. My B vit levels are low normal as I'm a vegetarian. However, due to my having beta thalessemia my body does not manufacture iron well & I've probably avoided having to have blood transfusions in my life since I don't eat meat. A lot of oral B vits have iron additives which could be dangerous. Given this, might be time for vit injections according to the RE who did the talk.  What's another needle @ this point?
  • High omega 3 levels are associated with increase in prostate cancer & increased morph issues (interesting since DH eats a ton of seafood).

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A Letter to All the Pregnant Women in My Life

An interwebs infertile friend recently posted this; I nodded along through the entire thing.  I don't normally copy & paste others' work, but this was way too good (as well as appropriate for where I am mentally) not to share.  You may nod along as well if you're still in the trenches of infertility:

It’s not you, it’s me.
I’m not like your high school boyfriend who heard that phrase in a romantic comedy and repeated it to you just days before taking your best friend to prom. I really mean it. Everything is me. You are wonderful. You are careful with me. You are kind.
I sit, every minute of every day, with the knowledge that I may not be able to have a family, and that even if I am able to have a family through adoption, I may not ever be pregnant, carry a pregnancy to term, give birth, glow, hurt, heal. There are moments, brief and beautiful moments, when I am so in love with my life that I forget about infertility and I feel actual joy. Those moments never happen around you. I can’t forget around you. Back when I had hope, I could find excitement in your growing belly and happy plans. Now, I just don’t know how to.
Most of the time, I am walking around in one of two states of emotion–both distant from my pre-infertility emotional self, both distant from joy. One of those states is a disconnect. Disconnection from my emotions is how I live through this; it’s how I get through every day. I want to compare it to wearing a bandaid to protect a scab, but it’s not quite like that. It’s more like a helmet covering a thin layer of flesh over an otherwise raw and exposed bundle of nerves, delicate and tender and requiring care and protection. I can talk about what I’m feeling while I’m not actually feeling the emotions. It’s the closest I get to being able to share what I feel with others.
Then, when the helmet comes off, it is not pretty. That is the other emotional state I sometimes find myself in, filled with intensity uncommon in my adult life, feeling emotions that make me uncomfortable and unrecognizable to myself. Anger, jealousy, hurt, resentment, despair, loss. I prefer to experience those alone. Which is lonely.
I don’t know how to engage with you, my dear friend, the way I used to. With my helmet on so tightly, how can I connect with you during this most important time of your life? With my helmet on so tightly, I feel like everything I say is a lie. But, with my helmet off, there’s nothing about me you’ll want to be around and there’s nothing about me that is comfortable for me to show around you. It cannot come off.
So, I miss you. Each time a friend begins to “try” I withdraw a bit more. When they succeed I become a little more alone. Over three years of this, the losses have accumulated and I have steeled myself for them a little better each time, faking it with a bit more success. I don’t want your happiness to feel like a loss to me, but it is. At least for now.
I read constantly that it is impossible to get through this without losing girlfriends, but I really don’t want to give in to that. In my lowest moments I see how infertility might take away everything. In my better moments, I hold out hope that when I come through this I will still be loved and able to give love.

Friday, October 4, 2013

What is it like?

What is it like...

  • to find out you're pregnant
  • to see 2 lines
  • to have the RE call you with good news for a change
  • to watch your betas double
  • to see a little blob on the screen with a beautiful flutter
  • to feel nauseous & happy @ the same time
  • to see a plain old OB/GYN
  • to hear someone else's heart beat next to yours
  • to be able to tell someone that it actually worked this cycle
  • to be able to look at baby items with hope & happiness
  • to be able to use the excuse you're eating for more than just you now
  • to see your belly grow
  • to feel their kicks from the inside
  • to have others buy you a shower gift for a change
  • to decorate their long empty nursery just as you imagined it
  • to make a birth plan
  • to experience labor & delivery
  • to hear their 1st cry
  • to hold them in your arms instead of just your heart
  • to see your name on a birth certificate listed as "mother"
What is it like?




Thursday, September 26, 2013

Back in the saddle


I had my WTF appt today.  It went well. Doc is as stumped as I am why I can't seem to get pregnant. Vid is going on FertilAid (speaking of which, recs of where to order it from?) to see if we can work on the slight morph & oxidation issues. Also, I made an appt to get a consult with Dr. Braverman in November, which was the soonest I could get in on a Saturday since it's a 3 hour drive (so long as the traffic gods smile upon us).  I told her about the Braverman consult & she was interested to see what he says. She has had people get further testing with him before & appreciates his outside the box thinking, especially with those of us who are unexplained. To her obviously the whole immunology thing is controversial but intriguing. I'm not sure how long it takes to get the testing done once we have our initial consult on 11/16 but I told her if possible I'd like to cycle over the holidays based on what Braverman recs & she was good with that too.  I can't believe I'm still on the crazy train.  What the hell is wrong with me?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

My niece is here 11 weeks early

My sister went in for a regular OB appt yesterday (Monday) after work. The baby's heart beat was off kilter so her doc sent her to the hospital for further monitoring.  While there, the baby's heart beat got really scary so they decided to do an emergency c-section.  I found out when my mother called me to ask me to take pick up her dog to stay @ my house because she was on her way to the hospital to meet my sister.  It didn't register @ 1st in my mind.  Then, when I hung up the phone, I started sobbing uncontrollably.

She was 29 weeks as of Sunday.  The baby was born blue with kinks in her cord but they were able to stabilize her & sent her to a hospital with a NICU across town.  Maggie weighed in @ 2lbs even.  My sister was transported late last night to the same hospital.  As of tonight the baby is on 30% oxygen via CPAP but is otherwise stable.  I don't even want to think what could've happened if she had not had an appt yesterday.  Her pregnancy was completely normal until 3pm yesterday.  My nephew was born @ 38w6d weeks vaginally & unmedicated with no complications FWIW.  My sister is doing fine & will likely be home this weekend.  I want so badly to go give her a hug but there's no way I could handle being on a NICU floor which makes me feel like shit.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Not pregnant.

Over the course of 63 months (5 years, 3 mos)::
  • I have experienced approximately 70 menses based on my 27 day cycle
  • I have seen 4 REs @ separate 4 RE practices (all of the offices in my city)
  • I've only felt comfortable working with 2 of the 4 REs ( in other words, the other 2 were douches) & the one who I really connected with of course is not currently practicing
  • I have gone through 8 IUIs, all of which were negative
  • I have transferred 5 embryos over the course of 3 IVFs & 1 FET, all of which were negative
  • I have spent approximately $20,000 in co-pays for the privilege of getting my period which I am perfectly able to do on my own
  • I still do not have an answer as to why we cannot even get pregnant, let alone worry about staying pregnant
As I see it, right now we have 3 options:
  •  Go see Dr. Braverman in NYC.  This may or may not be covered by our insurance.  I've had several infertile interwebs friends work with him who speak highly of him.  But even the gods of reproductive immunology can't get everyone pregnant.
  • Look into adoption.  Vid is still wishy-washy on it.  I've already waited 5 years to become a mom & by the time we could afford it it may be another 5 years of saving to do so from India.  And who knows if we would even be deemed "fit to parent"?
  • Live CFNBC (child free not by choice).  Stop all treatments.  Don't look into adoption.  Pretty much live the way we do now, but just give up all hope.
Right now I'm still pretty raw.  I went out this morning to run a few errands & had to leave Dunkin Donuts without ordering because there was a newborn there.  I was supposed to go to an autumn craft fair with my mom & aunt today but again, I just can't, in case I end up surrounded by pregnant bellies.  I am already contemplating calling out sick from work on Monday.  I already hate my job but being infertile makes is excruciating.  I just don't feel like I can function in society right now.  I am broken.  I can honestly say I no longer believe in a higher power.  I wish this was all just a bad dream but it's not: it's my life.  I hate my life.   




Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Another celeb comes out of the IF closet

I don't watch the show & honestly don't know much about her, but Aisha Tyler is me in so many ways.  I've said it before: infertility is a sisterhood, a club that nobody wants to be a member of.  I just want to reach through my computer screen & hug her!







Sunday, September 8, 2013

Infertility-induced psychosis

 It's a beautiful day so I decided to hang out the freshly washed shirts to dry. Of course a bird then shit on them.  I've been told this is good luck, but  I cried.  Oh & I ugly cried 2 times yesterday for no reason.  Vid made some sort of snide remark that I don't even remember & it sent me over the edge.  And the other time I don't even know what set me off.
Also, it safe to say a lot of progesterone = a lot of cramps. I had no cramping that I can remember from the Crinone I took for IVF #1.  I had some small cramping on straight PIO for IVFs 2 & 3 but this time I am on Endometrium BID as well as the ass shot @ bed time.  Friday I had some cramps that literally had me doing breathing exercises.  
BTW my husband has actually been doing the PIO shots this time; my mom (who lives a mile down the road) did it for my previous cycles.  This is HUGE for him as I normally have to hold his hand for him to complete blood work.  The 1st shot he did he literally prayed before he stuck the needle in,.  Adorable.
I POAS this morning @ 4dp5dt. Negative. It was strategic though. The stick expires this month (you know you're infertile when your pregnancy test stash is several years old) & I knew the likelyhood of getting anything but a negative was slim to none. So now I won't be tempted to test closer to beta when there is a chance of getting a real negative yet I've satiated the need to pee on something.  
I think the fact that this is the "make or break" cycle is adding to my infertility-induced psychosis.  The fact that if this doesn't work, we need to decide what our next move will be, if anything, is terrifying.  Not that I won't likely be a basket care for my entire pregnancy is this does work.  Don't get me wrong; I have a sliver of hope, mainly because I've never done an FET before & therefore have not had my heart broken in this manner yet.  However that could all change on Friday.  We shall see.

 
 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Meet Nemo

S/he's adorable!  And hopefully snuggling in for the next 9 mos.  Beta is Friday the 13th.  Of course!


Friday, August 30, 2013

FET scheduled


Wednesday 9/4 @ 11am Nemo gets in mah belly where s/he will hopefully decide to get comfy until May of next year.  I had my 1st acupuncture appt 2 days ago to prep.  Very cool & very pricey but hopefully worth it.  I go in again for before & after the transfer.  Yesterday I also started PIO ass shots & Endometin vaginal suppositories.  Fun, hormonal times!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Sprem frag test results

 
Vid is home from India! And we have the results of his sperm frag test. They look @ 3 parameters: DNA integrity (fragmentation), the level of immature sperm (decondensed DNA) & damage from free radicals (oxidation). The 1st 2 he passed with flying colors. The last one he was in the border region. So, he will talk with the RE about antioxident supplements which may (or may not) help. While it's great he's not horribly MFI (his morph is low but everything else is ok) it also means we still really don't know WTF our problem is.
I had monitoring this morning & apparently I am about to hyperovulate. Makes sense I guess since there are fraternal twins on both sides of my family. I had 2 follicles @ over 20mm on my R ovary today. Who knows how often this happens?  Tomorrow is CD13 so that makes sense as that's my normal ovulation day. So not only can Vid's guys not manage to fertilize a single egg, but even when there are double the targets we still can't get pregnant!
Also, tomorrow after work I  meet with the accupuncturist for the 1st time to discuss what she will do.  She comes highly recommended & is part of a co-op that does a lot of work with infertility patients.  The plan is for me to see her both immediately before & after transfer, assuming Nemo thaws out ok & reanimates.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Sharing in someone's joy for a change.

I know I spend a lot of time on this blog either being depressed, bitchy, or crazy (as infertility tends to do to people) but today, I have a nice infertility-related post to share!  Below is a local news story from Ohio about one of my infertile interwebs buddies who recently adopted a baby girl with the help of Facebook.  Kristen & John endured over 8 years of TTC with multiple treatment failures personally as well as with a gestational carrier & using donor embryos.  They are such a cute little family & I just had to share:




Tuesday, August 13, 2013

I *heart* Jimmy Fallon & you should too!

Yay for celebs who are open about their infertility struggles, even if it's after the fact!  And double yay for a male celeb talking about it!

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


My only complaint: not everyone "gets there" in the end.  I truly wish we all did, but unfortunately miracles don't happen for everyone.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Anticipation



The hubs is en route to India as I type this.  I dropped him off @ Logan Airport earlier today. He'll be back in 2 weeks.  Not long @ all.  We've done this several times before.  Still, it's so quiet without him home.  On the plus side my house is clean & will remain so until the 27th.

No news yet on the sperm frag test.

I had my thyroid recheck last week as it's been a year since the last one.  My TSH is up to 2.1.  My RE likes to see it between 1 & 2 so of course my body would be all "Let's fuck with 'em!" & be right on the border.  So, she kicked me up to the next dosage & we'll retest in a few weeks.

Also in a few weeks?  Our FET.  Aunt Flo will likely be here Thursday or Friday which would put the transfer around Labor Day.  Hopefully my TSH is better by then.  I doubt she'd cancel me based on a 2.1 but @ this point I am all but convinced something will go wrong.  Will Nemo not survive the thaw?  Will my lining be out of sync?  Will blood rain from the sky or a plague of locusts descend upon us?  

Maybe all of the above.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Sperm frag test: check!



Vid had his sperm frag test done this morning.  I came home from work & he informed me since the last time he had to give a sample they've updated their DVD collection.  An amusing quip but also sad as it shows how long we've been in this game: they've had to rotate the porn.

While it would be nice to get an answer to our baby making issues, I am equally scared this will give us no clue @ all.  And if this does show there's more of an issue with his 'boys' than we originally thought, how will he handle it?  Furthermore, what (if anything) could be done to overcome said issue?  We should have results in a week or 2.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

No fat chicks! Oh, wait...



Last year, I posted about the fact women who were told they could lose weight & magically get pregnant on their own after gastric bypass surgery actually didn't.  Another study appears to back up the claim that obesity does not reduce chances of IVF success:

"For the study, researchers looked at data of patients from five earlier studies (of women using their own eggs for IVF) conducted over the past decade along with data from 123 egg donor recipients from the Washington University Infertility and Reproductive Medicine Center...Most IVF programs have certain BMI restrictions in order to analyze whether a woman is fit to receive the treatment. According to Jungheim, these restrictions need to be re-examined as according to her, there is still a lot to learn about the obesity-pregnancy link... "We need to find out what specifically goes wrong in obese women who don't [get pregnant]. We think other factors besides BMI are involved."

Yes!  Other factors, like environmental ones, such as linking BPA (commonly found in plastics) to infertility, finding it may disrupt eggs from maturing properly:

"...exposed more than 350 immature eggs, which were left over from infertility procedures, to varying amounts of BPA in lab dishes. Only 35 percent of eggs exposed to the lowest levels of BPA had a normal number and configuration of chromosomes after they fully matured compared with 71 percent of those in a control group of eggs that weren’t exposed to BPA...Most of the eggs exposed to the highest levels of BPA failed to mature at all, and the rest had abnormal chromosomes."
  
Clearly more research on the causes of IF is needed


 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The (not so great) girl give away!



A Pakistani game show has come under fire for giving away abandoned babies to infertile couples.  In cooperation with a local NGO, couples were vetted & registered to possibly become guardians of such children.  But, they went on said show unprepared & not knowing they were literally going to be handed a newborn girl.  According to the article:

The couple didn't know they would be handed a newborn when they were invited to take part in the show and paperwork was not processed before the live broadcast.  Adoption is not officially recognized in Pakistan and there is no adoption law. The couple will have to apply for guardianship at a family court.

Now I'm no expert on adoption in Pakistan (or the US for that matter) but doesn't this seem like putting the cart before the proverbial horse?  I mean, given the bad publicity this has received it's not outside the realm of possibility that a judge could deny guardianship.  And although I don't know these couples from Adam, my heart aches that they may thus have a baby placed in their arms only to have it taken away.  I've had friends in the US bring babies home only to have the birth mom change her mind.  Being infertile sucks in the US. Having married someone from more Westernized neighboring India where infertility is taboo, I cannot imagine the experience of childlessness in Pakistan. 

I think this article also touched me as someone who long before she married a man from South Asia felt a draw to adopt from there someday but not having any idea what the future held or what the adoption process is like.  I always thought I'd have a couple of bio kids & adopt a couple as well.  I wanted to be Angelina Jolie before it was cool!

So many beautiful little girls being abandoned (if not killed) simply for being female.  So few of them adopted if they are lucky enough to be rescued & grow up in a (not so great most times) orphanage & not die on the streets.  Since Vid was born & raised in India we can actually adopt from there too since the rules (unless they've changed them) state @ least 1 parent has to hold OCI.  If only I could figure out a way to get my hands on upwards of $40,000 & convince my husband it was a good idea.  Oh & that little thing about passing the screening process to prove that despite my Zoloft prescription, I am generally not crazy.  Hopefully they don't read this blog!


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The post in which I loose my proverbial shit





Thanks to ongoing family drama about which I am writing a novel (loosely based), Vid is going back to India for 2 weeks on 8/12.  Classes start 9/4 & he needs to be back to both teach & take a class for his PhD.  He already took 3 weeks of FMLA in March for the last India trip.  Tentative ET was 8/9-8/12-ish & although technically Vid doesn't need to be there for it I just can't bring myself to do this FET alone because if it doesn't work he will be on the other side of the planet when we find out.  With my mental state as it is, I don’t know I can handle that.

I told him that if they ask about how things are going on the baby front he can tell them they will never be grandparents if we have to keep pushing back cycling due to their inability to get their sh!t together & us having to shell out $1800 for a plane ticket several times a year that could go to the baby fund, paying off bills, savings, etc.  So a September FET it likely is, which we were trying to avoid since school starts up again & our schedules become nightmarish once more.

My SIL was supposed to go back in April/May but did not because she is (I am assuming) sick of their b.s.  She's been sending them hundreds of $ every month (ILs are well off but it's a cultural thing) as kind of "quiet $".  Vid & her don't really talk & I don't know why but I suspect it has to do with the failed engagement last year she was almost forced into.  Yeah, the one the ILs spent over $10k U.S. on, throwing a huge party where the honored couple wasn’t even present.  

Andplusalso, MIL gave Vid's cell # to some of his relatives.  You know, the ones that sued FIL for land years ago.  Yeah.  So, he's been getting phone calls left & right for everything from "Can you get me a job in the US?" to “Do you know Arnold Schwarzenegger?” to "You have become fat; you should do XYZ to lose weight" & everything in between. 

I HATE THESE F#CKING PEOPLE.  There, I said it.  And if that makes me a terrible person, then so be it.

If I had 1 wish @ this point it wouldn't even be for a child: it would be for them all to just go away.  Or @ least for Vid to cut all ties which he won’t do since his mother has bone cancer which is basically the trump card in the never ending game of Indian parental guilt trip.  He is so sick of it yet he says nothing which basically validates their bad behavior.

This is what kills me most: he wants everything to be nicey-nice & kills himself by trying to be all things to all people.  If you are sane, you know this is not possible.  I tell him this, oh, I don't know...daily?  He complains about it incessantly.  But then he won't put his foot down to say "I cannot do this anymore" for his own health, not to mention for the health of our marriage.  As a recovering anthropology Ph.D. student I know to an extent the whole “honor thy parents” thing is taken to the extreme in the Indian context but...

AAAAUUUUGGGHHH!!!!!!!! 

I married a great guy.  Really, I did.  He's smart, kind, funny, adorable, etc.  I am truly grateful for whatever forces brought him into my life.  Unfortunately he comes with a set of in-laws that make me want to jump off a freakin' cliff many days.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

It's an infertile thing

 
I am a terrible person & really don't care. My sister is due with #2 in December (#1 just turned 1 last month, so 2 under 2, of course!) & had her big u/s today. Since #1 was a boy, of course #2 is a girl. And I'm almost positive pregnancy #3 will be boy/girl twins, because the universe hates me.  My mom texted me to tell me this because apparently I wouldn't see it plastered on FB 5 minutes later. This is our exchange:

Mom: Sharon's having a girl.
Anasara: I'm not having anything. :D
M: ?
A: I'm not having a girl, or a boy for that matter. Infertile humor. You wouldn't understand.
M: Not funny.
A: Like I said, it's an infertile thing. A warped sense of humor is a coping mechanism of sorts.

Then we proceeded to talk about my aunt buying a house. 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Rockin' embies


According to a newly published study, playing music to an egg in a petri dish in the IVF lab increases the odds of it fertilizing by 5%.  They really will fund anything, won't they?  To be fair we are the crazy people who played a classical music CD while transporting Nemo across town.  I wonder if it will make a difference on his/her ability to take up residence in my ute for 9 mos?  We shall see.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Going 'au natural'

I talked to the doc & she is good with doing a natural FET.  Yay for no Lupron!  Unless my body manages to eff this up too, then we have no choice.  We'll be doing it in August since to do it in July would mean us maybe having to skip a free vacation in Cape Cod which I am not about to do. 
The sperm frag test is being ordered in the meantime but DH is kind of being a PITA about it & is waiting to talk to the doc about some ?s he has. Fine but really dude, after all the crap I've gone through testing & procedure wise you're going to give me a hard (get it?  ha!) time about jerking off a couple times?  Does he honestly think we're doing this for fun?  Like I actually want to spend another couple hundred bucks?  Dude: the doc said this was a logical next step in testing!  Men are such babies.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

My life, on film...scary.

Found by my insomniac husband while looking for Indian movies on Youtube:


Friday, June 14, 2013

Cancelled.



I am the most fertile infertile EVAH!  I ovulated while on 6mg of Estrace daily to prep for our FET.
So FET = cancelled. Me = drinking tonight.

Will talk with DH about what to do. We can still do an FET but I would need to be on Lupron to prep. Lupron shuts down your pituitary gland. And when I was on it for IVF #1 it kicked my ass; I was seriously in bed @ 7pm & still exhausted when I woke up the next morning after 12 hours of sleep.
However, we are going to my grandparents' time share on Cape Cod next month. I refuse to let IF take away a free vacation! & And sincer I'm not sure of the timing of the FET yet (waiting for the doc to return my phone call) August may be when we can next cycle.

If that is the case, we might just keep Nemo frozen & go for IVF #4. Our original plan had been to do IVF #4 in August if Nemo didn't stick since my pre tax medical account reloads July 1st which would basically pay for an IVF cycle. Vid & I have a lot to talk about this weekend.

This now means that we are free next weekend since I took Thursday & Friday off for the FET. I needed to burn my last 2 vacation days since we accrue based on the fiscal year which ends 6/30 so they are mine for the taking! Will also need to talk about possibly running away for the weekend to somewhere within driving distance.

Friday, June 7, 2013

I am my own birth conrol



5 years ago today I took my last BCP.  We were newly weds & I was 29.  I had a regular cycle right off the bat & figured I'd be pregnant by my 30th birthday about 10 months later.  Little did we know we'd still be childless half a decade later. 

*sigh*

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Remind me why I still have Facebook again

Jumping out of window

Someone needs to tell my mother if she posts a comment that my sister is expecting again in early December on someone else's public page who I am not friends with, it may still show up in my news feed.  I guess I should be thankful I found out now versus after my failed FET.  That is all.

Friday, May 31, 2013

FET time


Right on time, my uterus began expelling its contents early Wednesday morning.  I don't know if it's the anticipation of the upcoming FET or the Estrace I'm on, but Holy Mother of God this is the most painful period I've had in a long time.  Anywho, Nemo is set to be transferred around 6/21.  Say a prayer, folks, because if this doesn't work it's going to get awkward @ work when I go from being staff to patient.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Back from Ireland

Did ya miss me?

We had an awesome time with my cousins in County Kerry & exploring a bit of the country.  We were really lucky in that it only rained for one morning & was sunny the rest of the week; definitely not your typical Irish weather.

Alas, we got back last night & I went back to work today.  Vid is officially on vacation for the summer but will be teaching a class as an adjunct @ another college.  Lucky bastard.  

While we were gone a sad thing happened.  My parents' dog died.  MuShu (he was a Pekingese like my dog) was 16 & had a good life but it's still rough on us all.  I think the fact it happened while we were away & didn't get to say goodbye makes it worse.  He (like most Pekes) was such a sweet, mellow little guy; after all, the breed was basically bred to sit on the lap of the Chinese emperor, keep him warm & generally look cute.  I always thought he'd get to meet my kids & nap with them.  Yet another thing infertility ruined.

Another thing that happened was my cousin with the honeymoon baby had kid #2 on her 3rd anniversary.  Another perfect girl.  Whatever.

But let's not dwell on those things.  I promised some pics from our trip & will oblige.  These are only a few of about 200 but you'll get the idea:

Celtic High Cross @ Clonmacnoise


The technicolor green fields of the Dingle Peninsula 
 that reminded me of the 'Teletubbies' tv show
Abbey Island in Caherdaniel where most 
of my mom's family is buried

Kilmainham Gaol, the (IMHO)
coolest place in Dublin

Vid drunkenly leaning against the gate @ Guinness Storehouse
after drinking his beers & mine.  I don't like beer but the tour
was interesting.

Me sitting in 'The Wishing Chair' in Rossbeigh's playground,
hoping it will help with our upcoming FET.
 And for good measure, I bought a 
"grow your own 4 leaf clover" kit,
because we need all the luck we can get.






Sunday, May 19, 2013

Off to (one of my) motherland(s)


Our bags are packed & we're ready to go.  We'll drop the pets off @ my parents (a.k.a. "grandma & grandpa") in a couple hours then head up to Logan for our overnight flight.  The weather looks good for the week (just a small chance of rain every day) & temps look to be comfortable for travel (in the 50s).  I'll be looking for a 4-leaf clover to bring home for our FET cycle since we need all the luck we can get.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Only in my dreams

I think the anticipation of cycling again is getting to me.  In the past week, I've had 2 very realistic dreams:

In the 1st one,  I was thrown a surprise baby shower. 2 good infertile friends who I know from a message board I used to frequent drove up from NY for it among others. We've met several times before so it's not like they're imaginary interwebs friends.  I was sobbing I was so happy. Then I woke up to Vid snoring because his CPAP had slipped & wasn't working properly.

In the 2nd one, beta came back as 920 & I was bleeding but the doc checked me & I was ok.  I vividly remember arguing in the dream with the RE about 920 being too high for a 1st beta.  She kept insisting that she was not b.s.ing me.  Don't remember much after that though.

It's nice to be pregnant, if only in my dreams.


Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mothers' Day...again

As our 5th "TTC-a-versary" draws near (next month), today marks my 4th Mothers' Day as a mother-in-waiting.  Today, I will not leave the house lest someone accidentally wish me a Happy Mothers' Day which I may or may not be able to handle in a graceful manner.  Would I smile awkwardly & just keep walking while trying not to cry, or throat punch such a person?  Yup; definitely safer to stay home.

While it's cool to see everyone's pics with their moms, both living & deceased, on Facebook, it's equally painful to see the posts of my friends & family with their little ones.  So, I decided to make my profile pic the photo I took with Nemo on his/her moving day:



This may be the only photo I ever take with my child.  Yes, Nemo is only a day 5 blast, but you cannot imagine the love I have for that little clump of cells.  If things actually go according to plan next month's FET, next year Nemo will be a 2 month old for Mothers' Day 2014.  If things go badly, there is a great likelihood that I will be in the same exact position next year as I am now: a childless mother.





Sunday, May 5, 2013

Mmmm...mangoritas!



Today is Infertility Survival Day.  I did not know this until logging on to Fertilebook just now; did you?  It's celebrated the Sunday before Mothers' Day, which this year happens to be Cinco de Mayo.  Vid & I went out for Mexican last night thanks to a Living Social deal & split a pitcher of mangoritas.  Today, my family is having dinner & these will be served yet again.  #WINNING!  This will be the 1st time since undergrad I drank heavily 2 nights in a row.  Since next weekend is Fertile's Day, I will also be purchasing a bottle of red wine to drown my sorrows in.  2 weekends in a row; wish me luck!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Someone totes stole my idea!

Remember this post from about 18 mos ago when I wrote about wanting to do a performance piece on infertility in response to the woman who gave birth as one?  Well, someone else thought it would be a good idea too:

Encouraging transparency and demystification through baring her body and fertility journey, Marilee will become LIVING ART by literally taking her IVF hormone injections to the streets. This piece will take place over a 14 day period where every IVF injection will be visually accessible to the public and Live Streamed across the country on USTREAM. "There is so much isolation in this process. Even after 35 years of IVF procedures, people still have no idea what it truly involves and the intense highs and lows that women and couples go through. It's about time to break this silence and taking ownership over this process inherently filled with uncertainty."

On May 30th, 8 pm Marilee will do her first public injection at SOMArts as part of one of two full evening performance art pieces. During this performance, she will be unveiling her art installation inspired by a 1920's broken down hospital room, which will be open to viewers for the duration of the two weeks. From May 30th-June 12th as the hormone injections begin to affect Marilee's body, she will externalize her internal physical changes by transforming the old and distressed hospital installation into a vibrant and lush garden

Wonder if I can sue; ha!  And why is it that all I can think of when I hear "performance art" is this?




Yup, everything comes back to 'The Big Lebowski'.





Sunday, April 21, 2013

Happy (?) NIAW!



It's that time again: National Infertility Awareness Week!  For those not in the know about NIAW, it's all about breaking the silence of infertility & advocating for the infertile community.  You can find more info on Resolve: The National Infertility Association's website.

If memory serves, this is the 3rd NIAW I am participating in.  If you would've told me back when I 1st heard of Resolve almost 4 years ago that I would still be sitting on the childless side of the fence I'd have thought you were crazy.  Now, if you were to tell me the next treatment cycle would actually result in a take home baby, I'd call you nuts.  

So what keeps me going?  Some days, I don't know.  Every so often, I seriously think about just throwing in the towel & saying "fuck it.": no more treatments, learn to live child free, albeit not by choice.  All the time, money & mental energy I have expelled fighting infertility seems like such a waste.

But then I remember I am not alone in this.  There's my husband, who makes me crazy but really is a great guy; he deserves to be a dad.  There's (some) of my family who may not "get it" but know how long this road has been & want to see me succeed in my quest.  And I'd be remiss if I did not give a shout out to my infertile interwebs friends who have been my rock; I hope they can say the same about me.

I am not alone.  1 in 8 couples experiences infertility of some sort.  Every time I think of how long my journey has been & how many failed cycles we have done I get slightly jealous of those who have gotten their take home babies after just a few IUIs or one IVF.  But then I remember this is not a pissing contest & there are those far more battle scarred than I: those who have gone through donor egg or sperm cycles with no success, those who have had failed adoption matches, etc.  

Every infertile's story is unique & should be shared.  So if you're not "out of the closet" when it comes to your infertility, I invite you to use NIAW as an opportunity to step into the light.  You have nothing to be ashamed of & everything to be gained by being your own best advocate.