Friends

I had my cycle day 2 appointment and my stats were as follows.

FSH 6.4, E2 82.2. No visible follicles on either ovary. 5 months ago this news would have terrified me, but now, I will take it. For some reason my protocol is different this time. No Clomid, no stimulating drugs. Yay! But I am being given 2 tablets of Estrace a day with no monitoring again until day 10. Usually I monitor on day 8 but again OK. Dr Yelian, my RE called it Hormone Replacement Therapy, which I kind of prickled at, since I associate that term with Menopause but he assured me no. So let’s get on with it and see how it works out. Next week I will know more. He said not to count on an egg retrieval this month. Weirdly I’m OK with that too. If it happens then great, if it doesn’t, well It’s not a complete break but at least there is no Clomid involved.

Now as I’ve become known for doing, I’m going to abruptly switch subjects.

I’ve always been the woman who has more male friends than female ones. It worked for me for a long time. I find some of the cattiness and pettiness’ of my gender sometimes hard to take. I hate when women agree to go to lunch together and someones pipes up “I only ate a salad I don’t want to pay the extra 2 dollars so can we all just get separate checks?” among other things. I am a girl I know that were not all like that but its one of those things that’s always bothered me.

Consequently when I began this journey I had one girlfriend, that I’ve known since high school, with 6 kids of her own, and she was living in Canada, so we couldn’t even talk on the phone most of the time. But I leaned on her, she said all the wrong things, meant well, and I had to forgive her for that because fertility is obviously not something she’s ever had an issue with. Shes been an incredible friend to me though and I wouldn’t trade her for anyone. I had my acupuncturist who I leaned rather heavily on, and he’s tolerated way more than he should have ever had to.

I’ve spent the last 9 months really trying to make girlfriends. At my age, its hard. But without some kind of support I’d be writing this post from a padded room somewhere. My blog has helped, its given me a starting point as to explain myself and my situation. Slowly over the last 9 months I’ve made friends, real friends who I respect and love and would totally break a nail for. Women who struggle in their own right, with fertility, their weight, making their lives into something they are content with living. Strong women who are on their own journeys. Some the same path as me, and some not. Intelligent, educated women who know better than to be judgy or petty. Supportive women who can handle my mood swings and my frustration and sometimes anger and fear. They are there for me, and I am there for them, on their own journeys none of which are easier than mine.

Much to my joy, I’ve also become friendly with some younger women, one special one who is going to help me learn to knit, who loves animals and is on a break from blogging. We will conduct these lessons via skype because she lives in upstate NY and I live in CA. Another young one who is taking her LVN boards soon and will then go back to school for her RN, and another who is just struggling in general about who she wants to grow up to be.

For the first time in as long as I can remember, and I do believe that’s somewhere around middle school, I have a group of girlfriends that I really adore. Who defy my own petty judgements of women and who make me laugh and who I’m thrilled to cheer for and who cheer for me. It’s nice to get out of my head and do things for others, little things that I hope in some small way brings joy to their lives and reminds that they too have a friend, and make them feel a little more loved.

You know who you are…

It’s such a relief. To have a support system that forces me not to isolate, that can take me out of my head, and who make me laugh like a cackling maniac. Its not easy. But its possible. Just like getting pregnant.

Do I get discouraged. Yes. Do I get tired, yes! Do I have fears, yes! Do I let it define me? No. Do I let my sadness over not being pregnant become my new normal? No.

That doesn’t mean I don’t get all worried and OCD about things. The loss of control in the process is one of the things I struggle with most. That and displaying the Queen Victoria like she was the crown jewels. I still find it mortifying. There are at least 5 people in my REs office I’m not sure I will ever be able to look in the eye.

This month I will do my best to walk bravely into the great unknown and hopefully come out the other side with something good to show for it. That being said, I don’t know what that something good might be.

Early

In a little over 12 hours I will be on the table/weird chair thingy they do egg retrieval in my REs surgery for the 8th time. Legs, strapped down, Queen Victoria on display, highlighted by the Russian Interrogation lights, my legs shaved, feet pedicured and the uh..bushes well maintained.

Its been another bizarre cycle where my FSH spiked, I was taken off Clomid, put on Estrace and we seemed to be off to the races from there. Except this follicle has grown over 10 millimeters in 7 days. And my E2 has gone from 40 to 235 in 7 days.  Add to it that I feel like my right ovary is building some kind of hipster nightclub in there, my failed “just go with the crazy experiment” and it becomes another humbling month of “yes I am still a control freak, who is a complete nutcase and yes I probably owe you and the rest of the free world another apology.”

There really is no dignity in this process what so ever.

Because my LH was SO HIGH yesterday, I *again* have the sneaking suspicion that I will have ovulated this little alien early. I’m trying not to think about it, but it’s not going so well, and every little twinge, every little knock is stressing me out.

Why did my RE have go to Turkey of all places when he knows my ovaries are unreliable, irresponsible and probably have horrible taste in music? If he hadn’t id have had an emergency retrieval today most likely and wouldn’t be worried about ovulating early.

Last month I was so sure it was going to be a bust that I work makeup to the retrieval. then snuck my phone in with me, photographed myself pre-surgery, texted the pic to my friend who promptly texted me back, “You wore makeup to a retrieval? Have you lost your mind?” “To which I wrote back, “If the outcome is going to suck, I’m going to look good doing it”. Which is retrospect still makes no sense.

I have done the meditation, and now I think I will just chant. “There will be a good follicle in there, not an alien. There will be a good follicle in there not an alien.”

Probably meditating again would be wiser. Lets see how well I sleep tonight.

 

Bridget Jones

I realized today that this IVF process has changed me. In some good ways and some bad ways but it’s changed me.

Think of it as my Bridget Jones List of trying to conceive via ART.

Comment translation:

  • g – good
  • vg – very good
  • vvg – very very good
  • nvg – not very good
  1. I no longer read gossip sites like Perez Hilton and Dlisted. Now I read a lot of infertility blog posts. g
  2. I watch enough trash reality tv that it’s really embarrassing. nvg
  3. I no longer care about anything any Kardashian as doing as long as my ovaries are not as empty as any of their head. vg
  4. I’ve eaten more fruit and vegetables in the last year than I have in my whole life (thanks for contributing this one husband) vvg
  5. I’m willing to try things like fertility yoga and meditation, things I’d have rolled my eyes at a year ago. g
  6. I’m willing to drink things that are abhorrent to me like huge glasses of wheat-grass. *this is really questionable*
  7. More people have seen the Queen Victoria in the last 7-8 months than have in my entire life.  nvg
  8. I’ve tried and continued with acupuncture. Even though sometimes I think he puts the one in my head there, to let the evil out. vg
  9. I take enough vitamins to choke myself, and sometimes do. g
  10. I’ve give up my beloved Diet Coke.  vg
  11. I’ve yelled at my RE. *Not my proudest moment I can assure you*  nvg
  12. I started a Peer Support Group for my clinic and omg people actually joined. g
  13. I have learned an entirely new set of acronyms and practically a whole other language *again, questionable*
  14. I actually get impatient for Shark Week to start so I can try again. *possibly indicates insanity*
  15. I’ve met, even if it’s just online, some of the best people I’ve ever known in my life. vvg!
  16. I have major control issues, I’m impatient and have a forked tongue. nvg
  17. The support offered by the blogging community has been amazing. Really. AMAZING. vvg!

The point of this journey is to wind up with a baby. It’s still my sole purpose, but I do think that for all its ups and downs, there have been some really special things that have happened a long the way. Somehow, fear and all, I do find the ability to hope, at least a little every month. Why else would I continue trying?

Bitter en Zoet *one of my most favorite bloggers!* made a comment to me last month “Magical Things Happen at the Circus”.  I try to think of that when I’m feeling particularly down.

One more Provera pill until the Circus begins again!