Tag Archives: Fertility

Back on the Chain Gang…

30 May

Its been so long since I’ve blogged, I don’t even know where to begin.  I suppose I’ll start at the beginning.

In early April I went to see a movie with my BFF Mandy.  We ate lunch and saw the Hunger Games.  Throughout the movie, I had to get up to use the bathroom–three times.  I thought this odd since Mandy and I both had the same amount to drink.  I finally jokingly said to her, “Either I’m pregnant, or I have a urinary tract infection.”

I thought back in my mind and realized that, while incredibly far-fetched, this WAS possible.  I went home and thought on it.  I tried to sit and just ‘feel.’  Did I feel anything weird?  No sore boobs, no bloated tummy, not tired, no weird cravings. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary.  And, I wasn’t late.  I had a period.  Or what I thought was a period?

I went upstairs and found an old test stick in my bathroom from the trying-to-conceive-Bea days.

“Holy shit.”  That was my response.  Two pink lines.  D’oh. I was 5 1/2 weeks pregnant.

Fast forward another week, and the symptoms were in full force.  I was pretty sick with Bea.  It was wintertime, so that probably made it more pronounced, but I do remember feeling like I had the worst case of the flu ever, and couldn’t wrap my head around what possible evolutionary, biological or other celestial reason why pregnancy had to start out so awfully.  Why would God (or your deity of choice) put someone through this?  You would think through natural selection our species may have figured out how to iron this little wrinkle out (irony understood: Here I am pregnant again).

Well, this kid really did a number on me.  I was/ am way sicker this time around.  With Bea, I had nausea but no vomiting, but #2 is still making me throw up, as I sit here at 12 1/2 weeks, taking anti-nausea meds.  I’ve lost 8 pounds.  I think the worst of it is behind me, as I feel good enough to at least write about it.

I stopped going to work around 6 1/2 weeks.  I was useless. Poor Bob did everything. Got Bea up in the morning, fed her, took her to school, picked her up, bathed her, and put her to bed.  My mom kindly cooked for us, so we didn’t starve, and by “we” I mean Bob and Bea, because I mostly just grazed.  I did nothing but sleep, eat a few potato chips and some yogurt, and sleep.

Then, last week, I was ready to go back to work.  Not as much ready to go back to work as I was ready to get out of the house.  Lo and behold, on my first day back I was told that they had figured out how to do my job without me there, and would be letting me go.  I was almost relieved, but still disappointed because I do like working, and don’t want to take Bea out of daycare.   I liked my job and it fit my lifestyle as a working mother.   But, as I puked in the locker room before I left, I thought “I guess this is for the best.”  (Sidenote, I wasn’t being replaced, so, no I can’t sue them…but to lay off a pregnant person is pretty ballsy, eh?)

Oh, and the best part of all of this is that we had to take my house of the market for 4 weeks because I was too sick to deal with showings.  So, now the house is finally back on the market.  And it is SLOOOOW.   We need a new house more than ever.

I thought about whether or not to write about the early parts of pregnancy, because, for me, they have been nothing short of miserable, especially the second time around.  And for those around me, I’m sure its been no picnic either (Bob was out of town for a whole week and Bea and I had to stay with my mother).  And all the while I go through this, BFF is battling cancer.  How can I complain about anything when my poor friend is on her 3rd month of chemotherapy?  Where is my positive spin? Where is my humorous take?  Is there nothing funny about pooping your pants at work?  Well, I guess in hindsight that will be funny.

No, nothing funny about any of this for me.  Don’t judge, I wasn’t super jazzed with Bea, either, until I had my 20 week sonogram.  I guess I’m just a seeing is believing kind of gal.  I remember getting odd reactions when I displayed anything short of undying, Jessica Simpson-like joy over being pregnant, but maybe everyone feels that way and they are just better actors than I am.  I think this makes me a super duper happy pregnant person in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters, as a sharp juxtaposition.   I am happy, I will be happy, this is meant to be, as all things in life are.   Just have to get over this hump.

So, as you can see, I did end up writing about this.  While I’m not in nesting mode just yet, this entry in a blog about parenting, fertility, life and family does give hope.  I don’t like complaining about how sick I feel, knowing that there are so many others out there who would give anything to feel the way I feel (well… maybe not QUITE exactly how I feel). But, this part of my journey shouldn’t take anything away from my fertility journey with Bea.  If nothing else, it adds to it. Because after two years of trying to get pregnant with Beatrice, and having to ultimately resort to IVF, this pregnancy came as an almost impossible surprise.  So, maybe reading about how nauseous I am won’t give hope to many, but the fact that I am pregnant should.

If someone who tried for so long and had so many difficulties can have a ooops lovely surprise, anyone can.   And I have friends, who, at this very moment are struggling right now.  And I think of them often.  No, its not fair that someone who wasn’t trying can get there before you.  I’ve been there, I know.   But hope is not lost.   There are a thousand stories like mine.  And I hope those that are still chasing stars can add their names to the list of tales very soon.

In the meantime, I need a nap.

Baby Making Rooms

13 Mar

I haven’t blogged in a while about my fertility journey.  I was recently recalling some of the things I encountered while going through it, and while a lot of it was painful (and a pain in the ass), some of it was humorous.

One of the funny things about infertility is just how, for lack of a better term, OUT THERE all of your business becomes! Literally and figuratively! Things that normally would not be spoken about under any circumstances suddenly become coffee talk.

“Oh, so did you have sex on the 14th day of your cycle this month? Any luck?”
“So, why can’t you get pregnant? Is something wrong with your plumbing or your husband’s?”
“Wow, how much does that COST?”

Yeah. Seriously.

The other side of the fertility coin is the one experienced by the man. Once you get past the less invasive treatments (namely drugs), you must enter the world of petri dishes, washing of sperm and questions like “will they fall out if I sit up too fast?”

At our clinic, there was a separate door (a back door wouldn’t you know) to the room where the man makes his ‘deposit.’ The Baby Making Room. Bob described it as the most unsexy room you can ever imagine, with porn of every type (Black, White, Asian, chubby…? They got em all).  And, of course, there was a VHS machine.  What other ways could they make this room feel skeevy?  Linoleum of course.  Well, I guess carpet is out of the question.

So, rather than parade these poor guys past the waiting room (I mean, really, what OTHER possible reason would they be going into a fertility clinic by themselves?)  they get to arrive and leave mostly anonymously.

I was back in an exam room one time with Bob when we heard “Ding Dong.”  Sorry, did you read that right?  That was the sound of a doorbell, not a penis joke.   Bob looked up and said “Ooh, someone’s going into the ‘room,'” I started cracking up. “You mean, the baby making room?”   Bob confirmed that this was indeed the room in question.

The doorbell sound was nothing that could be heard from inside the waiting room, or even in one of the phlebotomy cubes.  I had never heard it before in all of my time going to the clinic.  And now I felt sorry for the poor guy on the other side of the door  for some reason.  I couldn’t see him obviously, but what an unsubtle way to announce one’s presence, eh?

The other funny thing I remember is the Social Security patrons.  My clinic was right next door to a Social Security office in Towson.  So, once in a while an older person would walk in (having missed the large sign on the door), and whoever was at the front desk didn’t even need to pause to let them get their question out.  Again… KIND of obvious they don’t belong here, right?  “Social Security office is around the corner to the right, ma’am.”

I need to write about my next leg in the journey,   The IVF.  But if you were in my house this evening you would have witnessed a toddler possessed by the devil and an extremely exhausted Carrie.  So that will have to wait until another day!

The Story of Sarah and Abraham

23 Nov

I got a note this week that another blogger is following my blog.  I don’t know how they found me, but I’m truly honored.    This is the first (I think?) person that I don’t know personally that has signed on to follow me.   So this could mean that I’m actually entertaining and–gasp–poignant? (Insert flashback to that scene in “Julie and Julia” where Amy Adams innocently begins her blog journey by asking if anyone was there, and then flipping out when she got her first follower… could a book deal be in my future???)

Here is the link to THEIR blog…


The cutest things come out of petri dishes!

It looks like maybe they just started their blog, and are in the beginning stages of their fertility journey (and that I could REALLY use some blog design tips from them).   I wish them luck.  Everyone wants to hear that they will get pregnant, and that treatments will work.  But the reality is that not all of them do.   So, what do you tell someone, around the holidays (which, my good friend Dr. Jen D will tell you is actually a very depressing time of year, clinically speaking) surrounded by friends and family, hoping they’d have good news to share, but are faced with yet another negative test? Wishing, wishing, wishing for a child?

One of the best, most profound pieces of advice that I got during this process (and yes, I’m fast forwarding a bit in the story, a la “How I Met Your Mother”), was something that I clung tightly to, and got me through the very difficult first couple of months of pregnancy.  I have since re-told it countless times to others, furthering my reputation as a wise, yet youthful looking, modern sage.   So, I’m outing myself by revealing that this is not my own material.

That advice–no–that TRUTH is this:  Your child will choose their own path to you.  My husband (yes, of “Bobism” fame), was adopted, and so were his sisters.  My daughter was created in a petri dish.   My uncle was a pleasant ‘surprise’ to my 44 year old Grandmother. When all is said and done, no matter how you end up with your child or children in your life, you will look back and know that they are exactly who were meant to be yours.   And, yes, of course there are childless couples, and I can’t even begin to justify why or how that happens.  I’m wise and sage, not omnipotent.

So if you happen to read Sarah and Abraham’s story, tell them I said hello and to have a Happy Thanksgiving.  Their baby is finding his way as we speak.

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