Monday, October 29, 2007

Barren Bitches Book Brigade -- Happiness Sold Separately

Lolly Winston was a new author for me. I enjoyed Happiness Sold Separately, it was a quick easy read with characters I could certainly relate to. I did have a little trouble relating to Gina and her son Toby, but perhaps this is because I so strongly connected with Elinor. So Ladies, here is my perspective on some of these questions. If this lovely book club intrigues you then ... hop along to another stop on this blog tour by visiting the main list at You can also sign up for the next book on this online book club: The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood.

In the beginning of Chapter 4, Elinor finds it difficult to look at a newborn and its mother in the seat next to her. She says she isn't so much sad that she can't have a baby of her own but that she can't give her husband a child. Do you find your infertility more painful because of your desire to experience pregnancy and childbirth or because of your desire to see your spouse as a father?

I have been fortunate enough to experience pregnancy and childbirth, but I do long deeply to experience it again. My grief over my secondary infertility is definitely centered on my pain in being unable to give my husband more children. Part of what brought us together as a couple was our simple desires for home and family. I think knowing what we created together in J makes it even more painful. I think my feelings are also exacerbated by the fact that the only problems we can find are with me; all his tests are good. So I can easily place it all on my shoulders. Which is ironic, because my beautiful husband says that just having me and J is enough for him. He is a wonderful, loving father.

Elinor finally finds out there's a reason for her pregnancy problems, "a balanced translocation," and finds "there's solace in learning that something is tangibly wrong." How does (or would) a definitive, action-able diagnosis affect your ability to adjust or come to terms with your infertility? How would it affect your emotional response? Would it provide some closure? Alternatively, if you're in the unexplained category how does that ambiguity affect your decision-making and desire to keep trying?

The sadness in not having another child, especially one close in age to J, would not be different if I had a diagnosis (I am indeed one of the retched "unexplained"). However, I do think it would be much easier to cope and make decisions regarding treatment if we had a diagnosis. As a potential age-related, decreased ovarian reserve category member, it is difficult to decide how far to go and when to stop. Since expenses also are a factor in our decision-making process, it would help to have more concrete picture of the situation. I know that somewhere in there there must be a couple decent eggs left. But will I ever see them? Will IVF coax them out? Or will we just flush all our money down the drain? And will I ever get to spend a month without wondering if this could be THE ONE?

Elinor's thought on page 47 really struck me: "When Elinor was paying attention to her career, she should have been paying attention to her biological clock. When she was paying attention to her biological clock, she should have been paying attention to her husband." It made me wonder: Am I paying attention now to the things I should be paying attention to now? Are you?

I thought about my biological clock while pursuing my professional degree; I didn't want to ignore it. But fate worked things out in such a way that my husband and I couldn't manage to just be poor and in school together. So we alternately worked and went to school. That made us older by the time I felt we could possibly consider children. Then it took almost a year to conceive J (which I know they say can be normal, but I swear it was a harbinger of things to come). While we were trying I did focus on my career. Then once I had J, I abandoned my profession to stay home and support DH's pursuit of career. Now I'm neglecting my career in my pursuit of more children. Once I knew I was facing IF, I dropped any consideration of returning to work and threw myself into procreation. I often wonder if I'm so engrossed in this quest that I'm neglecting my husband and son.

I pay attention to IF. Sometimes I pay attention to my son. When he is around I briefly pay attention to my husband. I've stopped paying attention to a career I pursued (and paid for) for seven years. Am I paying attention now to the things I should be paying attention to now? I don't think so.

Hope you enjoyed this discussion of the book. Don't forget to hop along to another stop on this blog tour by visiting the main list at You can also sign up for the next book on this online book club: The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Unending Battle

a battle of wills -- a situation in which there are two competing people or groups, and both sides are equally determined to get what they want.

Warning: If you engage in the above with a 4-year-old, the experience could last a minimum of 14 years. Be prepared for bouts of screaming and foot stamping, a lack of comprehension despite numerous repetitions of the requirements, and generalized irritation. Strategic maneuvers required include banishment to the bedroom, loss of travel privileges and early retirement. If skirmish escalates, call for reinforcements.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


On the surface it seemed like an ordinary day. Showered, dressed, ate breakfast. Baked pumpkin bread with J. Even let him convince me to do a craft before pre-school in the afternoon. Opened mail, emptied dishwasher, made spaghetti.

But as the rainy hours stretched on my heart raced, my mind scattered, and I thought I might erupt in tears. And I don't want to feel this way. It was as if the day were punctuated with mini-panic attacks.

Hormones are probably part of it. The upcoming be-all, end-all cycle is part of it. The cost of said cycle is part of it. The move to Los Angeles is part of it. The cost of the moving and living in Los Angeles is part of it.

All those parts are landing on my head and shattering it into a thousand pieces. Why can't I hold it together?

When DH finally arrived home (at a reasonable time, thank g-d), it all seemed more manageable. But when I am alone all day with my thoughts, it seems our lives are going to fall apart. I think what set me off today was some investigation into living in LA. With the devastating fires happening, it has been hard not to think about the move. We won't go until sometime next summer. But trying to find an apartment that:
  1. Is a reasonable commute to UCLA
  2. Is in a reasonably decent school zone for J (this is my biggest worry)
  3. Will accept our smaller dog
  4. Is not outrageously priced
--- well, seems impossible. How do I know where the decent public elementary schools are? How do I know what areas are safe? And to top it off, we have very few contacts out there and we live across the country. So even if the perfect opportunity crops up, we may lose out because we are not in LA. And if I return to some type of work (not vet practice, licensing is too complicated) then we would have some additional income which would broaden our options. But if the be-all, end-all cycle is successful (g-d please yes), then I might not be able to work.

This control freak isn't handling uncertainty very well.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Eight Things

The yoga-lishous Ms. Planner has tagged me, and thus I shall oblige. Be forewarned, any creative bones have officially left my body as of late. So read-on at your own risk.

Here are EIGHT things about me:

1. Like Ms. Planner, and her personal-tagger Von, I have never had a one night stand. And my mom does not read my blog, so I could tell you if I really had. In fact, I have only ever been with one man, my husband. Yes, that is right, shocking in this day and age. But don't you dare think I took an abstinence oath or adhere to any other sort of right-wing conservative ideals. Oh no, not this gal. I would have done all sorts of bad girl things, really ... if only there had been the opportunity. *sigh*

2. I like to tell all sorts of unromantic stories about my relationship with that one man. I truly love him dearly, but get at thrill out of shocking people with crass perspectives on our couplehood. Like ...
2a. I really wasn't so interested in him when we first met. We were at a party, and I only talked to him to get the answers for an upcoming physics quiz. My roommate had to point out to me that he was interested. (clueless I was)
2b. While living togehter, we realized he would get deported to Canada eventually so started talking seriously about marriage. The proposal came a few weeks later, wedding in 7 months. So I'm kinda his green card wife, although now he is a citizen and doesn't need me anymore.

3. I can not take a complement, at all. I never realized this about myself until a coworker at my college newspaper pointed it out. I think he was hitting on me, but that's beside the point. It is very true. To the point where I get almost rude. It is the worst when it comes from a man.

4. As a kid I liked reading the World Book Encyclopedia. Yes I am a (science) geek. My brother did it too. Mostly I read about animals and health and biology. We had these other editions, I think they were yearly updates on timely discoveries or something. I devoured them.

5. I hated disliked my first grade teacher and the feeling was mutual. This is not just neuroses on my part, it is confirmed from an encounter with her in my college years. Oh yes, she couched things in phrases like "spirited girl" but in fact, our animosity was well known. Yes, I was an opinionated 7-year-old.

6. I didn't take my first airplane ride until I was finished undergraduate college. With my future husband. He's taken me a lot of places.

7. I spent one year of specialty training in small animal transfusion medicine and blood banking. That's right, collecting blood from cats and dogs to give to patients in need. It was a great experience and a wonderful time while I was pregnant with J.

8. A month or so ago I "accidentally" got $9 worth of free gas. The attendant accidentally put someone's $9 on pump nine instead of pump 8. By the time I realized what was going on, I'd already finished out the $9. The other person got their $9 on pump 8. So ... I left. oops.

So now I nominate my first cheerleaders: Leah at My Dusty Ovaries and (the recently quiet) Sticky Bun. Both gals are gestating away and could use some distraction, no?

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Brief Hiatus

Thanks for all the sweet comments on my last post. Geohde summed it up best -- wistful.

My parents are here visiting for the week, so I'm not likely to post much or comment much. But I will be checking in on you all, especially those of you with big weeks ahead!


Sunday, October 7, 2007

My Life Would Be Different If ...

my last pregnancy had been viable.

It occurred to me the other day, if my last positive had not wound up being a blighted ovum, then I would have a two-month-old little girl in my arms. It makes me sad, not just because she is not here, but because I am losing my ability to even imagine what it would be like. I forget a lot of my only pregnancy. The anxiety of those newborn-newmother days have erased many of the early memories. What would it be like to hold an infant, comfort her, nurse her? I think I am ready to enjoy it so much more the second time around.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Da na, Da na, Da Na ... *UPDATED*

DElurk you Lurkers! *

The Great Mofo Delurk 2007

Okay, in reality I probably don't have too many lurkers. And most of you all are so kind to take the time to jot me a note. But if you haven't ... then comment! While I haven't mastered goog.le analytics enough to track you down, I might figure it out someday. Yeah, someday soon!

Okay, back to our regularly scheduled programing ...

Tonight I am staring at our hodge-podge of furniture, trying to figure out how to put the living room back together in a way that will make it look big and spacious and homey for when we put the house on the market in the spring. We took out the 3 giant IKE.A bookshelves and are seriously considering not putting them back. Its just NOW what do we do with all the CRAP that was in them? I did actually get them pretty pared down, but ResidentBoy needs a place for all his 3 inch thick texts. Oh well, tackle that tomorrow.

Took my first BCP today. So far I'm feeling okay with the death of the DIY phase. I think I've just reverted to that classic IF state. You know where you just accept that this is a way of life -- you will have chronic dr's appointments, you will take lots of drugs, you will suffer tons of disappointments, etc. You will keep moving forward.

I indulged in a little retail therapy, despite the mounting credit card debit. Bought new bras, cause you know that is what we'd like to buy. Okay, maybe some of you like to buy them. But like I told niobe, they are not my favorite thing to shop for. But I had an extra 30% off coupon and this store actually had my proper size, so I picked up a white and tan bra. Nothing thrilling, sorry to disappoint (both you and ResidentBoy). I got a cute sweater and a zip-up yoga jacket. Just wish I could get into a yoga class (I would need a sitter, money, ya-da, ya-da).

So, since I found the de-lurk day event via niobe, who got it via Magpie, who I'm guessing got it from Ms. Schmutize herself -- I am going to follow niobe's lead and ask any lurkers a few questions:
  • What is your fav holiday (my little J loves Halloween)?
  • Are you glad its fall (I am, I love the crisp nights and mornings with sunny afternoons)?
  • Like or hate pumpkin pie? (I hate pie, but love pumpkin bread, YUM!)

UPDATE -- okay, I KNOW I have 17 subscribers on Bloglines! So ... where are you guys?! So far I only have 4 comments! Are ya sleepin'? Cause that's the only acceptable excuse. Ahh, I'd do anything to be able to go back to sleep. Its so nice and cool, and the quilt is so comfy, and my pillow is so soft, and ... OH, sorry I got lost for a minute. Comments! please?

*if you didn't get it, the title Da nas were supposed to be like Jaws

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

We are locked in

I can see the horizon. If all goes according to plan, I will have completed my last attempt (for some time) at child number 2. I'm a little wigged out.

Had CD3 bloods repeated to check FSH/E2. Spoke with IVF nurse about my recent 40, yes that's right 40, day cycle. Okay, I know for some of you 40 days would be wonderful, but for me that is a new record. I've been on the DHEA for a month or so now, so we can get ready to cycle. Although I have to admit, hitting 3 times a day has not always been successful, but I always get 2 in. Anyway, we want to cycle with our doctor in December, but the clinic closes (for IVF) for the last 2 weeks in Dec. Therefore, if I have another prolonged cycle, we could get stuck waiting until the new year. No THANK YOU. So the nurse agreed we should do BCPs to insure I have a period by late Oct, so I can do BCPs again and microdose lupron to be ready to stim in late November and retrieve in early Dec. G-d I hate the scheduling crap.

I'm almost relieved to do the BCPs, because maybe they will help the migraines and reset my body. On the other hand, I'm worried that the migraines and other symptoms aren't from being screwed up from the massive amounts of meds during the last failed cycle. But in fact they mean that I am approaching POF and that 40 day cycle is just an omen of the things to come. And if that is true, than the IVF is doomed.

So, now the possibility of just getting pregnant on our own (before IVF) is officially gone.