Patience.

Today was a hard day.Β  As you know, J had her appointment for the ultrasound this morning. We were optimistic going into it, high on hope from this past weekend’s fun, but it would be short-lived. J called me at 10 to let me know that she had 1 small & 2 large cysts, most likely from the Clomid last cycle. The bottom line being that we have to sit this cycle out and hope the cysts go away by next month.

We were devastated to say the least. J was crying on the phone with me, completely heartbroken, and I felt so defeated and powerless to do anything to help her. It was a really sad reality. Granted I’m sure there could have been much worse news to hear, but its still hard to swallow, especially when we were so excited and positive about this cycle.

I think maybe God is trying to teach us a lesson, one we definitely have a lot of trouble with already…patience. We both know there has to be a reason why this happened, and I’m trying to see the brighter side…

After all, we can still have our Capricorn if we conceive next cycle instead. πŸ˜‰

Looks to be a quiet month here on the blog, but don’t forget about us. At least we have our wedding next month in D.C. to look forward to, a much needed vacation! LOL

-B

Rub-A-Dub

You may or may not know that J’s favorite President is Abraham Lincoln. She loves him! So whilst searching for something on Google the other day, I stumbled across this quote by him:

“Let no feeling of discouragement prey upon you, and in the end you are sure to succeed.”

How fitting, especially for our current situation! I shared this with her and we both really appreciated it. Its true, after all.

So in the spirit of clearing our minds and letting our discouragement fade, we met up with J’s high school friends at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in Orlando yesterday.When you first walk into the lobby, on your right is a TV playing a looped story about these two African fertility statues. And on each side of the TV are the statues themselves, a man on the right and a woman holding a baby on the left. They were SO cool.

The instructions are that you place your hands on each one, rub on and caress them, think positive thoughts. Move onto the next one and do the same. Then touch them together and welcome your child into your life and thank them for their positive, fertile energy, and finish by giving each of them a hug.

Let the rubbing ensue!

It may sound hokey, but it was such a surreal experience. One of J’s friends cried as she was touching them. J felt the energy inside of them, alive and humming. I just felt such a peace and ease wash over me as I stood there also (and then I rubbed on J’s belly to give her my extra fertility vibes!!) All-in-all it was an overwhelming (but in a good way) experience. We stood there for a while and watched woman after woman come through and do the process. J’s friend said a woman came up to them that had seen them in Mexico and pointed to her daughter and said “That’s why she’s here!” The video said 13 of the 13 original women who touched them at the Ripley’s Headquarters became pregnant within the next couple of months. So far over 2,000 confirmed pregnancies have resulted after women have touched these statues.

So far, I’m liking those odds. πŸ™‚

J’s next doctor’s appointment is on Tuesday. Wish us luck that there are no cysts so we can proceed with this cycle.

-B

J & the Fertility Statues @ Ripley's

Lots of Thoughts

Yesterday when I got home from work, I straightened up the house and Bubba needed his cat pans cleaned. So as I was holding my breath and scooping away, I thought Man I really hate cleaning the damn cat box. My second thought, almost immediately, was Well if J’s pregnant, I better get used to it… And then I thought I’ll take 9 months of cat-pan duty to have a baby on the way!! I went about the rest of my afternoon and emailed J to see if she wanted to pick up something for dinner tonight, my back has been hurting and I really just didn’t want to cook anything. Her reply: Yes please πŸ˜₯ Worst day ever…BTW period!

As I absorbed that tidbit, I wanted to cry. I wanted to throw something. But I just didn’t do anything. I feel powerless as usual to control this crazy roller coaster we are on and it came to a crashing halt this afternoon. This long and drawn-out, dreaded 2ww was finally over. Of course I am sad. Of course I feel discouraged. Of course I feel fill-in-the-blank…but I knew someone else would be very upset and I gathered my resolve so I could be there for her.

At 5:30, when J got home, she and I just laid on the bed and talked about our day. We talked about how crappy her work situation has been lately. And about how we felt about the no…angry, frustrated, sad, discouraged, worried, anxious. We talked about how toward the end of the 2ww we thought it might be a no, but how we really had just hoped it was a yes so we wouldn’t have to do this again. How lucky would we be to have gotten pregnant this time? Although we’ve been at this before, it still felt like the first time and it felt just as bad as the very first time we got a no and the great let-down that that was. It still hurts. Its still frustrating and annoying as hell. J feels like its her fault, like she did something wrong. I assured her she did everything she was supposed to. I know she’s just frustrated that it hasn’t worked yet, and of course, worried about the money it costs for us to try again and the rigamarole she has to put herself through leading up to IUI #2. And then another 2ww. She is putting her body through so much to try to start our family, and I just wish there were something I could do, some magic that would guarantee it works next time.

So many thoughts run through our minds at these times…Why do so many other women get pregnant so easily and/or quickly? What about all these women on welfare who don’t need more children? What about all these unhealthy women or women doing drugs and drinking and smoking? What about everyone else who doesn’t deserve it…at least that’s how we feel. I just don’t think we are bad people. I don’t think we deserve to have a difficult time getting pregnant. We feel that its just not fair, and that’s really all it boils down to. We just feel slighted in some way, like we’re not good enough or that we are being punished and stupid and throwing our money away on a hopeless endeavor.

Another thing we worried about is that now that the blog has gone public, we didn’t want to let any of you down either. We didn’t want to have to share the disappointment with you after knowing how hopeful and excited you have been over this past month. In a way, we felt exposed. We felt naked and on display. We weren’t used to dealing with the collective and we wanted our moment to grieve and despair and feel sad and angry and I think we feared we’d be judged for that, that we’d have to put on a happy face and be bombarded with blind optimism that It’ll work next time for sure! Honestly though, we do know that you have our best interest in mind and heart and we do appreciate all of the love and support you have given and continue to give. The first three times we tried we only had our close family in the loop and have still felt so alone on this journey. Now that we have included all of you, we feel a little more secure, a little more connected, and not nearly as alone as before, and for that we thank you!

It is easy to get discouraged, yet we know this process is not hopeless.Rather, we choose to believe it is not hopeless. After our initial freak-out, we calm down. We collect our thoughts, and brace ourselves for the next couple of weeks (hopefully) leading up to the next IUI. We laugh about it, saying with all the signs we’ve gotten lately, we weren’t supposed to be pregnant this month anyway, that next month is our month so we can have a Capricorn. Besides, we don’t want to celebrate Christmas anyway, so we’ll celebrate the kid’s birthday instead. That one definitely gives us a good laugh. πŸ™‚ We tell our moms, we move on…but later that night, J’s period is nowhere to be found.

Fast forward to today, Friday. Ahhh Friday we’ve been waiting for you for so long! Due to her pretty much non-existent period and my mom’s advice, J got up early today to go in for the blood pregnancy test at Quest anyway. Just to get the official “no”. She called the doctor’s office and let them know that she had in fact started “spotting” the night before, but did the blood test anyway this morning just to be sure. They said it should only be a few hours for the results, they’d call her back, but most likely its a no because she started bleeding. Meanwhile, she set up her next appointment for this upcoming Tuesday 3/20 for her ultrasound. They will be checking to make sure she didn’t develop any cysts on her ovaries during this last cycle before they start her on Clomid (cysts are one of the side effects of taking Clomid, and if there are any cysts, we have to sit this cycle out and not do the IUI so we can wait for it/them to go away). If she’s all clear, she’ll start taking the Clomid Tuesday night.

It is now 3:30 this afternoon and J calls me on my way home from work. You won’t believe it, the doctor’s office closed at 3:30 and they never called me back! I left them two messages! WHAT. THE. FUCK. Needless to say, she was a little upset! Of course, at this point we have been assured it is most likely a no, blah blah blah, but what about her non-period that’s happening right now? Being the one that tries to see the best in a situation, I offer Maybe they didn’t get the results back before they closed? to which we both agreed Well they could have at least called and said as much. We pay enough money to NOT be left hanging like this! Its not the nicest thing to make a woman that’s teetering on the edge manic over the damn test. We just want the FINAL answer so we can moooooove on already and get some closure!

Sigh…so although we have been told its probably a no, there is still a tiny part of us both that wants to hold on to that last little sliver of hope we have. We still want to believe that maybe its just late implantation bleeding. Maybe it was from the hormones she’s been taking. Maybe, maybe, maybe…it seems like we literally just spent two weeks playing this maybe game. Really, in the home stretch, they had to keep us holding on to our maybes just a little bit longer? This seems like cruel and unusual punishment and since its almost 5:00 now and I haven’t heard if anyone responded to her last message at 3:30…I’m thinking we are just going to plan for her period to start in full-force soon and we’ll get the official no on Monday. Of course, she can always POAS (pee on a stick) over the weekend if AF is still M.I.A., but I’m pretty sure she’ll be calling their office the minute they open on Monday. You’d just think they’d be a little more cooperative.

So in the meantime, at least we have something fun to do to keep our minds occupied. We are going to Orlando to meet up with J’s friends from high school this weekend. Since we will be right there, they said we should to go to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! to see these fertility statues that everyone keeps swearing by and pray for some baby luck! Right now I think we are due for a fun girls’ weekend and a little bit of baby luck on the side definitely wouldn’t hurt. So we are going to go to Ripley’s Believe It Or Not to rub on some statues! I hope that awkward statement there made you smile, because I did! πŸ˜‰

Therefore, until further notice, the countdown has been reset and as soon as we know anything we will be certain to let you know…yes, no, maybe or otherwise. Thank you for being there for us, in the excitement and the disappointments.

-B

What’s In A Name?

A lot, actually! J and I believe in the power of names, and therefore have given a lot of thought to what we would like to name our future child(ren). This is something we have thought about for a long time…anytime the topic of children and a family comes up. Now with a maybe-baby in her womb, we’ve finally narrowed it down to a name for a boy and a name for a girl. Of course, we have no news yet on whether or not we have a yes or no this time, but these two weeks are finally cut down to only two more days until the blood pregnancy test on Friday…fingers crossed!

Anyway, we have picked out our names for our future little one(s). We’ve had the girl’s first name for a while but couldn’t find a middle name to do what we wanted. We really liked one name (to be after someone in J’s family per tradition) but not by itself…so we thought about it and finally came up with a combined name that we both really like. The point of the name being that it means “Elegant & entirely successful”. Winner!

Now, everyone would say we won’t have a boy because OH MY whatever shall anyone do?! There are all these GIRLS in the family!

Regardless, we have chosen a boy’s name and we WANT to have a boy (although it really doesn’t matter to us). For this name we liked it a long time ago but it seemed too popular. Too generic. So we tried spelling it different and we really liked it but we just weren’t sure. So all weekend we were discussing the names we were thinking about. We have been pretty certain about the girl name, so we were debating the boy name. Even after all our discussion we still weren’t sure. We felt empty, incomplete. We wanted to have the names ready so that if there is a little one in there, we had a name ready for it. Okay, now you’re thinking we’re insane. But that’s okay, if you know either of us you know we can be a little OCD. Just let us have our fun!

So we had been discussing the name and just weren’t sure about it. So we asked God to give us a sign! Funny things always happen when you do that…

We’re at J’s parents’ house and we’re talking about travelling. So J’s dad gets all excited talking about South Dakota. He’s going on and on and finally is like “Oh I have a map! Let me show you!” J and I just shrugged our shoulders and waited for him to get the map. He comes back and is talking about the Native Americans and forests and all this stuff about South Dakota and we’re looking at all the funny names on the map. And then, we see a county with the first name we’ve been thinking about. Right next to it is another county, which is the middle name we’ve been thinking about. What are the odds?! And if that wasn’t enough, the county next to that was Todd. Yep, Todd. Like, our donor’s name is Todd.

I know not everyone believes in God or kismet or fate or destiny, and that’s okay, because we do. And I think we got a sign right there. We looked at each other right then and said “I guess that’s the name.” And that was it. His meaning: “God is gracious, blessed one”

That night on the way home, we couldn’t help but be so impressed by the moon. J has a pull toward the moon anyway (being a werewolf and all…inside joke!) and no lie – it looked pregnant. It was so big and round and beautiful! Another funny thing, J was really drawn to a tiger’s eye when we picked up the spiritual stones for fertility – and the tiger’s eye is tied to the moon. Incidentally it is also tied to Capricorn which is from December 21 until January 19. If J gets pregnant next cycle instead of this one, her due date would be in Capricorn. Coincidence? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

I bet you are all waiting with bated breath (ok maybe not!) for me to tell you the names we finally ended up with. Well, I’m sorry to disappoint you but we are waiting until after we definitely know if there’s anybody in there whether it be this time or next. Hopefully it will come sooner rather than later, but at least we feel comforted knowing that whenever our little one decides to make a home with us, that we have a name for him or her. We are waiting with open hearts and arms for our turn to be Mamas (yeah, that’s what we’ve decided we wouldΒ like to be called…of course he/she may decide on something entirely different!)

So I wish I had something further to share with you, but right now we’re just impatiently waiting for Friday…I’ll see you all then. πŸ™‚

-B

Its Only Been ONE Week!

Man this wait is taking FOREVER! We are such impatient people and we are really being tested. At least J’s sickness is FINALLY starting to get a little better. She saw the doctor today and was checked for the flu (negative) but they’ve seen a lot of people with this sickness come through and unfortunately its viral so even if she wasn’t in the 2ww she couldn’t take antibiotics to kick it. Boo! Last night I joined her on the sick train and now I have the aches, sinus congestion, headache, sore throat, and the sneezes and coughs. Yay.

In other news…today was her progesterone blood test as it has now been 7 days past IUI. I never knew 7 days could be so long. The blood test measures her progesterone levels to see if she did in fact ovulate last week. Obviously if there was no ovulation (her problem before, hence the use of Clomid prior to the IUI), then there can’t be a baby in there. We are both chomping at the bit and ready for some news! But of course the doctor’s office hasn’t called her yet with the results of the test … so more waiting ensues.

Over the last 7 days there have been some odd “symptoms” which we are desperately trying very hard not to read into…at least until after we know she ovulated for sure. Cramping, large breasts, moodiness, weird dreams, and food aversions and even a very little amount of spotting yesterday have us both wondering is she? Isn’t she? IS IT NEXT WEEK YET?!?! WHY DOES IT HAVE TO TAKE SO LONG TO FIND OUT!!!!!

*sigh*

We’re not so good at this patience thing…these two weeks are always the hardest, but it seems even more difficult and long this time around. I will let you know once we get the blood results back. Until then, we are (im)patiently waiting for next Friday to see whether or not she gets her period, and if not, she goes in for the blood pregnancy test.

Does anybody have a time machine?

-B

P.S. Today J’s sister announced that she is expecting baby cuteness #2 in September! YAY! I hope we get pregnant soon so our little ones can be friends! πŸ˜€

Being Sick Sucks!

Here we are, only 4 days post IUI and J is sick as a dog. 😦 She’s got the gamut of seasonal cold/flu symptoms, meaning alternating stuffy/runny nose, coughing, fever on/off, sinus pressure, sore throat, nausea, body aches, restlessness, fatigue, and so on and so forth. Unfortunately, being in the middle of the two-week-wait means she can’t take any of her regular go-to meds for a cold…so she’s stuck taking Tylenol Cold/Flu in limited quantities (she says she would give anything for a NyQuil).Β  That being said, its not really doing much to help ease her general feeling of crappiness, but I’m making sure she’s drinking plenty of fluids, eating soup, and rubbing her achy legs when she needs it.

One thing that is particularly scary in the midst of this 2ww is that she has asthma and usually any time she gets a severe cold like this, it turns into bronchitis and/or pneumonia. Obviously neither of these things is something that we want to happen, but we’re trying to be conscious of the maybe-baby in there and just trying to do the right thing. This morning, after a fitful night of (non)sleep, she had such a horrible cough and had trouble catching her breath. J had discussed her asthma medications with all of her doctors previously and the general consensus was “If you can’t breathe, then the baby can’t breathe. Sometimes its better to take the meds you need.” So with that in mind, she did her Albuterol breathing treatment this morning. Of course, you still can’t help but worry.

We seem to worry about every little thing each time we have tried….and her being so sick is definitely the worst of our concerns right now! J did say that by being so sick, she’s too tired to get stressed out. In a roundabout way I guess her getting sick helped with some of the fears she had for this 2ww. One thing is for sure, we can’t tell if she’s having ANY early pregnancy symptoms since a lot of them mimic not only PMS but could be from the trigger shot and/or her cold. So…at least we can’t really overanalyze any of her aches, pains, or icky feelings so we’re focusing on getting her better instead of is she/isn’t she pregnant…well mostly! πŸ˜‰

It is the 4th time (total) that we’ve tried getting pregnant, but this time still feels so new and scary. We don’t know quite what to expect and we are constantly Googling questions we have and scavenging fertility message boards for others who have had our experiences (Ok, I’ll admit it, I am the one Googling, not J! :-)) My mom got pregnant with my brother when she had a really bad cold, so who knows? Maybe this will end up being a good thing.

In other news, her cramps from ovulation and the IUI subsided over the weekend and she hasn’t spotted again, but then this afternoon she had a sharp cramp in her uterus. Could it be implantation? I sure hope so πŸ™‚ We are keeping our fingers and toes crossed that she gets better ASAP and that this 2ww flies by…

I’ll keep you posted as the wait continues…but right now, I have to go take my Advertising mid-term. Oh and thanks to J’s sister for some good pregnancy advice – I’m picking up a smoothie with a Vitamin C shot in it on my way back from my test. πŸ˜‰

-B

And The Two-Week-Wait Begins…

Here we are again, standing at the beginning of the two week wait. Somehow I think this time will be the “longest” ever!

This morning J and I went to the fertility doctor’s office. We checked in and took a seat. Another couple was called in before us and then it was our turn. We took our deep breaths and she got up on the table, ready to go. She was a ball of nervous energy and of course, I was there to be the solid support, calm although inside I was jittery too! This was our first time having the insemination in the doctor’s office, so it felt like the first time all over again. At least this time we didn’t have to figure out how to get the baby batter out of the tube and just where do we put it? The doctor came in with his nurse after about 15 minutes (thawing time, I’m sure) and gladly announced that Todd had great motility in this sample! Awesome! This had been a silent fear of mine, that we would get right down to this moment to be told that the sample just wasn’t up to par, or some other imagined reason that we wouldn’t be able to proceed. Regardless, there was no need to worry as the sample we ordered was guaranteed to have 20+ million post-thaw, and today we had 37+ million post-thaw. We were all very happy to hear that.

The procedure was pretty straightforward: the doctor puts the sperm into a catheter which is then inserted up through the cervix, into the uterus near the opening of the fallopian tubes. Discharge sperm through the catheter, remove it, and she laid there for 10 minutes to keep it all in. She had some pain/cramping during the procedure, but overall it went quickly and smoothly. She’s been having some cramping still throughout the rest of the day, but its been getting less and less so that’s good at least. Our next step is for her to get her progesterone levels checked via bloodwork on March 8th to make sure she’s got enough progesterone to sustain a pregnancy and aid implantation, and then if she doesn’t get her period on March 16th, she goes in for a blood pregnancy test.

Of course we are hopeful but we have just been praying that the pregnancy will happen when it is the right time and that when it does we will have a healthy baby in there! I think that is all that anyone can ask for and we are impatiently waiting for the 16th to find out one way or the other. I have to agree with J on this one – I am nervous it didn’t work and nervous if it did…we know how to deal with the “no” by now…its the “yes” that we are going to freak out over! Our lives could change forever in a matter of weeks….

She said she wasn’t going to buy any pregnancy tests so she wouldn’t test early. I told her I would believe it when I see it. πŸ˜‰

-B