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A rock and a hard place

We had our follow up appointment with the RE today. She gave us two options:

1. Continue with IUI, but swap out Clomid for Femara, which some people respond to better. We would also add some injectable thing, though I forget what it is. Not gonadotropin. She gave our success with this a 15% chance.

2. IVF with ICSI. The ICSI because at this point the chances that fertilization isn’t happening are pretty good. She gave us a 50-60% chance with that, and at my clinic a single cycle, including meds, would be about 16-17K. We also talked with the financial advisor about their shared risk programs, and the 2 fresh 2 frozen option with a 50% refund if they don’t work would be like 33K with meds.

I asked her some questions about embryo donation, but The Husband really has no interest at all in it. He says that if we’re going to get pregnant and take the risk of transfer not working, it should be with our own genes. I am dropping that one because I wasn’t super passionate about it and he clearly isn’t interested.

After the appointment we talked, and pretty much The Husband wants to do IVF and believes it will work, and I don’t think it will and want to adopt. This is the first time in this infertility journey that we are really not at all in agreement about what to do next. He keeps saying “I think we’ll work it out” and “stop just talking about the cost” but how can I not? What if we do it and it doesn’t work, and then we can’t adopt? This is a REAL possibility but I think he has so much hope it will work that he is ignoring that.

He also keeps saying that I don’t want to do it because of all the meds and appointments. Almost in a spiteful way, like I’m letting that hold me back. Well #1 that alone is not enough to change my mind one way or another. I am willing to go through a lot to be a mom. But #2 I really resent him acting like that shouldn’t be a factor. I will have to take time off work and drive 45 minutes to our clinic twice a week, and be injected with crazy hormones that leave me black and blue and emotional, and all he has to do is jack off in a cup. So I think he needs to STFU and I plan to tell him as much! Even if I didn’t want to do it because of all that, it would be a valid reason.

We are planning to go to the adoption agency next month for an information meeting, before we make a decision. We both have a lot of thinking and talking to do.

Have you all heard the song “Pompeii” by Bastille? It’s by newest IF jam. Some select lyrics:

“I was left to my own devices
Many days fell away with nothing to show”

“And the walls came tumbling down in the city that we loved
Gray clouds roll over the hills bringing darkness from above”

“But if you close your eyes, does it almost feel like nothing’s changed at all
And if you close your eyes, does it almost feel like you’ve been here before”

“How am I gonna be an optimist about this?”

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6 Pregnant Ladies and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

Yesterday The Husband and I embarked upon our normal Sunday errands. Petsmart, Target, Costco, and Fred Meyer, in that order. The evening before he had shared that this girl he works with who is like 25 and has a really stupid awful husband and two kids, is pregnant with a third. They’re the type that make you go “really, three for them and none for us?! Makes sense!” So as we park the car at Target he says “I just saw Dumbo and her family going in. Do you want to go in?” I debated this. The chances that we would see them and have to say hi we’re relatively high. Not only does this mean talking to people we don’t like, but there is no way I could just ignore her obvious pregnancy. We decided to go to Costco first, which meant driving to the other side of town, then coming back, to avoid them.

Can I take a moment to say how much I love The Husband not only for willingly doing this, but it was actually his idea. He gets it.

So we do the Costco thing, then drive back to Target for mascara, eyeliner and the like. Thankfully, the highly fertile asshat family was gone, but in their wake, we saw six pregnant women in store. The first three were within 30 seconds of walking in, the last was our freaking checker.

OMG UNIVERSE YOU ARE SO FUNNY! I see what you did there! Swapped out one pregnant person we’d have to talk to with 6 we just have to look at. Well, joke’s on you cause we both agreed that we’d rather see hoards of preggos than have to talk to the young and the fertile family.

Last night we started making a list of questions we have for the RE on Wednesday. They are divided into: questions we have about treatment so far; questions about embryo donation; questions about IVF. We also discussed whether we want to go to another clinic for a second opinion. Basically to see if they can figure out what the problem is. The unexplained thing makes it hard to decide what path to take. I just want/need to have a new plan now that plan B is done. Bring on plan C!

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An Open Letter to the Girl I Hate

Hi ICLW friends. To get you up to speed, The Husband and I have been TTC for 18 months now. We’ve had 3 failed IUI’s and are talking with the doctor next week about next steps. It will be either IVF, embryo adoption or adoption for us.

Dear A,

I hate you. I know, you had no idea, right?! I’m perfectly nice to you and we even had a fun little conversation about K’s bachelorette party and whether we’re each going. But truthfully, I don’t think I will go if you’re going. I don’t think I can spend an entire night pretending I don’t hate you. There’s just not enough alcohol to make spending all that time with you bearable.

It started this summer when you got the promotion over me. They picked someone who had worked there for less than 6 months and had done nothing to set herself apart as a leader over me, who had been there for two years and worked my way up. It was hard to take. But I knew I had to get over it, so I tried to like you. I tried not to be driven crazy by how you talk quietly about things that aren’t private so I have to lean in, or how you’re getting engaged to a guy you’ve been dating for 3 months (which is stupid and insane). I was trying really hard to fight against my distaste for you. You’re a perfectly nice person! Why can’t I like you?!

And then, you got married to the guy you’d been dating for 5 minutes. And then you immediately got pregnant. And then you gave notice that you’re quitting to be a stay at home mom to your three year old and 5 week old fetus. You even came over to personally tell me that you’re pregnant, which was super nice of you. I did my absolute best “happy surprise” face, and then by the grace of god my dear sweet coworker saved me by asking you a bunch of questions about it. I was able to slip away and simmer in my newly refreshed hatred for you.

I can’t deny it anymore. I hate you. Every time I see you, every time I talk to you, I am reminded of all my failures. I didn’t get picked for the job, I can’t have a baby. You’re everything I want and everything I can’t have. And I fucking hate your stupid face and your low talking voice, and how goddamn sweet you are. I can’t wait until your last day when you walk out forever and stop rubbing it all in my face. Whether the person that replaces you is me or someone else, I can’t wait for you to be gone. I’m counting down the days.

When I got the invitation to K’s bachelorette party, and I saw that you were invited, I knew I couldn’t go. What if I get stuck next to you at dinner and you just go on and on about your pregnancy. It makes me sick to think about it. I know that you don’t know I’m infertile, and it’s not your fault you’re pregnant. But I just don’t know if I can do it. Do I tell you that I’m infertile and hope that shuts you up? You asked if I was going and I said I wasn’t sure. You told me you (and the other pregnant girl who’s going, though I don’t hate her) would go back to the hotel when we go dancing and to the male strip show. But you’d still be there. At cocktail hour. At dinner. At the burlesque show. Repeatedly talking about how you’re not drinking because of your baby. I think about my infertility constantly, and you have the power to make those thoughts nonstop.

I’m sorry I hate you. I know that you’re a very nice person and haven’t done anything wrong. I know that my hating you has everything to do with me and my pain and insecurities, and nothing to do with who you are or what you’ve done. But that doesn’t change it. I alone have given this power to you, and I alone can take it away. Thankfully you’re leaving and I won’t have to force it anymore. But even after you’re gone, part of me will always hate you. And you will never know.

Sorry bout that.

M

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Inspired

I made this today, and I think it needs to be put on a T shirt. Someone make that happen!

20140217-202738.jpg

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12 dpIUI

Just had one of those moments where I go “it’s 12 days past the IUI and I’m not spotting. Hmmmm, maybe there’s a chance!”

Then I go look at my Fertility Friend calendars from the last couple months and realize I haven’t started spotting until 14 dpIUI on the other two, so this is nothing special.

I’m out of town so I haven’t tested. I think if I had more hope I would have brought at least one HPT, but I don’t even feel the need to test really (At this moment, but you know how quickly the urge can strike). I’m just devouring my adoption book and waiting for the inevitable.

Spent last evening with my friend and her three month old. Spent hours discussing parenting and infertility, drinking wine. She told me that our friend, the one who back on thanksgiving essentially told me I shouldn’t feel sad I’m infertile because I have like ten child bearing years left and shouldn’t even be worrying about kids, admitted to her that though she apologized the next day, she thinks I’m ridiculous and doesn’t understand why I can’t “get over it.” Though I have texted this friend a few times since then, she has never asked and I have never offered anything to do with our struggle. I almost can’t wait until I see her in person again so she will ask how things are going and I can just shut her down. Either completely ignore her questions, or say “given your callous insensitivity in the past, I really don’t want to discuss this with you.” She would probably just think I’m a bitch and it would affect our friendship, but I really don’t care. She can suck a dick (which would be ironic because she’s gay).

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Hindsight

I am a huge fan of the show “Friends.” Huge may actually be an understatement. I’m that person who in almost every situation will say “This makes me think of that episode of Friends where…”

SPOILER ALERT: If you somehow have been living under a rock and never watched Friends, but realize the error in your ways and plan to start watching, stop reading now. I will be giving away major plot points.

For Christmas The Husband got me the complete series of Friends on Blu Ray, and I started watching it from the pilot immediately. I just started season 9, which is the one that starts with Ross & Rachel’s baby being born, while at the same time Monica and Chandler decide to start trying to get pregnant. I know from seeing the show many years ago that Monica & Chandler end up not being able to have children, and ultimately adopt twins via domestic adoption. I think it turned out to be male factor, but at the time that wasn’t relevant to me so I am not 100% sure.

It’s really hard now to watch these episodes where they’re trying to have sex as many times as possible during the fertile window, she’s pretending not to be mad at him so they can try. It’s really funny, and accurate! (as opposed to earlier seasons when Phoebe gets a BFP the same day as egg transfer when she is a surrogate for her brother). I just feel so sad knowing that all their trying is for naught. That they will end up seeing a doctor when nothing is happening and finding out pregnancy isn’t in the cards for them. Of course there’s a happy ending and they end up parents to not one but two beautiful babies. I just think if I could go back and see myself a year and a half ago and all the hope and excitement I had, and the total lack of any worry that this wouldn’t work, it would break my heart. It’s like watching Titanic where you know in the end the boat will sink; impending disaster.

I am, however, happy that a hugely popular show chose to address infertility, and that they didn’t miraculously get pregnant as soon as they stopped trying, or after they adopted.

Today I am 7dpIUI and 8 days past trigger. I forgot to take the HPT with FMU today and took it with SMU. There was still a super faint, squinter style, positive. So far I don’t really have any feelings one way or the other, but I know as soon as I test the trigger out I will start obsessing. This might be our last IUI. It might be our last fertility treatment. It’s all so up in the air.

I haven’t been talking much lately with my best friend that has the baby. It didn’t feel awkward necessarily, but definitely like we just have nothing to say to each other because her life is consumed by baby and my life is consumed by lack of baby. Obviously there are other facets of our lives we could talk about, but we just haven’t. So on Friday I texted her “how’s it goin?” She immediately offered that she is getting really frustrated with the baby and having a hard time lately. We talked a bit about that, I decided to go visit my hometown to spend some time with her this weekend. But I felt like I needed to say something to let her know that it’s okay for her to talk to me about how hard it is parenting a baby. I could just tell by how quickly she started spilling when I reached out that she needed to talk to someone, but obviously she wasn’t comfortable putting all that on me. Lucky for me, she has a brain and understands that it could be hard for me to hear about her parenting woes. Good friend right there.

I said something to the effect of “I don’t know if you feel bad or weird telling me when you’re struggling or need support, but I don’t want you to feel that way. I know being a mom is hard and you can talk to me. If you are telling me how blissfully happy you are with the baby, that would be hurtful. But unless you said “I hate this baby, I wish I never had it” I can handle it. If you said that, I would say fuck you”

She said thanks and that she does worry that if she tells me how hard it is I will think “well at least you have a baby” which would be understandable. And I said that there are times when people say things that make me feel that way, but that there is a distinct difference between complaining and sharing her frustrations, and that she can keep her complaining to herself. It was a good conversation. Of course, I’m sure that on my bad days what she says might make me upset or hurt, but overall, I want her to feel like she can come to me. Like I said, she’s not stupid and will hopefully know where to draw the line. I just don’t want to lose the friendship to my infertility. And she also supports me completely, whatever path we take to address the infertility, so it’s only fair that I am there for her.

Don’t worry, I’ll totes let y’all know when she does say something completely insensitive and offends me to my core. Seems unavoidable, eh? Such is [infertile] life.

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Good News/Bad News

Good News is that there is a management position open in my department. I applied for this position over the summer and almost got it, but was beat out by a girl who had more management experience. Well now that girl is quitting just 8 months after taking the job (bet you wish you’d picked me now, huh!) so it’s available once again. Unfortunately, since that time someone else who has a lot of management experience has come to the department and he will also he applying, which decreases my odds. but that’s not the bad news.

The bad news is why she’s quitting. When she took the job, she had a three year old from a previous marriage and had been dating a guy for a few months. Then she decided to go ahead and marry that guy about 7 months after getting together, in September. Crazy, but hey whatever floats your boat. Well now, not quite two months after she got married, she’s pregnant. So she is quitting in order to be a SAHM to her two kids. Fertile. Mother. Fucker. If it weren’t for the fact that this creates a career opportunity for me I would literally hate her.

My third IUI went very similarly to the last one. The nurse this time also did a fine job not making my uterus cramp up like crazy, unlikeĀ  nurse #1 who i now believe may have shoved the catheter into my uterus and then swirled it around. And bonus – she wasn’t extremely pregnant like nurse #2. So I suppose you’d say she was my favorite. The results of the SA (okay they don’t really call it an SA when it’s for the IUI but whatevs) was on the decline from the last one. When The Husband first had an SA back in May, his numbers were out of the park. Above average in every category except morphology, which was just average. Our clinic measures volume, motility, concentration,morphology, percent rapid & linear, and total sperm count. They don’t do morphology on the IUI analysis, but they still look at all the others. If you recall from IUI #2, the rapid and linear count was 0%. This time, it was 0% again. Also, motility was only about 30%, and what they want to see is 50%. On his first couple it was about 70%. The nurse tried to be very reassuring. She said that they only measure rapid & linear because they can, and they don’t even have a good understanding of how it affects success. She also said that it could just be that the part of the sample they looked at had none, but there were some in the rest. And she said that she’s seen IUIs where the SA numbers were terrible and still resulted in a pregnancy, and others where the numbers were amazing and it didn’t work. You just never know.

Right now I really have no feelings about this cycle. I’m having a really hard time having any hope. The Husband said he has hope for us both, so I will leave that to him. One thing I know for sure is that no matter how little hope you have for your cycle, you will start obsessing around 10DPO. I did get a bunch more wondfos so I can test the trigger out. Took one yesterday and it was a clear positive. I also actually thought to ask what brand the trigger was this time and they said it was called Pregnyl. I am planning to test every other day until it’s gone.

Have hope for me, kay? Thanks!

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Why I Want To Be A Parent

I had my third, and likely last, IUI this morning. But I don’t want to talk about today. It went okay, it’s just not what’s got me thinking at the moment.

I just started reading a book called “Adoption: sound choices, strong families” by Patricia something…I’m blogging from my phone and too lazy to link for you. Google it. In the beginning, it’s talking about how to know if adoption is right for you. It basically says your most overarching desire has to be just being a parent, not being pregnant or carrying on your bloodline or seeing your partner in your child. Because of all the things you lose to infertility; lineage, pregnancy and birth, being a parent; the being a parent part is the only one adoption can fix. So if you need and want more than anything to see your families genes live on, this may not be a good fit.

A very valid point, and one I’ve considered. I already came to the conclusion that I just want to be a parent and while I want the other things too, they’re secondary. But this morning I was thinking about why I want to be a mom.

People want and expect all kinds of different things from the parenting experience. Some are selfish, some are silly, some are honorable. Some people have never felt loved and needed and want a child to give them that. Some people had a horrible childhood and want a chance to do something different. I have some friends, a couple, who both have/had bad relationships with distant fathers who were never there for them. Now they have a baby and it’s an opportunity to give this child what they never had; two loving parents who will always be there for her. That’s big.

I think what makes me want to be a parent is the relationship I have with my own parents. Far from being perfect, they have both struggled with addiction and overcome it, fought for their marriage, and still see themselves as works in progress. My parents have always been real people to me, with faults and problems of their own. They never claimed there was one correct way to live your life. They encouraged taking risks and thinking for yourself, and I always knew they’d be there for me no matter what. As an adult, they are both friends and confidantes to me and I can talk to them about anything. I feel like the way my parents raised me and relate to me is such a huge gift. Who I am and my confidence in myself and my independence are a result of them.

When I picture being a mom I think about the baby and toddler years, to be sure, but I think so much about my kids as Tweens and teens and young adults. I think about how I will make myself as available and accepting as my parents were/are to me. What I want more than anything is to give that gift to my child.

I know I’ll get the chance. I just don’t know the when or how.

Those are just the thoughts in my head today.

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