Friday, February 27, 2009

New Banner Day

Hello, everyone!  We're on cd4 of M2 month two (it's difficult not to invent my own acronyms here.)  I should preface this post by mentioning that I'm on my second diet coke of the morning.  I haven't had this much caffeine in my bod in a few weeks, and  -- WOW -- caffeine gives you a jolt when you're not accustomed to drinking fifteen of them daily!  Okay, Susan.  Bring it down a notch...  Tomorrow we start round two of Clomid, which means our next IUI will likely be Monday, March 9th.  It sure seems like time flies by for the first half the month, but crawls for the second half.

Yesterday, I got an email from a dedicated reader (Hi, Kate!) who said that I'm taking this whole thing in stride; she said, 'You sound remarkably sane and realistic as you move into month #2.'  I have been repeating this sentence to Karen hourly since I read it, because she knows the truth:  For the first twelve hours of this cycle, I was a mopey and unhappy and just generally unfun to be around.  I like to think that I've matured since Tuesday then, but when I'm feeling immature, I look at the calendar and realize that we're about a week shy of our next ultrasound.  I remember that other things happen in life than trying to conceive.  I remember this because it is only month two, and at the rate I was obsessing, I'd be crazy by mid-March.

You also may notice our new banner!  (Yey, new banner!)  Karen began drawing a little dry-erase calendar on day one last cycle, and every day I took clomid, she added little baby heads around her famous kitty faces.  We'd change the cycle day every morning, and that became a piece of our routine.  Now we still have that drawing, and we figured that it would make a good little welcome mat.  She brought it into Photoshop and worked on it for about half an hour last night (the girl has skills in that program, btw) and before long it no longer looked like a dry-erase fridge decoration.  I we did notice a few things:

Baby number one looks like an cranky old man
Before she added the pink bow, no babies looked like girls
Baby number two looks like he lifts weights
Muffin has her signature 'who's trying to get me' face on
She used actual pictures of Muffin, Phoebe and Moxy for the fur
I think they look a little bit like they have antennas, and are climbing over the kitties to eat our flesh really interesting!

And, to prove that not everything here is made up, an actual picture of the fridge:
Have a nice weekend, everybody!
Update: My acronym disorder comes from reading too many TTC blogs -- just yesterday I learned that DH does not mean Designated Hitter, but dear husband.  Who knew?


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Still waiting

Good morning, family!  :)  Today is cd26 (or cd2, I don't know yet).  I am still only spotting, and am optimistic but realistic.  As predicted, we took a pregnancy test this morning because we are ├╝ber-patient, and came up with a negative result, or as it's called in the waiting circles, a BigFatNegative.  It could be correct or it could be too early to test.  I figure either way, it's part of the journey (blah, blah, blah) and as we're now the most patient women in the world, another month won't make us any more completely obsessed and insane than we already are.  More to come...

Update #1 - 10:10am.  I'm pretty sure this is a normal period that's just starting out slowly.  I have some hefty cramps and heavier spotting.  Can I still call it spotting if it lasts five days?  :)  Just kidding.   CD2.

Silver lining girl did think of one good thing that's come out of this...  we can have a few beers at the party on Saturday.  Woohoo!  I almost forget what it tastes like.

And, I'm having another diet coke.  ☼

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

it looks like we're waiting another month

I woke up this morning to a tiny bit of spotting, and though my optimistic brain wants me to believe it might be a positive sign, I'm thinking it's just a typical monthly one.  So I did what any mature adult would do:  I came to work, had a diet coke, and then used the interwebs to order some cheese balls.  I figure before the end of the week, I'll turn to heroin, but I believe that goals are achieved in baby steps. 

It does make me realize how slim our chances were this first month, and how many people have to wait for many months, even years to see results. 

For now, that offers me little relief. 


The cheese balls will help, though.

Monday, February 23, 2009

I forgot a few things

Over the weekend, I had a lot more energy than I normally do.  Friday I got home from work all wired, so I went grocery shopping and got all we'd need for the next week.  I couldn't sit still on Saturday, so while Karen worked on her paper, I checked the tire pressure on my car, filled the low ones, got a car wash, went to the library, took pictures in town, dyed my hair, cleaned the bathroom , kitchen and living room, and then couldn't sit still all night.  Phew. 

Yes, mom, I know this is totally unlike me. :)

And, for what it's worth, I've had horrible indigestion for about a week.  For the past few days, it's almost enough to make me sick to my stomach.  Several bouts of nausea, but I can't tell if it's just from drastically changing my diet.  And, strangely, I haven't been snacking at all (or even wanting to.)  Until the 28th, I'm chalking it all up to the crazies.

More to come...

slowly going crazy

Last night, when I headed to bed, I was sure I smelled smoke -- the strong, distinct odor of cigarette smoke. There's not really a way for smoke to make its way into our condo, so I chalked it up to another case of the crazies.  (Karen was kind enough to say she smelled it too, but I think she's just become accustomed to agreeing with me.)

I also have been ravenously hungry, which I'm sure is a combination of less snacking and my heightened awareness of all things happening in my body.  The headaches are still around, but I suppose they're not as bad as they were last week.  Other than that, I've had no definite signs.  (Unless you count the time that I yelled 'I JUST WANT A SIGN!' and we heard a clunking sound coming from another room.  Probably not what I was looking for.)

Five days left.  I just may make it.

Friday, February 20, 2009

songs in my head

Most mornings, I wake up with a song in my head. Some days it's something I've been hearing on repeat at work, or some commercial that is just way too catchy, (you know who you are, Target). This morning, it was a song I've never heard before, but I was singing it like I knew it. 'I'm just looking for a heartbeat...' in kind of a twangy, country-like song. No idea where it came from, and as Karen pointed out, it does sound like the first line of George Michael's 'Faith'. Long story short, I'm certain this means I'm pregnant, and my subconscious knows it. Or, I'm just obsessed with all things baby and I'm driving myself a little crazy. Perhaps a combination of both. :)

One week from tomorrow we can test. More to come...

Thursday, February 19, 2009

time goes by very slowly when you're waiting for something

Last night the kitties woke us up at 4am, and I had some trouble falling back to sleep.  I felt some strange stomach cramps, and true to form, was sure it meant I was pregnant.  We're on cd20 and 6dpIUI, so we're getting there...  Only seven eight days until we test.  Clearly, I can also not do math.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

February is a long month

It's February 18th, cd19, 5dpIUI...   If I knew more acronyms, I'd use them here.  If only I could fast-forward past the next week, I'd be fine.  I am trying to think of things other than pregnancy, but it's not really working.  Yesterday, I had a shooting pain in my leg that recurred for a few hours.  I was sure that meant I was pregnant.  Not much else is happening, which could be why I'm so antsy.  That coupled with the gray weather is making me a little tiny bit blue.  This too shall pass, says Ruthanne.  More to come...

Monday, February 16, 2009

Lilypie 21 - 37 day cycle Ticker

oh, my aching head

I don't know if it's caffeine withdrawal or hormones at work, but I can't remember ever having headaches like these.  My head was killing my Friday night, but since then I've been okay.  Until today.  More to come...

Sunday, February 15, 2009

everything is a sign

We went in for the IUI on Friday morning, and I haven't been able to concentrate since. A woman in line behind me at Target said that 'pregnancy makes some women so beautiful' about a model on a magazine cover. No one has ever made a comment about pregnancy -- It's a sign! I have been sleeping a lot. I've been very sensitive to smells. My breasts have been very tender. All normal side effects of the hormones I've been taking, but also normal signs of early pregnancy. (I should be banned from reading any more 'What To Expect' type books or magazines.) We are officially in the Two Week Waiting period. We can test on February 28th. Until then, I'll likely be a basket case.

Oh, and I've given up caffeine. The plan is that I will continue to drink it when we go out to eat, but all other times, I'm decaffeinated. I had some horrible headaches on Friday, but today I haven't had any (and, those could've been hormone-induced.) More to come...

Thursday, February 12, 2009

the lion sleeps tonight, but apparently I don't

Ever since I started taking Clomid, I have been sleeping better than I have ever slept.   I've been falling asleep within minutes of hitting the pillow, and not even waking up for my 4am bathroom breaks as often.  I used to stay awake if the cats woke me, and toss and turn for an hour, but not for the past week -- I have learned what it's like to sleep like a log. 
And, of course, all that changed last night. 
We were told to inject the Ovidrel at 9pm, and of course by 8:30 I was a clockwatcher.  Everything went smoothly, but I felt a little stiff for the next few hours.  (I never figured that my neck would hurt from a shot.)  Everything was fine, of course, and we went to bed at the normal hour, and I fell asleep just as quickly as I had expected.  And woke up around 1am.  And 2:30am.  Then, at 3:30am, my right eye was bothering me.  By 4am I had to go to the bathroom.  Fast forward through a few tossy-turney hours, and it was 6:30 and almost time to get up.  I am optimistic that it was just a rush of hormones from the shot, and not a new (or recurring) pattern in my sleep.
Hormones are funny things.  I love the mood booster, but I could do without the headaches and the heartburn.  I am also so excited, I have to restrain myself from telling everyone I pass in the hallway about why we're taking tomorrow off.  It will be an interesting few weeks of me assuming that I'm pregnant, and that everything is some symptom of that upcoming positive test.  (Which, by the way, we'll be taking on February 27th, the second I wake up.)

More to come...

update: I am now walking around singing 'The Lion Sleeps Tonight' with the wim-o-ways and everything.  Oh, earworms, you are such fun. 

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

cd12

This morning we went in for an ultrasound, (not mine to the left -- just a visual aid) and found three very happy, very large follicles.  I don't even really know what that means, other than we go home tonight and give me a shot and return to the office Friday morning for the IUI.  I don't know if I expected things to go differently, but as soon as we got the news, I couldn't stop smiling.  Every step of this process has been strange so far, and somehow today's ultrasound just made it a little bit more real for me, and I assume for Karen too.  I called mom on the way home from the appointment and started talking about prenatal nutrition and the like.  Somehow, I never thought I'd say this, but I am willing to give up considering giving up diet coke.  We have already given up drinking, and we're eating healthier than we used to.  Diet coke is tantamount to praying for me, thus the strikeouts above.  We'll see how I feel in a day and a half.  (um, a day and a half -- my stomach just flipped a little.)

All else is pretty status quo -- work is work, February is February.  I took a walk outside today, since we have some short-lived 70° weather here.  It's very strange to be outside walking around with no coat, with ice on the sidewalk.  Stranger, I notice that I'm thinking about being a mother all the time.  What it'll be like to take my next walk out there, wondering if I'll feel different in a few days or a few weeks.  Wondering how long it'll take for us to get a positive result, since (even though I don't want to admit this) it could take us more than one attempt.  Basically, I'm completely preoccupied today.  Luckily, the Clomid agrees with me so far, and except for a few massive headaches, I've been in a phenomenal mood.  I hope it stays this way for a while.

More to come...

update: I'm on diet coke number nine for the day.  Yeah, this'll be a piece of cake...  LOL.

update #2: three large follicles mean that three eggs are maturing and will be released.  You'd think I'd have known this before today.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

the beginning

Karen thought I should maybe bring you up to speed here, and explain how we got to where we are now.  We've both wanted kids for a long time -- I have wanted kids since I played with my dolls as a toddler.  I also used to nanny for a local family, and watched them go from a family of three to a family of seven.  I have always enjoyed spending time with kids, and have always known that I want to be a mother.  Most of my imagined family planning up until recently included the typical scenario: husband, marriage, 2.5 kids and a house in the burbs.  That all changed when I met her.  I was faced with new questions about donors and carriers and insemination.  We discussed who wanted to carry this baby, and decided that it should be me. 

I am a huge researcher -- I read everything I can get my hands on about a subject that interests me  -- but I knew nothing about how to begin researching this.  I checked the internet for local OB/GYNs, picked one randomly, and requested an initial appointment using their website.  When I got a call back to schedule something, I didn't even know how to phrase what I was looking for.  'I am interested in artificial insemination.'  They would ask me if I had any reproductive challenges...  'No... I am interested in using a sperm donor.  Am I meeting with the right person to discuss my options for this?'  I felt like an idiot, but I got my appointment -- they were able to get us in on December 31st.

We went to the reproductive endocrinologist's office nervous and excited.  Filling out the medical questionnaire in the car en route, I answered the typical inquiries about reproductive history, family history and health background.  I asked her about her family's history of some genetic disorder, and she laughed, pointing out that they probably didn't really need to know that info since she wouldn't be donating her sperm.  (Funny, Karen.  Very funny.)  The appointment itself went pretty quickly; the doctor explained our options as well as his recommendations.  He gave us a hand-written list of things we'd need to do before we could get started, and a packet of information on sperm banks.  I stopped in the lab to have them take some blood for a prenatal workup, and we were on our way.  We had lunch with my parents afterward and she relayed the morning's appointment as if she'd taken notes.  That night we had her family over for a New Year's Eve party, and told me she wanted to fill them in too.  She started to tell them about how I had an appointment that morning...  With a doctor...  and then she froze.  Silence.  I chimed in and finished the sentence.  'We're working on having a baby.'  We walked through all the detailed plans for tests and such, using medical terms while discussing menstrual cycles and hormones.  The discussion seemed so matter-of-fact that it didn't embarass us at all, and we joked about how odd it was bring up fallopian tubes in a coverstaion with her brother.

We had to meet with a psychologist -- standard procedure for anyone going through any type of artificial reproductive assistance.  For some reason, I wasn't the least bit nervous about this meeting.  We were aware of the state laws concerning same sex couples, and we knew that we'd need to work on Powers of Attorney and Guardianship papers.  We figured we'd discuss how to disclose this information to a child, and other typical therapy-type questions.  We sat down in her office and discussed our decision to start a family.  She asked when we met, how long we'd lived together, how long we'd each been dating women.  After giving us a few things to discuss, and probing just enough to make us a little uncomfortable, she convinced us to look into open donors and wished us luck.

After a few weeks and an uncomfortable HSG, we were on our way.  We sat down with the pamphlets about donor banks and began to make our selection lists.  We were looking for someone who shared our nationalities and who had our hair color and eye color.  We thought it was important that he be somewhat athletic, somewhat educated and somewhat creative.  After a few weeks, we decided on a donor.  We ordered vials and figured we should get all the information we could about who this person is.  We got a baby photo, a long profile, a personality test, a facial features report (which, honestly, didn't really tell us anything except that he has large ears) and an audio interview.   We listened to that interview very carefully.  He has a very deep voice, and sounds like he reads a lot.  He has typical guy taste in movies, likes music, and wasn't the least bit funny.  (This actually works out well, because according to Karen, I am also not the least bit funny.)

Fast forward to today.  We are on cd11, which means that tomorrow morning we go in for an ultrasound to find out when we'll inject me with more hormones, and when we'll schedule the IUI.  My prediction is that it'll happen on Thursday.  More to come...

Monday, February 9, 2009

cd10

We have decided to have a baby. 

This means doctor visits, appointments with therapists, online donor profiles, prescribed hormones, and a countdown to our maybe baby.  I began taking Clomid last week, and we have an ultrasound appointment on Wednesday (yep, the day after tomorrow.)  So far, it seems a little surreal that we could be pregnant soon, but we're both sickeningly optimistic.  There's a dry erase board on our fridge that we use to count cycle days, and Karen has been adding cartoon babies every morning since last week.  I keep reminding myself that everyone on the planet was born, but right now it seems as bizarre as alien abduction. 

I want to have a journal of what we're going through, to look back on and to share with family and friends during the process, so now seems like a good time to start one.  Thanks for visiting.  More to come...