Posts Tagged ‘TTC’

Fiddle Dee Dee, I’ll Think about that Tomorow


 

Katie Scarlett O’Hara was a bratty little snit.

It’s not her fault. She was written that way.

A few nights ago my husband was working an event late and was not expected to come home, sleepy-eyed, until past 1 am. As I began to feel a mega-early bedtime beckoning me, I saw that “Gone with the Wind” was coming on. Having seen it numerous times, but never in chronological order,I decided to partake. So I set the DVR to record it as it began, because I knew I would make it just shy of the amputation scene before I pooped out. I hate that scene. It really freaked me out as a child, and I was all too glad to have a stopping place for the night.

The next day, as I came in and dropped all my bags on the dining room table, I decided to pick up where I left off. I got to revel in Butterfly McQueen exclaiming that she “don’t know nothing about birthing babies!” Always loved that scene. It’s just so fun to watch Vivien Leigh playing Scarlett, and even better when she gets mad! On this day, however, my Rhett Butler (sans the dashing hat) came home, so I put the old South to bed. (Wish some of these old politicals would do the same thing. But that’s a whole other post.)

So, day three. Sherman has burned Atlanta, Scarlett still looks 16, and the dress made from green velvet curtains has seen the light of the day. Today I pick up at the scene where the men-folk come home, feigning drunkenness to fool the lawman. They had to make sure no one found out that they went to rough up some 1800’s gangster who had been looking to take Miss Scarlett’s “parasol” without permission. (“Parasol” means vajayjay in 19th century speak, by the way. Watch it again, I’m not being nasty, it’s true. It was 1939, after all. Today it would of have been a horrible scene, I’m sure. I prefer the 1939 scene. After all, I actually just used the word “vajayjay” in my blog.)

Soon after, Mellie and Bonnie had gone and died, and Rhett told Miss Fancy Pants that he didn’t give a damn what she did, or with whom. Rhett is really famous for that last zinger he threw to her, but I actually got much more amusement from Scarlett stating that, whatsoever may be unpleasant, “that she would just think about it tomorrow”, or “another day.” My personal favorite is the vague yet decidedly firm, “I’ll think about it some other time.”  Mind you, this is a woman whose problems consist of her city being burned down, her family plantation being demolished, her mother gone, her father acting really, super crazy, the man she loves married to the nicest gal in town, she has none

"The Yankees are after me lucky charms!"

but a carrot to eat, and she is forced to wear curtains to beg for money from a man in jail. Oh, sure, she is bratty and bitchy and all that jazz – but she inspired me tonight! Because after I was done watching the epic unfold, my own (albeit much less serious) was beginning. My unbalanced washing machine was tripping the light fantastic across the laundry room floor. My reproductive clinic sent me a bill for $450 of which I owe nothing, and I found out I have to stop one of my very regular medications in preparing for the embryo transfer. I had to wash towels, walk the dog, think about bills…..I was kind of bitchy myself, and almost started to whine a bit about it all……and then, in the midst of getting my petticoat in a bunch, KSO’s pretty little face appeared before me:

“Just deal with it tomorrow!”

Wow! Procrastination is so much better when you use don’t call it procrastination, ladies! Yes, by sweetly telling yourself you will deal with it tomorrow, you also can feel like you just removed the weight of the world from your shoulders! Like getting an extra half hour of sleep! An excuse to not vacuum! I mean, it won’t give you a 17 and a half inch waist or a sassy name like “Scarlett,” but you can just give yourself one more extra day to get back into your own little melodrama.

So, here’s to Scarlett! Thanks for making me just a little less of a responsible grown woman today.  

"No problem, Sugar!"

 

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Keep Truckin’


Last summer I was really grateful to have been invited into a 48 hour film festival group by some friends. Hearing about the project, I was ecstatic because it was right up my alley – but I felt intimidated that I would be joining a group of people that I did not know and sharing my ideas openly. They didn’t know me – would they wonder where I came from and why I was invading their project?

It was not that way at all – these people were fantastic. I got to work on a film project with some trained professionals who opened their doors to me and allowed me to participate. And there were others like me, who just wanted to contribute. It was a memorable experience because it was open. What I mean is that it was welcoming and free. My friend introduced me as someone who acts and writes to a group of people who, for most part, actually went to film school, but they did not judge me. They gave me a place on their team immediately, and gave me a part in their film. I really got to see how it’s “all done” – the lighting, the filming, the editing and camaraderie. It was a blast – to watch people work so hard together just because they have a passion for what they are doing. For what they were collectively creating, and for all the effort and joy that was put in behind the scenes.

That was almost a year ago. I remember that I was trying to work out schedules at the time so someone would be home for my first fertility drug delivery. I was so thrilled to be moving to the “big gun” fertility treatment and was calculating when I would be due, how fun it would be to be pregnant over Christmas, how long before I needed to start shopping at maternity stores, etc. How time flies; now we have lived another year and undergone 3 IUIs and a partial IVF cycle. Not pregnant yet. So much for the best laid plans.

Back to the film project, it seems some of last year’s crew has disassembled. People have obligations and teams don’t just magically unite when you want them to. So my friends that brought me into the group last year decided we should still do it. After all, we have someone who can do the filming and editing, who actually went to school for it – we have someone who is organized and can see the big picture without forsaking the little ones, and we have someone who can write and act. We are pretty jazzed because we have decided to create something. We have decided to keep going even though it will be more difficult, and we are not even really looking at it that way. It gets me thinking, it’s the same premise with the fertility treatment. Here is where I am going to get a bit campy and cliche. Sorry. But sometimes there is a lesson to be learned in keeping your head down and forging ahead. (I know, I did not want to admit it, either.) When I was about 5, we lived in the same neighborhood as my grandmother. Walking to grandma’s house was always a joy -no doubt there would be a hot cup of cocoa in the winter and the basket full of toys she kept waiting for us grandkids. But she lived at the top of a fairly large hill – and my legs were those of an inpatient little girl. Getting up the hill, I used to dramatically drag my feet and whine to my dad, “I’m tired, I’m thirsty, I’m this that and the other…” And dad would remind me what was at the top of the hill and he would always say, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going, Sarah!” Reminds me of what my brother wrote in our guest book when we got married – “Congratulations. Keep Truckin’!”

I have had times since then when I have been really tough. Pulled through some scary situations. And other times when I just wanted to be 5 again and give up, which I did. And I know it sounds really cheesy, but your mother was dead on when she told you that if everything came easily you would not appreciate it as much. Some gifts just find their way to you, and others have layers of circumstance that you have to peel away, slowly, methodically, over time. You have no idea how the story will turn out, but it develops as you go along, regardless of what you thought you’d write.  So yes – it has been a year and I am still waiting. But I am closer – much, much closer. And while I wait, I can create in other ways. The best plots are the ones where you wait in suspense, and then you find your story revealed. And it’s better than you ever imagined.

The Emperor


Penguins have a kind of  “hard knock” life. Ever since I saw “March of the Penguins” there has been a small little space in my heart reserved for these determined birds. This space grew a little larger this week as I pulled the pages, day by day, off my desk calendar. It is a calendar that celebrates the planet Earth, and nearly every day this week was devoted to penguins. These animals put a nearly inconceivable amount of work into reproducing, finding their one mate in a crowd of thousands when it matters most, and just surviving.

Monday and Tuesday may not have been about penguins…..Tuesday could have been, but I actually don’t remember. I was still deep in the mires of work and my own little trials. But Wednesday I still have, and it is what seemed to trigger the emotions I felt for these little guys all over again. Wednesday reminded me that Emperor penguins make a HUGE migration in autumn to breed in one of the most frigid, harsh, icy, desolate places on Earth. Beautiful, but not exactly nurturing. (Makes me think of my 9 frozen blastocysts, chilling out in pairs of two in a little, metal cyro-tube.) I don’t know how they came to be called “Emperor” Penguins, and I don’t care to find out. Because in my mind it is because they are regal; they have passion in their DNA so strong that they are born just a small bird, but with a monumental soul. What a proper name they have earned.

On Thursday, the males began to guard their eggs. For months, they withstand brutal winds and numbing temperatures without food to nurture their small counterparts within the fragile shells. Holding the prize between their little penguin legs, in a warm and furry place, they take great care to ensure the developing life does not end up on the frozen ground just inches away. They never take a break. They have no sports on TV. They have no Man Cave. What do they do, all those weeks? What do they think about? What do they feel? Maybe they just understand. They instinctively huddle in groups for warmth.

Instinctively. Without reserve.

In between Thursday and Friday, the females had gone to hunt and gather. They head to the oceans where countless perils await so that they can bring back food for their mates. It is fascinating; penguins and seahorses have a great rarity in common. Male seahorses give birth, and male penguins nurture and grow the unborn. Makes you kind of realize that if a seahorse in the temperate waters of the Atlantic can share a secret with birds traveling across the icy lands of Antarctica, anything is possible.

On Saturday, the female penguin returns with food for the unshakable males. At the end of the harsh season, as the moderate (relatively speaking) summer begins, the chicks are born. The females nurture the new young, and eventually migrate home until mating season begins again. Here is what enthralls me – more than the advent of computers, surgery with lasers, or the fact that we have walked on the moon – after all those months, in an endless sea of twinned penguins, the same female finds the same male from before she left.  How? This is my argument for those who cannot find a way to believe in both evolution and God at the same time. Don’t they see? We have the divinity and the love of our creator and it has allowed life here to evolve to this momentous event. The saga of a bird, that we have mistakenly decided is leagues less intelligent than we are and much less complex. Yet it does this. Evolution is the glory of free will and divinity personified. It is God, in earthly form – to create life from love.

We should hope to be like the penguin. The Emperor.

YoGabbaGabba and other oddities


 Is the picture on Monday the 1st supposed to be a condom? Ew.

Image courtesy of none other than..Marie Claire!

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 This is dedication. If men had the babies and had to grasp what a chart like this really means, there would be no people.   

 

Disturbing.

 

 

 

 

 

If you think Overhyper Stimulation sounded scary, check this out:

 

Holy crap!:

 

The Modern, Perfect Little Breeder


Wow….the Marie Claire blog broke my record for daily hits on the site! If you missed it, one of my last blogs discussed an article in Marie Claire that advertised itself as being about contraception, but instead hit on fertility preservation. I have noticed that my post has been discussed on other websites, and the feedback I received seemed to show that women had their own, strong responses to the post. Thanks for reading and sharing.

Fertility Preservation is something being discussed heavily in the media these days – Marie Claire was not blazing a trail or anything. “Conceive” magazine actually discusses many different options for women in their Summer 2010 publication. In addition to Ovarian Tissue Cyropreservation, women now are being introduced to some pretty groovy technologies that could allow them to preserve their baby-making ability even after bouts with cancer or other illnesses.  Ovarian Transplants and Womb Transplants are actually being researched as you read this little blurb.  It makes you think about a whole host of emotions, opinions, and (I can’t help it) medical bills.

I had discussed before my interest in women’s issues as they existed a few hundred years ago, and the article made me start thinking about it again.  There is a book I mentioned in May that will REALLY educate you on all things pregnancy, and the historical information is fascinating.  Plus it is a good read and will keep you engaged.

The book can be found on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Birth-Surprising-History-How-Born/dp/0802143245/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1276452565&sr=1-1#noop, and if you are pregnant, want to be pregnant, are close to someone who is pregnant, or just interested in the topic, I highly recommend picking this up.

The women that came before us endured so much for us to be where we are today (at least here in the 1st world). Talk about trail-blazing: these gals endured social ostracization, barbaric birthing techniques, and a whole host of ignorance heaped upon them when it came to their bodies, their babies, and even their characters.

In the 1600’s, women who were “barren” were viewed as anything from flawed to downright evil. Of course, many of these women failed to produce a pregnancy due to the sperm count of the one attempting to impregnate them, but considering the man might be to blame was inconceivable. These women were viewed as needing to “prove their piety,” for surely their flaw of childlessness was because of their evil thoughts and ways.  Can you imagine? After this came years of weird forceps, experienced midwives being banned from birthing rooms, and the spread of fevers and illness after birth.

If you are trying to conceive, or anywhere else in the process of having a child, this book will make some of what you are going through look not-so-bad. Then, next time you are in the stirrups, you can try to feel a bit grateful instead of wanting to kick the ultrasound tech for getting a little too rogue with the wand and crushing your ovaries. (If you kick her, you could say it was a reflex. I, myself have never done this, I’m just saying.) I am going to try to apply this technique someday when I am in childbirth. Of course, I am one of the women who will 100% want the epidural. Why, you ask?  Because it exists to spare me all of the pain of squeezing another human out of my body, and I am not one to look a gift horse in the mouth. (What does this expression mean exactly? I am going to have to Google the meaning of this saying and get back to you) It feels kind of strange for me to state this desire for an epidural with such certainty, because I am all about natural: Natural remedies, natural products, meditation and deep breathing, etc, etc. But this one thing, in my mind, requires some drugs. And if those drugs need to be injected into my spine with a very large needle, so be it.

Anyway, the book is a good alternative to the ones that talk about how to get pregnant, what to eat, what color to wear, what day of the week to part your hair on the left for better ovarian reserve, etc.  I, personally, have decided to stop reading those books because I think the anxiety they caused in me to be a perfect little breeder was scaring my eggs.  People get pregnant all the time without investigating the molecular structure of every morsel they ingest, or worrying that the computer monitor at the office is the reason why you have spent more money on pregnancy tests in the past year than you have on any other single thing that you purchase. And, you will learn cool historical information that you can impart upon others when in mixed company. You will look very intelligent and people will be impressed. Or grossed out, one of the two.

By the way, I found the background of the expression online:

The value of a horse is related it its age – i.e., a younger horse is more valuable than an older horse.

You can determine the relative age of a horse by inspecting its teeth.

Back in the day, a horse was commonly given as a gift.

If a man received a horse as a gift, and then inspected inside its mouth, he was trying to assess the value of the gift he received. So, the saying means that you should not assess the value of any gift that you receive; rather you should be thankful for the thoughtfulness of the gift-giver

Cryopreservation – The Final Frontier


Today was transfer day. The day that they put one or more embryos back into the uterus. This day feels special for IVF couples because it is the day that you are possibly welcoming your new baby into your family. But we knew in the back of our minds, due to my OHSS (Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome), that we might have to postpone. And we did. And it was sad.

My doctor told me that, with the enlargement of my ovaries and the amount of free fluid squirming around my pelvis region (which is just TMI, I know) that he could pretty much guarantee a long and possibly dangerous hospital stay should I become pregnant. When he mentioned patients who needed to be drained or intubated, we had pretty much resigned ourselves. I do not want to begin a pregnancy on life support, because if I am put in a ward like I was last week I might pull my own plug. Of course I teared up when I realized today was not The Day, but apparently this is not uncommon and we can move forward in a month or so when things have cleared up. But….. I saw pictures of the blastocysts! And I’m not getting all weird, I know they are not little humans yet, but we have 6 to 9 really pretty blastocysts hanging around. If you are not familiar with what a blastocyst is, you used to be one, so I shall explain.

A Blastocyst is a fertilized egg about 5 days after the fertilization. The cells have divided and other things have happened that will allow it to implant into the uterus once it is released from the fallopian tube. (Or in my case, the scary long catheter.) I know that is not very scientific, but Wikipedia called it a “parasite” before it rambled into something that would bore you and make you stop reading my blog. And we can’t have that.

So, we had to have our little bundles of hopes and dreams frozen. As in cyropreserved. Very Deep Space Nine, very Austin Powers talking about all things “quasi-futuristic.” And there is a little Russian Roulette involved in that, because they do not all make it out of thaw. It also makes me wonder if my kids will have a natural predisposition towards things like the Polar Bear Club, ice hockey, snow cones, the Ice Capades or igloos. But mostly it just makes me feel like I was forced to decrease my chances just a bit this round. I still feel in my heart one of those blastocysts will one day be waking me up at 3:47 am, but sometimes patience sucks. Even though patience and I have had to become BFFs.

So, I am curious to know what other folks do when you want to pamper yourself and tend to your wounds for the day. I still had to stay home from work in recovery, and I nursed mine by laying on my tookus all day and catching up on two seasons of Weeds I have missed. Watching the story of a woman whose 14 year old son has orgies and delivers fatal blows to folks with a croquet mallet of some sort made my issues look real, real small. Still, my mom is out of the country and I can’t call her, so I did not have the motherly words of comfort I so desired. I turned to slothlike laziness and emotional eating.

Now tomorrow, as a result from the nasty OHSS, I will return to work looking like I have a fat baby in my belly without having a baby in my belly and I am just going to have to deal.

Hope you guys are ready to learn about Frozen Embryo Transfer in the weeks to come…..

Crossing the Divide


John Mayer was right: My body is a wonderland!

Having a scan done today, my wonderful doctor (that is not sarcasm, he is actually wonderful) tells me that I have “Kissing Ovaries.” My first thought was that he was trying to make me smile while I wriggled on the table to the tune of my organs were being smashed, but then I detected the calm and serious nature of his expression. Then he told me what it means – get this, are you ready – they are so full of eggs and swollen that THEY ARE TOUCHING! If you are a boy this might not mean much to you because all your junk just clambers around as it will, but ladies’ ovaries do not touch. Not ever. One is in New York and the other in San Francisco, so they don’t even know one another. It really hit me about mid-day, while feeling like Shamu after a feeding; I thanked myself for wearing a long shirt so I could unbutton my pants at my desk in secret. Holy Crap! It dawned on me – they have crossed the divide!

This brings up a whole host of questions that, I would guess, anyone would be asking themselves. Medical questions, personal questions…..you realize that you feel you are so ready to welcome a new little person into your family, that something pretty damn uncomfortable hasn’t really been that bad. If I had to take a medicine that might make my insides swell inside of me just because it was something blasé, like an antibiotic or an antacid, I would be kind of bummed. I would probably mutter complaints under my breath and throw a fit in the morning getting dressed because my stomach looked like Kate Gosselin before she delivered a small nation. But, for this, it wasn’t that way. It was kind of exciting. Not that I am down on bended knee hoping to do it again, but it makes me think about our minds and how perception is everything. I think it is important when going through fertility treatments to try and focus on what are bodies can do,  not what we think they can’t.  Maybe this is how we cross the divide. After all, I never knew my ovaries could kiss…and yet, they do.

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