6

A little more about our RE appointment

I realized what it was that I didn’t completely like about the resident. She was really nice and friendly and I’m sure she knows what she’s talking about (so much as any doctor in their residency does), but she didn’t instill confidence. First she said the thing about “only” a year (to which I pointed out that by definition, a year of trying with no luck equals infertility) and she threw out the phrase “send you home and tell you to just keep trying” which had me freaked. She also looked like she’s a hipster (she wore majorly oversized thick black rimmed glasses). Finally, when speaking about the potential effects that diabetes can have on sperm, she referred to type 1 as “kinda an immune thing”. This bothered me because it sounded so wishy-washy and type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder (not kinda a thing). Sorry, needed to publicly vent that.

Also, I called my mom and updated her on our appointment. Then, in a rather cheeky tone and rather uncharacteristically, she told me to “enjoy trying”. From anyone else that would annoy me, but from my mom I found it hilarious.

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6

Up All Night

This post is a bit outdated since I’m reflecting on episodes that happened quite awhile ago, but does anyone watch Up All Night? I find it pretty funny (although I liked last season better) and I can also relate to it, even though I don’t have a child. One episode that caused me to think, “Oh that is so us” involved the couple, Reagan and Chris, sitting in bed. One was reading and the other might have been watching tv or trying to fall asleep. Then one of them says something like, “Wanna have sex?” and the other kinda shrugs, turns over or puts down the book and says, “Ok.” As soon as they are done having sex they go right back to reading/sleeping/watching tv (sorry I’m fuzzy on the details). That has definitely been J and I. He prefers late at night, right before sleep. So usually he rolls over and is quickly snoring, whereas I lay there with my feet up on the headboard for 15-20 minutes. If we do it earlier, I still have to lay there with my feet up, but he sometimes goes back downstairs to watch tv (or turns the one in our bedroom back on, depending on whether he’s close to being ready for bed or not). Sometimes I ask him to hand me my kindle (best gift ever) so I can read while I wait.

A more recent episode had them turning off the tv during dinner and discovering they had nothing to talk about. Sometimes I feel like J and I are the same. I figure it’s normal. I mean we’ve been together 7 years and already know most everything about each other so it’s not like the early days when we’d talk for hours, trying to discover each other. Instead we give updates on our day and talk about what we’re watching on tv.

I like that I can relate to the show but then I think, wow are we already that old married couple? Then I think, wait, are the characters only like that ecause now they have the responsibilities and exhaustion of parenthood? Is it bad that we’re already like that without having any children?

5

RE Appointment #1

Today J and I went to meet our RE. We were kept waiting for awhile and I’m quite sure that J was getting impatient and stressing over how much work he had waiting for him back at the office. I was getting anxious just because I was dying to get some information.

A resident came in instead of our RE. I am all for helping residents gain experience, but I had expected her to come with the RE when we were asked if it was ok if she was involved in our appointment. She was perfectly nice, but I felt kind of brushed off by her. She said something like, “Well you’ve only been trying a year. But it’s good to get things checked out before we send you home and say just keep trying.” When the RE came in, he had a confident air about him and a take-charge kind of attitude. He seems willing to be as aggressive as we’re prepared to be, but also realizes that jumping straight to IVF may not be the most appropriate choice for us. He said that all my blood work and cycle history looks good (he said that O’ing on day 20 of a 28-30 cycle isn’t really a concern), but even if everything else comes back fine too, he’ll still treat us. He said that anovulatory, unexplained, and mild male factor can be the hardest to treat. With anovulatory you’re basically starting TTC at the beginning once you get ovulation happening (which can take a few cycles just to figure out what dosage will work). With unexplained and mild male factor, it opens a lot of treatment options so it can be more hit and miss. Regardless of our test results, I feel reassured that he is going to help and I think he’s confident in his ability to get us the baby we so desperately want. Also, he said that if we try IUI that he’ll know within 3 months if it’ll work or not, so if not, then we’d move on to something else. That was reassuring too since I have read that IUI success rates drastically drop off after the 3rd try. Apparently at 29, if we were to do IVF, we’d have a 60% chance of pregnancy each try. But, I see J’s point about not immediately dropping 16K if it’s not necessary. Dr. Min (the RE) also said that he often sees couples at the one year mark and it’s just a matter of bad luck/timing; sometimes, they just need another few months of trying (I’m ok with that, but I’m glad he’s not making us put things on hold just to see if that happens).

So here are the next steps: 1) J’s SA on Nov. 5th, 2) a HSG for me (to be booked once I am on CD1), 3) a pelvic ultrasound with antral follicle count, and 4) a follow-up appointment with Dr. Min to discuss our results and treatment options on Dec. 11 (6 weeks). I will be anxiously awaiting Dec. 11th.

11

Carter’s Commercial

Has anyone seen the (new?) Carter’s commercial? It’s narrated by a little girl who starts out as a baby and grows to preschool years. It ends by saying, “When a child is born, so is a mom.” I found the whole thing incredibly touching and almost teared up. I was hoping I could find it on youtube and post it, but no such luck.

2

A bit more about us . . .

I have mentioned snippets about myself and J on the blog before, but I thought I’d give you a more detailed description of us and let you know about how we came to be a couple.

J is currently 31. He is a licensed land surveyor and works in senior management at a geomatic engineering company. He’s a boss, which I think he still finds a bit funny from time to time. It’s no surprise to me that he is a boss though because he is extremely responsible, hard working, and intelligent. [I actually know just how intelligent he is because I used him as my guinea pig one time when I had to practice an IQ test during grad school. I just so happened to administer it to him the day after he proposed and I joked that I was making sure that I had made the right choice. :)] J has the quintessential engineer’s brain. He is amazingly good with spatial reasoning and he is exceptionally practical. In that way, he also has the stereotypical male brain. When we watch thrillers, crime shows, or horror movies, he’s always pointing out a more logical approach which seems like the obvious response to him even though I know I’d be screaming my head off and at a loss for what to do just like the person on TV. J is quiet until you get to know him and then he is funny, silly, and fun-loving. He loves beer and likes to try new kinds whenever he has the chance. Energy drinks are his vice (but only sugar free since he’s a type 1 diabetic). He’s awesome at poker and loves Vegas. He has managed to fully fund a few trips there by his winnings. Even though he’s usually a couch potato at home, he’s always playing beach volleyball when we go down south. He has catch phrases that he cycles through. Sometimes I find them adorable and at other times they irritate the hell out of me. He’s oblivious to things right in front of him and I usually have to get involved if he’s searching for something. He’s proven himself handier than I ever thought he was now that we’ve had some home repair issues. He’s a master pumpkin carver, having previously done Scooby Doo, Mona Lisa, Darth Vadar, and a beagle that looked like my friend’s dog. He loves old school rap and hip hop. His favorite hockey team is the Penguins and his favorite football team is the Chargers. He is into technology and photography and always has to have the latest equipment. He’s tall and lean, but not lanky or too skinny (as he sometimes thinks he is). His hair is greying, especially near the temples, but I think it makes him look distinguished. Thursdays are my favorite day of the work week because J and his coworkers do “Tie Thursdays” and he looks so handsome.

I am currently 29. I am a school & applied child psychologist although I sometimes work with adults too. Even though I like what I do, if I was 18 again and I knew what I know now, I might have become a midwife. If I was braver, I might have become a wedding planner. I am very liberal in my views. Patience is not my strength, although I am generally quite patient with kids. I am a self-described nerd, but I was also pretty popular (not uber popular mind you) in school. I watch far too much tv, but once I start watching a show I get into it quickly and then I feel almost obligated to keep watching it. I am at my best when I’m busy, but give me the chance to be lazy and I’ll take it. I love shopping and I’m more likely to buy more reasonably priced things than one thing that costs a lot of money (although I am trying to go for quality pieces more often now). I love wine and fruity martinis. I am short and more or less petite. I have reddish hair and a ton of freckles. I look younger than I am. I have even been mistaken for a high school student (since I work in schools) on several occasions; one time a substitute teacher thought this meant she could cut in front of me in line for the photocopier. I tend to be less rational than J and lead with my emotions. I used to take dance (mostly tap and jazz with some lyrical, maritime step dancing, and hip hop mixed in) from the ages of 4-18. I mostly just dance around my living room now. I had headgear (only for bed) in elementary school and so did 3 of my best friends. I like most kinds of music, but I feel “out of touch” with today’s hits. Diet Coke is my vice. I do all the cooking at home and I used to like cooking for J before it became a regular expectation. Even though I have a great memory for facts, I need to do lists (which I often write on my hand) to remember what needs to be done. I like scrapbooking, but I like to finish them quickly so they aren’t as intricate as many people’s (a patience issue). I studied French Immersion from grades 4-12 and then I took a year of Spanish and German in university. I love languages and verb conjugation (rote memorization is my forte). When I was 11, I traveled to Paris and it’s the only European city I’ve ever visited twice. It holds a special place in my heart. I have been to Disney World 6 times (and I’m dying to go back) because my parents could both find applicable medical conferences in Florida during spring break and they could write some of the trip off come tax time. My grandfather was was born in 1901 and died days shy of his 96th birthday. He had to drop out of school in grade 5 and was one of the smartest, best people I ever knew. I have my earlobes, top of one ear, nose, and navel pierced, but no tattoos (still considering it). I still sleep with my stuffed polar bear, Lars, that I’ve had since I was a baby. Even though I love the look of high heels, I can’t really wear them (at least not the really high ones) because my feet are super sensitive. If I could have a massage everyday for the rest of my life, I might not need sex (and I like sex!).

As a couple, J and I are different, but often in a complimentary way. As already mentioned, J is more practical and I’m more emotional. When we’re looking at mapquest directions, he looks at the map and I read the words. He is great at saving money and I’m good at spending it. He can reach the top shelves and I don’t have to bend far to reach the low ones. He loves sports and I love musicals. I wish he liked wine and he wishes I liked beer. He likes reality shows like Storage Wars and Swamp People whereas I like the Glee Project and America’s Next Top Model (but we agree on Survivor and the Bachelor). We share the same core values.

J and I met almost 7 years ago. I was one of the first of my friends to give online dating a try. Really, my friend and I made a fake profile so that we could check out what Fredericton had to offer. There we came across J’s profile and my friend convinced me that I had to make a real profile and message him. He was cute and had a sarcastic sense of humor that was totally up my alley. So I created my profile and messaged him, then we started talking on MSN and arranged a date. We had 6 dates in the first 2 weeks and quickly became a couple. My mom said she thought I was in love with him already at that point. I told her she was crazy but I was a bit freaked out because I think she was right. We dated for 6 months and then J had to return to Calgary for summer work. Since I was planning to move to Calgary in September for grad school and possibly the rest of my life, I decided to enjoy one last summer in Fredericton with my parents and friends. Come September, after 4 months of long distance, I moved to Calgary and spent a week with J before he had to return to Fredericton for one last semester of school (so we switched places). After 6 months together, we spent a total of 8 months apart. It definitely tested our relationship, but we were both committed to each other and at the end of the 8 months, J moved in with me. We’ve had a lot of stressors, on top of the distance, in the 7 years we’ve been together, including diagnoses, family issues, and major work stress, but I think we get stronger each time. Infertility is our latest stressor and I hope we’ll come out stronger (and with a new addition, or two, to our family) at the end of it.

9

Leibster Award

This month I joined ICLW which is run by StirrupQueens. ICLW has opened up new blogs to me and brought new readers to my blog. One of those new readers is Alie over at Patience Is Not My Virtue. She was kind enough to nominate me for a Liebster award. This award was brand new to me, but apparently it’s awarded to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers (I think that I’m sitting at around 30 – only fellow wordpress followers show up on the bottom of my blog and I know a few non-blogging friends follow by email). Alie said that the rules are to answer 11 questions and then the nominees answer the same questions. Being totally unfamiliar with the Liebster award (Liebster means Dearest in German), I looked it up. All I really found were blog posts from other bloggers who have been nominated. Others seemed to answer 11 questions posed by their nominators and then they posed their own 11 questions for their nominees. One blog I read listed 11 facts about herself, answered the 11 questions, and then posed her own 11 questions. I’m not really sure which way I should do it so I might stick with the 11 questions Alie answered, but perhaps change some. Once all the Q & A is done, you nominate 11 others who meet the under 200 follower criteria.

So to recap: Step 1: answer the 11 questions posed by the nominator, Step 2: come up with your own 11 questions (?), and Step 3: nominate 11 other up and coming blogs that you love to read.

So here are my answers:

If there were one word you could choose out of the dictionary,  which one would you choose to best describe yourself? Analytical. I am always turning things over in my mind, looking at them from different angles, analyzing the nuances. Often I am over-analytical, particularly when it comes to my own life. My analytical nature helps me in (and more than likely guided me to) my current career as a psychologist.

What’s your biggest pet peeve? Wow, I have a lot. My top is probably being interrupted/cut off (even though I am guilty of sometimes interrupting others). I talk a lot (making it hard not to interrupt me sometimes, perhaps) and I like to get my thoughts out. Being interrupted (more so cut off completely) makes me feel invalidated.

Throughout your journeys, what would you say is the most important lesson you’ve learned thus far? That I really can’t control everything and I have to become comfortable with that.

What’s your favorite childhood memory? Meeting up with my 3 childhood best friends and going to each others’ houses each Christmas morning to check out what Santa brought us and also making short breads with my mom each Christmas.

What’s your biggest regret? Nothing. Sure there are little things I would change, but one change could have changed my overall outcome. Aside from our fertility struggles, I love my life. I still believe that we’ll be parents someday and I wouldn’t want to change anything else in my life. That being said, I’d give up my current lifestyle if it was between that and being a mom.

If there were anything about your life experiences you could change, what would they be and why? I wish I had believed in myself more growing up. My lack of self-confidence led me to put up with things and people I shouldn’t have. Also, (stealing from Alie), I wish I liked exercise and my go-to food was healthy.

Tell us something quirky about you. I tie my shoes using the “bunny ear” method (two loops tied in a knot) because I cannot make the proper way work for me (it always comes undone right away) and I have never been able to blow my nose. My ears just pop and nothing comes out.

What’s your favorite dish/meal? Pasta w/ butter (staple from childhood), cheese pizza, garlic fingers (maritime thing – it’s pizza dough with garlic butter and mozzarella cheese – huge as an after-bar treat), chicken fingers, yam fries with chipotle aioli. Basically anything high in carbs and grease.

Who or what’s been your biggest influence throughout life?  As far as positive influence, my mother. She is kind, generous, modest (to a fault), honest (would never even lie and say I wasn’t home if I didn’t want to talk to someone), hardworking, intelligent, and simple in her tastes. She enjoys life and tries to get the most out of it. She is who I want to be when I’m a mom.

Do you have a bucket list? If so, what’s the most ridiculous thing to do on it? I have one but I can’t say I’m 100% committed to completing it. Most of it involves travel. The most ridiculous thing might be to go on a Soap Cruise (you know, the cruises with soap opera stars). I was a huge fan of General Hospital from the age of 14, although I haven’t really watched it in a couple years now. I also used to love Days of Our Lives, One Life to Live, and Passions at different points in my life.

What do you do for a living? I am a school & applied child psychologist. I don’t do therapy/counseling. I mainly do assessments and diagnose conditions such as learning disabilities, ADHD, intellectual disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, and sometimes mood and anxiety disorders.

My questions for my nominees (I might change this up more than I first thought I would, based more on my own curiosity):

1. What was the last good book you read?

2. What is the favorite city/country you have ever traveled to?

3. If there was one word you could choose out of the dictionary,  which one would you choose to best describe yourself?

4. What’s your biggest pet peeve?

5. What was the biggest lesson you learned so far while TTC?

6. Tell me something quirky about you?

7. Who or what’s been your biggest influence throughout your life?

8. Do you have a bucket list? If so, what’s the most ridiculous thing  on it?

9. What do you do for a living?

10. How many kids would you like in total?

11. If you won 50 million (which is the current jackpot amount of the lottery here) what are the first things you’d do with it? (J and I play this game whenever he buys a ticket)

I’m not entirely sure how many followers these blogs have, but at least most of them seem quite new (like mine). I have gained comfort from reading their blog posts and from the comments they leave for mine.

  1. In The Fives
  2. Cirque de Baby
  3. The Crazy Baby Journey
  4. My Journey For You
  5. Project Pearson
  6. Infertilegirl
  7. Waiting to Expand
  8. Our work of A.R.T.
  9. Worth The Wait
  10. The 2 Week Wait
  11. Our W Life

HUGE honorable mention to Crazy Cat Lady Wants Baby and Bébé Suisse who would have definitely been on my nominee list if they hadn’t already been nominated by Alie.

3

Chat with My Mom

Men are sensitive about their organs

– My Mom

The above quote came out of my mother’s mouth while we talked on the phone  the other night. I was expressing my feelings about J’s comment about “my” appointments at the clinic and his SA. I never would have expected to have such a conversation with my mother. We don’t talk about sex or anything sexual. Sometimes we would get into conversations, but then I’d always get squeamish and cut it off abruptly. It’s so weird because I was like a walking Cosmo magazine when I was in high school and a bunch of my friends said I should go into sex therapy instead of becoming a child psychologist. I can, and do, talk about sex with anyone other than my parents. It just feels so taboo and uncomfortable. It’s even hard to acknowledge that I’m having sex to them (not that it really comes up in conversation). Obviously I am. I mean, I’m married and TTC. This whole TTC process has made me open up a lot more to my mom about everything, including my bodily functions and secretions (lol).

During my convo with my mom, I also brought up how she couldn’t have more kids after me. She wasn’t all that concerned because, as she said, she already had me. But they tried for an additional 8 years, until she was 40. They never got tested, so I have no answers about whether it was due to my mom, my dad, a combination, or unexplained. I find that I always assume that it was my mom because she’s the one who gave birth to me and couldn’t give birth (or get pregnant) with another child. This also makes statistical sense since 2/3 of infertility cases are due to an issue with the woman (more to go wrong in the process I suppose). However, it could have easily been my dad since he was an alcoholic until I was 8 and alcohol can affect sperm. I’ll never know, but now that we’re having issues I wonder if it’s “like mother, like daughter”. Again, I’ll never know and knowing wouldn’t really make a difference at this point. Had I known for sure that my mother had a fertility issue, I might have sought out help sooner and maybe we’d already have answers, or much better yet, a baby. Regardless, we’re on an answer-finding mission in the next month or so, so it becomes a moot point. One positive way of spinning the “like mother, like daughter” notion is that she was able to conceive me naturally (on the first cycle), so there’s hope for me.