Discovering Me

Me on having babies, losing babies, trying to have babies and hoping to bring this one home.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005


I don't know how I feel today. Certainly overwhelmed with my work stuff. I have a lot to get done before we start on a big job. I plowed through some of my list today, but I have to wait for replies on some of it before it's really all done. I'm feeling a little underwater financially, although we are in much better shape than most of America. I just feel like there are all of these big expenses on the horizon and I'm not really sure how we're going to keep up. I know we'll manage but when I look at the big picture, I feel very small.

Gracie has nearly conquered the potty. I think we have pee under control. Poop is definitely improving, it was a rough start. It's all clicking really well with her. I'm glad that hurdle is behind us. I was starting to worry that she would never really show any interest. It really is true that you have to let them decide when they are ready. She decided and it's been pretty painless.

I haven't charted in over a month. I put the fertility monitor and the thermometer away. I figure I'm paying the doctor enough money, he can keep up with it. I go in Friday for another blood test. Assuming that the level has made it back to zero, I think I'll have to repeat the baseline ultrasound and then start the Follistim. I never expected to have this all work out like it has. I don't know how I feel about the whole miscarriage thing. It was all such a surprise that I just don't know what to do about it. I'm not really upset and I don't really understand why. I was bummed yesterday because part of me really thought Dr. Baby Maker would call me and say "Holy shit Michelle, your levels doubled!" Obviously that didn't happen so I guess we're back where we were and no real worse for the wear.

I'm ready to get this show on the road now...still.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Roller Coaster

Well, after hoping all day today that I might actualy have a higher level today than yesterday, the big answer was (is) no. Level was lower, so the doc is saying early miscarriage. I'm a little shocked, and don't really know what to think, but it is what it is I guess.

It was hard not to get my hopes up today.

He's got me starting the pill for the next several days to freeze my cycle and will do another test Friday before I start the Follistim. My level needs to be zero before he can start it.

I guess this is still the beginning of the ride...

Sunday, June 26, 2005

It Just Keeps Getting More Weird

The drugs came yesterday. Went in for the baseline this monring. Doc found a cyst on one of my ovaries and said it was no biggie. They have to do an HcG before they start the drugs. It came back positive. Very, very low at 21 with a wayyyy low progesterone level. He thinks it's an early miscarriage which is why my period came so early. They have to wait for the level to get to zero before they start the meds and the rest of it.

Can I catch break??? I don't even know how to feel right now.

Friday, June 24, 2005

A Change of Plans

AF came today. CD 21. Nice huh? Welcome to my world. You know the craziest thing is that I still held out this small ray of hope that it might happen this month. Can you say dillusional? I knew you could.

So, panicked because I knew there were meds to be ordered so they could start on CD 2, I met with Dr. Baby Maker today. Mostly to talk about the financial end of things, but it turned out that we dealt with getting the business of IUI started.

Yep, I said it. IUI. I know I said we were going for drugs first, but the cost difference is 10%. $5000 vs. $4500 to more than double our odds. Come on. I live in Vegas. My husband is a big casino guy. I can't take him those odds and feel good about going with just the drugs. It just doesn't compute. This isn't about money, but the math just didn't work.

My big box o' drugs comes tomorrow and we do the baseline ultrasound on Sunday. Tonight was my last bender. We drank champagne from our wedding and sat in the spa. We laughed about high school (my friend from the old days is visiting this weekend) and talked about our future. It's been nice. I wish that things were as simple now as they were then.

Here's to the future.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

A Plan

I have been trying since last week to decide what to do about our fertility situation... So, I called Dr. Baby Maker today and asked about trying a less invasive approach before jumping into IUI or IVF. I just haven't been able to get used to the idea that I need to go that far. I may be crazy and I may end up just blowing more time and money, but I just don't think I'm ready for IUI or IVF.

I asked about trying clomid or just the injectables and the doc said I could do whatever I felt most comfortable with. We have an appointment for Jim to see his doctor about his part of the problem (poor morphology) and a possible connection to a prostate issue he's had before. I hope that it will be a freak thing or an easy fix. Both of those are very likely. I've read stuff that says poor morphology can be from a prostate infection or infrequent ejaculation(infrequent being less than 3 times a week, can you believe that!!??). So, since we've had issues with both, I think we're really in the clear there once his doc says all is well. His problem isn't terminal!

We see the nurse at Dr. Baby Maker's office tomorrow to tell her what our deal is. I think I'm going to try just the injectables first. I thought I might just try the clomid, but our odds are a lot better with the injectables, so what the hell. I better get used to being a pin cushion since I'll be getting daily injections once I do get pregnant again.

So, we'll order the expensive box of drugs and on CD 2, we'll start hoping for the best. For some reason, the burning desire to have this happen RIGHT NOW has waned a bit and I'm much more okay with the idea that it's not going to happen tomorrow. I think the break this month, even with all the doctors and tests, has been a way for me to focus on something besides charting and testing. I feel a little more relaxed than I did before. I don't really have a false sense of hope or anything. The reality is that it could all fail as easily as it could succeed.

For some odd reason, I could live with that if I had to.

Sunday, June 19, 2005


Well, Friday was rough, but necessary. The timing was bad, we were both tired and edgy. We had a chance to talk more over the last few days. Now that he's clarified his feelings, I understand a little better. I know I'm not myself. That me is gone. I'm sorry for that, but it can't be helped. The things Jim is concerned about though, I can do something about.

He says I'm less affectionate. It's true. I can work on that. He says I'm "morose" a lot. His word, not mine, but also true. I do have more bad or unhappy days than I used to, but I don't know that I can do more than try and stay more positive. It's been a good weekend for getting stuff out in the open and talked about. We've never done that well unless we've had to. Neither of us are deep talkers. We talk about the important stuff when we have to. The rest of the time we both wear some pretty hi-tech rose-colored glasses. We know that.

We had drinks together last night, just us. That was nice. We also fooled around in the middle of the day for a reason other than to make a baby. I guess I've been a little too single-minded. Baby making sex is a lot less fun.

Everything's okay. We are going to talk to the doctor about just doing IVF. Our chances are much better that way. Neither of us want to go through this, but we both want another child, so we are willing to do what we have to do. Our next appointment with Dr. Baby Maker isn't until Friday, but I may try and get that moved up so we can get on with it.

When we woke up this morning, Jim told me he had a dream that we got a positive test and we laughed and hugged and talked about how we hoped our recent alcohol consumption wasn't going to do any harm. He's never said something like that before. Maybe it's a little foreshadowing?

Saturday, June 18, 2005

My Husband

Jim & I were talking last night about what's next. He said his only concern about all of it that we not go through IUI or IVF and then have another baby die. He actually said "have another demise" which is the medical term the doctors use and I hate it.

He also said that he doesn't want to have that happen and "cause more damage to our marraige". I replied "what??"

He said I'm not the same anymore and he doesn't know if he can deal with more. So, if we lose another child he'll leave? I'm confused and very hurt. I don't know what to say. Of course I'm different, but am I that hard to deal with?

I just don't understand.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Thank You

It isn't as easy to respond to comments here as it was with the TLOL journals, so I just want to say thanks to all of you. I have gotten so much love and support here. I can't tell you all how grateful I am to have this outlet and all of you to give me your thoughts. It's wonderful.

Big Hugs back to you all.


Thursday, June 16, 2005

Where Do I Start?

I saw Dr. Baby Maker this morning so he could tell us what we do now. All the tests are back, so it's time to see what's next. I went in fully expecting him to say we'd do clomid and see you in a month.


My egg production is low and Jim's sperms are deformed. Yep. We're f-ed up. He suggested we do IUI or IVF. It feels so unreal. I never thought I'd be here. I mean, haven't we been through enough? We got robbed of our second child and now, in an effort to try to fill that hole, we're told this is what it will take? WTF.

I don't knwo what to think. I'm pissed. I'm sad. I'm sacred. I just don't know what to think. We have another consult with him on the 24th. We have to make a decsion by then.

I feel like I can't catch my breath.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The Story of the Ungrateful Daughter

A few months ago, my mother was bargain shopping and happened upon a bunch of cheap maternity shirts. She called and asked if she should get them for me. I said sure, thinking that I'd be pregnant again soon and it would be nice to have a few new things.

Well, as the time has passed and things have been harder with getting pregnant, my mom has been kind enough to spare me getting shirts in the mail that just smear in my face what I want and don't have. She mentioned when we were on vacation that she needed to dig them out and send them to me.

Two days ago I got a box from her. Assuming it was the shirts, and not wanting to deal with the drama that would come from what was certainly inside, I didn't open it. I set it aside with the thought that I would open it when I felt like I had the energy.

Today, I was sitting in my office staring at the box and decided I would go ahead and open it... It wasn't the dreaded shirts. It was a cozy quilt (I have a collection, I love them) that she made for me with a very sweet note that only a mom could write. It of course made me cry because she is always so kind and thoughtful.

Why in the world would I have thought she would be so insensitive? I feel like such a jerk. Here this lovely thing that she made just for me sat in the box for two days enduring my dirty looks because I underestimated my mother.

Next time, I'm just going to open the damn box.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Isn't that ENOUGH??

I got a note last week from a guy I dated before I met Jim. We dated for almost 7 years and I spent the last 2 trying to get away from him. He and I just did not belong together for many reasons. I learned many things from him, from that relationship, so I am grateful to him. Without him I wouldn't have valued what I have with Jim. For that I owe him.

So, the guy, M, has tried for years to get me to admit I made a mistake. He's tried to come between Jim and I for no other reason than because I was the only one in his life who left him. Before me, he did the leaving. So for that and other reasons, I've just stayed away. At times I do run into him because we work in the same industry and occasionally we run into each other. That's what happened last week.

Well, in the note he sent, he asked how I was. I figured he had heard about Audrey, so I just said that it's been a pretty shitty year and left it at that. Well, he sent me another note asking why were things so bad. At that point I explained what had happened to Audrey and that it was horrifying. He has 2 kids, so I thought at some level he might relate. You know what he said?

"Wow, that's really terrible. But, you sound like there might be something else. What else could be so wrong in your life?"

Seriously? Because having your child die isn't enough to make you say you've had a shitty time? I know what he wanted. He wanted me to say that Jim and I were on the rocks. But to just brush over Audrey and ask what else?

I know I shouldn't expect anymore from him. His selfishness is one of the things that I grew to hate about him. Ugh. I never learn. When did I think that he might have become more human?


Friday, June 10, 2005

Tears in Heaven

I took Gracie to dinner last night because Jim was out of town. We went to Fridays and sat on the was a perfectly lovely evening in the desert. We had a nice dinner and when we started to go our waitress brought Gracie a balloon. It of course didn't last long and before we could go was sailing off into the night sky.

I told Gracie it was going high up in the sky.

She responded "for Audrey".

I thought I might die. She's two. She was 21 mos when Audrey was born. How does she know this stuff???

Why are they called MaxiTHINS?

Really. Thin? I don't think so.

So, I did the HSG. Not really a big deal except that I am to expect 3 days of period-like bleeding with no tampons allowed. That sucks. The tech gave me a "maxithin" to wear home. Thin? NOT. More like Maxi THICK! These things suck ass.

So, the test was okay. One tube was for sure fine, the other questionable. We'll see what the doc has to say on Monday.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

To Explain...

In my post yesterday, I mentioned that I had 8 eggs in my ovaries... Let me explain. I am a moron and the doc had to explain it to me yesterday. I just assumed I was the only one who didn't understand, but here's the deal... And for the record, I'm relieved to know that I'm not the only one who didn't really get it.

We are born with a couple million immature eggs already in our ovaries. Every month (after we are sexually "mature" of course) your brain sends out a chemical called FSH that tells the brain to get a few of them ready for ovulation. My understanding is that the usual number is around 16. As those eggs mature, most of them die off because they aren't right or healthy enough to mature. Usually we ovulate only one egg. So of all of the eggs that start out ready to go at the beginning of our cycles, only one will really survive.

So, if you're like me and have fewer the normal number to start with, your already 25% chance of getting pregnant each month is then lowered again by the fact that you're not producing as many eggs as you should be. In may case...By half pr even more.

Yes, it's true. Even the best of us only have a 25% chance every month. AND after 6 months that percentage goes down considerably and is likely a signal that there is something up. So girls, if it takes more than 6 months...DON'T HESITATE. Run, don't walk to your nearest Dr. Baby Maker.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

A Few Answers

8 of them to be exact. That is the number of immature eggs I had in my follicles today. AND, it is also about half of what should have been there.

I do believe I have clomid in my future. Getting old really bites.
I told the doctor yesterday that I just wish this part of my life was over. That we could be done with the baby making part and move on the the baby raising part. I don't feel any different today.

Jim just took Gracie to B's house for the afternoon so I can get some work done and go to that icky ultrasound. Part of me wonders why I'm even bothering. If things come back funny and he says we have to do IVF or surgery to correct something, I'm not sure I'll do it. I think I'd probably just decide to be happy with Gracie and live with the fact that she won't get to have the experience of a living sibling. That thought brings tears to my eyes now, but I just don't think I have the nergy to go though all that. I really do hope that all of these tests come back normal and I just get to pop some hormone pills to straighten things out.

Letting Gracie go today was hard. She was crying, which she normally doesn't do. I just feel so drained. I feel like I've been string since September and I'm just sick of it. I don't want to hear how strong I am or how we'll get through it. I don't want to hear myself say that things are okay when someone asks when they really aren't. I want to walk out in my front yard and scream "I AM NOT FINE!!" at the top of my lungs. I'm not going to, but for some reason it does sound very attractive.

And now our insurance rates are going to go up significantly. I just know it. I hate that now the insurance company has all the cards. We've been with them for years and haven't had any problems. Neither Jim nor I have had a ticket since God knows when. Now, I have a ticket and two accidents in a year (I got into a little fender bender right after Audrey that we tried to just pay for. The adjuster was supposed to call us before he cut a check, but he didn't so taht one went on our record too). I told Jim last night to take my name off of the expensive car. I never drive it anyway. We're about to get rid of the Ford, so maybe we could just live with 2 cars for a bit and not the three. Who knows. Jim probably won't go for any of that.

He's been so good through this. I think he's a little bewildered by the whole fertility thing (as am I) and is just rolling with it. I really thought he would lose it over the accident, but he was his true, kind self and was totally sweet. I'm the one who's still pissed about it.

Why is nothing easy right now? Am I paying for the easy parts that I had in my life before??

Monday, June 06, 2005

The Afternoon Went From Bad to WORSE

So, the appointment with Dr. Baby Maker was disappointing. He did say he thinks something isn't right, but he wants to doa TON of tests throughout this cycle to figure out what it is. I don't know why I thought he might just write a prescription and send me on my way. That was pretty dumb on my part.

We did a bunch of blood work today. Tomorrow I have to go do this ultrasound where they fill your uterus with fluid to see if it's okay. In two days I have to go for another test where they shoot dye into your Fallopian tubes to make sure they are all okay. Basically, he said that there is a chance that after 2 c-sections that my uterus or Fallopian tubes could be scarred and damaged, or in the case of the tubes, that they could be scarred and adhesed to something that isn't allowing them to pick up an egg from my ovaries. could be that my hormones are just out of whack because, yes, even at the ripe old age of 30, I am considered old. Yes, I said that. I am old enough that my "egg quality" could be compromised.

So as if all of that isn't shitty enough... I got into a car accident on the way home.

Well, that isn't completely accurate. I CAUSED an accident on the way home. I plowed into someone's rear and he in turn plowed into the guy in front of him. Nice, huh? All of this on the freeway, at rush hour, with really kind people yelling "ASSHOLES!" at us out the window. Because after all of that I really needed some stranger calling me an asshole out his car window.

Why is nothing easy? Why all of this now? I know the important thing is that Gracie (who wasn't even in the car Thank God) is fine and no one else was injured. The man in the first car was an off duty cop and thankfully very kind. He did tell mu husband on the phone tonight that he thought I did what I could to avoid it, but there wasn't much I could have done. But, even after all of that I got a tick (to add insult to injury) and the guy is the middle's car is just trashed. The rear end where I hit him isn't bad at all, in fact like no damage, nor was there any damage to my car. The front of his car is a whole other story. It was trashed. The guy in the first car is fine too.

Fuck this sucks.

Sunday, June 05, 2005


Why is it that the best times in life seem to breeze by and the hardest times in our lives just crawl by?

The beginning of a new cycle is always so depressing and slow. Don't get me wrong, the 2WW is painful, but it's different, it holds promise and anticipation. The beginning of a new cycle is depressing and dull. Time goes by so slowly.

I have my appointment at 2:30 tomorrow. I wonder if he'll be willing to start something right away? Will he make me jump through hoops and burn another cycle, or will he be willing to try something NOW before this one is a bust too? I saw my friend who sees the same doctor today and she seemed to think he would want to do all sorts of things before he'd get on it. My perinatologist didn't seem to think so, but I guess I'll have to wait and see.

I am just so sick of being stuck here. I feel like I'm wasting time. Like I could be doing something so much better and more productive and yet, I sit. And wait. Wait, for the beginning of another f-ing cycle.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Buckets of Sadness and Pain

Thanks Vixanne for posting this and sharing. I wish there were a way to send it to everyone I know in "real life".

Who Gets in Your Bucket?
By Doug Manning
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

The best way I know to picture how we receive help from others in grief, is to imagine you are holding a bucket. The size and color doesn't matter. The bucket represents the feelings bottled up inside of you when you are in pain. If you have suffered a loss, hold the bucket and think through how you feel right now. If you are reading this to learn more about helping others, then imagine what would be in your bucket if a loved one had died very recently. What is in your bucket?

Fear. Will I survive? What will happen to me now? Who will care for me? Who will be with me when I need someone near? Most likely your bucket is almost full just from the fear. But there is also:

Pain. It is amazing how much physical pain there is in grief. Your chest hurts, and you can't breathe. Sometimes the pain is so intense your body refuses to even move. There is enough pain to fill the bucket all by itself.

Sorrow. There is devastating sadness; overwhelming sorrow. A gaping hole has been bitten out of your heart and it bleeds inside your very soul. You cry buckets of tears and then cry some more.

Loneliness. There is no lonely like that felt when you are in a room full of people and totally alone at the same time. Loneliness alone can fill any bucket ever made.

I could go on, but that's enough to get the idea across, and hopefully get you started thinking through your own list. What is in your bucket?

Now picture someone like me approaching you and your bucket. I also have a bucket. My bucket is full of explanations. I am armed and ready to explain why your loved one had to die, how they are now better off and how you should feel.

I am also well equipped with new ways to look at your loss. In politics they call that "spin doctoring," but most human beings seem to know this skill by instinct. I have almost a bucketful of comforting words and encouraging sayings. I can also quote vast amounts of scriptures. I seem to favor the ones that tell you not to grieve.

So we face each other armed with full buckets. The problem is, I don't want to get into your bucket. Yours is scary. If I get in there, you might start crying and I may not be able to make you stop. You might ask me something I could not answer. There is too much intimacy in your bucket. I want to stand at a safe distance and pour what is in my bucket into yours. I want the things in my bucket to wash over your pain like some magic salve to take away your pain and dry your tears. I have this vision of my words being like cool water to a dry tongue. Soothing and curing as it flows.

But your bucket is full. There is no room for anything that is in my bucket. Your needs are calling so loudly there is no way you could hear anything I say. Your pain is far too intense to be cooled by any verbal salve, no matter how profound.

The only way I can help you is to get into your bucket, to try to feel your pain, to accept your feelings as they are and make every effort to understand. I cannot really know how you feel. I cannot actually understand your pain or how your mind is working under the stress, but I can stand with you through the journey. I can allow you to feel what you feel and learn to be comfortable doing so. That is called, "Getting into your bucket."

I was speaking on guilt and anger in grief to a conference of grieving parents. I asked the group what they felt guilty about. I will never forget one mother who said, "All the way to the hospital, my son begged me to turn back. He did not want the transplant. He was afraid. I would not turn back, and he died."

I asked her how many times someone had told her that her son would have died anyway. She said, "Hundreds." When I asked her if that had helped her in any way she said, "No."I asked her how many times she had been told that she was acting out of love and doing the right thing, she gave the same two responses. Many times and, no, it did not help."
I asked her how many times she had been told that God had taken her son for some reason, and she gave the same responses- "many" and "no help."

I asked how many times someone had told her that it had been four years since her son's death and that it was time to "Put that behind you and get on with your life." This time she responded with great anger that she had heard that from many wellmeaning people, including family members, and that it not only did not help, it added to her pain and made her angry.
What I was really asking her is, "How many people have tried to pour their buckets into yours?" I then said, "Would it help if I hugged you and said `that must really hurt'?"She said, "That would help a great deal. That would really help."

Why would that help? Because I was offering to get into her bucket with her and to be in her pain, instead of trying salve over her pain with words and explanations.
If you are in pain, find someone who will get into your bucket. Most of the time these folks are found in grief groups or among friends who have been there. It is not normal procedure. It is hard to swallow our fears and climb into your bucket.

If you are reading this to find ways to help others in grief, then lay aside your explanations and your words of comfort. Forget all of the instructions and directions you think will help and learn to say, "That must really hurt." I think that is the most healing combination of words in the English language. They really mean, "May I feel along with you as you walk through your pain?" "May I get into your bucket?"Healing happens in their buckets.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

No Man is an Island

Unless you're talking about dead babies and infertility. No one really wants to talk about either of those subjects. Not even my husband.

I told my friend B that I was going to see the fertility doctor and I got the big "Well, I hope you get what you're looking for"... What the hell is that supposed to mean? What I'm looking for is another baby, I think I'm looking in the right place. I'm surprised she's acting this way given that she spent seven years trying before she finally conceived naturally...Twice. Maybe she hates fertility doctors because they could never figure out her problem. She's the firat one to say that I should just quit stressing about it because that doesn't make it any better. She of all people should know that comments like that don't help out a whole lot.

Maybe I'm looking for a magic pill, but I think I've been pretty patient given the circumstances. I realize there may not be a magic fix, but I have to try. I've tried charting, I've tried OPK's, the spit scope and I dropped the $300 on the fertility monitor. I just can't figure out what the problem is. This was easier before, I need it to be easy again.

I know I'll never be the same, but I just need something to be the same. I really thought this would be the easy part. Why does all of it have to be hard?? I know that BEING pregnant will be hard. I'm ready for that. I really just don't want to deal with this kind of curve ball. Haven't I had enough? I know the answer to that. I HAVE! I need to get past this part of my life.

Fertility Specialist

Well, I decided that waiting until the 16th wasn't going to help me, so I called my perinatologist. He said that I shouldn't stress and wait through another cycle when Dr. M was probably going to tell me to see a fertility doctor anyway. He recommended a couple and said I should try to get in right away. I love him

So, I have an appointment with Dr. Baby Maker on Monday. The Dr. W said that he would probably just try some clomid and see how that worked. He said the stress of out last year and the stress of trying so hard probably just had me all out of whack...

Remember what I said about taking clomid and ending up with triplets? Maybe I better start looking at triple strollers???!!

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Dr. M Called

Somehow I missed her call. I got a voicemail on my cell phone time stamped at 11:30. I have no idea how I missed it. I was home. That pisses me off. Why didn't she try the house??

Anyway, the message said that it's not unusual for ovulation to stop during stressful times. Duh. I'm slightly stressed and it's not getting any better. The fact that I don't seem to be able to get pregnant isn't helping that either. She said that she understood why I was freaking out and that we'd discuss my "options" when I came in on the 16th.

Options? What options? Wait? Drugs? What? I don't want to know on the 16th, what if it's too late on the 16th to try any "options"? I want to know NOW!!

Ugh, this sucks.

Giant Meltdown

I'm watching B's daughter today since baby K is still in the hospital. She's a good kid, but she gets into stuff more than Gracie does. I have to watch her much more closely than I do Gracie. I was on the phone in the office and while I was, the two of them got into Audrey's room.

The last thing I needed to do today was sit in there refolding all the gowns, sleepers, onsies and little hats that not did Audrey not get to wear.

So, the two of them were in the corner crying while I sat in the nursery crying and folding adorable, lonely little clothes.

I hate this.

It's for real.

The hag is back. This cycle is over.

I left another message for Dr. M. I can't deal with this. I hope she calls me back this time.


Me and my temperature. I don't even have the words.