Thursday, November 1, 2012

So much, so little.

It's been awhile, hasn't it?  Quite a bit has happened since my last post.

No.  We are not pregnant.

But, we are foster parents.  Well, we're finishing up becoming certified.  I think labor is easier than this process.  We had 36 hours of training,  and next up is the home study, at least 100 pages of paperwork and hours and hours of interviews.

It's been less than fun.   Tedious? Yes.  Exciting?  Yes, a bit.

While it's petrifying in some ways to think we're on our ways to be parents, it's also kind of fun.  I actually get to plan a nursery!!!!

We will begin as foster parents and hopefully move on to adoption.  We are requesting infants but have considered older teens, 16 and up.  I kind of like the idea of a teen knowing they have a forever home.  A place to come for holidays, parents to have visit them in college, etc.

Another exciting occurrence happened in August.  I graduated with my Masters of social work.  I haven't taken my licensure test yet, but plan on doing that in January.

The last major "thing" isn't so fun.  I will be having my third surgery in one year on 12/6.  It's not fertility related this time though.  I have to have my Achilles' tendon repaired as it's 75% torn.  Ugh.  4 weeks no weight bearing and 8 weeks of casting.  It's going to suck, no two ways about it.  But, it has to be done or I won't be able to walk.  It's hard to take care of a child if you can't chase them, right?  That's the only way I'm convincing myself to go through this right now.

In regards to my fertility, not a damn thing has changed.  Still perfect cycles, still no where near pregnant, still no answers, no closure and what feels like no hope.

As my daily 2:00pm iPhone reminder tries to convince me: Trust in Him and His will.  I'm trying!  Really!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Random Ramblings

This is one of those posts where I have lots to say but nothing to say. 
Enter stream of consciousness blog:

Went and saw an RE just for poops and giggles I guess.  Was curious what she felt she could do for us that my current gyno can't.  Of course she wants us to have a $2,000 IUI or even better the $13,000 IVF.  Her eyeballs about popped out when I said we don't morally agree with IVF.  You'd thought she saw a lobster crawl out of my vagina the look on her face.  Sadly, I'm considering the IUI.  Why is that sad?  I just feel it will be a waste of $2,000.00.

DH had a testicular US which was "perfectly normal" and yet another SA.  His volume was low and his motility is low (35%) but his count is very, very high 162.3 million.  Mathematically according to the urologist he has a "normal" count considering the count is so high.   We see the not so nice RE again in a couple weeks to get her point of view on the SA. 

Obviously this isn't going to happen for us naturally since it hasn't happened yet in 4 years. (Another "pro" for the IUI.)

Our house was vandalized recently, teenagers have been shooting at windows with a pellet gun and we were a victim.  Our front window has a lovely hole in it now.  We considered replacing the window since we need new ones through the whole house, the guy said anywhere between $1,200 and $2,000.  Ironic?

I almost murderfied the DH when he looked at me and said "well it's the window or the IUI."  He's right though.  I'm thinking we'll profit more from the window.

I didn't take any drugs this month besides the naltrexone and progesterone and I can tell.  I've had migraines and have not been the happiest of campers.  It is getting better now that I'm in the end of my cycle.  Pre-peak was not fun.

Why can't we get pregnant????? 162 million sperm and I ovulate, why won't this happen???

I blog I follow announced her pregnancy through IVF and I was devastated.  Not sure why, I guess it's that fear that "the cheese will stand alone."

I want to quit.  I see the perks of not trying.  No meds, no vaginal ultrasounds, no blood work, more money, more time. 

Maybe we should take the $2,000 for the IUI and put it in a savings account for when we're old and childless and relying on strangers to wipe our asses. 

I'll never see my child's face light up on their birthday or Christmas morning.

I'll never feel life inside me, growing, moving, kicking.

The feeling of gratefulness of not having children swept over my last night on my way home from graduate class.  I'm not sure how I would handle pregnancy, working 58 hours a week, school and being a wife.  I graduate in 6 months, maybe give it a break until then and try when I have less on my plate? 

I'm tired.  So tired.  This has become me, what will I be when I do give up (when I hit menopause). 

I've been wrestling with my ideas of femininity and womanhood.  I by no means feel masculine, but knowing I cannot give life, that I will not experience labor or breast feeding devastates the thoughts of what womanhood is for me.  I was meant to be a mother.  I was meant to nurture, to make lunches and wipe noses.  I was born for that.  If I can't be that, what am I? 

I'm still thinking the window is a better deal, and I would have an excuse to buy new curtains.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Will I ever look back and laugh?

I am not a good sleeper.  If I wake up; to piddle, let the dogs out, DH snoring, etc, I have a horrible time going back to sleep.  In these hazy sleep stained moments my mind goes to odd places.  Recently it's been traveling back in time to when I was single.  Now, I have NO desire to return to those times so these thoughts are not wanton wishes for times gone by but instead I'm hoping my subconscious way to lessen my current pain. 

When I was single I wanted nothing more to be in a relationship, married, happy, in love, etc.  DH and I had a whirlwind romance, met in March, engaged by June and married in November.  Once we met we barely spent a day apart and since married we've only spent 2 nights separate.  So when I look back on those years of single life I can now laugh at the things I did because I reached the goal I was striving for; marriage.  When I say single life I mean the idiotic dates I went on, the short and often painful relationships and the guys that came into my life to only cause hurt and strife.  I didn't date until I was in my mid twenties and there were not many dates even then but those I did have often were not healthy or happy situations.  At the end of each of them it was a painful reminder I was single and my heart's desire was so far from my reach.

DH and I have been married 5 years.  We've had our fights but I love him dearly and he was and is what I had wanted for so many years. Now that I have what I had prayed and begged and hoped for in my life I can look back on those single days and while I can recall the pain it's nothing to me now but a means to a happy end. 

I cannot help but hope that I will be able to do the same in regards to my current dream of motherhood.  That while holding my child I'll be able to recall these heartbreaking times and laugh at my impatience, at my anger or hurt.  Will I be able to recall these times without bitterness and realize they were all stepping stones on a path to my dream? I hope so.  I hope that the years we've carried this hurt have been for us to one day be able to tell our child how much we wanted them and how hard we worked for them and not just a story to tell to explain why we have 17 dogs.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

A year.

If I wasn't a lazy blogger I would look up the words to that Rent song that goes on about numbers and moments and how we measure a year.  But you all know what I'm talking about and likely now have that song stuck in your head.  You're welcome.

Here's how I measured last year:
Jan-March: try, try, try again, nope, nope, nope.
April: surgery to remove polyp.  HOPE.  Nope.
May-August: try, try, try, try, nope to the 4th power.
September: lap for 1-2 stage endo removal.
October: HOPE it WILL be my month. IT has to be, I didn't go through surgery for nothing.  Nope.
November: What a blessed 5th anniversary this could be.  Nope.
December: I have so much hope for you, you beautiful cycle.  Granted, I'm the freak that has normal cycles, great mucus, wonderful response to meds so most cycles are "beautiful."   DH and I were on vacation during peak and made the most of it and I had so much hope, so much faith.  I could almost feel the life being created in me.  Until a few days ago.  I do blame this "hope bottoming out" on hormones, it has to be.  I was so strong and happy and faithful until about peak plus 9 and then those the thoughts of "it just isn't going to happen" started creeping back. 

On to a new year.  Not out of the game yet, but as I type I can feel the all too familiar twinges of failure brewing in my pelvis. 

This will be a great year though.  I will graduate from graduate school this year.  I will hopefully be able to obtain a new job to use my MSW.  Hopefully this will be the year that DH gets his much desired principal position.  We'll be another year closer to being out of debt.  And, I'll turn 35.   This means we only have 10 more cycles to try to get pregnant.  So 2012, you'll either be a year of a blessing of a child or the blessing of laying down this cross of pain and moving forward to what God really has planned for me not what I hoped was His plan. 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Where do YOU draw the line?

Three years ago if $15,000 fell in my lap I would not have thought twice to do IVF.  Today, while it is still tempting I cannot get beyond the moral implications.  This is one of the many reasons we started the Creighton Model even though we are not Catholic the basic principles still speak loudly to me.

I have been asked why I would not do IVF.  Obviously the cost is a huge factor for us.  We definitely could make it happen, with savings and cutting back on things we could afford it, but what a huge waste of money (potentially.)  The most pressing reason I would not pursue IVF is the disposal of possibly viable embryos.  They do not retrieve and fertilize 1-2 eggs.  I recently heard one woman's story of IVF that they retrieved 13 eggs, fertilized 8 and implanted 3.  Do the math, what happened to the other 5 embryos?  Trash? Frozen? Donated?  Either way, those are 5 potential gifts of Heaven, and what becomes of them?

Here's my bottom line on IVF:  If it's what you wish to do, so be it, I will not judge, it's just not a choice we feel we should make but if it's right for you, then do it.  If we could do IVF and only retrieve 1 egg, know it would "hatch" and become a successful pregnancy, yes, I would consider it. 

The other line I struggle with is where do we interfere with God's hand?  I have heard that with the Creighton/NaPro methods the Catholic church frowns on ART (assisted reproductive therapies) because it removes  God's will in conception.  (For any Catholic readers, if I am wrong, please feel free to set me straight, these are things I've read online.)  If we are making babies in test tubes, is that really God's will?

What I cannot "figure out" for lack of a better term is where do we draw the line before we get to the test tube?  If we are created in the divine image of Christ then if we are born without the ability to become pregnant for any reason are we also "fiddling" with what God's hand would have planned? 

Example: I was born with a congenital shortening of the blood vessels on my right ovary causing that ovary to possibly be considered "useless," stage 1-2 endo and some hormonal abnormalities am I disobeying God's will by taking Clomid or having surgery to remove the endo?  God made me that way, endo included.  Am I attempting to create life without God?  If I was knitted in my mother's womb perfectly in His image then would I not be meant to be infertile and meant to NOT correct those things that could/are keeping me from becoming a mother? 

Granted, I understand that if there is a medical condition that can be treated we should do so, I'm not saying to pray over a broken arm and hope it heals.  What I am saying is that if I was BORN this way (infertile) should not just accept that it was how God made me, again, in His divine image?  Am I breaking His heart with every Clomid I take? 

On the other side of that coin is my always enduring thought that I was meant to be a mother.  That God created me to be a mom.  This could just be my way of trying to negate what God's will really is for me by saying my "heart" was meant to be a mother.  And, if my "mother's heart" came from God, then why would he also give me infertility? 

I've never really had faith that I would have a child though, to completely contradict what I just said. Now, that doesn't mean that I don't have "a mother's heart" and want a child.  But since we realized this wasn't going to "just happen" for us, I've never held the hope that we would actually get pregnant.  The automatic thought I have is always "it's just not going to happen for us."  I wanted marriage, badly.  And even in those dark hours of break ups and single life I always knew I'd be in love, married and happy. I just had to give it time and let God's hand move.   I have yet to have hope in these dark hours. 

Obviously this has been heavy on my mind and heart lately.  This Advent season has been so the most painful so far.  I'm not sure why but I tend to think it's because I turned 34 this year, and know my time is quickly running out or that every passing month is a step closer for me to realize this is not going to happen and to give up.  Infertility is hard enough January through November, but Christmas is simply heart breaking.  Our house is decorated, there are presents bought and wrapped and none of it means anything to me.  I would give up every Christmas present, every sugar cookie, every special Christmas only nibble to hold my child in my arms. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Big whoop, it's Christmas.

It's the Christmas season.  Big deal. 

Christmas is for children, or those who have children.  For those of us without children Christmas really isn't that exciting.  For us it's just about cleaning houses and cooking and buying boring gifts for old people.  I was so hoping to be able to shop for toys this year, of course, I'm not.   I am grouchy and down and not in the mood.  I just want this time of year to be over. 

I had the diagnostic lap done 9/19/11 and found I had minimal endo, "stage 1, barely stage 2."  It was refreshing to know it was minor, but yet frustrating to know it might not have been enough to cause our infertility.  We did find out DH's testosterone is low, but according to the doctor it's not low enough to affect quality/quantity.  DH has an appointment with a urologist in January.  He's not excited. 

Currently I'm on Clomid and Estrogen as well as LD Naltrexone.  My ultrasound series last month was "perfect" according to the doctor, but of course, no baby.  My hormones were also "perfect."  If I'm so damn perfect and normal then why haven't we been able to get pregnant???

I'm tired.  Tired of white baby stickers staring me in the face, tired of month after month of heart break.  I'm also just tired.  Work, school, internship, it's all so overwhelming.  The other night laying in bed awake at 3am, as usual, I was thinking "I'm glad we don't have a baby right now, how would I do it all?"  Maybe His plan is divine after all.  Perhaps this journey has been to give me time to complete graduate school, but I graduate in about 9 months, hint hint God!!  Any time now God, I'll have time to raise that beautiful gift I would so deeply love to be given. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The final final step for the final time (?)

I decided to have a exploratory lap done to check for endo as a last diagnostic step in our journey.  Surgery is 9/19 and I'm starting to freak out.  Not because of pain, or The Awful (bowel prep) but for the fear that I will know for a fact that I cannot have children.  It's a weird feeling, it's something I've wanted; an answer, but the fear of knowing for sure is sometimes overwhelming.  I'm praying that I do have endo, but a very mild case, at least I would have an answer and be a step in the direction of (hopefully) increase fertility.  I do so hope I'm one of those women who have this surgery and are pregnant in just a couple cycles.  Please Lord, let it be.