Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Things I needed to hear

We had our consultation with the fertility specialist, Dr. A, and we really liked him. I went in to the meeting feeling irritable and left feeling hopeful. So that's definitely something.

And that's despite the fact that he spent at least 20 minutes talking about how I need to lose weight. He said it in the nicest way possible, really. And it's not like it was surprising news. I'd been planning to ask Dr. A about how my weight might be affecting my fertility, in case he was one of these docs who's too embarrassed to discuss it. Turns out, he's not.

He pointed out that weighing too much can result in higher miscarriage rates and make it much more difficult to become pregnant in the first place. He said losing weight would double my chances of conception. So really, I have no excuse now. None.

Other highlights:

- I'll be having a number of tests run. They include: a physical, a heart check-up (I have an arrhythmia and enlarged heart valve), a bunch of blood tests to check hormone levels and for STDs, at least one ultrasound to check endometrial thickness, and probably a hysterosalpingogram and a hysterosonogram (which: yikes).

- My husband will donate more sperm to the cause even though we finally found out his motility and count are way above normal -- information my gynecologist mysteriously refused to tell us.

- Dr. A suspects PCOS. He says treatment would likely be metformin and clomiphene.

- Dr. A emphasizes eating of whole foods (not packaged), getting plenty of sleep, exercise, keeping caffeine and alcohol consumption fairly low, and limiting toxic exposure to stuff like pesticides, solvents, beauty salon crap, etc.

- Dr. A has freed me from lying around in bed, waiting for sperm to magically swim to the right place. For that matter, he's freed me from the missionary position. BAM!

-  Sex should be happening every 1.5 to 2.5 days mid-cycle. He says every day is fine, but he refrains from telling people that because he's worried they'll get divorced. Ha!

Finally, Dr. A says my "chances are excellent." I know we haven't run any tests yet, but I feel relieved and hopeful, nonetheless.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A few pre-appointment thoughts

My consultation is next Tuesday. I'm still nervous, but possibly more annoyed than anything else. The whole "it's not fair" thing. Nope, life isn't fair, is it sweetheart?

So here are the thoughts I'll just bullet-point for today, since they're a bit jumbled for now.

  • I hope that whatever treatment and tests I need don't exceed what's in our health savings account. Although we will pay whatever we need to, if we exceed the HSA funds, we are on the hook for all costs since infertility treatments aren't covered. Well, of course they're not! Why would they be?! Don't get me started. 
  • I still need to get my records from my OB sent over. In speaking with the fertility clinic's rep, she asked if I had copies of previous test results or if I knew the numbers on the results. Which made me hate my OB just that much more. She basically refused to tell me the results of our tests a number of times, despite me repeatedly asking her. Just another instance of doctors believing they know better than their patients, and that patients are on a need-to-know basis. What a bitch. 
  • I feel like I'm being dragged into this by my ankles, while I clutch desperately for a handhold. 
  • I could have been born a boy. Sometimes I think about that when I'm fed up with being a woman.
  • I stopped taking my temperatures, even though I know it's valuable information for the doctor. I think I'm just pissed off about the whole thing. I give up. Fuck taking temperatures. It's never helped me before. Fuck laying around for half an hour after sex. I have a friend who got pregnant after having sex, then drinking fourteen pina coladas while sitting in a hot tub. But I have to lie in bed with my legs in the air? Fuck that. 
  •  It's funny who in my life cares (or seems to care) about this stuff and who doesn't.
  • These pre-appointment moments are filled with "what extremes would I go to" hypothetical scenarios. Surrogacy, egg donation, sperm donation, adoption, IVF. You begin to wonder. 
  •  This was never in the plan for me or my friends. Don't ask me what was; I just know infertility was not. I resent its presence. 
  •  On the other hand, I'm brilliantly lucky to be able to seek treatment for this. I am grateful for that.
  • I'm tired. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


For those (most, if not all) commenters who suggested I make the appointment with a fertility specialist immediately, I must explain something. We have probably not met, or else you perhaps do not know me well because if you did, you would know I live in 1) a perpetual state of denial and 2) a perpetual state of procrastination. So making the appointment before my period started was simply impossible. I'm not saying I did the right thing; I'm just explaining my neuroses.

So what happened was I started my period late Thursday night. Friday I went on a camping trip (which: what could be better? Camping while on your period? Obviously good times). Saturday I came home. Sunday I recovered from not sleeping on the camping trip. Monday I sorted out my insurance questions. Tuesday I scheduled a "new patient consultation" at a local clinic. The appointment is two weeks out, on the 26th.

Which leaves us at today: Wednesday.

I think we should play a game called "What's Your Damage?" We should guess what my problem is (if we are so inclined). For those who are familiar with symptoms/temperatures/fertility monitors, it might be fun. So here's my list of "ailments."

- been trying 2 years, with 1 miscarriage.
- 33 years old
- overweight
- fertility monitor says I ovulate
- basal temps suggest I do not ovulate, and there's no rise in temp in the second half of the cycle.
- cycles range from 24 to 32 days
- periods are not debilitating -- crampy first two days, then fine.
- no family history of infertility
- husband's sperm has been checked and is fine

So, whatcha think? I think high possibilities are progesterone deficiency and/or PCOS. Worst-case nightmare material = I am out of eggs/eggs are not viable.

Questions? Thoughts?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Live Now

No, I'm not dead. Yes, I am still infertile. 

I haven't been blogging here, because I felt like I haven't really had anything of use to add to the conversation. I am still not planning on getting pregnant, and in fact have been taking pregnancy tests just to make sure hell hasn't frozen over, pigs aren't flying, and I am not somehow knocked up. 

So, why am I blogging today*? 

I actually have something to say. Advice, if you will. Something I think will actually help anyone dealing with infertility. No, it's not about how to get a baby in your belly. If I knew that I would be writing a book and encouraging people to buy it and blog about it. Instead, it's about keeping your brains in your head, while trying to get a baby in your belly. 

Are you ready? 

It's pretty simple. 

Don't put your life on hold while trying to get pregnant. 

I know, that seems simplistic, and a little ridiculous. After all, how can anything be more important that the pursuit of parenthood? You are probably thinking you aren't putting your life on hold, you are pursuing the next level of your life. You are probably thinking I just don't get it. 

If you have read this blog though, or my other blog, I think you know I do. 

I am now 37 years old. I started trying to have a baby when I was 32. The five years in between were sucked into the vortex of infertility and adoption. I look back on the past five (almost six) years and I see a lot of regrets. More and more I see that a lot of them have nothing to do with infertility, but things I didn't do because of it. I didn't take job offers. I didn't buy nice clothes. I didn't plan trips. I didn't lose weight (I was sure I would get pregnant and then just gain it all back). I didn't take on projects I thought would take a lot of my time: like learning to play an instrument, or writing a book. I avoided family and friends who were fertile because I was not. I put myself on hold, making infertility the main focus of my life. I missed out. 

I don't want you to miss out too. 

If friends are planning a trip to Borneo in two months, GO. Don't think "I might be pregnant then, I better not." Worst case scenario you have to cancel and you are possibly out money. It will be worth it. It will also be worth it if you take up a hobby, take a job, go back to school, buy clothes that can in no way be worn as maternity clothing, and spend time watching children you love, even if it hurts at the time. 

It won't be easy. It will all be worth it. 

Live. And remember you are not alone. 

*This post was inspired by Mo over at Mommy Odyssey

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Get on it

There are no changes since last week.

Temps are still too low. Ovulation is unlikely to have occurred. Aunt Flo should arrive shortly.

And my plan to wait until July has been booted out the window.

Because I'm making an appointment with a fertility specialist as soon as I get my period.

And I'm nervous as hell about it.