Wednesday, April 25, 2012

National Infertility Awareness Week -NIAW

I'm a little late in getting over here to blog about NIAW this year. I've been busy spreading the word on the boards and on FB though. I guess that counts, right? :)

This is such an important week for me and for all of the men and women suffering from infertility. It's a week to spread awareness, to support, to advocate, to just be open about our struggle. There are so many people out there that have no idea what it is like to be in our shoes. That's ok. It's not their fault. I don't wish it on anyone. But I do hope that by seeing all of the updates and messages, they can find it in their hearts to offer a shoulder to cry on, an ear to listen with.

One day I hope that K and I are fortunate enough to bring a baby home to love and care for. Until that day, I will continue to advocate for infertility. Below are some of the many facts and tidbits I have been and will be sharing on FB this week. They are combinations of past years statuses, sources such as RESOLVE and my own words. Please feel to take and tweak for your own use.

- Infertility is, indeed, a very painful struggle. The pain is similar to the grief over losing a loved one, but it is unique because it is a recurring grief. It's the pain of the unknown. This process happens month after month, year after year. It’s like having a deep cut that keeps getting opened right when it starts to heal.

- IVF was introduced in the US in 1981. Since then, more than 114,000 American babies have been born through IVF & ART. Not every person who uses a form of ART will have 6 or 8 babies at once. Jon & Kate and Octomom are examples of irresponsibility that paint infertility treatments in a negative light. The vast majority of those who undergo treatment are responsible in their decisions.

- Acknowledge infertility as a medical & emotional crisis with a wide variety of losses, disappointments, and 'costs': physical, financial, social, marital. Please don’t deny or minimize involuntary childlessness either by avoiding the topic or offering empty platitudes like "Just relax". It's ok if you say "I wish I knew what to say." Many times all we need is a sympathetic ear and a hug.

- Although ART is extremely helpful for some couples when conventional therapies fail, these procedures account for less than 5% of infertility services & represent only 0.003% of US healthcare costs. Only 15 states currently have some sort of mandated infertility treatment coverage.

-Your infertile loved ones need your emotional support during this journey. Most people don't know what to say, so they wind up saying the “wrong” thing, which only makes the journey so much harder for their loved ones. Knowing what not to say is half of the battle to providing support. For helpful tips for supporting a loved one experiencing infertility, please visit: http://www.resolve.org/support-and-services/for-family--friends/infertility-etiquette.html

- This might be a good time to look at some infertility myths, and consider what infertility is not. Infertility is not limited to women. Infertility is not all in your head. Infertility is not limited to unhealthy people. Infertility is not limited to older couples. Infertility is not going to go away if you just “relax & go on vacation.” Adopting will also not take infertility away like Charlotte on Sex and the City.

- More than 7.3 million people of childbearing age in the United States experience infertility. I am one of them. Please take the time to learn more about the struggle those of us have to endure to have families.

- Many people lose their faith during this journey. Telling an infertile couple that it’s God’s plan is hurtful and upsetting. Basically you’re saying that God thinks crack heads and child abusers are more worthy to have a child than an infertile. Would you tell a cancer patient that it is God’s plan for them to be life-threateningly sick? Life is a series of events and circumstances that we can’t always control. But you can control your words. Infertiles deserve the same compassion, courtesy and empathy any other person dealing with a medical problem receives.

And my closing NIAW status:
Although today marks the end of National Infertility Awareness Week, I hope that the awareness continues throughout the year. Thank you for taking the time to read these statuses all week. Your support for people suffering from infertility does not go unnoticed. ♥

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Look Again

Look AgainLook Again by Lisa Scottoline

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


This was the first book that I have read by this author. I enjoyed her writing style and the pace she set in this book.

The story is about Ellie, a journalist, who has her world turned upside down by a seemingly innocent missing child postcard that is in her mail. The child on the postcard looks like an identical twin to her son Will. Her son was abandoned at a hospital as a baby and she was writing a story on the little baby with a heart problem. She subsequently fell in love with this child and knew that he was meant to be her son.

With his birth parents unknown, Ellie is unable to shake her mother's intuition and she sets out to find the truth for her own piece of mind. Along the way she runs into backstabbing co-workers, unexpected deaths, a love interest in her boss, shady characters and in the end, a truth she might not be prepared for.



View all my reviews

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

He laughs....

Yesterday K and I decided that we were going to cycle again immediately. I called my clinic and scheduled my baseline for this morning. Of course we know in Rachael-land things don’t always go off as hoped. My ovaries are still too enlarged (um, yeah touching each other large) and there are still large remnants left over (wonderful.) So…the plan when I left the doctor’s office was to start BCPs tonight and then start back up next cycle.

Along the long drive into work, I started thinking about how maybe this was a sign that we should actually wait a little longer. Yesterday I was a little hesitant to jump back in. Excited of course, but in the back of my mind I was really nervous for a multitude of reasons.

In my head I was ok with going forward because I thought “Hey, odds of getting knocked up have to be better because my body did really well this time around and if we cycled right away, it would still be on course.” Scientific or not, that’s what my mind was thinking. Well, I don’t have the choice in the matter now. So there goes my “theory” that I was using as a crutch to propel me full steam ahead into the next cycle.

K and I have a lot of summer plans that I would happily still do if I did get pregnant. But maybe I don’t want to worry about having “too” much fun and excitement. If you saw our concert schedule for the next few months, you’d die. We are going to 14 concerts in a little over 7 weeks time. That’s who we are and what we do in the summer. One thing you’ll never hear me complain about living in Wisconsin is the concerts. Anyway, I’m rambling a tad. Had I gotten pregnant this last time around, none of this would have mattered. But I didn’t. So it does.

SIL isn’t getting married in 2013 anymore, they pushed it back to 2014 to be able to save more money and still have a life during their engagement. With that being the case, I’m not in a rush to get pg so that I am not pregnant at their wedding. Again, it doesn’t ultimately matter if I were pg at their wedding. It would just be nice to not be. Also, if we wait until August to cycle I will still be on summer hours at work. That means I have Friday afternoons off. Of course I can’t predict when I will have a monitoring appt or when the IUI would fall but at least there is a chance I wouldn’t have to take time off of work. My vacation time at work is basically non-existent so what little time I have, I need to plan carefully.

Surprisingly, I’m ok and not sad by today’s appointment. I am relieved in a sense. I have at least a month to decide what to do. I think I need that time. Maybe I will want to go ahead and start again. Maybe I won’t. At least this is my choice. God knows us infertiles hardly ever get a choice in our journey. I might not have had one today but I will in a few weeks and that’s good enough for me. We can make plans…but God laughs when you do that.

Monday, April 16, 2012

And it begins again

Cycling that is. Yup...I'm going to back to back cycle. Didn't see that one coming but we are. I have my baseline tomorrow morning. I'm nervous and excited and hesitant. This is likely be our last shot for a while. FSA money and our own money will be depleted after this one. So...this is it. It better be it. It has to be it.

Nothing else worthy of typing I don't think. I'm so over the million pictures of babies flooding my facebook feed lately. I mean, it's taken over. I *get* that a lot of my in real life friends have reached the same point in their lives but the every single day multiple uploads are so overwhelming. I've tried to hide people and then realized that for some reason this isn't translating to my fb mobile version. So when I go on my phone to catch up, bam! zillion pictures of baby doing mundane crap.

That's pretty fucking harsh isn't? I mean, I know that everyone has the right to post whatever they want. It's not that I'm not happy for them. I am. I just am sad for me and I'm also just not that interested. Just like when you get married, you are the only one that is *that* excited about your wedding. Ok, maybe that's slightly untrue. Immediate family members are usually equally excited about weddings and babies.

But give an infertile a damn break. On Friday I was bombarded by my high school ex boyfriends announcement that his first child, a baby girl, had arrived. Today another high school friend had her third (yeah third, sigh). Another had twin girls (non-if and her second and third babies) three weeks ago. Yet another is due any day. Two other high school girlfriends had babies a month ago. All adorable. All I'm happy for. But DAMMIT I don't want to constantly be seeing it on fb. On top of that I'm hypocritical. There are a few other IF friends that I looooove looking at all the pictures they post. One in particular always manages to crack me up. Love her.

Yes, a fb break is probably needed in my immediate future. Except I love talking to family on it. I'm my own worst enemy I swear to god I am.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Yet Another Failed Cycle

Well, my gut was right. I am not pregnant. Again.

I did end up testing on Wednesday morning and it was a BFN so I pretty much lost almost any hope of it working. I got a lot of love and support from my IF friends. Of course it meant the world to me to hear all the kind words they had to say.

Friday before the beta even came back AF decided to show her ugly bitchy face. I finally got my results around 4 pm and I just left work early. I actually told my owner what a brief overview of what happened and it turns out her daughter struggled with IF for 4 years before conceiving with IVF. I really didn't want to have to confide in her but at least in the end, I know she understands (to a point) what is going on.

Anyway...I don't know really where we are headed right now. We won't be cycling again right now. I have realized that for my own sanity, I cannot do back to back cycles, even if we could afford it, for my own mental sanity. I'm not strong enough for that.

So that's that. Still infertile. Heartbroken all over again. IF fucking sucks.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Week of beta

So it's beta week. And I'm beyond terrified. Last week I think that I developed mild OHSS...or something. It felt like I was bloating and my ovaries were pushing down on my bladder or something...making me have the urge to pee every 15 minutes. I also had this really weird feeling, mainly as the day worn on. It was almost like that feeling you get when you are about to pee in your pants (oh shut up, you know that feeling) and it's that hurting tingling feeling. Anyway, I thought I had a UTI so I chugged the cranberry juice for a couple days. I called my doctor's office of course and they were not overly concerned with it. So I waited it out a couple days.

Now it's Monday and I have three full days between now and beta time. I'm dying. I tested out the trigger. I have lost that overly optimistic feeling. Call it whatever you want but I'm entering into self preservation mode. I have no desire to be out carrying on like normal. I know that it can sound unhealthy but I just don't feel like faking it. This cycle has been so different in terms of what we did and didn't do. For once I wasn't open with everyone about this cycle. Normally I tell everyone. I just knew that if this didn't work out I couldn't possibly deal with telling everyone the bad news time after time after time. So for that reason, the only ones who know are my blogger friends, my infertility community friends and my mom and in-laws.

In other news, my SIL asked me to be a co-Matron of Honor for her! That was the highlight of my Easter weekend. I was so shocked because all along I have known her BFF since forever would be the MOH. Needless to say, I'm super excited. It's looking like her wedding will be in March of 2013 and she would like me to do the floral arrangements! I'm already scouting ideas and am having so much fun being back in the wedding planning part of my brain. There are for sure times when I wish I was still doing that as a side gig. Maybe one day I will be able to again. Or not. I'm sure I'll be stressing out soon enough ;o)

So there's my mid-2ww update. I'm barely making it through. :::sigh:::