Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The highest highs and the lowest lows

When you are on hormone supplements you have highs and lows.  Very high highs and very low lows.  Take this weekend, for example.  We went apple picking, country drivin', and I unilaterally decided we will have a fabulous mosaic tile backsplash (I didn't get around to the project specifics, but I spent a good 30 minutes in the bowels of Lowes so I think that's making good progress).

Then, last night, Matt brought home the wrong bread.  I was making roasted cauliflower soup and had asked for a French baguette.  He brought me a short, stout sour-dough loaf.  I was enraged.

My rage can take on many manifestations, but this particular variety was: cry, scream, plea (for a new loaf), and yell some more.  I'm not proud of these moments.  My face gets puffy and red. Mascara runs down my neck.  And I am at my worst.

Someone else I know going through fertility treatments described the very same thing: crying, screaming, and a terrified husband holding his breath for the next rampage.  My descent started with bread, went to "You have NO idea; why don't you just GO AND PLAY SOME GOLF and live your EASY life!" and went to, "F--- kids!  I just want a goddamn PACK OF DOGS!"  I really said this.

That's not to say Matt is all good and no bad.  Boys, on a whole, can say supremely insensitive things and not even realize it.  Yesterday Matt said he will make a "sacrifice" and be "okay" with one child.  It was a relatively innocuous statement, but I was at my brink, and I was incensed.  "Boy, at this point, you WILL be ELATED with ONE child!  And you say you're sacrificing?!?!  You get to sit at home as I drive to all these doctor appointments and spread my legs!  You are STILL IN BED when I've been on the road for an hour!  So I'm SOOOO sorry you are sacrificing!"  Again, I really said this. 

Matt then went outside with our dog, and I cut up my cauliflower for the soup, alone.  Twenty minutes later he peaked through the front door, and there I was, sitting on the couch thumbing through a catalogue.  It was almost as if this was a normal Tuesday.  We then enjoyed our soup, and yes, even the bread.

Monday, September 20, 2010

IUI Insanity

This morning, at my bi/tri/whatever weekly ultrasound/blood appointment I learned this month's round of IUI (intrauterine insemination, aka artificial insemination) failed.  Everything looked good on Friday and I was scheduled for Sunday morning.  Sunday is tricky: they perform IUI and IVF procedures but there is very limited staff present, so I was not given an ultrasound to ensure I ovulated.  We took it that I did, or was about to, because of my ultrasound and blood results from Friday.  Matt also gave me an HCG shot Friday night to induce ovulation.  This morning I went to the doctor to make sure all was well, and wouldn't you know it, my (now huge) follicle was still hanging out in my ovary.  It's now past maturity and not viable.  Matt and I can't run home and have sex in the hopes it drops today because my cervical mucus (yes - very sexy) is hostile due to a side-effect of my medication (the medication that grows that sucker of an egg).  So you're just left feeling hopeless.

I called Matt on the drive into work, crying.  I always cry in the car now: first of all, it kills two birds with one stone because I cry nearly everyday, and really, with television shows premiering these next few weeks, I don't want it to intercede with my trashy tv viewing.  Crying in the car is perfect because it also gives you a limit on your self-pity: you have to stop by the time you arrive at your destination.  And if you're going to work you can't get too blubbery because you're wearing mascara. 

I cried because I was sad and frustrated.  And that's the beautiful and tragic thing about infertility: each cycle is independent of the next, so you grow hopeful (again) and invariably are disappointed (again).  I cried about all the appointments, the money spent on the medication and the procedure, and I cried because, damnit, this positively, absolutely, 100% sucks.

But there's definitely some beautiful moments in all of this.  Matt and I are closer because we're going through the up's and down's together (although I wish he was probed half as much as I was).  We tack on a lunch or breakfast out with our weekend appointments.  We've retained our humor (hard to believe with my recent posts, I know).  And we know we'll be parents, somehow, someday.  Until then, we have no problem doting (just a little too much) on our dog, Penny.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Lazy September Days

I suppose when you’re out of options, you’re much more willing to leave your comfort zone. That’s how I found myself laying on the acupuncture table for the fifth time this summer. That’s right – I have an acupuncturist. And I really don’t know what’s become of me.
Infertility has thrown me for a loop. I haven’t written about it for lack of news, but because it’s just sad and in my haze of self-pity I couldn’t muster the strength to be witty. I wish I could be stoic in my grief, but I am not, and I hoot and a holler any chance I get. This does not make me a fun house, dinner, or anything mate. Matt and I did IUI (inter-uterine insemination, or commonly known as artificial insemination) for the past two months (to no avail as of yet). We will try again (and then move to IVF) but my last "I'm so sorry; you aren't pregnant" call was a surprise: not because of the news, but because sitting at my desk at work I put down the phone and just…cried. And I can’t fully articulate that feeling of emptiness, and I was expecting it to be negative at this point, but with all this effort – the meds, the monitoring, hell, even the acupuncture—I suppose I was holding out more hope than I realized.

So sluggish and sad (and, come on, curious) I made another appointment with the acupuncturist.

I am completely, utterly, out of my element in the acupuncturist’s office. I feel awkward and think odd hippie-ish thoughts like, "You should really eat wheat germ" even though I don't know what wheat germ is, or "Why don't you ever wear your Birkenstocks?". I know nothing about Hinduism or Buddhism except that Buddha statues are very “in” right now and Richard Gere is friends with the Dali Llama. I have no spirituality in my life, but I want to believe so badly in all of this, so I just nod vigorously when my acupuncturist, one of those gorgeous women in wispy linen and no make-up, says I have major blockage to my heart for my energy isn’t in line. Who knew?

So this is what I have been doing when I haven't been writing: and the truth is, most of the time I'm doing nothing, lazing at home watching Netflix. But I find I need that time more and more - that time of nothingness after work and before bed - to get my head in the game for the next round to face tomorrow. And the day after that. Because I'm not quitting anytime soon.