The Big O

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The big O… Ovulation. Sorry for those of you who thought otherwise. Silly you, this is an infertility blog! 

I knew that Clomid would push back my ovulation date. I typically ovulate on cd11. Well I am at cd18 and still nothing according to my opks. I thought I was ovulating Sunday night though. I woke up from a dead sleep to EXCRUCIATING pain. I have survived endometriosis for years, including 2 laps now and several ruptured cysts. You’d think by now the pain wouldn’t get to me. But this was horrid. I felt like someone was stabbing me over and over. It hurt directly in the center of my very lower abdomen down to my butt. I could barely stand up straight, the fetal position was my only option. After one and a half hours, a hot bath, Aleve and a heating pad, the pain finally started to subside and left me with a horrible pressure and heaviness. I’m still feeling the same pressure and heaviness. In the midst of my sobbing melt down I did an opk. Negative. So now I am left wondering if those silly things even work on Clomid. Nothing online has given me a conclusive answer. I did call my doctor first thing Monday and he didn’t seem too worried. Which was reassuring, but at the same time I want answers! 

Has anyone had a similar experience on Clomid? When did you ovulate? How did you know? HELP!

Praying for Patience

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I had my follicle ultrasound on Thursday! The doctor said I had 3 very good follicles all around the same size on my left ovary. I had one smaller one on my right (That was the ovary with the most endo during my lap). He seemed pretty positive about our chances of getting pregnant this month. I am secretly praying for the possibility of twins, E is too. We would LOVE that! Doc said if I do not get pregnant this month, he will up my dosage of Clomid next month. Fingers crossed that we won’t even need to do that and this is my lucky month. 12 times a charm?! Now if I could just figure out when I ovulate! Clomid had pushed my cycle back 4 days already. So I have been peeing on OPKs like crazy and having sex everyday / every other day (side note: planning sex is really damn frustrating and annoying to me). 

E & I have a good feeling about 2014 being OUR year. Things are really looking up for E’s career. He is finally getting passed the assholes in his chain of command and getting things accomplished and the recognition he deserves. He put in paperwork to go to RASP this week. It’s a 2 month Ranger selection process that, when passed and selected, will get him into the 75th Ranger Regiment. Which is kind of a huge deal, it’s a Special Operations job. I have been praying so hard for him, this is all he’s wanted since enlisting and he deserves it more than anyone I know. The past year has been so frustrating for him (and me) with his career. He has constantly been under the leadership of people who do not encourage him or lead him. He has been in 4 years and is the most decorated and experienced E4 in his company (more than his NCOs actually), yet still hasn’t been to the board. No matter what he does or how hard he tries it just seems to be one road block after another. It is so disheartening to watch him go through this and be powerless. But he was given a glimmer of hope this week and we will find out Monday if he will go to RASP or not.

I selfishly had a melt down when he told me he had a chance to go to RASP. The first thing I thought was “What about trying to get pregnant?!” I wanted to scream. I was at work and had to go to the bathroom to calm down. I know I can’t be mad about it, because he deserves it, but I am sad that if I am not pregnant by the time he goes, that means a guaranteed 2 months we will have to put this on hold. Then he will go through Ranger school, which is even longer. I can’t help but feel sad for me and my dreams being put on hold. But I’ve learned to accept God’s timing and have faith that it all will happen when He feels is right. Or so that’s what I have been telling myself. Needless to say, I’ve been praying for patience a lot lately.

Clomid Round 1

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I am writing you from my shiny, new, white HP Chromebook. I adore this thing. The Chrome OS is simple and intuitive and SO FAST. I don’t use my laptop for anything crazy, so this simple laptop is perfect.

Anyway, I am in super high spirits today (my posts probably seem so bi-polar). I made it in to the doctor the day after the snow storm and he put me on Clomid. We talked about a few options he feels I have for now and the future. 1) Lupron. This is a monthly shot that helps get rid of endo. Apparently, he couldn’t get all of the endo in me. BUT he did cleared and freed my tubes as well as my ovaries. SO reproductively, I am good to go. While you’re on Lupron you cannot ttc though. And it is known to have some crazy side effects. Which have made me super apprehensive. 2) Clomid. Helps create more, healthier eggs. 3) IVF. This is a further down the road thing, but he has expressed that IUI wouldn’t help with my type of infertility so after the Lupron and Clomid, IVF would be next. 

So far, I have taken 3 doses of Clomid and experienced ZERO side effects. Zilch! I was expecting the worst, I always am. But I haven’t been moody, no head aches or stomach aches. In fact, I think the Clomid has actually helped my sleep. I’m usually a pretty sound sleeper but after the surgery I was tossing and turning all night every night. I haven’t been waking up at all. And I have been having CRAZY dreams. Which, again, isn’t abnormal for me but these past 3 days have been even crazier than normal. Clomid has given me so much hope for this cycle.

I have an ultrasound scheduled for Thursday to check out my pretty little follicles. I’m excited to see what the doc has to say!

The Name Game

ImageI’m a week post op and the past day or so have been experiencing new pains. I have been cramping and have had a headache that will not quit. I haven’t slept through a night yet and last night I woke up with this weird tingling (almost like a painful tickle) in my lower chest on the right side. Of course it gave me anxiety because I am a hypochondriac and that just made it even more impossible to sleep. Awesome! My post op appointment is next Wednesday and I am praying the doc puts me on Clomid for my next cycle. Fingers crossed!

This surgery has put E and I in such great spirits. We are so ready and so hopeful for little baby G! We’ve been talking baby names more than ever. It’s a weird obsession I have actually. When I was 6 or 7 I found this baby names book of my Mom’s and I just sat and read through it over and over and over. I still have that book somewhere actually. I have always had a love for names, and their meanings and origins. I chose my favorite girls name when I was about 10 and it has been my favorite ever since. E has agreed to it but we have yet to completely agree on a boys name.

Future baby G possible names:

Reagan Michelle: Reagan is Irish (as am I!) and means “Little King” It’s a unisex name but I love it for a girl. Michelle is my Mom’s name and means “Who is Like God.” This has been my future baby girls name since 1994 ish thanks to The Exorcist! haha

Aria Madison: Aria is Italian and means “Lioness.” I am a Leo and love the meaning behind my zodiac and the fierceness of a lion. I also have a thing for presidential names, thus the middle name Madison.

Jamison: This is a variation of Jameson, it’s an English name and it’s one of the few boy names Eric has approved! Our first boy will have my maiden name as his middle name. This is a family tradition of mine.

Declan Ryan: Another Irish name that means “Man of Prayer.” I love biblical and religious names. Our second son would have the middle name Ryan. This is E’s middle name and the name of a cousin of his that passed away as a child. Again, an Irish name that means “Little King.” E actually hasn’t approved Declan, but I will keep pushing for it.

Elias: This is a Greek & Hispanic (E is Hispanic!) name that means “Lord is my God.”

Julian: Julian is a Hispanic name and means “Youthful.” I have always loved this name and recently met a little boy named Julian that re-introduced me to my love for this name.

Roman: Another Hispanic name. I love this name, it makes me think of strength and pride.

Luca: Luca is Latin and means “Light.”This is another name I feel represents a strong male.

Well, This Sucks.

ImageI am sick of talking about fertility. I am sick of thinking about trying to get pregnant. I am EXHAUSTED.

No one realizes what this does to you, trying to conceive for 11 months, battling a disease that most people don’t understand… it tears you apart. Throw in the occasional “I’ll have your baby for you!!” comment and it can ruin an entire night. People don’t get it and I keep telling myself this every day, but it doesn’t help. I want someone, other than a stranger on the computer, to get it. I want a friend who actually understands. Not that I would EVER wish this life upon anyone, but I just want that support, that bond. It’s sad, and I am mad at myself for letting it happen, but going through this has actually put a wedge in most of my friendships. Maybe that makes me cold, that I don’t reply to the pictures of your growing baby bump or “like” your status’ on Facebook anymore but it is what it is. I have put up a wall.

In fact, looking back on my life, this is what I always do. I block people out of my life to protect my heart. When my parents divorced, I was a week shy of 21. (Happy Birthday!) As an instant response to this Earth shattering event, I stopped going to classes, I started partying A LOT, I tried to find comfort in the arms of any guy that gave me attention (and then quickly kicked him to the curb when he attempted to get too close), I fought daily with my best friend and ended up pushing her out of my life for a year or two. I chased after anything that that was temporary and rejected the idea of any kind of permanence in my life. Because if my parents, after 25 years of marriage and 4 children, couldn’t last than surely, nothing could. I refused to get attached to anyone or anything and I lived my life like that for years. I broke hearts and lost friends all because of this wall, this divide I NEEDED to create. And here I am doing the same thing again.

According to my Mom, I’ve always been a runner. And according to my Dad, I left a string of broken hearts across NE Ohio. In fact, E is the only thing that has made me stand still. He has grounded me. So of course I am thankful for that. I have him, and he IS going through this with me. He sees my pain and my struggles. But I still don’t think he gets it completely.

I am completely rambling today. I have a lot on my mind and T Minus 4 sleeps until my surgery. I’m scared, overwhelmed and ready for this to be over. I don’t know how people ttc for years on end. I suppose I would, if I had to (but Dear God, I pray I don’t have to), but I am over it. This sucks.

 

Thankful

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Too often we focus on our problems in life, the minor to major annoyances, the aches and pains. This journey has taught me that survival is dependent on my ability to stay thankful. E and I have a little routine, every single day we talk about things that make us happy and good things that happened that day. If you are struggling with anything, I encourage you to try the same! Say it out loud, “I am thankful for…”

Today I am thankful for:
Coffee and blue berry muffins
Fur babies who snuggle with me when they know I’m in pain
A husband who always keeps my on my toes
Laughing with E about any and everything
Sunday mornings watching bad tv
Aleve and a bubble bath that helped calm my pain at 5am
Parents that gave me a fairy tale childhood
3 Siblings that make me laugh
A job to dread going to tomorrow morning
Friends that make that job bearable
Living in the south after 27 brutal winters in Ohio
This journey, that will undoubtedly teach me to cherish the children I WILL have one day!

Surgery #2

Image3 years ago I promised myself I would never undergo another laproscopic procedure. I was bruised, bloated, miserable and certain I wouldn’t survive another day. Drugs did nothing. I cried every time I had to sit up, walk to get something or go to the bathroom. In fact going to the bathroom proved to be next to impossible after having endometriosis removed from my rectum and bladder. I would clench a towel in my hands while I bit down on another towel. Just to pee. 3 days after my surgery, I wound up in the ER with a 104 degree fever and a bladder infection. 2 weeks after my surgery, I returned to work. 9 weeks after my surgery, I finally felt normal again and pain free.

Thinking back on January 2011 brings tears to my eyes. But what makes me actually cry, is the fact that yesterday I scheduled my second laproscopic procedure to remove endometriosis. All in the hopes that after this surgery, my ovaries and tubes will be clear and I’ll finally be able to conceive. But nothing is 100%. I am scared to death.

That being said, I am so blessed that E will be by my side the entire time. By some miracle of God, he is able to get out of work and a very intense training for about a week to take care of me. I have 3 girl friends taking a day off to spend it with me while I recover. I have family that is trying to arrange schedules to be here.

So here goes nothing. January 15th I will kick endometriosis’ ass once again. Baby G will be here before we know it. I have faith that everything will happen in God’s timing.

Finding Strength

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A friend told me last night that she admires my strength and how I still live my life and have a positive outlook while facing these challenges. It almost caught me off guard. When I look at myself in the mirror I paint these words onto myself: infertile, sick, diseased, angry, sad, numb. But never strong.

There was a time when I would’ve considered myself strong. I have been through a lot in my life. And 2 years ago, in the middle of my rock bottom, I packed up my car and moved south on a whim. No real plan. No friends. I just started over. That took strength. That took balls I don’t think I have anymore! But today I feel anything but strong on the inside. And I guess it’s time I stop that.

I am strong. I have faced challenges both big and small in my life. I have persevered. I stand here today facing this obstacle with some strange optimism that it WILL work out. I don’t know where that hope comes from. Because I still break down every month when my period starts. I cry myself to sleep some nights. And I guess I always thought that made me weak. But it doesn’t, it makes me human.

My friends kind words, though she may have thought they were insignificant, meant so much to me. Today I know I possess a strength and determination to survive this struggle. I will show this disease who’s boss.

No I’m not pregnant, thanks for asking.

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I’m back in Ohio with E for Thanksgiving to see my family. I missed this place so much. I never thought I’d say that. But I miss the seasons, I miss going from one house to the next full of family and friends. I miss being surrounded by people who know me, and have known me my entire life. But there’s one thing most of them don’t know…. How hard we are trying to get pregnant.

It’s hard not to break down every time someone says “When are you and E going to have a family?” Or “Are you pregnant?!!” No, no I am not. Thank you for reminding me. So I smile and say something polite and the people that do know wince and hold my hand.

I’ve been slowly telling more people about our struggle. But it’s honestly not something people want to hear about. People want to hear about the good. They have enough stress and problems of their own, they don’t want to be burdened by my problems as well.

We will be back in Ohio next month for Christmas. Maybe just maybe I will have a different answer for my friends and family. That would be the best Christmas gift God could ever give us.