28 June 2007

Here in my car I feel safest of all*

*Cars, by Gary Numan

I miss my car. My car was my life. I had a cute zippy little Hyundai Excel 4-door sedan that could fit a couch in the trunk. Seriously, it was amazing what I could fit in that car! It was comfy, and the perfect size for my little legs. It was like it was designed just for me. Everything was right in reach - the radio buttons, the temperature controls, the seat adjustment knob. It was the first car I'd ever owned that I bought, I negotiated for, and was brand-new when I bought it.

I kept my rollerblades in my car, along with socks and sweatpants, so when the urge hit me, I could stop anywhere and go blading. When my car got broken in, the thief took all my toll change, went through my glovebox and made a mess of my cassettes*, pulled the back seat down and rummaged through my trunk, stealing my favourite Navy-issue wool blanket, he somehow missed my beloved blades.

My tent, sleeping bag, Coleman stove, and cooler all fit easily into the trunk, and me-n-my car would happily toddle off to riverbeds and forested remote areas to spend a weekend. After backpacking in the woods for 3 days, I could count on my car's back seat to be a perfect place to lie back, prop up my weary feet and rest a bit before driving home.

My stereo rocked; I could blast Zeppelin without any speaker distortion. My cassette case fit perfectly under the front seat, and I could pull it out and prop it up on the passenger seat without ever taking my eyes off the road.

During ice storms, when I lived in a very hilly area, I would stop my car and try to help people stuck at the bottom of the slippery hills. They would ignore the girl in the Korean car and keep spinning their wheels. I would smile and wish them luck as my little car rolled past them, and easily zipped me up the ice-covered hill.

When I backed my car out of the garage without opening the garage door first, my little car took out 4 panels of the 2-car door, and knocked it off the track, but didn't get even a little dent or scratch on the bumper.

My little car carried me all over the US. We'd go for little weekend jaunts, sometimes with a destination, sometimes not. Sometimes we'd visit far away friends, sometimes we'd just go exploring. My car never overheated in the boiling summer, never spun out in the rain.

The one time I stupidly drove after having one too many, my car got me home safely. I'm half-convinced my car yelled at me for being such a moron.

I carried everything in my car, yet it was spotless. I could drive forever in that car, but it would still only cost me $20 in gas.

My car gave me freedom. My car gave me power. When my car died, I cried a little bit. Okay, a lot. I got another car, second-hand, but it wasn't the same. I traveled, but my "new" car was just a place to stow my gear. I fixed my little car myself, but I couldn't figure things out in my "new" car. My "new" car didn't give me freedom. Or power. It wasn't my real car; it was just a way to get from point A to point B. It was too expensive to hop in and drive somewhere. I no longer have control of the direction my car and I travel.

Once, my body gave me freedom. It gave me power. I could walk for miles, blade for hours, ski across mountains. I could even use it to get stuff, if I wanted to (I did it once, and felt really awful after, so I never did it again.). Naturally, I assumed that when the time came, I could use my body to have children. Especially since it was Hubby who had the fertility issues, not me.

I feel like my body isn't my real body. It's just a thing to carry me from point A to point B. The power is gone. The freedom is gone. I no longer have control of the direction my body and I travel.

I miss my car.

* cassettes are ancient items that look like little tiny videotapes**. They hold music, one album*** per side. They used to be the only way to hear your own choice of music in the car. Most of us had gloveboxes or console boxes full of these little tapes.

** videotapes are not-so ancient items with movies on them that pre-date DVDs. You used to rent them at the videostore (that's why they're called "videostores" - neat, huh?). You could also buy blank ones that you could use to record tv shows. We were all so excited because you could fast-forward through the commercials.****

*** albums pre-date CD's. They were very big, about 12" in diameter, and were made of plastic, and then vinyl. They have lines in them that needles would "read" and translate into music. We would grab a stack of albums and merrily shlep them off to our friends' houses to listen to each other's music. We originated file-sharing by holding up microphones to the speaker and recording the albums onto cassette tapes for each other.

**** commercials are 30-second mini shows that interrupt tv shows every 3 minutes. Thankfully, because of TIVO and downloads, we don't have to be subjected to these horrid, mind-bending, ethics-distorting vignettes that make it impossible to follow the storyline on the actual tv show we're trying to watch.

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Waiting for a real post to land somewhere near my brain

In the meantime, enjoy. Is very beautiful.


20 June 2007

Break out the vodka, it's a pity party

Sorry to run away. I got tired of myself. I didn't feel like listening to myself be gloomy and gripe about yet another thing (that would be my RE's secretary saying she might be able to get us an appointment for August. Hellooo! Ticking time bomb here - uterus could explode and turn into dust any second now.)

I'm just tired of everything being so hard. Of course, Hubby and I were international, so I had to immigrate for us to be together (a year-long process that cost mega bucks). Of course, we had to get married out of town (to accomodate family). Of course, since my divorce from my first marriage was in the States, I had to pay to get a letter from a lawyer confirming that my divorce is, in fact, valid. Of course, since the local rabbi where we got married was out of town and our rabbi was from another country, the person we asked to sign the legal docs (a very old family friend) accused us two days before the wedding of only inviting him to sign the docs, resulting in a frantic, last-minute scramble to find a justice of the peace to sign the docs. Of course, we want kids, but Hubby had a vas. Of course, Hubby's VR didn't work. Of course, the docs tell us to wait at least 6 months to see if the VR worked, and then when it didn't work, they tell us we have to HURRY! I'm OLD!! Of course, the market falls out of Hubby's line of work just as we start cycling. Of course, we couldn't get any of our family to help us so we could do a second cycle. Of course, when we finally get to cycle again, RE tells us to move quickly because I'm OLD!!! Of course, when the cycle fails, RE isn't available for an appointment until August. (this list, of course, omits all the "cancel, don't cancel, no follies, few follies, any eggs? a few eggs" drama)

I know, in the grand scheme of things, this is nothing. It's absolutely nothing compared to those of you who have cycled 7, 8, 9 times. It's nothing compared to those of you who have suffered devastating losses. And I'm in now way intending to belittle the hardships anyone else has endured. I just need to whine and feel sorry for myself. Why does everything have to be so damn hard? Just once, once, I'd like to get something major that I really, truly want so badly, without having it be such a life-altering struggle.

Just once.


Out From Life

be back shortly

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15 June 2007

The (very) long and the short of it

Random thoughts:

- I hide bad stuff behind humour. I went through some abusive stuff early on and learned to hide what I was feeling so I wouldn't let the other person know they were getting to me. I wouldn't give them the satisfaction. It's now a bad habit I hide behind. I have difficulty saying, "I'm sad."

I'm sad.

- The more I think about, the more pissed I am at the clinic nurse who called. I wanted to make a follow-up appointment with my RE right away. She said we really should wait for "the letter" that they send out. Last time, it took weeks to get the letter, and by the time I received it, I was so done with that cycle. I didn't want to rehash it. But now, I want to talk to the RE when it's all fresh, and discuss our egg quality, etc., and the RE's thoughts on why two good embryos didn't take. The nurse finally, huffily, said she'd get a message to the secretary to see when the RE could "fit me in."

Oh, eff you. SO sorry for the inconvenience. I remember feeling this way last time - "Sorry, it was negative, you'll get a letter, okay, buh-bye, get lost." Everyone at the clinic is wonderful and friendly until you get that BFN. Then you're just another patient who made them look bad.

(warning, if you're squeamish or easily grossed out by body stuff, stop reading now. Of course, if you're squeamish or easily grossed out by body stuff, you're probably not pursuing infertility treatment.)

- All day yesterday, I had very, very dark brown (like almost black) thick, mucous-y discharge with little clotty bits. Anyone know why I would brown discharge first, before red bleeding? Today is closer to normal. (haha, very funny body: you hear "bfn" and immediately set forth to flowing. Thanks.)

- I'm very very sad that I'm now niddah. Hardest part of the whole crapfest is knowing I can't get hugs and snuggles. Those hugs and snuggles were getting me through the last few days.

- Ironically, yesterday and today I've been horribly nauseous. (haha, very funny body: you suck.)

- Hubby and I had a most romantic dinner out last night (I didn't get my scotch*, but I did get sake). We just sat, snuggled in a private corner of the restaurant, and talked all gushy mushy. It was lovely. Hubby even got choked up. I love that I'm married to a man who is comfortable tearing up when he talks all romantic-like.

- What a difference blogging makes. Last cycle, a few people knew we were cycling. When they asked how it was going, and we told them about the bfn, there were a variety of responses, none of which was too comforting (somebody actually said we just saved ourselves "$500,000 on tuition, clothes, camp, etc."). This time, with one or two exceptions, you guys were the only ones who knew we were cycling. And I couldn't have asked for more comforting responses than the ones I received from each and every one of you. I am so grateful to you guys. Thank you from the bottom of my sore little heart.

I'm so glad tomorrow's Shabbat. I need a day off to just curl up with a blanket on the couch (and watch old movies, but I can't do that on Shabbat). I think G-d will understand if I don't go to services, and limit my prayers to just personal conversation.

*Shanna, I've tried to drink Scotch properly; I just can't. Except for some stupidly beautiful, v v old Glenfiddich someone gave me. yum.

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14 June 2007

I'll take a Scotch, wet, on the rocks

First off, apologies for making you wait.

So last night, Hero Hubby came to pick me up, and told me the news. The doctor from my GPs office (not my GP, but another in the office) said the results were negative, and then added,



damn non-infertility doctors.

He said to be sure we test again next week, because "it's extremely common to have a false negative."

That may be. For people who try to get pg the so-called "normal" way. He also said it's still very early, blah blah blah.

I just heard from the clinic, the results were 0. So, no need to re-test, non-infertility doc! Geez, if rabbinical students are now having to learn about infertility, why aren't GPs having to learn at least the basics?

On the bright side, I no longer have to stuff myself with little balls of peanut-oil.

On the other bright side, I can have cocktails tonight.

Oh, and there's an update to the "easy" blood draw. Remember, I asked for the paper tape since I've developed an allergy to the bandaid adhesive? I got big red bruises from the tape. THE TAPE! Argh.

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G-d heard all our prayers

but he said no.

more later.


Hubby to the rescue!

Hubby actually went to my dr's office. They may stop answering the phones at 4:30, but I guess they still see patients. He explained the situation, put me on the phone, the nurse asked if it was okay to give the results to Hubby, I said "ABSOLUTELY." The nurse called the lab, got the results and gave them to Hubby. After talking it over, we decided to stick with our original plan.

He's coming to pick me up within the hour.

And before you even ask, I couldn't tell anything from the tone of his voice.

I was a basket case when I thought we'd have to wait until "sometime" tomorrow. Remarkably, even though I don't know, I'm fine now. I'll be more fine if it's positive, of course.

Maybe live blogging doesn't suck after all.


It's a charlie foxtrot, sir

There's an old Yiddish expression: "Man plans, G-d laughs"

After all our planning over who was going to get the call, we heard nothing. Hubby finally called the clinic, AFTER the nurses all left. I checked our voicemail at home again, to hear a message from one of the nurses saying she had been trying Hubby's cell all day and if we got the message in 10 minutes to call the clinic. Otherwise, we're to call them tomorrow. (Like I could make it to tomorrow without exploding)

The message was from 45 minutes ago. I tried calling my GPs office, figuring they could give me the results. I called at 4:28, and got the "we close at 4:30pm" message.

Hubby just called; he's at my dr's office. He's going to call me back in a minute.

Ah, my first experience with live blogging.

It sucks.



That's it, I've just snapped. The pressure got to me. My mouse is acting up, and I can't create a thingie that I need to create for work, so I just started crying. Right at my desk. Argh. Fortunately, no one is in my office right now, and the computer guy had just left.

Hubby just called, and was kind of circumspect, so I thought he had news and was just taking his time getting around to telling me, but no. No news. Teasingly, an hour or so ago, his phone blipped, the name of our clinic popped up for a second, but then disappeared. They probably dialed, thinking they needed to answer a question, then read the chart and realized they didn't have my results yet. Whatever, it was a nasty little tease.

Thankfully, I planned ahead and bought M&M's this morning.


13 June 2007

One more thing

For those of you who don't go back and read comments to previous posts, I'll repeat what I said here:

You guys ROCK!!! I can't tell you how much it helps knowing people are pulling for us. We SO appreciate all the love. Thank you.

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You want me to stay 'ere and make sure 'e duzn't leave

Best movie ever.

Speaking of convoluted instructions, Hubby and I spent quite a while last night talking about how to handle the results of today's test. Since we're both at work, and our jobs are at opposite ends of the city, we had to decide who gets the call from the clinic, and who gets the great or sucky job of calling the other.

I would love to be able to call Hubby with good news, but I'd probably break down in my office, and my co-workers and boss don't know about our cycle. I'd loathe having to call Hubby with bad news (I really don't think I could even do it), but I'd be okay in the office. I hide bad stuff really well.

Hubby would be okay with calling me with bad news, but would have a helluva time keeping calm with good news. And to be honest, I don't want to get any news over the phone. Especially if it's good, because we'd get off the phone and then I'd have to put a cap on it.

It's like planning the invasion of Normandy, I tell ya. So, the decision is, we've asked the clinic to call Hubby. If we hear today, Hubby will pick me up after work and then tell me one way or the other. Bad news, we go for drinks at our favourite beachside lounge. Good news? Hubby gets to drink at our favourite beachside lounge.

Since the last 5 minutes have felt like 5 hours, I have no idea how I'm going to make it to his phone call telling me whether or not he's picking me up. And then, I have no idea how I'll make it to pickup time!

The wai-yay-ting is the haaaaaaaaardest part.

(oooh, lookie: a movie reference AND a song reference in one post!)

((I'm a little delirious, can you tell?))

(((blood draw went awesomely! Tech lady hit my vein with no problem, and even was nice about using the white paper tape when I said I've developed an allergy to the bandaid adhesive.)))

((((Did I tell you I've developed an allergy to the bandaid adhesive?))))

IS IT 4PM YET?????


12 June 2007

Just keep swimming

I have long, indepth conversations with G-d every day, twice a day. Demanding that He make at least one of those little embies stick. But lately I've realized, it's too late for that. They've either stuck or they haven't.

So I've switched to insisting that IF at least one of the embies stuck, He watch over it and keep it healthy, and let it grow fully with all its bits and bobs.

But that feels weird. Defeatist, almost. IF it stuck? Then we have the whole "keep it healthy" thing, which sounds too much like getting hopeful.

And what if I get a BFN tomorrow? Should my daily chats stop? Should I change it to, "Thanks a whole lot for NOTHING!" I can condense 10 minutes of conversation to one word: "why?"

That'll save me a whole lot of time in the morning.

Beta tomorrow. I can get through today, but how the hell do I get through tomorrow??


11 June 2007

Hubby Appreciation Day

With all my griping, whining, cramping/not cramping, etc., etc., I failed to mention something.

I have the best Hubby in the world. He comes with me to every appointment that he can. He's had to miss two because of meetings he couldn't get out of, but otherwise, he's there for every blood draw, every ultrasound.

And while I was stimming, he was in the bathroom with me morning and evening, popping open needle caps for me, prepping the alcohol wipes, collecting the needle wrappers, used cotton balls and wipes and tossing them in the garbage, and putting the used needles in our sharps jar.

He can't take the shots for me (although I'm pretty confident he would, if he could!), but he tries as much as possible to make sure this is something we're both going through, and that I'm not doing all the crap work alone.

And that makes me one very lucky Projgen.

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And the beat goes on

and on and on and on....

My body hates me. On Saturday, I had what felt like "I'm getting my period any minute" cramps all morning. I was so miserable, so sure it was all over, when the cramps suddenly ratcheted up.

Ah. Just an IBS flare up. Probably still residual effects from forcing my insides to EMPTY! ::sigh::

I told my body it was unecessarily cruel and heartless to do that to me. But does my body care? No. It just snarled and said, "Don't like it? Go find someone else to jab." And really. How could I argue with that?


08 June 2007

Nobody else could possibly be that bored

Obviously, the creator of this was in their 2ww.

(I thought I posted this last week, but just saw it was a draft. Duh. 2ww brain?)


Stand back! She's got hormones!

The thing that is really getting me about the 2ww, is not the waiting. Waiting is waiting, you find ways to make the time go by. What's killing me is the emotional torture. Am I or am I not?

I had such a fit of gloom-n-doom yesterday, being so sure this cycle isn't going to work (see what games we play? We can't even bring ourselves to say the pg word, even if we sure we're NOT). Does this or that sign mean it worked, or does it mean AF is coming? I can tell myself until I'm blue in the face that I won't know until I know, so stop trying to interpret the signs, but it doesn't matter. I can't stop. This morning I woke up to realize my boobies are no longer big and sore, so I figured "that's it."

But on the bus ride to work, I suddenly got more nauseous than I've ever felt. And I can count the times I have thrown up in my entire life on one hand. I don't barf too often. But that could mean anything, like maybe I shouldn't have had that pastrami sandwich last night. Besides, it's too early for me to be feeling nauseous if this is working. Yesterday I felt crampy twinges. Pre-menstrual or implantation? Last night, on the way home from work, I burst into tears on the bus for no reason. Hormonal? Sure. But it is drugs or nature?

See? Driving myself crazy. I can't stand it. I can't stop thinking about it. And I can't even have a drink to try to forget about it, 'cause there's still that one little tiny chance in hell...


07 June 2007

Sticky note: place embryo here

This is cool.
(warning: pg ment a few times)

I wish I knew the date of this article. They mention "January 17" but is it this year*? Anyhoo, the article is about a team of scientists who are looking into what causes an embryo to implant in the uterus (I'm not googling that stuff. Nu-uh, not me. Got nooooo reason. No reason whatsoever...). It seems to me that if they are able to isolate the cause, and replicate the molecular changes that occur to cause implantation, maybe someday, REs will be able to replicate that process in the human body.

Clinics will be able to dramatically increase the odds of an embryo sticking, which may also have the side benefit of clinics and patients being more comfortable transferring only one embryo. This would reduce the risk of multiples, and it might even mean for most people, a vast reduction in the amount of stims women need to take, because, in theory, you wouldn't need as many eggs.
The researchers found convincing evidence that a molecular sticking process stops the embryo's journey along the uterine wall and starts attaching it to the wall -- the first stage of implantation. Failure of the embryo to implant causes about three-fourths of lost pregnancies.
When you consider the current method, it's like taking a whole bunch of tennis balls and throwing them at a velcro wall off in the distance, and hoping that some of them - any of them - stick. But, if any do stick, ideally it will be only one, but maximum two. Not very scientific. And not very easy on the patients who have made huge bets on the game, but have no control over the players.

What a difference this research could potentially make in the lives of infertiles.

*updated to note the date of the article, thanks to the nerds on the 'net brilliant researchers** who pose as readers! The article was published in Science, 17 January 2003: Vol. 299. no. 5605, pp. 355 - 356.

**NOTE: kids ment here.



D'ya ever go back and read some of your previous blog entries just for fun? D'ya alternate between thinking, "what the heck did I write that for?" and "heh. I'm funny."

Well, do ya?


06 June 2007

Grace Slick's got nothin' on me

One week in and man, oh Manischewitz, my boobies ITCH! It's driving me crazy. They also hurt like hell. I remember that from last time - that progesterone just messes with my system.

Speaking of which, anyone ever read the fine print on Prometrium? Y'know, where it says, "Do not (their bold, not mine) use Prometrium if you... are pregnant or suspect you may be pregnant."

Um, what?

Also (and this is not very modest of me, so if you're offended by that, you might want to look away now), my crotch is like a space heater on high. I'm emitting so much heat from that part of my body that I could sweat out a small room. Yeesh. Giving that I'm taking progesterone capsules suspended in peanut oil vaginally, I'm emitting other things, as well, but we don't need to go there. Let's just say panty liners are a girl's best friend. I still don't compare to Persephone's stories, though (I also use something like GladRags, not store-bough disposable thingies).

And I'm worn out. Pooped. Wiped. (huh. Never noticed the relationship between those two words before.) And having majorly bizarre dreams. I usually remember my dreams, and they're frequently quite detailed. But lately, they've been highly detailed, extremely clear and just plain weird. Last night I dreamt that I had a baby - not delivered, a newborn just appeared - and I was worried about nursing, but it just latched right on. Then I didn't feed it for 8 hours, but I didn't seem worried, because I took the baby, put it on the grass, where it turned into a white rabbit and started noshing away on the green stuff. And that's just the highlights.

For those of you who are wondering, the last time I smoked pot was the one time I tried it 25 years ago in high school. And no, I've never dropped acid, either. Who needs that stuff when I've got progesterone!! Woohoo! I should start selling it on the street; I could help pay for so many people's cycles! Although getting people to buy into the "take vaginally" part of it, might limit my market.


05 June 2007

Half full AND half empty

However you look at it, we're halfway! Only one week left to wait (please G-d I should have the whole week to wait). Okay, one week + one day, but c'mon, allow my little victories.

Meanwhile, an aside to my Jewish readers. I received this email about a survey on Negiah and Taharat HaMishpacha. Because I love surveys, and am a little obsessed with T"H, I am posting it here. I've seen it around the 'nets already, and filled it out awhile ago, so it seems they're being very thorough and trying to get as large a sample as possible. Go fill it out, if you so desire.

My name is Mark Guterman. I am a Clinical Psychology PhD student working with Orit Avishai of the University of California at Berkeley. We are doing an internet survey of Jews of all denominations. The survey is for both singles and married couples. The survey is online at: www.JewishSurveys.org

Please help us out. We are not making any money on this; we are simply trying to learn more about our community. Your cooperation in this would be greatly appreciated, and you would be doing a service to the Jewish community at large.

More info on the survey:
The study looks at issues regarding Negiah (premarital touching) and Niddah / Taharat HaMishpachah (family purity). Niddah and Negiah play an important role in the every day lives of Jewish men and women. The collection of handbooks on this topic grows from year to year, yet we know very little about how Jewish couples, men, and women experience and observe Niddah and Negiah. Anecdotal evidence and our previous research have led us to conclude that many couples and individuals are experiencing difficulties with this aspect of the Halachah. We are inviting the Jewish community at large to participate in this important survey to shed light on these difficulties and explore some ways to address them. Given the intimate nature of these matters, this brief, online survey is totally anonymous, and no identifiable information is collected.
Thank you very much for considering this,
~Mark Guterman

NOTE: There are some very un-tnius questions in this survey, so be aware if you are uncomfortable with extremely - um - personal questions. -pg

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04 June 2007

What's the other 50%?

You Are 50% Normal

While some of your behavior is quite normal...
Other things you do are downright strange
You've got a little of your freak going on
But you mostly keep your weirdness to yourself
How Normal Are You?

thanks to Rachel Inbar for helping me kill another few seconds of the 2ww.

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