27 July 2007

Disappearing act

Honest, I didn't mean to drop off the face of the earth for 3 weeks. I have been so swamped at work, that I barely have time to pee, never mind take a lunch, read my email (sorry, Mom, I'll mail soon!), and forget about reading blogs. I'm 14 posts behind on the blog with the fewest unread posts. I go home, eat dinner, and collapse into bed.

I knew today was going to be quiet-ish, so I was hoping to post. I just thought I'd be able to be witty and fun. But it's not in me today, because sadly, my family suffered a horrible tragedy a few days ago. For privacy reasons, I can't go into it, but suffice it to say someone is dead and a 3-year old will likely be having nightmares for the rest of his life. Someone I love very much, along with her children, is suffering a pain and horror I hope no one ever has to know. All because another person was selfish and cruel and in incredible pain that he refused to acknowledge and seek help for, and did something despicable.

I want to pray that his soul finds peace, but I can't yet. Right now, I'm happy to hope that his soul rots away in agony for what he's inflicted on my family. And my attention is better spent praying for strength for my family right now. Then I can pray that I find the strength to forgive him, and that my family finds a way to forgiveness and healing. It's going to be a very long time.

I'm sorry this sounds like such a tease. But I need to talk about it, but I can't talk about it here, but this is my best forum for it. It's all so sad.

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06 July 2007

Infertility haiku

So I was tagged by Kirby to do this Haiku meme. Kirby's are awesome; she obviously has a flair for the haiku. Mine are kind of lame-ish, but they get the point across.

doctor said cancel
not enough follies or eggs
we retrieved anyway

four eggs, not enough
"we prefer five, six or more."

implantation? no.
no gestation, it's all over
no baby for you

first wife said no kids
vasectomy for him
now I get the pain

why don't you adopt?
you know, to get pregnant you
just need to relax

your eggs are no good
use somebody else's eggs
then you'll feel better

I know you'll be a
mommy someday, I can just
tell about these things.

if we use donor
eggs, will our baby also
have his bright blue eyes

(Update: somehow this one got left out of the original)
it's a friend's birthday
but we have no kids to bring
no party for us

I tag Bea, Megan and Meg, who I'm sure doesn't have time for this at all!

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Thank G-d it's b!tch day

Why do some people insist on using enough perfume/cologne to choke an elephant? People! Just because YOU don't smell it on you, doesn't mean WE can't!

Why do 60-year-old lesbians think it's okay to wear a drill-seargent buzz cut, tank tops and combat pants? And then wear bright red lipstick? I don't get it. It's quirky on 20-somethings, but ya gotta stop at some point.

Thanks for the encouragement about low-dose cycles, you guys! I hadn't realized that it was not such a bizarre concept. Now we just have to start our phone calls to see who is willing to do it here. Maybe we'll just wind up going to NYC; what we save on meds will pay for our airfare. And I just want to say, I agree with Bea. I don't object to the information in the letter, I object to its presentation. You won't give me an appointment, but you'll break my heart with blunt, impersonal sentences. Information has to be shared, there are just better ways to do it.

There's this weird thing that happens to me when I'm not cycling. I can actually convince myself that I don't really want kids. I'm tired - I can sleep late. I tell myself I couldn't do that if I children. I'm sore - I don't have to worry about carrying a baby around. I want to go to the movies - I don't have to worry about a babysitter. I hear my neighbours dealing with temper tantrums and realize I'm glad I don't have to deal wtih all that. Until I see a baby, of course. It's all a mind game.

But during my IVF cycles, I wanted it. I wanted it bad. I didn't fall into a puddle of tears when we got our negatives, in fact, if I remember correctly, I didn't even cry. But I was oh-so-sad. Devastated that I'd failed again at having a chance to raise a child, to watch my son or daughter be a bar or bat mitzvah. To watch my husband discuss Torah with him or her. To stand under the chuppah with him or her. To be heartbroken, yet thrilled, when he or she moves out, knowing that I've done my job. To watch him or her go through all of the above with their own children. (wow, is it way too hard to write "my child" when referring to all this). I cry at weird times. Or not so weird. Like when I'm sitting on the bus, in one of the sideways facing seats, and a very very pg woman decides to stand right in front of me (even though she'd been offered seats) with her enormous belly - seriously - right in my face. If the bus swayed, she would have bumped my nose with her inverted belly button. I bawled in my book all the way home. But then I was fine and back to my rationalizations.

I have to make sure that this "eh, I don't really want this" lethargy doesn't overtake us and prevent us from pursuing another cycle, low-dose or otherwise. I'm not ready to face a donor egg situation; I might not ever be. And adoption? We can't afford that. And we're too old for most places we'd consider. Hubby and I have talked about this extensively, and if we were to adopt, we'd want an infant, for a number of reasons. Which really limits our options. So, for now, it's cycling or nothing. And I've already wasted one egg this month, and will be wasting another next month, when we're going away. I don't want to waste any more.


04 July 2007

You can't improve, so just give up

And I quote:

"It's not likely that we can improve upon this in another cycle. It would probably be more logical to consider other options such as adoption and egg donation."

So after being told I should wait for the letter from the RE to make a follow-up appointment, not wanting to wait, then finding out there are no appointments until August, we got the letter. Last cycle, there was at least a hand-written note on the letter. This was straight-on typed, and I'm not even sure the signature isn't a stamp.

The last Barren Bitches Book Tour covered the book by Peggy Orenstein, waiting for daisy (I read the books, but don't do the tours, because book club and book tour stuff makes me feel stupid.) There were so many moments where I nodded and held back a, "you go, girl." But when I got to this paragraph, just a day after getting the letter from my clinic, I jumped up and shouted, "Hallelujah!" Hubby and I had discussed this very thing two weeks before.
"I felt like the high roller whose new friends disappeared when his stake was gone. The caring brochures, the chummy smiles, the warm affect of the clinic "team" seemed abruptly stripped away, revealing nothing more than a cold-blooded business. We had wanted so desperately to believe that we had ignored the sales pitch in the compassion, the coercion in the photographs of babies and sunflowers. But I finally got it - these guys may have been doctors, but they were also salesmen. I may have been a patient, but I was also a consumer. I was undergoing a procedure, but I was also making a deal - and they were making a buck."- Peggy Orenstein, waiting for daisy
We didn't perform up to our clinic's expectations, the odds are we will continually fail and that will make them look bad.

But, they "were pleased to obtain 3 mature eggs and one immature egg."

What's wrong with that? Why do we have spit out 15, 20, 25 eggs each cycle? So what if only 2 fertilize? I'd only want 2 embryos transferred, anyway. Hubby has had a few conversations with an RE we got friendly with at a conference a while back. He told us that the down side of being plied with maximum dosages of gonal-f, lupron, repronex, etc., etc., while increasing the number of follicles and eggs produced, is the potential for chromosomal damage to the embryo. In which case, nature (usually) intervenes and prevents the embryo from implanting and maturing.

Alrighty then. Why did my RE never tell me this? I've never seen this mentioned in my own research, I've only ever seen the warnings of cancer risks to the patient. All the conversations about cancelling this cycle because of my low response, no one ever said, "and y'know, there's a chance that even if we do eggs, the embryos will be so genetically damaged, they won't implant anyway."

What's wrong with doing a regular cycle, with minimum meds, getting one or two follies, one or two eggs? Ostensibly, I ovulate every month anyway. In theory, I'm already producing one egg each month that is going to waste. So what if I don't get extra embryos to freeze? So what if we don't have a choice of the "best" egg and the "best" embryo? People who get pg that other way - y'know, using "sex" - don't get a choice. What the fuck difference does it make? Seriously?

I remembered a clinic whose focus is low-dose cycles being mentioned in an issue of ATIME's magazine a while back and decided to look them up. They're our next phone call. And we're not buying into any caring brochures, chummy smiles or photos of babies and sunflowers.

For extra credit, some light reading: Daily Mail article

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