Thursday, August 25, 2011


Wednesday morning when I got home, I called and signed up for the "taking care of business day" through the county. This is the day when you have orientation and they help you navigate through all the paperwork to become a foster or adoptive parent. I thought I would be really excited about it, but so far, I'm not. I don't really want to foster a child only to have them taken away from me to return to their parents or go to another foster home. I'm not sure how you deal with the loss once they leave and you've formed an attachment. If we adopt, then I'm giving up on my dream of experiencing pregnancy, and having a child that is biologically mine. I know it sounds harsh, but I'd rather explore surrogacy because then I know that there are some sound genetics there. I recently heard a news story on NPR comparing the outcomes of biological versus adoptive children and the effects of upbringing. It seems that no matter how much time, energy and money you spend on your child providing them with diverse opportunities, genetics will win over when it comes to perusing a successful education and career. And, I see many of the mothers who have their children taken away come through my ER. I know first hand how they treat their bodies, their children and others. I remember talking to one woman who was pregnant, using meth and was schizophrenic. All her children were in foster care. I know they need love and support, but that's not my dream baby. I don't want a child who is likely to end up on a similar path. No amount of love can keep a child from developing schizophrenia. So why did I sign us up for such an uncertain path? Today, I'm really not sure.

Monday, August 22, 2011

I Don't Want To Make Lemonade

My dad has always loved the cliched quote "when life gives you lemons, make lemonade." He even used it in his speech at my Bat Mitzvah when I was 13. But what happens when life gives you lemons, you try and make lemonade, the lemons are rotten and you have cuts on your hands? What then?

Am I stuck in a dark place? Absolutely. Do I feel angry? Yes. Am I feeling a little depressed? Probably. Do I feel sorry for myself? Sure. Do I feel like giving up? A little.

I keep having flashes of images that represent the way I feel. I see myself repeatedly walking into a glass door or reaching into a jar and getting shocked. Or with a plug getting yanked open, deflating and falling to the floor. I'm knelt down on my knees, arms up in the air cursing the heavens, tears streaming down my face.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Throwing Money Into A Bonfire

Or, at least this is what I feel like I'm doing. Today I went in for my fourth ultrasound of the week. My RE was concerned about my E2 levels because they were lower than he had expected. They redrew them again today in the morning. This evening I got the dreaded call from my RE, the one I knew deep inside that I was going to receive. My E2 levels are going down. Why? He thinks the ganirelix is shutting down my system. He gave me two options. 1. Continue and increase the medications. See what we get. 2. Cancel the cycle, start again with the old protocol that worked. I chose option 2. Why? Because why continue when we're going for good quality eggs? We don't know what we'll get, and the likelihood of having good eggs that result in good embryos is poor. We've wasted our time and money, but why waste our last attempt at IVF?

I feel deflated, socked in the stomach, like I should be searching out other options. Maybe I'm not meant to be a mother. Maybe I'm being punished by God? Maybe this is his/her way of telling me it's not meant to be.

In the meantime, I'm cooking, baking and on my second Gray Goose with cranberry and pineapple.

Bottoms up!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Sometimes Bad Days Have Nothing To Do With IF...

...And today is one of them for sure.

To understand me, you have to understand that I am an animal lover. So much so that I decided that I would need to marry a veterinarian or a vet tech, because they are the only people who love animals as much and would understand my relationship with my furbabies. Amazingly, a vet tech found me, swept me off my feet, married me (twice) and is now in school to become a DVM. (I'm so proud of my Brain!) Ok, back on topic...My animals are not my children, but they are part of my family and are my furbabies. I love them with all my heart. Bessie and Tessa are mini rat terriers. Bessie is my trouble maker and she's tried to commit suicide several times. She has eaten a fallen medication and ended up in emergency seizing for hours. Her case was so interesting and difficult my roommate used it as a presentation for vet school. She has also jumped off a cliff at the beach, eaten most of a bag of dog food (twice) to the point where she had to hunch over to accommodate her stomach, vomited blood and turned blue after a routine dental which ended in a plasma transfusion and survived an attack by a German Shephard...just to name the memorable times. Her littermate Tessa has food intolerance and irritable bowel. I know this for sure because she's had an ultrasound, a colonoscopy and an endoscopy with biopsies. She's on two meds twice daily and a special diet. She also has a slew of "as needed" meds. Sometimes when she doesn't eat I have to hand feed her kibble by kibble. Boris and Vashti are our older cats and they tend to vomit up hair-balls, but what cat doesn't? Our new addition Beta had two eye surgeries to try and save her eye, and today a third surgery to remove her eye. Watson is our BIG dog and he's 80 pounds of gentile, lazy,  foo-foo, loving.  While I was in nursing school my roommate and I fostered kittens and found them homes at any expense. I even bought everything a kitten needs and left one in my parent's house when they called and said they were on their way home from the airport.

All this back story brings us to today and last night. Last night my friend calls and asks me to take four one day old kittens overnight and during Friday until around 6:00 p.m.  I was off and agreed since it was only one night and one day. They needed to get the kittens out of the humane society because the policy is to euthanize all kittens and puppies if surrendered to them. Her colleague was going to get in trouble for taking them, but they wanted to save them. She brought these little kittens over that were so new that their umbilical cords were still attached. I stayed up the whole night trying to get them to feed, keeping them warm, and toileting them. I had two hours of sleep before having to drop off Beta for her surgery. When I returned to feed them, the strongest one from last night was now limp and cold. I warmed her up, tried to get some glucose into her, and stimulate her. I repeated this frequently for hours until she died. The other three were strong and feeding well. Around 12:30 p.m. my friend calls me and tells me that her employers are threatening to charge her colleague with theft if the kittens aren't returned by 5:00 p.m.  I had to hand the kittens back over knowing they were going to be euthanized. We were stuck our backs up against a wall. If I kept the kittens this woman would be charged with theft and she could loose her license. If I gave them up my friend would probably be fired along with her colleague (she's quitting anyway) but more importantly these kittens will die.

So, on top of all my amped up hormones from this IVF cycle, and being sleep deprived, I'm upset about this kitten situation. I guess this is what I good dead goes unpunished...

Today a red-eyed Pinky.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

August 12, 2011

Today was our fourth anniversary, our third anniversary, and our other third anniversary. It was the fourth anniversary of the day I gazed at the love of my life through an ivory veil as I walked down the isle to spend my life with her. We declared our love in front of our family and friends, and I the eyes of those who mattered we were married. The next year we stood with my parents in a courthouse and were married again. This time it was recognized by the state of California. It was also the day that we had agreed upon to start our family building journey. At that time, we had no clue what lay in store for us.

We’ve hit some low points. Some days I wasn’t sure the Brain would be home when I got there in the morning, anger, BFNs, a D & C, putting her cat down... We’ve had some great high points, gazing at each other 60 feet below the ocean, driving quads through Arizona, celebrating BFPs, getting tipsy while wine tasting…

Thank you dear Brain…I love you!

Monday, August 8, 2011

I Love Her!

The Brain and I both came into this relationship with three furbabies each. Me with two dogs and a cat, and her with two cats and a dog. A little over one year into our marriage we had to put one of the cats down. She was the Brain's baby, the most perfect little cat in her eyes. It was then we decided we'd wait until after we had a baby before getting any new animals. I swore off cats because my brother is allergic. But I digress. As much as I love her babies, they are loyal to her, and I don't have the same warm fuzzies with them as I do my own. My dogs are a little more neutral with their loyalties. Beta is our first furbaby together. The first one to melt both our hearts when she does something cute. We keep turning to each other and saying, "I love her!"

Beta is a great distractions too. Sunday morning in the middle of the night, while nursing a headache, nausea and cramps, the bleeding began. Wonderful . . . withdraw bleeding from the birth control pills! Since my first day of stims, I've had insomnia. When I finally do fall asleep I'm plagued with vivid disturbing dreams. After returning home from lunch in L.A. she played and purred and took a nap on me while I was asleep. She's the best Beta we've ever had!

Friday, August 5, 2011

More Anxiety

As I was walking up the stairs to my RE's office this afternoon, I suddenly had a wave of anxiety wash over me. It hit me and I stopped, like my feet were caught in the sand as the water recedes into the ocean. All I was going in for was a baseline ultrasound, not a big deal, but at that moment my hands were trembling. Each time I go in, I am more and more anxious. It all started with that seven week ultrasound where I was supposed to see a growing little baby with a strong heartbeat, but instead I saw a baby struggling to develop and lagging far behind. Then, a week later I didn't even look because I knew what he was going to say. The next day, I left after a D&C. At our ET I cried, was anxious, impatient, and didn't even watch. I didn't want to see the embryos that I might never meet. I left upset, negative and down. I don't want to be that way. I want to shed this anxiety, drop it in a corner like a heavy winter coat on the last day of winter. It weighs on me. I want to feel weightless again, like when we were scuba diving in Belize. I felt free and exhilarated knowing I was defying nature, breathing underwater, not even feeling the burden of the bulky dive gear. If only getting pregnant were as easy and enjoyable.

In other news, we started our stims today. I forgot the hot searing pain that goes along with Bravelle. I tried to postpone the shot by said "wait wait wait" a lot. But, I know she'll eventually sit on me, so I allowed her to give it to me. I thought that it would be an easier shot now that I've gained a few pounds and have some belly fat...but nope it still hurts.