Saturday, January 29, 2011

So Sad

When I was still living at home 8 years ago my brother's dog had puppies and we kept two of them. When I married DH and moved out we took Missy and my parents kept her sister Katie. Last week Katie had surgery because she ate something that got stuck in her stomach. She went home a couple days later and wasn't doing well so my mom took her back in and they had to open her back up and take some kind of wire out. But the wire had punctured her intestine, they removed part of it and thought it was fixed but it continued to leak into her system and poison her. Last night our local clinic said there was nothing else they could do and sent her to a special dog hospital in a nearby town. They don't think they can save her either because she would not survive another surgery to repair the intestines. My parents will put her to sleep tonight if there is no improvement.

We're all so sad. Katie was so much a part of our family and nothing will be the same without her. What a senseless way to loose a member of your family. No one can understand what got into her to make her eat all those strange objects, its so unlike her. Missy doesn't understand that her sister isn't coming back but its going to hurt me everytime we go to my parents house and Missy runs around looking for her. Missy and Katie have been best friends since the day they were born. My mom and I spend lots of time together taking the dogs for walks and we take them everywhere together. Nothing will be the same now. How can loosing a pet hurt so much? I practically have not stopped crying since last night. I'm thankful I still have Missy but I loved Katie too and will always miss her. Life is so cruel and unfair sometimes.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A Force At Work

Today I was reading "Intimacy Ignited" again and I have to blog about this part. It was discussing how men sometimes demand sex and women often deny sex. We're all guilty of that accusation. And how our marriages can fall apart when we don't even know its happening. Here are some scenarios.

1.) Last night you made love, this morning you can't stand each other.
2.) You talk but say nothing, touch but feel nothing. Feel like strangers.
3.) You know you hurt your spouse but you don't care.

I've experienced all of these, in the past week no less! Of course I blame myself, the hormones, or DH himself. But as the authors stated in this book, those things are caused by another force at work. That force is Satan. He is out to destroy marriage and these scenarios are examples of how he does it. God gave us the gift of sex to make our marriage unbreakable but Satan perverts sex and uses it in many different ways to destroy our marriages. By blaming anyone or anything other than Satan for these scenarious is only helping him to ruin our marriage. We need to look at things differently. We often think oh well that's just the way marriage is. Not true, it doesn't have to be that way! Guys notoriously complain about married life and I challenged DH to say positive things about it around his friends, (which he gladly does because it always gets attention). Now his friends think we're always "gettin freaky" in unusual places. Apparently bragging about your sex life is how convinces them marriage isn't so bad. At the wedding we went to a month ago DH was saying how great marriage is and how happy he is and one guy said "wow I don't think I've ever actually heard someone talk like that about marriage before". By presenting the positive to others it also helps us to focus on the positive things. I encourage all of you that are married to do the same. Challenge either to say only good things about your marriage to friends and family, it really makes a difference.

There is one thing repeated in the book that bugs me. Actually I've read it in the bible several times too and it always bothers me. The book says God designed sex to produce life. Oh the old "be fruitful and multiply", "children are God's blessing on marriage" sayings! Well how come our sex doesn't create life, how come we can't be fruitful and multiply, is our marriage not blessed because we don't have children? Hannah, Rachael, Elizabeth, and Sarah must have all felt the same way.

Last Sunday this quote from the sermon stuck out to me and I want to leave you with it.

"God is a God of action....And when He acts, He always acts in Love".

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Another thing I forgot about treatments

Emotional havoc, yikes stay away! In DH's defense he is just being himself but everytime he even speaks I feel annoyed. EVERYTHING is annoying me these past few days. Date night Friday was a mess. DH made me late for acupuncture and when I wouldn't tell him which road to take (out of pure stubborness but he has been there a hundred times he should be able to find it on his own), I ended up canceling and burst into tears about how why should I go to acupuncture anyway because there is no point supporting a baby that isn't there. Today somehow me going to the gym by myself this afternoon while he does some other things around the house turned into I'm such a fat pig and he doesn't love me or ever want me to be home with him, followed by more tears. Poor DH, I'm a mess and I have a whole week to go before AF shows. Double the ovulation apparently means double the PMS. Its going to be a long week. I hope DH survives.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

You Love Me Anyway

I know the last time I posted a song that speaks it was Sidewalk Prophets and while I try to be diverse, this is my favorite song at the moment. The one that really speaks to me. Here is my favorite part of the song, so beautiful yet true and humbling.......

"I am the thorn in Your crown....but You love me anyway
I am the sweat from Your brow....but You love me anyway
I am the nail in Your wrist....but You love me anyway
I am Judas' kiss...but You love me anyway
See now I am the man who yelled out from crowd for Your blood
to be spilled on this earth's shaking ground
Yes, then I turned away with a smile on my face with this sin in my heart
Trying to bury Your grace
Then alone in the night I still call out for You, so ashamed of my life...
But You love me anyway, oh God how You love me"

I'm ashamed of my post on Sunday, I'm ashamed of myself for reacting in a way that is not what my heart believes. I was angry and wrong to blame God that way. But I'm not going to edit or delete that post because its real, its how I was feeling at the time and I know many of you have felt the same way at times. But I do not believe our infertility is God's fault. He is a loving God who only wants the best for us. I've been through this before. I've explained before why He would allow these things to happen. Its all part of His plan and greater good will come of it. He has never let me down and I know He won't now. But infertility is still so hard. Besides in a way I asked for this. I prayed once, not long ago, that when God gives us our miracle that He would show up in a big way, leaving no doubt that the glory is all His. So if DH was suddenly giving us great numbers and the RE was giving us good odds for success than wouldn't that take away a little of God's glory allowing some credit to be given to science? Not in our mind of course because we know how long we've waited and prayed but to others I can see how they would give science the credit. I often wonder if we do IVF and are successful, if I would be a little disappointed that I didn't get a big showy miracle. But it would still be a miracle to us, one we would treasure in our hearts and forever give Him credit for. But if we are going to defy all odds when we get our miracle then God would have to create a situation in which conception is impossible or hopeless, right? Its all part of His plan, I know it because I asked for it.

So I'm sorry I was so angry and blamed God on Sunday, it was wrong.....but He loves me anyway :)

Thank the Lord for His mercy!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Better Attitude

I feel a lot better now. In a way it feels like I'm moving through the stages of grief. Perhaps the stages of disappointment are similar. Either way, I'm at acceptance now. It is what it is and I'm excited to move on to IVF again. I want to call my doctor and talk about it but it seems a little soon since I just had an IUI two days ago. However I think they would understand because they know better than me how unrealistic it is to get a positive with such a low count. The timing of our IVF depends on the protocol they have me on. But we need to make sure the ER is after the 15th of March because my sub for work will be on vacation, leaving me no way to take time off. But I'm sure they can plan that by making me take an extra week of BCP. I think part of the reason I'm excited is because I've forgotten how much all the injections suck.

We will do a few things different this time. Last time we did limited fertilization because we just weren't sure how we felt about freezing our embabies. Our church as no black and white answer on that, it was just a personal choice. This time we will freeze if we can. However we don't want more than 10. We have to consider the possibility that all of the will survive, however unlikely, we just don't think we can handle having 10 kids. But we will not abandon, discard or adopt out any of our embabies. Whatever we manage to freeze, we're going back for someday and giving them a chance at life. I don't feel good knowing that there is a certain percent that will not survive the freeze/thaw process but I'm going to let that God worry about that. He is the creator and giver of life. If he chooses for them all to die or all to survive, there isn't much I can do about it.

We are using the One-Cycle Plus plan from ARC. At our clinic it is the same price for the same services as if we would just pay the clinic like we did last time. Only with this plan if we don't succeed or if we miscarry a baby part way through again we have a free FET already included. And if we do have a live baby from the fresh IVF and never use the free FET, it still costs the same as if we just paid our clinic up front. We are not sure yet if we will the $10k cash or if we will finance through ARC. We are leaning towards just paying cash. Either way we are ready to move ahead and do this.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sorry God but I'm pissed

I still love you God but I can't deny that I'm mad at you right now. Why do you keep doing this to me? DH always has a count around 10-14mil/ml during the winter months and now today it was only 2mil/ml? That's worse than his average count during the summer months. I'm sure that God has only done this to make me unhappy and probably to teach me something. I was feeling so hopeful after a two year break, I was looking forward to this IUI for over a year, I really thought this would be it for us. And now I'm very angry and disappointed as once again we had only 1 mil post wash. Sure everyone says it only takes one but lets be realistic here. While that theory may technically be true it is statistically very VERY unlikely that an IUI with only 1 mil sperm will be successful. I felt like I should apologize to my RE and nurse for wasting their time on a Sunday. I'm now remembering why we gave up treatments, the disappointment and heartbreak from the constant bad news is too much to bear. Why God, couldn't you just give me something good to think about the next 2 weeks? Even if it didn't work if I could at least carry a flicker of hope in my heart during the 2ww. Now there is nothing but another broken bleeding wound in my heart. I just want to give up for good. And I'm so angry that a loving God would give me such a desire to be a mommy and then not let me. That does not sound very loving to me. It sounds cruel. Why does He constantly make me endure such misery? I'm so mad.

I'm just venting here, I still love God and have complete faith in Him and I know in my heart that He is a loving God and hurts when I hurt but I can't help but be a little angry with him. Everything was looking so perfect this cycle, I was so happy and then every last bit of hope that we will ever have a family is ripped from my heart leaving a hemoraging hole on a heart that was delicately stitched back together in the first place. This sucks. This sucks a lot. But I'll be okay. And when I'm done feeling sorry for myself I'm gonna put my big girl panties on and continue to live happily ever after just me and DH. But right now I'm still angry at God and myself. Why did I let myself get hopeful again? Why was I so positive and happy? Stupid me.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Trigger Tonight

Today I had two good follies, one at 16 and one at 23. The awesome news is that they are both on the right side, which is the side where my tube was wide open. Hooray! I went to acupuncture on Wednesday and again today. She is very positive and encouraging. Now our IUI is Sunday and I'll go to acu again next Friday. Monday is a holiday so I get the day off work to take it easy and relax. So far everything is looking perfect for this cycle. Now if only DH can do good for his part.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Whew....glad that's over!

My HSG was not bad at all, though I'm glad its over. The shot my RE gave me before really seemed to have helped. And he took the speculum out after he got the catheter in, which I wasn't expecting since so many girls have said it was uncomfortable moving around on the table with it in. My right side looks really good, the dye started gushing out of that right away. My left side he had hard time getting it to go through because it kept coming out the right. After I rolled on my side it did go through a little which means its open and he said I'm good but I'm still a little concerned. I need it to be an easy road for DH's little guys to travel. They have enough problems they don't need a difficult terrain to have to overcome. Hopefully my good follies will be on the right side this month for our IUI. I will see on Friday at my ultrasound and I'm praying DH will have good numbers on Sunday. I feel better knowing that everything is all clear. My RE always goes on about how beautiful my reproductive organs are. Is that weird? I told DH, the RE gets so happy about it all the time but I suppose he is used to seeing women with problems and not so beautiful reproductive organs and stellar bloodwork. My RE said today that everything is perfect with me and we just need to figure out what to do with my DH. Yep, too bad no one knows anything or understands male factor issues. But overall I had another good experience with my RE. His attitude seems different now, I guess the two year break up was good for us. But what a difference his attitude makes on my own. It actually makes me feel good about going back to his office again.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

HSG Tomorrow

Here's another good idea from a fellow blogger. She said to read "Intimacy Ignited", a study on the Song of Solomon and marital sex. So I started it and it is good! When I finish reading it I will devote a post just to this book and my sex life with DH, maybe I should put a TMI warning on that one, since my MIL reads this blog too ;)

So HSG tomorrow.....yikes, I'm getting so nervous! Two years ago when I had an SIS done prior to IVF I thought that was incredibly painful. Almost everyone has said that the HSG is worse. I wouldn't be so worried if I could come home and do nothing the rest of the day but I have to go to work at noon and likely be on my feet until 5:00. I am going to acupuncture immediately after the HSG so hopefully if I am having any pain she can help. I'm also worried because the nurse said not to take any ibuprofen because they will give me a shot of something she said was super ibuprofen to prevent cramping an hour before the actual HSG. I don't know what drug it is, started with a T but once I had a shot of Demerol and it seriously made me dizzy, I actually passed out twice. I have never passed out any other time in my life. Its a very weird feeling when everything starts going dark and you know your going down. But it must not be too serious of a drug because I can still drive myself home. Quite honestly I will be a little shocked if I don't get an all clear report from the HSG. No one has ever seen even a hint of any kind of fertility problems on my end and I always get told I have picture perfect fertility. But at the same time there is always this little feeling that maybe I might have endo and as I ponder the fact that DH and I have never gotten pregnant on our own after 4 years of well timed intercourse, maybe I won't get a good report tomorrow. I am expecting a good report but its not impossible that after all this time we find out I'm not as fertile as they keep telling me I am. But mostly I'm just nervous and anxious about the possible pain.

Tonight is my last dose of clomid. Maybe I can get a good night sleep tomorrow. I always take my clomid right before bed. This is based on my un-scientific theory that I will then sleep through the side effects. Compared to some other girls' reactions to clomid it seems to work. I have minor headaches during the day but my only real side effect is waking up with hot flashes at night and tossing and turning because one minute I'm sweating, the next I'm shivering. Not that I should complain about sleep, after all we're doing this so that I will end up pregnant and not sleep a solid night for the next 18 years. I wonder if anyone else ever panics that they might actually get pregnant. The other night as I was sitting on the couch with DH after we were both exhausted from a tough day he said something about being so tired he can hardly get up. And I thought "boy I'm glad we don't have kids, I can't imagine being this tired and still having to make them something to eat and give them a bath and put them to bed". Then I thought "oh crap, what if this IUI actually works?! What if I do end up with the twins my heart so longs for?! That will be the end of nights like this."

So often I don't associate what we're doing with getting pregnant. In some ways it helps me to stay grounded and not so disappointed. This IUI seems like just another procedure and the money we're paying for it seems like just a charitable donation to my RE for which I will get nothing in return. How sad is that? But at the same time I do feel great hope for the next few months of treatment. I really feel in my heart that God is going to give us biological babies, maybe two at a time. I just don't know if now is the time yet.

A couple days ago I blogged about the dvd we watched in our bible study and how I feel bad that I can't wrap my mind around God's awesomeness. This Sunday I was a bit distracted in church and I'd listen to the sermon then my mind would wander. But when he said this, he had my complete attention:

"God doesn't expect us to wrap our minds around Him and understand Him, He didn't design us to. We only need to wrap our arms around Jesus."

I think He put that line in there especially for me this week since I was feeling guilty for not being able to fully understand and appreciate just how great and awesome He is. The Lord knows I will never understand His ways, now if I would just stop trying to understand it and start wrapping my arms around Jesus, how much more peace and joy will I find? It is amazing when you can finally look back and see how God's plan unraveled. I always look back at the struggles DH and I had in our dating relationship and the hardship of his family moving him away and forcing a long distance relationship on us. Now I see how what we went through then has only made our relationship, love and marriage stronger and better. But I didn't know then that I would have the rest of my life to be with this man. Now I praise God for the hardships we endured then so that we can reap the rewards now.

Someday I will look at our struggle to have a baby the same way. I don't hope that someday I will see the good in this, I KNOW that someday I will.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Here We Go

Our IUI cycle is underway. I had my baseline on Thursday, everything looked good. I'm much more relaxed about the cycle itself, stressed about getting out of work for all the necessary appointments though. I used to want to know the results of all my bloodwork and such but I don't care anymore. I'm not anxious about the IUI like I have been before. Probably because even though its been a while, I have already done this 3 times. I know what to expect. I started on the clomid last night and take that until Tuesday. Tuesday I also start my antibiotics for three days because of the HSG on Wednesday. I've always avoided this because of the expense and I didn't think it was necessary. My RE is sure my tubes are open. I wasn't sure I wanted to do it on an IUI cycle but then I read it can actually help because even if they are open the dye helps flush out any debris that might be in the tubes. On clomid I usually make 2 good follies and a third that is iffy. So if DH can just give us a few good swimmers I feel good about this working. I'll have mutiple targets and a clear easy path for them. If this doesn't work I will be suspicious that his sperm are not capable of fertilization. I am praying for 10mil post wash for our ideal conditions. I know my hopes are high so I'll settle for 5mil post wash. Hopefully my HSG will be pain free. After that I have a follie check on Friday and probably a trigger shot, then the IUI on Sunday, one week from tomorrow. So far I feel really positive about this cycle. I really think it could work this time. We'll see if I'm still so positive a week from now.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Star of Bethlehem

First of all I want to say that I am inspired by a fellow blogger that is doing a give-away. I want to do a give-away too! So my 100th post here will be a give-away. I'm not sure what yet - I'll try to make it good! This is post #83 so I have a little bit to go yet. Keep reading and following :)

Our church bible study watched this dvd the week before Christmas. DH and I missed it because of the wedding the night before and our inability to wake up and get to church 1.5 hours early. Poor excuse I know. But we borrowed the DVD and watched it at home. It is awesome. You can read more at this website, The Star of Bethlehem. They talk about how literal some of the references in the bible are to the stars compared to scientific evidence we have now. I always thought such things were metaphors and it really got me thinking, how many other things in the bible can I take literally? Like when it says the barren woman will have a house full of children (paraphrasing). Maybe that isn't just a metaphor either.

Towards the end of the dvd it takes scripture and compares it against astrological events that were happening at the time of Jesus' crucifixtion. I almost cried. How can you not be in wonder of a God who can do such amazing things? But I have to say, I am sorry that I can not wrap my mind around just how awesome He is. He is too big for me to understand. I can not even wrap my mind around the fact that Jesus was beaten so badly He was unrecognizable, then nailed to a cross. I can't fathom it. I can't understand how God could give up His son that way. And definitely can't understand how even if I was the only sinner on this earth, He still would have done it.

Definitely watch the dvd or read more on the website, it will give you something to think about.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Happy Blog-iversary!

One year ago today I started this blog. I don't even remember what my intent was except as a place to vent about life. I looked back at a few posts and while I definitely think I've done some growing and changing, some things haven't changed. For one, my constant promises that I'm going to get healthy and lose weight. Why is that so hard to keep? Well its an ongoing goal but I'm not going to lie to myself and all of you by pretending that this time its going to happen for real.

AF showed up today and while I was happy to see her so we can get started on treatment, I also was disappointed that I'm still not pregnant. Not that I thought drunken sex would work but it would have been a nice to have a surprise BFP. I have very mixed feelings going forward. Here's what the two different voices in my head are saying:

Voice #1 (I HATE this voice): Well God, I gave you two years to give us our baby. I surrendered everything to you and patiently waited. You let me down. Now I have to do this myself. And with that kind of attitude You will probably not let me be successful. It would be so easy for You to make me pregnant, why would You make me go through all these treatments? Maybe these treatments won't work, if You wanted me to have a baby I'd have one by now.

Voice #2 (I like this one better but its harder to believe): Thank you Lord for giving me this two year break to heal my heart and grow up some more. Everyday I become a better mother than I would have been yesterday. Last time I felt surely the world would end if our treatments failed. Well, they did but You kept the world turning. This time around I know that if our treatments fail, I'll be greatly disappointed and unhappy about all the wasted money but DH and I will still be happily married and our life will go on just as it has for the past 26 years. You have provided us a capable doctor and the funds to pay him. I may not be sure we will get our baby this way but I don't want to get to heaven and have you say, "I provided everything you needed to get your baby but you just waited and cried out for Me to drop it in your lap." The fact is that God made doctors to help us. I don't know why He would want us to get our baby through IVF when He could just give us a surprise BFP. But I also don't know why He would give someone cancer only to have them overcome it when He could have just not given them cancer in the first place. And I don't expect to know, that's why He is God and I am little ol' me.

I don't know if we are doing what He wants us to but it feels good to be back at the RE. I have my baseline Thursday, HSG next Wednesday, Follie check next Friday and probably our IUI on Sunday Jan. 16th. If this IUI is not successful, we will do another in February or start BCPs for IVF in February. It all depends on what kind of post wash count we get and what our RE thinks.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Welcome 2011!

So far every single post I've read about saying goodbye to 2010 and welcoming 2011 has been good riddance, it was a terrible year. I don't exactly feel that way. 2010 wasn't a terrible year for us. We actually finally got it together and I dealt very well with life while still being infertile. My SIL had her baby and I got over my resentment towards her so we are almost friends and I love my little niece to pieces. I got two job promotions so we are way better off financially than we have ever been. DH grows everyday more and more into the perfect man. Our marriage is better than it has ever been. So if there ever was a perfect time for our miracle to arrive, 2011 is it.....did you hear me Lord? We're ready, now is a good time. Who am I kidding? Like I have any say over it.

I'm still anxiously awaiting AF. I can't believe when you want her to show she takes her sweet time. I'm either 11dpo or 13dpo. I always have a short LP. If I'm 13 she will for sure show tomorrow. For the past several months I always spot for 1-2 days before. So far no spotting. Even if I was only 11dpo I should have spotting by now. Still no PMS except for a few cramps, it feels like she's weeks away. I've thought maybe I didn't ovulate, but I've never not ovulated plus I had a ton of EWCM. I've tried everything I can to get her to show. I had sex with DH last night which always makes her show up for some reason and I even POAS this morning. You all know that as soon as you POAS, AF nearly almost always shows before that single little test line shows up but it seems she's being stubborn this month because I'm so anxious to get started with our IUI cycle. Actually, now that we decided to do IVF again I'm excited to get started with that too. We are thinking if our IUIs don't work IVF will be happening in May. How I will get the time off work I still don't know. Maybe we won't have to go that route, who knows. But for now, come on AF!!