Friday, August 31, 2007

Happy, Happy!

We are going away for the weekend for a little R & R. Hopefully, this will help me get my mind off of the TTC or the lack of TTC activity in my life right now.

Good luck to All.


Grandma's Refrain

When I was seven years old, my mother and I spent the entire summer with my grandparents, back home, in the Caribbean. The summer was filled with countless aunts, uncles, cousins, sun, palm trees, and glorious food. Every activity and everyone revolved around my grandmother, the matriarch. What I remember most about my grandmother was her hands: ripened, sun-kissed, gentle, adept and warm. Her touch was soothing, confident, maternal.

I come from a big family. Grandma had 10 children, who each had about 2.5 children who each had 1.5 children.

That summer Grandma and I talked about many things, but what she talked about the most was the value of motherhood. “You are going to love being a mother one day,” she said over and over again.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Patience is a Virtue

Everyone should have a doctor friend like Dr. Val. Dr. Val just finished her residency in Ob/Gyn in Connecticut and she is now embarking on her own private practice down South. A mutual friend gave me her number so I could talk to her about the pros and cons of surgery. When I called she was very generous and patient. She let me know that there is still plenty of hope and plenty of time for me and my egg drop drama.

Thanks, Dr. Val!

Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) I have elected to follow my RE’s advice and have the myomectomy.

Now if I could only stop researching everything that could go wrong during surgery, how the surgery could affect my chances of getting pregnant, and how the surgery may result in a hysterectomy, I think I would be able to come to terms with my decision and stop second guessing myself.

Patience is a virtue!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Down but not Out

I feel down right now but not completey out. My RE told me today that he strongly recommends surgery to remove my fibroids. He basically said that they could affect my fertility and that they could increase my chance of miscarriage. And of course no one wants that. Dr Feelgood said that it wasn't so much the size of the fibroids but their location; I have two grape-sized fibroids lodged in the muscles of my uterus.

I am not a happy camper right now but my RE seems to think that this procedure ill increase my chances of getting pregnant and giving birth.The surgery is cheduled for mid-October. The recovery time is 2 to 4 weeks. I have to wait three cycles until I can TTC again.

So we are looking at an October birth, if everything works out.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

More Fun with Needles

Today, I had more fun with needles, but this time, they were small and designed to move my Qi not make me bloated and nauseous like the injectables did.
I went to the acupuncturist today. The Dr, I will call him "Dr. Querky" (because he was) looked at my tongue and told me that I had a blood blockage which caused the fibroid to grow and made it hard for me to conceive. He said that he could treat me and that my energy would eventually realign, creating a more hospitable environment for the egg. His approach works in tandem with western doctors, so I promised to keep him abreast of everything my RE said. Then he put me on the exam table and stuck needles into me. And I gotta admit that I actually enjoyed it.
Dr. Querky played music and turned the lights down low. He told me to visualize the fibroid moving out of my body and then encouraged me to breathe as he left the room. I was able to lie there for 40 minutes. I left Dr Querky's office feeling totally relaxed and hopeful. Monday is the day I discover if I really need surgery and long I have to wait until I can TTC again so I need all of the hope I can get.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow

I know this is a bit corny, but as a child I really loved Orphan Annie. "Tomorrow" was also one of my favorite songs when I was around 8 or 9 years old. I think it was the first Broadway play my Mom took me to and the memory has stuck with me all of these years.

This week I indulged in a bit of a pity party but today I picked myself up off of the floor.

Tomorrow, I am going to see an acupuncturist about my fibroid/fertility issues. And I am actually excited. My hope is that this acupuncturist will be able to work with dr. feelgood, my fertility specialist, and that the three of us (plus Nadia, of course) will be able to make a baby.

Next week I meet with my RE to find out if I need surgery to remove my fibroid or not.

Wish me luck!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Bloody H*ll!

Christmas did come early this year, but I did not get the gift I was hoping for. Unfortunately, I got my period; in fact, it came a few days early.

I have to admit that this intimate discovery reminds me so much of the first time I got my period the summer of my eleventh year. Upon seeing the blood, I felt, shock, confusion, and shame. I also remember a pervasive sadness-- perhaps a mourning for innocence lost, mixed in with a fear of the unknown. Today the feelings are exactly the same.

Inevitably with me, the anger creeps in. More than anything else right now, I feel very angry. My donor had a 45million sperm count with 60% motility and now this.


I am angry because I know that the next step, according to my RE, will be to discuss my options regarding fibroid surgery. I don't want to have surgery! At the same time, there is a chance that the fibroid has an effect on my fertility. There is also the chance that I will get pregnant and have complications due to the fibroid.


I wish my reproductive functions were more in line with the fantasies my mother inflicted on me when I was still young, innocent, and naive: “be careful or you will get pregnant,” she said shortly after I got my first period.

What a joke!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Waiting for Christmas

I am not in a very good mood today.

You see, I was never very good at waiting. When I was young, I used to shake the gifts under the Christmas tree and beg to open one early. My mother never relented. I would wake up before 5am on Christmas morning and I always had to wait until at least 6am. Then, we were required to make ourselves presentable for Dad's photo shoot. It was excrutiating. Then, finally, I would be allowed to open my gifts.

As an adult, I have to admit I have not gotten much better. In fact, one could argue that I am actually worse. You see, Nadia and I always open our gifts before Christmas morning. Sometimes we make it to Christmas Eve night, but last year, I think we unwrapped our gifts the day before Christmas Eve.

So, I am really having a hard time with TWW. I have about 9780 minutes left until I will allow myself to test. And even though I could test early, I want to give myself the best chance of getting a conclusive result. Even though I am trying to distract myself, I still find waiting very hard.

Reading other blogs in the sphere does help pass the time, though.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Help Needed: The Three Month Rule

Well, one of my friends asked me today if I believed in the three month rule. “Would you let me know if you were really pregnant” she said.

“Well, I… I dunno…” I was planning on telling her but when she asked me, I started to think, am I being naive?

Frankly, it is way too early for me to even thinking about testing yet. I mean, I have at least 192 hours before I would even consider testing, but who’s counting?

But, do you believe in the three month rule? Is there a superstition about telling folks too soon?

For those of you have dealt with this issue before and for those of you who are hoping to deal with this issue, would you let your friends know if you were pregnant. Obviously, the first three months are really risky so it makes sense to wait, but what if I don’t tell the folks at work and I have really bad morning sickness won't they figure it out? Can I hide that? What do folks normally do in these situations?

Like I said, I have no idea if I am pregnant, but in the interest of watching the eggs fall through the hour glass during the TTW, I thought I would ask you: how have you handled it or how do you plan on handling it? who would you tell, if anyone about your pregnancy in the first trimester? What would you recommend? What have your friends done?

Thanks in advance!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Are We There Yet?

Can I test yet?

Anyone who knows me knows that I am an extremely patient person, but the TWW can try anyone’s patience.

Can I test yet?

I tested early once and I was completely devastated when I got a BFN. I promised myself that I would never do that again. So I have to wait.

Can I test yet?

I guess I should look at this as a life test:
*Just how patient am I?
*How much suspense do I really like?
*How many new ways can I find to distract myself in one day?
*What is my favorite form of torture?

Can I test yet?

I have bought some new trashy novels to read, new music to listen to, and have scheduled lots of time with friends. And I also must mention that I intentionally agreed to meet insanely tight deadlines at work over the next two weeks.

But can I test yet?

Nevertheless, it is extremely difficult for me not to interpret every bodily twinge as a sign of pregnancy. I am going to spare you the details, but I think I could be pregnant. Then again, maybe my body is simply working its way through the injectable medication.

Can I test yet?

Needless to say, it’s going be a long two weeks.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

One Tornado, One Flood, Two Angels, and An IUI: Are You Experienced?

Okay, so today was the second of two IUIs. And, as you know, it rained cats and dogs in New York City last night. Nadia left early with the car, before we realized that there was no public transportation.

Once it dawned on me that I might miss my chance, I fell into a panic: How the heck was I going to get to the drs to have my IUI?

I have been on injectable medication for 9 nine days. This was my fourth round of IUIs and a lot is riding on this one. If this doesn’t work, I have to have surgery to remove a worrisome fibroid.

Talk about egg drop drama!

I was supposed to get to the office by 9am and it was 8:40am. The streets were teaming with folks who wanted to get to work. The buses, when they did come, were filled to the brim and there was no way I was going to make it on time.

Suddenly, I spotted my neighbor in the crowd, and by chance I asked her how she was planning to get to work. She said that she was just offered ride to mid-town, which was exactly where I needed to go.

“I’ll take it!” I exclaimed.

“Excuse me?” she said.

I stammered, “Um, I mean, can I get a ride with you?”

She softened and introduced me to her new friend, Allison.

Allison and her husband had just moved here from North Carolina, so they were still pretty friendly. They had yet to develop that New York 'tude we are famous for. “Where do you work?” Allison asked. "Well, I work in Chelsea but I have a doctor’s appointment in mid-down." She encouraged me to jump right in to their luxurious toyota corolla. The ride was quick and painless. Virtually perfect!

My North Carolina angels smiled sweetly as they dropped me at my doctor's doorstep. When I walked into the office, Imagine by Lennon was playing. I got there right on time. Everything seemed to be falling into place.

Despite the tornados and flooding, I had my IUI right as scheduled. The doctor said that my donor’s sperm count was 45 million (oh my!).

About an hour later, I had the most horrible cramps ever! And they are still going strong. I hope it’s a good sign. No matter what happens, this is definitely an IUI experience, I will never forget.
But, let me keep it real, I do want to have my baby.

Shout Out!

I want to talk this time to give a shout out to the wonderful NYC blog-gers who nurtured and sustained me this weekend. I am so glad to have met you and had the opportunity to hear your stories first hand. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You. I'm humbled and inspired.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Up, Up and Away!

Tomorrow, my beautiful stomach and I are going to float to the drs office for the first of two IUIs. I will be singing a song, but it won’t be the classic hit by the Fifth Dimension; it will be my favorite Jimmy Cliff song, “You Can Get It If You Really Want.” Whenever I need a little inspiration, I remember the chorus: “You can get it if you really want, you can get it if you really want, but you must try, try and try, try and try, you’ll succeed at last.”

As I float tomorrow, I will remember Jimmy’s prescient line, how much I really want the egg to drop, and the fact that this try really could be magic.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Lucky 7

My donor # this cycle consists of four numbers that add up to the number 7. I was never into numerology before, but trying to conceive (ttc) has broadened my horizons.

The number seven has magical powers. Afterall, it is the number of the gods, featured prominently in Roman and Greek mythology and the Holy Bible. Also, let’s not forget that the number seven can be found throughout popular culture, ranging from Prince’s seminal classic Seven to cartoons such as The Seven Dwarfs. Last but not least, in the gambling world, Lucky 7 images are derived from the game of craps, where rolling 7 wins.

This week, I will have two IUIs and Nadia will be by my side. I have a good feeling about this cycle. Despite feeling bloating and perpetually tired, I feel relaxed and open to the possibilities.

I recently met some other women who can relate to my trials and tribulations. And in spite of their own egg drop drama, they are still standing.

I'm feeling lucky.

Friday, August 3, 2007

The Shoes of a Lesbian Dad

I discovered Lesbian Dad on the same day that Nadia jokingly complained to me about how hard it was to be a lesbian dad. “Being a lesbian dad ain’t easy," she said. "You have to get up early to take your wife to the doctor so she can have her blood drawn and her poonanny checked by an objective third party. I’m tired,” she said. And we both laughed because we were both tired. Tired of the doctor visits, not to mention the fact that it was barely 5 am.

At that moment, however, I thought about how challenging it must be to be the non-bio mom in this equation. I keep forgetting because I'm feeling very self-absorbed these days. Pumped up on fertility medication, I experience life in a daze so I'm not as present as I used to be. When Nadia joked about the challenges of being a lesbian dad, I thought about how easy it would be for her to stay in bed in the morning and let me go the doctor by myself. And I wondered what I would do if the situation were reversed.

I don’t know what I would do if she were on fertility medication; constantly scrounging the internet for information; investigating new fertility treatments; reading every book written on the topic; and repeatedly recalculating the odds of getting pregnant 'this cycle' with a frenzied look in her eye.

I don't know how I would feel if I recently chose to have a hysterectomy to remove my fibroids. Nadia never wanted to give birth so she had no qualms about having her uterus removed when her fibroids got too big. How would I respond to my partner’s burning desire to bear a child if my core values privileged nurturing children in care who may not have functional familes?

It is true that for most of my life, I did not want children. But something changed in me within the last seven years. Repro desire has crept into my heart, slowly but surely, and I have to admit that it can be consuming at times. During those moments, it's hard to remember to make space for Nadia. And it's hard to know how to make space for Nadia.

I think it must be hard for Nadia, the-lesbian-dad-to-be, to keep her center, her place, her identity vis-a-vis our unborn child in an experiment between my body and anonymous sperm. It's an adventure where the stakes get higher and higher with each passing day.

The underlying questions remain the same:
*How much will this cycle cost?
*What are they long term effects of infertility drugs?
*How long can we afford to keep doing this?
*Does this crap really work?

And the answers to those questions seem to change all the time. The uncertainty lingers.

But I do know that the love still flows deeply between us and that Nadia will make a great daddy.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

3 More Days to Go!

Nadia and I arrived at the drs at 6:45am today to get in line. I was number two. After a blood test and ultrasound, my dr told me that I need to inject for only three more days.


I can't wait until this part is over. Then it's two IUIs and the TWW.

One day at a time...

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Fun with Needles!

For the last four nights, my belly has been our injection site. Tonight we are aiming for the upper thigh--fun!

This round with injectable fertility medications is an infuriating and infantilizing experience. I feel helpless and angry but I am not sure why. I am very emotional and totally zoned out at the same time. Everything interaction seems heightened but I also feel detached from my surroundings.

The routine that Nadia and I have developed around these injections is extremely intimate and intense. We are bonding around needles and fertility medication. If nothing else comes of this, bio-tech has brought Nadia and I closer together.

How ironic!