Public Service Announcement:

This post is more for people not suffering from infertility.

It is funny how everyone has something to say to you about not getting pregnant. I understand people don’t really know how to respond or approach this issue since there is not a lot of dialog surrounding it. I know people are trying to be positive and supportive. But sometimes we just want someone’s compassionate ear. I am going to suggest to you what not to say to someone who is suffering from infertility:

“just relax and it will happen!” – why don’t I relax my foot in your crotch.

“just get really drunk! it worked for us!”- like I haven’t tried that every weekend. we all know how much I love wine…

“just stop trying, that is when you will get pregnant. when you least expect it.” – how about I just stop trying to not punch you in the face. also it is pretty hard to stop doing something when you have already been doing it for so long.

“have you gotten hubs sperm tested?” – duh, that’s like the first step and the easiest!

“You are still young!”- people I’m not getting any younger here. I will be 30 next year. Last time I checked, our “natural” age to pop kids out is actually 15- so I am ancient by those terms.

“I’m sure nothing is wrong with you.” – oh because you have a phD in vaginas.

“It is not in God’s plan yet.” – I am a Christian so I somewhat understand this comment. I believe that God does have a plan and maybe it isn’t the right timing yet, but I don’t want to hear this from you. Plus, have you had a conversation with God about my fertility issues lately? I don’t think so.

“Just be patient.” – ohhhhhhh….. {this is in my angry, agro, grunt voice}

“I have a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend that tied this and that, and the other and it worked for them!” – well my friend of a friend of a friend wants your friend of a friend of a friend to shove it!

I give this advice in a loving way, so sorry if it comes across harsh. It is just so frustrating to get opinions or advice from people who have no idea what it feels like to not be able to accomplish the one thing us women are made to do! Until then, I will just smile and nod politely…

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on another note its obvious that gif’s are my new favorite thing.

 

 

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The 2 week wait: DUN DUN DUN…

A.K.A The “Looking up every early pregnancy symptom on the internet” week wait.

A.K.A. The test your patience week wait.

A.K.A  More like the million year, week wait.

A.K.A The 2 week wait.

For those of you unfamiliar with this glorious term, the 2 week wait refers to the 2 weeks after ovulation and hopefully conception in which you have to wait to pee on stick. As it turns out I am in the 2 week wait as I type this. {5 days past IUI to be exact}.

In the past I have been really sucky at this wait. Patience is a new word that has come into my vocabulary and life practice’s since this whole infertility journey began. It wasn’t until last cycle that I sort of let it go {until 4 days before the 2 week wait was over…. but that is pretty good if I do say so myself!} Each month the 2 week wait consists of scouring the internet for every symptom that could mean I am pregnant! This will go on for hours and days, until I have re-discovered the same information about 3 times. It usually ends up with 5 wasted pregnancy tests. {chaaaching!} I open my fertility friend app every day to see that yes, we are still only on day 3- no time machine here. I begin to check off every symptom I have felt and analyze that against my other charts- because this has never happened any month before- wrong. {my fertility friend app is beginning to become more like fertility enemy}.  The 2 week wait is also full of hopes and expectations that will soon be crushed, once again.

Since finding my peace, this 2 week wait has felt immensely different from the others. I haven’t looked at fertility friend enemy app all month. I haven’t looked at a single pregnancy forum online. I haven’t analyzed any symptoms I might be having- I honestly haven’t been paying much attention. {for me PMS symptoms are exactly what I have read early pregnancy symptoms are}. I feel so relaxed and content about where I am at right now. I am sure things will become more difficult the closer I get to being able to test, but I am making a promise to myself- and maybe you all can hold me accountable- that I am not going to test until the day after I am supposed to start my period. I know everyone is at a different space in their infertility journey so I am going to give some tips that might help you get through the 2 week wait without loosing your sanity::

* take a mini vaca- hubs and I, along with some friends, will be heading to San Felipe this week for an after Memorial Day celebration. It helps to not have internet- kind of forces you not to be tempted to look up your symptoms. It is also nice to be surrounded by friends and fun activities. {hubs and I did this last month during the 2 week wait and it helped me to stay relaxed the rest of the month}.

* plan a date night with your girlfriends. Have a glass of wine {or 2 if you want! you haven’t peed pink yet ;)} and make fun of the men on the latest episode of The Bachelorette.

* get a massage. it. feels. so. good.

* start a good book you have been wanting to read. Especially if it is 700 pages- that will keep you busy for a while.

* limit the time you are on social media. Sometimes social media can trigger negative thoughts and emotions about ourselves. The 2 week wait is a sensitive time and seeing another girl get pregnant while awaiting your turn can send you into a spiral. I find the less I am on social media the more I can focus on what is really going on inside of me. { note: I am going to do another post about social media and infertility entirely}.

* keep busy. I don’t care what it is you do, just keep moving.

* go for a nice, long walk. We live in such a beautiful world. Take advantage of Mother Earths creation and clear your mind.

* don’t put expectations on yourself.

As soon as you know it the 2 week wait will be over. It may end positive- literally- or it may end with you saying “well, we always have next month.” Either way just know how strong you are for getting through it the best you know how. This month I have no expectations for myself. I have hopes and I pray that this will be the month for us. As for now you can find me digging my toes in the sand while sipping a cold O’douls…

 

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Infertility & Love.

Dealing with infertility and continuing a loving and respectful relationship is hard. This is one issue you don’t think you will be dealing with when you get married. You think you will be arguing over money or which side of the bed you get to sleep on, not why aren’t we getting knocked up.

It took a while for me to come to the realization that this is just as hard on hubs as it is on me. He feels sad and let down too. He feels like he isn’t performing his job adequately or efficiently {which by the way he is}. I didn’t stop to think about how he was feeling because I was too caught up in my own selfishness and emotions. When I finally took my drunk goggles off and smelled the roses, I was able to understand and deal with my relationship around infertility in a different way. I really do believe infertility has brought us closer and has deepened our marriage on so many levels. Mind you, we have had our ups and downs through this journey.

My tips:

*Remember you are in this together. No matter what your husband or wife is going to be there when this is all said and done. He is the one by your side lifting you up when you had a bad day, he is the one who you cry to after you found out another person is pregnant and it wasn’t you, he is the one who has that sexy shoulder to cry on, he is the one who makes you feel like no matter what he will always love you, he is the one making you laugh when it hurts and you don’t want to, and he is the one who takes your mind off the negative.

*Make him feel needed and special {and not just for his special sauce}.

*Keep the romance. It gets complicated and unsexy when you have to schedule sexy time around your fertility friend app. {an alert pops up- “ITS TIME TO GET BUSY NOW! NOW! NOW! RIGHT NOW!”} No pressure… riiiiighhhttt.  Guys don’t like feeling like they have to live up to some standard or goal- unless their doctor stats are quality and quantity. We have a secret phrase we use when it is go time, something that takes the pressure off. Don’t just have sex when it is prime time. Have sex just because too! Put on some sexy clothes or some mood music- AIR or John Legend are always winners {wink wink}…

*Talk about the future with babies in it. We still talk about names we like and vacations we want to take with our kids. We talk about what our kids will look like and how we will raise them. I think it is important to stay positive in this conversation and have that glimmer of hope that we will be able to implement what we talk about someday.

*Spend time together NOT talking about babies, pregnancy, or fertility. No brainer right. Take advantage of being able to go on spontaneous dates and sleeping in together. It won’t be this way forever…

*Go see the “Cord Cutter”. This could take up another post entirely, but all I gotta say is GO. I heard about Connie with Soul Sync through a few friends that have been to her- I don’t know if they are ok with me saying their names or not so I won’t- but you know who you are and I thank you for bringing Connie into my life! Anyways Connie is sort of like a therapist, but it is a lot deeper than that… She helped hubs and I so much with issues pertaining to our relationship that had nothing to do with infertility but linked it all together. – Connie at Soul Sync

*Hubs won’t always understand your struggle fully. That was a hard one for me to swallow. Even when he is being supportive, there is a big part of him that just doesn’t get why it is so upsetting when Aunt Flow shows every month. Find a community where you feel comfortable and where people understand your struggle completely.

*Keep your crazy in check. I know how those special little fertility pills can turn you into The Exorcist. And it is no fun for anyone. Hubs is not going to want to get sexy with you when you are being an all out b-word or crying at every commercial on tv . It is easier said than done. I know its like Sybil- you don’t really know you have been acting that way until your head is clear the next month.. “I wasn’t that bad on those pills, was I honey?”…. yes you probably were that bad. Just keep it in check. Be EXTRA sweet.

Most importantly be honest with each other and your emotions. Keep an open line of communication. You are both going to have good days and bad days. That is ok.

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::DISCLOSURE::

I want friends and family to know that they can come to me and announce that they are pregnant. I want friends and family to be able to share their experiences and journey with me as well. I am genuinely excited/happy for you and want to share in your excitement!

It has taken me some time to get over this. There is always somewhat of a grieving period each month when Aunt Flow shows. I have come to terms with this. I have let myself feel these emotions because I think it is ok to feel sad. It is ok to feel robbed. It is ok to feel jealous. And it is ok to grieve something that wasn’t. {all you mommies out there should really be the ones envious of me though… I can still do date nights on a whim without scrambling for a babysitter, sleep in until 10:00am, go on tropical romantic vacas, and read 700 page books!- just kidding, just kidding}

I don’t want to miss out on life or the miracle of new life because I cant have the same thing. I love the quote “Comparison is the thief of Joy”. I will no longer compare my life to others. I will live in the moment because that is where you will find the most joy.

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TGIF

TGIF. That’s all I gots to say. This has been a looongggg week! Now I might be jumping ahead of the story but I want to write this down while it is still fresh in my uterus, I mean my mind. {see what I did there}…

Lets start at the beginning of this cycle. I came out of last month with a failed IUI/injectable cycle. It was hard, but for some reason I held it together pretty well. It is getting easier to see one line on the First Response and spotting on the tp every month. It was also easier because I knew we had one more IUI/injectable cycle left to try. Hubs has been such a gem supporting me and showing his love and compassion for me.

Anyhoo, here we are another month, another shot. Literally.  Imagine having to live your life around taking a freaking shot- oh wait- diabetics probably know what I am talking about. I have to give myself- or I should say Hubs has to give me a shot every evening. Same time, same place. 8:00pm sharp in the belly. {I am taking 75iu of Gonal-F and Menupour. I also take Ovidril when it is time to ovulate}. Let me be clear, I did not let hubs give me the shot for the first week last time. That is how dramatic I was about the whole thing. I mean it is scary. My husband is a paramedic for Gods sake and I still could not relinquish the control for a hot second, even though that is what he does for a living- gives people shots. At first the shots gave me anxiety. For those of you who know me, you know what a hypochondriac I am. Typical evening starts like this- 7:15 light the peace aromatherapy candle. 7:25 drench myself in heaven scent essential oil- this helps with calming and anxiety. 7:45 pull out meds and supplies. 7:50 lay down and meditate using deep breaths on couch. 8:00 hubs gives shot. 8:30 I didn’t die. It’s cool. I’m cool. Repeat.

Along with the shots, I have to drive to La Jolla to the doctors every other day {You are monitored closely when taking the injectable medications}. I live in Jamul. You do the math. Don’t get me wrong it’s nice catching up on new JLo music on the ride, but the traffic. I could never be a 9 to 5er. I would kill a b. This week I have had to drive to the doctors every dayyyyyyyy. It just so happens I have been moving quicker this cycle and I was ready for IUI earlier. I produced two mature follies- aka eggs- that will be released- so yes we could be blessed with twins! My doctor also decided he wanted to do back-to-back IUIs {this is when you do one IUI and then come back and do another the next day- obvi}. Good for my chances of conceiving. Not good for my va-jaja or my patience. What I mean is that every time I go to the doctors I have to get a vaginal sonogram to track my uterine lining and growing eggs. TMI but I am sore come Friday and there is no good time to show for it- if you know what I’m talking about. Not only do I have to spread my legs for some quiet and awkward Asian women every morning so she can probe around in there- I really try to engage and ask her how her morning is, but she doesn’t say anything… I also have to spread eagle for some old man- aka my awesome doctor who I really do like- to insert my hubs stuff- I mean you think it is his stuff… joke, it is, but wouldn’t that suck if they mixed it up with someone else’s?{this time we got 77million swimmers with 100% motility and 67million swimmers with 58% motility the next day. You would think with all those little guys swimming around in there they wouldn’t be so dumb as to miss two eggs!! I mean come on that’s a lot of potential babies}. So every day this week someone was up in my privates and it all happened before 9:00am. Way too early people.

IUI itself isn’t that painful. It feels like getting your annual. Afterwards is a little sucky though. You feel bloated and crampy and heavy. The whole process takes around 2 weeks. I know it doesn’t sound like a long time in the scheme of things and it really isn’t. It will all be worth it in the end! But now comes the hard part- the 2 week wait. I have been horrible at this in the past. Checking every symptom online. Testing a week before I am supposed to get my period. Reading every blog there is about everything that is. Well not this time folks. I am cruising this time. So TGIF because I am done with the meds. I am done with rando’s probing around in me. I am done worrying. Now it is a waiting game…. so I am continually visualizing, praying, and smiling for what comes next.

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IUI in all of it’s glory.

This month is our second cycle/last cycle of IUI in conjunction with using injectable medication. We did IUI last month with injectables and were unsuccessful. {I won’t rehash that experience since you will get the jist of it in my next post}. I am going to get into some med talk real quick so you will know what I am referring to in my subsequent posts. So bare with me:

For those of you unfamiliar with infertility talk IUI stands for Intrauterine Insemination. This is when they take your mandangos spooge and clean em up, spin em around, and separate the good from the bad. Then they take that clean, amazing liquid gold {77 million to be exact- in our case} and insert it past your cervix straight into your uterus using a syringe and catheter. This helps bypass any hostel va-jaja and makes it so the sperm doesn’t have to swim as far. Their adventure begins a lot sooner. {all really exciting stuff. I know.}

Injectable medications- in my case- consists of hormones such as Gonal-F and Menupour {75 iu}. These drugs help stimulate a strong ovulation, produce multiple mature eggs, and helps stimulate healthy estrogen production. Like I said before, I don’t have issues with any of these things- or so we think- but the meds can help juice things up. We decided to be aggressive with our treatment since we had tried other oral medications such as Fermera and Clomid with no luck. Our doctor also recommended doing injections because statistically the rate of pregnancy is a lot higher. With that said rates of multiples are a lot higher as well, 30% chance of multiples. Bring it on baby.

In conjunction with using these meds I also do what is called a “Trigger” shot. This is a medication called Ovidril which causes your body to release all your mature eggs instead of the largest of the eggs, usually just one. In a normal cycle your body will only release one mature egg- maybe two, which is how you get fraternal twins. When you do a trigger shot it forces your body to release all your mature eggs and gives you a better chance of conceiving. With that said, you have to be careful here- injectable medications can cause you to over stimulate, causing you produce too many mature eggs that are being released. BOOM this is how you become Octomom or John and Kate Plus 8. Not fun. Your doctor should be monitoring you very closely so that this doesn’t happen. Usually they will have to cancel your cycle if you overstimulate. A good number of eggs to have is between 2-4.

Keep in mind IUI doesn’t increase your chances of getting pregnant that much. In a normal cycle you only have about a 20% chance of conceiving. IUI ups that about 5%. Injectables up it by 19%.  It is a gamble. It is also said that if IUI doesn’t work for you after 3 cycles, it probably won’t work and you should consider moving on to another form of treatment.

IUI with injectables is also very $$$. I was extremely lucky to have a friend who had just gone through IVF. She became pregnant and had unused medication that she gifted me. YES you can do this with fertility medications. If you are interested in doing any kind of medication for fertility I would check with your doctor and ask about using someone else’s unused meds {not talking dirty needles here}. If it wasn’t for my friend Jen I don’t think we would have been able to afford two cycles of IUI. Also, without the support of my parents we would not have been able to continue with our treatments. So thank you to everyone who has helped us 🙂 It is our personal decision that we are only doing two cycles of IUI. I have done research and I believe that if it doesn’t work this time then it wasn’t meant to be. We have talked about other options such as IVF if this door closes. So please pray, send good vibes, do whatever it is that you do that this month is our month!!

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Benedictine Blessing Bracelet

Obsessed with my new “blessing bracelet”! Wear this bracelet on your wrist to remind yourself that God has given you a mission to make the world a better place, and you can choose to fulfill that mission by using your hands to do good. I hope by using my hand to write down my experiences that I can help someone else who is struggling not feel so alone. I am so blessed in so any ways. I need to remember to be thankful for those things and not take those things for granted.

Benedictine Blessing Bracelet

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