4dp5dt – Pepper & Pessimism

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Yes, that is cayenne pepper on my avocado, and no, I’m not the kind of person who sprinkles pepper and sriracha on everything. Somewhere in my excessive googling, I came across the information that cayenne is great for implantation because it increases blood flow immediately upon ingestion. So that’s what the pepper is all about. What about the pessimism?

Yesterday was a bad day. I’m on 1.5 cc of progesterone and it is rendering me balls-to-the-wall tired. The shots are leaving me much more sore than last cycle, though of course this is a minor discomfort that I am totally willing to live with if it helps us grow healthy babies. To top it off, it’s school musical week and yesterday was the worst rehearsal I can remember in about a decade of directing children’s theater. I tried to stay calm and think of the little embabies, but I was unsuccessful. The truth is, my two week wait has been / will be the opposite of restful and calm, but there isn’t much I can do about it. Oh, did I mention I am being observed at work on Monday by a principal who has never seen me teach before? Some of you may remember that my tube began to rupture on the day I was directing my summer show in the AM and had an interview in the PM. I always have impeccable timing!

4dp5dt is a very boring place. You know it’s too early to think about testing (though there ARE those who get BFP this early, which makes it even harder to resist), and my body is doing absolutely nothing. Except being tired at night after a long day’s work. Nothing too remarkable about that.

Well, as my doctor put it yesterday when she called with my doses, “You’re getting close! Only a few days from being a few days away…”

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Stark White

I am not typically an over-tester. I usually wait until 12dpo (and I usually have my period by then…).

For some reason I tested today, at 9dpo. I didn’t use FMU… and I didn’t wait 4 hours… and I drank things in between. So yes, I know this really cheap internet test isn’t exactly reliable right now, but the stark whiteness of it still makes me sad. I don’t know why I felt the need to test today…

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Blindsided

I expected to feel somewhat sad on Mother’s Day. The pain I feel today, however, has caught me off guard.

It is only 8:30 AM on Father’s Day and my Facebook feed is already inundated with posts. For some reason, I am finding this almost harder than Mother’s Day, but I can’t figure out why. Maybe it’s the progesterone. Back in May, I was riding out a “drug free” month…

9dpo. Too early to test, but based on this month’s stats and how I feel right now, I am not holding on to unrealistic hope. At this point, just want to move on to IVF next cycle.

I will definitely try to make today a celebration of my father instead of grief for the father that my husband has yet to become.

3.5 Million

3.5 million

If I had 3.5 million dollars, I’d be ecstatic. 3.5 million M&Ms would be AMAZING. 3.5 million is a lot! Right?

But 3.5 million post wash sperm is another story. 3.5 million, in this case, is below average. Low, even. When it comes to sperm, the TTC woman needs to be greedy. And 3.5 million is not enough.

The doctor didn’t really say much when she saw the number. Made some sort of noise that indicated “This IUI is probably a waste of time, but you’re naked from the waist down, so may as well just go through with it…” Or that’s how I perceived it, anyway…

Later this morning, after IUI #3, R texted to see how it went. I didn’t tell him. I didn’t tell him that he didn’t give me enough strong swimmers this month for a fair shot. I didn’t send him links with lists of foods that can increase sperm count. I didn’t lecture about stress, or healthy eating, or getting enough sleep.

I simply said, “Ok. Now we wait.”

I made an appointment to talk about “next steps.” When we first began treatments I really thought meds and IUI would be enough for me. I naively thought that surely I would be pregnant by now. But I’m not just one of those people who needed a few more months, a healthy egg, and good timing. No. Infertility is a very real thing. It is scary and it is frustrating and it is unknown. And it is part of me.

Smell the Roses

Warning: This post is uninspired.

Ever so slightly spotting this AM. The tell tale mild cramps. There’s no denying it now. I’m glad I held out testing (12 dpo today); I don’t think I can handle any more stark white sticks. Those things are so mean.

I knew this wasn’t going to be my month. It’s strange, but since I have been under a doctor’s care, I have felt like I know how it will play out:
Feb. (medicated, good old BD) BFN
March (medicated, IUI) BFN
April (medicated, IUI) BFN
—————Future Cycle Predictions

WELL I CAN’T PUT IT IN WRITING! THEN IT WON’T COME TRUE!

Let’s just say, I will need to be patient for a bit longer, but my time will come.

In the meantime, the next few weeks are going to be extremely busy, and I am looking forward to many things:
1) Closing on our new house next week!
2) Martinis!
3) School Musical (I direct it and it’s a BIG FULL SCALE production)
4) wine, wine, wine
5) NO 2 WEEK WAIT
6) Did I mention the martinis and wine? (without the guilt)
7) losing 5 pounds by summer (in spite of the martinis and wine)

Have to keep moving forward, and HAVE to remember to smell the roses along the way…

Copping a Feel

Anyone who walked by my classroom today when there were no students present, may have caught me copping a feel.

Once I hit 8dpo, I start feeling myself up like crazy. I can’t help it.

It’s actually less “feeling up,” and more “giving a little poke.”  I start compulsively pushing in at the sides of my boobs.  The 8dpo and beyond “tenderness test.”

Do they feel the same as last month?  Are they more tender?  Less tender?  Is it a fuller feeling?  Are those women who say that they couldn’t even roll over on their stomachs because of nipple tenderness for real?  Why don’t my nipples feel like that?  I must not be pregnant.  Or does the lack of boob related symptoms actually mean that maybe I am? Was that a cramp near my uterus? Oh, #@!& it… I’ll just eat some ice cream.

The thing is, I don’t even know what I’m feeling for.  Do I want them to be tender, or not?!?  So, I assess the situation (poke, poke, squeeze)… and then I go back in my fertility calendar and compare the feeling I have today to every single other month at this dpo (please tell me you do this too!).  And I hope for an aberration.

Today I found one. So now I’m hanging on to this tiny thread of hope.  By 8 or 9 dpo, I am usually in PMS mode (…usually…).  Boobs are usually starting to give me my first sign of AF, but today…

i.  feel.  nothing.

And I AM SURE it means absolutely nothing.  Or maybe, the meds are lengthening my luteal phase like they are supposed to, which is a good thing.  But it’s certainly not a good indication of pregnancy.  If there is one thing that I have learned with any degree of certainty from stalking the BabyCenter forums, it is that there is no such thing as an early pregnancy symptom that you can be sure of.  There is so much variation, not just woman to woman, but from month to month within the same woman.

There just is no way of knowing until your BFP — and even then, between evap lines and non doubling beta numbers, sometimes you still don’t even really know.  I have yet to even get to that point.  I hope the big fat nothing I feel right now will at least lead me to the next level of uncertainty.  Sounds more promising than AF.  She’s a you-know-what.

1ww

Growing up, I was in a children’s theater group. We performed two full scale musical productions a year. At the start of each new show, we had auditions, which were followed by the dreaded 1 Week Wait.

It was grueling. We came from all over central jersey to participate in this group, so most of us didn’t go to the same school. The week was full of phone calls, notes (the old fashioned kind, handwritten and expertly folded into a tiny little origami triangle), and more phone calls. Now, mind you, we couldn’t actually pass the notes to one another until we saw each other the following Saturday, but there was something therapeutic about writing them. There were no online blogs back then.

So we spent the week speculating, and over analyzing (“well, I messed up the dance audition a bit, but the part I want doesn’t dance much, so I doubt it will matter…”), and praying, and wishing, and making deals with a higher power for the parts we wanted. We tried to talk ourselves down to reality, in case our dreams did not come true. But even if you knew in your heart that you weren’t going to get your dream part, you held on to hope nonetheless.

Then, the big day arrived. The waiting was finally over. Soon, you would know the outcome and there would be no turning back. The hopes you had held on to all week would either be realized or shattered. The director handed out script by script, announcing each person’s part, in turn. Some shows, your wildest dream came true and there was nothing more glorious than hearing your name attached to the leading role you had been hoping for, and seeing it written on the script in your hands. Other years, you could feel your heart sink into your stomach the moment your hopes were shattered. And then of course there was the putting on a smile and forced support for your friends who DID get the parts they wanted. It wasn’t that you weren’t happy for them, it was just that you were so devastated for yourself.

I can not help but draw parallels between that dreaded 1 week wait, and this dreaded 2 week wait. Of course now, instead of twice a year, it’s 12 times a year, and I have yet to receive good news at the end of it. Nonetheless, I always find some hope to hold on to.

At 7dpo today, I have one week to go… and I sure hope I get the part I want…

… Til it’s Pink

Tonight R and I went into the city and I had a drink drinks. 2, to be exact. I’m only mildly sorry about this. I guess I’m prescribing to “drink til it’s pink” for now.

I have a hard time putting life on hold for a “maybe baby.” I’m not going out and getting sloshed or anything like that, and most of the time that wonderful Clomid / HCG cocktail headache reminds me pretty fervently that I really shouldn’t be drinking anyway.

There are different schools of thought on this one so each of us IF ladies needs to make her own decision. I read in a few places that more than 4 drinks per week is linked to infertility. R and I are big foodies and we enjoy our, achem, beverages… but having read the research, I have definitely cut back! I have also read that a glass of red wine each night might help with implantation, so obviously that is what I’m choosing to listen to. The millisecond I see that BFP, not a sip of anything alcoholic will pass my lips, but until then… let the wine flow!

Do you abstain, or drink til it’s pink?

Distractions

Way to take your mind off of TWW if you have an anxiety disorder and emetaphobia (fear of vomiting):

Wake up to DH having stomach issues when you KNOW everyone has been catching that terrible stomach bug lately. DH knows well enough than to admit he feels sick (“I’m just uncomfortable…”), but there’s no fooling an emetaphobe.

I’d rather be obsessing over 2ww…

To the Core!

Pineapple core, that is!

Many TTC women who have achieved their BFPs swear by pineapple core.  What is the “core,” you may ask?

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Pineapple core contains bromelain, which, from what I’ve read, acts an anti-inflammatory, blood thinner, AND it helps to produce cervical mucus.  For whatever scientific and physiological reasons bromelain helps with implantation, many women thank the pineapple core goddesses for their BFPs.  It is inexpensive, natural, and healthy, so I figure it is worth a try.  (Especially since my mother cut up a fresh pineapple last week and I tossed the core into the freezer for safe keeping.  Easy-peasy for me!).  Here is a great link that explains the whole pineapple thing much better than I have: http://conceivewithpineapple.blogspot.com/  Honestly, you can google “TTC pineapple” about a gazillion options will pop up (many of which are testimonials!).

I tried eating 1/5 of a pineapple core every day for 5 days after IUI last month.  I did not get my BFP, BUT my progesterone levels were better.  I have no idea if the pineapple helped, but it certainly didn’t hurt. So, I am trying it again.  As this point, I have detoxed from all other TTC “home remedies.”  No more fertileCM, EPO, or any other supplements.  Just following doctor’s orders, taking my meds, and eating some pineapple core. Oh, and some Brazil Nuts.  😉  What “home remedies” do you subscribe to while TTC?