Sunday, December 27, 2015

Merry Christmas

Could have been worse, I guess.

My family barely talked to each other, like usual.  We talked about the weather and work, like usual.

His family was so far away.  His cousins all know but don't give a shit.  I used the trowel in the tamale assembly line.  Using a trowel is controversial, so they gave it to me because I have no strong opinions about tamale construction.  That was kind of fun, and I thought the trowel worked better.  Bisabuela wasn't there.  There was hot chocolate, yay, instead of being stuck with that gross guava drink.

A cousin announced a pregnancy with her 50 year old boyfriend.  This year, he had custody of the 15 year old, who was about to blow a vein with this joyous news.  There was Hermione's baby and Fancypants's baby.  There also seemed to be a lot more toddlers, just a ton of people.  So many people, and no one said shit.  We talked about the weather and work.  And it was fine.  I mean, I'm not sure why I spend time with these people.  There are so many of them and I don't even know their names, but whatever, it's a few hours at Christmas, and Sperm Donor has always been the golden child and they like it when he comes back once a year, and maybe an Easter here or there.

Christmas dinner with just Sperm Donor, his parents, and his siblings was going well.  Of course, all we talked about was the baby, is there anything else people talk about?  But then the drinks started flowing...  Hermione's husband, I'll call him Harry, is not very likable, and he's the guy who will sit in the corner with the phone.  I guess someone at the big gathering had asked him how long they were trying (WTF?) and here we go with the bragging.  Sitting right next to his sister in law, and he knew about at least two losses.

Hermione's baby was an accident, and they didn't even want kids.  And HAR HAR he shouldn't have been surprised because Harry's other two kids (with two different women) were surprises.  Harry was a surprise, hell, I even heard Sperm Donor was a surprise, and then I just cut him off.  I didn't want the rest of the story, I didn't need his punchline.  Mid-sentence, I screamed over him WHAT A FUNNY STORY in the most obvious sarcastic tone that even he would understand.  And I pulled a straight diva move and went into the same back room to cry again.  Sperm Donor was pissed and told everyone we were leaving.  He took my side this time, I was pleased with that.

In the back room, I cried.  I cried for Christmas AGAIN.  I cried for everyone pregnant, I cried for everyone having what I can't have.  I cried for all the dead babies.  I cried for the frozen babies that we can't decide to even unfreeze.  Then I made a big mistake, I checked Facebook.  Everyone is either pregnant or posting pictures of their kids.  Merry Christmas to me.

I calmed down, we went back to Christmas and watched a football game.  And we talked about the weather, work, and football.   Like usual.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Miscarriage on "Transparent"

I'm generally sick of infertility on TV.  It pops up where I don't want it, like Into The Woods being based on some desperate baker's wife to get pregnant, or an ectopic being a dramatic medical complication on Gray's Anatomy or a miscarriage neatly tying up a Big Love plotline.

But I just watched the second season of Transparent on Amazon, and O.M.G.  This has spoilers, so if you haven't seen it, go watch it.  This post will wait.  Just go watch it, if you can handle VERY adult content and a show that tries to make you uncomfortable whenever it can.  SPOILER ALERT.  I stayed up all night watching this season.  This show is about gender identity and graphic sex, so a sensitive portrayal of loss wasn't what I was expecting.

This miscarriage was dead on.  The ultrasound tech, "let me get the doctor," the look on her face, and I felt that feeling that can't be described.  Vomiting on the floor at crossfit, get that one too.  Running off the road and having a panic attack.  Insisting we get pregnant RIGHT NOW.  The ticking clock.  Insisting we take a minute to "breathe."  Wanting to do it "right."  Wailing at a public event and blaming some stupid shit for killing the baby.   Screaming in grief.  Narcissistically blaming myself.  Blaming the evil eye.  Strangers looking uncomfortably, not sure what to say.  Your own sister completely useless in your grief.  O.M.G.  Done all that.

I've done and said and felt all those things from all those characters.  Well, not eating lunch meat at the grocery store, that's gross haha.  When he vomited on the floor at Crossfit, I was already crying. I was so moved by this portrayal of miscarriage and for all the reactions it brings out.  So moved.  Got no sleep.  This one was exactly right.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Insurance Battle

The insurance appeal has gone to hell.  I'm in some weird overlap of Obamacare and the state regs, and I'm just being punked at this point.  The bill was way lower than I expected, only 9K for the doctor part!, but I'm pissed now.  I think I'm going to have to sue them.

So as I was gathering up all my documents and receipts, my god that appeal was sent in August?, I just felt so ANGRY.  That everyone else just has some wine and Netflix and gets their baby, and I am going to be freaking suing an insurance company for Christmas.  It's not fair.  It's all not fair.

Last night, I saw where I had hung the Christmas lights.  I put up the hooks last year when I was PUPO, just barely out of reach.  Why did I get on a step stool and go out in the cold when I was PUPO?  Why did I have that tea?  Why did I use the scented shampoo?  It's all my fault.

I was very naive for thinking a health insurance plan that said it would cover infertility actually would.  This process has brutally taken my naivete in many ways.  I wouldn't wish an insurance battle on anyone.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Not So High Risk

Six months after my scary lupus tests, I finally got a consult with a MFM.  He was young and good looking.  Maybe the most patient and start seeming doctor I've met with ever.  I was surprised he was a dude, he has a unisex name, haha.  At this point, I don't really care who sees my goods.

My lupus thing means exactly what I thought it did.  I am a hair away from the clinical diagnosis of antiphopholipis syndrome, APS.  He seemed unconcerned.  Lovenox, no big deal.  He seemed to think twins wouldn't be a big deal either.

This isn't the response I was expecting.  I told sperm donor, and he freaked out and said we can't possibly have twins.  So now we are at an impasse.  Medically, everything seems fine.  But we can't agree on what to do with the frosties.  One second I want to impant two.  The next I want to hire a surrogate.  The next I just want to do nothing.

Mostly, I'm scared.  The idea of losing another heartbeat doesn't sound like something I could survive.  I'm not sure I'm strong enough to keep going.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Thanks for Something

Thanksgiving was all about the OMG baby, of course.  I did a lot of the work.  And everything was about the baby.  Baby.  Baby.  Baby.

Of course, the baby is perfect.  It will eat from any device.  It will sleep in any location.  It will make some kind of face.  It's perfect.  And then she said that it had sperm donor's eyes.  She said her baby had my husband's eyes.

I was filled with this fucking rage of how dare she.  How dare she steal everything I ever wanted.  How dare she walk in here like nothing happened.  How dare she not even fucking text when my baby is dead.  How dare she not give a shit about the hell I am walking through.  How dare she mock me and all my loss by saying her baby looks like my husband's.  IT'S NOT MY HUSBAND'S BABY BECAUSE THAT BABY IS DEAD.

A few minutes later, when we were still talking about the baby, because what else do people talk about?, I went the back room and cried.  The same room I cried in when I saw her pregnant belly for the first time so long ago.  Maybe they could even hear me this time.  I don't even care.  This is real.

Bisabuela was even worse.  She told stories of that baby and Fancypants's baby (who isn't even blood related to her) and then related them back to the billion other babies in the family.  She looked me in the eye as if she didn't know, when she's the worst.  Oh, and when are we having a baby?  You'll have to ask God.  He took the others.

Sperm donor said he thought the comment about his eyes was flattering.  He would.  He's all about that.

And maybe some of this is a cultural barrier.  I've lived as an interloper in a Mexican family for a long time, and have had very few issues, none once married.  The issues I had were sitcom level jokes about the language barrier.  But I think this one might be cultural.  I think there might not be a language of loss for this.  I think there might not be words for the struggle for what I am going through.   Worse, I think they might blame me (not that I give a shit).

But I feel stabbed through the heart by the way I have been treated.

I could just completely skip Christmas and no one would give a shit.  I understand now why people go on cruises or go to Paris or something for Christmas.  I get it.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


It's almost Thanksgiving where I will get to revel in the royal first grandbaby, and my babies are still all dead or frozen.  And I am so angry at my in-laws.

Nobody cared about my due date.  Not when the first grandbaby was born within days of it.  Nobody sent a text.  Nobody picked up a phone.  Nobody gave a shit.  It's just the gossip topic du jour that everyone knows and no one reaches out to me.

My mind just keeps sitting here marinating on this.  It makes my stomach sick.  It makes my jaw clench up.  I am in this much pain and no one gives a shit.

Really, this isn't different than last year.  Nobody gave a shit then either.  Nobody texted or anything.  But last year, I was in a more hopeful place, I think.  I remember last year looking at the Christmas tree in the fertility clinic that I was blown away that I was still here, so many years later.  I thought I could at least be pregnant this year.  I didn't know that I could lose a heartbeat, be diagnosed with some fucked up blood thing, and be completely hopeless.  You would think I would know things could go left quickly given how this started.

It is different than last year.  I need family.  I need support and love and compassion from somewhere.  I thought I had a family.  I thought my in-laws were like a real family, but it's clear I don't belong, and that I won't get any backing here.

I can't decide what to do for Thanksgiving.  Just not go?  Confront everyone?  Make some sarcastic smart ass comments?  I do know they will not be getting anymore information because clearly it does not matter to them.  I just have to decide if this will poison our relationship forever.  I feel so betrayed.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Heartless Gossip

I was talking to a friend who knows a friend of Fancypants.  She updated me on my own family's gossip.   That long telephone game with people who this is none of their business resulted in a mostly accurate rendition of about half my fertility struggles.  From a woman who is in my family --- and is snuggling a fucking newborn right now.

Conclusion is that I get a pass on baby shit.  Gee thanks.

Nobody picked up a phone or even said shit.  Everyone knew.  Nobody said shit.

Talk about the worst kind of gossip.  Passing my pain around along and not having an ounce of compassion to try to be there for me?  To say I'm sorry?  I'm praying for you?  Hell, I'd even take the well-meaning offensive shit people say (just relax?) over just whispering behind my back and saying nothing.

In my family, no one has been there for me.  My mom always has been useless.  My sister didn't even return the text when I told her there was no heartbeat.  I guess after this many she had no fucks left to give.  My own husband didn't remember the due date.

His family is clearly useless too.  Not only doing nothing to be there or give a shit, but actively gossiping around this story.  I really thought I was close to my in-laws.  In some ways, more than my own parents.  But not now.  I'm an outsider.  They will never be there for me.  In so many ways, I'm on my own. 

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Forgotten Due Dates

My due date would have been October 21.  I made my in-laws a freaking frame with that date.  October 21.  Sperm donor didn't remember it.  He never remembered any of them.  The only one who did was G, probably because she's the only real world person who reads my blog haha.

I have three missed due dates now: January 20, August 11, and October 21.  I just need a late spring one and I'll have a whole quarterly dividend schedule of pain.  It took me a minute to remember the old ones.  That's a good thing.  But those dates will never leave me.

I was hurt that my in laws in particular didn't reach out to me.  I mean I never expected my mom to, but I really thought my in laws would.  Especially with how rough this has been with Hermione and all.  But nope.  Nothing.  Why would they give a shit about the dead grandbaby's due date when they have the first living grandbaby?

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

What Infertility Has Taught me.

Hermione had her baby, and then Fancypants had hers.  I got left out of the casserole duties that were rotating.  You know, that unpleasantness, which clearly everyone knows.

It's mindblowing to me that all this time so many people have known I was in pain and said nothing.  Instead of compassion, they just talk behind my back.  I guess on the plus side, I don't have to make enchiladas.  Not that there was a right thing to say, and not that it would have helped, but I wish someone said something, especially my in-laws.

Now, after fighting this burden, I know what to do.  Even when I don't know what to do.

My friend's mom died last month.  I don't live near this friend anymore, but definitely a friend.  I don't know how it feels to lose your mom.  I never even met her mom.  But I knew what the correct response was.  It was what I would have wanted all of these staring family members to do, acknowledge it.  I sent her a text.  It said "I am so sorry."  I mailed her a physical card.  It was two sentences and said I was thinking of her and I was sorry.  I sent her a couple more texts, just that I was thinking of her and I was sorry.

A month later, I sent her a similar text.  You know, right when everyone else had moved on.  And she texted me back that my texts had meant so much to her.  You know, those texts she didn't even respond to.  Those texts didn't say anything profound or helpful.   They weren't Maya Angelou quotes or advice from someone who has been there.  My words could not bring her mom back, or help her work through her shit, or even say I get it, those words just said I was there and I heard her.

"I'm thinking of you."  is such a powerful text.  It is POWERFUL to say I have heard your pain and I am connected to you.  We are all connected, and sometimes that connection is what someone needs in a very dark time.  Because to all my infertility sisters, I am thinking of you and I am so sorry.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Pity Party

And so I found myself in a hospital room in an L&D ward with a one day old baby.  I had no idea this was a thing.  If anyone needed to pony up for the deluxe room down that hall, it was Hermione.

How many people could be crammed in this room?  Aunties, kids, abuela (bisabuela!) came into town.  They had folding chairs set up.  Someone brought in food.  Someone had some music playing on a bluetooth speaker.  Someone was watching Netflix. Why are all these people here?  What are they doing?  Why don't they go home and let her get some sleep?  They've been here all day!

It was like I was invisible.  Why am I even here?  This isn't my family, and it's very obvious I don't belong.  Nobody even acknowledged me when I walked in.  Instead they were ALL OVER Sperm Donor for now being an OMG uncle, even though he's been an uncle since we got married.  WTF.   And as they gushed over him being an uncle, they didn't even make eye contact with me.

All discussion was in Spanish, but I gathered that Hermione was not allowed to get up and would be in the hospital for a couple more days.  She looked like hell.  I saw zero medical personnel.  Aside from the whiteboard with a bunch of times on it and the hospital bed, this could have been any cheap hotel.  The baby was just being passed around.

And then I found myself ridiculously drunk with a girlfriend, hey I took an Uber.  And all I could get out between gasping crying was that it's not fair.  It's not fair.

Friday, October 16, 2015


Hermione is being induced.  It's some kind of emergency.  That's weeks early.  Maybe four?

Everyone is gathering at the hospital.  I guess this is a Mexican thing?  It seems bizarre and invasive to me.  All the aunties and cousins and everyone are leaving work to go camp out in the waiting room.  WTF?   I told Sperm Donor we weren't invited, and he just seemed confused as to why would need to be invited, as if it is assumed that of course we will go camp out at the hospital.

Sperm Donor forgot our due date, but I haven't forgotten you, October 21st.  I haven't forgotten.

Maybe Sperm Donor should have married the superfertile Mexican girl he was supposed to.  Then he'd have a couple kids by now, three I guess.  Maybe she would have said the right prayers or lit the right candles.  Maybe she would just know that you are supposed to go camp out at the hospital.  Maybe she would have actually made it to L&D in one of these FOUR YEARS and the party would be for her.

I went to a super difficult spinning class to try to get my mind off it, and it didn't work at all.   I just ended up crying on the bike, which is a decent place to cry actually because no one is looking at you and you're dripping sweat anyway.

As I was driving away, I was thinking that if I drove off the bridge, it wouldn't even matter.  I'm 33.  My kids are all dead, and the OMG FIRST GRANDBABY will be here.  Who gives a shit about me?  There's nothing special about me.  There's nothing important about me.  Maybe after four years, I should know that.

I'm not camping out at the hospital.  There's no way I can deal with this birth party with el primer nieto, and abuela, and everyone else.  I'm turning off my phone, and I'm leaving.  Maybe I'm going to the beach.  I don't know.  I have to get out of here.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Life Kicking Me Around

It's been a tough couple weeks for me.  I feel like life just keeps kicking me and kicking me and kicking me.

Still haven't heard from the insurance appeal. 

My period screwed up, and the Wondfos I bought to start IVF are all gone. This will be my FIFTH PACK of wondfos.  That's 250 pregnancy tests.  Maybe 10 actually said what I wanted them to at the right time.

One of Sperm Donor's bros accidentally got a girl pregnant on a one night stand when he was out of town, and he won't even go see the baby.  He knew about some of our struggles, and yet this douche canoe told us this anyway-- as if he had a frat brother a state over he hadn't seen in a while.  It visually upset my sperm donor.  Sperm Donor walked out, very dramatic and out of character.  I think Sperm Donor might have finally gotten a taste of how I feel constantly.  This might be the first friend he loses over this.

I got completely left out of a girls' event that meant a lot to me, and I am so sad about it.  My bridesmaid uninvited me and didn't even tell me to my face or warn me.  I feel so left out and HURT.  But I get it.  I'm a bummer and a failure and I've spent a whole year running from reality.  I get it.  Single girls and glowing pregnant ladies are way more fun.

This is why I wish I had been more careful with who I told.  Here we are years later, and it's the awkward topic no one wants to mention.  I wish back on IUI #6 when I thought I needed some support that I had just kept my mouth shut.  If I had known that it would follow me around for years and fuck with my friendships, I would have kept it to myself.

I went to three weddings in a row, and everyone was pregnant.  I guess that's normal in your early-mid thirties, it's just me who can't figure this out.  They'll probably all pop back from their honeymoons pregnant too.

Another friend emailed me she was pregnant, and I didn't even respond with my canned response.  I just cried.  Ugly cried.

I finally called the MFM specialist and I can't get in until February, if they even agree to take me.  I can't even start an FET cycle until that.

You win, life, I give up.  None of this is going to work.  I can keep fighting, scheduling, write checks, but I can't fight fate.  This is bigger than me, and my pain and effort mean nothing and have no power.  It's not up to me, it's not up the the doctors.  At some point I have to face the truth.

Hermione is due in a couple weeks, and I'm still here.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Showered With Miracles

On the way to Hermione's shower, which should have been mine, my mom was having none of it.  This isn't about you.  This is your niece.  These are all people who love her, nothing is going to be about you, and this is going to be fun.

We drove past my babies in the freezer.  And then it was a very long drive.  And then I was at a giant Mexican baby shower with a TON of people and so much going on.  Why had I been worried?  This wasn't about me at all.  HA. I hate it when mom is right.  Besides, if I talked to everyone, it would be 90 seconds of conversation.

I had crafted a onesie with an inside joke, it was pretty funny.  Everyone loved it in the gift opening, more than the ridiculous $200 present.  And to think I literally got tears on it when I was making it last night.  Ridiculous.  This is happy, this isn't about me.   It was wonderful.  It was fun to be around so much family and with so much love.

My mom had to leave, and I got a ride from Fancypants to her evening shower, hosted by one of my dear friends at night.  I knew this one would be rowdier.  I wasn't even invited to this one, they were being kind to me.  (Her family shower was a week before).  Fancypants seemed glad I was going, and you know what, it was fun.

They had some dumb game where everyone, including men, put a balloon under their shirt, held a quarter between their knees, raced someone across the room, and tried to get the quarter in a bowl on the floor.  It was hilarious and stupid.  One of the balloons popped, and there were some distasteful miscarriage jokes.  That was the only moment the whole night I felt that sting of loss.  Otherwise, the whole night, I had a fantastic time.

It would be unthinkable to me a few days ago that I would have spent all day at two baby showers and had a delightful time.  It was great.  My time will come, or maybe it won't.  But the world is full of love, and if you are open, you can see it and feel it and receive it where you think it's impossible.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

No Zen for the Shower

My anxiety is increasing about this baby shower this weekend, the one that was supposed to be mine.  In the mail, I got a note to get a mammogram.  That means it has been a year since I escalated this journey to IVF.  A year, two pregnancies, three dead embryos.  Oh and the years dicking around almost dying before that.  My baby would be almost three years old.

I hate this.  I hate this for both of us.  I wish I could be what I should be, but I can't.

I'm tempted to send the damn gift and say I can't attend, because it's true.  I feel like I can't.  Over this journey, I've learned to remove myself from situations that will be too much to handle.  One year old's birthday parties.  Conversations about breast pumps.  Facebook.  Life.  I haven't been to a baby shower in two years, except work ones I couldn't skip, with acquantainces.

This will be the first time I am staring down my husband's gossipy, awful family in this context.  I want to hide.  My friend texted me that I am strong and brave and that I can do this.  But maybe I can't?  I can't even run in the back room and hide if it gets rough, because this is an awful relative hosting this at a place I've never been.  It's easier to handle kids than pregnant women for me.  Well, kids, then babies, then pregnant women.

I've been to a lot of yoga this week to try to center and zen or something.  But I keep going back to this mental image that she is hugely pregnant.  And I'm still here.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Cheese Still Alone

I got an email about the wedding (yes the same wedding) from another friend.  It was a heads up that she's pregnant also.  I already knew that, I guess, remember I am infertile, not stupid.  This means she got pregnant a month or two after her wedding.  I mean, we're in our early-mid-ish thirties, what did I expect?

And that colleague I saw at the IVF clinic way back in December 2014 when I bravely tucked my tail and hid in the bathroom.  His Facebook is covered with his new baby.  That means while I was in beta hell with my chemical pregnancy, they were getting joyous Christmas news about what would be their son in the next ultrasound room.  FML.  This works for everyone but me.

I haven't heard anyone even tell me about a miscarriage.  No one has sent over their friend going through IVF.  Nope.  Everyone gets pregnant on the second try and it's all sunshine and rainbows.  For everyone but me.  For fuck sake, the stats say miscarriages and even advanced REs and stuff are fairly common, but I don't feel that now.  I don't know anyone in real life going through anything close to what I am.

Everyone is going to be fucking pregnant at this wedding.  This wedding I have flown to two different cities for and clearly don't belong at because of my failure to execute the basic mission everyone seems to be going for.  Even the guys at this wedding, four, maybe more will have pregnant wives.  Does anyone talk about anything but their goddamn babies?  And I will again be the cheese standing alone.  Good thing this wedding is in a recreational marijuana state.

I don't have a good way to explain this feeling.  I would not wish it on anyone.  Physically, the closest analogue I have is grief, which just overwhelms your whole body with physically sobbing and chest pain and shows you no way out.  It physically takes you to the ground.  That has gotten worse as the world has closed in on me.  But this is now more overriding.  It has infiltrated every aspect of my life.  I live as a failure, and as a sad, pathetic cautionary tail.  The truth is, I might never get what I want.  And I do not know how it is possible for me to continue the rest of my life feeling like this.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Skipping the Shower?

Hermione's shower is in two weeks.  I bought her some ridiculous $200 present.  I have plans to make some crafty stupid bow with the baby's name.  I ordered a silly knit hat for a newborn photo op.  I ordered some newborn booties with her sports team on them.

Looking at that present feels like looking at someone laughing at me.  I moved it in the closet, and I can still hear it laughing at me.  I can see the silly games with melted candy bar in a diaper, I know the questions.

I am filled with ANXIETY when I think about this.  Anxiety with all caps.  Because I don't share my grief with people I barely know, and even if I did, someone else's baby shower is not right.  I know the questions are coming from a good place.  And, hell, maybe I won't get them.  I know at least some of this struggle has been in the gossip mill for a long time.

I feel this urge to RUN AWAY and not go to this shower.  It just so unfair.  I don't want to face it, I don't want to talk about it.  I am already freaking out at the concept of people cooing and gushing over her pregnancy, at what should have been our joint shower.  HA.  I should have known better than to tempt the universe with that one.  Of course that will never happen for me.

Everyone is going to think I'm a total bitch for leaving early, but I don't care.  To survive, this one is going to have to be quick.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

A Storm of Showers

I'm looking at two baby shower invitations.  One for Hermione.  The one that should have been our joint shower.  The other for a fancy cousin of my sperm donor's who I didn't even know was pregnant.  Always a fun surprise flipping through bills to find another joyous pregnancy for someone else.

Fancypants is registered at Pottery Barn kids for things like a plush elephant rug.  Hermione is registered for diapers and breast pads.

Both showers are being hosted by my least favorite, most pushy family member.  I don't even care anymore.  If she's up in my face, I'll tell her the babies are dead.  It's true.

Mercifully, I am out of town for Fancypants's shower.  I thought about making up a trip for Hermione's, or even calling her and explaining.  Surely she would understand?  But my mom said I have to go.  She said she will come in so we can go together and leave early.  Mom said she will even make up the excuse.  Definitely going to be leaving early.  I hate it when mom is right.

I was digging through my desk to find a card to send to Fancypants and I found the ultrasound photos.  And I just lost it.  I started weeping like an insane person.  My whole diaphagm was shaking and I was overwhelmed with loss, sadness, hopelessness.  I  could feel the sadness squeezing on my chest.  I wouldn't wish this feeling on anyone.

I thought I was doing OK.  I had at least stopped thinking about it.  But the truth is, this might never happen for me.  I still have to meet with two specialist doctors before the FET because of my blood issues, and I haven't even made the calls to do it.  I've just been carrying Lovenox on planes so I don't get a bloodclot and die.  Eight of them now, TSA didn't even blink, but they did take my water bottle.  Fun fact, there's almost always a sharps disposal at airport bathrooms!

I'm scared to even have a FET because I already know the baby will die.  And it will try to take me with it in whatever crazy ass new way I haven't encountered yet.   I'll never be a happy pregnant lady at a baby shower with a bunch of annoying relatives.  I'll always live in fear of death.  If I can ever even make it that far.

Sperm donor has thrown out the idea of a FET in January, but he seems indifferent really.  And me, I'm pure fear.  Oh, and all this jealousy and sadness.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Proud Mama

It's been a good day.

Insurance.  I popped on over to, and they CHANGED THE WORDING ON THE PLAN!!!!   Hahahaha!  They changed to wording to say exactly what infertility is covered!  And, just like I thought, what I want is covered.  That is a big old clue, I think.  I think it means maybe I won?  G is more cautiously optimistic.  She said maybe I just scared someone...

The CCS genetic testing came back.  I have 6/7 normal embryos.  For some reason, I feel like a proud mama bear for a minute.  Someone called my babies normal!  Smile for the camera kids.  LOL.  I also felt relief wash over me.  Six confirmed normal embryos from when I am 32 means I can wait until I'm 38, 40 whatever, right?  6 normal embryos, plus five untested in the freezer, feels like a good place to be right now.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015


I hadn't seen my in laws, including my sister in law Hermione, since Easter dinner.   Handled that one like a champ when I elegantly sobbed in a back room, because my baby is dead and she has my due date for the first grandbaby.

I had given her some thoughtful gifts at Easter, including some earrings with her baby's birthstone, but I never heard from her.  I texted her about some other baby stuff people had given me that I obviously didn't need right now, and she didn't even respond.  I guess it's for the best because my bad baby juju might catch via text or my bad juju things.  You know, I live in a world where babies die.  A lot.

We went to my in-laws for a few hours, actually on the way to somewhere else, and Hermione was there.  I didn't know she was going to be there, but there was no way to prepare anyway.

She was beached flat on the sofa watching Family Fued.  And there it was, the big old reminder that I SHOULD BE SEVEN MONTHS PREGNANT.  I didn't feel anything on the surface.  That self-hate and grief is much deeper now, and I carry it around for later, taste some leftovers later when life starts to taste too sweet.  I appeared cool, so I hope that helped everyone else's comfort level.  Nobody said a word about any babies or heartbearts.   Just like Easter.  I don't even know if it's a boy or a girl.

First I beat myself up with all my failures.  That's always fun.  Why did I bring my mother in law when there would be no heartbeart?  Hermione and I had talked about a joint baby shower.  Oh god, do I still have to go to that shower?  What kind of god would want that?  She is really having the first grandbaby.  I bet they were talking about the nursery or something until I walked in.  At least I didn't end up thinking about all my sins that made me deserve this.

And then I found my thoughts in a new space.  Cattiness.  I'm not saying I'm proud, but this is where my thoughts went.  Middle school girl cattiness.  We are on fire at work, and they are struggling.  They can't even afford for her to take her FMLA leave.  Her baby daddy is in a nasty custody battle, and has been since she met him.  I don't even know how they have room for a baby in their place.  And their baby gets to live.
Hermione was always a big girl, and pregnancy really did a number on her.  I've been working out two hours a day.  I almost have visible arm muscles, though obviously my yoga zen is not working.  Her legs were swollen like someone from My 600 lb Life.  Her jaw was swollen into her neck, she was so sweaty.  And she's got two more months to go!  She didn't even get off the couch when guests came in.  She looked like warmed over hell.  Somehow that made me feel better.  But not good enough to talk to her.

And then I felt worse.  This is obviously going to get worse before it gets better.  I can redirect my thoughts away to neutral topics, but I don't know how I can get myself to a positive place when my thoughts return to it.  And now I really wish I had never seen that heartbeat and that baby was just some wondfos and some blooddraws and a better luck next time.  Every time I see that video on my phone it knocks the wind out of me.  Clearly, I need to work on my thoughts with this one, and I need to do it now.  I just don't see how her pregnancy can mean anything but "I'm sorry, but there's no heartbeat."

Thursday, August 6, 2015

How Infertility Has Made My Life Smaller

My life has become smaller because I carry a secret no one understands.  I watched Cait Jenner's reality show, and I felt dumber having watched it, and I've watched some trash TV.  But something stuck with me, this idea that Bruce lived a LIE.  Even the people who knew him best, didn't know him.  He was never his full self because he carried this secret for years.

I've lived a pretty open life, but infertility has silenced me.  I carry a secret that in many ways defines me.  It has defined my job, my workout routine, my diet, my vacations, my responses to normal banter, my interaction with others.  It kept me from kids' birthday parties, brought pain and suffering on my body, and rocked my identity to the core.  And yet, no one really knows all of it, certainly not how I feel about it.

Going way back to my emergency ectopic, I felt like no one had the "right" response.  I'm still pissed my husband never cried.   I felt like my friends didn't get it.  I wanted them to call more.  I wanted them to leave me alone.  I wanted to cry or scream or talk about it, and it was too painful to mention.  I wanted my mom to leave me alone.  She called too much, she cared too much.  My poor husband still hasn't wrapped his head around the baby dying and me almost going with it, I think.  Some people just didn't care.  I don't know what the right response was, even now.

Telling people about medical intervention, like Cait Jenner, reduces me to stats and shots and scans.  It has a certain logical appeal to explain all this to my mom, because there is no emotion in it, it is just science and the next step.  But this is drastic medical treatment that reduces my genitals and my body to a patient.  I don't even notice transvaginal ultrasounds, aka the dildo cam, anymore, but they are terrifying and invasive, or they should be to normal women.  And so, my identity as a person is reduced to my meds, my weight, my medical choices.

Most people I don't tell about this stuff anymore.  I am so disappointed in so many responses.  And I don't want to hear second-hand miracle stories or second-hand miscarriages or IVF/adoption anecdotes.  They just don't matter anymore to me.  I've heard it all.  I've lost friends.  Real, flesh and blood friends who couldn't handle it.  And everyone in my life experiences me with a lie that removes a giant part of my life from what they see.

Plenty of people in my life know about what happened over three years ago, and I'm still a drunk, so they should be able to conclude things haven't gone well.   But I stopped investing emotional energy into people who just don't give a shit and won't be able to understand how this feels.  I'd rather have no response than one that I feel is dismissive, even if well meaning.  And people used this against me without even meaning to.  My sister couldn't even respond to a text after the most recent miscarriage, which cut me to the bone.

Thinking about the reverse scenario, if someone told me their struggle, I'm not sure I could be much help either.  Calm Persistence came out with her real identity and her hellish journey through this.  She claims it let people love her?  Depending on how you count it, I guess I've had four miscarriages too, and I'm not sure even I would know how to respond to her.  It would be even more awkward if this were my sister-in-law or my dear friend.  What am I supposed to even do?  What does she expect me to do?  Am I supposed to talk about it?  Send a card?  Say some crap like I'm sorry or I know someone who had a miracle baby?  What can I possibly say to help that?  So, how can I put that responsibility on others to handle a situation that even I can't deal with?

Over three years in the infertility trenches has left me completely alone.  Honestly, I don't even think my husband understands the level of pain and of struggle I am having with my body, and with my identity.  The stakes are so high for me that I am not sure my life is even meaningful if I can't figure this out.  And yet, at some point, I must face reality that this may never happen.  So I write it here.  This is the only way I know to process it, and I don't expect anything really.  Maybe somebody gets it?  If so, I'm sorry, I wouldn't wish this on you.  I know I can't keep living with all this suffering inside.  The only way to openly live my life is with some kind of resolution.  Maybe I'll finally get pregnant, like Mark Zuckerburg's wife.  Maybe I'll just give up.  Maybe if I can't figure out that life isn't fair, life will keep teaching me that lesson over and over again.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

A Generic Response to Your Pregnancy

I got another thoughtful heads up about a friend's pregnancy, as I have every five minutes in the last three years.  The internet is full of helpful memes about what not to say to infertiles, so when someone gets it right, I can at least respond like a civilized human with a polite response.

The response I want to send:
Wow, great news, Bellatrix!  Since we last talked, I'm now zero for four.  Maybe fifth time is a charm!  Hope you have better luck than I did.  Good Luck, P

The response I did send:
Hi Bellatrix!  Thanks for the thoughtful heads up.  As you know, this has been tough on Sperm Donor and I, and it just takes time to process.  I appreciate you thinking of me and being so compassionate.

I'm sure that you will be shortly surrounded by joy and will be a great mother.  Maybe someday I will join you.  Love, P

Monday, August 3, 2015

This Is How You Do It

A friend emailed me that she won't be at our mutual friend's wedding at the end of September because she will be six months pregnant.  I wouldn't know anything about being six months pregnant, but I guess you can't fly?  She wanted me to find out from her.  I appreciated that.  Getting blindsided by a Facebook post or at the wedding is way worse.  I am so grateful for the heads up.

I got the email walking into a boot camp.  Thank god it was bootcamp and not yoga.  I was actually crying, but nobody could tell because it was so sweaty and punchy and hard.  I didn't do my best at bootcamp, but I'm not in top form anyway, and I was crying.  In yoga, I would have thought about it the whole time, way worse.  In bootcamp, you just cry and punch.

And then on the way home, I was just crying in the car.  It's not that I'm angry for her.  These thoughts actually have nothing to do with her.  They're about me.  And everyone else passing me by.  These feelings are all about me.  The email that popped into my head as a response was:  "Well, we're zero for four now, so that's a fun development since we last talked.  The last one had a heartbeat.  Maybe yours will have better luck!"

I'll have to wait a day to respond.  Blah blah good luck.  Blah blah great mother.  Blah blah so happy for you.  I need to just write this email once so I can send an autoreply.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

So, About My Lupus

OK, so I don't have lupus.  I was so focused on the last cycle, I just let all this go.  But looking this stuff up, it's more serious than I thought.    My bloodwork does have all three beta-2 glycoproteins with waaay solid positives and lupus anticoagulant.  Doing a little wikipedia diagnosing, I am a hair away from diagnosis with antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) aka Hughes's Syndrome in the UK (helpful video here).  I need one more test in a few weeks because my tests aren't far enough apart, and I guess my "gynecological event" was a couple weeks early to meet the diagnostic criteria.  Yea, that event.

This is sounding scary.  Late miscarriages, early babies, bleeding out, and a strokeHome birth is out.  I guess hormonal birth control is out too.  I guess maybe I have a life of autoimmune flares and pain to look forward to?

It's pretty clear I need to get some ducks in a row.  I need a high risk OB, MFM.  I called my friend who almost lost her baby to an incompetent cervix and called her doctor.  I hope they let me in.  I also need a nephrologist, maybe the rest of my life.  I could be on blood thinners and in pain the rest of my life.  I at least have enough information to get more testing.  And I need some advice about the twin risks, given what I know now.

Now I'm freaked out about going back on birth control pills for my FET.  I have to decide tomorrow (Day #2).  If I don't start birth control tomorrow, it would be at least six weeks after my next period for the FET, two weeks of birth control, four weeks of lining.  That's the end of October for my transfer, at the earliest.  By then my SIL Hermione will be giving birth.  On my due date.

And then I start crying.  It's not fair.  I don't want to do any of this.  I didn't want it to be FIVE YEARS LATER until I would get my baby and this much pain and money and suffering.  And everyone else just pops out a baby, no biggie.  After losing a heartbeat, I thought surely it couldn't get any worse, but somehow it just keeps getting worse and worse and worse.

I can't handle any more surprises.  I can't handle any more fucking bad news.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Fighting the Insurance Company: Part 2

My insurance plan is an Obamacare plan bought on  It says infertility is covered "No charge after deductible."  They had preapproved my IVF months before, and confirmed with the doctor.  And then they denied it.  Days before surgery, of course.

I finally got the official paperwork in the mail, and they claim infertility is not a covered benefit.  Yet IVF has a whole benefit section with a bunch of hoops I've been jumping through since January.

My friend G helped me (hi G!) and we made a badass appeal.  The medical part is easy when you blew a tube.  The rest is regulations and rules.  My goal for that appeal was that someone will look at it and send it straight to legal.

Also, I'm allowed to ask for documents, practically anything in this state.  So I requested documents, a lot of documents.  It's going to take someone a week to get all those documents together.

With all the pain and struggle of the last week from that brutal retrieval, my muscles are still sore, it felt GOOD to focus my anger in something I guess I can call productive.  It felt good to send that little response out certified mail.

No way is this over.  If the insurance company wants to fight, they picked the wrong one, with the most clear medical history possible.  And now I'm angry.  False advertising, state insurance regulations, Obamacare regs, I'll fight in every arena I have.  I will be such a pain it will be easier to pay to make me go away, I can tell you that already.

Monday, July 27, 2015

And The Worst Is Passed

Warning:  TMI and kind of gross, involving toilet stuff after IVF.

As all IVF sisters know, the digestive issues after retrieval, especially with a ton of eggs, are BRUTAL.  Your bladder and bowels are all in there, there's no room for any of it, and your ovaries are like raw nerves where those eggs used to be.  Combined with anesthesia effects on digestion and the crap, high salt diet you are supposed to follow, it's all completely fubar.

I thought I had this under control with some judicious use of Colace and prune juice, but then, and I swear I am not kidding, I think I got food poisoning.  OMG.  So suddenly everything is haywire, and I don't know if I should keep hydrating, eat salt?  What is happening?  Is the food poisoning doing enough to pull fluid out of my ovaries.

I was getting hot and cold sweats, in so much pain I knew painkillers would do nothing.  I was one more hour long time on the pot away from going to the ER.  And I swore I would not go to the ER.

And then it snapped, instantly.  I could breathe.  I felt kinda normal except all the swelling, but it wasn't painful anymore.  I went to a yoga class this morning for old ladies, and it was just perfect.  Just what I needed.  I think this ship has been righted, and now I can focus on my new hobby: the insurance company.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Uncertain 3d After Transfer

It's Friday night, three days after retrieval.  Nobody bothered to call me.  I guess the embryos are still mostly alive, I hope?  I guess I'm not doing a Day 3 transfer?  If I'm doing a Day 5, maybe they'll call then?  Not like this is important or anything.  Well, hope all but two didn't die.  Have a fun weekend!

I'm still really, super sore.  I can't really bend over or fold in any manner.  My belly is still WAY swollen in a particular way that just looks pregnant, and it hurts.  I couldn't even wear two different pairs of yoga pants because they were digging in too much.  Yoga pants!

I got the rejection letter from the insurance company and channeled my rage and pain into a superbitchy letter that I think was pretty effective.  I pulled all my regs and policies and records.  Obviously, I'll look at this when I'm not on hydrocodone and wine, but I think I have a shot.  After all, the plan advertises that it covers infertility!  How can you both cover infertility and also exclude all infertility treatment?  WTF.  Why would have all these checklists about how to qualify for IVF if IVF is never covered?  Ridiculous.  I need more wine.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Feeling Better Day After Retrieval

22 eggs, 20 mature, 17 fertilized and made it through the night.  That's better than last time!  That means we are on plan for CSS genetic testing and freeze all.

I can breathe again, so crisis is averted.  I can still feel the fluid in my abdomen, like a really uncomfortable swelling that makes me look pregnant, but my ankles look normal and I can breathe.  Hooray!  It will be a while until that swelling goes down, and I can wear pants with buttons.

I guess my emergency measures worked.  I drank 6 liters of Gatorade.  (The Latin flavors weren't stocked anywhere, boo, so I ended up with red, yellow, dark blue and light blue.  Light blue is awful FYI.)  I ate four huge packs of sunflower seeds, buffalo ranch flavor, the best.  I don't eat crap like this usually, but of course if you want a baby you eat crap and don't work out, that totally makes sense.  I drank an organic protein shake, but threw most of it up.  I even took some Lovenox after reading scary shit about clots and OHSS

Thank god for hydrocodone.  I only took four pills yesterday, and today I've got nowhere to be, so I'm going to take some more pain pills and try to do some work slowly and badly.  I'll need to go back and check those emails LOL.  Also, watch some real housewives I saved for post-surgery recovery, but I was in too much pain yesterday to even watch TV.

I signed up for a slow flow yoga class on Friday.  I will see if I am feeling up to that.  My goal for this gap, while the babies are in the freezer, is to work out.  I don't have any excuses.  I need to be in the best shape of my life.  Working out two hours a day was doing wonders for my body and my mind, and I have a month or so to keep that up, once I feel like my body can handle it.  I need to get my yoga on point so I'm ready for pregnancy yoga, and I just need to get my body together.  Did I mention I'm a huge fan of Classpass?  For now, I'm listening to my body.  Maybe tomorrow my body will want some wine.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Pull Up Painfully to Retrieve It

Dear lawd, my second IVF retrieval was WAAAAAY more painful than the first.  At the scan two days ago, the doctor said it was because of how my left ovary is wedged low next to my uterus?  Uh, ok, doc.  I was like a frazzled raw nerve of pain last night.  I couldn't move.  I could barely make it up the stairs to the bedroom.  I was actually looking forward to the surgery because it might take away the pain.  HA.

When I came to, it felt like my abdomen was split open.  And I puked my guts out, which makes me three for three in the recovery room.  I had asked for the post-op instructions before surgery, but nope.  I got them hunched over a trashcan in a fetal position.  Even then I knew they were wrong.  Sperm donor had no idea what was happening, like usual.  I have been through a diverse rainbow of gynecological pain, and this was the worst.  THIS IS A FREEZE ALL.  Do you people not read the charts?  Keep your progesterone.  I need PAINKILLERS.  They were $30 out of pocket.  Thanks, insurance.

And then I was thinking how colossally unfair this is.  This isn't how I wanted any of this to go.  This isn't how I wanted my baby to be made.  With my sperm donor looking at some gross porn at 7AM, me puking my guts out.  With much needed painkillers.  Not being able to sit up.  And we will probably be out five figures at the end of this anyway.  In a fucking stirrup surgery chair with seven people in the room.  I didn't need a honeymoon in Paris, but god our bed sounded nice.

The anaethesiologist looked just like Dr. McStuffins.   I didn't think that hair was even possible on an adult human.  I would have laughed, but I just didn't care, and it seemed kind of rude to comment on it.  Oh, and I was in so much pain, I didn't care.  It took like five tries to get the IV in my hand, didn't care.  In the meantime, they did some, uh, washing down there.  Like 2 liters of water worth, really getting in those folds.  Where was the water going?  That was weird.  Sorry my laser hair removal was reversed last cycle.  They put some stickers on my chest.  How did they even get to my chest?  I think I was supposed to be out.  And then cold lube and a speculum and then I was gone.

They didn't tell me how many eggs or anything, guess there's nothing I can do about it anyway.  Last time was 29 eggs, and this time doesn't seem any different, except the PAIN.  Maybe they'll call tomorrow.  Not like this is a big deal or anything.

Now, I have some new symptoms.  My shoulders hurt like a mother.  Not like laproscopic hurt, like throbbing.  I can't breathe.  I can't pee.  My ribcage feels tight like I can't breathe all the way in.  And now, I think I am showing signs of the dreaded OHSS.  So here I am drinking Gatorade.  Protein shakes.  Lots of fluids.  I'm done with doctors, I'm done with this.  No way I'm going to the hospital unless I have no choice.

And that brings me full circle to the beauty of the freeze all.  I almost wish I'd done this in the first place.  I chose to beat my body up this badly (again).  But there's no reason I have to also get pregnant in this sad state.  A freeze all takes so much pressure off.  For now, I'm just hoping to pee again.  More Gatorade, please.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Stim Day #8

God, I'm in pain.  I forgot how bad this feels.  Seriously, whose idea was this?

My poor ovaries are way enlarged, like over 20 eggs again large.  They feel swollen and raw, like exposed nerves.  Like when I move, I risk an electric feeling shooting pain that takes me down immediately.  And they've enlisted my lower back too, so that feels like the worst kind of period cramps all the time.

When my sperm donor stumbled in drunk at 4AM, I couldn't get back to sleep at all.  I was just thinking about how much pain this is.  It just radiated electric pain and dull throbbing pain, sometimes both.

Ovaries this swollen feeling is like wearing shoes two sizes too small.  Maybe if you stay still you don't actively notice, but if you move, it gets even worse.  And it feels like there is a clear solution, TAKE OFF THE SHOES.   MUST TAKE OFF THE SHOES.  But that will take a few days, and I know it gets worse before it gets better.  And this feels worse.  It feels unnatural, dangerous even.  It feels off balance.  It stings with electric, raw nerve pain.  It doesn't feel right.

I accidentally threw away my vial of Lupron yesterday, so I got to dig through a bag of kitchen trash this morning.  Thankfully it wasn't trash day.  Doubled over in pain, going through gross stuff, I was crying again.  This is when you know you are a mother, when you will do anything for this baby (well embryos #10 - #?) including fold your stupidly painful ovaries digging though old yogurt and leftover chinese.  I need a nap.

Friday, July 17, 2015

FREEZE ALL Stim Day #7

This morning I went in for a scan.  It wasn't my doctor, so when she was probing me and telling me about my lining, I told her it was a freeze all so that didn't matter so much.  What a difference.  Obviously, for genetic testing, it has to be a freeze all, but I hadn't thought about what that meant to me.

This time last IVF cycle, I was a damn mess.  I had been madly googling scary stories about OHSS and pregnancy.  Don't do that before your IVF, please.  This exact scan was much scarier.  This time, I feel pretty chill about it.  Aside from the occasional insane thoughts that this medicine keeps putting in my head, I feel pretty calm now.  If shit goes left, they can give me real drugs.

There are a couple differences this time.  I know what is happening.  I'm not scared of needles.  I know what is about to happen.  I have tried to make myself feel like I am doing something by buying gatorade and following the rules.  I believe I will get eggs.  I believe they will do something.  And then they will all die one way or another, but I am kind of at peace with that too.

The FREEZE ALL is a big difference.  I am clearly in no emotional state to be impregnated next week.  Biopsies take a few weeks, gearing up for FET takes a month or two?  Anyway, nothing is going to happen next week that I can control.  The babies are just going to the freezer.  This feels like a lot less pressure.  It makes me wonder if I had said I wanted to freeze all last time if maybe the results would have been better?

Surgery on Tuesday for now.  Soon.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Day #5 Stims

It's only afternoon and I am so over this day.

This morning, my sperm donor was giving me another awful Lovenox shot, and I asked him if he would do this to have a baby and he said no.  He said he would just give up.  Oh, and this is the last time you're doing this too, as if that was a decision made by him at 8AM mid-Lovenox.  Great.  He doesn't give a shit, he will be a terrible dad.  He isn't willing to do anything for our twins!

Then I slowed down.  I am not handling issues like that today.  I am only handling today's issues.  I am not picking a fight with my husband about a theoretical IVF cycle that he is refusing to do.  When it is time for him to do an IVF cycle, we will then address this issue LOL.  It is not productive to think like this and start a fight.  For today, I need to take my Lovenox shot and see the genetic counselor.

The genetic counselor was such a waste.  I waited OVER AN HOUR which pissed me off because I had to cancel a meeting.  I guess I was spoiled by my RE, who is always on time.  When I finally got in there, it was a RN straight out of college who was giving me a 7th grade chromosome lesson.  I haven't taken a science class since 2002, and I knew more than her about CCS.  I was trying not to roll my eyes.  Also, I really could have lived without all the pity for my sad, sad reproductive history which made me choke back tears which pissed me off even more.  It must be really hard on you.  Gee thanks.

Physically, I feel really uncomfortable.  Now that my meetings are done, it's all yoga pants.  Probably will be for at least a week.  My poor stomach is covered in bruises and keeps swelling up.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Day #4 Stims

Good lawd, can it only be Day #4?  I'm dying here.  I am SO TIRED.  I just hit the wall and took a nap today, I didn't get any of the work done I was supposed to.

My back hurt, and my neck was cramping up.  I went to my massage guy, and it was the best massage I have ever had in my whole life.  It was like all the muscles in my back had tensed up weird like I slept on my whole body wrong.  It was THE BEST.

Driving, I could feel every little bump.  It's been a while since I felt that.  My poor ovaries are clearly doing something, and I can feel them gurgling.  They're doing something to my lower back, almost like period cramps that radiate.  Ugh.

My poor stomach is a Lovenox battleground.  I have spotted bruises all over and hard places from all of these shots.  I'm on four a day now, Lovenox, Lupron, Gonal F, and Menopur.  I've stayed hydrated.  No alcohol.  I am a model patient.

I've gotten better at actively blocking thoughts.  I am not going to beat myself up today.  I am not going to worry about the next steps today.  I am not thinking about the risks of twins today.  I am not thinking about the cost and the fucked up insurance.  I am not thinking about IVF divorces today.  Most importantly, I am not beating myself up for being in this position.  Not today.  For today, just get through today.  And if that means take a nap and get a massage, then do what you have to do, girl.  The to do list will still be there.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Stim Day #3

It's stim day #3.  I am so TIRED.  I have no idea how I worked out on these meds!  I slept 12 hours and I still feel so tired.  My lower back is hurting.  That's a new one.  Last time, retrieval was on Stim Day #10, so this won't be long now.

I have to meet with the genetic counselor Wednesday, and I'm still not sure why or what we will discuss as all tests have always come back normal.  When I went to India, I had to go to a special travel immunization place, and they totally freaked me out about all these weird diseases that are rare and I can't do anything about.  I really hope this is not like that.  I am not in a good mental place right now to be freaked out about more shit I can't control.

The RE office is such a fascinating place.  It's women of all shapes, sizes, colors, ages.  And all totally quiet and freaked out.  Going through the same journey and yet pretending like we can't see one another.  I can always feel the nervous energy in the waiting room, sometimes the sadness.

Lovenox is awful.   It has this giant thick needle to put in the huge amount gel.  It's like injecting a jello shot through a straw.  It HURTS and it bruises.  I am grateful for a Lovenox side effect that seems to have counteracted the IVF meds, diarrhea, also a new one.  Last time, I couldn't #2 without wringing out my poor ovaries and screaming in pain.  I am also not really sure why I am on Lovenox.  But I'll try anything, including covering my belly with giant bruises.  Good thing my belly is so swollen I have plenty of fat to inject.

I need to get my IVF retrieval provisions.  This time I will be better prepared.  I'll have to go to Wal-Mart, the only place that stocks the good Gatorade:

sunflower seeds, buffalo ranch flavor (the best!)
Gatorade Sabores de Mi Tierra, all flavors
protein shakes, going to try some new stuff this time
Colace stool softener
prune juice
other juices

Just one day at a time for now.   Just today, for today.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Stims GO! Day #1

It's Day #1 of Stims!

I cut my ridiculous workout regime.  I'm not even going to yoga.  All my energy is going towards the stimming.  Definitely not trying boot camp on Day #3 of stims.  That was a terrible idea.  I can already feel my mind spinning, I might go crazy.  Working out was the only productive way I had to deal with all of this stress

Lovenox gave me a crazy bruise, like worse than this one.  It was really that bad.  It's just so much liquid gel stuff.  God, Lovenox is bad.  It hurts and it hurts even more the next day.  It's worse than any IVF med I've ever taken.  Insurance didn't pay anything for it, and it was $143.10 out of pocket for 30 syringes.

My mind is spinning.  Sperm donor told me he knows two couples with IVF twins, and they are both divorced.  In fairness, one of them should have been divorced from day one, she was a total bitch.  Mind spinning.  Scared.  Surgery.  My to do list is very long and has lots of stuff I can accomplish while I need to entertain myself.  But I didn't do any of it.

I sat on the couch and watched My 600-Lb Life.  That show makes me feel like I got life under control, and I got my shit figured out.  Turns out it was an update episode and this woman had a baby with no heartbeat and went in for a D&C, and it all came back to me.  I could physically feel it on my chest.  I could feel that no heartbeat.  I could feel looking at the ceiling.  I could hear someone's fucking baby crying next door.  I could feel wanting to be somewhere, anywhere else.  Of course, even she actually got her goddamn baby in this episode. It's just me who loses time and time again.  I was crying again. I can't even watch ridiculous reality TV. I need to watch real housewives or something.  These meds are no joke.

I need to be mindful of what I am thinking and how I am treating people.  This is temporary, and it's not real. I just need to hang on, one foot in front of the other for now.  Just today, just for now.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Show Must Go On - Lovenox

The show must go on, and today was my suppression check with dildo cam.

1.  Do I get any decent drugs because this is a freeze all?  You can tell I have priorities.  No answer on this one yet.  I know what the result will be, no matter what his answer.

2.  Should we do the transfer in Denver?  No.  They only ship the biopsies, and never ship the embryos.  SO COOL.

3.  What's up with lupus test that is still positive and like three others?  I am now on Lovenox.  Uh.  OK.

So I picked up a ton of Lovenox.  I guess I get to be on this when/if I get pregnant too.  Yay.  Insurance didn't pay.  Maybe I'm under the deductible.  Maybe they don't cover it?  No idea.  It was $143.10 for 30 pre-filled syringes.  It's showing as over $300 on Walmart for 30?  Maybe insurance did pay something?  No idea.

I opened it up and it is made in Milan.  Ooh.  How glamorous.  So I had visions of sitting in the piazza smartly dressed eating some delicious bread, olive oil, pulpo.  And then I saw the shot.  Whoa.  That's a lot of weird gel stuff.  Oh god.  Right when I said I wasn't scared of needles and these shots wouldn't be a big deal.  Then I have to inject a shot glass worth of jello shot into my love handles.

And the blogs agreed.  Lovenox will be painful and bruisy and yuck.  Good news is, all three blogs I found with tips on Lovenox are now mothers!  So that's something.  Just think of Milan, right?

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

FML Insurance

I figured out why my meds weren't covered.  Nothing was covered.  Today, yes today, the insurance company made a final rejection of my IVF claim.

Turns out my policy both covers and excludes IVF.  AWESOME.  Seriously. FML.  Why have a billion hoops and shit if IVF is never covered?  And it says IVF is covered on!!!  I guess I just got a new hobby, the insurance company.  Now, I get to learn all about insurance appeals.  And I'm pissed now, so I pity anyone who is my new hobby.

It took about an hour to even figure out it was rejected.  I called back SEVEN TIMES until I got a good CS rep, Deandre.  Deandre is my man.  He actually figured out what was going on, understood what I was saying, and told me how to appeal it.  So, thanks Deandre.  You helped my day.

Don't get it twisted, it still sucked.

My sperm donor busted in my office to tell me something.  I was on hold, tears down my face.  I had my hair pulled up, mascara running.  I put Deandre on mute.  I told my sperm donor to leave me alone I could hardly speak.  Meanwhile, my sperm donor was on some big call, got an awesome new client.  Best news he's had in a couple years.

I told him my terrible news, and he didn't skip a beat.  It's just money.  Now, let's talk about my new client!  It's just money.

Feeling Good on Lupron

Today I woke up earlier than my sperm donor again.  I read the news of some celebrity having a baby via surrogate, and I started thinking we might have to do that.  The five babies in the freezer.  Is it even ethical to pay a woman to use her uterus like that?  And I found myself googling how much a surrogate costs and thinking of how we are going to pay for that and crying.  WHA.  Slow down.  Ain't nobody got time for that!  I had to get to early pilates!

Working out is the only thing that kept me sane last cycle, and it's the only thing keeping me sane this cycle.  Either Lupron really is an awesome doping drug, or I really have a lot of stress to burn because I have kicked ass and taken names in spin class, pilates, barre, even my weakest suit, yoga.  I'm terrible at yoga!  I really got my money's worth from my Classpass subscription.  I have been working out as much as I possibly can.

Downside is all exercise must stop with stims in a few days, learned that one the hard way last time.  I have a couple chill yoga classes planed the first couple days of stims, but I am not going to push that at all.  All energy during stims must go into stimming!

It's clear that I am not in a place emotionally to do a fresh transfer, and we need the genetic shit anyway, so this will be a freeze all to genetically test the babies in Denver.  I am kind of relieved and glad that I get to maybe have a more "normal" experience without all the stim nonsense combined with pregnancy.  And hopefully I get some good drugs so retrieval isn't as painful and maybe I can recover faster?  I guess we will see.

Freedom Fertility and my insurance aren't playing nicely, so I have to work that out.  I knew it was a question of time until the insurance was too good to be true.  But for today, I feel AWESOME.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Wildly Swinging on Lupron

I've been on Lupron a little over a week, and uh, I don't remember it feeling like this.

Yesterday, I woke up earlier than my sperm donor and I was achy and in pain and he was still asleep.  My thoughts went like this.  God, it hurts, and he is so lazy and always sleeping.  And he hasn't even asked if I'm in pain.  I always have to do everything, I gave myself all my shots this round.  I'm in this all alone, and I'm always bearing the brunt of everything.  I'm going to have to do everything for this baby WTF am I thinking?  My friend is pregnant, everyone has already had their babies, and it's too late for me.  Why did I wait so long?  I'm about to be 33 and we've been at this since we were 29.  I am so pathetic, and he is just sleeping.  And I started sobbing.  Like shaking crying and wailing because I was so angry or something.  Uh.  Yea.  Luckily he is a sound sleeper.

That is why I need to be so mindful of my thoughts on these drugs.  IT'S A TRICK.  It's not real.  Just one day at a time.  My poor hard working sperm donor who can't sleep in a day on his vacation LOL.   And he's been through a lot this year, so has our marriage.  It's just been a lot.  I need to be very mindful of my thoughts.  Just get through today.  Don't beat yourself up, not while on these drugs.

I went to an extremely difficult spin class this morning.  Lupron is a doping drug, remember.  I NAILED IT.  Wow.  Maybe it's all that frustration, or maybe not working out for three days on vacation, but that was awesome and suddenly I feel better.  I feel like I could work out again today, even.   I feel awesome!  Maybe that's what I got right last time, I kept up my workout schedule until stims.

So I packed my schedule with workouts until stims.  Me and Lupron can at least try to get something accomplished if it is going to make me crazy.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Feeling Weird On Lupron

I've been on Lupron  almost a week now, and I'm feeling it.  I still don't have the headaches 75 - 100% people get, so I'll take it.  What I do have this time is this all over achy muscle feeling.  One blogger said she felt like a hungover sloth.  I feel like I have the flu, like all over aches and no ability to control the temperature of my body.  My back aches, my wrist aches, it hurts.  My hips hurt.  Last time I went on an emergency run to a nail salon massage chair LOL.  I have no idea how people are on this drugs for months and months.

Oh and the naps.  I'm not a napper normally, but  the general fatigue never goes away.  Naps on Lupron naps are delightful and refreshing.

I've been cleared to exercise and Lupron is a doping drug, but I'm still traveling so I haven't made that work yet.  I am  trying that tomorrow.  We will see how that goes.  Maybe I'll have to abort that too.

The biggest change this cycle is what it is doing to my thoughts.  I think a lot of this is the much crappier position I am in this round.  Last round, I was going to be pregnant in a month or so, this is it.  It was new and exciting!  This round all the embryos are going to Denver.  I have already convinced myself it won't work, and if it does I'm just queuing up another miscarriage.

I find my thoughts going to very dark places.  I met up with a friend who wasn't drinking and is obviously pregnant.  She didn't want to tell me but I'm infertile not stupid.  Maybe she was worried my dead baby juju would rub off on her.  Maybe the whole thing is just too pathetic to even talk about.  People stopped telling me about their friend who got ivf twins on the first try, and I don't believe those stories anyway anymore.  And if this round doesn't work, what's the point anyway?  My life is all failure and suffering and I can't take anymore of this.  Everyone is pregnant everyone's life has gone on, it's just me who is still here three years later.

And that is why I need to be very mindful of my thoughts and my thought process on this drug.  I can tell it is trying to take me somewhere very dark, and I need to think about my thought patterns and my judgment.  I can't say I replaced those thoughts with positive ones, just practical ones.  Get the dog groomed.  Get the dry cleaning.  For the next few weeks, just one foot in front of the other.  Just today.  That's all I can handle right now.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Laughed Out of the Room

OK, maybe this was ridiculous, but I was FREAKING OUT that I might have lupus.  So I didn't even ask my RE and took my health into my own hands.  I don't ask for permission for anything anymore.  I booked an appointment with a rheumatologist.  I got in five days later (that's today).  After a 20 min drive, and I was meeting with a world expert in lupus on a high floor in a beautiful building with free coffee.  God Bless America.

The whole transaction took maybe 15 minutes.  I printed out my test results.  I told her my RE said I tested positive for lupus after several miscarriages.  My mom has fibromyalgia and also tested positive for lupus, but no one has ever had lupus.  (I left out the rest of my complicated reproductive history.)  She seemed unimpressed, but asked me about 50 questions about pain, headaches, tiredness, my skin on a touchscreen ipad.  No.  No.  No.  No.  Then she actually laughed in my face.  It was the best medical reaction I have had in a long time.  She laughed in my face!!!  Yay!!!!

I don't have lupus.  I don't even have arthritis.  I don't have any meaningful inflammatory conditions.  The doctor said she was really sorry about the miscarriages but this wasn't why.  And if my dumbass OB was really worried about inflammation, I should get an allergy test.  OBs don't know how to read the tests they order.   Ouch.  Hadn't thought of an allergy test.

The doctor seemed pretty pissed I was wasting her time.  YAY!!  She said the test meant nothing, I am fine.  I think I apologized or something, but I was smiling.

I've never been so glad someone laughed in my face.  I said bye and that I hoped that I would never see her again.  $4 parking, and $128 later (still below my deductible), a world expert told me I am fine.  I do not have lupus.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

I Can't Have Lupus

I have two new blood draws scheduled, and the doctor wants to send the results to some other doctor.  My IVF may or may not be on hold.  I will know in a few days, lupron is supposed to start next week.

I stopped googling the scary part about lupus, you know miscarriages and chronic pain and fatigue, and I start googling the symptoms and diagnosis, which are pretty much the same thing because there's no lab test for lupus.  So I'm not sure why I'm still getting a bunch of blood tests.  I've never really had any of the major symptoms of lupus -- fatigue, headaches, joint stiffness, butterfly rash.

But I have had some other the other symptom, like that bumpy heat rash I get all the time that I've never seen anyone else have.  Swollen joints.  Nose sore, mouth sores.  Muscles tired when I'm tired.

I'm psyching myself out.  Everyone's legs get tired when they are tired right?  Everyone gets a heat rash on the beach right?  Or if they wear a metal necklace outside in Las Vegas in summer.  Of course I don't have freaking lupus?  How can you have lupus without the main symptoms?  This is fucking ridiculous.  The whole thing is ridiculous.

Isn't it bad enough I've lost four embryos?  That one almost killed me?  That my dad has cancer.  That my sister in law has the first grandbaby with my due date.  That I feel like a constant failure and fraud.  That nobody gives a shit about my pathetic struggle.  That all my friends have had two babies already.  That I pushed my marriage to the brink with my failure and my insistence on five figures worth of medical intervention.  Do I really need a chronic, painful, uncurable condition on top of this?

Surely my sins are not so bad as to make me live in this constant state of mourning with everyone else's children.  And then to live in this two week wait for a diagnosis of a chronic illness.  God.  This two week wait is even worse.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Something Snapped

This last WTF appointment contained a caveat about genetics.  The doctor thinks we should get the embryos tested at CCRM.  At the time, that seemed like a big blow, so I just left and went to the beach.  Rented a house, went to some friends, drank myself silly.  Just left for two weeks, and worked on the beach. Took my birth control pills.  Last call, right?

And then while I was gone, it got worse.  I guess I tested positive for lupus antibodies?   Lupus.

My initial Googlings about lupus FREAKED.ME.OUT.  Miscarriages second trimester.  Miscarriages.  High risk pregnancy.

And then I kept reading.  No way to diagnose.  So complex.  So many drugs.  I give up.  I quit reading about lupus.  I quit reading about genetic testing.  I'm totally overwhelmed.  Maybe it's my lupus.

So now I have another doctor appointment.  Maybe a lot more doctors.  Welcome to the RPL club.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Truth Will Set You Free

I went to a baby shower I could not skip last week.   Baby showers are so triggering, and someone spent a week on Pinterest for this one.  Flowers in tiny baby rainboots.  Multiple crossword puzzles.   Number guessing.  Prizes.  Glass containers of pink custom popcorn.  I had a few drinks.  And then a few more.

A friend of a friend I see maybe 5-6 times a year came up to me.  She had a six month old baby on her hip.  Of course she did.  And she asked it.  A throwaway meaningless question at an event with a bunch of people who don't know each other.  "So when are you guys going to have a baby?"

I snapped.  Maybe it was wrong.

"Well, we are zero for four, so you tell me."  *pause*  "Did you see so and so's car!  He must have gotten a big bonus!"

She cared a lot about that car all of a sudden.  And so we talked about the car.

This strategy was risky, obviously.  If I happened to pick someone who did IVF, or someone who froze their eggs before chemo, or just someone nosy, there is going to be some followup.  I had to be ready to talk about all of it, which I was.  I'm just so over all of this.  It feels like discussing someone else's life now.  Going rogue with honesty is asking for this feedback, which luckily I did not get.

I also opened myself up to gossip.  At this point I don't care about that either.  Anyone who gave a shit about me as a person would have already known about at least one of the four.  I timeshifted this post because I was worried about backlash (especially for my sperm donor!!!).  I was really worried people might ask him about it, and I know that would be awkward for him.  But it seems like no one said shit.  Maybe if you ask a rude question, you keep the TMI answer to yourself.  Maybe she thought it was a joke!??!

I feel surprisingly free.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

A New Diagnosis: RPL

My mood is completely somewhere else for IVF #2.  It's almost like I can't be bothered.  The women in the waiting room were very young, very blonde, and had nice nails.  You could feel that tension where if you make eye contact they will start crying.  A lady in a niqab came out of the payment area sobbing.  I know that feeling.  The last time I was at the RE office was for my March abortion.  Big contrast to my current energy, which is more like an observer.  I'm barely there. 

First step was hysteroscopy #3. My cervix doesn't like being messed with and the saline is some kind of torture.  If my sperm donor had to do this, we would never get pregnant. I should have gotten the valium, but I had no one to drive me.  More accurately, I did not want anyone to drive me.  I just wanted to be alone.  I thought that was the worst part, it wasn't.

Then came the doctor consult.  I got a new, fun diagnosis:  RPL.  Recurrent pregnancy loss.  My IVF chemical pregnancy with two perfect embryos, and then a spontaneous miscarriage two months later are a statistical improbability.  No shit.  I do everything 1%, I guess.

I zoned out at this point.  I didn't really respond or say much at all.  I wasn't even upset.  He said there were two things to look into: genetics (that's another post) and something about looking into a uterine abnormality, even though all the reports said perfect.  *shrug*  So now he wants the tape of my HSG from three years ago.  Luckily I made them give me a copy before I left.  I REALLY should have gotten the valium for that one.

Just one more thing I can't control.  I'd take my old diagnosis "secondary infertility: tubal cause" over RPL any day.  I regret every day that I carry the scars of RPL, because there is no way to come out of RPL unchanged.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Insurance Good News

There is so much to digest from my two hour doctor's office extravaganza, it is going to take a couple days to sink in, and then couple posts.

I'll start with the good news.  News so good it had me crying on the phone with my mom in the car.  Good news!  The insurance picked up 100% of the cost, no copays even, once I pass my deductible ($1,500 individual/$3,000 family).  WOW.

The kicker is that this is an Obamacare plan from  That's right. I'm self-employed, live in a state with no coverage at all for infertility, and this is literally an Obamacare plan.  Not even the most expensive one, it's about $1,200 for the two of us per month.  Wow.

That is even better than my coverage in a mandatory coverage state for a plan that I kept on COBRA for over $2K/month.  All I had to do was have a tube surgically removed to qualify.  Lucky me.  Oh, and the baby in the tube too.

We have to pay $1,500 for cryo, like last time.  There's a new option to pay $3,500 to have the embryos genetically tested at CCRM, also not covered.  Those are the only out of pocket costs.  Wow.  I made a new post for the costs of IVF Cycle #2, this time with my new insurance.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Meh About Round #2

Doctor appointment Thursday for final checks to start a new fresh round.  I'm pretty calm, really.  I know logistically what is about to happen.  I have no control over that, and I'm not scared of needles anymore.

Mentally, maybe  I don't care, or I've checked out, but it has no power over me this time.  This time, it feels like getting new glasses, really annoying glasses that require fifteen office visits, a bunch of vagina checks, and a bunch of blood draws.  Just another errand, and I'll have to wait there forever.  I think I have already decided it will fail.  I am a planner type, not that you would know that because I so very rarely execute those plans.  But this time, I am expecting to end up at Plan M.  We're already at Plan G or something.

I have been too busy at work to sneeze, not to mention worry about IVF.  That helps.  I've been working out two hours a day.   I am doing something like dance/Zumba/spin in the morning, and yoga/pilates in the evening.  I am literally exhausting my body so I can't think about it.

Emotionally, everything I had is gone to Hermione who is magically pregnant with my due date with the first grandbaby.  That is all over Facebook.  That is all the family is talking about.  I think that took all the fucks I have to give.  I don't have any more emotions left for anyone's baby after mine died and hers lived.  Including mine, I'm pretty indifferent to that now too.

After my miscarriage, I heard shit from any of them.  I'm not saying I expected daily status checks, but a text might have been nice.  But why coddle a silly miscarriage when there is a real baby?  My position has been made loud and clear.

I think somewhere along the way I have made peace that this might never happen for me.  This is the end of the line for me.  I will try these fresh rounds.  Maybe take some out of the freezer.  No more after that.  I am not so stupid as to keep chasing death.  I am not overwhelmed at the prospect that I might never have a child.  It feels like death and suffering is the hand I have been dealt.  The hand I live with every day.   The more I fight it, the more I suffer.  So, here we go.  Round #2.