The State of Things

This post should be subtitled, Are You Bored Yet?


So, there’s not really much new around here to report.  I feel a little bad about that.

I mean, for the past almost four years, I’ve been in a constant state of upheaval, immersed completely in the chaos of doctor’s appointments, ultrasounds, and fertility meds.

And now?

Now I just… am.

Honestly, I don’t know what to do with myself sometimes.  For years, this blog – my whole life, really – has been all about infertility.  I suppose it’s a healthy adjustment that I’m focusing more on my general health, my relationship with the husband, and my actual life, than on the shortcomings of my reproductive system, but still… it’s a big adjustment.

Because I don’t want anyone to think that I’ve fallen away from blogging about every twinge and poke in my abdominal cavity, and sharing every TMI moment in my life, I figured I should at least put together a small update on what’s been up with me lately.

First of all, you read about my recent experience with Maya Abdominal Massage, right?  Well, I’m going to continue with that, once per month, for at least another two months.

I’ve also decided to start trying to get a relaxation massage once per month as well.  All of this “extra” stuff that’s not covered by insurance can be expensive, so I’ve turned to Groupon for deals on the massage end of things.  It’s not such a huge undertaking when you’re getting a reduced rate.

Acupuncture is going well; Dr. McStabby surprised me at the last appointment with an e-stim acu-treatment.  Basically, he places the needles as usual – some in the legs and feet, a few in the arms and hands, and a few in the belly – and then he hooked up these little tiny electrodes to a few select points, primarily in my ankles and belly.

For the record, these are not my legs.

Now I know it sounds scary, thinking that there are electrical impulses being sent into needles that are puncturing your skin, but I swear to you, I didn’t feel a thing.  If anything, that treatment was the most relaxing one I’ve had so far, and I even was able to fall asleep a bit on the table.

We talked before I left his office about herbs – I had run out of one of the daily decoctions I take – and he said that after I run out of one formula he has me on, which is apparently a sort of “reset” formula, he’s going to start me on a new blend that will really help “pump up” my egg maturation.

This is pretty much what my herbs look like before I mix them into warm water – a cross between brown sugar and powdered makeup. They taste about like that, too.

I’m really looking forward to seeing what this new blend will do for me!

However… I do find myself getting a little antsy sometimes.  Still.

What can I say?  I’m a creature of habit!

Every time I get that way, I have to stop and tell myself that this is the first full cycle I’ve been employing acupuncture and herbs.  My body is still adjusting to the diet I started 6 weeks ago, and it will take some time to see results from that.  It will also take time to see changes from the acupuncture and herbs themselves, and as I always hear/read, it can really take three to six months to see these expected changes.

Some days I feel like I did when I had my first Clomid cycle, so many years ago.  I was certain that those five little pills would get me pregnant immediately, and I was highly disappointed when that, and the subsequent cycle, did not turn out as I had expected.

Now when I have friends who start fertility meds for the first time, I see that hope in them, too.  It makes me a little sad, thinking how naive I was, and what a rough road these friends may have ahead of them.  I always hope for the best, say a little prayer for them, and give them my most hopeful and encouraging smile while telling them what everyone always told me:  you need to be patient; the first time isn’t always the charm.

Funny.  After all this time, I still need to take my own advice.

And so, while I am very hopeful that acupuncture and herbs may be my miracle treatment path, I am still working on the learning curve.  I have to tell myself every day not to chart my temps like I want to, and sometimes I give in to the temptation to analyze my temps when I know I shouldn’t.  I have to stop myself from checking OPKs every day, and I know it will be the same with HPTs later in the cycle.

Obsession is not conducive to relaxation, and relaxation is conducive to conception.  I keep telling myself that.

Sometimes, though, I think that the stress of forcing myself to relax might just kill me.  Ha.

I’ve seriously Googled “relaxation techniques”, and contemplated buying a relaxation how-to book for my Kindle…

Clearly I need some help with this whole letting go thing!

And so, in the meantime, I’m working at improving my natural compulsive tendencies, while also working on my stress response.  I try to remember to breathe deeply, and I try to take time for myself every day.

All the while, I try not to try too hard.

It’s all very… trying.

I guess the important thing is that while I’m working at not trying so hard, I’m still my same determined self.  I am having a little trouble finding that happy balance – if there is one – between determination and acceptance, but I think that eventually I’ll get there.

Until then, I’ll keep blogging away, sharing any exciting news and probably mostly relatively sedate information I have along the way.

It’s not likely to be very intense around here any time soon, but I guess that’s just the trajectory I’m on.  Frantic, impatient, compulsive, totally obsessive Tracy needs to take the backseat for a while.

It’s time for a more peaceful approach to readying my body – and my mind – for potential parenthood.

I hope you’ll keep checking in with me throughout, and I promise to post random craziness now and then, just to prove that I haven’t really changed that much.

Thanks for sticking with me, friends.

11 comments on “The State of Things

  1. Andrea R. Smith
    September 10, 2013 at 12:29 pm #

    GREAT post!!! Super honest and reflective.


    • Tracy
      September 11, 2013 at 10:32 am #

      Thanks, friend! 🙂


  2. Heather
    September 10, 2013 at 12:54 pm #

    Just because you’re not in treatments doesn’t mean you’re not still trying. I took a year break and tried natural stuff (homeopath) even if it doesn’t work, you’ve leant something!


    • Tracy
      September 11, 2013 at 10:33 am #

      Well said, Heather!

      I do feel the need to be *doing something* at all times, so it’s really hard for me to *just stop trying*, lol. At least this way, paying less attention to the trying part is actually actively doing something!

      I found the loophole! 😉


  3. jackie
    September 10, 2013 at 1:57 pm #

    Your spirir is so shiney these days!! Xoxo 🙂

    Being a MT I’ve come across many relaxation techniques.the best one I’ve ever done was a releasing and “burning” of the past. To sum it up: while laying still visualize yourself sitting around a bonfire, you can be there with a situation, just yourself or with someone. If youve been hurt by someone, have them say what you wanted them to say in an apology. If its situation, visualize it the way you wanted it to happen, if its yourself- same as the first apologize. Then forgive. Then visualize walking into the fire to “burn” to make peace about what had happen and then visualize yourself walking out as a whole and “clean” 🙂 simple, but it takes a willingness to move forward 🙂


    • Tracy
      September 11, 2013 at 10:35 am #

      Oooh, shiny spirit, you say? I like that! 🙂

      I should have consulted you on relaxation techniques! Sometimes one gets so wrapped up in exploring the millions of options that one forgets the options that are closest to home. 😉

      Your idea is a good one, and I may put that into practice. I am especially looking for a good way to settle myself with the anniversary of my miscarriage coming up. I feel like overcoming that will be a big step in my journey…

      Thank you, friend.


  4. lydiaseeks
    September 10, 2013 at 2:27 pm #

    Oh man, this is so so true: “Sometimes, though, I think that the stress of forcing myself to relax might just kill me.”

    I also love the graphic, sad but true, that’s me at baby showers…


    • Tracy
      September 11, 2013 at 10:38 am #

      We really do amp ourselves up, don’t we? Even when what we’re really *trying* to do is to stop trying so hard?

      It’s a vicious circle… I think a big part of what I’m struggling with is letting go. Letting go of control, disappointment, jealousy, frustration, grief, anger, and that overwhelming feeling of being victimized by your own body.

      It’s not easy, but I know it will be worth it.. Letting go is the new black. 😉


  5. Jenni Moore
    September 10, 2013 at 7:22 pm #

    When you get a relaxation massage are you able to turn your mind off and actually relax? Not me! I have constant thoughts running through my head, despite me repeatedly telling myself to stop thinking. Evidently, I wasn’t listening to myself. Maybe practice makes perfect and I should try again!

    Enjoy being you and good luck with the relaxation and non-obsessing!


    • Tracy
      September 11, 2013 at 10:42 am #

      You know, it really depends on the situation for me… I need to feel that I can trust a massage therapist, and I’m finding that this Groupon situation doesn’t allow me to really build much of a relationship with anyone. When I’m not totally comfortable, that’s when my mind can’t relax either.

      At my last massage, I had a therapist who was an older gentleman, which is fine – I’m not shy – but he was a little rough on me. Normally I like my tense muscles to feel like they’ve been worked on and that the kinks have been worked out, but four days later and I’m still feeling “worked out”, and not in a good way.

      I guess maybe I need to suck it up and find someone more my speed…


  6. Connie
    September 11, 2013 at 3:55 pm #

    I really liked this blog entry. I’m in this forced relaxation mode now too and it’s hard, when for past four years, I’ve been so focused on BBT and OPK. And now to be told to stop them, I don’t know what to do with extra time. Extra time gained from not obsessing over changes in temp and likelihood of pregnancy symptoms during the two week wait.
    We’ll get through it! Here’s hoping that acupuncture and herbs work for us (I’ve been doing both since beginning of the year). But I’m quite envious of Dr. McStabby’s experience. St Louis doesn’t have a Randine Lewis practitioner.
    Also, you’ve perked my interest in the Maya massage. I don’t have uterus problems, but I’d like to try it anyway. I think there’s one practitioner in St Louis who does it.


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