Month: March 2014
Video

Things That Are Good

Today’s blog post is brought you by things in my life that are good (spoiler alert: it’s ALL THE THINGS), and Liz Lemon.

Why?  Because I’m happy, and because it’s my damn blog, and because Liz Lemon is my spirit animal.

Ready?

*****

So I know I haven’t posted in a few weeks, and it’s mainly because I’ve just been so darn busy.

Yeah okay, some of that busy-ness has been in the form of catching up on my dvr-ed programming, eating whatevathecrap I feel like, and generally carving out a deeper ass-indent in my couch, but some of it has actually been productive, yo!

But really, I’ve been up to some things in my regular old life these days.

THINGS, you guys.

Firstly, I’m like 98.56% sure that I ovulated on cycle day 15 last month.

FIFTEEN.

WHAT?  Like, without drugs??

Uhh… apparently so.  The new herbs McStabby has me taking seem to be working some kinda miracles down-unda, and I’m hoping the miraculous normality continues into this month.

So yay for functioning girly-bits!

Also, McStabby totally went all bitter renegade Infertility Advocate on me at my last appointment.  Seriously.  He was all like “UNEXPLAINED INFERTILITY IS SUCH A BULLSH*T NON-DIAGNOSIS, GOD!” 

It was crazy, and awesome, and I almost would have laughed, but I was too impressed.  Basically, he is like SO OVER hearing about unexplained infertility as a hard and fast diagnosis.  He wants some of his UI patients to start looking more into other causes of infertility, like immunological issues and bacterial infections.

There are really no reproductive immunologists in this area, so he wants me to start with my OB rather than my RE.  He said that the OB may be more receptive to requesting some of these tests, and less likely to blacklist me from the office for even asking.

Because, you know, I see an acupuncturist, take Chinese herbs, and want to talk about antibiotic therapy and testing for immunological disorders, and I guess some fancy doctors don’t like that stuff.

So I’m trying to decide if this is a path I want to explore, or if I want to just want to keep on keepin’ on with the whole “infertility on the back burner” thing.

It’s a conundrum, to be sure.  I have no idea what to do here.

Aside from that, another cool thing happened:

I made a friend on Facebook.  A FRIEND WHO LIKES BOOKS.  I ran into her a while back in the comments section of a book blog I read, and she and I bonded over our shameful love of Bar Rescue marathons (don’t judge me).  I recognized her name as a news reporter for a local station, and lo and behold, she is also on the Facebooks and is totally friends with another blogger I love.

It was sorta meant to be, you guys.

Anyway, I sent her an email letting her know about the new RESOLVE support group I was looking to promote, and asked whether she thought the station would be willing to share a flyer on their website or via social media or something, and she was like “why don’t you come on my Sunday cooking show and we can talk about it on the air?”

And I accepted.

I was nervous as all get-out, but I think I actually spoke in coherent sentences (without any accidental swearing, yay!).

One thing did happen that I feel badly about, but I didn’t realize it until well after the show had already aired…

Prior to the taping, I was talking with my interviewer and a few other people in the room about infertility, and about people they knew that had struggled to get pregnant.  One of the women mentioned her sister, who had had years of trouble conceiving, and we talked about her sister’s stories of a coworker who was an unhealthy drunken chain-smoker that had magical Duggar-like fertility.  We’ve all heard stories like this, and it’s enough to make a compassionate infertile roll her eyes at the injustice of it all.

During the interview, I said something like “why can the girl at work who drinks and smokes get pregnant, and not me?”, generalizing, and referring to that bit of conversation we’d had off camera.  Apparently, some people I work with may have thought I was actually talking about someone specific in our office who is pregnant (and not a drunken chain-smoker at all, by the way)… which came to a bit of a shock to me, because OMG I WOULD NEVER!

I feel like such an a-hole, even though it was a completely innocent comment that had nothing to do with anyone I actually know.

Ugh.

So, you know… Tracy – 0, Tracy’s Foot-in-Mouth – 68,759.

Oh right.  Here’s the link to the video… I’m after the Fitbit segment at about 2:40.

And you know the best part of that day?  I spent two days prior deciding on what to wear, ultimately coming up with a navy sweater over a coral shirt and some light khaki pants.

You know what happens when you wear khakis, right?

Yep.  Tracy – 0, Scumbag Uterus – 159

Okay, so I guess that was a good thing with some bad undertones… but ultimately it was a good thing, so it still fits within the parameters of this good-things-and-Liz-Lemon-themed blog post.

YESSIR.  Still counts.

The last good thing I want to talk about is my RESOLVE support group.

We met for the first time last night, and while I can’t discuss specifics, I can tell you that we had a pretty nice turnout for a first meeting!  Six women attended, and I feel like it was a great mix of people in different stages of their journey to parenthood.  We had some lively conversations, there were a lot of different topics thrown out for further discussion at upcoming meetings, and I feel like the women who attended really wanted to be there.

This group means a lot to me, both in the sense that doing the legwork to make it happen is very fulfilling, but also in the sense that I have really been missing being a part of a group that exists because of a shared passion.

Also, we’re kind of like the really sassy Island of Misfit Toys, and I kind of love that.

So it’s all good right now.

Like, ridiculously good.

Marriage?  Good.

Work?  Good.

DVR capacity?  Good.

Life?

Bring it on, life.  I’m pretty happy accepting only good things from you for a change.

Let’s keep up the good work, eh?

Image

Toledo Area Infertility Support Group

This is a project that’s been a long time coming, both for me, and for this area.  Please feel free to share this post, this image, and the Resolve Toledo email address, toledoresolve@gmail.com.

Thank you!

RESOLVE Flier - 2.18.14

Status

The Five Year Review

Soooo… Here we are.

Five years deep.

Five  l o n g   years of trying, failing, struggling, treading water, and just… waiting.  Waiting for our turn, waiting for our two lines.

Waiting for our family to happen.

Year One was the picture of a happy-go-lucky newlywed with all the time in the world.

Year Two saw me attempting to combine Clomid with crinolines, in a sweaty scene straight out of a TBS sitcom.

Year Three had me unhappily (and soberly) awaiting the results of what would be yet another failed IUI cycle.

Year Four ended full of retrospect, acceptance, wisdom, sadness for what could have been, and an amazing amount of hope that Five would most definitely be THE YEAR.

Yesterday was the end of Year Five…

And today?  You’d think today was the first day of Year Six…

…But today is actually the beginning of something completely different.

*****

Some things have changed recently.

Actually, I don’t know if it’s more that things have changed, or that I have, but my direction has clearly been altered of late.

At my most recent acupuncture appointment, I spent some time talking with Dr. McStabby extensively about stress in my life, and the emotional toll infertility can take.

“Infertility causes infertility”, as Dr. Randine Lewis says.  While I agree that infertility has been a major stressor in my life, especially in the past few years, things have improved for me recently in that department.  I’m no longer as stressed as I used to be, and I think acupuncture and TCM has helped greatly.

But… so has time, honestly.  We’ve been at this thing for a long time.  We’re kind of getting used to disappointment after five years, know what I mean?  It’s become so regular that it’s not like it’s a big shock any more.

We’ve been trying to get pregnant for our entire marriage, essentially, and the husband and I have put a lot on hold to pursue this life that we have been so desperate for.  He and I talked recently, and at great length, about where we want to go from here…  We finally had that talk that I’ve been afraid to have for a long time.

He is ready to get back to being a married couple instead of a TTC couple.

*cue deep sigh of relief that he doesn’t straight up want to divorce my crazy ass*

More than that, he says he won’t resent me if we can’t get pregnant, and he won’t resent me if I decide to hardcore pursue Western treatments again (although, I’ll be honest, the odds of that are slim).  Basically, I have the husband’s blessing to move in whatever direction I feel comfortable, even if that is just varying degrees of backing off the whole TTC thing completely.

We may move onto just being a healthy couple who lets whatever happens, happen.  We’ve both accepted that we may be that couple who doesn’t have kids.  Maybe we’ll be the ones who can travel at the drop of a hat, or we’ll adopt (even more) furry creatures, or we’ll be the best gosh-darn aunt and uncle EVER.  Maybe we’ll adopt a child someday, if the situation is right.  Maybe we won’t.

And you know what?  We’re okay with ALL of those situations.  Truly.

At this point, IVF is not in our immediate future.  We just don’ t feel right about some aspects of it at the moment.  Part of the decision is financial, and part is just that I don’t feel like there’s anything physically SO WRONG that we can’t conceive on our own (and neither do any of the SEVEN doctors I’ve seen over the years…).  I just cannot justify forcing my body to do something that it doesn’t seem ready to do.  Maybe that will change someday, and maybe I’ll regret not going all-in while I still have some remnants of youth on my side, but honestly?  It just doesn’t feel right to me today.

It’s a lot to process, I know.

One thing that’s stuck with me though, is a conversation I had with McStabby recently.  He asked me, “Do you feel like you deserve a child?”

I was taken aback a little.  I honestly had to think about it.

He asked because, in his line of work, he sees women who have certain emotional hang-ups that he suspects can prevent them from conceiving, whether it’s a past trauma, a lack of confidence in their marriage/family life/maternal skills, or something else.  Regardless of his motives for asking, it’s a jarring question to be asked, for sure.

After a minute, I came to a conclusion.  Yes.  I do.  I deserve a child. 

Does that feeling mean that I will necessarily have one?  No.  Because life’s not always fair, and sometimes the harder we squeeze a handful of sand, the more of it slips through our grasp.  Just because I believe that I deserve a child, doesn’t mean that I’m going to force my body to submit to my timing.

Soo… I don’t want to just come out and say that we’re taking the “Just stop trying…” non-approach, but in some ways, we kind of… are.

Wait, wait.  Before you freak out and tell me I need to rename my blog, let me ‘splain.

We’re not saying “just stop trying and a BABY will magically happen”.

What we are saying is, “just stop trying so HARD and LIFE will happen… and whatever blessings come along with life, we’ll take those too.  And if a baby happens to be one of those blessings?  Even better.  Icing.  Gravy.  Time for a parade.”

It’s a strange – and strangely freeing – place to be…

For the moment, we’re just kind of bobbing along.  Living life.  Being married people who don’t have to inject themselves with things or ejaculate into cups.

I’m still going to continue acupuncture treatments for now, and I’ll continue taking the herbs even if I stop the actual acu treatments, just for general health and balance; honestly, I like how I feel, even if I don’t like the taste of the herbal “teas”.  Between the husband and I, the door is open for me to go back to the RE if I so choose (I would be interested in seeing if there have been any changes in my blood work in a year’s time), or maybe for a possible medicated cycle one day, but likely nothing more than that.

I’ll also keep working to maintain the healthy habits I’ve gained through TCM, but I will likely stop temping someday soon.

I KNOW.  Don’t freak out, or I might freak out and lose my resolve on that little gigantic decision.

I may never be able to ignore the quality of my cervical mucus, but my body temperature, the chemical content of my urine, and what’s in my underwear will no longer have complete control over my entire life.

So that’s where I am right now…  I know I’ve been quiet here lately, and I wanted to provide a little update and insight into why that has been.

I do have some exciting things on the horizon, including my Resolve Peer Led Infertility Support group venture – which should start meeting this month (!), and being invited to attend Resolve’s Advocacy Day in Washington DC, where I will have the chance to speak with members of the House and Senate on the political issues surrounding infertility treatment and coverage in the US.  The husband and I are also traveling to San Francisco for a wedding in late May, and are looking forward to that little getaway opportunity as well.

All in all, life is not perfect, but it is most definitely still a good life.  I’m appreciative for all I have, including all of YOU, and I’m ready to focus on what I have, instead of beating myself up for what I don’t.

I don’t know exactly what this new outlook will mean for me, my life, and this blog, but I know I will continue to be here, rooting you all on, and hoping and praying for each of you, every day.

I’ll still likely be holding out some far-fetched hope that my own body will miraculously get its shit together, too.  I mean, some things will never, ever, EVER change.  🙂

*****

So that’s it.

Year Six isn’t really a thing.  Like, at all.

This is just March, just a few years into a great marriage, just a drop in the bucket of a great life.

A life I’m going to be actively living again.

…Starting today.

My hope for you is that wherever you are in your journey, whether your life is completely saturated with the details of TTC, or whether you too are at a bit of a crossroads, that you are able to slow down from time to time and appreciate what you do have.

My hope for you is that you live that little life of yours in a way that makes a difference, impacts others, and allows you to look back fondly one day, free of regrets.

My hope for you is that you live.

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