Monthly Archives: July 2014

Real Day 1


I’m sitting here in font of my first shot of Lupron and totally psyching myself out.  I don’t know what’s wrong with me.  Seriously, I’m a pretty brave person, I’ve done some crazy things in life.  But this is really getting me and I don’t know why.  I feel all panicky.

Any tips??

❤ ❤ ❤

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What’s in the Box???!


It’s HERE!!!  A little unnerving that the box could double as a quaint condominium for my 2 dumb dogs.  Unpacking it now.  My home is becoming Needle Nation, I’ll need to hang a new flag.

Also, I decided to make an Instagram account for all the IVF stuff.  Follow it, I’ll be happy to share every detail that could possibly help or support anyone out there!  @bb.bux

Also please feel free to follow my regular account too (@KateOrDie) for regular updates on both my one-eyed, and toothless dogs, pictured above!  What more could you want?

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Baby Fat


What are you babes doing to stay fit and healthy through all of this??  Obviously, once pregnant, I will happily gain a healthy amount of weight for the baby, but I’m reading more and more that that amount does not tend to be as much as we think it is.  I feel like over the last 4 years of ttc, my body just wants to gain.  This could also have something to do with being over 30 now, dammit.  But I really do feel like my body is trying to nest every month, even though every month that nest has been batted out of the tree by some bitchy cat.

I cut out gluten for almost a year per the request of my acupuncturist, but I didn’t notice much of a difference.  I was gaining a little weight though, which I thought would be the opposite.  But while staying at my parents house this last time, being that my mother laughed at me with the whole no gluten thing so she prepared gluten with a side of gluten for each meal, I went back to eating it.  I noticed that I was full a lot faster and ate way less.  I also noticed that it made me a little lethargic, so it’s a give and a take I guess.

I tend to eat pretty well typically, but I’m most interested in finding physical activity that I can get into without having to fear I’m messing anything up.  I’m a runner and a swimmer and I hike at least once a week.  Running is a no-no, and I just worry about swimming and water getting up in my Netherlands.  Hiking is great, but probably not once I’m pregnant.

So here are my questions!  Answer any or all of them if you like!

1. What activities are you doing to stay fit and were they Dr. approved?

2. What are you cutting out or trying to include more of in your diet?

3. Are you using a heart monitor while you exercise and if so, do you recommend the one you have?

4. Are there any vitamins or supplements you’re having luck with?

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Well, medication is paid for and will be delivered tomorrow!  It’s so surreal, no turning back now!  It would have been nice if our insurance had covered ANY of my meds, but that was not the case.  A bit infuriating considering we looked long and hard for a policy that would help with the cost of IVF and found nothing.  It wasn’t like this was just sprung on us, we knew for a long time that IVF was probably in our future, but there was nothing we could have done about it.  It was like being pushed off a cliff in super, ultra slow motion.

But now, it’s just time to focus on the baby that I hope will be the pot of gold at the end of this pooh-colored rainbow.  I have to believe that the universe will give it all back to us in some shape or form, but the important thing is that baby!

In Other News

Today while taking a wee I looked down at my dog’s 4 inch nails, then had to wipe myself with a paper towel.  I had to wonder, am I ready for children?

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Fertility Tourism


This is a subject that I’ve been fascinated by lately.  I’ll admit I was fantasizing about a London holiday where I would live in a charming cottage for months and receive IVF treatment for $4.  The price of it here in the US is killing me.  It’s so insane.  I also feel a little icky thinking about how some of that cost is probably due to the fact that people dealing with infertility are sometimes so desperate they would pay anything, so companies know they can charge anything.  What do I know factually about how these companies get their pricing?  Zilch-o-la.  But it’s still suspect.

I know that other countries have different laws and I think that makes up the majority of motivation for fertility tourism.  For example, I believe in Canada you can’t pay for donor eggs or sperm?  And in some countries PGD for sex selection is illegal.

Other than cost, we have it pretty good here in the US.  We have some of the best doctors and tend to be the most relaxed with our regulations.  But part of me did want to just look into IVF in a few other countries just for the heck of it.  I couldn’t find much on it.  I’d love to hear anything you ladies know!

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Unshakably Happy


So, I’m a Nichiren Buddhist, which is probably the best thing I have going for myself currently.  It’s really helping me not lose hope through this rough patch.  I’m sure people of all kinds of faith will understand that.  The organization SGI (Soka Gakkai International) is structured very much around the members and each individual experience.  We are encouraged to share our struggles and our triumphs with one another, strengthening each other’s faith and practice.  Nichiren Buddhism is not one for blind faith, really.  It’s more about challenging the practice, and learning from our results and the results of others.  THIS is how we grow our faith, by constantly seeing proof, and getting a better understanding of how and why it works.

Every month, each group has a discussion meeting.  There will be a specific topic that the group will delve into together, we will share our favorite quotes pertaining to the topic, read related articles, and share our thoughts and feelings on it.  But the real kind of meat and potatoes to these discussion meetings are the shared experiences by members.  Typically one member who has recently received an inspiring benefit, or has just made an exciting cause in their life working towards a major goal, will be asked to tell their story.  The human aspect of encouraging one another is massive.

I’ve been asked to speak at our meeting today.  I was asked months ago, and was really hoping to have something inspirational to talk about by now.  I was hoping my story would have turned around and I could talk about how I was coming out on the other side.  But that’s just not the case.

Our struggles are what shape us into better human beings.  And the goal of Buddhism is to be unshakably happy.  That means that your circumstances do not determine your happiness.  Circumstances will always change and shift, and if our happiness was dependent on them, that would mean our happiness would waver as well.  To be whole and complete and to find inner peace and happiness NO MATTER WHAT is what being a Buddha is all about.  The cool thing is that we are all Buddhas.  Whatever you believe in or whatever religion you practice, the key to your happiness is within you.  It’s YOURS.  You have the power to make great changes in your life, and the greatest thing you can do is have courage, and to make the determination to be unshakably happy no matter what challenges come your way.

I know I talk a lot in my blog about not giving in to the sadness that surrounds IVF.  It’s not that I’m suppressing my feelings, it’s that I am making the determination to focus on being happy instead.  It’s not easy, but it benefits me immensely.  When I feel sad, I allow myself to, but I try not to feed into it.  I respect my emotions, but I also realize that being happy is my choice.

Human suffering is something that every person on the planet shares.  People with small problems and people with big problems all experience suffering.  I’ve found that the people with only the seemingly small problems actually suffer just as much as the people with large problems.  Of course the people with large problems would love to trade with those that have small, superficial ones.  And that just proves that our situations are subjective.  If a person going through the loss of a child got to trade with someone whose biggest problem was worrying about making rent that month, they would feel light and free and HAPPY.  But that person who only lives in the realm of not knowing if they will make rent, suffers.  They are sad and consumed with worry and it most likely will effect other areas of their life.

I hope that makes sense.  And I also hope it does not come across as though I am making light of what any of us are going through.  I’m so happy to have found women to share stories with and a community of support.  I hope that we can also encourage one another to find real happiness through these challenging times.

I don’t have a happy conclusion to share at my meeting today, but I have the enlightened determination to face this challenge head on and win.  Let’s all be champions for ourselves.

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The “Me Too”-ers


Comparison is the thief of joy.  That’s why I do very little comparing myself to others.  As far as my issues with infertility, it’s really no different.  When I hear that someone I know is having a baby, I’m genuinely happy for them.  I’m aware that there’s no fixed amount of babies allotted for the planet and they didn’t get the last one.  Sometimes there are little pangs of sadness, but those come just from being reminded of what I’m going through when I’m trying not to think about it.  I tend to keep it all under wraps until I’m in front of my computer blogging about it these days (ignore my meltdown 2 nights ago).  So I keep it together, but there are reminders everywhere.  And I’ll feel those sad pangs of “oh yeah” and let myself feel it for a second, and then wrangle it back down again.

I feel the exact same when I hear about other women getting pregnant or see pictures of their babies as I do when I’m shopping and walk by the diaper isle or a life-sized cardboard cutout of the Vlasic Pickle stork.  It’s just a reminder of what I’m going through.  Nothing more.

But I guess in life you can’t help who is out there comparing themselves to YOU.  And I am very used to this concept.  Insecure people tend to see the world as eat or be eaten and feel the need to constantly compete.  Unlike most of you probably sane ladies, I’m pretty sick, so I get a kick out of it.  It tickles me in a very naughty way.  Not the really good kind of naughty tickle, but still.

Now I’m starting to realize there’s apparently another event in the Tournament of Lives and it’s even more obnoxious.  It’s the emulation of struggle.  I’m really beginning to understand the old saying about someone that needs to be “the bride at the wedding and the corpse at the funeral.”

A person close to me recently started telling people that she’s having “infertility problems” just a few weeks after hearing what we were going through.  She has only been trying the last couple months and hasn’t even been to the doctor about it.  Now, that’s none of my business (insert Kermit drinking tea meme) but I can’t help that the lesser evolved portion of my brain feels a little bit highjacked.  Especially since she knows every detail of what we’ve been going through and how painful it’s been.  Apparently she’s pretty vocal about her pretend prognosis and I feel like it trivializes the real thing.  This is why is the infertility and tttc forums (that I have become very involved in through this) when someone who has been trying for less than a year posts or chimes in they a-l-w-a-y-s get dragged.  Ain’t nobody got time for that.

Another good friend of mine was dealing with infertility a lot longer than I was, and way more of it.  Many failed IUIs, full rounds of IVF, too many years and a sickening amount of money.  She had just about the same thing happen to her.  After letting people in on what they were going through, a good friend of hers started posting on FB about “not being able to have a baby” after trying for maybe 2 months.  Also, nothing medically wrong with her.  Thank God my friend and I weren’t crumbling like that after 2 months, we never would have made it this far.  Maybe they don’t mean any harm by it, but it just shows their inability to see past the nose on their own face.

After talking to more women and reading more blogs, I’m finding out that quite a few of us have similar stories.  That’s weird right?  I feel like it needs some kind of special term, since it’s seemingly so common.  Just like “Catfishing” has now become a term for something that seems like it should be obscure.  But it’s now SO common I guess they need a word for it.

I’m only human, and obviously not completely immune to being hit by the shrapnel of pettiness, but I found a way to have peace with it.  I remember why it is that my husband and I are putting ourselves through all of this.  And it has so much meaning that the petty stuff simply can’t touch it.  People tagging themselves onto what we’re going through without actually having a clue about it just aren’t even in my peripheral.  I think about how much we are going to love our future baby and how every person’s struggle is different.  People with problems that may seem small to you, don’t see their own problems as small and I’m learning to find compassion for that (while simultaneously giving some serious side-eye).

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Questions for You IVF Pros! <3

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So the nurse sent me my tentative protocol and I’m having a hard time making heads or tails of it.  I’m wondering if some of you fine ladies might take a look at it for me and help me figure it out?  Does everything look pretty typical?  I was supposed to be traveling to visit my husband who’s gone for a month and a half but I’m assuming that will be a no go.  Were any of you able to travel during the process?  I would be back before my first blood draw and u/s.  

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Last Night

push-button toy

I wasn’t sure if I was going to post about this.  I try as hard as I can not to throw a pity party for myself and mainly focus on finding humor in this situation, with a little side order of being pissed.  That’s typically the recipe I need for survival.  But last night I just broke and could not for the life of me get it together.

I don’t know if it’s the BCP finally kicking in or what.  I mentioned before that the last time I took them they made me insane in the membrane.  But I was more just not myself, not an emotional wreck.  So who knows, maybe I really did hit some sort of breaking point.  I’m feeling a little better today, and I knew I would.  Things are always colored differently by the light of day.  That’s why I didn’t write this last night.  But I was like a moment away from feathering all my hair and swooping it across my forehead, putting on massive amounts of eyeliner, turning on some hair touching band with a whiny dude singer, and writing my lament a’la Lydia Deets.

While I’m glad I didn’t do that, I was reminded last night about how reading other women’s stories made me feel less crazy and less alone.  I guess, according to every person that has ever tried to console me while I was crying, you’re supposed to remember how other people have it worse than you do.  That never worked for me, it only makes me sadder.  The only time anything like that ever works for me is when I am feeling sorry for myself when my husband is on tour, and I make myself remember families out there whose loved ones are in the military, putting themselves in harms way, and then I usually feel so stupid I just laugh at myself.  The most danger my husband is ever in is getting accidentally clipped by the tiny, sweaty elbow of some overzealous teenage stage diver.

But, no, thinking about how other people are sadder/worse off than I am does not tend to make me feel appreciation for what I have.  I feel even further down the hole, like sadness is insurmountable.  I can’t save those people, I can’t even save myself.  The world is a terrible place.

What set me off yesterday was the nurse at my appointment for my MMR vaccine.  No, she wasn’t a bitch.  I fucking WISH.  She was totally warm and sweet, and that is my kryptonite.  When I’m sad or upset, I can be pretty tough.  And when people are terrible to me, I can hold it together and defend myself and be strong, I have no problem with that.  But the second someone shows me real kindness, I turn into one of those tiny push button toys of a horse or giraffe that collapse when you press the bottom.  I crumble.

Of course one of the first things out of her mouth before giving me the shot was, “Any chance you are pregnant?”  I pressed my lips together, and even though I smiled politely as I said “no” it was like she was somehow able to see through it.  She didn’t say anything but smiled back warmly.  “Do you plan on being pregnant any time soon?”  Now I can feel the sensation of water pressure building up behind my face, but I was still holding it together, at least I thought so.  “No.”  Then she said the most terrible thing she could have said to me in that moment.  “Are you ok?”

She said it so sweetly, in the warmest voice, and there was nothing I could do about it at that point.  I cried.  Like ugly face cried.  Then she really went above an beyond, asking me questions and not taking “I’m ok” for an answer.  It took a little bit to get anything out of me because I didn’t want to burden her with it, or make her feel like she needed to continue to be sweet to me.  Like she would feel trapped and be sorry she asked if she really knew what was up.  But she was really wonderful, and talked to me for a good amount of time and offered to let me sit in the room with her until I felt better.

I never really recuperated from that yesterday.  As I was going about my day, I would look down at the band aid on my arm and it would all come back to me.  I even did my very best to focus on whatever I could that was shallow.  I turned on my go-to antidote for all things feelings, Bravo TV.  But none of my familiar beloved sociopathic housewives were available to hang out.  It didn’t matter, there was some show on about money grubbing realtors in Miami and I thought “perfect.”  Halfway through the episode, the sort of deadpan Jewish American Princess with the personality of a dial tone took her dog in for a teeth cleaning and it fucking DIED.  I lost it.  Why Bravo, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME!?

I turned off the TV, pulled it together, and tried to focus on something else.  I have been asked to speak at a meeting of the Buddhist organization I belong to this Sunday.  I wanted to work on what I was going to say. I was really hoping I would have something inspirational to share at this point, and I just don’t.  At that point balloons and confetti dropped from the ceiling and Lionel Richie played over the speakers, this pity party was in full swing.

I guess I try to fight it too much.  I don’t WANT to be sad about this.  And I know I shouldn’t be, things could be much, much worse.  But am I going to be am mom??  I seriously need to know.  Cool I have my health, and a great husband, and lots to be happy about.  But is it ok for me to actually admit I might trade every bit of that for a baby?  I mean, that’s kind of messed up, right? There’s something to feeling sad when you know you shouldn’t be.  It would be one thing if something horrendous had happened to me.  Then I could cry and grieve and let it all out.  I almost feel like I’m not allowed to be sad right now, but I am, so it’s really messing with me.  I don’t want to burden my husband, family or friends with it.  Everyone has their own stuff going on.  And honestly there’s really nothing they can say or do about it anyway.  So I cried.  Hard.  Like violently vomiting up sobs.  And my body oscillated  through numbness and then stabbing pain, and then numbness again, over and over.  But I think I just needed that.  I feel better today, I do.  I think I may have exorcised the demons, at least for right now.


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