Thursday, December 30, 2010

Eternally Exhausted: The Amount of Power Possesed By Such a Small Being.

I now officially despise the smell of the following:

-coffee breath
-the shop at work (metal/aluminum chips, coolant, etc.)
-Chinese food
-our fireplace/house after a fire goes out

I also do nothing but sleep. I mean that. All I think about at work is my bed and my pajamas and how I can't wait for the 3 of us to be together again. I'm exhausted. And typically I'm exhausted because I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome but that kind of sleepiness is manageable. This is PAINFUL. And I don't really mind it because I can come home and go right to bed. But this has lead to me skipping meals, which upsets Todd.

And this is the third issue behind my wacky sense-of-smell and my exhaustion: I have ZERO appetite. I haven't had any morning sickness, so to speak, but I have felt a weirdness in my stomach. No food looks, sounds or smells good. Nothing appeals to me, especially after 1:00 in the afternoon. The thought of even putting a fork in my mouth sort of weirds me out. I feel like if I DO eat, then I might get nauseated. I hate to throw up. I whimper and cry when I do. But I know I need to eat. I KNOW THIS. I just have to find something I WANT.

I can handle ice-cream. I'm guessing I can't have just that for 33 weeks though.

So I guess I'm starting to feel pregnant. It was bound to happen.

Oh, The baby monster bought a Bouncing Souls t-shirt for Daddy for Christmas. Not even born and already spending my money! Anyway, it came on Monday along with a matching onesie. Seeing this itty bitty Bouncing Souls onesie next to his ginormous t-shirt was so just flipping adorable I could barely stand it. Little by little, I'm starting to feel all geeked out.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Mini-Milestone: Post Script

I took a second stab at snapping some Week 6 pictures. Gotta keep up the momentum in case things fall through for the photo project, though I'm not expecting that. Regardless, I'm looking more like I typically do since yesterday's bloat overload has decreased.  So here we go, my Week 6 mug shots!

And the baby monster just scored another X-Mas gift from it's Aunt Wendy. Love it:

Mini-Milestone: Making It Halfway Through the First Trimester.

Until John Jackson and I start our pregnancy photo project (P3), I'm not taking anymore pictures of my expanding self. Because in all actuality, I haven't grown, I haven't expanded. But man, am I bloated! And pictures of a bloated tummy, even if you use the word "tummy", are NOT cute. And the fact that I have a mammoth somehow looks like a monster took a chunk out of me. I can't explain. Hopefully John Jackson can capture some shots that look less creepy.

But hey, you can't escape "creepy" when this is what's happening on the inside:

And the little monster is actually the size of this (time for your weekly food shot):

Let it be known that those are NOT my man hands. Also let it be know that at this point in time, the little beast in my oven has started to sprout webbed fingers and toes, the neural tube has closed and the forebrain and midbrain are kicking in good, because it's going to need a scholarship to go to college), and there are 2 black spots on each side of the head which will eventually become eyes. All the websites and books say the thing is starting to look more human. I think it's starting to look more Splice-like.

Yesterday we announced the pregnancy on Facebook and hey, that's what truly makes it official, right? All day, happy and shocked pals left comments regarding the baby monster and that kept me entertained during X-Mas. Because I don't know what will happen to Facebook in the future (remember Friendster or MySpace? Yeah, me neither), I better record some of my favorite reactions to a bun in my oven for posterity:

Aunt Firecracker: What's the big deal, everyone bakes at Christmas time....OH! THAT oven!!! Congratulations :). I love you guys :)

Uncle Texas Ben/The Drink: Wow! Lacey, I can't tell you how happy I am for you both. I was just telling Lisa the other day what a wonderful mother I thought you were going to be.

Aunt Windy: OMG!!!!!!!! Yay!!!! Can I uncross my labia now? Congratulations you guys! I am sooooo freaking happy for you. Best news ever.

Uncle Pat May: Rock a bye, baby, don't you leak. Bender wants to drink for at least a week.

Uncle Texas Pete: Good job. I'm very happy for you both. When he or she is old enough (you know, 2 or 3) send him/her over to mow my grass.

Uncle Alex Murder: Somehow I knew that already, because you are my twin. haha! Congratulations to you & Todd...that's awesome! Have a Merry Christmas!

Aunt Stephanie: Best Christmas News Evah! I already predict that your baby shower will be THE event of 2011. Next to baby monster's launching in August, of course.

Uncle Brett: Geez... everybody's awfully excited. I'm cooking two hams in my oven today, and nobody threw me a parade.

Godmother/Aunt Tessa: Bring on my godchild!! I love you my oldest friend. You are going to be a wonderful mom.

Uncle Rocko: holy motherfucking dogshit. congrats!

Phoebe did the Snoopy dance, Sharon D. deafened me with her screams, and plenty of people sent personal messages with lots of high fives and thumbs up, not to mention advice. They may think it's unsolicited or unappreciated but believe me, I've been waiting for this for a long time. I'll take ANY and ALL of the advice I can get. I'm so lucky to know so many cool Monster Moms...Little Jen, Jen May, Stephanie, April, and so on. They're the coolest chicks in my book so I need to know what they know. STAT!

So Christmas was pretty entertaining as far as the baby monster being (cyber) unleashed on the world. And he/she/it rustled up some Christmas Day Swag! Our first baby clothes!!!  Since the baby currently has no junk, everything is neutral though I don't see why you can't get pink shtuff. We've all heard "A Boy Named Sue", am I right? Still, the clothes are uber-cute and hanging in baby's closet, waiting:

And the monster also scored "Baby's First Tattoo" which is a baby book that's right up our ally. It includes such gems as "Name of the HMO Who Kicked Mom Out Of The Hospital After 24 Hours", "Restaurants We Are No Longer Allowed To Eat In" and "Baby's First Inappropriate Website". I look forward to recording every embarrassing detail. That's what I do!

So I might not have anything to blather about for awhile. The whole world knows that I've become a host to an alien-being. My body isn't really changing too much at the moment (besides a stretching uterus that is pressing on my bladder at all times of the day). Our first doctor's appointment isn't for 2 more week. I can't see too many mind-blowing things happening at this moment. But what do I know? Every day is an adventure.

I just wish it was 1/11/11 already < - - - how creepy is THAT?!?!?

Merry X-Mas, y'all.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Happy Holidays: A Note To The Unborn Vol. 2

Merry Christmas, Baby Monster...

I just wanted to apologize for being down-n-out with some sort of cold or flu. I don't think it really affects you or anything but I'd like to be in a good mood while helping you grow. Right now I'm aching and miserable and I don't want you to get the wrong idea about me. I promise to try and pep up.

So I've learned a few more things about you that are YOU specific and not something I've been informed about by What To Expect. First off, you must be partially happy because you've taken the heartburn down a few notches. I appreciate that, especially while I'm trapped in Sick City. Secondly, you strongly dislike the smell of coffee, coffee breath, and our fireplace once the fire has been put out (the smell lingers in the house and closely resembles the scent of bacon, which is typically lovely).

Despite being repulsed by these aromas, you're still not inflicting morning sickness upon me. Thanks. We are just finishing up the 6th week which is when the cookie tossing can start for many women. Hopefully you and I can just skate through it. Teamwork, baby.

More people know about your impending existence and seem super pumped, especially your Aunt Stephanie and Aunt April. I hope you realize with your tiny developing brain that you're going to be surrounded by the coolest batch of secondary aunts, uncles and cousins around. You're predisposed to awesomeness. Your Uncle John Jackson is going to take some pics of me while you're cooking based off of these, and I'm uber-excited (though this broad got all her clothes donated by American Apparel, yuck, and I'm just me):

Pacing The Panic Room (scroll down a bit for the weekly pics).

Alright, well, it's Christmas Eve and I can't sleep so I think you and I will watch some Conan. I need you to get used to bouncing all over the place when I laugh. I have a HORRIBLE laugh and I laugh A LOT, especially during Conan. Think of it like in utero surfing. Oh, you did get a silly, little X-Mas present from your paternal Grandma. It's really more for us but it's cute because it's another symbol that you will eventually exist.

I also got your dad a Bouncing Souls t-shirt for Christmas and a matching onesie for you. I don't think they'll make it here in time for tomorrow (because some musicians are real jerkfaces) but it'll be a nice surprise for your dad when they arrive. Next Christmas, you'll be'll be 4 months old...and I promise to get you some badass presents. But probably not a lot because will you even really notice?

OK, it's Conan time! Buckle your safety belt!

Love you,

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cats Out Of The Bag: Telling More People The News.

Slowly but surely, we're spilling the news to more people. At first it was my immediate family, Todd's sister, and a few close friends. I know that waiting until you're further along is the smart thing to do (especially when you have an angry body like mine), but I wanted a support system. And MAN, if I didn't know before, I know now that my friends are simply the BEST.


Everyone we had told reacted so positively to the news that we decided to expand the circle of who knew. A few more friends, 2 of my aunts, and finally, Todd's parents and his son. That was a really great moment that took place yesterday at his family X-Mas at our house.

The plan was to just tell his parents. I had wrapped up little baby socks with skulls for them to open. I felt slightly bad that I had just told my mom (who told my dad) over the phone. But I couldn't hold out on telling her. Mere moments after the plus sign appeared, I had to call my mommy. Anyway, we were going to hold off on telling the kid he was going to be a big brother until X-Mas morning, but the time was just right. All 3 of them opened the socks and there was a lot of hugging and some tears (not from me, I'm a robot). We had a little toast and moved on with the day.

The kid asked if the baby could sleep in his room.  So the person who COULD'VE been the toughest critic is on board and pumped (he asked to call his own mother with the news but...yeah...that can wait).  So right now, in week 6, life is good.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Moving Right Along: Mind-Blowing Facts About My Monster.

The 5th week of my pregnancy is over and the 6th week has begun. Bananas.

So far, the only signs that I'm cultivating life are the never-ending heartburn, some signs of "emotions", and a period that never showed up. If I could sail through the rest of my preggoness like this, it'll be a piece of cake. However, the book (What To Expect When You're Expecting, my new Bible) says morning sickness tends to show up in week 6 or 7. I'm going to have to employ the power of positive thinking.

The little monster is currently this big:

Big step up from the size of a poppyseed or a pen tip! So what else do we know besides how big Junior is? The nucleus of the brain has formed, there are legs and arm "buds", and the intestines and blood vessels are in place. The weird two-chambered baby heart is beating but it's totally spazzy and will be so until all the bits-n-pieces fuse. I guess the circulatory system is the first to get rolling. Makes sense.

All this amazing stuff is going on and the thing looks like this:

Horror movie in the making, am I right? But seriously, I'm not making fun of my future spawn. I'm just taking in so much creepy information right now and I could sit here babbling about the miracle of life, but I need to be me. It's freaky and I'm freaked. But I'm also incredibly happy and excited. I just wish January 11th (our first doc appointment) would get here so a medical professional could could confirm that things are running smoothly.

Only 3 weeks to go.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Small Criticisms: A Note To The Unborn Vol. 1

Dear Baby Monster:

I know you and I have only been acquainted for like 3 days but this whole "helping you develop into a being that can sustain life outside my body" thing would be A LOT easier if you'd quit giving me heartburn.

I thought I was having heartburn for the last 2 weeks because I'd severely increased my garlic intake but I'm starting to believe it's you that's making me breathe fire. It's going to be a long 35 weeks if I'm constantly trying to rip my esophagus out through my mouth.

But on the flip side, you're not making me toss my cookies so maybe I should just accept the heartburn! Because the letter you're going to get if I start yarfing is going to be way more severe. And I wanted to save our love/hate relationship for when you're a teenager, running wild in the streets.

Your Grandpa (the one that looks like the Pringles man) has an ample supply of Tums in his desk drawer. And your Dad said he'd go buy me some fruity Tums for home tonight. He likes the Spearmint ones. Gross, I know. Try not to hold it against him.

Anyway, there are ways I can combat the heartburn so...I guess don't worry about it. Your neural tube is just developing this week so you probably can't worry yet anyway. Just kick back in your cushy water bed.

Uncle Dan gave me some Goobers so if you like 'em, maybe you can ease up.

Love your guts (even if you don't have any yet),

Monday, December 13, 2010

This Is Happening: Trying To Wrap Our Minds Around Creating Life.

Trying to soak it all in but I'm not sure it's been absorbed yet. For either of us. Maybe it just doesn't seem real because we were trying for so long. Or maybe it's because I don't feel any different aside from some mega-annoying heartburn. I still look like me. Still feel like me. But allegedly, I'm growing a human being. And not in a petri dish or anything.

Todd bought me my first pregnancy gift. It's been enlightening and terrifying.

I made my first doctor's appointment this morning. Once I did that, I felt the slightest twinge of being pregnant. Especially when they told me I'd have to put a credit card on file in case I had any outstanding costs post-delivery. I mean CLEARLY I knew I was eventually going to have to unleash this monster upon the world but having a medical professional tell me (officially) how many weeks I was and discuss post-delivery payment I'm going to have a baby.

Oh, the first appointment is January 11th. I guess at that time we'll actually be able to see/hear the heartbeat. Right now, the heart is like a 2 chambered blob that isn't doing much. Beating comes in the next week or so. Along with the liver! That'll be handy 21 years and 35 weeks from now. So the appointment is set and I just have to keep my head from exploding with thoughts or what could be wrong that we won't know about for 4 weeks. Luckily, I have Christmas and New Year's to occupy my time. Though nothing can shake the image that right now, my baby looks lke a sea monkey.

And next up? Telling my step-son he's going to be a big brother!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Big News: Being Naked At The Most Important Moment Of My Life.

I'm expecting my period tomorrow. I'm expecting to start taking the Clomid on Tuesday.

My step-son is at Kalahari overnight so we're on our own. The plan was to get some good looking steaks and all of the fixins, stay in our pajamas all day, and watch episode of 30 Rock all night. "Chill Night", as we call it, is a fantastic and healthy ritual in our house. But it looks like our grilling will have to hold off until tomorrow's football game because tonight, we're celebrating.

Of COURSE I would get a positive pregnancy test 72 hours before I'm supposed to start fertility drugs! And of COURSE I would have to be completely naked the moment that beautiful pink plus sign showed up (Todd was naked when he proposed so I guess it's out lot in life to be naked during important moments).

I grabbed a test while we were rustling up groceries and Todd tried to talk me out of it, just told me to wait it out. Neither of us were banking on success this month. But I do what I want. Duh. I headed up to take a shower, very unglamorously peed on a stick, and there it was. I ran nakedly, jugs bouncing in the wind, to the landing and yelled for my hubby who was vacuuming. He turned and watched me shake the stick in the air like a spazz, and he sprinted up. We looked together (several times), he confirmed it was a plus sign and not my brain obsessing, and we hugged (yep, still naked).

We did it! On our own. We're going to be parents. HOLY COW.

It's very early right now so we're keeping it under our hats (hence why this post, and some to follow, won't appear as posted for a few more weeks). My body hates me and has hated me forever so I'm totally freaking that something will go wrong. But I've told the 2 friends in my life that I talk to on a daily basis, my "little sis", and my mom, who is very excited. I've got a great support system. I have no doubt they're pumped for me, especially since one of them almost deafened me with her cheers of joy.

Who else is pumped? My adorable husband! He wanted this as much as I did.

So Monday morning, I'll call my doc and make my first appointment for...whenever that's supposed to be. I'm 4 weeks today so I'm guessing it's too early. Did you know that at 4 weeks, my baby is the size of a poppyseed?? That's bananas. Saying "my baby" is also bananas. Without going to medical school and without any confirmation from my doctor, I'm guessing my due date is August 20th. Looks like me and my ginormous self will be spending a lot of time in the pool this summer.

I can't believe that after all this time, all this waiting, all these HOOPS, it turns out what was holding us back was a low-grade prostate infection with no visible symptoms that was cleared up after 10 days of antibiotics. As soon as his prostate was back to normal, BOOM, I got pregnant. A-MAZ-ING. And slightly annoying. I mean, a whole year of trying and all it was was a simple infection? Hell, at least the trying was fun.

My eggo is preggo and I'm on cloud nine.

ME, an hour after the crazy news, 4 WEEKS:

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Clomid: The Perfect Excuse To Rip People's Faces Off For 6 Days In a Row.

Carrying on...I decided to get the scoop over the phone.

My husband trusts me to relay accurate information to him and I'm impatient. My doc called the day after Thanksgiving and we were just about to hit the road for a little holiday get away. Knowing what the next piece of the puzzle was would only make the weekend more relaxing. I could turn my brain off for a few minutes.

Here comes the Clomid, our ticket to increasing the population count.

Clomid is the most well known fertility drug out there. But like I've said before, this isn't Octomom stuff so keep your jokes to yourselves! Clomid is used to jump starts ovulation (and the success rate is 80%). Again, like I've said, we aren't totally sure I'm not ovulating, and we DO know that I've ovulated in the past. Most women that have stopped ovulating also stop having periods or skip periods. No such luck over here. I'm still feeling especially gross 4 days every month.

Here's the basics: every month when you ovulate, one of your eggs sends out a signal to the rest that says, "Hey jerks, I'm the one! This is MY month! I'm blowing this pop stand!" and that's the egg that's ovulated. With Clomid, that signal is blocked and a few eggs get ovulated, making for more targets. The more eggs hanging around, the better the chances one with get fertilized.

So let's get something out of the way right now. The most common side effect of Clomid is MULTIPLES. Twins, or less likely, triplets. But it doesn't go beyond that. In situations like Jon & Kate or the Octomom, In Vitro and other more hardcore fertility treatments were involved. That's not going to happen to us. Now the odds of twins for a woman taking Clomid is 1 in 250 (typically, the chance of twins is 1 in 2500...but MY chances were higher because my father is a twin AND has twin sisters and my mom had a brother and sister that were twins). Less than half a percent of women on Clomid have triplets. So basically having more targets increases our chances of this:

Or more likely in our case, this:

Why am I ranting?

I'm not especially happy that we didn't just get pregnant on our own. Yes, my husband's doctor solved what he thinks the problem was. But it would have been nice to just hump around and have it happen. Throw jokes about ending up pregnant with 10 babies on top of everything else...well...I guess I'm a little sensitive about it all. But we can handle twins. We can handle anything.

Moving on...

Besides multiples, Clomid has other possible side effects that I'm not really looking forward to. Very common are hot flashes, breast tenderness, nausea, some possible pain and wild, uncontrollable, glass-smashing MOOD SWINGS! It isn't nicknamed "Clomood" for nothing. But the side effects only last for the 6 days you take the meds and I've been told that if you take it in the evening, you can sleep through most of it. Damn. I was going to use the meds as an excuse to start telling people what I REALLY think!

Two scary side effects are a swelling of the ovaries (if we don't get preggo in the first 3 months, I'll go in for an ultrasound to make sure everything is the size it should be) and a build up of fluid around the heart (which my doc has never personally seen in a patient). These will no doubt happen to me because I have the worst luck.

My doc said most of her patients are preggo within the first 3 months on Clomid, and lots of chicks get lucky on the first try! If we don't luck out, she will up the dose for another 3 months. I've got everything crossed that it doesn't come to that because after 6 months, there must be more to the story than just possibly not ovulating.

But first, I need to get my period (aren't you so glad you decided to start reading this???) so I know when to start popping pills. It would be extra super if I was knocked up now so I didn't have to put my body through this, but I'm not putting any money on that.

$9 and 6 days of crabiness. That's what it's going to take.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Analyzing Semen: Why I'm Glad To Not Be a Medical Professional.

It's really not my place to talk about this. But I married these sperm, til death to us part. So while this part might not be as juicy and graphic as when I gush about my own glorious junk, it'll still get the point across. I mean, the fact that sperm count and motility needed to be checked out should be common sense.

As my doc (basically) said, why take fertility meds if he has loser sperm?

I consider these to be "loser sperm". Try and tell me otherwise.

So now my husband has a doctor to be poked and prodded by: a urologist. It's this dude's job to give his fellas the stamp of approval. He returns home from his initial exam with a plastic cup and a reason to *insert your favorite slang for masturbate here*. But even this isn't as fun as it sounds/should be. Once the cup is, um, full, he has 30 minutes to get it from our house to the hospital...which is 23 minutes away...during morning rush hour. And the cup-o-stuff has to be kept nice and toasty. Without running over any school children waiting for their morning bus, he makes it.

And the wait for results begins.

And we get the results.

And they're dumb.

This is a major set-back. If I might not be ovulating and his stuff isn't top-notch, well, we're just the poster people for fertility failures. And my doc can't/won't give me any fertility aids whatsoever until all is good on the spermy front because why put me through possibly rough side affects (I'd rather not have fluid build up around my heart if I can help it) if the chances are slim?

But his doctor believes he knows why the results were what they were, or he at least thinks the results were a fluke. So the doc prescribes 10 days of meds, a week of "resting up the troops" and a re-test. Basically, it's Groundhog's Day except this day, the results are fan-flipping-tastic! There's a cup full of strong swimmers hanging out in the lab. Both of our docs give us encouraging thumbs up. Way to go, sperm!

So now we've completed the 3 tasks we were assigned. My blood work was clean enough (whether I was ovulating or not...there's really no way to say for sure), my internal bIts-n-pieces were wide open and inviting, and his stuff was solid and strong. My doc said it was up to me whether I wanted to come into her office or discuss our next step towards making a monster over the phone.

I decided to...

Monday, December 6, 2010

Hysterosalpingograms: Another Way To Feel Humiliated With Your Pants Off.

The next pit stop on the long and frustrating road to Conceptionville had us heading to the hospital for what was without a doubt one of the more irritating moments of my life. Yes, ladies, if you didn't think things could get much worse than your good ol' yearly pap smear, just add in various catheters, inks-n-dyes, and machines that look like they may come to life and murder you.

At this moment, you're having a Hysterosalpingogram.

You'll just have to imagine a sterile tray of torture devices and elevated stir-ups.

They tell you it's JUST an X-Ray of your internal lady parts. JUST? Please. Now, I'll admit, I did some research ahead of time because I like to be informed. But being informed came with the price of being terrified. The Internet is riddled with women who said that for them, it was more painful than labor. Say WHAT?? Of course there were women who said it was a piece of cake, easy as pie. But I ignored these women in favor of the ones that were making me sweaty, teary-eyed, and panic stricken.

Enter the husband. I didn't ask him to go with me but he could clearly smell the freak-out that was brewing. He wasn't alone. The receptionist in the Radiology department, the X-Ray tech, the doctor who was elbow deep in my stuff, and the poor nurse who offered to hold my hand during the procedure were all very aware that I was wussing out. I wish I hadn't worn silver eyeshadow. I probably looked terrified AND ridiculous.

So I leave my loving hubby in the waiting room as I feel like I'm walking the Green Mile. The next thing I know, I'm siting in a hospital gown with no drawers on, wishing every pair of socks I owned didn't look like a 5 year old girls little footie. The sweetest nurse in the history of nurses brings me into the torture room and I get situated. I won't get graphic but iodine and a man I didn't know in latex gloves were involved.

So what IS a Hysterosalpingogram and why was I getting one?

That's basically a fancy and technical name for an X-Ray of your uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries to look for blockages, fibroids, cysts, scar tissue, etc. Basically scouting out anything that could be preventing sperm and egg from hooking up. Where does everything turn sour? When they crank you open with the speculum, thread in a catheter (OUCH #1) and then pump dye into your stuff (OUCH #2). There you are, exposed to the world, cramping up, bleeding a little, and having the pleasure of watching it all on a screen.

Remember the pretty and symmetrical uterus from your text books?

Not even close. It's like panties with 2 noodles connected to random mush.

That is not my business but it's not far off. Right at that moment, legs still in splits formation, they told me that everything was wide open. Bad choice of words, medical professionals! Regardless, there was nothing blocking the path. Good news! But with the good comes the bad, and the bad came in the form of bleeding, cramping, and a few moments of dizziness and nausea (most likely because I psyched myself out before hand and hand to come back down to reality).

An attentive husband and 64 ounce boot of Spaten Oktoberfest helped.

Next topic: my junk gets a break. It's Todd turn to squirm!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Kick-Off: Does My Blood Have Anything Important To Say?

The first step in figuring out why we can't get any buns in an oven I assure you worked in the past - having blood drawn. There's nothing cool about needles. Sorry heroin addicts.

It was the same as every time: "You're covered in tattoos. You can't POSSIBLY be afraid of needles."  Lady, I assure you I can be and am and I should punch you for even talking to me. Tattoo needles don't suck blood from my veins, filling up a plastic tube like one of those bubbling Christmas light bulbs. 3 viles later and I was free to go...and to impatiently wait for messages to appear in my doctor provided voicemail box.

The first message I received let me know that I was STD free. Not a shock but always good to hear. The second message told me that my good ol' pap smear was satisfactory. As satisfactory as those things are supposed to be, I guess. I also learned that my thyroid was tip-top. But I knew that because dim-witted doctors have been trying to blame my health problems on the thyroid for years. It was the third call that really got my mind boggled.

My doc leaves me a message saying that my blood work indicated that my FH and LSH levels were off (I don't remember which is which but those hormones make the eggs and then boot them from the ovaries when the time is right). This could have meant:

A. That I was pregnant. When you're pregnant, the levels go up and stay up.
B. That I was ovulating at the very moment blood was drawn. When you ovulate, the levels go up but eventually drop back down.
C. That I had Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and was no longer ovulating.

For your education, from the Mayo Clinic: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common hormonal disorder among women of reproductive age. The name of the condition comes from the appearance of the ovaries in most, but not all, women with the disorder — enlarged and containing numerous small cysts located along the outer edge of each ovary (polycystic appearance). The exact cause of polycystic ovary syndrome is unknown. Women with polycystic ovary syndrome may have trouble becoming pregnant due to infrequent or lack of ovulation.

No longer OVULATING??  I ovulate ALL OVER THE PLACE!

The first thing I did was take a pregnancy test. No. The first thing I did was freak out to my oldest pal, Tessa (who is also the future godmother to the first born spawn), about how I would have been like 2 milliseconds pregnant when the blood was drawn. She brought me back down to Earth and THEN I took the test. Negative. Of course.

Then I talked to the doc and she said women with PCOS typically have hormone levels with a ratio of 3:1. My levels were 5:1. Yeah, I'm an over-achiever. Regardless, she said maybe I have PCOS and my levels are just higher than most women, or maybe I was just ovulating when the blood was drawn and my hormone levels in general are higher than most women.

My brain hurt thinking about it THEN and it still throbs a bit.

We knew for certain that I was at least MAKING eggs. I just might not have been booting them from the nest. There's no way to tell for sure. But if this was the case, all hope was not lost. Certain fertility drugs could help give the eggs the push they need. And no, these were not Jon and Kate Plus 8 or Octomom fertility drugs. But more on that later.

So we had jumped through the first hoop, but things were still slightly fuzzy.

Next up: Hysterosalpingogram. Stay tuned for that dramedy.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Jumping Through Hoops: "Infertility" and Why It's Dumb.

We aren't Ward and June Cleaver, that's for sure.

Me: Make your X-Mas list. I want to get you something you really WANT.
Him: A baby.
Me: You can't unwrap that.
Him: I can unwarp the box it comes in.
Me: Just make your list, pervert.

So if you've been trying to create life...that doesn't involve putting a brain in a dead body and reanimating it...for a year and nothing is coming of it, it's suggested you see an OB/GYN and have her poke-n-prod your lady parts. At this point, you're officially being treated for infertility. On all your paperwork is the the big neon sign shouting, "You're infertile! You're 31 and your uterus is a FAILURE!" Balls.

Our doc (who is super thorough and answered all of my husband's questions about the female reproductive system with the use of models and graphs while I died a little inside), said there were 3 hoops to jump through before we knew what's what:

1. Have blood drawn to rule some things out.
2. Hysterosalpingogram. Yep. It's as scary as it sounds.
3. Semen Analysis a.k.a. hump-a-cup.

And let's not forget that the starting point for all of this was every woman's favorite, the pap smear. I don't know if that should be capitalized or not but it sucks so badly, it doesn't deserve large letters. An STD screening was thrown in for kicks. Chlamydia and Gonorrhea can really muck things up. Duh.

So once my nether regions were all swabbed and sent off to the lab (the swabs, not my nether regions), she dubbed us "infertile" for the time being (and I say US because 40% of infertility is caused by the dude). There were 3 hoops we had to jump through but there were even some hurdles to jump over to get to the hoops. Damn, I wish I was in better shape.

Regardless...a plan was in place.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Making Monsters: A Ridiculous Introduction to Our Attempts to Breed.

Hi. Hello. Welcome. Whatever.

Most of the people who hang out here at 1313 Mockingbird Lane already know us but for those who don' should. But seriously, we're a couple of chumps who are bananas for each other that got hitched in the fall of 2009 and have been trying to put a bun in the oven ever since. But for 2 people who mash their genitals together more than anyone I know, we're not having such great luck.

Welcome to the Wide World of Fertility! She is a harsh mistress.

You spend most of your 20s trying NOT to get pregnant (epic FAIL) and then when you actually WANT to expand your family, it's like your uterus is a ghost town. Or perhaps a town that was infected with some sort of toxic plague. Don't be insulted, uterus. You know I love you. For a year now, that bright pink minus sign has been laughing in our faces. Well, there's only so much let down a person can take before they get rowdy.

And we KNOW that at one point or another, the parts responsible for making monsters worked because the future father, well, he's already a father to a 9 year old boy! Footnote/Sidebar: Our little family already has a child. We are ALREADY a family. He is a father, I am a step-monster. So when I say things about "becoming parents", I'm specifically jabbering about breeding together...and making this kid a big brother.

Anyway, according to our doc, a lot can happen in 10 years. Just because he knocked a girl up once upon a time doesn't mean things are still tip-top.  But I'll get into our doc and all that jazz another time...those are some crazy stories right there. Now, I'm just introducing you to our situation. We've been trying to get an eggo preggo for a year and we're tired of the waiting so in September, we started seeing an OB/GYN for a helping hand (preferably wearing latex gloves).

Cocktails are the only upside to not getting pregnant when you want to.

SO...I decided to start this blog to document our voyage into parenthood without it polluting my other blog...the rambling, blathering blog. I did the same thing when we got hitched because getting married was a big part of my life, but it wasn't the ONLY thing in my life. Just like trying to breed isn't the only thing in my just seems to be all-consuming right now. So from the struggling to that damned pink plus sign (I hope) to a human being bursting worth from my exhausted loins...

Yeah. These people want to become parents.