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Originally posted Feburary 28th

I know. It’s totally clichéd. Infertility is often referred to as a rollercoaster of emotions. Disappointment, sadness and anger at the beginning of the cycle, followed by resignation that you do, in fact, have to continue on with this insanity for another month. After that comes the pressure of trying to make sure that you’ve got your timing right and have all of your bases covered. Then for about a week, there’s nothing. You’ve done everything that you can, and all you can do at this point is wait and hope for time to pass by quickly. As time goes on and the “symptoms” crop up, there’s excitement and hope that maybe, just maybe, this time it worked. Of course all of that excitement and hope is dashed by something that tells you that this time it DIDN’T work, and you spirits come crashing down and you’re right back at the start of the rollercoaster again.

I know that I’ve been on this rollercoaster for a while now, and while you’d think that I would get used to it and know what’s coming up and how to deal with it, I’m not, and I don’t.

This cycle has been decidedly different than other cycles, and I thought that maybe I would be less susceptible to the rollercoaster of emotions because of it. Since this was an IUI cycle, there wasn’t really a whole lot that was up to me to control. I was told what dates to come in for blood work and ultrasounds. I was told what day to start doing ovulation predictor tests and specifically what times to take them. I even told my body when to ovulate by giving myself the trigger shot. Not a lot was left up to me to control, which was nice. It was like someone else was taking the reigns as all I had to do was enjoy the ride.

And that all worked out fine until Monday. I met with my acupuncturist on Monday and when she felt my pulses, she said that they were “REALLY good actually. Slippery and balanced.” Having read The Infertility Cure, I knew immediately that a slippery pulse is a sign of pregnancy. Of course I’m sure that pregnancy is not the only thing that generates a slippery pulse, but mine have been wiry and unbalanced the previous two times I had been in, so it certainly wasn’t normal for me. Of course the first thing that runs through my head is that I’m actually, finally pregnant. I tried to tell my mind to be quiet. I tried to not let it get the best of me. I tried.

But it didn’t work. After my acu was over, the first thing I did was to go to the Dollar Tree and get some cheapo tests. I was thinking that the trigger could still be in my system and I wanted to finally be able to see those two lines on the test, even though they wouldn’t be real. So I did the test, and there was a faint “something” there. I wasn’t sure what it was. That in and of itself got me excited, even though it still could have been just the trigger.

To add to my growing excitement, I realized that I hadn’t been spotting at all this month after ovulation. This was H-U-G-E for me as I’ve been known to spot as early as 10 days before my period before. I asked my acu if this could be from the acu treatment already, or maybe it was from the Femara which just gave me a stronger ovulation which in turn prevented the spotting? She said that it could be from either really. Or, she said, it could be because I’m pregnant.

Roll up the slippery pulse, the “something” pregnancy test, the lack of spotting, along with some sore boobs, and of course I’m convinced that I’m pregnant. It’s so easy to get caught up in it.

Of course today it all comes crashing down on me. Today there was bright red blood when I went to the bathroom, which is a sure sign to me that I’m out this month. I made a mistake in letting everything control how I felt, and now I have to pay the price for it.

I wish I could figure out a way to better control my emotions. How do I prevent myself from feeling hopeful and excited every month? If I can contain those emotions, then maybe the disappointment and sadness would be proportionately smaller and therefore easier to deal with.

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Originally posted February 6, 2008

As strange as it sounds, my elevated FSH has actually provide me with a sense of relief. Yes, elevated FSH does suck, and I have no way of knowing how this will turn out in the end, but now I have some sort of reason, some explanation for why we haven’t been able to get pregnant yet. Instead of scouring the internet looking for possible reasons, I can now firmly point to one thing and say “This is why we’re having troubles.” I don’t have to speculate anymore, I don’t have to lay awake wondering about this or that little thing that could be our problem.

It also gives me something to focus on. Something concrete. Now that I know, I can focus on what to do to make my situation better. How can I deal with this and try to make the best of it.

A part of me is terrified that we’ll never be able to have our own kids, kids that are part Mark and part me. It may come down to using donor eggs, which would mean that our kids wouldn’t be any part of me, genetically. In some sense, it seems easier to accept adopting a child that is no part of me, and no part of Mark than it is to have a child that’s part Mark but no part of me. I can get over that, I think.

I have to get over that because I really want to experience pregnancy. I want to be able to hear my baby’s heartbeat on the Doppler, and to see it bouncing around on the ultrasound. I want to feel it kicking inside of me and feel the sensation of little bubbles when it has the hiccups. I want to wear cute maternity clothes and have people ask me when I’m due. I want to look forward to the experience of giving birth. I want everything that comes along with pregnancy, even the morning sickness, heartburn, constipation, sore back and feet and general discomfort associated with pregnancy. I want it all.

But I may not be able to conceive with my own eggs. And I may not be able to carry a baby created using someone else’s eggs. So I have to come to terms with the fact that adoption may be in our future. Adoption is something that I’m very interested in, but in some ways it seems even more painful and frustrating than trying to conceive. I’ve seen how devastating adoption can be when you’re so close and then things fall through. Two co-workers of mine actually had their adopted baby for 3 weeks before the birth mother decided she wanted it back. It was devastating to watch the aftermath.

I guess it all comes down to the fact that there are no easy answers and someday I’m sure trying to find the answers to those questions will weigh on me. But for now, I feel as though a giant weight has been lifted from me. I feel a renewed desire and interest in life. For today, at least, I feel relief.

Our History

Dec 2006 - Started trying to conceive
Summer 2007 - Semen analysis (great), progesterone test (normal)
Dec 2007 - SHG normal
Jan 2008 - 1st RE appointment
Feb - Mar 2008 - Diagnosed with elevated FSH levels, 2 rounds of IUI with 5mg of Femara
Apr - Jun 2008 - Seeing a new RE. 3 rounds of IUI with 12.5mg of Femara, all busts. HSG normal
July 2008 - Moving on to IVF at a new clinic
Aug/Sep 2008 - 1st IVF cycle - cancelled due to poor response
Nov/Dec 2008 - Retry IVF, transferred one blast and one morula, negative beta
Feb/Mar 2009 - 2nd IVF cycle - Antagonist protocol
May 2009 - 3rd and final attempt at IVF - Antagonist protocol
Feb 18th, 2010 - our One Small Wish comes true: Nina Adele is born.

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