Wednesday, December 30, 2009

-

IUI attempt #1 failed. No wonderful baby news with which to kick off the new year, much to my profound sadness.

As Super Man dried my tears this afternoon, I realized that we've been at this now for around 45 months.

That's 45 months of trying. Hoping. Wondering. Medical tests and procedures. Pregnancy tests. Mourning.

And no second baby for us.

Three more tries at IUI before we pull the plug. We're praying that a positive pregnancy test exists somewhere in there, with a second amazing miracle waiting at the end of it.

always,
SW

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

wondering

Hello and Happy Holidays, friends!

I'm so sorry for not posting lately. I've had a lot - A LOT - going on in the past two weeks. My stress level has been inordinately high, too, but that's another story for another time. And, really, I'm sure many of you have experienced higher-than-usual levels of stress lately, too, what with the holidays and all the usual gatherings and all.

But I can't blame my absence entirely on holiday busy-ness and stress; I've also neglected my writing lately because I just don't know what to say. I've been in a bit of a limbo the past few weeks.

As you know, Super Man and I went through our first IUI procedure on December 16. It's been a long two weeks of waiting to see if it worked, and I still don't know. I'm not supposed to test until tomorrow, and then only if my period hasn't come.

I'm nervous. Anxious. Hopeful. Cautious.

Friends and family ask me if I "have a feeling" one way or the other. It's hard to answer that question. Because I WANT to have a feeling that I'm pregnant and, I don't know about you, but when I want something badly enough I can convince myself that I feel something I may not really feel, you know?

It's also hard to answer that question because I don't trust my "feelings" on this subject. Not one bit. Why, you might ask? Because when I was trying for Super Boy, it went like this:

Month #1: Was 100% convinced that I was pregnant and had all the standard pregnancy symptoms. Yet I was not pregnant.

Month #2: Was 100% convinced that I was pregnant and had all the standard pregnancy symptoms. Yet I was not pregnant.

Month #3: Was 100% convinced that I was NOT pregnant, and had all the usual PMS symptoms. Yet I actually WAS pregnant.

So, you can see that I'm not the best at gauging how I feel physically when it comes to guessing whether I'm pregnant or not. I've been trying to avoid doing that as much as possible the past few weeks.

(I do have SOME sense of self-preservation, despite all indications to the contrary.)

That said, I have been bone-tired, completely exhausted and could fall asleep at the drop of a hat for the past week. Could be baby-brewing, but could be the stress.

So I'm sitting here on this frigid, sunny late December afternoon, wondering. Am I pregnant with another child? (Or two?) (...Or more? Eeek!) Or am I going to be disappointed another month running because IUI failed this month?

The thought of us welcoming a new member to our family in late August or early September sure is sweet. I hope it is a dream come true.

Let me say now - just in case - that if it turns out that I AM pregnant, I haven't yet decided whether I'll post it here right away or not. My personality is such that I was virtually unable to keep the wonderful, blessed news a secret when I was pregnant with Super Boy seven years ago, and thankfully it didn't present a problem for me then because the pregnancy stuck and was by all accounts a great success. But I know that's not always the case. And after all these years of trying for another baby, I'm not sure if I could take announcing the happy news only to have to retract it due to miscarriage in the early weeks. I guess I'll make the decision once I know the news myself. But if I do withhold the information for a little bit, I hope you'll understand that it's not about me not wanting to share it with those of you who have followed our journey and wished us the best. Again, it's just that self-preservation thing I mentioned earlier, and needing to protect my heart just a little bit.

As 2009 winds to a close I wish you all the happiest of New Years, and pray that all your dreams come true in 2010!

With love,
Average Everyday Super Woman

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

at last

After nearly four years of trying to conceive, and after four months of seeing our little team of fertility specialists, we're finally at the good part of the whole process: ACTION!!!

After my successful surgery last month, I was put on 100mg of Clomid again from Monday to Friday of last week. This morning, I underwent a mid-cycle ultrasound to gauge whether the Clomid did its thing and we could proceed with IUI.

And the answer is YES - the Clomid worked (I had one large follicle, 2 medium follicles and several small follicles on my right ovary, and another good sized one on my left ovary), and my uterine lining was appropriately thick, so we're good to go!

Because everything looked so good, I got an HCG shot in the buns before I left the office today, which will force ovulation within 24 hours, so we're scheduled for IUI tomorrow morning. Super Man will take care of his end of things first thing in the morning, and I'll go in at 10am for the insemination. I've got to admit, it's a little odd to think that the moment of truth will happen when my husband is an hour away from me, bustling away at work, but hey - whatever works at this point!

I can't tell you how excited I am right now. I realize that this could all end as the past 45 months have ended, with me not getting a positive pregnancy test and feeling devastated. But I am hoping for the absolute best. And the fact is that this month will be completely different than all 45 months behind us, because the components will have all been primed and put as close together as they can get short of doing IVF, so if anything is going to give us a good shot at success, it's this.

I should know by New Year's Eve or New Year's Day whether we'll be adding to the Super Family nine months from now. If my test is positive, what a wonderful way to ring in the new year! And, if not, then we try again in January, February and March and pray one of those months brings us the news we so want to hear. I have such a good feeling about 2010... I hope this is the reason why!

Wishing you all a blessed holiday season!
SW

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

baby steps

We're one step closer to the goal, friends! While our progress may be slow, we are one step closer.

I had my post-op appointment with the fertility specialist today, and it looks like IUI Attempt #1 will be kicking off on or around December 19th. I cannot begin to articulate everything I'm feeling right now.

Certainly I'm excited. Ridiculously, perilously excited. This is it. After nearly three and a half years of trying, trying, trying on our own without success, and three months of general (and largely unpleasant) STUFF under the care of the fertility specialist, we're finally at the doorstep of the only fertility treatment we plan to pursue, the one we're hanging our hopes on. All of our hopes.

For that reason, I'm also scared. Because, ultimately, my Super Doctor said that we have a 20% chance of achieving pregnancy in any of the four months we plan to do IUI. During those four months, 50% of couples will conceive and 50% won't. If we're in the 50% who don't, that's it. The end of the road. The natural pessimist in me fears we'll be in the latter group, but I'm trying to ignore that side of myself and just hope.

Hope. Yes, I'm hopeful. I'm tremendously hopeful. All of the tests that have been done on both me and Super Man have come back normal. We're in that 15-20% of infertile couples who have infertility with no known cause. Which could simply mean that the problem for us is not one of the mainstream easily identifiable problems, or it could mean that we just haven't gotten the stars to align correctly doing our own thing, and by bringing all the players closer together, throwing in some Clomid, and timing the heck out of the process, we might finally hit the jackpot. I'm inclined to HOPE for the latter scenario!

I'm also incredibly emotional right now. Heck, as a Catholic, I can't even think about Christmas marking the birth of BABY JESUS because that alone makes me cry. Seeing babies (or pregnant bellies), hearing about babies (or pregnant bellies), seeing pictures of babies (or pregnant bellies), thinking about babies (or pregnant bellies)... all of it reduces me to a teary-eyed mess right now. I suppose that's as it should be, since it totally reinforces for me and the rest of the world that I want a second child so badly that the sheer wanting of it is painful and heart-wrenching.

And there is a small part of me that is relieved to be at this part of the process, finally. Regardless of the outcome, this will give me the answer I've been seeking for so long now. Will our family expand one last time, or will it remain as it is? So much of my life has hung in the balance waiting for that answer - and that's no way to live, take it from me. The "what if" is always hanging in the back of my mind, coloring every decision I have to make about the near - and far - future. If I achieve and sustain pregnancy from one of the four IUI attempts, at least I know how the next few years of my life will be spent. If I don't achieve or sustain pregnancy, then everything is up in the air, open to change, a book yet to be written. I've spent so much time dreading the latter outcome because it's not what I WANT, but it's come to the point where I've had to make peace with the fact that it might BE the outcome. And, if it is, I need to embrace that and accept it and make my peace with it, for my sake and that of my whole family. So, while I pray that this will end with another healthy, wonderful baby, I will feel some sense of relief just to have a clear sense of direction to my life after years of waiting for the answer to be revealed.

I'm also finding myself daydreaming about how Super Boy and Super Girl would handle a new addition to the family. Super Boy has longed to be a "big brother" for so long now that I know he will be ecstatic to finally fill that role. On the other hand, I have no doubt that it will be a big adjustment for him. He's been the baby of our family for six and a half years, and he LIKES being the baby - most of the time. He's used to having my undivided attention as the major focus of my life. I think he will struggle a bit to pass the mantle on to a new baby, but hopefully he will quickly learn that my love for him can never be diminished or divided. He will always be my first baby, my angel, my boy. As for Super Girl, who will be 14 in a few months, she keeps saying she hopes I have twins! She's all for us having another baby, and - at her age - she understands that we've faced challenges in trying to achieve that. I know she will be helpful again, as she was with Super Boy - and even MORE SO now, since I could probably get her to change a poopy diaper this time! She was only seven years old when Super Boy was born (the age Super Boy will be when I would deliver another baby, if this all works), so she was pretty dead-set on only helping with the occasional "pee only" diaper changes. ;)

So, that's where it's at right now. A whirlwind of stuff this month, and I couldn't be happier!

Love and kisses,
SW