Period Watch: (Almost) April Edition

If my last positive OPK was correct, I should be expecting my period to start sometime around the middle of the week (HUMP DAY! OMG, I love that camel commercial too much).  Fertility Friend says today is 11 DPO.  Of course, having put that in writing, it probably won’t happen.  BUT IT’S SUPPOSED TO, and that has me feeling a bit… happy.

Here we are on the last day of March.  As of today, I’ve lost 36.5 pounds.  Physically, I am feeling fantastic.  Better than I’ve felt in ages.  I am expecting to hear something about last week’s blood tests today or tomorrow. I’m still a bit concerned about the glucose test because of my family medical history, but I know that no matter what the result is it’ll be better than it would have been back in November.

In short: Bring on the clomid, please! We are ready! I am dying to order those vials of sperm so I can stop obsessively checking our (determined, hard-working and gregarious) donor’s supply.  (I do love those donor summaries!)

Baby making aside, we had a lovely day on Saturday wine tasting with my mom in Santa Maria.  My mom came home with 2 cases of wine, and we came home with about a case. I’m hoping that the fact that we just spent a fortune on wine means that I jinxed myself and I will totally get pregnant this cycle so I can’t drink any of it. 

Kvolkm

Me in the vineyard at Kenneth Volk
Foxen_glasses

Enjoying a bottle with our picnic lunch at Foxen
Cambria_winery

I took a similar picture the last time we were at Cambria Vineyards… I just can't resist this little spot. It's perfect.

On Sunday, I saw Divergent (loved the book and liked the movie) with my parents at a new theater by their house with the most wonderful reclining seats ever.  I’m not sure if I can go back to a regular movie theater now that I’ve been there. 

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I hope this week brings good things to everyone. I am thinking good thoughts for all of us. 

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Glucose Test

I write to you today from the waiting room at the lab, where I am experiencing the utter pleasure that is the 2-hour glucose screening. It involves:

1) getting here first thing in the morning

2) having blood drawn

3) drinking 5 weight watchers points worth of pure sugar within 5 minutes

4) waiting an hour

5) having blood drawn again

6) waiting another hour

7) having blood drawn again

Also, no food or drink of anytime from the moment you wake up until the last blood draw is complete. Oh joy. I’m an hour in right now and I feel like crap. Nausea, headache… I desperately want a bottle of water, and I can’t have any. I hope to god this is not indicative of a problem. I’m kinda terrified.

I know that PCOS brings along the risk of diabetes, heart disease, etc. Add PCOS to a family history of diabetes and heart disease, and it am basically screwed.

Also, I found out yesterday that I have high cholesterol. Yay!!! My level was 215, and the blood was drawn on January 29th. I really wonder if the diet and exercise over the last few months has helped at all.

Please, please, please let me pass this damn glucose test. I don’t need any more bad news this week. It has already been an awful, terrible, no good very bad week. Fingers crossed.

My Wife (Sham)Rocks

Throughout the (almost) 9 years we've been together, I've told Catch repeatedly that I. DO. NOT. RUN.  It's kinda been a thing.  I would even get annoyed if we were out walking the dogs and she would get them all excited and run down the block with them.  What the hell, woman?  I told you–no running. 

Yeah, I'm terrible.

AND THEN…

Someting cosmic exploded and set into motion a chain of events that have lead me to running.  I can't explain it.  It just sort of happened.

Catch has been so supportive of my endeavors, and I find it SO ironic that it's now HER telling ME, "You know I'm never gonna run with you, right?"

I've had an itch for a month or so that I wanted to sign up for a 5k.  Trouble is that all of our March weekends are booked, and moving into April… well, I'm not really sure how much running I want to be doing during two week waits and all.  I didn't want to commit to anything.

Cut to Monday.  Saint Patrick's Day.  I come home from work to this:

Photo 1

It's a registration table.  Complete with t-shirts and sweatbands. 

Photo 2

And with the treadmill…

Photo 4

Upon completion of my 3.1 miles on the treadmill, I was given a strand of light-up shamrock beads as a medal.

My wife truly freaking (sham)rocks.  The whole thing was so cute it's ridiculous.

In a Timely Manner

Today, I would just like to thank my body for being vaguely cooperative for a change.  Today is CD 18, and I got a positive OPK.  Reasonable.  I’ll take it.  It’s much better than last cycle’s O around CD 33.

That means that in roughly 2-ish weeks, we’ll be on the clomid road again. 

Of course, having said all of this, my body will probably change its mind.  I can just see it extending its hand to me and then yanking it back with a loud, “Psych!” just as I’m reaching to shake it.

Please, oh please, let this be it.  I have been such a good girl with my vitamins and exercise and apples and kale.  What more does lesbian gotta do to get a little bit of alone time with some frozen sperm???

Goal.

In November, I said that I wanted to lose 28 pounds by the time we started trying again.

I took an unofficial month-long break from dieting over Christmas/New Year’s because I couldn’t handle the stress of it all.  I didn’t REALLY get back on track until we met with our RE toward the end of January, and I have truly been working my ass off since then. 

Here’s my progress:

November 18th – First weigh-in

December 16th –  11.9 lbs lost

January 20th – 12.3 lbs lost

February 17th – 19.6 lbs lost

March 17th29.5 lbs lost

Patio2

I consider myself agnostic, but Catch was raised Catholic.  Our differing belief has never been a huge issue.  I know that neither of us can really understand where the other is coming from, but we acknowledge this difference between us and treat it with respect. 

Last night, we had dinner out on our back patio for the first time this year.  I spent the day cleaning up the yard and it was such a nice place to be in the early evening.  When we sat down at the table and Catch asked if she could say something, I prepared to raise my water glass for a toast, but she made the sign of the cross.  I folded my hands and tried to ignore the way my body involuntarily tensed up.  I can’t recall her exact words, but the sentiment was, “Thank you.”

Thank you for everything we have.  We know we have a lot.  There’s just one more thing…

It suited us.  She talked to god.  I threw the sentiment out to the universe.

So, I’ve met (and exceeded) my goal.  The same goal the RE set for me in January.  We’ve picked a new donor from a different cryobank (also at the request of the RE).  The financial end of things has been addressed, and our savings account is ready.  I’ve had all of the requested lab work done. 

There is nothing left to do but wait.  In the meantime, I’m going to keep working my ass off and Catch is going to keep praying to Saint Anne.  We make a good team.  No matter how the next few months pan out, I am so incredibly grateful to have her on my side.

Grouchy Running Guy

My Nana turned 82 last week.  As a birthday gift for her, my aunts arranged for the family to come over on Sunday and re-do the landscaping in Nana’s front yard.  I assured Catch that there would be so many of us that it would be no big deal and we’d be done in a couple of hours.

Unfortunately, only a small percentage of the family actually showed up.  What could have been a little work ended up being quite a lot of WORK.  Shoveling, squatting, bending, kneeling—all very physical, and very tiring.

When I woke up on Monday morning, I felt like I’d been hit by a truck.  I could barely move my arms and legs.  Unfortunately, Monday also happened to be the day this week that I was free to do whatever I wanted after work, and what I wanted was to go for a run. 

I never run out in the real world.  I prefer sweating it out in the privacy of our bedroom, where our treadmill lives.  I know, though, that running on real solid ground is not the same as running on the treadmill, and I really want to start working on the whole solid ground thing.  (Goalz—I haz them.)

So, I mapped out a very short, 2-ish mile run from my office complex to a local park, then two laps around the park and back to the office.  I left the office in my running clothes and made my way through the building feeling totally exposed despite being appropriately covered.

I hid behind some bushes to stretch.  It probably made me look insanely creepy, but it felt better to do my pre-run lunges in the privacy of shrubbery than for an audience of the Baja Fresh patio next door. 

Then, I was off.  Running from my office.  Oh, the irony.

I failed to take into consideration that it would be about 80+ degrees and totally sunny at 4 pm on the first Monday of Daylight Saving Time.  It was hot.  I was already sore and uncomfortable.  This was going to be a SLOW run.

There was another gentleman running around the park in the opposite direction.  We passed each other a few times—he was running significantly faster than me.  As we passed, I would look up with the intention of smiling, but he never looked at me.  Eventually, I just figured that a) he was just a grouchy guy or b) there’s some unspoken rule that I’m not aware of about interacting with other runners. 

Toward the end of my last lap around the park, I was really struggling.  The sun was getting to me and I was so sore and tired.  I felt like there was absolutely no way I was going to be able to keep running all the way back to the office.  I started to negotiate with myself.  Just finish this lap and then you can walk back. 

Suddenly, I look up and find myself face to face with grouchy running guy.  He gave me a big smile and a thumbs up.  I gave him the biggest smile I was capable of in my total misery.  I know it couldn’t possibly have conveyed how much that thumbs up meant to me, but I hope it gave him an inkling.  His gesture was all it took to give me the final push I needed.  I picked up the pace a bit and ran my ass off all the way back to the office. 

Thanks, grouchy running guy.  I really needed that.

Some Numbers

5

The number of miles I ran on Saturday.  No walking. 

15.8

The number of miles I ran last week total.

27

The total number of pounds I’ve lost so far.

1.6

The number of pounds I still have to lose to reach the goal the RE gave me.

1

The pairs of work pants in my closet that do not make me look like a homeless person. (Technically, this is not true.  They are not in my closet—I am wearing them.)

12

The approximate number of people who commented on my weight loss last week.  All of a sudden, people are doing double takes.  It’s kinda fun.  I’m not one for attention, but I’m trying to let myself enjoy it.  It would probably be even more noticeable if I had more clothes that fit me properly.

2

The number of pregnant people I’ve secretly given dirty looks this morning at work.  Proof that I’m still me no matter how good I’m feeling at the moment.

239,876

The number of times this weekend I wished I could just fast forward to my next period because I am sick to death of waiting.  I am so ready to be back in the game. 

Whatever

When we decided to pause TTC and get healthy, I looked at the calendar and thought, you can do this.  It’s only 4 months.  You can be maniacally healthy for 4 months if your prize is a baby.

It turns out that I can’t be maniacally healthy for 4 months no matter what the prize is.  If I could be, I wouldn’t have taken 4 weeks off from dieting over the holidays and I would likely be well beyond my goal already.  Even now, while I am certainly on track, I would not categorize my behavior as maniacally healthy. 

I really would have thought I could do it.  I thought that if I just kept baby baby baby in the back of my mind constantly, it would be like a magic pill that would cause me to stop wanting cupcakes and margaritas and melty cheese.

It didn’t work.

I’ve learned to negotiate with myself.  If I eat a cupcake, I run an extra couple of miles.  If I am desperate for a margarita, I drink lots of water and run a couple of extra miles.  My philosophy on weight loss basically boils down to: Will run for carbs.

All around me on the internet, there are women with PCOS going whole hog gluten free and paleo.  They ditch their morning coffee in favor of herbal tea.  They don’t allow a margarita to pass their lips once a week. 

I can’t help but think that those women must want a baby so much more than I do.  It makes me feel like I must not want this as badly as I think I want it.  If I did, I’d be more like them, right?

The stubborn part of me is SCREAMING at me from within: STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHER PEOPLE!

The scared part of me is sobbing:  It’s too hard.  It’s all just too hard.

I don’t know what the right answer is anymore.  There are days when I feel like I’m on top of the world.  My pants are too big!  I’ve lost 25 pounds!  I can run MILES!  We are SO getting pregnant!

And then there are days like today when I feel like it’s probably not enough.  Like maybe it will never be enough.  I will never be enough. 

I remember sitting next to my grandma at her organ when I was a very little girl.  She would play and sing, que sera, sera—whatever will be, will be—the future’s not ours to see.  It always sounded so hopeful to me then.  Now, it just makes me sad. 

What if whatever isn’t what I want?

11 Things

I’m forcing myself to take an actual lunch BREAK today.  My door is closed, my lights are out, my phone is on Do Not Disturb, and Pandora is set to Norah Jones.  The result of this forced mid-day peace is my participation in this 11 things thing that’s making its way around the blogosphere.

  1. I lived less than a mile from the epicenter of the ’94 Northridge Earthquake, and yet we do not have an earthquake preparedness kit assembled at home.  (This is the apartment building that my bedroom window overlooked.) We skirt the issue by telling each other that hopefully we’ll be able to get to the camping gear that’s stored in the very front of the garage.
  2. My mom was a single mother who worked her ass off to put me through 12 years of private school.  I wish I had appreciated it then, but she knows I appreciate it now. 
  3. In high school, I once played the part of a singing, dancing, pregnant chicken in a school play. I was always the quiet shy girl who was teased mercilessly, but I LOVED being on stage.  It was a totally liberating experience.  After that play, I was more inclined to speak up for myself.
  4. Being gay came as a complete shock to me.  I had never even considered it.  Likewise, it was a total shock to pretty much everyone who knew me.  This past Valentine’s Day was the 16th anniversary of the day I came out to my mother. 
  5. I don’t dance.  I just don’t.  We took lessons before our wedding, and I was high enough on wedding excitement that I did dance that night, but heck if you can get me to dance any other day.
  6. I have a tattoo of the Gemini symbol between my shoulders.  I got it with my (now ex) best friend the day I got the last of my belongings from my ex-girlfriend after we broke up.  It suits me just as much today as the day I got it.  I love it.  No regrets. Tattoo
  7. As desperately as I want a baby, I am also aware that I adore this time right now with my wife.  The relationship we have is more than I ever even knew to hope for.
  8. If I could live anywhere (and take my parents and in-laws with me), I’d want to live in the Pacific Northwest or in Colorado.
  9. Catch and I have taken some amazing trips together—the Alaska cruise was amazing, as was our honeymoon cruise to Mexico—but my absolute favorite trip with her was a camping trip to the Sequoias.  I could have stayed there with her forever. Sequoias
  10. The first time I met Catch’s parents, her father was wearing a confederate flag t-shirt.  I’m glad I didn’t let him scare me off.
  11. I have never colored my hair.  Ever.  You don’t mess with red like this. HPIM1219

In which I swear far less than I really want to…

Today is CD1 following a fantastic 48-day cycle.  It’s also 3/3, and you know how I feel about the number 3.  I had resigned myself to waiting out another cycle and pushing things back until mid-to-late-April, but I have to be honest—I’m disappointed.  3/3 would have been a great day for CD1 if we were trying this cycle.

Here are (a few) of the reasons why we’re not:

1)      I am still 4 pounds from my goal.  (So. Close.)

2)      We decided to err on the side of caution and paid off the small 401k loan I took out for baby making so that we could take a larger loan.  When I first borrowed that money (from myself), we really had no clue what we were in for.  Now that we know more about my body and its issues, we are taking more than we hope we will need, but enough to get us through some of plan B if plan B is needed.  We can always pay off what we don’t use. We’re still waiting for that to be processed.

3)      I still haven’t taken care of getting copies of all of my recent blood work to the RE.  Dealing with my doctors’ offices has been an absolute nightmare, and the thought of having to talk with the bitchy women at the front desk while sober makes me want to hurt someone.

So we wait.  Possibly another 48 days. Hell, who knows? Maybe I’ll bleed for another 30 days like I did in September.  Gosh, that would be fun.

I should know by now that having a plan is meaningless when it comes to TTC.  There hasn’t been a single thing over the past 13 months that has gone according to plan.  I don’t even believe it’s possible at this point. I think plans are like fairies.  We should just stop believing in them and then they’ll die and we can move on with more abstract outlines of theoretical possibilities.

Also: Fuck plans.

Sorry.  It had to be said.