Getting Duped By Hope

I know this was only my first full cycle after my loss. I know we didn’t really try to get pregnant. I know it takes time to for one’s cycle to return to “normal” after a loss.

Still, I was devastated to get my period today.

I decided at the start of my cycle to use OPKs to have at least a general idea of what my body was doing or trying to do. I didn’t get a positive until CD 26, and we didn’t have sex until the day after that. Not avoiding trying to get pregnant, but certainly not making a valiant effort. Assuming I ovulated the day after that positive OPK (probably, since I also had fertile cervical fluid at that time), good old Aunt Flow’s arrival today means my luteal phase was a whopping 7 days. Or I didn’t ovulate at all, I suppose. Either way, it’s shit.

I had no right to hope for anything better than that, to be honest. I mean, back when we were TTC the old fashioned way, I always ovulated late-ish, around CD 20. And my LP was only 10 or 11 days long. So, not too far off from this cycle. Expecting my cycle to magically morph into that of a normal fertile person is simply ridiculous. Yet, I think subconsciously maybe I did expect it. Or at least I had hoped for it. You read so many stories about previously infertile women spontaneously conceiving, especially after a loss. Why couldn’t I be one of them? Didn’t I deserve to be one of them? Damn hope, once again reeling me in.

I don’t know where to go next. Maybe I would be happier not testing or tracking my cycle until we decide to really try to get pregnant (as unlikely as it may be). In fact, I know that’s what I should do. I should shut it down and not give it another thought until after the holidays. I should just enjoy Christmas with my family and work on healing my mind and body. Should….

Tonsillectomy Diaries: Recovery Day 1

I feel relatively good compared to all the scary warnings and stories. I’m in pain, but it’s far from the worst pain I’ve ever experienced. (That prize still goes to the ruptured cyst.) I have some nasty mouth rinse and even nastier liquid pain-killer that keeps the majority of the pain away. The worst part is that I can’t really sleep. My uvula is about twice its usual size, which is normal after a tonsillectomy, but makes it hard to breath when I lie down. There isn’t much I can do about it but wait.

Speaking of waiting…. I arrived at the outpatient surgery center at 9:45 am yesterday as instructed for my procedure. The nurse had me change into a gown almost right away, which I thought was a good sign. Boy I was I wrong! I didn’t get wheeled into surgery until 3:30 pm. I understand that the doctor can’t predict which surgeries might take longer, but that wait was torture! I was woozy from lack of food and water, and since they didn’t allow any valuables, I had to wait without my iPhone and internet connection. There was so much chatter and TV noises around me, I couldn’t sleep, either. Not to mention, I was sitting in the most uncomfortable recliner one can imagine.

Aside from some chocolate pudding at the hospital and a few bites of applesauce this morning, I haven’t eaten anything of substance. Surprisingly, I’m not hungry. Not that lack of hunger has ever stopped me from eating, but in this case, I’m pretty sure my sore throat is overriding any hunger signals from my stomach. I’m totally okay with that! I’m sure I’ll eventually get my appetite back, but for now I’m going to enjoy not having one, with the hopes that I come out of this weighing a bit less.

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In baby making news, it seems my period decided to arrive early. At just 9 dpo, I already have heavy spotting that will probably turn to full flow by the end of the day, or tomorrow morning. I’m not surprised – this is how my broken bits normally operate – but it means no IUI for July, and, if we need IVF, it wouldn’t happen until fall or winter, which isn’t a great scenario. If I weren’t so drugged up, I might be more upset about all that. Or not. It’s hard to tell, after 3 break cycles, whether I really care about getting pregnant anymore. Yeah, I know…. I should probably figure that one out before going big guns on assisted reproduction.

Tonsillectomy Diaries: Recovery Day 3

Tonsillectomy Diaries: Recovery Day 8

Tonsillectomy Diaries: Recovery Day 11

DOs & DON’Ts of Recovering from an Adult Tonsillectomy

Nephews and Aunts

Lucky me, I wasn’t in limbo for long. Good old Aunt Flo showed her ugly face just two days after my last post. As usual, she kicked my ass, but, thankfully, she waited until after a super fun Friday afternoon with my nephews. Just barely. It was on the short drive home after dropping them off that the unbearable cramps and backache began. By the time I crawled up the two flights to my apartment, I was in tears. I popped some Percocet left over from my laparoscopy in October, showered, and watched TV as a sweet wave of happy relaxed my body and flooded my brain.

But, before my uterus attempted to self-destruct, I had an awesome afternoon at the amusement park with my nephews, Bean (7) and Luigi (4). (Not their real names, which should be obvious, but people come up with such stupid odd unique names these days, I thought I should clarify. Bean is short for “jumping bean,” and Luigi is for the kid obsessed with the Mario Brothers, Luigi being his favorite.) Poor Luigi, really really really wanted to drive the go-carts and bumper cars, but even for a 4-year-old, he’s quite small. He accepted the news gracefully, though, and made the most of the teacup ride (which left auntie’s stomach churning), kiddie roller coaster, and bouncy house.

Funny story…. Last summer, my sister arranged for an inflatable bouncy house at our family reunion. In order to stay inflated, it had to be plugged into a power source the entire time. Well, this is potluck territory, which means there were no fewer than 10 crockpots all plugged into the only outlet at the park (via an intricate system of extension cords and power strips). Every so often, the outlet would overload, causing the motor to quit working on the bouncy house and the entire thing would deflate instantly – with kids still inside it! The supervising adults would yell for the kids to exit NOW, wait for it to re-inflate, then start the whole process over again. The kids thought it was hilarious, the parents didn’t seem concerned, but I was stressed out the entire time. From that day on, whenever Luigi sees an inflatable bouncy house, he asks, “Is it going to fall?” It doesn’t deter him from having fun.

Bean ran into a few friends from school, so, being the cool aunt, I let him run wild with them for a while. He schooled them on the go-carts, and fearlessly rode all the “scary” rides. (It’s a mild amusement park, even by podunk standards. There’s not a single ride a 7-year-old can’t ride.) Bean is such an awesome big brother that he made time to ride the kiddie roller coaster a few times with Luigi, even though he was almost too big to fit in the seat.

It was a beautiful afternoon, and I had the best time with my boys. There were a few moments when my heart broke a little watching all the parents with their kids, desperately wishing I was one of them. One of the employees referred to me as “mom,” which made me feel both happy and sad at the same time. I didn’t bother to correct him.

I’m so grateful that I had that wonderful afternoon with truly the best two kids you can imagine, because it made the disappointment of another failed cycle a little more bearable. It’s not the same as having my own kids, but I’m so very thankful that I get to play an active role in their lives, not just as the aunt who spoils the hell out of them, but also as a teacher and a guide. I know that even if I can’t have kids of my own, I do have the opportunity to impart some of my values and knowledge to my nephews, which they will then (hopefully) pass along to the next generation in some way.

Here We Go Again (Again)

Last cycle started with M and I so sick, I feared we may not be up for making a baby. We soldiered through, doing the bare minimum.

Here we are again, at the start of our third cycle on Femara and a trigger, and sick again (or still sick? We were starting to feel better….). I finally dragged my ass to a doctor to figure out how serious this is, not being able to breathe normally and all. I don’t have influenza, thankfully, or bronchitis or pneumonia, but I stocked up on hand sanitizer and cough suppressant to minimize the transmission of whatever plague has set up residence in my lungs.

This cycle will be a bit different. Because I’ve had mid-luteal phase spotting for the last two medicated cycles, I will be using progesterone suppositories after ovulation. For those unfamiliar, I’m referring to spotting that occurs about 7 days after ovulation and 7 days before my period, lasting 2-3 days. There are several potential causes, including low progesterone. The doctor gave me the option of testing my progesterone level a week after I ovulate, but, by then, it may be too late to supplement. This is a common it may not help, but it won’t hurt treatment that many women claim helped them conceive and stay pregnant. Because I’ve always been a spotter, I’m eager to see if this will keep the spotting away. I’m even more eager to see if this will help me get pregnant and grow a healthy baby.

In the mean time, I’m focused on kicking this cough to the curb.