Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Gulp. 20 Years?

I got home from work last night giddy from my successful presentation. "Oh yea," I thought, and probably, ok....did say out loud, "I rock." I was poised, articulate, appropriately funny. Heavens, I gushed, I'm so good. And I'm so young to be so good. I sauntered in the door and E said there was a voice message for me from a very perky person who said something about "high school reunion." Actually, the words "20 years" were somewhere around the "high school reunion" words. High school reunion. 20 YEARS. Same sentence. Not, you're "20," you won't have a high school reunion of any significance for 3 more years, but "20 year high school reunion."

I. Am. Old.

I remember so vividly, so clearly being 18 years old and graduating from high school, heading off to college. I remember the yellow leggings and long matching yellow t-shirt with decorative sparkles (it was the 80's, people) I wore on a date with my cute California boy fling the summer after I graduated. My gaggle of high school friends. Big Hair. My zippy little Honda CRX. Black of course. The promises to always stay in touch, to visit one another, the butterflies in my stomach about what was to come. Who would I be? And would I ever be 21? On my own. On. My. Own. An adult.

20 years. Graduation from college. Marriage. Divorce. Sadness. Guilt. Hope. Joy. Law school. Love. Marriage. Success. Travel. Float-on-a-cloud-happiness. So much life has been packed into 20 years. But yet, I remember it like it was yesterday.

I'm not nostalgic for my teens or twenties. From a very young age, I chafed at the boundaries of being young and dependent. I wanted to drive, to make my own money, to live in an apartment, to travel, to be the boss of me. I wouldn't trade me now for an 18 year old me in a million years, except of course for my 18 year old eggs. (I just chuckled out loud thinking of how immature I was yet utterly convinced of my maturity. Silly girl. )

But still, 20 years.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Well, hello there.

It's fascinating to me how people have found my little blog and how I've stumbled upon blogs that touch me, move me, make me think, make me come back for more. I remember my bad place last year after my failed IVF, when, with what was surely the hand of grace, I stumbled upon Mel's blog, http://stirrup-queens.blogspot.com/. Holy shit, I remember saying out loud, there's a whole colony of us! Dear God, a herd of infertiles! Each comment (except for the two snarky ones), each click, each link has lifted me and supported me and, I do earnestly believe, has kept me from shaving my head and beating station wagons with baseball bats. For the lack of felony assaults on my record and subsequent disbarment, I humbly thank you.

Rambling preamble aside, it's always fun to find out how people find your blog. I share with you in no particular order my favorite google searches that led people here:

1. "How to buy alcohol underage in Myrtle Beach."
2. "How to shoot heroin." (I'm seeing a disturbing pattern emerge.)
3. "Fluff my pillow." (I need to meet this girl.)
4. "Getting pregnant too easily." (You're in the wrong neighborhood sweetheart.)
5. "injections butt." (Come into my parlor.)
6. "How can I stop myself getting stressed because I can't get pregnant." (If I only knew...)

And then, of course, there are the ones that make you want to reach out through Dr. Google and give someone a hug, like "early miscarriage betas not doubling" and "hopelessness IVF infertility." And I hope with all my heart, that like me they stumble upon someone in our herd who can give them hope and encouragement and support and sanity.

Happy weekend everyone!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Spring! Spring! Spring!

Oh happy, happy, happy! Happpeeee. Look, look, you can see the clematis beginning to climb over the pergola. Look at that adorable dwarf Japanese maple next to the happy rock. Oh me, look at the little pink budlets on the tree. And notice how there's no grass. That's happy too. No grass to mow. Over to the bottom left is the pool, which isn't pictured because it's filling as I type and is a little bit ugly right now. But picture, if you will, a full blue pool, a perfectly proportioned floaty with drink holder occupied by appropriate umbrella-ed-y beverage and no pressing emails or voicemessages from cold hearted coworkers or bosses [note I don't say picture a pale, infertile blond 38 year old with less than toned musculature who could easily drop 15 pounds]. Damn, I love me some Spring!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

A woman of few words

I vowed when I started this blog that if I didn't have anything to say, I wouldn't say anything. And I certainly would not, WOULD NOT, ramble on about meaningless drivel, like my quest for the perfect pair of dark brown closed toe pumps, hopefully with a bit of ornamentation to set them apart from the crowd, or the rude lady at the pedicure place who womanhandled my feet, rudely tapping my ankles when it was time to submerge or demerge from the soaking tub (and I would not, WOULD NOT, drone on about the water not being hot enough or the poor selection of celebrity trash mags).

I'm breaking my vow. I don't have a lot to say, but I feel like talking.

It feels strange not to be doing anything related to infertility treatments. No needles, no pills, no visits to the RE. It feels strange, but nice. Normal. I don't know exactly when treatment will start up again. We'll get the results of E's chromosomal tests in about two weeks. If all's normal, we'll jump back on the wagon for another fresh cycle. Sometime. I don't dread the thought of shots or pills or monitorings. I don't dread the retrieval or the transfer. I dread the waiting. I dread with everything I am the emotional toll of a negative or a failing positive. I dread the having to mold myself back in to a package of normalcy after another failed cycle. And if I'm being really honest, there's a part of me that dreads, a little bit, how my life, our lives, will change if the cycle is not a failure. (I prefer that my angst cover all bases.)

I saw a counselor last week for the first time in 6 years. If a girl has to pay someone to listen to her, well that's what a girl does. I exaggerate, of course. I have wonderful listeners in real life and with you. I've been struggling, though, with where I fit in in the world. Where's my place? Why do I feel so old at 38? Yes, I believe I even asked the question, "but what does it all mean?" I'm sure my counselor saw dollar signs.

I've concluded my Tuesday ramblings. I will happily report back to the group when my counselor reveals the meaning of life. And the winning lottery numbers.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


The results of my immunological and chromosomal tests are NORMAL. I was hoping for "fanfriggingtabulous" or "damn, you've got fine chromosomes", but NORMAL will have to do. According to the RE, NORMAL is good, it's where you want to be, certainly, you don't want abNORMAL. Ok. I tried to read the report but they lost me at "factor V Leiden mutation," which I don't have, I don't think. Still waiting on E's chromosomal testing, but they're less concerned about him because he has an adult child. I told him he better not screw things up.

NORMAL. In many ways, my thoughts lately have centered around variations of NORMAL or more specifically, what's my NORMAL? Where's my place? Before we started trying to have a child, I was very sure about my place in the world. Happily married, great lifestyle, interesting trips, good job, freedom, lots of fun. When we started trying to have a child my NORMAL changed to incorporate the possibility of being a parent one day, less freedom, less travel, more responsibility, sure, but add a little human to the mix.

Now I don't know where I fit in. Will I be "happily married, great lifestyle, interesting trips, good job, freedom, lots of fun" or "less freedom, less travel, more responsibility, sure, but add a little human to the mix?" And how does one dress appropriately when the invitation doesn't specify?

So I'm struggling a bit with my NORMAL.

The good news is that the sun's shining and the flowers are blooming. And the Kentucky Derby is right around the corner. I have a new hat. Ok, and a new outfit. And you can't pair a new hat and a new outfit with old shoes. So, I've got new shoes too. And I will look anything but NORMAL.

If I do say so myself.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Other People's Babies

I have learned much on my travels via Infertility Avenue. Personally, I've learned how irritating it is not to have control. I often find myself grasping at a "plan", charting options, grabbing for that elusive ah ha, just to feel like I'm driving my own life. I've learned that it's very difficult to be--much less stay--centered if you don't know what your center is going to end up being. I've also learned that though each of us is going through something very similar, we experience it in widely differing ways. My experience is not and can't be yours. Your pain, your joy, your fears are yours, uniquely yours. We commiserate, we support, we cheer, but each of us is in our own lane.

So I'll come clean. Other people's babies and small children don't bother me (unless they throw up on me on a plane. Hasn't happened, but I wouldn't like it). In fact, many are really kind of cute. Some aren't. I don't cringe when I see a Pregnant Person. It doesn't make me uncomfortable or jealous when people talk about their kids or when someone excitedly announces that they're pregnant, out of the blue, can't believe it, isn't it the most amazing thing??!! My general antipathy toward baby showers is not because someone, not me, is pregnant, it's because they're always on a Saturday afternoon, they play silly games and they last too long. (I like my Saturdays.) I really want everyone who wants to get pregnant to get pregnant. I do. Really. Except for crack addicts. And mean people.

I say this not to evidence how admirably well adjusted I am or my commendable maturity (my RE reminds me of my "maturity" all the time), but to admit my selfish little secret. I don't want Other People's Babies, I want my own. I don't want to adopt. I don't want to use donor eggs or sperm if it came to that. I don't want to steal that cute baby from the Target. I want my own little Melanie/E combo, with some sass and wit on the side. I want to point at that child and chuckle (in a kind parental way, of course) because he's a horrible dancer like his father. I want to tell her that she got her mama's brains, thank God, wink wink. I want...I want...I want.... I know how it sounds.

It's why the results of these tests have such import, I think. My Plan B won't be adoption or donor eggs or donor sperm. It will be a different path. Still, I hope, one with meaning. And if that's the case, I will pull off of Infertility Avenue and onto, well who knows. It's my selfish little secret.

Don't tell anyone.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

My life as a duck.

We got back from Portland last night and were welcomed with...rain. It's raining today and according to weather.com it will be raining for the next 7 days. In Portland, it rained. During our drive to Gold Beach, Oregon.... I'm sorry, during our 6 hour drive to Gold Beach, Oregon, it rained. It also rained on our 8 hour drive back from Gold Beach. (I'm not a good car driving/passenger type person. It's a patience thing. I'll work on it.) Please, for the love of God, turn on the sunlamp and give me some lovin'.

Despite the dampness, Portland is a pretty awesome city. Great shopping, lots of green, not a lot of traffic considering the size of the city, an 85,000 square foot book store (Prrrrrrr) and probably the best meal I've had in recent history. Miso marinated black cod at the Heathman Hotel. Jasmine rice. Sesame Vinaigrette. Delicate, flavorful, brings-tears-to-your-eyes, makes-you-guard-your-plate-like-a-game-cat, lovely black cod.

I have no news on the reproductive front. I was expecting to have the results of my immunological testing by now, but I don't. I won't know about the chromosomal testing for at least another two weeks. I have been doing some research on PGD (Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis) though and would love your thoughts. The studies I've seen are mixed.

So it's limbo land for a while. Life with a child? Life without a child? If it's the latter, I need to begin planning, well, Plan B, which right now will definitely entail a dry, arrid clime with little rainfall and absolutely no snow. It will probably also include a lot of golf and reading and pool floating. It will mean that my professional days will end far earlier than if the former occurs. And George Clooney will bring me beverages at a snap.

Plan B.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Oh stooooppp.

Oh my goodness. The fabulous and extraordinary Mrs. X (theyoungandtheinfertile.blogspot) hearts my blog. I'm tickled pink and say right back at ya! The warm fuzzies must be shared (particularly because there's been a dearth of same in our little blogging community lately), so I'm passing this on to Denise at http://www.freezerbuns.blogspot.com/. I love her blog and selfishly, she has been such a wonderful source of support and good advice as we have shared one shit cycle after another. I also heart Rebeccah at http://www.chasingachild.typepad.com/. This woman studied for the bar exam while undergoing IVF. I break out in hives just thinking about it. And Io at http://www.damnthatstork.blogspot.com because she's irreverent and funny and doesn't have cankles.
Off to Portland, Oregon tomorrow, where, predictably, it will be raining. I mean absolutely no offense to Portland or Oregon, but I would rather be on my way to the Caribbean. Or to the lottery office to collect my winnings. Alas.