Know More Than You Ever Wanted To Know!

So there I was thinking:

A) I’m going to hurl
B) I’ve got to stop complaining about RR
C) There’s a relationship between those two things, I’m sure of it.

We can guess:

A) RR’s shenanigans, which to be fair, are more like direct acts of war, are causing me so much stress I’m going to be physically ill.
B) The nausea is a sign that my body is trying again to make things work and the idea of having another 3-yr-old is making me ill.
C) I have the flu. RR is the culprit despite showing no symptoms. Like a biological weapon.
D) Associating my daughter with weapons and war has karmically inflicted an ulcer on me.

But guess what, this means I’m distracting myself with fun facts and games and so I will tell you that I know at least two other terrific writers who have said, hey, I think you deserve a Nobel for being a paragon of peaceful inspiration! Okay, that’s not at all what they said (obviously) but they did nominate this site for a Liebster Award which, as far as I can tell, is a great way for small sites to drive traffic to each other while giving a hearty pat on the back. Who doesn’t like that? There are strings attached to this red-carpet extravaganza and so I stuck the whole thing over on another page, here.

Read away. And, if you were wondering, this is nine days after the first IUI. The exact same time the nausea showed up last time before disappearing with a poof on the 11th day. I imagine I’ve been queasy at this time of the month every month since I was 11 but I could also be pregnant and wouldn’t THAT be something. Three be damned.

Trying Again

Yesterday, we did the second of two IUIs for this month. I’m in awe of my body and its textbook timing. Ten years ago I gave up on the idea of having a biological child because I couldn’t line up any of my biology or, let’s face it, change my habits, in order to even get to the point of visiting a fertility clinic. Now I’m ovulating on the 15th day of a cycle and finishing out 15 days later. Amazing. Go old eggs.

Speaking of old eggs, we had the chance to do two IUIs back to back this month (for those playing along at home, this is to increase the chances of the sperm helping my egg and her walker across the street). I’m delighted to be trying again even though this week has been EXCEPTIONALLY difficult in three-year-old land. Seriously, how did any of us live past the age of three?

Probably Not Pregnant

I’ll go ahead and save you the finger exercise: It’s too early to know! Lots of people don’t feel anything til weeks after! Be patient! This has as good a chance of working as not working! And you guys, you are the best ever. Because you tell me this even though you and I both know there’s nothing to fix it but to actually know.

But let me tell you. Even in the absence of actual evidence, I’m pretty sure I know. God, that’s depressing.

Last month, the same thing happened. We cruised along until the ninth day after the IUI and I felt progressively more pregnant. Bits of actual symptoms here and there. Then all of a sudden, the tenth day arrives and bam. I don’t feel pregnant. I’m starting to feel my uterus in ways that I always do, every month since I was 11 except for that unfortunate set of years at the dawn of the century (that’s totally pretentious but also, you guys, totally true! We get to actually use that!) I’m telling you, if I had a personal list of “Oh hey, your period’s coming checkboxes!” – which I would I have if I’d actually ever paid attention – I’d be checking off every one.

So yes, it’s only 11 days. But if I’m right, which I think I am, we’ll be ordering more mountaineer and and taking another shot next month.

Sharks and Minnows

So this getting pregnant thing – turns out it’s fraught with feelings. I knew that academically but I don’t think I grasped what that might mean for me. And let me tell you, I wasn’t completely prepared for the emotional shenanigans I’m suddenly experiencing.


I’m disappointed that I’m not actually pregnant (and, I assure you, the two days late “gift” didn’t merit a thank you note on nice stationary) mainly because I actually thought I would be. It’s SCIENCE. How could it not happen? Here’s an egg. There are the sperm. How can you miss each other in a space that small? Also, once you get together, which, how could you not, how do you not make it to the wall in time? You know what game I hated when I was younger? Sharks and Minnows.

Hateful Game

I started swimming competitively at three. Yes, I’m that kid who says “I’ve been dancing/singing/drawing all my life” and you think, “Asshole.” The second I could dive down far enough to get a hateful black rubber ring from the bottom of the pool, I was listening for a gun (yes, actually) to go off so I could race some other unfortunate kid to the other side. The coach’s favorite practice tool was a game where one child, the shark, began treading water in the center and the other children, the minnows, attempted to swim from one side of the pool to the other without being tagged by the shark. Once tagged, they too became sharks and the game progressed until one minnow remained and was either crowned the winner or besieged in a terrifying way by ravenous sharks. Imagine being one of a couple wily kids staring down a pack of people trying to get you at all costs. I wasn’t ever dumb enough or slow enough to get caught early. Apparently, neither are my eggs.

scared egg

So, I vacillate between WTF SCIENCE and a host of other frustrations, some as ridiculous as, “Great, now I’ll have to WORK in February, one of the most depressing months of the year.” I told you they were ridiculous. I admit I also feel some relief. Fine, fine, look shocked and then say, “Well, that’s why you didn’t get pregnant. Your body knew you had hesitations!” to which I say, SCIENCE. As much as there was some draw to having both of our children be genetically related, the first donor we chose looked a lot like me. Having been the blondest, palest, bluest eyed baby, I’d kind of like my kid to have a shot at not looking like she fell into a bucket of bleach until she’s 12.


Now we’re able to go with someone who looks more like D. Also in the feelings category, it’s kind of cool to be able to pick what you want your kid to look like but not as cool as actually getting to have a kid. As much as I’m disappointed, I’m also deeply glad this isn’t our first. I feel much less sad when I look at RR and think, best baby ever. Still, now we have to wait, depressed and flummoxed by science, until we can try again this month, Because SCIENCE is so ACCURATE that you still have to wait for the perfect day to give it a chance to fail. You can’t be BOTH, science.

One More Week

Popped in for the progesterone test (link for the curious) yesterday and everything is just peachy. I’m not entirely sure that I wouldn’t rather have skipped it, but after some reflection, I decided I’d rather know if this cycle had a diminished chance of success. Which it didn’t (in fact, the results were good enough to make the normally taciturn nurse practically giggle). And that’s good news except that it’s not THE news.

Although I’m not an over-googler exactly, it doesn’t mean I don’t occasionally stray to the dark side. Fortunately for me, any search that turns up more than one wiki or yahoo answers query in the first five results sends me back to more respectable endeavors like wondering what my amusement park is*. For the lazy link clicker – dude, I am totally that person, so no judgement – when D didn’t get pregnant on the first go, we went to an amusement park and rode all of the roller coasters. Maybe I’ll go to some yummy cafe and have espresso. I know. I live on the edge.

Googling aside, I’m well aware that the liklihood of having actual symptoms at this point is slim. Even so, so many different-than-normal things have gone on that I’m sure I’m going through menopause, getting the flu, or dying. Probably dying. My poor wife has to endure countless rounds of symptom-dismissal-depression-symptom.

Ugh. My stomach just keeps grumbing and growling!
I’m sure I just ate something weird.
I am never going to be pregnant.

And then the excitement stopped. No more weird cramps. No more hot flashes. No more…anything. And then yesterday:

Oh god, I’m going to hurl. Yes. I’m totally going to…ugh. Why do I feel so awful?!
It was probably those two cookies I inadvisably ate after breakfast.
I am never going to be pregnant.

This weekend we have friends in town which means I’ll have to dial back my constant complaining. Let me tell you, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t complain at all if I knew that all my discomfort was caused by pregnancy. Cramps, pressure, bloating, hot flashes, intermittently sweaty palms, nausea. Dude. GIVE ME A REASON.

Alas, we wait. Of course. But it’s only one more week. At most!

Also, did you all SEE this? Clearly these guys have been coming to my house as RR’s favorite thing to say to D and I is “NO TALKING”

Conversations with My 2 Year Old

Come Back in a Week

Whoa now. Was this progesterone test a thing when D carried RR? There I was, like the Venus de Milo in repose and discussing the Hindenburg* with my wife when the nurse suggested we come back in a week for a progesterone test to see if we had a shot at a viable pregnancy. Or something like that. Essentially, it appears that while such a blood test won’t predict pregnancy, it can certainly tell us if the odds are against us.

vdmUnfortunately, for the Venus de Milo, she had to stand while waiting for something magnificent to be created. You and I are creative and can thus imagine what she really would have done once she got tired of holding up that damn sheet. 

Finding out that it “probably didn’t work”? Exactly what I wanted to do with my Thursday. But, might as well get the crushing disappointment out of the way, right? Given that we’ll have house guests throughout the second week of waiting, it’s probably a good thing to keep me from being too high strung.

Also – why did none of you tell me that my uterus would behave like an asshole after an IUI? Cramping and general discomfort ala HSG (only for an extended period of time). Apparently, my cervix doesn’t really dig being toyed with. Regardless, I forgive you in an attempt to send a subliminal message to my rouge egg and sperm that I am a nurturing mother earth who is a fertile field, complaining cervix aside. Shh. Don’t tell them any different.

* During my wife’s second IUI, we found ourselves discussing, at length, the Lockerbie bombing. I don’t know what sparked the conversation, only that I explained what little I knew of it while my wife (probably) sent out a little prayer. This time, remembering our oddly timed Lockerbie discussion, we invoked the Hindenburg. Not as a talisman, just something I happen to be doing at work right now. Go figure.

“He Likes Pizza and Plays the Guitar”

Sometimes I feel, just a little bit, like a novelty. I reassure myself that people like me, couples like ours, are a dime a dozen. Probably. Right? At least at a fertility clinic. But there’s still that sense.

D and I handle this by being happy, friendly, and funny. For the most part, it’s just who we are. Yesterday, we joked with the lab workers about our donor  He likes pizza, I said. He says he plays the guitar. I smiled into the silence and they burst into laughter. Those tiny anonymous vials don’t play guitar and like pizza. And they don’t look like RR, a picture of whom D was dangling over my shoulder. All three technicians grinned and laughed with us.

In the clinic, I popped my head up to remind the doctor that the less I saw of him the better. He paused and half chuckled. The nurse sputtered into a smile (being a surly sort) and we shot that sperm past my cervix with a smile on our faces. Our regular receptionist emphatically wished us well.

Let’s hope all that laughter and good karma results in something. Something good. Egg, ahoy.

Want to know about what exactly happens at an IUI appointment?