Tuesday, November 30, 2010

To follow up from my last post, one of my friends and I were talking about it, and she said something that really hit me as I look at trying to follow what God wants and wanting to feel heard.  She said, "He is the same God that put the really freakishly strong desire for a child in you."  I hadn't thought about it that way before, but she's right.
I was talking to someone recently who asked about whether I was truly trying to follow God's plan for my life and my family or whether I was wanting from God what I want when I want it how I want it.  That really hurt, because I had told that person before about my prayer life and how I had been asking God from the beginning only for patience until it was His time.  I had also told that person when my pastor told me to start asking for a healthy baby in addition to asking for God to work His plan in my life and give me patience.  I ended up talking to my pastor after church yesterday to get a sanity check.  She reminded me that she had been the one to tell me to ask for a healthy baby and not just for peace.  She told me that it was perfectly reasonable to want to feel heard by God.  That made me feel a lot better.  I do know with my head and my heart that God is listening, but knowing it and experiencing the comfort and peace of FEELING it are two different things.  Overall, though, it just especially helped to have that sanity check and hear that I AM praying the way God wants me to, like I thought I was.  That person had me feeling all upside down and shaken up, and now I feel more normal (as much as I can, given everything).

Saturday, November 27, 2010

I realized something tonight that feels really pathetic.  My absolute highest hope for the next month is that my next proof of failure comes on Christmas.  I have got no hope at all that I'll have anything other than failure, so the best that I can hope for is that my proof of failure (maybe I should start abbreviating that POF instead of one of the more common abbreviations) comes early enough that it doesn't completely mess with my trip to Atlanta.
One of my friends just said that me doing this blog inspired her to do a blog about her specific issues (not related to IF) and that it has been really helpful for her.  I started this to help myself and others with my IF journey, and it's been doing that, but it's really nice to know that it has helped people with other problems as well.
I just learned that I failed again this month.  No wonder my stomach was feeling like crap when I woke up.  I was pretty damned sure I had because I hadn't made myself try on one particular night and instead tried a day late...sure enough that I wasn't even bothering to not drink during the 2ww.  I do appreciate the ability of cats to notice when people need them...as I started writing this, my big cat got clingy.

I don't think I'm going to the football game today.  It has nothing to do with not wanting to see babies or the awkwardness of not tailgating and everything to do with the fact that it's 45 minutes before the game that's 45 minutes away and I'm still in pajamas, since I just woke up 45 minutes ago and the fact that I'm crampy enough and gassy enough that I don't want to get dressed and go anywhere.  Might as well be able to watch multiple games at once in comfort instead of watching one game with windchills in the 30s.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

In terms of the things I love about Thanksgiving, this has been a great holiday so far!  Cooking and baking have been enjoyable and relaxing, despite a pie crust mishap.  In terms of infertility, it's been...interesting. 

One thing I was thinking last night is that a silver lining of me focusing so much on being pregnant and having a baby is that I haven't been focusing on what having an older child would be like, so I'm not upset about not sharing things like cooking for Thanksgiving with a child like I loved sharing them with my mom.  If that run-on sentence made any sense...

At any rate, I said that to DH last night.  Big mistake.  An hour or two later, we were finally done talking for the night, having not accomplished anything.  I feel like he doesn't understand me at all through this.  Those who know DH, do NOT get on him about this.  Most people don't understand me, and he is trying (very trying, at times).  But DH likes logic and order and consistency and stability, and this journey is none of those for me, which makes it very hard for him to feel anything other than angry and frustrated with me.

So where we are right now is that I'll be getting my support elsewhere.  I'm not mad at him for this, and I don't want you to be mad at him either.  Like I told him, I'd rather he tell me he can't handle it, especially since I DO have other sources of support that I can make use of, rather than both of us being miserable.

Please don't bring this up with DH.  It's not like I'm trying to hide anything from him...if he wanted to read this post, he could.  But I don't want what I write to come bite him in the ass, because that's not fair to him or, by extension, to me.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I've been calling my one friend's toddler my birthday buddy or birthday twin since she was born on my birthday 2 years ago.  Today, I got a new birthday buddy.  I was excited to see that she came and that she came on my birthday.  I was happy, and not upset, and I appreciate that.  When I told DH about my new birthday buddy, he asked how I was doing, and I was honestly able to tell him that I was doing fine.  I didn't know how long it would last, but I was sure going to enjoy being fine while it did last. 

I'm not just fine anymore, but I'm not upset or angry or completely depressed either.  I'm still happy and excited for my friend, but pictures have started making their way onto Facebook and it's hard for me to see the pictures.  I'm not trying to say that people shouldn't post them or anything like that.  But it's still hard.

So now I have a mix of excited and difficulty rather than unadulterated excitement.

Monday, November 22, 2010

I want to clarify something about my last post.  I wasn't saying that people shouldn't complain or vent about troubles that they have with pregnancy, giving birth, or parenting.  I'm a therapist for heaven's sake...the last thing I'm going to do is tell anyone they shouldn't vent or otherwise express their feelings.  What I'm saying is to be grateful WHILE you vent, the same as when I vent about work or my house, I'm still grateful that I have a job and that my house isn't in foreclosure.  Appreciate the fact that you get to be a parent while you are waiting for that particular negative part to be over.

Also bear in mind, however, that your infertile friend may not be the best person to complain/vent directly to while they're desperately wanting to have that problem.  Before everyone gets upset at me, I'm NOT saying that any of my friends have done that, and I'm NOT saying to avoid posting complaints in public places like Facebook.  You all (and I) have the right to post what we want, and infertile friends (as well as anyone else) have the right and ability to block the posts of people who they like when those people's posts hurt too much to read. (Of course, that comes with its own set of ramifications which relate to why I haven't blocked anyone's posts, as hard as it can be to look at Facebook sometimes.)  All I'm trying to say in this paragraph is, we all have different people in our lives that understand different parts of us and with whom it is natural to talk about different things.  When I'm frustrated about something work-related, it's often a lot more helpful for me and the other person if I vent about it to another social worker or someone else in the general field than if I vent about it to, say, my software-engineer husband.  Similarly, when you're looking to talk to just one person rather than the internet universe or friends list universe about what you're experiencing related to pregnancy, birth, or parenting, sometimes your infertile friend is the best person to talk to anyway because you're just that close to them, and sometimes it's better to talk to another parent.

Again, that last paragraph is talking in generalizations and NOT about any of my friends.  That hasn't been an issue with my friends up to now, and if it starts to become an issue with anyone (which I don't expect), I'll discuss it with that person.  This blog isn't just about what I am experiencing and feeling at any given point, it's also about infertility in general.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Thinking about it, I can already think of one thing to add to the last post:  When you complain about your kids or about the symptoms of pregnancy, remember that some of us would kill to be experiencing that.  I would kill to experience morning sickness.  I would kill to be up all night with a newborn.  I would kill to experience a screaming toddler in the store.  I would kill to have an elementary-schooler fighting to avoid going to bed.  I would kill to have a teenager snapping at me that I know nothing.  Because I know what goes with it.  And I know that I may never have that.
I took this from another blog, although I took out the parts that don't fit me at this point in my journey: 

We all get them, those well intentioned comments from family members, co-workers and friends that leave us either:

1)rolling our eyes
2) crying
3) screaming
4) punching a wall (or them if it's a really bad day :-) )
5) writing a blog about what "the others" need to know so that we do the above far less often!

So, here is my attempt at helping "the others" not get harmed along the way when
trying to help an infertile woman.

NEVER EVER SAY JUST RELAX (or anything that implies that we need to just relax): We couldn't agree more that we need to relax, but you informing us that we aren't and we need to do a better job of it is even more un-relaxing!

We do not want to hear stories about your friends friend who:
a) Got pregnant right when she went through with adoption
b) Went through infertility treatments and finally got pregnant with triplets and is now so overwhelmed (especially when you imply : be careful what you wish for)
c) Finally got pregnant after 3 years of trying when she tried.......... (yes, we've tried ev.er.y trick in the book, each one and if you could guarantee us that drinking a pomeranian's piss would impregnate us, we'd do it....I think most IF women would anyway!!)

Do not tell us that it will happen when "the time is right" or "when God wants it to." There are many, many, many reasons this is insanely annoying, too many to go into. And by the way, it does not offer comfort at all.

Do not imply that we are ungrateful for what we have simply because we are very sad that we feel we are missing something. I already ranted about this in a previous post, just know it's a terrible thing to ever say or imply that you think we are, because you are wrong.
5) If you are pregnant and are our friend or family member, we will probably go to your baby shower because we have to, and there is a good chance we will cry before during or after your happy day. There is also the chance that we will not come because.....well....we got a flat tire on the way! (Comment by Jessie: I can very much understand why people would either choose to invite me to their baby shower or why they would choose NOT to invite me.  I don't necessarily know which I'd prefer at this point, although either way I'm not sure I'm up to going.  For me, at this point, the most important part is whether you cared enough to consider my feelings in deciding whether or not to invite me, whichever decision you end up making)

6) You will never ever understand how we feel unless you have walked in our shoes. You can try and relate it to something tragic in your life, but it's like comparing apples and oranges. We do appreciate it though when you truly try to understand.

7) We are emotional, moody and feel like we are completely losing it. We do not want to, or like feeling this way just as much as you do not like us being this way.

9) We think about getting pregnant CONSTANTLY. We may or may not always talk about it, but it is always, always on our mind. Practically everything reminds us of wanting to get pregnant. Even a beer gut reminds us of how much we wish that our guts looked like that, but for other reasons.

11) We just want you to be there for us when we need to vent. We want to know that you are ok with us talking about our infertility with you, and that even if you don't get it, you will listen with an open ear.
13) Infertility sucks major donkey balls and we would not wish this on our worst enemy (unless you tell us to relax and then...in that case........)

Wow, I could go on and on and on!!!!! What other things would you add to this list that you wish "the others" of the world would know about being infertile?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Up and down, back and forward, dance in place.  The insurance for my company will actually cover infertility diagnostics, but I can't switch to that until DH switches companies, which now won't be until February or so.  I could have gone on my company's insurance back at the beginning of October if I had known that this stuff would be covered.  Unfortunately, they gave us only THREE DAYS max to make a decision on whether we'd take this insurance or not...they wanted the decision in one day!  That's nowhere near enough time to find out what insurance covers in the way of infertility and whether it's cheaper to stay on DH's insurance or switch!  So now I'm waiting for DH to switch companies, since that'll be a life-changing event such that I can switch insurance. 

This puts off the adoption question for a while, I hope.  I did find out that domestic adoption is apparently cheaper than overseas adoption, when I thought it was the other way around.  I'm hoping that we can still try to conceive, though, and that DH won't want to just adopt in order for me to be back on ADHD medications sooner. 

I have my massage in 40 minutes.  It would be nice if it served two purposes instead of one, but that's basically impossible.  So I will enjoy the relaxation and try not to mourn the fact that I'll never know if a massage would help with conception because this is the only one I'll get.

Monday, November 15, 2010

So now we're apparently at the point of considering whether we'd rather adopt an American baby or a baby from overseas so that we can start figuring out costs.  DH and I were talking about why I want to be a mother (after having talked in the past about why he wants to be a father).

We were also talking about focusing on things a person is passionate about, and I said that one of the things I'm passionate about is wanting to become a mother.  I explained that I really wanted to experience ALL aspects of being a mother, including growing a life inside of me for 9 months, feeling our baby move, seeing our baby on the sonogram, giving birth, experiencing those first moments of our baby's life outside of me.  Unfortunately, at the rate we're going, that costs a lot of money we can't really afford with no guarantee of return.

So basically we're at the point of considering where we would want to get our baby from if we adopted so that we can use that as a starting point to figure out how much adoption might cost.  I guess we have to figure that out now along with getting prices for fertility services, because we can't afford to have fertility services and THEN adopt when they fail, so we have to decide which we are going to do before we would start anything with a fertility clinic.

PS. For those that are wondering, yes, I do have other things that I am passionate about besides motherhood, and yes, I am trying to focus on those things in an attempt to fill the holes in my life that I created in order to be a responsible mother and in my heart that my heart created on its own.  I am doing a lot with APO because APO is where I feel most competent and able.  I'm trying to make time at the correct times to be able to do stuff with flags again, which is the other thing I'm most passionate about.  But so far at least, no matter how hard I've tried, focusing on the other things I'm passionate about has not made the passion I feel for motherhood stop hurting.
There will be a longer post coming in a minute or two, but I first wanted to say in a separate post how grateful I am for people who break their baby news gently to me.  One of my friends had discussed with another friend how to tell me and ended up pulling me aside and telling me at the end of the day when we had seen each other, before telling a bunch of our other friends.  I very much appreciated hearing it in person, hearing her story, hearing it at the end of the day so I didn't have to put on a happy face while I was being professional, and it being ok to cry about it in front of her.  Later that evening, I went out to dinner with her and her husband, and I appreciated that we were able to joke around about me being able to drink and that so far it doesn't seem to have affected the friendship.  I really appreciate her friendship, her caring, and her concern.  I thought I might have been doing a little better after I was enjoying holding my other friend's 4-month-old Friday night, but this showed that I wasn't, and I really appreciate that being ok with my friend.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

On Friday night, I was at a book signing.  Two rows behind me were a 5-month-old and a 3-month-old.  As the 3-month-old began to cry, I was hit with an overwhelming desire to hold it.  Immediately after came the knowledge that it would hurt like hell to hold it, knowing that I may never have one of my own.  Ever since then, my left arm keeps literally aching, wanting to be bent around the weight of a baby.  I can especially feel the ache in my elbow and my upper arm, which would be bearing most of the weight.

We had been hoping that the insurance would be better at DH's new company.  We got good news and bad news yesterday.  The good news is that they have an FSA, so we can pay for testing and treatments pre-tax up to the limit of the FSA.  The bad news is, the PPO that the company works with has no infertility coverage.  The HR manager was wonderful and noted that the HMO the company can also work with might have coverage and that she would check.  Still, what the hell is up with this?  So many of the people on my message board have coverage for diagnostic procedures.  Is that really so rare?  Are they all just really lucky?  Or is it that DH and I are blocked for some reason?  That maybe God doesn't want us to succeed? 

All I can say is, thank goodness for Zoloft.

Friday, November 05, 2010

I had a really hard day yesterday, hard to the point of crying in my office with my friend.  Part of it was horomones.  Part of it was that there was a baby shower that day for one of my coworkers.  Part of it was finally being able to let go after all the stress of the last month.  I hadn't been able to let myself feel that before because I had needed to be able to keep pushing through until it was over.  But the horomones and baby shower causing some emotion let the rest come out as well.  I think maybe the need to keep going and to be strong for others may have done more than the Zoloft did in getting me through this month.  But either way, I'm through it. 

I'm not doing well.  I'm not sure I even count as managing at this point.  But I am at least surviving.  I haven't been written up at work again.  I'm even catching up on paperwork since several intakes have not shown.  I'm not snapping at DH, I'm being successful at being supportive of him.  So maybe I'm managing.  I don't really know at this point.  Sometime next week or the week after, I'll redeem the massage that M bought for me.  I figure it works better to use it this month than last month because last month we weren't trying and last month the stress was so constant that the positive effects from the massage would have been gone right away.  Hopefully this month will be lower-stress enough that the effects of the massage will last a decent amount of time. 

Plus, this month I have several APO events to run.  That actually lowers my stress rather than raising it for the most part.  At this point, APO is my happy place.  APO is where I feel competent and able to accomplish things.  APO is where a lot of my friends are, and especially a lot of friends that don't have kids and aren't having kids anytime soon.  It's not that I don't want those APO friends or any of my other friends to have kids.  But the fact that many of my APO friends don't have kids makes APO feel like more of a safe place for me emotionally.  Besides, it helps fill my time.  I thought I was going the responsible thing by not continuing as a Section Chair because I thought I'd have a baby by now.  Since I can't have that, I might as well fill my time with APO and other activities.  Yes, it's like dealing with grief by running around cooking and cleaning for everyone else...it doesn't do anything to address the grief.  But it makes it possible to survive for one more day and try to keep going.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

It's pathetic when it hurts too much to look at my OWN baby pictures!

On another note, I really appreciated the concern and caring that one friend showed in messaging me privately before announcing her pregnancy on Facebook.  That made it a lot easier to take.
It's nice to know I'm not the only one having trouble dealing with Facebook but not wanting to let go of the connections to other friends that it offers.