I’m still alive

Just a quick little postlette (is that even a word?) to let you all know I’m still here. I’ve been trying really hard to blog more frequently, especially since my little stat program told me that there are a lot of visits from a specific area of Southern CA…anyone related to me reading this, I love you and I’m so glad to know that you are taking an interest in reading my little ramblings. Comment, though, let me know you’re out there.
I haven’t posted much in the last few weeks. That call from the OB office re: referring me to the RE really shook me up for some reason. On an intellectual level I know that it doesn’t change anything really, it’s just moving to a doctor that’s better qualified to deal with whatever problems I might be having, but it feels like a failure to me. I think the most difficult thing for me is not knowing what’s going to happen. I really want to skip this next cycle of Clomid (which of course I won’t) and go straight to the referral. If they tell me that there is nothing they can do for me it will break my heart, I will want to die, but of course I won’t. I will mourn for what will never be and then I’ll move on b/c I have to: I have a family here that needs me to be me and to be the best me that I can be. I’ll keep up with the estrogen supplements if I can b/c they make me a hell of a lot more “normal” whatever that means, but other than that I’ll be able to move on with my life. It’s the constantly getting my hopes up every cycle only to have them dashed when Ovulation doesn’t happen that is killing me.
We have to wait until after the first of the year for financial reasons (flex plan at work) to really get started with anything with the RE, but I want to do the consult before the end of the year; no sense in putting a ton of money into flex if there isn’t any reason for it, you know?!?! During the interim I’ve been thinking that I might like to try some alternative methods of achieving fertility. I’ve heard really good things about acupuncture and as afraid as I am of the needles, I’m more afraid of not having another baby. I’ve also heard that a chiropractor can be a big help. I know you have to be careful not to get hooked up with a quack who just wants your money, though, so I’ll obviously have to do some research. There are also vitamins that you can take that are supposed to help in the ovulation/fertility department and I figure those can’t hurt either. A little homeopathic treatment while I’m waiting for the hard-core drugs (I just pray I don’t end up with quads or quints, although I’d rather have that than nothing – don’t tell TJ….LOL) to begin.
On the knitting front…don’t know if I mentioned it but I finished Krista’s scarf awhile ago…just have to package it and mail it. I’m a lazy, lazy thing once things are done…just ask my mom and she’ll tell you all about me and package sending…LOL It’s like a running joke. I’ve started a pair of socks for TJ in a funky green/black colorway called northern lights by damselfly yarns on etsy…look them up, they have great stuff!!! I’m also working on a simple pair of toe up lace socks for myself using Fleece Artists BFL sock yarn (which smells so much like sheep; I’m in love) in the stone colorway which is simple and beautiful. I have two baby projects that are almost done, but I just can’t bear to work on baby things right this moment. My friend L’s baby was just born and the Anouk I’m making for her is for next spring/summer, so I have time…the blanket I have to force myself to get back to; baby Alison is already six months. My girlfriend Julie also just had a baby girl and she has a naming ceremony coming up in October…I need to bang something out for little Piper. I was thinking maybe some decadent socks and a Baby Surprise Jacket for her. So much to do, so little time…:)
More later…and I haven’t forgotten my promise to post pictures from our trip to the beach, just more lazy on my part….later all.

Fertility Drugs Can Change Your Life!

Who knew.  Secondary infertility has saved my life!!  Sounds crazy, right?  It’s true, though.  In my last post I talked a little about the meds I’m taking, but more about the side effects etc.  So here’s the deal with the meds:  Dr. Hamilton (my favorite doctor in the world currently) put me on a cocktail of 100 mg of Clomid CD 3-7, 3 mg Estradiol (which is estrogen) every 12 hours CD 8-12 and finally Prochieve gel (which is progesterone) daily from CD 17 until there is a negative home pregnancy test on CD 27 or for the first 10-12 weeks of the pregnancy.  (CD means cycle day, btw).  Since I haven’t been ovulating with any regularity at all for the last 5 years (since Jake was born), my body hasn’t produced any progesterone of its own in most of that time and my estrogen has also been extremely low.  Now I knew that conception would be impossible without those hormones, but what I didn’t know was that those little devils effect a lot more that goes on in your life/brain than just reproductive things.  I’m not a doctor, nor do I play one on television, and I don’t know the whats, whys or hows of it all, but balancing these hormones this past month in an attempt to knock me up has changed my life irrevocably!

People that have met me since Jake was born don’t really know the “real” me, at least not the me I used to be when my body worked the way it was supposed to.  Before Jake was born I was a happy go lucky kind of gal, one who cared what she looked like when she left the house, always wore makeup (unless it was hellishly hot outside and it would just slide off – like today), couldn’t sit at home doing nothing without feeling like she was going crazy, was exceptionally social and happy.  The Shannon people who have known me for 5 years or less that people have known has been slovenly about her appearance much of the time, has never worn makeup – even to things like weddings, has constantly made plans (b/c I genuinely wanted to do things with people that I like) but then cancelled them at the last minute b/c the thought of actually leaving the house and doing something wasn’t just distasteful to her, but was honestly frightening.  This Shannon has been afraid of everything all this time.  I used to spend 6-8 hours a night driving around with my best friend Deniece when we were teenagers, early twenties.  I LOVED being in the car, being on the go.  Now I’ve been terrified of being in the car for any length of time and while I was able to control it to the degree that I could sit in the passenger seat with TJ driving or let friends pick me up (even that was rare, though, and there were only a few people who’s cars I would get into:  Shannon’s, my brother in law’s…OMG those are the only two I can think of…wait, I would let Andrea drive my car with me in it.  I was not, however, able to get myself to drive the car anywhere other than to McDonald’s up the road or maybe the gas station at the corner for a pop, and NEVER with Jake in the car.  It was a full blown phobia, it seems.

A few years ago, I met Spinsanity Shannon and joined a few knitting groups.  I thought that would be the beginning of getting better.  I had met a great group of women who were interested in the same things I was.  I learned to spin, yay, went to meetings and was social for the first time in years.  Even that didn’t last for me, though.  ‘The fears, the laziness, the apathy took back over and it’s been almost a year now since I’ve even seen any of them.  My loss, not theirs.  I keep planning to go back and I always let the fear of not being wanted, not being accepted get in the way.  This is one example of the way that I’ve been self-destructive over the last years.  I feel like I’ve digressed a bit, though, b/c I had to get up to tend to Jacob for awhile.  Back to my point…

Since I’ve taken the meds, I’ve found myself with a completely different state of mind. Where I used to spend 80% of my time in bed either knitting and watching TV or playing on the computer etc.  I’m all about getting my house in order now.  The upstairs is almost done:  our bedroom is completely organized, clean and gorgeous, the office is about 95% there and we have Jake’s room yet to do.  Our upstairs bathroom still needs a lot of work but mostly stuff TJ has to do, so I can’t do it.  I’m doing laundry 3-4 times a week – how the hell do we accumulate so much laundry, seriously?!?!  The biggest changes, though, have been in my fears and my almost pathalogical need to be by myself over the last years.  The last two “weekends” (our weekends are usually Monday night through Thursday afternoon b/c TJ works the early morning shift at Duncan Friday through Monday) we’ve gone up North (I swore I would never go there again after we moved back down here) and I’ve had a GREAT time.  I rode the quads with and without Jake (was TERRIFIED of them before, wouldn’t even sit on one when it was off) and I had a blast.  Going fast rocks!!  I went to the beach (pictures in next post about Jake’s mini-birthday party) and played in the surf and sand (not like me at all, I’ve had a lake/ocean/pond/anything with living aquatic creatures phobia for as long as I can remember) with Jake and loved it.  I even learned how to mud and sand a wall to prepare it for painting.  The big change here is that I enjoyed all of these things and didn’t long to be at home, in my bed watching TV.  My DVR is suffering greatly from this change in me.  Where it used to always be almost empty b/c I watched TV constantly, now it’s almost full b/c I spend so little time with the boob tube.  My knitting has suffered (oh, I just got the Zephyr Options needles from Knit Picks, btw, but haven’t used them yet.  Pretty.) b/c I don’t spend much time sitting around.  Today has been a lazy do nothing day just like yesterday b/c it’s just too hot to move around w/out a/c in the house.  As soon as it’s cool again, though, I’ll be back to chores and getting this house in order.  I tried to work on the living room a bit yesterday but was sweating and dizzy before too long.  It’ll get done, though.

So, long story short, as TJ says, it’s not like my wife has changed, it’s like being married to a completely different person!!  I’m glad when he says that and I like the person I’m becoming.  Still have a long way to go, and I’m still a little nervous re: the social aspects and being accepted by the people I want to be with most after blowing them all off for so long, but I guess even that is a part of growing and changing.  I’m going to have to face it eventually; I’m working on my courage.  Oh yeah, one other HUGE change.  I’m driving again.  All over the place and LOVING it more than I have words for.  TJ is now regularly getting into the passenger seat and having me drive him around…the freedom is exhilerating.  It’s been a real pain to try to schedule everything around when he could drive me or when someone else can.  I’m not usually one to toot my own horn, but GO ME!!!  LOL

The Baby Quest Begins

So today is my first day taking the Clomid at a higher dose.  I took the two pills this morning and I’m waiting for horrible side effects to kick in.  So far so good.  Last time I took Clomid (at 1/2 the current dose) I had some moodiness, lost my appetite almost completely and couldn’t sleep for more than an hour or so at a time for the entire five days.  I took it at night last time in hopes of avoiding some of the bitchier side effects.  I paid with sleep.  So we’ll see how this goes.

I’m really feeling anxious about this!  I want to have another baby so badly I can taste it.  Every time I see a baby on TV or a pregnant woman or someone shopping with a newborn I just want to bawl my eyes out.  I’m grateful that I have the wonderful child that I have and I know there are so many women who don’t even have the one who are going through what I am and even worse, but it doesn’t change the visceral reaction I have to seeing these things.

Having the world’s most hellacious period doesn’t help matters, I have to admit.  I was complaining last week about bleeding heavily for over 3 weeks; yeah, let’s go back to that.  This bleeding is MUCH heavier and the cramps are horrible.  It’s almost like VERY mini-labor.  My hip bones feel like they want to pop out…LOL  So I’m in bed (or on couch depending on the time of day) and I’m playing TV, computer, and knitting catch up.  I plan to (read: hope to) finish the Moderne Baby Blanket in the next day or so.  I have block #10 and the border left and I’m done.  Then I have the 2nd 1/2 of Anouk to finish for my friend Lisa’s new baby girl, Ainsley (isn’t that a beautiful name?)  I have to say that Anouk is one of the favorite projects that I’ve done lately.  I love the yarn – Cascade’s Pima Tencel – it’s so soft and the colors are so vibrant.  I’m using the same colors that are used in the pattern and I love it.  I’d like to make another one in the future using some softer colors as well.  I think it would make a pretty little tunic in pastels. We’ll see.

My 52 pair plunge seems to have plunged itself right down the toilet.  I haven’t even finished the first pair.  I’m getting ready to order the replacement needles that I need so that I can get back to work.

We’re getting ready to leave for a week in Pittsburgh tomorrow.  Wondering how that car ride will go with the cramps?  TJ has to work there and we don’t like being apart for a week if we don’t have to.  It’s fun to get a chance to take Jake to different states and for him to see different things.  Doesn’t look like we’ll have a lot of time this time around to go a museum or an aquarium, but I’m sure we’ll find something to do.  We’re staying at one of my favorite hotels: the Hampton Inn.  I gotta tell you that the beds at this hotel are to die for.  OMG…so comfortable.

Gotta run…Jake wants to play War.  It’s his new favorite card game and he’s pretty good at it.  It’s been great for helping him learn numbers and what number is bigger than what other number etc.  Later folks…

Loving the new Fertility Doctor

I had my appointment with the new Fertility Doctor yesterday.  I was so scared going in that I was going to get really bad news.  Not so much!!!  Yay!  We talked about the period that will not end – he said it was annovulatory bleeding and it could go on for a long time.  The solution to it, strange as it may seem, is to make me bleed more.  LOL  He’s given me a Rx for Provera to make me have a “real” period.  That will be followed by 5 days of Clomid, then 4 days of Estrogen and later 10+ days of Progesterone.  He tells me that this cocktail of meds is twice as effective as using Clomid alone.  He also doubled the dose of the Clomid this cycle. So I’m feeling optimistic for the first time in a long time about having another baby.  With my birthday coming up, I can’t think of a better present than a positive on a pregnancy test.  Here’s hoping…

Finished K’s Multi-Directional Scarf finally.  I started it in Feb. of ’08 when I was in CA. for a visit.  I put it aside for a long time when I got home.  When I realized that I was leaving to go out there again in May of this year, I got it out and started working on it again.  I worked on it while I was out there and hoped to get it done while I was there to give to her, but I didn’t have the time I thought I would for knitting while I was out there, so I didn’t get to finish it before I came home.  Now that it’s done, I’m let down.  I really enjoyed the simplicity of the pattern; made for great TV  knitting.  So now I’m working full time on the Moderne Baby Blanket for my FIL’s girlfriend’s newest granddaughter.  More easy knitting, but as you get to the end parts, each section takes forever.  I’m almost done with block 9 of 10 blocks and then I just have the border to do and it will be off to the baby.  I need to hurry, though, b/c she was born in Feb. so if it’s not done soon, she’ll outgrow it…:)  My sock plunge is really suffering, but I’ve got to get these things done.  It’s my motivation to hurry so I can finish my Coriolis socks.

I’m having a problem with size five needles, though.  It’s like I’m cursed with these.  In the last six months I’ve managed to snap in half one each of two different sets of Harmony Option size 5 tips and one of the Harmony Straights size fives.  Of course all of my current projects: socks, baby blanket, shawl are all being done on fives.  ARGH!!!  Time for a Knit Picks order.