Sunday, February 28, 2010

Hypnosis Session 1

Yesterday I went for my first hypnofertility session. I had been contemplating trying this out for a long time now, but never could really seem to wrap my head around it. Growing up, Western medicine was always used and I think I don't believe in the more traditional types of healing although, I am staring to come around. It was a hard decision for me deciding which practitioner to use, but after a lot of soul searching, questioning and research I made the decision to stay local and have a face to face with someone here in Toronto.

My schedule is so crazy right now with work, twice weekly acupuncture, weekly counseling as well as my volunteer commitments, that finding time for another appointment is a daunting task into itself, but I managed to find a practitioner that works on weekends so that reduced the stress.

Once I made the appointment, Shawn (the hypnotherapist) sent over a form to fill out about my medical history with infertility and there was something like two lines to answer, what medical procedures have you tried and what were the outcomes? Seriously, I could have filled out two pages not two lines, but I managed to put the bare minimum (4 IUI and 3 IVF- all BFN). She also sent over a list of suggested mediation phrases that I was to look over and select 10-20 that applied to me. While reading these suggestions, I found myself yet again questioning. Some of them were so silly to me and I just couldn't understand how this would help me. It took a long time to go back to those phrases, but I was finally able to narrow down my selection to about fifteen that touched me in some way.

I did not know what to expect when entering the office. Walking in to the home office, I became very nervous. I entered and saw a large couch and two recliner chairs. I sat in the recliner and waited for Shawn. She was friendly and I think could sense my anxiety/nervousness and worked with me accordingly. The two hour session was divided into three parts. The first part of the session was the most difficult for me. This was where she taught me Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). The basic premise of the technique is tapping pressure points (like in acupuncture) while repeating phrases like "Even though I have this ____________ (i.e. upset / anxiety / sadness / worry, etc), I deeply and completely love and accept myself". She would give me sentences for me to repeat while she taught me the technique. I was ok at the beginning until the sentences revolved around the word baby. This word struck a cord and I instantly became overwhelmed and found myself crying...a lot. It took a good five minutes at least to regain control and be able to continue with the session. Why did that word cause such an emotional response? Was it because this is getting real and I may actually get to have one? Or because deep down I believe that I may not? Or because when I think of infertility, I don't think about toddlers or teenagers, but of only babies? For whatever reason, she was able to use this response to further our work together.

The second session was more intense. Before we began she asked me how I was feeling about my infertility and I came up with this:
1) anxious
2) angry/resentful
3) upset/devastated
I decided that I needed to work on my anxiety first. The way I see it, I have thousands of thoughts a day that go back and forth from being successful to failure and this is where I need to get my head in the game. I need to be in a positive frame of mind so that I can actually believe I have a chance. I truly believe that if I achieve a more positive outlook, the other feelings will diminish (not go away completely, but reduce). Here I was not under in a full hypnosis manner, but had my eyes closed and followed her voice (like listening to a meditation CD). I remember hearing her voice and trying to visualize what she was instructing me to do. I felt almost like I was faking it at some points, because I am not sure if I could really see what she wanted, but I tried. Apparently, I am very comfortable with this type of therapy. She told me that I was able to let her in to places that take some people a few sessions to get to. I have to admit that I am surprised by this. I didn't realize that I had done that. I mean, I remember some parts of the conversation and they were definitely intense, and not things that I usually think of, but still. I do admit that when I awoke from this session, I felt a bit lighter and more relaxed.

The last session was the hypnosis. The lights were off, I was reclining on the comfy chair with a blanket and soft music was in the background. Here again, her calming voice soothed me into a deep state of relaxation. I remember hearing bits and parts of her words, but nothing specific. I may have even fell asleep for a part of it (which she told me was ok), but what I do remember were the code words. She gave me two code words: Relax and Success. I am to say these words to myself when I think about the cycle and am on the table waiting for the transfer and should feel some relief. Apparently, they will trigger a response I had during the hypnosis and help me regain a sense of calm.

When the session was over, I felt a bit better. Am I I felt lighter. I felt more positive. I felt like she did something and it is beginning to work. I was probably one of her more skeptical patients and I feel like I made a baby step to believing in hypnotherapy. Shawn gave me some strategies to use at home or work when I am feeling down or anxious and I am going to try and do them. I decided that I am going to see her two more times. Once before I go to Denver for the transfer and once more when I return during the waiting period.

For a first introduction to hypnosis, I was surprised at how emotional I would feel, how open I would become and how my mood would suddenly change. I am proud of myself for taking what I see as a big leap of faith.


Saturday, February 27, 2010


Tonight I'm exhausted. I have been on my feet, out of the house all day. I went with A.'s sister and mother wedding dress shopping. I LOVE shopping for almost anything, and wedding dresses are no exception. We went to a small boutique shop and were treated like royalty. From the moment we entered the store until the minute we left, it was a pleasurable experience. When we first walked in the offered us slippers! We were then escorted to a private dressing suite where they served us beverages and had a plate of cookies and chocolate pecan squares out for us to nibble on. Once we decided on a gown to purchase, they brought us champange and when we were at the cash out, they served us vanilla cupcakes. This is what I call was unreal how welcome, comfortable and at home they made us feel. Now the bride to be, is not a shopper, in fact she rather despises it so I thought it was going to be an interesting day. I was wrong. She had almost as much fun as I did. She tried on the most beautiful gowns and finally settled on a Reem Acra ball die for beautiful.

She is going to make the most beautiful bride. I was so happy and honoured to be a part of her special day and I will treasure this memory for a long time.


Friday, February 26, 2010

Remembering our Wedding

A.'s sister got engaged on New Year's Eve and the whole family aside from being completely ecstatic about the new union, is also completely obsessed with everything wedding. Ah to be getting married again. A. and I had a picture perfect wedding. It was the best day of my life and I can picture every detail like it was yesterday...

We had a large wedding of 400 guests in a synagogue and it was a traditional wedding. We didn't see each other the week before the wedding and didn't speak for the last 24 hours. When it came time for A. to see me in my dress, it was a magical moment and luckily, our photographer was there to catch it on film (we did pictures before the ceremony). The flowers were yellow roses and our cake was made out of cupcakes. Our bridal party was enormous with 10 girls on my side and 11 on A.'s. Every detail was perfect from the dress to the decor and everything in between. Planning the wedding was not. It was the most stressful time of our relationship (including infertility at times). I mean anytime six people with ideas, budgets and priorities get together there is going to be tension...I just didn't realize how much tension.

There were moments when I honestly didn't know how we would survive. It was a true test of our love and commitment together and thankfully we came out on the right side. I am proud of us for that. In a way it lay the ground work for this journey only on a much different scale. Infertility stress is different than the stress of planning a wedding. A. and I are now making all the choices, even though we consult with our families. We have no one to blame but ourselves if we are feeling worked up about this life stress. Infertility has tested our marriage. I am constantly in a bad mood as I don't feel well or am worrying/thinking about the cycle and I definitely don't feel desirable often. It has been a tough three years. We stress about money, where to live (right now we are in the suburbs) and how we will achieve the goal of having a family. As much as I regret not starting to try sooner, in a way I am glad that we waited until we were ready because we are so much stronger as individuals and a couple and are better suited to handle this stress (and there is a lot of it).


Edited to add: it is funny that this post ended up this way as originally I thought I was going to take it in a different direction.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Infertility on The View

The View dedicated today's show to infertility. Each co host discussed her experience with fertility/infertility and it covered everything from needing IVF to Celiac disease, to ectopics and recurrent miscarriages. It really makes you think about how many lives have been touched with infertility. For such a private issue, there are so many women affected by it.

"Do you have children" is a question that I seem to be asked a lot lately. I never know how to answer it. I struggle between the "no" (which is accompanied by a look that says please don't ask anymore) and the "not yet" and the "I can't so please leave me the fuck alone". I try to vary my response depending on my mood, the person asking and the tone of the question itself. Once I finish answering, I often think if I answered correctly. Am I setting myself up for failure by answering "no" or "I can't"? Am I telling the universe that I don't want children? I sincerely hope not!

The show did a good job in my opinion of discussing the facts about infertility. It had the facts, some real stories and of course some idiotic fluff. If a doctor told me I could get pregnant if I gained wait, don't you think I would be stuffing my face with chocolate, pizza and any other fatting food I could find? So I ask you Guiliana, WTF? If you want something bad enough, you do what you got to do. Other than this issue, the episode was well done and thought provoking.

It got me thinking about the daily struggle infertility is. It is exhausting finding time to make doctor appointments, work, keep the secret and try to have some sort of normal life all the while trying desperately to achieve your greatest dream. As much as I hope and pray and dream about this journey being over, there is only one way I see the end...with a baby in my arms.


I had my first suppression check today and my estrogen came in at 1727, the doctor wants it over 300 so we are definitely on track!


Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Hormones do funny things to my body. They make me cry at silly commercials, feel sick at inopportune times, and as of late, cause a fungal rash over my body. Yes, I love hormones. It is commical to me the fact that if a drug will cause a side effect, you can bet I will get it. I fall in that 2% every time. I am getting tired of this.

I went to my doctor today for my note saying that I will be away form work and I also took the opportunity to show her my new friend, Rash. I swear she almost jumped back when she saw the red blotches creeping up my neck. It is gross. I have been wearing turtleneck shirts for a few days now (even with the hot flashes), but how long can this continue? The doctor thinks I have tinea versicolor, a skin condition caused by an overgrowth of yeast. She thinks the hormone injections have initiated the flare up. Ok. I understand, but really? She gave me a requisition to see a dermatologist, but what is the point? It is not like I will be able to take anything that may make this go away. UGH! I just want a break from all of this shit.

As a teenager I was very lucky, I didn't have acne or other skin issues on my face...everyone's luck runs out. I am embarrassed by this rash. I feel ugly. Being infertile has made me doubt myself and feel badly about not being able to give A. a baby and now I feel ugly on the outside as well as the inside. No one should feel this way. Every time I look in the mirror it is a constant reminder of my failure as a woman. It is stairing at me in red and white in the face. I can't escape this.

I will try and make the appointment with the specialist, but honestly, I am not sure it will work out. I can't miss so much work and there are only so many appointments I can fit in my already full schedule that this rash or whatever it is will just become ignored until hopefully it disappears.

I am tired and frustrated of infertility. I feel like my efforts do not have a reward and that is a terrible place to be at the onset of a new cycle. I am struggling to internalize that this cycle will be different because we have taken out the part that has not worked for us, my eggs, but I need some reassurance. I don't want to feel like I am setting myself up for disaster. I need to try harder to think positively, but it is hard. The visual reminders of what I have gone and will continue to go through are so much that it makes forgetting impossible. I really hope this negativity is the hormones speaking.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I'm in an award stage right now, trying not to obsess over every little detail about the cycle, while at the same time, obsessing that the cycle is upon me. I think I must check my calendar at least fives times a day making sure the dates are right and counting how long until retrieval, transfer and even beta day! I know, I need a life.

Right now, I cannot focus on any other element of life. This cycle is consuming my every thought. I spend many hours on the chat boards and reading the blogs of other inspiring women who are fighting the same battle as me. I have learned so much valuable information and life lessons from these women and am so thankful for this one and only aspect of infertility...meeting these women.

I guess the point, I'm not so eloquently making is that even though I am trying not be, I'm obsessed with infertility. Its not healthy, but I can't help it.


Monday, February 22, 2010

Heart Stopping Moment

Today I had a stop everything, heart pounding moment and it scared the hell out of me. I leave my blackberry on silent all day, but do not have it in my classroom with me. This way, I am able to see if I have any missed calls or emails on breaks and after school. Lately, I have been feeling pretty confident that this cycle is going to happen, so much so that I allowed myself to book flights, hotel and car and even arrange an appointment with my GP to arrange my sick note for work. All that hope was suck in an instant today. My phone said, "missed call from Dr. Schoolcraft"...what? I wasn't expecting a call today. What could it be? Of course, I naturally assumed the worst and thought that yet again, the donor pulled out. I took a deep breath and checked the voice mail, and thank goodness, my fears were unfounded. They needed to reschedule the time of my pre-embryo transfer regroup. Wow, I guess I overreacted a bit...but I couldn't help it. I'm so scared of the worst happening and this is the place my mind goes to.


Sunday, February 21, 2010

Bridal Shower

Today we threw the bridal shower for my cousin. It was so nice to have pregnancy free event for once (except for the secret pg bridesmaid). No one talked about babies, morning sickness, bellies or anything else related to pregnancy...just weddings. I was totally in my element as well. I love playing the hostess. I woke up super early to buy all the food and organize the last minute details. The rest of the maids arrived a couple of hours before the party and we were able to get it all together in time. I am exhausted now, but it was worth it. It was such a reminder of my old life, my happy life and it definitely came at a time where I needed it the most. My cousin had a great time too, which of course was the best part.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Supporting A.

Eight days ago A.'s best friend had his first child, a boy. We were still on vacation in Florida and from that moment on, we were no longer forgetting about our infertility problems, but focusing on the news of others. It definitely hurt. This pregnancy specifically has been extrememly difficult for me because of the timing; we should have been six weeks apart. Even though ours was a chemical, for 48 hours I was pregnant and so happy. I would look at this friend and try and imagine what I would have looked like at each stage. It has been a tough six months. This couple has been supportive and considerate of our journey and how I am feeling, but it still hurt to see her belly growing and hear about what she experienced. He wrote A. an email shortly after the birth talking about how amazing parenthood is and how he wishes we would be there soon. We should be there already! We were trying for a baby at their wedding. I know the comment was made to support us, but it felt like a huge slap in the face.

Today was their babies bris (the Jewish circumsion ceremony) and I felt I needed to go to support A. And his dear friend. For the past year, I have pulled away from most baby/pregnancy related celebrations, but today I let down my guard and went.

This was one of the hardest things I have done in my life. I was surrounded by babies and toddlers. When did people start bringing their mini-me's to parties relating to circumsion? It felt awkward to be there childless. I felt the eyes on me thinking about where my children were. In fact, one woman asked if I left my two little ones at home! Excuse me-when did I have two? It took all my strength not to cry when I replied I don't have children. I wanted to say, no I don't have any children as my 30 year old body has failed me and I can't have biological children-are you glad you asked?! But I didn't.

A. and I both want children, equally. We dream about our family and it saddens us that it hasn't happened for us yet, but we differ so drastically in the way we deal. I shut down and ignore all things baby as it just too painful (I didn't even see te baby today), and he is not phased at all by others' babies. He still wants to hold them, talk about them and google over them. It bothers me. A lot.

When we finally left the bris, I again felt like I had to hold back the tears. A. Tries so hard to be supportive, but as a guy, he doesn't get it. When he is off with his friends chatting over the Olympics or whatever, I am left with the mothers sitting and cooing over their babies. It sucks.

Overal, I am proud of myself that I mustered up the strength to go today, I just hate that I have to pay the price for others' happiness with my own.


Friday, February 19, 2010

Day 1!

Today is day 1. In fertility terms, the first day of a new cycle. Yes, it's finally here. I was sure my period was coming yesterday, it always comes three days after stopping the birth control pill (its nice to have one normal element), but when I went to the bathroom, it wasn't there. I was disturbed, shaken and uneasy about what was happening. Where was my period? We never want it to come, and when we need it, it is never there. Story of my life.

So what's in a day? In the grand scheme of this cycle, nothing. So this morning I awoke and was instantly happy. I mean really, who gets excited about blood? Those who want to move forward. I was so excited that I emailed my nurse almost instantly (keep in mind it was 5:00 am her time). When she got back to me, the tone of her email sounded excited too and she told me about my next steps. I have next steps! I am on my way. Lupron is decreasing thank goodness and hopefully those awful headaches will subside and I start one Estradot patch (Canadian version of Vivelle) every other day.

I am trying not to get too carried away. I have been in this blissful situation before and it has come crashing down. They do assure me, that that will not be the case this time, but until I reach that milestone of Ms. Perfect actually starting the medication process, I will remain cautiously optimistic. For now, that is enough. After the horrible day/evening of yesterday, it was really great to get some good news today.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Feeling Sad

Today was a difficult day. It didn't start off that way though. It started off pretty good. I woke up to a call from work asking me to come in early to substitute for an absent teacher first period (we get paid extra to do supply work for the periods we don't teach). I quickly got dressed, took my doxy and left for work. The nausea usually starts to kick in about 20 minutes later, and right on time, mine did only I was at work. Luckily, I thought about this and had brought a nutritious breakfast of diet ginger ale. I also sent off some blood work to the dr. that I had redone (I failed the first time) and thank goodness, everything was fine. So I spent the day happy.

At the end of the day, walking to my desk I saw my blackberry flashing red indicating I had an email. It was from one of my closest friends who lives out of town. She has an incredibly busy schedule and there is a three hour time difference, so we don't have many opportunities to talk. When I saw it was her, I instinctively knew what it was. I should have waited to open the email Why did I need to read it at work? To be fair, she is and has always been incredibly supportive of my throughout my infertility experience. I have cried to her on numerous occasions and she has never betrayed my trust or been anything other than a true friend. Today was no different. Her email read something to the effect of, I want to give you the heads on something, would you like to call me? Those words, and I knew...she was expecting her second child. I immediately wanted to burst into tears, but I was at work so I tried to hold back as much as I could although a few managed to escape and run down my face. I finished my work quickly and before I could reach my car, I was hysterical.

I managed to write a response, although how I could type through the flood gates is beyond me. I wrote something to the effect of: I am so happy for you, but I don't think I am able to hear the words out loud right now. She understood and was, as usual, extremely supportive. I was not. I have literally spent the last four hours crying my eyes out. No one else knows this information about her and so I haven't shared my feelings with anyone (except all of you reading) and this has been hard. Even as I type this entry, I am constantly stopping to wipe the tears from my eyes.

I shouldn't be surprised by this news as her daughter is two years old, but I am. I wasn't prepared for this I also am feeling badly that I couldn't support her the way she does me. I hate that about myself. This fucking infertility has turned me into a selfish person. I am too obsessed with my problems and struggles that I cannot be there for someone who would do anything for me. I hate that. It makes mad and upset.

I am feeling competely alone right now. So much so that I couldn't wait to get home, and be able to type. This make me feel better. I feel like I am able to express what is on my mind and in my heart while receiving such incredible support. I thank all of you for your strength, support and advice, it helps me pick myself up on those hard days. Today is a hard day. I am sad.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Still Feeling Yucky

Today, I woke up feeling sick...again. I cannot get used to the fact that headaches are the new norm for me. I took my morning dose of Doxycyline and got dressed for work. I haven't figured the reason, but the morning Doxy dose doesn't agree with me. I tend to get very nauseated. In fact, a few days ago when I was in Walmart, I had to grab a Nutrigrain bar off the rack as I was scared of passing out. Today, a similar incident occurred. I got extremely nauseous. So much in fact, that I was running back and forth to the bathroom a number of times before the puking began. It was not the way I had envisioned starting my morning. Oh well. I have tried so many different ways to take the pill to reduce these effects, but nothing is working: drinking lots of water, empty stomach, full stomach...any suggestions would be appreciated.


We booked our flights. I am getting excited and it is getting real now. I am cautious about this because until she has started her stims, I am not 100% confident that this cycle is going to happen. None the less, we are booked and that is one relief. I also booked the car rental and will do the hotel soon. YAY! This may actual happen.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Feeling Sick and Tired

Today was my first day back at work after the long weekend away. Emotionally, I am feeling pretty good. I am really starting to think that this cycle is going to happen and that is making me both optimistic and nervous. I have restarted my regular electro-acupuncture twice weekly regimen and that also contributes to making this all seem more real. Physically, I am not doing so great. You know how they say you block out the pain of labour so you will have more children? That is me with the hormone medications and their awful side effects. I should say that if a drug has any possible side effects, you can bet big money that I will get all of them. Lately, I have been experiencing migraine headaches quite regularly from the Lupron shots as well as constant hot flashes throughout the day, and on top of that, I have a cold. Now I'm whining because I just don't feel well.

I know that this all hopefully for a good cause, but when I think about what I have put my body through the past three years, I feel sick. I can't believe that I am still in this place. I think back to the day that my RE told me the Clomid wasn't working (after 5 days) and that I needed to start on the injections, boy was I hysterical. That was the worst news I could have heard. And now, three years later, I am getting shot all over the place in a variety of locations while I am on the phone or watching television or being completely blase about the whole thing. Wow, I have changed. I still hate needles, but am not as afraid as I once was. Don't get me wrong they still hurt and it doesn't help much that A. thinks that he is a Dr. from all the injections he has given me which makes him quite cocky at times, but for the most part, he does a decent job.

I think I am reaching my breaking point with all of this shit. I am sick of the mood swings, headaches, the constant schedule and all the other stuff. I'm just feeling done. Yes, I am so excited to be actively in cycle, but if this doesn't work, I am not sure what my next step will be as I just hate where I am now. Although, I will probably forget these feelings and keep going, knowing me!


Monday, February 15, 2010

Good Things Come to an End

This weekend has flown by. It was so wonderful spending time with my grandparents in Ft. Lauderdale this weekend and it has proved to be a much needed release for me. Yes, I had daily thoughts about the upcoming cycle, and yes, I needed to be conscious of the time for my shots, but no, I did not let that ruin or define our vacation.

Keeping our infertility a secret from my grandparents has always been difficult for me as my grandmother especially is very perceptive. I can remember very clearly the two times she has asked me the question; the first was right after we got our false positive and the second was the day before our Beta results for IVF 2 (negative). I think she knows something is up, but she has never directly asked that question. Being the coffee addicts that A. and I are, there has been an added pressure to come up with believable reasons for why we are both not drinking coffee, especially in the mornings. Overall, I think we did a good job of keeping up appearances, I just hope the charade can end soon and A. and I can share some happy news.


On a different note, yesterday was absolute torture. A. and I are restricting our caffeine intact and are avoiding anything with caffeine, including chocolate. This is NOT an easy thing to do on Valentine’s Day. Why is that when you can’t have something, it is in your face more than ever?


Sunday, February 14, 2010

To My Valentine

Valentine's Day is not a day that A. and celebrate. Not because we don't love eachother, but because we just don't need a made up holiday to tell us when to express our feelings and buy eachother over priced flowers and chocolates (not that we begrudge or think ill of anyone who does); however this year is different; I want to celebrate. I want to be able to think of our love today. In the past three years of trying to conceive, our love and commitment to eachother has been tested.

When I reflect back on the people A. and I were when our journey began, we were so different. Excited, nervous, uneducated and gulliable. My local dr. always told me, "your young, this will work" or "I can feel that this will work" and so I blindly believed her. I do not think she was maliceous, she like many just assumed that because I was under 30 that it would work. Now at 30 (which is still incredibly young in fertility terms), we are all more experienced, educated, fearful and realistic. I look at the world in statistics. I think about my chances and weigh my options carefully where as before I would have jumped in feeling positive without science to back it up.

I have learned a lot about myself as well. I am a private griever. When the bad news comes, I shy away. I prefer to cry myself to sleep alone and isolate myself from everyone...including A. He is different. He needs to talk about it and will with anyone who will listen. It is not that I am selfish, I just cannot get myself together enough to be there for him in times of extreme sadness. He knows this and is so incredibly supportive and for that, I LOVE him.

Over the past three years our marriage has become stronger. We are more in sync with our feelings and have finally found our way to navigate through the world of infertility. He tries to understand the many many many mood swings I have on a regular basis and the constant headaches and not feeling so desirable and for that I thank him. He rubs my back when I feel sick or brings me a cheer up gift when I need one, although since I have given up chocoaltes there haven't been many gifts. He has endured his own pain and I know that. It is not easy for either of us right now, but we are strong and are fighters.

A. is the best partner that I could have imagined to accompany me on this journey (although I wish we didn't need the journey) and I know that whatever happens with Ms. Perfect, we will survive-eventually and hopefully our love and commitment to eachother will continue to grow.

To those celebrating Valentine's Day, I hope the day brings you smiles and happiness.


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Day for Loving Myself

Today, I celebrated me and the things I love. I had a great day in Ft. Lauderdale, my only complaint being the freezing weather. After having an uninterrupted night's sleep (A. is a big snorer), I spent the remainder of the morning lounging around and watching TV. The afternoon was spent with my mom, shopping at our favourite mall, Aventura. We hit all our stores and managed to find some great sales, I even allowed myself to buy something (I don't shop anymore as I am always thinking what if I'm pregnant); we ate dinner at our comfort food place, The Cheesecake Factory, and to end off the night, we saw the movie, Valentine's Day (very cute and totally IF friendly). Aside from a few moments of thinking about sizes while shopping, today was a totally infertility free day and I felt really good.


Friday, February 12, 2010

Celine Dion

On the plane from Toronto to Ft. Lauderdale, I read this week's People magazine which features Celine Dion on the cover. Celine has decided to make her infertility journey public...very public. In the article she talks about the process of the daily monitoring, hormone injections, multiple IVF procedures as well her four failures. While I do admire her for bringing this important topic to the public that IVF doesn't always work on the first, or second or even fourth try, there was one part of the article that rubbed me the wrong way; Celine is quoted saying, "I"ll keep tyring until it works". What about those of us, who can't keep trying until it works, because the money will run or it will never work? IVF is expensive and donor egg IVF is even more, I can't imagine A. and I being able to do another fresh round if we find ourselves unsuccessful. So while I truly thank Celine for taking a public stand and sharing her infertility journey, I am once again reminded of how money really can buy happiness.


Thursday, February 11, 2010


Today is my one year needleversary. Not of receiving needles, but of A. giving them to me. It was exactly one year ago today that A. stood in the Ft. Lauderdale airport family bathroom preparing to shoot me in the ass, while I cried hysterically and tried to mentally prepare. As I reflect on this past year what has changed?

1. Today A. will again shoot me up in the Toronto airport on our way to Ft. Lauderdale

2. I have completed 2 full IVF cycles (1 chemical, 1 BFN)

3. I have travelled to Denver Colorado a total of 3 times

4. I have changed jobs to one that I despise (I quit for next year though so its ok)

5. There have been 4 babies born and 3 pregnancy announcements in our social circle

6. We finished our basement with the hopes of needing more room

7. We have moved on to donor egg IVF and are currently in cycle 1

8. I distanced myself from my closest friends for 6 months and then slowly began
reaching out

9. I continue to vent to my therapist on a weekly basis

10. I go for acupuncture regularily and will start hypnotherapy next week

Reflecting sucks. I am no better off this year than I was last year. The difference was that last year in that airport I had hope. It was not hormone shots or Lupron, but PIO (progesterone in oil) which meant the cycle was over and we were waiting for the good news. This time it is the Lupron, one of the most hated shots of all. It causes dreadful headaches and moodiness among other side effects and I have little hope. Not because I don't believe in the donor egg process, but because right now, I don't believe in me. With never having success at such a young age (I am only 30 now), it is hard for me to really believe that this could work. It should work. But then again, so should the IUIs, the IVFs and all the other stuff. Hopefully four days in the sun will help get my mood in a better place.


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Trying New Things

I think it is so important to break free from our comfort zones and try new things every once in a while. I did this today. Maybe it is an effort to change my negative thinking about the future outcome of my cycle or trying to take my mind off said cycle, but either way I'm doing it.

I'm actually a little embarrassed to admit this (but after yesterday's announcement nothing could be so bad), but I have never dined alone before. Sure, I gone for fast food and ate at the table, but that doesn't really count. I am writing this from the table when I am currently dining alone.

I like being alone. Lately, I prefer my own company to those fertiles any day, but there is some stigma about seeing someone alone in a restaurant. I'll admit, I have wondered about the reasons why a particular person is alone and at time feel sad for them. It doesn't occur to me that maybe they are off to a meeting, their spouse/roommate out of town or some other logical reason. I just can't help staring. Is that what is happening to me? Are people staring?

Probably, but not for the reasons I think. I am dressed in my work attire and am constantly on my blackberry so in this particular restaurant filled with elderly couples (I know kind of strange) I am different.

Lately I have been feeling as if people feel sorry for me. I have no children and those in the know pity me and those who don't can only assume. I think in the last week my fertility status has come up in random conversation with colleagues at least three times. Each time I a m unsure of how to respond. My response right now (and I rotate them to entertain myself) is that it doesn't always work on the first try. This was said to a colleague who is engaged and told me they are planning to start their family right away. I hope it works for them.

Is there a point to my rambling? I'm not sure. I guess I'm sick of being an outsider and always feeling looked at, I just want to blend in...for once.


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

What an Embarrassing Moment

Today I wanted to crawl into a ball and die. Literally. Today at around 12:30pm the incident happened. The staffroom at work has two private bathrooms, and after lunch I went to use the facilities. I went in as I regularly do and locked the door like usual. I am a bit of a germ freak (I'll admit it), so I am from the squat not sit camp. So anyway, I am in the bathroom squatting when I hear someone pull on the door and just as I say, "someone in here", the door flings open and a male teacher walks in to find me holding my crotch running for cover. That was it. Yes, it was one of the most embarrassing moments of my life, but boy did that make me laugh!


Monday, February 8, 2010

Thoughts on Hypnosis

Hypnosis has been on my mind a lot lately. I am not sure that I am the hypnosis type (nor do I know who/what the type is), but either way, I don't think I'm it. I'll admit that I have been going out of my comfort zone lately and experiencing elements of eastern medicine like acupuncture, but when I think of hypnosis the idea of meditation comes to mind, and that doesn't work for me. I don't have anything against meditation, but it doesn't work on me. I try really hard to follow the voice and have them guide me in the room of hallways and then my mind goes at 1000 miles per second thinking about my cycle, life, work and anything else I can to distract myself from the CD.

Lately I have heard stories of failure that have got me thinking. There are so many couples that are trying to get pregnant and have that perfect cycle, but it resulted in a negative. So I ask myself, why should I think that donor egg will be my solution? This has been weighing heavily on my mind for weeks now. Each potential pregnancy is unique and the reasons for success or failure are not always known, however I do always seem to fall on the wrong side of the statistics each and every time. I need to get my head in the game. I need to think positively. Maybe hypnosis is the answer?

So as I am pretty confident that I have decided on trying the hypnosis route, I now must decided when, where and how. As I see it, I have two options:

1) there is a woman in Denver who pioneered hynofertility and she will "meet" with you over the phone and create a personalized recording


2) the woman in Denver has trained many professionals and there is one not too far from my house that I could meet in person

Which would you choose, the teacher or the student? Seeing as I go to one of the top clinics in North America and have the top doctor at said clinic, my first inclination is to choose option one, but then I think about the logistics and my comfort level and how it could be fantastic to meet someone in real life than always chatting over the phone or Internet. So again, I find myself torn. Why can't anything be simple? I am so sick of every little thing turning into a massive issue. I am tired of this.

I realize I need to take the plunge and continue putting myself out there, but it is difficult so please bare with me as I try to figure it all out.


Sunday, February 7, 2010

Superbowl Sunday

I am not a sports lover. I cannot sit in front of the television watching any game. My father can; he is an avid sports fan. Golf, hockey, baseball, basketball or football, or even curling, if it is on, he's watching. Thank goodness A. is not like that either. A. loves to go to the stadium to watch the game live, however on TV, its not really his thing. I on the other hand, like the food at the event rather than the event itself. The few times I have been to either a basketball, baseball or hockey game I focused all my attention on scouting out what to order first and time my trips to the food counter accordingly. It is very important to make sure you go during an inning high as then there are no lines.

So tonight as the Superbowl is upon us, I think about sports. Who am I kidding I never think about sports. In fact, I don't even know which teams are playing tonight. How pathetic is that?

Every year my father and uncles throw together a massive Superbowl party and invite all their friends and families. It is not a male only party, however I have never been invited. Like I said, I could care less about the game, but I hear the food is to die for. Pizza, wings, deli meat, party sandwiches and anything else you can think of. So A. is going as usual and I will have a relaxing evening with the girls (mom, sis and grandma). Our evening will not be nearly as foodtastic as the boys, but we will have a cheesy chick flick, some yummy take out and definitely no screaming.

So I ask, which would you rather?


Saturday, February 6, 2010

Bowling Anyone?

Two of my all time favourite movies are Grease and Grease 2. In Grease 2, I especially love the bowling scene. It is not often that you see bowling turned into a musical/dance performance and I love it. This afternoon I went bowling with some family and it was such a hoot (did I actually just write hoot?).

I am not a bowler. Growing up I actually despised bowling and we went a lot. I find that I am not strong enough to use the ball one handed and I couldn't really care about improving my score. That has always been my bowling motto, and it hasn't changed. So there I am today, in the grove excited about my overall score of 50 points per game, when my father offered me a friendly wager. He told me he would give me $20 if I scored above 60 on the final game. GAME ON!

Seeing as I really didn't care about the money, I took this last game as an opportunity to 'go big or go home'. I pulled out all the stops. Each time it was my turn I tried a different move from the Grease 2 movie scene. I twirled and spun and threw and rolled the ball, and you what? It was my best game. I even got a strike rolling the ball backwards through my legs! I know, it was awesome if I do say so myself.

The entire time we played the only IF thoughts that appeared in my head were, if I was pregnant I wouldn't be able to play as the ball was over 8 pounds. So there, infertility, you did not win this round today. Bowling was a lot of really silly fun and it felt great.


Friday, February 5, 2010


What is it about Fridays that always puts a smile on my face? Maybe its the shorter work day, or the upcoming weekend or the fact that as a teacher I count the week over on Friday; either way I love Fridays. Today signifies only five more Fridays until I will be in Denver.

I can't believe it. By the time next Friday rolls around, I will have started Lurpon. Things are starting to move fast now. It may actually happen this time. We may get to a transfer and hopefully a pregnancy. On this Friday, I am filled with hope.

I hope everyone has a happy Friday!


Thursday, February 4, 2010

A Little Perspective

Ok, so for the past month I have been writing (bitching really) about my life and my struggles. Today I got a little perspective.

The grade nine students at my school have just finished reading the novel, The Chrysalids, by John Whyndham. For those of you unfamiliar, a central theme revolves around fear of the other. Many connections can be made between infertility and this novel as I have expereineced in my own life. I have so many fertile friends who shy away from talking about pregnancy or family planning as it is too uncomfortable for them. For them? What about me? Maybe I need to talk, and I'm sorry, but if you have been blessed with chidren suck it up and talk to me. In my opinion you don't have the right to feel awkward around me.

But this is not what I want to focus on today. Today a speaker was brought in to speak with the students. This was a young man who was eleven years old living in Rwanda during the Genocide. He spoke about his story, life before and after, and how it has affected him. He now resides in Toronto and is a graduate and award winner of the University of Toronto. Hearing all that this man has gone through really made me think about my own life.

Yes, right now it feels like I have the raw end of the stick. I feel like I am the only young female unable to conceive (even if theoretically I know that's not true). I have many bruised and damaged friendships and feel like an outsider in my own skin, but that is nothing compared to the real pain that many people have and continue to go through.

Life does go on during and after infertility. I have to remind myself of that. I am not saying that I am going to completely forget about the very real pain that I constantly feel in my heart as I ache for the baby that I may never meet, but I will try and put some perspective on my rants. At least for today. Again, I am so thankful for the opportunity of meeting this inspirational man and hearing his story of courage, bravery and freedom.


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

My Decision

I first want to thank you all for your ideas and suggestions regarding my dress dilemma.

I have to admit that I was still undecided of what to order even when I pulled into the parking lot of the store. I decided to try on the dress and take it from there. The sample was loose. When I was measured, they told me to order one size larger than the sample (this would really be like two sizes) and so I ordered it. I am also planning on calling tomorrow morning to order the extra yard as an insurance policy. It's only $40 and if I don't need it I can always donate it to the pregnant cousin (yes, I got confirmation on that at the store today!). I think this will be the best emotional solution for me as I really don't think I could bare the devastation of an extra large dress that is unneeded.


Today was a busy day. It feels like every day is busy lately. Partly because I am keeping my self over-programmed so my mind has little time to wander. So far it is working. I am distracting myself, but I am also tired. My activity for tonight was fun. I was getting together with my sister and cousins for dinner and a chick flick. We went to see, When in Rome, very cute and totally IF safe.

I had a mini breakdown. One of my cousins (not the engaged one) told us that she is planning on volunteering in Africa and travelling for the next couple of months and therefore she will miss the bridal shower our mothers are planning. Truth be told I will be missing the shower as well as I will hopefully be in Denver! Obviously, I am excited to go, and get the process started, however I feel like for three years I have missed so much. Family dinners, holidays, parties all because of infertility. I never complained before, because it is always for a good cause, but when the cause fails, it sucks that I missed the important stuff. Anyway, when I heard of this cousin's plans, I flipped out. I was a total bitch and she definitely did not deserve it. I feel bad. I have apologized, but I took out my own frustration on her and that was not fair.

I feel like I am falling apart. This was just one example of how I have lost all control over my life, emotions and goals. Nothing is as it should be. I should be pregnant. I should be able to use my own eggs. I should be able to spend one day without crying. I should be happy.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

What Are the Chances

I am still torn about the dress situation and have not fully decided what to do and probably won't until I am in the store tomorrow. I did call the store today to get some information about my choices and this is how the conversation went.

Me: Hi, I am a bridesmaid in a wedding in August and I may be pregnant, what should I do about the dress size?

Salesman: Oh that is so funny, you are the second person to ask that today. The first was a girl who is 6 weeks with a wedding at the beginning of August and doesn't want the bride to know.

Me: What did you tell this girl to do?

Salesman: Seeing as she was quite petite, I told her to order two sizes bigger. It would also depend on your dress style.

Me: Mine is 7002.

Salesman: So was hers.

Ok, in my mind I have this all figured out. She is referring to the my cousin's other cousin on the other side (if that makes sense). I can't figure out how I feel about this. Normally, I am in hysterics at the onset of hearing about someone's pregnancy, but this time I find it comical. Yes, she has only been married one year next month, and yes, she is a few years younger than me, and yes, it probably worked for her on the first try, but it is what it is. But in all honesty, what are the chances?


Monday, February 1, 2010

I Need Your Advice...

Today I thought I would pose a scenario out to the blog world and hopefully get some advice from all of you!

This summer I am going to be a bridesmaid in my cousin’s wedding. The wedding is set for Sunday, August 1, 2010. All of the bridesmaids are going to wear the same dress and they need to be ordered on Wednesday (yes, you read correctly, this week). Here is where my dilemma comes in.

My cousin does not know (to my knowledge) of our trying to conceive and I would like to continue hide that fact. If all were to go according to plan (and we all know how plans work out) than I would be 4-5 months pregnant at this wedding. I don’t know what to do about my dress. I guess I have two options and I would really like your opinions as to what you would do in my situation.

1) I could order the dress in my size and if I need a bigger one, order a second dress and hope that I will be able to get it in time.
2) I could think positively as if there were going to work and order a bigger size.

As I see there are definitely pros and cons to both situations. I think I know what my decision will be, but it is definitely something to think about. I am yet again annoyed that my infertility is turning what should be a fun event (who doesn’t like shopping?) into a stressful disaster.