Anger management needed

Today I’m just fucking angry.

Angry I’m I had to let that little egg go to waste this month. That I feel I don’t have many more eggs left. Angry that five babies were taken from me.

Angry that I’m in this fucking situation. That I still have no answers. That I have to wait for answers that might reveal nothing. Angry that no one in the medical profession seems to give a shit.

Angry that my friends are all knocked up without even trying. Angry that they are all out being happy and pregnant together while I wallow in misery. Angry that I’m spending fortunes on doctors and treatment and tests and supplements while that bitch two doors down can get knocked up three times while drinking and smoking during her pregnancies. And that she’s mean to her kids.

Angry that I’m suffering this in silence. That I have to quit my job because I’m too weak to withstand the barrage of cooing my colleague will receive from my colleagues and bosses. Angry that I cannot cope to watch her expanding belly and her due date so close to what was mine.

Angry at myself for not trying sooner. Angry that I’m not strong enough to endure this shit.

Now I’m going to go find something to break. Rant over.

OPK – not today

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There she is, that cute little OPK happy face smiling back at me. My little eggy just begging to be courted.

Sadly she’ll be flying solo today.

Yes a conscious decision to let this special monthly moment go by the wayside.

It’s freaking killing me but we have made and unmade this decision several times. The plan, I’m reminded, is to wait for tests to be performed and results received before we try this again.

Am I nuts? It has been over 2-1/2 years since these opportunities have been deemed golden and put to good use. Watching this one pass us by going to waste is a very sad thing to witness.

But I guess what we are after are answers. Next week I’m due to have a biopsy to test for NK cells and to test out this super fertility assessment. We’ll also be doing karyotyping and other immunological testing, many of which I explained here. For all these tests we need to be unpregnant. We are doing this to prevent more losses, I have to keep reminding myself.

But there’s the part of me that wants to throw caution to the wind. Part of me that wants to just go for it and see what happens. Was it all just bad luck? Is there really a problem? Could it work maybe just this once? Is there a good egg in there that will bring us our little bundle? Is this one, is she the one?

I guess the bottom line is we are too stunned and scared to find out. Still sore from recent losses. Still aching and exhausted from all the trauma. And so we’ll be sitting this month out.

I’ll be watching and hoping to see some smily faces put to good use out there in Fertility Cyberland ladies! Just hope I get to put one of my own to work again one day soon.

Tell no one…ok maybe just one

I met up with a friend last night for a tasty non alcoholic beverage. These days meeting up with friends ends with me in tears, swearing to never see them again. This time I left feeling lighter and supported.

My friend has been through a journey similar to mine and she ended up at the end of her journey without children. Not happily so but she has made the best of it. It still brings her to tears to discuss her losses (she had four), and to discuss the outcome of their journey. She melted upon learning of mine.

I’d been hesitant for some time to tell this friend although she is the only one I know personally who has had a similar journey to mine. Firstly because my rule is Tell No One. And secondly, I have been too scared to approach her with it.

I didn’t want to dredge up any sadness for her but also because I selfishly didn’t want to face the possibility that I could end up like her: without children. I know this is a possible outcome for me. I’m still too scared to consider it. But as much as she makes the best of it I know she carries around a serious weight, a grief that will be with her forever. This terrifies me although I know that no matter what the outcome of my journey, I too will be carrying a grief around forever. I know that never goes away.

I decided to tell her because I knew she could relate. And she does. They started trying around the same time we did, all naturally conceived and lost. She explained that they never consciously gave up, but they no longer sought after it. The investigations became too onerous, and the losses too devastating, something I can totally relate to. It has been five years since her last loss and she is into menopause but her grief is still palpable.

She had warned me once many years ago through teary broken eyes don’t wait too long. It was hearing this that made me realise it was time to get our act together. That maybe sometimes things can go wrong. How true has that become.

As we spoke last night she just said the right things. She just nodded with knowing. It was a kind of support I get through this blog, through support groups, through forums, but haven’t received yet from a friend. And I’m so happy I was able to open up to her. I was able to lower my guard just this once.

We cried. We cursed. We laughed. We cursed some more.

I felt relief after leaving her. Like a small part of my burden had been lifted. Or shared. What a difference that can make.

Long walks & quinoa

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I can get into that. If this guy can live 123 years on that stuff, it’s good enough for me. I’m not saying I want to live that long but hey it’d be nice to stick around long enough to see the fantasy kids and have fantasy kiddies of their own. And if these things are this guy’s secret weapon then I’m in.

1) Quinoa. I love quinoa. It tastes good! The protein, the fibre, the omega 3, the lysine, the iron, the magnesium. All good stuff! Easy to make and supportive of our digestive system. Item 1 … Check!

2) Walking. Hey I love long walks. What’s not to love about a little fresh air, getting the circulation going, touching base with nature. I can do that! Check!

3) Drop the sugar. I think there’s something to that. Might have to wean myself off the Ben & Jerry’s then. Less enthusiastic … check.

4) Let’s hope the first three are enough to crack the secret of eternal life because I don’t think Sainsbury’s is carrying skunk this season.

Recurrently normal

One of the lead consultants at our recurrent miscarriage clinic said this to us during an appointment to discuss the outcome of our fifth loss:

“You think you’re special? You’re the only one you know going through this? Well I’m here to tell you that you’re not special. You are no more special than anyone else out there in that waiting room. There is nothing unique about your experiences.”

Phew, glad we cleared that up! It’s great to have it confirmed that no one actually cares about the specifics or individual nature of my five losses besides me.

“And you are here to ask why this is happening to you, what is so abnormal about you that this keeps happening? Why can’t you have a normal pregnancy? Well let me remind you that the sheer act of getting pregnant and carrying a baby to term is in fact actually ‘abnormal’ and the act of miscarriage is the ‘norm’. So don’t be upset if you miscarry multiple times, or be surprised. That’s actually how it’s supposed to work. Think of all the things that can go wrong! It’s a miracle babies are even born at all!”

Oh! I get it now! So the 20 year old from two doors down with the enormous baby bump and two little kids who smokes three packs a day and chugs a two litre bottle of cider in one sitting? She’s abnormal! And all those ladies with baby bumps I pass on the sidewalk everyday. Totally not normal. And all those kids in the park. Nope. And all my friends who are nursing or tending to their little ones. Definitely not. They’re all abnormal! What a relief!

Well now it’s all clear! I can see now how the possibility of never having a child is quite a realistic, normal outcome. Merely going along with nature’s way. I feel so much better now thanks!

Dickhead.

Autopilot

The only thing my husband and I have problems discussing is how my negativity and anxiety directly contributes to our inability to have a child. He feels it does. I know he’s right and I can do nothing about it. It’s clear I’m doing nothing intentional to sabotage our chances. But we also both know that although I’m doing everything I can physically, I’m doing nothing psychologically to help things.

I don’t know how to fix this. I can’t feel any less horrified and tormented when we lose a baby each time and he would never ask me to. The grief and sadness takes its toll. I can’t feel confident we will end up with a child in the future either. We have lost five babies, four of which the cause is unknown. I am terrified.

And although he’s convinced it will work next time, if it doesn’t where does that leave us? How many do we have to lose before it’s enough? He says we will never know unless we try. But the risks and consequences of trying are so overwhelming and debilitating that I don’t want to try. How could I survive another loss?

He has no concerns about trying again. His positivity is astounding. But what he can’t handle is how these losses and the constant set-backs are destroying me.

The hopes for our most recent pregnancy were destroyed by a random chromosomal abnormality that had nothing to do with our RPL, our age, our health. How can I feel confident or positive trying again when nature throws us a curveball like that? Another obstacle in an already unfair playing field. The anticipation and dread is too horrific.

The options as I see it:

1) I protect myself from any future pain of losing another child by not trying to have one. Would the pain of never having a family destroy me? Probably. Would I actually believe it if I said we tried our best? No. Would I hate myself for not being strong enough to give it another go? Already do.

2) We can try again, from which there will be three resulting scenarios:
a) We lose another one. I recede into an even deeper pit of despair from which it is unclear I will ever return. And what? Try again after that? Not sure it’s possible.
b) We succeed with our sixth pregnancy. I can’t even contemplate the possibility. It hurts too much. My mind simply cannot not go there.
c) Neither of the above because we are unable to get pregnant again. Can’t even go there.

So where does that leave us? I’m not sure. Maybe I’m in no position now to try again. Maybe that will come back with time. I’ve obviously not lost hope completely yet since I’m still doing the supplements, the tests, the yoga. The physical me is going for it. Maybe the mental me will get back on the bus at the next stop, or the stop after that. Maybe I’ll step back into the driver’s seat. Until then we’re on autopilot. I guess that’s good enough for now.

Juiced

It’s Saturday morning. I’ll try to keep it light.

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Although Operation Sweet Pea (preconception plan) is more like boot camp the way I force myself kicking and screaming into rigorous routine (I’m an all or nothing kind of girl), there are some bonuses. One of the things that makes me smile is making and drinking fresh organic fruit and veggie juice for us both. I try to juice everyday and notice when I haven’t. I love the feeling I get from it, and love the idea that it’s sending nutrients directly into my bloodstream.

I’m feeling slightly guilty saying that stupidly because during my treatment with Traditional Chinese Medicine I was told to stop juicing because raw foods have a detrimental affect to my system overall. More than any of the strict rules I complied with during the treatment (you can read them here), this one broke my heart. I have difficulty seeing how fresh organic vegetables and fruits can be bad for me. As a vegetarian I rely on raw food.

I was trying to satisfy the eastern, western and personal protocols in the last pregnancy and it consumed me. It was probably a way to channel my anxiety of being pregnant (and terrified of losing it) into something constructive. But I was so hard on myself. I took all the joy out of eating. It became a chore.

The time spent watching dust collect on my much loved juicer made me rethink things. I have to decide which elements of treatment to abide by and which to skip. I am going to allow myself to pick and choose because this is my body and I’m calling the shots. Rightly or wrongly, my days of feeling pressured to follow a protocol 100% are over. There has to be a little give and take in this process because it’s hard enough as it is. Otherwise I’ll just beat myself up more than is necessary for not sticking with the plan.

This time things are going to be a little less structured, a little more organic, So I’ve decided to keep on juicing and just enjoy how it makes me feel, hoping that will have a positive effect on my health and fertility.

I’m going to write down my two favourites that I’ve come up with so I can keep track. These use fruits or veg known to enhance fertility and I’ve included the benefits of the ingredients so I remember why they’re so good:

Juice 1
1/2 Grapefruit
(increases cervical mucous)
1x Beetroot
(detoxifier, prevents birth defects, high in folic acid)
1x Carrot
(regularises ovulation)
1x Apple
(antioxidant, boosts immune system)
1/2 Lemon
(reduces vaginal acidity)
Handful Basil
(antibacterial, antioxidant)
1/2″ Ginger
(increases blood flow to the womb)

Juice 2
1x Apple
(antioxidant, boosts immune system)
1x Kiwi
(Blood thinning, high in folate)
1/2 Lime
(antioxidant)
1/2 Cucumber
(high in folate and B vitamins)
1 Kale leaf
(antioxidant, boosts immune system, reduces inflammation, enhances egg maturation)
Handful Mint
(antibacterial)