Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Yes, I was in a car accident this evening. Yes, I am okay.
I was driving down the highway when we came up on an accident on the shoulder. We had to drive over the center line to go around it (the police were already there). I turned my head to merge back into my lane. When I looked straight again, I barely had time to hit the brakes before I slammed into the back of a SUV. Thankfully we weren't going very fast. Tell that to my crumpled hood.
Since the police were already on the scene, he pushed me to the side of the road and I instantly started crying. Yes, I was that girl. The officers that helped us were actually the nicest group of men I have ever dealt with. He made sure I was okay and didn't need medical attention. I was crying pretty good by then and he told me that it would be okay, to take my time composing myself, that no one was hurt, and we'd get it all straightened out. Another officer checked on me a bit later (it was raining and windy and I didn't have a coat - of course!) and said that my airbags absolutely should have deployed - and they didn't, and I definitely need to report it. But, honestly, I'm glad they didn't. On top of it all, I really didn't need a solid punch in the face. The woman in the SUV may disagree at this point... The officer helped me get a tow-truck and collected the drivers license/insurance info. They were very helpful. I am grateful that they were so good to me. It was a bit of a traumatic experience, and they would have been well within their right to take a firmer stand with me. But, they didn't. I will be writing in to give my feedback.
Ya'll, he didn't even write me a ticket.
The woman I hit had a child in the back seat. As soon as I overheard that, I started bawling. He was perfectly fine, just scared and crying. I feel awful. It is the first time I have ever been in a car accident. Let alone one where I was at fault. I had to call J to come and pick me up, queue the tears again....
I really am okay. A little stiff, but no damage. I can certainly feel the let-down of the adrenaline. That's never fun. I'm sorry that this is a little pieced together. As I'm sure you can imagine, I'm a little scatterbrained.
J was not upset with me at all. In fact he's already over it and on to the car-shopping part of this debacle.
Any recommendations for a sedan with good gas mileage? This was our commuter car.
Sunday, March 27, 2011
After focusing on nothing but TTC for two and a half years, I lost myself. I lost that bit that made me, me. It was time again to focus on losing weight, getting healthy, returning to a more positive state of mind, working on my relationship, eliminating stress in my life, and mostly - finding my happiness once again.
Part of what was causing me stress was my job. I have been a manager at a financial services company for the last 4 1/2 years. With 13 employees and my own set of duties, I was constantly on the go. Being busy isn't what bothered me. In fact, it is probably the only part of my job I enjoyed. But, I wasn't being challenged and I'd stopped growing personally or professionally. I was so busy worrying about everyone else and their goals, that I'd put myself on the back burner. If I was even on the stove at all.
In light of 2011 being The Year of Me, that needed to change. I am proud to announce that on Monday (tomorrow), I am starting a new job with my company! A fresh start. It is a completely different line of work, so I have a lot to learn, but I am more than ready for the challenge. There are three major highlights of this new position that I'd like to point out...
#1- It is a fresh start in an area of work I am genuinely interested in.
#2- I get to ditch my cube for an office - with. a. door.
#3- I no longer have any direct reports. That means no more performance evaluations or employee relations issues! (...insert sweet sight of relief...)
Monday marks the start of a new chapter and another item in the win column for me. I am really happy with the progress I've made so far this year. I still have work to do, don't get me wrong. But, all too often I find myself focusing on what we don't have. The baby we haven't brought home. I need to do better at stopping for a moment to give myself some credit for what I have accomplished in a few short months.
My relationship is stronger than it has ever been.
I have lost 24 lbs since the beginning of the year.
I am regularly seeing an acupuncturist to help manage my stress.
I have planned an amazing trip of a lifetime.
Slowly I am still working to eliminate clutter, get organized, and thus stress from my home.
And now... I have replaced a job that caused me anxiety and a great deal of stress and unhappiness, with one that brings me hope, challenge, and the return of my desire to work hard.
If these are the lessons that the higher-powers-that be wanted me to learn by requiring we go through this infertility struggle, I hope they're paying attention. I'm working hard, and I hope to soon be rewarded.
What positive changes have you made in your life? What would you like to commit yourself to now?
Friday, March 25, 2011
I feel like I'm doing so much better handling our IF struggles. I still want nothing more than to have a family. But, I've reached some level of acceptance. I still have faith, but I've accepted that this is a part of our journey.
Then something simple happens, in this case a video on Facebook.
(please, if you're here and are the one that posted the video - I am really not trying to make you feel bad or guilty in any way)
First of all, I love my friends, and their children. They're my family and I am so grateful to have them in my life. I would hate for my saying anything here to influence them negatively, or to hesitate in sharing these moments on Facebook. But, today, instead of seeing a sweet little boy that I love dearly, I went to another place. The place that desperately wants it to be my husband in the background talking to our son. Laughing as they learn and become fascinating little people. Spending a Friday night at home, teaching our child to play and watching them grow.
J has done so much for me in my life. For our family. Our friends. He is so generous with his time and is genuinely a good person. He is patient and loving. Funny and so smart. He has so much to share. I want, very much, to give that to him. Yet we fail month after month. Never does he utter a complaint. He's never made me feel insignificant or at fault. He's done nothing but hold me up when I couldn't do it on my own. To share with me his faith. To tell me that it is me that he wants. That I am his family, even if we don't have children.
I may not be worthy, but my husband should be a father.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
My doctor (AKA Mary Cutsohappy), decided that she didn't like it, or another one on my back and shouted, "OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!" Ala the Queen of Hearts from Alice and Wonderland. I might be exaggerating slightly, but they were removed none the less. Off to the lab they go.
Two moles removed, two sets of stitches. One is right under my bra strap (almost on my spine), the other is on my left shoulder blade. Neither of them feel good when I move. Did you know that you basically cannot move a muscle without it moving the skin on your back? If you didn't, now you do. Because they are on my back and that is a high-tension area, I was instructed no stretching or the gym for two whole weeks until I had my stitches out. TWO WEEKS!? Doesn't she know I'm trying to ditch the Chub Club? Damn moles getting in the way of my Quest for Sexiness.
Today I'm doing okay. Uncomfortable for sure, but I'm toughing it out and I'm glad I got it taken care of now. J was very sweet and washed my hair for me last night since I couldn't take a shower for 24hours. It was a wet mess, but a sweet gesture. Love that man.
My good friend Rachel had a good question this morning. She asked, "Could it be hormonal? I mean, at this point can't we blame everything on your hormones?"
Damn skippy, Rach. Damn. Skippy.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
This May, we are traveling to London and Ireland. It will be our first trip to Europe. I cannot begin to express how excited we both are. See that counter to the right? Yes, at any given moment I can tell you, without looking at said ticker, how long we have until our trip. Hurry the hell up and get here, will you May!?
This weekend we booked our final hotels. Now that we've got a roof over our head each night, I've decided I would share my itinerary with you!
Day 1 - Leave Seattle
Day 2 - Arrive in London
Day 3 - Explore London
Day 4 - Tour Bath and Stonehenge
Day 5 - Fly to Dublin, tour Guinness, Trinity College, St. Patrick's, etc
Day 6 - Staying in Waterford -fricken- Castle (hellllooo, inner princess, is that you tingling??)
Day 7 - Cork, Kinsale
Day 8 - Kenmare, Killarney, Ring of Kerry
Day 9 - Limerick, Shannon
Day 10 - Cliff's of Moher, Burren National Park, Galway
Day 11 - Fly back to London, Explore
Day 12 - Continue Exploration of London
Day 13 - Fly Home
That is the quick and dirty version. I have a larger itinerary packed with different sights and options. We know that we won't be able to see them all, but short of scheduling every single second of every day, I wanted to make sure that we had plenty to chose from. I've been watching documentaries about Ireland and I've even gotten restaurant and pub ideas from watching shows on the Food Netw.ork! I cannot stop because there is so much we want to do and see! Mostly, I want to take pictures, drink beer, and stay in castles!! Don't worry, I fully intend on sharing the details of our hotels when we return. Filled with my feedback and recommendation. Just try and stop me. You're welcome.
I am serious about my research. To prove it, here is a picture of one of our guide maps. It's how I got started - circle and label all of the stuff we're interested in seeing! This led to reservations, lists, itineraries...
Have I mentioned that I'm excited? Oh, I did? Okay, good. I'm glad we have that covered.
Monday, March 21, 2011
I have taken quite a few months off from ICLW, but I am so very happy to be back. Honestly, I just felt that since we were on a break that I didn't have much to share. But, I missed it! I missed meeting all of the new visitors, and discovering new blogs. While we're not really back-in-the-saddle on the active ttc front, we're still taking baby steps.
To sum up our journey for those who are new to these parts...
*We have been trying to conceive for 2.5 years (Sept '08)
*Diagnosed with PCOS in Oct. 2009
*Poor response to both Clomid and Femara, before I was dumped by my doc
*Instead of continuing with Seattle Reproductive Medicine we have been on a break since August 2010
(See TTC History in the menu above)
My focus in 2011 has been on my health. Eliminating stress, exercising, eating better, and all around pulling myself out of the funk I've been living in. I'm happy to report that so far I've been making great strides. I'm coping better with our struggle. We're communicating very well as a couple. I've been working to eliminate stress (helllloooo new job!) and getting acupuncture. Most profoundly, I've dropped another 20lbs.
After seeing my naturopath we decided that I would drop a much needed 40lbs (at that time it was 20% of my body weight) and see how my PCOS was. I'm halfway there! Already I feel better and I'm starting to see my cycles regulate. That's no guarantee that it will go away entirely, but it certainly isn't going to hurt.
I am so grateful for the community that we are building through the blogosphere. The support I have received has meant so much to me over the past few years. I hope that I am able to provide at least a fraction of the support I have been shown by all of you. Thank you for dropping by!
If you have any questions for me, feel free to shout them out!
**I am overjoyed by the response to the Common Thread bracelets. I promise to get started on them this week! Feel free to pay it forward and do the same on your own blog. Keep them coming!**
Sunday, March 20, 2011
This bracelet is the color of a pomegranate, which has long been a symbol for fertility. It's worn on your right wrist and is to help connect you with other wearers of the bracelet.
Have you ever seen motorcyclists wave to one another? Bus drivers? Accepted as a member of a mutual club, without even having to know one another? The same idea applies here. If you saw another woman in line at the grocery store, a knowing sympathetic glance could be shared and you wouldn't have to explain yourself, you would just be understood. Mutual struggles and appreciation for the tough road.
Please take a moment to visit the Stirrup Queens and read about The History of Infertility's Common Thread.
Last week my bracelet wore out. Honestly, I'm surprised it lasted the 11 months that it did. A real testimonial to the quality of Jenny's craftsmanship! Before I sit down to make myself a new one, I thought I would extend the offer to you as well. If you are interested in sporting one of these bracelets, I would love to make you one. An everyone's-a-winner of a giveaway. Simply email me your address and I will get one in the mail for you!
It's a crappy club we all belong to. No one wants to be a member, but here we are. If there is a way to show support to others out there suffering along with me, even through simply wearing a pomegranate colored bit of braided string, I'm going to do it. If that means making bracelets for all of you lovelies too? Done.
Send me an email, I'll send you a bracelet.
Saturday, March 19, 2011
I was wrong.
In three clear, unmistakable, no need to hold it up to the light and squint, characters. -NO
I'm doing okay. Not great, but I'll live. I am proud of myself for taking it as well as I am considering how much I got my hopes up yesterday.
Someday it will be different.
Someday we'll get pregnant.
Someday we'll get a family.
Friday, March 18, 2011
I am scared to test tomorrow morning. Scared it will be negative. Scared it will be positive. Scared my period will start before I even have the chance. Scared it will be positive and it will be a mean lie. Scared that the next time I wipe it will be over. And mostly, I'm scared I've let my hopes creep up to far and that my heart will be broken, again.
I'm sorry that I don't have more substance than this today. It's all I can muster while I hold my breath for the next 24 hours.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
I saved our long email chain and went back and read it today. I love that even with thousands of miles between us, we're still able to be there for one another. That we won't need to put on that shiny smiling face all the damn time. It's exhausting and with her I don't have to. If we're feeling shitty and sorry for ourselves, we say so. Get it out there, pick each other up, and get on with the day. To have a friend like that, in all of this mess, feels like I won the friend lotto.
There is a snippet of the email exchange that I want to share with you all. It isn't eloquent or revolutionary, but it was an honest summary of where my mind is at. The comments in parenthesis give explanations where needed. Here goes:
(She asked where I was at with actively ttc)
It is never far from my mind. There is something I want to say out loud, but last time I said it …in the GAP in Seattle… I started the next damn day. We don’t do this much, but last night I asked J to pray. He said that we just needed not to think about it too much. So I prayed on my own. These days at the end of the 2ww (or after the 2ww in my case) are the WORST.
Honestly, I think I’m avoiding the ‘active’ part of TTC, as in the doc/meds/OPK/charting piece, because I’m hoping we won’t have to. J has this everlasting faith that it will ‘just happen’ for us. I just roll my eyes when he’s not looking and am grateful for his positivity. I just don’t/didn’t agree.
However, the last two cycles since I started losing weight and doing acupuncture have been pretty regular (28 and 29 days!). While that isn’t a guarantee that things are functioning as they should, I’m not using OPK’s or anything, it certainly isn’t a bad sign. My acupuncturist is very happy with my progress. That I seem calmer and my heart rate has improved, better circulation, and response to treatments is very positive. I guess I’m closing my eyes, crossing my fingers, and praying that all of this positive change actually does something.
Right now where am I at? … after our trip. If it doesn’t happen by then, it is a phone call to Seattle Reproductive Medicine and another chat with my ND. I’m not sure how I feel about crossing the THREE YEAR threshold in a passive manner. Or at all for that matter. It makes my heart sink.
None of this stops my daydreaming.
Maybe I won’t be able to drink in Europe. Maybe this Mother’s Day will be different. Maybe in CA this summer I will have a little belly (different from the little belly I have now! lol). A November baby would be perfect. Maternity leave for the holidays! A long time ago I bought a baseball newborn onesie because that’s what I wanted to give J when we found out. Wouldn’t the start of baseball season be perfect timing?
Oy. Vey. The things my mind does to my poor heart.
Sorry, that was a really long answer to your question. I suppose I needed to word-vomit too. :/So, there I am folks. I'm scared to actually do something again, and I'm scared not to. Avoiding these decisions does not allow them to go away.
You did read the top part right. I'm late. CD31. Nothing out of the ordinary for us PCOS folks, but not consistent with the last two months either. Is two months long enough to be a "trend"? No. Have I tested? No. Am I successfully keeping myself from getting my hopes up? No. Have I stopped myself from over-analyzing every gas pain, bloat, moment of yuckiness? No.
Oh, that's a cramp! Nope, just gas.
Oh, I think I'm about to start! ::rushes to the bathroom:: Nope, just CM (sorry, overshare.)
J and I have decided that we're going to wait until Saturday (CD34). If I still haven't gotten my period, I will pee on the last test I have in the house. We were fairly active with the ol' maritals at the appropriate times, so we'll just have to wait, impatiently, and see. I promise to keep ya'll posted.
I completely understand that now that I have typed this and put it out in the universe, I will probably start my period. But, God, if you're listening, do me a solid and prove me wrong this time, will you please?
If you've got a spare prayer, or positive vibe, or good ju-ju, or whatever you're into, please put in a good word for me. I promise to return the favor.
Sunday, March 13, 2011
Here's a song if you haven't: You're Going to Miss This
There is a section of lyrics in the song that have really been on my mind:
You're gonna miss this
You're gonna want this back
You're gonna wish these days hadn't gone by so fast
These are some good times
So take a good look around
You may not know it now
But you're gonna miss this
J and I have been TTC for two and a half years this month. With no success. Never a single positive pregnancy test. And I've peed on more than I can count. The last six months our focus has been around really getting our life back. You've seen much less about our fertility around here because we've been trying to focus our energy elsewhere. Reconnecting as a couple, focusing on weight loss, planning our trip to Europe, etc. Conceiving is never too far from our minds, but we've worked hard to (temporarily) make it less of a priority. To leave the days where it consumed everything we did and instead get back to living.
That brings me back to the song. I found it really hard to imagine that someday we're going to miss this. The heartbreak, the constant struggle, and simply the maintenance of TTC. The last time I heard this song though, my perspective was a bit different. Perhaps I can credit the months I've spent trying to find 'me' again. However, I really feel that there are things I will miss.
Doing nothing, from the couch, with my husband on a Sunday.
Picking up and going for drinks with friends on a whim.
The alone time we have to just be together.
Being responsible for only ourselves.
I have fallen back in love with my life. I am able to appreciate the people, things, and opportunities I have been blessed with in my life. All that I've learned, the people I've had the opportunity to meet, and the depth in my relationships. I'm grateful that those are not among the things that, someday, I am confident we will have the opportunity to miss.
I'm happy to be at a place of acceptance. But, do not mistake that for giving up or lack of faith. This is our life. I believe that someday we will be parents. And when that happens:
I hope that we're going to miss these days. In a way that dulls the pain of our struggles and focuses only on the good times. I am going appreciate all the time we spent making sure that these are good times. But, I am pretty confident that we won't want these days back. We'll have enjoyed the good and be very ready to leave the bad behind.
Trace, you almost had it right.
Saturday, March 12, 2011
I am getting back to enjoying the gym an I look forward to additional progress on the scale this week.
Here we go!
Monday, March 7, 2011
I had a moment of panic a couple of weeks ago when my doc handed me the Transition Plan. Whoa, whoa, WHOA. Wait a damn minute! Me? Dieting SOLO? ::deep breaths into a paper bag::
You get the idea.
It took me a couple of days to come to terms with the fact that my transition plan needs to be the base for how/what I eat for the rest of my life. That's huge. That is what "they" mean when "they" say it is all about lifestyle changes.
Basically, I need to continue focusing the majority of my meals on real food. Lean protein, lots of veggies, a couple fruit servings a day, and a small amount -especially for me- of good carbs (brown rice, quinoa, etc). Avoiding sugar and processed foods. Add in lots and lots of water (60-90oz) and regular exercise. It won't peel off nearly as fast as with the HCG diet, but I should be able to continue to lose on my own now that I got that little kick in the pants.
Here's what I ate today:
Breakfast: Fruit Smoothie -strawberry, blueberry, 1/2 serving protein powder
Lunch: Leftover Chili (YUMMMY chili made with lean ground beef, chili beans, dark kidney beans, green and red bell, onion, garlic, jalapenos, and no-salt-added tomato paste) - pretty healthy and tons of veggies!
Dinner: Pesto Chicken (ala my kick-ass gal pal, Susan) - chicken breast, pesto sauce, a sprinkling of cheese, and broccoli ...simple, yet soooo yummy...
Pretty balanced, normal stuff, right?
This weekend I allowed myself a night off and went out for drinks for a girlfriends birthday. I am such a cheap date! Besides my inability to manage more than a couple vodka tonics, there are a couple of foods that I found I jumped the gun a bit too quickly with - dairy and carbs. I had a tiny cup of clam chowder and it was bloat and stomach cramps for hours. No Bueno. I had a tiny pinch of cheese on my chili, and a bit of dressing on a salad at dinner, but otherwise have avoided it since. Probably not the worst habit to avoid, so I learned my lesson there!
I want to thank all of you for your well wishes, positive words, and support over the last couple of months. It hasn't been easy, but your words of encouragement have meant the world to me. There were a couple of moments I thought, 'I can't cheat or bend the rules, because I will be devastated if I have to report back that I gained.' So, thank you for being my conscience, and continuing to be my cheerleaders, as I slog through the remaining el-bees.
Friday, March 4, 2011
How did the whole thing turn out?
Official Weigh-In: 180lbs
Weekly Loss: 4lbs
Over six weeks, that is a total loss of 21lbs! Can I get a 'WOOT!'
To date, I have lost 56lbs. FIFTY-SIX POUNDS. That is a child! Or my dog! Wow. Right? I am very proud of myself. This is right up there with one of the greatest accomplishments of my life.
I have updated my measurements as well. There wasn't as big of a change compared to two weeks ago, but I was prepared to see that. My weight loss wasn't as dramatic either. Over time I know it will slow down. That's just the way it works. Here it is:
Over the last 6 weeks I have lost a grand total of 46" and 3.3% body fat. Almost 4 whole feet.
Here's the quick and dirty version: 6 Weeks 21lbs 46" 3.3%
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
I have been trying very hard to truly settle in to the whole taking-a-break thing. For my own sanity I needed to find ME again. To continue my trek to get healthy. To focus on my work and better my situation there. To reconnect on a real level with my husband again. I mean, helllloooo, the man isn't just a sperm factory! I feel like I have been successful on all fronts. We're really communicating well again. Talking things through and focusing only on us. TTC is never far from our minds. It is still a big part of our life, but it doesn't have to be the center. We've seen and talked about my progress in weight loss. And today - I got a new job! I received the news and accepted a new role with my company. It's a new career path for me, but it will be a much better path all around. I can't wait to get started! Overall, things are going very well. I'm happy again. Truly, in love with my life.
As the first 6 weeks of my diet comes to a close, I've started thinking more and more about TTC. What do we want to do next? Do we want to continue to go with the flow? Are we ready to up our game again? Do I start with just OPK's and charting? Call the RE? Am I really ready for the meds and high maintenance tracking? We are approaching the 2 1/2 year mark and there is quite a lot that I am going to need to work through in the coming days and weeks. We need a solid game plan, because the last thing I want to do is lose myself in the fray, again.
So, the question is - when and how do we begin again?
I only wish we didn't have to decide.
I have felt like such a wuss. Yes, it has been chillier in these parts lately, but damn. I'm spending the majority of the day in my office, wearing my coat and scarf, with my legs wrapped in a fleece blanket. I look like my Grams.
I asked the doc, is this some evil diet backlash? Her answer? Yes and no. No it isn't a side affect of the hcg. But, yes, it is a result of my diet. Why? Because I have taken off an almost 20lb coat! I'd never thought of it that way. However, I have basically step outside, taken off a big fuzzy warm coat and said, "Now body. Listen up. You will remain at the same temperature you were when you were wearing the aforementioned fuzzy warm coat. Got it?" My body then proceeds to give me the finger and commence with the shivering.
Doc says that it will just take some time for me to acclimate to my new lighter self. Has anyone experienced this? Am I silly to just have never thought about it?
Meanwhile it is warm tea and layers for me!