Life is Going to Change!

Andrew and I both hate the comment, "Your life is about to change forevvvverrrr."  Well, duh.  We are having our first and second kids at the same time.  We are adding two babies to a house that has heretofore only had puppies.  Of course it's going to change. 

There are several things we hate about this expression: 
1.  It's usually said in a mocking tone by an "experienced" parent.
2.  It implies that we better enjoy life now because it's going to difficult/stressful/sleepless/etc. when the babies get here and ruin everything.
3.  It doesn't take into account the blood, sweat and tears we have gone through to get to this point.  Do you really not think we have had plenty of time to consider the life-altering change that bringing multiples home will entail?

I know many, many women who are SAIFers (Success After Infertility) and, not surprisingly, they don't use this expression.  Instead, they congratulate us and talk of the amazing blessing that it is to add a baby (or babies) to a household that has longed for them and prayed for them and worked for them. 

Of course my life is going to change.  It may be difficult and stressful and sleepless for awhile but it will also be everything I have ever wanted.  I can't wait. 

Pregnancy Update: things are progressing nicely and will be having our anatomy scan on 11/19.  I can 't wait to see our babies looking like babies instead of the blobs they were when we last saw them.  Of course, I can't wait to know their sexes but I am also anxious to know that their major organs are developing according to schedule.


Babies on Board!

It's been quite awhile since I've posted because I've been hiding fantastic, incredible, amazing news.

I'm pregnant!  Not just a little pregnant but pregnant with TWINS!!!!

After beta numbers that were perfectly average and on target for a singleton pregnancy, Andrew and I were amazed to see that both of the embryos from our Frozen Embryo Transfer stuck.  The picture above is from 7weeks0days.  I've since had another ultrasound and the twins continue to look right on track with perfect little heartbeats.  I cried so hard when I first saw them, the u/s tech had to ask me to hold my breath so she could get the measurements.  She told us that she had a 20 year-old IVF baby and that seeing our excitement made her day.

Andrew and I never imagined more than three years ago when we decided to start a family that we would travel the winding and dark road that we found ourselves on.  While I would never wish what we have been through on anyone, I must admit that I have learned many lessons along the way.  The Mrs. Mroch that is due April 11, 2013 is more patient, more persistent and more hopeful than the Mrs. Mroch that wanted to have a baby in April, 2010 because it was a good maternity leave for a teacher.

We are now Facebook official.  I have to admit, it terrified me to openly tell people.  I still have the infertile mind that is much more accustomed to bad news than to good.  I have another appointment this Friday and will hopefully get to hear both heartbeats on the doppler.  I will keep most pregnancy updates here rather than on Facebook because I know how it feels to see every detail of someone else's pregnancy in my news feed and I won't do that to the friends that I know are struggling.


I have my hot flashes at night....

...as sung to the tune of "I Wear My Sunglasses at Night."  Jeez Louise.  I had gone several nights without hot flashes and wrongly assumed that I would continue to dodge the proverbial bullet.  Last night proved me wrong and overly optimistic. 

I do some of my worst thinking when I'm laying in bed, drenched in sweat.  Things that don't seem so bad or like such a big deal during the day are major issues at 2am.  Last night, I was planning to end friendships and dreaming of moving away.  I also decided that I would be either buying a bigger bed or moving to the guest room because my husband was making me hotter.  I did pause to acknowledge the fact that a shorter haircut is helpful when dealing with hot flashes.  Less mass to make extra sweat on the back of my neck.

Modern medicine has done amazing things for infertile women and I am eternally grateful for the potions that will hopefully bring me a baby.  I feel stupid complaining about something that is ultimately as inconsequential as a hot flash, but that's only in the light of day.  At night, I wonder if it can possibly be worth it.  There is a comparison to be made between waking up every few hours because of side effects and waking up every few hours if the medicine works and brings me a baby.  I suppose it's all practice...


Here we go again!

That's the cheapest shipment I've ever gotten from my friends at Metro Drugs in NJ.  $164 for the medicine for my upcoming frozen embryo transfer.  $164 that brought all the emotions that I've been tamping down since last fall right back to the surface.  It was like a scene from a movie; I signed for the delivery, shut the door and started crying. 

I'm not the same person who posted pictures of medicine shipments and running totals last summer.  Back then, I was brave and hopeful and my biggest worry was the money we were spending.  Now, I know it's about so much more than the money and I'm more scared than I've ever been.  It's about that tiny glimmer of hope that's still there.  Fragile and hard to find sometimes, but it's still there.  I want a baby and, for that chance, I'm willing to get back on the horse and start a new sharps container.


Don't Ignore...Common Sense--NIAW 2012

Today is the beginning of National Infertility Awareness Week, part of RESOLVE's efforts to make the world more aware of the truths of infertility.  Last year, I wrote a "myth-busting" blog entry. (Found here).  This year's theme is "Don't ignore..."  I've decided that my Don't Ignore message will be about common sense, something I've found woefully lacking in the general population since deciding to be open, at least in public if not on Facebook proper, about my struggle with infertility.

I found this picture on Pinterest (from this blog) and it made me laugh out loud.  So many of the things in this picture are things that I regularly hear my friends in the IF community complain that they've had said to them.  A few of them are things that some of you, dear readers, have said to me.  So, my blog for NIAW will be "Don't Ignore Common Sense." 

If someone has the courage to share with you their struggle with infertility, they've likely been through a long and difficult silence where they were afriad that sharing would lead others (i.e. you) to judge them, pity them or otherwise think of them as "different."  In reality, 1 in 8 couples suffer from infertility so the only thing "different" about us is that we're open about our struggle.  If someone is confiding in you, they aren't looking for advice.  They likely have a team of well-paid medical professionals (that they're paying out of pocket for, btw) giving them advice.  Your infertile friends and family members don't need your advice, they need your support.

So, before, you say any of the things in the picture above, stop and ask yourself whether you're being supportive or if you're unintentionally causing pain.  Don't say you understand if you haven't walked in these shoes.  Don't tell us it's in God's plan unless you really believe that God wants crackheads and 16 year-olds to have babies but not us.  Don't tell me I should adopt because then I'd get pregnant right away unless you're going to give me the $25-$45K it would take to adopt a baby.  And, just like last year's advice, don't ever mention to me if you happened to get pregnant on your first try.  Some things are better left unsaid. 

For more information about NIAW and RESOLVE:

  • http://www.resolve.org/infertility101 (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)
  • http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/about.html (About NIAW)
  • 3.31.2012

    It's a Wonder...

    ...anyone ever gets an old house sold and a new house bought without something in the middle falling apart.  In order to close on our new house, the buyer of our old house must close on the house he's selling, get his financing sorted out to close on our house before we can close on the new house.  This involves paperwork, home inspections, termite certifications, never-ending mortgage paperwork and on and on and on. 

    To this point, I have been running interference between the bank, our buyer and the people we are buying from.  I have also been crazy busy at work (can we say 'Spring Testing'?) and have been trying to get my last two graduate classes finished up and take my comps.  I finallly had enough on Friday and told Andrew he was going to have to deal with the bank.  The never-ending stream of papers to sign and things to find and copy for the mortgage has done me in.  He, of course, was perfectly willing to take the reigns which reminds me that I don't always have to do everything myself. 

    I crossed three things off my list today: I took my comps and ordered a kitchen table and a television console for the new bigscreen tv that Andrew is shopping for.  The table is a Paula Deen and I absolutely love it!



    A New Obsession

    I have happily postponed my FET to summer because I/we decided that my work schedule is too crazy to be running back and forth to the doctor and, more excitingly, we have decided that our income tax return (which is still an unknown amount) needs to sit in our savings account because we have bought a new house!
    After going back and forth on whether to build or buy for several years, we happily discovered that one of the few houses that we have both always loved was for sale and in our price range.  After several rounds of back and forth offers, we got a deal that we believe is fair and a closing date at the end of May.  With no contingency to sell our house, we are now living on borrowed time and need a quick sale on our current house.  This, of course, scares the crap out of me.  People keep assuring me that we will have no trouble selling our house but the mere thought of having two mortgages scares the crap out of me!


    Update and Cart Before the Horse

    I have finally made the big call and got myself on the FET calendar for my next cycle.  This is a bit misleading, as I almost always need Provera to start a new cycle so all this really means is that I'll be cycling when I suck it up and take those ten little pills.  At any rate, it's reassuring to know that my FET will be a Lupron/Estrodial Valerate two-month doozy.  Some FET cycles are short and minimally altered by meds.  As someone whose own hormones are unpredictable, I prefer cycles where they suppress and totally replace instead of crossing my fingers that my body behaves.  I can be patient. 

    It's Sunday and I started a new feature one week ago today, so here is my CBTH item for the week:
    the essential-to-every-modern-nursery Eames rocking chair
    I'm all over the place with nursery design style, but I love the look of the classic Eames rocking chair.  I can see myself blowing the budget on one of these and then scrambling to buy stuff like a crib and changing table. 


    Cart Before the Horse

    My blog has taken on a decidedly unhappy tone lately.  I know some of you out there are worried about my state of mind and I appreciate your encouragement and concern.  I promise I'm not depressed all the time.  Sooo, in an effort to bring some sparkle back to my blog, I'm going to add a regular feature that I'll call "Cart Before the Horse."  That's a bump phrase that's used for any baby-related browsing or shopping that happens before pregnancy.  It also happens to be one of my very favorite things to do on a lazy Sunday afternoon.  I'm going to share some of the things I've been dying to buy and make for the almost three (yikes!) years since I started trying to have a baby.
    Item Number One: Fruit Punch fabric by Timeless Treasures.  I'm not sure what I would make out of this fabric, but I'm pretty sure I could design an entire nursery using apples and this color scheme. 
    Item Number Two: Dream Menagerie rug by Anthropologie. 

    Item Number Three: Gus and Lula print from Etsy.  This was featured recently on a style board from Lay Baby Lay.  I guess thinking of IF like an adventure is appropriate, no?  This strays from my aqua-centered nursery ideas in items one and two but gray/yellow is one of my other favorite color sets.

    So, what do you think?  Is it nutso to be making a shopping list for things I can't buy?


    IF's Common Thread

    IF's Common Thread

    Some really great ladies in the online IF community started wearing a bracelet made of a specific kind and color embroidery thread to signify that they are a part of the IF community.  It serves many purposes, but one of the goals is to educate the world about infertility.  If you wear the pomegranate bracelet and someone asks you about it, you're supposed to share your story and hopefully do your part to end the shame and embarrassment that too often accompany infertility by being open and honest with people you might not ordinarily open up to.  The bracelet is also a way for a PAIF (pregnant after infertility) woman to reach out to those of us who are still trying to get pregnant.  It says, "I know what you're going through.  I've been there and I know how lucky I am."  What a great message, something one of the original ladies likened to a secret handshake. 

    The ladies on thebump are putting together a Common Thread event and soon I'll be sporting a bracelet the color of pomegranates (which are said to increase fertility).  Ask me about it if you see me!


    Is it 2012 Already?

    January, 2012 has been rolling around in my head since we found out we were not getting a take-home baby out of our IVF cycle.  From that time, we automatically agreed (with zero discussing) that we would wait until "after the first of the year" to try a FET.  At the time, it sounded like far enough in the future to not worry about.  As in, "we have to wait foreverrrr to try again so I might as well not even think about getting mentally prepared for it." 

    ::fastforward through a busy semester::

    Now it's January, 2012 and it's time to get back on the crazy train.  Only I'm scared.  The reason they tell you to get back on the horse that's thrown you is because if you wait, you'll lose your nerve.  I've waited and now I've lost my nerve.  From January until September last year I was rolling from one cycle into another and never had time to second guess my decisions.  Now I'm haunted by the question, "At what point do we cut our losses and say we won't spend any more?"

    I've sent the email to my clinic's financial director asking for the itemized list of my clinic expenses last year.  I even opened a new email to send to my IVF nurse, sweet Rebecca, to tell her we will (hopefully) be ready to roll as soon as we get our taxes done.  Then I closed it and had a good little cry.  I am totally not mentally prepared for another failed cycle.  One almost did me in.  Two is unfathomable. 

    I read a bump signature today of a woman who got pregnant for the first time after four fresh cycles and a frozen cycle.  I am in awe of the strength it must have taken to keep going time after time.  Even without taking into account the fact that we could never afford that many cycles, I could not withstand the emotional trauma.   

    Elsie Louise Mroch

    Elsie Louise Mroch
    the puppy who changed my mind