Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Good, Bad, and Annoying

The transfer is set for Saturday! At my appointment yesterday my doctor said everything looks great and he was very pleased which was nice to hear from someone who rarely shows emotion. He also wants to do another transfer two days later on Monday. I'm not sure why but it does satisfy my desire to do a 5-day transfer so I didn't argue. The bad news is that TOIAW is leaving that day so I will have to go to the clinic alone. The really bad news is I will have to self-administer intramuscular progesterone shots. In the immortal words of the Oklahoma cowboys on The Amazing Race, "Oh, my gravy..." I'm pretty sure I will be able to do it but it will likely prove to be quite interesting.

TOIAW and I have been making the most of the two weeks we get to spend together before being apart for another two months. We have had a lovely time, but today he is on my last nerve. The past several days have been very busy and the next few will be as well so I was looking forward to relaxing a little today before going out tonight. He, on the other hand, seems determined to follow me around the house pestering me. It's a lot of fun. Tonight, however, truly will be wonderful because we are meeting with an old friend.

She and several of her friends are on a special trip. Her husband was killed in action in Iraq last year and when she received his personnal items there was a map detailing a trip he planned on taking upon his return. So this year she is doing the trip he planned and the itinerary calls for a stop in my fair city. I can't wait to see her and tour with her and her friends tomorrow! Her husband was a great guy and I am so excited to spend Memorial Day with her.

I hope you will also have an opportunity to thank someone who serves, has served, or has sacrificed greatly for our nation!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Keep Moving Forward

After the failed donor egg cycle in February, my dad sent me an email in which he said, "Keep moving onward and upward in deed and in spirit." I've been thinking about that a lot lately. It brings to mind a hike I once took...

It was the summer of 1999 and I was living in Israel. One particularly hot and humid weekend and some friends decided to go camping in the Galilee and I agreed to go with them foolishly assuming they weren't going to attempt to kill me on a crazy difficult hike. So we slept on the shores of the Sea of Galilee (which is really a lake). There was a meteor shower that night that was quite stunning. Two of my friends stayed awake most of the night watching the stars and falling in love--or deepening their love, I'm not sure of the details of their relationship's timeline--and, with all the energy and euphoria that new love brings, they led us on a hike into the bowels of hell the next day.

You can ask TOIAW, any hike that begins by going downhill raises numerous red flags for me. I didn't fail physics; I know we're eventually going to have to come back uphill. Down the mountain we went and into a beautiful wadi (ravine). I've forgotten--or blocked out--many of the details but here is what I do remember:

  • There were at least two parts of the trail that could only be traversed by swimming.
  • Wasps like beef jerky and will attack you if you are eating it.
  • Much of the trail consisted of fallen rocks. They weren't huge but they weren't small either. You had to keep moving forward and not try to balance or stand on one rock or you would fall.
  • Lisa, one-half of the New Love Duo, wore these tiny little sandals that offered zero support or stability and she did the entire grueling hike as if it were a stroll on the beach.
  • I chose to wear running shoes that became treacherous once wet and I had a huge fall. I still have a scar on my left knee. TOIAW does not believe I went on this hike willingly and/or without bloodshed once I realized how difficult it was going to be. All I can say is it happened and I have witnesses.
  • The uphill portion out of the ravine was something akin to rock climbing. There were boulders the size of VW Beetles and you had to use both your hands and feet to climb out. Or at least I did.
  • We ran out of water.
  • It was days before I could once again walk normally.

But it was a lot of fun and I was with people I truly love even though I haven't seen most of them in many years. I'm not sure if it's the PTSD associated with the hike or that it was so darned fun, but I often think about that hike when I'm going through a tough time. The part that stands out the most are those long stretches when we walked across the rocks. You had to sustain a forward motion because if you stopped, you fell. There was no time to think about your next move, you just had to go with your instinct and move quickly. You had to keep moving forward.

Today it has been one month since I spoke with my dad. I think about him all the time just like I often think of Sarah. If I stop and think about all they are missing and all I am missing with them, it's overwhelming. I want to keep moving forward while carrying their memories in my heart. I don't want to fall. I know God has plans for me and I don't want to be on the ground sobbing instead of moving with Him.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Save the Date

Well, you don't need to save it but I'm going to. What date is that, you ask? Um, that would be the 3rd or 4th of June which are my tentative transfer dates! I'm so excited! And I just can't hide it! No, No, No! I know, I know, I know, I know I want you, little frozen embryos!

Sorry, where was I? Oh, yes, so anyway my period finally arrived and we're on our way. I'm glad TOIAW will be with me then--and for a few days afterwards--but soon after he will be traveling to some truly random places and I will return to the U.S. June 2010 could shape-up to be one of the best of my life*! I still might postpone my return for a week or so in order to do the initial blood tests and ultrasounds here but I haven't decided that yet. It just seems like a hassle to go back to the U.S. and try to do it there because I don't see how I could get appointments so early in my pregnancy and then I will have to explain everything to, like, 34 people and it just sounds complicated. But every day is complicated here so there's that also.

I'm getting ahead of myself...but it would be so nice to actually have these problems instead of the one I do have: No baby in my arms or my tummy. I'll leave you now to say a prayer--or 70--for me ;)

*No pressure those of you who are on the Wheel Family Road Rally team, but the rally is in June this year and beating the Wilcoxs at their own two-car strategy is totally part of my June 2010 Best Month Ever plan. Victory WILL! BE! OURS! Not that I'm competitive or anything...

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Being here alone doesn't help much when it comes to getting over jet lag. I've done a fair job but I'm still staying up too late. I have no idea why because we gave up our American tv contraption so all I have for entertainment is local cable (which has several British channels that I keep on for noise but not much else). I've read a lot and I've gone for long walks but I could really use some bad reality there a 12-step program for this? I'm seriously considering buying some shows on iTunes but, I don't know, that seems desperate to me and I'm not sure I'm there yet.

So, what I have been doing is obsessively googling in preparation for our frozen embryo transfer (FET) coming up soon. There's a message board specifically for women seeking treatment in the MC. One of the most vocal gals on the board was treated at my clinic several times and never got pregnant. I asked the clinic about her--privacy laws, what's that?--and they said she never followed doctor's advice, exercised very hard after her transfers, etc. and that's why it never worked for her. She apparently decided not to give up on the MC (she's from here originally but lives in Canada now) and sought treatment at a different clinic and--BAM!--she's pregnant even though she's running 10k a day and working in her 2 acres of landscaped yard (which, in my opinion, clearly demonstrates that she's not all that stable if you know what I mean). So now she's convinced my clinic sucks and their practices are awful and they lie about their success rates and no one really gets pregnant there and they beat old ladies and they kick babies. It's mostly nonsense but you would be surprised how upset these kinds of unsubstantiated claims can make a person a 1 a.m. Real Housewives of New Jersey, on the other hand, would never leave me in such a state. That's it, I'm doing mental health is at stake.

I guess the thing that bothers me is why am I susceptible to these crazy ideas anyway? Why does it take far more effort to erase bad thoughts than accept good ones? It's so freakin' frustrating!!! I'm spending too much energy thinking about stupid stuff when there are real issues to pray over and consider. Take, for instance, the number of embryos my doctor wants to transfer. I don't want to discuss the number here but suffice it to say it borders on terrifying but comes short of OctoMom. I don't know what to do and that should be what terrifies me at night but it's not. Not getting pregnant is what terrifies me. Something is seriously wrong with me. All the more reason to watch Real Housewives because that show makes me feel exceedingly normal.

I should get going because I have plans today to hang out with a friend this afternoon and have dinner with her and her four beautiful children (I'm not opposed to having four children, I just don't want to have them all at one time). I'm taking strawberry shortcake for dessert...yummO!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

It's a Small World, After All

Well, I'm back in the Mystery Country. It's warm and green here and, who knew, it's actually quite lovely. It's still not where I want to be but it's a much improved version of the MC I left a few weeks ago. This is all very good because at my appointment today (just a few hours after I landed, I might add) I found out that I might have to spend an extra week here. No biggie...I can easily do an extra week for a good cause!

Despite my sad post a few days ago, I had a really great time at home with my mom and the rest of our family and close friends. The sadness is normal and it comes in waves but it's all part of the grief process and this is a process about which I know a thing or two.

Last week TOIAW had a blast from the past that brought a smile to my face. Two years ago I had the unfortunate experience of dealing with someone I dubbed the "Hello Kitty PA" after her mouse pad and other assorted office decor. I wrote about her here. It seems the good PA has once again found work with the federal government and is working at an embassy TOIAW visited last week. He wasn't feeling well and stopped by to get some medicine and she immediately recognized him and showered him with sweetheart's and honey's. I don't know if I'm more shocked that she is working there, that she recognized TOIAW, or that he emailed me a picture of th Hello Kitty poster on her office door.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Two Weeks Later

I planned on writing about Dad's funeral today but that's not going to happen. Man, oh, man t hurts so bad. Last night I was looking up a sports score for my mom and on the sports page online they still have a story about him so there was his picture staring at me. It took my breath away.

My mom went back to work today so this is one of few times I've been alone so I've spent a lot of time in his closet and sitting in his chair. I still can't believe it. I don't understand how or why and I want him back. I don't want to hear people say what a great man he was or read the sweet words people have written, I want him back. I just really, really want him back...

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Hello, Allergies

The combination of sleep deprivation, stress, grief, and spring allergens has not been kind to my body. Honestly, I'm surprised I held out this long. I've been doing the OTC thing but if I still feel bad tomorrow it might be time to see if there's an infection involved.

We're continuing to have quite a bit of family time which has been so nice. My mom is functioning but I know she's hurting so bad and I hate it for her. I fear the worst is yet to come...she spent every day with him for 37+ years and now he's gone.

I have so much to say but I just don't feel like it right now. Just wanted to let you know we're [mostly] okay.