The next step

Today I took the next step in ‘getting over’ my people getting pregnant and having babies saga. I looked through somebody’s newborn album on fakebook. 


It may not seem like much to the normal observer, but to me that is a HUGE step. I never really do that, for fear of jealousy and floods of tears. I got all the way through the album. Yes, I could feel the tears bubbling to the surface, and of course I was still jealous, as it is what I have wanted for the last two years, to hold a baby in my arms. But I actually did it. The first step of many, I think I just need to keep it up now and try overcome in my own slow way. 


I also went to somebody personally and congratulated them on their pregnancy announcement (following on from my post from a couple of days ago). Only a few months late, but better late than never, hey?

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Congratulations, she said

For a few months now on fakebook, I’ve been avoiding saying congratulations to people and commenting on/liking their bump/baby photos. Mainly because I’m insanely jealous of them and just couldn’t bring myself to do it as I wish it was me. But I’ve now realised how harsh this has been of me, and one of my resolutions is to rectify this. It’s not their fault I’m broken and can’t make a baby (at the minute), but it’s like I’m taking it out on them (well, not like, it is taking it out on them). 


But they deserve to be happy, and me be happy for them, as it’s messing with my head. I can’t go through the next few months like this, it’s always going to be staring me in the face and I just can’t avoid it. I would expect the same for me, so it’s only right. 


So today I took that first step and said it to somebody, and I’m feeling quite proud of myself, as it has been an underlying problem with me for the last few months that has been so hard to deal with, but I need to deal with it, for my own sanity and that of my husband. 

So, to all you mums-to-be who I haven’t said congratulations to (or the like), congratulations. (Although most of you won’t be reading this, I should probably go and say it to you personally…)
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Acronyms

For some readers who may not know what I mean when I use acronyms like ‘BFP’, ‘OPK’, etc, I will post the most commonly used ones – If there are any I have missed leave them in the comments section 🙂 

AF – Aunt Flo (menstrual period – a.k.a. ‘the witch’)
ANOV – Anovulatory (no ovulation)
BBT – Basal Body Temperature
BD – Baby Dance (making love)

BFP – Big Fat Positive (positive pregnancy test)
BFN – Big Fat Negative (negative pregnancy test)
CD – Cycle Day
CM – Cervical Mucus (one of my friends doesn’t like talking about this, which I think is rather funny!)
DPO – Days Post-Ovulation 
DTD – Do The Deed (making love)
EWCM – Egg White Cervical Mucus 
FC – Fertility Clinic
HPT – Home Pregnancy Test
HSG – Hysterosalpingogram (a medical procedure where they inject dye into your tubes, to check for blockages)
ICSI – Intra-Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection (a medical procedure to help you become pregnant)
IF – Infertility
IUI – Intrauterine Insemination (a medical procedure to help you become pregnant)
IVF – In Vitro Fertilisation (a medical procedure to help you become pregnant)
LH – Luteinizing Hormone (the hormone that stimulates OV)
LMP – Last Menstrual Period (the first day of)
LP – Luteal Phase (the number of days between ovulation and the start of AF)
LTTTC – Long Term Trying To Conceive
MC – Miscarriage
OPK – Ovulation Prediction Kit (self explanatory)
OV – Ovulation
PCOS – Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
PCO – Polycystic Ovaries
PG – Pregnant (the one I really want to write for myself!) 
POAS – Pee On A Stick (self explanatory)
PUPO – Pregnant Until Proven Otherwise
SA – Semen Analysis
TTC – Trying To Conceive

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Everywhere you go

So it seems, as soon as you start ttc, there seems to be pregnant women EVERYWHERE. Of course, they have always been there, it’s just that you want to be one of them, so you start noticing them more. And soon enough, it takes over your life.


Social networking sites. Yep, they are all over there too. There seems to be something in the water at the minute. It seems like every other day someone is announcing they are pregnant. I don’t mind (well, if I’m honest, which is what this blog is for, it kind of destroys me a little more inside every time I hear it, and a wave of jealousy explodes inside of me), it’s just when their scan photos are ‘flaunted’ all over. Well, again, I don’t mind people adding their photos, as they want to show off their baby, and everyone else wants to see. I can avoid that by just not looking at the photos, which I do (apart from when they appear on my top news feed, at which point I quickly move page).


It’s when they then have them as their profile photo too. I then see them all the time, and every time it hurts just that little bit more. I can’t avoid this, unless I stop using the site altogether, or remove them from my friends, or hide them from my feed. Which I don’t want to do any of, as they are my friends, and I like to keep up with them. (OK, so in truth, I’m just too nosy). It just feels like it’s being rubbed in, that they’re pregnant and happy, and I’m not. I know that’s not true, but infertility drives you to these types of thoughts.


From this experience, when (trying to think positive here, not working) we are in the situation we so want to be in, I am not going to be doing the profile pic thing, as I know all too much just how soul destroying it is every single time it flashes in your face.

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Let’s start at the beginning

OK, so this is a bit backwards, this should have really been the first ever post, but needed to get that last one out.


You’ll maybe want to grab a cuppa (or two) before reading this post, could be a long one. Just a history of us since we started ttc, to help you understand my future posts and where I am coming from. (May be some TMI too, don’t read on if you are easily ‘bleugh’-ed out! I’m a straight talker, me!)


So we decided to start ttc in January 2009 (2 years ago now, that is a loooooong time in this little ‘world’ of stress and upset). If I’m honest, deep down I probably knew we were going to have problems, due to the fact I have always had problems with my menstrual cycle. I had been having the worst problems most recently – i.e. cycles lasting 4+ months at a time (with the actual ‘period’ lasting anything up to 8 weeks before taking medication)! I’m sure it would have been much longer if I hadn’t been to the GP for medication to stop it. These problems started in 2008, actually quite a few months after I stopped the pill, probably even a couple of years.


Anyway, we gave it a couple of months to see if my cycles would miraculously sort themselves out – no suck luck – so went back to the GP for more medication (norithisterone, to be exact). They couldn’t actually help us regarding ttc at that moment in time, as around here you have to have been ttc for 2 years before they will help (well not in our case, will come to that later). Basically, go away and keep trying. They never even had any idea what WAS wrong with me (I saw 3 different GP’s before the one that actually helped me)


Waited another few months, by this time it was probably about the end of June and I was still having the same problems,  it was driving me absolutely crazy, causing problems between me & hubby, arguing all the time and I just felt really down in the depths of despair. So back to the GP I went; this time we had a discussion of what we could possibly do to sort my problem out. The contraceptive pill. Well, not really what you want to do when ttc, is it? But, if it helped to sort my cycles out and then we would possibly conceive quicker afterwards, I was prepared to do it. Heck, even 15 year olds on the pill still manage to pregnant sometimes don’t they?! Probably by skipping a couple, so maybe that’s what I would do…


So, off I go with my prescription, hoping that this would sort my cycles out and that the next time I went to the GP, it would be with good news… So I started the pill in July ’09, even on the pill I still wasn’t having ‘proper’ periods! Just had to face it, I’m a freak and no-one will ever know what’s wrong with me! So we thought, well this isn’t really helping, but if I stop it maybe my periods will have some sort of consistency? So I stopped taking it in November ’09. Carried on with the routine of ttc.


My periods eventually returned in February ’10. We were hoping that maybe we’d had some kind of miracle, and I was actually pregnant! No such luck, again 🙁 So that was a year now, ttc. A lot of people who had started ttc around the same time as us, were now expecting, or even had their baby! Depressing 🙁


So, we carried on as we had been, knowing we weren’t going to get anywhere and desperately wanting help. By this time I was on the verge of a breakdown. So, off to the GP I went again, this time in floods of tears! I thought, she must help us now, surely?! Well, we had a long discussion, and decided that I really wasn’t ‘normal’ and it just wasn’t going to happen for us like this. She still couldn’t actually give us a referral to the fertility clinic (FC) at this point though, as it hadn’t been 2 years. But, as she had decided that I wasn’t normal and I really was a freak (my words, not hers) she said she would discuss my situation in the weekly meeting the following week! How special did I feel?! All to see if I was a special enough case to be referred. Well, skip to the next week, and I was special enough! (I always knew that) And so followed the endless tests…


First, we needed some CD (cycle day) 21 bloods for me (these were actually day 36 for me, as I have irregular cycles), to see if I was ovulating. I knew I wasn’t, after all the temp tracking and ovulation prediction kits (OPK’s) I had done, but it’s part of the procedure. Anyway, my period came early that month, so I had to wait until the next month! All this waiting already, and then this! I think my body is just totally against me. Anyway, I had it done eventually the next month. The husband also needed to have a semen analysis (SA) before we could be referred, so that was booked in too. And done. Now, we could be referred. Or maybe not. We were waiting, and waiting, and waiting for the referral appointment letter, and then eventually the surgery rang me and told me that our referral had been sent back as husband needed another one before they could refer us and it would be accepted! For goodness sake, why didn’t she tell us this before, instead of keeping us hanging on! (But I let her off, as she had gone out of her way for us, and she is lovely) So, that one was booked in too, and done. FINALLY, we could be referred. Hubby needed to stop smoking too, which he did, and has been stopped since June last year now (with the exception of a couple of occasions where he has been in drunken company). We have both lost a lot of weight too, as we knew this could be effecting us having problems – me, over 3 stone, and hubby, well, 2 stone last time he got weighed. At this point the GP told us that it would probably just be a case of me having to take clomid, to make me ovulate…


Skip a couple of months to September, and we get the best letter ever – one with our first fertility clinic appointment printed on it (which was in October)! So we got prepared for that, questions, answers etc. The appointment itself was really just a BMI check, medical history etc. We also received hubby’s SA results back. Not good. The motility (the movement of the little guys) was quite good, 70(ish)%. It was the morphology (the shape of them), that was the problem. His first one was 3% morphology, although his 2nd one had improved, to 6%. But still, a ‘normal’ morphology percentage is 10%. The improvement was after he had stopped smoking though, so we’re hoping it has improved some more. And then we were told of more tests I needed to have before our next appointment (which should have been in December – they only have the FC once a month, which is a bit annoying, but we can’t really do anything about that) I needed 4 more blood tests to check for ovulation – day 21, 28, 35 and 42 – done. Also, a pelvic scan – basically an ultrasound (I hate these, I have a weak bladder at the best of times!) – done. And then a HSG (hysterosalpingogram – wow, I remembered that without googling it! – this is to check your tubes for blockages etc.)


Yes, the bloody HSG, which I am STILL waiting for. I first went to book it straight after our first appointment. (It has to be done on/around cycle day 10, and you have to ring on the first day of your cycle to book it – very strict they are) I was already on day 4 of my current cycle, typical. They were fully booked. So I had to wait until the first day of my next cycle. Again, just typical for me. At this rate I wasn’t going to have it done before our next appointment. (Oh how right I was). This was turning out to be an extra long cycle, and it still hadn’t arrived a few days before our appointment. So, begrudgingly, I rang up to push our appointment back a month. (It should be next Monday, now) Lo and behold, a few days after, the witch (another name for your period) turned up! Hopefully I was going to get my HSG in before our next appointment! Wrong, again! Right before Xmas, and they were fully booked for the next couple of weeks, and now I have to wait until the first day of my NEXT cycle! Whenever that may be! Bloody damn typical! At this point I was so angry. So now, I’m having to push our appointment back for yet another month. Next time I ring to book my HSG, I don’t care if they are fully booked, I am NOT waiting yet another goodness knows how long, I will not hang up the ‘phone until they fit me in! I have very irregular cycles so I can’t tell when the next one will start, and I’ve waited long enough already!


So now, you may finally understand why I get upset and angry and stressed like I do. I hope it has given you some understanding anyway. And that you will keep checking back, to follow me through my journey (and my husband’s of course).

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The name game

I originally set this blog up back in October, really to help with the stresses and feelings of infertility and trying to conceive. I never really got around to writing in it until today. The birth of my friends new baby girl has prompted me. I’m sure at some point I will write about our full history with ttc, but for now it’s going to be short and sweet. I’m kind of hoping that this will help relieve some of my tense feelings, rather than screaming and crying the house down every day, as that is what I usually feel like doing. 


I found out back in May that my friend was expecting. This was a couple of months after she had come to me for advice on ttc. I immediately knew it was my ‘fault’ she was pregnant, and I felt so deflated, even though I was expecting it eventually after seeing some of her statuses on facebook. It was like, she had been trying ‘only’ 5 months before she fell, and there was us, 17 months on and still nothing! Why couldn’t it have been me?


Well today was the arrival. I am happy for them, don’t get me wrong, she is so beautiful. It’s just, well, they have named her the name we have for a middle name, if we ever have a baby girl. It just made me feel so sad. Like if we use it now she will think we’ve ‘copied’ them. Stupid, I know, but ttc drives you to these types of feelings! 


I suppose I should push my feelings of jealousy aside for a few moments, and go and wish her congratulations. 

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