Monday, December 20, 2010

The girls have been here for nearly a week. I have hardly had a moment to shower or use the bathroom. Im transporting the eldest to and from school, out of district and it's a PITA. I have a list of no less than 13 providers, and last Friday, my phone rang 22 times. Most calls regarding appointments or information for the girls. Things have been going well. The older one is emotional, and that is to be expected. All are well behaved, and eager to please. All are developmentally behind, we had a sort of group therapy session with their psychologist today. The eldest goes once a week, the others every other week. We had a birthday party for the little one yesterday. She is now 3. Her sister turns 4 on the 29th.

Friends, family, and perfect strangers have been amazing about helping out for Christmas. I have only had to purchase a few items, and the girls are going to have a very merry Christmas indeed. Children's services is going to throw a party for all foster children on the 22nd. Their Mother will be there, and my mom (the social worker mom) is driving all the way to Portland to go with us.Each girl has a sparkly new holiday dress for the occasion. The social worker is on vacation, and they have asked me to semi supervise the visit, my Mom thinks this is a bad idea, since I have never met the mother before, she she is tagging along to keep an eye on things. In general I am happy but anxious, exhausted and excited. There are not enough hours in the day and the mountain of laundry in the utility room grows ever more gigantic. I should probably go tend to it now, before it explodes.

More soon.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

I actually managed to get a good chunk of that done yesterday. I have a parent teacher conference with the kindergarten teacher tomorrow at 1.30pm. the social worker and the speech pathologist will be there as well. I have a booster seat, but will have to get Brian to set it up. The rain is coming down in a torrent and we have no garage, so he is likely to get fairly wet doing that. Streets starting to flood a bit. I slipped in the mud last night and hurt my hand and shoulder. My one good shoulder that does not have tendinitis in it. I feel like such an old lady. I got another container to store the toys, the diapers and hair things. Did you know that a package of 56 girls pullups is 21 dollars!?! Im looking to buy some old school plastic training pants. It seems that the little one is still in regular diapers, so Im guessing shes not potty training at all. She turns 3 next week. I think that now is the time, and I have to say that Im pretty good at potty training girls. Speaking of peeing pants, Ive been so excited that I feel like I could. I can hardly imagine a nicer Christmas present for me. I know its selfish, because I know this is a dreadful time of year to move the girls. They see their Mother every Friday, and will do so tomorrow. Then they are coming here! We are to serve them dinner and drive them home. They will be here from 4:30 to 6:30.
It seems that the girl's current foster parents got their court appointed lawyer invovled yesterday (girls lawyer) and the caseworker had to spend some time convincing her that it is the right thing to do. Lawyer is on DHS's side now.

Ive been in contact with one particular clinic in Guadalajara. I sent some basic info to the doc. This could be a trip for summer of 2011. We will see how long the girl's stay. Im pretty set on an IVF at this point, but still debating a mini IVF or saving for a regular one. Even if I miscarry again, I will be able to say that I did everything in my power to give Brian a child. And hopefully have some peace, of some kind in 2012. Embryo donation is not yet totally off the menu, its just not going to happen anytime soon.

Anyone have an idea of what I should serve the girls for dinner tomorrow? Something safe like chicken nuggets and fries? Pizza? I dont want to feed them junk right away, but I want them to be able to relax and enjoy their meal without worrying if they dont like it.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Devil is in the details

Ive started making a list of things that either need to be done in order to prepare for the arrival of the girls, and things that I must not forget to do once they get here.

1. purchase child sized bed pillows and pillow cases (dont forget plastic mattress cover for larger bed)
2. purchase and install a booster seat in the van for the eldest
3. toiletries.. shampoo, detangler, brushes and combs, ribons, bows and hair ties, teeth cleaning implements, body wash etc.
4. pull up diapers for the middle one to wear at night, and the youngest to use all the time. flushable wipes.
5. some more storge containers for toys.
6. figure out how the school bus is going to transport the eldest, from out of district. (I already bugged the social worker about this, so hopefully its being seen to)
7. make appointment to meet with the kindergarten teacher.
8. try to get their pediatrician on the phone to ask general questions about their asthma, and health.
9. see how we can get on the list for the middle girl to go to Head Start
10. figure out when all of their appointments are
12. grocery shopping for kids
13. get a general idea of what the two younger ones might like to do for their December birthdays.
14. Try not to think about their infant sibling too much.

To be continued....

Friday, December 3, 2010

a date with three girls..

Brian and I have a play date with the girls set up for next Friday. They will visit with us at our house for a few hours. Then on Saturday, we will go to their current foster home. Sunday they have a farewell party with their foster family, and Monday they come here. It seems a little truncated, the transition. But I can live with it, I just hope their little hearts dont break again. Its a damn shame that they have to be shuttled around.

The caseworker said today, that she wants to speak with me more about fostering their infant sibling after mom gives birth in late jan/ early feb. That would make for an awful full house. Of course I want the newborn here. I guess we will just let it play out. Its totally possible that mom will split the state.


Considering the cost of IUI with injects here in Portland (probably around 2500 dollars per cycle) I started thinking, maybe I want to do IVF instead. Ive been looking at clinics in Guadalajara, Mexico. They have many US and UK trained RE's, who speak English. I love the state of Jalisco and have always wanted to venture inland from the coast. So my feelers are out, Im making calls. Asking around on message boards, been in contact with one couple from the UK that has done this, another from the US. A regular IVF with nothing fancy like PGD or donor eggs, would cost at least 15 thousand dollars where I live. A regular IVF in Mexico would cost anywhere from 3-6 k depending on the clinic. They are also offering a mini IVF, which has appealed to me. They mostly stimulate with clomid, and throw in a few shots. Try to get one or two goood eggs out of it, and transfer. Pregnancy rates a bit lower, but still higher than what I could expect with a donated embryo FET. To consider all of this, I have to ignore the RPL demon sitting on my right shoulder and whispering that I will just miscarry anyhow. That my eggs are all rotten. For my family, coming up with 4 thousand dollars and travel expenses, is still a LOT of money. This is a huge risk and I have to weigh it all very carefully and begin to squirrel away the cash.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

the same

Still waiting. The current foster family has been informed, and they are freaking out. Two social workers are going early next week to explain more about why the girls are being removed, and how they will be transitioning them. You would think this would be normal part of foster parenting. Some situations just are not a good match. A little more foresight might have prevented this from happening but thats not certain.

So now they say start transition the week of the 13th. I can live with that, but will be awful irritated if we wait for over a month all told, only to have it fall through in the end.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A change of heart

I decided to have a nice long think and try to get to the bottom of why I have been so angry and anxious lately. Im angry because I am anxious. I am anxious because I have no control over whats happening right now. No control over Brian being wishy washy about embryo donation. No control over when they place kids in my house. I have given up my job to be a foster mother, but most of my time has been spent waiting. I think its reasonable that I am a little on edge about this. My next thought was, what can I do? I can run everything past Brian. And I did. He is a bit anxious and uncertain himself. He confirmed that he is just not feeling an embryo donation attempt. He wants another shot at a bio child.

Im going to speak to Dr. B (RE) about an IUI with inject cycle or two for this spring. I know we havnt had much luck with our own genetic material. I know that its a long shot, even getting pregnant this way. So far they havnt been keen on my doing IUI with injects, because of the cost, and because its not any sort of treatment for RPL, not to mention that I was responding fairly well to oral meds. It seems that at this late date, after years of trying and so many failed medicated cycles that its reasonable to ask for gonadotropins. I still feel that if pregnant, I stand a decent chance of carrying to term. I know adopting a few little embryos is a much safter way to hedge our bets, but Brian just isnt there quite yet. Embryo donation is something that can be done in a year, or in 5 years. Im still only 34. I have to keep telling myself that lots of women have babies in their late 30's and early 40's. My Grandmother's each had a baby in their 40's. In fact my paternal grandma got married at 28. Her first child (Henry) was born still. A year later, she gave birth to boy girl twins, then proceded to have 5 more children.

I think part of my anger has been coming from having to except that this is still a process. That my chances of a quick fix faded a long time ago. I just have to do what I can, and that is all I can do. I gotta except that I could still be childless, and trying for years to come. If I didnt want this so bad, I would have already given up.

Friday, November 26, 2010


I cant remember all the stages of grief. I seem to get stuck in the anger stage. I thought it was nearly over, but the past week or so, I have been waking up with panic attacks, in a blind, red, rage. I dream of having to exlain to random people, the reason that I have no children. How do you let go of the anger? To think of everything that still needs to be done in order for me to have a child to call my own pisses me off. For most people, its easier than ordering takeout. An afternoon quicky produces a live child. I hate that it all has to be tied up with time and money and negotation. My options have narrowed down to three. Adopt through foster care (long shot) give birth via embryo donation (long shot) Be content without children (Im not sure this is possible). Brian is tepid about embryo donation. I think in the end, he does not want to spend the money. The measly 8 grand or so that it would cost to try it twice. This also makes me angry, but I cant discuss it calmly right now. Im angry with him for being wishy washy and leaving everything up to me. He never asks what the next step is, and never inniates conversation. The anger makes me feel like everything is a farce, everything is impossible and Im a fool to keep trying. I feel boxed in and beaten down. Im still mad at the medical community, for not caring. So mad that Im not even sure I can do the embryo donation thing without blowing a fuse. I wonder how long I have to stay angry (and the anger is always followed by sadness) before I finally just dont care anymore. Do you allot yourself an amount of time before you give up, or a number of foiled plans or procedures? I suppose its time to haul myself back to the therapist. Since Im not trying to get pregnant I can have my zoloft, and my ativan. I had a panic attack before going to Costco the other day, a full blown crying meltdown. So I guess my anxiety is back in full force. I really just want to feel like a normal person and not a walking time bomb, at some point. No matter what happens.

In foster care news, there is none. The social workers didnt get it together to start the transition last week. They still havnt even told the current foster family, which of course also makes me mad! The sooner this transition happens, the better for the girls. Im angry at their caseworker for putting them in a foster home that was too full and under resourced to start with, and leaving them there for 6 months. They say they have to tell the family in person, and are waiting on the family's certifier to do the dirty work. I cant figure out why this wouldnt be the caseworker's job as shes the one actually moving them. Ive been assured it will all take place this next week. My sister is getting married on the 4th, and I have booked us a hotel room at the Eugene Hilton. With an extra queen bed for the girls. Im a little worried that an overnight trip right after placement is going to be confusing for them, but I suppose it could also serve as a good distraction. A wedding has to be interesting for little girls. Flowers, cake, big frilly dresses. Their room is all ready and I am slogging through the long holiday weekend, waiting.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

a little added interest

Yesterday I finally had my first long conversation with the girl's caseworker. Lots of interesting information, and Im even more sure I want to do this. Most interesting of all is the fact that their mom is pregnant. The baby will most likely be taken into care. In Oregon, placement with siblings trumps everything else, so its not totally out of the question that Brian and I will have that infant here after its born in early feb, as the girls will almost certainly still be here by then. Unless of course some random relative who is willing and able to take 4 kids shows up out of nowhere. They have been looking for family for 6 months with no luck. Bio dad just failed a homestudy with flying colors in another state.

I got a packet from the clinic in Reno today, but there really wasnt much in it. It says in bold letters on the first page that people with "significant" medical problems such as diabetes or recurrent pregnancy loss will be excluded from the program. Thanks for nothing, I phoned them and bitched about the wording, told them it was too vauge. Last time I checked, recurrent miscarriage wasnt a significant medical problem, otherwise somebody would give a shit. And nobody does, at least Ive never met the medical professional who even claims to. Of course the coordiantor knows NOT THING ONE about recurrent pregnancy loss and has no idea why it would preclude somebody from trying donated embryos.. UGH. I told her that my problem is most likely egg quality based, and that I have no anatomical issues or immune system problems. Dead silence on the phone, she had no clue. Im reluctant to pay for a dr. consult anywhere, just to have them say Im out on a technicality. The seattle clinnic wont feed me that horse hockey, but the Nevada clinic has better stats.. I just dont know.

Monday, November 15, 2010

be very very quiet

shhh, I dont want to jinx myself but it looks like soon there will be three (count them) little girls residing in my house. A sibling group 2, 3, and 5 years of age. I am waiting for their social worker to phone and iron out the details. The placement workers say its a go. Last Friday our certifier sent an email explaining that Brian and I had 3 choices.

1. The three girls
2. sibling group of 2, boy and girl
3. wait for an infant (which is what she really wanted for us)

I felt compelled to take the three, dont ask me why. Call it a gut feeling. Im pretty certain there will be infants in our future, from social services or otherwise. I am now almost sure that I will do an embryo donation cycle at the Nevada Center for Reproductive medicine in Reno, this coming late spring/early summer. This gives me time to lose some weight, get the records transfered, do my initial consults and counseling, and save some $$$. Im waiting for paperwork from them, including a list of the embryos they have on ice. Rumor has it that they have quite a few made with donor eggs... mmm nice fresh young eggs so much less likely to go wonky in my uterus of doom.

I will post as soon as I know when the girls will arrive. We are hoping for at least a week to get to know them first. They are currently in shelter care foster home. Their mom is homeless and has other "issues".

Monday, November 8, 2010


The boys are gone, they found an uncle who made it through a lot of hoops. A paternal uncle, with young children and a wife. I drove them there last Friday evening, it was sad to leave them screaming and clinging to our legs. We didnt know they were leaving until Thursday night, and it came as a bit of a surprise as we were told they would be in our care for a "long time" which in DHS speak tends to mean a year or more.

We are now getting the house in together for the next placement. Not much else to say, Im feeling a little drained, excited for whats next but cautious. The next placement could take a few weeks, as our certifier is being selective and I think she took us off the emergency care hotline. She wants us to have a fighting chance to adopt.

I bought a car last week, I had been walking and taking public transport for about 2 years. Nice to have the freedom to move about, car seats purchsed ones that go from 5 to 100 lbs if need be. My husband has been delightful about the entire foster parenting process and is very much in his element.

I took some of the mexican clomid this cycle, even though I said I wouldnt. Ha. Im 9 dpo and feeling my period coming, at least Im pretty sure, average lp these days is 9 or 10 days.

Brian has prepared for me an eggnog latte. Im of to enjoy it and see about dinner. Oh, my youngest sister is marrying the only boy she has ever dated in early December(they are both 21) Its going to be a small wedding at my parent's house. I have to figure out what to wear, and what to get them for a gift. Any suggestions for casual, winter, afternoon, wedding attire?

Friday, October 15, 2010


I meant to update a bit sooner, but its been a circus around here. Social workers, lawyers, boys, activities, car shopping, boys, toys, shopping, eating, eating , eating. The boys went from eating nearly nothing to consuming massive portions and wanting to eat all the time. Knowing what we do now about their legal situation, we are assuming they will be here at least 6 months, if not a year. It started as an emergency weekend placement. The social worker and court appointed lawyer are busy trying to find suitable family for long term placement or adoption. So far it's not looking so great this side of the border. If they find family in Mexico, then they will have to deal with the mexican consulate and that can be a long, tedious process. I really wish I could post pictures so you could all see the cuteness. I can easily tell them apart these days, and wonder why I couldnt at first. D has a rounder face and weighs more. B is more verbal and makes a lot of silly faces. Their grandmother wanted me to know that they speak almost no spanish. They also dont speak English. B has about 10 words, D only 4 or 5. Average for two is something like 50. They see a doctor next week and it will be interesting to know how much they weigh, how tall etc.

My life is 100% wrapped up in these boys. Everything else seems a bit trivial. I still want to attempt a donor embryo pregnancy, but It will probably wait until they are either with family or available for adoption. I have gone from being my husband's sun moon and stars, to playing second (third) fiddle to the twins. Its amazing to see him with them and gives me all sorts of warm fuzzy feelings. It feels like a family, even if its not forever.

Saturday, October 2, 2010


Im not sure how much I can share on this blog. I guess I can say that the boys were taken from a big drug bust. Their caseworker goes to court on Monday, then we will know more. Its hard not to hope that they will stay at least for a few months. They are clean and well cared for, but not bilingual as they told me on the phone yesterday. They only speak Spanish, and some twin gibberish, and not much at all. They do say mama? (looking for her everywhere) mine! and no! They cried and cried and screamed for the better part of yesterday evening. Bloody murder. Today they awoke crying, then just the occasional sniffle and huge tear. Asking for mama and grandma.At the risk of sounding cliche, I will say that I am bone tired already. My mother was here today to help. Its very emotional having them here because they are so sad. They have a new stroller, and are very very fond of it. Relaxed enough this afternoon to play a bit. Not eating much of anything. between the two of them today they consumed 4 small packets of animal crackers, two fish fingers, 2.5 bananas, 16 oz milk and 24 oz watered down juice. And all of my glass of icewater when I wasnt looking. So far I say ist been worth the classes and the invasive homestudy. Just to be able to give these frightened little boys some of what they need.

Friday, October 1, 2010


I have twin two year olds sleeping in my nursery. They are 26 months,identical boys, big for their age, hispanic, beautiful, and very upset. more tomorrow.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

What do you know!?

I got a message from our foster/adopt certifier today. She said that she turned in our homestudy/file to her supervisor yesterday, and it's going to be "staffed" tomorrow. I wasn't at all sure what staffing meant, so I phoned m stepmother who said that it means that it will be reviewed and signed and DONE tomorrow. Probably along with a few other people on our certifier's case load. Whew! Since Brian and I are being put on the shelter care hotline list, stepmom says we could be getting calls as early as tomorrow evening, as lots of kids need shelter care at night and on the weekends. Of course they will be looking for a longer term placement for us, but sometimes a shelter placement can lead to a long term foster placement, and its the best way to get babies right from the hospital.
Very excited, will update soon.

On another topic, Ive been in email contact with an RE on the East coast with some special RPL credentials. He told me to get Brian in for a sperm DNA fragmentation test. Have any of you heard of this or done it? My own RE has not mentioned it. He seems to think its just as likely to be a male factor thing as something wrong with my eggs. Who knows? If the test came back abnormal, we would be willing to consider a few donor sperm,clomid, IUI cycles.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


I met my certifier for a picinic lunch on Saturday. It was pleasant enough, I got to visit with a couple of other adoptive parents/people waiting to become adoptive parents. The certifier was dropping hints that our paper work is not all that close to done. That we won't be hearing from her again til she finishes her vacation in late October, which stinks a bit because she said we would be done by first week of October, at the start of September. Before that she had told me start of September at the latest. I know she only works part time. I know shes probably over worked, but I would just appreciate a realistic time frame so I can carry on with other parts of my life! I for SURE wouldn't have left my job in August, had I known. I am reminded of our time dealing with US immigration. Brian and I felt so uncomfortable with the fact that one or two government workers had such a huge say on how we lived, on what our future together would be like.

I have been learning more about the new policy regarding engaging family / extended family in care plans and permanancy plans. They are looking for any family, anywhere. Current caregivers are given no preference. IF parental rights are terminated, IF no capable family can be found, then its possible to adopt. These rules just changed as of July 1st. My stepmother and the social worker have told me this throws a pretty big wrench in trying to adopt a child under 5 from foster care. My gut feeling is that this is not going to be the way we will expand our family in the long term. After all this work and waiting. Im feeling quite tired again. We of course will still foster children, under the assumption that they will all be returned to parents or family, but I think its time to actually put a plan for the Embryo donation cycle in place.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Sitting tight

Time is moving slowly at my house. I've been biding my time. Pottering about the nursery. The crib arrived and I put it togther by myself. Not so lucky with the changing table, which required Brian who drank beer and sang along with the Smiths while erecting the thing. Showing that he is both manly and sensitive. Heh. My mother and I have been second hand shopping. I have a few outfits for preschool or toddler aged children. Jeans, sweaters, pajamas. There are lots of baby things, sleepers, onsies, receiving blankets, bottles, crib bedding. I feel like a big imposter, of course. Be that as it may, there will be flesh and blood children inhabiting these beds and these clothes in the near future. I just wish there wasnt such a wait. Always the WAIT.

The saftey inspection went fine. Social worker claims to be "almost finished" with the rough draft of the homestudy write up. She sent an email yesterday, saying that Brian told her I had cancer in my teens. What?! I did have a tumor. A giant fibroid aidenoma in my right breast, had a pretty good scare but they took it out and said it wasnt malignant. I was 19. Anyhow, I guess Brian never really got the gist of that whole story considering that it took place years before I met him. He thought it was cancer, she wanted to know what my prognosis was. Im pretty sure she thought I was hiding that from her. Ha! Funny now but how akward.

Ive been out numbered by Brian and my OB. They both say to try another 2 or 3 clomid cycles, so here we go again in the next few days. This cycle I will skip the luteal phase progesterone, and get my 7 dpo level taken to try to confirm ovulation. OB agreed to this as the suppliments were the RE's idea.

I am planning a trip to Iceland and the UK for November of 2011. We will rent a little flat near the sea in Norfolk for a couple of weeks (not too far from Brian's parents) then spend a week in Reykjavik which is supposed to be beautiful that time of year. There is that to look forward to and to plan things around.

Saturday, September 4, 2010


I was cleaning my kitchen a few days ago. I cant remember the exact chain of thought that brought on this revelation, but suddenly I was moved to tears when it occured to me that this is not my fault. Any time during the past couple of years, if you had asked, I would have asserted that of course it wasnt my fault that I had miscarried so many times. That I was infertile. But secretly I was pretty sure that it was. I had somehow been careless with those pregnancies. Worried too much, and my infertility was due to a character flaw. Or not taking good enough care of my health, caused by my anxiety disorder. That women who can manage to bring a pregnancy to term are somehow superior and I inferior. That if I wasnt hoisting around my rather stout, 4 year old niece, or squating to dig my 12 lb Le Creuset dutch oven out of the bottom shelf of my cupboard, then I wouldnt have started bleeding either time. The embryos could have made a better attachment. If I could just have cultivated enough of that non chalant lightness that makes other women "relax" and sail through their pregnancies unharmed, and also allows them to become pregnant easily.

I suppose by feeling that I was to blame, I somehow was making it less sad. Its not tragic, if its your own damn fault. Being blameless almost makes me feel more vulnerable. It IS sad. it IS unfair. Terribly fucking unfair, and now I get to grieve it a little more proper.

Monday, August 30, 2010


hello blog land. Im back from vacation in Northern California, and feeling mostly refreshed for it. Brian and I had our final homestudy interview with the foster/ adopt certifier on Friday. Whew.. what an invasive process. Every regulating body in the state of Oregon is totally nuts. We continue to inch closer to certification/ placement but its sort of slowed down to a crawl. This coming Thursday is the final saftey inspection, and walk through. We have a check list and its my job these next few days to be sure that everything is ticked off. Most of my vacation time was spent chatting with my stepmom, who had a TON of interesting info to share about the child welfare system and what is likely to happen with our adoption attempts. She has worked for the agency for 22 years. She said that sadly, family is ALWAYS given prefrence for adoptions these days. Even if its super extended family. Even if the child is already comfortable in a foster care setting and has been since birth. That said, often family members interested in adoption, wont be cleared or wont pass a homestudy. My certifier explained it as the apple does not fall far from the tree theory, but they do have to give family a chance. Adpopting through the state is possible, but not as easy as it was a few years ago, when they did give current caregivers some clout. My stepmom mentioned that she was pretty sure they would have us in mind as medical foster parents. This hadnt crossed my mind much, because I am not a nurse. I know a few practical nurses that do this for a living and I thought you had to have nursing skills. Ive been told that because of what I have done for work, caring for the elderly in their homes with nursing delegations for certain things like G tube feeding, medication admin, and wound care, that I can easily be put on the list to take infants that require a little extra care. Of course they wont give me anything that I cant handle. At least I hope not. Anyhow, the certifier confirmed that this is what she was planning to do, and she told me to start buying stuff for an infant! Finally ordered a crib Friday night and it should be here in a few days. Nursery room is getting totally douched out and we are setting up a shelving unit for plastic bins in the dirt basement. I plan to post some before and after pics in the next few weeks. Its a lovely feeling, knowing that our child is going to live in this nursery, in this house. Im still keen on embryo donation and might try it sooner than later. Perhaps this spring, even if we have foster kids. Nothing wrong with trying to complete the family in one fell swoop, is there?

Monday, August 9, 2010

catch up

This week has been a bit of a nightmare. Brian had his second solo interview with our certifier on Friday. He told her a few things I wish he could have left out. Unflattering things about his family, my family, and me. Im not up for candy coating who we all are or lying about anything, as we really have nothing to hide. Its just that some nitty gritty details could have been left out. Brian is like George Washington, he cannot tell a lie. He confessed to me friday evening, his defense was that he wasnt going to lie by omission, and I was saying that they never even asked about these things. He volunteered, and in my opinion embellished. UGH. Anyhow, this cumulated in my accusing him of attempting to sabotage our efforts to be foster parents. I was reptilian and mean about it for the better part of the evening. I simply couldnt stand the thought of having yet ANOTHER thing taken from me, should our application be denied. I finally came around to thinking that it is what it is. Brian is who he is and I wouldnt really want him to be any different. They will either approve us to be foster or adoptive parents or they wont.

Our homestudy is dragging on a bit. I thought the interview on friday would be the last until we did a final interview about placement and the saftey walkthrough. It seems that our certifier wants both of us to go to her office this coming friday to be interviewed on our own, one last time. I will wait in the lobby while brian does his, and then we will switch. All told we will have done 17 hours of interview and soemthing ike 32 hours of classes. Ive been asking around, people who have done this in other states think this process is a bit insane. I phoned my stepmother who works for DHS this morning, and she said its a brand new home study protocol and nobody knows exactly what they are doing. She hasnt done one or seen one yet.

My last day of work came and went without much fanfare. There was a cake, as promised. Ive still plenty to do to get things in order for our future foster children, but am also wondering what to do with myself. I want to take a class this fall, there is a Tango school up the street. Or maybe painting at the community college. Now that Im not doing fertility treatments I want to live like an adult for a while. An adult who has interests other than peeing on various kinds of sticks and spreading her legs for any doctor who will have a peek. I want girls nights out with wine and intellectual stimulation. I want my pre infertility / pregnancy loss life back, but I hardly remember who I was a few years ago. Its going to take a bit of effort.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Wait list

I am on a wait list for embryo donation at a clinic in southern California. They say the average wait time is 1.5 years. Im still going to check out the clinic in Seattle but I do like to have more than one option. The clinic in CA charges a bit less for this procedure, but of course I would have to factor in travel costs and some extra monitoring with my RE here in portland before I flew out for the transfer. The seattle clinic insists on several counseling sessions with a therapist that knows something about embryo donation before their clients procede. I think this is fair, although I doubt anyone locally would have a clue. My HMO had a hard enough time searching for somebody qualified to deal with recurrent pregnancy loss. Im trying not to get caught up in all of this, its really back burner stuff for the time being.

My last day of work is this coming saturday. There will be a party with cake on friday. Our garden shed is finished and we are in the process of filling it with some of the stuff from our "spare" rooms. The new AC unit has saved us a few sleepless nights, though so far this summer has been pretty cool. Friends from other parts of the country find it hard to believe that we get such hot summers here, and the fact that we hardly ever see any snow in the winter.

Im making a few plans for the time between quitting work and getting kids. I might make a trip to Eugene to see my dad and friends in my hometown. A long weekend to the coast may also be in order, one last private weekend with Brian before our lives change considerably.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

another bust

Im not pregnant. This brings to an end a long year of trying to get knocked up. My last pregnancy was in July/August of last year. I have no idea why I was able to become pregnant so easily with meds starting 2 years ago and now.. nothing. Im still ovulating Brian is still producing motile sperm. My only thought is that I have an egg quality issue, and it keeps getting worse as I age. When I was in my 20's, I could get pregnant on my own, but had a tendency to bleed / miscarry in early pregnancy. Weather or not I will try again.. ugh. Right now I say no. Im tired beyond measure and sick of having so many hormones in my system. I have felt like the world is caving in on me the past couple of days, and really its just that I stopped my luteal phase progesterone and will soon get my period.

Embryo donation, still being seriously considered. Just not at all sure that i want to keep beating up my ovaries with more clomid.

The social worker was here for 4 hours interviewing Brian today. Its my turn tomorrow. I have 8 more days of work left. My stepfather is coming this weekend to help Brian erect the garden shed. This will give us some much needed storage for the things that are in our spare rooms. Next week I might start painting the children's rooms. I fancy a sort of sky blue with sunshine yellow accents in one room. not sure about the other. Our entire house is painted a light charcoal gray with white wood/ trim. I dont like it, too drab for this part of the country. Still undecided about furnishings. Used or unused. probably best to get a crib and mattress new but Im still on the hunt for dressers/ changing tables. For those of you who have children, how essential is a rocking chair or glider, for an infant? My mother rocked me to sleep every night until I was about 8, I was also breastfed until I was two and a half. I think mom practiced attachment parenting before it had a name. Anyhow, I wonder if most kids enjoy being rocked as much as I did.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


I just phoned that clinic in Eugene that is supposed to do embryo donation, only they dont. Not really "maybe one or two a year". They dont actually have any sort of program. I then phoned Oregon Health Sciences university fertility clinic. This is the other major clinic in town, other than mine. They dont do it either. Well they have, but only a handful of times in the many years they have been operatiing. So I got back on the phone and left messages at major clinics in Seattle and LA. I dont want to have to travel in the event that we do this, but it looks like there is no choice. I hate that this has to be so bloody hard, at every turn. I would love to wake up to a baby, in a basket, on my doorstep. Hell if Im going to travel I might as well get a good vacation out of it. Maybe South Africa? Maybe somewhere in Eastern Europe. hmmm.

Homestudy has started, but not by any means finished. Brian has a 3 hour interview with our social worker on the 28th. 4 hours for me on the 29th, she said it will take longer because my family is "much more complicated". Which brings to mind this scene from the film Blade Runner

I actually have almost 100% good feelings about my mother, and well you know,, Im not a Replicant. So this should go just fine.

a week or so after that we will have our final interview and saftey inspection.

Work is winding down. I have to work tomorrow on what should be my day off, because we are putting on a carnival for the residents. Should be a real cluster f*ck! oh well, more money for me. I desire a petunia picklebottom diaper bag, but they cost more than my wedding ring did! Still havnt purchased anything for the kids rooms, but been shopping.


Monday, July 12, 2010


Is it possible that I am nesting in anticipation of foster children? Yesterday I washed/polished all my wooden blinds, which are on every window in the house. Very unlike me. Today I sanitized every surface in the kitchen, including all the appliances and bleached out the washing machine. Then, I decided it was time to seal/stain the grout on the entire kitchen floor. its midnight and I have just finished. I had Brian order a kit for a new garden shed,, I could go on. Maybe Im just paranoid about the homestudy, but maybe nesting instinct isnt totally hormone based. perhaps its psychological. hmm. I wonder if other fostering/adopting parents get this urge.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


Our foster certifier will be here most of this coming Friday afternoon. This will be the first time we have met with her face to face. This is the start of the homestudy, my guess is that she will come out one final time before placement and that she will make us go to her office in the next couple of weeks so we can be interviewed seperately regarding what our foster/ adoption instructor calls the "sex,drugs, and rock & roll" questionnaire. We have 3 Thursday evening classes to finish, that wrap up on August 5th.

My emotional bank account at work is running pretty dry. I am an activity director at a large nursing home, and we have some very challenging residents at the moment. These are not sweet old men and ladies, these are physically disabled folks in their 50's and 60's who are also mentally ill. They manipulate, lie, try to get you fired, and are physically violent, and Im just feeling burnt out! I have been doing similar work for the better part of 11 years and have never had so many buttons pushed. Four more weeks, four more weeks. Luckily I do have the support of a great mental health team at work who know that I have more 1 on 1 interaction with the residents than almost anyone else in the building, and they give me helpful coping tips.

I took a taxi home from work on friday night and somehow left my credit card in the cab. It was stolen. The credit card company phoned yesterday afternoon to say that there had been some shady looking charges made over the course of friday evening and saturday morning. 600 dollars worth. Of course we had the bank cancel the card and I filed a police report. An officer came out ten min. after I phoned. It seems that the culprit is not very intelligent and made purchases at major department stores and drug stores where there are video cameras. We wont have to pay for these charges but its still rather upsetting. The credit card company will have to pay and they will be the ones to press charges should it go to court at some point. I hate to think it was the cab driver.. ugh.

Not much to report as far as this femara cycle goes. Cycle day 11 with a lilly white OPK. Side effects not to bad this time around, except for one day of splitting headache and a couple of hotflashes. Maybe slightly more irritable than usual, but that could also be attributed to the 100 degree heat we had for a few days.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Donated Embryos ?

Have any of you looked into this, or known anyone who has done it? I thought of it about 6 months ago but put it on the back burner because we didnt have anyone locally who was doing it. I found out today that a clinic in Eugene (100 miles south of me) is doing this, for a flat fee. The cost is a fraction of what a traditional IVF or IVF with donor eggs would be. Its sort of like adopting potential children. Brian says he might be willing to give it a shot, if we find ourselves no closer to either adopting or birthing a year from now.
I dont have pneumonia, so far as they can tell. I was given a big dose of broad spectrum antibiotics which will end today, just in case. Coughing up less stuff so maybe there was some sort of low grade bacterial infection in there. I have gained 7 lbs in the past 2.5 weeks on the steroids. Gulp. Im still easily winded and a little wheezy in the evenings. The steroids are done in 4 days, and I really hope I never have to take them again. To think I used to be a smoker, cant imagine that now.

A packet of Femara appeared at my door this past week. A gift from a friend and I decided to play doctor and up my dose to 5mg. I produced one mature follicle on 2.5 but my lp was still so darned short, even with the double luteal phase prometrium. My OB thinks the higher doses are better for my crumby lp for some reason. I figure it cant hurt. This will be the last cycle before I take a 3 month break. I will take the 3 final doses of clomid and perhaps one final dose of femara, and if I still dont have a baby thats probably the end. I will still have the mexican clomid but Im feeling like I have to draw the line somewhere. Some research suggests diminishing returns after 3 non pregnant medicated cycles but I think thats all out the window for somebody like me with an ovulation disorder, who ovulates on the meds and has been pregnant on them several times. I cant afford injects even if my RE was willing to do them. Ive told Brian that in 5 or 6 years I would like to try a pregnancy with donor eggs, if we have the 20 grand, but perhaps by then we will have completed our family through adoptions.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

x ray

I am going in for a chest xray today. I dont know when yet, the advice nurse is asking my PCP what he wants to do exactly. I was up all night hacking and wheezing, had to try and sleep sitting up on the couch again. The predinsone should be helping with the asthma/ inflamation but the infection (whatever it is) keeps having its way with me and starting the cycle all over again. Im hoping antibiotics will be a quick fix and I can get off the 'roids, which make my heart beat too fast and cause me to feel really gross.

I gave notice at work the other day, did I mention that? 5 weeks til I am a housewife. Who knows how many weeks til I am a foster mother. The thought of the pitter patter of little feet warms my heart and brian is already sentimental about it. he got some fantastic Where the Wild things Are wall stickers the other day, to decorate a kids room. Im still not sure how to prepare for kids when we have no idea what age they will be. My stepmother (the child welfare worker) told me that I should get a crib that converts to a toddler bed, a pack and play, and a twin bed which should cover most situations that could arise. Because Brian is willing to adopt a preschool aged child, its pretty likely that we will end up adopting through the state at some point. Its just more likely that a 3 or 4 year old will be available, but we are not ruling out an infant or sibling group. This is all exciting, and has made me consider that I need to really start doing some work to not only prepare our home for these children, but myself. I dont want to be frustrated and grieving when we accept kids, I want to be open and strong.

Monday, June 28, 2010

I should know better

I took an hpt today, at aprox 9 days past ovulation. I really should know better. The test was negative and now I feel like I want to puke. I actually cried. Ive been fooling myself to think I dont have a serious emotional attachment to these medicated cycles. I hate my body for being so sick this past month, and just not doing what its supposed to. Ever. If I wasnt STILL trying to get pregnant I would take a valium right about now.

My cousin who is 7 months pregnant wrote me an email today saying that she knows Im trying to become a foster parent. Who the hell told her that? My mother no doubt. I never told my mom not to tell, but the information seems so delicate to me. If this all falls through its just one more thing for people like my super fertile cousin whos been pregnant "every time she forgot to use birth control" to feel sorry for me about. I dont really want people to feel sorry for me. Contrary to how it might seem after reading my blog for a while, I dont really want everyone and their mother to know how fucking painful things have been for me, and what we are doing to try to become a family. Since everyone also seems to have strong opinions about foster care, having everyone know also puts me in a vulnerable position, I just dont care to explain myself to ANYONE. The first person who asks me if I want my "own" kids is going to get a big kick in the teeth. As is the next person who tells me that people always get pregnant after they adopt. Where to people GET that sort of bullshit? do you tell urban legends to people with chronic illness, in the hopes of lifting their spirits? why on earth do people pull that crap with infertile women? My coworker told me he saw it all the time when he worked in OB. I gave him a look and he shut it, but still. I did mention to him that it does not matter a single bit if I somehow magically get pregnant after I foster or adopt because I miscarry all my babies. Anyhow, these are the comments Ive been hoping to avoid. Now that my cousin has this new bit of information, it wont be long before the rest of my huge family does too. I cant stand to think of anyone discussing it, or opining in any way.

I want to move about 3 thousand miles away to be alone with Brian and try to make some peace with my broken body. I should know better than to work myself into these sort of states. It all starts with thinking I could be pregnant, still thinking almost every day about when it will be time to say enough is enough. I want lots of options but it gets overwhelming. all the possible things that could happen, everything that might not happen. its exhausting.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


My lungs havnt improved, in fact they got worse as I started tapering off the steroids. they only gave me a 6 day taper to start. Yesterday I was back at the doctor, the asthma has reached the point where its scaring me and freaking the doc out a bit too. They gave me breathing treatments and a much longer course of the prednisone, at a way higher dose with the hope that will get things under control. If Im not better tomorrow, I will probably have to check myself into the hospital. How the hell did this happen? Ive had some mild asthma as an adult but never like this. Im considering going on an anti inflamatory diet after all this. it helped with a tendinitis flare up a few years ago. I feel like such a decrepit old lady. Im not thinking at all about being pregnant this cycle. I did take clomid, and have intercourse but with as sick as Ive been, its hard to imagine. Plus I ovulated late, and I never get pregnant when I ovulate late. ARG. Ive lost any reasonable expectation that the clomid is going to help me get pregnant. I know it still could, and did in the past its just not computing in my brain. My brain says "this hasnt worked the last 5 times, why should it this time". My OB sent an email today saying that shes hopefull for me, and to call her if I need anything. Thats pretty sweet of her.

I got another nice email today from our foster care certifier.Shes ready to start the homestudy as soon as we turn in our huge long invasive application and questionaire packet. so maybe next week she will come out and interview us.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


I made it to urgent care today. Just couldnt manage to go to work, cause I cant breathe. my oxygen levels are ok but my asthma is waaay out of control flared up due to bronchitis. The doctor didnt think I have a bacterial infection, so no antibiotics but STEROIDS. wtf? I think I remember my brother having to get shots of the stuff when he would have life threatening asthma attacks as a small child. They gave me a six day course of pills. It made me think of the articles I have read about steroid treatment for women with elevated NK cell levels. Ive never been tested for this cause my docs think its a bunch of hooey. Do any of you know anything about the whole nk cell theory and why steroids might help? Im willing to practice most any sort of medical voodoo to try to carry a pregnancy to term. Although Im not going to pay for IVIG, I would do it as part of a controlled study. Sadly nobody is doing those in my neck of the woods, Dr. Mary Stephenson is doing it in Chicago, but I think right now shes focusing on IVIG for women who are having secondary rpl, or whatever they call the situation where a woman has had children, but is unable to carry again.
Here we are about six months before we got married, I was 28 and Brian was 25.


and a few recent ones




Monday, June 14, 2010


I wanted to have a little whine. I am ill, came down with a sort of shallow cough a couple of weeks ago which has progressed into a hacking, productive cough, which has since devolved into a wheezy, hurting, gasping for air. I need to get myself back into the doctor. Im calling it bronchitis and hoping they wont think its bacterial and that I need antibiotics. I am on cycle day 11 and dont want to take any drugs. Im worried that this months TTC efforts will be fruitless because of the illness. I was sick before ovulation time last cycle too. It just feels like a waste of time and a waste of clomid and I am seriously too sick to be participating in procreation type activities. But the show must go on, cue the Marvin Gaye. We managed last year in searing 100 degree heat, 93 degrees indoors at midnight, and I did get pregnant that cycle although I didnt stay pregnant very long. Im sick of everything being so forced and planned. It was old two years ago, now it seems like a bad joke.

My HSG was awful and painful, but the tubes are clear and the old uterus seems to be in good shape. The radiolgist told me only 2% of women who do the procedure, complain of that sort of pain. Im not sure where he got that stat, but you know. Go figure.

I just noticed that my last post was written on what would have been the first birthday of my "june baby" had he or she made it. June 8th. Thats the one that I really thought was going to be my take home baby. sigh. If they make it 9 weeks, with a heart and little arms and everything, why cant they stick around? It makes no sense.

Foster parenting classes still humming along for the most part, had to skip the one this evening, and wont be able to take it until the first week of August, which pushes our "graduation" back a week or two.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Once I eventually got a real department of human services worker on the phone, things started moving very quickly. On Saturday Brian and I sat through 3 hours of our introductory foster/ adoptive parenting session. Monday night, another 3 hours. We will be knocking out two classes a week for a the rest of the month, then we have to wait til mid July to take the last ones. From what I understand, the homestudy will start happening once we have finished half the classes. I think the hardest thing for me will be asking my shrink to write a letter stating that Im fit to foster/adopt. This is mostly a formality but its part of the medical history we need to submit. I told our certifier outright that I had been treated for anxiety this past year, directly after I spilled the beans about my miscarriages. She had asked me outright if Brian and I had attempted to have our own children. We have a HUGE packet of paperwork, forms and little psych evals that we have to fill out, which is giving me awful flashbacks of getting Brian through the US immigration process.

Speaking of flashbacks, has anyone else had odd visual disturbances on clomid? I almost always get them. My doctor says its not a big deal. I can only describe them as "tracers" and for those of you who didnt gobble up tons of psychedelic drugs during your mispent youth, I dont know what the sober equal to such a thing is. I am on cycle day 4, and will have HSG#2 Friday morning. I figured out a solution to the pain, I noticed I have some codeine in the cupboard. Ill probably end up having a codeine and clomid induced acid flashback when they fill my tubes up with dye.

I got a little baby blanket this evening. it was at a second hand shop but I plan to give it a good laundering. Its got Beatrix Potter animals on it, the same ones that Ive got framed pictures of. My friend Dina had a build it and they will come theory about baby rooms. It worked for Dina. Im having trouble figuring out how to prepare for children when I dont know how many or what ages they will be. Im guessing that this will end in a mad scramble for things the day before the children are placed. I suppose our caseworker will have some suggestions. Im thinking a cheap ikea crib or maybe a slightly more expensive one that converts to a toddler bed. Perhaps a single bed that would suit a toddler or school aged child. My Mom wants to throw me a foster child shower. I wasnt quite sure if this is approprite or tacky or what. Ive asked around a bit and most people say its a fine idea. My usual opinion of showers, weather for babies or weddings is that they tend to be vulgar displays of bad taste. I dont begrudge them to any of my friends though and to their credit, most have managed these things within the confines of not causing me want to vomit into my purse. My reason for perhaps making an exeption for a foster kid shower, is that we are really going to need so many supplies on such short notice. What do you think? Bad taste or good fun?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

No alarms and no surprises

I am not pregnant. Today Im about 11 days past ovulation and spotting. Negative pregnancy test. I wonder if its normal for people with a usually short luteal phase to continue having a short LP, even when they ovulate properly on drugs. Hmmm. Not that it probably matters much, as I seem to be able to become pregnant despite the short lp, assuming I do take meds. At least I USED to. I have no idea why I havnt been pregnant the past 5 medicated cycles. Could be luck of the draw, but I wonder if something has happend in the past 9 months, its been that long since sperm met egg and I produced HCG, however briefly. I am now two years older than I was when I started fertility treatments. This is part of the reason I decided to have another HSG. We are reasonably sure I am ovulating on the clomid, we know Brian isnt shooting blanks, even if his post wash count was piss poor last cycle. I wonder what other factors there could possibly be ? I think Im starting to understand how people with unexplained infertility must feel. Heres to hoping that the hysterosalpingogram blows out some dust and we are back in the swing of things this next cycle.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

whole new can of worms

I am more or less acccustomed to having people say rude, insensitive, or just ignorant things about my infertility. I am also used to hearing folks make similar comments about my recurrent pregnancy loss problem. My first live support group meeting here in portland had my cheeks burning and tears welling in my eyes when a woman told me "youre not infertile, you keep getting pregnant". Im slowly telling family and friends that Brian and I are planning to become foster parents, with a thought to adoption and now everything is turned up a notch. It now appears to be open season on discussing my failed attempts at delivering a baby, and to tell me all about how hard foster parenting is. Regaurdless of weather or not they have ever done it. People also like to recite the myriad reasons they would never do it. The thing is, nobody is asking them to. Brian and I want to do this because we think its the right thing for us. We feel its noble and worthwhile and a fine way to spend our time and resources, both emotional and financial. We dont know if it will end in the dream come true, of getting a child we can keep forever but it MIGHT. After everything I have been through these past couple of years MIGHT sounds pretty darn good. Like my friend "panamahat" mentioned the other day, we have to work with the resources that we have. To quote Bob Dylan "Life is sad, life is a bust, all you can do is do what you must you do what you must do and you do it well".

I suppose Brian and I will have to figure out how to navigate this new sensitive territory. Do you ignore these sorts of questions or comments, or do you attempt to educate people? I know that much of it stems from natural curiosity and concern for our well being and happiness.

If it does happen that I am pregnant during the course of these next few medicated cycles, Im almost certain that we will procede with the foster/ adoptive parenting classes. Brian has agreed to stay at his job another two years if need be. Im feeling like there really is more than one way for us to get to parent, and that we might be surprised by what happens in the end, and that feels good. I get so frustrated when I feel like I am running out of options.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

a little luck

A caseworker from the state finally phoned me, when I couldnt make it to my cell at work. But at least she tried. Turns out the woman I had been leaving messages for is no longer the person in charge of foster care info. I only wish the two people I actually got on the phone would have known this, they had assured me I had the right person/ right number. Oh well, ball rolling. Im thinking now that I have the right person I shouldnt have to play phone tag for too long.

Im thinking I MIGHT be pregnant this cycle. Dont ask me why, some months I just have a feeling. Ive been wrong almost as many times as I have been right. Of course it could always be psychosomatic. Time will tell. Im having a few indicators, stingy nipples, heart burn (I always get this super early in pregnancy) and the desire to take an afternoon nap today. I also had the faintest hint of blood in my CM today. I keep telling myself I wont take a test unless my period is several days late, but we know how well that usually works out.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The State

The state worker hasnt returned any of my calls. I spoke to somebody else in her office and they wont give me any information at all, except to say that nobody has any luck getting this woman on the phone and that if I dont hear from her by next tuesday, that they will shoot her an email on my behalf. I just want to know where I can get an application and when the next orientation class is. I also need to go in for fingerprinting but none of the literature they sent a few months ago provides any clue about where that might happen. Im reminded of the movie Brazil, only I cant even get my hands on a stupid 27b/6 form. I need a Mr. Tuttle to blow a bunch of shit into their office via a very complicated duct system. That would make me feel better. Seriously, I was told that they are bad about returning calls but this is stupid. How does anyone become a foster parent ? I asked my stepmother how I should proceed, and she said to give them another day or so, then get a supervisor on the phone. She works for the same department, only in a different city.

I wanted to tell Faith that she was so right about the 3 month average placement being incorrect. The average placement is actually something like 400 days. I think I will just need to be upfront about how long we are likely to be in Oregon. I can probably still do some shelter care or a shorter term placement.

Ive been cooking up a storm in recent days. blueberry muffins with strusel, turkey and italian sausage meatballs with fresh fennel, pasta with fava beans and a lovely pesto that I whipped up myself. We got a bunch of fava beans in our veg boxes the past couple of weeks. Anyone have any ideas about what else I could do with them ? besides serving them with human flesh and a nice chianti ala hanibal lecter ?

Fertility Friend says I ovulated on cycle day 15. I disagree and say 16 or 17. No matter, as we didnt really have enough sex this month to cover all our bases. It's possible but,, meh. My HSG is ordered for next cycle, I just have to call in when I get my period. The radiologist at kaiser is horribly inept at performing these things without pain. From what I have read, its really all about the finesse of the doctor. This time I am bringing my mommy and asking my OB for a something a bit stronger than Ibuprofen.

Im sort of wondering If Im really cut out for dealing with the state for a year or more, if Im bristling so much at a few rude receptionists and 2.5 days worth of unreturned calls. We will see.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


I don't think I mentioned that I smuggled 60 clomid tablets back from mexico. I got them at a reputable pharmacy directly from the mexican pharmacist, so Im fairly confident that the pills are just fine. I snuck them back in a clomid rx bottle. I have a prescription, but not for that many pills. I take 100 mg, so this is six months worth. Should I need it. I like having it as an option. I wrote my OB asking her to order another HSG for me. My last one was in June of 'o8. If Im going to keep consuming clomid and the like, I want to make sure that the tubes are all clear. I also cant help thinking that it very well could give a little fertility boost, even with the water based dye as opposed to the old school oil based dye. My OB has agreed to that. She said she would prescribe Femara if I prefer to take that so I dont have to pay so much to have monitored cycles with the RE, but I would prefer to stick with clomid for now. Its been proven to assist in getting me knocked up and I dont get the horrid side effects on it. I hardly notice that I'm on clomid at all.

Today is cycle day 17 and Im probably ovulating today. I had a positive OPK yesterday. Ive been using opks for YEARS and have finally figured out the clear blue ones are the most reliable.

We have decided to stay in our house for another year. I had a real estate agent out here last week. Who knew that we would have to come up with 20 grand in closing costs ? We are hoping to stay and build a little more equity,perhaps do a for sale by owner. Prices are going back up in my hood. Brian would still like to apply to grad school but we wouldnt need to relocate until late summer of 2011.

Thanks for responding to my last post. The three of you gave me a lot to chew on and mull over. I agree that IVF with donor eggs is a pretty great option if one can afford it. Who knows, maybe in 5 years the price will drop as it becomes more and more common. For now its probably wiser for me to dedicate my savings to an adoption. I wish the stupid adoption tax credit wasnt in constant danger of expiring.

Brian and I have agreed to take some foster children for the duration of the time we are in Portland. From what I understand the average placement is a few months, so we might go through a few sets of kids before we pack it up and move. My step mother works for the department of human services here in Oregon, so she knows everything there is to know about the foster system here and a possible foster to adopt situation. From what she says, people do adopt infants out of foster care fairly often, but you really cant bet on it. Its sort of about being in the right place at the right time. I know its not fair, but she has some inside info about the children in care that might give Brian and I an advantage. So if that happens, wonderful. If not, we still get our feet wet in the world of foster care. I get to direct some of the mommy instinct into something productive, and hopefully we can be of some benefit to kids who really need the attention of stable adults. We have two rooms in our house that arent being used for anything except neglected exercise equipment and book storage. After we do the classes and the homestudy, I will quit my job and get a mini van ! Isnt that wild ? Me, a stay at home "mom" even for a short while? Its what Ive been wanting. This is something we have been discussing for a long time. We know its a lot of hard work and will cause a major upheaval in our home, but I welcome it.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Support Group ?

Would any of you gals dealing with RPL be interested in forming a small support group ? I am no longer able to attend my real life, live group. Because there are too many pregnant women there at any given time, and they just go so late, and I always have to get up early the next morning to work. I was thinking we could find a live chat room somewhere or perhaps do msn messanger. Maybe once a week. Let me know if youre interested.

I have to confess that Im in a pretty bad place emotionally speaking. Trying to figure out how much is too much in the TTC department. One of the really ass burning things about RPL is that there is never closure. Its fresh grief after fresh grief and it just never seems to stop. There is a large part of my brain that is urging me to throw in the towel, but Im not quite there. I think there would be too many what ifs if I dont at least try one more pregnancy. Im looking for advice. I know many of you are dealing with or have delt with the same issue. I know this is so personal, but Im really curious, what would you do if you were me ? For those that dont know my whole story I can try to give you the readers digest version. I was pregnant at 22, it was unplanned and very upsetting. I was having a strange orange colored discharge and spotting. The nurses at planned parenthood told me my pregnancy would be "high risk" due to an unidentified uterine infection (which years later I found out was nothing worse than a super flared up case of bacterial vaginosis). An ultrasound showed I was at the tail end of five weeks, and we saw a heartbeat. I had an abortion. Less than a year later I was pregnant again by the same partner. I miscarried violently before I had a chance to make a prenatal appointment, I was 7 weeks. That relationship ended, and I didnt give a lot of thought to having children until I was in my late 20's and fixing to get married. I diagnosed myself as having a fertility problem, but my OB had me monitor my cycles for a full year before she did a workup. Turns out I was right all along. I was pregnant after my second round of clomid in September of '08. Missed miscarriage diagnosed at 11.5 weeks. The fetus made it about 9 weeks. D&C. pregnant again after another couple of clomid cycles. Early bleeding but heart beat detected at 6 weeks 3 days. No heartbeat at 8 week scan. Forced break for three months, then pregnant again last summer after one measly clomid cycle. I didnt know I was pregnant and thought a heavy brown bleed was my period, so I took more clomid. I only took an HPT about two weeks into that cycle cause I started bleeding again. I dont really ovulate on my own, but so far that seems to be the only impediment to getting pregnant.Ive recently completed my 4th medicated cycle in a row (I did take a ttc break after 3 clomid cycles). I figure I have about 3 real options. I can keep trying with the oral stimulation drugs. I can save my money for an IVF with donor eggs. I can save my money for a domestic adoption. Because my RPL is idiopathic, they do say that my chances of going to term are decent. I feel at such a loss, any advice or insight would be much appreciated.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Tequila time

Im not pregnant. spotting yesterday, cramping today and a negative pregnancy test. Blah. Im trying to not let it spoil my vacation. Not thrilled at the prospect of taking more clomid, but I cant afford another thousand dollar IUI cycle at the moment. You might wonder what I am doing in mexico if Im so broke. Good question. Its an attempt at finding a little balance and not letting my infertility struggle take over every stinking part of my life.

In happier news, Brian is having the time of his life down here. He is busy channeling his inner Steve Irwin. His favorite activity has been watching the many geckos in our apartment compete for juicy insects in the evenings.Hes on nearly constant lookout for Iguanas. I see a river boat trip in search of crocodiles in our future.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

4 days past IUI

Brian and I went in early Saturday morning for sperm wash/ IUI. Brian had to provide his sample at the clinic, but he was a good sport about it. He said there was porn playing on a flat screen tv in the collection room, and it was all women on women anal action ! I wonder, who picks this stuff? Brian reckoned that they just wanted to exclude anything having to do with another man. We had a pleasant breakfast while waiting for the sperm to be prepped. Our fertility clinic is located in a swanky part of town and we were there early, beating the weekend rush. Come IUI time, the doctor on shift informed us that Bri only had ten million motile sperm. From what I understand, this is not a great number. We went ahead with the insemination and that was that.

I have the next two days off, and lots to do in order to get ready for mexico. Canceling the Organics to you produce delivery, ironing and packing, putting together a first aid kit, filling prescriptions. If I get my period while in mexico, Im going right into a clomid cycle with the OB, as I wont be home in time for a monitored cycle with the RE. Speaking of packing, Brian went out on his lunch yesterday and got himself some spiffy new summer clothes. He wanted to know if they look too girly or yuppie. I told him that he lives in a city and there is no shame in wearing nice clothes that dont stink of grunge era 1992. So Brian is going to be all sauve and meterosexual on vacation and I think its cute and funny. Speaking of my produce box, its getting to be that time of year when the good stuff starts rolling in. Since its mostly local and organic we spend the winter eating a lot of kale, sweet potatoes, onions, and other root veg. Now its lovely lettuce, salad greens, asparagas, and herbs. Soon there will be strawberries. It sounds silly, but the feeling of abundance that I get from opening the box each week, does wonders for my mental health. I feel lucky to live in a place where there is so much fresh, fabulous food. And that I have a nice house to live in, and a mostly good quality of life.

Thanks to all of you that are commenting and rooting for me. It means a lot.

Friday, April 23, 2010


I had a follicle scan on the 20th (cycle day 11). Nothing doing on the left side, but lots of follicles on the right. Most of them too small, between 9mm and 12mm, but there was one fat follie @ 16 mm which was right about where I should have been. I was hoping for more targets, but from what my infertile friends have been telling me, one mature is pretty normal for a femara cycle. I triggered last night. This was the first time ever injecting myself with anything and its pretty intimidating. I got over it and it was easy and painless. I peed on a cheap internet HPT this morning just because its fun to watch things turn colors. I suppose I will test out the trigger. Brian and I go in tomorrow morning for collection and insemination. He will do his "sample" at the clinic, as we live too far away to get it there unscathed.

Dr. B is putting me on a double dose of the luteal phase progesterone support. These are the vag suppositories and not my favorite. I will be in mexico come test time, but Ive found an English speaking OB to order a beta for me. I would rather not stress with betas, but the RE wants them. If I dont have my period by 13 dpo I guess Ill get the blood work done. I always come to a point during a treatment cycle where I am no longer able to think clearly. I know the stats even after factoring in my personal history of getting pregnant fairly easily with ovulation stimulation. The chance of pregnancy is probably around 15%, yet I cant help but think THIS HAS TO WORK. After trying so long and being on the wrong end of the statistics so many times, something has to give. After spending so much money (this little IUI cycle is costing me nearly 1000 dollars) and you know,, just being a good girl. Because good people eventually have a happy ending, right ? So no matter what one little devil on one shoulder whispers about being realistic, the other one is saying "nonesense, everything will be FINE". The only thing that brings me back down to earth is the start of the bleeding, either my regular period or the miscarriage.

Im not really sure where Im going with this. I suppose I just feel silly for giving into magical thinking, but I seriously cant help it.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

foot in mouth

There I was, pretty much boasting my ability to handle the side effects of oral fertilty meds,like some sort of infertile gladiator and all the while FEMARA has been kicking my butt. I feel psychotic and uneasy and just plain physically awful. Much like the way many people react to clomid.

I was just wondering who is going to want to check in on me, or read my blog if Im such a hopeless wet blanket, nearly every post. The truth is that I waffle. Hope comes and goes. When Im down, I wanna vent and when Im up, I dont want to say anything and jinx myself.

I am looking forward to proceeding with this cycle. My expectations of being pregnant are pretty low, but I do feel like Im getting on with things. I had a pretty long ttc break. 20 days til Im on the beach in mexico, and thats what Im REALLY looking forward to

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Real Quick

before I dash off to work and totally forget to update. I decided to go ahead with femara/IUI cycle. baseline ultrasound yesterday, and first letrezole tablet. never had an antral follicle count before, so that was interesting. doc put me on the lowest possible dose of femara, and I sort of wonder what he was thinking. its not like I have unexplained infertility or something, I have a diagnosed ovulation problem that my OB liked to whollop with 100 mg of clomid every month. I barely responded to that. I guess he is the RE trained at john hopkins and I am not. next ultrasound is on the 20th. Im presently on cd 4. I mentioned elswehere but will say it again, Im not pleased or releived to be taking a different oral ovulation stimulation drug. I dont give a shit about side effects. I would rather be doing IVF or domestic adoption or something more effective. this feels like more of the same crap Ive been doing for the past two years. and I couldnt care less if I sprouted hair from my chest or started bleeding out of my hands and feet, as long as I ovulate properly.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

I think I forgot to mention that my last and final batch of blood work came back all normal. Again. So now there really will be no more testing and as far as I know, they I will never have a reason for a total of 4 confirmed miscarriages. I will never know if the pregnancy that I aborted would have gone to term, but it didnt look great. I was bleeding and had an unexplained uterine infection. There also won't be any lovenox(blood thinners). My RE's nurse had gotten me all psyched up for a possible inject cycle. The RE still says that his first choice for me is IVF with PGD, second choice IVF with donor eggs. After I again told him no way, he says there is no need for injects since I respond well to oral meds and we will go ahead and try letrezole (femara) and IUI. The thing is, I dont want to! I am so freaking tired of trying to get pregnant. So awful sick of being disappointed. I think my heart and brain have just given up on the possibility that a potential pregnancy is going to lead to a live birth. Pregnancy has for me become a sort of self flagellation. Between my therapist and my doctors, I feel like at this point, I cant even buy any hope. I have been trying to do little things to coax that hopeful feeling back into the light. The supplimental insurance for pregnancy, the maternity dress, but I am still coming up short. What would make me feel most productive would be to persue a domestic adoption, and with Brian going to grad school and moving state next year, that is not an option. Cant buy hope and cant buy a (30 thousand dollar) baby.

Brian is unwilling to give up. He even called me a wimp for wanting to delay this next treatment cycle.I told him that we have already been through more than most people would subject themselves to. We have reached a compromise, I will fill a final clomid prescription that I have had waiting for me and take that when I get my period in two weeks. We will go to mexico for ten days in the early part of May (booked trip already) so I can feel like an adult and just take a load off. If Im not pregnant, we will go ahead with the IUI cycle may/june cycle. I have to keep reminding myself that Brian has a lot of emotional investment in having our biological children, and that he does get some say. We will keep navigating this slippery slope together, and If Ive lost my capacity to hope for a while, I know that he hasnt.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

the haves and have nots

I have mixed feelings about the online and real life support/ buddy groups that I have been participating in. I have bonded with lovely and intelligent women that I would never have met in the during the course of my every day life. We have shared joys and many disappointments, I have learned a great deal about infertility and pregnancy loss that would have been hard, if not impossible to come by without reading the accounts of these women's experiences and benefiting from their research. At the same time, I keep thinking how easily we forget. Women who used to lament about long cycles , fertility testing, and chemical pregnancies, are now gushing about cloth diapers and complaining bitterly about lack of sleep. If I hear or see one more former infertile going on about how having a baby "changes everything" I might be forced to gauge out my eyes and ears with a bloody pitchfork. Dont they remember how NOT being able to have a baby changed everything ? For your average woman who happily spends 5 years with her husband before getting pregnant and delivering, I can see how having a baby changes everything, disrupts your saturday morning sleep ins and late nights with friends. Cramps your style as far as shopping and spending goes.. personally I have not been enjoying this time of not having children. its been painful, and wretched. Heartbreaking and wallet draining. I would be pretty cussing glad to have everything changed by a healthy baby, but I dont know if I could forget these past few years.

Perhaps we should divide ourselves into those that have come out the other end of the infertility void, and those that have not. Or maybe I just need to avoid this sort of thing for a while.

Im also having mixed feelings about therapy. Now that my anxiety is mostly being controlled by the zoloft, I want to focus on my painful feelings surrounding my miscarriages, which I feel are totally normal and valid, that there is nothing pathological about these feelings of anger, jealousy,inadequacy, and isolation. However, they are no less worthy of treatment. During our last session I mentioned that I feel that women who have easily had children, or are pregnant with no reason to suspect that anything bad could happen, must hear my story and think "Im sure glad Im not THAT sad sack of shit". A woman who cant even manage to fufill her biological imperative. The psychiatrist looked shocked that I said that, told me I was projecting, and went on to ask about my anxiety. I cant help but feel that she just dosent get it, and Im not totally sure who would. My ideal therapist would be a reproductive endocrinologist/ psychiatrist who has run a recurrent loss clinic and has personally suffered at least 6 pregnancy losses, and infertility. Because I feel that unless a person has experienced what I have, how COULD they possibly understand ? And this is what frustrates me so much about these women in my support groups who have "graduated". Because they have understood and they should understand, but they seem to go through some sort of baby induced amnesia. I have been seeking the company of people in the same situation, but more often than not these people go on to have children, and the bond isnt broken but it changes.

Friday, March 5, 2010

More waiting

Everyone who is infertile and trying to get pregnant / carry to term knows that you are always waiting for something. Right now we are waiting for the results of the final blood clotting stuff I had drawn a week or two ago. This makes it too late to start my IUI/ inject cycle this coming cycle. Another forced break cycle ahead. We didnt even try this month... Brian asked me why and I told him that in 7 years together, I have never been pregnant without taking clomid. He really cant seem to wrap his mind around the fact that I get positive ovulation tests and still dont ovulate in a manner thats condusive to getting pregnant.

I am busy interviewing real estate agents and figuring what I need to do by the way of sprucing up the house. there are a few minor repairs and some landscaping that need doing. Im sort of at a loss, because I have never sold a house before. I plan to rent a storage unit and make sure we have as little clutter in the house as possible. I might even hire a maid to come in a couple of times per month, as I simply dont have much time to keep a house clean enough to be ready to show at a moments notice, not without some help. The real estate agent that I have spoken with, seems to think we can sell the house for about what we paid for it. Fingers crossed. If it sells quickly, it will free up a ton of money for savings. We can can rent a small apartment for a third of our monthly mortgage payment. I have been keeping one of the spare rooms in this house, free for a nursery. Im most likely never going to set up that nursery and it feels strange.

I have been making room in my mind for the possibility that I will get a take home baby one day. In doing so Ive been making other sorts of provisions, besides that nursery. I got supplimental insurance that will pay out when I give birth, and if I have pregnancy complications that keep me out of work. I got a maternity summer dress just because it was cute and on sale.

So theres really not much to tell. Just waiting, getting all my ducks in a row for my coming cycles with the RE.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


This week finds me in a more relaxed state of mind. I really do want to support Brian in his career goals. Its not entirely true that I dont have any of my own, I would just prefer to be a stay at home mum, in a perfect world. I have been putting off taking the oregon board of massage practical exam. Its a 2 hour oral exam with 3 examiners. The thought of it actually causes panic, but I have been discovering that in nearly every other state in the Union, they dont have these strict laws and tough exams for massage therapists. The national written exam that I already sat for and passed with flying colors is perfectly good. So this is a way to work less and earn more, and Im thankful for that.

Im still mentally gearing up for my upcoming IUI cycles. Still need to speak to Dr. B to see if he will allow the femara/ low dose inject protocol. I have a pretty good feeling about it.

I went to bed at 11 last night and slept til 11 this morning. Sort of wonder if Im fighting off a virus. Work is physically taxing and I probably just needed to rest up. Trying to think if there is anything else that is noteworthy.. one of my best girlfriends has moved back to portland from san fran. Im so happy shes here and she may end up living with us for a couple of months while she gets on her feet. Im still losing weight, slowly. Purchased a new pair of jeans a couple of days ago. Size 6 ! with room to wiggle. This probably seems quite small to a lot of women but you have to know that I am only 5'2 with a teeny tiny frame. I still have a lot of body fat and a big apple shaped gut. I can easily lose 15 more lbs and still be round and curvy.

my lunch is almost ready. I made potato leek soup with the veg from the box its so good.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


My husband shocked me a week or two ago, by telling me that he deeply desires to go back to college and do a phd or a psyD in clinical psychology. I am proud of his ambition and hate the fact that hes been unhappy at his job here in Portland, but this changes everything. We will have to sell our fancy little house. At a loss. We will have to pack up everything and pretty much wont know where we are going til the last second. I will have to work full time to support us during the 5 years that one of these programs will take, and we will come out of it at least 150 thousand dollars in debt.. just loans to cover tuition. No shit. I moved a lot when I was a kid, and even more as an adult. I just got comfortable in this house, and its physically unsettling to me to think about leaving. Ive made it very very plain to Brian, that this does not mean Im giving up on MY big dream, of having a family. I dont have any career ambitions to speak of or desire to fill any sort of artistic void. All I really care about is being a wife to Brian, and a mother to children. Best case situation, is that I manage to get pregnant in the next year or so and carry to term. Worst case is that I never do, and we cant afford to adopt 6 years from now, when saddled with those crushing student loans. Its all a hell of a lot to think about. The work it will take to put the house on the market. Saving money, no holidays, work work work. Blat.

My OB has given me 3 final rounds of Clomid, to reach my 12 cycle lifetime maximum. Shes also put in another referal to the RE. Brian has agreed to 3 cycles of Femara and IUI (plus low does injects?) with the RE, if needed. So Ive got 6 fair chances and becoming pregnant in the near future. OB has ordered a baseline ultrasound next cycle, and some mystery blood work that she wants.. have to ask her what thats all about. Im on a break from now until march, and it feels sort of good. Im burnt out on TTC in a way thats impossible to describe.

i know this post is all over the place and Ive a lot of housework to do so Im going to wrap it up.