Monthly Archives: July 2014

So Much to Say!

April 30, 2014

Proof of how busy it’s been is that my parents’ anniversary came and went on Monday and I forgot to wish them a happy anniversary.  I didn’t forget that it was their anniversary.  We talked about how it was their anniversary.  But I never uttered the words “Happy Anniversary”.

We’ll start with Friday.

I was supposed to have an ultrasound and consult on Friday.  But my period hadn’t started.  And this was supposed to take place on day 3 of my cycle.  Now, since my period hadn’t started yet on Thursday, I called the nurse to find out what I should do if it didn’t start that day.  She said to call and reschedule.  So Friday morning, shortly after the office opened, I called to reschedule for Monday.  But there was no ultrasound appointment available on Monday.  The soonest I could see both the ultrasound tech and Dr O was May 5.  I told her that didn’t work.  It had to be Monday or Tuesday at the latest.  She insisted that it just wasn’t possible.  And I burst into tears.  I didn’t start crying to be manipulative.  I started crying because I was frustrated.  Everything had been going so well.  I explained that I would have to wait another month.  She offered to schedule something farther out.  I tried to explain that if my period hadn’t started yet, there was no way I could schedule farther out.  I told her that I was incredibly frustrated.  She said she understood.  I told her that, no, she really didn’t.  She said she’d talk to the ultrasound tech and call me back.

I finally spoke with the nurse shortly after my period started that afternoon.  She had talked to both the ultrasound tech and Dr O and had me scheduled for 7:45 Monday morning.  And since my period was late in the day, Saturday was going to be considered day 1.  Which meant Monday was day 3.  Right on target.

Saturday I had cramps.  Blech.

Sunday was meal exchange and knitting.  And it was fun as always.  Nothing like knitting and swapping theatre war stories.

I got to work super early on Monday.  I knew I wasn’t going to be able to get into the building until 6, but I wanted to make sure that I was there by then.  I had forgotten how much fun it is to have a transvaginal ultrasound probe poke at my ovaries.  But everything looked good.  There were four little follicles on one side and five on the other, just what there should be on Day 3.  We’re doing an FSH/Clomid protocol.  My mom, kindly, stopped at Walgreens to pick up the Clomid once I got email from Walgreens that it was in.  (I had to take the first dose that day.)

Except the email apparently didn’t really mean that it was filled.  It said “Unable to contact insurance”.  What it meant was “Your insurance won’t cover this.”  Um, yeah, kind of knew that.  So my mom told them to go ahead and fill it.  And she waited.  And waited.  And waited.  And stayed near the prescription counter so that they could see that she was waiting.  And someone finally asked if she was waiting for my prescription which had been sitting there for ten minutes.  Not Walgreens’ finest moment!

And I couldn’t stand waiting, so I called the sperm bank and ordered a vial of FF73 to be delivered to the clinic next Wednesday.  Yes, Sofia’s donor is still available.

And the nurse said she would send the FSH and hCG prescription into Freedom Pharmacy, who handled my FSH last go-round.  She said they would be calling me.

Which brings us to Tuesday.  I looked at the protocol.  I need to take the first dose of FSH on Friday.  And I still hadn’t heard from Freedom.  So I called them myself.  They not only still had me in the system, but they still had my parents’ address as an alternate shipping address.  There was one little snafu, though.  They had a prescription for FSH, but not one for hCG.  That’s okay.  Dr O isn’t sure we’re going to use hCG this cycle.  But if I do need it…  I emailed Portage Pharmacy, since they’re a compounding pharmacy, and asked if they carried hCG.  They wrote back within an hour or two to say that they do indeed and if the doctor decides we’re using it this cycle to just have him send them the prescription and they would have it for me.

And then Freedom’s automated system called me.  It hadn’t gotten the message that my order had been taken care of.

And now we’re at Wednesday.  I’ve taken two doses of Clomid.  My ovaries ache.  I think that’s a good sign.  They ached with the drugs the last time.  I still need to check the expiration dates on my OPKs to see if I need to replace them.  I take the first OPK on Monday.  My next ultrasound and consult is on Tuesday, along with a blood draw.  The Medieval Congress is also next week.  Looks like I just might miss a day of it because I’m trying to get pregnant.

I feel like I’ve been waiting so long.  And now this is moving so fast.  And I’m nervous and a little scared.  I’m scared that I won’t get pregnant and scared that I will.  Sounds pretty healthy to me!

P.S. When I called International Cryogenics, I explained that I had ordered from them before but I was now with a different physician.  She asked who I was formerly with.  When I told her Grand Rapids, she said that they worked with a lot of people after the practice closed.  Her understanding was that he had a massive heart attack or stroke and that’s why the closure was so sudden.  She thought she’d heard that he died, but I did a search for his obit and didn’t find one, so it looks like that’s just rumor.  But sudden cardiac event does explain why I got the letter after they had officially closed.  She also said she would do a fertility dance for me, so don’t blame her if it snows.  Gotta love Michiganders!


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What’s Making Me Happy This Week

April 25, 2014

  1. My period finally started today.  It was a couple days “late” again — at least based on the 27 days I was going.  Which meant I had to cancel my ultrasound and appointment with Dr O today.  And I’m still trying to reschedule for Monday or Tuesday.  (That’s a story that’s definitely not making me happy.  Perhaps I’ll give you the saga tomorrow.)  And all the while stressing that my period won’t have started by then.  But it did.  So at least that much is okay.
  2. The DD Conference is done for another year.  Sure, we’re already planning for next year, but it’s really good to be through the busyness that is April.
  3. I got to pat a guide horse on her nose.  She was at the DD Conference with her owner, who was presenting.  The horse kept sticking her head over the registration table, so I gave her a pat even though you aren’t supposed to pet service animals when they’re working.
  4. Atlases.  Atlases are making me happy.  I really do love maps.  And since I have my desk cycle, I’ve been wanting to see just how far I’ve ridden, so I bought a US road atlas and a Europe road atlas.  They’ve both arrived.  I’m looking forward to taking my highlighter and imagining just where all I’ve gone since I got my desk cycle.
  5. This post about DYI “Artisanal” Toast by NPR’s The Salt blog.  I think I cried a little when I read it because I was laughing so hard.
  6. It’s hard to believe that it was only this past Sunday, but my parents and I ate our Easter lunch on my balcony.  And we didn’t have to bundle up to do so.  (Plus we went for a walk in the nature preserve near my house, which we’ve never done before and now we’re asking ourselves why not because it is a beautiful spot.)

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Friday, Friday

April 18, 2014

Today has been a series of frustrations.  And as I was leaving my parents’ house this evening, I told my mom that it was making it hard to think about what’s making me happy so that I could write this post.  And her response was that was why I had to do it.  So here goes.

What’s Making Me Happy This Week

  1. I turned the thermostat to “off”.  (Okay, so it got cold enough that I had to turn it back on, but then it warmed up again.)
  2. I had a hair appointment today.  It’s silly, but I do love my red.  And this is a particularly nice shade.  Yolanda rocks!
  3. One of my theatre friends posted that even though he’s 34, he still has to read the four questions at the Passover seder.  I giggle a little every time I think about that.  He should invite a neighbor kid to come next year…  Or a work colleague who is younger than him…
  4. My mom and I dyed Easter eggs today.  She found some awesome dye.  The colors are amazing.  Bright and deep.  And they came with mustache and eye stickers (including 4 pairs of googly eyes) so that they can be, and I quote, “dapper”.  (Which of course made me think of Dapper Dan and O Brother Where Art Thou).
  5. Itzhak Perlman was on Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me a couple of weeks ago, but I only just got around to listening to the podcast of it this week.  If he doesn’t come back in a “Best Of” episode, they’ve forgotten what’s funny.  When he starts talking about Candy Crush…
  6. Jane Goodall talking about cloud computing on Here & Now.  There’s a charm to the off-handed way she describes it.  And that she describes death as joining that cloud.  That was kind of charming, too.

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Better Than Prose

April 12, 2014

It was tempting to write about yesterday yesterday. But since Fridays are for what’s making me happy, I waited. There was just too much to say.

Thing the First. Clearly, I’m not supposed to sleep. Midnight nightmare, followed by accidental midnight alarm, was followed by another midnight nightmare. This time it was what would best be called an actor’s nightmare. It really was one. It was borne of the stress of what was coming on Friday.

In my dream, I was at my meeting with the obstetrician. It must have involved a pelvic exam because I was taken to an exam room and given a gown into which I changed. At that time, one of my less-than-pleasant colleagues came into the room to take the meeting. (I am a bit amused that this person was the villain of the piece.) She gave me a large glass of water. We’re talking Big Gulp here. In an orange plastic glass. And I told her she had no business being at my appointment. And she proceeded to try to take charge, so I tossed the water at her. She then bluntly said, “Face it. There will never be another baby.” As I screamed at her that it wasn’t her place to decide that and that she needed to leave, I successfully tossed the remainder of the water in her face.

And then I woke up. And it took a while to fall back asleep. But I did. And I woke up at 5, so I got to work at 6, which meant I got off work at noon. (I’m loving the flexibility my keycard gives me!)

Thing the Second. My parents and I met with a Borgess representative about having them cover some of my expenses for trying to get pregnant again. We were all curious as to just how this would work. Borgess is a Catholic hospital. The Church does not approve of any forms of ART. (If you’re a single woman, you’d better get pregnant because you were talking to an angel, not because you made a conscious choice. Have I mentioned that I’m not a very good Catholic?) Obviously, they can’t pay for my drugs or the donor sperm, but they can pay me. So now I have a lot of thinking and math to do. And this is probably the last you’ll hear from me about Borgess and money. I hate asking for it because it feels mercenary, and I’m not a litigious person. But I wouldn’t be trying to get pregnant again if my daughter hadn’t died while we were in their care.

But the tone deaf nature of our previous conversation remained. I’m just far enough removed to view the conversation more objectively than I was able to back in November. She wants me to come up with an amount of money based on what I need to do to “make [me] feel whole.” And no matter how many different ways my parents and I reframed that sentence, she kept returning to those words.

Needless to say, my blood pressure was elevated by the time I got to my appointment with the obstetrician.

Thing the Third. I’m hesitant to say who my new doctor is. He works at a Catholic hospital, but he does things that the Church does not approve of. Unlike the person with whom I was meeting in Thing the Second, he is very catholic, not very Catholic. I shall just call him Dr O. And the next time I see him, I’ll try to remember to ask if he’s cool with me naming him in the blog.

Dr O was late. But it didn’t really matter. Like any good care provider, as soon as he stepped into the exam room, I was the only patient in the world. He would listen and talk and discuss with me as long as I needed him to. And if my mom still has questions after that, he would answer her questions, too.

No, he had not seen my records from Grand Rapids. Apparently, despite their year-old EMR, transferred records aren’t filed very well. So we told him what we’d done before. He said that the FSH protocol was more aggressive than he preferred. He’d rather use a lower dose and combine it with Clomid.

Yes. He’s totally cool with doing FSH. The other OBs aren’t comfortable with prescribing injectibles, but he doesn’t mind.

He wanted to know when my next period was so that we could schedule an ultrasound and get started. And try. In my next cycle. No hinkle-pinkling around.

The difference between my appointment with Dr O and all of my appointments in Grand Rapids was lightyears. (Oh, and he did confirm what the midwife had told me about the fertility practice here in town being unwilling to work with single women even though a recent editorial in the journal Fertility stated that it is unethical to deny us treatment.)

I walked out of that appointment weighing ten pounds. I could suddenly breathe again. I’ve stepped back into a world where things are possible once more.

Thing the Fourth. Since then, the same Emily Dickinson lines keep running through my head.

I dwell in Possibility –
A fairer House than Prose –
More numerous of Windows –
Superior – for Doors –

Of Chambers as the Cedars –
Impregnable of Eye –
And for an Everlasting Roof
The Gambrels of the Sky –

Of Visitors – the fairest –
For Occupation – This –
The spreading wide my narrow Hands
to gather Paradise –


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What’s Making Me Happy This Week

April 11, 2014

  1. I think it is finally, really and truly, spring.  The sun is out.  I didn’t wear a coat to work two days this week.  And I even wore sandals yesterday!
  2. My mom and I went for a walk on the trail today, and there was a kid who was writing messages in it on chalk.  The first one we saw said “Happy”.  At the trailhead, he’d written “Start” going in and “Finish” going out.  Right where the path meets the parking lot, he’d put “Farewell” on the exiting side.  It was sweet, and fun, and definitely made us smile.
  3. This woman made a pie chart of pie out of pie.  It is, shall we say, a pie pie pie chart?  And I thought my KAMSC classmate’s geometry of the circle pie was good…
  4. Somehow, Lisa and I have simultaneously been watching TNG.  We did not discuss this in advance.  And yet we’re at about the same place in the series.  Which has led to some amusing Facebook conversations.
  5. I had email from my cousin Kristy about a week ago.  She wanted me to know that she’s been thinking about me but never knew the right thing to say.  I told her that “I don’t know what to say” is always the right thing.  Well, I had a small package from her.  The card said that she’d found something and it made her think about the right thing to say.  It’s a small frame.  The picture encased says “I fear one day I’ll meet God, he will sneeze and I won’t know what to say.”  Kristy, you did awesome!  It’s perfect.  I love it.  It made me laugh.  And each time I look at it, it makes me smile.

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April 10, 2014

I’m very glad that tomorrow is Friday.  I’ll be even more glad to have it be tomorrow at, oh, 3:30.  I just need to get through then.  I just need to get through those appointments.  Then maybe I can start to focus again.

I seriously feel like I’ve never coordinated a conference before.  My brain is positive that I have three more weeks to prepare, but the calendar says otherwise.  And even then, I find myself just staring.  Staring at emails.  Staring at blank documents.  Staring at disclosure forms.  And accomplishing nothing.

The fact that I’m, apparently, not supposed to sleep isn’t helping.  There was the nightmare of two nights ago.  And last night, I somehow switched from Alarm 1 to Alarm 2.  Alarm 2 has never been set.  So it went off at midnight.

The good news is that our new position has been posted.  And I’ve submitted my application for it.  And my application has been forwarded to my boss.  Here’s hoping they don’t make us wait until there’s a pool of potential candidates!  Getting us to a stage where we can finally hire someone to fill my job (once I move into the new one) will definitely help with this feeling that there’s so much to do that I don’t even know what all there is to be done.  Dear everyone – I’m sorry if you got lost in the shuffle.

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Gee, Thanks, HIMYM

April 9, 2014

So I finally got around to watching the series finale of How I Met Your Mother.  This is not really a post about that.  Sure, I could go on about how good writers understand that characters develop and grow and may not be willing to do what you want them to do, so forcing them into an ending you wrote eight years ago destroys everything that the characters have done and learned and felt over the subsequent years.  But, you know, whatever.  Unlike The Good Wife, I stopped really caring about HIMYM a while ago and was really just watching because there were so few chapters left to read that I might as well suck it up and finish the book.  Plus, I was really liking The Mother.  She won me over when she was knitting… for a baby she’d just met… because he didn’t have a hat and so someone needed to make him one.  I’ve been known to say similar things…

But really, this isn’t about how I feel about the finale.  Because, again, unlike The Good Wife, I didn’t really care.  So I didn’t worry about the spoilers.  So I already knew how it had ended.

No.  This is about the dream I had after I watched the episode.  You see, my parents have been at my brother’s.  And they were driving back home yesterday and today.  They stopped and spent last night in Ohio.  But I had a dream that my mother had already gotten back.  And she came to my apartment.  And woke me up.  To tell me that my father “didn’t make it”.  Because he was dead.

Now, this is not my mother’s MO.  She would not come and wake me up by clamping her hand over my mouth in order to tell me that my father was dead.  She’d call first.  She’d leave a choked message of “call me back”.  Trust me.  I got that message twice while I was in college — once when I was a freshman because my grandmother had died and once when I was a sophomore because my grandfather had died.

But I still woke up in a panic.  And I looked at the clock.  And it was 11:30.  It wasn’t even today yet.  Or as I said aloud to myself, “It’s not even tomorrow yet.”

So between that resulting in poor sleep the rest of the night, and my job being in total limbo, and my appointment with the OB on Friday, and the DD Conference being in this stage in which I feel like I don’t even know what I’m doing…  I no longer know what day it is or what time it is.  And I spent a lot of time staring at my computer at work today.  Can it just be Medieval Congress time already?  I need a break.

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