Archive | April, 2011

Not fair.

20 Apr

None of this.

Mo just found out she’s having another ectopic.  A completely unexpected positive that turned into this.

When is all of this going to stop?  For her, for me, for all of us?  I just don’t understand.  All I want to do is scoop her up and take it all away.  No one should have to go through this.  If I could be the only one in the world to suffer this, I would do it in a second.  To know someone else’s pain and be completely helpless, is a cruel, cruel joke.

It’s just not fair.

Will you go give her some love?

Changing my dreams.

20 Apr

Growing up, I always figured I would get married and have two kids. I have just one sister so it was natural to want a family exactly like ours. That dream changed quickly when I met Tim.  Early on when we approached the subject of having children, he admitted to me that he didn’t want to have another.  As much as I loved him, I called it quits. Having a family was too important to me to continue on in the relationship if that wasn’t in his plans. The “break-up” didn’t last long because he said he would be willing to discuss it, and that we did. I loved him too much to just give up. Besides, he was an amazing father to K, and it was his fault in the first place that I wanted children. In fact, up until I met him I wasn’t even sure I wanted them. But as soon as I saw him with his daughter, it was over. I had finally met the man I was going to have a family with, and I wouldn’t be okay with that not happening.

Fast forward two years and Tim wanted a child with me as much as I did (sometimes I think even more). At that point, I’d come to realize I would be fortunate enough to have just one with him, so I started trying to switch things in my mind a bit and became okay with a smaller family. After all, our son or daughter would already have a sibling.  In essence, I’d have my family just as I had pictured it…only slightly different what with the whole other woman’s child thing.  (Minor detail.)

Except, I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that in my heart, I have never been able to let go of the thought of having two natural children of my own. As much as I’ve been trying to fool myself into thinking I was okay with just one, I’ve been planning ways to convince Tim to have another all along, and we hadn’t even started trying for our first.

We married and only waited a year before I got pregnant the first time around.

These miscarriages? They weren’t in the plan.  They’ve changed everything.

Up until a few weeks ago, I was still convinced we’d be having two.  But things have started to change dramatically for me.  The longer this takes, and the fact I will have a higher chance of miscarrying again in the future because of my history, I’m just not sure I can go through this all over again.  I have started to only desire one child and feel overwhelmed at the thought of trying for more.  I know that could change the second I hold my baby in my arms, I’m aware of that. I just feel like if I succeed at this, I will be extremely grateful for just the chance to have had one, I’m not sure I’ll want to press my luck for another.  If I can avoid this pain again, I will do everything possible to do so.  Besides, I just don’t know if I have the strength for this battle all over again.

I’m hoping my maternal desire will be fulfilled with one.  If it’s not, I have these pages to remind me of what I went through to get there.  And if I still choose another child over the risk of having to go through this again, I just pray I have the strength to make it through to the other-side.

Have you had to change the way you always envisioned your family because of your struggle with infertility or loss?  If you’ve experienced pregnancy loss, do you think you could do it all over again after a successful pregnancy?  

* Tim’s desire to only have one child is purely monetary.  If we were wealthier and could provide a comfortable lifestyle for more then one child, it would be a no-brainer because we’re going to make really cute babies.  

Radio silence.

18 Apr

Don’t you hate it when your job gets in the way of your blogging?

I mean, what exactly do they think they’re paying me for, anyway?  I was under the impression it was for expression of my reproductive turmoil on this little blog of mine.  Apparently…that is not the case.  Oops!

Don’t worry, I didn’t get Dooced.  In fact, there’s something very exciting coming my way in the realm of my work-life: in a week today, I’ll be on my way to Brazil.   And I’ll be getting paid for it!

Have I ever mentioned how much I love my job?  I do.  I really really do.  (Even though sometimes it’s hard to concentrate when there are all of you lovely ladies out there waiting to be read and conversed with.)  I guess I haven’t mentioned my job at all on this blog as a result of the above mentioned possible consequence of talking about your work on your blog, but I feel very lucky to work where I do.  It started out as a part-time gig that has since grown into a new title and full-time position complete with promotion.  And now: Brazil!

The downside is that in order to get ready for this trip, I have been so insanely busy these last two weeks that I might actually need a vacation when my trip is over.  I’m hoping this explains my radio silence as of late, and it will continue to explain the silence for the next few weeks as well.  I will have internet connection while I am there, so I’m planning on posting pictures and little blips of my trip, so I won’t disappear completely.  Plus, I like the idea of sharing a little more fun with you all instead of just doom and gloom a lot of the time.  Especially when that fun equals caipirinha, 80 degree weather and monkeys at your doorstep.  That would just be cruel to not take you along with me.

Aren’t I so thoughtful?  I know, it’s okay, you can hate me just a little bit.  I kind of hate me, too.

I will miss Took Tim dearly, and hate that I’m going there without him.  10 days is a long time to be away from home.  I can’t believe I’ve become such a homebody in my older years, but I guess a year and a half of social-dodging will do that to someone.

So I hope you’ll forgive my absence here for a little while.  It’s for a good cause, I promise.

Caipirinha can’t drink itself, after all.

This little blog of mine.

15 Apr

I’ve started to understand something in keeping this blog that I want to mention.

Those that aren’t here, that don’t see me on a regular basis, they don’t understand what I’m actually like in my day to day life.  This blog, this space of mine dedicated to my inner thoughts and purging of emotions, is just that.  It’s a mirror of what is in my head at that particular time that I choose to write.  It’s a glimpse into the workings of a mind that has suffered a tragedy such as this…it’s not the entire photograph of my thoughts.  It’s a peak out a window in a speeding train, only to head back into a tunnel left wondering what the entire landscape must be like.

It’s easy to believe that I am always sad, or frustrated, or angry.  I often am for hours – days – at a time.  But most of the time, like the days that just passed, I’m filled with a hope that hasn’t always been there throughout this past year.

I believe my fate is laid out before me, in quickly drying cement.  Sure I can carve my thoughts into it in the knick of time, but it’s still going to be what it was meant to be, no matter how quickly I try to leave my mark before it hardens.

Part of why I keep this blog is to help me process the times that I don’t feel so certain, times where I’m having a harder time seeing that faith that I try so hard to hold onto.   I need to get it out of my head and through my fingertips into typed words on a screen so I can stop thinking about it.  Once it’s out there, even if no one reads it, I can move on from it so much easier than if I had kept it in.

It’s my therapy, my only outlet where I’m not judged openly.

The downside to that is that those that do read it, those that only have this as a window into my life, believe that it’s how I am every hour on end.

The truth is, there are days where I am there and can’t get out.  But the days that I’m not, the days where I’m filled with hope and find myself smiling more than crying, they’re much more frequent then the days that I have a hard time breathing.

I would never give up this space and the people that I’ve met through it.  I wouldn’t be where I am now – able to face the day with actual hope – without it.  It was never meant to be a miscarriage blog, and I certainly don’t plan on it staying that way, either.  I’m doing everything I can to get it back to how it started.

And with every piece of my being, I believe it will.

Growing cysts like a champ since 2010.

12 Apr

Turns out that cyst on my left ovary didn’t go away like I had previously thought.

Instead of going away, it grew to 4.25 cm and is now a hemorrhaging cyst on my left ovary.

So in other words: just another day for Courtney!

The good news is that there is still blood flow to the ovary – which means as of now, there’s no risk of torsion like I feared.  I just have to wait to see what my doctor wants to do, which will be either wait it out or surgery.  I’m fearing it will burst again before we even have a chance to decide.  That wouldn’t be all that bad in and of itself, I know I can handle the torture pain if it does, I’m just worried about excess scarring at this point.  After almost half a dozen of these, my ovary must be looking like a war zone by now.

Then, of course, there was this: as I was giving the technician my history, I mentioned that I’ve already had cysts during both my most recent pregnancies, she said, “Oh, well at least you have 2 cute babies to make up for it!”

Ouch.

I must be used to comments like these at this point because after the initial blow and my honest reveal of the truth, I quickly  transitioned back to talking about my cysts.  It helped that she was really helpful in describing things to me, something I don’t find common among technicians.  I just really wish they would include all of my history on the orders the doctors send in to avoid comments like that.

The best part of the visit was that I saw follicles of varying maturity on my right ovary!  I can’t tell you what a relief this is.  I really thought that my right ovary wasn’t functioning because of Ole’ Lefty stealing the show.  I’m on CD11, so it was perfect timing for follicles and I couldn’t have been happier to see them and know that at least that part of my body is functioning properly.

I’m really glad I went in to get checked out, even though it didn’t necessarily tell me anything I wasn’t already familiar with.  It was just such a different pain than the “normal” cysts pain that I usually experience, so I think I had the right to be weary.  I’m proud of myself for going, I usually wait these things out.  Maybe I’m turning a new proactive leaf.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, my uterus is still the most beautiful uterus in the whole wide world.  And the tech told me I got an A+ in water consumption.

It’s good to know I at least excel in something. I may not be any good at baby-making, but at least I can fill a bladder like nobody’s business.  Go me!

Where I ask you to be my Dr. Google.

11 Apr

For over a year now, since my February miscarriage, I’ve had painful ovarian cysts.  For a while there, it would hinder everything I did.  It felt as if someone was holding onto my ovary and wouldn’t let go as I walked away from them.

They went away for a while, but then came back again in full force.  I’ve had 5 bursts now…all on which I believe were on my left side.

You all know that last cycle, I had a 38-day-cycle, something that has never happened to me before.  I took about 5 pregnancy tests, so I wasn’t pregnant.  But I had a cyst, I could feel it.  As far as I know, it dissolved and didn’t burst because once I got my period, the pain went away.  I also had a cyst the cycle before.

Now, I have a new pain.  It’s different than my cyst pain because it’s lower.  It’s still on the left side, but it feels like it’s in a different location than my ovaries.  It’s been here for a few days now, ranging from annoying to almost gone to back with a vengeance.  So much so that I just called to make an appointment with radiology and I’m going in at 3:30.

I’m scared.  It’s a new pain that making my mind wander to not-so-pleasant diagnoses.  It’s pulsing, and I don’t like that one bit.

Has anyone had this?  I know I’m not explaining it very well, but I don’t even know how to describe it.  All I know is it’s lower than where my normal cyst pain is…but from what I can tell from anatomy charts, there’s not much directly below our ovaries but ligaments and bone.  And it’s not in my uterus.

I just don’t know how much more of this I can handle.  I want my body back.

 

Your liver has daddy issues.

9 Apr

Two months ago, I met with an acupuncturist for the first time in over a year.  The last time I saw one, it was for the cysts that appeared during my pregnancy in February of 2010.  After I miscarried, they left me with a severe amount of pain and the only thing western medicine wanted to do for me was put me on birth control.  Not exactly something I wanted to do considering we were trying to have a baby.  It worked.  The cysts started to go away and I got pregnant again a few months later.

Fast forward to this year and another miscarriage, and I felt the desire to go again.  I needed to know I was doing everything I could to prepare my body for another pregnancy and hopefully get the next one to stick.

Some friends of mine had been urging me to go to this particular acupuncturist for a while, so I finally made the call.  He happens to be in the same exact office as my therapist, so that makes it an building devoted just to my healing. I figured it was a sign.

The first time I saw him, it was the week of my due date and anniversary of my second miscarriage.  It was near impossible to control the tears, as I’m sure you can imagine.  But I felt like it was the perfect time to try and make a change.

After an initial conversation of my history and my reason for seeing him, I hopped up on the table.  While he felt my pulse, he explained to me what causes a miscarriage according to Chinese medicine.  He started by describing how they view each organ with it’s own personality, but each working towards the same goal of keeping the body alive.  Among them all, the liver is kind of the big shot.  The liver helps controls the blood supply and determines where is should flow, and it plays a key role in a pregnancy.  When a woman miscarries, it’s because the liver feels the pregnancy is compromising the blood supply to the rest of the organs and shuts the pregnancy down.  So in other words, it believes the pregnancy is threatening the health of the rest of the body, and it does something about it.

What a jerk!

He asked me a few more questions regarding my liver, trying to put the puzzle pieces together on why my liver would do that.  One of those questions was what my relationship with my dad is; because apparently, the liver is a good indication of how you feel about your father.  I am very lucky to have a  great dad that I have a wonderful relationship with, so for me, that wasn’t it.  But I did find that rather amusing that various relationships in your life take a toll on specific parts of your body.  (I wonder who is in charge of the reproductive system, because whoever that is, I need to mend that quickly.)

In essence, our goal will be to trick the liver into thinking that at around 8 weeks, that the pregnancy is actually beneficial to my body, rather than detrimental like it has thought in the past.

He had no idea what he had given me with this simple idea.  For over a year I had been angry at the fact that during my last pregnancy, I had spent so much time envisioning a healthy and inviting environment in my womb for my baby, and it did nothing.  I had honestly believed it would make a difference, only to be proven completely wrong.  What was the point then?  I had thought.  But now, if this were true, it all made sense.  I had done the right thing all along.  Maybe my positive thinking had given the baby a healthy place to grow, but that bully liver took over and stopped it.

I could finally let myself off the hook.

I realize to some, this may sound like a bunch of crap.  But I’m willing to believe him.  And there was something specific that really convinced me:

During each ultrasound in the past year, every technician or doctor has told me I have a great looking uterus.*  While my acupuncturist was doing his exam, he looked into my ear and said, “Well, your uterus looks great!”  Besides the fact he was looking in my ear and could see my uterus and that in itself is just crazy, that was all I needed to hear.  I could believe him.

There’s hope my uterus will allow a pregnancy to thrive.

I think he’s going to be able to help me.  I truly believe in his power.  And at this point, I’ll do anything.

Even if that means dressing head to toe in green (it’s the color of the liver) or calling my dad every day to tell him I love him, I’ll do it.  So far, Western medicine isn’t proving very much to me on its own.  I think I’ll trust the man that can see my uterus through my ear.

Hey there, Dad!  Why aren’t you looking awfully handsome today!  Have I told you how much I love you?

*Not quite sure what a great looking uterus entails…but I’m beginning to question if they’re all just judging the book by it’s cover.