Sunday, July 29, 2007

a meme, my first...

We've been tagged before, I think by A. and E. (sorry girls). But this time we've been caught - by the gals at It's Taking a Village so it's time to face the music. And because we've been tagged before, we consent to do it twice - one for me and another for C.

Here are the rules: Let others know who tagged you. Players start with 8 random facts about themselves. Those who are tagged should post these rules and their 8 random facts. Players should tag 8 other people and tell them they’
ve been tagged. I don't think we'll do any actual tagging - baby steps people.

1. I grew up on Martha's Vineyard Island. People always seem surprised that A. my family is not wealthy and B. People live there year round. Yeah, who watches your children, remodels your homes, makes and serves your food? My family and friends. It was an amazing place to grow up - so safe and easy. I never had any intention of moving back there as an adult though. There is not much in the way of culture or diversity (although that might be changing). It was a "small town" - everyone knew everyone and that gets exhausting. I do go back to visit a couple times a year. I really long for the beach/ocean every so often.

2. I love the smell of rubber/plastic. Band-aids, shower curtains, air mattresses. Wicked weird.

3. I have a deep dark fear. Please don't laugh. I'm afraid I'm going to like my adorable, lovable, snuggly, darling dog Ringo more than I will like my baby. Silly, I know. But my fear before this? That I wouldn't be able to have babies and...ahem...

4. C. and I both went to the same women's college. We were there at the same time (she was a firstie when I was a senior) and we didn't know each other!! We met after C. graduated and moved to Brooklyn with one of my closest friends from said women's college. Thanks l.!

5. I LOVE GAMES. Everyone says I "cheat", I "love to win", I'm a "sore sport" - but none of that is true. I just love to play games: scr*bble, domin*es, trivia, sc*ttergories, cr*nium, cards, load*d questions, b*ggle. You name it, I love to play it. C. does not love games, which makes me sad and is one of the very very few things I would change about her - that and her self-control when it comes to itching.

6. I balance my checkbook to the penny each month. Yes, I'm obsessive when it comes to organization and money - so this is where it shows. Sometimes it takes me 20 minutes and other times it takes me 3 hours to find 14 cents....but I always find it. I've found this task a bit harder now that we own a house and our finances are totally joined. It's my job and I don't really mind it.

7. I come from a long line if "scavengers". My family (mother, father, uncles, aunts...) loves flea markets, junk shops, and free stuff. We're always on the look-out for good stuff. You would think our houses are full of crap, but we're picky too, so we don't just take anything. C., my dad, my mom and I once carried a VERY heavy wrought iron, metal table up to our 5th floor walk-up. My dad had to stop at the 4th floor because I was afraid he was going to have a heart attack. The table is still gorgeous and now enjoys a prime spot in our dining room. The things New Yorkers throw out! We would take romantic walks in the moonlight on trash night. And it's pretty common for my dad to call me and say "hey, take a drive over to such-and-such street and check out a blankety-blank on the side of the road". AND I GO! hee hee. My uncle gave us a lawnmower he found on the street and we have used it regularly for more than a year. Sickos - we can't help ourselves!

8. I've been teaching small children for almost 20 years - and I'm only 31! It's the only job I've ever had. I started when I was 12 at a daycare that a family friend owned. So maybe I wasn't exactly "staff" but I had a summer job. I took one summer off to clean houses and it was TERRIBLE. Other than that, I have had no other jobs - not waitressing or retail. When I got to college I vaguely considered being a bio major, but it lasted one semester and then I took education classes. It was meant to be. I love my job. I'm very lucky.

And that's it folks! Now you know more than you ever wanted to know about me. I think I did okay considering I was a meme virgin. The only person I tag is C. Go to it, baby!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

#12, Down the Hatch!

The spermies are safely inside and hopefully running full-speed at S.'s egg right about now. #12 is behind us and in front of us all at the same time. To celebrate this momentus occasion we...cleaned S.'s mom's house.

We started a tiny little side "business" of cleaning houses over the summer, since neither of us could score summer school jobs, and we're broke teachers. This is perfect for us because we're relatively clean people, and I make a lot of cleaning stuff and/or use "earth friendly" products, which I think people are starting to appreciate these days. Besides S.'s mom's house, we're doing a family friend's home tomorrow. Even if it's just a little bit extra, it's nice to tuck away for some future summer fun. It at least takes our mind off the tww, if just for a little bit of time.

The other thing we're busy doing to bide our time is re-read every single Harry Potter book. S. is already halfway through #4, me through #3, and we just started Monday! We are crazed. We wanted to fully enjoy and appreciate #7. I'm sure others may think we are nuts, but those in the know, of course, know!

Monday, July 23, 2007

The Power of Visualization

I am feeling like we've had this blog for a long time. For giggles, I went back to our very first post in May of 2006:

"I don't know if or how our experiences trying to get pregnant will differ from the other women we've read about, but it certainly does help sort out your feelings on the whole matter, plus it's way cooler than making a lame-o scrapbook."

Ahhh, yes, better, than a scrapbook. But could I have imagined that we'd be on try #12 and still writing? I don't think so. But then again, what could I have imagined it would have been like a year and 2 months later? I think for all those women whose blogs we've been reading for a long time, and who are fortunate enough to either be pregnant or already have a baby, the future is easy to visualize--you have something certain in front of you. For those of us still on the bus, the future is less certain, even as we gain options with every cycle. It's just those cycles after cycles after cycles that just seem like a never-ending road in front of us.

But try #12 does give us something to look forward to--a stop off the bus, if you will. If it doesn't work this cycle, then insurance must cover our future reproductive plans--including IVF. That's right--S. worked her magic on one of our beloved nurses, who petitioned the insurance bitch about our challenge to the "exposure to sperm" clause in our insurance regulations, she made a call to our insurance and VOILE! Coverage. This leaves us unbelievably hopeful and happy. We know that doesn't translate into "easy"--but it gives us something to visualize for the future.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

on the slow train

Still only 14 1/2 mm. And I think we're down to two. Continuing the medicine (which they continue to give me) and go in again on Tuesday for yet ANOTHER ultrasound and MORE bloodwork. At this rate, I don't anticipate doing the HCG shot even then. This is so not typical of this medicine. I am so aggravated. I never never would have guessed my body could be so ornery.

Friday, July 20, 2007

growing this, growing that

So I'm not so good at growing follicles. I am CD11, have been on 150IU of Gonal-F for the last 3 days and 112IU the 3 days before that. I have 3 follicles all on the smallish side, the biggest being 13mm. It's fine. I'm not saying it couldn't/won't work, but it's not the kind of results I thought I was buying. 3 more days of 150IU and we go back in on Sunday for another ultrasound and bloodwork. I think they'll give me the trigger shot and we'll have a Tuesday insem. But, we'll see how my stubborn reproductive organs play along.

What I am good at growing is vegetables. Look at todays bounty!! My father, my uncle, my brother and I were having a "contest" for the first ripe tomato. DING DING DING, we have a winner! Of course there is no prize for this contest, just bragging rights. Fine by me! I'm doing the "I got the first red tomato" dance!! As a side note, and to add insult to injury with my father, there is something being said about organic gardening. I can't wait to eat it!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Digging Life

Yesterday was CD6 for us, since S.'s flow didn't really start flowing until the day after our CD1 ultrasound. She has one o.k. sized follicle along with 3 sorta-medium sized ones on one ovary, and a few really, really tiny ones on the other. They upped her G*nal shots to 150. We thought we might run out if we continue at that rate, so they gave us (gave us!) an entire pen to use just in case we ran out. Sometimes, we love our doctors and nurses! They really are so, so nice there. So it looks like we're set to go in on Friday.

In other non-babymaking related news, my poison ivy continues to drive me insane and we're in the midst of digging a patio in our backyard. Digging, for those of you unacquainted with it, is not fun, especially in the heat. I'm sure at the end of the summer, when we're lounging around on our fabulous new brick patio, we'll say, "Oh yeah, it was nothing--totally worth it!" But for now, we're scratching our heads wondering why we ever thought this was a good idea!

Monday, July 16, 2007

You're gonna need an ocean...

...but not of Calomine lotion--apparently it's out of style to use as a treatment for poison ivy these days. That's right--I have poison ivy. Pretty badly, too. Let's just say it's creeping upwards into regions you just do not want to have poison ivy in. Ugh.

I like to think most people get poison ivy accidentally--they're traipsing through the woods on a jolly walk-about, or they're hiking and just brush past it by accident. But me--no, not me! I willingly and voluntarily plucked poison ivy vines out of a bushy patch at the edge of our yard to make way for a rhubarb patch. Not that I did it with my bare hands. I had protection, of course! Rubber gloves up to my elbows, plastic bags tied around both hands and feet, and bucket of bleach in which to plunge the vile plant. I was foolhardy, though--I thought this would be protection enough. Turns out those plant oils can jump! Oh, lord, can they jump, and I did not shower immediately afterward, which is the cardinal rule of knowingly dealing with poison ivy exposure. I've been miserable and paying for it ever since.

To top it all off, I have a wedding to go to this Saturday (our 3rd of the summer). I'm trying to get it it quickly off of my arms, and luckily the biggest, weepiest patches are on my upper thighs. Since I'm not wearing my mini-dress to the wedding, it shouldn't be too much of a problem.

Anyone have any fool-proof cures for the poison ivy itching and rashes?

Friday, July 13, 2007

Just got home from NYC. We were there for a friend's 30th. I think this is the first time we've gone to visit since moving where we haven't even set foot in Manhattan. Well, okay, we did at the end--to get bagels at our former favorite neighborhood bagelry in our old hood--but for recreation purposes, we stayed squarely in Queens with a trip out to Long Island to Ik.ea. We purchased a kick-butt as-is outdoor chair for our patio. Not that our patio is built yet, but we're getting started this weekend.
Oh, and we came home to discover a flat tire on the Jeep. Great! What a lovely surprise. No idea how it happened. I haven't even driven is since June 20th! Ah well. That thing is on its last legs anyway.

S.'s flow was playing chicken with us for a while. At our day 3 ultrasound, our tech said S.'s lining was still really thick for being on day 3. Turns out her flow was feeling a little shy, so we weren't sure for a little while there if we were going to even be able to start with our meds this cycle--which wouldn't mean no cycle for us, but pretty much did because it would mean S.'s hormone levels were all out of whack. Luckily, the flow started flowing and we commenced as usual, and the blood test showed S.'s hormones on track for the beginning of her period. Phew! It's weird how foreign it all felt after over a month of not being there--the waiting room, the ultrasounds, interacting with techs and nurses and front desk people...but sort of a comfortable thing to fall back on, too. We have yet to broach the insurance issue with our doctor--we rarely see her on our trips into the clinic--so we'll have to call her. I really have no idea how available she is via phone, but I know to make an appointment in person with her, there's like, a two month wait or something crazy like that. Ugh! Imagine being that busy? I can't. I can't even find a summer job!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Back in the saddle...

I am ready to get going again. Fertility issues were by no means on our minds during our Alaska trip--at least not on mine. For a while, we got to forget about going to the doctor every other day, sticking needles into our stomachs, waiting for periods..all that really fun stuff. S.'s period came yesterday, which means we're back on track for insem. this month. This month is significant to us, because it represents the 12th time we will have done an insemination. Number 12 is like this magical, mystical number, because after try #12, insurance is supposed to cover everything. Everything. Sperm. IVF. Whatever. Everything.

Great! Is there a problem here then, you may be asking? Well, our doctor is saying we've only tried 9 times--she does not count the 3 at-home insems we did. I decided to call our insurance company on the down-low last month in anticipation of this moment and ask what they counted as "exposure to sperm," as the insurance company insists we must have for 12 months, and they said whatever the doctor says, counts. So now the task seems to be, if this cycle does not work, convincing our doctor that our at-homes counted and insurance said it counted so why not make everyone happy and count it??!! Why in the world would we spend $1500 on sperm for 3 months, only to waste it? I'm pretty sure I "exposed" S. to it. Not that the exposure amounted to anything, but still.

I know I've ranted about this before, but it's just so annoying to have to prove that S. has been trying to conceive outside a doctor's office. Why the hell else would lesbians buy sperm?!?! Some crazy science experiment??

Oh well. Hopefully none of this will matter and this month will be it. Knowing our dumb luck, it will. The one cycle before everything is to be covered, and our full coverage kicks in, we get pregnant. I can only keep hoping!!

Speaking of saddles...S. looks good on a horse, don't you think? This was the one Alaska outing I was not sure of, bu
t we had a great time!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

We are so wonked out and exhuasted from the flight back. We've been up for about 30 hours. I'm trying to hold out and go to bed at a reasonable time. But, I can't wait to catch up on all the blogging..tomorrow probably. Thought I'd check in and leave you with a few shots of our unbelievable trip.

The awe-inspiring Mt. McKinley. 20,000 feet of ice! A moose in our neighborhood in Anchorage. I was a moose virgin... And both of us in front of Holgate glacier, a tidewater glacier off the coast.