Thursday, May 31, 2012


Tomorrow is IUD Day. I know our decision to not continue TTC or use ART and then to now TTA may not be for everyone. I get that, and I understand and respect it. But I am a ball of emotion today. When I read Sweet Grapes it brought me so much comfort, and so much validation in regard to so many things I was feeling. One of the things the couple who wrote the book talked about was affirming the decision to be CFNBC. And they chose to affirm by going back to birth control. I explained it in a previous post, but for me, I need some control. I need to know what the next couple of years will look like while we do the things we've planned "instead." I hated being "late" and wondering what if. I don't want that anymore.

I want this. And yet, I have a heavy heart. It's truly a closing of a chapter. I know it's what's right for us. I'm anxious though, in part because my OB/GYN insists on inserting the IUD during menstruation. I would have liked to wait until Monday, but the triage nurse scheduling my appointment informed me that since I've never given birth (gut punch), a doctor had to perform the procedure and there were no appointments available on Monday. So I feel icky and sad, and I have to go be naked and icky in front of a man doctor I don't know so I can formally put the TTC nail in the coffin.

Like I said, I know you readers may not agree with our decision. But this has been a discussion for months, and we feel confident in it. If you could spare some loving thoughts, I'd appreciate it.

Ssssspencer meets Clover

Obviously, when I brought Spencer home (er, had him delivered via USPS), I had to consider that I have two dogs at home, with one in particular who likes to eat toys. So even though I plan to keep Spencer in my underwear drawer (what? Where would you keep a plush sperm?) I wanted to make sure my pup, Clover, knew not to mess with my new toy. And Spencer, not being the type to want to die an early death by de-fluffing, was on board.

She looks incredibly intimidated, doesn't she?

Friday, May 25, 2012

Introducing Spencer

After reading a very awesome blog by my pal, Kristy, who suffers from PCOS, I've gone and done something... a little nutty. You see, Kristy got herself a plushie, an ovary she named Olivia (she also has an egg and a sperm, but they've yet to make their true mark). She takes Olivia everywhere, from Bass Pro Shop to her RE's office and Walmart. And she helped me to discover that Olivia has friends, namely a sperm plush. And so, I adopted Spencer.

Don't let the Comic Sans and bow fool you. He's one bad ass sperm doll (yeah, according to Amazon, he's a "preschool toy"). And he's judgy, clearly. But he has a soft side: Spencer enjoys gardening, movies, and dancing to LMFAO.

So, he may pop up now and then. I don't know exactly what role he'll take. Mainly, I'm thinking comic relief. You know, take it out on the sperm now and then. In a funny way.

Friday, May 4, 2012


Last night, Buddy joined me at my therapy session. It was a little weird because my therapist was running about 20 minutes late, and it was kind of awkward to not know how long to wait. I knew I had an appointment - it had been confirmed, but this had never happened before, and she doesn't have a receptionist in the building, so...?  Buddy was about 15 minutes late, so we wanted 5 minutes together and decided we'd only wait 5 more, and she opened the door about 2 minutes later. So, better late than never.

It was kind of strange to be there with him. I had told him a couple months ago about the types of things I've talked about because I didn't want him to be caught off guard by any topic that might come up, but it felt odd to have him there. Normally, the session is just a conversation, more or less, between me and my therapist. She'll ask how I'm doing and if anything in particular is bothering me, and then we just kind of have a conversation until a topic sticks and then she might ask me to elaborate. She basically leads me through talking to a solution or clarity on whatever it is I'm working through. With Buddy there, I didn't have any specific agenda with him there - it was just so meaningful to have his support in the room. It took a little longer to start the conversation, but some really good things did come out of it.

We talked for a bit about how Buddy handles things and how we kind of react to each other. For a while now, I've had a hard time wrapping my head around how this can be such a traumatic thing for me and he can just be like, "it is what it is." The fact of the matter is, he IS sad, but something that's probably as basic as the difference between men and women allows for him to not think about his biological clock constantly. He's also not surrounded by a community (on The Bump, through blogs, on Facebook) of women that remind him of the situation. It's not a bad thing that that community is around me, it just is. I also had no idea that he actually is comfortable telling people that we aren't having kids and indicating that fertility is the reason. I know he has told people we aren't having them, but last night he said that his coworkers know it's because we can't (yes, I realize we chose not to do treatments, but left on our own, we consider ourselves unable, or at the very least highly unlikely, to have them).

In the beginning of our infertility experience, we talked about it often. I mean, it was hard not to. It was on our minds a lot and it was an incredibly emotional time in our home. But it fell out of his thinking much more quickly than it did mine. I don't bring it up much because I don't want him to feel bad because the bulk of our infertility is on his side. What I didn't know is that he doesn't bring it up not because he feels badly or because he doesn't think about it, but because he doesn't want to "trigger" me. From the conversation with the therapist, he's a lot more aware of when I'm triggered than I thought he was. I keep a lot of it to myself because sometimes, I have a bad week and everything gets to me, but apparently I'm far more transparent - at least to my husband - than I thought. So basically, in the same way I'm been shielding him from my emotions, he's been trying to help my in his own way by avoiding upsets. I think moving on from here, we can be more open and communicate more feelings and know that they're not bad to express and we aren't going to hurt each other with them.

Anyway, the very exciting thing for me is that I graduated from therapy. The last couple of sessions before this one have been less emotional and I didn't feel like I had as much "stuff" to talk about. We still talked obviously, but I didn't come into those sessions with a mental list of things that I wanted to cover. So we decided that we'll just play it be ear, and see how it goes. I didn't make my next appointment, and I don't intend to. I know I'm welcome to contact my therapist if I have a small issue that I want perspective on, and she asked me to keep in touch. I feel incredibly lucky to have found her, because I think she was just the right fit for me. I'll be forever grateful for her help and guidance. As cheesy as it may sound, she is a part of this process for me, and she'll always be thought of in kind regards as a big reason that we were able to get through this time. It was the absolute best thing I could have done for myself. It's the end of yet another phase for me, but I'm looking forward to taking what I've learned and reflected on carrying it with me.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Get me off this roller coaster

For the last 6 or 8 months, my cycles have consistently been 28 or 29 days. I can feel when I ovulate on the left (I seem to O more frequently on that side) and I have my pesky spotting for 3 or so days before CD1. This last cycle was different. I couldn't feel O, my typical pre-CD1 symptoms came and went and my cycle was 32 days with very little spotting on CD31. Not my typical cycle. Basically, for the few days I was "late," I was freaking out.

All sorts of things went through my head. We'd avoided when I assumed my fertile window would be (since I'm not on progesterone supplements and am worried about the possibility of miscarriage), but if my cycle was long, I was off on that and something could have happened. What if I was pregnant?  I just painted the craft room purple! It would have to be a girl. How would Buddy react? What about all the work I've done in therapy to be okay with childfree? What about financially? We could afford a baby, but not saving for a baby as of the last 6 months has meant more expendable income. Did I want to give up my pricier haircuts and our dinners out? I kind of like having money to spend on stuff for me. What about our plans for remodeling things in our home or finally having a vacation? A baby would mean that would get put off a while. What about insurance? My insurance sucks now, and maternity care would be so much more than before. I know we'd figure it out, but did we want to anymore?

And I realized something. I wasn't sure I wanted to be pregnant with a surprise. Over the last 6 months, I've come to a place where I enjoy life with my husband and we have new things to look forward to. We're having fun making plans to refinish the kitchen cabinets and reface the fireplace. We're enjoying things like gardening, and I'm focused on my side business and he has time to go dirt-biking. Life is good - something I couldn't have envisioned 6 months ago. I found myself incredibly confused. How could I have feelings like this when we'd been so devastated 8 months ago? When my cycle finally ended, I found myself relieved, and I knew it was time to do something.

We've talked about it off and on over the last few months. Hope is great, but it's also exhausting. Suddenly thinking for the first time in 8 months that there could have been a chance, slight as it may be, shot me back to our TTC days of hoping and hoping and then being let down. I hate the feeling. And so, I'm going to do something I read about in "Sweet Grapes," something to affirm our decision. At the same time, it's something that seems counter-intuitive to my grief. I'm going to the doctor and I'm inquiring about an IUD. I realized I'd enjoyed not having the ups and downs of TTC, and after being thrown back into it by three simple days, I wanted my serenity back. Yes, I'm still sad at not having children, but unless I - er rather, we - change our minds about this decision we've made, it doesn't feel fair to me to ride the emotional roller coaster anymore. I want certainty and consistency. If we're going to move on, I want to move on. I want some control. I'm confident that I want to focus on this to-do list Buddy and I have been building and working on. I'm relieved to be letting go of this part of it.