Apologies and Goodbyes

Wow.  I didn’t realise how much I had neglected this blog until now.  And in doing so, neglecting the people who chose to follow me, and I them.  I’m sorry.  I can’t even feign that I’ve been too busy to blog.  I admit it:  I’ve been cheating on WordPress……with Instagram, which is a better place for micro-blogging plus easier to ad a visual aide and edit the post.  And I don’t have to approve comments.  And…

Anyway, I cheated, and I’m sorry.  Sorry I haven’t been around to read your posts and comment or commiserate.  I just…….well I just didn’t feel like coming here.    It’s too depressing, and quite frankly I don’t need to visit this depressing place to be depressed.  I’m already there at any given time.

my journey to motherhood is over.  And so there’s no need for me to continue to blog here.  There is nothing left to say. It’s over. But I’m not deleting it.  I’m going to leave it, in case any small part of it comes in handy for someone.  I can’t imagine it will.  But you never know.  Plus, I think my holiday TTC carols are kinda funny.

For those of you who followed, I thank you.  For those who contacted me and offered support, I thank you.  It didn’t go unnoticed and it didn’t go unappreciated, no matter how it may have seemed.

Wishing you all the best on your journey, whatever stage you are in.  Xx

 

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These are a few of my TTC things

Technically, My Favourite Things isn’t a carol.  But it seems to be on the holiday music loops in the shops, and never any other time of year, so……it’s getting a make over, Hopeful Hearts style!

The fourth single from the Grammy deserving album, Infertile Carols:

My TTC Things (My Favourite Things)

Blood tests and ultrasounds, having injections

Hoping I don’t get some kind of infection

Stock up on Tampax and Always (with wings)

These are a few of my TTC things

Appointments and schedules all ruled by the calendar

Moodiness and night sweats, memory like a colander

Babies in strollers tug at my heart strings

These are a few of my TTC things

Excess and co-pays, insurance premiums

Progesterone and oestrogen, Crinone, Endometrin

Sudden hot flushes and horrid mood swings

These are a few of my TTC things

When my period’s late, and I think what if?

I start feeling hope

Then later my undies are ruined again

And I feel like such a dope!

Waiting and praying and wishing like crazy

Hoping my donors ovaries aren’t too lazy

Not leaving the house until that damn phone rings

These are a few of my TTC things

Deep breathing, meditation, positive visualising

Wrestling with grief that is life paralysing

When will my baby get to hear me sing?

These are a few of my TTC things

Destressing, detoxing, should clean up my eating

Gained weight last cycle, esteem took a beating

I can’t fit into my favourite black jeans

These are a few of my TTC things

When it finally comes……and I’m finally Mum

Oh, I will be so glaaaaaaad

But then I remember it all has to work

And I go back to feeling soooooooo baaaaaaad

Third single released from chart topping album

I clearly missed my calling.  I mean, this much talentWasted.  If my previous employer knew what a bottomless well of creativity they were getting rid of, that retrenchment just might not have happened.

C’est la vie.  Moving on.  Australia’s Got Talent, here I come.

TTC (Jingle Bells)

 Peeing on a stick

In the loo at 6am

Waiting for results

And it’s negative once again

Throw self in the floor

And start sobbing like a child

Why do I even bother trying?

Man, this ride is wild!

Oh, TTC, TTC

What you do to me

What Hell it is to try and fail

It’s making me cra-zy!

Oh!  TTC, TTC

Why are you so mean?

I cannot stop, I must go on

Damned infertility!

Another month has gone

Can’t take another fail

Another friend is pregnant now

I’m ready to spit nails

She just went off the pill

They’ve barely even tried

Now she gets what I’ve wanted

So I cannot help but cry

Oh, TTC, TTC

Why can’t it be me?

I’m doing everything I can

I wish I could break free

Oh!  TTC, TTC

Hey this stuff ain’t cheap!

Emotional wreck, just what the heck

I’m broke financially

Oh, look another year

Has just gone screaming past

Another year without a child

Midlife’s approaching fast

I don’t know what I’ll do

If I never have a child

Can’t even live it up because

The bankruptcy’s been filed

Oh, TTC, TTC

It never worked for us

Needles, shots and tablets

Never once got up duff

Oh!  TTC, TTC

It makes me want to scream

We’re broke, we’re old, we’re childless

But I guess we’re still a team

I have kids…..

…..but they only exist in my head.

I know.  Pathetic, isn’t it?  A 43 year old woman, goes to sleep at night thinking about ‘what happened that day’, with the kids that she hasn’t really got?

This is not the same as playing make believe, though.  Like, I don’t “play house” or pretend they’re there when nobody is around.  I am fully aware that it is only in my head, and I don’t see or hear them outside of that small space.  I’m not seeing voices or having schizo episodes.  I do have some kind of mood disorder, but I don’t think I’m categorically insane.  (Opinions vary, and the jury is still deliberating that…..)

I have started to do what I call feathering my nest.  As in acquire things for what would be the nursery.  Recent bargain finds include a glider rocker and foot rest in exactly the style I wanted and in excellent condition ($100), I have a barnyard theme layette set with everything; there are a few very small imperfections due to use, but hard to find ($100).  A Steelcraft highchair that looks to have NEVER been used even once (not a mark on it anywhere!) ($100).  A pristine jungle animal bouncy seat with toy bar ($20).  Deals just too good to pass up.

I go in that would be nursery and sit in the glider, close my eyes and rock and try to imagine rocking my baby to sleep.  If I fold my arms the right way, I can juuuuuuuuuust about convince myself for about two seconds…….

I would play with baby dolls in there, if I could find one like the kind we had when I was a kid.  You know, plastic heads with “real” hair and blinking eyes, half plastic/half stuffed fabric arms and legs but a squishy body perfect for cuddling?  yeah……they don’t seem to make those kinds of baby dolls now.  They’re all plastic, hard bodies and quite small, not realistic size.  Not very cuddly.  Not very satisfying.

Once again, I know……I know……a grown woman who would stoop to playing with baby dolls on her own accord.  But I would.  I always liked baby dolls.  I was ready for motherhood at quite an early age.  Maturity lacking, I was ready to take it on at 12, 13.  Easily.  I’m probably the only person I know who (when she’s able to be around babies) breaks her neck to change a shitty nappy!  Seriously…….no nappy blow out is too big to make me change my mind!   Show me the baby shit!

Anyway.  (Sorry, I get off track sometimes.)  In my head I have kids.  I have a boy and 2 girls.  I can’t actually envision them (aesthetically) clearly.  That part is very blurry.  But, here’s the thing.  They aren’t static figments of my imagination.  They’re not constant.   They actually grow, evolve, as people.  I don’t plan out what they did or said.  It just comes to me.  It’s like somewhere in my mind lives a person writing a screen play, except there are no edits.  Whatever they did or said?  It’s like real life, as in no do overs.  We deal with it, and move on.  Every night it picks up where the night before left off.  It’s like a soap opera with a rolling storyline.  My night time imaginings of that days events is different every day.  They grow and change, go through stages, get older and meet various milestones.  They have friends.  They have people they don’t like, people that don’t like them.  They have their strengths and weaknesses.  Their gifts and talents.  They are each their own person, with their own quirks and personalities, just like any kid.  Don’t get me wrong.  They’re not perfect.  I am not envisioning motherhood through rose-tinted glasses!  I mean, I “deal with” temper tantrums, PMS, attitude problems, notes from the teacher about talking in class, lying, smart mouths, and sibling rivalry.  They makes messes, they get into mischief, and can cause untold chaos if left to their own devices.  But, I also get lots of cuddles and I love you mums, weird and wonderful works of art to display on the fridge, the odd dandelion brought to me (head only, no stem, so I have to float it in a bowl of water!) as a gesture of love.  I’m under no illusion that parenting is easy, or always delightful.  I know the real deal.  Parenting will be hard.  The hardest thing I will ever do.  It will be infuriating, frustrating, tiresome, at times loathsome.  But it will also be the most rewarding, joyful, pride-building thing too.  For every up there is a down and vice versa.

But they’re not real.  They exist only in my head.  I have no idea how they came about, but it’s been going on for a while now.  It started when I was working in the city during the week.  I had nothing in the way of a life once I left work each night.  I’d go to the house where I was renting a room, catch up with my housemate, retire for the night, go to sleep.  One night, I realised that I had daydream/imaginary kids!  So I just……went with it.  It became my night time ritual.  My bedtime story, I guess.  I’d go to bed, spin that days episode, drift off to sleep.

(Typing it out, I wonder if maybe I’m not insane after all!)

But, I reckon it’s born primarily of my deep deep DEEP desire for motherhood, and so, until the kids are actually here……in the flesh……making messes, driving me crazy and making my heart explode in my chest with so much love for them, I have to make do with the ones that live only in my head.  I like to think I’m rehearsing, if you will.  Sharpening my mothering skills in theory, if not practical.  Sort of a……role playing exercise.

Why not?  Role playing exercises are used now in everything from job interviews to workshops for teamwork skills assessments.  Why not desired and hopefully impending motherhood?  🙂

I guess I should update on where we’re at in all this

Back before I decided to launch my songwriting career (ha!) I think I may have mentioned that I was undergoing some testing to find out why on earth I can’t get even a perfect tip top quality donor egg embryo to implant and make a baby.

Well, as it turns out, I have a generalised immune imbalance, fairly decently elevated natural killer cells in my uterus (mildly elevated in my bloodstream), as well as lactose intolerance and non-Celiac gluten intolerance.  After speaking to both my fertility specialist (whom I haven’t switched – it’s just too much trouble to switch and start over) as well as a reproductive immunologist in Sydney, I have a treatment protocol for when we go back to Zlin.

As I suspected, the RI is more aggressive in his approach than my FS.

My FS has suggested in addition to the standard medication protocol (basically HRT):

  • 10mg prednisolone daily, starting one week prior to transfer, and for two weeks post transfer
  • Clexane (heparin) injection daily (I forget the dose)- a blood clot preventer 1 week prior to transfer, and for two weeks post transfer
  • Intralipid infusion – one week prior to transfer, and another one week post positive beta (which is 10 days post transfer)

MY RI has suggested similar but more aggressive:

  • 15 mg dexamethsone daily, 10 days prior to transfer
  • Clexane injection daily (same dose as what FS recommended), 10 days prior to transfer and for 12 (yes TWELVE) weeks post positive beta
  • Intralipid infusion – one infusion one week prior to transfer, and one every two weeks post positive beta, for eight weeks (4 infusions)

Naturally, I’m going with my RI’s recommendations.  He’s got a specific interest in RI where’s my FS has only “believed” in NKC’s for about a year.

At this stage, we are looking at going over in April 2016.  Which feels like ages away, but is really not.  We’re hoping to be able to coordinate another stimmed cycle with our previous donor to bank embryo’s, in case it doesn’t work…..or in the case that it does, and if we want more kids, they will all be full siblings.  I really want that for them.  It’s very important to me.

We’re trying to coordinate the whole thing with BAUMA, which is a huge construction/civil/forestry/and mining expo held every 2 years in Munich, Germany.  If we go to BAUMA, we can claim the flights as a tax deduction.  Well, we get basically nothing for our tax dollars, so damnit, I’m going to avoid paying anything I can!

So there is a lot to organise, and save up for.  That’s the biggest drama, money.  Always money.  But where there’s a will there’s a way.  😉

2 Pink Lines: Another Infertile Carol

Well, since the last one went over so well on Instagram (hey, I made a few people laugh, and if you know anything about the game of TTC, you know any chance to get the giggles going is a chance you don’t pass up!), I decided to try my hand at another one, see if I can’t go gold or platinum.  (I just know Capitol Records is going to come calling any day.)  (Capitol is still in business…..right?)

I “penned” (came up with it while driving home Continue reading

The 12 Months of TTC:  An Infertile Carol

xmasCarols_1548206c

Right.  So.  I’m trying really hard to be in a better head space.  And a better mood.  Get back some Christmas spirit (because infertility has, over the years, chipped and chunked away at it, like a prisoner with a sledge hammer sentenced to hard labour in a quarry, and my Christmas spirit is a  boulder of, I don’t know, chalk.  To say my spirit is in smithereens would be generous), I’m attempting to find humorous, or at least ironic (and sarcastic, because that’s my second language!) POVs about being infertile during the holidays.

I have dug deep into my bag of tricks (about the size of a zip lock baggy).  And I have found some leftover remnants of clever brilliance (don’t laugh, I knew these scraps would come in handy for SOMETHING).  With it, I have created a masterpiece that is going to earn me a Grammy.  Or at the very least a pie in the face.  (Make it pumpkin, please.  I like pumpkin pie.)

To the tune and (approximate) tempo of that time honoured holiday classic, The 12 Days of Christmas, I give you

The 12 Months of TTC

In the first month of TTC, I remember this was me…
I stopped taking my BCPs!

In the second month of TTC, I remember this was me…
I modified my diet
Oh, and I’m still not taking BCPs!

In the third month of TTC, I remember this was me…
I started temperature charting
Remodified my diet
Yes, I’m sure I stopped taking BCPs

In the fourth month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Tracking cervical mucous
Still temperature charting
Re-remodified my diet
NO, I’m not taking BCPs

In the fifth month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Reeeeeee-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!!
Still tracking cervical mucous
Faithfully temperature charting
Re-re-remodified my diet
I wonder if it’s because I took BCPs?

In the sixth month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Added acupuncture
I’m re-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!! 🙂
Still tracking cervical mucous
Still temperature charting
Tried a whole new diet
I’m sure it was those BCPs…..

In the seventh month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Went and had some blood work
Enjoying acupuncture
I am re-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!! 😐
Tracking cervical mucous
Still temperature charting
Blew my stupid my diet
I’m not taking anymore BCPs

In the eighth month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Got a script for Clomid
Went and had more blood work
Look forward to acupuncture
I AM re-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!! :/
Added Pre-seed to cervical mucous
Stuff the temperature charting!
Back on the stupid diet
I’m blaming years of BCPs!

In the ninth month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Had a hysteroscopy
Higher dose of Clomid
Did a ton of blood work
Losing faith in acupuncture
Stop suggesting re-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!!
Hostile cervical mucous
Gave up temperature charting
Sick of this damn diet!
Might as well be back on BCPs!!

In the tenth month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Got sent to a Repro Endo
Had a hysterosalpinogram
Prescribed some new fert drugs
Went and had MORE blood work
Gave up on acupuncture
YOU TRY re-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!!
Don’t bother tracking cervical mucous
Laugh at temperature charting
Totally blew my diet
Oh, and I’m back on the BCPs!

In the eleventh month of TTC, I remember this was me…
IVF cycle busted
Went back to Repro Endo
Had a laparoscopy
Changed up all my fert drugs
That’s right, more blood work
I miss my acupuncture
It actually was re-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!!
Producing NO cervical mucous
Deleted app for temp charting
Diet?  Diet schmiet…..
Can’t believe I’m TTC on the BCPs……

In the twelfth month of TTC, I remember this was me…
Diagnosed infertile
IVF cycle 2 busted
Repro Endo baffled
Counselling recommended
Take a break from fert drugs
Honestly…..more blood work?
Went back to acupuncture
It’s sooooooo re-la-ax-ingggggggg!!!!
Where’s my cervical mucous???
Temperature?  No, a hot flush
Really need to diet
What’s the point of taking BCPs?

Obviously, this isn’t QUITE how it went for me.  It took me years to get a fertility specialist to do anything beyond advise me to lose weight.  I mean, I’ve been at this for 12 years, not months.  But the above comprises the endless headscratching and beard stroking that one does when TTC after a year, when you’re TTC as an infertile.

Anyway, just a little humour and hopefully you found it mildly amusing.  🙂

Holiday Survival Advice

Amazingly enough, you will RARELY get such advice from someone still struggling with infertility.  I read this with great interest and the stirrings of……something.  Until I got to the bottom and saw the author has created her family via adoption and egg donation, and I immediately soured on it.  Because of course!  Of course she can dispense such advice!  She’s come out the other side.  Shes no longer struggling.  She’s got the one thing I need to bring peace, love, joy and hope back into my life.  She’s got a FAMILY.  But here at the Hopeful (hopeless?) Hearts? It’s just me and Mr Heart.  We’re a couple.  And a couple isn’t a family.  I’m sorry…..please don’t try to convince me otherwise.  I’ve been in a childless coupledom for over a decade now and I know there is no similarity in celebrating the holidays as a family for a couple. So I’m not as receptive to anything she has to say now.

Link to full article here  https://www.donoreggbankusa.com/news/blog/dont-just-survive-the-holidays…thrive
Here’s the thing:  I used to LOVE the holidays.  Loved them.  Everything.  The decor, the songs, the feeling of generosity and good will.  Now?  I hate the holidays.  Hate them.  With s purple passion.  While it’s not quite as bad here in Oz as it is in the US, from the time Halloween pops its head up until New Years Day has passed, the holidays are nothing more to me than a screaming-in-my-face reminder of what we’re missing:  a family of our own.   Infertility has broken me so badly that I’m not even sure if having a family could conjur up the good feelings I used to get.  Sometimes broken things really can’t be fixed.

We have family, yes.  All people with their own families.  And we’re always invited to spend holidays with them.  Pity invites.  Third wheels.  Hangers on.  Oddballs.  There……but not really part of it.   There…..separated by the haves and have nots.  Whether that’s accurate, or only how it feels to me, is irrelevant.  It IS how it feels to me.  That’s how it feels to me, because that’s my reality.

So, I loathe the holiday season and if the opportunity to be put into a 3 month long coma were available?  I’d snap it up, in a heartbeat.  As it is, all I can do is try to find ways to cope until it’s over for another year.  Every year it gets a little harder, so evey year I have to go to further lengths.  It’s getting to be very exhausting.

Eventually I am literally going to have to live under a rock.

I use bad language sometimes……

…….and when I’m feeling the worst of the worst……when the TTC struggle has got to me and more than I can bear…..I’m hateful.  I’m bitter.  I’m spiteful , and I say things that are just horrible, but that I don’t REALLY mean.  I give in to the Dark Side of The Force.  (Help me Obi Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope.)

But I do it…..and I admit it and I acknowledge that it’s not the most mature or kind approach. I do and it’s not but…….I can’t really help it.  It’s the only way I can get the poison out.  The poison being the sadness, the fear, the depression, and the feeling like it’s a lost cause.  I say it’s poison because most days, it feels like it’s killing me.

It’s a little but not really but maybe a tad like (from personal accounts I’ve read) having Tourette’s Syndrome of the heartbroken soul.  The desperate NEED to say or do something and the inability to stop it.  I read once a story about a little girl who, when feeling overwhelmed, felt she HAD to make what she called “bullfrog faces”:  eyes and mouth wide open, over and over.  She’d get overwhelmed, the feeling would build, she’d be in public so would hold it in, barely…….then when she could find a “safe” place to do it (ie in private), she’d just let loose……until the need was satisfied.  Just bullfrog over and over…..until the need passed.

I’m like that, only with my nastiness.  I generally do not let Mean and Nasty Kristi out to play, except around people I trust implicitly (sometimes she escapes though not too often and then it’s like trying to heard wet, angry cats).  Because they know I don’t mean what I say, and they understand that, while it’s awful, I HAVE to say it.  The longer I go without letting off the extra pressure, in a manner of speaking, the worse it is when it comes out.  Like a pressure cooker with a poorly fitted lid and faulty pressure gauge.  Trust me…..it’s a mess.  Helping your grandmother scrape pressure cooked green beans off the ceiling makes an impression on you.

I have yet, in my 43 years, found a way to channel it in more constructive ways.  Nothing is as satisfying as a vitriolic raging rant.  With obscenities. Not just mildly profane but reeeeaaaaalllllly offensive ones.

On the blog, I get pissy……and I use language that is…..well, colourful to offensive.  I actually can maintain a professional and dignified persona IRL, but my blog?  An outlet.  A sounding board.  A whipping boy.  A cone of silence, without the silence.  ??  I don’t think I’m making sense (I’m hot, thirsty, and I need a bath.  That’s enough to make me scatterbrained.)

So I apologise if my language is abrasive.  If the use off the f word is offensive.  Please forgive.  But sometimes other words will not do.  Long term infertility is a bloody hard road.  Some whinging is just inevitable.  😉