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So on the 11th I went to my Doctor to begin treatments, sadly it didn’t work out for this cycle. Will try again next month.

That is the short of it. If you are the tl:dr kind of person you’ve got the whole story there. If you’re that adventurous kind, continue on….

The will be TMI bits here, I’m giving you a 2nd chance now to opt out and take the easy road.
I’ll give some detail and there will be talk of  vaginas and other female organs. If this is too scary for you, you may want to stop here. This is your last warning.

Still with me? Awesome! Here goes.

We drove down to my awesome Doctor, early in the morning, filled with anticipation and a bit of fear. From a technical standpoint, I know the process, but there are the unavoidable feelings tied up in this. Science fills me with comfort. Emotion is unpredictable and unyielding.

I start by peeing in a cup, because isn’t that always the way it starts. I’m assuming it was a pregnancy test, just in case nature was finally on our side. (Stupid nature!). It may have also been a ruse to get me to empty my bladder completely.

We then go to an exam room with a procedure table-bed thingy. All girls know this table, the one with the foot stirrups. We all hate this table. My husband likes this particular table though. It has a light on it that is foot controlled, so he has been known to wave his foot back and forth, under the sensor to make it go on and off. Never while I’m actually having the exam though, at least not that I’ve noticed. I wouldn’t put it past him though.

I’m told to disrobe, everything waist down. I can keep my socks on (I know because I asked). I always wear cute socks and hell, my feet get cold. As I sit there I realize my super cute socks have a hole in the toe. How embarrassing. I also realize I failed to shave my legs before this trip. These are the things I’m thinking about. I’m compartmentalizing. I’m a spazz.

Dr. M comes in. She is, like always, funny and a bit sarcastic. If I had picked her personally as a doctor I couldn’t have done better (She was referred by my insurance). Her personality fits us. If I wasn’t going through this, we might be friends.

Dr. M is encouraging. She doesn’t know this but I hate the ultrasound machine. I relate it to my ER visits and the miscarriages I’ve had. Many of you have seen an ultrasound procedure, where they roll the little curved bit covered in some sort of silicone gel goo, over a pregnant woman’s stomach and they find the healthy spawn, reaching out. Mom and dad may also get to learn the gender of said spawn. They show this on TV and in movies all the time. This has never been my experience.

There is another kind of ultrasound, it is done with something that looks more like a wand and it is done vaginally. During my first miscarriage, I got both kinds, first the less invasive and then the more. I was penetrated by this thing and then given the worst news ever. You can understand my misgivings. But science, I am giving in to science and attempting to let these memories go.

We settle down for the transvaginal ultrasound to make sure my ovaries look good to begin treatment. The right one first. It seems to look good, this is encouraging. The left one next. Not so much. There is a circular void on the screen. Apparently I have a cyst. She measures it’s diameter. It looks to me like like she’s selecting an area in Photoshop. It even had the little cross-hairs and dotted line.  We’re told it’s too big to proceed this cycle.

I had 2 choices, attempt to let nature take it’s chance on me again, try an OPK (over the counter ovulation kit) knowing that my hormones could be affected by this cyst and maybe it doesn’t go away on it’s own this cycle or take medication to make it go away and try next month. The one kicker is, the medication is birth-control pills, so no trying on our own. I went with the pills.

So for the first time in 20 years I’m taking Birth-control pills again. Crazy and counter intuitive.
My cyst explains a couple of things. My hormones have been all over the place recently, I’ve had nausea and cramps. Back pains. I might have equated it with early pregnancy if I hadn’t been completely sure I wasn’t. I was beginning to think it was psychosomatic. At least I’m not completely crazy.

I’m disappointed. I feel like I’m losing time, but the logical part of me knows that this should be under the very best possible conditions and this cycle wasn’t. So here’s crossing our fingers, toes and whatever else you’ve got to next month and here’s to waiting for my period to begin again.

Next time, though, I’ll make sure to shave my legs.

 

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The last couple of weeks I’ve been planning for a positive outcome for my fertility treatments (more on that in a moment)…but I’ve also been planning for events, should the treatments work, I’ll need to cancel or reevaluate.
Why am I doing this? Because I’ve put my life on hold several times in the past couple of years either because I became pregnant or we were in the process of trying.
My husband and I have plans to return to Walt Disney World in the fall for The Food And Wine Festival at EPCOT. We had an amazing time last year and when (if) we go this year, I’m sure it’ll be just as great.

I’ve put my deposit down on the hotel. I’ve begun planning what parks I want to go to on what days, where I want to dine and when (even though we can’t make reservations until 180 day out!). Which day we want to go back to Universal to see the Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion. I even know which is our quiet pool day. Doing this keeps me calm. This is how I compartmentalize.
I’m seriously looking forward to it, but I totally hope we don’t go.

TMI for those who don’t what to read about girly issues….

Now, for anyone who may be going through this, this is what is happening so far…
We are beginning daily, multiple injections shortly after my cycle begins. (for the very first time, in the last 3 years I am praying for my period to come! Weird!)

In the mean time, I’ve applied, and been approved for Family Medical Leave because I will erratically have to see my doctor and I can’t pre-plan around those appointments with my job. I’ll often only know a day or 2 in advance when I’ll need to be seen. My employer has been incredible. I’ve asked for concessions regarding being able to receive some of my injections while on the job (because I can’t self administer all of them), rather than calling out, leaving early or coming in late and they are being incredibly flexible. I really do feel like I work for the best company in the world.

So hopefully, in the next couple of days, I get to start being stabbed with small metal spikes in both my stomach and ass, frequently, so that I won’t be able to imbibe in alcohol, caffeine or sushi (and so many other things) for more than a year and be tied down to a needy crying, pooping, little human for 18 (or more) years.  Oh, and have to call Disney and let them know that I need to cancel my plans for Food and Wine, because life got in the way.
Sounds like paradise.


I hope you haven’t been sitting on the edge of you seats waiting for my infrequent posts….

We’ve reached the next step. I’ve had an incredible number of tests, related to both my infertility and my genetic condition. It’s been a long road but I’m clear to begin fertility treatments on my next cycle.

I don’t want to get into to many gory details just yet. Just cross your fingers and toes. Let’s see what the next few months bring us.


If you read my post from October 10th this is an update to that…

It’s a good news bad news situation. I’ve seen doctors, I have more appointments but I have a diagnosis and thus a reason for our fertility issues.

First the good news…my Von Willebrand diagnosis, of which I’ve known about since I was in my mid 20’s, is not a contributing factor, and in fact may be assisting in my fertility.  (Who knew!)
I’m in a very good place to be able to conceive and carry a child especially in my very advanced age of 40.  With a caveat, of course.

My husband is perfect (I’m sure he’ll be noting and referring to this for years to come).

Now the bad news…
I’ve been diagnosed with a chromosomal issue called Turner Mosaicism or Mosaic Turner syndrome. It’s hard to find much info on the issue because more is written on Turner Syndrome, which seems like it’s much worse counterpart.
My OB/GYN said that based on the tests that I’ve taken over that last couple of months, in her evaluation, I have a 25% higher chance of miscarriage in the first trimester than would be normal because of chromosomal issues with some of my eggs.
Our next step is to see a genetics specialist, who will then evaluate our chances of conceiving a healthy nerd-spawn. We have an appointment in early January. If that appointment goes well, I might be put on fertility drugs to give me a higher chance of conceiving.
We were told that this doesn’t affect my ability to carry a healthy pregnancy, so one of our options might be IVF from a known or anonymous egg donor. That is outside of our insurance so I’m a little terrified of the cost if it comes down to that. Of course there’s always adoption.
So there you have it. I know that many of my friends have been concerned about me and I appreciate it. It’s been a rough time, but we’re getting through it. At least, hopefully, we’ll have answers or a least a direction sometime soon.


I won’t be upset if this ends up being a for some of you (you know…the 2 or 3 of you who follow me).
I’m not really sure I’ll end up posting this, but here goes….

This is my real life. I’m gonna tell you about what I’ve been dealing with for the last couple of years and how it’s changed me as a person. I’m not gonna lie, this is probably TMI for some, but for others it may help, and honestly…I’ve been keeping this pretty close to my heart for awhile.

We’ve been trying to conceive for a couple of years now. It started so easily…we thought “wouldn’t it be nice to have a second child” and then, without really trying, we were pregnant. It was incredible…it was so easy. I was so wrong.

Some who follow me, or more likely my husband,  may remember that we had a miscarriage a couple of years ago. I’ll never forget it. It was my 38th birthday. Only those who are very close to me know that I had a second about 5 months later. Since then we’ve been unable to conceive at all.

You go through a period of mourning, but you don’t feel like you can talk about it like you would if a relative or close friend had died, because what has died was never viable in the first place. It never laughed, or spoke or walked a step. Hell, It went away before I even got to hear it’s heartbeat. But something died, and I mourned…and I had every right to.
I’ve been sad and angry. Very angry, for a long time. I’ve thought terrible things about myself and questioned my own femininity. But people don’t talk about these things, so I didn’t.

I lost friends, some because of our choice to parent again, and later some who instinctively recognized my underlying anger and, understandingly, decided to avoid it.  Of course in the course of time, several of our friends have gotten pregnant, successfully, and those pregnancies are either currently percolating or their spawn have been unleashed onto mankind. I want to show them I’m happy and I am so very happy for them, but it’s so hard to express when you hate yourself for being unable to do the one job you had. So I avoid even commenting on it. It’s an uncomfortable spiral for everyone.

So, we recently decided that this was a problem that was beyond us, and have sought medical assistance. We’re at the very beginning of this, going through tests. I had an incredibly invasive one today that has left me in a crampy ball laying on the couch working through the pain. The tech and on call OB/GYN commented on my high pain threshold, not the super-power I was hoping for, but hey, beggars can’t be choosers.

My husband and I made a deal, if the tests come back and it’s a no go for us again, we’re just gonna have a zoo full of fur-kids and be the most amazing fairy-godparents to all of our friends kids.
I just can’t be angry anymore. I need to follow my bliss and if it doesn’t include the pitter-patter of biological spawn then we’ll have to refocus.

I hope that this post helps someone, who has been unable to talk about things like these. I really do. I so rarely get personal, but it’s time to take back my power and run with it.
For those of you who read the whole post, thank you, you rock!

 


I don’t believe much in New Years Resolutions because when I make them and don’t follow through, I feel like a big failure. I’m not much in the way of failing, so I usually just avoid stating them outright.
This year I posted some goals on this site (including writing this blog at least once a week…oops!) and haven’t really talked about them since.

The biggest, and most important thing, at least in my mind, was making this “The Year of the Hodge Podge”. Tom and I want to be happy, healthy and comfortable, seem easy enough.
In the last 10 years or so I’ve gained more weight then I’m happy with. They’re totally “Happy lbs.”. You know, married to my love, feeling mostly fulfilled, and eating out more than I probably should. A couple of years ago I’d crossed over the 200 line and stayed there, inching up little by little.
It was hard for me. I don’t feel I judge people by their weight, but I certainly spend a great deal of time with people who are thin and model-like. I even know a few real, professional models. Models and cosplayers pose for my husband for art reference. I knew it got bad when I began to truly avoid cameras being pointed at me at conventions, I dread the tag requests I get on Facebook after every event. That girl, in those pictures, isn’t the girl I see in my head. So, I take the peek-a-boo approach…if I can’t see it, it isn’t there!

So to the point (finally!)…in the last couple of months, I’ve been watching what I eat, and working out, mostly on our wii fit and walking. I’m not being crazy about it, making changes I’ll be comfortable sticking with in the long-term. I’ve mostly cut dairy out of my diet. Started taking vitamins, which is a huge deal because I hate even taking Tylenol, now I take several pills every morning.

As of today’s weigh-in I’ve lost 19 lbs!

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I’ve been under 200 for the last couple of weeks and sill inching down. At work, I started at a costume size 22 (Disney’s costume sizes are larger than the real world sizing that you might find in a store). I’m comfortably wearing a size 18 now, and will soon be in a 16.
I have containers in the garage of cloths I’d sized out of in the last few years and I’m thinking it may be time to go through them as the jeans in my closet that were way too tight a couple of months ago are kinda loose on me now.
So there you have it…so far I’ve lost about 10% of my body weight and I have no intention of finding it again.


I don’t claim to be well-educated in this area. I don’t have any kind of degree that would make me an expert in bullying or the psychology related to gender. Nothing like that. My only expertise lies in the fact that I was once a teenage girl, am now a full-grown woman and have been on both sides of mean-girlness. Yes, I admit to being the bully as well as the bullied.

This won’t have the answers. Most likely, just more questions.

It’s a shame really that women are so keen to knock each other down. It’s not as if men aren’t already doing it for us, figuratively,  if recent tweets and news items from certain male creators of comics are to be believed. In the “Nerd Community” guys are often the first ones to call geek-girls “posers”, “con-pretty” or, in the case of cosplayers, whores (because if a woman spends hours upon hours of her own time creating a screen or book accurate rendition of her favorite character she must be a poser, fake geek-girl, whore). My husband, who is kind and loving to me and sweet to most women, regularly calls out a particular actress as horse-faced, as if she has any control over how her face is shaped and what does it matter anyway. Yes, I’m totally throwing him under the bus, but he happens to be the man I spend most of my time with…you know that everybody does this too, and to what end?

Now I’m just mentioning the comics/art community because I’ve been a part of it for over a decade. I’m a total nerd, which just really just means that there are certain things that I embrace and obsess over and I have no problem admitting it to anyone. But I’ve experienced mean girls since I was a girl. Been knocked down, excluded, lied to or about. It’s happened all through my life as well. Had boyfriends stolen from (as if they were mine to steal away from) by women who only wanted to prove they could. The real pain comes from when we suddenly exclude someone from our lives when they had been so much a part just days before without reason. We often take with us a core group of friends (who’ve had to choose, and they choose the perceived alpha). Leaving the first woman utterly alone, at least in her mind. I’ve done it and had it done to me.

Now I’m going in circles. I’ve done all of these things to other women, so I’m not pointing fingers. I don’t understand why, but it seems like we’ve been bred to compete. I don’t want to compete anymore. I’m too fraking old for this.

Does it matter in the end, who won, when we’re all food for worms? My guess is no.



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