PG Strikes Again

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Looks like an early winter… for us.

It has been an early winter in a lot of ways.  The failure of my second IVF heralded the leaves turning gold and crimson in February already.  Losing my little doggy Amber saw them breaking loose and floating to the ground, leaving the grand old trees naked in the wind by April. 

And it really has been an early winter.  It got cold rather suddenly. Before we had a chance to shop for leggings and leather jackets, there was a distinct bite in the air.

I haven’t had a lot to say recently either.  After my own personal early winter, I was rather unsure of my next move.  I was reading at Mel’s post about a favourite book of hers.  She read all but the last page, fearing that after the last page was read, the book would be over for her forever. “I loved this book so much that I always refused to read the last page because I thought that if I didn’t read it, the book didn’t end. I am terrible with endings.”

I suppose I feel the same about treatment at the moment.  The longer I leave it the longer it won’t be “the end” for me either.  The idea that I still may be a mom is more appealing to me than reality at the moment.  I am getting plans together rather slowly for blood tests and such, but drawing it out as long as I can.  I am delaying the inevitable, really.  I mean the outcome is the outcome, whether now or in six months.

I am just enjoying not thinking about it, is all.  I guess I didn’t want to bore you either with the non event that is my life at the moment.  I am not one of those people that fills the awkward silences.  I am ususally the person that creates them.

The good news is that we got a new puppy so that Jasmine wouldn’t be the only four-legged “person” in the house.  Our new addition, Emma, is a chocolate mini dachshund, and she has already stolen our hearts.  She is cheeky and confident, unlike Amber who was timid and so gentle.  I am glad they are so different because it helps me to remember Amber for her own special qualities. 

I will post some pics soon, and keep you updated on the progression of my eternal blood tests.

I have been slow to comment – although I have been reading your posts. So I don’t expect a flood of comments.  If you read and move on, that’s okay with me.  As long as you’re still out there.

Insomnia Please Release Me…

Sorry about that last post – I wanted to see what that was all about and had to post it in order to gain access.  It looks quite good actually, it is a course about having more energy and getting what you want out of life, your job etc.

I am back to not sleeping – I think the work side of things is playing on my mind.  I lay in bed last night until 2:30 going over the work for this week.  Eventually I listened to some wacko CD which is supposed to lull you to sleep, but they have this crazy bell which “DINGS” every 5 seconds.  So even if it was working, the bell wakes you up.  I ended up listening to a meditation CD called Body Brilliance and that seemed to do the trick.

I still stand by what I said in my previous post about control.  But in life, everything is easier said than done, so I regard myself as a work in progress.

I am going through a forum-stalker phase, where I spend most waking moments on the net waiting for someone to post something new.  I am travelling other people’s IF journeys as I am unable to travel my own right now.  I get a lot of comfort from hearing about their daily injections, scans, follie updates etc. I know, I am a sad example of a human being.  You know what they say – whatever gets you through the day.

As unstable as I am sounding at the moment I am actually okay.  (Besides not sleeping and obsessing about work)  I am very excited to tell you that I have an appointment to see the Hypnotherapist on Wednesday and I can’t wait to hear what she has to say.  I will keep you posted.  Apparently it’s not that scary hypno that takes over your mind and makes you cluck like a chicken – you are very lucid and aware the whole time, it’s a sort of deep meditation from what I can gather.  The other kind is against my religion, so we’ll be doing none of that!

Other than that, I’ve got a nasty cold.  Please post something *someone* so that I can go and stalk you. Thanks. ‘Preciate it.

Resolutions (I know I know…)

Wow! I really missed you guys, and just had a nice big catch up session…  I wish for a happy and successful 2008 for all of you, and by successful I mean pregnancies all round! (Or live births if you’ve already crossed the great IF divide).

It has been a really relaxing, much needed break.  I am feeling positive and ready for this next cycle.  It will be my 2nd IVF, for those of you who have just tuned in.  As mentioned in my last post, January 2nd was D-day for me to start Lucrin.  I got my first “shot” this morning, and within an hour I felt the familiar fog.  I refuse to go down without a fight, so I downed 1.5 litres of water, and then felt nauseous and foggy!  I am so glad I waited ’til after the holidays!  Still feeling good though, and very determined.

I am going to try and get some acu in before the retrieval.  I am still off work, so now is a good time to kickstart all of that.  I have many, many resolutions and I need to get a start on all of them:  (or at least one heeheeheehee!)

1. I will go to gym regularly.

2. I will eat better.

3. I will try not to stress.

4. I will believe in success.

5. I will make more effort with friends.

6. I will learn how to use my fabulous new Canon EOS 400.

7. I will start to draw again.

8. I will try to complain less.

If I think of any others, I will update the list.  It’s more for my reference than anything else.  As far as resolutions go, I believe that if you don’t try, you’ll never succeed.  So I’d like to give it a good go.  I haven’t included “Have a baby” on this list, as that is not something I have a lot of control over.  And at this point in time, I’m okay with that.

Diamonds in the Rough

It has taken me a while to come to terms with IVF 1.  I am finally in an okay place about that.  I have realised that I actually grieved my early miscarriage and had all the accompanying emotions.  First, sadness.  Then Anger.  Disbelief followed that. And finally, acceptance.  I still feel a pang every now and then.  That is to be expected. 

In the meantime, there have been two pregnancy announcements in my family.  Both unplanned (obviously), one a bit of a shock.  After those two pregnancies were announced so soon after my biochemical pregnancy, I felt like I was being flung into a nightmare from which there was no escape.  Like some kind of horror movie where I am not allowed to cover my eyes in the scary parts. Just as you find courage when facing fears you never thought you could face, I discovered a strength in me that I never knew I had, and have been able to overcome those feelings. Feelings like hurt, jealousy, anger, resentment and pure despair.  It’s no-one else’s fault that I feel these things:  they only serve to highlight feelings that were there all along. 

We, those of us battling fertility problems, can’t afford to be weak, and to give up.  We have to be tenacious, to keep trying despite ourselves, and always hope.  My friend made a comment to me a few days ago that I have changed from all of this.  She was mourning the “old” me.  I was a bit hurt by this comment, but later realised that she was partly right.  Only, the old me is alive and well.  The old me is still here, but with many new facets, like a rough stone that has been cut and polished.  The value of that stone is much greater once it becomes a diamond.  But don’t forget where that diamond came from.  We are all diamonds, shaped by our tragedies, misfortunes and our will to keep going.  We are still the same stones, but we have been transformed, our diamond cutter’s name: Infertility.

I am proud of who I am and the things I have become.  I may not always be cheerful and carefree, but I am still me.  I may not always jump with glee at the news of someone else’s pregnancy, but deep down I still wish them well, and feel happy for them to experience all the things that I long for.  I may cry, but out of those tears comes empathy, and determination that I never had before. I  love more deeply, cry harder, have a profound appreciation, and my heart has grown to accommodate all of those I have met along the way.  I don’t wish infertility on my worst enemy, but wish that they knew some of the unlikely gifts that it has given to me.

Things I’m Grateful For..

I am pretty sure that I have written a post under the same title before…

And thank you for the wonderful salad ideas, I will be trying them out, and please don’t be shy to send me any others you have gathering dust. Elizabeth, you are quite right, we do have some mean salmon salads in this neck of the woods, and salmon is my favourite fish, so I will be getting out there to sample South Africa’s salmon salad selection! I had a salmon wrap the other day which was killer!

Onto the title topic. Things I am grateful for. Earlier this evening, I sat watching ER, the episode where Abby has her baby, and then the baby almost dies, and she and her mother do some bonding. Thankfully, all’s well that ends well. Only, I don’t remember a time where an episode like that didn’t reduce me to a snivelling wreck. I feel so strong, yet at the same time, I feel like I am walking a very thin line, on the other side of which is total melt down.

So I decided to pop onto the net and have a read through the blogs. I laughed, I cried, I sat in silent wonderment. And afterwards, I felt okay again. From Becky’s thought-provoking post to KarenO’s funny and truly amazing post about her miracle on the netball field, to heart-wrenching posts like the one from Baby Blues, waiting for her miscarriage to take it’s course. There is such a sense of community here, from the funny to the sad to the bizarre.

This brings me to things I am grateful for:

1. All of you, for enriching my life to a point where this is actually bearable.
2. My amazing family, who have really been there for me through all of this.
3. My IRL friends, Debs, Tam, Yvonne, Leigh to name a few. Even when I don’t see you, I feel your love and concern.
4. My beautiful funny doggies, Jasmine and Amber, and my kitty Cairo, my fur-kids.
5. My old, small, wonderful and charming new home. I feel happy here already, this house has a warm spirit.
6. My new bedroom curtains which were put up today. Finally I can walk around in the buff again 🙂
7. Oprah Winfrey, the world needs more people like her. She taught me to be grateful every day.

And I really try to do just that. That way, even in the face of sorrow, adversity or pain, life seems just that much better.

New Beginnings

Thank you for making me smile with your comments on my last post. 🙂

After a quiet weekend, lazing in bed, I am good to go. Still walking like a geriatric, but other than that I am “strong like bull”! In body and mind. As I lay in bed, navigating through the many movies I had recorded for later viewing pleasure, something struck me.

At the beginning of this year I threw myself into the fertility treatment full force. I had made a decision that I would be pregnant this year if it just about killed me. At this point, everything else came to a grinding halt. Why not, I told myself, this had to work, I would be pregnant soon, and then I would carry on with everything else…
Fast forward eight months: Picture me, lying in bed, my insides stitched closed, moving around is a chore, breathing is laboured, and I feel like I have been hit by a truck. I have not been eating properly or exercising; I look thirty something and feel ninety-something.

And that’s when it struck me. I have been taking my health for granted. I have been filling my body with all sorts of destructive niceties (cake, fudge, chocolate, sweets, copious amounts of fast food) and have done ZERO exercise since January. My body, in the meantime – which should be my temple – had turned into a giant pile of mush. For the first time in my life I had to go out and buy a size bigger because my clothes no longer fit me. I have never owned “fat” clothes… until now… I feverishly started to make all sorts of “post op resolutions”. When I’m well again, I’ll start cycling and walking and eating healthily and drinking more water….

You see, on any normal day, (when I haven’t had surgery of any kind) I am a pretty mobile person. I can run, jump, skip, dance and work. I can breathe easily, sing out loud and drive myself anywhere anytime. I don’t want to take advantage of these luxuries. I want to preserve my health into my pregnancy and beyond it, well into my twilight years. I want to run and play with my child(ren) and hopefully one day grandchildren. That is entirely up to me and depends on how look after myself now.

So with that said – who has some good salad ideas?