Amber and Aaron

Amber and Aaron

The Fun We've Already Had...

  • Graham Tomas born July 31 at 5:04 P.M. weighing 8 lbs, 12 oz.
  • December 2, 2011: PREGNANT!!!
  • Paisley Kate arrived August 21 at 5:38 P.M. weighing 7 lbs, 9 oz
  • DUE DATE: August 25, 2010!!!
  • Dec. 14, 2009- PREGNANT!!!
  • Oct. 07,2009- Had elective D&C.
  • Sept 28, 2009- No embryo on ultrasound. :(
  • Sept 15th, 2009- We found out we're PREGNANT!!!
  • Sept '09- Aaron had varicocele repair.
  • July '09- IUI #1 with HCG shot= No such luck
  • April '09- Ovarian drilling surgery, followed by hospitalization for uterine infection
  • Jan-Mar '09- metformin + 3 rounds of clomid= no ovulation
  • Dec. 11, 2008- Hysterosalpingogram (Fancy word for shooting dye through the ovaries. OUCH)
  • Nov '08- Sent to RE. Tried metformin alone for two months (No ovulation)
  • Oct '08- Diagnosed with PCOS based on amenorrhea and crazy hormone levels.
  • June '08- Aaron convinced me to start trying.
  • June '04- Got Hitched!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Team Jacob

Aaron, me and both our moms went to see New Moon last night. I read the books and always preferred Jacob. It never made any sense to me why Bella would choose Edward. He just seemed so gloomy and serious all the time, while Jacob was fun and kind. However, I solidified my die-hard Jacob status last night watching the movie.


I mean, really, how in the world would you not pick Jacob? Look at him! I can't even give a fair opinion of the movie due to my ridiculous fascination with this guy. I know there are lots of Edward fans out there, but I just can't see the competition...

*Note: I was not informed of his underage status until after the movie. Plus, I think any 17- year-old who looks this good is no longer covered under child protective services. Correct me if I'm wrong.*

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Survive Thanksgiving: Check

It may not have been easy, but it could have been worse. The tour of Thanksgiving dinners was survived...

We start at my dad's side of the family who live in the country. It's always full of people since I have 13 cousins on that side. My dad was actually there this year and on good behavior which is a rare occasion. The family played horseshoes, checked out Grandpa's new chickens (not kidding), and of course ate turkey.

Then we moved on to my mom's side of the family. She was an only child and my grandparents have passed away, so now it's just her aunt, uncle and cousin. My cousin has a 1-year-old so we were able to spend some time with him. At house #2, we discussed how my uncle shot the turkey in the back and we were even shown pictures of the poor turkey we were eating. By this point I am getting extremely full and tired of turkey.

House #3: Aaron's family. By far the classiest house we go to on Thanksgiving, we even use china. (The other two houses use paper plates.) My mother in law had scratched her eye while in the shower before we got there, so she wasn't able to open one eye. Made for some great jokes, but nevertheless, Aaron and I went to his vet clinic to get her some eye drops. She eventually felt better and we ate. Turkey. Again.

I can't tell you how many times people tell us that we're not eating enough, or we must not like their food. We ate at 1 pm, 3 pm, and 6 pm. Do the math, people. Our metabolism can't possibly keep up with that. It's like we're in a traveling turkey-eating-competition. And a person can only eat so much turkey.

Point of this whole story is that not one person mentioned the miscarriage or the infertility. And even better no one asked when we were going to have kids. That's the blessing of telling everyone about our problems. I didn't have to deal with stupid questions! Of course I was sad. The thought was never too far from me that I should be pregnant. And I am sure hoping that next year I will be. Maybe then I'll be able to eat more of their stupid turkey...

*Catie- your message that you sent me a couple of posts ago was incredible. It brought tears to my eyes. You have been such a positive, uplifting support for me through this. And I can't thank you enough for your friendship. Your joy would never cause me pain... You are such an amazing person and I am SO glad Robbie married you!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thankful? Not so much...

Got the "lovely" chance to meet a perfectly nice, new patient today and refer her to an OB since she's 11 weeks pregnant with a perfect baby. Good for her. No really, I am so glad that it only took her 1 month to get pregnant with her 3rd flippin' baby. And that she is "trying" for a boy this time. Thank goooooodness she survived such an ordeal...

The holidays are not exactly bringing out the sunshine in me. In fact, I'm having a complete meltdown. I've cried twice this week which is more than I cry some years. And you know what crying does besides making my eyes puffy and my nose run? It makes me mad.

I miss my baby. I miss my pregnancy. When I found out I was pregnant, one of the first things I did was figure out how far along I would be at Thanksgiving. I was about 14 weeks wrong, it turns out. So now what I am is angry. And empty. At a time when I thought I would be so excited. We'd be in the 2nd trimester. We'd be well on our way to meeting our baby. All the should-have-beens keep rolling through my mind.

This has turned out to be a lot harder than I expected. I read somewhere than women who have struggled to get pregnant have a tougher time dealing with a miscarriage. This is not to say it isn't always hard. But when you've been waiting on this baby for so long and have been through so much already, it's extra tough. We wanted this so much.

Suddenly it seems like everyone else is getting pregnant. Like 90% of the female population. And I can't help but wonder why not me? Why do they get to keep their babies and I had to lose mine? Why are they posting belly pics and ultrasound photos and I'm still dealing with infertility? And why do they always have to be everywhere that I am???

The road isn't fair and there are NO good answers. I get that. If there is one thing I've learned through this, it's that every single story is very unique. Every ending is different. And every journey varies in distance, direction and speed. And all that I really want is to know that at some point, we will bring home a baby. But no one can guarantee that.

Tomorrow will be one year since we first walked in to the fertility clinic. I remember how scared and excited and hopeful I felt. I remember thinking that I didn't really belong there. At some point, they'd realize there was a mistake. I was fine... I remember when he told me I had PCOS and what our treatment plan was. Things were so different then. I believed in my heart that I would soon be pregnant. And I never thought I'd be one of those girls who had trouble or who lost a pregnancy. But here we are. And it sucks. Plain and simple- the whole thing sucks. And right now, I'm just not okay with it.

* Good news of the day: Aaron entered a weight loss challenge at our gym and worked his tush off for the past 6 weeks. We just found out that he lost the biggest % of body fat of the 20 participants so he gets $400.00!!! I'm so proud of him!!! *

Monday, November 23, 2009

11 years later...

Aaron called me on my way to work this morning to ask me if I knew what day it was. This is when sheer panic sets in. The only times I get asked this question is when I've forgotten something pretty huge, like my mom's birthday. (It only happened once and I will NEVER make that mistake again...) And then I realize...

November 23rd. The day we became a couple 11 years ago. Wow, 11 years...

I had driven up to Stillwater to have dinner with him that night during our 1st year of college. (I moved to Stillwater for my 2nd year to join him.) At this point, most would have thought I was crazy to follow a boy across the state to attend a college I had never considered. But it was the best and most important decision of my whole life.

Crazy looking back now at how simple and uncomplicated things were. We were just 18-year-old kids with our whole lives ahead of us. I'm so glad we didn't know then that combined we'd be a reproductive nightmare... What I also didn't see at that time was that we were strong enough to make it through anything. I knew that he was perfect for me and that I couldn't live without him. But I had no clue how much I would need him or how much we would go through.

Hoping that I can give him the best gift of all in the upcoming year. I'm feeling like year 12 is our year...

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Opposites Attract

Anyone who knows Aaron and I would say that we are pretty much as different as we can be in many areas. He is more on the quiet side, while I like to tell my business to anyone willing to listen. (Thus, the blog began...) He's very determined and hard-working, while I'm more on the lazy side and will do anything to sneak a nap in. The list could continue forever and you all are free to add your own thoughts in the comment section, but I thought I'd show you two pictures to demonstrate what I mean.

I went in to our bedroom the other night and discovered this on my side of the bed. Nope, the bed isn't made up, our decorative pillows are shoved under the bed, and I will guarantee that the dresser needs to be dusted, but notice the floor. Pretty empty, right?

But then I made the fatal error of looking on Aaron's side of the bed. And this is what I found:
The kicker here is that this is frequently what his side looks like. And those clothes on the bed and floor are sometimes clean. How does he know that? No idea, they look dirty to me. But he's got some kind of "system". Now, I would like to take a minute to give him credit for doing his own laundry. I feel that all men with at least one arm are capable of doing their own laundry, but do appreciate that he does his without a fight.

Which leads us to one last difference between us. Aaron feels that laundry should be sorted in to nice organized piles based on some technical mathematical formula and done in about 10 loads. Then some things are dried, some are laid flat, and some are hung up.

My laundry works like this:
  1. Take the entire laundry basket and dump in washer. Squish it in if it doesn't want to fit in one load.
  2. Move all to drier. If anything doesn't survive this process, it wasn't meant to be.

I thought I'd put a picture of us with the twins of our best friends, Mendy and Adam. They started out at 2 pounds each, so they have come a LONG ways. We were able to spend the evening with them last night and enjoyed it so much. They are such an incredible family and we are so very lucky to have them in our lives. Thanks for always being there for us!!!

Friday, November 20, 2009

No Room for Infertiles Here

The mall was literally swarming with all things baby tonight. We go to do some unneccessary shopping (retail therapy, as I call it) and I lost count of all the baby bumps, adorable children, and newborns that we saw. It was like women were trying to hit me with their sweet little bellies or run me over with their cutesy strollers or kill me with their picture-perfect families. I get it, people. You can ALL have children and I can't.

I just went to the mall to escape!!! It's swine flu season for goodness sake! Did they not get the memo about keeping their babies away from crowds???

Pottery Barn Kids nearly made me lose it. It's like that store is designed to rip me apart at the seams. I do fine with Motherhood Maternity. In fact, I like to joke about how their clothes are designed to make you look stupid when pregnant. But just allow me a glance in the direction of Pottery Barn Kids and I turn into this whimpery, pathetic soul.

So, we're back at home. Safe and sound. Aaron has made a promise to hide all of the Christmas cards that we get of our friends with their adorable families. Only ones with dogs are allowed this year. It's like how he hides the envelopes from wedding invitations when people address it to Mr. and Mrs. Aaron. I am not Mrs. Aaron, thank you very much. Marriage did not delete my first name. (I could go on and on here, maybe another time.)

I've officially lost my mind. Which sucks considering I didn't have much control over it in the first place.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wishing for Amenorrhea

Yep, it's most certainly a period....feeling more like something that is trying to rip my intestines out of my hoo-ha at this point. My cramps are killer, my lower back hurts, I'm nauseated and I might be having some mood swings according to Aaron. (Although I feel like I'm being perfectly pleasant.) *We might need to insert a commercial here for some PMS medication.*

So, we're now on Day 2. I'm excited about a new month and a new chance. I'm also worried that I am going to be a tad disappointed (aka: very pissed off) if I don't get pregnant already. So I know the stats are only about 20% get pregnant every month of trying. IF your normal. Which we are NOT. But a girl has to hope.

No further news at this time. I will be in the bathtub with a lovely glass (possibly bottle) of wine watching TV, popping Midol like candy. Hope everyone is having a lovely evening!!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Period, maybe???

For those who somehow do not enjoy posts about my cycles, please return next time for more pleasant subject matter. Otherwise, feel free to read on...

I think I might be starting my period tonight!!! I had one 2 weeks after my D&C which my OB/GYN thought was a bit too early. But now, 28 days later, I am spotting and cramping. It's a little different than usual for me since I'm used to starting first thing in the morning and it's heavier than this. But things might not be the same for a while...

Point is, I'm excited than I'm having normal cycles again!!! I've been terrified than I wouldn't ovulate on my own anymore and then I'd be back at square one with those nasty progesterone shots... Thank you ovarian drilling!

Several weeks ago, I had a patient come in to the clinic to see me for bleeding during pregnancy. She was a younger girl who didn't plan a pregnancy, but was concerned due to excessive bleeding at 12 weeks gestation. I did a pelvic exam on her and we found out that she was, in fact, miscarrying. It was such a moment of deja vu.

Just weeks after being told of my own failed pregnancy, here I sit... holding this poor girl's hands, explaining to her that "it's not her fault", "these things just happen", and other such nonsense ramblings designed to give the healthcare provider something to say. I almost felt like I wasn't even the one saying these things, but actually hearing them from my own doctor. I felt like I had no idea how to even do my job anymore.

I watched her face go from seemingly calm and understanding to completely confused and devastated. And I knew exactly how she felt. I also knew that I could not say anything at all to make it better. She probably wouldn't even hear what I was saying if I tried. So I just sat with her and tried with all my might not to cry.

The day I saw my empty sac on ultrasound will always be one of the most disappointing days of my life. Dr. Haas stood there holding my hands and offering such sweet words of encouragment and hope. But nothing else mattered at that moment. I'd lost that little embryo that I wanted so badly and prayed for so hard.

My experience has made me better at my job since I do deal with infertility and even miscarriage from time to time. I definitely have much more empathy than before. I just wish I could make it easier on them. And even myself. I wish there were words that would ease the pain. But I know that nothing does.

So we keep on moving. Taking it one month at a time, holding out hope for that miracle, praying that you've got a lucky streak heading your way. And right now, I'm on cycle day 1. I'm looking at this as a new beginning...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I sure have written a lot of crap!

This is my 100th post on here. I was really hoping it could be something exciting, but I don't have too much to report right now. Just waiting for my 1st real period following my D&C which should arrive early next week. And then we're back to trying...

I can't believe I've actually come up with enough to say that I've posted 100 times. I also can't believe that I've had over 10,000 hits to my site or that I have 44 followers now. I feel so incredibly privileged that 44 people actually think that what I write is worth reading... my English teachers would have been so proud. :)

This blog was started for simple fun. I thought maybe somebody will read it and maybe even a couple would think it was entertaining. I mainly did it for myself. It feels great to put your feelings down on "paper" and even better to find out that others have felt that way too. What I've found out is that I can't wait to get home to check my comments others have left. Or to check on the other blogs that I follow to see the results of their pregnancy test or if their baby was born or how their appointment went. (Kinda like being a peeping Tom.)

These girls have become my friends. We may live many miles apart, but you are all here with me every step of the way. And for those that have blogs, I feel so connected because you share your most personal life experiences with me. So, I thought the best way to "use" my 100th post was to say thank you.

Thanks to my "pre-existing" friends who have been there from the start. Thanks to my "infertile" friends, who make me feel not-so-alone. And thanks to everyone who has prayed, loved, cared, cried, yelled, and laughed during this journey. There's no way I could have went through it all without you.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Bye, bye Breasts...

Seriously, I've never been well-endowed. But I was okay with my properly proportioned breasts before. When I got pregnant, "the girls" immediately became much more voluptuous. Kind of like Lynette on Desperate Housewives. Except hers are obviously not really bigger and I didn't wear low-cut shirts all the time to display them. (Which I now regret considering they are gone.)

But about 3 days after my D&C, they disappeared. Which sucked. But I thought, well I can live with what I had before. Today, however, I feel like they have nearly disappeared. If things continue at this pace, I won't need to wear a bra by Christmas. I'll just be placing band-aids strategically, especially in cold weather. Great for comfort, not for curves. And they are no longer the same size. I had no idea that my left breast was so unhappy and so quick to bail on me.

You can't give a girl a nice instant boob job and then just take it all away along with her pregnancy. I felt like I should get to keep them as a consolation prize. But instead they've decided to head for the hills. Great, now I look like a pre-adolescent boy... So NOT fair!!!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Siamese Strawberries

I have never in my life seen a siamese twin strawberry, but I had two in the batch I ate this evening. They tasted delicious, but Aaron questioned the hormones or chemicals used that created such a defect. Uh-oh. What if this affects my fertility??? Maybe I'll grow 100 cysts on each ovary, have high amounts of male hormones, and fail to ovulate unless someone drills 10 holes in each ovary with a laser. (For those who don't know, I'm kidding. Totally already had all of those things happen.)

So, I joyfully ate the strawberries. Heck, maybe it'll fix something in there. At this point, pretty sure it isn't going to hurt. :)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Go Ahead, Lock me Up

We're friends, right? I can totally tell you girls (and some guys who wish to remain private readers because it's apparently embarrassing to read an infertility blog) anything on my mind, can't I? If your answer was "no way" or "I'm not quite comfortable with that", you should probably stop reading now. For the true friends, here goes...

So, a realization slammed into me like a mack truck yesterday. When my grandma, cousin, then friend of the family all walked up to me at the funeral and asked when "the little one is due", I had the fleeting idea of answering as if the miscarriage hadn't really happened. I actually wanted to just pretend things are fine, tell them May 22nd was the big day, smile like the proudest expectant mother and maybe even rub my belly for good measure.

But that's crazy talk. What in the world is wrong with you, insane girl?

Don't worry about me, it's just the infertility talking. You just get to a point where you're tired of disappointing people around you. It's always, "nope, still not pregnant", "that treatment didn't work", or "we lost that pregnancy". People are starting to dread talking to us for fear of having to hear about another failed month. And I'm quite honestly tired of talking about it.

It was such a wonderful change of pace to tell people I was pregnant. To talk about pregnancy symptoms and due dates and ultrasounds where you expect to see something in the uterus. I've talked myself and everyone around me to death about infertility. People are ready to fling themselves from moving vehicles to avoid hearing about my cycles, cervical mucus, and emotional turmoil.

And then I realized, I'm just one slippery step away from being like those crazy women who fake their pregnancies and steal someone's baby. Uh-oh... When did I lose my mind? Now, let's take a minute to note that I am perfectly aware that stealing a baby is also spelled F-E-L-O-N-Y. I'm just saying- infertility and pregnancy loss can make the mind play tricks on you. You become a little desperate. Which in my book also equals crazy.

So, now that I've worried everyone about my sanity or lack thereof, I hope you all have a great weekend. Just back away from the computer and forget that this ever happened.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Memorial Service

Today was Kate's memorial service which, of course, was incredibly heart-breaking. Seeing a tiny little casket is completely surreal. Knowing that we will never see her again is hard to imagine. I am glad she will never have to suffer. And I am so thankful that she was brought into our lives. Never will a little one mean so much to me and make such a huge impact in such a short amount of time.

Many of our family and friends were there. Grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles. I realized a very important lesson. News of a pregnancy travels like wildfire. News of a miscarriage does not.

I can't tell you how many times I was asked today about when I'm due, or congratulated on our baby. And this isn't the first time this has happened. My neighbors congratulated me on Halloween night. And it's so sad to watch their faces go from happy to sad/embarrassed in seconds. They don't realize that I'm okay. Infertility has given me thick skin. They think that they just broke my heart. I can't convince them that it will take a lot more than that.

But I realized that I have to keep the next pregnancy (God willing) a lot more private. I just don't want to see the hurt faces again next time. And we will probably be even less excited about the next pregnancy than we were about this one. I never felt completely comfortable about it. You can't put this much time, money and effort into something and not feel total fear that it will all be taken away.

I am sad for our loss. It's unfair that we'll never meet our baby. But I'm even more upset for Amee and Billy. I just can't even begin to imagine their pain. It really puts my own situation into perspective...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Sweet Little Kate

I've been trying to complete this post for 3 days now. It's so difficult that I'm going to keep it brief. My cousin, Amee, had identical twin girls on the 4th of July this year. While Marley is completely healthy, Kate was born with a major heart defect. She had open heart surgery at 10 days old and spent 2 months in the hospital. She has been home for the past month and we've been so fortunate to spend a lot of time with her and Marley. (We live about 2 minutes from them.)

On Sunday, her heart suddenly stopped and she was taken from us. She was an incredible little girl with a beautiful smile and such a brave spirit. It was just more than she could take.

I will never be able to thank my cousin enough for allowing me into Kate's life. She has a permanant place in my heart and will never be forgotten. I feel so much anger and sadness that she won't grow up with Marley. But I'm thankful that we were given the chance to know her and that she won't have to endure any more surgeries or pain.

We were able to spend about 4 hours with her on Sunday and took some great pictures with her. She was happy all day that day which makes this so hard to understand. I just wanted to share her with those who didn't get the chance to meet her.

Marley (pink headband) & Kate (green headband)

Aaron with Kate

Me and Kate

Kate, you had the most amazing smile and sassy personality. You were a joy to be around and I'll never forget the hours I spent just holding you. Your face always lit up when we talked to you. You are still the toughest, most resilient baby I've ever met and I'm going to miss you so much. I would give anything in this world to have you back with us, but I know you're in a better place. We know you'll watch over Marley from Heaven. We love you so much.