A Natural Mother

What happened to me on Clomid is appearing to be happening to me on follistim. I’m sensing a trend, and it’s really the most bizarre thing.

As a recap, when I was on Clomid, it would work (get me to ovulate by growing my follies) the first time I was on a new dose. So, when I started on 50 mg, it worked. But then, the second time I would use Clomid and start on that same dose I finished with last time, it wouldn’t work, and the doctor would have to up my dose. This happened while on Clomid three different times, and my doctor would just let me stair-step my cycles (not get my period and just keep going instead). Out of the six rounds of Clomid I took, three got me to ovulate. And yes, those three were every other time.

The first round of follistim got me to ovulate. They had to play with that dosage a bit because 50 iu’s weren’t working after a while. So, a week and a half into the shots, I was upped to 75 iu and bam, I grew 3 follies and ovulated. Guess what. I’m on my second round of follistim, and the doctor started me off at 75 iu, since that’s what worked last time. It’s been over 2 weeks now – that’s a lot of shots, and I have one, count them, one small follie, barely over 10 mm. Why am I not surprised? It’s like the first time I use a drug, my body hasn’t seen it before and responds appropriately. The second time, my body fights it off like it’s nobody’s business, daring me to try yet another drug or procedure.

That whole, don’t go on vacation because your estrogen is too high not to see us 3 days in a row thing, was crap. It’s been a week and a few days since then and it’s not looking good. That said, the doctor wanted me to continue this cycle. It’s not as if he gave up on it. But this cycle is going to be one follicle strong. Just one.

I’m not begging for multiples here, and I don’t mean to imply that. However, there’s something about going through all of this, both physically and mentally, where I get to this place where my brain says – you know what, if I’m going to ovulate, it better be more than one egg. When only one grows, I just joined the rest of the population who releases that one egg on their own and gets pregnant by having sex. Ha! Clearly these three-times-a-week jaunts down to my clinic and multiple stomach bruises do not put me in the same place as everyone else, and I would appreciate my body providing me with more than one large follie in order to say, “Thanks for putting up with my crap. Here’s two (or three) eggs for your effort and well-being.”

Plus, this is my last IUI. Yes, it really is. We’ve made up our minds, and have the luxury of being able to do that with our wonderful insurance. I can’t believe I’m getting very close to pulling out the big gun, IVF. It’s scary. Terrifying.

The funny thing is, I’ve recently mentioned IVF to a few people, especially those who I’ve not updated in a while. I don’t mind updating them when they ask, I really don’t. Talking about this has never been an issue. But it’s the funniest thing – the way people react. I’ve learned that most people do not know what IVF is. I guess I shouldn’t expect them to. But I feel like I always knew. I suppose that’s not the case. Anyway, the trend in comments is basically a congratulatory one. Yes, good for you. You’re doing IVF. Yay!

No, you don’t understand. This is the next step, yes. But it’s the last step. Not last last, like there’s no other options. But last as in..the last “common” type of fertility treatment. If that doesn’t work, to my knowledge my options are: surrogate, donor egg, adoption. And those will be done, if need be, but I mean – that’s, well, extreme. It just is. But as for IVF – I’m not happy about it. It’s not a “yay”. This is a step I’m not happy about doing. It’s a huge deal, and it’s scary.

Of course, people also don’t know what IVF entails. They seem to realize the severity of it once I get to the part where they go in and suck out the eggs, one by one. (I try to make it graphic for added effect.)

I’m jumping the gun, I know. I can’t help thinking about my next cycle after this one. Surgery, OHSS risks, and what if none of the eggs are viable? What if it doesn’t work?

One cycle at a time, and I’ll find out the progress on my little follie at yet another ultrasound tomorrow morning. I did start Ganirelix and as far as I know, that means ovulation might be..getting close? Or something? Had to order another round of follistim – blew through that first 900 iu pretty quick!

School is starting soon. My main reaction to this is happiness. I have a regret about this summer – I did nothing with it. I told myself I needed to do some projects, or something. Read some good books. I don’t know what the hell I did do this summer, but I know what I didn’t do. Anything. I wasted it. But then, I suppose the whole past year has been somewhat of a waste, and the only thing that got me through it with actual happiness was my last class. They were so wonderful. I laughed every day. Now, it’s back. Granted, I’m just starting to put my room back together again, and I’m getting a whole new round of kids, but having something to focus my mind on is such a relief. I almost forget this pregnancy mess.

But then today was a reminder of what is so far away. One of my most dedicated, happy, well-rounded 11-year old students from last year has come back to help me set up my room. He is actually one of a few students helping me out in my room this week, for which I am so grateful. But he was the first. We got a lot done; bulletin boards, attacking the closet, etc. I knew he was coming in advance and I told his mother I’d make him lunch as a thank you. Nothing much – just a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, an apple, a Gatorade, and chips. Well, he wolfed that sandwich down like it was his first meal on earth, and he raved about how delicious the bread was, how much he just loved the sandwich. He was also grateful for the rest of the food, and it’s not like he doesn’t eat at home! He has a wonderful family. I felt this sense of motherly..I don’t know, pride or something. Longing. That I could do something for him that he appreciated. Because he is coming back later in the week, and because my house is running out of food, I went to the grocery store after I left school. Bought more of that bread he loves (it’s my husband’s – with gluten), more jelly since we were out, Gatorade, etc. It made me happy to buy this food, and I will be even more happy when I go to make his lunch.  I realized how badly, how truly badly I want to be a mom. I want to be that mom in the store, thinking about my kids and remembering their favorite snacks, and bringing them home to make the kids happy. Such a simple little gesture but doing it for this student felt so good, it must be what mothers feel. I won’t go this far because he’s a student, not my kid, but I can’t wait to sneak a few m+m’s into a sandwich, or write a note that s/he finds at the bottom of his/her lunchbox that says “Have a great day. Love, Mom.” That’s what I want. That is the dominant feeling I am lacking most, the one that seems so very natural to me, and I think I do it well, but never have a chance to use it. I really do think I’m a natural mother. I’ve thought that for a very long time. Which is what makes this all the more difficult.

Like I said before, teaching is on the brain a bit now, and I’ll start updating my new teaching blog more often. If you haven’t checked it out yet, you can do so here. I’m a little confused with wordpress – a lot of people who read this blog are reading my new blog and getting the emails, but my new blog doesn’t say I have them as followers. I don’t get it!

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The world’s worst presents.

The day has finally come (tomorrow). The day I start my third type of fertility treatment – injectables with an IUI. Let’s see – I haven’t had a period since, (hold on, let me check a calendar) May 11th! That’s a long time! Today is CD 54, but I only know that because I just checked. I haven’t kept count since the day I found out 150 mg of Clomid was going to do nothing but cause me to go insane, and that was somewhere around CD 25.

Sidebar – I was at a thyroid appointment the other day (which is looking lovely, by the way -0.9 TSH is damn near perfect) and my doctor asked if I have been getting my periods regularly. I almost burst out laughing.

Anyway, I’ve been going through the proper steps to ensure a great time with my first set of shots. I watched the videos, asked a few clarification questions with the nurse, got a fantastic HSG completed successfully, and had my baseline blood work and ultrasound this morning. Oh yeah, and Christmas came early:

Kidding. These would make the world’s worst presents. The best thing about that picture is the watermelon I plan on consuming over the next few days.

Now, this morning’s ultrasound wasn’t exactly routine. I must say, first of all, that the wonderful condom-covered probing camera (known affectionately as the dild0-cam to most of you) was a comforting delight compared to whatever was shoved up there with the HSG last week. When we started, the nurse said, “You have a full bladder. Did you go to the bathroom?” I felt like a kid. Yes – I did! Like, 20 minutes ago! I can’t help the fact that I chugged a protein shake right before I got there…

Then, as he’s looking around in there, he discovers what I’ve known for a while – I have tons of little baby follicles in each ovary. Like, a lot. Like, he stopped counting and said, “Let’s just say there’s 30 in each one”. That’s a total of 60 follicles. That’s a lot of maybe-babies. Then he found one (I swear it’s that pesty cyst, back to say hello) and he says, oh, this one could be developing. If that happened, the cycle would have to be cancelled. But rest assured, there’s no way in hell I’m ovulating on my own. I would know it if I was. Anyway, I didn’t get any calls this afternoon regarding my blood work (which would have shown it), so I’m not concerned. After that was all over, I met with a nurse who went over the plans for tomorrow. She commented that it’s a good thing the doctor is starting me on a low dose (50 IU), because of the amount of follicles I’ve got in there. This leads me to an unpleasant thought – I feel like, if I’m going to have 60 follicles, I should’ve ovulated on my own. Or at least with Clomid. Maybe I’m not the typical type of person that does injectables with IUI, or IVF if it should come down to it. Clomid should have worked. But it didn’t. And my new fear is that even on the low dose, I’m going to produce too many eggs, and the cycle will have to be cancelled. I just really don’t want that to happen. I guess what I’m saying is simply that I want this to work. I really, really do.

With this type of treatment being so drastically different from what I’m used to – a simple pill for a few days – I hope I do it right. Not to mention the fact that I’m going to Maine tomorrow for a 3-day mini-vacation, and the drugs are coming with me. My first shot is tomorrow night, up in Maine. It can’t be that complicated – but I think I need to watch those videos again. My doctor commented last week that the first shot will take me 45 minutes, but 44 of those minutes will be the anxiety leading up to it. After that, it’ll be quick. I don’t think it’ll take me 45 minutes per say, but I can’t say I’m thrilled about doing this. In my stomach.

Also, different from many others is the fact that I don’t have my period. My doctor didn’t put me on Provera. So many nurses are asking me when my period has started, and I always have to explain I’m not getting it. So I’m not even sure what cycle day tomorrow is supposed to be – 1? 3? If you get your period, when are you supposed to start the shots?

And another question – approximately how long after the last shot do most of you trigger/ovulate? I know with Clomid you were supposed to ovulate about 10 days after the last pill. Is it similar for follistim?

Ugh. So many questions on this first round of injectables. Whether you’ve gone through injectables with an IUI, or IVF, is there anything you think I should know about any of this? Giving the shots, ovulation times, words of advice?

I’ll be back for another post once I return, and by then I should be an old pro.

Fun with injectables

Okay, on to my RE appointment yesterday.

The reason I am not sure whether my HSG is tomorrow or two weeks from now is because I am scheduled for stupid jury duty tomorrow. I am hoping my name will be on the list tonight when I call, so that I don’t have to go. If I don’t, the doctor put me in for an HSG in the afternoon. If I do have to go, they only do HSG’s on Wednesday afternoons – and next Wednesday is the 4th of July, so they are off. It would have to wait until the Wednesday after that. I hate to wait another two weeks.

However, the good news there is that he is letting me start injectables at the same time – rather than having to wait a whole other cycle. I am fairly certain my HSG will come back clear.

As for the injectables – well, it seemed to me my doctor was leaning towards IVF, but he wasn’t pushy. N and I decided to do one or two cycles of injectables with IUI, and then take it from there. I found these stats interesting:

% of success getting pregnant per month: (in my age group – under 30)

-No drugs: less than 5%

-Clomid with IUI: 12%

-Injectables with IUI: 20%

-IVF: 55%

% of multiples per month:

– No drugs: 1-2%

– Clomid with IUI: 1-2%

– Injectables with IUI: 20-25%, with 5-8% being more than two babies

– IVF: 30%, mostly twins. 1-2% more than two babies.

This seemed to be why the doctor was pushing for IVF. He seems to think the risk of many, many babies is decently high, and according to those stats, I’d have to agree. However, we’re going to see what happens. He won’t even do the IUI if I have any more than 3 follicles past like, 15 mm. He said as an example, if I had 1 or 2 big follies at 18-20 mm, but then I had 6-7 little ones, no way. He wouldn’t do it. I’m fine with that. I am a little curious/concerned that my body will produce too many, and we’ll have to cancel the cycle, which would suck. But he’s starting me on a low dose (50 IU) and I will be monitored like…4 or 5 days out of 10. So a lot.

I just want to be pregnant with a healthy child. However, I would do mental back flips if there ended up being two babies in there. I would love to have twins. Triplets – and I start to freak a bit. I’m just worried about the risks. After triplets I can’t even think straight. However, none of that is worth thinking much about at this point, as I no longer get my hopes up for anything. Let’s just see if my follies will even grow – that would be a good place to start.

The other interesting thing is that my doctor will not be putting me on Provera, even though this is CD 47. He claims the latest research says getting my period now might actually hinder my ability to get pregnant from injectables, because it takes such a long time for my lining to build back up, or something like that. He’s either crazy or a genius, but I’m going to go with it. Between this and my stair-stepping Clomid cycles – I really never have a period! But I guess I can’t complain.

I also feel I should mention that it probably sounds like I am just bouncing around from treatment to treatment without a financial care in the world, and considering some of you go through such hardships to get the money, I probably sound like an ass. I can only say that I am so, so freaking lucky, beyond lucky, that my town just switched last summer to new insurance, and this new insurance fully covers just about everything. I am lucky enough to pick my treatments like it’s nothing. I have yet to see a bill since I started with my RE in December. I don’t take this for granted, believe me, but I am so happy money isn’t an issue.

With that said, my to-do list now has watching these “teaching packet” videos on my RE’s website (as in, how to shoot yourself up in the stomach, no big deal), calling the drug company up in Maine to schedule a delivery date for my lovely box o’ meds, and then, once they arrive, calling my RE to schedule my baseline ultrasound, to check out what’s happening in there. Then, we start. The HSG is a separate, lovely addition to all of this. It’s hard not knowing exactly what the timeline is – not knowing exactly what day I start. But it is a good thing it’s summer, and I’m home, so I can just go with it. My second round will be coinciding with the start of the school year, which is going to be one giant pain.

Or maybe I won’t have to go a second round? That would surely be nice.

I could be a great mother.

I’m back from my little hiatus. How long has it been – two weeks, I think? Maybe a little more. I knew I was going to need the break from blogging, and just about everything else, as I turned all of my attention towards my students for the last two weeks of school.

It was a fun two weeks. We had something going on every day, including:

– Field Day: Not sure if the rest of you teachers out there have field day, but it involves rotating through different activities with the rest of the school, with most of them being outside. There are always a few water activities too, and I always end up soaked myself.

– A trip to our local park, where, similarly to field day, the 5th grade only rotated through a few stations, including rolling around in a giant hamster ball. My personal favorite was kickball and volleyball with my class.

– A game show came to our school. It went by grade level, so again, it was just the 5th grade. This company had everything – the whole setup of a game show, with buzzers and prizes, music, etc. They had some academic-type questions and some physical challenges, like having the kids on the floor, eating pudding off a plate without using their hands. Then of course, the teachers were forced into participation, and though I didn’t answer any academic questions correctly (do you know how many zeros are in a google?), I was able to be the first one to answer, “Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?”

– Bingo, with candy for prizes.

– A kickball tournament.

– Two pizza parties, one for our class only for winning the “Penny Wars” competition (we raised over $450 in my room alone), and one yesterday for the whole 5th grade on the last day.

– The “moving up” ceremony. In my old school, this was always a pretty big deal. This year, we tried to keep a lot of the same characteristics. It went very smoothly, actually, despite the fact that the temperature got to over 100 degrees, and we were packed into the gym 400 people strong, with no ventilation whatsoever.  My five teaching partners and I were very prepared, taking turns reading the names of the award winners, shaking hands, etc. The kids all dressed up, which is one of my favorite parts. They always complain beforehand but love seeing each others’ outfits when the day comes. Teachers dress up too, and in addition, I surprised my class by singing the national anthem with a student.

-And finally, yesterday was the last day. I loved my class this year, probably more than any other, so I was dreading this day. We had Popsicles, a final assembly where we handed out a few more awards, saw a few slideshows, ate pizza, got in one last kickball game at recess, signed yearbooks, and then I had my group huddle. I started it last year, and it was such a nice way to end.  With about 10 minutes left to go in the day, a few parents had made their way into my room, and I asked them (probably rudely, but oh well) to leave so I could have the huddle without anyone else in there. Then we literally got into a huddle, and I thanked them for everything, wished them luck next year, etc.

The kids were balling. Of course, partly it’s the concept of mass hysteria, which works for any age group. A few people get crying, and it spreads like wildfire. It started with one student, who began crying a good half hour before the end of school, watching a slideshow. He’s been at the school since kindergarten and I think the realization of moving forward to a new school kind of hit him all at once. Then, back in my room, kid after kid started becoming upset, until I’d say a good 20 out of 23 kids were crying. Even my toughest boys were wiping their eyes. I hate that. I don’t cry, not in front of them, because I just don’t feel like I should be making them more upset. I gave out lots of hugs, and said goodbye, which I don’t do well.

And here we are, the next morning. I received the most awesome present a few days ago from the girl whose mother was the one we raised money for:

Her father came in and said, “We wanted to fill it with chocolate but ____ said we should use peppers instead!” It was very cute. I cut them all up and brought them into school the next day, and my students were ecstatic to eat a ton of peppers. I also got this wonderful note from another student:

You know that you have an amazing teacher when you call her mom  by accident, look up to her, and walk in the class feeling great when you see your teacher and all those things are true to me .You make me feel like a better person .

These are the things that make this job worth it. I know I have a lot to learn when it comes to teaching – I’m only five years in. But this class in particular I am grateful for, for allowing me to care for them, and give as much as myself as I could. I have always opened myself up to my students, as I feel it’s important in making those connections. This year, though, was different. I started playing at recess (kickball mostly, but racing and basketball prior to that) on Friday afternoons, and in the last few weeks, it turned into almost every day. I did something with them last week I’ve never done with any class – I took them to the piano in the cafeteria, and they all gathered around it, and I played them some classical music. I took lessons for 11 years but stopped, and just picked it up again. Together, the students and I created this safe, family-type community atmosphere in my room, and it was so nice, every single day.

I know I was doing this partially for selfish reasons, but because it was beneficial for the kids as well as myself, I’d call it a win-win. I was filling that void, the void of not being pregnant when just about everyone in my age group is. The void of meaningless thoughts – thoughts about not even being close to getting pregnant, when instead, I could think about my kids. That student who called me “mom” was one out of, I’d say 10 or so students who accidentally called me “mom” on a regular basis. I’m not their mom, and I reminded them of that every time, as they would blush with embarrassment. But deep inside, of course, I take it as a compliment. My students are proving it – I could be a mother. I could be a great mother.

I know it will take me a few days to get my class out of my head, but it will happen. I will adjust, I always do. I just need to be sure to fill my summer with a lot of activities – I must keep busy or I will go crazy. Besides, I do have something to look forward to on Monday – my appointment with my RE. You know, the one I’ve been waiting over a month for.

As a recap, because it’s been a while, I didn’t ovulate on the 150 dose of Clomid, and it did crazy things with my emotions, and I refused to stair-step up to 200 mg. Therefore, the nurse recommended I move on to injectables, which I’ll happily do, but they wouldn’t let me until I meet with the RE first, and he had no appointments until Monday. Monday, for the record, will be CD 46. I have tried not to think much about this waste of 46 days, except to remind myself that I wouldn’t have wanted to miss any school the last few weeks, so maybe it’s a blessing in disguise.

Hopefully by Monday my thoughts will be swimming with questions about injectables and no longer my amazing students, but until then, it’s a bittersweet weekend.

 

A Teacher Story

Let me tell you the story about the 5th grade teaching position I almost didn’t have.

Right around a year ago, knowing that my elementary school was being closed down, and my town was switching from a K-6 to a K-2, 3-5 model, I was impatiently waiting to find out my new position. I knew all the 6th grade teachers would be heading up to the middle school, but unfortunately, they only had room for 16 of them – and I, on the hierarchy of 6th grade teachers, was the youngest, at #18.

One Thursday afternoon, word spread like wildfire in my building that the placements had arrived. The whole staff gathered in the main office (it was the end of the school day), shut the door, and mourned the loss of our building. In particular, a 4th grade teacher (who, after 17 years, was being moved to 5th grade) and I were balling our eyes out. Now – I’m not a crier in front of anyone – if I cry in front of you, it must be really bad. And I was balling/hyperventilating.

They were putting me in a kindergarten support position – not even classroom teacher. Now, I had spent the past four years as a 6th grade teacher, including my final year at my old school, where I was the only 6th grade teacher in the building and started the year out with 29 kids. Those students were awesome – such leaders – and I took such pride in having them be role models for the rest of the building. This new job, this support position, would involve me sharing a room with a few other support people, and pulling kindergarteners who were struggling with math or reading to work in a small group with me for a half hour. That’s it. There’s nothing wrong with having this as a job, mind you, but it’s not for me. I had just finished my 2nd Master’s degree, and I wanted to put what I learned to good use. With 6th graders. Not struggling kindergarteners. Worst of all, what I loved most about teaching – connecting with the students – would be virtually impossible, not only with that age of student, but for the amount of time I’d see them a day. I would not have my own room, I wouldn’t be able to put smiley faces on papers, I wouldn’t be able to talk about college and life plans with the kids…etc. Gosh, a year ago I was one hot mess. I was freaking out.

In those last few months of school, one year ago, I was sad. My school was closing, my staff was going to be spread out all over town, I would miss my students whom I grew close to, and I was heading into, for me, what would have been the worst job of all time.

I don’t really know what happened after that, besides my principal speaking, multiple times, with the HR director. She put in a good word for me, and I think he contacted other people about me as well. I left him messages…trying to put a bug in his ear without flat-out harassing him. Rumors were swirling that another 6th grade position had opened up at the middle school, and either I might get it, or #17 on the list. If she took that job, her newly-appointed 5th grade position would open up. I’d happily take either one, hence the phone calls. In my head, I was begging – please, please, I cannot have this as my job – I just can’t. I’ll be stuck in this position forever and I’ll never get out.

You know what people said, in an effort to try and get me to feel better? “Oh, don’t worry. You won’t have to correct papers or deal with parents; you’ll be so free that you can put all your effort into getting pregnant.” Ha!

Anyway, on the second to last day of school last year, with my room full of packed boxes, and in the middle of our “graduation” awards ceremony, I got a phone call from the HR director. “We found you a position,” he said, “in the office building. You don’t have any windows or anything but it’s not that bad.” I sort of choked on the phone, and he said, “I’m kidding! You got the 5th grade position. Over 15 people asked me to switch into that position, but I gave it to you.”

One year later, and I am wrapping up  my 5th year of teaching, but my first year teaching 5th grade. Had I been stuck in that support job, not pregnant, not connecting with the kids, I would’ve been a horrible wreck all year. Instead, I was handed the funniest, happiest class I’ve ever had. Well-rounded, helpful, and outgoing, these are students I enjoy being around every day. Friday afternoon kickball games are the best part of the week. And as this school year winds down, with 20 days left, I am reminded just how lucky I am to have been given this 5th grade spot, with wonderful teaching partners (including the 4th grade teacher from my previous school who was moved to 5th 🙂 ) and wonderful kids.I will be sad to see this year end, as I am every year.

This is why I was especially delighted to read this paragraph from Lindsay over at Tiny Bits of Hope:

Only 20 days left of school.  This is always a tough time of year for me.  I grow too attached to my students, I think that is why they respond so well to me, because they know how much I truly care for them.  I almost always cry on the last day of school, every year has gotten a little easier, but no ending to a year is easy. 

This is exactly how I feel! Everyone is happy for the end of school year except me, and I don’t think I handle the change well. I also grow too attached to my students, knowing how well they respond to me, and I learn this lesson the hard way every year – with this year being one of the hardest.I have no doubt tears will be shed after my students file out the door for the last time.

I guess the easiest way to describe what a good class is like for a teacher, especially in this black cloud of infertility, is to say that they make you feel like a superhero; a rock star. Like you can do no wrong, as they shriek and jump for joy when you walk into the room as if you are a celebrity; like showing up to work every day makes them happy and excited. I only hope in a given school year to inspire and guide them into becoming successful, kind, and happy pre-teens. But I can never count on what they do for me – build me up and carry me through whatever I am going through.

I’m sure that when I have kids, someday, I will lose a little bit of this closeness I build with my students every year, because instead of giving all 150% of me that I currently give, it will probably be more like 70%. Until then, these are my kids from 8:30-3:00, and I don’t take that responsibility lightly.

Every September you are given a group of children of whom you try to mold, shape, and guide all year long. Every June, you say goodbye, feeling as if your own actual children have just left you for good.

Teaching is the hardest, yet most rewarding job around, I think, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________

In fertility news, I spoke with my nurse yesterday after having my second blood test done this week. “Wow,” she exclaimed, “I cannot believe you didn’t respond to 150 mg of Clomid! I was sure you would!” After describing my serious depression last weekend to her, and wondering aloud if I lost my mind, she said, no, I didn’t – and that what I was describing was extremely common. That did make me feel a bit better, and I told her I don’t want to go up to 200 mg of Clomid, or even stay at 150. She said I’d be probably moving on to injectables (thank you for the information, everyone, about that in my last post), but I would need to make an appointment with the doctor before changing up the plan.

I called today to make the appointment – and they have nothing until a month from now. Seriously. A month. So, the month of June, in blog-land, won’t have much news in it. I’ll be in limbo until I call to get Provera and induce a period, right before I meet with the doctor. I haven’t had to wait around like this since before Christmas – it will be a bit weird.

However, it’s my last month with my students. Hopefully, putting Clomid hormones aside, I will be able to enjoy every minute I have left with them before they are off to middle school and I’ll be left with an empty classroom until September.

By the way, we won the fundraiser for the first week of Penny Wars ($216 raised in a week) – and will be rewarded with a fancy doughnut and juice breakfast 🙂

 

What’s an injectable?

Well, my husband and I have made a decision. I’m done with Clomid.

I say that, though if the option of stair-stepping with a lower dose is available, I’d try that. But if that isn’t on the table, I am done with Clomid.

I had my CD 12 ultrasound and bloodwork done this morning, as I requested. Originally, I wouldn’t have had this until at least CD 24. Remember the last time I spoke with my nurse and she said “I just know you won’t have to stair-step this time,” and I said, “How do you know” and she said, “I just know”? Yeah – she was wrong. As of this moment, I have zero follicles developing.

It wasn’t as upsetting as it was frustrating. I know my body – on Clomid, I only ovulate when there are two doses in one cycle. That’s it – it doesn’t matter the dosage, it only works the second time. So on 150 mg, as the first round of Clomid this cycle, it didn’t work.

And, also as I predicted, the nurse who called me this afternoon said that my doctor would like to have me stair-step, again, now up to 200 mg. And that’s where I drew the line.

#1 – I can’t ever be sure, but I believe that the serious depression and lack of rational thinking that occurred this past weekend had everything to do with this high dosage of Clomid. I was not myself at all, and since then I’ve completely snapped out of it and felt so much better.

#2 – I am sick and tired of 60 day cycles. I understand I should be grateful to have cycles, and I am, but really – I don’t have cycles, unless I’m on Clomid. Even with Clomid, it’s 60 days. So perhaps there are other options out there?

The nurse who called (a nice one, not my usual) confirmed that she has heard people say Clomid causes severe mood swings, and that yes, there are other options.

So here’s the plan as of right now: Even though I had no follies developing, apparently my estrogen was really high. I have no idea what this means, or if this is a bad thing, but the doctor would like me to do another blood test in 2 days. So it’s back there I go on Thursday, before work, mind you, a 40 minute drive. And of course, I can’t be late for work with 23 kids waiting for me, so I have to make sure to get my blood done right away. You know what time I was there this morning for a 7:00 opening? 6:30 – and there was still one person in front of me. Crazy.

After the blood test Thursday, I will get another phone call, and in this call I will request an appointment with my doctor. I’m done with Clomid – what’s next?

The nurse did mention injectables. She said some people don’t like to take them (not sure why?) but they don’t cause the mood swings like Clomid does. Sign me up.

She did not mention Fermara. I will bring that up at our appointment we have to make, as I am willing to try it. However, I’m also willing to try injectables.

Only thing is – what, exactly, are injectables?

Are they the shots, like, in the butt cheek? Or are they the suppositories some of you talk about? And how is an injectable different from a trigger shot? What do you guys know about this?

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And in other news, as you know, I love my class this year. I will definitely miss them, as they make me laugh, and are so good-natured and spirited. This week, they are also proving to be very giving.

There is a student in my classroom whose mother has recently been diagnosed with a pretty severe, rare autoimmune disease. My school is putting on a fundraiser, a competition called “Penny Wars”. Basically, it’s every class against each other. Each week, we collect pennies, or any money, and there are weekly prizes for the class with the most money. First week’s prize is breakfast with donuts and juice. Then, there is a grand prize for the class with the most money raised overall – a pizza party.

Last Friday, I sat down with my class, and with the student’s help whose mother is sick, we explained the fundraiser. I stressed two important things: #1 – no one has to give money, especially when money is tight. If they happen to have any spare change, great, but no worries otherwise. #2 – on the other hand, I said, it would be pretty awesome to win the school competition – since the student is in our classroom. We have to represent her! After my speech, telling them we would start officially yesterday, students went rushing to their backpacks, giving whatever change they had right away. It was darn cute.

However, I am most touched by yesterday and today’s actions. In 2 days, my class has raised $170. 2 days. The kids, and their parents, are being so generous and kind. We all had a blast today counting the money, and the kids got very excited. They are owning this competition, and the cause it surrounds.  We are hoping to win this week, for sure, but the big goal would be to win the whole thing, and be able to present my student’s mother with a bucket-load of money. It’s just one of those nice, touching moments with kids, reminding me how much I do love children – they can be so very kind, with no reservations.

It’s definitely one of the highlights of this school year, and it takes my mind off of IF, for which I am grateful.

 

If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

Welp, Mother’s Day kicked my ass.

See, the ironic thing about it is – I was prepared to have a perfectly nice day! I wasn’t upset – I feel too far away from a mom to be upset, plus, I’ve already been upset all weekend because of this failed cycle and getting my period…so there probably wasn’t too much farther down I could go. So I was good – we planned a dinner for my mother (which N cooked, of course), and we had a lunch out with N’s family as well. Really, it could have been a happy-go-lucky day.

Unfortunately, someone’s insensitivity kind of ruined the go-with-the-flow mood I woke up with. The title of this post is a phrase I have heard over and over again since elementary school. Apparently this person was absent on those school days.

This man I’m about to talk about is a family friend of N’s aunt. We see him on holidays; up until the last two times I’ve seen him, he’s been really quite nice. He’s a nice guy, is what I’m saying. I’ve got nothing against him.

Now, this is the man who, on Easter, as I was snuggling one of my dogs, said out loud in front of N’s family, “See? You don’t need kids – you have dogs!” That was irritating enough, especially because he knows my situation. I didn’t tell him, but I know that he knows.

Yesterday, as he and his gf arrive at the restaurant, he gives me a hug and says loudly, “Do I need to be wishing you a Happy Mother’s Day, too?” I couldn’t believe it. He laughed, really loudly, as I said, “No! And if you do, I might cry, so please don’t.” You’d think me saying that would give the hint not to ask me about it. Not only that, but what if I was pregnant? Did he think I’d choose that moment, in a “hello” embrace to announce to my in-laws that I was pregnant? Just because he asked?

So I was kind of miffed throughout the lunch, even making a comment to my MIL about how that was a tad bit insensitive, of which she agreed. But I moved on and enjoyed the meal. At the end, as he was leaving, he said goodbye to our whole big table. He offered up a, and I quote, “Happy Mother’s Day – and you Megan, well, Happy Mother’s Day…soon? Hopefully in the future? Sometime? Not for a while? Hopefully soon…” And as he’s going on this rant, in front of everyone, I just kind of looked up at the ceiling and I recall saying something like, “I have no words….” And I didn’t. I was almost speechless, kind of in shock. I just did not know how to respond. After the comment he made when he walked in, and the one on Easter…I’m not sure I want to be around this guy anymore until I actually have a good announcement to make. Yuck. It did kind of dampen my spirits, I have to admit. I just wanted to forget about my own problems and focus on my mother and MIL. But he, so kindly, had to bring my lack of a pregnancy back to life.

Okay, this isn’t the only reason I posted. I also have news, for what very little news it is, but hey, something to talk about.

My nurse called today. I’m supposed to start Clomid tomorrow. It went something like this:

“Megan? I spoke with the doctor. He says you didn’t ovulate on 100 mg (yes I did, just in a stair-step, not on its own), so he would like you to start up with the 150 mg, like you just ovulated with.”

“Okay, well…what happens when I have to stair-step? I was hoping not to have to go up to 200 mg.”

“You won’t have to stair-step.”

“I’m sure I will, I always have to. The first round isn’t going to work.”

“It IS going to work. It’s going to work, okay?”

“Oh…okay then. Thanks.”

I was at a Starbucks and couldn’t think of exactly what to say to her at that moment, but my question is: did she say I wouldn’t have to stair-step, and that I’d have a normal length cycle this time because…..science told her so? Or because she’s being optimistic and therefore wouldn’t address my question? Because I’m all about science…but I’m supposed to have the hope. Not my nurse..she needs to have the meds.

So, with that said, I’m starting Clomid, Round 8,071 – I mean 4 (6 counting the times I didn’t ovulate) tomorrow, as CD 5, heading towards IUI #2. Yippee. Looking forward to hot flashes and mood swings, usually swinging more down than up. We’ll see, 55 days from now, how long this cycle turns out to be.