Saturday, 27 August 2011

Terrifying Moments in Parenting

I know that I"m not a parent... believe me, I'm aware of that fact everyday.

Each day I sit and hope that soon I will have the joy of bringing a child into the world. Each day I hope that I will see the wonderment of learning a new thing about the world in my child's eyes. Each day I hope that I will get the opportunity to watch my child and grow and develop into a little person. Each day I hope I will get the chance to talk my child out of suicide??? No, not really. Not at all.

This is the scary reality of parenting. I hope that I never have to face that little piece of "fun" in the world of parenting.

Why write about this? Because a very close friend of mine is dealing with this very issue right now.

It pains me to know that my friend is dealing with a child who wants to end her life. The very life that I ache to create everyday, my friend's daughter wants to end. Why?

Teen years are horrible. Hormones, hormones, hormones. Peer pressure, changing society, and sex. Yes, sex. The pressures are ridiculous and kids don't know how to deal with it.

Here are the basics of the story...

My friend, Susan*, has a 13-year-old daughter, Danielle. I noticed on Facebook the other night that Danielle had posted something like 'have you ever done anything really stupid and wish you could change it because you hurt someone that you cared about? I'm sorry... you know who you are'. This was followed by a response by Danielle's friend Amanda. Amanda said 'i don't forgive you. I would, but you flirted back with him and took off your shirt, so I don't'. Moments later, Danielle had deleted the whole situation from her FB. In that short 5 minutes however, I got smart and took a screen capture. I printed it with the intention of giving the copy to Susan.

I was supposed to spend today with Susan. We are still going to go and hang out, but our day will involve constant check-ins with Danielle. I called Susan last night to see if she needed to cancel. She was having chest pains and losing it. We talked for about 30 minutes about the situation. She told me more. As in, Danielle and Amanda had gotten into a fight, Amanda had dragged Danielle to a boy's house with her and a game of truth-or-dare started up. Amanda was the one who dared Danielle to take off her shirt, and when she did it, Amanda became incensed. Apparently all this crap on FB was followed up by Danielle sending text messages to other girls telling lies about Amanda. I must say that these were lies that Amanda herself was trying to make people believe, but when Danielle told them, Amanda was angry.

So, Danielle is now dreading going back to school and wants to end her life. She has asked other kids to bring a gun to school to end it for her. She has threatened to use a knife. She has threatened pills. Do I think that she's serious? Not really. I think that she THINKS she wants to die, but she has threatened this every other time things have started to get rough. The girl is very dramatic. Do I think that the threats should be ignored... NO. Suicide threats should never be ignored. It's the fact that Danielle keeps changing her method that makes me think that she's not really serious. Is she humiliated? yup. Is she terrified to go back to school? you bet. Is she really going to kill herself? I don't think so. She's not committed to the idea enough... yet.

How do I know? How can I be sure? Well, when I was ready to end it all I knew just how and when it was going to happen. I didn't flounder around. I had a plan.

I have had some very dark days in my past... very dark days. I want to say that those are all past me, but I can't say for certain that they are. I will say that the last year has not produced any days that came within a mile of my dark days, and for that I'm thankful. I have supportive friends, a great job (now), wonderful family, and a life that's getting close to perfect (if we could just solve this infertility thing that keeps popping up). But that wasn't always the case.

In my darkest days as a teen, I contemplated suicide. I won't tell the whole story of why now - it is a very long story - but suffice to say, I was depressed and felt alone. I felt like I had no other options... nowhere to turn. One day after school, when I was about 15, I came home and downed a whole bottle of Tylenol with codeine (I had gotten them for my wisdom teeth extractions). I laid on my bed, hugged my old teddy bear, and started to fall asleep. Then it hit me... my parents would find me there. They would see me. They would have to deal with all the fallout. I had a major sense of guilt and couldn't go through with it. I stumbled to the bathroom and threw up. I spent the next six hours drinking coffee and trying everything to stay awake. Obviously it worked. The next day I went to school like nothing had happened. I never told my parents about this, and I never will. They don't need the guilt or pain of knowing that I was that close to the end.

I am thankful that Danielle feels that she can confide in her mother. And that she feels comfortable confiding in me about all of this. I'm so thankful that I don't see in her the same signs I saw in myself when I look back. I am so thankful that I didn't just close my eyes that day. I'm just thankful that when I think about myself as a parent, that I think that I will have the tools that I need to recognize that darkness in my child. I think that I will have the tools to help my child through the darkness.

I hope that I never have to find out that horrible part of parenting... I hope.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Thanks, that was fun...

Yeah, not so much.

I had my HSG today. It started with me having to leave home at 6 am to get there on time. I got to the hospital at about 7:45 and checked in. They couldn't find me. Apparently the woman who works admitting hasn't seen enough health cards to know that the last name comes first and was looking for my booking under my first name (thinking that the cards went first, last). Yes, have the joy of two first names...and yes, it can be confusing, but when names are listed on cards with a comma in the middle, it's pretty clear that the last name comes first. So that was fun.

Then I got to radiology and was given the gowns to change into. Well, I'm not short. And I'm not talking about being slightly taller than average... I'm 6'1". Well, those damned gowns are not made for tall people. So there I am, walking around the radiology department, sitting in the chair waiting, and the damned gown was mid thigh on me. I never wear skirts that short for a couple of reasons: (1) I'm in my mid thirties and it's inappropriate in my opinion; and (2) I don't have the legs for it. So that was fun.

Then my doctor didn't show up until 8:30, so I waited, alone, in radiology until she showed up. That was fun! I couldn't concentrate on reading and I was cold in my short gown and robe :(

The tech came and got me and explained the whole procedure and my doctor showed up shortly afterward.

The actual procedure only took about 5 minutes in total.

It started with me getting a cramp in the back of my leg - which always happens when I'm in stirrups or get a pelvic (with or without the stirrups)... bending my leg like that just causes cramping. So that was fun!

When I laid on the table and closed my eyes, everything started spinning - I had to hold onto the table and pick a point on the ceiling to look at... again, that was fun!

The test itself wasn't horrifically painful as I feared, but it wasn't a walk in the park either. I cramped when the catheter went in and then when the dye went in it was pretty bad. Like REALLY bad menstrual cramps, but you can't move or do anything about it. The doctor told me that I might cramp when she inflated the balloon that holds the catheter in place, but I didn't, so that was good.

One thing that was kinda neat was that they turned the monitor so that I could watch the dye going in. It was cool to watch it flow through the uterus (which looked perfect according to the doctor... I disagree, it would look perfect if there was a baby in there). And then it moved to the tubes - quite quickly actually. The left tube filled up and spilled out immediately, then it started moving to the right tube but neither the doctor or the radiologist could see it move completely through the tube. It looked like it was showing up right up to where the tube meets the uterus. It would mean that there would be a blockage right at the uterus, or else a muscle spasm there. The dye just wouldn't go anywhere into it. Usually with blockages, it goes a little way in and stops. The radiologist said to remove the catheter, etc and that it would just have to be inconclusive (he said it nicer than that), because they really couldn't get it to show, regardless of more dye. So yeah, that was fun.

The doctor thinks that it was likely a spasm going on in the tube while she was doing the test, either a reaction to the dye, or stress, or angle. She figured it wasn't a true scar tissue blockage (not permanent) because I had never had so much as a Pelvic Infection or UTI. Regardless, she said that the left tube was completely clear so we should go ahead with the Clomid next cycle and if I don't conceive in three months to come back to her and we'll redo the test and possibly try to open it.

For about five or six hours after the test I was quite sore and cramping badly - particularly on the right side, which makes me wonder if there wasn't a blockage that was being pushed out. I had one major cramp about five hours after the test (really bad) and then the cramps kinda started to subside. I'm hoping that's it. The doctor did tell me that even if I ovulated on the right side and the right tube is blocked, the left tube could pick it up because "the tubes are bendy like that". I really do love my doctor! LOL. She's so funny sometimes.

So I told her that I hoped that I would be sending her flowers in a month or two. She laughed. The tech helped me to the bathroom so that I could clean up (sorry for the visual, but it's not fun to get off a table and have blood and dye running down your legs and dripping all the way to the bathroom. When I was done, they made me sit and wait for my husband to actually come in and get me, because they were worried I was going to pass out. I was REALLY shaky and super pale. I'm usually pale, but apparently I was ghost-like, and I was in a cold sweat and dizzy. So that was fun.

So, yes, not completely successful, but not as painful as I hoped and at least one of my tubes is open. So next cycle we begin Clomid, follicle tracking, and HGC shots. FUN!

And in honour of all of this, I give you... BNL.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011


My HSG is scheduled for first thing Thursday morning.

I'm terrified!

Monday, 22 August 2011

What's My Name Again?

When I went to see the OB on the 11th she told me to call in on CD 1 to book my HSG. Well, CD 1 was on Friday and they were closed on Friday, so I called this morning. I didn't anticipate it being a problem as the doctor told me that if AF showed up when the office was closed, just call the next open day. The nurse made it sound this morning like I was asking for a miracle.

First of all she couldn't find my chart. So, part of the problem was that the files are in my maiden name. When I was first referred to the OB, I hadn't yet changed my name on the my health card, so the files stayed in my maiden name. I changed my name on the cards about six months ago, but the problem is that the files there weren't changed. I asked them to make the change, but apparently they didn't. So there was that confusion to deal with. She finally found my file and took my number, saying she would call me back.

That was at 9:30 this morning.

At about 4:15 this afternoon, I was just about to pick up the phone and call to find out if she had booked the HSG yet. Then the phone rang. It was the same nurse. She apologized for it taking so long and told me that it still wasn't booked. She had sent over the fax to the hospital and called to confirm with them. However, they did not have it booked yet. She said she would have a time tomorrow. She said that the appointment would be either Thursday or Friday, but would have to tell me tomorrow.

At least she called and told me what was going on.

I'm really not looking forward to this test. I'm so tired of testing and the fear of it showing something wrong is really freaking me out :(

Friday, 19 August 2011



That's how long my last cycle lasted.

This morning around 2 am I noticed AF had arrived. Very light, but according to the ob, any "spot, smudge, smear, drop" counts as the first day of the cycle. She was very clear that if it happened at 11:59:59, then that was CD 1, if it happened at 12:00:00 then you count the new day as your cycle. The woman was actually quite put off that women come to her and say "I spot for two or three days prior to my period"... she said that that is your period. Um, ok.

So, I guess that makes this CD 1 and we start all over again.

I'm not going to lie. I was kinda hoping a bit that the long cycle was due to a pregnancy that just wasn't showing up... but honestly I knew that it wasn't. I didn't have this horrible let down when I saw the blood... I actually said "oh, finally!!".

You know, if I wasn't wanting to get pregnant, I would be thrilled with a long cycle - who doesn't want fewer days of AF in a year?

So, we're back to the beginning.

In a way it's good that it waited. I was to schedule an HSG at the next cycle (for day 7-9), but my ob's office was closed until Monday, so if I would have started my cycle a week ago when I thought it was coming, I would have had to wait until the next cycle to have the HSG done. This way, I can call them on Monday when they open and get it scheduled for next Friday.

Of course, I'm going to freak out all week about having it. I'm not good with pain. I'm terrified of pain. Pain meds don't work well on me. I have a very low tolerance for pain.

People have said to me "well, how are you going to have a baby then". Drugs baby... drugs.

I'm not one of those women who thinks that she needs to be a hero. I figure if I've carried that baby for nearly 10 months and I am going to raise it and would be willing to put my life on the line to protect it, I don't need to go through endless pain to have it. My mother and grandmother both had long long long labours (my mom was about 48 hours with me before they gave her a C-section, and my gramma told me her labour with my mom was about 50 hours). So I'm not thinking that I'll survive the pain that long. I figure that drugs were created for a reason. Thousands of babies are born everyday when the mothers have drugs and they are fine. I trust my doctors and I know that I would be of no use to anyone if I'm in pain - I basically shut down.

So, I figure that the pain of labour is a bit different than all of this. Granted I don't know how painful an HSG is, but I'm hearing a variety of reports. I read one woman's account that it wasn't painful at all, and then she went on to say that her biopsy wasn't painful either. LORD!! my biopsies have been the most painful things that I have ever encountered... excruciating. I think that the people in the waiting room of my ob's office thought I was being tortured. I was crying so hard that I hyperventilated and my contact lense slid under my eyelid (just to make it all worse). I really hope the HSG isn't going to be that bad, but I'm not taking a chance. I'm taking some Ketorolac (I think it's called Tordol in some places) before I go in... it might help to dull the pain... probably not, but it's worth a try. Advil (which I'm allergic to) and Tylenol didn't help with the biopsies, so it's time to bring out the big guns.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Maybe I'm One of a Kind?

or at least in the 1%??

Thanks to a friend, I started to think that I may actually be pregnant. When I took that second HPT on CD 35 and got a clear negative, I decided that it was obviously over. I started waiting for the next cycle, and waiting to start the next phase of our fertility journey. When I started having slight cramping, I figured that it was only a matter of a day or two until AF showed up like the bitch that she is.

Then a friend made a little comment... something along the lines of 'you know, there are women who get negative HPTs even when they are pregnant'... to google I go!

Sure enough. There are numerous stories out there of people saying that they had positive blood tests, positive ultrasounds, but not a positive HPT until well into their 5th or 6th month. One woman's story said that both she and her mother had had negative HPTs and negative blood tests until well into their 5th months of pregnancy... but the ultrasounds revealed babies and they delivered healthy babies.

That's great! Just great! Just when I started to feel ok with the idea of this being a failed cycle, the hope is starting to rear it's ugly head.

I looked at some websites that talk about the chances of having a negative HPT and with a pregnancy after 23 dpo. Today is CD 41 and I'm pretty sure that if I ovulated, it was on about CD 11. For those of you really bad at math, that puts me 30 DPO. So if I am truly pregnant, that would mean that I fall within the 1% of women out there who do not show positive HPT tests with pregnancy after 23 dpo.


I don't know if I'm really that special. I hope I am. I really want to be... but am I? Doubtful.

If I am indeed pregnant then it's a breeze thus far. Headaches that come and go, more of a nagging pain than anything.

In the last week I've had a bit of breast tenderness and some cramping - which is why I thought that AF was on her way. This cramping feels just like it usually feels pre-AF, so I figured that it was coming in a day or two... but then it went away and nothing. Nada. Nil. I'm really tired, but that's not overly new. I've been anemic on and off so long that tired is just me.

So I really don't know what to think. I want to think that I am in a very small number of women who are pregnant with a negative HPT, but I know that's unlikely. The greater likelihood is that I'm not pregnant, that my cycle is more screwed up than I thought, and that I'm going to need Provera to start it, then the Clomid to have it run properly.

How quickly can you plunge into pre-menopause anyway? My last tests in December or January showed my reserves to be perfectly fine, so I'm thinking that's not it, but I still have the fear.


Thursday, 11 August 2011

The Results Are In...

So I saw Dr. B yesterday - she's the OB/GYN that I was referred to.

First of all, the oncologist didn't send her copies of ANY of my tests or reports on what had happened with me, and she was the referring doctor. *sigh* so I had to give her a whole background of my time with him. Plus, she thinks that every six months might be too much for follow up biopsies, given how painful they are... I'm inclined to agree.

So, after waiting 1.5 hours to see her, we get in and she takes the background. She looks at my file and says "well, so you've really only been trying for about two months"... I quickly corrected her and said, "well, that and the 15 months prior to the hyperplasia starting up". She responded quite favourably and said "oh, so you probably want to get this show on the road".

See, here's the thing. I know that I'm not that old... really, I'm only 34, but I know that 35 is just around the corner, and that by the time I have a baby I'll be inching up on 36 quickly. AND we want more than one child, so if this doesn't happen soon I will be 40+ trying to have my second and I wanted to avoid that if possible. SO yea, I want to "get the show on the road".

So then she tells me that she wants to do a hysterosalpingogram (HSG) - also known as the dye test. During this test, they inject a dye into your uterus via catheter and watch it via x-ray to make sure it spills out of your tubes into your abdominal cavity. This is basically to make sure that the tubes are not blocked. She said when she gets an all clear on the HSG, I can start on CLomid and and HCG trigger shot and she will monitor via ultrasound for follicle development. She gave me the scrip for both the Clomid and trigger.

So, here's the kicker... the HSG test needs to be done between days 7 and 9 of the cycle. I'm on CD 39 of my current cycle and I've been cramping for two days, so I'm sure that I'm going to see AF any day now. That's not the big problem - the problem is that Dr. B is on vacation from now until the 22nd. That means that unless I hold off until at least the middle of next week, this next cycle is shot for the dye test and therefore the meds too. Which means that my August/Sept cycle is out, the dye test will take place during the Sept/Oct cycle, and we can't start with the Clomid until the Oct/Nov cycle. I just really wanted to try earlier.

I can understand her wanting to cover her bases with all of this, but it's pretty clear by my temps that I'm not ovulating at all, how about we get me to ovulate and THEN we'll work on the idea of worrying about whether my tubes are blocked. I've read that lots of women get pregnant after the test because a minor blockage in their tubes are cleared. I would be looking forward to this but if I'm not ovulating, then clearing a blockage won't make a damned bit of difference.

Part of me wants to try to use the Clomid on this upcoming cycle to see if it helps me to ovulate, but then I worry what will happen if I'm still not - how do I tell her that I tried it too early, etc.

I guess I wait.. more waiting... sigh.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011


Well, I took another pregnancy test this morning. Hope, beyond hope, right? Anyway, it is CD 37, and nothing. The test was an obvious negative. Guess it's pretty obvious that I"m not pregnant. Sigh. next month right?

I worry a bit about these extended periods. Last month was 36 days followed by four very light days of AF. This month I'm on CD 37. I did have a bit of cramping last night and this morning, so I assume that it's on it's way. I guess I shouldn't complain about not having to deal with AF too often - especially after the 8 months of non-stop, but it still kinda worries me. Everything I find online says that anything from 21-35 days is normal and if you are always longer then there's nothing to worry about. I guess that it's all from never having a truly normal cycle that ends up worrying me. I don't know what's normal for me.

My temps were normal for a little while and then got all up and down and all over the place again. I will be honest, I didn't do a great job of taking them at the same time everyday. I was determined that sleeping in was more important. Next cycle I'm going back to the 5:30 or 6:00 am temp taking, as vacation ends in three weeks.

Today is the day for the OB/GYN appointment. I'm really hoping that Dr. B can shed some light on the situation and my big hope is that she just gives me Clomid to try for a cycle and doesn't make me wait another cycle before starting. I fear that she's going to want to do a bunch of tests this next cycle before being willing to give me anything. I'm just tired of waiting for this to happen. It's to the point that I get mad at any woman I see who is pregnant... I know nothing about their story, but in my mind they are the enemy. It's just not right.

I'm so tired of waiting.

Anyway, wish me luck on the appointment this afternoon. Hopefully it goes smoothly.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

I'm a Roller Coaster Baby.

I hate roller coasters. Well, ok, in all honesty I've never been on a roller coaster, but they look scary. I don't do so well with rides. I get dizzy. I get sick. It's not pretty. It's rather humiliating and disgusting. So the thought of going up and down that quickly for fun... no thanks. I get car sick just going up and down the hills of the valleys here, and I live on the prairies.

The last week or so has been a veritable roller coaster of temperatures for me, and frankly, I can say that this coaster holds true to what I would expect the real ones to be like. I hate it. Over the past week my temps have gone up and down so fast that it would make your head spin. Four days ago - 36.09. Three days ago - 36.65. Yesterday - 35.91. Today - 36. 61. Up, down, up, down, repeat until nauseous. Normally I would be happy about high temps this late in my cycle (I'm on CD 31), but with the up and down I'm thinking that it's very unlikely that a pregnancy could survive such extremes. Kind of like living in this province, my body temp has taken up a pact with Mother Nature and neither can make up their minds.

That brings me to the next thing... I'm on CD 31... well, I guess since it's after midnight, technically it's CD 32, but whatever. No sign of impending AF. No PMS, no spotting, nada. Last month my cycle was 36 days, so maybe I've just gone into longer cycles since the acupuncture. Again, I would think it's because I"m pregnant, but I've pretty much given up hope of that. The only thing that would lend itself symptom-wise to pregnancy is this nagging headache that I"ve had for the past two weeks... it's like a pressure headache. Small doses of Tylenol have made me functional, but it was pretty bad today.

I had another chiro and acupuncture appointment today. Ran into the wife of a friend of my husband. She is seeing the same acupuncturist. I knew she went to the clinic, but I didn't know if she saw the same person. When I went in for my appointment, the acupuncturist said - oh you know her? I explained the friendship, and she said - yeah, it's funny when you specialise in certain things how many people end up knowing each other or referring each other. She specialises in fertility...

I know that these two want to have children, but we've never had the talk about when or if they are planning on starting (or have been trying). I don't feel that I have that kind of relationship with her yet, and the guys just don't talk about that stuff. She's older than her husband (she's about 38) so I'm pretty sure they are trying already, without luck obviously. I want to ask her, but I don't want to put her on the spot or anything. I keep thinking that maybe knowing that she's not the only one out there might make her feel better if she's struggling with it...but like I said, we're not that close. I'll have to think about it.

I got a call from the OB/GYN that I was supposed to see at the end of this month. She is at the hospital that day and needed to move my appointment... instead of bumping it like I thought they would do, I got pushed up... I see her next Wednesday (10th). I'm excited but freaked out at the same time. My big hope is that she just puts me on Clomid and that will allow me to ovulate and everything else will just go as it's supposed to. My biggest fear is that there is something much more sinister going on and she's not going to be able to help me.

I was talking to my gramma the other day about all of this. It may sound strange to do that, but gramma went through four years of trying before she conceived my mother and then had 15 years of unexplained infertility afterward before they stopped trying for a second one. Gramma told me about this when I broke down one day and told her about the hyperplasia and specialists and procedures, etc. She had never told anyone about it... not even my mother, so I felt like we connected on a different level. Anyway, I was talking to her and said that IVF wasn't an option - the money wasn't there. She reminded me that my inlaws are filthy rich and would probably gladly put down the money for IVF treatments. She's right. I never thought of it, and I don't really want to ask, but if it comes to that as the only option, then I think perhaps a loan from them would be the best recourse. We'll see.

Anyway, it's been a crazy couple of days - lots of running around. Tomorrow it's back to the school to keep setting up my classroom, and then Saturday into the big city to pick up the inlaws from the airport. The only people in the world who think it's a good idea to go to Arizona in the summer, during the only three weeks of warm weather we have. Next week is the specialist appointment, and then Thursday we pick up my eight-year-old nephew to keep him for a few days. The school year is just around the corner....

Where did summer go?