On Being Your Own Advocate

Just to let everyone know- I apologize for strictly writing about fertility stuff and being so sporadic. I plan on diverting away from this realm a bit and focusing on other things in my posts…but first wanted to address this.

I’m on cycle day 34 and still no period….even WITH doing another round of Clomid earlier this month. I called my doctor yesterday (Monday) morning to leave a message letting her know and she returned my call this morning. I’ve had enough and requesting for a referral for a different physician.

I’ve bitched about her before, but my OBGYN has absolutely no bedside manner and is very curt…but I think it’s borderline bipolar. I never know what personality I’m gonna get and that’s frustrating. I asked if perhaps my follicle size and quantity and uterine lining have something to do with my irregular/absent periods. You NEED to be monitored via vaginal ultrasound to analyze this which I have only been ONCE. I was on cycle day 35 the day of my ultrasound and my lining looked as if it was around cycle day 10. Obviously something isn’t fucking right, doc. Provera did not induce a period for me, but birth control did last month.

I’ve gained nearly 10 pounds over the past few months, and while I know gaining weight doesn’t automatically make you conceive right away, it’s still annoying. I’ve been enjoying indulging in more food, but I miss my intense cardio that I’ve been limiting it for almost a year with no results. (I plan on writing a post about healthy eating and working out soon.

Obviously Clomid round 2 was a no-go. My 21 day labs (although it was day 25 for me as I did not get a positive at-home ovulation test until cd18) showed my progesterone level at 13. My doctor claimed this was good, but on my first round of Clomid my level was at 19.6. I know it can vary every month, but wtf? Seriously…have to have a natural low progesterone deficiency because every month I’m NOT on Clomid my levels are below 3.

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The truth.

Anyways, about my conversation with my doc. In a nutshell and without me being dramatic, she mentioned my age could start playing a factor. I appreciate her truth, but I’m not old…more testing would need to be done to check the QUALITY of my eggs. She also mentioned that my body is probably just more prone to stress and cannot handle it well, and once again, said she can only mention acupuncture, yoga, meditation so much. The thing is- I don’t constantly feel stressed. Yes, I have my moments, but there is no way that I’m just one big ass giant stress ball. If I am, then maybe I should be seeing a flipping therapist then (I’d love to if there were more hours in the day and they were free, haha).

The final straw was that she said that we need to seriously start saving our money for more invasive treatment as injectables are about $1000 PER CYCLE and IVF is about $7000. IVF?! I’ve done TWO rounds of Clomid, girlfran. I’m all about being real and honest, but are you fucking kidding me? I’m all for injectables. In fact, I’d like to go that route as it will ENSURE ovulation occurs. They also HAVE to monitor you via ultrasound to check lining and follicle size and quantity during this sort of treatment (this risk of multiples or OHSS- ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome increases dramatically if not properly monitored). Maybe my lining sucks, or perhaps I’m not producing enough follicles or they’re not maturing enough. An ultrasound can tell you so much more than blood tests.

However, Tricare (our insurance) does NOT cover this treatment. They only cover basic fertility oral medications and procedures. I’ll write another post about the different between Tricare Prime (what I’m on now) and Standard sometime…it can be very confusing!

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I requested not to be put on birth control or Provera to induce a period. I want it to come naturally…as long as it takes. She told me to call back in a few months if I still don’t have it and as long as I have 4 periods a year that I’m okay. This is NOT okay to me. I don’t expect to be every 28 days, but why the frick is there no semi-consistency? And call back in a few MONTHS?! LMAOOOOOO.

Did I damage my body so much from being on birth control for 10 years? After I initially got off birth control in late 2012, my periods were every 5-6 weeks- consistent enough…and I ended up pregnant. I had a period every 30 days or so after my D&C back in September, but starting in December, they have been very irregular/non-existent. I was told gaining weight and reducing exercise can help regulate periods….but it seems to be doing the complete opposite for me. Awesome.

I want more blood work done to check my hormone levels at various points in my cycle (pre and “post” ovulation, although I’m not ovulating on my own). I’d also like a few ultrasounds done to check out everything I mentioned earlier pre and post ovulation. I made an appointment with my PCM (primary care physician- basically regular doc) to put in a referral for a different OBGYN that was highly suggested. My appointment is not until August 19th, but that’s fine. I’m hoping I at least get better bedside manner from a second opinion. Figure out ME before even mentioning IVF and shit, ya know?

Anyways, sorry to vent, but this is what I’ve been hassling with on my day off. Fun stuff ;)

***EDIT*** I literally started a new cycle a few hours after publishing this, haha. Crazy!

What did your insurance cover if you ever went through fertility treatments? How did you finance it? Our (okay, mostly TJ’s) DVD collection may be able to cover the costs, haha.

Have you ever had irregular cycles? Birth control masked mine for way too many years, so I don’t know if my body naturally produces regular periods :(

Any advice on being your own advocate?

 

 

Posted in Fertility, Life, Uncategorized | 8 Comments

The 2 Week Wait

For those of us that are trying to conceive, I guarantee that we can all agree that the 2ww (2 week wait) sucks major dong. If anyone is confused as to what the two week wait is (men and those that got pregnant “without trying” may not have a clue- it’s the period of time after ovulation is supposed to occur and when your next cycle will start). Basically, it’s when you have no fricking idea whether or not you’re pregnant.

This can make women feel stressed and anxious. I’ve noticed that for me personally, I go back and forth with my emotions. I want to feel hopeful, but the realist in me doesn’t want to be too optimistic as disappointment will hit me harder if it doesn’t happen. For many months, I’d analyze every to see if I had symptoms of early pregnancy. Well people, that is a complete waste of time and energy and I don’t do that shit anymore.

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True dat.

It’s important to keep busy during the 2 week wait as it’ll simply keep your mind off of it. Praise the Lord that I’m working now or else I’d go nucking futs and probably have 287 decorated or painted mason jars and other various crafts taking up space in our extra bedroom. Margaritas the size of my head also seem to be calling my name during this time period, but I know it’s because I’m on edge. I’m obviously no doctor and I’m not going to discuss whether it’s right or wrong to drink during this time, but I’m pretty sure a glass or two of wine or whatever is fine. However, I’m refraining from alcohol (not that we drink much to begin with, but we enjoy cocktails and movie nights every once in a while!) because I want to and the Clomid is still in my system.

I go in Monday to for labs to check my progesterone levels to see if I ovulated or not. As I mentioned before, we are truly hoping for ovulation as that’s a sign that my body at least responds well to the medication. Nonetheless, Clomid thins your uterine lining which was NOT monitored the past two times I have taken it, so I have no idea how things are in that department right now. You need good lining for implantation by the way.

I used Clear Blue Advanced ovulation tests this month to see around what I potentially could have ovulated. I have a shit ton of the Wondoflo cheapy ovulation tests and while they’ve worked for me before, the line never got darker for me this month. Maybe it was a bad batch, but I had enough and stopped using those. I got a flashing smiley on cd14 and a solid smiley on cd17. I was pumped about that as it’s a good sign- the smileys show that your estrogen levels are changing which is essential for ovulation to occur. The Clear Blue are a bit pricey, but I plan on continuing to use these instead of the cheapies. I use the at-home ovulation tests to have an idea when to go in for my 21 day blood draw as I mentioned above (they call it day 21 labs, but you should get this done 7 days after your positive ovulation test as it will be more accurate). I’m actually going in on day 25 or something.

I’ve cut back on exercise, but I didn’t do any cardio except walking this week. This is somewhat hard as I have my brand new spankin’ treadmill staring at me in the face that the husband bought me for our second anniversary (he’s the bomb). Running is a stress reliever for me mentally, but my doc wanted me to chill in that department as she believes it stresses me body out. I’m on my feet walking around for 8+ hours a day at work, so that’s enough for me right now. And to be flat out honest- I wanted to keep all the spermies possible in their home. Sorry, had to say it, haha ;)

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So yeah…my advice is too keep busy and try not to think about it. Finding support in others helps as well. There are SO many online forums and Facebook pages with numerous women going through similar situations. They can offer support, advice, or simply be there to give you a good laugh. I’m even a member of two Clomid groups on Facebook and although I don’t actively participate on it, it’s definitely made me feel better! I was a pissy witch the first time I took Clomid (back in March). I didn’t know what the hell was wrong with me and Tyler probably felt like he needed to sleep with one eye opened, haha. But I found out that the medicine can cause your emotional state to sway because of the added hormones being put into your body. I’m happy to report that this round of Clomid did not do that to me :) It did cause major bloating (seriously looked like I was 4 months pregnant…I took a picture, but I’ll try spare ya the image!) and I thought my ovaries were going to pop out of me mid-cycle, so hopefully that’s a good sign.

How do you cope during the 2 week wait?

Do you do anything differently?

 

Posted in Fertility, Life, Pregnancy, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Round 2 and One Year Later

Last time I posted, I mentioned that I was doing one month of birth control to try to induce a cycle. I’m SO happy to report that it worked just a few days after taking my last active pill! Luckily it landed on a Friday so I was able to call my doctor and she called in a prescription of Clomid as well as a Day 21 lab test (this checks my progesterone levels to see if I ovulated or not). I had to work 9-6, but Tyler’s on vacation still so he was able to pick it up for me :)

I’ll be taking it as I did last time (back in March…can’t believe it’s been that long)- 50mg from cycle days 3-7. I’m on day 5 today and have had no side effects yet aside from being extremely tired although I’ve been getting sufficient sleep. It depends on what my Day 21 labs say as to whether or not we’ll do a third round of Clomid, or move onto Femara. They are very similar fertility meds, although Femara tends to have less side effects and does not thin the lining of the uterus as Clomid does.

In all honesty, I’m just hoping for a normal cycle and for my blood test to show that I ovulated. With the combination of putting on a few pounds, not doing any strenuous exercising, and the Clomid I’m thinking positively about this. Conception would be pretty damn awesome too, but we’ll take what we can get right now ;)

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Random Vegas picture to break up the text… My sister was hungry and asked the bartender for a free snack, so he gave her a bowl of green olives, haha.

Tyler’s been on leave the past week and a half and doesn’t go back to work until next Tuesday. Since having all that time off and me working, I mentioned him flying home to spend time with his family since we will not be going home at all this year. He said no as we had no idea what my cycle would be like, and with our luck we’d miss our window for the month. Thank God he took this into consideration and opted out! While it’s not a huge deal, TJ will be gone again from mid September until the end of October, so that’s another two months wasted. We have roughly 2-3 months or so to either shit or get off the pot with the oral fertility medications before moving forward. However, my cycles are sometimes jacked so who the hell knows! I could very well have another 70+ day cycle, so we are just taking things as they come. We’re enjoying our time together now, and I’m so grateful to be working (although the schedule isn’t ideal) to take my mind off this stuff and make us some extra dough.

July 7th is the one-year mark when we found out we were expecting. Sometimes I wish I were like my husband and couldn’t remember dates for the life of me….I don’t know how or why I remember such weird, random shit. Anyways, I’m actually glad this the past year has fully circulated. Based on the doctor’s calculations, we conceived around our first anniversary, haha. We learned so much during the time I was pregnant- things about pregnancy, birth, baby items, and each other. We got some pretty good arguments out of the way, such as finding out the sex and names. Yes, we will find out the sex. I was weary about it before, but after the miscarriage, I won’t be able to go without knowing. Names have not been discussed since the loss, but this is something we want to keep between us. I think if there is a next time around (I say if only because I’m crazy and don’t want to jinx ourselves), we will be a bit more emotionally prepared as the past year has brought us closer together than I ever thought possibly.

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Love.

It’s absolutely amazing to share your life with someone who loves you in your best and worst hours. While some days were complete shit, it’s made us stronger and definitely more educated in the reproduction and fertility department. And, I’ve been some pretty awesome connections along the way as well. A big thank you to everyone who’s reached out and given me support, advice, and guidance- you all know who you are!

Posted in Fertility, Life, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Update on Fertility Treatment (or lack thereof…)

I’ve been meaning to give a quick update in this department for the past two weeks, but with work, class, and our Vegas trip, I haven’t really had the desire to write during my free time. Anyways, I’m going to make this short and sweet since there isn’t much to discuss right now unfortunately.

I mentioned in my last post that my doctor prescribed me Provera to induce a period (my last menstrual cycle was the beginning of April….I know- annoying). Well, provera didn’t work. She concluded that it was probably due to the fact that my estrogen and progesterone levels were just too low (my estrogen was in normal range the last time it was tested in January, but this is when I found out that my progesterone levels were almost none existent). To put it in simple terms- estrogen builds the lining and progesterone makes it shed (or, if you get knocked it, progesterone is a HUGE factor in keeping the pregnancy viable- low levels can result in a miscarriage, although they are typically earlier on in the first trimester).

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Hoover Dam- I’ll recap our Vegas trip soon!

I was prescribed birth control for one month to try and jump start a period. Two steps back…but there was really no other choice than to wait and see if I ever started naturally on my own. Given that I was on birth control for about 10 years, she didn’t want to do this as we really have no clue what my natural cycles are. I sometimes didn’t even get a period being ON birth control! My previous gyno thought it was due to stress…apparently my body goes effin apeshit when things don’t go smoothly in my life, haha. So yeah- I’m mid-cycle on birth control, and let me tell ya- I don’t miss it. My body is probably wondering what the heck is going on with the fertility meds, then provera, and now birth control….I won’t get into this now, but I do have some opinions on long-term use of birth control. It masks any issues you could be having.

As I mentioned before, I’ve been adding more calories to my diet. Low or high body fat/weight play a definite role in conception, so gaining a few pounds was necessary to see if this effects my hormone levels. Tyler thought this meant eating shit food everyday, but that is not the way to go! I’m sorry, but I don’t understand how people eat fast food and utter crap every day. I feel so lethargic and blah after indulging in too many meals out and whatnot. Anyways, I’ve gained 8 pounds in the past 6 weeks or so we shall see. Some people may find this annoying as most people have trouble losing weight and keeping it off. Sorry if that’s the case for you, but everyone’s different :) Also, some of the weight may be from the birth control as I’ve literally felt bloated since I started taking it. I have no idea, but this will be the only month I’m on it.

This is still a ways away, but I signed up for a half marathon that is taking place at the end of October. My doctor advised to not participate in strenuous training, so this is up in the air. I don’t want to be a quitter, but this ordeal is our number one priority, ya know? I needed to focus on gaining a bit of weight so have kept running at a minimum lately. Running, especially interval training (my favorite!), can stress the body out and actually do more harm than good sometimes, according to my doctor. Who knows! At any rate, we will see how the next month or two goes. I can always drop down to the 5 or 10k, but it really just depends on what my body is gonna.

SO…if I get a menstrual cycle from the birth control, we will try another round of Clomid. If that doesn’t work, she said she’ll try Femara (very similar to Clomid, but the side effects are supposed to be not nearly as bad). My doctor said she’s hopeful for us, but to start saving soon as we will have to seek help from a RE if the next two attempts don’t work. Oh, and she said that she believes the first time I got pregnant was a fluke, haha.

I must admit, the time away from tracking days and going in for blood tests only to get myself anxious about the results has been wonderful. I was completely effing over peeing on ovulation tests after getting positives for two week a few months ago. Thought I was gonna go out of my mind! The job has helped me take my mind off of things too- I feel more normal now than I have in quite a while. However, time is still ticking and we still have our ultimate goal in mind- a healthy pregnancy and baby. One day :) Keep your fingers crossed for us!

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Posted in Fertility, Life, Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Life Lately

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel like days/weeks drag, yet time seems to go by pretty darn fast. I wanted to give a brief update on what’s been going on around here and fill you on some of our summer plans.

As I mentioned in my last post, Tyler got back from NIE on May 21st. It’s great to have him home, and I’m sure he’s over the moon to sleep in his bed with the AC on again. The wind was atrocious while he was away- like to the point where I thought I might have to wear goggles while outside. I couldn’t imagine sitting in the desert in 90 degree weather with sand being blasted against my face all day long! Anyways, he started another grad school class right when he got home, but this one is six credits instead of the normal 3; therefore, it’s double the work. It’s entitled “International Dimensions of Organizational Behavior” so I’m actually looking forward to reading some of his work. The last two classes were military intelligence stuff with is boring as hell and foreign to me :(

You know how I’ve been moaning and groaning about the job market out here (not good) and endless hours of job searching all while feeling like I’m getting nowhere? Well mama was offered a job! It’s a management position with a well-known retailer, so there’s definitely room for growth which I’ve never had before. Plus, you HAVE to have a Bachelor’s degree to even be eligible for this position, so at least my degree will be getting put to use. They employ a MIT (Manager-in-Training program) which will enable me to learn the ins and outs of real management and leadership of an organization. I’m super grateful for this opportunity, and it’s come just in time for the repayments of my student loans! To be honest, I’m pretty damn proud. I didn’t acquire this job by knowing someone- having a family or friend hire me on . I did it all on my own, in a city that’s home, yet still unfamiliar in many aspects- woo!

Tyler never uses his leave (vacation) time. Since he’s been back in the army, he used it once which was this past Christmas. Well, he just found out that he has too much leave that’ll be lost if he doesn’t take his block leave the last week of June/first week of July. They get four weeks off a year which are broken down into two 2-week increments (different depending on your unit); however, you can take some here and there if need be. This is awesome and annoying because he’s gonna get 17 days off, but if he would’ve known about it sooner, I would’ve pushed for a beach vacation somewhere for a few days, haha. However, I’m looking forward to having a stay-at-home husband to do ALL of the cooking, cleaning, laundry, and errands (grocery shopping, vet appointments, waiting for my scripts at the pharmacy for 2 flippin hours, etc.). :)

What else…I mentioned on here before that while I have my Bachelor’s degree from UTEP, I’m one class shy of obtaining my Human Resource Management certification through Purdue. Well, I’m taking the class this summer so I’ll have the cert at the beginning of August! I have a certificate in Organizational Leadership and Supervision, so I’m hoping this will add a bit more to my resume, too. Kinda sad to think that this may be my last higher education course ever, but you never know!

My little sister turned 21 over the weekend. I still feel like I’m 21 and Tyler loves Vegas so we put the two together and booked a long weekend to celebrate with her! She’ll fly in straight from Chicago and we’re driving up (about 10.5 hours away from here…shoot me). We’re stopping at the Hoover Dam upon my request on our way up, so that’ll be one thing to check off my list. Aside from the Phoenix area and the driving route to get there, I haven’t seen shit past pretty much Illinois in our country which is pretty sad (Lawton/Oklahoma City, OK doesn’t count- worst state EVER). If we more time, we’d stop at the Grand Canyon, but that’s on the list for next year.  Anyways, we’re both super pumped about this. Can’t wait to recap it!

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My Junior year prom, 2003. Kathleen was only 9!

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May, 2014.

So a little update on the fertility front. I was referred off post to get a vaginal ultrasound done a couple of weeks ago. William Beaumont (the army hospital out here) is backed up until August (uhh WTF?), so my doc had me go elsewhere. Anyways, they checked to see if I had any cysts (none!) and the lining/shape of my uterus. I don’t have any cysts (yay!), but the ultrasound tech said it didn’t look like I was going to have a period for another two weeks or so (I was already on cycle day 35 or so at this point, so this was aggravating). Also, I took another look at the records over the weekend and noticed that me endometrium lining was 5mm. This seems abnormally low given that I was at least 35 days into my cycle. If this is of concern, I’ll be annoyed that this issue has not been addressed yet. I’m doing to call my doctor about it this week, and if I’m getting the run around without any answers I’m going to request a second opinion. A thin uterine lining can be can be caused my low estrogen or damage to the uterus, typically from D&C’s. My doc keeps telling me my estrogen is fine, but I haven’t had it tested since late January.

Does anyone have any insight on this or am I reading too much into it? I researched the shit out of this on Sunday morning, and my lining should’ve been much thicker given how late in the cycle I was. Plus, if my lining is thin, it isn’t possible to a fertilized egg to stick. AND, Clomid thins your uterine lining even more which is why it should not be used for more than a few cycles. I’d appreciate your opinion about this if you’re familiar with it or are a nurse :)

Anyways, I still hadn’t gotten my period, so I called my doctor and she prescribed me Provera (basically progesterone) to jump-start things. It’s been 7 weeks since my last cycle, and I just finished up the pills (10mg for 10 days) the other day….hopefully it shows soon. The love/hate relationship I have with my period is ironic…and I never thought I’d say that out loud, haha.  The side effects of Provera weren’t nearly as bad as Clomid, but I still wasn’t feeling like my normal fabulous self. It made me extremely tired…like I think I almost fell asleep standing up last week. I took a few naps which I NEVER do. It caused stomach issues- at first I couldn’t stop and then I couldn’t go at all- and I drink plenty of water, eat lots of fiber, and have been running a few miles a week- all things to keep things moving along. Oh, and I was super emotional. I shed a few tears while seeing a baby sea otter that was hurt while jogging on the treadmill at the gym. Like come on now…I’m nuts, haha. So yeah, this medication better work. If she doesn’t show by Friday, I’ll call and see what the next step is.

Once I start my new cycle, we will try 50mg of Clomid again on cycle days 3-7. With my luck, I’ll be taking it while we’re in Vegas. That should be a real treat for TJ and my sister with my insane hot flashes and mood swings, haha. I honestly wouldn’t care though- we’re both eager to get the next round going. IF it doesn’t work this next cycle, my doctor and I are going to discuss adding a trigger shot to the mix. I won’t get into specifics about it now, but it’s basically a shot given to you when your follicles are mature enough to induce ovulation within the next 12-24 hours of it. Anyways, we shall see….

That’s about it around here. The dogs are doing well, but hating the extreme summer heat.

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Wrigley LOVES giving kisses!

Oh- we will not be coming home for Thanksgiving OR Christmas this year. Sorry family. As long as things pan out with this job gig, I won’t be able to take time off around the holidays, plus if Tyler saves some leave then perhaps we can finally do some traveling here and there. Our friends and family are always more than welcome here though :) Have a great week!

Posted in Army, Fertility, Life, Miscarriage, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

How to Help Deal with Pregnancy Jealousy & the BFN

Is the title a bit dramatic? Haha…straight to the point. While I enjoy blogging, I obviously have not been doing much of it lately. My husband got home last Wednesday after being away for field training for six weeks, so that’s exciting! While he was gone, I did a lot of crafting, reading (What Alice Forgot, Me Before You, and Gone Girl), job searching/interviewing (which I’m happy to say has come to an end!), and relaxing. My mom and sister flew in earlier this month for a long weekend, and it was wonderful to spend four full days with my them!

Moving along…this subject may be touchy for some, but it’s absolutely real for so many women, especially nowadays since social media is such a prominent part of our lives. I want to talk about this because as I’ve mentioned before, I feel like miscarriage, infertility, and trying to conceive are all a journey that provokes SO many emotions- it’s honestly a rollercoaster. As much as I try to stay sane, logical, and keep my feelings in check, sometimes you just have to let it all out, ya know? The same can be said for any turbulent, confusing time in one’s life.

I also have to mention- what has helped me may not work for everyone since we’re obviously all different. Some people cope with stress by eating (I’m the opposite- I lose my appetite, but I’ve been trying to keep myself properly fueled with nutritious food). However, a few people have brought it to my attention that perhaps my weight is directly linked to our issues in this department. I truly appreciate their concern, but there is no issue. I’m under a great specialist’s care, and while I haven’t counted calories in years (yes, I got sucked into that demon when I was a teen), I’ve been adding about 500 extra calories per day to my diet by drinking homemade smoothies and eating healthy fats such as nuts, cheese, avocado, nut butters, etc. All the stuff I normally eat anyways- just more of it! In addition, some people work out, others lay in bed all day, some become bitter or resentful when things don’t go as planned- whatever. The important thing is to not let yourself go.

So, here is my insight about not only dealing with pregnancy jealousy (and other negative feelings), but also ideas to implement when getting that big fat negative (BFN) month after month :)

  • Allow Yourself to Feel- Seriously. After the miscarriage, I just kept telling myself that I was okay, it could be worse (which it very well could’ve been), and not to cry. I was honestly afraid if I let myself feel, then I’d let myself go. Does that make sense? Sounds ridiculous, but I wanted to keep my shit together. It worked to an extent- as I’ve mentioned before, I maintained a 4.0 the entire semester with six classes. But in reality, I had some low points, and I’m blaming this on my connection with social media (pretty much blogs and Facebook). It was redonkulous the amount of ladies I knew that got pregnant right after or the months following. This may sound weird, but the pregnancy announcements are the ones that bothered me. After the birth, I’m totally cool, haha. Pyscho, I know ;) It’s simply part of life, and while I’m happy for them, it doesn’t mean it tug at my heart a bit. Cry if you need to cry…holding things in will only may things worse.
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Lots of Wrigley snuggles happen :)

  • “Hide from Newsfeed” is Your Friend- Okay, I tried disconnecting myself from Facebook all together a few times, but since I live almost 2,000 miles away from 95% of my family and friends, it’s just easier to keep in touch. I enjoy interacting and staying connected, shoot me. Plus, who doesn’t like some creeping when they’re super bored? Don’t answer that ;) Anyways, don’t feel bad about hiding people from your newsfeed. They don’t know it, and you can always check their page every so often when you’re feeling strong. At first I assumed I was big woman and thought that utilizing this option would make me weak. Then I realized, who in the Sam hell cares! It’s better than shedding tears when signing on and seeing baby bump pics or statuses about pregnancy darn everyday, ya know? I’m sure my husband appreciates this as well, haha. And to make myself clear, I’m not dissing women who use social media as a means to post pictures, updates, complaints, or inquiries about pregnancy AT ALL. Doesn’t stop me from wanting to roundhouse you, but I’m not dissing you. Just kidding! Seriously, just kidding. I don’t think I could roundhouse shit :(
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Lol, sorry. A little dramatic.

  • Be Okay With Turning Down Invites- Unless it’s mandatory, you don’t have to attend everything you’re invited to. This may be more difficult to those that are more social (I’m not a huge social butterfly to begin with), but if you don’t feel like going and it won’t seriously offend anyone- don’t go. You don’t have to go into detail as to why you’re not going, but if you’re close to the person then simply let them know. Most people won’t give a hoot, and if they do and don’t understand the circumstances, then eff em! For example, a week after my D & C we had a Hail and Farewell to attend (it’s basically a gathering where Tyler’s unit says good-bye to those that are leaving and welcomes new incoming families. It’s laid-back and takes place somewhere casual, such as D-Bubs). I wasn’t feeling it at all, but I went anyways. Two pregnant women were at our table (both very nice by the way)- one that was two weeks ahead of me and one that had just found out she was pregnant. It was awkward because it’s such a happy time, but I felt like such an outcast and did NOT want to talk baby talk, ya know?  However, I remember leaving after it was over, holding Tyler’s hand, and feeling closer to him than ever.

 

  • Talk About It- I’m not talking about all day every day, but moms or other important women in your life are great resources. I may not see my mom often, but there has not been one time that I’ve called/texted her and she hasn’t been available to talk things out with me (we talk when things are good too though!). Although our circumstances are different as she never experienced a miscarriage, she was put on Clomid which helped conceive my brother (secondary infertility). Unfortunately, memories about the drug are fuzzy after almost 25 years! Nonetheless, she is there for me to talk things through, ask questions, and remind me that everything will be okay. She’s researched all of the testing and procedures we’ve gone through and read up on fertility issues which I’ve been very impressed about and it’s meant a lot to me. My aunt’s been great with keeping me positive as well. I can always count on her for some good laughs! My advice in this department is to not bombard others with your troubles, but talking about it will help. However, relationships are a 2 way street- don’t reach out to people when your in a time of need and never want to hear their problems. That shit don’t fly- be a friend/daughter/sister/niece, etc. and reciprocate!
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Me and my mama :)

Also, find support groups. I found one last year strictly for Fort Bliss army wives dealing with infertility, miscarriages, and simply trying to conceive. I’ve met a couple of the girls in person, and it was awesome! We all come from different paths in life and our stories are all different, but it’s great to have female support to ask questions, give advice, and merely help you deal with time dragging ass. I have a few friends that I knew growing up and I keep in touch with on a weekly/monthly basis for support on both ends as well. It’s amazing how much I’ve learned from these ladies!

  • Stop Mugging Pregnant Ladies You See in Public- I kid you not, just like getting notified via social media that everyone you know is getting knocked up, you will notice pregnant women EVERY time you go out. Tyler noticed it, and when my sister was visiting me, she noticed it as well. This may seem silly but it was the sweetest thing- we were running errands and within a matter of a few minutes we saw at least 3 preggo ladies. She put her hand on my back and asked me if I was okay- I almost cried just because of her sensitivity! Bonus points for my sistafran ;) You’ll notice women with child much more often. You’ll wonder how far along they are, if they’re having a boy or a girl or want it to be a surprise, if they’re having complications, etc. But instead of thinking it should be you, send a happy thought their way, smile, and move on.

 Side Notes:

  • Buy Tampons in Bulk- Stop acting like this month will be THE month and that you only need a few to hold you over. TJ and I have gone to Costco several times and he asked about this and I’d always say no…well, I said yes a few days ago and I feel damn good about it.
  • Don’t Think About What Month You’d Give Birth- Don’t think about it. Who gives a honk? Just stop.
  • Make It Known You’re Struggling to Conceive-  Everyone has different relationships with their family and friends, but I honestly think, why not? If people know, they’ll stop asking questions. Perhaps they will offer some support. Who knows! I’m not saying tell your entire family. Hell, I don’t think anyone besides the family members I’m close with even knew about our troubles until I opened up on here about it. But as I mentioned above, a close friend or family member or a support group will do wonders with feeling less alone and help cheer you up. I’ve become close with complete strangers and some family members never ask about a thing. Eye-opening. Oh- and don’t even bother talking to a Debbie downer about it- he/she will act like it’s no big deal.
  • Eat Everything You CAN’T When Pregnant- This includes sushi, sunny-side up eggs, and lunch meat. I know alcohol and caffeine can influence ovulation, but have a fricking drink or 3 you get your period. Oh, and go on a bike-ride or ride a horse ;)

This post was meant to be light-hearted, so don’t take the things I’ve said too seriously ;) I plan on doing a post soon about what’s been going on with our treatment lately (no, not pregnant), so stay tuned!

Do you have any words of wisdom to share?

How do you cope with difficult situations (doesn’t have to pertain to just this topic)?

Posted in Fertility, Life, Miscarriage, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Easy and Inexpensive Floral and Glass Decor

Late last year, Tyler and I took a weekend getaway to Phoenix to just get away for a bit. We I had a few on our agenda- Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, showing him around where I lived for a short time back in 2008/2009, South Mountain, and eating some good food. He had one request- Ikea. Our house is set up very different than the homes we lived in back in the Midwest. At any rate, he wanted to get two new shelving stands to replace our old ones in our dining area- which were unfinished, unstable, and just overall ugly (he used them in the house he used to own back in Tennessee when he was stationed at Fort Campbell…not sure what he was thinking). I was obviously down for this idea!

We ended up purchasing one tall stand and one shorter stand with two baskets that both had an espresso finish. Unfortunately, I didn’t take a “before” picture of what the dining room area looked like. *Note- if you make a trip to Ikea, bring your bigger vehicle. We didn’t even think about this and took his Lancer, haha. The drive back home was super comfy ;) I didn’t even bother decorating that area before we got the new furniture, but obviously wanted to add some things once it wasn’t such an eye sore anymore. However, mama is cheap and after browsing decorations at a few stores, I decided to take things into my own hands.

We have a large Thomas Kinkade painting in the room (Tyler’s from his old house)-

Streams of Living Water

While the painting is absolutely beautiful, it was just on the wall and it was completely random. I guess perhaps I was a tad bit weird about it as it was his and his ex’s…and it was us now- in our first home together- and I didn’t know how to make it feel like ours. Does that make sense or am I a complete lunatic? Anyways, I suddenly embraced he painting after the new pieces were set up in the room and wanted to bring out the colors in the decor.

I knew I wanted a serene and peaceful look as that’s what I feel when I look at the painting. As mentioned above, I couldn’t fathom spending $20 or whatever the price tag was on some of the shit I saw. Money don’t grow on my trees, so I took a little trip to the Dollar Tree to see what I could come up with. This is what I initially created that ended up being the inspiration for the rest:

Off white floral basket

I made two of these. Grand total- $4!

My mom had given me the small baskets before we moved. I bought the foam, moss, and two bundles of flowers from the Dollar Tree which was just enough to fill both of them. I saw things similar at stores going for $12-$20 bucks each- No flipping way!

After I made these, I was on a mission to fill in the rest of the shelves. Once again, I utilized the Dollar Tree (favorite dollar spot as literally everything is a dollar or less), Home Goods, Ross, and revamped some things I already had at home. The end result:

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Still need to fill in the rock frame, whoops. Also, I display seasonal decor on top, but just made something special for the “regular” months that I’ll share soon :)

The candles were from Home Goods and were on clearance for $3 and $4.

The rock frame was at Ross for $4.99 each (I bought 2). The glass filled vases were purchased from the Dollar tree, filled with small pebbles I already had, and I used twigs (not really sure how else to describe them) to add something extra.

The balls inside the glass cylinder were both from Home Goods ($3 and $5).

On the 4th shelve from the top you will see a frame. I’m not very religious, but the Serenity Prayer helped me through the miscarriage last year- plus I think it’s a great reminder for all things that life throws at us. I wrote it out on Microsoft Word, picked the font style that I wanted, and printed it out on paper that looked like the sky. Cut it out and placed it inside an antique looking frame I already had- simple!

The thing placed next to it was purchased at Home Goods for $2 on clearance.

We already had the vase on the bottom shelve and the rocks/potpourri that is filled inside of it.

This is what the end result is of the smaller shelving unit:

WP_20140503_006Frame and flower thing from Ross ($5). I added in the burgundy things to bring out the colors of the painting.

Had the glass cube already along with the pebbles and just added in extra flowers I had from the planted fake flowers I made.

You can read about what the mason jars are and how I created them here.

Where is your favorite place to shop for home decor?

 

Posted in Crafts, DIY, Inexpensive Home Decor, Uncategorized | 8 Comments