Thursday, July 31, 2008

All spermed up!

I got my positive on the OPK on Monday, meaning inseminations Tuesday and Wednesday. Karen was in NJ for work until last night. She arrived home at around 7pm. Since we are doing this together, I did not go in to the doctor for an IUI this month. We tried last night with an at home insemination. It was at the very edge of my fertile window, so it may be futile, but it's a shot. It seemed like a waste to lose the whole month.

So I woke up yesterday morning early to stop by Bethesda to buy some dry ice. Then off to work for a short day. At noon was a farewell lunch for a good friend and coworker, so I went to that and then left to go pick up the sperm. The Andrology Lab in Georgetown closes at 3pm and I was in Rockville, so I couldn't waste any time. I picked up an insemination kit from the nurse, got a little lesson in DIY inseminations, and then picked up the sperm. And I was home by 3:15. Took a little nap with my doggy, then got to work cleaning our home. A is coming to visit tonight and we had a filthy home. K came home around 7pm, we walked the dog, and then I took a shower while K finished cleaning the kitchen floor. What a way to welcome her home after a long trip away - can you please clean the kitchen floor?

The to the task at hand. I won't go into details, but I think you know that a trip to the bedroom is required. I gave K a little pep talk and she did a great job. We were both amazed at the tiny amount of sperm they give us for a large amount of money. Hmm, why don't people get pregnant? Maybe giving them more sperm would help! Afterwards we watched A Pug's Life on the laptop and enjoyed a KitKat while laying in bed. Then K took a shower and we went to bed.

We were amazed at how relaxed our dog was during the whole thing. The only place in our home she is not allowed is our bed, and she gets very upset if anyone is lying there anytime other than bed time. It's like not fair or something. So we prepared to give her a kong to distract her, but it was unnecessary. She pretty much ignored us and slept on the sofa in the living room. I don't know why, but I appreciate it.

So now we wait two weeks. I'm not getting my hopes up this time because I just don't think we had the timing right. But maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised.

Monday, July 28, 2008


So I didn't go to Nanny's funeral. With the upcoming ovulation, and K going out of town for work, and the cost of trying to conceive, it just didn't make sense to fly to FL for a couple of days. So I sent flowers and a nice card to Poppa, and said I wished I could be there with him. Poppa called yesterday to thank me for the flowers. I told him that I wanted to be there with him, and he said that I was in spirit and that's all that matters, so I feel a little better about my decision. I need to keep better in touch with the old people in my life.

Poppa told me that he and Nanny were incredibly lucky because they were married for 62 years, and that the first 59 of those years were really good. The last three were hard because Nanny was sick, but they had a great time for the first 59. These people were truly in love for 62 years. Sometimes with older people who've been married forever, you feel like they need each other, they are used to each other, but not that they love each other. But with these two, you knew how much they loved each other, and that it had been that way for 62 years.

That's what I want with K. 62 years of happiness. I saw an interview with Will Smith where he was asked about his relationship with Jada, one of the longest and strongest marriages in Hollywood. He said that he and Jada decided a long time ago that divorce is not an option. And that because divorce is not an option, they had better work hard to make this marriage work. So they fight, and sometimes it would be easy to say, 'You know what, we're through. I don't want to do this any more." But since divorce is not an option, instead they work it out, fight their way through it, and their relationship is better because of it.

This is how K and I see marriage. We don't believe in divorce - it's not an option. We believe that we are perfect for each other. But that doesn't mean we don't argue. And certainly we've had some horrible arguments. I think every couple does. But since divorce is not an option, we work through our problems, and we are closer afterwards.

People in my family marry young and stay happily married their whole lives. Love and romance are celebrated and cherished. My grandparents were happily married for 45 years. Papa died 11 years ago and Granny still wears her ring and tells her great-grandchildren about how wonderful their great-grandpa was. My parents have been married for 36 years. They were high school sweethearts, and married the day after my mom graduated from high school when she was 17 and he was 18. They are still very happy, love spending time together just the two of them. I know they've had hard times, but have come through it better, stronger than ever. My sister married when she was 19 and her husband 20, and they have been happily married for 13 years. Everyone said, 'wow, they're too young,' but my parents said 'we were young too, and look at us'. I have good role models for what a good marriage is, and I have high standards. I will not get a divorce, and I want to be happy.

K and I were engaged when I was 21 and she was 20, 8 years later, and we are still very happy. I'm not saying it's easy, but part of it is will. We are not quitters. We want to stay happily married, so we spend a lot of time and energy making sure we are happy. When we were arguing over money, we set up a budget that we both agreed to and stuck to it. When we were arguing about cleaning our home, we set up a cleaning schedule. We never go to bed angry. When we fight, we always both apologize and try to each understand the other's position. We aren't perfect, and sometimes it's hard, but no one ever said it was easy. We love each other very much and we are very happy together, and that's something worth holding onto.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ovulation coming

The ovulation is coming soon. If its on schedule, I will get a positive on Tuesday. K is going out of town for work Sunday - Wednesday. The work would be a positive on Sunday, because then we would have to skip this month. Any other day and we will be able to squeeze in something within the window, but not Sunday. We've got our fingers crossed.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


My family had a family of best friends. The mom was my mom's best friend. The dad my dad's. And the daughter was my sister's best friend. We did everything together basically my whole life. We met them when I was four. Our moms were co-leaders of our girl scout troups. We camped every easter, memorial day, and labor day together. We had a standing Saturday night BBQ/pool party at our house through the summer. We had a standing Saturday night fire - either an outside bon fire or inside by the fire place - at their house through the winter. We went on several Thanksgiving cruises together. We did everything together basically my whole life. Their grandparents were considered my grandparents and mine theirs. One grandma, Nanny we called her, died yesterday.

What do I remember about Nanny? She was 80 years old, so when I met her, she must have been in her 50s, but she's always seemed much older. Being a poor working class southern woman takes it's toll on you. She and Poppa lived in a double-wide trailer, but it was the most impecably decorated house I'd been to as a child, so I thought they were wealthy. Nanny never worked and didn't know how to drive. She loved to cook, and was good at making southern standards. She was the kind of cook that liked to be told that she was a good cook, so she was always fishing for complements. "How do you like my biscuits, how do you like my cookies? I see your taking another cookie, they must be very good, huh?" She made her own BBQ sauce, but I didn't like it. My parents stressed to me many times the importance of telling her that I loved her BBQ sauce. She was the kind of grandma that always tells you that you've gained weight, no matter if you've lost it or gained it. She loved to complain about her illnesses. If you said how are you, she would say, "well, you know I'm old. my body has lots of aches and pains. I can't get around like I used to." We would all joke about this when she wasn't around. Everytime I saw her, basically for the past 20 years, she would grab my hand, look me in the eye, and say, "you know, I love you as much as I love my own grandchildren. I've always considered you and your sister my own grandchildren."

The last time I saw her was in August. I forgot to take a picture and have regretted it ever since. I didn't go to see her at Christmas even though she called and asked me to. I want to go to the funeral but don't know if I can. Neither K nor I can take off of work for this, and we just got back from 3 weeks in Australia, so we don't have a big bank of leave stored up. I haven't even heard yet when the funeral is so it's hard to make plans.

It makes me sad that she will never meet our children. She loved babies. We will add this to the list of people who we love who won't meet our children - my Papa, my Grandma, my Grandpa, K's Grandma. This is life - most children don't get to meet their great-grandparents. But it still makes me sad.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Can I ask you a rude question?

I was asked this by a woman at church on Sunday. Hmm, a rude question? She corrected herself, "well, maybe it's just an inappropriate question. or maybe I'll just ask it. are you pregnant yet?" Let's see, if it's a rude question, or even just an inappropriate question, and you know this, then maybe you shouldn't ask it.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Since I'm not pregnant...

I still have this pesky period. Last night I realized that we are out of pads and pamprin. K said that I wasn't very prepared for getting my period, but I reminded her that this is a house with two fertile women, and I wasn't that last one to have a period, and when she used up the pads and pamprin, it was her responsibility to add them to the grocery list. So today I asked my Mexican male coworker friend to go out to lunch with me and we stopped at Safeway on the way back. He was a little confused and embarrassed when we stopped in the feminine hygiene section. But now I'm all stocked up with pads and ready to ride out this period.

Not pregnant

As indicated by the blood test yesterday and the blood running fast out of my vagina today. I thought it would be harder but I'm okay. We try again in just two weeks.

Monday, July 14, 2008


Here's a pictoral of what I've been talking about lately.

It's not too revealing. Pregnant is one of the biggest words - surprise, surprise.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Happy belated 4th of July

I haven't posted in a week so here's what's been going on:

1. Second IUI was on Wed. Our doctor encourages two IUIs per cycle, and we want this to happen sooner rather than later, so we are going along with it. We figure heterosexual couples have sex multiple times during those two fertile days, we should at least give ourselves two chances. We saw a couple from our DI support group in the waiting room. Unfortunately they had an appointment with our doctor at the same time we did, so our IUI was 45 min late. This IUI only cost $350. Turns out we were overcharged for the first one, so they gave us a refund. It was wonderful customer service, the kind that is rare these days. I was impressed.

2. We visited our good friend X at his new home in CT over the long weekend. Besides a brief visit to Providence about 5 years ago, this was my first trip to New England. Basically, I've traveled a lot in the US, but not to New England. CT is very cute. X says he is good luck for people trying to have babies. A couple visited him after trying for many months, and they were pregnant right away after the visit. Let's hope that same luck happens for us. X also asked the details on how this all works, and then said half-seriously, "Wouldn't it be easier if you just had sex with a man?" X in many ways is young and naive, so I didn't take offense to that. I just said, "What would stop me from getting AIDS, since I can't use a condom?" And he said, "Oh yeah, that makes sense..."

3. We went whale watching in RI with X. It was horrible - all three of us got horribly sea sick. X says he's never been motion sick before in his life, and he was throwing up over the side. It's torture being stuck on this boat for 4.5 hours and being sick the entire time. X says he thought he was going to die, which K thinks is very funny. She kept reminding him that no one dies from sea-sickness. K was the least sick of the three of us, so she took care of us - giving X tissues after he through up, letting him borrow her jacket, buying me a sprite, feeding us crackers. Total mom mode. I'd like to blame my nausea on possibly being pregnant, but I think that would be a stretch considering how sick X was.

4. On the boat I saw a very sick woman having to care for her very sick son, and I thought, wow, I am not ready for that. When I'm motion sick (which is not a rare occasion), I can barely care for myself. Moms have to put all of their sickness aside and care for their children, and that part of parenting totally sucks. It reminded me of my childhood. My mom was always horribly motion sick, and so was I, and she took care of me regardless of how sick she was. Wow, thanks mom!

5. We only saw two whales on this horrible 4.5 hour torturous trip. We saw them right at the end, right as we were about to leave and go back. A mom and baby fin back whale, the second largest whales in the world. K thought this was a good sign. Above is a picture X took with his very nice camera.

6. As we were driving home on Sunday, C called and asked if we would like to meet them at our favorite restaurant for dinner. We sped home because after eating shit food all weekend (this is what we do on vacations) we were feeling pretty ill and could use some good healthy food from our favorite restaurant. After dinner they came back to our place. Our dog Angel was just amazed by that baby. She wanted to lick his feet, but when we told her not to do that, she just sat down and stared at the baby in amazement. It was very cute. We should have snapped a picture.

7. Today I went in for a blood test to see if my progesterone levels are right. If they aren't right, the doctor plans to put me on progesterone for my next cycle. Let's hope the levels are right - we are already paying enough for all of this.

So that's been our week. Very active - we are exhausted. We are looking forward to a nice quiet week of relaxation. I feel exactly the same - no pregnancy symptoms yet.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The first IUI

Today was the first IUI. And it was a crazy day. But let's start with yesterday. Yesterday morning I had a positive on my OPK, so I called the doctor and made appointments for today and tomorrow. When I got home from work, I asked K how she was doing. She said nervous and I said, me, too. Her stomach was queasy and she had the shits (I know, too much information). So we decided to take it easy and try to relax. We went to our favorite restaurant and came home for a long walk with our dog. Then we meditated at our fertility altar and went to bed early. We decided this will be our pre-IUI ritual - though hopefully the ritual won't need to be invoked too many times.

Our IUI was an early morning appointment at 7:30 in DC (Georgetown). I had a 10am work meeting in DC (K St.), so we had this plan to drive to Bethesda, park the car and metro down to the doctor. Then K would metro to work and I would metro to K Street, find a coffee shop, read my novel, and relax until my meeting. Nice plan.

First we couldn't find the parking lot in Bethesda. This is crazy - we've parked there before. We just drove around and around the metro, but couldn't find the parking lot. I blame this on having gotten up so damn early. We ran out of time after all of the driving around and decided just to drive to Georgetown. Thank god for the GPS. We arrived at our appointment 20 minutes early and I peed twice while waiting - those damn nerves! We paid the $500 fee ($500!). The doctor called us in right on time, I stripped down and got into the stirrups. Doctor came back with the sperm and asked me to verify it. I said, what exactly am I verifying? I can't exactly identify it and I didn't memorize the order number. But the specimen did at least have my name on it, so I said, go ahead, shoot it up. She opened me up and squirted it in and it was over before we knew it. No pain at all, which was my biggest fear.
K said she wanted to peak to see what I looked like all opened up. Maybe tomorrow. K also said she wished she had a camera. What exactly was she planning to take a picture of? Doctor said to lie there for 5 minutes and then go about my normal life. She left and K pulled out the statue of the goddess we took our last name from and we held it while thinking good thoughts about sperm finding the egg - swim, sperm, swim! I think we actually laid there for 10 minutes. Then I got dressed and we left around 7:50am. 20 minutes for $500?!

So now the new plan - I still wanted to park in Bethesda. Parking in DC ain't cheap and we already paid $8 to park at the clinic. And I had 2 hours before my meeting was to start. K didn't want to leave me, so we decided to drive together and then both take the metro from Bethesda. K drove and wanted me to relax and lie the seat back.

So we're driving along, I'm lying down and can't see anything, and K says, look there's a dog in the road. A yellow lab with tags was wondering across Wisconsin Ave, a major DC road. We, feeling loving and generous after our procedure, pull over and chase the dog down. Her name was Carter and she was very friendly. K called the number on the tag and the number is disconnected. K calls the police. DC police have a reputation for being very slow and unresponsive. This is a very low priority situation. K needs to get to work, and I can't miss this important meeting. It's getting later and later. The police call back and say someone will be there within a half hour. Then they call back and say no one is coming, but tell us to take Carter to Friendship Animal Hospital which is very near by. Okay, we can do that. We load Carter into our car and drive her to the hospital and drop her off.

Now it is 9:15. There's no way for me to find somewhere to park my car and still make it to my 10am meeting. So I drive there right on time, and K walks to the metro and gets to work VERY late. Totally worth it.

I'm in my meeting until 1pm, out to lunch with colleagues, driving back to my office in Rockville (getting lost but again none of this could have been done without our fabulous GPS). I get to work around 2:50, check my messages and find that I was invited to an emergency meeting at 2:30, run to the meeting, and finally get back to my office at 3:30.

And I breathe, and suddenly remember that I had an IUI today. I kind of forgot after all of that. Wow! I could be pregnant. Thinking happy thoughts. Sperm meets egg, sperm penetrates egg, egg implants on uterus wall. I'm not really sure how long all of this takes. I'm going to go home soon and relax tonight. We have to do it all over again tomorrow.