The Goings Ons

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Have I really not posted since Wednesday?! GEEZ. Darn job! Haha!

And that being said, nothing much has been going on. Well, except a couple more updates from/about the RE.

Mr. A and I had to get our blood tested for H.I V and H.E P before we proceed with IVF. Now, it's not like either of us are anywhere near being in a risk group for those things, but just like how I was worried I had cysts with no symptoms before my very first u/s last October, somehow after we had our bloodtests, I became worried that we would be positive without any symptoms!! Hahahahaha :) Do you think I'm crazy? Mr. A sure did!

Anyway, all tests were negative.

"I TOLD YOU SO!" says Mr. A ;-)

But I blame infertility for my worries. After all, we had no symptoms of being infertile either. And look where we are! Do you think how you're dealing with infertility has affected how you deal with other worries/situations, too?

But anyway, meds will be ordered tomorrow. I was talking with my nurse about how, based on my response to 250iu follistim last cycle, the RE does not expect to retrieve more than 6 eggs. He said this does not decrease our percentage of success, and it is true that we were feeling led towards a lower stim cycle anyway, but I wanted to ask one more time about the dosage. My nurse said that she does not know of any IVF cycle where my doc has prescribed more than 325iu, or else they risk hyperstimulating me and getting the whole thing cancelled. So, alright. I feel like I have asked enough about it, and that God is telling me not to fret anymore. How I respond is completely up to Him. If He is going to bless us with a baby with this cycle, He will orchestrate everything necessary. (Thank you all for your encouraging comments on my ivf post!!)

And speaking of our baby, I have always told everyone that I want a boy first. But I think God is preparing my heart to be open to a girl first. We shall see :) Just prayin' for a healthy baby-- boy or girl.

Happy 200 :)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

In honor of this, my 200th stream of consciousness, I'm going to give out some awards that have been graciously given to me :)

Ashley at For the Love of Shoes and a Baby gave me two! Whoa. Thank you so much! The first is the sunshine award- "The Sunshine Award is given to bloggers whose positivity and creativity inspire others in the blog world. I am now going to pass along the sunshine and present this award to some of my favorite bloggers who make my day "A Sunshine Day!"

Just like her, I'm rolling the sunshine and the next "Going Places" one (and the third one below) all into one big award-a-palooza!

The "Going Places" Rules: Post where you’d like to be in 10 years and then give it to 10 bloggers.

The Type A Nightmare gave me the Happy 101 award :) Gotta love the type-A love :) When you receive the Happy 101 Award, you have to list 10 Things That Make My Day and then list 10 Blogs worthy of this award as well, and then you'll have the award and they'll have the award too.

So here is my award homework:
1. Tell where I'd like to be in 10 years. (Do I get extra credit if I'm still blogging in 10 years and can link back to this post?) I'd like to be the work from home mom of 3 kids (Ages 9 & 9 (twins) and 7). I'd love to still be living in the same area as we do now, and I'd love to feel more at home in a church. Banana will be old, but as sweet and precious as ever. Mr. A will be a rockstar dad. We'll have sold our rental property and almost paid off our current house. Mr. A and I will have seen our awesome marriage strengthened by our awesome kids- and we will still get up on Saturday and make an amazing big breakfast together, but this time we'll have 3 extra helpers :)

2. 10 things that make my day:
*A breakfast combo from the local bagel place: Chocolate brewed coffee and a sausage, egg, and cheese asiago bagel
*Walking Banana
*Talking to one of my sibs
*Making a great dinner that we really enjoy
*Getting alot accomplished at work
*Reading a devotional that really hits home
*Watching any episode of The Office
*Daydreaming of what our kids will be like
*Being married to Mr. A- whether it's hearing about his day or listening to his hilarious grumpiness in the morning or laughing together at something so funny we both have tears in our eyes or pretty much anything else that we do together :)

And here are the people I nominate!
1. Hoping for a Baby
2. Mis(sed)conception
3. TTC Hopeful
4. While I'm Waiting
5. Thoughts from a Blonde
6. Misson: Motherhood
7. Everyday Blessings
8. Such a Good Egg
9. I will be a mom...Someday
10. One who understands

Okay! Get on your homework!! :) So glad we can all connect like this- it's such a blessing!!

(PS. Just wanted to add that getting great comments/emails also makes my day! Didn't want to leave that one out- I guess nowadays the joy I get from blogging is a given!! Thank everyone so much!)

IVF Consult

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Sound the air horn, we are on our way!

Our appointment yesterday went really well, except that my nurse thought the RE would do an u/s first, so I was up on the table with a sheet on (and nothing else that is, ahem, important on CD4...) when the RE came in and proceeded to tell me that he doesn't think an u/s is necessary today and then launches seamlessly into the consult. So needless to say, after a little over an hour of sitting up there, me and the table were a mess. Thank goodness for that paper and huge pad-looking-thing over the table!! I felt sorry to just leave it like that, but what am I supposed to do? I don't know how to change the paper, and it's CD4, people!!!

The other funny thing was that a resident came in to talk to me before the RE did. She goes "So, the RE did an IUI 2 weeks ago, and what has happened since then? Did you get your period?"



I kind of felt bad for her- I answered as calmly and as nonchalantly as I could that yes, I got my period.... (And Mr. A mentioned after the appt that she looked bored when we were going over IVF. Perhaps this isn't the specialty for her?)

But anyway, down to business. My RE is great about explaining things and very thorough so he answered all of our questions and did a nice job of going through everything. I'll have another appt with him on CD21 (March 11), where he will do an u/s and, if there are no cysts, I'll start lupron.

The one thing that he said that is kind of a bummer is that with my response to follistim so far, he expects to retrieve no more than 6 eggs (I was already on 250iu for the last IUI, and the max dosage he generally gives is 300iu). Now, I should say that Mr. A and I are personally not too keen on freezing embryo's, so in a sense, the fact that I (probably) won't have many eggs, and therefore embryo's, is kind of a wierd lineup of physical and emotional/spiritual situations. But then you always hear of people who come out of ER with 23 eggs or something, and the engineer in me feels like there cannot be as good of a chance with retrieving only 6. But then I remind myself that we don't to have to freeze alot of embies. So around in circles I go.

But the RE actually said that if he retrieves 6 eggs and 5 are mature, that is way better than 23 eggs that are mostly not mature. And he said that just because they retrieve a smaller number of eggs doesn't really diminish our chance of success, either.

And amidst all of the talk about what we want, I am constantly reminded that it's pretty ridiculous of me to talk about how many embryo's we want. We are praying for a healthy baby blessing this year. I am reminded that God is the giver and sustainer of life, and it will be up to HIM as to how I respond this time, and how many embryo's He creates, and how many He sustains to the point where they can be transferred. And how many babies we bring home in December. (Oh yes, have I mentioned that if ER is April 1, my due date is December 23??? Have I mentioned that for the last two April's, I was so excited that I'd be due around Christmas?)

We left the appointment feeling a tad overwhelmed with all the info that is real now, but thankful that we were able to have he consult so quickly after the start of a new cycle. We are thankful to have the opportunity to see what God will do with our upcoming IVF. We are praying that I will respond well and that we will be blessed with good fertilization and healthy strong embryo's, and that God would bless us with peace and contentment no matter the outcome He has for us. We are praying for a baby blessing, but nevertheless, His will be done.

A Better Mother

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Thoughts on Becoming a Mother:

There are women that become mothers without effort, without thought, without patience or loss, and though they are good mothers and love their children, I know that I will be better. I will be better not because of genetics, or money, or that I have read more books, but because I have struggled and toiled for this child. I have longed and waited. I have cried and prayed. I have endured and planned over and over again. Like most things in life, the people who truly have appreciation are those who have struggled to attain their dreams.

I will notice everything about my child. I will take time to watch my child sleep, explore and discover. I will marvel at this miracle every day for the rest of my life. I will be happy when I wake in the middle of the night to the sound of my child, knowing that I can comfort, hold and feed him and that I am not waking to take another temperature, pop another pill, take another shot or cry tears of a broken dream. My dream will be crying for me.

I count myself lucky in this sense; that God has given me this insight, this special vision with which I will look upon my child that my friends will not see. Whether I parent a child I actually give birth to or a child that God leads me to, I will not be careless with my love. I will be a better mother for all that I have endured. I am a better wife, a better aunt, a better daughter, neighbor, friend and sister because I have known pain. I know disillusionment as I have been betrayed by my own body. I have been tried by fire and hell many never face, yet given time, I stood tall.

I have prevailed.
I have succeeded.
I have won.

So now, when others hurt around me, I do not run from their pain in order to save myself discomfort. I see it, mourn it, and join them in theirs. I listen. And even though I cannot make it better, I can make it less lonely. I have learned the immense power of another hand holding tight to mine, of other eyes that moisten as they learn to accept the harsh truth and when life is beyond hard. I have learned a compassion that only comes with walking in those shoes. I have learned to appreciate life.

Yes I WILL be a wonderful mother.

~Author Unknown

IVF versus Catholics

Saturday, February 20, 2010

I have been really frustrated lately by the posts about how Catholics who follow the church teachings are bearing such a heavy cross. As if people who don't follow the church teachings aren't bearing a heavy infertility cross.

I feel like I want to provide support to Catholic women who are considering ART (IUI/IVF). Not saying they have to do ART, but just that there's someone else out there who's thinking what they are. And I feel pretty confident in my take on things, so I'm not planning on engaging any super-Catholic debates about this. When I was searching for support about taking this path, I couldn't really find anything to support what I felt in my heart. And that was to try IUI and/or IVF.

Maybe some people would say that I shouldn't even refer to myself as Catholic because I don't follow or believe in 100% of the doctrine and teachings. To them I would say that I don't believe in everything Am.erica is doing or stands for right now either, and I still call myself Ameri.can. (And, to be honest, I haven't identified myself as such on this blog because I don't want people to assume what I believe. I have my own interpretations of things, and while they are 100% Christian, they do not line up exactly with Catholic doctrine, and I'm totally comfortable with that.)

The biggest issue that is raised is that ART does not allow the baby to be conceived from mutual self giving of the spouses with collaboration from God. As if going through the entire IVF process doesn't require mutual self giving of the spouses. In some ways, I think it brings out the ultimate in mutual self giving, with all the patience and sensitivity and care that come with all the shots and procedures!! And on the contrary, I think it could be argued that, in the case of timed intercourse, many times it is the wife who knows she's about to ovulate and is demanding the hubby hop in the sack without concern of whether or not he'd like to- that is not exactly mutual self giving, nor is that kind of "act" the most loving or romantic display, either!! (I realize that the church is only talking about s-ex when they say "mutual self giving", but that can be construed pretty broadly.) Also, it's not like a married couple who is going through IVF isn't going through it without amazing (mutual) love for each other and hope for a future child.

And I also think it's important to note that although the docs in the lab can even go so far as to fertilize the eggs, GOD is still the creator of life- even science cannot make an embryo or, possibly more importantly, sustain it. That is all collaboration from God, right there.

The other thing that gets thrown around is that we do not have a right to a child. And technically, I agree. But just because you don't have a right to something doesn't mean you can't try to have it anyway. I didn't have a right to a college education, but I certainly tried and persevered to get one. I don't have a right to a big savings account, but I will do everything I can to have one. And similarly to ART, the things I tried while getting my degree or adding to the savings account don't guarantee that I'll achieve my goal. Nothing is every guaranteed, except that God's will will prevail.

I feel like I should point out that we are against disposing of embryo's and really don't like the idea of freezing them, either. And I think that is one of the things that gets muddled into the debate- from what I have experienced, people who strictly follow church teaching seem to think that if you are willing to try some sort of ART, you are excitedly looking forward to creating 30 embryo's and carelessly disposing of half of them. I believe that there are very discernable ways that a Christian can go through IVF with the utmost respect for human life and for God as our creator.

I think it is really sad that the church is so flamboyant about the glory of motherhood and yet provides no support to couples who feel compelled to seek available treatment in the form of IUI or IVF for their infertility. God is still in charge of creating and sustaining life. The life is still borne out of incredible self-sacrificing love (emotional and physical) between a married couple. The church has its own version of treating infertility, but what if the couple isn't feeling led to try that method? Would the church rather alienate it's young adult population than embrace what are God-honoring decisions on the path to parenthood?

If the answer to that question could be measured in the amount of young adults in our church, it would be the former. There are very very few young adults in our parish, and I suspect that part of the reason is because of the exclusive nature of many of the teachings. And what are some of responses to this? That the church has survived because it has held fast to its teachings. That the church cannot be willy nilly endorsing all kinds of new technology or new ideas. And I agree that you have to have some boundaries and standards, but these should be re-evaluated and possibly fine-tuned so you can best support your members!!

When I was talking to my aunt about this, she felt that it was important for me to consider that my conscience, guided by the Holy Spirit, is going to be my guide here. She reminded me that there was a time when the church teachings included that it was "right" to return a to his owner. My, how things have changed. Here's hoping that the future will bring a changed teaching about ART, too.

So anyway, if you are reading this as a Catholic who is considering ART, know that you're not alone. My hubby and I prayed a ton about which direction to take, and I think you have to go with your gut on this one. And, I don't think you should feel bad about breaking with this teaching. I have talked to so many people who did ART and then felt like they couldn't be Catholic anymore. Come on. Your decisions are between you and God, and if you feel like God is calling you to try ART, go for it. Although I would say that it's a good idea to set your boundaries to be respectful of life, but this is very doable.

And I hope that if you're a super-Catholic who disagrees with everything I said, that you'd take a moment and realize that I'm not attacking you personally. This is just my viewpoint on this issue. To be honest, I am floored that there are so many who adhere unquestioningly to the church's teachings on this. I'm sure there are alot of things that we do agree on, number one that we agree to disagree on this point. But there are, like me, some people who don't agree with everything the church teaches. And how you respond to them can either encourage them to stay or cause them to leave. And I'm pretty sure you'd want to them to stay, right?

Starting anew

Friday, February 19, 2010

Yesterday afternoon and early evening, there were more than several tears.

Which reminds me, my apologies for the run of somber-sounding posts lately! I am surprising myself for sure. I can't wait to feel like the normal me again.

I had decided early in the day yesterday that I was going to make some serious comfort food dinner... chicken & dumplings and fresh wheat bread. When the dumplings ended up being on the mushy-looking side, I couldn't hold back the crying any longer. Not only can I not make a baby, I can also not make a stinkin dumpling!!! So when Mr. A called to say he was on his way home, I sobbingly suggested that maybe he should go to his friend's place for dinner since our dinner was crap.

I don't know about your husband, but Mr. A does not respond so well to crying. He is a fix-it kind of guy, and he sees crying as something to be remedied, so (bless his heart) his first reaction is to tell me to just calm down. Which, in my bleary head, seems a little kurt. As if the problem is that he's hungry, and he's telling me to make him a sandwich to fix the problem.

But I know that he doesn't mean any harm or distress. He is just trying to fix his teary-eyed wife.

Which is not always the easiest do-it-yourself project.

I am just thankful that in our marriage, we can cut the crap and have an honest, compassionate, and gentle discussion about how x behavior makes us feel and why y behavior might be more well-received. I was not responding positively when he was trying to reassure me that things will be alright (apparently, a few less tears is not a positive enough response...haha!), and he didn't really get that telling me to just calm down was not exactly comforting.

His best line of the night? "I'd be completely happy if I had just you for the rest of my life."


I mean, we obviously long for children alot. But I feel the same way about him. I was making a "worst scenario list", and the worst case scenario I can think of is that the ivf doesn't work, and we go through a failed adoption. But how can I say that a lifetime with my awesome hubby to myself is the worst case scenario?!

And that being that, and after one of those to-die-for hugs, I received an affectionate slap to the rear-end as I finished up the dishes.

God, thank You for my husband. I am truly blessed.


I was "spotting" maroon by 8pm, so I didn't take my nightly progesterone supposit. I'm going to call my nurse this morning and see when our ivf consult is going to be. They usually start meds on cd21 of the cycle prior to the retrieval, etc. If I am figuring correctly, ER could take place on April 1. How appropriate!

We have had 3 new starts in the last year- clomid, then injectables, then iui.

Time for another new start.

Here's hoping and praying that starting over is a thing of the past.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Had very light (color and quantity) brown spotting from last night until about 8am this morning.... 14dpiui today...

Historically speaking, spotting is not a good sign...

I haven't tested, but if I still haven't started by tomorrow, I'll probably take a test in the morning...

So many questions unanswered right now...

PS. What a great day to find out a college friend is pregnant with NUMBER TWO!!! :-P

Getting closer

Monday, February 15, 2010

11dpiui here.

I am having a hard time with the emotions this 2ww. You know, the impatience, frustration, annoyance, sadness, fear sort of things. It is so unlike me to be this way- which I think is why I'm having such a hard time with them. Yesterday I was so snappy at Mr. A, before and after church! I didn't even mean to be being snappy! (Not to mention, how disrespectful and ungrateful after receiving the half a dozen roses and the cutest card I have ever seen?!) And even IN church, I whispered some things that were really uncalled for ("hey, your coat smells like smoke" (his friend smokes all the time so he ends up smelling like it sometimes!)). I mean, really, was that necessary? Then I pretty much had big tears streaming down my face for the last couple of songs because they were all about God going before us and us not being afraid and God turning night into day, and I just couldn't hold it together! Then I continued to be tearful all the way to the car, just apologizing for how I was being!

Haha! I was a mess!!

Luckily, Mr. A is the best nap-tucker-in person, and he tucked me and Banana in for a nice nap while he did some overtime in the kitchen. That seemed to help alot- I was not overcome with emotion for the rest of the day! We had a really nice day in the end, and we ended up getting chinese take out from our favorite place for a special dinner treat- of course I was oblivious that it was also the Chinese New Year! That has to be a good coincidence, doesn't it? Haha.

I think alot of people are wondering (Mr. A and I, especially) if it's just the progesterone meds. I have been on them before- is it likely that they'd affect me differently cycle-to-cycle? I have never experienced this before. Of course I'm praying that there's a little baby is to "blame", but I don't really have any other symptoms (of course there are some here and there, but what else is new?).

I think the other reason I might be more on the emotional side is that I'm just nervous of what is next. At this point, we both are peaceful about moving forward with IVF, but we only have enough money in our baby making account for one try. I know it's not up to me to worry about the future, but it's hard not to. We are almost at the end of our baby rope... (Do you hear God chuckling at my limited viewpoint?...)

And yet all the while I'm being conflicted with all of this stuff, I'm just praying that God has a happy, healthy baby for us this time, and above all that I know we'll see His hand in the creation of our family. It is becoming fairly taxing to be praying for two different outcomes. Here's praying that we find out which road He has for us very soon...

Short and Sweet

Friday, February 12, 2010

7dpiui progesterone=16.1! (yesterday)

So, that is all fine and good, and I'm trying not to be disappointed/freaked out that last cycle it was 20.1 and no pregnancy. But, my nurse/doc was very happy with that at 7dpo, and to make myself feel better I found online that the average progesterone at 4w is 20, so (assuming I'm pregnant, of course), I should be at 20 in another week, right? (Correct answer: "YES!") Hahahaha :)

After getting the bloodtest, I went to get a Valentin.e's Day card for Mr. A. I had to chuckle at the selection. ALL the "for husband" cards were pretty much gone! ALL the "for wife" cards were still stocked to the gills! Who hasn't bought their card yet, I wonder???

Recently, we got a hand grain mill because we have wanted to try to make our own (non processed) flour! Well, we tried it out last night, and we now have beautiful freshly-milled wheat flour! I am going to try to make a loaf of honey wheat this afternoon :) Y'all are invited :)

PS. Banana has been SO cuddly the last few days. Hoping she's picking up on someone else snuggling in before I can tell....

Pity vs. Compassion

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

My good friend K and I were talking on the phone the other day. We are so grateful to be traveling this infertility road together, but we are praying to get off this train very soon. Anyway, we have handled sharing about our infertility in very different ways.

She and her hubby have shared that they're trying for a kiddo with alot of people- but for the purposes of this compare/contrast post, it's most important that she's shared this with many of her friends (who are all monumentally fertile, of course). K is quick to point out that her friends simply know that they're trying- not all the tears and anguish and frustration that come alongside. Of course K and I hold nothing back when talking- we have both cried and thrown fits and everything else- when it comes to trying to do something that is portrayed as so simple. But she feels like if she shared with her friends all of the deep down nitty gritty funk that comes with trying for so long without success, it would make them feel uncomfortable.

They express pity towards her, which was what we were talking about the other day. She doesn't want to be pitied. She doesn't want people to say, "Oh, you poor little K..." while they are nursing their second baby in 2.5 years. She wants them to realize that there are alot of other great things about her life. Just like me, K is very goal-oriented, and there are few (if any) things that she has set out to do that she hasn't accomplished...except having a baby. It makes her uncomfortable to be pitied.

In response to this, I shared my (very different) perspective.

I have told only 3 of my friends from college. I haven't told anyone else. (This doesn't count our immediate families or the friends I have made through IF boards, etc.!) Of the three that I have told, only one has taken an active interest in our struggle. The other two (who have kids, by the way) have never asked me about it since I first told them, despite my great lack of pregnancy-announcing emails and my eloquent fairly-somber email about the lack of things going on with us.

So when I was talking to K, I told her that I actually want some compassion from my friends who know. I want them to email me and say, hey, I know you told me 3 years ago you were hoping for a baby, and I know you haven't told us you're expecting- is everything alright? I want them to think twice about sending me an email that complains about their having to find a babysitter so they can go to a movie. I want them to email me and ask how they can pray for us right now.

Do you think there is a difference between pity and compassion, when it comes to other people viewing your infertility?

For me, I think the difference might be that pity is more superficial, while compassion is a more active, deep way of caring for others in difficult circumstances. Compassion (to me) involves some sort of doing, not just saying "I'm so sorry about your lack of baby" and then returning to your obliviously-fertile life.

I don't even feel pity from my friends who know but don't say anything to me about it. I feel more denial from them. Like, maybe if they don't bring it up, I'll forget I told them and thought they might be a source of support. Or maybe it's my fault for not bringing it up to them again. But as I told K, my problem with bringing it up to them is that, if I am really honest, I'll tell them how much it hurts how they talk about their commodity-kids. I'll tell them how much it hurts that they don't ask how we're doing in that respect. I'll tell them how much it hurts to be left behind. (Disclaimer: I know that God has a specific plan for me, and that I'm not behind there, and that is very encouraging most days, but let's face it, sometimes I just feel left behind.)

And I think telling them all that would make them even more befuddled as to what to do next. Even more than them knowing that we were praying for a child 3 years ago and we still don't have one, and not wanting to ask me about it.

I think the only time I have ever really felt pity about not having a child was when I told the two girls mentioned above that we were trying, and they said (paraphrased), Oh, don't worry about it. I'm sure it will happen soon- we weren't even trying!, which now that I think of it is more just dimissal of my pain rather than pity. Everyone else who knows our story is extremely compassionate to us, and when I mentioned this, K said, "well maybe they [her friends] are being compassionate and I just can't see it...", but maybe they just aren't.

It is a very thin line to walk, as far as telling others about your infertility struggle or keeping it close. If you tell people, you open yourself up to responding to pity or denial, but gain the chance of receiving compassion. If you don't tell people, it's kind of unfair to fault them for lack of pity or compassion.

Have you noticed yourself responding differently to pity and compassion about your infertility?

K, if you're reading, thanks for walking this road with me (or taking this train, as we like to say). Here's praying this month is our baby stop. I appreciate your friendship so much, and thanks for being an inspiration to me!


Tuesday, February 09, 2010

I think it is hilarious that the day after my neighbor rant, my great online buddy Erica writes a post about how great my attitude is!! Hahahaha!! Yes, I think because I am so predisposed to actually having a great attitude, I do feel really bad when I don't. Call me crazy! Thank you all for your encouragement in my hysteria ;-)

I will say, though, that I have never experienced myself with such impatience and ease of frustration. I think it is too early for real pregnancy hormones to be kicking in, so at this point I'm chalking this up to a new symptom that probably means nothing! That list is almost off the page, I tell ya!

And since the first week of the 2ww is the boringest time ever, I am posting one of my new favorite recipes for your eating enjoyment!!

Taco Pizza

**8 oz bulk sausage (or I guess you could use ground beef, but the flavoring of the sage sausage is our favorite!)
**3/4 cup chopped green pepper
**1 can of refrigerated pizza dough (I used a can of french bread dough and then unrolled it very carefully, but it would probably be very easy just to get the pizza dough. I should also note that I usually make my own pizza dough, but I wanted to try this in the interest of super fast not-so-much-prep pizza...)
**Salsa to cover pizza dough surface
**2 cups shredded taco cheese (or as much as you want!)

Cook the sausage and green pepper until meat is browned and pepper is tender. Set aside. Unroll dough, and set on a greased baking sheet. Spread salsa on top of the dough, top with meat mixture, and sprinkle with cheese. Bake in a 400F oven for about 20 minutes or until cheese is melted to your liking.

It is YUMMY!!!!


Sunday, February 07, 2010

I think someone mixed in some enormous dose of impatience with my progesterone this time! I am going crazy here! I am amazed at how such simple things are driving me crazy, to the point where I try several times to let it go, and then I turn around and am focused on it again!

I told Mr. A I was going to write a vent post about our !@#$^ neighbors, and he said "Where? On your Christian blog?!" HA! Touche.


Vents are inevitable. Are vents unChristian??

To give some background, our across-the-street !@#%^ neighbors, or at least the wife, are middle-aged gossip hounds. When we first went over to their house for dinner a few months after we moved in (2 years ago), she voluntarily filled us in on all her coniving nicknames for the people on our street and any dirt she and our old-lady neighbor (to the right of us) had dug up on people. Our neighbors (let's call the the "W's") moved here maybe 15 years ago from CA, and I think they have this impression that they are better, classier, more professional, and better (did I say that already?) than anyone else. (Not that that's how everyone from CA thinks, just the W's...) Like, our neighbors to the left of us are from West Virginia and are maybe not the most refined people, but they are decent and friendly, but Mrs. W will only refer to them as "West Virginia's", not their names. Condescending, no? Maybe I'm just hopped up on progesterone...

Anyway, supposedly they moved here with a group of people from CA to start a church here. Well, they ended up having some personal issues with one of the other group members, so they ditched that church and have yet to find another one. (She once told me "It's nice to take a break from church- we were so involved for such a time"... Gee, hope God doesn't take a break 'cause He's tired...)

Weird tie-in is that the director of the pregnancy center where I volunteer is (I think) one of the people who moved with the W's from CA to start the church here. I don't know exactly if it's her that the W's disagred with, though.

In October, our neighborhood does this secret "Boo" program where you "Boo" your neighbors, and then they "Boo" other people, all without people knowing who "Boo'ed" who. Well, we "Boo'ed" the W's, and they did not participate!!! I was floored. Are they too good to take part in a fun neighborhood game? I couldn't believe it.

THEN, our pregnancy center is starting a new training class and we were encouraged to invite two people to volunteer. So I thought, hey, maybe I'll ask her- I know she is (used to be?) a Christian, and maybe it would be a ministry that she would like to be a part of and maybe help her make some connections to get back into some weekly Worship. Well, I gave her an invitation, and she immediately seemed uncomfortable. I don't know what is in her past that might have contributed to that, but all she could say was that she'd "pray about it", but it was by far the most hollow "pray about it" I have ever received. (Huge subjective interpretation, I know. Of course I don't know her heart.) I was so mad I wasted an invitation on her. She did eventually email (email!) me and say that she had decided not to volunteer since she had held positions like that in the past and she didn't think it'd fit right now. I have never felt so patronized in my life.

THEN, on Friday, after it had snowed 4", Mr. W was out there using their snowblower on the W's driveway. You should have seen how annoyed I was (hello, progesterone!) that he was snowblowing 4", when the storm total was going to be 20"!!! HA! I was cracking myself up. I knew I shouldn't have been so annoyed, but I just couldn't help myself. Anyway, he was out there snowblowing again yesterday snowblowing (their driveway and the old lady's driveway in no time flat) as Mr. A was cleaining off his truck. Did he offer to let Mr. A use the snowblower, as our driveway was completely covered in snow? Nope. Then about an hour ago, we were out there shovelling and cleaning off my car. Did they come and offer that we could use their snowblower? Nope!

UGH!! I am so done with them. Mr. A thinks I'm being ridiculous. I feel like they're in their house looking out the window laughing at us. Don't they know it's debatable as to whether I should be shovelling snow at 3dpo!?!?!?!? (Hahahahahahaha....)

I am sick of feeling like they think they're better than us. I have tried to stop being so mad about this. I know I shouldn't be mad, or even annoyed, but it's going to take a long time for me to get over this.

For Mr. A's sake, please pray that I can let this go soon! Hahaha!! I think he's getting tired of me being annoyed! (Since it's fairly uncharacteristic for me!)

Damn pregnancy hormones.



Saturday, February 06, 2010

No, it's not an avalanche of the 20" of snow we're supposed to get by tomorrow- it's an avalanche of blog award nominations!!

Thank you to In God's Hands, TTC Hopeful, The Journey Through life, and It Only Takes One time... Not! for nominating me for this blog award :) (I think they are the only ones- if you have nominated me and I forgot to make a note of it, let me know!) I am always humbled that even one person reads all of my thoughts day after day, so I really thank you for hanging in here with me!

Seven "interesting" things about myself... (after writing them, I don't know if they are interesting or not! Haha!)

1. I have a heart for volunteering, and I never miss an opportunity to encourage others to take part in some kind of volunteer experience that is close to their heart. Before starting at the pregnancy center last February, I volunteered at our local Ronald McDonald House for 4 years! It was so amazing to be there for families with children in the hospital (lots of preemie parents). I made some great friendships which I will always treasure!

2. I love driving. Even when Mr. A and I are both in the car, I'm usually the one who's driving, unless it is snowing and I'm afraid of running off the road!!

3. Last summer, I made the switch from dish sponges to cotton dishcloths that are healthier because I only use them once and then wash them, and they are reusable!

4. I use our paper shredder's scraps for packing material when I send packages.

5. Mr. A and I both try our best to model our marriage after the concepts in Eggerich's "Love and Respect", and it is truly an awesome way to enhance your/our marriage!

6. I have a choose life license plate.

7. I looooooooove cooking shows!! I think it would be fun to be a cooking show host (all those cute little prep bowls!), and I have learned alot from watching, but it's not one of my realistic goals ;-) Can someone just come to my house and put all of my ingredients in cute little bowls before I start cooking dinner?

And for my nominations, I choose:

From IF to When (Katie) -What I think is beautiful abou Katie is her honesty!

For the Love of Shoes.. and a Baby, too (Ashley) -I love how Ashley sprinkles in beauiful things that aren't really ttc-related

Making Me Mom (Hillary) -Some people tell me that my faith is inspiring, but I find alot of encouragement in Hillary's beautiful faith

The Pugh's (Rachel) -I am a new reader of Rachel's, but I have loved her beautiful reflections

Mission: Motherhood (Al) -My heart is broken at Al's recent miscarriage, but the way she has written about and approached the grieving process has been a beautiful testatment

Stacey's Thoughts on Infertility (Stacey) -Stacey recently found out she is pregnant, and the way she has projected her sensitivity and vulnerability has been so precious to my waiting heart

The Desire of My Heart (Noelle) -Noelle's early pregnancy was great with troubles, but she has hung on in a beautiful way- not being afraid to write about her raw emotions


So here's what you need to do:
Thank the person who nominated you and copy the award in your blog,
Link the person who nominated you for this award,
Share seven interesting things about yourself, and
Nominate seven fellow bloggers and add the links to their blogs

Went great :)

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Thank you all for your prayers for us this morning! Our IUI went very smoothly, and I am very bloated and tender right now. Bring on the running pants!!

As I was driving over there, I was thinking how I initially thought our IUI would be this weekend. Then when I learned that Mr. A's family wanted to visit this weekend, I was all in a fuss that that might not work too well if we have to be half an hour away at 8am Sunday morning without a good explanation.

Then at my u/s on Monday, it was revealed that my follies were unusually ahead of themselves and so we would avoid the potential to have to explain where we were going to Mr. A's family. (Not that they would not like it or disapprove- they are just not the "intimate details" type of family- they would probably be uncomfortable just because they don't talk about personal stuff.)

Little did I know then, we're supposed to get a major snowstorm this weekend. Which is a tad more inconvenient than explaining our medical lives to Mr. A's parents.

Do you see what God has orchestrated?

All I could think about today was the people whose entire cycles (and savings) hinge on being able to do a baseline u/s or an ER or ET this weekend. I praise God for providing us the opportunity to do this IUI today. I was mentioning this to the receptionist at my RE and she said there is a girl there whose critical cycle days they could use to predict major snows. I guess the storm we got before Christmas was also an important time for her! I cannot imagine.

We all have times where we feel forgotten by God, but I can tell you today that I felt very important in God's eyes. I am so lucky (and unworthy) for Him to line up our cycle dates and put great hope into my heart, while others are facing cancelled cycles and cracking dreams.

When I was walking out of the RE office, I stopped by my nurse's office to see if she met Mr. A this morning when he was there for his part. She said she had missed him! She is such a sweetheart. She told me, "I'll just have to meet him next time..." (as I'm thinking, next time?!, there isn't going to be a next time!) but she continued, "...when you're here for your early pregnancy ultrasound!" Okay, I'll agree to that!!

And the receptionist told me to call her with good news in 2 weeks. Okey doke! Needless to say, I walked out of there with a big smile on my face!

And, what song do you think was playing on the radio when I got into my car?! None other than "What faith can do" (Kutless), that spoke so clearly to me last week!! Oh my goodness, I about died! Can you believe that?! I am not kidding!!

I feel very priveleged today to have experienced all of this encouragement. I strongly believe that this is Godly encouragement. In the past, I would have doubted this. But I think it's high time I stop doubting that our God would choose to interact with us in everyday ways. I am praying that this encouragement will reveal a healthy little one snuggled in tight from this cycle, but even if it doesn't, I am encouraged that our family will be expanded by the hand of God. And once we are cradling our little one(s), I don't want to look back on our journey and see my doubt of the encouragement that was interjected along the way.

Our big God has big plans, when He gives me big encouragement, I'm going to respond with big faith!


Wednesday, February 03, 2010

(Before I start my actual post, I just want to express my thanks for all the prayers that will be (and have been) raised for a successful IUI (tomorrow at 10am) for us this time! The trigger went well last night :) If When we find out that we're pregnant, our due date will be my older-of-my-younger-sisters sister's birthday! Hope she will be willing to share it!!)

What I really want to post about today is about the uncertainty of our lives and how awesome it is that we come together and rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep (Romans 12:15).

How many of us thought our lives would turn out one way and have been surprised that our actual life is not what we imagined? Hello, every single person who is struggling with infertility!! Hello, every single person who was convinced a new cycle was starting, only to receive a BFP!

But uncertainty touches so many others around us in many different ways, even though I identify with the anguish of uncertainty through trying to conceive. (I know, it's hard to think sometimes that people who don't struggle with infertility have problems!!)

This post was inspired by the younger-of-my-younger-sisters sister who finds herself in somewhat uncertain times right now with a specific part of her life. It's not at all what she imagined.

Please join me in praying for her today- that she would feel resolution soon, and peaceful and prayerful about any outcome, and surrounded by family and friends if that outcome is not what she had been anticipating!

Fast Growers

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

u/s yesterday went really well! Unexpectedly, though, I already have 20mm, 17mm, and 15mm follicles!!!! I guess the increased dosage really made them grow fast this time!! AND, if you can believe it, the 20mm is on the LEFT!!! I guess we finally got that one into shape!! My RE says he's surprised I only have 3 (he might have preferred 4), and I'm sort of thinking the same thing, but he is very happy that the left one is cooperating and that all three will most likely ovulate.

I got estrodiol bloodwork after the u/s, and they are calling me with the result this morning, but my RE expects to have us trigger tonight and have the IUI on Thursday morning. It will be our first weekday one! Good thing, too, because Mr. A's family just told us yesterday that they'd like to visit this weekend!

Guess who will (probably) be 10dpo on Valentine's Day?? Hahahahaha, why do I do this to myself??