The Tragic Optimist

You want answers? I got yer answers right here.

note: almost all of these are questions I’ve gotten at some point. I’ll leave it up to my dear readers to guess which aren’t real, and which ones annoyed the heck out of me.

When are you due?

November 7 – election day. Yes, we’ll be voting absentee just in case.

Do you know what you’re having?

Almost certainly a human. And probably one with girl parts. Unless the ultrasound tech was wrong. But she seemed pretty certain.

Have you felt the baby move yet?

Yep, starting around 17 weeks (three or four weeks ago). She doesn’t kick a whole lot, but I definitely feel her move every day. I love that part.

Have you had any food cravings / aversions?

No real cravings, though there was one night that I made Chris make me french onion soup. I love that man, he made it from scratch and it turned out really good. My one real aversion is to coffee, which sucks because I really love coffee, and there’s a few mornings when I’d really, really, really like a cup of coffee to get me going.

Have any strangers asked to touch your belly?

Not yet, though a surprising number of people keep talking to the belly. And they always wave their hands in front of the belly. It’s a little disconcerting. The belly can not hear you, can not answer you, and certainly can not see you waving your hands.

Was this a planned pregnancy?

Hah! It’d be hard to have a more planned pregnancy than this one.

So you were trying for a long time?

Yes. 22 months. Actually, in the world of infertility, it’s not such a long time, but it really felt like a very long time for us.

But at least you had fun trying for those 22 months, right?

Um, no. The whole trying and failing at the one thing that your body is supposed to be able to do gets old really, really fast. And watching everyone else get pregnant and give birth, while you’re still unable to even get to that first step, not fun. Then add on to that the dozens of ultrasounds with the dildocam, the blood draws, the shots, the catheters. Yeah. Again, I’ll go with not fun. But thanks for asking. Really.

So, you’re saying you had to have medical help?

Yeah. My body doesn’t seem to like to ovulate on its own. So after a bunch of testing, I went on Clomid, which is kind of the starter fertility drug. It induces ovulation, but has a relatively low rate of multiples. After 4 unsuccessful cycles of just that, we were referred to the Reproductive Medicine Center, where we did IUIs (intra-uterine inseminations). Our third IUI try was the winner.

Is IUI where they fertilize the egg in a test tube, and then put it back in?

No, that’s IVF. With an IUI, they usually induce ovulation – for us, with Clomid and a shot to trigger ovulation – and then they use a catheter to inject the sperm directly into the uterus. It’s only takes about 20 minutes and it’s not really painful, but I would recommend the traditional method of getting pregnant if at all possible.

Well at that point I think I’d just adopt.

That’s not a question. Go ahead and ask someone whose been through the adoption process about how easy it is to just adopt. In any case, I have great health insurance, which covered 6 tries of IUI. Health insurance doesn’t cover adoption costs. While we had seriously started investigating adoption, it’s expensive, and time consuming, emotionally draining and not easy. Which isn’t to say that I think adoption is bad, or that I don’t understand why someone might choose that over the route we took. We just weren’t at the point where we were willing to give up on trying to conceive

Did you mean for this post to be a rant about fertility treatments and annoying questions that you get from well-meaning people?

Well kind of, but not really. It’s something I’ve been meaning to post about for a while now. I want people to know what we went through. In part because I felt so lonely while we were going through it, and I think that it helps to know when someone else has struggled with it. I never wanted to really talk about what I was going through, but it would have been nice to know someone else who’d gone through it that I could occasionally complain to without having to explain everything. Which is to say if you’re reading this and end up going through something similar, I’m happy to be that person you need to complain to without having to explain everything. Plus, I haven’t found a way to talk gracefully about this in real life without coming across as bitter.

Is that because you’re still bitter?

Yeah, probably. I don’t want to be, but I don’t think I can escape the fact that this is something I had to deal with that I wouldn’t wish on anyone else. I’m mostly just really happy and excited about being kicked from the inside, and I can’t wait to meet the kicker. The ultrasounds with the dildocam, the blood draws, the shots, the catheters, they were absolutely worth it, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t wish it hadn’t happened another way.

Could you have made that last sentence any less convoluted?

No.

What if I have more questions about your pregnancy?

Um, hello. I’m a reference librarian. Questions are my forte. Just ask me, or post them in the comments. I’ll try to answer to the best of my abilities, though as a librarian, I reserve the right to look some of them up in a reputable source. I’ll try not to get too bitter.

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1 Comment

  1. Thanks for the comment! I am still figuring my way around the blog spot world and have met some wonderful people. I have met so many people and read so many stories that are just so comforting. Thank you so much for sharing your story.

    I hope to add, “Parenting, finally” to my blog soon!

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