Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Mr. Fix-It and I were really excited by the idea of not finding out the sex of our baby. We made the decision to be Team Green long before we were pregnant. I blogged about our reasons a while ago.

Here's the interesting part, though. I'm quite sure I wouldn't do it again. I've even used the words "anticlimactic" and "tedious for no good reason". It was completely amazing, don't get me wrong, but also something was missing for me.

In hindsight, I think I would have felt more bonded and connected with our baby knowing if it was a boy or girl. It's not to say that I felt disconnected. It's just that mental picture. Imagining your life with a son or daughter. The moment you meet your baby is phenomenal no matter what; the added surprise of finding out the sex did not make the moment any more powerful. Nothing could. It was the most incredible moment of my life.

When I was pretty far along in the pregnancy, a nurse at my OB's office made a comment about having a little girl. She had my chart in hand, and I was sure she'd seen something. I quickly told her that we weren't finding out and we didn't want to know the sex of the baby. She quickly said she was "just guessing!" and went on with the appointment. I was quite sure she had completely ruined the surprise. But when I left for work that day, all I could think about was having a little girl. It felt like this secret only I knew. As time wore on I convinced myself that she truly hadn't seen anything in my chart. And of course, you know how the story ends. So no surprise was ruined.

I still feel strongly about having gender neutral baby gear to use with future children. And I'm glad I didn't have overwhelming "boy" stuff everywhere. But, I had no intentions of dressing my kid like a neuter either. Little boy clothes wouldn't have killed me.

Next time around, if we are lucky enough to have a next time, I definitely want to find out. If for no other reason than to experience pregnancy both ways. Maybe if we have a third or fourth kid we'll be surprised again. But for now, I hope to have the bond of "knowing". And I like the idea of an additional surprise, another celebration - finding out the sex in a fun way. A cake with pink or blue icing on the inside? It's probably a little tired. But how many times do you get to enjoy a moment like that?
Thursday, May 15, 2014

When we were undergoing fertility treatments to conceive Baby Fix-It, I thought I appreciated how easy we had it. Our fertility clinic was literally a 5 minute walk from our home. I'd get up for work a little early, go in for a monitoring appointment, and head off to the office. If I wanted to schedule an acupuncture appointment, I was able to swing by on my way home. It was a small, brief, addition to my daily routine.

In the fall we learned that we had to switch clinics. Our insurance had changed. We were now working with a bigger, fancier clinic downtown. With a big parking garage. And long waits. What used to be a quick pit stop is now an hour, often longer, event. And now we have a kid thrown into the mix. If I need to be downtown at 7am, Mr. Fix-It and I are juggling schedules. Sometimes this means we scoop Baby Fix-It out of his crib and PJs, we all head down to the clinic, and then we drop off Mr. Fix-It to his office. Other days I try to head out early, Mr. Fix-It works from home, and I do my best to get back before childcare has cut too far into my husband's day. He very often starts his mornings with an 8am conference call. Other days he is literally standing at the door waiting to run off to the train as I pull back in the garage.

And then I'm trying to keep up with acupuncture. Yesterday was so hectic that I literally dropped Baby Fix-It off at the street corner of North and Clybourn while Mr. Fix-It jumped off the train, grabbed our kid, and took him home. Makin' it work? Yes we are.

I'm not complaining. Trust me, I'm not. It's just so different this time around. It's so much more. So much more work, so much more coordinating, so much more everything. And hopefully, equally worthwhile.

Monday, April 28, 2014

As Baby Fix-It has just crossed the 18 month marker, I am struck with a sense of falling behind. It's imaginary, and pointless, and serves little purpose. But I still feel behind. I thought I'd be pregnant by now. I thought we would be further along in so many ways.

For so long, we are all on the same track. You go through school, you advance at a steady pace, you move forward. Then you finish college and everything goes haywire. At least that's how I felt. Get a job, continue with more schooling, find onself while backpacking in Europe, plan a wedding, stay single, move to a new city. Or do none of the above. As friends started to choose a path, I started to evaluate my worth. "She's already engaged?" Crap. "He's a VP?" Seriously.

And yet, when I step back, I can't argue that I have failed to achieve anything I've wanted for myself. But a voice inside keeps saying that I'm falling behind. 

They say that people are more preoccupied with themselves than they are with you. That might be true. But when I see a mom with a 3 year old at the playground I wonder if she has a baby at home. Or if she's pregnant. Or if she hopes to be pregnant. Or if she only wants one child. So, while I try to figure out everyone else, I assume people are asking themselves the same things about me. Then I ask myself the million dollar question, "Why do I care?" I could talk about social approval, or fitting in, but really it's about the track. We are not on a track anymore. We are not graduating to the next grade. An A on the English paper doesn't exist. Some of us will get married late in our 30s. Some of us will only have one child. Some of us will have 5 babies. Some of us will be career driven, and others will stay at home. Some of us will go back for a doctorate degree once our children are school age. Some of us will switch our paths over and over.

While I field the sense of falling behind and try to answer, "So when are you having another baby?", I try to ignore the sting. I've mastered the kindly polite, "I'm ready whenever it happens" while saying a silent prayer: please let it happen. I know people aren't trying to be rude. Or judgmental. They're genuinely curious. I suffer from the same affliction. I'm saying I get it.

That sense of falling behind is a tough one though. I'm slowly learning to accept that my track is now my own. It's not perfect, or timed as I'd like. There are bends in the road where I can't see what's coming next. Enjoy when the path is clear and easy. Have hope when all you can do is move forward.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The morning of my 32nd birthday there was a package waiting on our doorstep. A cake packed in dry ice? A fabulous pair of shoes? Nope. A whopping-filled-to-the-brim box of fertility meds. I'm taking it as a good sign. The universe is clearly trying to give me a baby for my birthday. I mean, there are just some messages you can't argue with.

Things may be moving a long a bit faster than I had initially thought, too. After my bloodwork and ultrasound on Monday, the nurse called with my stats. Everything looks great - estrogen, progesterone, LH, FSH, HCG. Check, check, check, check, and check. All numbers are excellent. Follicle count at 16. This always gives me a moment of pride. Then I have to laugh at the ridiculousness. I'm pretty sure I have minimal control over the goodness of these numbers. But then I tell myself to celebrate. Celebrate every little, tiny, silly shred of good news. Enjoy feeling hopeful, right? The nurse scheduled me to come back on May 2 and mentioned something about starting Lupron then. Oh! I thought that was happening in early June. Complain, I will not. I'm all for moving forward.

So on Tuesday, I celebrated 32. I want this year's birthday wish to come true more than ever before.

Monday, April 14, 2014
I can't tell where the journey will end
But I know where to start

So wake me up when it's all over
When I'm wiser and I'm older
All this time I was finding myself
And I didn't know I was lost

Did you ever watch Ally McBeal? Remember how she had theme songs for moments and life events? I love that. I totally do that. Around college graduation I blasted "99 Red Balloons" on my car stereo. Annie Lennox has carried me through some serious break ups. When we conceived Baby Fix-It my get-pumped-up-for-injections song was FloRida's "Good Feeling". And this winter, during a trying fertility process, I kept coming back to "Wake Me Up" by Avicii.

Last week we met with our new fertility doctor. I liked him. I really needed that boost of confidence. He was kind, responsive, and gave us no sense of being rushed. I especially appreciate that last part. This new fertility clinic we've been using has often left us with a feeling of being hurried and unimportant. Sure, we are one of hundreds of couples they treat each year (maybe more, I have no idea). But also, this is no small physical, emotional, and financial commitment. So taking the time to really understand our history and wishes was deeply appreciated.

I went into the appointment with thoughts on our next steps. And I was relieved the doctor was on the same page. Last Tuesday we signed paperwork to move forward with a fresh IVF cycle. I'm a bit disappointed we have to go through the entire process, but we have done it before, and we can do it again. The thing with fertility treatments that has always stuck with me is this: your eggs will never be as young and healthy as they are today. So no time like the present.

Today I was already back in the stirrups. We still have to wait a bit while my uterus recovers from the D&C, but things are progressing. My body is back on track (if you know what I mean). So today they checked my HCG (it was hovering around 1 last week), estrogen, progesterone, uterine lining and did a follicle count. I'll start birth control today. This means that next month, when we start the IVF cycle, the timing will be predictable. The doctor also explained that birth control helps keep your system calm. Calm is good in the fertility world.

And so calm it is. I'm at peace with where we are in this process. At  peace and simultaneously pumped up. I'm taking the next several weeks to take care of myself. Going to the gym, eating well, sleep, yoga, balance. Calm. And excitement.

I'll let you know when I find my next song of the moment.


A Therapist and an Engineer take on Marriage, Home Ownership, and Parenthood. One project at a time.

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