Mommy's heart for Baby Jacob

Thursday, March 24, 2011

6 Weeks Ago -- A Gift from Jacob

In the midst of all of this fertility chaos and stress, I wanted to share something that happened to me about six weeks ago and literally right before all of this stuff with my cyst, fertility tests and RE appointments.  I've been thinking about it over the last few weeks and smile at the timing.

It was the second week of February and we had just finished dinner.  Alex and I were still sitting at the dining room table discussing who knows what and the boys were playing.  Alex had left the table and within a milisecond I had a sudden thought leap into my head--Jacob.  It literally just appeared out of nowhere---we hadn't been discussing him, we weren't talking about doctors, absolutely nothing related to him.  At this time too, I hadn't learned of my cyst yet, nor had I started any fertility testing.

But there it was as plain as day.  Jacob.  I remember that it came on so fast.  I remember feeling a warm feeling, something like comfort, happiness and just...warmth.  It's really hard to describe it.  I smiled like a woman who just received a wonderful surprise and thought to myself, "Is that you Jacob?  Are you here with Mommy?" 

Now let me stop here and say that I don't know a lot about angels or things like that.  I believe they exist but am not up to speed on the topic enough to say how they operate, when, with whom, etc.  I cannot tell you though how happy I felt in those few moments.  I was so happy.  It was the weirdest thing and definitely out of the ordinary.  Who knows if it really was my little angel baby visiting me or perhaps just an association of good feelings?  I don't know.  All I know is that it was an out of the blue warm and joyous feeling that caused me to stop what I was doing and just feel, to just feel what was happening at that time.

It only lasted a few moments that evening but I remember grinning a lot to myself that night.  I haven't told Alex about it yet and have pretty much just kept it as a private treasure until sharing it now.  The night following that experience I had a similar feeling but not as sudden as the first time it happened.  And that was it, it was primarily just that one day, maybe two days that I felt him.  I felt something wonderful.  I may not know exactly what it was but it was the sweetest feeling, that's the only and best way I can describe it.  It was a pure, sweet and loving feeling.

With all that's been going on, I've found myself often reflecting back over the last few weeks.  I can't believe how much has happened and in some ways how much my life has changed since my initial March 3 visit with my RE.  That was the beginning of the mega-fertility stress.  And of course, right before then was the cyst pain and my trip to the ER.  Lots of fun in the last several weeks.  How funny about the timing of things.  My experience with Jacob was just a few days before my cyst and all of the agony over fertility and my future of having a baby. 

Some people say we see what we want to see.  Someone might say, "Well, she probably just wanted to think of her baby and feel like he was there with her."  Who knows.  It doesn't bother me or offend me.  Of course I think of my precious Jacob often but mostly those thoughts are intentional and direct, not as spontaneous as that evening in my dining room was. 

Perhaps God was sending me a little pat on the shoulder giving me a joyous feeling in my heart about my son.  Perhaps it really was my little angel fluttering around and warming my heart.  Perhaps it was just a random thought that surfaced from somewhere in my mind.  What it was exactly isn't important.  What is though is what it did for me that day and what I've taken from it since then.  I'd like to think that God did indeed have a hand in it and that maybe, just maybe He sent Jacob to me to say a sweet hello.  Whatever happened that evening, I am grateful for it.  I am touched at the timing of it.  I'd like to think that it happened right before the last several weeks of emotional pain to give me a foundation of love, warmth...and possibly hope?  Something to let me know that I wasn't alone in this?  

Whatever the reason my sweet little baby just leapt into my head that night, the fact is that he did.  All I care about is that he was there.  He's with me daily but for that wondrous moment he was really, truly with me.  It's a feeling that I cherish and wanted to write about in an effort to help me through this rough and uncertain time. 

My sweet baby Jacob...how much mama loves you and will always love you.  You may not live here with your brothers but you are my son whom I treasure as much as them.  I am so thankful that I carried you for those 13 weeks.  I am so very thankful.  How I loved seeing you on the ultrasound.  Every move, every flicker of your heartbeat melted my heart.  You were a gift to me that I cherish and always will.  Thank you for smiling at mama and for giving me that moment of calm before the storm.

With warm thoughts of my baby angel Jacob, I wish loving, joyous and peaceful thoughts to all of you, my friends!


Monday, March 21, 2011

'Silent Night, Holy Night'

This wasn't what I was going to do.  I was coming by the computer to turn it off and to go to bed.  But I had to jot a quick note. 

Without going into much, let's just say that today was a crusher, draining, exhausting and emotionally very upsetting--again.  More crummy test results from my RE--ovulation either didn't happen or was lousy--it's hard to understand.  Period still hasn't started yet.  Yes, according to the nurse Clomid can extend my cycle.  Who knows.  When I asked her if that meant that I more than likely was not pregnant, her reply was, "Never say never.  We've seen everything here."  Okay, whatever that means.

After I was hit with the additional still-in-the-same ballpark bad news mid-afternoon, my day plummeted.  All of that energy and drive I had throughout the last week was gone.  My still hopeful spirit felt heavy and like it was sinking.  I spent time researching Clomid, fertility drugs, high FSH, you name it--I looked it up.  The day has just about stunk all around.  The tears I couldn't shed last night at seeing my negative pregnancy test?  Oh boy, they fell today...and hard...and often.

And then at our folk dance practice tonight, at what I had hoped would be a stress-reducing event, turned out to be a night full of kids running amok while their parents didn't intervene.  I couldn't concentrate on my dancing and left even more stressed and down then when I had arrived.

More tears.

Well, at some point I put Benny to bed and he asked for a song but said he wouldn't sing with me this time.  He was 'canky' (that would be cranky) as he explained his mood to me and why he didn't want to sing as he usually did at night.  I said I'd sing for him anyway and decided to sing 'Silent Night'.  Yes, it's a Christmas carol and it's mid-March but hey, I've always loved Christmas carols and they are frequently what I have sung to my boys ever since they were babies. 

Benny laid in his crib holding my hand and watching me as I sung.  When I was done, Sammy came in the room and asked what the song was and could I sing the pretty song again?  Benny had started crying and wanted to sing it with me this time (I think he felt bad that he didn't sing the first time since he was cranky).  I sang it again, this time holding both boys' hands.  Neither boy knew the words but they both tried to sing with me regardless.  My voice broke as I heard their sweet voices try to match mine and I did my best to hold it together for them. I closed my eyes, held their hands and just sang. And, for the first time today, I felt a smidgen of peace. 

Of course, I have to thank my mom for talking to me for an hour and a half prior to that.  She really helped me to start to settle down.  Just having her to talk to helped boost my hope back up just a bit.  And then topping off that conversation with singing with Sammy & Benny?  Well, I think maybe God was giving me a moment of peace and pure love with my boys.  Just for that moment, I felt peace.

I'm going to bed now...weary, about to cry again, frustrated, confused and wondering how much hope I should still hold on to.  I want to unplug my phone so I don't hear from any more doctors.  I want to think about my baby Jacob who lives in my heart and in Heaven...I want to dream about him tonight.  And I want to forget about things while I hopefully can sleep some.

Hoping for a silent and peaceful night...and dreams.


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Waiting for a Miracle

After 2 or so weeks of being offline due to our computer crashing, I am so thankful to be back up and running.  Isn't it amazing how much we rely on computers and the Internet?  Back in the days before such technology, we never would have known what we were missing.  But now, take away our computers and look out!  Everything is thrown out of whack.

Not like I need a computer issue to make my life goofy.  Just another one of those weeks here at fertility freak out headquarters.

Let's back up a week.

Almost a week ago, I started having what felt like some mild cramping off and on.  My first thought was, "Great!  Stupid period is on it's way."  Even though it was a week out from my start date, I figured it could just be PMS even though I typically don't have a lot of PMS symptoms.  Well, the symptoms were off and on and then seemed to switch to a different sort of ache.  This went on until Friday when I finally decided to see my OB about it.  Plus I'd been trying to find out about my blood tests so I figured it couldn't hurt to go in to see her.

You see, apparently the stupid lab that did my last FSH test a few weeks ago screwed up.  They did NOT do the test.  They only tested AMH or whatever that one is called.  The hope was that with the Clomid my FSH levels would have gone down and that would mean that I 'passed' the Clomid Challenge Test.  Don't ask me to explain.  It's hard enough for me to figure out. 

The RE's office and I had been in touch every day since Wednesday.  They hadn't received my results.  I called my OB's office and on TH, the nurse there said she had them and would fax them over.  Later I found out she had read me the first FSH test numbers, not the most recent.  Only after finally talking to my doctor Friday did I learn that the lab who did the tests mistakenly did not run it.  So, that should put me in an interesting position as my RE was waiting to get a complete picture of all of my most recent test results to know what, if anything, to recommend next.

So, I'm at my doctor's office Friday afternoon.  She apologized about the test, asked about my visit to the RE and re-summarized what's been going on.  How I'm transitioning to menopause.  Yippee.  How I can still get pregnant, yes.  How my numbers stink.  How it is still possible to get pregnant and that I do have options including some other oral medications and injections to try.  I guess the way I understand it from her is that my body is almost split?  That part of my body wants to head on out to pasture, while the other part is still all happy making baby stuff--uterine linings, LH surges/ovulating, periods, etc.  Don't you love how I explain things?  :)  I can only hope that the happy baby-making part of my body beats out the other side. 

We also discussed my concern that our RE was putting me on the one side of the spectrum of "hopeless cases".  These are my words, mind you.  I needed to get my doc's thoughts on whether or not she thought he would work with me to pursue any and all options while "I'm still in the game."  As I told her, "Look, if you're saying I can still get pregnant, then I'm still in the game.  It might be a pretty lousy game but I'm still in it so I can't miss any opportunity."  She assured me that my RE was a good Christian man who wouldn't give up on me as it's his goal to help women have healthy pregnancies and healthy babies.  I guess we'll see.

I told her that this is a journey with an unknown future that I'm on.  Perhaps I'll get pregnant, perhaps I won't. Perhaps I'll get pregnant and lose the baby or perhaps the baby will have some problem but still live.  Perhaps I'll get pregnant and the baby will be wonderfully and perfectly healthy.  Only God knows this.  And only He knows what the plan is.  I can only continue to hope and pray that His plan is for me to have another child.

Oh, well back to my aches.  My doc pushed around on my stomach, tested my urine and said that more than likely the aches were either PMS or implantation cramping (if I were to be so lucky).  Apparently she didn't feel they were of any great concern.  She also suggested that they might be psychological seeing as how this week was a rough week leading up to my possible period.  We'll look at my cyst in about 2 weeks but she didn't think it was that.  I guess that's a good thing.

I'm still very thankful for my doctor.  She agreed how much this process can take over your life and how anxious each day can feel.  It's nice to know that she can empathize so much with what her patients are going through.  She also cautioned me to not take any more pregnancy tests for about a week.  I told her I had taken 2 early tests on Wednesday and Thursday and that they were both negative but a few days out from my period.  She reminded me that a 'watched pot never boils.'  I'm glad she and I can laugh.

Back to my weekend then.  As hard as it was, I did NOT test on Friday, Saturday or even today...my period was supposed to start today but didn't.  Unfortunately before anyone gets all excited, I just tested shortly after midnight (so I'm considering this the first day after missing my period) and the dumb test showed me only one pink line.  I can't tell you how much my heart was racing as I went in to the bathroom.

You may remember in the past that I would always test early so as to help let myself down early and easily.  I did this a few days ago but then when I stopped testing, I thought that perhaps, just maybe I had tested too early and that the Hcg levels were too low to be detectable.  So, my plan was to go with what the doctor said...kind of. 

Because I'm going out of town Tuesday evening and not returning until Sunday, I figured I needed as much info to give my RE tomorrow when I talked with them.  They may put me on Clomid again to do the Clomid Challenge Test, or perhaps something else.  I am to call them on Monday or whenever Day 1 of my cycle hits.  If it wasn't for that call I need to make, I probably would have held off on testing.  Why?  Well...

I think this month I've just needed to hold on to as much faith and hope as possible.  When you've been slammed by the statistics as much as I have in the last month, it's been so overwhelming and totally unbelievable that you need a lifeline--and you want to hold on to it for as long as possible.  Who wants to think about running out of time to do anything, you know?  It's just so frustrating.  I think I just didn't want to know.  That's why I was dragging my feet as I went into the bathroom a short while ago.  

Do you know that all day today (Sunday) I was counting the hours down?  Strange, I know, but for every hour that I did not see red, I was excited.  I was more and more hopeful.  I was still in the game for this month.  The first thing I was thankful for was that my irregular cycle didn't act any more goofy as far as coming early--as the last three cycles each came a day early.  And then when today came and went and nothing, I thought, "Man, maybe I DO have a chance this month!"

Yes, I'm not dumb.  I know stupid periods can come late.  But mine typically don't.  They are usually right on time in my irregular cycle-sort of way.  Watch the silly thing start around 4 AM or something just for laughs.  Who knows.  I guess it's just that when things don't go the way they normally do, you can't help but notice and wonder about them.  You know your body pretty well, right?  Well, I'd like to think I know mine.  And when something different happens, it makes you think about it and say, 'hmmmm.'  That's what happened to me this past week--those off and on achy-crampy things.  And then no period today.  Wouldn't your brain be going in to overdrive too?

So where does that leave me.  Sad.  Frustrated.  Feeling heavy.  I can't tell you how grateful I am that I didn't test earlier.  Kept me in a better mood.  Man, was I working my butt off in the last few days.  It's almost like I was trying to keep myself so insanely busy that I didn't have time to think and wonder when/if my period was going to come.  Being so busy helped me not to feel too much.  Joy with my family--yes.  Happy memories when I heard a song from college that made me think of my sorority sisters--yes.  But, anxiety--no.  I kept that buried under chore after chore.  All day long today I was doing laundry, dishes, cleaning up the boys' toys, tackling other cleaning jobs that needed done, you name it, I did it.  I even enjoyed watching a movie while I cleaned the living room.  It made me happy.  I'm glad I was happy.  I've felt strong in these last few days and weeks which surprises me.  Strong for my boys and for my husband and I'm grateful to God for that.

What's next?  Well, I guess I'll call the RE tomorrow and figure out if he's going to try Clomid or perhaps something else and if he'll fax me a prescription or what with me going out of town.  Could I be pregnant?  I guess anything is possible but I feel less of a chance now.  Unless my Hcg levels are still too low to be detectable, like the doctor said, who knows.  Maybe that's why my OB said to wait a week?  Boy, this could be one very stressful week if my stupid period doesn't come but if my test again and it still comes back negative.  Sometimes patience just stinks.

Well, I just don't know what else to say that will sound halfway intelligent or interesting.  I've been wrestling with emotions and keeping myself as upbeat as possible, as hopeful as possible and just taking one day at a time.  I've been so incredibly grateful for my life--for Alex and my boys--for every smile, tear, hug and laugh.  Sometimes I look at Sammy and Benny and can just see another child here in our midst--a little brother or sister with the same love in their hearts.  It brings such a huge smile to my face when I think about that.

Trust me, I know that even if I get a positive pregnancy test, I'll still be in for a journey of a million and one very rough steps.  I know that potential problems could arise and I've been thinking a lot about that.  Would I be strong enough to handle another potential miscarriage?  Or what about if our baby had some problem?  I'd like to think that I would.  Or more importantly, I'd like to think that perhaps this is happening in some ways to make me a stronger person, a stronger mother, a stronger Christian.  I know God is with me and is leading me where He wants me to go.  I just hope and pray that I can hear Him clearly.  I found myself wondering, is that Him speaking to me?  Is He telling me, "Look woman, your ovaries are ready to retire here soon so get it through your thick head, no more babies!"  Or, is He telling me, "The doctors say you can still get pregnant, just that it will be more difficult.  Have faith in Me."  I can't tell you how much I hope that's what God is saying to me. 

Well, dear friends, I guess that's it for now.  You might be on the lookout for another post from me in a few days--will be it one with a miracle attached or simply more crabbing on my part?  Whatever it is, I thank you all for reading, for your comments and your prayers.  It helps to know that I'm not alone--that even if you haven't experienced a miscarriage or fertility struggles personally, that you're still out there willing to share in my journey.  Of course my hope is too that my words help someone, anyone, who may need to know that they aren't the only ones feeling this way about things, that there is hope out there or even if you just need a good laugh or cry--I hope my words bring you that. 

Here's to a good cry--that surprisingly I just don't feel like doing right now.  I guess that's some good news right? :)


Friday, March 11, 2011

Fertility--I'm not giving up

Well, unfortunately due to my computer being down for the last week and a half, I've fallen behind in my blog again and now have forgotten what "Part Two" was supposed to cover.  Let's see how best to catch everyone up on the fun of the last few weeks.

My cyst has been feeling much better.  So very thankful for that.

Well, after several weeks in February of thinking that maybe...just maybe things worked this time, they didn't.  This last failed cycle was just another reminder of the absence of a baby.  It also marked the beginning of a whirlwind of fertility tests, appointments and tracking of almost everything under the sun.  After just one month of doing this, I have new respect for those parents who've had to deal with fertility issues for months and years.  It takes a lot out of you emotionally.

In a nutshell, I started Clomid this past cycle.  That's the fertility drug that helps you ovulate.  I was so nervous to take the medicine.  I'm not much of a medicine woman--I'd much rather avoid putting drugs into my system but obviously there are times when medicines are necessary, I just hope and pray they don't have too many side effects. 

I pretty much lucked out this time and and so thankful that I did.  Vomiting is a really common side effect and I skipped it.  I had a few bad headaches but they didn't last long.  I also had some vision trouble one night and that scared me half to death but it passed after about 10 minutes.  When I contacted my doctor about it, she said it was more of a rare symptom and joked about how I love stats--especially the rare ones.  She said I could skip my last pill but that taking a full 5-day dose was better than 4, so I went for it and just prayed that it wouldn't mess with my eyes again.  It didn't and I thank God for that.

So.  I took my Clomid and went for an FSH test right before and then after.  That's when the bomb hit.  I say bomb, as in just one bomb not several, and I truly hope that it's just one because it's been a serious emotional tug of war since then.

After talking with me about my Clomid concerns, my doctor said she had my first test results back and "they weren't stellar."  She only explained a little and said she'd have the specialist go into more detail.

Our appointment was Thursday, March 3.  We met with an RE (a reproductive endocrinologist).  He was very knowledgeable and reasonably nice.  I just don't know how to explain what happened at this appointment.  It was a rough and very confusing hour and half.

It seems that my FSH levels (a hormone) were pretty high and significant of a possible start of the transition to menopause.  Menopause.  Yes, you read that right.  I about died when I heard that word.  I was like, "menopause?"  That word was nowhere in my vocabulary.  Seriously.  Here I was fretting over various fertility issues and I find out that in a nutshell, my time could be running out?  It could be that simple.  And depressing.  And horrifically confusing and uncertain.

You see, they can't say for sure that that's what's happening.  While some of my results showed numbers indicative of the transition to it, they can't say when I'll actually hit menopause.  The doctor said the extremes were this--I may not hit it for another 10 years or more.  Or I may hit it in 6 mos.  Six months????  That was so hard to hear.  It was even harder knowing that I was all over the board.  It could simply take longer to conceive.  Who knows.  I had been prepared for pregnancy to take time at this age, but not for the fact that I'm potentially running out of time.

What was so frustrating was that the RE at times spoke out of both sides of his mouth.  He would paint this horribly gloomy picture of all of the statistics for women my age.  Our chances for conceiving are lower, our rates for miscarriage are higher as are chances of birth defects.  It was horrible.  Yes, I knew a lot of this in broad terms, but not in such specifics.  I know I'm not a spring chicken but jeez.  I felt like I was watching a painting unfold before me...full of blacks, browns...the darkest and most dismal colors you can imagine.  But then there were also a few patches of white--of hope, and I desperately wanted to cling to those.

The RE said several times that I still could get pregnant--that women my age and older do it all the time.  Even those who have already hit menopause can go for a year in it and then suddenly ovulate and have a baby out of nowhere.  He also said that my FSH levels could have been high due to a simple hormone surge or something like that.  And that I could cycle in and out of the transition for years before fully hitting menopause. 

Our RE wanted to see my next set of test results--another FSH test to see if the Clomid did what it was supposed to...also to spike the FSH levels?  That's where I got confused and don't quite understand how everything relates.  He also asked me to get my progesterone tested again 7-9 days after I detect an LH surge (which happens right before you ovulate) so he can see how those levels look.

What I left with from that meeting were so many more questions than answers.  I was also frustrated because he didn't set a follow-up appointment with me to suggest what we'd do next.  Another medication to boost something else?  Who knows.  Perhaps he's just waiting to see how this cycle turns out.

I can't tell you how many times I cried after that visit.  I know my thoughts are jumbly right now since it's been awhile but after that day everything got more stressful than before. 

You know what I think is a serious crime in our world?  Extinguishing the hope of another.  Yes, I think it's a horrible thing to do when you take away another person's hope.  Now I'm not saying that's exactly what our RE did, as so much of his talk was positive and optimistic but then it's like he countered himself with stats after stats about all of the negative.  Once or twice, he'd pause, not say anything and just look at me.  I found myself wondering if he was hoping I'd say, "Okay, doctor.  Thanks so much for filling us in.  I guess you're right, we should just quit and save you time to spend on someone more worth it."  Seriously.  I felt that way.  Perhaps he was just pausing and wondering what I was feeling.  I don't know but it made me very uncomfortable.

After that appointment I talked again with my doctor (ob/gyn).  I forget what it was about--some other follow-up, I think.  She asked how the appointment went with the RE.  She did say again that I had options.  Not just one option but options...with an S.  I'm taking that.  I'm holding on to that.  She suggested other medications to try so I'm hoping the RE will agree that it's worth it to at least try.  She also reminded me to tell the RE of my side effects with Clomid so we may not use that again.

What about killed me though was the last thing my doc said.  I asked her just as a final thought, "So we don't need to quit and throw in the towel?"  She said no but that she and the RE would be very honest with me and that "they would tell me when it's time to stop trying."


Who says anyone can tell me to 'stop trying?'  Didn't the RE just spend a lot of time telling me about how women have beat the odds, and how women even in a menopausal state can suddenly conceive out of the middle of nowhere?  And I haven't even hit menopause yet.  JEEZ!!!  Yes my numbers were a little high but it could have been an off month, both doctors agreed to that.  Perhaps my doc thought I wanted to hear that--that I didn't want false hope.  I'm not sure why she said that but I wasn't pleased to hear it.

I'm at a point now where I want to BEG both my doc and RE to please stay on my team.  Don't give up on me.  If timing is critical, then let's please try everything and anything out there before my time really does run out.  I did a lot of research and found so many 'success stories'.  Women like me, with high FSH levels, have gone on to have babies and healthy ones at that.  One women went to 5 different REs before she found one who would work with her.  You know what?  At age 42 she delivered a healthy baby girl. 

Man, I just can't say enough about hope.  Feeling like at times the RE was trying to extinguish my hope was just awful.  Hope is so hard to hold on to.  It surely doesn't help when someone is trying to blow out the little flame that shines before you.  It made me think of the song I sing with my boys and that I loved as a kid, "This Little Light of Mine."  The one verse kids have always loved singing and doing the motions too (and Sammy and Benny do too) says, "Don't you try to puff (you pretend to blow your candle) it out, I'm gonna let it shine!"  That was me.  Desperately protecting my candle of hope while the doctor blew so much negative in our faces. 

Did I mention something else the RE said during our appointment that really hit me hard?  At one point he was quoting general stats about older eggs and defects.  He said something like, "Thank God women's bodies normally recognize this and force a miscarriage or we'd have tons of humans walking the earth with all sorts of horrible chromosomal defects." 

I know when I heard this I felt sick.  It was just his words.  I'm sure he meant nothing by it but the way his words came out...it just painted such a visual picture that no woman who lost a baby should have to see.  All of this happened in milliseconds as I reacted to hearing his words.  I remember thinking of my precious Jacob.  Then it's like I saw visions of hideous zombie like creatures walking around like from some spooky sci-fi show.  I cried when I told my mom this that night.  I asked her, "So what...is the doctor telling me that that's what would happen...that even if I did get pregnant we'd make a little monster?  Is that what Jacob was?  Was my little baby, who kicked and squirmed and wiggled just a little monster?  Was that what he was?   So, I shouldn't even try??"  My eyes are flooding while I write this.  My baby was not a monster.  He simply had things that didn't work here on earth...but he's perfect in Heaven.  Perfect and in Jesus' arms.  That thought brings me so much comfort.

Well, as you can see, there's a lot of emotion here.  I'm sorry if anything I'm saying is offensive.  I don't mean to hurt anyone.  Please understand how difficult hearing all of that has been for me--it was beyond a smack in the face.  It struck my very core. I loved and still love my little baby Jacob so very much.  I'm a momma of three boys.  No one can take that away from me.  No one.

Thankfully my emotions have settled a bit because we're back in waiting stage but let's just say it's been rough, especially when I think too much about it.  I guess writing about it is bringing everything back.  If my computer wouldn't have been on the fritz, I would have written about this sooner.

So what's going on now?  Well, we're just taking it day by day.  It's too hard to know where this is going.  You know, I looked at my bill/receipt--that form you get at the doctor's office when you leave.  There were four types of office visits listed--straightforward, mildly complex, moderately complex and highly complex.  I'd never seen that before, have you?  Which one was checked on my form?  You guessed it.  "Highly complex."  That almost made me laugh.  Leave it to me to be complex. I wondered what was so complex about my situation?   I guess it could be because there are so many unknowns with when women will totally transition or not.  Maybe it's just not as simple as someone with a blocked tube or slow sperm.  I don't know.  But if it is that complex, then that tells me there still is hope.

My hubby has been great.  We've discussed this several times and plan to keep trying.  Like Alex mentioned, we did just conceive a few months back and ON OUR OWN.  Yes, it ended sadly but we did make a baby on our own...no meds or doctor visits or test results to analyze.  I could still have some good eggs in there and no one can predict what egg will come out.  He and I agreed that the doc has to give you facts and generalizations.  That they look at your numbers but that even they don't know for sure.  Especially when you're 'highly complex'.

My hope is that I can keep medical people at an arm's length for awhile.  If I have to start new meds this next cycle or more tests, that's fine.  But I do plan on being a bit more assertive and asking them not to give up on me, nor to tell me when to quit.  Unless my life is on the line or something funky, no one can tell me to quit.  I don't care what stats say.  Other than seeing a doctor/RE when I have to, I don't want to be around them too much.  I don't want to talk to them about stats anymore.  All I want to focus on are possibilities.  Things we can try.  Things we'll plan to try.  Attitude is everything and I can't afford any more negative weighing me down.

That's it.  I know if I can do that, it will be better for me.  During the last 3 months of trying (following the miscarriage), I was stressed but nothing like this.  I knew my chances were getting harder being older, but I wasn't obsessed with every last percentage of this hormone and that hormone like I am now.  That's the mental state that I want to get back to.  That of "anything is possible", we just have to keep trying and see what happens.

Hope.  Funny how that theme has truly touched every part of this journey.  I hoped that I would make the right decision about Jacob--I knew that I couldn't terminate and that decision was right, no matter the pain I'd have to go through.  God took my precious baby after only 5 days of uncertainty.  I have to hold on to hope.  I just don't know that I can ever give it up, you know?  I just keep praying that God will keep leading me on this journey and that if it's His will that we conceive again that the baby will make it.  And that if the baby has some problem, that He'll guide me to be the best mommy possible of that little baby.  I know I'll hug that little baby and thank the Lord every day for him or her. 

I read a quote somewhere recently that said, "If God leads you to it, He will see you through it."  Man, I love that.  I'm keeping that in my head.  Whatever He leads me to, He will help me through.  And also the story about Abraham and Sarah--I was flipping through the Bible a few weeks ago--before hearing of my test results--and literally stumbled on the story of how Sarah got pregnant WAY past her prime.  It was a miracle and all part of God's plan and will.  Anything is possible with the Lord leading me.  I know and trust this.  It may be a baby, it may not.  But I can't just give up all hope just because some doctor is telling me how difficult it may be.  Aren't the difficult things worth fighting for?  Isn't that what we all grew up learning?

Complex, yup, that's me.  Lots of darks but with light shining through.  It's my candle, doc.  Only God knows where my light will lead. 

Thanks for reading friends.  I appreciate your thoughts, prayers and interest.  Please feel free to contact me if you have any words of advice, suggestions of alternate treatments, medications, etc.  My email is:  kdanisk@yahoo.com.

Until next time, hold your candle high.  The more candles we hold up, the brighter the light of Hope for all of us.  Even if it's just a tiny flicker of hope--I'm holding on and holding on tight.