Welcome, February ICLWers. It has been such a devastating week in the ALI community and my heart goes out to the bloggers who are experiencing losses. The support and care you've shown to them really make me grateful to be a part of this community.
You can find a brief subfertility/loss timeline on my right sidebar if you're new to my blog. Most of our issues have to do with my uterus. Recently, though, for the first time in 60-something charted cycles, I've become fully aware of my ovaries. They tried to kill me this cycle. It was my second cycle on letrozole and I got pregnant the first cycle, so I'd assumed the pains that first time around were (totally worth it) implantation-related ones. Had the exact same pain this time, though, but for a much longer time, and this time I had zero chance of a little embryo implanting. We'd found out post-letrozole but pre-ovulation that we had not yet optimized my uterine environment (that's doctor-speak for "needs more surgery, or at least more procedures"), so we opted not to gamble with trying this cycle.
For the past two weeks, it has felt like my ovaries had been replaced by angry baseballs of pain (they're probably smaller than that, but "angry golf balls" didn't sound right). I feel ridiculous complaining about it when so many of you have gone/are going through IVF; I know I am not getting the Treatments gold in the Pain Olympics. But it's sucked lately. The only thing that eases the discomfort is lying down, so when I'm not at work, I'm on the couch feeling like a sloth and indulging my new Downton Abbey habit.
I'm excited to get my period today because it means the ovary pain will end soon. I'm sure the period will be epic—hello, worst cramps ever (they're always the worst ever)—but at least it's a different kind of pain. I'm tempted to try a lower dose of letrozole next time to attempt to decrease the hellish ovary pain. I realize that might be crazy talk, because my doctor says this dose works well for me: nice follicles, progesterone of 22, and, of course, the fact that I got pregnant on it before. However, the thought of going through this madness again with only a 10% chance of getting pregnant each cycle drives me to despair. Then I feel guilty about not being willing to submit to two weeks of pain and slothfulness for a possible pregnancy. Will have to discuss further with my doc.
My next hysteroscopy is March 9. I'll start taking testosterone tomorrow to thin my lining for the procedure. Can't wait to take a new hormone, and a male one at that! My random black chin hairs do not need that kind of encouragement.
My doctor sounds optimistic that she won't see scar tissue next month, but I don't know how much of her talk is just to keep me from feeling hopeless before the procedure. By giving me hope, I'm trading being depressed now with being depressed later if she unexpectedly finds more scar tissue. Hope can be brutal.
Between watching TV and chatting with my fertility clinic almost daily, you might wonder if I have time to fit in anything else. I've managed to fit in a few social engagements, which has been a mixed bag. Lately, more than ever, there are tons of coworker pregnancy announcements, lots of "I understand such-and-such because I'm a mom," complaints about kids, etc. The good parts of being social are still outweighing the bad, but the emotional fall-out afterward has been intense. I don't want to isolate myself like I did after my first miscarriage, but I feel so powerless in the face of "Let's compare labor stories!" and "OMG nursing is soooo hard!" I completely lose the ability to change topics.
In baby-obtaining news, my husband and I have been fantasizing about convincing his brother to hand over baby #4 to us. We'd start small, asking for just a weekend here and there. Eventually, we'd "babysit" more and more often and brainwash the baby into thinking we're his parents and he wouldn't want to go back. That should work, right? Baby #5 is coming this summer, so I'm sure the parents will need our childcare services soon.
I received a funny message from an infertility nurse last week. She left me a voicemail saying that she couldn't answer my question, so my doctor would call me later. The nurse seemed to be irritated that she'd gotten my voicemail and said, "Please be available when the doctor calls you back." She didn't give me a specific time or range of times to be available, so it felt like "Don't go to the bathroom, drive, attend meetings, or otherwise live your life until your doctor finds a moment to call you back." No one would be more thrilled than me never to miss calls from their doctor, but come on.