Monday, May 30, 2005

Brevity is Sweet. We're Not Supposed to Eat Sugar.

You asked for it; you got it. The whole gory insemination-psycho-family-graduation-wedding story is now available. But if you've never noticed before, we'll warn you. We're not capable of tight, spare prose. Would that we were paid by the word, like Dickens. So grab yourself some fortifying snacks, make sure you're in a COMFY chair, and tell the kids to get their own damn dinner. You'll be reading for a while.

For those who don't like scrolling or spoilers, here are links in chronological order:
The Beginning
A Diversion
How SperMusical Are You?
We Now Resume Our Regularly Scheduled Program
But Wait, There's More!

Have fun!

Sperm Shack Epilogue

The following morning, Cait was awakened by a desperate need to pee, and NO desire to crawl out of the warm nest of blankets and walk over to the main cabin where the bathrooms were. Peering at the clock, she realized that it was, indeed, almost temping time. After a shivery dash to the bathroom, she nudged Jen, who grabbed the thermometer from the corner of the bed and put it into her mouth. Cait stared, horrified, at the readout of 96.3, while Jen mumbled “prob’ly fine. think that hapnd before. mmmf.” And promptly fell asleep. Cait’s mind worked overtime as she dozed over the next hours. “How could she not have ovulated? Every cycle it’s been the same. Positive OPK. Insem next day (or not on months that were just for charting purposes). Temp rise the day after that. Like clockwork. Why did it go down?”

By the time we reached full consciousness around 9:00, Cait had an idea.
“Is the thermometer cold?”
“Yeah, it’s been sitting out all night.”
“Is your head cold?”
“Yeah.” (duh)
“Take your temperature again”
“Do you think maybe the frozen nature of the thermometer and the fact that your head has been cold and you’ve been breathing through your mouth because this place is basically your worst nightmare, allergy-wise, could have skewed your temp this morning?”
“Oh. Maybe.”

Hands slap foreheads. Moderate sighs of relief are breathed by all (although not so much by Jen because she never gained enough consciousness to worry in the first place).

The rest of the day was as uneventful as a day with Jen’s family gets. Which is to say that there was chaos when people were around, and then several blissful hours of quiet, while they all ventured out in the rain, scorning us for skipping out on a cold, wet, boat ride in favor of staying in a cozily heated house, with rocking chairs, our knitting, and cable TV. We knitted while alternately watching insanely bizarre B movies, staring at the lake, and (unfortunately for Cait) writing progress reports. And, of course, trying not to freak out about the lack of a temp rise and the presence of some lingering eggwhite.

Later that evening, we ventured out to the school for the first of the graduation events. Most of us stayed long enough to make dinner of the spread of hors d’oeuvres, and then skipped out on the speeches. We were told later by those that stayed that we had made a wise choice.

Graduation day started with SUNSHINE!!! Jen’s temp was still low, but slightly higher since we had slept with the thermometer UNDER the covers with us. At least we were expecting it this time. By the time we got to the school, it was approaching WARM outside.

The graduation ceremony was long, so Jen entertained herself by taking a short video clip of H getting her diploma, and then repeatedly played it back, hitting rewind just as H reached out for her diploma. “Oh, so close, ooh, not quite, oh, oh, wait, she got it. Awww… she had to give it back.” We were (shockingly) much more amused by this than the others we showed it to later.
During lunch, we were introduced to the drama teacher (insert link here). Jen grunted hello, but managed not to kill him right then and there, and then was ridiculed by her mother for giving him “the fisheye”. Her retort? “Well, SOMEbody had to!” We celebrated the sunshine by getting ice cream and buying short-sleeved shirts.

After a relatively mellow afternoon of watching The Incredibles, and yes, more knitting, we had dinner. For most families, this image does not evoke strains of Beethoven’s fifth, but those families have never dined with Jen’s family. The conversation ranged from mocking vegetarianism (and promising to feed our future child meat against our wishes), to talking about how people in their late 20s and early 30s (namely us) are not NEARLY as grown up as they were in previous generations. Because we watch animated films. And laugh at them. Cait restrained herself from making bitter remarks and let Jen do the responding. The outcome was still the same. We are not grown ups, despite the fact that we own a house and a car, hold down solid jobs, and pay all of our bills on time. Oh, and would have a child by now if the stupid universe would let us.

But the REAL drama started when H proclaimed that she had to leave. Apparently she and her mother had AGREED THAT SHE COULD STAY AT THE DRAMA TEACHER’S HOUSE THAT NIGHT, and she was ready to do so. Jen’s mom, while blasé about the lovers’ tryst, was apoplectic at the idea that H might leave in the middle of dinner. Much clench-jawed glaring ensued. While they “negotiated” the rest of the details, the rest of us scurried to clear the table and dodge the bullets, and returned to our movie. Eventually, H took the car and left, while we rested our jaws on the floor in disbelief.

Thanks to the sunshine, the Sperm Shack was much warmer, and when we woke up far too early the next morning, Jen’s temp was a whopping 97.4. So somewhere in there, ovulation took place. After saying our goodbyes, stopping to look at loons (no, not the family, the actual feathered ones) one last time, and having breakfast with friends, we returned the rental car and checked in for our flight. Our trip through security was much calmer with only the 2-inch-long needles of Cait’s injections sans dry ice to get through.

We made it home in time to relax on the couch for a bit, and then get ready for the black-tie, uber fancy wedding THAT WOULD NOT END. But that, my friends, is a story for another day.

Sperm Shack, Part 2

Although we were in fine form with the Sperm Shack medley, the heavens were still conspiring against us. We had trouble getting a strong enough signal to call Jen’s mom and find out where exactly the restaurant was, and the few times we got through, we got no answer. So we were left to drive around Wolfeboro (which, thankfully, is not that big) trying to follow the vague directions given by Jen’s mom in the earlier phone call. Finally we gave in and asked for directions, which Jen isn’t keen on doing in general, but especially not when she is going to have to ask for directions to “that French restaurant that starts with something like 'Meez,'” (French being a language that she cannot speak, spell, or pronounce to save her life and that she therefore despises. Cait can speak some French, but she was not on the phone with Jen’s mom, and was therefore useless in trying to help figure out what the name might be.) The cheerful New Englanders blinked once in confusion and then deciphered the garbled request enough to say “Oh, Mise en Place! It’s right down that road. You can’t miss it.” Only we had. And continued to for at least two more attempts.

When we finally walked through the door, almost two hours after talking to Jen’s mom (at which point they were ordering dinner), and already at least an hour later than we had hoped to do the second insem, they were only JUST FINISHING dinner and had not yet ordered dessert. Mentally throwing our hands up in the air, we sat down and ordered the most intensely chocolate, decadent item on the menu, and a glass of wine. Both, of course, highly off limits for both of us.

Eventually, the wine and chocolate were consumed, and Jen's mother was convinced that it was TIME TO GO, as the wait staff had cleared and reset every table and were waiting, mop in hand for us to JUST LEAVE, and we set out for the cabin. As some of you know, there had earlier been debate as to where we would sleep (with significant insemination ramifications). We had been offered a sofa bed or two twin beds. Jen had thought that the sofa bed was in an open loft and the twin beds were in a private room, but she was incorrect on all counts. What we got is difficult to describe or imagine, but we’ll give it a shot.

The owner of the cabin wanted to add sleeping space, and had recently decided to convert the space above the garage to another bedroom. Key word being “recently”. Wires between renters and rentee were apparently crossed, such that the construction was hurried along such that it was somewhat habitable. With great trepidation, we headed up and dropped off our luggage and the all-important cooler. Other than critters, we were the first occupants of the new – unfinished – room. Complete (INcomplete?) with plywood flooring, raw drywall, and beautiful, heavy antique cast iron twin beds on opposite sides of the room. Oh, and no heating. Whatsoever.

As soon as we could make our exit from the family gathering, claiming not untruthfully to be exhausted, we set about preparing our primitive insemination clinic. Cait removed the vial from the dry ice and put it in her pants to warm up. (If you know Cait, you will wonder why in hell SHE tried to warm up the goods, as she has been known to shiver at high noon in the Gobi Desert. Don’t ask me.) She was already numb, so the fresh-from-the-dry-ice vial was only moderately uncomfortable. Jen, meanwhile, attempted to push the beds together. Hercules would have been unable to move one of those beds single-handedly, so with much cursing and grunting, we worked together and got them close together. More or less. As it was approximately 33 degrees in the loft, henceforth to be known as the Sperm Shack, we began to make the bed, layering quilt after quilt upon the bed until it began to resemble the Princess and the Pea. Jen found a cozy looking wool blanket and Cait added it to the pile, asking, “What’s this?” as she spread the last corner into place, noticing an odd substance on the blanket. To our horror, we discovered a suspicious hole in the blanket with telltale droppings in great quantity surrounding it. “EEEEW! Get it off!” Jen shrieked, ripping it from the bed.

The rodent-scarred blanket. was quickly forgotten as we hastened toward the final squirt. Remarkably, the vial had thawed in Cait’s pants, and we burrowed under the pancake-like stack of blankets for insemination, Arctic-style. Jen flipped once or twice, and then we drifted off to a cold-headed sleep, where Jen’s dreams involved a wildlife expert examining the blanket and pronouncing the culprit neither a mouse nor a rat, but in fact a loon. Apropos, since we’ve been nothing BUT loony for the last week or so!

I Can Name that Tune in 3 Sperm!

There will be a prize awarded for the first player with correct answers. Additional contributions to the Sperm Shack jukebox will also be welcomed.

The following are clips from which songs?

I got me a Malibu, it seats are quite funny
So hurry up and bring your cooler, honey!

The Sperm Shack is a little old place
where we can get knocked up
Sperm Shack bay-bee!

S*men in the cooler
S*men on the mattress
S*men in the syringe
S*men in the tu-ubes

Bang bang bang on the egg baby,
Bang bang
You’re what?
PREGNANT! (Please god!)

*don't want any Internet wackos

I will give sperm to you
Will you release your egg?
Don’t let this try stress you out.
Weep not for the late insem.

Swim this way!
Swim this way!
Swim this way!
And gimme a kid.

Ricki don’t lose that spermie.
It’s the only one you’ve got
You might use it and you’ll feel better
When you get pregnant

And Now a Word from our Sponsor

Hey, Kids! Dry ice provides hours of temperature reduction, but that's not all. With your cooling power, you also get lots of worry at no extra charge! Is it cold enough? Is the temperature stable? Is it melting too fast? Will anyone get hurt? But worry and cold aren't all you get - inside each package is a free toy:

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Just add water!

Dry ice: guaranteed to provide lots of fun for your inner child (whether or not it aids in producing an actual child).

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Sperm Shack, Part 1

All of our previous worries notwithstanding, it was actually pretty easy to get the boys through airline security. There were a couple of worrisome-at-the-time-but-hilarious-in-hindsight moments, such as seeing the “you are in a filming zone” sign and remembering that Southwest is doing a reality show. We were pretty sure that they’d jump on the opportunity to broadcast lesbians and frozen sperm, but thankfully they were in Kansas City on Thursday. Between the words “sperm” and “dry ice” the TSA agent was pretty creeped out and was OK with just poking around with a stick and then letting us get AS FAR FROM HER AS POSSIBLE WITH OUR BIOHAZARD COOLER!

Once we got to New Hampshire, things did not go smoothly (shocking, I know) at the outset. First there was the car rental fiasco, in which Jen, though vividly remembering doing so, actually did NOT reserve a rental car, resulting in 45 minutes wandering from counter to counter saying, “did I reserve a car with you? No? Do you have any cars available? No? Thanks.” Cait and the COOLER OF DOOM (which had helpfully been labeled “Dry ice—medical specimen—sperm”) stayed far far away so as not to further freak the natives. Eventually we did get a rather cool car, the Malibu Maxx, which Jen had been curious about ever since the Olympiad Advertising (she did have much fun sliding seats around and playing with other features over the course of the weekend), and headed off to find some dinner.

It was only after sitting down with our eat-in food and receiving a phone call from Jen’s mom requesting insisting that we join them at a fancy French restaurant for dessert instead of going directly to the house that we realized we might be in a bit of trouble, timing-wise.

Our apprehension grew deeper as the road to Wolfeboro seemed to grow longer and longer and longer. It did not help that the radio reception grew worse and worse (Oh, and did we mention the rain? If you have been living in the Northeast within the last month, this should come as no surprise to you, but…it was raining. Hard.). Rather than succumb to our panic, we got silly (who knows? Maybe prolonged exposure to dry ice vapors warped our brains even further than their normal warped state). As the B-52s Love Shack came on, we simultaneously turned to each other and belted out, “SPERM SHACK BABY!”

To be continued…

For those of you playing along at home, come back later and take a shot at the Sperm Shack Quiz. See if you are as sperm warped as we are….

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Creepy (but good)

One year ago TO THE DAY, Cait and I did our first-ever insemination. On that day, I lost my "sperm virginity". Freakishly enough, our first post-mole insemination was this morning. To keep the coindidences rolling, last year we stayed up way too late the night before the insem due to a friend's family crisis. Last night, I was up until 1:00 am (thankfully only to pack, not for a crisis). I do hope that the outcome varies from last year to this....

Bottom line: insem #1 went down this AM, and the boys are taking their first plane trip today. The second vial is back safe and sound in the dry ice, and we'll are doing the second insem SOMEWHERE in NH. Despite what I wrote in Choose Your Own O-venture, we did decide that taking it on the plane was the way to go. And also despite my fear of Instead cups, that will be our backup if TSA says it's no go. And THAT would be the ultimate insem story! ('Scuze us, we'll be back..." running off to find a big restroom to insem in [ick, ick ick], then going back through security, "Nope, we don't have that sperm anymore." Please, god, do spare me!)

This is probably the last dispatch for a few days. I'll be leaving for the airport shortly and I don't think I'll have much access until Sunday. I thought I could use the web browser on my phone (geek! geek!) but remembered I get noooooo reception in the hinterlands of NH.

Do stop by and entertain each other with witty comments, if you please! :)

I Know It's Too Early for Forward Facing...

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But there's our maybe** baby (ok, well, 50% of the chromosomes for the possible** baby). If you're wondering, that's the carseat* we keep in the car for our 3-year old buddy, GiggleGirl. We hang out with her a lot and I often pick her up from daycare.

I've renamed the car the CryoMobile. In the past 36 hours, the CryoMobile has made three trips to pick up dry ice, two visits to the REs office (once to pick up the sperm, once to attempt to pick up the raincoat I left there in my frazzlement on visit 1 - only to find out it had been stolen) and once to CVS for more OPKs. The sperm has so far been to work with me twice (we believe in Take Your Child To Work Day around here all right!). Hopefully the next time the sperm gets buckled in, half will be buckled in the carseat but half will be in the driver's seat. Keep your fingers crossed. I've got my legs crossed waiting for the next OPK....

*Yes, it's a Britax. I lurve it !! And GG's mom gave it to us for her use, so no $$ worries.
**Edited to keep the evil eye away.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Choose Your Own O-Venture

Remember Choose Your Own Adventures? Chances are, if you're anywhere between Cait's and my age demographic (basically, born in the '70s), you do. They've mostly fallen out of fashion, although I think there's at least one in the collection at my school. I've decided to add to the genre with a new CYOA, Fertility Style:

You are Jennifer, a mid-30s lesbian school librarian and mommy-wannabee who has been thwarted by fate and excess sperm/chromosomes at the time of conception. This is a particularly perilous week for you, as you have just announced your plans to leave your current school for another (causing great distress to your colleagues) and you are heading off to attend the graduation of your academically-brilliant-yet-decisionally-challenged sister, all at the same time that you are finally free to inseminate after an externally imposed break of 10 months.

If you accept this challenge, you will have to negotiate the perils of OPKs in smelly school bathrooms, transporting human tissue across state lines, your wife (who gets very, very stressed out by travel) and your mother.

Are you up to the task or do you want to bow out gracefully?


Three Year Itch

With wise counsel from all corners of the globe, I took the new job, giving my current job the dubious distinction of the position I’ve held longest in all my working life. However, this switch is different from all the previous moves as my title, responsibilities, and employer remain essentially the same, while the location and the incumbent cast of characters is changed. Thanks to all who provided ideas and advice!

In the end, I used Emilin’s sage suggestion to make the final decsion. When I first saw her comment, I thought it was tongue in cheek, but when we talked later (on the phone! what a concept! because she’s got great news!) she explained that it was a very serious suggestion. It is actually brilliant, and provides a simple way to eke out one’s true feelings on a subject with a minimum of wheel spinning. I tossed the coin repeatedly to verify that the results were accurate, but no matter how I phrased it, the answer came out the same. “Heads, I take the new job.” Heads. No discernible disappointment. “Heads, I leave the old job.” Heads. Nerves of steel. “Heads, I stay at the old job.” Tails. No plummeting stomach. It seems that the universe and I are both interested in the same outcome: new job for Jen.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

And Now for Something Completely Different

Cait got her black belt in Tae Kwon Do today.

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(Do you think she was pleased? Oh, and the lion is a classroom pet.)

The culminating test, last in a series of four, lasts for 3 hours and includes a demonstration of all of the physical techniques learned in our style, history, vocabulary, philosophy, forms, breaking, and a speech by each student. It's an achievement under any circumstances, but given her years of struggling with Lyme Disease, the stress of the past year, and work demands in recent months, it's nothing short of amazing. But anyone who knows Cait isn't surprised in the least:

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Cait embodies the essence of a true martial artist: strength, compassion, dedication, grace, humility, and power. I am inspired by her and honored to share my life with her.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Help! Advice Needed!

Ok, guys, I was just offered a school librarian position at another school. I am not sure what to decide. Here are the pros and cons:

shorter commute (will save 25-40 minutes per day)
2 blocks from my mom's (will do child care one day a week and emergencies)
new building with great facilities
(?)principal is retiring so I would go into a totally unknown situation(?)
have to get to know new staff & new kids
larger school (more classes to see)
experienced assistant & many parent volunteers
less diverse school in all ways (possibly easier management-wise but perhaps not as interesting)
it's my old elementary school! (there's a silly nostalgia bonus for that)

longer commute
supportive staff & principal (been wonderful during this lousy year)
I'm very connected to some of the kids
I've been here three years and gotten my library media program about 65% of where I want it to be - next year I could go higher
horrible building, very overcrowded, library WAY too small, no renovation for at least 2 more years
diverse school that provides interesting challenges
my assistant is retiring so I'll have to train someone new (and I don't get too much say in who's hired)

My dilemma basically boils down to this: a lot of the positives at the new school relate to having a child. Hopefully, that will be soon, but it might take a while. We didn't have any trouble getting pregnant but so far I'm 0 for 2. I'm worried about making this choice based on something that hasn't happened yet; but I also don't want to be a few years down the road really regretting NOT making the change and wishing I had the extra time with my kid. I don't think either choice would be bad, but the unknowns (new principal or new assistant) in each situation make the decision that much harder.

Please, please, please share your thoughts with me. I need to decide pretty quickly!

The Last Time I'll Be Happy about a Negative Beta

It can't be that often that women call the results line at a fertility clinic month after month and are elated to hear that their beta is negative. But that's been my lot of late, and yesterday was no exception. So (in our minds if not Dr. Reserved's) Cait and I are clear to start trying again. Wahoo!

Other RE News
Nurse Cheery is back, praise the gods. I poked my head into her office yesterday and told her about the missing sperm, and she immediately took charge of the situation, assuring me she'd get it taken care of. (She is, of course, blaming the bank while the bank blames the clinic - but THEY can sort that out, not me!). I'll believe it when I see the vial in my hand or the credit on our account, but it's nice to have someone giving this the attention it deserves.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Sanity has left the building

Now that I am in the cycle where we hope to inseminate, I've gotten just a wee bit obsessed with a touch of manic-depressiveness to spice things up. I was not particularly looking forward to this cycle before it got here - it just seemed like a big Nyah-Nyah from the universe: "A year ago this month you were trying for the first time. Here we are again and look where it's gotten you!" Then when I got my period yesterday, I was startled to discover how excited I was. The excitement didn't last all day as I then started to get even more wound up than I've been about timing. Today I've swung betweeen nervous, excited, scared, frustrated, irritated and pleased (with one or two thoughts about work squeezed in around the edges). All of these emotions have played themselves out on a background of worry.

Especially since we are technically starting against medical advice, I worry about any little thing. Since I started having regular cycles again (after the long stretch of no bleeding followed by seemingly endless spotting), my periods have been heavier. I never had particularly heavy bleeding, so this is still within the realm of normal - I mean, I'm not gushing or becoming anemic, but they're distinctly heavier than I've ever had before. If there are any molar pregnancy sisters out there (Hi Ana!), did your cycle change much after your PMP? What about the rest of my fellow miscarriers? Do you think it's something to worry about? Oh, and while I'm at it, does anyone have any ideas on convincing my body to move up my ovulation date a day or two? ;)

Opinions and advice welcome!

Saturday, May 14, 2005


Remember my neighbor? Well, I've decided to refer to him now as the "Prick Upstairs" or P.U. for short. P.U. and I have had another nasty round of confrontations, about which the only good thing I can say is that they were precipitated indirectly by his plans to move. (If you want the full story, read the long version.)

This Is How Badly I've Got It
Today I watched my friend's baby while she went to a meeting for the morning. He needed to nap, so I borrowed a co-sleeper/packnplay from my upstairs neighbor (NOT P.U. - the neighbor directly above us who is a good friend and a single mother by choice). Her daughter sleeps in her crib now, so the cosleeper's been packed away for a couple of months.

When I set it up, I discovered a sheet stuffed in a side pocket. As I pulled it out, I noticed that it still had the wonderfully indescribably teeny baby smell. I offered it to Cait to sniff, too, and we both had a moment of bliss.

But that's not bad enough. Later today, after the adorable, chubby-legged and gummy-grinned boy had been reunited with his mother, I wandered upstairs and had to fight off the temptation to pull out the sheet and smell it again.

This Is How Badly Cait's Got It
(guest mini-post by Cait, dictated to Jen)
My class of four and five year olds is doing a unit on animals that come from eggs, and in our classroom we've been observing caterpillars as they grow and change. On Thursday I got to work early because my class was going on a field trip and I had lots to prepare. When I peeked over at my chrysalides to see how they were doing, I saw that the first butterfly had emerged and was quietly hanging on the side of the enclosure waiting for its wings to dry. I of course immediately called Jen to say "I'm a butterfly mama!" Then, ignoring all the work that I had to do to get ready for the day, I made sugar water to feed it and called every passerby into the classroom to observe my baby butterfly. All done on the verge of tears.

Somebody get us a baby, quick!

Top 10 Worst Dressed
You know your wardrobe is in bad shape when you need to get pregnant in order to dress better.

In the last couple of weeks before the miscarriage, two of my friends gave me their maternity clothes as I was beginning to have trouble fitting into my clothes. I never wore any of them, and they sat in a bin in the corner of the bedroom for months. A couple of weekends ago I was finally able to deal with them, and I sorted through them to see what I might someday want, organized them, wrapped them up, and put them in the basement for storage. I discovered that my maternity wardrobe will be larger, more varied, and more fashionable than my current clothing.*

*In my defense, I hate to shop and I am stingy. I would never go buy myself 20 different tops, several dresses, and an array of jeans, shorts, and pants.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Have Sperm, Will Travel?

(not a blog title I ever thought I'd write!)

Cait and I were discussing the logistics of the upcoming cycle, and realized that this could be very, very interesting. As I think I've mentioned before, my sister is graduating at the end of the month, and a large entourage (parents, us, friends of the family and one of their daughters) are going to New Hampshire for the festivities. Wouldn't you know, the dates of the trip line up quite obnoxiously with my likely ovulation. First cycle in ten damn months we get to try, and we'll be out of town. With. My. Family.

Oh, and we're flying there, since we have to be back in town for a wedding Sunday night. Generally, I'm happy to fly instead of driving 10 hours, but one advantage to driving is you can take anything you want in the car. Such as a liquid nitrogen tank. Whereas I'm not sure but I think they're not really kosher on planes. So that leaves us with the dry ice option, and that brings along its own delightful set of complications. How much dry ice do we need? How long will it last? Where can we buy more in New Hampshire? What will the conversation at the security station in the airport be like? ("What's in the cooler, ma'am?" "Oh, just some sperm.")

Shit. As I was typing this, Cait said, "Can you even take dry ice on a plane?" and I googled it. Dry ice, yes. Human fluids (outside of humans), not so fast. Transporting tissue or bodily fluids requires adhering to a bizarre and arcane set of regulations. And I don't think my little cooler with dry ice from the packy store and a ziplock bag with the vial in it are going to make it.

Our options are disappearing faster than matter into a black hole.

We could buy more sperm and have it shipped to my sister. Ha ha. At boarding school. Ha ha ha. Where she's already been kicked out once and nearly a second time. Ha ha ha ha. Ok, forget that.

We could fake terrible illness and fly up a day later - again, only if the timing works out. That buys us one extra day, at the cost of my mother's considerable ire. Which could be assuaged by the truth, but we don't want the pressure of family knowing that we're insemming again.

We could get really lucky on the timing and not have a problem.

Or we can miss the first cycle in ten months.

Fuck. (Oh, yeah, that won't work.)

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Kick off your shoes and stay a while

Welcome to everyone coming over from Julie's list. Feel free to poke around. We're still in limbo here but soon to be back on the TTC train (c'mon period!) later this month.

Comments are not only welcome, but encouraged! :)

The somewhat short version, for the newcomers: we started inseminating with frozen donor sperm last May. Chemical PG on our first attempt, pregnancy on the third (with ultrasound showing heartbeat during the 8th week). However, at the 11 week midwife exam, she could not hear a heartbeat with the Doppler. She blamed it on my tipped uterus (oh, and the "fluff" on my stomach - her word, not mine) and had us come back a week later. Still no audible HB. Ultrasound followed: no heartbeat. D&C five endless days later. A week and a half after that came the news that this was no ordinary miscarriage, but a molar pregnancy. Much chaos, many, many blood draws, two methotrexate injections and 6 months later, I finally reached a negative beta at the beginning of March. Despite our stubborn doctor's opposition, we believe that we're good to go after a 3 cycle wait, so we'll be insemming at the end of this month or beginning of June.

So we're twiddling our thumbs, counting the days, and... what was that other thing? Oh, yeah, trying to find our lost sperm(!).

On a more serious note, send some positive vibes and healing energy my friend Jenny's way. She's in the midst of ectopic #2. It just sucks.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

This One's for Julie*

Yesterday I wore white underwear.

This may not seem worth writing about, but it was the first time since October 6 of last year. It's a bizarre thing, but I have been unable to wear anything other than black panties (eew, I hate that word -panties- it sounds so euphemistic and girly) since the D&C. It started out as a practical measure, due to endless bleeding, but evolved into an odd statement/security blanket. Somehow the dark fabric was a sign that all was not well in my twat. The black camouflage acted as a talisman to ward off additional evil. (Hitchhiker fans will note that this is not unlike the defensive strategy of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal: If you can't see it, it can't see you.) And of course, it stood as symbol of loss.

However, when I went to get dressed yesterday morning, I saw that all of my requisite black underwear had had migrated to Mt. NevaDoDaLaundree and was unlikely to return anytime soon. Even the desperation underwear, one random pair of gray panties (yes, my entire underwear wardrobe consists of plain white, black, and gray jockey bikinis - Cait, who matches her underwear color to her outfit, thinks I'm nuts) was gone. So I picked up one of the many white pairs that have sat forlornly in the drawer for seven months and got dressed.

I know, I know, this is not the type of event that sets the AP wires humming and brings out the news vans (and thank god, since neither I nor my underwear wish to be on the news). But it is significant. It appears that my crotchety crotch is ready to move on. There have certainly been other times since the miscarriage that the black underwear supply has run out, causing great anxiety and leading me to creative/repulsive responses such as

  • staying in pajamas until I had washed and dried a load of darks
  • turning my current underwear inside out
  • or hell, just wearing it a second day (and with that confession, my site stats plummet...).

Yesterday, by comparison, I merely noted the dearth of doleful drawers and took what was available. I didn't even realize the significance of the event until about mid-day.

Odd milestone that it is, I'm glad to have reached it. The mind-crotch connection is a powerful thing, and I would not have wanted to inseminate with a grumpy cooter. If my body were still mourning the loss of the last pregnancy, I would be worried that it might fight another conception. I'm taking this as a sign that my body and my subconscious are now ready to try again (and just in time, as we're planning to start again next cycle).

Or maybe I should just get some new underwear. Feel free to suggest a new color and why you think it's a good choice.

*President of the "Crotch In Mourning" fan club

Friday, May 06, 2005

Drama Update

Sperm: still missing - probably the fault of the RE's office. not sure how to proceed. quite pissed.

Sister: back at school. graduating. probably still boinking drama teacher.

Drama teacher: still employed. don't ask me, talk to my mother.

Mother: still kinda crazy.

Beta: still zero

Cola additction: under control - down to 1 or less per week. thanks for all the tips you shared! i tried most of them at one point or another.

Pyrex bowl: still wonderful!