Thursday, December 11, 2008

random thoughts

I don't care about Ricky Martin's twin sons. Anyone want to form a class action law suit for the "emotional distress" caused by this headline?

Cooper got some burs stuck in his fur last night, and decided to eat them. He was then dry heaving / coughing ... poor little guy ... such a small brain ... like father, like son.

We've decided not to talk to people who have ever had anything to do with pregnancy. That includes our parents.

This was a really nice comment:
I'm so sorry, I thought this was going to be it as well. You guys hold on tight to each other.

When my husband and I were trying and it wasn't happening, he told me that God would not put the desire in your heart to be a parent if he wasn't going to come through with it. I tried to remember that. Surely enough, His timing was perfect.

I know it's hard to find solace in the words of someone who is on the other side of the tracks now, but I pray that you have peace in your hearts and remember that God's promises are true. He would never lie.

Thanks for that kjames106

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Really disappointed

That last post was factual - she started, exactly on the day that we were supposed to call the office. Amazing how regular her cycles are. And amazing how disappointed I am. I know, I know - I was getting all proclaimy and cocky about a month ago - it was somewhat sarcastic, but it was mostly sincere - I had a really good feeling about our odds this month. Clearly that doesn't matter. So - our dilemma remains the same - I want my wife to get pregnant. I have sex with her. But she doesn't get pregnant. Doctors test her blood and look at her anatomy with ultrasonic equipment. And it still doesn't work. I've masturbated into no less than 10 plastic cups. Nothing. Young girls at front desks have taken my samples to back rooms, spun them around in circles, added some purple die, then inserted said medium into my wife - a lot! And no dice.

We're going to try another IUI this month, now that the hope is utterly and completely gone - after that, we're going to talk with the Dr. to determine next steps. We're thinking we may have come full circle with IVF again. How exciting for us.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Not this month

Merry Christmas. My wife started her period today. Did yours? Well that's nice - what's that you say? You're pregnant again? Oh, congratulations. How nice for you.

Oh, what's that? You want me to congratulate my sister who just had her second baby yesterday? Okay - I'll be sure to let her know. Oh - and yes, I will tell her that you think her other son is so cute, and that you feel bad for her having to manage two children. You're right - it must be really difficult. But yes, I'm sure she's soooo happy to not be pregnant anymore - she looked so uncomfortable!

Yes, I heard about the two cousins who happen to be sisters who are pregnant with due dates 4 days apart. That's really exciting news - really happy for them. And yes, I heard about the other cousin who had a "vanishing twin", but remains nice and pregnant with her second child. Going to be great when all those kids are running around at family functions, isn't it? I'm thinking of buying a nice pair of soccer cleats, or some spears for those occasions ... oh, you couldn't hear me? Sorry, it was nothing anyways - never mind. When are we going to start trying? Oh, you know - we'll get there soon I'm sure ... we'll keep you posted, douche bag.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Get'n ready

December 9th is the date we're counting down to - 5 days away. In recent weeks, 6 little follicles squirted their eggs into my wife's reproductive organs, to meet an angry mob of centrifugally selected, zombie-headed, tangled up sperm (mine) Somewhere in the dark we're hoping at least a pair of them combined, and that they have since embedded into the plush, downy, progesterone-fueled uterine lining. Sounds cozy in there. If I were an egg, I'd probably give one of my sperm a shot, out of sympathy, and due to a lack of a better option.

It should be noted that this batch of sperm were manufactured on German soil. No doubt this resulted in a highly precise, intelligent, demanding team of tacticians with a complete and absolute lack of sense of humor. They will march into the uterus and drive straight into the egg, but will likely go right through the other side, through the wall of the uterus to fulfill bigger ambitions, moving towards the heart or brain instead (much more strategic pieces of anatomical real estate)

There have been no funny signs or symptoms this month. We're past all of that anyways - we're too experienced to fall victim to falsely raising our hopes due to a sore nipple here, or discharge there. We just roll calmly ahead, with a sliver of hope, and a mountain of doubt, preparing for the trend to be continued. We're hopeful though (after all, I've guaranteed a pregnancy this month ... next month, I will proclaim the certainty of failure, then the month after that I will predict something in between) But really, we have reason to be optimistic about our next 4 months, given our post-endo status, detection of 6 mature follicles, and progesterone supplementation.

If it doesn't work, at least I'll be home for the holidays. I'm in the final 1.5 weeks of my German project. It has been the longest 3 months on record - and I miss my wife, and Cooper terribly. Being home will more than offset another failed month ... but it would also amplify the excitement of finally breaking through. I hope that it's the latter, and not the former. What a sweet Christmas it would be ...

Friday, November 28, 2008


It's 4:00 a.m., Eastern time - 10:00 a.m. where I am. The day after Thanksgiving. My wife is in line at Kohl's, with her sister, joining the hordes of Black Friday shoppers. She's never done it before, and I think it's sort of funny / crazy that she's actually out there.

Update on our progress: None - my wife is just taking progesterone supplements, vaginally, until December 9th. She also gave herself another shot yesterday (same stuff as used for the trigger, which supposedly further elevates levels of progesterone) So, it's wait and see some more.

Everything that follows is unrelated to fertility, and purely editorial.

I spent my Thanksgiving working, in Germany. Not an ideal way to spend the holiday, but really all I missed was my wife, and my dog. We talked on the phone a bit about Thanksgiving dinner, and why it's such a big deal. We agreed that it really isn't that big of a deal ... here's why: Turkey is not good. It is boring, and when you really think about it, it tastes bad. At least some parts of it do (i.e. white meat) If you eat just a piece of white turkey meat, and judge it's flavor subjectively, you'll likely say it doesn't taste good. Turkey's place in the food chain is that of a low fat alternative to better meats, like beef and pork - it's a filler. To use it as the focal point of the most overindulgent meal of the year is sort of stupid, and inefficient. All sorts of effort is spent on creating a supporting cast to prop up the dead weight focal point that is the turkey. Stuffing, gravy and cranberries are only there to make the turkey worth eating. Give me a cheeseburger any day.

Or maybe this is just a way for me to feel better about not being there - tune in this time next year to hear my rant about how Thanksgiving dinner is the greatest meal ever.

Wishy washy, I am.

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Counts

Sample of 75 million sperm with 60% motility.

My dear wife had a good deal of cramping on the morning of our procedure - we think it was the follicles being fired from ovary to uterus. We speculated that, given our luck, two follicles were probably emitted at the same time, one from each ovary. The follicles, having been emitted at near light speed would then collide in her uterus causing a firey explosion, taking out all sperm in the surrounding area. My wife's uterus was likened to a cyclotron.

Or maybe the eggs tumbled gently down into position where finally, after 2+ years of doing this dance, they managed to coordinate with their sperm partners. Babies!

Final day is December 9th - that's the day when we should call the office if flow has not started (down there)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Follicles - Part 3

The office called - protocol is as follows:

Trigger shot administered at 7:00 p.m. tonight - this poses a dilemma as my wife has class at that time, which will require her to slip into a bathroom at precisely 6:58, and self-administer the shot. She has completely melted down in past attempts at giving herself shots and the timing of this one, being critical, allows no margin for melt downs. I volunteered to drive to where she is to give her the shot in my car (which would kind of be like a quickie, right?) but she is pledging to be strong and do it on her own. I love that girl.

Tomorrow we abstain, then Saturday morning we go into the office to frollick with cups (me) and to have have a baster thrust unto thee (wife)

There are 6 follicles that should be at or about the size we need them to be. The lady on the phone told my wife that if it results in multiples we might have to have a discussion about terminating one or more. I say the hell with that ... the real decision is just to pick which channel we want our TV show to be on.

Follicles - part 2

One measures over 18mm, and three others are at 15mm ... they said they usually like to trigger as soon as one gets to 18mm, so we are expecting to do so tonight with IUI tomorrow morning. But, can't we wait until the 15mm triplets get to proper size as well - I hope so (assuming they need to get that big to be "ripe")

More later - until then, I will be watching Detroit get erased from the map.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


The ultrasound tech told her that there were at least 3 in the left ovary, and at least 1 in the right ... not sure how ovaries work, but I thought only one ovary released eggs each month ... either way, there is more than one, which is good news because now my sperm will have a higher chance of running into an egg when they take their wrong turns.

She's back in for an ultrasound, and blood work this morning. Hoping they provide an estimate of when we will do the trigger shot (we're thinking tonight, or tomorrow, which would mean IUI tomorrow or Friday morning)

I didn't write about this yet, but I thought I'd share - when I was in France last weekend I attended a mass at the Cathedral Notre Dame - a beautiful Catholic church in Paris. I don't know what it was, but I was sort of taken in by the place when I saw it on a tour the day before, thus compelling me to trek from hotel to church on Sunday morning. Anyways, while I was in mass (which was said in all sorts of languages that I don't understand) I looked up and saw a banner ... I could only see half of it, but that which I could see contained the word "Annee" .... if you go way back into my blogging history, I bet you can find a post that details the name we like for a girl - Annie. Weird ...

I know the word Annee is French for something completely different from how I interpreted it, but still - weird. I'm not a superstitious guy ... but maybe I am ...

Monday, November 17, 2008

In U.S.

Back home for this week ... always nice to take a breather from the project, and from the constant routine of checking into new hotel, unpacking, working 14 hours a day, cleaning exploded hair gel off of other bathroom items, packing, moving to new hotel, traveling to strange Euro city by weekend, not knowing how to do basic tasks like pay for food, get taxi, ask for bathroom, etc. Life becomes quasi-normal this week ... then I return to Germany next Sunday evening.

We are going on day 4 of our shots - so far the blood work has revealed adequate levels of stimulant, so we're on track. She goes in for an ultrasound tomorrow morning ... hoping for more than one follicle this time, and a better idea of when we'll do our IUI (likely to be late in the week)

I'll keep you posted ... enjoy the next several posts because, remember, this is the end of the road for us. We're going to be pregnant for sure in about three weeks.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Next round

This next round is going to be the one - here's why:
  • Because the endometriosis surgery was only recently completed - we have only one cycle completed since
  • Our only post-endo cycle was conservatively medicated, resulting in only one follicle
  • Progesterone deficiency was also recently detected (I think we have ~3 cycles of progesterone supplemented work behind us)
  • Our next cycle will be more heavily medicated, likely resulting in multiple follicles, thereby increasing our odds
  • My wife is young, and has very regular cycles
  • Our Dr. said my sperm is fine ...
  • I'm going to be home, and we're doing an IUI next week (shots start this Wednesday)
So, I'll check back in later to tell you that my wife is pregnant. Don't go anywhere.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Losing streak

Our string continues - but not before a tease. In a normal cycle, she would have "started" on Friday, Saturday at the latest. So, when Sunday rolled around and flow had not yet commenced, our naive minds started to take the bait. And when Sunday evening came with no change in status, we were letting our minds venture into dangerous territory. Then, I received an e-mail from my wife stating the inevitable:
After the 800th wipe, the last one had a nice pink line of blood on it. Not pregnant.
Quite literally a losing streak.

So, that brings us to, oh let's see, somewhere around 30 cycles with no success. Impressive, no?

Friday, November 7, 2008

Guest post - from my wife

Here's the text of an e-mail I got from my wife this morning. She has been dutifully e-mailing me every night before she goes to bed - when my Blackberry alarm goes off in the morning I immediately check my Yahoo e-mail, and there's always a message from her (it's as close as I can get to waking up next to her - I appreciate her messages so much more than she knows)

Anyways, here it is, published without her permission (she'll be cool with it ... so no worries):
Do you remember me telling you about that girl in my class that has two sets of twins????? Well if not there is a girl in my class that has two sets of twins and in a conversation today during class we somehow got to talking about being put under and eventually it turned into the laproscopy surgery. She said that she had to have it done b/c she had endometriosis, moderately. She was put on clomid and got pregnant with twins a few months later. She then tried for a while the second time and was not getting pregnant so she was put on injections and did IUI and her third round got pregnant again with twins! It gave me hope and made me feel a little better.

It's weird because the last two days I've felt like giving up and just saying screw it. But then when I heard her tell me her story it gave me a little more hope. I think it's God's way of telling me not to give up and that I'm not alone. Now my whole group knows our situation and they are praying for us too. It was kind of a fun class.
I love that girl - it's so nice to see a message with a positive spin on it. It's soooooo easy to get down during this process. We need a little boost to keep our heads above water sometimes, and at minimum, believe better days are coming. I sincerely believe they are, and I'm glad to have my wife share those sentiments.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sarcasm Well Placed

I'm glad I hedged with all that sarcasm in recent posts, because, there have been reports of spotting from my home. Wanna know something? Sometimes a small amount of vaginal progesterone cream obliges gravity and escapes to freedom. The end is in site when the cream turns pink - and it started turning pink this morning.


On a happier note this is pretty funny

Monday, November 3, 2008

(Final?) Countdown

She's going to blow in 6 days, or less. Oh, and her whole boob hurts now - both of them - not just the tips any more.

I hope the sarcasm tied to the mention of every symptom is coming across (maybe it's lost on the black background?)

Can't ... wait ... to ... see ... what ... happens ...

To be clear - if she makes it to Saturday without starting, that's when she goes into the office for a test (or POAS at home)

Friday, October 31, 2008

and, cramps

While on a walk with Cooper, she was taken by intense cramps, which caused her to run for home ASAP. Then, the cramps went away and she felt completely normal. Weird. By cramps I mean period-like cramps. She's over 8 days away from any such activity ... weird. No spotting. Just cramps. And sore nipples. And sore lower back.

An update on myself (unrelated to infertility): Sitting in our office in Zurich, Switzerland as I write this. Snow on the ground. The Alps are out there somewhere beyond the fog. It has been a very intense week including 16+ hour days, and one night, a soggy vending machine sandwich with turkey, curry sauce and CORN! (what is WRONG with Germans? Corn on a sandwich?!?!?) Overall it's been a good experience so far (aside from being so far away from my wife, who I miss terribly - and my dog who is the best person in the world) It's cool to get to see so many parts of Europe. On deck for next weekend? I'm leaning towards Paris. My company has a social function for the guys in the Zurich office this evening - expecting to have some fun, wading through an evening of second-hand smoke, German and Swiss German (one of which is "high" German, not sure which, but no matter, as they all sound the same to me - like gibberish - maybe with enough Pils, I'll begin to comprehend) Tomorrow I'll take a tour of the city, then relax on my own - hopefully a Skype video call with my wife (who looks beautiful even over a low-resolution, low frame rate webcam)

Enjoy the weekend. If you're in Zurich, I'll be the American with the big nose - please feel free to say hello.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Back Soreness

Why is that every physical malady seems to offer a glimmer of hope that pregnancy might be upon us, but we still scramble to find non-pregnancy related causes to justify the symptoms?
  • Sore nipples? - Must be from the new bra (... but, could be from implantation ...)

  • Overly hungry? - Must be from the trauma of an unbalanced work-life balance (... but, could be demand from another hungry cluster of cells inside her uterus, as asinine as that is ...)

  • No appetite? - See last bullet (... or, pre-morning sickness?)
My wife's back has been hurting her for the past several days. Naturally I've attributed this to implantation. What else could it be?

She had similar back pain a few months ago, and we have a feeling it's from the Progesterone. It's worse this time though. Nipple soreness? Yes - she has that too, and it's not from me getting all handsy (as my hands are 4,000+ miles away from her) Clearly, it's way too early to attribute any of these symptoms to pregnancy (as even if she were pregnant, implantation could only have occurred some time in the last 3-4 days) Still, something interesting to note. We have to remember this was a medicated cycle, and all of these symptoms can be attributed to said mediation.

So, it's more wait and see, but the back soreness is definitely from implantation (or, from moving the fall decoration bins from the basement)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

IUI - Done!

We had our IUI this morning. Counts were ~86 million sperm, ~46 million motile ... that's a lot of sperm. Porn selection included Oui, Hustler, Barely Legal and Playboy.

One follicle was detected during ultrasound yesterday, and blood worked detected that my wife had already "surged" - thus the scheduling of our procedure this morning. We were a little concerned that only one follicle was present - isn't the point of a medicated cycle to encourage the growth of multiple follicles? Well, turns out our office starts all of its women out on a standardized dose. Some respond better than others - next time (if there is a next time) they will start my wife out on a higher dose right from the start. She took her first progesterone shot last night (what we thought was the "trigger" shot - turns out, there is no trigger during a medicated cycle!) We obviously need to be more educated on what we're doing, and what we're paying for ... but there is, and should be an inherent level of trust in Doctors. We're hopeful that the elimination of endometriosis will prove to be the last hurdle, and that the single, lonely follicle will mingle with one of my 86 million, and become our baby. We'll see though ...

I'll try to post some more details as they roll in, not that they're that exciting. As it stands now, I will "send reinforcements" into my wife, in wave, after wave, after wave, after wave - will be like the beaches of Normandy, only instead of dead soldiers there will be retarded sperm, flailing around at the cervical entrance.

Back to Germany next week, for three weeks this time ... hoping for positive news while I'm out of town, which I can celebrate with some hefeweizen and cold cuts.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Update on Medicated Cycle

We're getting close to T-day (T for trigger)

My wife was told to increase her dose of Folistim due to her levels being low ... she has since increased her dose, and a blood test confirmed that the change brought her levels into the appropriate range. She had an ultrasound this morning that revealed a mature follicle. They also took blood, and will call us later in the day to describe next steps. We're thinking she'll do the trigger shot tomorrow, then we'll do the IUI on Thursday. That should be just about right as I leave the country again on Sunday ... I'll be away for three weeks this time *ouch*

I'll keep you posted.

Other than that, it has been really nice being home, but there's always that thought in the back of my head that it's temporary, and I need to leave again in just under one week. The time will pass quickly, but painfully. This experience, only 25% complete, has given me a very healthy appreciation for what I really value in life - it has put my priorities in perspective. I will never take for granted an evening with my wife. It is my favorite way to spend time.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


In my absence, my wife is having to do her shots by herself. A brief note from her e-mail this morning:
"I hate doing my shots. It took three times before I got it right. The first time I went too slow and just made a little puncture in my leg and the second time I started to do it and then I stopped quickly and left another puncture. Finally I got it on the third try. I shake so bad it's hard to do. It sucks. It doesn't even hurt. It's just the thought."

Overall she's doing pretty well, but she said she feels a little nauseous the past few days ... not sure if the shots have anything to do with it or not. I just hope her ovaries are cranking out a whole shitload of eggs. I've been taking my vitamins, and have added one called ArginMax, from GNC ... not sure if it exactly the supplement I should be taking, but it has all the standard antioxidants, and other sperm-producing facilitators.

I'm going home in two days, and I can't wait to see my wife, and my dog.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Another bummer

One of the highlights of my three month assignment in Europe was to be the opportunity for my wife to come over for a week - we were planning to spend a weekend in Paris, and some other nice European cities. It was to be a very nice time, and all at the expense of my company. All for naught though, as our bad luck has struck again. Turns out when you're on follicle-stimulating drugs, you are advised not to travel internationally. Yes, that's right - our great good luck has struck again, and on no finer day than my wife's birthday.

I can't even begin to describe how bad I feel for her, and how utterly disappointed I am that the oasis that was to be this visit in the middle of our three month stretch, has now gone dry ... I hate this phrase, but I'll use it - it's not fair.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy Birthday

It's my wife's birthday today - she's 28! Let me tell you a bit about her:
  • She is the most beautiful woman in Southeast Michigan, and in the world (way too pretty for me)
  • She has a great heart
  • I miss her terribly
  • She is turning 28 ... not very old at all.
  • She has made me the happier than I ever thought I could be
  • I love her more and more every day
So if you see her, tell her happy birthday.

The Appointment

My wife was at the Doctor's office for over two hours - she was there so long that I started to get worried about her. Here's what she did, and what she learned:
  • Her uterine lining is perfectly fine (recall they took a piece of it while they were in there with their laser beams, and cameras)
  • She is starting a medicated cycle ... not sure which follicle-inducing medication brand she is taking, but it comes in a little pen just like the one we had during IVF - only this time, she only has to take one shot per day, and given my absence, she'll have to do it herself (I'm so sorry sweetheart!)
  • She will take these shots for 7 - 10 days before taking a trigger shot (which I'm told requires a much smaller needle than the 2.5 incher we used during IVF) Her eggs will be dropped into her fallopian tubes, en route to a few million swimming, dual-headed monsters
  • Via ultrasound, her follicular development will be monitored, allowing the doctor to precisely identify when the eggs are ripe, and the trigger shot should be administered(7 - 10 days, as mentioned a few bullets ago)
  • Once trigger is given, we conduct an IVF 12 (or 24?) hours later
  • She had blood drawn, to check that everything's within spec
  • I have to alter my travel plans so I can be home to make a deposit into a sterile cup ... 4,000 miles of flying, to get my member precisely inside of the plastic cup that is probably already in the doctor's office (think of the marvelous machines we have that can allow such things to happen!) I'm just hoping my project manager will approve ...
  • She will take progesterone following the procedure, and will likely join me in Europe for some sight-seeing, and touring
That's all for now ... I hope the post was informative enough.

Ich Bin Allein

I woke up to the German version of "All By Myself" this morning - how fitting.

I'm sitting in the Berlin airport awaiting my flight that is indefinitely delayed. Great start to the week.

My wife will meet with Dr. M this morning to discuss our next cycle in more detail. I'll post an update later in the day with the results.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Only in dreams

Had a dream last night ... a little corny, but nice.

We were with my wife's family - all of her Italian cousins were huddled in a living room, gossiping (naturally) My wife was sort of laying on her side on the floor, and the topic of her trying to get pregnant came up. There were some questions from a few of her women cousins like "So .... do you have any news for us?" I was watching from the opposite side of the room, thinking "Come on ... do you have to ask that? - you know what the answer will be." Then, my wife responded, smiling "Well ... I don't know ... maybe ... " As the word "maybe" left her lips, I took on a puzzled expression ... got up, moved cautiously across the room, suppressing the unavoidable surge of hope as I awaited the rest of her response ... could it be? Why didn't she tell me? No, cant be ... she's playing.

As I got closer to her you could feel the tension rising in the brief pause before she exclaimed "I'm pregnant!" and the whole room erupted into cheer, me included. There was a big embrace, and every happy emotion possible all at once. I even think there was confetti and a marching band playing some sort of fight song.

Wow ... it was only a dream, but what a feeling.

If, and when ... if, and when.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

What's going on ...

Locked in a room with 11 Germans and Swiss. Very little English is being spoken - mostly German, which makes it easy to tune out (as I hardly know any), but is sort of isolating. They all smoke, and old cigarettes aren't my favorite aroma (although I smoked in college)

New projects are exciting and unnerving at the same time. Setting goals, expectations, responsibilities, work plans, financial calculations, etc., etc. in a short period of time while minimizing overlaps and working 80+ hours is brutal --- but, it's also educational. Working with people that don't speak your language every day, have been working with the client for 3 months already, on their turf is equally brutal, but also, educational.

I will spend the next two weekends here in Europe by myself. I have a few friends in Germany, but am unsure if I will see them. I will definitely take advantage of this opportunity and do some sightseeing ... just not sure where I'm going to go yet.

After that, I'll go home for a week, and engage in baby-making with my wife. Then, I come back to Germany with my wife, who will stay with me for a week. One week after she leaves, I will once again return to the U.S. for a week, then, back to Germany for the final 3-week stretch, leading up to the holidays, at which point I will take 2 weeks off (and maybe more)

Whew! Going to be a crazy couple of months ... spending this much time apart is far from our first choice, but it's a hell of an opportunity for me professionally, and for us to tour Europe. We're definitely going to make the best of it.

You know how they say not thinking about getting pregnant can help you get pregnant? Maybe this project is just what the Doctor ordered ...

Monday, October 6, 2008

Checking in, from far away

I'm in Germany, and I miss my wife.


A little under three weeks until I see her again - she will ovulate sometime during that week ...

She will have an appointment with Dr. M to discuss our next steps on 10/13. Until then, I'm toiling away in Germany, missing my wife and dog.

Monday, September 29, 2008

It's happened

I've been working in consulting for over one year now, and fortunately, have managed to avoid out-of-town projects. That day has come to an end.

I was notified this morning that I will be working on a project in Stuttgart, Germany for the next 2.5 months. Ouch.

My management team has promised they'll accommodate our conception efforts ... I hope they'll follow through on it. I'll be sure they're held to it, because I'll be damned if we're going to derail our efforts for anything. My wife is a puddle of tears ... and I am on the brink myself. I knew this came with the territory of a consulting job, but was hoping I would luck out and dodge the bullet. Professionally, this will be great experience ... working internationally is something I'll need to do at one point or another. But personally, this is the last thing I'd ever want to do. I love my wife, and I enjoy her company. I like coming home to her every night, sleeping in the same bed and waking up together. For the next three months, we'll have to make do with phone conversations ... and a 6 hour time difference. There will be trips home, but they'll be much less frequent than either of us would like.

Wish us luck. The holidays will be here before you know it (hopefully)

The Aftermath

What started smoothly evolved into a bit of a mess over the weekend - literally. My wife took some of her Tylenol w/ Codine on an empty stomach. The result: vomit-inducing stomach cramps. She spent the majority of Friday evening in front of the toilet, puking. This was followed by an extreme case of constipation. Not good. With the help of Milk of Magnesia, she's managed to pull through, and is feeling much better today. I think she's through the woods now. Her incisions are healing nicely - the one on her belly button is very itchy, and the other one is a bit tender still, but other than that, she's feeling good. She's back on her feet and going about her daily routine just as she always did.

She has an appointment with Dr. M on October 13th. Not sure if they're planning to call us with the results of the lining check, or if they'll just talk to us about it at the appointment. We'll see.

That's all for now.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

End of the Tunnel?

Some random musings follow:

Now that we've been diagnosed with, and temporarily cured of endometriosis, should we get excited and hope that we can de-board the infertility bus at the next stop? I don't think so ... we've been through enough in the past two years to know that premature excitement and anticipation can be your wost enemy. Aside from "go on a vacation", the recommendation of "not caring" is the most frequently lent piece of advice we've received. Don't get me wrong - we're happy that we have a culprit at which we can point fingers, and even happier that the culprit has temporarily been handcuffed, but we're by no means convinced that Mr. endo doesn't have friends lurking in the background. But we'll see. At least we have a reason to be hopeful, and a patient, compassionate Doctor.

Might the endo have caused our IVF cycle to fail? (I've read that prostaglandins - hormones emitted by endometriosis - can interfere with implantation, essentially tricking the ovaries into thinking they're at a part of their cycle that they are not) Maybe. Doesn't really matter now, but it's hard to overlook the careless, and less-than-thorough approach of our first Doctor.

We watched the video of the procedure - you can see inside my wife's abdomen, where her uterus, tubes and other inner bits are on display. You can see the endometriosis in the form of little dark, sometimes white, marks on her ovaries and abdominal wall. Then you can see the little red laser that burns them off, leaving sear marks in their place. They also did another dye test while in there ... you can also see this on the video, as blue fluid pours from the ends of the fallopian tubes. They took a sample of my wife's uterine lining ... we'll get the results of this biopsy in a few days. I'll make my next post upon receipt of results.

As always, thanks for the comments and wishes. They are very much appreciated.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


My wife had her laproscopy this morning (pronounced la-PROS-co-pee by one of the Doctors) The good Dr. M found stage 2 endometriosis in there, and blasted it away with his laser beam. He described endometriosis as having 4 stages, with 4 being the worst. The odds of getting pregnant are inversely related to the stage of endometriosis ... so my wife's stage 2 was not too severe, but it was enough, in the Doctor's opinion, to inhibit pregnancy.

It's a funny thing - we're thrilled that she had this disorder. If we had left with an "all clear" diagnosis, our evening would have been a long one filled with "where do we go from here?" and "what the fuck is the problem?" As it is, we are quite optimistic about our chances in the upcoming months, having just knocked down a major hurdle.

My wife will meet with the Doctor in three weeks to discuss next steps, which according to our latest meeting with him, will include shots (i.e. a "medicated" cycle)

My wife is doing very well. She is a bit tender, and groggy, but doing very well. The incisions are incredibly small - one is inside her belly button, and is hardly discernible ... the other is located a bit more south, and is ~2-3 cm across. She has some shoulder pain as some of the air they inflated her with is floating upwards. She just took her first Tylenol with Codine ... and she's having trouble peeing (I think it's in her head) Overall, she is doing well. No showering for 2 days (gross) and no sex for three days.

Anyhow, it was a successful procedure, and not nearly as difficult as my wife feared it would be. We'll keep you posted ---

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

9:30 a.m. - Tomorrow

We have to be at the hospital at 9:30 a.m. tomorrow. I'll try to post an update tomorrow evening when we get home to let you all know what we've learned (after I eat my sub)

The staff at our clinic is incredible - we received a call yesterday from the billing department. They looked into our insurance on their own, and discovered that our procedure will likely be covered! Two things are positive here: 1.) They called, 2.) They looked into the insurance coverage on their own ... I've never been to a medical office that has been so thorough. Very much appreciated, and completely unlike the first clinic we worked with. Even though we're still not pregnant, our decision to switch clinics is validated with each iteration at the new place.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Laproscopy Scheduled

I'm taking the day off work Wednesday to escort my wife to her laproscopy appointment. She met with Dr. M this morning, who described the procedure ... two small incisions will be made, just below the navel. They will go in with a camera and laser, blasting away all signs of endometriosis. While in there, the Doctor will biopsy the uterine lining to check for any abnormalities. The whole procedure will be video taped and will take 40 - 60 minutes. We will receive a copy of the video, to relive the memories every September 24th in future years (I'll be making popcorn) After the procedure the Doctor will describe the results to me while my wife spends an hour in recovery. We will then go home for an easy day of relaxation. There's a great sub shop by the hospital ... I really hope we're there near lunch time so we can make a quick stop.

My wife is completely freaked out. Since it is an abdominal surgery, they will put a breathing tube down her throat - she doesn't like the idea of that so much. I keep trying to tell her that she'll be anesthetized, and will not feel a thing ... but it does little to comfort her. My poor wife - such a trooper through all of this infertility BS. I hope she knows how much I appreciate everything she's done, and her patience through all of this. She is an amazing woman. It's not fair, what she has had to deal with ... but we're hoping that this will reveal another piece of the puzzle.

Wish us luck - oh, and I guess it goes without saying - her period started late last week. No pregnancy this month.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My Castle

I am writing this from a castle just outside Berlin. 14 hours of total travel time took me from Detroit to where I currently sit.

My German is limited to only a few words, so I am completely inept ... combine this with a reception staff who barely speaks english, and you end up in a situation like the one I'm in now. I am the only one here. I haven't eaten anything and was hoping there would be a restaurant or something ... but no such luck. I just left my room and stumbled through some dark hallways managing to find two oranges in a little room in the back of the castle. The fridge in my room had a Toblerone bar and two bottles of beer - these are becoming my dinner.

Interesting trip so far.

Update on the infertility front: My wife expects to start her period today or tomorrow ... she can just "feel it" - and she's got a very accurate sense about these things (has been 100% right so far) FYI - this Friday will mark the cycle day on which she started last month, so we're right in the ballpark. Laproscopy, here we come!

Congratulations to Tracy and Scott over at Wonder Twins - their babies were born yesterday. God knows they deserve it ...

Monday, September 15, 2008


If you've been reading me for a while, you know we sold our house a few months back, and that our old house had a track record ... well, I just heard from our realtor that the couple who bought our house are divorcing. Very sad ... they are a young couple too, not unlike my wife and I (if you consider 30 years old to be young)

I can't imagine how hard that would be ... and having just buried themselves in a mortgage while the bottom falls out of the housing market. Yikes. I will keep them in my prayers.

I Am Waiting ...

And so is my wife, for the upcoming PERIOD! (sounds and whistles here to celebrate ... wait, celebrate? Not really ...) She said she "feels like she is going to start" ... we'll see about that sometime in the next several days.

I will be spending the week in Germany for training, so my poor wife will have to suffer the letdown in an empty house. I hate that she has to be alone during a difficult time ... we've been through it, oh, 26 times or so ... but the sting never quite goes away.

Good week to all of you ... will post an update when I learn of our next steps, which will probably include an appointment with our Doctor, and the scheduling of a laproscopy. Anybody know how many months a laproscopy will put us on the bench (i.e. not TTC?) And what is it like - does it hurt? My wife, needless to say, is not overly thrilled about going under the knife ...

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Happy Birthday

... to Cooper. He's one, and is the best dog in the world.

We got him right after our IVF attempt failed - it was one year ago that we began shots for the IVF cycle. Hard to believe.

Cooper helped us through that difficult time. Getting him was the best thing we've ever done - everyone should have a Cairn Terrier.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The #s

Count: 108 million
Motility: 60%

Let the countdown begin - and the shagging.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

IUI Round 4

Positive ovulation test this morning means a stack of porn and sterile cup in my future. Can't wait. IUI #4 is scheduled for tomorrow morning (I'm pretty sure it's number 4 ... could be off by one or two, but, does it really matter?) Same protocol as last month: Femara + IUI + Progesterone

Had a pleasant weekend - was happy to see a beer in the hand of the wife of one of my best friends (no pregnancy announcement, thank goodness) Listened to my sister complain about how hard it is to be pregnant while having a baby. It's understandable, but a bit difficult for my wife to hear as she would love to have such inconvenience in her life. This brings me to an interesting thought ...

To date, I have elected to keep this blog anonymous. The further we go down the road of struggling to get pregnant, however, the more people in our circle of family and friends are becoming aware of our issues. I have thought several times over the past week(s) that it might be interesting for them to read this blog so they would get a sense of what we're really going through. There's a lot that they still don't know ... but upon further review, I have chosen to keep it between you anonymous readers, my wife, and myself. None of my personal acquaintances (aside from a few of my wife's friends) know about this blog. If I were to make it known amongst my family and friends I would have to filter my remarks in consideration of the wide variety of readers who know my wife and I personally. The comment about my sister might get me in trouble, even though she's tough as nails, and is not afraid to speak her mind to anyone and everyone within earshot - she would probably be okay with it, but there are others that would be deeply offended, and would feel the need to comment on everything in defense of their side of the story. It calls into question the purpose of a blog like this - in my opinion, this blog is about getting our side of the story out, unfiltered, and unrefined - as I write, I don't want to worry about how anyone might react, or if feelings might be hurt. The target audience of this blog was, and continues to be people who are going through similar struggles with getting pregnant. I don't want it to become a blog to keep my family informed of where we are in our progress - there are better forums for things like that (such as phone calls, and oral communication ... imagine that) I don't think it's such a good idea to invite the family in - although reading this blog might invoke some sympathy from them, it would create an even larger amount of controversy that would only end up getting us in trouble.

And with that, I've just broken one of my rules: I've tried to strictly limit my posts to the topic of infertility, making a strong effort to avoid blogging about this blog, or blogging about not blogging enough, or blogging about lack of new topics to blog about ... and here I am blogging about why I don't like to blog about blogging. I feel so dirty.

Friday, August 29, 2008

100th post

Who knew? I hoped that I would have transitioned this blog to the "Father-to-be" variety by now, but why would I want to do that? I'm just getting into the groove of this infertility thing, so why should I move on just now that I'm getting so damned good at it?

My wife's cousin announced she is pregnant this week. Yippee.

Off into the weekend ... should be an exciting one. Will spend a nice quiet evening with my wife and dog tonight, perhaps around a bonfire in the back yard, then I will release millions of deformed sperm unto her (my wife, not the dog). Tomorrow, off to see my pregnant sister, and one of my best friends, whose wife will probably announce she is pregnant. Then my sister-in-law will come to stay with us, and we'll watch the Michigan State game (can't wait for college football!) - sis-in-law is probably pregnant too ( ... probably a stretch ... )

In summary: Family stuff during the day while my testes generate subpar product to be sent on their tangled journey at night. Repeat.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Ethan's birthday

Went to our across-the-street-neighbor's-kid's birthday yesterday - Ethan turned five. There was a big inflatable bouncy thing, and children everywhere. We were the only ones without one.

At the party was a "holistic nutritionist" who worked in a clinic offering acupuncture, massage therapy, homeopathic, and other forms of voodoo / witchcraft treatments. We asked her what nutrition is important to people trying to become pregnant - she said women need more fat than they would think. Something to do with more efficient processing of fat-soluble vitamins. So, my wife will consume more butter. And we'll buy some shrunken heads, and rattles, and sage.

After the party we went to Rite-Aid to pick up our Femara prescription.

This cycle will bring us into our third year of trying. Scary to see that in writing.

Thursday, August 21, 2008



And there you have it. So ends the recent flurry of blog posting, hope and progress. Period commenced about an hour ago ... lightly at first, as if not wanting to interrupt the fun.

Protocol will not change next month - we've another round of Femara + progesterone before us. If this one fails, my wife will be laproscoped, inspected and if necessary, cured of endometriosis via laser beams ... after that, we'll commence with medicated IUI cycles, and monitoring.

It was a frustrating, and disappointing month, but at the same time a bit nice. At minimum, we made a small step forward - the progesterone worked, and the spotting stopped. We tasted, ever so slightly, what it might feel like to clear the hurdle of infertility. I allowed myself to consider what it might be like if my wife were pregnant ... it was really nice, and I'll eagerly look forward to getting there, for real, in one future month.

There's always next month! Now I'll take my seat and become a spectator, cheering on the legions of blogging infertile. Go get em team.

The post where I correct misinformation from previous posts / comments

In case you have been following comments from the most recent post, I have to correct something. I've gotten the facts all wrong - my apologies ... here are the accurate figures, as certified by my wife:

  • August 4th: Positive ovulation test

  • August 5th: IUI

  • August 8th: Begin progesterone

  • August 18th: Expected period, but nothing

  • August 19th: Pregnancy test = Negative

So, as you can see, the negative pregnancy test came at least 14 days after ovulation (assuming ovulation was on time, as predicted by the kit)

I'm thinking the chances are slim, but we'll find out tomorrow. I'll post right away after finding out.


Nothin ...


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wednesday: No change

Still no period ...

My wife was unable use the second pregnancy test from the pack of two she purchased because in her excitement to POAS, she dropped it into the toilet. She has a habit of dropping things into toilets, like for example when she dropped our digital camera into the toilet in a Border's bathroom, in Boston. The camera, remarkably, came back to life (after drying for 5 days), but I'm sure it picked up many unwanted passengers along the way.

Either way, my wife has still not started her period, but we're pretty confident the delay can be attributed to progesterone, and not to pregnancy. We'll see on Friday though (if we make it that far)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tuesday Afternoon (Infertile Blogger Acronym Edition)

Wife POAS with a HPT = BFN

Tuesday ...

Still nothing, but our enthusiasm is being held in check by some Googling on "Does progesterone delay your period?" - the answer is a solid yes, but not in all cases. My wife called her nurse at Dr. M's office to inquire further, and the nurse confirmed that progesterone can indeed delay a period, but that my wife should continue taking it until her period starts - OR - until Thursday, when if she still hasn't started (fingers crossed) she should call to schedule a blood test for Friday morning.

Another symptom my wife is experiencing is frequent urination - she has to go twice a night (which is unusual for her - has never happened before) The nurse said that this is unrelated to progesterone ... it could be that her uterus is enlarging due to the embryo inside - OR - her ovaries have swelled due to the Femara, thus displacing her bladder capacity leading to more frequent "urges".

Either way, it's a waiting game ... funny thing is, there are no pregnancy tests left in our house. My wife exhausted her supply last month, and is nervous to go buy another one.

Will keep you posted.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Monday ... and ...

No spotting - still. This is highly unusual. Normally my wife starts spotting on day 23, or so, which was like last week. Then, she usually starts full-fledged period-ing on day 27, which was yesterday ... and at the latest, the morning after day 27 (this morning) As of now (which is right now), she is still keeping all of her uterine linings right up inside her uterus, where they belong.

No matter what happens, the progesterone seems to have done its job. Regardless of the outcome, this is a very big step in the right direction.

I'll keep you posted ...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Dr. Appt.

My wife had her bimonthly appointment with Dr. M to renew her Femara+Progesterone scripts, and consult on our progress. She asked him where we go from here, should our success rate remain consistent (at zero) - he said we should continue with one more month of Femara+Progesterone, and if unsuccessful, proceed with laproscopy (to check for endometriosis) and/or move on with medicated IUI cycles, followed by IVF if necessary. He left the laproscopy optional - it would give us more information, but wouldn't entirely change our approach.

My wife's reaction to the possibility of another go at IVF involved some commentary on our bad experience in our first go around. Dr. M asked "Where did you do your IVF again?" - my wife told him IVF Michigan. Dr. M gave several examples of former patients that had gone through IVF Michigan before ending up in his office - their stories were very similar to ours: Need help getting pregnant, one semen analysis reveals only chance for success to be IVF. The patients in his story ultimately end up pregnant through non-IVF methods. Dr. M told my wife that he doesn't think we should be doing IVF anyways due to our age (we're too young) - it's comforting to know that there are people out there that genuinely want to help in a cost-effective way. Dr. M is a good man, and we're happy to be under his care and counsel.

My wife is supposed to start her period on Monday of next week. She has not started spotting yet - this is a positive step. It appears, for now, that the progesterone is doing its job. I'm sure that the second I hit the "publish" button, small bits of her uterine lining will begin to precipitate. The publish button has a reddish-brown color ... coincidence?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Pain in the Back

My wife is currently experiencing very intense back pain - she's still at least a week away from starting her period and is in the midst of taking Progesterone supplements. Normally she NEVER has back problems ... is there a correlation to infertility/pregnancy? Is this normal?

Friday, August 8, 2008


It's Friday - a perfect day for my wife to shove tubes of Progesterone cream into her vag.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Monday, August 4, 2008

We're Back

We returned from our second honeymoon in Jamaica this past weekend. 7 days of bliss. It was everything we hoped it to be, and more. By comparison, it blew our honeymoon out of the water. It was that good.

Our honeymoon in 2005 was spent at Couples Ocho Rios, at the urging of several family members who had been there previously. We enjoyed the place so much that we decided to go back, only to a different Couples location (Ocho Rios is currently being renovated - it is the oldest Couples destination on the island of Jamaica, known by many of the staff as "The Original", so it needed a bit of updating) We chose Couples Negril, and couldn't be happier about it. The facilities were immaculate, the staff incredible, the food amazing, etc., etc. We didn't do much other than lay by the pool. I managed to play some tennis and ping pong (which I am AWESOME at - I won the tournament handily, and was rewarded with rum. Same held true for tennis, which I sort of suck at, but love - won a bottle of rum for my valiant efforts on the hard courts as well)

We managed to stick to our promise of not talking baby stuff while we were there, but now that we're home, we get to pick up where we left off, and that is with IUI #3 tomorrow morning (wife received a positive ovulation test this morning) She has been taking three Femara pills daily for the past week, and will begin with progesterone supplements three days after today (apparently it can interfere with pregnancy if taken too soon following an IUI) She will have an accupuncture treatment done tomorrow evening as well. We'll carry on with lots of intercourse along the way and hope for a positive outcome.

I will begin trying to rectify some of my bad habits, including overeating, chewing tobacco, drinking more than I should, not exercising and carrying too much stress. My goal is to bring my weight into the ball park of 175 lbs by mid-October (which will require some 20 lbs to be shed). My mind is clear, for the moment, so I am feeling more refreshed at work ... we'll see how long that lasts.

It was a sorely needed vacation, worth every penny. I am normally not keen on spending money on such luxuries, but I am very happy we did. The advice of "just go on a vacation and you'll get pregnant" may not hold true for us, but at least we escaped our infertility situation for a little while. If any of you are considering a trip, I can't recommend Couples Negril highly enough. Go there, and you'll see what I mean.

I'll be back in a few days to provide update on our next round. Thanks to everyone for your comments - I have really enjoyed reading them, along with your blog posts. Hope your own processes are going smoothly.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Infertility Jewelry

I purchased the middle pendant from the photograph at left for my wife, and gave it to her over the past weekend. It is a pomegranate, which symbolizes fertility (actually, the seeds within the pomegranate symbolize the fertility - the rest, I'm not sure, but I thought it was a cool piece)

Vanessa Amalia is the jeweler. She owns and operates a studio in New York City. Her web-site can be found at I e-mailed her to ask a question about the pendant and received a very quick, personalized response, almost immediately - very impressive. I e-mailed her again with a follow-up question and once again received a nice personal response in very short order. Even if I didn't like the piece, I would've ordered it anyway based on the excellent customer service.

My wife LOVED the necklace, and it was really inexpensive. It has a very nice heavy feel to it ... my wife already wants the bracelet and some other stuff from Vanessa's site - we even ordered a horseshoe pendant for my sister-in-law who is currently in the throes of a quarter-life crisis (somewhere in between college graduation and establishing her career / getting comfortable living by herself. She's single, so any of you ... er, wait ... it's unlikely that any of you 3 - 4 men reading this are single - nevermind)

A quote on the pomegranate:
The pomegranate is a magical and historical fruit, portrayed through ancient traditions as a symbol of luck. Its jeweled and abundant seeds promise generous futures, and represent love and marriage, fertility, prosperity, and life - in Greek tradition, pomegranates are often given as wedding gifts to ensure the couple a bountiful future together. The fruit is present in the Bible as well as throughout Greek mythology; Aphrodite, the goddess of love, was known for planting pomegranate trees wherever she went, while Persephone was forever bound to the underworld for eating the pomegranate given to her by Hades.
So guys - this is an easy, inexpensive "just because" gift ... I highly recommend you visit the site.

Failed, again

Spotting started ~3 days later than it normally did - nowhere near the improvement we hoped for with our latest regimen of increased dose of Femara, but is was a slight improvement. Now my wife will commence with a progesterone cream, to be administered 3 days after her positive ovulation test, once a day.

We're off to Jamaica next week where instead of timed intercourse we'll have intercourse all the time, and in place of limiting drink, we'll have rum for breakfast.

Should be a nice trip. Has been a great three years being married to my wife - she is a great person, and I'm lucky to be in her company every day.

Friday, July 11, 2008


My wife just got done with her first acupuncture appointment, and she LOVED IT! I'm trying to get her to write a "guest post" about the experience ...

I've normally considered acupuncture to be included in the same category as other voodoo / witchcraft / hippy "alternative medicines" like homeopathy, chiropractic and massage therapy. But, if my wife likes it, and it relaxes her, and improves her view on her prospects for becoming pregnant, then I'm all for it.

I'm going home for lunch and won't be surprised if my wife has dreadlocks, is wearing a tie-dyed skirt, smoking a joint while a patchouli incense stick burns in the hand of a Buddha figurine.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

A Poem - To My Sperm

So white and small, and all screwed up,
You started your day in a sterilized cup.
Playboys, Penthouse and Hustlers galore,
Assisted your release just in time for,
A walk down a hallway, on our way to see,
A nurse who would take you away from me,
In a rubber-gloved grip, you'll go to a lab,
Where you'll move into a syringe, and prepare for a stab,
Up through the vag, and through the cervix,
Into the uterus you'll fly in a fix.
Here you'll hang out for as long at it takes,
For my wife to ovulate.
When you see the egg, you'll swim like hell,
And if you get through, we'll think that's swell.
Some dual-headed, and others two-tailed,
We'll hope in two weeks that you will not have failed.
So relax while you can in your warm little vial,
Because soon enough you'll begin your trial.
Now ends my poem about insemination,
I hope real soon we'll get lots of congratulation.

The end

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

On Deck - IUI #2 (then Jamaica)

Wife took an ovulation test this morning and as it usually is on day 10 of her cycle (or somewhere around day 10, can't remember the exact day), it was positive - she's getting really good at forecasting the day on which she will get a positive test. She called it early last week saying "I should ovulate next Tuesday, putting us at Dr. M's office on Wednesday morning for our second IUI" - smart girl, my wife.

Her cycles are incredibly regular - I guess this is a very positive thing, and the fact that she is actually ovulating is even better. Also, the fact that she is only 27, and I about to turn 30 gives us plenty of time. So what, precisely, is the problem? Who knows ... maybe it was this progesterone thing all along? We'll find out if our increased dose of Femara will do the trick in a few weeks. Tomorrow morning we will go in for our second IUI - wonder if they got any new "Barely Legals" in over the past month? Can't wait to find out ... sooooooo excited.

We will go to Jamaica for a week at the end of this month for our third wedding anniversary - going to Couples Negril (we went to Couples Ocho Rios for our honeymoon and needless to say, we really enjoyed it, thus our return trip) It is a trip that is sorely deserved, especially for my poor wife ... until then I will be working at a feverish pace to wrap up my current assignment so I can make a clean break from work for a while - I need a break (have been putting in ~14 hour days for at least a month now). We're hoping my wife will be pregnant when we go ... and if not, we'll drown our sorrows in rum.

Hope you all are having a good summer.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Not, again

Wife "started" on Friday. Fuckin eh ...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Follow-up with Dr. M

First off, thanks to all of you for the comments on our most recent, seemingly unsuccessful month (no, my wife has not officially "started" yet, but is still spotting ... we have a long track record of hoping her monthly spotting is simply implantation bleeding, and I, an even longer track record of encouraging her to believe that it is implantation bleeding - but to date our hopes have gone unfulfilled)

She met with Dr. M this morning - as always, she remarked about what a nice man he is. He thinks the spotting is associated with low progesterone - our first Doctor's response to a description of my wife's early spotting was "it is not a concern" - again, a great divide exists between the worlds in which these two Doctors live. Dr. M offered my wife two options by which to remedy this problem. The first included upping her dose of Femara (from 2 to 3 pills a day during days 5 - 9 of her cycle). The second included a vaginal progesterone supplement (much like those she took after our IVF cycle) in addition to the Femara regimen.

She opted for the first option and Dr. M sent us on our way to TTC for a few more months. Recall that my wife has been taking Femara for four months now - it was prescribed for two reasons, one of which was to increase her progesterone, the other to ensure a healthy ovulation cycle. Dr. M said she shouldn't start spotting as early while taking the increased dose - we'll see when that time comes. Let's keep our fingers crossed that our perseverance will be rewarded, and remind ourselves that if we keep going through infertility treatments, we might just get pregnant.

Monday, June 23, 2008


It appears we'll ride the infertility train for at least one more month - wife started spotting yesterday. IUI #1 is a bust. Bummer ...

She'll have an appointment with the Doctor to refresh her supply of Femara, and to be advised on the need to conduct laproscopy, or not. I'll keep you posted.

As it is, we're just happy to have sold our house - we have settled into our new place quite nicely, and are enjoying the community whilst reading about the upcoming 10 - 15% further price deterioration. So happy we found those suckers nice people to purchase our home from us (sincerely, they got a hell of a deal)

Cooper is getting a ton of exercise (I've spent the 45 minute morning commute time I've saved to take him on a walk) He is turning into a very sweet dog (outside of the biting fits, a fascination with socks and occasional dump on the floor) I think we're going to enjoy this summer a lot more than the last one, in which we climbed the learning curve of infertility, realizing that we were amongst the inflicted. Now that we've accepted it, we're sort of numb to the pain, and we trudge along through each month with a bit less sting ... at least that's true for me - my poor wife has uttered the phrase "it's not fair" to the point of exhaustion.

Hoping the good Doctor will help us in our quest. More to come later.

Monday, June 16, 2008

IUI #1: Highlights

We conducted our first IUI on Saturday morning. Some highlights, if they can be described as such, follow (with much childish commentary):

  • There were several other guys in the office when we arrived, each clearly waiting his turn to utilize the porn collection and plastic cups (lots of tightly fitted baseball caps) My wife's keen perceptions picked up on one guy who had his own porn collection in a messenger bag

  • My wife also noticed that each guy took approximately the same amount of time to leave his specimen - perhaps a bit of fascination on her end with the whole concept of male self-pleasure?

  • Porn collection consisted of Hustler, Barely Legal and Playboy

  • Transfer was done by nurse, who showed us the milky, purple colored solution that would be injected into my wife's uterus via catheter (purple part was not from me ...)

  • Wife had slight cramping after transfer, but other than that, it was relatively uneventful

  • As my wife lay there for 20 minutes following the transfer, I rummaged through the drawers to show her the porn collection they offered - just after I tucked the magazines back into the drawer, the nurse returned to the room ... how funny it would have been if she had come back 5 seconds earlier to find me showing my wife porno magazines as if they were children's books ...

Other than that the weekend was filled with lots of unpacking and family time - enjoyed it immensely.

Here's hoping that at least some of the guys reading this can participate in Father's Day next year - the view from the sidelines is nice, but would be better to be in the game.

Friday, June 13, 2008

On Deck: IUI

We're doing our first IUI tomorrow - my wife got a positive ovulation test this morning, so I have to go into the office at 8:00 a.m. to leave my sample, after which the staff will wash it and then inject it back into my wife at around 12:00 noon.

Hoping for a positive result ...

Saturday, June 7, 2008


Successfully closed on our place yesterday, but the afternoon was not without incident. This post violates my unofficial rule of "infertility posts only", so spare yourself the time if you like.

Prior to going to the title company I had to retrieve a few odds & ends from our home, one of which was a bag of garbage. Michigan has been experiencing several days of 90+ temperatures, so this bag of garbage was particularly "soupy" having been thoroughly heated by these temps in our garage. A short, smelly drive ensued and I was at the title company with time to spare - time enough, it turns out, to find a dumpster to deposit my trash into. I found an office building with an unsecured dumpster, pulled up next to it and waited for a crew of gentlemen to return to their building after a Friday lunch out. When they were out of earshot, I stealthily exited my vehicle and retreived the garbage bag from the back seat. Then, holding open the dumpster lid with my left hand while swinging the bag of garbage with my right hand to get it up and into the dumpster, I made my move.

As the garbage bag pendulum neared the bottom of its arc, the bag material stretched and gave way, spewing its contents all over the parking lot in a loud, stinky mess. The crew of gentlement turned out to still be within earshot, and to prove it, stopped abruptly staring into my direction as I held the top half of a dripping garbage bag, still wearing my business suit. There were old chicken breasts, eggs, melted ice cream, etc. in the puddle of garbage before me. I ducked down, grabbed a few of the items and chucked them into the dumpster before getting into my vehicle to depart the scene.

I won't be surprised if I see a fine for littering in my mailbox sometime over the next two weeks. For the record, my wife and I returned to the scene after closing to put the rest of the elements into the dumpster, except for the broken egg shells, a few pieces of glass, and of course, the melted ice cream.

Now that the close is behind us, a quote from Charles Schulz, of Peanuts fame seems relevant:
"That's the secret to life... replace one worry with another...."
What shall we worry about next?

Friday, June 6, 2008

4.5 Hours til ...

Our close is still on track, and is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. this afternoon. I've been a nervous wreck all week because of articles like THIS and THIS and comments from Wilbur Ross in a speech of his I attended in which he stated housing prices will slide by another 15% before they hit bottom. This is a grim situation, especially in Michigan.

Tie to infertility: The wait before closing feels exactly like waiting for the call from the IVF nurse with our post-IVF pregnancy results ... only, hoping for better news this time. If this closing fell apart, we'd be fairly devastated ... all our stuff is moved, we really like the new (rental) house and neighborhood, and we're really looking forward to shedding our mortgage payment.

No success with month 4 of Femara. Wife is going to see Dr. M this morning for an ultrasound, and prep for IUI. Full steam ahead!

More to come next week. Enjoy the weekend, and all your transfers, shots, drugs, "we have to do it tonight because I'm ovulating", etc.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Breath Holding

My wife is the most wonderful person in the world. We were going to her parents this weekend (which is fairly routine) for a Memorial Day party. We parked up the street at a relatives house and walked the final 150 yards to her parents. Before getting there I saw a man in the street and said "Hey, that looks like my cousin Pete!" (which was odd, because this event was with my in-laws, not my side of the family) I quickly dismissed it as we walked into the yard - then, the big crowd of people which contained members of my family AND my wife's family yelled "Surprise!" - then the Michigan State fight song started playing as I slowly realized my wife had thrown a surprise 30th birthday party for me (2 months before my actual birthday) I was shocked, and completely surprised. I had no idea she was planning this. I had so much fun - one of the best times I've had in a really long time - members of my family were there, several of my friends and my wife's entire family. I can't believe she pulled this off, and in the midst of everything we're going through and her busy schedule. I am so lucky, and I love my wife more than words can say. Thank you sweetheart - I will always remember that.

Update on Femara month four: Spotting began today. Bummer. I think my wife is at the point of exhaustion with this whole thing. True, sincere exhaustion. The hope is gone ... and you know what? We're sort of glad to see it go. Hope brings anxiety, and disappointment. It is tiring. It is blinding. It doesn't make the situation any easier. But when you get to that point where you have no more hope left you can look around and realize there is a whole lot of life to live outside of infertility, and a lot of it is really cool. Our plan is to move, enjoy a small house in a cool city, save some money and, God forbid, enjoy ourselves a little. We might even have a few drinks along the way. And hopefully Cooper will stop biting us, and pooping in our house.

We're coming in for the final approach with the sale of our house. Moving into a rental this Friday and closing the sale of our home next Friday. Very nervous, and very hopeful that this sale will stay on track. Posts will be sparse this next week.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


You know when you work a lot of hours and you think you can do no more, then you get a second wind and become incredibly efficient and motivated? Well, I'm there right now ... it has been a long week, and we have a lot going on in our lives (working in consulting, wife in grad school, selling our home, packing, moving, changing addresses, setting up new services, parents in town this weekend, attending black tie events requiring tuxedo purchase - which is stupid, incredibly busy work week requiring 14 hour days all week, etc.)

Why can't my sperm get in this mode? They don't do anything! They just sit there all day waiting for their release and then, they swim sideways / backwards / slowly / into each other / in circles ...

Their job is very simple. I don't understand why out of 300 million, not a single one can find the time to do his job.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Barren Neighborhood?

Our house and neighborhood might be cursed. Not sure if I've posted this before, but now that we're packing our things after a 3-year stay, it seems appropriate to elaborate on our home/neighborhood and its history of infertility issues.

The people that lived in our home before us struggled with infertility, but we didn't learn this until we entered the land of the infertile last summer. When we moved in we found a few needles in the bathroom drawers and assumed they were required for diabetes, or heroine or something like that. At that point in time we had no idea what IVF was, and had no way to know that needles would be required to conceive. My, how things change in such a short time. During our introduction to IVF one of our neighbors told us about the former owners of our home and their dually unsuccessful attempts at IVF - that explained the needles. We're not sure what happened to them since, but we hope things worked out for them (they seemed like nice people at the closing)

Our neighbors on one side have a single child that they refer to as their "Miracle baby". They tried to conceive for a really long time and had given up hope long before they received their positive pregnancy test.

The couple two doors down have a teenage boy (Junior in high school) and two twin boys in 3rd grade. The gap between them never seemed odd to us (let me restate that - never seemed odd to ME ... my wife was always aware of this oddity) until we were diagnosed as infertile and were directed to pursue IVF - at that point we asked the husband of this household (referred to behind closed doors as "Putz") ... he told us that they did IVF and were successful in conceiving their twin boys. The twins are referred to as one person while Putz screams for them across the neighborhood in between swear words: MitchellShane!

The house two doors down the other way is occupied by swingers - pretty sure they're not all that concerned about being fertile ... in fact, they are likely concerned with NOT being fertile. Wonder if there are blogs in the swinger community about such topics ...
The "couple" four doors down adopted a little girl from Russia, and promptly got divorced afterwards. No word on why they adopted, or why they divorced, but we can only suspect infertility played a role.

So, there you have it - cursed neighborhood? Perhaps not, but there seems to be an unusually high concentration of infertility issues in our corner of the universe. Hoping to find better soil in Birmingham (where we'll be living for the next year)

Good Post

Great post over at Faith In Fertility - made me think of something I'm not sure I've shared on here yet ...

A few weeks ago I was walking Cooper to his favorite poop spot (one of our neighbor's front yards) and a neighbor and his wife were outside with their little dog (Louie). After Cooper said hello (consists of jumping around like an idiot, hacking and coughing at the end of his leash, peeing on the neighbors shoes and pant legs from sheer excitement) we began talking about our house being on the market - a natural starting point to any neighborly conversation. I was describing to them our reasons for wanting to move, which included being closer to my in-laws for the day when our family begins. This naturally lead to a brief description of the trials we've been experiencing on that front. At that point, the lady took my hand and began saying a series of prayers asking God to give us the patience to accept his plan, and to help us get the pregnancy we want so badly when it was our time. This had a huge impact on me ... it was so courageous of her to just dive in and do this without knowing that I was of a religious disposition. I walked back home with a smile on my face to tell my wife ... it was a very nice interaction, and I will not soon forget it. In fact, I think it will be one of those memories that sticks with me for the rest of my life.

I saw this same couple again yesterday and told them that we managed to sell our house - and I said it looks as if their prayers helped (only on a slightly different front than we would have ideally liked the help, but selling the house is a piece of the infertility puzzle, as described in previous posts) These are great people - we will miss living next to them, even if our exchanges were brief and limited. It's just good to know that people like this are out there, and even better that they are in the neighborhood.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Departed

Most of the blogs I've been reading of late are written by people who have departed the land of the infertile, and are in the midst of pregnancies, or parenting. There is a common thread that runs through each of these blogs - and it is one of regret and shame. I think it's understandable, but I wanted to contribute my USD 0.02 to those who might read this post, and have written of the things I describe.

I know it's hard for some people to deal with others getting what they want. Every time we hear a pregnancy announcement, my wife breaks down in tears. For me, it stings, but I can handle it - I get down for a bit, then get up very quickly and worry only about what we can control in our own situation. I am of optimistic composition (or at least I try to be) When I read blogs describing people as they carry out their IUI or IVF procedures, I genuinely want them to succeed, and can feel their pain when they don't (we've all been there). The feelings we infertile experience as a result of our affliction are shared amongst all of us - why else would we read and write blogs about it if there weren't some common denominator amongst us? I find it puzzling, however, that when people achieve their goal, they actually feel bad about leaving the infertile herd for greener pastures. I can't wait to jump over that fence! When we do, I intend to cautiously celebrate, and savor every second of the experience. And I will feel no shame when telling others about it.

So, a message to those of you who have become pregnant, or parents: Enjoy it. There are a lot of people who would love to have what you have and many of them are happy for you even though they don't.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Back in the USA

I'm back from my two weeks in Germany - I'll spare you the whole "sorry for not blogging" post that is all too common amongst infertility bloggers and get right to the point:

  • My wife is not pregnant this month

  • We are going into our 4th month of Femara assistance - it's now or IUI

  • Germany is a beautiful country - you should go

  • I like the Russians, and French people are actually pretty cool

  • We have a bid on our house - only need pass inspection and we'll be moving (likely into a rental home in Royal Oak)

  • I am tired and sick

  • Baby-making should commence in ~6 days

  • It's good to be home - I really missed my wife

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Here's an e-mail my wife just sent me:
We need to make a baby as soon as you get home b/c I have lots of slimy stuff coming out. I definitely ovulated!
Love You!

Gross ... (and awesome!)

Double Positive

My wife got ANOTHER positive ovulation test this morning. We're at a loss as so what this means. Theories range from faulty ovulation predictor test to an actual double ovulation (if such a thing is possible) Actually, those are our only two theories ... not much of a range. But anyhow, it is what it is ... time to procreate. I leave the country on Saturday, so here's hoping one of my 169 million strong white team catches the little egg.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

New Car

Broke down and purchased a new vehicle last night - got a 2008 Ford Fusion SEL V6 AWD. Nice vehicle ... traded in my POS 2001 Ford Explorer Sport, whose ride dynamics can best be described as "bone-shattering"

Naturally, my wife will drive the new car and I will take hers.

How's it relate to infertility? The car salesman's son just had a baby girl that day (his first grandchild) Good day for him I guess, but I'm not really qualified to say seeing as how we don't have any children yet.

Monday, April 21, 2008


Update on the premature ovulation situation: Wife has been taking ovulation tests each morning, and has yet to get another positive (not that we're expecting that ... we're just checking to be sure the early positive test wasn't a fluke) We've been busy ...

This weekend I leave for Germany for two weeks. My wife's cousin's wife is having a baby shower that same day, but my wife is opting to not go. I don't blame her. It's hard enough to have to send your spouse off on an airplane for two weeks while simultaneously enduring the pain/ridiculousness of a baby shower. She reads this blog and I want her to know that it's okay to bypass something that will only cause pain ... she should stay at home, and take a bath while Cooper tries to jump in with her before getting frustrated and wandering off to take a poop in the green room while chewing through the remaining straps on her shoes.

I am going to miss my wife terribly. And I'll miss Cooper too.

Hopefully there will be a positive pregnancy test sometime during my absence. If not, at least I'll get to come home to my wife shortly thereafter.

Friday, April 18, 2008

What the H-E Double Blue Lines?!?

Not THOSE kinds of double blue lines, but a positive ovulation test, rather. It's day 6 today, and my wife decided to take an ovulation test after feeling some slight pains (which she usually feels around ovulation time) Sure enough, positive test ... mind you, this comes a full 5 - 7 days before her normal ovulation time. Strange, but we'll take it.

Now, let's get busy making a baby ...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Dr. M Visit

Update on my wife's appointment with Dr. M this morning:

  • Based on a digital exam (bi digital, to be more precise) no cysts were found. My wife was provided a prescription for 2 more months of Femara.

  • Dr. M stated that most couples who are put on fertility drugs achieve pregnancy within the first 4 months. If we are still unsuccessful after 2 more months of trying we will begin IUI, and my wife will undergo laproscopy to investigate for endometriosis (which is present in 30% of women seeking infertility treatment, according to Dr. M) I was pleased to hear that IUI only costs around $300 per shot. That's manageable.

I had my wife ask him three questions about the male side of things:

  • Caffeine: He said a few cups of coffee a day are fine, but due to their excessive amounts of caffeine, energy drinks are not. This is unfortunate, as I am a big fan of Monster Energy drinks and have consumed a lot of them over the past few months. From here on out, I will cease and desist all energy drink consumption

  • Vitamins: A one-a-day multivitamin is more than sufficient for most men, according to Dr. M. I intend to continue my antioxidant cocktail of Vitamin C, E, B12, Zinc, Selenium, Beta Carotene, L-Arginine, L-Carnitine and Fish Oil until my current supply runs out. Then, I might switch to Wellman tablets, per some friendly advice from England.

  • Semen Analysis: I wanted to know if it would make sense to have my levels checked again, but Dr. M advised that many active, swimming sperm were witnessed during our post coital test, which, in his opinion is a superior test to semen analysis as it evaluates the function of fertilization (part of it, at least) He provided some numbers: Normal counts are 20 million, but my counts are ~169 million, and my motility is above average as well. My morphology was low at 13% normal (below the 15% normal "fertile" cutoff) Let's do the math ... 15% of 20 million is 3 million. 13% of 169 million is ~22 million. Translated, I have over 7 times as many normal sperm as an average guy ... but at the end of the day it hasn't really mattered because none of them have made it to the destination ... or maybe they have and we're failing to implant. Either way, there is no need for another SA.

That is all, for now.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

... one more thing

Forgot to mention in last night's post, my wife decided to have a period after all. No pregnancy this month. Bummer.

Wife goes in to see Dr. M. on Thursday to see if the medication is causing any cysts. If all is clear, the Doctor will renew her prescription for Femara, and likely send us on another 3 month tour (for the record, we have had two unsuccessful months with Femara thus far) She is going to ask him a bunch of questions, and hopefully get some reassurement - after all, patience wore out a few months ago, and we're getting low on hope. I'm wondering if I should have another SA conducted to see if my vitamin + reduced alcohol regimen has had a positive impact. Plus, the plastic cups they have over there are really hot.

I have a feeling this next month will be our month, assuming there are no cysts.

Good news over at "Faith In Fertility" - happy times in England.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Shitty Day

It's been a while, but I've been busy having shitty days, like today for instance:

-Sunday evening, receive a call from my boss stating I had screwed up the numbers on a slide he was about to deliver to a very high profile audience of CEOs, executives and board members. Oops. I feel like shit as I hate to make mistakes. Worse, he brings me into his office and belittles / humiliates me further.
-On way to the office following the conference at which my screwed up presentation was presented, my car runs out of gas on the freeway ... I coast onto the shoulder and walk through the ghetto (8-mile area) to find a gas station and fill back up. Return to work, reeking of gas for more humiliation.
-Sister calls: She is pregnant. Come home to wife, sitting before bottle of Jack Daniels.

I'm glad there are only 2.5 hours left in this shitty day. Plenty of time for the house to burn down though ...

Monday, April 7, 2008


It's been a busy week, thus the brief hiatus in posting.

My wife started spotting last night, a full 5 days before she normally does. It was described as "brown" in color ... I'm no expert on spotting since I've never done it, but this strikes me a bit odd. My wife's spotting normally begins the day before she starts "flow", so this one being 5 days before the end of her normally very precise cycles is strange (she's usually at 25 days, exactly, to the hour almost)

I always chalk spotting up to "implantation bleeding", but have never been accurate in this assessment. Maybe this month is different? Doubtful, but it has to happen some time - right?

Monday, March 31, 2008

Humbly Recalling My Last Post

Dear God, I hope I was wrong in my last post comparing infertility to Michigan State fandom - I haven't seen a beating that bad EVER. Twas the equivalent of a failed IVF ... hopefully not indicative of our infertility fate.

Positive ovulation test over the weekend ... wait, hope and pray.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Infertility is exactly the same as being a Michigan State fan

Okay, a bit of an odd post follows, and I expect the majority of the readers of this blog to be less than interested. I am a Michigan State University alumni, and have been a fan of MSU athletics for as long as I can remember. The life of an MSU sports fan is a difficult one. Here's a few zingers for any of you who might be familiar:

  • 9/28/2005: MSU football blows 27-10 lead over the University of Michigan with 8:34 left in the 4th quarter. This is the most painful loss I have ever seen. The only positive thing about this loss is that for the rest of my life, I will never be as disappointed by a loss as I was by this one. It is still painful just to think about.

  • 9/23/2006: Almost a year later, MSU football blows 17 halftime lead to Notre Dame, in a torrential downpour which should have immobilized Brady Quinn and ND's passing game. Having lived through the debacle against Michigan one year earlier, this one wasn't so bad.

  • 3/15/2008: MSU basketball blows 9 point lead with 6 minutes remaining against Wisconsin in Big Ten Tournament. Painful, because Wisconsin has owned MSU since Bo Ryan took over as coach.

I could elaborate on dozens of other small, but disappointing letdowns, but I'm not feeling particularly masochistic today. While there have been disappointments, there have been some extreme highs as well, including a national basketball championship in 2000 (while I was attending MSU), a Citrus Bowl victory in 2000 (over U. of Florida, who I HATE), a Final Four in 2004 and what seems to be an emerging football program under promising new football coach (Mark Dantonio) If you distill it down, being an MSU fan consists of the following:

  • High expectations

  • Crushing disappointments

  • Ever-present hope that better days are coming

  • Occasional high points

  • Constant jeering by pricks from the University of Michigan (where I got my masters, FYI) that MSU is a sub-par school

Now, if you compare this to infertility, you find a lot of parallels. Each month/cycle (season) is greeted with a fresh sense of optimism. When you get to the end of the month (game) you sometimes find a period that comes a day or two late (like a 17 point halftime lead) elevating your hopes only to have them crushed by spotting a few days later (2 interceptions leading to touchdowns in the 4th quarter) and ultimately flow a day after that (the clock runs out and MSU has blown the game) Then, you deal with the crushing effects of your high hopes being destroyed by the resulting loss. While this happens, you hear about all of your friends and family who have recently conceived, or delivered a baby (University of Michigan fans)

Consider coaching: If you've read this blog you know that my wife and I originally worked with Dr. S (equivalent to MSU's former coach John L. Smith, an overpaid crackpot of a man who was completely ineffective at doing his job) Dr. S recommended pursuing directly to IVF (Spread Offense) bypassing the more traditional routes of diagnosing and treating infertility (establishing the run) Having no success with such drastic measures, my wife and I "fired" Dr. S (MSU fires John L. Smith), and "hired" Dr. M, who proposes a much more thorough, traditional and disciplined approach to treating infertility (much like MSU's Mark Dantonio has taken MSU football back to basics)

Needless to say, our hopes are ever-present, and we have faith in our new Doctor (coach).

This post was prompted by the fact that MSU basketball takes on Memphis in the sweet 16 tonight at 10:00 p.m. I will be up late, and hopefully my perseverance as an MSU fan will be rewarded with a victory.

FYI - my wife will ovulate any day now, so we're doing a lot of sex these days ... have a good weekend.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Life After Infertility

I've been thinking a lot lately about what will happen if after we get pregnant. Over the last year, my wife and I have aligned everything in our lives to achieve a single goal: GET PREGNANT. I switched jobs to increase my earning power, taking on the burden of long hours and frequent travel so I could financially support our infertility treatments at the fastest pace possible without having to save money in between successive rounds or bury ourselves in debt. Our home is on the market so we can move closer to my wife's parents so they can help with our parenting duties, and so I can live closer to my new employer. We keep a minimum balance in our bank accounts to cover the costs of IVF, in the even that we need to do it again, deferring car purchases and other luxuries. My wife has put blinders on to every other part of life outside of parenthood - her focus and determination are that strong. We have made absolutely no plans for what will happen afterwards - we don't talk about it. It's taboo. We don't want to jinx ourselves, get our hopes up, etc. We will be like the dog who finally catches the car and doesn't know what to do next (not that I would mind ... I would love to have that problem, and my wife would love it even more)

Life is a big string of "what's next". I can't wait to turn 16 so I can drive, turn 18 so I can buy cigarettes / chewing tobacco (Kodiak), graduate high school so I can go to college, turn 21 so I can buy booze, graduate college so I can start earning money and start my career, finish grad school so I can be completely done with school, get married, buy a house, pay off student loans, pay off cars, start a family.

Of all those things, getting pregnant has been the biggest for us because of the difficulty we've had in achieving it. It was easy to look past each of the other milestones, because they weren't that difficult. I'm trying to remind myself, and my wife that we have a lot to be grateful for, and that we live very enjoyable, fortunate lives. Putting happiness on hold until the next milestone arrives is no way to live life. This should be most relevant to anyone on the brink of the parenthood milestone as it will change their lives, values and priorities to the core, forever. I can't wait to start thinking about things after pregnancy ... I envision a sunny day, with a tall glass of beer, a happy wife and anticipation of parenthood. But at this point, I feel a little guilty, and uncomfortable considering how nice it will be ...

Thursday, March 20, 2008


Thought I'd share a little detail on my wife's current drug of choice: Femara, but first, a brief recap for those of you just tuning in:

  • Aug. 2007: Visited IVF clinic in hopes of getting help with infertility

  • Aug. 2007: Were told by IVF Doctor that chances of conceiving naturally were 0.6% each month, due to low morphology

  • Sep. 2007: Kicked off IVF round #1

  • Oct. 2007: Completed / failed IVF round #1 - two mature follicles, zero frozen

  • Dec. 2007: Visit a second Doctor, who told us semen looks fine (low morphology is offset by a higher-than-average volume / count)

  • Jan. 2008: Wife conducts post coital, which identifies more than sufficient, live, swimming sperm in cervical mucus

  • Feb. 2008: Wife is determined to have lower-than acceptable Progesterone. Femara is prescribed. Doctor encourages us to try this route for 5 - 6 months.

Femara is the brand name for a drug called "Letrozole", which is traditionally used in treatment of breast cancer. It has been found to have a positive effect in treatment of infertility. To quote web-site

Femara works by suppressing the production of estrogen. Thus, creating the effect of producing more hormones that work solely for ovarian stimulation. These hormones namely LH and FSH help in both the processes of ovulation induction and superovulation. As a result, Femara has become widely accepted as an infertility drug.

My wife ovulates regularly, so our Doctor prescribed this primarily as a means of increasing her Progesterone levels. I've read a few posts on from others who have tried a similar route (try THIS thread) and have had good success.

I really think it's just a matter of patience for us ... our second Doctor (the one we trust) told us that 80% of couples abandon infertility treatments prematurely (i.e. moving on to IUI or IVF) due to frustration.

Have a happy Easter, and good luck with each of your respective IF clusterf*cks.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Wife and I decided to book a trip to Jamaica. We went to Couples Ocho Rios for our honeymoon, and we liked it so much we're going to try another Couples resort in Negril, Jamaica. We've booked the trip to coincide with our 3 year anniversary. Haven't been on a real vacation since our honeymoon, so I think we deserve it. Total cost: $3,700 for 7 nights all inclusive (includes flights). Sort of an untimely expenditure given the possibility of IVF in our future, and the cost of selling our house, but who gives a shit ... life is too short to worry about such things. Besides, our retirement accounts are all funded to the max, so we're okay.

I'm going to drink rum and knock up my wife while we're there, unless I do that before we go, in which case I'll just go through the motions.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Officially Not This Month

Wife started spotting this morning. THIS MORNING! So, we went through an entire weekend of waiting, wondering, hoping that maybe this would be our month (my wife normally would've started on Friday, but just to get our hopes up, her P decided to wait until Monday: The shittiest, longest day of the week for my wife who has to work, then go to two grad classes at night) Needless to say, we are disappointed.

I encouraged my wife to check out this site, which has a Java-based dice rolling simulator. She is not a statistics expert, and neither am I, but I understand the principles. Given a 20% chance of success with each try, a success should be achieved once in every 5 tries, on average - thus the assignment by Dr. M to procreate for 5 months before moving on to the next step.

I'm encouraging my wife to try to forget about what we've been through (IVF) and to view this as if we just started trying. Easier said than done, but we need to keep some sanity.