Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Going For Number Two

Here is the post where I spill my guts. I've debated whether I wanted to write about any of this or all of it or what. I debated whether my hubby really was okay with me "telling the world," but I'm taking him at his word when he told me to go ahead. I worry about keeping some things private, but I am no longer sure why I would want to keep this private. Going through it last time was so hard to do when I didn't know anyone IRL who was going through it, and it can be so isolating. Thanks to some friends I found through the internet, I had people to talk to. I need support and I need to talk and write about this, because that's how I deal. Besides, the real life friends and family we have who read my blog already know, so here goes...

We are trying to conceive a second child. Some people wait until their child is older and things are more settled to go through the chaos of babyhood/toddlerhood all over again. Londo and I are in agreement that we want to get it all over with together. All the fertility treatments, all the pregnancies, all the nursing, diapers, sleepless nights, teething, etc., we just want to get it all over with in one big lump of sleepless years. Pull it off, like ripping off a bandaid. Have I mentioned that the baby stage is not my or Londo's favorite stage? But we are enjoying the toddler stage, and we seriously are looking forward to 3 and older. So we want to get the baby stage over and have 2 to 3 kids who are 3 and older. We'll get there.

But how will we get there?

I've mentioned before that we struggled with infertility and needed help to conceive the Pumpkin. We have no idea why we had problems, and we were determined to have "unexplained infertility." I won't get into the frustration of a diagnosis like that, especially when we are the types of people who research and try to fix things. There was no specific "problem" to fix. Instead, the specialist (a reproductive endocrinologist (RE)) recommended full medicated IUI cycles to just cover all our bases and hope it worked.

After 2.5 years of trying to conceive (TTC), 5 IUI cycles, 1 miscarriage, 1 D&C for the miscarriage, more needles than I can count, and lots of hormones, we got pregnant with the Pumpkin. I carried to term (past term) delivered our beautiful baby girl. It is a rough road, but it truly was worth it.

And now we are back on the rollar coaster of emotions, hormones, treatments, needles (oh, the so many needles) and who knows what else. We have used any form of birth control for over a year, and we actively tried for a few months. Nothing. We could have kept trying, but as Londo pointed out to me, we don't know if we could ever conceive on our own. Why are we wasting time when we know that the medicated IUIs did work for us--we got pregnant 2 out of the 5 times, so that's a 20% of the time. So since we want to have this second kid soon, we decided to get back to the specialist and start the treatments again.

So, I weaned, because I'm more ready to be pregnant than I am not ready to wean (if that makes sense). I've given up coffee. I've worked with my insurance to figure out insurance stuff. We met with the specialist and set up a plan (in fact, the same plan that worked for us previously). And we have begun to do all the pre-treatment testing again, I guess to make sure that we are still "unexplained."

In fact, just this morning, I went in for the HSG, which is a test where they shoot dye up through my uterus and my fallopian tubes and take x-rays to make sure there are no abnormalities of shape and that my tubes are clear. The cramps that result from this test are pretty bad, but I'm happy to report all was clear!

On the unhappy note, the procedure room was in the same area where I went to have the D&C for the miscarriage I had. Even just going back into the exam rooms brings back so much, like the excite me of a heartbeat, or the devestation of a heart no longer beating. Things I'm sure I'll go into in more detail later, but having been hit pretty hard with some bad memories today, I'm not quite ready to talk about it.

When you go through infertility, there is just so much baggage attached to what is so simple for other people. We want another child. It sounds so easy. Just sex, right? In fact, lots of it to give you better chances! That's sounds great! But when just sex doesn't do it, when it's not that simple... it's just hard to go through. Again. Physically, emotionally, hormonally, mentally...

I (and Londo) just keep trying to concentrate on the wonderful outcome we had last time. In fact, it's easier to go through this time already, partly because we know the drill, but mostly because we know that it can work for us. We have the proof in one amazing, beautiful, supergenius toddler. I am confident that we will have another great outcome. It's just not an easy path for us to get there.

I hope that it will be a bit easier having a place to talk about it and get support.

21 comments:

OneHappyCow said...

Even without "knowing" you, I kinda guessed that was what was going on - the TTC part actually, I was unaware of the fertility "issues". I am a nurse and have seen full well the rollercoaster that goes along with the whole ordeal. I wish you the best of luck along the road, hope you keep your bright outlook so far, and keep your focus on the WONDERFUL outcome you have been blessed with. As you said, it can make the journey just ever so much more bearable! Big hugs to you during all of this - I will pray for you for a quick answer to your prayers! Good luck!

Jan said...

You have mentioned the infertility stuff before; I'm sorry I forgot about it when I made my comment the other day.

In the interest of comparing stories (but not competing!) ... I have never had any trouble getting pregnant, just STAYING pregnant. I had an oops pregnancy in spring 2002, followed by a miscarriage/D&C. Then a planned pregnancy late 2002, twins, even, also followed by a miscarriage/D&C. I had the HSG ("you'll feel a little pinch," said my ob/gyn, "but it shouldn't hurt"), an MRI (discovery: I am not "a little" claustrophobic) and finally a surgery to remove a uterine septum.

And I know I was one of the lucky ones. For one thing, they put me under for my D&Cs, so I have no memory of the procedures. And for a more important thing, they were able to find something wrong AND fix it. I didn't know at the time how very unusual that is.

I hope it'll be easier for you with some support -- you can count on me.

P.S. I love me some baby-holding. No chance you'd like to move to the left coast -- I'd be happy to take a squirming infant off your hands for awhile. :)

Sharina said...

It seems like baby number two is the big topic around the blogosphere. Big hugs to you and I hope you get your second child very soon :)

Kristina said...

I usually don't comment much because I haven't gone through the baby thing yet. This topic touches my heart and I wanted to let you know I am giving you a mental/internet hug today. I am excited for the next super-pumpkin and am glad my future kids will have some fabulous older friends to follow around and learn from.

My Buddy Mimi said...

When you mentioned weaning I did wonder if maybe you would be starting to try for #2, but it didn't occur to me that you had already been trying. Best of luck! Or is that jinxing it? Is there some equivalent to "break a leg" that is used for infertility issues?

AmyinMotown said...

I had a stronnngggg feeling that's what was going on. I'm a veteran of the wars too, except the medicated IUIs didn't work because of my hack RE. Two and a half years of trying followed by a wonderful, gorgeous, genius little girl!
Baby #2 came much, much easier than Baby #1--really just a few months of half-assed trying and not avoiding.
Like, you know, normal people, which I still have trouble wrapping my head around. I always refer to Will's conception as a surprise and then laugh at myself: No birth control, sex midcycle, had been trying-ish for eight months. Normal people call that a plan coming together--some might even call it an ordeal because it didn't happen right away. For me, after the hellishness of trying to get Maggie, it was a huge surprise and delight.

This all shared by way of hoping your story turns out like mine -- sooo much easier the second time around. And if you need support, sign me up. Because infertility BLOWS.

ImpostorMom said...

I am behind (as always) and I just knew before finishing your weaning post that this was why.

Good luck and I hope it happens fast for you guys. We tried for a long time to conceive Boog as well and I know how heart wrenching that can be.

I wish you luck in this endeavor and also in dealing with all those toddlers you guys will one day have. Whoo, makes me tired just thinking about it. :P

wealhtheow said...

Good luck on this next leg of your journey. I hope it is a speedy one!

Oz said...

I so admire your courage in blogging about this - at whatever level of details is comfortable for you. In my experience, miscarriages (I can only talk about that because I haven't really experienced infertility) are often harder on us because we don't talk about them. Once I told people about my miscarriage, I found out how common they were - I'd been in my own bubble before and hadn't realized - and the support I got really helped me.

Best of luck!

La folle maman said...

I wondered if that was the reason for the weaning. I thought of calling to ask but figured you'd tell me in your own time. I knew how much you wanted to let Pumpkin wean herself and I thought to myself, "I wonder if they're trying again." I was hoping it was this and not some other reason like you had to go on some hardcore medication for a health issue like migraines or worse.

I wish we still shared an office so I could be right there again this time. Feel free to call me anytime. I'm sure knowing the drill will make a world of difference.

OneTiredEma said...

Another veteran of the unexplained IF wars. HSG = BTDT...with my MIL in the waiting room (ack!).

Ours resolved without meds, though, so I can understand your weaning.

And you're certainly not alone in wanting to get it all done in one fell swoop--the terrible nights and the babies and all that. My neighbor has 3 under 5 and wants to be DONE with those stages at some point in the foreseeable future (four kids, I'm guessing).

Good luck with your big plans!

hedra said...

I also thought there might be at least thinking toward trying going on.

Sorry about the IF ordeal aspect. My sympathy for the post-loss (and IF counts as a loss, too, though different kind) emotional repercussions. Nothing is really simple after that.

Good luck on the efforts, my thoughts will be with you.

HeatherY said...

There are so many women in the internet community that have struggled with infertility. It is such an overwhelming and emotional experience that no one wants to discuss IRL. We struggled for 3 years to get pg. I felt so much shame and embarrassment. It really changes you in so many different ways.

Thank you for sharing your story.

Karen said...

I know this can't be easy for you, either to talk about or to live through. I'll be praying that things go easier this time around.

sheSaid.purplehouseonpearl.com said...

It seems it's a good thing you opened up to all of us... as we seemed to be guessing it any way. Well at least the trying for number 2.

It's also good, because we are here for you with anything you need to talk about on this crazy emotional journey.

I'm Not Skippy said...

I was searching for something profound to say. Can't find it, so I'll just say good luck.

z said...

I hope you have an easier time this time around. I will keep you in my prayers and hope that you two get what you want. HUGS

Colleen said...

I'm sorry you have to go through this again. I can only imagine how tough it must be to not have a definitive reason why things aren't working quite right. The unknown tends to make me a lot crazier than even the worse "known".
I hope this round of procedures is a lot quicker for you both.

Maybe a nice evening out with bloggy friends might help you guys relax and take your mind off things. ;)

Kat said...

Tee hee, well I had an inkling but that is because we tried too :0) All the best. Yu are irght to hold on to the thought that you can get pregnant and have a wonderful supergenius to prove it. Hope you get lucky! Kat x

egm said...

I had three miscarriages between the births of my daughter and son, and after all the tests and workups, our RE actually said, "Well, sometimes lightning strikes three times."

Our next attempt stuck, and my son was actually delivered (by C-section) in the exact room where one of the D&Cs was performed. I was having some (also unexplained) heart trouble, and I started freaking out when they wheeled me into the same room. When I told the anesthesiologist why I was so upset, he asked, "Would you like something to take the edge off of that?" Ummm, yes, please! Whatever he gave me calmed me down and got me through it, but I'll never forget the jumble of emotions.

We've been trying for a third for the past nine months with no luck. Getting pregnant was never my problem, but something certainly isn't working this time around. I'm bracing myself for infertility, round 2, and it was great to read about someone else in a similar boat. I think a lot of people would look at me and say, "Why? You've got two healthy kids; why would you put yourself through that again?" But that's just the tip of the iceberg of things we are willing to go through for our children, how ever many of them we feel compelled to have.

If it just didn't involve so many needles . . .

Shellie said...

I'm sure that as miserable as it all is, it will all be worth it. Whine all you want!