Monday, August 31, 2009

IF Sister in need of meds

A fellow IF sister, Jennifer, recently emailed me sharing that she's going into her first IVF cycle. As usual, she is another who is not insured and is paying completely out of pocket (because American health care coverage for IF SUCKS) and has had to really scrape it together just to get this one opportunity. Like me, she has also been trying to conceive for five years and has so far done two IUIs. If anyone has any spare medication that might help her out, please email me at redrivershel AT gmail dot com. Thanks!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Closet Door Sliding Open...

This post mentions: PG, bumps, rather extensively...

Yesterday I entered my long awaited third trimester. Crazy. And in just a few weeks' time (September 12th, to be exact) my friends and family will be joining me at an event I NEVER thought would take place: my baby shower. It is there that I have decided to do what I've for so long spoken about: come out! Whenever I think of this, I get this jaunty little ditty in my head:

"I'm coming out
I want the world to know
Got to let it show
I'm coming out
I want the world to know
I got to let it show"

That's right. I will come out as the flaming infertile I am and I will do so proudly. But because this event is a celebration of baby G and not an educational seminar on general infertility, treatments, or even our particular infertility, we wanted to share our story in a way that simply highlighted how hard-won and long-awaited he was, giving us even more reason to dance in the streets upon his arrival. Without this acknowledged, it would have never felt right. To share this, we created a photo book through i.Photo, but I've decided in order to not let this be the theme of the shower, we will do the following:

A. Not pass the book around until I'm opening presents (so any potential asinine comments, with particular emphasis on the ASS, will not come until the end at which point I may be subdued from any bodily harm towards them by cake).
B. Any particular questions about treatment, IVF, infertility, etc. will be met with an appreciation for their curiosity and then an invitation to share over lunch or coffee in a less public forum. While I'm coming out, my medical information is still not something for which I will be sending out a public service announcement.

I'm not actually foreseeing anything too stupid being said, but you never know what will fly out of people's mouths about this sorely seldom spoken about topic, especially since there are a few people that are particularly um, old (and you know they never censor anything) and a few who are, well, a bit narrow minded. Luckily, most of my friends and family are awesome enough to not go there and in fact, this will not come as news to about half of them anyway, despite my being a generally private person. So needless to say, I'm nervous, but excited.

So, here it is: The Story of Baby G. You MUST watch it full screen to read the text (it's much more of a story book than photo book) and definitely watch it in HD. It doesn't exactly flow like a slideshow as it is a book, but I think it tells our story in a very authentic, but brief way. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


This post mentions: PG

The nursery is painted, the window treatments are up and the rug has been laid. Even the baby clothes we have purchased so far have been hung. This is the first signs in that room that someone new will join us in three months' time and although this reminder is visible and tangible--I can walk in and see it all, feel him kicking against my ribs, after 5 years of waiting, I still can't quite fathom that perhaps my dreams are finally about to come true.

My guess is, a man starved for years on end will have a harder time believing in that steak dinner promised him than a man with an already full belly. In that sense, I have been starving for years and so I still feel out of place preparing for something that feels surreal. I am that starving man, sitting around a table with those well fed and mimicing their movements, placing a napkin in my lap carefully, as if receiving a meal is common place to me. In some ways, it feels absurd. All of the niceties we encounter each day, such as repeating how 'excited' we are, feel so trivial in the shadow of what's really going on for us and especially of what has already gone on for us. Little do most people know the level at which my longing for that ultimate meal resides, especially when it has been handed to them at their request.

I recall when Mr. S. and I were dieting (something we will need to return to shortly and mostly, desperately). We would reward ourselves at the end of the calorie-deprived, gym crawling week with one 'cheat' meal and I will tell you this: food had never tasted so divine. This is the nature of my pregnancy and the eventual arrival of our guy thus far.

Despite the ongoing anxieties and the inner turmoil over being infertile, yet pregnant, and the guilt over leaving others behind, I have been able to cherish most moments of this pregnancy. I might have complained about morning sickness, but I secretly delighted in running to the bathroom, knowing it likely meant he was getting stronger. I have had almost every symptom under the sun: heartburn, constant nose bleeds, increased acne (my personal 'glow'), headaches, sinus problems, gingivitis, fatigue, bloating, (TMI coming, much to Mr. S's chagrin) terrible gas, leg cramps, vericose veins, back pain, sciatica, among many others, and I have honestly LOVED every one of them (but still never gave up the opportunity to feign complaining, of course).

I adore learning his patterns of movements, the way he almost without fail goes nuts kicking a minute or two after I awaken. It's the best 'good morning' I've ever received. I wouldn't trade his little hiccups or his wiggles or his immediate reaction to loud conversation (especially when there's a high pitched female in the room) for anything and Mr. S. and I quite frequently find ourselves standing in Baby G's mostly empty room, just staring. To think, there will be a little person in that room in a few months, a little person we already love so deeply, beyond what I can grasp. I am still in awe. I will always be in awe.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

99 Days

If I am lucky enough to cook this baby until he's well done, I have an estimated 99 days until he is born. This makes me remember fondly the night I turned ten. As I fell asleep, something occurred to me and I excitedly called my mom in to tell her.

"I'm double digits now!"

She seemed amused by this observation, as she probably would be today if I told her this again. Much like that time, I don't think she'd really realize the weight of it for me. Simply put, I never thought I'd get this far. If luck continues to treat me with the same regard as it has in the past several months, I suspect I'll be saying this for the rest of my life.

If the next 100 days are anything like the last, they will be filled with pure anxiety, pure joy, pure disbelief and ultimately, a generally medically textbook pregnancy experience. I can only hope.