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>My birthday is today, and I am now 36 years old.

I was afraid that turning 36 would be bad…time is so not on my side, in terms of babies and fertility treatments. I had a minor meltdown about my inability to conceive a few weeks ago, and since those feelings tend to come out of nowhere (at least, that’s how it feels), I was afriad I’d have a surprising and unwelcome wave of sad and terrible thoughts on my birthday.

I’m very happy to say that my birthday has been off to a really lovely start. I’ve gotten lots of birthday wishes, and my amazing husband is making me dinner tonight. I got up early this morning and had a good 3-mile run, and while it wasn’t my best time, it wasn’t my worst. I feel calm…and fortunate…and good. I don’t like the single strand of grey hair I found a few months ago, or the wrinkles that are strating to appear with greater visibility, but aside from that, I don’t have any negative feelings about getting older.

I wish we had gotten pregnant and had a child by now, but we didn’t. More and more, I’m starting to think that the sadness I feel when I hear people announcing pregnancies or talking about their plans to conceive comes from my gradual acceptance of our life without children. It makes me sad because I feel left out, and I’m beginning to believe that feeling is never going to change. I don’t really feel a desire to try fertility treatments again because I don’t believe they will work for me. I know there’s a chance, but I don’t know how much higher that chance is than if I did nothing at all.

I’m proud that on my 36th birthday, I ran 3 miles before going to work this morning. I’m happy that I got to wake up in a nice home with my incredible husband and adorable dog, and celebrate my life. It will never be easy to know I probably won’t have something that means so much to so many other people, but I am happy I have the life I do – even if I’m 36. 🙂


>I traveled AGAIN for work this week and last, and I am beyond thrilled to say that I now have no travel scheduled from now until early July! There have been multiple times throughout the last six months that I’ve not only wondered how it would even be possible for me to pursue fertility treatments, but how I would even manage to care for a child if things had worked out. This is not the job I ever imagined having, by any means, but it’s the situation I’m in. My previous job ended, and really, I’m lucky I got the job that I did.

I really hope that by the end of the summer, I’ll have come to some kind of a conclusion about whether or not we want to pursue fertility treatments. Honestly, I just don’t know how I feel. The fact that I have this crazy job is not helping, but the next 6-12 months shouldn’t be as bad for work travel. I’ll still have to travel every other month, but that may not pose too much of a problem, depending on the timing. Beyond that, though, I just don’t know. I still want it to just happen. I want to just find out I’m pregnant one day, and be surprised. For whatever reason, I can’t give that up right now.

A woman I work with is about to be a grandmother. We were talking about her daughter, and she asked me “Do you think you’ll have children?” I felt like I could honestly answer her, saying “I don’t know.” She didn’t ask if I wanted them, or if I could – just what I thought the end result would be. I’m sure she wasn’t aware of the words she chose to use, or what my answer really meant. We talked about her daughter, and she said that her daughter didn’t really want children until she was 38. A little voice in my head kept replying to her, saying ‘but I don’t know if I can; I don’t know if I have that option.’ But I just nodded and said “we’ll see.” And, I guess we will.

>Sometimes, I think I am handling our situation with infertility well. We’re enjoying life and are seriously putting off any decision making until we have what I hope will be a fun and relaxing summer. While I think about being infertile and am definitely not happy about it, there are days where I don’t think about it at all. Then, there are days like Saturday.

We had a great day…went for a good run (my best time yet!), shopping, and then got ready to go to a party that evening. It was a bbq/house warming party with a few other couples. I hadn’t seen most of them in a while, and there was one other couple at the party that I had never met. I was surprised to see they had a baby, only because I rarely see babies these days (we don’t really hear from most of our friends who have had children anymore, and all my other friends with children live many hours away). I wish I could say that the realization that I would be spending the evening with an adorable baby girl made me happy, but it didn’t. Instead, I almost felt a sense of panic, especially since I wasn’t prepared for it (if I know I’m walking into a situation with a baby, I usually have a better reaction).

At first, I was ok. There were moments that were not easy, like when I saw her father playing with her, and I started thinking about how sweet M would be with a baby, but I tried not to let my mind wander. Conversations, though, naturally turned to pregnancy and childbirth. That was especially true when one of the women told me that they are going to start ttc next year. They would ideally like to have a June baby, she said, but they were thinking they might start ttc in May or June of next year. While all the focus on babies and pregnancy was difficult, that was the hardest part. Hearing the optimism in her voice and her confidence that things would go as planned made me so acutely aware of my own lack of optimism. We stopped saying “when” we have children ages ago, and now use “if.” We don’t think about when would be a good month or season to have children, but instead think of periods of time that are conducive for fertility treatments. Seeing that baby and talking to other women made it hard to escape the feeling of being different…and that they have something that I don’t.

I actually had a good time at the party, despite the baby and pregnancy talk. After ttc for almost two years with M and for almost three years with my ex-husband, I’ve done enough research and have enough stories from friends that I can carry on a pretty good conversation. I did have too much wine, though, which had terrible effects once we were in the comfort of our own home. Once I started talking to M about it, everything just poured out. I’m not really a crier, but when I do, it’s all or nothing. I sobbed…about the unfairness of it all (I hate when I go down that road!), the fact that I don’t know what we should do, and that I’m turning 36 next week. I cried because doctors can’t figure out what’s wrong with me, and I don’t think they know if any of their treatments are going to work. Mostly, though, I cried beacuse I don’t want this…I don’t want to have to decide what to do, to call my insurance company for the hundreth time, or to decide how much I’m willing to put us through to try to have a child. I want to be the other people at the party – people who think of ttc as a joyful time and who decide ahead of time the month that they would like to give birth.

Most of the time, I’m really ok, but then I go to a party and unexpectedly see a baby, and apparently, it all falls apart.

That…and wine…is a bad combination.

>I think we are officially over our are we moving or not turmoil. I’ve stopped applying for jobs, and turned down any interviews I had lined up. M. had a hard time accepting the news that he didn’t get the job of his dreams (or the job he imagines would be the job of his dreams – who really knows), but he seems to be back to normal now. He’s going to keep an eye out for any opportunities that seem exceptionally appealing, but the limited number of jobs combined with the intense competition for the ones that are available make our chances of going anywhere pretty slim. We’re ok with that, though. There are many advantages to staying, and I have felt comforted by the by fact that things are no longer up in the air. Moving would have been exciting, but this is good, too.

We decided that no matter what happened, we were going to put off fertility treatments until the fall. We wanted to enjoy the summer, and after the rough year we’ve had of getting laid off/almost moving/not moving/almost moving – combined with two rounds of Clomid and a new job that required massive amounts of travel – having a fun, relaxing summer sounded like the perfect remedy.

It still does. The problem that M. and I have both realized is that we don’t know if we’ll feel any differently in the fall. We’re enjoying our life. We started running in February, and I can’t remember ever feeling better. I’ve lost a few lbs, I’m getting stronger, and I just feel so…GOOD. I’m amazed by what my body has been able to accomplish in such a short period of time, and I feel like physically, everything is just in synch. My periods have gotten lighter, and the dibilitating cramps I used to get are now totally manageable. We both feel good, and we have some fun summer trips planned to look forward to.

It’s hard to think about disrupting all of that…and to think instead about injecting myself with medications that may or may not work, but will most likely have side effects that will not make me feel my best. Sometimes I feel like I have accepted that we may not have children, but other times I wonder if it’s really just that I’m giving up. Maybe I just don’t want it enough.

For now, we’re just going to enjoy life, and we’ll see how we feel in the fall. There will always be a part of me that will hope for a surprise pregnancy – achieved without any medical intervention – but I know it may not (or probably won’t) happen. That, I have accepted. As far as giving up, I guess only time will tell.

>I live in a college town of about 150,000 people. The population could be larger depending on how large of a radius is used to include surrounding small towns, but I usually tell people that about 150,000 people live here. Several large cities are within driving distance, and that, combined with the fact that it’s also home to a large university, can make it feel larger or smaller than it really is, depending on the day.

The area overall is good for raising a family, and it seems like most people who live here are focused on families, children, etc. It’s sometimes made living here difficult, and I had some hopes that moving to a larger city would have helped lessen the feeling that we are not part of the club that everyone with children appears to belong to. I have no idea if this is true, and it isn’t necessarily specific to the area. Sometimes it just seems like I am the only infertile person living here, even though I know deep down that isn’t true.

Recently, though, I have come across things that have surprised me.

Two local mom-bloggers got together last year to create a website that is specifically geared toward moms. It includes information that, apparently, moms would find helpful, and contains a lot of information about the area. The authors were recently on the radio show that we listen to each morning, and I decided that afternoon to check it out. I have no idea why – I did once before, and there was nothing there for me. I’m not a mom, so the content wasn’t helpful, and if anything, it was depressing. Last week, though, I visited the site and saw they are now featuring a blog that’s focused on one couple’s struggle with infertility. I was stunned! While I was sad to read about this particular individual’s expereince, it meant so much to me that they included it. I don’t even know why I visited the web site, but I was glad I did!

I was surprised again by my small-ish town on Sunday, when they featured stories of women who dealt with infertility before having children in the newspaper. It was some kind of a mother’s day segment, and the last thing I expected to read about was infertility! They profiled three couples who dealt with various aspects of infertility before having children, and they recommended a book for people who are currently dealing with infertility. I wish they told the story of a couple remained childless (because of finances, unsuccessful treatment, etc.) or adopted, because it had a little bit of a happy – and not always realistic – ending feeling to it. But, I appreciated that they even included it, even if it wasn’t perfect.

Usually, I feel surrounded by mom’s night out, mom’s happy hour, mom’s day, and mom’s talk shows. It was nice to feel included.

>It’s official – we aren’t going anywhere. M. found out last night that he didn’t get the job, so we aren’t moving, and we aren’t getting new jobs. There are so many worse places to work and to live, and there are certainly worse situations to be in…but it still stung. I know that M. was beyond disappointed, and that was hard. I really didn’t know what to say, because I know that there isn’t anything I could say that would make it better.

I feel like we honestly just haven’t been able to catch a break, and I thought maybe this was going to be it. I was hoping that we would have one of those situations where M. got the job of his dreams, we moved, and everything just made sense…where our decisions dealing with infertility would become crystal clear…where we would just feel like it all worked out in the end. Apparently, this won’t be the end for us.

Now that we’re staying, we’re going to have to figure out what our plan really is for dealing with infertility treatment. I live in a state with mandated insurance coverage, and my insurance has approved treatment, but the prescription part of my plan is still denying coverage. Even once it’s covered, though (if that ever happens), I’m torn. On one hand (especially now that we’re staying), I want to do everything we can to start a family, but I’m also hesitant. I know that statistically, our chances are not high, and they still don’t know what it is that’s preventing me from getting pregnant. I realize that it may not be possible to know right now, but I would feel better about taking medication if I knew why I was taking it (and not just because “it’s worked for a lot of people” or ” we’ve had good luck with this). Maybe it’s age, or maybe it’s something they don’t know, but I’m torn about what I want to do next.

We’re going to wait until the fall to decide. Until then, we’re going nowhere, in more ways than one.

>I saw this at Misconceptions about Conception. I thought this might break up my sting of posts where I talk about all the uncertainties of my life. 🙂 On that end, nothing has changed, so I am hoping this will be more interesting!

If you’d like to participate, copy and paste the list and bold all the things you’ve done!

99 Things About Me

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to DisneyWorld
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo (everyone should be happy I have not done this)
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing (only on a fake rock wall, but I think it counts!)
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been a passenger on a motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year’s Eve
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Got a tattoo
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

This isn’t part of the 99, but I ran my first 5k this weekend! It’s not a marathon, but I’m still happy about it. 🙂


May: BFP for baby #2, due January 2015

July: Our daughter is born!

November: Still pregnant. Fingers crossed! EDD 7/5/13
October: retrieval 10/12; 5dt 10/17; BFP!!! 10/25-hcg=70; 10/29-hcg=391
September-October: IVF, microdose lupron flare protocol
June-July-August: approved! dealing with scheduling issues and most likely starting IVF in September
May: waiting for insurance approval to start treatment
April: laparoscopic surgery to remove endometrioma on left ovary; diagnosed with stage 3 endo
March: RE finds cyst - suspects endometrioma; also high FSH, low AMH
February: consult with RE; bloodwork, hsg

January-February: Acupuncture once per week, vitex and natural progesterone after ovulation; back to charting bbt
March-April: end of ttc
May:diagnosed with severe cervical dysplasia (CIN III)
July-August: L.E.E.P. procedure and recovery

December: Start acupuncture
May-November: Not actively trying/on a break/enjoying life
April: Not actively trying, still waiting for insurance coverage for injectables
January-March: still waiting to start injectables

December 09-March 10: On a break while waiting to start injectables
November 2009: 50 mg Clomid CD 5-9; BFN
October 2009: All tests normal; Take 50 mg Clomid CD 5-9; BFN
July 2009: Ob/gyn asks for bbt chart, S/A, CD3 b/w; plan tbd.
April/May 2009: Switch from OPKs to the Clearblue Fertility Monitor
March/April 2009: Start using OPKs and bbt

Sept/Oct 2008: Stop preventing; 'if it happens, it happens'
Summer 2008: Stop BCPs; using bbt chart to prevent pregnancy
May 2007: Married again! husband #2; no plans for children

Previous Life
Fall 2005: Divorced
Summer 2005: See RE; more b/w, clomid challenge test, sonohysterogram; 2 Clomid IUI cycles - BFN; male factor discovered (he now has a child with wife #2)
Spring 2003: See ob/gyn for IF, get b/w and HSG; All results normal; Husband #1 gets S/A, which he says is normal; results never sent to ob/gyn
Spring 2002: Stop BCPs, begin ttc and charting bbt
Oct 2000: Married to husband #1