Monday, October 27, 2014

I Succeeded at a Thing!

I'm in a rare good mood tonight.  Rare since diagnosis, anyway.

Last week, which was Week One of the dreaded Chaos Weeks, I presented a ten minute oral argument in front of members of the moot court board and an actual practitioner.  I was terrified.  I was sure I would fail.  I almost had a panic attack in the stacks of the library (and no, I wasn't just out of breath because I was climbing a lot of stairs and I am very out of shape YOU SHUT YOUR MOUTH).

But I readied myself for battle, I went in there, and I did my best.  And I thought it went OK!  Pretty good, even!


It went awesome.  Because they posted the results today and out of the seventy-seven people in the class, only two did better than I did.

Honestly, I can only remember a few times in my life that I have been this proud of a thing I did.  And I think it's because I really needed this right now.  PCOS feels like one big, boiling pot of failure that I occasionally cry into or burn the bottom of because I cannot even make failure soup correctly.  Succeeding at something in the middle of all that suckiness feels good.  Like, REALLY good.

Of course, I might also be in such a good mood because now that I have a definite start time for drugs, I'm not trying as hard to get pregnant this cycle.  I feel like help is around the corner, so it's maybe ok if I just take a tiny break this month.  And that's really freeing.  And it's nice to feel free for, like, a second.  If I thought I could feel so unburdened all the time I would consider giving up trying, but I know that me feeling this way has more to do with drugs in my future than lack of trying in my present.  If I actually quit, I'd be devastated, not elated.

But the point is, it's really nice right now.  I'm in the eye of the storm, with the awfulness of trying naturally behind me and the awfulness of drugs ahead.  But right here it's calm.  And while I'm in this calmness I accomplished a thing that I'm really proud of.  And it feels awesome.  So... yeah.  Good day.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Changed Friendships

Sometimes I really hate what PCOS has done to my relationships with other people.

Brother and California Sister-in-law (CSIL) are spontaneously coming to visit tomorrow and I'm not excited.  I used to be excited.  Whenever I got to spend time with them it was my favorite.  Their apartment was like a haven for me where I could relax and be myself.  And if things had gone a different way and I were pregnant now or at least trying without a death sentence hanging over my head, I think our relationship would still be joyful and full of excitement.  Instead, I feel like there's bitterness between us.

She's bitter that I have to be struggling while she's trying because if she does get pregnant she just wants to be happy about it.  She'd really rather not deal with my pain.

And if I'm honest, I am bitter, too.  I'm bitter that she doesn't have to go through what I have to go through.  That she might actually get pregnant.  And if she does, I know that the first thing she will feel is joy.  You know what I will feel if I get pregnant?  Terror.  Because a little pink line on a stick isn't the end game for me.  I want a child.  And PCOS doesn't stop ruining my life after implantation.  My risk of miscarriage is so much higher than everyone else's.  So I know that if I'm ever blessed enough to get a positive pregnancy test, I will immediately be terrified that I will mess it up, that the positive isn't real, that I will lose the child, that I will never be whole again once I do.  Meanwhile, CSIL would just be blissfully counting days and getting ready for her little miracle to bounce out of her youthful and fresh uterus and into her waiting arms.

And it's worse because she's such a private person.  So private.  So she might not tell me right away if she does get that positive.  But not knowing only makes it more painful for me so I keep having to ask in sneaky ways.  And I want to hear about how the process is going for her but she keeps not wanting to talk about it, even though I will understand the process of trying better than anyone!  So that makes me feel like I can't talk about my own process.  But when I try not to talk about it, it just swells in me, fighting to get out and I can't think of anything else in my life remotely worth mentioning.

I hate walking on eggshells.  I hate dreading the thought of seeing someone I love.  I hate that I'm finding it really hard to forgive her for telling me how much it sucks for HER that I am struggling right now.  I hate talking about it and I hate not talking about it.  I just hate the whole situation, and I hate that it is the way it is because of the thing that's wrong with ME.  It's always me and my stupid body that make everything terrible.

And I hate that I have all these horrible thoughts and feelings over a simple lunch.  Just lunch.  That's all.

I hope that the restaurant we go to seats us at a table made of beheaded children and puppy tears so that I will have a legitimate reason for having a terrible time.  I honestly do.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

IComLeavWe and Stress and Other Ramblings

Happy International Comment Leaving Week!  I got lots of comments on my Chocolate post yesterday, which was very exciting but also amusing.  It was amusing because I didn't really think about how all the new people reading my blog would probably just read the most recent post because scrolling and clicking are hard (no judgement; I did the exact same thing on all of their blogs), and it didn't occur to me to try to tailor that post to reflect the kind of person I want new people to see me as.

As a result, I believe that everyone now pictures me somewhat like Gollum, only clutching chocolate bars instead of The One Ring.

Eh.  It's not inaccurate.

Anyway.  Right now I am stressed.  I'm in the middle of those chaos weeks I told you about earlier in "Apparently I am a child now" (That's the one where I was crying over a bike.  Remember that?  Good times.).  And to make things worse, I tried to dabble in a bit of escapism by playing Dragon Age: Origins and my game boyfriend broke up with me because I fought a freaking army to make him king and he now feels like he needs to marry someone of royal blood.  CLASSIST PIG.  I MADE YOU WHAT YOU ARE.

Oh, dear, this post is not making me look much better.

It's hard to focus on school and all the Very Important things that I need to do when I just keep thinking about my appointment on November 6.  The one where I start taking drugs.  I have so many thoughts and feelings about the drugs.  For example, should I tell people that I am taking them?  If so, all of the people or just some?  I don't want anyone to try to talk me out of it.  Everyone is still hung up on the fact that I am in law school, but I'm like sixteen steps beyond worrying about that.

Besides, at this point NOT being pregnant is as stressful and time-consuming as being pregnant would be.  So if y'all are worried about taking my attention away from my studies you are TOO LATE.  And it's killing me to just keep doing nothing besides waiting and crying and researching nursery themes online.  It's been over eight months of that, yo.  That's plenty.

At the same time, fertility drugs are just so not how I pictured my life.  I hate drugs.  I used to refuse to even take pain killers (not because I'm a hippie, just because the idea of something changing my body chemistry used to freak me out.  Don't worry; once I started getting super painful periods I reconsidered that stance real quick).  Am I about to put things in my body that will make me absolutely insane and give me all kinds of side effects and then not even work when all is said and done?  In a year will I be broker and crazier and still completely childless?

Yeah, possibly.  That's one of the potential outcomes here.  But I have to try.  I really do believe that.  I just wish I knew how best to mentally prepare.

Monday, October 20, 2014


I have declared a nemesis today, my friends.  And the name of my nemesis is Chocolate.

I am growing more and more certain that when I die and look back in cosmic wisdom on my life and all the small decisions that formed it, I will see with perfect clarity that it was chocolate, and not PCOS, that deprived me from ever having children.  Because most of the diet things I can handle.  I can live without white flour, even though it is inconvenient.  I can live without milk.  I can even live without cheese, as much as I thought I wouldn't be able to.

But then Chocolate comes along with its delicious, flavorful goodness, and I am lost.

Especially because it is always offered to me as a treat that people want to give me to make me happy.  I can see the joy and expectation in their eyes.  They KNOW that I will love what they are presenting.  I don't want to disappoint them!  I don't want to spit on their gift!  It would be rude!  Plus, then I wouldn't get to eat chocolate.

Three days ago, it was the flourless chocolate cakes  at Brother's birthday dinner.  I mean... they were shaped like Daleks.  I'm not sure what I was really supposed to do.  But they were my downfall.  Because when I once again tasted the sweet heaven of chocolate, my resistance to it was destroyed.

Thus I was utterly unequipped to refuse the giant platter of chocolate passed around at the end of the meal at a dinner party yesterday.  I ate the first one so as not to be rude.  I ate the second one because someone thought it was a good idea to put the platter in front of me and just LEAVE IT THERE.  I ate the third one because.... ugh, because chocolate is delicious!

Today I thought I was safe.  No dinner parties today.  Just law school.  But I was wrong to relax!  CURSE my kind and considerate Friend Who Does Not Know for buying me a frosted, chocolate cake donut on her way to school to show her affection for me!  CURSE HER.

Whatever.  Who cares what happens this month.  I don't even care if I don't ovulate at all.  Because next month it shall begin, my friends.  My journey into the land of drugs.  I made an appointment for November 6 so that I can start next cycle.  I'm nervous and excited and optimistic and pessimistic all at the same time.  It's confusing.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

I'll race ya!

So as I mentioned last post, I was visiting Brother and California Sister-In-Law (I'm gonna call her "CSIL" because typing is hard) this weekend.

(For those who are wondering: no, I have not quite recovered from the Dairy Debacle of 2014.  Getting there.  But this post is not about that.)

CSIL just started trying to conceive and after subtly testing the waters ("CSIL, would you like a drink?  Yes, you would?  Aaaaaalllllright then.") and then feeling like a jerk for being relieved that she is not yet doing the prongo congo, I struck up a conversation about baby names.

Because baby names are fun!  And we have talked about them before!  And Husband and I, in our obsession (ok, fine, my obsession), came up with a second name we love for each gender in case of twins (when it rains, it pours, right?).  So I thought it would be a fun, "Hey, look, we can totally talk about some baby things together without me being a super-downer all the time!"


Even though she has told me her baby names in the past, apparently since she started trying For Serious she no longer wants to discuss it.  She doesn't want to hear mine and she won't tell me hers.

Why not?

Because if they're the same, "it'll be awkward" (her words) because they're not changing their minds and they don't want us to be mad at them when the baby pops out and they give him or her a name that we  wanted.  So, basically, when it comes to names she thinks I might want, she's prepared to race me for them.

Well, FREAKING GREAT.  I would love to race you, CSIL.  Your period comes like freaking clockwork and your uterus had never flipped you off with any kind of weird symptoms.  Let's totally race.  Oh, what's that, you got pregnant in the middle of that sentence and it's quadruplets and you're going to use all of my names?  I'm thrilled.

Seriously, though.  She could have just told me her names.  I am not a danger to her.  In fact, if we were thinking of the same name, I would have withdrawn immediately.  I wasn't even going to TRY to fight her, because I know what a gimp I am.

This is what a race between us would look like:  The gun goes off.  I shoot out of the gate, immediately trip on my own feet, and fall flat on my face.  Embarrassed, I get up, run really fast, smack into something, realize that it's the starting gate and that I'm running in the exact opposite direction that I'm supposed to be, and then collapse on the ground and sob for a while.  CSIL takes a casual drink of water.  I finally push my emotions down, start staggering down the track again, and then suddenly go blind.  As I get down on all fours and try to feel my way towards the finish line (spoiler alert: I am not even close), CSIL finally enters the race.  She jogs easily past me, crosses the finish line, and then wipes her brow even though her forehead is not even so much as GLISTENING from exertion.  She gets a trophy.  I am crying again.  All of her children get beautiful names and I am stuck with the names Toiletface and Trashchild.  They are not even real children; just some sticks I found and decided to love.  Some people wonder whether I think they are real children on account of the fact that I am STILL BLIND, but no one feels comfortable asking.  Gradually I lose all of my friends and acquaintances, flunk out of law school, and get really smelly.

That's how I feel right now.

But since she won't tell me her names, I'm going to stick with mine.  And if she gets pregnant and gives birth and bestows upon the fruit of her loins one of MY names, then I will consider that my child.  Win-win.  Free child.  That's what I call problem solved.

Friday, October 17, 2014

What a crappy day.

So this morning I woke up slowly and luxuriously, curled up in my nice warm blankets and totally rested because I don't have classes on Friday mornings and I got to sleep in.  I got up slowly, took my time getting ready for the day, and felt awesome.

Oh, no, wait.  That was how I WANTED my day to start.

Instead, it started with my uterus screaming at me.


Uuuugghhhhh cramps are the worst!  So I wallowed in pain and cried for a while and then I got up and took some Advil and stumbled around in a sleepy, pained stupor trying to find my heating pad and I could not find it no matter how hard I tried and so I went back to bed for Wallowing and Crying  II: The Pain Continues (sequels suck) until I finally realized that the heating pad was under the bed.  Got it.  Plugged it in.  Had to get up a couple hours later, still in pain, still exhausted, and decidedly grumpy.  THAT is how my day started.

Then I drove down to my mom's house (about two hours away) to join her for my brother and sister-in-law's birthday dinner (this is California Sister-In-Law - the one who is trying, not the one who is pregnant).  Usually such things are super fun because my mom has a rule that she will make us whatever we want for our birthday dinners, and we consistently take full advantage of that.  Brother chooses to use the privilege to make riddles for Mom about what to make.  This year's was:

1.  A food item from my (as in SecondVoice's) favorite movie.
2.  A food item from Mom's least favorite movie.
3.  An alcohol Mom would be embarrassed purchasing.
4.  Fig ice cream.
5.  Something that is an unnatural color.
6.  A food item from Doctor Who.
7.  A food item from Avatar (as in the air bender, not the blue Native Americans)

I look forward to these dinners every year.  They are so fun.  And planning them is so fun.  And so I decided to go off-diet for just this one day.  I mean... I have lost 16 pounds already.  That's a big accomplishment.  So I figured, you know, what is the worst thing that could happen if I go off-diet for just one day?

Well, I will tell you.

The meal was full of dairy.  Cheese, whipped cream cheese, heavy whipping cream, milk, chocolate... basically all the forms of dairy that can reasonably be included in a meal.  All the things I have been staying away from for months.  And I ate it all.  Every last morsel that was put in front of me.

And then I spent the rest of the evening on the toilet with explosive diarrhea.


I cannot even tell you how embarrassing that was.  Or how much it sucks that I missed out on a ton of great conversation.  Or how unfair it is that I have to deal with my body doing stupid crap (whoops!  there's another one) like this to me because I'm trying to control it and eat the right things so that it will stop throwing a hissy fit every time I try to put a baby in it.  It isn't fair.  Why can't my body just be normal?  Why can't I have those light, kinda achey cramps that other girls get that do not prevent them from doing anything with their day?  Why can't I eat or not eat dairy at my own discretion and not have my body flip out?  Why can't I just grow a freaking human inside of me like all the other women?  HUH?

I'm going to bed now because I would like this day to be over.  Good night, readers.  I hope your days were better than mine.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

How am I? Umm...

I never thought the questions "how are you?" and "what's new?" would be such challenges for me.

There are two categories of askers, and I shall address them each individually.

Those Who Do Not Know:

Last night, an old friend got back in touch with me (am I old enough to have old friends?  I guess so.  Seems weird, though.) and asked what's new in my life.  This is a guy that I was very close to in high school, saw occasionally on breaks and things during college, and then lost touch with a few years ago.  This person asked me what was new.  It is an innocent question borne of genuine ignorance and equally genuine interest.  Several responses flitted through my mind:

The "Everything's Fine":

"Oh, not much!  Just loving life!  School is great; marriage is great; I'm basically living a fairy tale all day and every day!  I just wish I could share this joy with the world and especially with those in need!"


  • does not make anyone uncomfortable
  • is not too much information in response to a casual question
  • makes me feel like a big fat liar
The "Sob Story":

"I just want babies and I don't have any and everyone else gets them and it isn't fair so I cry all of the time and nothing else in my life seems to have any meaning at all.  I have contemplated stealing babies.  I might have even actually stolen one briefly.  Don't worry about it.  Also, please don't tell the cops.  They don't understand my life."

  • it is accurate (well... not the baby stealing part.  I did not do that.  *shifty eyes*)
  • it encourages a deeper level of communication
  • now he is trapped in a conversation about my problems
  • I don't want PCOS to be the only thing that I ever, EVER freaking talk about 
  • he might say one of those things I hate it when people say (see previous post, and/or imagine some well-meaning but unhelpful gobbledygook)
Those Who Know

This is equally tricky.  Because what do they mean?  Why are they asking?  How much are they asking?  Some responses:

The "Status Update":

"Pretty good.  My cervical mucus was slippery a few days ago so that's good news.  I had a lot of sexytimes and now I'm perma-crossing my fingers for two weeks.  They are super sore and it makes everyday chores harder.  Thanks for asking!"

  • This might legitimately be what they are asking
  • Again, it is an honest description of what I am going through
  • This may not have been what they were asking AT ALL and now you've doomed them to more boring details and they want to slit their wrists but are forced instead to nod slowly
  • Makes it seem like PCOS is the only thing going on in my life.  Sometimes I do feel like it is, but that doesn't mean I want to broadcast that to others.  I want others to think I'm cool and have, like, hobbies.  Or whatever.  Things I think about that don't rhyme with schmabies or schminfertility.
The "Grasping For Straws":

"I... went grocery shopping yesterday?  Still going to school... pretty much every day, now.... Uuuuhhhh.... oh!  Did you hear that the guy from High School Musical proposed to his girlfriend at Disneyland?  So that's a pretty big deal."

  • Probably less repetitive and more interesting than CM updates
  • Might help me remember what else IS in my life right now and that's probably a good exercise for me
  • If they were not asking for a PCOS update, I have responded in a socially appropriate way.  If they were, then they can clarify.
  • Even though I KNOW there are lots of things going on in my life, I can never think of them on the spot because my mind just keeps screaming unhelpful suggestions like, "Tell her about your comparison shopping of ovulation kits!  I'm sure she's interested in that!  Did you cover insurance questions yet?"
  • Keeps the conversation more surface level.
  • Once again just makes me feel like I'm not really answering honestly.

There are other options, but those are the main ones that immediately pop into my head when confronted with friendly, normal questions that people respond to all the time without having to make pro/con lists.  Can anyone think of any others?

(P.S.  In case any of YOU want to know how I'm doing...  I got my period today.  So.  Yeah.  At least 31 days is still pretty normal-like, right?  Come on, uterus.  Get it together.)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Get out of my sexytimes, PCOS!

You know what I hate?  I hate that I always, always know exactly where I am in my cycle.  And I hate that whenever Husband comes at me all sexy-like (and, guys, he is super sexy when he comes at me all sexy-like), I do the math and I either think "YES.  LET'S DO THIS.  SEXYTIME A BABY INTO ME." or I think "We are wasting some perfectly good sexytimes not making a baby."

Every time.  I can't not have those thoughts.  If I'm into it, I have those thoughts.  If I'm not in the mood, I still have those thoughts.  And they affect whether I decide to get in the mood or not.  Not definitively, but they are a factor.  

And the time of month affects where I want to have sexytimes, too, because I am sure as heck not going to be stuck in the shower with my legs up in the air for half an hour post-sexytimes.  Because even if that is a silly superstition and doesn't have any effect on anything, I am taking no chances.  If it's fertile times, those legs are going up.  And I want to be on a comfy bed or couch when they do.

And I just really hate that.  I hate how it has invaded that intimate area of my life.  I wish sexytimes could just be sexytimes and not be about anything else ever.

I hate having to schedule it, too.  Ovulation is the least romantic time of the month.  There's no surprise or excitement because I know it's coming and I'm almost dreading it because of the pervasive feeling that it's just going to fail again and my own natural inclination to not even try if I think I'm going to fail.

By the way, if anyone wants to throw a "just relax and it will happen" my way in the comments, I WILL MURDER YOU.  AND I AM IN LAW SCHOOL, SO I WILL KNOW HOW NOT TO GET CONVICTED.  TRY ME.  JUST YOU TRY IT.

Still no period, by the way.  Good news or bad news?  If I were a betting woman, I know where I'd put my money...

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Apparently I am a child now.

So, Day 29 of this cycle.  Still no period.  But I would bet money that it will come tomorrow, because I am PMSing hardcore.

Basically, I just cried all the way home because I hate my "new" bike.  In my defense, my new bike is stupid.

My old bike (which, quick refresher, was stolen from right outside of my apartment, even though it was locked) was a gift from my dad, and it was beautiful and sea-green with a black basket made to look like it had cool vines on it.  I named her Marine Cassidy and we were the best of friends.  My new bike is a Craigslist find that looked in the picture like a bike that could be owned by a fully grown woman, but that in fact was clearly made for a young girl.  Tweener, tops.  I named her Cyndi (the i is supposed to have a heart on it; that's mandatory) because she has a stupid butterfly tramp stamp and I hate it and I hate her and that is my story.  Also the basket is in the front which makes it impossible to attach a light to the front, which I did not realize, so I was biking some pretty pot-holey roads in pitch darkness.  Without my glasses.  And also while crying.

Ok, it wasn't just because of the bike.  I am also very stressed.  The Chaos Weeks are coming.  I have a hearing (meaning I have to write a memorandum and prep for oral argument and meet with my client several times to make sure he is ready) and a moot court competition (meaning I have to write a brief and then write and deliver two oral arguments) and a church event for the children that I am planning (meaning I have to plan all the activities and order all the things we need and recruit volunteers and tell them what to do, and plan/deliver a short sermon) all in the next two weeks and it is too many things.  Too many.  And that is on top of normal law school and editing the thesis that I volunteered to edit and dealing with infertility.  So in class when I found out about another surprise thing that is very big and due in two days I was rather unhappy about it.  I will be so glad when October is over.

Plus, again, I'm fairly sure I'm PMSing.  Or, whatever, maybe not.  Because PCOS can do whatever it wants to me at whatever time, so this really could just be a thing that's happening for no reason.  Or it could be pregnancy hormones.  Isn't it fun how the symptoms for all three are exactly the same?  I love being able to guess whether the craziness I'm going through is the first sign of my dreams come true or another bitter disappointment or pointless havoc.  It is my favorite game.

Friday, October 10, 2014

How long to wait?

Ok, so I know I already said I was completely sure that I'm not pregnant this month... but that was when I was sick and miserable and in a very negative frame of mind.  I got lots of sleep and I'm all better now.  Well, my body is (minus my good friends the crazy PCOS symptoms).  My mind, on the other hand, is now back to anxious "what if"s.

Because, you know, I COULD be pregnant... Maybe?  Maybe this time?

Ugh.  The problem with not being sick and pessimistic is that now the ol' two week wait actually FEELS like a two week wait again.  I was kinda enjoying not counting and recounting the days.  I went three whole days without checking my fertility tracker app!  That's got to be some kind of record for me.

So the quandary I'm puzzling over right now is what day I should test if I don't get a magical repeat of last month's perfect cycle length.  I'm on Day 25.  Last month I had my period on Day 28.  The several months before that my cycles have been anywhere between 26 and 58 days.  According to the aforementioned fertility app, my average length is 39 days.

Yes, I realize I'm just spouting numbers and that none of them mean anything because my body is a mystery wrapped in an enigma wrapped in crossword puzzles and Sudokus that were written by third graders and don't make any sense because no one explained to them what a Sudoku was and the answer to every crossword is "fart" no matter what the clue is and no matter how many boxes.

That was a long analogy.  It kinda got away from me.

I asked Husband how long he thought we should wait and he said we should wait a month after my period is due.  A MOTHER FLIPPING MONTH.  So I asked him how long he thought we should wait once he factored in the fact that I go crazy when I have to wait for things and that he has to live with me and that if it were up to me I would test early and often.  He then said fifty days.  When I calmly and rationally pointed out to him (if you're picturing me screaming like a banshee and my eyes flashing all crazy-like, you're pretty close) that fifty days was longer than a month, he said, "Oh, sorry.  I meant two months the first time."


So basically I am no longer consulting him on issues of timeline.  I love him very much, but he is a very stable and constant person who does not always understand the crazies that explode inside of me on a daily basis.  The stableness and constantness will come in all kinds of handy when we're actually parents and need to live from crisis to crisis, but right now it just makes him and his entire outlook on life very strange to me.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Ugh, diets.

Sometimes . . . Husband does not really understand diets.

I mean, Husband and I have always had drastically different taste in foods.  I like sushi and vegetables and even though I am not a vegetarian I think that tofu is delicious.

Husband's idea of fine cuisine is Hamburger Helper or McDonald's.  Or Hot Pockets.  This is a thing that I have (mostly) accepted about him.  In fact, it's somewhat of a running joke in our family.  When cousins do impressions of Husband, they usually involve the look of excitement that crosses his face whenever he sees a fast food chain he hasn't eaten at in a while.  Basically, while I did try in early marriage to make meals we would both like, I quickly realized that it was a lost cause.  Back then, when we were still newlyweds, I made one dish for him and a separate one for me every single meal that we ate together.  Once law school started and I no longer had anything remotely resembling free time, that was obviously not a thing I wanted to do anymore.  So he's been on his own food-wise for over a year.

Because of this, making my own, separate meals when I started the PCOS diet was not unfamiliar.  What WAS unfamiliar was how angsty I got when he ate his food around me.  His tolerable food, I mean.  I continue to feel nothing but disgust when he eats Hot Pockets.

We had a lot of conversations about this in the first month of the diet, particularly when he ate half a box of chocolate donuts right in front of me.  (I feel the need to point out at this time that he is basically a bean pole.  I've lost 14 pounds and am right in the middle of the healthy weight range for my height, but he STILL weighs less than I do.  And he is taller.  This is just another thing about my life that is unfair.)  And, to his credit, he has been trying.  He hid the entire box of cookies that he bought yesterday on a shelf below eye level in the cupboard (I still saw it right away, but it was a good effort), and he only makes pizza when I'm not home (though the house does still smell like it when I get back).

So today when he asked if I could put away the last slices of his pizza for him and didn't understand why I didn't want to even look at the cheesy, white-flourey, greasy deliciousness of it, I got a little frustrated.  I've never asked him to diet with me.  And I wouldn't, because I know that he would not be able to.  I've made SOME progress with him over the years (for example, he will now eat fish and if given the option will choose brown rice over white), but it has not been easy.  I'm almost positive it's a mental thing, but he always feels sick after eating food he doesn't like and so he reacts strongly to being forced to, and has on several occasions eaten fast food before going to a friend's house for dinner in case they serve something he doesn't like (which is most of the things).  So I wouldn't ask him to.  I have always known that this would just be a me thing.

But sometimes... ok, a lot of the time... I really, really wish it wasn't just a me thing.  Even if he doesn't eat the food with me I wish it was at least on his mind as much as it is on mine.  When we go to a restaurant with a friend and I have already looked at the menu online and ascertained what dishes don't have white flour or dairy or soy, and then the friend suggests another place, I wish that instead of being all for it, Husband would know that I have no idea whether I can eat at the new place or not and would mention that instead of agreeing immediately and forcing me to remind him.

I wish that when guests come over he wouldn't get my favorite dessert bars and ask me to help frost them and tell me it's fine to take a slice when it obviously isn't.

And I wish that he would understand why I don't want to put away his pizza slices for him.

Sometimes, it's just really hard that this entire infertility thing is completely on my shoulders and that I have to work really hard to try and fix it while Husband can (and frequently does) forget that it's an issue at all.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Miserable Musings

Uuuuugggghhhhhh I am sick today so everything seems exponentially more awful.

I'm in a depressed funk, but one that's more comical than worrisome.  I'm like a sitcom character with a "look how depressed I am" punchline for every comment anyone tries to make at me.

Basically, I am Eeyore.

"Look how expensive this soap is!"

"Can't.  I'm very busy melting into a miserable puddle that will seep into the floor and stain the carpet because I cannot even die in a way that will not inconvenience everyone around me."

Actual conversation that I had with the girl sitting next to me in class.

Ok, fine, it wasn't.  Sometimes I am that clever, but when I am sick and depressed I mostly manage grunt responses.  I believe what I actually replied was, "What, does it have gold in it?"  Not my best material.  But I promise that in my mind I am a sparkling wit.

Anyway, obviously the miserableness has ventured into the realm of babies because, well, that's just my life now.  If my cycle is normal like everyone else's (and like it was last month and maybe will be again?  Maybe?  The weight loss COULD have worked, right?) then I am in the two week wait.  Everyone's very favorite time.  Only, honestly, I'm in such a negative frame of mind that I am POSITIVE that I am once again not pregnant.  I'm 100% certain that this month was yet another failure.  So I'm still impatient and everything, but more because I want to just get it over with, get my stupid period, feel all the horrible feelings that I already know I will feel no matter how much I expect to not be pregnant, and try again next month.  Only next month is a month away!  At least!  Because who even knows with my ridiculously irregular cycles!  Last month could have been a fluke!

Waiting is the worst.  Especially when everyone has babies but me.  There's a guest speaker today and I don't even know him but my stupid mind that stores away piles of random tidbits all of the time EVEN THOUGH I DO NOT ASK IT TO has just reminded me that a friend of mine took a class with him last semester and she had a week off when this guy's wife had a baby.  So.  Thanks, mind.  I now know that this random guy I've never met before has a newborn.  Aaaaand I hate him for it.  He looks young so they probably didn't even have to try for that long.  AND he has curly hair, which everyone knows looks adorable on babies.  I bet his infant is freaking precious.


Monday, October 6, 2014

Oh, PCOS. You're so clingy.

It seems to happen that whenever I get to a point where I'm able to set aside my struggle and engage in life like a normal person, my body decides to throw a weird symptom at me.  I was feeling good this week!  I was getting into the swing of my new job and staying on top of homework and overall doing well!  But obviously, that couldn't last.  Basically, PCOS is an insecure friend who hates it when I hang out with anyone else.  Like, you know in movies when there's that one "friend" who goes to crazy, lying, manipulative lengths to sabotage the main character's relationship for some flimsy and really not believable reason that almost always comes down to jealousy?  I'm talking From Justin to Kelly status (yes, I watched that movie this weekend (no, I don't want to talk about why (shut up.))).  PCOS is that friend.  Every time.

This week it was weird, sharp abdominal cramps on one side, breast pain, and then today some random spotting.  I hate the spotting the most because it was spotting that made me think I was pregnant way back when.  You know, when I was starry-eyed and thought my body could do no wrong.  Back then, I figured it was implantation bleeding.  But, nope!  My body just does whatever it wants whenever it wants.  YOLO, I guess.

So obviously this go-round I'm not getting my hopes up.  Instead, I'm just getting irrationally angry.  That's healthier, right?  Progress?

Also, for those that were wondering, Husband's Best Friend is having a girl.  Arizona Sister-in-Law (who is actually no longer moving to Arizona so maybe I should come up with a new name for her.  But, you know, later) was unable to discover the sex of her baby today because the silly little boy or girl was apparently doing cartwheels in the womb and making it impossible for the ultrasound tech to see their tiny, baby genitals.  So now they have to wait two more weeks.  It basically sucks.

Saturday, October 4, 2014


I think it's natural for humans to want control.  And when you're in the middle of something that is so completely out of your control, like trying to conceive with PCOS, I think it's understandable to want to take control where you can get it.

One of my coping mechanisms since I was 14 has been to dye or cut my hair in some radically different way whenever I want to mark a new season in my life.  Right now, dealing with what I'm dealing with, I really want to dye my hair jet black.

Unfortunately for me, my dear, beloved husband of two and a half years doesn't like dyed hair.  My last two dramatic hair transformations were cuts, but my hair is short enough right now that a cut is just not going to (pardon the pun) cut it.  I'd probably just tell him that he'll get used to it if I didn't also recently accept a job as a children's pastor at a fairly conservative church.  (Yes, I am doing this in addition to law school.  I know.  If you're wondering, I'm also on the board of two clubs and doing a clinic, all while trying to get some life to grow in my barren tundra of a uterus and coping with the crushing depression that stems from my total failure in that area.  Basically, I've got tons of free time.)

I know it's a stupid thing to be upset over, but I am upset.  It just feels like I can't do anything with my body that I want to.  I'm stuck with my boring, dirt brown hair and my defective, joke ovaries when what I want is to be a raven-haired beauty who is so fertile you can't even look at her funny without knocking her up with quintuplets.  A black-haired, baby-making machine.

Instead, I'm still just me. ;/

My Prologue

So I've mostly been talking about feelings and not so much where I am in my journey.  I'm actually pretty early in it.  That's why my pain is so fresh and so potent and so all-of-the-time (right?  That's why, right?  It won't feel like this forever . . . right!?)  Husband and I have been off birth control for eight months now, but we only found out about the PCOS about three months ago.

The first month after The Reveal I went to England without Husband on a study abroad that I had already planned before I knew that I would find out earth-shattering news the week before my flight.  So that was a lot of weird times trying to process and grieve thousands of miles away from anyone in my support system.

The second month I got serious about trying natural cures.  I wasn't really overweight (5'7" and 156 lbs), but I had read that losing 5-10% of your body weight could normalize your cycle.  So I went on an extreme PCOS diet (no dairy, no grains, no legumes, no sugar, only SOME fruits and vegetables and meats) and I started exercising.  By the end of the month I had lost 12 lbs.

The third month was when I started getting really antsy, though.  I felt like I had accomplished my weight loss goal.  I lost another lb over the month, but didn't feel as motivated to keep up my frenzied pace and I eased up a little on the diet.  When my period came, it was a perfect 28 days after the last one for the first time in YEARS.  But it was still a period.  And without weight loss to pour my energy into, waiting for my next ovulation has been excruciating.  And I know that after it passes, I'll be facing the TWW, which will be even worse.

So I've been pouring my energy into a planning and over-thinking a lot of miscellaneous baby-related things instead.  Which is fun . . . but I'm not sure it's super healthy.

First was names.  Husband and I nailed down a name for each sex months ago and they are both the perfect combination of recognizable but not too popular with excellent meanings, clever literary references and neutral initials (our last name starts with T so Zachary Isaac was out of the question for me).  It took weeks to orchestrate such perfect names.  But I wished later that I hadn't because it was right after they were settled that I found out I had PCOS.  Having a name made the loss even harder because not only did I not have a baby, but I didn't have those specific babies.  When you have a name you have somewhat of an image of what that child will be like and now that child is gone.  So for a while I wanted to change the names because just thinking of them made me remember that bitter time.  I was back to feverishly researching naming trends and etymologies.  But Husband convinced me not to because, to him, we're still waiting for those children.  I feel like we lost them but he feels like as long as we keep the names, we haven't.  We just know who we're looking forward to.  To him, throwing out their names would be killing them.  So we're keeping the names.  And I don't get to throw energy into coming up with new ones.

So now I'm planning the nursery.  My first theme was Totoro, but I think I'm more into Kingdom Hearts now.  And I know that when I finish with this I'll go to baby announcements.  Or maternity clothes.  Or that all important decision between breast-feeding and bottle-feeding.  (Who am I kidding?  It will be breast-feeding.  I find it way too cool that my body has the ability to sustain a human life.)

Does anyone else do this?  I think I keep going back to it because it makes me feel like I have some small sense of control in the baby realm instead of constantly just waiting and waiting and waiting.

I'm only 24, so we were originally going to wait until after law school to start trying drugs, but I'm going crazy.  We've each taken on an additional part time job so that we can afford it earlier.  Hopefully in a couple months.  And hopefully that will give me somewhat of a sense of control before I design and send out my own baby shower invitations with a "TBA" in the "date" column.  I'm thinking High Tea as the theme.

Friday, October 3, 2014

We are everywhere.

The weird thing about the pain of infertility is that it's so private.  For whatever reason, society decided that it's not one of those things we can talk about openly in casual conversation.  Being in law school, I feel like that's especially true for me because the vast majority of my peers aren't anywhere close to the stage of life that I'm in.

In fact, most still think it's crazy that I'm married.  My first year, while I was still getting to know everyone, there would come a point in each developing friendship when I would say something like "my husband" or "my mother-in-law" or "I promise you that when I say no, it is not an invitation to try harder; please look at the rock on my finger and then walk away", and the other person would realize that I was married.  Not once did anyone react with a casual, "Oh, that's cool."  Nope.  Shock and awe and horror, generally, and then I would have to sit through a several minute monologue about how crazy it is for them that I'm married because they don't feel AT ALL mature enough for that kind of lifelong commitment (not that they're saying I'm not mature enough or anything.  Seriously, they're SUPER happy for me and totally sure that it will work out).

Suffice it to say, I feel pretty confident that sharing with said peers that I want to procreate would be met with the same (or greater) amounts of shock and monologue, and it gets pretty exhausting, so I will pass.  Besides, infertility makes it a non-issue for now.

So, because of this, I have a secret pain and a secret life that I don't share with any of the people I see day to day, which is nice because it allows me to have somewhat of a break while I'm at school, but it sucks when people ask me how I am and I have to be careful how I answer.  Sometimes I wonder whether there are any others in the classroom struggling just below the general awareness.

Well, yesterday I met one.  In casual conversation before my clinic seminar started, people were talking about how weird allergies are and the clinic aide said that when she was pregnant she spontaneously developed a peanut allergy that went away when she wasn't pregnant anymore.  I had known that she was married, but not that she had children, so I said, "Oh, how many kids do you have?"


"But you just said you were pregnant..."

And then she gave me that tight smile that I know so well.  The smile that says, "Please figure it out because I don't want to say it.  To be honest, it still hurts."

I immediately apologized and said I was sorry to hear that to save her from having to explain and then the professor came in and started class so I couldn't say anything further.  I wish I could tell her that I know what she's going through, but I don't know how appropriate that would be or how much she would want to talk about it with a student of the law school she works at.  That might be weird.  But, somehow, it's nice to know she'd get it even if we never talk about it.  It's nice to know she's there.  And I'm sure there are others are out there, too... hurting just beneath the surface.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

I appreciate your sensitivity . . . but stop it.

My first two posts detailed a few of the insensitive things people say to me about PCOS.  Those things are rough and/or annoying, but sometimes I think the people who are trying to be sensitive are even worse.

Pro tip, my friends: I am not going to fall apart if you say the word baby around me.  I know I'm a mess, but I'm not that bad.  And when you say it and then your face immediately crumples and your eyes water and you get all frowny and say "Oh my gosh, I'm SO sorry" with a caring and compassionate hand on my shoulder and some meaningful eye contact (SO MUCH EYE CONTACT.  THE EYE CONTACT IS NOT NECESSARY), you are not making anything better.  In fact, you are drawing EXTRA attention to my desert wasteland of a womb, and now I have to try to make you feel better and convince you that you didn't just shatter my entire life apart.  It's shattered.  Already.  You're fine; just please stop talking.

Worse, though, is when pregnant friends withhold information from me that I really want to know in the fear that it will utterly destroy my soul beyond repair (I assume that's the fear, anyway).  For example, this weekend Husband's Best Friend and Arizona Sister-in-Law both get to find out the sex of their babies.  I am excited about this.  I promise that I am.  And I've known exactly when this day would come for months now.  I'm prepared.  I will squeal and gush and talk about how great having a baby of that particular sex will be.  I've trained for this.

So when I see Arizona Sister-in-Law gushing all over Facebook with Michigan Niece about how it's coming up and it's so exciting and Michigan Niece wants to know as soon as possible and Arizona Sister-in-Law has been composing cutesy texts to send her... it makes me wonder why she hasn't even told me that it's coming up.  Hard to considering that she's not talking to me at all right now because it is apparently impossible for her to tell me anything pregnancy-related without me dying and it is equally impossible for us to talk about anything whatsoever that isn't pregnancy.  Even though I've tried to tell her that's not true.

For real, though, if she continues her silence and doesn't tell me about the sex of her baby and I have to find that out from Facebook or some nonsense, I will be really hurt.  I don't know whether I should call her and inform her of that or not.  I want her to know, but I wish I didn't have to tell her.  It makes me feel like I'm forcing my way into her personal life, when I used to just be part of it.

You know what?  If she doesn't tell me then I will just pick a sex myself.  And if that is not the correct sex I WILL JUST ACT LIKE IT IS, FOREVER.  Problem solved.
IComLeavWe: Join the Conversation