Our third 2WW is officially halfway over. And so far I have no symptoms (not that I believe symptoms mean anything anymore, since I had cramping in the first 2WW and red-hot nipples* in the second, and both were BFNs).
We’ve kept ourselves pretty distracted thus far, watching a ton of movies and eating everything and anything that sounds appealing. And figuring out how to file taxes together for our first year as a married couple. Right now our living room, strewn with mortgage interest statements and scraps of burrito foil, is probably a pretty apt metaphor for our internal states: a little anxious, a lot distracted.
I’ve been temping this cycle and am feeling pretty discouraged by the lack of a clear “spike” on my chart. I’ve been prowling the internet for pictures of women’s BBT charts so I can obsessively compare mine, and I keep feeling inadequate. (I know I said I was going to stop lurking on the web this 2WW, but the researching and the constant re-reading makes me feel like I have some control over the process, or at least keeps my mind busy, and I’ve decided that both of those things are quite necessary right now.)
Anyway. One more week. Incidentally, our super-cold climate is supposed to climb to almost 50 degrees next weekend, meaning it may be sunny and springy when we finally test. Spring, the ultimate mood-lifter! So the disappointment of a BFN may be tempered by the fact that we can grieve outside under the open sky; a BFP will likely make us shit our pants in ecstasy.
*Looking forward to the search traffic we’ll get with a term like red-hot nipples. Hell-o!
This is our third Two Week Wait. We know better now than to get our hopes up too high. Andrea isn’t reading (or at least telling me) every twinge in her body, every little temperature change, and mood swing. Those are all parts of life, not just pregnancy. That’s what I’m telling myself at least.
Yet our conversations still drift to baby talk. As the non-birthmother, the more coffee I drink the more I want to talk about these things.
Should we decorate the nursery with a theme? How will the dog react to the baby? Should we let the family throw a baby shower or try to do our own? Will the dog steal the baby’s toys? (yes) These are the fun conversations. The ones that don’t involve calendars and doctors and bodily fluids. They are too enjoyable to avoid even if they do ratchet up our hope.
Conversations also inevitably drift to the possibility of needing to plan for a next time. Even within this tww we are looking ahead at the next. If this time doesn’t work, what do we do next? Do we keep on keeping on and stick with the IUI route? Could IVF be a possibility for us, financially?
Hell, maybe it won’t matter. Maybe this time will stick. Fingers crossed!
We did our third IUI this morning. Our first with a little more help (the ovidrel trigger shot on Sunday night.) We’re looking for all those good signs, both physical and superstitious. Good vibes. A lucky penny. A sunny morning or a break in the clouds, at least.
As the wife, I feel like my main job at this stage of the game is to be calm and supportive. I held Andrea’s hand while the nice Midwestern-mom nurse pressed against her bladder to get everything lined up. We joked a little about not peeing on her. A little joke but not too much slap-stick. That’s a moment of restraint for me. When I’m nervous or excited or happy or sad (ok all the emotions) I tend to resort to humor. This isn’t always a bad thing but maybe not the tone to be set while attempting to conceive a baby.
Once the process was done we waited the oddly specific yet short ten minutes before heading back to work. I like these ten minutes. A bit of quiet between just my wife and I. Even though we don’t know anything, we won’t know anything for a while, those ten minutes swell with hope. This could be the start of something. This could be the ONE.
After those ten minutes, I press the hope down a bit and try to be more level headed. There is no point getting excited or discouraged yet. Only time will tell. I really feel like we’ve done everything right. If it doesn’t work this time it’s only because sometimes it doesn’t work.
But I sure hope it works.
I wanted to title this IUI #3: The Cervix’s Perspective, because of everyone I think that little guy had the hardest time this morning.
Our nurse was one of the nice ones, an upper-middle-aged woman with braces and tennis shoes, rather than one of the brusque let’s-get-this-over-with types, for which I (and my cervix) were grateful. I tried to come in with a full bladder, but it’s hard to time it just right, and in the end I think I peed a little too close to the appointment time. So our nurse had to do some pressing on my bladder from the outside (“You’re going to find this terribly cruel,” she said apologetically) and some re-wriggling of the catheter before she managed to get it in proper.
I had an easier time relaxing with it today, maybe because I did some restorative yoga poses and deep breathing this morning before we went to the clinic. Elizabeth held my hand and when it was over we had our usual ten minutes, dutifully timed by an egg timer on the counter, to kiss and say how much we love each other under the glare of the clinic light (which Nice Nurse tried to dim for us on her way out).
It’s spring outside, or nearly spring, and on our way in to work we stopped and bought a candy bar to celebrate. I feel happy.
I think we’ll try to navigate this 2WW a little differently than the last two. I actually went to work today rather than staying home, and I’m going to take just one day off before jumping right back into my yoga practice. I did go to acupuncture yesterday and am headed there again today, but otherwise we’ll treat these next couple of weeks as we would any half-month of our lives: gently, but with enough indifference to keep the heart from getting caught.
And I’m going to try to stay off the message boards. It’s not good for peace of mind, this internet. My compulsive Google-prowling may have been why my symptom chart from mymonthlycycles looked like this:
As a couple of ladies, trying to make a baby (a couple of babies?), in the Midwest we have lots of thoughts, lots of questions, and not a lot of people we can talk to about it. We’ve seen what a wonderfully supportive community the internet can be so we thought we’d jump in.
This blog will hopefully be a place where we can ask those questions and share our story.
Stay tuned for more.
Much Love, Elizabeth and Andrea
We first started talking about having kids – over beers and in more depth than you’d think – early in our relationship. After a bit of bartering, a bit of contemplation, decided that we both wanted to carry (if possible). We both wanted that experience and that connection to another human being.
Long story short, I’m going second.
For this part of the story, I am the non-birth mother. I’m the one who isn’t getting poked and prodded and peeing on ovulation sticks. This is both liberating and terrifying. I am free and I am helpless. There is not much more I can do right now except try to be supportive.
I know I’m not alone on this side of this fence.
Please feel free to chime in and tell me what I’m doing right or wrong. Tell me how to cope.
I will admit that Elizabeth was the one who was more certain she wanted children from the very beginning, but I was pretty quick to catch the fever, too. One of the best things about our relationship is our tendency to agree with one another on the big stuff: our core values, where we want to live, what’s funny and what’s not, and the fact that we both want to be pregnant.
Since I’m almost 2 years older than Elizabeth, I’m going first. For the past year, though, we’ve both been rocking the prenatal vitamins and cutting back on post-dinner beers. I’ve also been doing acupuncture and yoga and starting each day with a meditation practice.
So when we finally had our first IUI–after lots of appointments, consultations, medical tests, and a long visit with a psychologist (required by our clinic)–I was a little surprised when we got our first BFN. But then I figured, fine–BFNs are like a rite of passage; we had to have one.
Then we had another. And I started feeling pretty heavy about the whole thing. The OPKs were frustrating, less precise than I’d hoped, and it started to feel like we were shooting a very expensive dart at an invisible target.
So about half an hour ago, after we finished our dinner dishes, Elizabeth got on her knees in our bathroom and injected my stomach with our first Ovidrel trigger shot. We’re going in for our third IUI in 36 hours, hoping that this cycle is the one that sticks.