31 December 2008


Marking the turning of the year with quiet snowfall and a gentle day.

For some amazing words and an inspiring reminder of each of our special uniqueness, I invite you to visit my sister's beautiful blog. There is simply no way to say it better.

Happy New Year.
Wishing you peace.

29 December 2008

is it still true?

You know all those many things we assume about ourselves, about others, those knee jerk responses that happen without thought? all those things that we know to be TRUE? What might we change in ourselves, our realities, our relationships, in the options and opportunities we see and create and consider if we just asked ourselves, "is this still true?"

Lupron, day 4

So it is monday, day 4 of Lupron- and I have a learned a few things: if you are translucent like I am, look for veins before you put in the needle; if there's blood, there'll be a bruise; if you go slowly and look first, the pain happens mostly just as you pierce the skin and not while you put the needle the rest of the way in; when you're done, it stings for a while after; let the alcohol dry for a few seconds after you think you're good; when you're done, wipe with a gauze, cotton ball or wad of toilet paper, NOT the alcohol wipe since dang that stings.

I have had a few waves of sad but still feel like kate so far. when I am about to inject or am injecting or feeling the sting afterwards, I feel like shit, a deep blue. But then I am ok. So I think so far this is circumstantial and not the drugs talking. at least, not yet. Clomid made me crazy sad, so I am really worried about what might happen when I start the stim drugs in a few weeks. My sweet sister suggests I try to stay in this moment, something I have always sucked at. I am trying.

My solace has always been in paying attention to things OUTSIDE of myself-- the sky, the trees, the wooly horses, the silly wild turkeys, the green lichen, the cranberries we spread across the snow-- I am finding it really hard to stay connected to the things that have always mattered most. I hiked on saturday morning, a great big snowy hike up the back side of the "mountain" in the fog. It was warm enough to go without too many layers and I got to the top without having to stop too many times.

My drive in to work is by a stream which is usually just about iced in by this time of year, but in this warm it is running high, carrying the melt of 2 feet of snow. The edges have a thin band of yellowish ice, it looks much more like march than december. It takes more energy than I can believe to just pay attention-- to the fog yesterday blowing and swirling past the window as I played with my new old ebay ibook. Look kate, look-- THAT is life happening. right here, right now. not if or when or if only. it just is. I wish it did not take so much effort to feel connected right now.

I am missing my self-- the one that laughed more, the one that was more frivolous. I know that a lot has happened that makes it make sense that I am more careful, more pessimistic, more watchful. As my dear friend Tammy so kindly said recently, "
I wish I could say that there will be a time when you will go back to being "Kate" but since we're always evolving we'll always get the updated Kate!" Ok then. I want a happier kinder gentler updated kate. with cookies.

26 December 2008


The power came back on monday night, an early christmas miracle. Truly-- a toilet I can flush at will feels miraculous. I am so relieved it is back on-but also glad to know we can make it through a long power outage if we need to. To the utility companies from all over who came to help- THANK YOU. I have never seen so many people working so hard to get things working again.

Medications arrived from the amazing Ascend pharmacy in Portland last friday- $1450+ for what I needed in addition to the donated medications. For those of you keeping track, the estimate was that the donated drugs were worth about $3K. I left all of the medications in a bag in the fridge at work until I was confident the power was good and on, and brought them home Wednesday.

Today, the 26th, I started the Lupron injections. Here is the true story: I am scared out of my mind of needles--specifically of injections. BUT so far, with this one injection down, I am surprised to say it was not nearly as awful as I expected. It is not comfortable, but those needles are so dang sharp, as you touch it down to your belly skin it just starts to go it. I did no dart throw, no quick jab, no quick anything, just touched it down and pushed it in. Then it was over and stingy but not awful.

Psychologically it does NOT feel ok for me to be pushing something into my own skin, into by belly, but that is a different sort of discomfort. I decided to just do it- to act as if can do this. And I did.

So, one down. Approximately 35 to go.

22 December 2008


12 days since we had power. I am ready for it to be back on. No estimates yet for my area. They are working hard at it, and it is clear that as soon as they can get it back on, it will be on. Two feet of new snow in three days have not helped their progress even though the new snow is really really lovely.

I find myself dreaming of amenities like showers and a well stocked fridge, and realize just how lucky I am. Even now, with no power, I am warm and housed and loved and fed. Maybe not quite as clean as I would like. And my house? Squalor. But really, I am doing fine.

And really, fine or not, I am ready for the lights to be back on.

18 December 2008


And so, tuesday we had our injection class.
Faux caucasion belly fat rendered as a plastic rectangle.
A bazillion vials and needles and syringes.
Alcohol wipes.
Sweaty palms.

Ok kate. Deal with it.

So, we mixed we swirled we wiped we waved we drew down and in and up and pinched and poked in and pressed down and pulled up and wiped some more...

Good lord. The nurse is so adept, her hands hold syringe and vial and pull back all with grace and the comfort of many years of doing this over and over and over
I fumble and struggle and color outside the lines and wobble and feel all thumbs and
the bottom line?
...well, i think I can do it. at least the mechanics. it will not be pretty. but it does not have to be. This is a lesson for me folks, a Lesson: it does not have to be pretty, it just has to work.

15 December 2008

Sticking the landing

Ice storm and power out at home. Not sure when it will be back on. IVF meds in the fridge at work. That has made me feel more vulnerable than almost anything else.

Up in the pre dawn to head north for the pap smear and while I was there I pre paid for IVF on cap 1 card ($7900+ no meds) and...
a choir of angels was singing. No kidding. A choir was in the rotunda of the hospital and their voices! I cannot describe it. Magical. I got completely choked up.

The pill is going ok- nausea is better but not great. I know this is short-lived, so that helps.

Injection class tomorrow. Prescriptions to be faxed in tomorrow too. Pap results by friday or monday. Injections start 12/26.

I guess it all feels like progress. And it feels a little bit like a wild toboggan ride where once you get going you hope you don't run into a tree. Or one of those crazy dream moments where you fling yourself into the air and then think, huh... hope I stick the landing.

11 December 2008


I feel truly barfy. I blame the BCPs. I can imagine that this may be like early morning sickness where you want to sit very very still and only breathe in cool air and, for the love of god, no swallowing.

so here I sit, very very still. breathing cool air in slowly and hoping I do not actually barf. Yay birth control pills. not so much.

09 December 2008


Anxiety. Did an inventory of my crisper-- 5 boxes repronex minus 1 dose. 4 boxes 150IU follistim. 16 boxes 75IU follistim. Called the clinic. Made appointments for next week for back up sample freezing and injection class.

God I am scared. I feel overwhelmed by this. How fast time is marching towards what I am dreading. I asked about the catheter that they might use during transfer (should we be so lucky) and got a nice response-- it may not be necessary, but if so, they will use a pediatric and took note of my needs. Learned the HCG shot can be subcutaneous not just intramuscular. See? Something(s) good. Learned about the pharmacy. The dosages. The things I can mix and the things I cannot. The progesterone in oil. The suppositories.

I took my first BCP last night, so I did not temp this morning and will not until next cycle. There is no point since I am suppressing. It should have felt like a vacation. But instead, I felt heavy and sad and it was nearly impossible to pry myself from bed.

My pragmatic Kate says-- hey! progress! onward and upward! this is our best chance! whoo hoo! get in there and let's DO THIS THING.

My more kate Kate says, Shit.

08 December 2008


So, I spent a week away, a week of business travel, and a week of major exhausting crappy flu-ish-ness. I am home now, still flu-y. Still wiped out. And today is cd1. 

I called the clinic. They want me to start BCPs today in preparation for IVF week of Jan 19th.
Things can change. Next week's last minute almost-through-the-cracks Pap may come back wonky. The schedule may have to shift. But tonight, I am acting as if... as if we are going to do this thing. 

Something to confess: I want to think that they have this under control. The million details. I need to think that. To have them discover the need for the Pap this late?  It shakes me.  It really does.

It also strikes me that I do not want to be doing this. I had held out hope that somehow we would catch a break, get pregnant this past cycle in spite of every reason why that was unlikely. So now I hope we catch a break--no, a million breaks. Starting with a fine Pap. A fine response. A fine retrieval. A fine transfer of fine embryos. A fine pregnancy. A fine delivery. A fine and healthy and normal life.