09 July 2009

my ordinary life

it is bizarre how crazy things end up feeling ordinary.

it somehow becomes ordinary to lie back and have a person stick a wand up your hoohoo and
it is somehow ordinary to happily exclaim when you see the dark voids that mean follicles in the strange foreign visual language that is ultrasound.

it is ordinary to mix drugs on the kitchen island, pinch a swatch of belly fat and push a needle in with stinging fluids to make follicles grow, it is ordinary to do this in the aforementioned kitchen, in bathrooms at your own house, in a dunkin donuts, in the library, or just in the car in some parking lot somewhere at the appropriate time.
is ordinary to schedule around it, to realize you'll have to leave yoga class early to do this
or you'll do this and then go grocery shopping

it is ordinary to field strip the syringe, to take your handful of empty vials and throw them away in a container that includes used dental floss, and kleenex, and hair from the drain. the boxes and inserts and plastic trays go into the recycling bin with restoration hardware and landsend and athleta and jjill. it is ordinary to have a recycling bag more full of follistim boxes than of junkmail.

it is ordinary to lie in bed hoping that this will do what it needs to, to hope for feelings of fullness, some sign that something is happening.

it is ordinary to count the follicles along with the ultrasound tech,
assess the plushiness of your own uterine lining,
learn the language of follicle size and count and E2 levels and
it is ordinary to weigh the pros and cons of suppositories versus injections for progesterone support, to weight the pros and cons of heat versus ice, of standing versus lying down

it is ordinary to hope they will poke through the wall of your vagina and suck out eggs and magically make embryos happen in a special little dish and put them back in with a bendy straw made just for things like this
and it is ordinary to speak in code and shorthand of stim and trigger and ER and ET and dpt, and hCG and

it is ordinary to swing from hopefulness to hopelessness and back as you troll the internet for certainty, for statistics that fall in your favor, for the secret to success, the way to get rich quick, lose 100 pounds in 100 days eating chocolate, get pregnant over 40, over 41, over 42...

and then you ask yourself, what is this life I am leading where this is ordinary?

I started this journey with naive absolutes, no injections, no IVF, with many nos that have all morphed into maybes and yeses as other things failed.

Last night I started stims again, and looked at myself in the mirror over the sink, my shirt pulled up, pants down, roll of belly pinched and the needle in and I saw this person, this competent looking hopeful person, doing things I said I would never do.
I'm ok though, I am. It is just the oddest thing ever, this slippery slope of hopefulness, of maybe this time or this protocol or this cycle or these eggs or this lucky roll of the dice...
and maybe it will work.

So I hope and swab and stick and pray. Good old ordinary hope... without it, where would we be?


Mad Hatter said...

So eloquent. And real. And not ordinary at all, but extraordinary. Sending you lots of positive energy. XO

Sarah said...

great post kate, sounds pretty much like my ordinary life from 2002-2007! starting in '02 i swore i would never do IVF. i wanted to adopt and begrudgingly agreed to go to the clinic "just for tests" because my husband wasn't ready for adoption. and then ok gee i guess i could try IUI. five more times. before moving on to ivf. there is definitely a sliding scale, but i like to think of it as our highly evolved ability to adapt to our circumstances. (which by the way comes is very handy when you finally achieve your goal.) i'm hoping you find yourself there sooner than you can imagine.

Michele said...

If I had a glass of wine to raise, I would. It is insane how things most people would never think about are ordinary to those of us struggling with infertility and high risk pregnancies. Absolutely insane.

And I still look at that woman in the mirror and hope... please... this... time.

onwardandsideways said...

I've said it before... thank god for blogging... going through this isolated and alone would have been an extra slice of Hell on top of the Hell Sandwich that is Infertility.

I'm rooting for ya', sistah! I hope this will be the cycle for you. 10 follies is not bad at all out of the gate, and who knows where you'll end up.

Hang in there and stay brave!

K said...

Oh my gosh. How well you've said it, once again. It's like you wrote a page out of my life, only way better than I could have done. Well done, my friend. Very well done.

Sprogblogger said...

Beautiful post. Makes me remember that I, too, began this saying, "I'll never do anything so invasive as IVF.


We do what we have to. And, we hope. We hope a lot and if we're so inclined, we pray a lot. I'm hoping this is the last time your ordinary life involves such extraordinary things. Hoping this is the cycle that creates your child. Hoping hoping hoping.

IVF 40+ said...

thank you

Nic said...

Great post. With out hope we would be no where. hope keeps us going, keeps us trying, keeps us going.
I hope with all my heart that this is the one

Best When Used By said...

What a beautiful, wistful post. I think it gives many of us pause to reflect upon the path that has led us to where we are now. Thank you for putting words to the phenomenon.

Anonymous said...

I am hoping for the extraordinary for you.

Anonymous said...

As usual your post, as so many do, brought tears to my eyes. Have you read the book, waiting for Daisy? It's a beautiful story of a woman who took measures that she never thought she would like you describe and is written quite well. I think it will give you hope and comfort you as you go through this journey *hugs*

Demara said...

aw Mekate.

"...doing things you said you'd never do?"

I think of that line and wonder if I will be in your boat, your shoes in 12 years?

Jenn said...

My sweet dear Kate,

This post was absolutely heartfelt and eloquent. I have had those moments looking at myself in the mirror in the midst of my IF journey and just pausing.

I hope and pray all of this "ordinary hope" does the trick.

Warm and loving hugs sent your way!

B. said...

Kate, you say it so well. It's all surreal, how quickly these extraordinary measures become ordinary to us all. Thank goodness we have each other. I really don't think anyone outside this community could ever comprehend this life we're leading. I'm hoping right along with you!

Elizabeth said...

Hi Kate -- I think you write so powerfully about this whole strange situation. Thank you for sharing it. I'm just coming out of the failed FET cycle enough to start to think constructively about whether I try again, or look to adoption, or something else to try to grow our family. (W is basically uninterested in this, so that's a challenge.) Thanks for stopping by the Liam blog. Love to you,

just me, dawn said...

this is a beautiful post. I knew it was ordinary when we were headed out for the evening and my DH asked "do you have your meds?" LOL...like it is normal to need to carry sharps and meds on every outing.

Grade A said...

All so true. You are only ready for what you can handle at any given moment until the next moment happens and you take on more. And suddenly? It seems, as you say, ordinary. I laugh at what I thought before going to a clinic. From your posts, I can tell you are really working hard to stay in touch with what feels right/what you are comfortable with, and I think that's key.

Barefoot said...

What a beautiful post. I am thinking of you as you start your cycle, and sending lots of good thoughts your way.

kerri said...

great post! it's a shame that anyone has to know what it's like to go through this! good luck this cycle!

IF Optimist, then... said...

Another eloquent and mindful post about an extraordinary person redefining "ordinary" because she is remarkable and strong and determined. Thanks so much MeKate. Best wishes for a great cycle.

Kate said...

Beautiful post, Kate. You are an amazing writer. This gave me chills and made me tear up. Hope this new ordinary turns into extraordinarily wonderful.