Making it Magical

So much focus and energy, in these tough journeys, goes towards the lack… the idea that something is missing. I want to shift. We want a baby, a family, because what we have is beautiful and wonderful, and worth sharing. It's a nest full to brimming and that is where love should grow.

Remember why you want this and who you want it with.

We went away together, spontaneously, last weekend to one of Ontario's wine regions. We ate ice cream, fresh sourdough, local tomatoes, oysters from the maritimes, sat in the sun, sang out loud in the car with the windows open. We found a beach, with a sandy bottomed shoal and stripped our clothes off… waded out into the water and didn't care that we were in our underpants, two hundred yards from oblivious families and couples with dogs.

We stayed overnight with my ex, who is still one of my best friends, and her gf at a beautiful home they just bought in a small town; ate around a harvest table; had coffee in a rambling garden with dogs playing underfoot; walked down to the beach and boardwalk.

That is what I need to focus on, because it's what I can control.

I got a shot in my butt today, to trigger my body. That's up to science. Tomorrow I go in for the second attempt at iui. My body got two follicles ready (19 and 14) this morning. Another little runner trying to catch up at 12. That's all I can do. Send the vibes, cause it's happening.

Here we are, loving life and singing to Haim. Much love!

https://youtu.be/JmfST9IHq-g

Advertisements

Small wins

Not gonna lie, I was totally apprehensive when one of the students in my GSA club started telling me, in her gregarious sing-songy voice:

Miss, I totally went home and for some reason, I'm not sure why, I decided to Google your name… And so I read like 200 reviews of you, and like 99% of them are grade 12 boys talking about how hot you are.

Awesome. I guess that's better than the inevitable diss track, celebrities read mean tweets-style alternative. Inevitably, the desire to go down that bleak rabbit hole of "I wonder what people say about me" is a whole lot of ego stroking and pleasant surprises, rounded out (read: cancelled out) via horrifying, William Tell Overture soundtrack in the background comments that rip you to shreds. I don't believe, sadly, that most people go online to write about how much they like things, as much as they go online to vent their frustrations at the world. If that frustration happens to be human, it can be anything from bone chilling to hilarious. So, it's nice to know that whatever my official score, I'm scoring points with someone.

By contrast, one of my former students is back doing a practice teaching placement and she pulled me aside, used my first name (adorable) and told me how much I helped to improve her writing and that she loved my class. That's the kind of feedback I'm keeping track of.

The Gender and Sexuality Club (GSA) is also close to my heart, because I literally see the change that is possible in such a relatively short time. I have kids of all ethnicities, all orientations, faiths, genders and the visibility, laughter and support they have is exponentially better than when I came out in high school. Plus, they have grownup queer folks, like me, in a position to help and support them, and to rally when the going gets tough.

I feel like my job, as much as it contributes to the gray hairs I'm getting, is one of the things that makes me hopeful; first, that if I have kids i'll do a good job of it, especially once they make it to high school. That's where I really excel. Second, if I don't have kids, or can't have kids, these guys will make it OK. They are the tangible results and the sum of my daily efforts. I will channel my energy, as I've done for the last decade, into making sure that the young people I have under my wing will be kind, critical, thoughtful and empowered.

It's what I focus on when I don't know what will happen. Right now…My life feels good.

——-

And my ovaries look good, too. I have one follicle at 18, and another at 14, third runner-up is at 12. Nicely spread over both sides. Let's just hope there are only one or two try to finish this race.

Sitting in the waiting room

Does anyone else find it weird that at the clinic you sit in a waiting room and everyone is … completely silent. I just made eye contact with a woman sitting across from me and smiled. No reaction… she looked back down and registered no emotion. So yes, I realize that

1) it's early and maybe people are actually still asleep.
2) it's taking a particularly long time today.
3) maybe people are stressed. Maybe they are nervous. Maybe they are frustrated. This process can be all of those things.
4) maybe it's awkward to talk to strangers, even if these people might be going through all the same things you are. Or worse … what if they're not?
5) is it about shame? Is it all of this, or perhaps none of this…

As for me: Today's result? Good. One big follicle on each side. 11 on one. 13 on the other.

Hey Again. Ps. Don’t Give Up.

I haven’t said anything in a while. I’m here. Just menstruating. Got some feedback re: the last cycle (the one where the clinic wouldn’t go ahead with an IUI procedure (refused) because I was ‘too fertile.’ I had three big, juicy follicles. I know, some of you are thinking, ‘shut up!’ it’s a great problem to have, but the needles, and the time and the hopes and the aging, and the constant revolving door of feelings… I feel like the entire summer was a write off. I feel the sand draining through that narrow hour glass, like the sands of my uterus, slowly pouring out of me as I become decrepit.

DIR_sG2XgAAokf1
This is how I am picturing it (my womb) by the end of this year. Please don’t be mad. It’s how I’m dealing with my disappointment. Feeling jaded and imagining hornets making a nest in there seems better than focusing on things beyond my control.

I keep hearing that number: 35. The tipping point. Fuck, it’s depressing. I don’t feel old. I don’t think I look old. I feel like my ovaries are still kicking up their heels, putting on a party dress and making eyes at strangers in bars. I was looking at Jason Mamoa’s feed on Instagram today and felt for sure like I could have a baby.

Does anyone else waver between extreme confidence and crippling self-doubt from moment to moment? I’m managing that by staying very busy.

Early Monday morning, before being almost late for work, I was at the clinic and found out from the doctor that, in addition to 3 over-eager, tarted-up follicles that looked way too desperate to take into a procedure room (triplets anyone?!) my estrogen was at 4000. That was the real concern. No wonder I’ve been a basketcase.

I’m keeping it all in, but like Ani Difranco says (I can’t help the nod to my tween lesbian days), “Every pop song on the radio, is suddenly speaking to me.”

And every person I pass is pregnant, or has a parade of ducklings behind them. Or those damn ‘First Day Back to School’ chalkboards all over their social media. And I work in a high school (which you would think might have the opposite effect on me and cause me to reconsider….), but they are the loveliest, most adorable people and I feel pretty confident that we’d raise a good one. When I’m looking out at my motley bunch of charming, smart-alecky, naive, strange and clever students, I think: this is why we (and YOU, you amazing internet community of brilliant, passionate queer folks who will make the best, most sincere and fierce parents) need to have kids. We will be filling the ranks of future classrooms with kids who are wanted, beloved, with a sense of self, of advocacy, of dignity and who will be the kind of humans we will be so proud to have helped get there. We can’t give up. It will happen.

Rambling. Restless. I am sitting on the couch, being stared at by my cat. Drinking scotch (cause I can). Thinking about this, reading your stories, trying to be more ray of sunshine and less doom and gloom; trying to think of the up sides.

It was tough luck to get told I couldn’t go ahead with IUI try number 2 (for me). *For new friends to AsquaredMamasquared, my wife and I tried for 3 years, with her as the carrier. So now we are hoping that, having scaled back my medication to half the dose they gave me last cycle, two things will happen:

  1. I will have the right number and size of follicles to put me squarely in the middle of the ‘go ahead, runway is clear, let’s land this thing’ territory
  2. My wife will not have to deal with quite the same experience as last time (from me, hormonally)

Multiples Choice

What do you do when your only choices all feel like total crap? Or when the choice is out of your hands entirely? Helplessness isn’t a feeling that sits well with me. Ever. I always want to know what my next option is, the alternative, the next step…

Got the call back from the clinic (the one telling me whether the Burlington Clinic would go ahead with my procedure, having found that I have 3 follicles big enough to implant). Given the high risk of multiples they won’t do the procedure. Guts drop to the floor. I feel so defeated. On one hand, my body is raring to go; but they are worried for the slim chance that it could be a higher risk pregnancy. No discussion allowed. So no pleading or persuasion possible.

How risky? Well, I called my uncle just to see what he thought of the numbers – to see if he thought they were being reasonable. He said he is in agreement. The risk with twins is considerably higher than with one; the risk with triplets is significantly higher still. They are making a call that is “disappointing in the long run, but safer” in terms of avoiding a bad outcome.

15% chance of getting pregnant with IUI per cycle. Of that 15%, 40% that I will release 3 eggs and end up with three babies. Even less that these would all be viable. I’m not a math person, but these numbers seem insanely low. Know what isn’t low? My age. Or the days that keep creeping by.

When I hear “you’ll just have to wait,” what I’m hearing is “just give up.”  And my mind starts racing against this lack of control by coming up with all the options – no matter how impossible – because crazy and outlandish is better than no choice at all.

How crazy? For example, in my car today, I’m eyeballing the handsome Croatian (I assume) guy driving the Croatian Electric truck beside me, as I come home from the city. Thinking ‘I’m so fertile right now, what if…’  How easy would it be to casually roll down my window and flirt? “Hey, you’re gonna have to stop driving beside me, because I’m finding it very distracting,” some eyelash batting, “… although admittedly I like the view.” Do guys really fall for that stuff? His beaming smile seems to suggest, yes, and I didn’t even open my mouth.

And then I get flashbacks to Bette and Tina in The L word, trying to seduce a variety of men and dupe them into becoming a baby daddy.

Screen-Shot-2015-03-16-at-5.51.20-PM.png

Do I sound crazy?

tumblr_ll1et0XJXJ1qc1ptfo1_500_large.jpg

Am I that desperate?

It’s a game of multiples with no choice. The nurse even said, “if you were doing this procedure at home, not the clinic, you look like you’re ready to go, so this would be a good time.” Except they have our sperm!

My creativity surges, along with my body, so I come up with questions with no right answer.

Question One: what do you do when your follicles are screaming ‘Open for Business’ and there is no available sperm in sight?

A) Accept that this month the meds, trips to the clinic, the stress, the needles in the arms, the hope and the feelings are all just a write off.

B) Put on your straightest looking dress and hit the club tonight hoping for a catch and assist.

C) Put a call out on BUNZ trading zone (if you don’t know about Bunz yet, look it up, it’s awesome. Like Kijiji without any money ever changing hands. People post what they are in search of, and are met with offers and replies. Sometimes it’s for help, sometimes it’s a service, sometimes it’s a trade for a good. Example: help my grandmother in a wheelchair get lifted down her front step so she can sit in the park/I need someone to practice a bob haircut on/I drank way too much this weekend and need someone to take away the rest of this two-four… will trade for subway tokens. I’ve included a little video link below to Bunz founder, Emily, speaking about the community. Bonus: My wife produced the video). I digress: My ad would read: ISO sperm belonging to a creative, smart and relatively good looking dude- no sex required. Name your trade. Ps. We are lesbians if that helps seal the deal.

D) none of the above.

E) Feel like you are a bundle of raw nerves and try to avoid taking it out on all the people you interact with today; like when work decides to switch the class/course and periods of the day that you are teaching TWO DAYS before school starts, after I’ve already gone in to school (on my vacation) to set up classes, photocopy, made all my websites, plans, etc. Did I mention that the new class got put into period 1 (which I requested as my lunch before the end of last year, so I could avoid this whole issue of having to get supplies in on short notice for one period, constantly disrupting the learning of one class of kids)? Per. 1 starts at 8 am, and the clinic doesn’t open until 7 am? That’s gonna be a blast.

anigif_enhanced-24180-1394553101-1.gif

I know I should be grateful that my body seems fecund, but overly so. It’s the opposite problem some of you are dealing with, but we are left in the same boat at the moment: unable to proceed.  I just can’t win.

But you can trade, and live and try again.

Here’s that video about Bunz.

dims.jpeg Watch it here. Thanks for all the support. I will try to be normal again tomorrow.

 

 

Good Body, But Still Waiting for Good News

At my clinic appointment this morning there was good news and bad news. The good news is that I am progressing well: my body responded very well to the drugs and it looks like I would have a great chance of getting pregnant this cycle. BUT. My probability is also the problem. The bad news: I have three follicles, one at 18,19 and 20 respectively. One Burlington has a policy against inseminating if you have more than three follicles over 15. They're going to call to see if there's anyway to make a judgement call on this one and do the insemination. I'm off school right now, and so ready for this to start. I've paid for the medication, but now I have to figure out whether to do the hundred dollar shot that prompts me to ovulate so we can do the procedure tomorrow, if it's a Go. If I get the shot and they say no, I am totally out of luck. And it will take them up to two hours to find out whether I will be allowed to do the procedure. Now, I don't know what to do – because I don't know if I should get more money invested via the drugs before and the shot today. It all rests on the clinics and whether or not I will be able to do the procedure. And I have to come back to the clinic either way to get the shot, either in a few hours or later this afternoon, but I'm heading out to the school to start prepping for classes that start in less than a week. So, cross those fingers. Let something go right today.