Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

I am having a bunch of people over to my house tonight, so I'm going a bit crazy. My awesome cleaning lady is here, doing her best to cope with the aftereffects of painting the house. We are, as we speak, attempting to reassemble things so that everyone has a place to sit, and the breakables are out of reach of hands, and safe from elbows and costumes.

I woke up to discover the Conservatives have decided to give some big tax cuts to the rich...rather disturbing to say the least. Sneaky bastards are pretending to give the breaks to the poor, and to "everyone" but the higher your income, the more you benefit, so in my books, not such a great bunch of tax cuts. Very regressive. And we have no deficit so they figure what they can afford it. Except that some of us would like some government program spending thanks!

I mean really, lets be honest, what the heck do I need with more money now? I'm already getting a couch! There comes a point where I need less and less stuff. And if I really want it, we can buy it and still pitch in our fair share of taxes. It won't kill us...

But back when I was a kid, I needed financial help, and thank God the government was there to help me with education, with health care, with subsidies for all sorts of things. It wasn't perfect, but we didn't have to worry about infrastructure falling on our heads, like we do now. And it wasn't charity, so we never had to feel like we were begging, something NO ONE should ever have to do. Human rights aren't just things like freedom of speech, everyone has the right to a dignified economic standard of living.

There is a point to government---it can be a force for good. I get the distinct impression this government spends all of it's time being deeply suspicious. Sometimes I wish I could send them back in time to be me as a kid, knowing that the only time I'd ever get name brand candy was on Halloween, because my family could barely afford food.

I am so so grateful for the help that I got back then. I want to pay it back, but as long as these idiots are in power, it may not work so well...

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


8 weeks, 1 day we are measuring right on target, heart rate is 149 bpm, and the crown rump length is 1.7 cm.

The little fetbryo is floating away growing just fine. Last week at Dr. Eyebrows, when I saw the fibroid squishing the sac, it looked like the baby was being crushed, but now I KNOW it's the crappy machine that just made it look that way. It can't do proper angles, as well as having clarity issues that prevent us from getting the heartrate, so the fancy new machine is awesome. Sigh of relief....

Best of all Fred the Fibroid has either stopped growing or is possibly getting smaller!!! The SOB is measuring 6 cm x 4.5 cm, so either last weeks giant growth was mismeasured, or the machine was crap, or all these little pains I've been having are Fred losing his firmness and shrinking, hehe.

I'm off to the docs to check on my UTI status, and then I'm going shopping for tile, and curtains and the remaining bits of Halloween costumes.

I'm thinking of going out as a blog for Halloween, complete with paper strips on my arms for sidebars, printing out a header and sticking it on my forehead and a couple of posts for the body. I may even print out some HTML and put it on my t-shirt underneath, like when people look for source code!

I can't do this bizarre one yet because my stomach isn't big enough, but here it is if you want to steal it. I once saw another infertile, now pregnant woman dressed all in black normal clothes, except for her stomach which was uncovered. She had used spirit gum and some fake scar material to make a giant open sore complete with fake blood beside her navel, then glued & hung a huge bunch of tiny baby spiders on white string coming out of it.

Best part, her complete look of nonchalance. It was her way of dealing with the stress, basically a huge eff-you to the universe.

Brilliant----hmmm, maybe I could do that one anyway? Hmmmm...

Monday, October 29, 2007

I hate this suspense

The suspense is hell. I no longer feel nauseated, not one bit, but I always feel tired. And for the last day or so, I've been terrified that the tiny shooting pains in my cervix mean this is all over. They could also be my stupid damn fibroid stretching and causing pain. Or be nothing at all.

I keep stuffing progesterone up and counting the minutes until my next ultrasound; 10:00 am Tuesday morning. I hate living like this.

I feel like an idiot. I never should've tried this again. This was a fool's errand, and I just know I'm going to pay the price. What in the hell was I body is too messed up and every time I find a "cure" or a "treatment" for the current crop of disasters another problem rears it's ugly head. Do you ever wish you could go back in time and get the treatments you have now, but in a much younger body?

I'm getting to see my new high risk OB/Gyn Nov.7th, if I get that far. I'm hoping he has some good ideas, but I just don't know what the hell he could come up with.

My house is being painted today and tomorrow, and my furniture is all arriving on Thursday. We're having a whole lot of people over for Halloween, and things would be in a lovely state of chaos if not for this stress.

Thing is, with all this chaos I keep wondering how I'll fit in a miscarriage if I get bad news tomorrow.

Yeah, not exactly positive thinking. Not exactly one day at a time. I'm just not very good at that right now. I keep wondering if I'll do better if I just accept that the worst will happen, and I should give up now, and then just go on with my day. Some people do okay with that, but I'm not sure it will work for me.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I don't know what's wrong

Not with the pregnancy, just me.

I keep opening your blogs, and trying to read, but then----I don't. I click open the window, and try to figure out what to say, what to comment, but nothing comes to me. No pithy words, no inspiring hopes, no comfort.

It takes every ounce of brain power to focus on what you are all writing. And I'm sucking at it. I'm good at it usually, but I seem to have no energy, no nothing. Huge enormous issues crop up, I know I have words to offer, but my fingers won't type them.

I have lots of stories, like how my husband actually couldn't understand that we were high-risk? He thinks that once we get out of the first trimester, we're fine----a breeze. I looked at him like he had three heads and reminded about our last loss at 16 weeks, and Matthew at 21 weeks, and how I went into premature labour with Mac at 34 weeks. His face turned pale----oh yeah, it comes back.

I really think he deals with stress by blocking out bad memories. Not that I blame him. I'd love to be able to do that! I'm being forced into talking about this pregnancy with everyone I meet, because I'm showing enormously, I swear I look 5 months, not almost 8 weeks. As my stomach and boobs pop out, my ass is shrinking. (Yeah, it picks now to shrink, what was wrong with June?) Most of my stomach popping out is my fibroid and my weak stomach muscles, but still....half the women at my school have guessed, and the other half are telling everyone. They are all so happy for me, there is no malice, after everything they've watched me go through, and everything they've read in the paper, it would be hard not to hope I'd get a break. It's just hard to feel like a celebrity on bump-watch....I kind of wish I'd get to tell them on my own emotional schedule, not my damn bodies'.

Anyway, next 2 days, we're painting the living room/dining room, and I'm hoping to get some relaxing time in, away from the house, but who knows?

Maybe the Ashley Sale will unfrazzle my brain. It can't hurt. Spending money is good, right?

I have 22 tabs open in Firefox right now, sorry, I'm not a stalker, just temporarily frozen, helpless and tongue-tied. I got nuthin' guys, just nuthin but crap. Sigh...

Friday, October 26, 2007

No coffee table yet


All day.

You know, when I was poor, and had only furniture from the Salvation Army, I thought people who were rich enough to afford new furniture from nice stores, must live lives of perfect harmony. They simply flashed a gold credit card, and people did what they wanted.

When I grew up and could afford to decorate in the late 20th century style known as "Early Ikea," I thought things were getting better, and perhaps someday I could move up to furniture made of real wood and glass, that comes assembled! Perhaps own a sofa that had nice cushy springs, and didn't sag or creak.

I did not know that the price I'd pay would be giving them all of my money, and never ever getting the furniture. I really whine when I go through delayed gratification....sigh.

Still pregnant here, my bloods came back all nice and average. Iron good, thyroid good, progesterone was normal (this is due to me taking 400 mg/day of prometrium, of course), and my hcg as of Tuesday at 7 weeks was 80,000. Which still kicks ass. Why did they do my beta? Who knows? At this stage, after 3-4 ultrasounds, it's kind of extraneous. But if it keeps Dr.J. happy...fine. She's getting me into see a high risk OB I haven't seen before. A guy I need but have no connection to to get in good with.

Which is good because I'm going to need him. I saw Dr.Eyebrows for a last minute panicked US after I woke up with no nausea and figured well, this is it...everything must be toast!

No, no, nothing bad happened. We saw the heartbeat, but they couldn't see the heartrate on the crappy machine. Not as big a concern to me today as the GIGANTIC fibroid. I know I called him Fido before, but I am changing it to Fred. Cause it's now bigger than a dog, big enough for a real name. Approximately 7.5 cm worth, all around. Still on the outside, (sort of subserosal/intramural) so it can't impinge on the baby's space, so far, but that may change in the future if it gets bigger.

Which is freaking me out.

So I'm just taking back that stupid ass comment about how it's more likely I'll get a baby than the furniture. I can deal with going back to Ikea.

But I REALLY really want this baby. So if I only get one of the two, I know which one I'm picking.

Yep, still here

I'm trying very very hard to ride this rollercoaster but it's just not cooperating.

Last week I had to take Kaz into the ENT clinic again to get his nose cauterized again, because of course he has been bleeding all over the place AGAIN. So much for "if we cauterize the bulging vessels, he won't get any more bloody noses, ma'am. This should take care of it." I think the nice young Irish doctor was patting me on the head as well because when I told him my experienced pediatrician wanted him to look up in the nasal cavity a little further and make sure there weren't any vessels bulging in there, he did do it, but told me it that if it was a bleed up there, that it would only be a rare cancerous tumour, and it wasn't there, so not to worry. He cauterized the vessels out on the edge of the nose, and made out like he was laughing, because he "knew" we were fine.

And two days late Kaz had a superhuman nosebleed all over the bathroom.

Yes, you Dr. Patronizing fuckhead, we're just "fine," thanks.....note to self, call back for another appointment, with BETTER Doctor.

Tonight we went out to an open house for a private Catholic high school my husband wants to send Kaz to next year. (It's grade 7-12.) I want him to stay where he is, but Mr.Cotta was all hyped so I agreed to a tour. Frankly, the school was great, the teachers fine, the students there were nice, but the other applicants? Yikes! I grew up poor, and I understand when kids can't afford name brand clothes, but I CANNOT comprehend taking a child to this event with greasy hair, dirty nails, sloppy untucked clothes and worse manners. Weirdly, the dirtiest, rudest kids seemed to be the middle and upper middle class kids. The poorer ones were neat as a pin, and polite & attentive.

Kids will be kids...but there is a time and a place for dirt and once in a while, they should be able to get it together, you know? In this day and age, is that asking to much? Hell, maybe it is...some of the parents were even worse. It's not even winter, no parkas needed, and it looked like some of them hadn't dragged a comb through their hair in days. Yet, they expect their children to be admitted to the school, with a first impression consisting of "interpersonal scuzz."

God almighty, these filthy little jackasses can't be the future of Canada...please....

And here's to hoping that my new coffee table arrives Friday morning. It's supposed to, so it's unlikely it actually will.

I was chatting with a friend of mine today and she told me that ever since she's known me, all I've wanted is a baby and new furniture, in that order. It's ironic that this evening, I'm feeling more hopeful that the baby will arrive than I am about the new couch ever getting here.

I'll put the pregnancy related stuff in another post, next. I don't want to think about nice things whilst in a full on rant! Good for distracting me, I guess.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

It's a good day today!

The heartrate has increased to 125 bpm and the crown rump length has increased to over 1 cm, aprox. 11 mm! WEEEEEEEEE!!!!

Yes, folks we have a pregnancy, and definitely NOT a puppy in there.

Total sigh of relief...until a few days before next Tuesday. Sometimes I think I live from ultrasound to ultrasound. Luckily this time I got the chance to find everything out live because Dr.J. had written them a note telling them too. And I insisted on having Mr.Cotta right there with me from the get go. Funny thing about some ultrasound labs in this town, they refuse to let the Dads in for the whole scan, only the ending part, even though Ministry of Health regulations say that women shall be allowed a support person of their choice at every stage of the maternity experience. But not every clinic does, it's almost like they are so desperate to get you alone and control the entire experience, they can't understand why it would be reassuring, or why any woman might need a friend? Hospitals let partners in, as do high risk OBs, and fertility clinics, but not all free-standing US clinics. Weird...anyway, I'm a bit of a pain in the rear that way, as you might have guessed, so I get what I want.

But this was great, and I have a picture, and now I just need to do something celebratory. I know it's only one ultrasound and it's only one little step. Heck, the universe could fall in tomorrow....but for today, I am going to be happy for the good things in life!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Many tasks await me

So, didn't get the phone, or the Ipod Touch because I ran into a moron at the Rogers Store at the Eaton Centre downtown. I should've known better than to go there because that mall is filled with cute little twerps who only use cellphones to figure where the next club night blowout is being held. The salesguy looked like he's just rolled out of a drug den, complete with a nasty bruise on his head, a bleeding cut turning into a scar, and hangover.

Not exactly a corporate star....

I may try a store downtown, maybe one at First Canadian Place or Commerce Court, because those guys wear suits and don't smell like crack, but I am definitely not putting up with anyone telling me that I'm going to have pay some outrageous price plan for surfing the web on a phone, or accessing email. (The hysterical part? He was trying to talk about internet access on a phone, but had never heard of an RSS feed. I don't expect the average person to know it, but a guy selling me a pocket computer or web-enabled phone---duh, of course he needs to know that.) And here in Canada, we have the highest cell phone rates in the world, the most expensive internet access, and a crazy system of oligopoly that would make anyone else in the world file a class action lawsuit so fast it would make these jokers' heads spin.

For example, we now have number portability, and guess what happens? Yep, all three major carriers refuse to give deals to anyone switching carriers and have made it clear that they aren't encouraging it. Does that sound like free market competition to you? Hardly, more like collusion, IMO. Plus, I can't get flat rate unlimited deals at all, even though Rogers quite clearly advertises an unlimited plan right here. Can you say false advertising? Yes, I have a screenshot in case they erase it, so far, they just keep protesting to me that unlimited only means 25 MB, too which I laugh, since the dictionary definition is obviously quite different.

There is no logical reason why I shouldn't be able to buy an iphone here in Canada, but I can't. The ludicrous reason why is apparently because it would work on Wifi access and not just cell sites, and Rogers, Bell, & Telus are quite desperate to make sure I have to pay per kb, or on a permanent monthly subscription for the rest of my bloody life. God forbid Ted lose a nickel of profit. *eyeroll*

So why do I need an unlimited flat rate plan? Simple, just checking Facebook was 472 kb everytime I loaded a page, and 25 MB a month goes pretty fast that way. Getting email synched on a blackberry uses hardly anything, as long as it's text, but add a few attachments, or click on a webpage, or check bloglines and I'm going to run out in 3 seconds flat.

So, I'm stuck with either waiting for the iphone to come to Canada, unlikely in the near future, or getting a crappy phone only usable for phone calls, and buying an iTouch ipod so that I can surf the web for free (I can get a flatrate per month here, but only for the Toronto core) and read my email and blogs without lugging the laptop all over town.

This is very very ummmm inefficient, uncompetitive and totally outrageous. Another item on my large list of things that must be changed in the world, sigh....

But it is distracting as I wait for tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm nice and nauseated, and feeling rather wiped out tired, so hey maybe there's still something in my uterus of doom, and not just a puppy?

Distract me, and tell me how much you guys pay for surfing on your phones, or blackberries, or just your cellphone bills? Anonymously if you like, but seriously, how much per month and in which countries/states?

Friday, October 19, 2007

little surfing

Thanks for all your reassuring comments! I'm trying to focus on the hopeful stories, but I realized that I needed to look at other blogs, and sites, like political ones if I was going to get my mind off of my troubles. So I go over to my clogged up bloglines feeds, and click on all the political blogs. Red Tory has been posting up a storm, about the Throne Speech, about the impending possible election, etc. but what is my eye drawn to? This.

RT meant this post to be a statement about the excesses of the undertaxed U.S. rich, all I can think of is that this entire site is pure infertility porn. Designed to make us believe the fantasy can be ours, if only we spend every last cent with the damn Docs.....I have to admit, I'm drooling as I click around, until I see this page, and laugh my ass off.

I can't be the only one who remembers the Ladybug onesie theme right? I mean we're no longer in onesie territory here, we're in serious decorator territory hon.

Anyway, the whole thing is silly, but oooooooooo as long as I focus on the shiny lovely pieces of glitter and fluff and ignore the stuff I can't control, I'll be less nervous.

I hope.

Tomorrow I'm getting a new cellphone, or maybe a blackberry or maybe even an IPod Touch. My old phone is crap, and I was supposed to replace it anyway. In fact, it's been so long since I got a new one that I could pretty much get any phone I want for free. but I've delayed and delayed, like I somehow don't deserve it. Ridiculous. So now I need to reward myself.

Shiny, fluffy, glittery, distracty, at least until NEXT TUESDAY.

*And before anyone doesn't get it, I DO mean this last bit as an amusing contrast to RT's post about conspicuous consumption. Irony, etc.


So if any of you can think of positive things to say, or happy thoughts, or inspiring stories, I need them.

I saw Dr.J. today and she told me that the report that had been faxed over by the radiologist did not show heartrate numbers, but they phoned for me this morning. Basically, the crown rump length, (CRL) is 4 mm, and the fetal heartrate is 98 bpm. (The gestational sac was in proportion, but not the size I mentioned in the previous post. I have to go fix that typo....) Most people have conventionally been told that any heart rate under 100 is not viable, but hearts don't just turn on like lightswitches at 6 weeks precisely. So some studies say that 98 is within the median range for 6 weeks gestation exactly and a CRL of 4 mm, and other studies say I'm borderline or just plain screwed. There are some on this site. And a bunch more, but I can't look up all the numbers. I'm crying so much I fogged my contacts.

The radiologist didn't write anything negative on the report and Dr.J. assures me that she would've, or that she would've phoned Dr.J. directly right there and then if she had any concerns. And I keep trying to hold onto that, the hard-earned knowledge that they don't let you leave if anything is wrong. Because they don't. They keep you there and phone your Doc. And this U/S clinic is really really busy and has a lot of experience dating pregnancies and determining viability. So they would know.

But right now, all I can think about is that this may be my last chance at pregnancy, and I just want to crawl into a ball and cry, because if it all goes wrong, I'm not sure what I'll do.


Tuesday, October 16, 2007


Just a bit. This ultrasound was more comprehensive, and only drove me slightly insane. You see the tech was muttering the entire freakin' time, and as missed conceptions mentioned, was vaguely concerned about doing a transvaginal ultrasound and reluctant to insert the dildocam.

Meanwhile, I'd already shucked off all my clothes, leapt up on the table and spread my legs, ready for ACTION!

Never let it be said that I am unwilling to do anything in this adventure.

The tech was very nice, but kept looking at me with fear or perhaps horror in her eyes after she heard this was no.8 in a series of pregnancies.

Unfortunately, she too was lame and did not give me all the measurements I wanted. They did do all the measurements like fetal heartrate, and recorded them, but would not do anything besides show me the screen and the heartbeat. Plus, she kept muttering, words like "Small, very very tiny, so small." They then promised to fax a report to my Doc, which had more info than this morning, but not much.

Dr.J. called me on my cell, from her cell, with what she had which was that the fetus is measuring 6 weeks 0 Days and that there was a heartbeat, and they gave her no numbers beyond that in this interim report. I know they will do a more comprehensive report and get it to her later, but in the meantime I am still hoping for more.

Fuck I hate these people. They just don't understand the concept of the stress of a recurrent miscarrier and how having information like the Crown Rump Length in proportion to the heartrate vs. gestational sac size can really relax a woman like me. Having someone pat me on the head and tell me "Relax," is not helpful. Giving me actual data I can rely on, IS relaxing.

So yes I am measuring right for dates, thank God, but my question is, where can I buy, rent, or steal a goddamn ultrasound machine so I can avoid these buttheads? And yes, if I ever become a doctor myself, I promise, I swear to you my compatriots to never ever patronize a patient. It's simply wrong. Just so so wrong.

P.S. I intend on finding a high risk practice that will give me the info real time so this never happens again. It's just a pain in the rear for these early weeks.

Weeeee, just before I hit publish Dr.J. called me again and she promised to call them tomorrow and ask for the heartrate and other numbers! Technically, she accidentally hit the redial button by accident, but for tonight, we're going with fate, magical thinking baggage and all.

Haven't quite got the answer yet

There was a long long wait for ultrasound this morning, in fact for everything at the clinic, mostly because there was only one Doctor on, and he was so young and new, we're nicknaming him Dr. Just Graduated. He likes to take his sweet time with patients, in fact, he likes to take freakin' forever, and treat us like we're stupid and naive and unable to read an ultrasound screen. He even talked slower when speaking to us! was all I could do not to rip the dildocam out of his quaking little hands, stick it up my vagina, and do the scan myself.

Anyway, in the end, we have a nice gestational sac, a yolk sac, 3.5 mm I think, and it's all positioned at the top of the fundus, so thank God, I may avoid my usual drama of wondering whether the embryo will once again implant so low, we'll be debating how to get the baby out. Fido the Fibroid is now 6 cm wide and growing, but nowhere near the sac. I guess that explains the bulge in my pants. And here I thought it was my uterus.

And yes, just one yolk sac. Poor Mr.Cotta actually said "Thank God!" so loudly the nurse jumped. I was fine because I'm already at high enough risk as it is without discussing multiples, but he had worked himself up a bit on the subject, I think.

The only problem is that the low resolution machine they use for this could see a heartbeat flickering, but couldn't record the heartrate. Dr.Just Graduated tried mightily, but could only find MY heartrate! And at 6 weeks, 1 day, a heartrate is easily obtained and standard minimum practice on any decent machine. Hell, on the high-resolution ones, they've found heartrates for me at 5 and a half weeks!

They want me to come back in a week, and they'll find it then, to which I laughed and laughed. And then picked up the phone and booked another US at another clinic for this afternoon.

I mean, HEEEELLLOOOOO, does anyone think I'm going to put up with anything less than the most aggressive treatment possible? Sigh.....such dorks, I'm emailing Dr.Eyebrows with the complete story afterwards.

I hate when Dr.Eyebrows is gone to conferences, because his clinic staff take over, and they have gotten so used to doing things in a certain way that they really don't feel like changing, regardless of the technological advances. He is always very kind and positive, but these guys drive me crazy. Poor Dr. Just Graduated looked like he'd give anything for a better machine, but the only one there was the one used for egg retrievals, and it was being sterilized and draped for the OR.

So I'll update with more after my second date with a dildocam for the day.

Monday, October 15, 2007


I spent the weekend blathering like a fool. I was so nervous that everytime my fab American visitors were in the car with me and Meg, I freaked out and got upset about the driving, freaked out and got upset about the parking, or freaked out and cried about my personal inadequacies, both real and imagined.

Or just cried about nothing at all. Cause hey, why not? I need to shed some excess liquid and I'm already peeing every hour on the hour. Time for a new orifice, eh?

Oh, and about that "Eh". Apparently, I have a Canadian accent! The word again was a source of vast amusement on "Penis Tour 2007." Canada is also full of sexual references I never knew about. Like the TTC picture Julia took? Here, it means Toronto Transit Commission. We have subway cars and streetcars that are called Red Rockets. And until they brought it up I'd only ever thought about it once or twice. Same thing for all the orange pylon/cone references.

It was a good distraction anyway. If you will excuse me now, I have to go stress over whether these cramps are just gas, or something more terrifying.

Tomorrow at 9:30 am I find out what the hell, if anything, is growing in my uterus.

It better not be a puppy.

Sunday, October 14, 2007


I'm not really a tough, ballsy chick. I just play one on the internet.

Really, I swear.

In fact, I've discovered that I like blogging for making personal confessions, because I really melt and turn into a big terrified puddle when I talk about all this stuff in real life. To avoid the puddle, I turn into "The Passionate Advocate on behalf of Someone Else," complete with voice change, political arguments, and dominating personality as armour to keep me safe.

I knew this about myself, but I thought I'd be able to avoid it if I met some bloggers in real life who had seen the more vulnerable side of me on the net.


Sigh....I'll really have to get better at this.

Anyway, I'm off on Tour today, a very long, or possibly short phallic tour. We'll be wandering around with the visitors having some very strange fun. Maybe I'll even relax a bit. Oh what the hell, where's my damn armour?

Friday, October 12, 2007

The Power of Magic

I have so many things to blog about, and I can't choose which ones to do.

Like my ultrasound next Tuesday, which is stressing me out. And now I really have found out how my husband feels about all this, I'm feeling guilty for putting him through all this torture and stress again.

You see, he has been acting stupidly happy, in fact, boyishly adorable, sending me long gushy emails all about the great things that we will do for the next 9 months, and signing them "Love, Your Baby Fadder". I mean, heeelllllooooo who is this romantic dude and where did my regular husband go?

And he really didn't want to try again, or at least that's what he said, usually whenever he was tired of my hormonal rollercoaster. But a few times, after we had lost Georgia and Mira, he simply lost it and freaked out and told me he wanted to get a vasectomy. I thought he blamed me and was trying to punish me, but instead he was in so much pain, that he really wanted to shut the door and run away. Men really do grieve differently than women, not worse or better, but differently. My support group kept telling me that, and I didn't believe them.

He kept telling me that he was fine and it was no big deal, he was in control of his emotions, and that men just didn't feel the same way. Of course, this was crap.

So last night we go out to dinner to get away from the paint fumes in my house, and we start talking about the Bruce Springsteen concert Monday. He has tickets, 2 really fabulous ones, and we are discussing going. I knew I might be tired, so we discussed him taking a friend or even Kaz, who has been raised on rock and roll since he was a baby.

I regret this now, but I told Mr.Cotta all about my magical thinking fears and how I was determined not to be ruled by them this time. He said, "What's that?" and I explained about how it works. Since I know you guys don't click through all the time, here below is the Overview from Wikipedia. (but you should really really read the entire article if you have EVER experienced infertility or a pregnancy loss-it's a bit of an eyeopener.)

According to Frazer, magical thinking depends on two laws: the law of similarity (an effect resembles its cause), and the law of contagion (things which were once in physical contact maintain a connection even after physical contact has been broken). These two laws govern the operation of what Frazer called "sympathetic magic", the idea that the manipulation of effigies or similar symbols or tokens can cause changes to occur in the thing the symbol represented. Typical examples of sympathetic magic include the use of voodoo dolls, and the fetishization of cargo cults. Others have described these two laws as examples of "analogical reasoning" (rather than logical reasoning).

Typically, people use magic to attempt to explain things that science has not acceptably explained, or to attempt to control things that science cannot. The classic example is of the collapsing roof, described in E. E. Evans-Pritchard's Witchcraft, Magic, and Oracles Among the Azande, in which the Azande claimed that a roof fell on a particular person because of a magical spell cast (unwittingly) by another person. The Azande knew perfectly well a scientific explanation for the collapsing room (that termites had eaten through the supporting posts), but pointed out that this scientific explanation could not explain why the roof happened to collapse at precisely the same moment that the particular man was resting beneath it. The magic explains why two independent chains of causation intersect. Thus, from the point of view of the practitioners, magic explains what scientists would call "coincidences" or "contingency". From the point of view of outside observers, magic is a way of making coincidences meaningful in social terms. Carl Jung coined the word synchronicity for experiences of this type.

Adherents of magical belief systems often do not see their beliefs as being magical. In Asia, many coincidences and contingencies are explained in terms of karma in which a person's actions in a past life affects current events. Likewise in the west, ideas of "motivation" and "positive thinking" in themselves achieving outcomes are not seen as magical by those who tout their benefits.

A common form of magical thinking is that one's own thoughts can influence events, either beneficially, by creating good luck, or for the worse, as in divine punishment for "bad thoughts". Freud reflected on these phenomena in his essay, "The Uncanny". These beliefs reflect an incorrect understanding of the boundaries of self - i.e. one can indeed will to move one's own arm, but not the ashtray on the table[citation needed], at least not by any direct means (e.g. we can will our arm to move the ashtray, or there may be even less direct routes of influence). We can also make the opposite error: thinking that outside agencies can see into or influence our thoughts (paranoia).

Another form of magical thinking occurs when people believe that words can directly affect the world. This can mean avoiding talking about certain subjects ("speak of the devil and he'll appear"), using euphemisms instead of certain words, or believing that to know the "true name" of something gives one power over it, or that certain chants, prayers or mystical phrases will change things. More generally, the identification of a symbol with its referent.

Magical thinking has prevented me from enjoying my pregnancies and my life, and has never once protected me from the pain and grief of losing a child. All it has done is suck the joy out of my life and left me with sadness over all the precious moments I wasted. I could have been celebrating the short time I had, and instead, I tried to "protect" myself from the world. Fat lot of good it did.

So how does this relate to Bruce Springsteen? Well, in 2004 I miscarried Georgia at 16 weeks, a little while after I went to the Madonna concert. Great tickets, (8th row floors!) I had an absolutely awesome time, and yet----for years I felt guilty for going, like the rock concert caused my miscarriage.

Stupid, eh?

Magical thinking is one of the biggest reasons why I believe that we have to get accurate diagnosis for pregnancy loss and infertility. You see, whenever I start to think that rock concerts cause pregnancy loss, I just whip out my copies of the chromosomal analysis, and the placental pathology and the letters and reports I got from various doctors. I read, read, read, read. And there really is nothing like logic & science to beat the tar out of a little voodoo black magic bullshit.

I also am fighting the magical belief that I can't have a live baby because Ivory Snow baby soap flakes are no longer in production, and my two living babies only had clothes washed in them. (Powdered detergent is different, in case you wondered) Second biggie, is that I lost my favourite brown Gund Teddy Bear when I was 11 weeks pregnant with Mira, and that Teddy is what kept all the babies alive. Teddy's disappearance killed her. I can't even buy a new Teddy exactly like it to try to replace it because Gund doesn't make them in the "tender style" of fur anymore. (I have pictures, and tried to build another one at Build-a Bear, but it isn't the same!) Third biggie, is that when Dr.J. does my prenatal care and delivery my babies live, and when she doesn't they die. And she ISN'T delivering babies anymore, gahhhhhh. And worst of all, after Matthew died, I was convinced that his chromosomal problem was punishment from God. I thought that since my bad egg was the cause, and I insisted we try that month, it was my fault. I went so far as to believe that it was because I forced my husband to have sex with me on a Tuesday when he was tired from working, instead of waiting for the weekend. Yep, having sex on a Tuesday causes dead babies.

Utterly ludicrous, I know.

There are lots of other minor ones, like buying maternity clothes, and getting baby stuff, but those I am going to try and conquer by calculating how much circulation I'll be cutting the blood flow off to my uterus with splitting tight clothes, or by remembering how hard shopping was with newborn Mac after I hadn't bought a damn thing for him for nine months. I swear I whimpered in pain through that whole damn store. *Shudder*

And yes, this is the reason why I have become a science freak, so that I can conquer my terror and stop having panic attacks at every turn. I don't want to be afraid to live my life. I don't want to feel guilty anymore.

So after all this discussion, I told Mr.Cotta about my fear of rock concerts and miscarriage, and he suddenly freaked out and told me I wasn't allowed to go to the concert with him, that we could take no chances! I kept trying to explain that the concert couldn't be a cause and that I am purposely trying to confront my fears about magical thinking, and not give in to them, that in fact, I SHOULD go to to the concert, and live my life based on scientific facts, not irrational fears, even if it's emotionally hard, because I don't want to live in superstitious hell. Unfortunately, he will have none of it. The look of fear in his eyes was simply unreal. I know he won't shake it. He was upset the rest of the night.

So, Monday night I guess I'll be at home, with my feet up, gestating quietly and meekly.

I am not good at meek.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Go Vote Liberal Dammit!

Hey chicklets!

Just a reminder that today is e-day, you know, ELECTION DAY here in Ontario. And yes, I want you to vote Liberal, because I sincerely believe that it is the best thing for this province, and especially for every infertile couple and anyone interested in adoption reform in Ontario.

Go see this post for why! No other party has put out a policy on this, ever. The NDP delisted IVF in Ontario back in 1994, and the Conservatives refused to fund it, even after people like Jim & Christine Flaherty used fertility treatment to have their triplets. Hypocritical, eh? I guess to the Tories, only rich people who can afford unlimited treatment should ever get to have kids. And the Green Party, pffhhhht, they actually told me if would be better for the planet if fewer people reproduced. I guess we're supposed to be the sacrificial lambs in the process. I guess it never occurred to them that people should get to decide that for themselves, eh?

And if your local candidate doesn't have a clue what it means, don't worry, they aren't making policy, and the people who are, really really care about our concerns.

Oh, and unless you want crazy fringe parties taking over, like pro-laffers, and sharia parties, and the right-wing nutbars, vote NO to MMP in the referendum. Truly a sucky idea, there were loads of other better ones but they picked this shitty thing. Belgium does it, and they still have no government after 100 days.

It's more complicated than string theory, so I can't even explain all the ins and outs to the average person, I get it only after hours of studying, but I've known PhDs who looked puzzled about it!

Basically a bunch of backbench politicians, would not only get elected without local constituents to take care of, but they wouldn't have any duties at Queen's Park, due to the fact that most of them are going to be from fringe parties, and will never be in Cabinet or on any important committees. $100+ a year to sit around a wank off all day, or bitch at me all day about how I should be wearing a chastity belt, and give the government the key to controlling my uterus.

Greeeeeeaaaaaaaaat idea, fuckwads.

Off to GOTV. I won't be checking the blog today, because I'll be busy, but if I get any trolls, beat them up for me, pretty please?

And remember if you don't vote, you have no right to bitch afterwards!


Tuesday, October 09, 2007

I've been typing for hours now, trying to put down some thoughts. Some rather unpleasant thoughts at that.

This is about people I know in real life, not anyone I met through the blogosphere.

The short and sweet is that some people I thought were close friends, and some relatives I liked, are not very nice people. They don't even know about the pregnancy yet, and I've just realized that they live for schadenfreude, literally pleasure in seeing other people's misfortune, and are very very unhappy now, because my life is going well, and I am feeling content and happy to a degree. And this doesn't fit their script very well.

I was always the one with bad things to report, family tragedies, injuries, money problems, health issues, and they were always so quick to relish in every detail, to endlessly yet subtlely blame me for every event. Somehow, I must be at fault right? Marked by fate to suffer. Cluck, cluck, cluck. And they were always the ones to rush in and save me and offer a shoulder to cry on, a solution for my pain. Always there, always secretly glad that they were not the ones to suffer, that somehow I was balancing out their cosmic happiness. And as long as I was living in hell, that would ensure their lives would be perfect and happy, at least in their warped little minds.

I think I deserve some happiness in life and not just because of this pregnancy, but in general, and things have been going well for awhile for me, which is an amazing and wonderful turn of events. But I guess they don't think I should be happy, if their behaviour last week on the phone was any example, or if their behaviour at Thanksgiving dinner was to be observed.

Hmmmm, maybe that's just too accusatory, instead, maybe me doing well is all so bizarre and difficult for them to cope with, that they can't handle it. You know that old saying, we aren't attracted towards the things that will make us happy, we go for the things we are used to? Well, here's hoping they can find a way to change what they are used to, because one more stupid thing out of their mouths, and I just might scream. Really.

Examples? A relative of mine at dinner was incredibly bitchy the second she figured out that we were getting new furniture. Or maybe she was just angry that Mr.Cotta and I were getting along better than her and her husband, or pissed that my kids go to private school and hers go to public. (She can afford to send them to private, but has had a prejudice for years about it. It's now a problem since she may need to send them to private, but has been on this pedestal for so long, she can't climb down. I personally don't care about the issue, I think families make choices based on individual kids, but she thinks the public system is morally superior. Note: she went to a private school herself, *eyeroll*)

Another example: A friend was on the phone with me when I got an email detailing Mr.Cotta's quarterly bonus. I was so happy, I told her about it. This particular friend has had way way more money than us for years, and expects a big inheritance, which she has told me about many times. We were always happy for her and her family. Even when we were broke, I never said anything but, "Wow, that's fabulous!". But when I mentioned a decent bonus cheque? The phone line dripped with icy bitterness. You'd think it had come directly out her own pocket.

I dread telling these people about this pregnancy or eventually about a live baby because in the end, I will either have bad news to tell, and it will just feed their schadenfreude personalities, or it will be good news and they will find a way to be nasty and stupid and spoil my joy. And since we are either related or have mutual friends, it's pretty hard to cut them out completely.

And it isn't everyone. Most people are lovely and kind, and I want to shout about this pregnancy to the rooftops with them. I want to be bathed in their positive kindness. Everyone out here on the net has been great, and most people in real life will be the same.

I just wish I could stick these few jackasses in soundproof glass bubbles and send them to Mars, or therapy, or secretly slip them antidepressants.

Any advice? Help?

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Welcome to the nutty

I'm leaving the last post up for posterity, just so we know what pregnancy can do me. And later, when I tell you all how calm and relaxed I was, you can point that thing out to me and laugh and laugh and laugh. Good times.

That last post is an example of what happens when you don't sleep, don't have your husband home to hold on to, and when your previous record of non-stop pregnancy sickness is really doing better. Leading you to suspicious belief that something is wrong because you are NOT hugging the toilet.

I have discovered something brilliant though. When I don't inject the heparin regularly, I feel sicker. I can't do it every single morning at the same time, so I'm trying to change the time to later in the day, maybe evening. So I did it this afternoon instead, and tomorrow I'll move it to evening. Well, I felt nauseated all morning. And within 15 minutes of injecting it today, my nausea was gone.

I had the same reaction to hcg injections when I did those last pregnancy. But even at 2,500 units/shot their half-life was longer, about 3 days. That high was great! I felt like SUPERUTERUS for 2 days after each shot. (I'm not doing them this time, I may later if I can convince my drug dealer/RE/OB to give some.) Seriously, energy galore! No nausea! Great sex life!

There are several theories of why NVP exists, and Motherisk has loads of research on it, but my favorite theory right now, is that some women's bodies react to the new embryo improperly, and together they create the wrong "type" of hcg, and the placenta is improperly constructed as a result. (This can accumulate over time, so a first pregnancy can be successful, but each successive one as you get older and older is worse.)

Poor blood flow, and improper passage of nutrients, cells, etc. cause the nausea, similar to when your body senses you have a flu bug or have ingested germs somehow, and tries to get rid of it by throwing up. In theory, by replacing the bad hcg with good hcg from healthy women, you can hopefully construct a good placenta. Or by using heparin or baby aspirin, or both, you can hopefully build a good placenta, and keep it from blocking up the arteries and veins, or inflaming the whole damn thing.

And hopefully get a live baby out of the whole adventure.

Anyway, the hcg injections were easy 3 years ago but the heparin shots haven't been. The first three days are marked by three bruises, each worse than the last. But thanks to Bea and the IVF Shoot 'Em Up site, today went like breeze! I'm on 5,000 units of fragmin, but it felt like nothing after following her instructions. Thanks Bea! You are a GENIUS!

So about all that cheery optimism

It's kind of not working.

For those of you who may be thinking that a positive pregnancy test means a live baby for me, and all I needed was to fix my non-existent ovulation, we need to talk.

I haven't posted about every pregnancy experience I've had, and I really ought to fix that. Urghhhhh. Basically, I have lost pregnancies at every stage. And the odds of this resulting in a live baby are so low, the high risk docs won't even give me a number.

Since I had a Trisomy 18 pregnancy at the age of 28, amniocentesis and a nuchal scan isn't even optional, it's mandatory. It's thought to be incredibly rare for a young woman to have a chromosomally damaged egg, (poorly gathered miscarriage evidence notwithstanding) that my odds of a good egg are crap. And honestly, I'm not sure what I'd do this time if I got a bad amnio result. After 9 years of guilt and judgement heaped on my head----fuck I can't even go there.

And it is pretty presumptuous of me to think I'll get to 18-21 weeks. Pregnancy #6 was lost a few days after the positive. And Mira and Georgia never got past 12 & 16 weeks.

I DO have two living children. They escaped from my crappy uterus before anything could go wrong, so I have to give the docs some credit. Even after Mac was born with lungs full of meconium and had an Apgar of 1 at one minute, hey, the docs suctioned him and he pinked up, and hell, he's alive and healthy.

You know, most bloggers who get pregnant seem to have a "safe point" where they no longer worry about the pregnancy, and start assuming they will get a live baby out of this adventure. I really don't have that point. So every moment of the next 35 weeks is going to be absolutely terrifying. And it seems to have made me even more nutty about my living kids.

But I'm not upset to see pregnant women or babies anymore. I've only felt that way during my worst moments to be honest. I'm more of a babyluster myself. I'm the crazy woman who looks at your newborn like I want to steal it. Not little kids, mind you. Just babies, and the smaller the better. I follow them around like an addict looking for a fix desperate to smell them or touch them.

Tomorrow I'm going to pack a bag for the hospital. It's not a bag for L&D. It's a bag of stuff I'll need if I'm miscarrying at any point. I'm tired of having to send my husband home to bring me hospital gear, and he returns with whatever he grabs because he's grief stricken and in shock and can only find my pantyhose and lipstick, but not maxipads. (And who the fuck needs pantyhose after a D&C? I never did understand that one. Poor sweet crazy man....)

And in more of the "getting ahead of myself" category....this next conversation is predicated on the fact that someone will need to take care of me if I miscarry at least.

The issue is that my hospital, the women's one in town, has been gutted over time and parcelled out amongst various hospitals. So it's still got the best NICU, and the best L&D, but if any other part of my body acts up, it's problematic. The only other decent high risk hospital I'd go to, I don't really like. They get so intervention happy that they turn every single birth into a high risk one. I've literally never met a woman in real life who gave birth there and didn't get an automatic unneeded pitocin drip and a crash vacuum or a crash c-section. No wait a minute, since they refuse to VBAC anyone, they do a lot of next birth scheduled c-sections. In fact, they have the highest rate in the province.

So you're asking, why wouldn't Aurelia want every damn intervention on earth? Don't interventions ALWAYS save babies?

Ummm, no, not always.

I don't want the wrong interventions just because they exist. I want the right treatment for me and the fetbryo and sometimes the right treatment is to turn off the pit drip, or to wait for the baby to descend slowly and not push it into distress with extra drugs or a vacuum. And some OBs who live for adrenaline or interventions are very very authoritarian towards patients. Sometimes listening to a Mom who tells you something is wrong, is critical. Every time something has gone really wrong, I've known it deep down. I can't always say what, but I know if something has changed and they need to do something help me.

I knew something was wrong just before Mira died, and before Matthew was diagnosed, and when Georgia died, weeks before. And now, I barely trust my intuition anymore. I don't want a Doc talking down to me as well. Every time I don't feel sick or gassy or tired or well, pregnant, I start to lose faith. And I can't do that. It won't help.

The question is, how do I find that magical perfect Doc?

In my world of magical thinking, Dr.J. is the only reason my babies made it. Every time I've had a live baby, she was there, and every time I had a dead baby, I had another doctor. Completely illogical, I mean she was my GP when Matthew was conceived, and all the others, but still, I can't stand the fact that she isn't delivering babies anymore. And I have no idea how to clone her.

I'm truly blathering now, and it's late. I need to go to sleep.

So, if some of my fellow IFer's can't read me all the time for the next while I get it, it might be too painful to read, just please please please don't assume my attempts at joking and optimism are anything but a defense mechanism.

I will never be the happy innocent preggo ever again. I AM trying to fake it 'til I make it, one day at a time.

Friday, October 05, 2007

I don't know what to type

There's no way of beating around the bush on this one.

I'm pregnant.

That BFN? It was a BFN when I peed on a stick, but when I went for the blood test Monday, it was a beta of 116.

And on Wednesday it was a beta of 365.

And today, Friday, it's 996.

I'm on baby aspirin, 400 mg of prometrium, intravaginally, 5,000 iu a day of fragmin, and enough folic acid to choke a horse.

My first ultrasound is on the 16th.

So why did I wait to tell all of you? Because I didn't actually believe it was true myself, until it doubled Wednesday, and I had to tell my husband first before I told the entire internet. You know, my husband, the guy who wasn't so sure it was a good idea to try again, in light of the fact that our batting average sucks when it comes to live baby achievement?

I was kind of afraid to tell him, because I also am a little over the top psycho emotionally when I am pregnant. In fact, the roller coaster from hell is the usual way in which he describes it.

But instead of getting upset, or overly anxious, my darling sweet fabulous husband took me in his arms and told me he was happy. And he really really wants me to try to stay calm.


I'm PREGNANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

DHEA WORKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

EVERYONE ON EARTH SHOULD TAKE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


As you can see, I am not so good at calm.

I know this pregnancy could end tomorrow. I have only a tiny chance of getting a an actual live baby out of this.

But for today, for right now, for each and every day that I am pregnant, I am going to be thankful for this tiny little chance at some joy.

One day at a time.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Delurking Day

So today is the Great Mofo Delurking Day, started by Schmutzie at Milk Money or Not, Here I come. Schmutzie had noticed that there was a marked decrease in comments lately all over the blogosphere, and yes, it's been summer and all, but STILL, it's fall now, time to get back to normal.

The Great Mofo Delurk 2007

If you are too shy to comment, email me at aurelia dot cotta at gmail dot com.

And seriously to the person in the Ontario government reading me, please reveal yourself. Same to the person at Health Canada who has subscribed to me on bloglines.

I have your IP addresses and even your department sections. If you are simply reading my blog for personal problem, you are totally welcome, what with all the infertiles working for the government, but if you are monitoring this site for other purposes, like figuring out a departmental communications strategy----uncool.

I have lots of stuff I'd like to blog about, and knowing I am being watched by you guys makes me feel a little Big Brother paranoid, K?

So be nice! Smooch!


I am still waiting on the results of the UTI culture, not sure what the hell is holding it up.

My doc informed me Monday that she finally got the results of my intestinal cultures from LAST JUNE. Apparently some arrived, and the rest never did, supposedly they were stuck in the damn mail room? Not her fault technically, but I'm still pissed off right now. I stopped complaining to her about my digestive system because she kept acting like I was depressed or crazy, or just didn't have the "right attitude." Doctors have tried to label me with fibromyalgia, IBS, & interstitial cystitis, all of which were ruled out. The one lingering symptom of hyperthyroid I can't match up with my TSH level has been digestive.

The answer: basically, I have, and have had for a long long long time, an infection called Dientamoebiasis. Sigh...I know it's been there for years because my son came home with it, in 2004. And since the entire family wasn't treated, and it is extremely communicable, (among family who live together, not average people we meet) we seem to have been passing it around for the last 3 years.

I can take the medication, (it's safe for TTC and pregnancy) my kids will take whatever I make them take, but the real challenge is Mr. Cotta. Adults can be asymptomatic, but carriers. And diagnosing them can take up to ten different culture samples, or one insanely expensive blood test that no one would order unless it was critical. So the policy is, treat the whole family for ten days with medication and be done with it. But my husband hates seeing docs, and hates taking any medication, ever. So this drives him nuts. But he has to take the medication, or we'll all be sick again soon. I know he will in the end, but the fight along the way....sigh.

Anyway, wanna hear the symptoms? (from Wikipedia and emedicine, my link thingy won't click)
  1. Weight loss
  2. Fatigue
  3. Nausea and vomiting
  4. Fever
  5. Uritcaria (skin rash)
  6. Pruritis (itchiness)
  7. GI Pain
  8. Headache
  9. Malaise
  10. Bloating - (Maybe why my stomach sticks out weirdly, always pleasant for the IF)
  11. Diarrhea & constipation alternating
  12. Irritability
Chronic infection can lead to inflammation throughout the entire abdomen. Including the reproductive system.

And no we're not going there.

I just can't.