28 February 2011

I don't need to worry, right?

Okay, so I'm a bit of a worrywart.

Well, I'm A LOT of a worrywart.

[I'm also not a very good liar]

My GP, yes the one I don't like, wants to see me. I had my annual physical on the 15th and she's obviously found something that she didn't like.

Really, what else can be wrong with me? I'm already infertile, have had two surgeries, have numerous allergies and ulcerative colitis and am asthmatic.

She found something strange with my blood work last year (although I can't remember what it was for the life of me, but it obviously wasn't that big of a deal since I can't even recall the problem!) and I had to repeat my blood test.

My blood pressure is fine and I'm certain that my EKG was fine.

My appointment is at 5:30pm. Could you please say a little prayer for me?
I so need a drama-less March. Please Lord, let this be the last stressful thing for a while!

p.s. Hebrews is having surgery tomorrow, please say even bigger prayers for her!

p.p.s. I saw Dr. Nora today and we had a long chat about coming out of the IF closet. More about that after my doctor's appointment!

27 February 2011

Coming Clean

Yesterday was a good day.

And Lord knows, I've needed one to come along for a while!

I am very lucky to have a group of women that I meet up with on a regular basis for IF support -- yet another wonderful thing to come from the blogs! Although we are all on different paths to growing our families, we are able to share our stories and our pain (and we all know how much pain is involved with IF!).

As I was driving to my next rendez vous -- where I was going to be the only person that was childless -- I turned on my Rosary application on my trusty i.Phone and prayed my way to my destination. I knew that I would need strength since Mr. JB (he's away on a boys weekend) was not going to be with me at the dinner party and because I knew that there would be PLENTY of baby talk.

I was glad that I had quite a long time in the car, thanks to traffic and snow, to get my head together. I always seem to have my best talks with God while I'm driving. I have been praying for discernment and for clarity at our particular fork in the road and I have been so frustrated at the lack of answers.

Then it came to me.

I need to start telling people about my IF. I need to come clean.

Now that we're getting closer to starting the adoption process, I have to start telling people.

We have told a few friends, but I have been so private in my real life, which is funny since I have a blog that anyone can look at. I know that I'm getting tired of living a double life.

So how do I do it? Do I send out a mass e-mail? Post it as a Face.book status? Invite the people I want to tell to dinner?

How did you tell your friends and loved ones? What was their reaction?

I'm absolutely petrified to do this, but I know that this is something that I have to do. I feel like I'm drowning in secrecy, and I'm tired of the charade.

26 February 2011

JellyBelly in flux

I have had so many blog posts percolating in my head and just now, while enjoying my gluten-free bagel, I had a thought.

I have been struggling so much because I want so badly to find a solution to my sadness. I want an out. I want something concrete to hold onto.

This is not the lesson that I'm supposed to learn from this particular point in my struggle.

Yes,  it is definitely easier said than done, but I think I may be onto something here.

I'm a fixer. I like to find solutions to problems. Heck, my job is a daily journey in finding solutions to how to deal with 19 crazy seven year olds.

I know that I'm looking down a path with a serious fork in the road I know that it is fear that is keeping me from moving forward. I also know that I have put up every road block in our journey towards adoption.

I don't sit far from where the large, brown envelope with the paperwork for Child.ren's Aid is hiding. I can almost hear it talking to me.

"JellyBelly, what are you waiting for? Why have I been sitting here in this basket for a year? Just fill me out already!"

So many of you have given me the gentle encouragement that we should just start the process, just so we can have something other than my broken body to focus on. It would make so much sense to pursue public adoption while waiting to see if surgery in Omaha is an actual possibility (although Mr. JB doesn't think that it's going to be needed, sometimes it is so tough to live with an eternal optimist!).

Perhaps giving myself an end date was the wrong way to approach my IF. I do work well with deadlines, but in this case, I need to be more forgiving to myself. The self-blame has been tough to take, and I'm the one responsible for all of it!

So, I'm going to try and give myself permission to take a mental break. We leave for our resort vacation in two weeks. I don't need to make any decisions before then. For now, I'm going to try to muddle through my life without having a breakdown.

How does that sound to all of you?

19 February 2011

And here we are again...


Part of me is so relieved since I was feeling like an out of control, hormonal maniac.

But most of all I feel sad.

And disappointed.

I know that something needs to change, but I feel like I'm stuck in the hamster wheel of TTC. I'm petrified of starting the adoption process. I'm scared to stop trying. And I know that pretending that living life without children is not an option.

I wish that someone would just make the decision for me.

If only it were that easy.

I'm so tired of feeling sad. I'm so tired of living my life in two week increments. Most of all, I'm tired of being childless.

Are there any psychics out there? Anyone have any visions of my future?

I'm lost.

16 February 2011

Longing for Lent

Dear Lord, do I ever need Lent to come.

I'm sure that those of you that read yesterday's post can clearly see that.

I am also certain that the Lord has a very interesting sense of humour.

I was at an all day meeting today surrounded by THREE pregnant women. I spent the ENTIRE day hearing about their pregnancies, their expectations, how easy it was to get pregnant. All of the typical conversation that one hears from a fertile that has never even had the thought that conception could possibly be difficult.

It took all of my being to stay in the room. I wanted to take my things and run, but I had to be professional and smile and look happy. I did send some bitter texts for TCIE who is always there for me (thanks again TCIE!) to help me cope, and there were a few washroom breaks that involved some silent screaming. I was dying on the inside, but no one could tell. 

Perhaps I should try acting, because I am certain that I did some Oscar winning material today.

On my way home today, I got a whiff of spring. For those of you that don't live in an arctic climate, this winter has been incredibly tough. It's been bitterly cold and there's been way too much snow (yes, a proud Canadian girl like me is complaining about snow, I usually love it, but it has been RIDICULOUS!). I got to drive with the window cracked open and the heat off.

I felt for a brief moment that I was going to make it, that the cross of IF wasn't unbearably heavy.

Perhaps it isn't just IF-related PTSD that I'm suffering from, maybe I also have seasonal affective disorder?

What I do know is that the sadness that I feel is something that I have to deal with. I need to find beauty in the little things in my life since the big stuff is just too daunting. I'm going to start with little steps tonight. My favourite yoga teacher has a new class on Wednesday nights and I'm going. I don't usually practice on consecutive nights, but I want to be bikini ready when we head south next month (the state of my body is another post for another time, d*mn you fertility drugs!). I can turn my mind off for 75 minutes and I can concentrate on making my body stronger, not the things that it can't seem to do.

Thank you all for all your kind words and support. I know that this dark time will pass, hopefully sooner, rather than later.

15 February 2011

Seeking Comfort

That's exactly what I have tried to do today.

I took the day off because I had my annual physical (with the GP that I really don't like, but cannot leave because it is nearly impossible to find doctors that take patients). I knew that I needed a day away from my class (who is driving me crazy and making me a miserable person, well actually, it's one specific student, but I'm not going to blog about that today), and taking the entire day off was what I needed.

I've been miserable for the past couple of weeks. Part of me feels like I have some form of PTSD that's related to IF -- is that possible? I feel like I have been dragging my broken spirit through mud. I know that it most likely hormonal and that when AF starts the clouds will break open and peace will come upon me (funny how that happens, eh?). Another part of me is worried that my normalizing hormones are making me feel like a basket case.

I am usually an optimist. I am also usually happy, despite five and a half years of being IF. I am constantly being praised by my friends and colleagues about how calm I am. I know that it isn't a persona, I am actually that person.

Since the Dalya and Danielle's deaths I have tried very hard to focus on the positive things in my life -- my ulcerative colitis being in remission, our upcoming trip to the Dominican Republic, my perfect eyesight, but I feel like the weight of IF is dragging me down.

I know that I have hit rock bottom many times, and so many of you have buoyed me through so many periods of intense suffering. It seems as though I am there again.

After my physical I went to the chiropractor (who is my biggest IF cheerleader) and I complained to her about my aching lower back as well as my jaw. She joked that I'm never an easy case to "fix." She asked me why I was so tense and I wasn't able to answer her.

Is my body trying to tell me that I need to get off of this roller coaster? Is it time to reclaim my life and move on?

It seems to me that every time I set a deadline for myself, I get a positive sign that we need to keep going.  I had thought that December 2010 was going to be the end of our TTC journey, but then I started to see Dr. Nora. Then in January my Napro doctor said that we had just had our first two viable cycles and that we shouldn't despair. And now, there's a possibility (however slight) that I will be able to have surgery with Dr. H.ilgers.

Is this divine intervention? Or is it coincidence?

I know that ultimately I have to make peace with what I want, and unfortunately that means that I can't give up. I did say to Mr. JB a couple of weeks ago (perhaps it was in the car on our way home from Danielle's funeral) that I believed that we were close. I have not had that feeling in a VERY long time.

I never thought that I would be 36 and still childless. Part of me just wants to mourn the loss of that dream, but I can't hibernate in a hole and do that. Another part of me (although lately, it has been a very small part) believes that my IF is serving a greater purpose in my life.

So for now, I have to continue praying -- which has been really great since we have a Legion of Mary statue visiting with us for a couple of weeks, and hoping. And maybe, I have to reach my hands out so all of you can hold me up while I am feeling so weak and small.

Thank God for all of you.

13 February 2011

Just this once...

I wish that I could see into the future to see that the pain of IF was all worth it.

But I know that isn't realistic, nor am I in control.

All I know is that I feel extra, special sad today and that this cross is particularly heavy on my heart.

Not even the tub of dark chocolate covered almonds are helping right now.


7 February 2011

The calm after the storm

Dear Lord, I hope that this is a boring, uneventful week.

I feel like I've spent the past week crying, and it has nothing to do with the state of my uterus.

Witnessing the grief of two families, two very different families, this past week, I have had a lot of time to pray and question God. I know that I have no idea what His plans for us are, and I can't possibly understand the logic of a 13 year old girl and a 32 year old mother dying of cancer.

All week I've heard about how Dalya and Danielle were such witnesses to their faith. They both believed in God's plan for them and at the end of their lives they were both more worried about their families, and not for their deaths. At the reception after Danielle's funeral her husband and father-in-law spoke (and my how brave they both were) about how she didn't want to give up, that she was willing to try anything to live. Danielle also went as far as to write cards to both her young children, from everything from birthdays to First Communion to their wedding days. She also wrote letters to her family members outlining what she wanted them to do to help out in her kids' lives.

I have no idea how she found that strength. But then again, she made her peace and she wanted to prepare her family for her eventual death.

Dalya was another amazing witness to her faith. Her mother never wanted to use the word cancer. She refused to acknowledge the disease in the hope of erasing it. It is too bad since her brothers were both refused counseling that was offered by the hospital and the school. We have another student who's cancer in currently in remission and Dalya was over the moon to hear that Nicole was beating her disease. Dalya would call the school and ask for more challenging work, and despite the fact that she was too weak to attend school on a daily basis, she would try her best to attend when she could.

Dalya, too, worried about her family and how they would be after her death. She didn't ask for her own comfort, but for the comfort, particularly, of her mother.

I feel so small in the face of these two beautiful women.

I have spent the better part of five and a half years feeling sorry for myself. Every month since we got married I have mourned the arrival of AF and the passing of yet another month without a baby. The disease that was growing inside me, although the cause of much pain, was not fatal.

I have seen my health steadily improve since my IF diagnosis. I don't know if I will ever conceive, but at least I am not adrenally fatigued, suffering from debilitating cramps every month, or crazy because of PMS. Although I know that I would trade any of these things to have just one child, I know that this journey has brought me health, something that Danielle had her husband remind us in his speech at the reception after her funeral.

It is so hard to look past the grief that I have held in my heart, the grief of the dreams that I thought were going to come true soon after my wedding. But I do know that if it wasn't for IF that my marriage would not be as strong as it is. I also know that when parenthood does finally come that we will not take one day for granted.

So Dalya and Danielle, thank you for forcing me to appreciate my life. I will continue to pray for your families since I have no doubt that you are both looking down on us from heaven.

3 February 2011

I hate you cancer

We had a student pass away Tuesday night of cancer.

That's two cancer deaths in one week.

The teachers had to do a mini-liturgy in our classes to remember the poor girl that passed away and I could barely hold it together.

So more prayers are in order, friends.

A twelve year old girl should not be dying of cancer. 

Let's hope that this is the last death for a LONG time.

St. Peregrine, pray for us. St. Joseph, pray for us.