26 November 2008

Knowledge is power, yes?

I've always loved doing research. As an educator I get to learn knew things every day. I honestly believe that ignorance isn't bliss.

Until today.

We had another follow-up appointment with our NaproTechnology doctor and it was quite the eventful visit. It didn't help our mood that we had to wait almost two hours to see her -- Mr. JB even checked with the receptionist to see what the delay was and he's certain that they forgot about us! It also didn't help that I had to wear a mask in the waiting room because I am sick, again! I even had to wear it during my visit with my doctor!

Dr. T is a very thorough doctor, so I know that I shouldn't complain about waiting so long since she gives the same attention to each of her patients. She went over my bloodwork and said that my estrogen levels are good and that my progesterone levels are still a little low (my peak +7 levels were taken last night at 5pm and she was able to get the results this morning!). Dr. T also said that she was concerned about my mucus scores (they were 8 for this cycle) as well as all of my 10SL days post peak. She was also concerned about my 14 day period this cycle. Now that my estrogen and progesterone are pretty good, she's pretty certain that I have endometriosis.

Dr. T also did an internal exam and she said that my cervix was inflamed so wouldn't be able to get the swabs that she wanted. She said that she wasn't concerned about the inflammation, but I'm adding it to my list of things to worry about.

So here is our course of action: Dr. T is getting me a referral for the doctor that will be doing the laparoscopic surgery and until then she's put me on a mucus enhancer (B6), and she also wants to try Clomid for two cycles, just in case.

I know that I should feel relieved that my doctor is coming to some sort of conclusion as to why we haven't yet conceived, but I'm feeling so defeated right now. I feel so disappointed that the HCG wasn't the miracle cure that I thought it was going to be. I'm also worried that I'm going to have to tell my new principal about having to take time off for the surgery. I'm sure that it's not going to be an issue, but it's just something else to worry about.

The one thing that is more worrisome is that I'm scared that the doctor will find more things wrong with me. I'm so mentally and physically drained right now that thinking about the surgery makes me cry.

I need to go to bed. Perhaps, when I finally get better from my cold I'll have a clearer head to think things through. All I know now is that I'm scared and I don't know how much more my infertile psyche can take.

18 November 2008

I love procrastination

I'm in the height of report card season, so of course I'm spending LOTS of time on the internet. I've picked out my next pair of comfy boots and found them on sale. I've caught up with as many people as I could on F.aceb.ook. I also spent a lot of time this evening updating on my blog (notice the new blog list -- I was envious similar lists on other blogs so I acquired my own). All of this, but no work on my report cards.

I'm not very good at having unfinished work hanging over my head -- a very bad trait for a teacher since there is always work to do! I haven't been able to find my report card writing groove and I'm not trying very hard to find it.

Last Friday we had the day off to write reports. When I arrived at my very quiet school (Mr. JB was working at home so I knew that I would get little done!) there was a guy from physical plant installing bulletin boards, three months late. Instead of having full reign over my classroom, I had to find another place to work. I'm the kind of girl that needs a certain mood, certain songs on the CD player, and every resource at my fingertips. Needless to say being relegated to the boring old computer lab was not conducive to working.

So I'm at t-minus six days until my deadline and instead of toiling away I've been farting around my kitchen and I've been doing some serious bonding with my laptop. Am I stressed? Of course. Do I really want to do anything about it? No.

One would think that writing 21 report cards would be a good distraction from my misbehaving ladyparts, but I just have no desire to do them. At least today I didn't see the return of the brown.

I'm off to numb my brain with some bad reality TV. Report cards, what report cards?


p.s. I left a card for my co-worker that had a miscarriage last week. She still hasn't been back to school, so I hope that her supply teacher left it in a safe place.

16 November 2008


I love the colour brown. Our incredibly comfortable couch is brown. All of the wood in our house is a deep, deep brown. Almost all of the walls in my house, save one that is deep red, are brown (our bedroom is painted a tasty colour called "Tiramisu"). My hair and eyes are brown.

My love for brown came slowly. You see I love for things to match -- my shoes have to match my purse, my hat has to match my gloves, my bracelet has to match my earrings. Falling in love with the brown clothing trend meant that I had to invest in a new winter jacket, scarf, gloves and hat. I also had to ensure that I had the proper accessories. Trust me, it wasn't a hardship to look for all of these things since I love to shop. And my search for the perfect warm, but stylish brown hat has helped me focus my latest trips to the shops, although I'm thinking that I'm just going to learn how to knit so I can just be done with it.

So what brings me to my diatribe on brown? Well, my ladyparts seems to have decided that since I love brown so much that they need to give me seven days of brown bleeding. I'm on day 15 of my cycle and it's the first day that I haven't seen any sort of spotting. This is my longest stint of bleeding/spotting since May.

Weren't the HCG injections supposed to help stop 14 day-long periods?

Needless to say I'm feeling incredibly bummed out. Not only did I get hardly any work done on my report cards (bad excuse, I was out having fun instead of working), but now I'm thinking that there is something seriously wrong. I really should've taken Mrs. X's advice, but I really can't stay away from Dr. Google.

It also doesn't help that I spent all weekend visiting with friends that have kids -- on Saturday night we went out with Mr. JB's high school friends who all have the perfect two kid families. Although we've never discussed our IF openly with them there are so many times where I think that I'm wearing a placard saying "Barren" around my neck. Then today we attended my best friend's daughter's fifth birthday party. I don't usually find it hard to be around other people's children, but being around my old roommate that is pregnant (baby number two, try one) was really hard.

We see our doctor on the 26th and I really hope that I don't drive myself mad trying to diagnose every strange twinge in my belly. Perhaps I should distract myself by actually working on my report cards. Then again, the new C.anadian H.ouse and H.ome is on my front hall table and I'd much rather imagine my new kitchen than be productive....

12 November 2008

Now what???

In the hopes of my lady parts behaving as they should (i.e. no more two week-long periods and endless days of brown bleeding) I assumed (wrongly) that things were going better. Since I started the HCG injections in August my cycles have gone from being 24 days to 30 days long. And since September my periods have been relatively shorter. I'm on CD 11 today and I thought (based on the patterns from previous cycles) that I had bid adieu to Aunt Flo.

Alas, I was proven wrong yet again.

This is what my chart looks like (red stickers abound):
November 2nd: M/H
3rd: H
4th: H
5th: M
6th: M/L
7th: L
8th: VL
9th: B x 1, OAD
10th: B X 2, OAD
11th: VL X 2 (I also noted pink since I didn't see red at all that day), OAD
12th: L (well it isn't the end of the day, but that's what I'm going to put before I go to bed)

Now, am I going backwards???? The last three cycles ended with very little brown spotting and then a couple of dry days. The pattern of having bizarro bleeding was common before the HCG injections and the Low Dose Naltrexone, but now I'm am completely and utterly confused.

I'm assuming that there is yet one more thing wrong with my ladyparts -- be it some other infection, disorder, maybe even endo? I have no idea. My Napro doctor suggested that if I don't get pregnant in the next couple of months that she wants to do some laproscopic surgery to see what's going on. I was very, very hesitant the last time I saw her, but now I'm thinking that I should push for it.

Honestly, I'm feeling at the end of my rope. I'm stressed out because of report cards and my crazy students (yes, the full moon makes children even nuttier!), and my teaching partner is getting more annoying by the day. I've had interruption upon interruption that what teaching I have left before I write my reports is completely disjointed and I'm sure doesn't make sense.

I'm almost sure now that with this bizarre bleeding that we aren't going to conceive, yet again.

Any advice my fellow bloggers? Or could the strange bleeding be due to stress?


p.s. I learned yesterday that a colleague of mine suffered a miscarriage earlier this week (it was her third). Since I am new to my school I don't know anyone very well, I was thinking of putting a note in her mailbox telling her that, although I've never had a miscarriage, that I've been struggling with IF for a long time. My new staff is quite a bit older (there are at least six teachers that are close to retiring) and there are only four of us that are considered "young" teachers. My heart absolutely aches for her, but I just can't imagine striking up a conversation out of the blue. Am I overstepping my boundaries by leaving her a note?

11 November 2008

JellyBelly Remembers

I'm feeling a lot more reflective and grateful this particular Remembrance Day. I was always taught to be ponderous and quiet during the moment of silence and I've tried to instill this respect to all of the classes that I have taught.

It was an especially big challenge teaching my class about Remembrance Day. Since the students in my class have the propensity to be violent (Not just ruler throwing, I've had pencil stabbings, spitting in one another's faces, pushing, and punching! Needless to say, I have a direct line to the principal's office!) I was nervous about talking about war. I was surprised that my students had never heard of Iraq or Afghanistan, and when I asked them about places where there was war, they had no idea. I explained to them that there are places where there are people that don't want peace and that there are bad people in the world that think that fighting is the best way to solve problems. I also told them that we had to remember all of the soldiers that fought and are currently fighting since they are helping protect our country.

It was very, very hard not to get too political.

I also told my class about visiting Normandy this past summer and seeing the rows and rows of headstones at the American and Canadian cemeteries. It wasn't until I stood on Omaha Beach that the war became real to me.

The north of France is absolutely beautiful -- as is the rest of the country, but that's besides the point. It was very important to Mr. JB that we visited the D-Day landing beaches when we were planning our trip, and it was an easy concession to make since I had never visited Normandy before. The day that we visited Omaha, Utah and Juno Beach was a beautiful, cool and windy day.

Now I've seen "Saving Private Ryan," but being on the very beach that the allied forces landed on was very, very powerful. I can't even imagine the death that happened on that beautiful beach, or the fear that the soldiers felt as they landed.

Today my class took part in the school's Remembrance Day Assembly. My kiddies sang O Canada and said the Our Father in French. It was all very, very cute. They practiced so hard and I was so proud of them. The majority even sat through all of the presentations patiently and some of them even paid attention! My principal's dad is a World War II veteran and he spoke to the school as well.

I've spent the past couple of weeks having the feel-me-sorries and right now I'm feeling quite guilty. I live in a beautiful country with all of the opportunities possible. Although I have been struggling to become a mother for more than three years, at least I have the resources and the freedom to seek out a solution. I've been looking too long at the things that I don't have, but not at the things that I already have in my possession.

I am blessed to have a strong faith that guides me through the frustrating and sad times. I have a husband that cooks, cleans and is so incredibly patient. I also have a doctor that is working very hard to help us achieve the family that we so very badly want. I also have a body that is behaving a lot better -- no more 14 day periods, woohoo!

So I leave you with one of my favourite photos from our trip to Normandy. This rock was at one of the Canadian cemeteries close to Juno Beach. I found it really touching to see the Canadian and Euro coins on the emblematic maple leaf. I don't know who left it behind or how long it had been there, but it's an image that has been the wallpaper for my computer for quite a while.

So tonight while I say my prayers I will definitely be praying for peace in our world and that God keeps all of the soldiers fighting for peace safe. For them I am forever thankful.

8 November 2008

JellyBelly Self-doubt

I really hate teaching art. As a child I always dreaded the Friday afternoons spent painting, gluing, and crafting. I hated getting my hands dirty, splattering paint on myself and I really resented that I could never, ever make my project look like everyone else's.

As a grade one teacher I do a lot of art projects. This week we tackled poppies. My school is having a pretty huge assembly on Tuesday and apparently distinguished guests and media are going to be present. The primary wing of my school has been abuzz with activity all week. All of the grade one classes have been making tissue paper poppies -- basically they had to cut out a poppy template and then they had to fill the paper with red and black tissue paper balls. My class loves doing this type of art. We did pumpkins in the same style as well, but I left that for a supply teacher (I know, I'm evil!!!).

I always save art for the afternoon since the mornings seems to fly by, but by doing this I also save my most dreaded subject for the time of day where I have little patience. Yesterday, after a long week of fighting a cold and trying not to kill my teaching partner, I felt my patience reserve run out. I try very, very hard not to raise my voice at my class. I don't like yelling, I don't like hearing other people yelling, and I especially dislike people yelling at young children.

I have one student who has a really hard time with authority. She attended a Montessori school for junior and senior kindergarten and apparently had free reign to do whatever she wanted. So when she arrived in my conventional classroom where she had to sit in a circle and sit at a desk, she had a very hard time. Well yesterday afternoon little A started throwing rulers at her group members and when she was caught red-handed, she started to argue with me. When the look of death didn't work I ended up raising my voice, and I saw fear in her eyes.

Then I felt very guilty.

How can I even think of being a mom to my own kids (who no doubt will be just as willful) when I can't be patient with the children of others? What am I going to do when my child openly disobeys me?

A's mom looked completely exasperated when I told her about her antics at the end of the day. Lucky for me, her mother is completely aware of what her daughter is capable of and she isn't the type of mother that blames the teacher. Thank God I haven't encountered parents like that, yet.

I told my incredibly fertile best friend that I was thinking more and more about adoption and that biological children aren't the priority they used to be. Do I actually believe what I said, or was I just trying to help her feel less guilty about being able to get pregnant at the drop of a hat? Or was I just steeling myself for yet another month of disappointments?

I made a decision (yet to be shared with Mr. JB) that I'm giving my body until April 2009. It will be one year that we've been with our NaproTechnology doctor. I'm definitely tired of the drugs, doctors and charting. So often my body has felt like it doesn't even belong to me, and for my sanity that feeling has to stop.

Is this deadline the end of hope for me? I don't think so. But if I keep running around and around in this hamster wheel more than my patience will give. I'm sure of it.

2 November 2008

JellyBelly's Next Steps

I have an e.B.a.y. addiction. Now I don't think that I need a support group, but in the past I've had to ban myself from going on the website for weeks at a time. I love finding deals. For example, I got a brand new Betsey Johnson dress (with tags!) for $40! Last winter I got three pairs of Banana Republic pants for $70! And just last week I got gorgeous, all leather boots for $101!

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy shopping, but not at malls since we always run into students and I don't like crowds. I also get really frustrated since I can never find clothes that fit me or shoes that are both comfortable and stylish. It is so much easier to sit on my couch and search for good deals AND I feel such a sense of accomplishment when I win an item at a good price.

Shoes have always made me feel better. I admit that I may have a few too many pairs, and that we're going to have to find a very large house with many, many closets in order to properly store every pair. We're planning to have our basement finished this winter and I spent a lot of time imagining my new shoe storage so I can see every pair in their glory. Just thinking about it gives me goosebumps.

I'm just a little OCD!

Which brings me to my next steps: this morning when Aunt Flo and her red army came marching in with a vengeance I had to think about something else other than being barren.

Since attending my cousin's daughter's baptism last Sunday I've been thinking more and more about adoption. Seeing my dad holding little M and watching him fall completely in love with her made me think that my crazy parents would be accepting of any child, as long as it was ours. Even before we discovered the Marguerite Bourgeoys Family Centre I knew that adoption was an option for us, I just never felt ready to do any research. So this morning after mass I opened up my laptop and searched out domestic adoption. I read until I was too hungry to concentrate and when Mr. JB got home (he was helping one of the Knights of Columbus move a couch) I told him what I was up to. As usual he was 100% on board -- honestly, I really lucked out in the husband department!

So I'm putting out the question to the bloggosphere: Where do we go from here? Should I go to the library and do research? Do I contact the various organizations (the Children's Aid Society and the Catholic Children's Aid Society, thus far) that I read about this morning? Should I go to the various adoption groups on the internet? I'm a bit lost. The one thing that I do know is that I want to pursue domestic adoption since I don't know if I could handle the stress of international adoption, nor do I want to go into deep debt in order to bring a child into our lives. I welcome any suggestions please!

As for the D.irect E.nergy update: we finally had hot water restored last Saturday at about 6pm and after more complaining we had heat last Sunday at 11pm. We also had a personal visit from the Director of Planning and Logistics on Wednesday night since I made such a big stink and contacted media (yes, if you contact the press these people move SUPER fast). Not only did the company take full responsibility and cover the cost of the new venting (which was $420), the guy also brought me flowers. He also said that after our situation the directors took to the phones at the call centre in order to see firsthand what the customer was going through and that they would be reviewing their practices. We also got his card so if we have any future issues with our hot water/furnace they will be at our house ASAP. Don't mess with the JellyBelly!