I get knocked down…

…but I get up again. Isn’t that how the shit 90s song goes? Except I’m not really sure how to get up again.

This week is definitely up there in the list of worst weeks of my life. After my friend’s pregnancy announcement burst my denial bubble last Sunday I worked at home on Monday, feeling fragile and tearful but making it through the day.

On Tuesday I went to work and had a very stressful meeting in the morning, the outcome of which was basically that out of a team of 6 people I was the only one left to do any work on a very big and difficult project (one of the reasons being my Director is going to Bali for 3 weeks – alright for some!) I then realised I had forgotten to do things on 2 of my other projects and then had one of the women I manage (who is overly dramatic and anxious) haranguing me about what I was going to do about a problem on her project which is essentially unfixable.

And I snapped. It was just too much for me and I felt so overwhelmed, all this stuff was going on at work and all I could think was ‘I’m never going to be a mother. I’m never going to have children. Work will be the only thing in my life and I hate it.’ I went to the toilets and sobbed. This is not an unusual occurrence but normally I go in, have a little cry, if anyone comes into the loos I stop or cry quietly until they leave, then dry my eyes and get on with my day.

This time I just couldn’t stop. People came in and out and I continued with huge gasping sobs. My work friend came in and asked if I wanted to go and get a coffee and chat but I sent her away – there was no way I could think about leaving that cubicle. It was so scary, I don’t think I’ve ever felt that out of control of my emotions – such a huge wave of grief that pushed me down and wouldn’t let me up again. After about 10 minutes or so my boss came in, by which time I was a little calmer. She took me away for a chat where I told her I just wasn’t coping and felt so overwhelmed. She told me to go home and work at home the next day and she’d have a think about what she could do to help. I then had to walk through the office with a tear stained face and collect my things – of course there had been an all-staff meeting that day so everyone from my company was there. Awesome.

As I waited at the bus stop on the way home I was on Twitter on my phone when I saw an email pop up from my friend that had a miscarriage shortly after our spa trip entitled ‘Our exciting news’…..well, we can guess what that was about! Of course I’m happy that after having a miscarriage she has now got to 3 months with her pregnancy (meaning she must have got pregnant again the month after her miscarriage) but when I saw that email, after the day I’d had it just tipped me over the edge again. I sat on the bus with tears rolling down my face, as if I hadn’t humiliated myself enough that day. I managed to stop crying by the time I got on the train but felt like I was going to hyperventilate. What a fucking day.

On Wednesday I spoke to my boss who said that I should go off sick for the rest of the week….but there was an all day meeting on Friday for the big and difficult project and if I didn’t go to it it would have made my work over the next few weeks almost impossible so I said I’d go to that. She then said that she’d spoken to my 2 Directors and they all agreed my workload should be cut in half for the next few months until I feel more able to cope. I just can’t express how bloody awesome my work is…it definitely helps to work for psychiatrists/psychologists at times like these!

Thursday night I realised that the meeting on Friday was being held at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists! Cue another meltdown! I felt really anxious Friday morning before going into the building but it wasn’t too bad, I just made sure I didn’t look at any of the artwork.

The weekend has mostly been better – Friday night I drank wine with friends in the sun in Regents Park which was lovely and chilled, and then yesterday I went shopping with my Bridesmaids for their dresses, which went very well so that’s another thing ticked off the wedding list.

But today is, of course Father’s Day. I hate that I’m stopping DH be a father. I went to my mum’s for lunch and my brother and SIL were talking about filling in a ‘baby’s first book’ for their daughter and everyone was talking about the different things their kids did and the stories/memories they tell their kids which made me lose it again. I took myself off to my old bedroom and sobbed. I just can’t get the thoughts that I will never be a mother out of my head. I will never fill in a ‘baby’s first book’. I can’t think of other options: donors, surrogates, adoption. I can only think that.

Have my WTF appointment tomorrow so we’ll see what they have to say…more shoulder shrugging I’m sure.

 

Pumpkini travels part 1

Just over 6 months ago* I was crowned champion of IF pumpkin smackdown with the story of Pumpkina and her dreams of a pumpkini…my greatest achievement in life to date. A few weeks after that my little pumpkini set off on his travels and has been steadily making his way around the world, putting right what once went wrong and hoping each time that his next leap would be the leap home…..no, no wait, that was the premise of Quantum Leap.

Pumpkini has actually been making his way around the world bringing hope, love and giggles to infertiles everywhere – the ones he visits and the others that have a little smile when they see him in a new part of the world.

So I thought I should do a little 6 month round up of this travels and spread a bit more of his infertile love…hmm that sounded better in my head. Anyway…..

He started off sight seeing in London with me…or more specifically the sights that are on my way to work, starting with Tower Bride:

bridge Then checking out the Shard, and enjoying the Tower of London in  the rain (of course, it is London afterall):

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tower

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But Pumpkini was tired of the London weather and wanted some sunshine so I packed him up, and shipped him off packingto see @ivfferescent in Sydney

 

 

 

 

 

@ivfferescent welcomed Pumpkini into her home ….and into her heart

Amy_sydney street

Amy_face

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He repaid her kindness by supporting her at a colleague’s maternity-leave party…just chilling out by the hummus, keeping an eye on herAmy_buffetBut they had the most fun together when out and about…. this video still makes me giggle everytime.**

 

After enjoying the sunshine, the next stop for Pumpkini was Germany to see @littlemissicsi and the impressive sightsLittlemissICSI_berlin of Berlin….I also think he might have been out to sample some of that famous Berlin nightlife.

 

Tune in next time to find out where Pumpkini’s travels took him next!

 

 

 

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*I can’t work out if I’m horrified that it was so long ago or that its gone so fast?!

**Pumpkini obviously only encourages safe driving practices!

WTF Again

Last Tuesday was my WTF. In the week or so before I had been coping pretty well and too busy to think too much. Then on Saturday I met up with my group of friends. We have all known each other since we were teenagers (some of us longer) and have grown up together. Most of them now have children and there were 5 kids under 4. I had really been in two minds about whether I should go – I knew it would be hard to see everyone only 2 weeks after my BFN, but I also knew it would be hard sat at home knowing they’re all meeting up and me missing out on even more of life. So in the end I decided to go. It was really hard at the beginning. I nearly had a panic attack before we went in and as I opened the door and saw everyone turn to look at me with their pity faces I just wanted to leave straight away.

But I stuck with it, DH by my side holding my hand all the way. And for the most part it was great to see my friends who were all sensitive and lovely, but….it just hurts. There is no two ways about it. It hurts to see my friends with their families and to see them moving on with their lives whilst my life is stuck in the try-to-get-pregnant, try-to-get-pregnant, try-to-get-pregnant loop. I dealt with it pretty well on the day (only 2 crying trips to the loos!), mostly through the medium of wine, but on Sunday DH had to work so I was home alone and did indulge in a fair amount of messy sobbing.

Monday I felt alot better, in no small part because I met up with a lovely twitter buddy for Monday afternoon drinks – oh the decadence! By the time Tuesday came around I wasn’t really worried about the WTF and didn’t really feel that upset about going in.

The consultant was predictably vague – she just basically said ‘I dunno?!!’ Obviously I’m very grateful to have great eggs and embryos but when they keep failing to implant there’s not a lot they can tell you. I did ask about NK cells and biopsies etc etc but as predicted she just said there isn’t any evidence for them. She did say if I really wanted to get them done she could recommend a private clinic but really she thinks they’re using us as a cash cow.

The only thing she could suggest doing differently was having a hysteroscopy (which acts as an endo scratch) and giving me a low dose of steroids to suppress my immune system, although she was rather sceptical about the merits of this.

Before I went to the appointment I had put a lot of thought into moving clinics to do a fresh cycle. My aforementioned twitter buddy suggested I ask if my clinic do an unmedicated or natural FET. Since I have 1 free FET left and I wouldn’t have to take lots of horrible drugs, then I might as well. But I was very doubtful they would actually offer this – it has never been mentioned and surely if they do it they would have discussed it as an option for my first FET no? ….Well, no! They do it, apparently they just don’t like to tell anyone they do!

Despite questioning my consultant about why they don’t do it very often and what the relative success rates are compared to a normal FET answers were not forthcoming. She just didn’t really seem to know much about it. The only real reason she could give me as to why they normally do medicated FETs was “well, its a lot easier to schedule all the treatments in with medicated cycles”

….erm, what-now???…did you just tell me that I’m on horrible drugs for nearly 2 months that make me feel like shit, give me massive gaps in my memory, make my hair fall out…..all so you can organise your fucking diary?!!! What the actual fuck!

So then I asked, if I was going to do a fresh cycle would I be suitable to do a short protocol, and she said I would be….so again why was I put on a long protocol before if I didn’t need to be?? And again, being able to book appointments in seemed to be the biggest consideration! Furious is not the word.

I came out of the appointment with my head buzzing. I hadn’t asked half the questions I wanted to about natural FET because I didn’t actually expect them to do it, I didn’t have a clear plan, I did have a massive cold sore that was sending shooting pains through the nerves in my face and I was supposed to be going off to work. Basically, I felt fucking awful. So I did what any responsible adult does in this situation. I phoned my mummy. And then I cried. Full on sobbed standing outside London Bridge Station with about a million people looking at me. Thankfully this is London so no one stopped to ask if I was ok – it would have been too mortifying. I am a Londoner, I have no desire to look a stranger in the eye, much less share with them.

For some reason I thought seeing all my friends and their kids and then having my WTF a few days later wasn’t going to be hard, or at least not as hard as it was. I think it all just hit me whilst stood on Tooley Street. I don’t want to have to decide between a FET or a fresh or natural FET or a new clinic or the same clinic…..I DON’T WANT ANY OF THIS. I JUST WANT A BABY.

I got worked up into such a state my mum told me I had to come home! So I called my boss, sobbed down the phone to her and she told me the same – there goes my last bit of professionalism.

So…after the crazy fug and tears have cleared I’m still left with the decision – natural FET or fresh cycle? I’m liking the idea of a natural FET but I can’t find any proper information on it! When googling all I can find is people in fertility forums asking “does anyone know anything about natural FETs?!” So any advice welcome.

PS Sorry this is such a long post – well done if you made it this far!

PPS My WordPress is being weird and won’t let me see a load of new posts from you guys I know are there so sorry I can’t catch up with your news 😦

 

 

Spoilt Rotten

Yesterday was my 32nd birthday and I was unreservedly spoilt. It was blummin marvellous! This year marks the 2 year anniversary of the start of our ttc journey (woooo, well done us!) and before the day I was worrying a bit that it would make me sad, but it was brushed aside with all the fun! I didn’t feel like celebrating with my ‘fertile friends’ this year as, actually didn’t really fancy being smacked in the face repeatedly with stories of children and general fertile-ness.

So instead I went for lunch with DH and my besty and her boyfriend to an amazing restaurant called Sarastro’s in Covent Garden. It’s a crazy little restaurant very busily decorated in a sort of Turkish/Arabian nights theme with an eclectic mix of knick knacks dotted around. To add to this, whilst you’re having dinner a string quartet entertain you, followed by some Opera singers! It was so much fun and was really great to have a laugh with (childless) friends.

That morning DH had told me to ‘pack a bag’ but not told me where we were staying, so after lunch he led me off to Canary Wharf. It was quite weird not knowing where we were going as I organise everything usually so it was quite nice SONY DSCto just follow for once. We walked through the Canary Wharf area (always weird at the weekend as it’s totally deserted) to a little dock where we got on a mini ferry which took us across to our hotel. Once there we were upgraded to a ‘delux-plus’ room with an AMAZING view of Canary Wharf. We’d had to wait for a while at reception to check in and the staff were very apologetic about this and told us the drinks were on them at dinner….totally not used to this level of customer service in England!! Ha!

So we had a bottle of wine at dinner (as well as some wine with lunch) and do feel a bit bad that after over 2 months of not drinking in preparation for IVF we’ve ‘fallen at the final hurdle’ by drinking a week before I start my down-reg drugs. I know that it’s not the end of the world, we weren’t even drunk and it really was AMAZING to have some red wine again so I’m trying not to over worry and just remember that if the IVF doesn’t work it won’t be because I had less than a bottle of wine (you guy’s may need to help me with this in a few months!)

158142697_billy-the-goat-farm-animal-cute-dress-up-halloween-baby-I woke up the next day in our lovely hotel room with the memory of a ‘baby dream’. I dreamt that I had a son – I was just dressing him and cooing over him. Weirdly, we had nicknamed him ‘goat’ so I kept saying “ahh come on goaty, put your arm in there for me!” Normally I cry after having a ‘baby dream’, but think the combination of the weirdness of naming my child ‘goaty’ and waking up to an impressive view across the Thames just made it all seem silly and lighthearted.

We even committed the cardinal sin of talking like we might actually one day get pregnant and how we’d have to call the bump goaty… and that maybe next birthday we might be waking up as 3…. Ouuusssccchhhhhhh. Brave/stupid people. It’s been a long time since we’ve talked like that.

SONY DSC

Anyway, the fun didn’t stop there. As my final birthday treat DH had booked tickets to go to the viewing platforms up The Shard, the new ridiculously massive glass building next to London Bridge. Because I commute into London bridge station 5 days a week I’ve seen it being built over the last few years so was very excited to finally get up there! It was awesome, so cool to see London stretching out for miles and miles.

After grabbing some lunch from Borough Market and some brownies from my favourite cake shop in London (Konditor and Cook) we headed home, with a quick stop off for tea at my mum’s. IMAG1374The day ended with us watching some more of series 2 of Game of Thrones. Perfect. Great day all round.

There are soooo many awful things about IF but it does make you realise the important things in life, the people that love you and just how special they are. Every single one of my loved ones went out of their way this weekend to make sure I know that I am loved and to make a fuss of me.

And in a weird way I have IF to thank for that.