Hello again – a triumph to report!

Wow I thought I’d take a little break from blogging, as nothing really was happening, and suddenly it’s been two months!

So in some ways, nothing much has happened, but then in some ways an awful lot has happened.

To begin with HSG results – all fine. I was disappointed really, I was hoping I might have a blocked tube that the dye was going to push through and unblock and then suddenly I’d be all fertile and pregnant. However, this was not the case. When I picked up my results I was told all looked normal, but because of the pain I experience during my period (vomiting, fainting, unable to move) it was very likely to be endometriosis and I should book in for another laparoscopy. Following that, IVF would be the way to go.

Now I’ve already had one laparoscopy five years ago, and nothing showed up. I”m not keen to have yet another one, only for the same result to potentially come back. It took me weeks to recover from the first one, and I guess I just don’t feel ready for all that again. And if I do have endometriosis, they might be able to laser some of it off, and I’ll have a fertile window, but who knows for how long, and ultimately it will most likely come back.

I decided to go down a different route for a bit, implementing a massive diet overhaul and started taking Chinese herbs on top of my acupuncture. And do you know what? IT’S WORKING. I honestly cannot believe it, but for the first time in maybe 7 or 8 years, my period has not ruined almost two days of my life. Don’t get me wrong, I still need to take painkillers, but the difference is my body is responding to them – and just over the counter painkillers, not extra strong prescribed ones.

So this last weekend, when my period showed up (I had hoped it wouldn’t, even did a pregnancy test last week as was feeling hopeful, how silly of me) I WENT OUT on the main day of my period (usually the most painful). I went for lunch with friends, then later, my sister stayed, and I cooked dinner, and we watched a movie. I had a normal day. This is MASSIVE for me, life changing. My periods have interrupted my life for years and years: normally I can barely move, even getting to the bathroom is difficult, often I crawl around just willing time to pass whilst slowly going insane – I’ve even called A&E before.

What I’ve done: on top of the Chinese herbs, I’ve cut out all red meat entirely, and only eat chicken maybe once every two weeks if it’s organic. I have cut out dairy and also cut out about 80% of sugar from my diet (can anyone do 100%?!, surely not possible). So my diet has been mainly of fish and vegetables. Also (and I appreciate this is a bit nuts), I’ve switched my body wash, shampoo and conditioner to organic brands, with no added nasties.  I’ve also been using a magnesium spray which is meant to be a good way of boosting your levels as it absorbs quickly through the skin. Magnesium is meant to help with muscle relaxation and all sorts of good things – have a little look on Google if you’re interested! I guess the only downside is that I don’t actually know which of these things is actually working, or maybe it’s a combination!

I’m not saying it’s easy, or even possible to keep up long term, but I intend to keep it going for a good little while to see if my body balances itself out. And here’s my thinking, if my infertility is caused by endometriosis, then the inflammation is part of the problem. If I can reduce that inflammation and balance out my body naturally then who knows, maybe one day I can get pregnant. I know this is wishful thinking, but for now, the natural way is so much more appealing than going into hospital again for yet another procedure. As for the pregnancy thing, I’m not even thinking about it this month, I’m enjoying feeling fit and healthy and trying to listen to what my body needs.

SC x

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Here We Go Again

So I haven’t mentioned this yet, but the HSG test did have a side effect after all: my period. A week early. Only a little over 3 weeks from the previous one.

For some, this probably wouldn’t be a big deal, but for me, it’s a nightmare because of the crippling pain / missed time off work. And this one was bad. Bad in a way I won’t even go into, but it was three days of utter agony and was physically and mentally exhausting.

But anyway, onwards and upwards – we are onto a new month of trying. I thought I’d feel excited but to be honest I just feel a bit defeated by it all at the moment. I’m still waiting for the HSG results and have been tormenting myself with what they might show. Despite a laparoscopy five years ago which said no endometriosis, I’m convinced I must have something like that, because what else could be causing this type of pain? Pain that causes black outs and prevents me from being able to think in a coherent way cannot be normal can it? But to diagnose this I would need another laparoscopy – last time I took a long time to recover and I just don’t feel that I can through another. And it’s more time off work again. I guess I’ll worry about that if and when it becomes a possibility.

So yes, trying to muster up some enthusiasm for this month, but to be honest, after almost a year and a half of absolutely nothing it really doesn’t feel like pregnancy is even a possibility. I see pictures of people’s positive pregnancy tests, with the two lines peeping out, and  can’t even begin to imagine what it must feel like to see those two little life changers staring back at me. I’ve only ever been a one line kind of girl.

Last month was my month off, and it was interesting because despite knowing that there was absolutely no chance of pregnancy, I still had “symptoms”. Of course the sore breasts, but also weird stabbing pains, nausea and bleeding gums. What I hope this has shown me is that obviously these “symptoms” do not automatically mean that I am pregnant, sometimes they are just part of my monthly cycle. So I’m hoping this month I can ignore a lot of these feelings and therefore feel a little more sane as we move onto a brand new month on the TTC treadmill.

SC x

“No sex this month – do you understand?”

So, a break from everything from me this month: it’s been the month of the HSG test. And just to explain my title there – at our initial appointment we were warned, not once, not twice, but THREE times by our nurse that we were not, under any circumstance to have sex before this test. I mean yes it was obviously very important that we didn’t – but come on, we don’t need telling three times. And nor do I need it written down in bold AND underlined on my information letter. Thank you but I can see the warning just fine in normal font.

So anyway, the HSG test. I was nervous. I promised myself I wouldn’t Google horror stories. But of course I did. I might as well have googled the actual words “Google horror stories”. I really don’t know what’s wrong with me, I just can’t stay away from ridiculous Google searches which are never going to do me any good whatsoever!

The test itself wasn’t great, but not as bad as I”d worked up in my head. Having the speculum inserted was far more painful than the dye being pumped through, which I’d read was meant to be the worst part. I suffer from horrendously painful periods and this wasn’t anymore painful than those. What I was disappointed about though was that I wasn’t able to watch the dye going through my tubes on the screen, like I’ve read some women have been able to. I have to wait two weeks and then phone up to make an appointment to get the results.

I”m worried what it will show. Blocked tubes? Fibroids, cysts? A weird shaped uterus? Part of me wants everything to be all clear, but part of me wants there to be something wrong, something to explain the pain I go through every month, and something to explain why after 15 months we are still not pregnant. For now, I have to be patient and wait. Oh dear. Not my strong point.

And, since my HSG test was after ovulation, we really haven’t been able to try this month. And this forced break has done me the world of good. I’ve had a lovely month feeling like myself again. No living my life around my cycle and when I might be ovulating and whether I should be drinking etc. It’s almost like a little holiday, away from the “trying to get pregnant” person I seem to have become. The only problem is, we didn’t try because we were forced to have a break this month (quite literally, see title of this blog and remember the bold and underlined scary letter), but I”m not sure I would be able to take a break if there wasn’t a real reason to. The temptation of trying when I know I”m ovulating would be too much and I expect I would give in – but hey, another six months of this and maybe I will go on another little break and enjoy being just me again for a bit.

So for now, it’s all about the patience. Oh good.

SC x

A Bit Angry

I’m a bit angry. Not just on behalf of myself, but on behalf of all the women out there struggling with trying to conceive. The more I read of other blogs out there, the more I realise how much time, energy and emotion is taken up with this trying to conceive bullshit. But women struggling with infertility should not be pitied, they should be respected and admired, because the strength and resolve I’ve seen out there has knocked me sideways. Those who never strive down this path do not realise what infertility is affiliated with: blood tests, intimate investigations, hormone injections, surgery, risky procedures, reoccurring pain, reoccurring loss, grief……..and I really could go on.

I had a difficult week last week and hit a bit of a new low following my appointment at the infertility clinic. I sometimes feel as though I have forgotten what I was like before all this crap. I absolutely refuse to let this define me, I was/am a strong minded individual who knows my own mind and is very comfortable in my own skin. This infertility journey will NOT rob me of who I am. It’s not going to be easy, because it’s always going to be everywhere – I have tests coming up and not to mention period pain that interferes with my life. I have pregnant friends and I want to be a part of that, so avoidance isn’t an option, but what I do have is determination to stay on top of this – this doesn’t mean I’m going to be fine all the time, but if nothing else i will continue to fight.

SC x

Google Abuse

Dear Google,

I’m so sorry for the abuse last month, it wasn’t big nor clever, and I will try and be better next month.

I’m confess I wasted my precious my precious time and yours by searching the following:

  • can a cold delay ovulation
  • my breasts usually hurt after my period, but pain came later this month
  • how quickly does acupuncture help you get pregnant
  • breasts hurt more at the front than the sides bfp?
  • nipples look darker bfp
  • feeling bloated tww
  • headaches three days in a row following ovulation
  • Sinus pain early pregnancy sign
  • mouth ulcer two early pregnancy sign
  • feeling cold tww bfp
  • feeling shivery tww bfp
  • fish oil helping fertility
  • runny nose tww
  • having a nap in tww bfp
  • breasts feel heavy bfp
  • 10dpo bfn followed by bfp
  • 12dpo bfn followed by bfp
  • 12dpo nauseous
  • burning feeling in throat tww bfp
  • cramps felt different this month
  • cramps didn’t follow ovulation like usual
  • negative test but then positive test
  • awaking early two bfp
  • first response stats
  • first response accuracy
  • ovulated later than i thought bfp
  • spotting 14dpo bfp
  • twinges in stomach tww

Hmm I can’t decide which one I’m most proud of.

And these are only the ones I remember….this was despite not even trying at the right time this month ( I then became convinced I might have ovulated late and therefore got it right anyway)

Yours shamefully

SC x

Lucy. Much needed love and company

Today is my least favourite of the month. It’s the day my period turns up, bringing along the familiar disappointment with it, the crippling pain and of course the worry of missing work, yet again. Since 4am this morning I’ve been awake with debilitating pain, it’s 10am now and I’m just being allowed some respite before it all kicks off again. I deal with this all day, completely alone, I get a few hours of respite followed by pain that sends me out of my mind. Getting up, even for a glass of water kicks the pain off again, so I limit my movements as much as possible.

So yes, today is a struggle, but one little thing that keeps me going is my Lucy. I totally appreciate that not everyone loves cats as much as I do – but for me, she’s my saviour at this time of the month, she just doesn’t leave my side. It’s a real comfort and I’d be lost without her, she absolutely knows when I’m feeling unwell like this.

We found Lucy online from a private seller. We had picked up Freddie our boy cat the previous day and decided on a whim to get a friend for him. Lucy wasn’t a very happy kitten when we got her, she was covered in fleas and had worms. She had sad eyes but also a bit of an attitude and I was worried we had made a mistake. I couldn’t have been more wrong. A month or two of getting her sorted and she was a different cat. Loving, friendly and there isn’t an aggressive bone in her body.

I can never resist taking a photo of her looking so sweet, and decided this morning to look back over previous months when I had taken photos of her during the first day of my period,  and thought I’d share them, as they really are very sweet.

So I need to get over the hump of today, and then onto the next month (month 15 of trying) for us.

SC x

PS the first photo below is right now and the rest go back over the past 7 months 🙂

image1 image7 image4 image5 image1 image3 image8 image6

A weekend of fun: a negative test result and an infertility clinic

So, I think it’s in the title really, this weekend has been quite difficult- but I think I”m feeling ok about it.

So to begin with, there was the BFN (Big Fat No) yesterday. Why was I even surprised? We had completely missed trying at the correct time this month, so why would I even let myself think it possible? Last week I was being so sensible, really I was, but then the “what ifs” started to creep in. I had a cold earlier in the month so what if I ovulated later this month, and so actually we did try at the right time after all? And why weren’t my breasts sore straight after ovulation this month? Why? Why?! Cue Google and lots of posts telling me that this is a positive sign of being pregnancy for some (of course it is, everything is if you Google it correctly!). And so I allowed myself to feel hopeful anyway, when I never really had a right to. I stared and stared at the test on Saturday morning, holding it in different lights and pulling silly squinty faces to try and see the non-existent second line. Reluctantly I finally threw it away after a good 10 minutes of some serious studying.

So anyway, following that delightful start to the day, it was onto the infertility clinic, for my first initial chat. Nothing much to say on this really, only that it all made the whole thing a lot more real. I took a few deep breathes when I first arrived as I wanted to be as coherent as possible, not sobbing uncontrollably. I actually managed to hold it together pretty well and the next step is a hysterosalpingogram (can anyone actually say this?!) and then we go from there once the results are in.

Feeling a bit defeated but trying to remember it’s my hormones as well that are bringing me down. I always feel this way around now, and thankfully it does always pass. Come on period just show up so I can move onto the next month please.

SC x