First of all, it’s kind of nice that when I accidentally don’t type in my whole blog title, up comes “Grit Magazine,” about farm tools, living off the land, tending to your own community of bees, etc.  Frankly, I’m grateful it’s not the Grit Magazine I might have imagined…I don’t know, biker chicks mud wrestling, or something like that.

So, AF FINALLY showed up last Friday.  It was cd 42. She does take her own sweet time.  She was probably off tormenting someone else who really didn’t want her around.  No manners at all, that friggin’ Flo.  Anyway, I was antsy and uneasy all week. Partly, I’m sure because of PMS – which is extra fun with super long cycles, and partly just because I was impatient and nervous for it all to begin.  Because now IVF4 has officially started. Admittedly, the beginning is a little anticlimactic as it ramps up.  I’m just taking Metformin and BCPs for a few weeks. Emotionally, things have definitely changed, though.  I’m a stew of a whole slew of emotions these days – hopefulness, sadness, impatience, worry, anxiety.  At least I’ve gotten better at recognizing the rising tide of emotions, so I’m working harder to take care of myself.

Mostly, I’m hopeful about this cycle.  I keep listing off the things that have changed and that I desperately hope will be making a difference this time.  I know I may have listed these before, but it makes me feel better to see them.  Hell, I might write them with every post, who’s to say?

1.  Embryos in a new lab environment

2.  Metformin will hopefully improve the ovarian environment for the egglets

3.  On Zoloft, so controlling the effects of stress and anxiety on my body

4.  Taking vitamin D

5.  Getting an endometrial biopsy, which anecdotally improves pregnancy rates with IVF.  “Tilling the soil,” I guess.

6.  New cohorts of eggs can act completely differently – MAYBE we’ll just get better ones this time around.

So, we’ll see.  I also play a mind trick about my past cycles.  It goes like this:  they didn’t use Menopur for the first cycle (big mistake), so that one doesn’t even count.  That takes it down to only 2 cycles failed.  The Antagonist cycle was a super bad match for me, so that takes it down to only ONE legitimate cycle failed – and we had a few good looking embryos for that cycle.  I do this to try to take away the meaning and power of the FOURTH IVF CYCLE – that somehow there’s necessarily less hope now because we’ve tried a few times before. What if they fucked up before?  Surely, that fucked up cycle is a “gimme.”  I know this may seem convoluted, but it works for me on some level.

In my effort to gradually “get my feet wet” about the possible egg donor thing, I started to browse some donor agency databases.  This is kind of my strategy to take the pressure off this cycle working a TINY bit.  I was surprised by how I responded to seeing their pictures.  I thought I would be upset by having another woman’s face in my mind – someone who was taking my place with my child and my husband.  The factor I hadn’t considered is how YOUNG these women are.  The one I ended up especially liking is only 21 – young enough to almost be my OWN daughter.  She looks grounded and self-confident – the way I’d want my daughter to be. Anyway, it’s a comfort to know that looking through these photos is not quite what I thought it’d be.  Then I wonder, what if my child doesn’t get any of my artistic leanings?  What if I get a child who’s not at all interested in art projects???  No art projects!!??  I know people might say that even my biological child could end up that way, but I’m skeptical.  Baby steps…

I’m so impatient that I joke with J about stealing other people’s kids.  Is that funny or creepy? When we see a family with a toddler and baby I say that they don’t get two, and that we get to take one of them.  When we saw a bunch of families picnicking together, I eyed the group of toddlers like a hungry wolf eyes baby chicks.  One of the moms said a friendly “hello” to me, no doubt trying to disarm me and thus foil my plan.  She could probably tell I had my eye on the 2-year-old with the lopsided ponytails.  Ah, only fellow IF-ers can really get the humor of this, I suppose.

These are things I appreciate today:

1.  The flowers I planted on my porch.

2.  The rainbows that fill my house – and that I have a husband sweet enough to buy me a bunch of crystals for Christmas, so he could put them in the windows to fill our house with rainbows.

3.  That it’s finally fucking sunny and not gray and drizzly outside.

4.  That I’m healthy and strong and feel pretty good in my body.

I can do this.

– Patience

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