And Another Failure..and haven’t people learned?

This blog is starting to become pretty much just me complaining, which I hate, but that’s just where my head is these days.

Our clomid cycle failed.  Not only did we not get pregnant – I didn’t even ovulate. I’m not sure why, as I ovulated before on 50mg (the same dosage as this time).  I’m worried its again from hypothalamic amenorrhea, although I really don’t know as my eating and exercise habits are nowhere like they used to be. However, I can’t stop beating myself up for it. Like I’m the reason this cycle failed, and it’s my fault we have to wait another month (or more, since my husband will be out of town for 10 days).  As if I didn’t feel guilty before…I definitely do now.

To make matters worse, today is my husbands birthday.  He said multiple times “I think our BFP is just waiting to show up on my birthday!” and now it’s my fault thats also not true.

But on top of the crappy past few days, I walk in to work today and one of the first things said to me is “have you seen that meme floating around facebook about October baby boom?? We hope that’s you!”

When will people learn not to say things like this? It doesn’t make the fertility issues any easier. I appreciate you thinking of me, but when I now know it’s not going to happen, all it does it make it harder.  I have no problem talking about our infertility struggles, but it should be on my terms. All that does is put me in a weird spot.

UGH. Hopefully some better news for you next time!

For now, back to no workouts until we get this sorted out, and hopefully inducing a period soon for another clomid cycle.

XOXO

Carly

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12 weeks!

Psych. I wish I was 12 weeks along!

What this post is really about is the whole “don’t share your pregnancy until after your first trimester” thing.

I just don’t understand it.  I recently had a coworker share her miscarriage story, and she discussed how hesitant she was to share a miscarriage as nobody even knew she was pregnant, because it was still first trimester.

I feel like all that silly rule does is put a stigma on miscarriage. You don’t tell people, because if you lose a baby early on, it must be somehow your fault and you don’t want people to judge you. It just makes no sense.

I can  think of so many reasons to share your pregnancy early, and to share your miscarriage if it happens.  I know for me, it was so hard to go work everyday. But because my close coworkers knew my story, they had the sympathy and understanding if I needed some time, or some space, or if I didn’t want to talk about others successes. Or they were available if I did need to talk. Or needed anything. And not just my coworkers but the remainder of my friends and family. I didn’t have to make up some lie of why I was feeling down, or why I didn’t want to go out.

Why should people in your life not be privy to details of it?  Why should I have to hide something just because that’s what people tell you to? If you have a miscarriage, or any health issue for that matter, it should be up to you if and when you  share.  Society shouldn’t tell you otherwise.

And on the same token, what if you want to wait until you’re 20 weeks pregnant to tell people? Or 5 weeks and everything’s going great, and you want to tell people?  It should be up to you. It’s your body, your life, and other people shouldn’t dictate how you live it.

That’s my 5 minute rant and rave. I have no other news to share (for now at least!) other than we’re working on it. I’ll let you know soon, wordpress world!

XOXO

My Story

I wrote this for another blog, but figured to share it here with all of you. It’s a summary of my story, and where we stand now. It’s written with love, and a few tears scattered in.

XOXO

My name is Carly. I am 30 years old, and have been married for two and a half years. My husband is 33, and I’m convinced is the most wonderful man on the planet. He’s smart, funny, loving, kind, caring, and, may I add, devilishly handsome.  Our life together is perfect, except for one thing: we’ve been struggling with infertility for about a year and a half now.  And to make matters worse? I’m a pediatrician. All I do, all day, everyday, is see babies and families and new moms and congratulate them on their babies, all while wishing for my own.

Here’s our story:
We decided after about a year of marriage to start trying for a family. I had an IUD, which I had removed in June 2017.  I had no period after that for several months, thwarting any attempt to track my ovulation. I saw a doctor several months later, who trialed me on Clomid to induce ovulation. I did one course of Clomid without success of ovulation, and still no period. I tried another cycle a few months later, and at the same time my doctor also decided to order some bloodwork which showed that all of my hormone levels were low. Like, nonexistent they were so low. I was sent to a fertility specialist (reproductive endocrinology and infertility aka REI) at that point.
It was February 2018 by time I made it to the specialist, who diagnosed me with hypothalamic amenorrhea (HA) and recommended hormone injections.  Instead, I did some research on my own and realized that years of severe undereating and overexercising probably led to my HA diagnosis, so I took matters into my own hands.  I tried what no woman wants to try – I purposely gained weight.  10 pounds, to be exact, which is quite a bit on my small five-foot frame. This took time and patience in and of itself. I went from one hour of working out 5-6 times a week to nearly nothing but walking and yoga, all while doubling my calorie intake.  And as shallow as it sounds, this was hard. It was hard to change my body so drastically, but I just kept telling myself it’d be worth it. A couple months later – May 2018 – I got my period. My first real period since my IUD removal.  I called my REI and he prescribed another course of clomid.  And BAM. 4 weeks later I had my first positive pregnancy test.
We were so excited. So many happy tears.  1 year of trying with difficulty, and so many lifestyle changes, and it worked.  We had two ultrasounds (one at 5 weeks, and one at 6 weeks, the latter showing a heartbeat).
And then, August 7, our happiness ended.  I went in for a routine 12 week ultrasound, only to discover I had miscarriaged. Actually, I had a missed miscarriage.  I had had no bleeding, no symptoms, no cramping. Nothing. But my ultrasound showed a 6 week fetus with no heartbeat. We were devastated.  I did a round of cytotec medication to induce miscarriage, and then miscarried at home with my husband and mother at my side for support.
This was almost 5 months ago. And we’re still dealing with it. My serial hcg checks STILL have not returned to zero. So, on top of all of the waiting to get pregnant, then losing our pregnancy, now we have to wait to even start trying again.  These months really just feel like wasted time. Like we’re sitting here twiddling our thumbs waiting for my body to figure it out to let us try again.
Even harder still, and maybe what sets our story apart from others, is that I am a pediatrician and work so closely with newborns and infants all the time.  This experience has truly made me appreciate what people go through to have families. But, I will say that working in this environment can be a constant reminder of what I don’t have, and what I want. And sometimes it can be hard to not let jealousy creep in.  My brother and his wife had a baby last week. We were pregnant together, and looked so forward to having our kids only a few months apart.  It’s been hard to love my niece and be open to her arrival, without being plagues with jealousy.
But setting aside my jealousy and my difficulty with being a pediatrician who is struggling with fertility, this has given me an even deeper appreciation for what it means to be a patient. I’ve been immensely unhappy with the care I’ve received from my doctors, which has made this experience even harder than it already is. There has been multiple lapses in communication, indifference to our feelings as a couple who lost a baby.  It seems that infertility, and miscarriage in particular, is so routine for our providers, that it can be forgotten how completely individualized it is to the couple going through it.
And What I’ve Learned:
While our infertility struggle is nowhere near to over, and in fact we may still be in the early stages, I have hopes that we’ll get back on track, and that it’ll happen for us at some point. While I wouldn’t wish this experience on even my worst enemies, I’ve learned so much. I’ve learned it’s O.K. to not be O.K.  These months have been hard. Incredibly hard. I’ve always thought myself a strong person, but have learned that infertility is not for the weak of heart.  I have reached depths of sadness I didn’t know existed, and have slowly worked my way out, only to sink again every so often.  I’ve learned how to be a better pediatrician. I’ve learned how to listen more. I’ve learned to be patient. I’ve learned to be open about my situation, as I’ve learned that sharing my story and hearing others’ stories is what has helped me to wake up each morning, and tackle each day for itself. And until we can try again, we wait, and hope for the best.
Thinking of you all, and wishing you all the best,
Carly

I’m Back…But Not for Good Reason

Hi again WordPress. Long time, no see.

I have not written in a while because, honestly, I thought I was doing well.  And, as it turns out, I’m not.

It’s been 15 weeks since my miscarriage and I still have present hcg levels.  Then, I started bleeding. I called my doctor, hoping to find out if there’s anything I should do since I haven’t had any bleeding since the first few weeks. I called 48 hr ago, and the only response I got was from a nurse…who told me that the doctor would call me. Which hasn’t happened.

It’s been a very interesting experience. Being a doctor, but then becoming a patient. I’ve quickly realized the inconsistencies in patient care, and how frustrating it can be.  My biggest pet peeve in all of this (just ask my husband!) is poor communication. I’ve played phone tag with the office numerous times. I’ve called, only to be met with snarky comments on the side of the secretary.  Then, a nurse messaged me on our online chart and answered my question, which was “I still have positive hcg and now I have a period, is this normal??” with the response “this is not your period, you still have positive hcg”.  Thanks, lady, for basically just re-iterating my question and not answering it.

I’m not exactly in a good place. In fact, I’ve actually been a mess this week.  I recently had a niece born, and had to pool all my efforts to feign excitement and happiness.  Don’t take this the wrong way – I’m very excited. I’m very happy for them. But I can’t help but be upset and hurt and frustrated.

It’s been quite the learning experience. The frustrations, the tears, the sadness, the anger.  I’m just trying to turn my experience into a positive, for my future patients. Or at least, try to turn the negative into positive. I’m just hoping to be able to move on from this soon enough and try again to start a family, and be happy and healthy.

Thanks for letting me vent, wordpress world. Hope I can help, and hope you can help me.

 

Trying to Move On

How does one do this?!?

I am trying to move on. Trying so very hard.  I find I am struggling with this.  I want to continue my life and move forward and try again.

Almost 9 weeks after my miscarriage, and my hcg is still positive. My doctor assures it “just has to run its course” and “everybody is different” but I’m convinced this is straight-up torture. I know I can get pregnant, so for goodness sake just let us try!!

I also find that while playing this waiting game, I have become increasingly jealous of others. Others that got pregnant easily, that carried their healthy babies to term. I try to avoid social media, but for my age group and friends its EVERYWHERE. I try to be happy for others. And generally, I am happy for them. But there’s this little itch deep down inside that is just straight up jealousy.

I hate that side of me. I try to convince myself that my course is my course and I can’t compare to others, but it’s so much easier said than done.

So here, as I write and complain (just for a second!) I just need to remind myself that I’ll get there, and when its meant to be it’ll be.

XOXO