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We all deal with stress in life, and mine is no different or better or worse or significant in any way.

I am a stress eater.  I mention it all the time here and in my daily life, so this is really not a confession or anything.  It’s a fact.  I could stop and redirect my stress reduction to working out again, or banging the hell out of a pipe with a socket wrench…but no, I choose to eat.  Last night it was a delicious pair of french bread pizzas.

This process…this bizarre ‘Patience Exam’ as I like to think of it, has been  for me, like some horrible reality show.  Feeling like there are cameras on you with each disappointment, like you are whining for the 400th time about how hard this all is as the nation mocks you.  I had a dream last night that I was sitting in bed watching “The Daily Show” as I usually do.  Jon Stewart was doing his usual satirical take on this, that, or the other thing…and then he turned his aim on me.  ME?  I sat up in bed like “Whuh!?”

And I sat there, in this dream state, watching my whole self get torn to shreds on national tv.  Watching this guy just pick apart my behavior throughout this whole infertility process, my crying, my bitching, my jealousy, my bitterness, my darkness, my laughter, my issues.  On and on.  Tearing apart my entire person.  My entire self.  It. was. humiliating.

Of course it was a dream…but nevertheless…I woke up feeling very small and very alone.  Dreams have a way of lingering after waking from them; like cigarette smoke after a party.  They force you to examine.  To be introspective.   I have been a banshee from time to time throughout this journey and my husband has taken the brunt of it.  I lay out my mea culpas for all to see as I am human and prone to these fits of agony and ecstasy on a whim.

Maybe the dream was just fears personified or maybe it really just was those french bread pizzas digesting.

Maybe I should cut the carbs and start a rock garden.

Or maybe I just need to recalibrate my perspective.

Either way, as of this moment…I am just waiting for AF to show her face so we can move on to our FET.


“Top 10 Songs That Can Be About Infertility No Matter How Tangential”

Part II

6. So Hard – Dixie Chicks

Okay, this is the song that so many women dealing with infertility hear eventually.  Since two of the three Chicks had IVF, it’s no wonder there would eventually be a song about it.  I wish they would write a whole album of music about their struggles both with IF and the crazy process of IVF.

7. The Heart of Life – John Mayer

“No, it won’t all go the way it should/But I know the heart of life is good.” Its very lovely & personal for me, this song.  It could so easily be Chris’ theme song.  It makes me think of him every time I hear it.  How he has been an absolute prince among men through this entire process.  How he has been able to see the bigger picture for us both when things get the better of me.  How he has worked his ass off so we can at least try to do this.  His patience and understanding should be bottled and sold the world over. Olivejuice, babe.

8. Come Tomorrow – Juliet Lloyd

“You’re well aware of what you’re missing/You count up every sacrifice you’ve made/But don’t you ever stop believing/that it’s worth it all someday”. Another song on heavy ipod rotation.  This song can be about the 2ww or beta results, or just waiting for the next cycle’s window.  I love how she touches on people telling you to be patient and the image of treading water.  She wrote the song about being a struggling musician…but for me, it’s spot on for what we’re going through.

9. Apron Strings – Everything But the Girl

If anything, this song sparks memories of being young, sitting on the floor of our kitchen and watching my mom make dinner.  She has a way of wearing her apron that is beautifully unique only to her and I find myself starting to mimic it as I have grown and begun exploring my own culinary prowess (much to her delight as well as the loving amusement of my brothers).   Maybe it’s also because it’s an 80’s song or something and just brings me back.  Either way, that memory only deepens my own desire to be a mom myself one day.  “He’d look just like me when I was young/And I wonder as the days unwind/Will he have your eyes or mine.”

10. Along the Road – Dan Fogelberg

“Cursing the quest/Courting disaster/Measureless nights forebode/Moments of rest/Glimpses of laughter/Are treasured along the road.” It’s simple and a little bittersweet when you think about losing a little part of yourself in the stumble onward towards what you are fighting for.  It’s about any of us.

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I would be remiss, making any song listing and not mentioning Jamaican reggae singer Lady Saw.  When women around the world open the dialog about our reproductive struggles, it allows those around them to slowly release dogma and antiquated ideas and begin to embrace a supportive, open atmosphere.  She takes on the idea of feeling ashamed about infertility and the wrenching loss of miscarriage:

No Less Than a Woman – Lady Saw

‘This song came to Lady Saw immediately after her second miscarriage. “I wanted to share my pain and allow my fans and all the people to understand a woman’s worth, what we go through, and the pain we endure,” expresses Saw. Saw noticed infertility was a worldwide concern when she revisited her Manhattan doctor every three months for blood work. “I would see a whole new set of women come in with problems more serious than mine. I was like, oh my god…this is a big big universal thing! I thought…let me touch this subject because it is so personal to me and other women.”

‘Infertility is a word that a lot of people are ashamed to mention…Many people are so illiterate when it comes to that word that they act if it is a crime not to have a child, but I don’t think so…” states in her introductory verse. According to Saw, this is the general consensus of many in Jamaica, more specifically the music industry within Jamaica. “People feel if you can’t breed or get pregnant, then you must not be a real woman, but they are not God. If I keep losing these babies and I never have a child of my own, then god knows what is best. It does not change anything. I have three adopted children and still support so many more, so I have a lot of love to give,” she says.’

"He who hears music, feels his solitude peopled at once." — Robert Browning

Regardless of where you are in life and whatever kinds of struggles come your way, it’s usually something that can be temporarily assuaged by a good song.  I have found this to be true in a hundred ways over the years, and this particular situation is no different.  You usually find yourself listening to something and really listening to the lyrics, really trying to see if this fits.  So, in honor of Nick Hornby and his book “High Fidelity”, I am putting together my totally done before, totally unoriginal play list.

I understand that trying to deconstruct or breakdown art is frowned on in some circles.  One is encouraged to immerse oneself in the piece, to understand the subject matter, the style, period or principles.  I’m gonna go ahead and break these songs down a lil’ bit anyway.  Try to explain how I like to embrace them and how they help me cope.  If anyone is out there reading this, please feel free to comment on what songs, music, art or whatever helps you get through the tough times.  We can share the struggle a bit.

So, with out further ado, I present to you (in no particular order) the first five songs of…

“Top 10 Songs That Can Be About Infertility No Matter How Tangential”

1. No One Said it Would Be Easy – Sheryl Crow

In a way, I like to think this song captures the financial & emotional stresses of infertility for couples.   When she sings about getting sympathy money from his father, or feeling like it’s compromising  standards in the lyric  “It’s just a question of eliminating obstacles” you get a clear picture of the intricacies of laying everything on the line to start a family.

2. The Climb – Miley Cyrus

I was driving home from work when I first heard this song on the radio and it hit me like a ton of bricks.  I say this with full control of my faculties as this is, after all, Miley Cyrus and I am apparently a 15 year old deep inside.  It’s pure treacle and strains into sap territory, but essentialy encapsulates what every “guilty pleasure” should be.  With every “ain’t”, “gonna” and “gotta”, you feel a little less crazy and a little more lifted.  Ok Hannah Montana, you got me this time dammit.

3. Deep Freeze – Sandrine

Sandrine’s lyrics are anything but pure sunshine here.  It delves into the darker corners of struggle that make you want to wear lots of black eyeliner and and scowl at pedestrians.  I like that.  She sings about seeing children playing in the street and their “smiling, ugly faces” and eloquently hits a place of bitterness that can only be truly understood by those who have been there.  “They keep on telling me it’s spring time/But I am in deep freeze” goes the lyric.  For someone in the middle of fertility struggles, it sums up that feeling when some Captain Insensitive  says “just relax, it’ll happen” for the 500th time.  It is dark and it’s true and gets heavy rotation on my ipod.

4. Nick of Time – Bonnie Raitt

“When did the choices get so hard?/With so much more at stake/Life gets mighty precious when there’s less of it to waste.

Beautiful song with heartbreaking themes.  Love me some Bonnie Raitt.  ’nuff said.

5. Blessed – Elton John

In an interview with The London Times, Elton John & David Furnish were asked about children: “Do you want kids? Elton: No. I’ll take the perks of being gay where I can get them and that’s one of them for me: gay men are the only group of people who aren’t looked down upon if they don’t have kids”.

But for the David Furnish point of view, (it was) never likely to happen because Elton’s always too busy. He says, “I wanted children. We talked extensively about adopting, but it came down to Elton saying, ‘I’m going to continue to do what I do and it will be very difficult to raise a child with you if I’m not going to be there’.” Furnish, 45, fears he will always be sad about the decision. He adds, “It will be my one regret when I leave this planet; that I never had children of my own, because I really love children.”

It was Bernie Taupin who gave the meaning of the song, with his desire to have children. “Your eyes open up” he declared.  The lyrics gave voice to his desire.

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So there ya go.  Stay tuned for the next five!

Went in for our U/S and blood-work repeat today and the results, as I found out this afternoon, were less than stellar.

Looks like my body is stronger than the Lupron I am taking, and it is ovulating as usual.  My E2 level today was 298, this is up from the 235 on Friday….so that adds up to:  no transfer this month.  I am so sad, and so disappointed.  I feel like I can’t ever hope for good news, because life will always smack me in the face with one thing or another when it comes to this.  My stupid body can push through the Lupron and do the natural thing, but it can’t get pregnant.  Wtf is that?

It’s like some endless, sixth level of hell, never-ending cue at the DMV.

So, I wait for AF.



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