Sunday, November 30, 2008


It has been a long nine months. I've written plenty of blog posts between March 1 and today -- about 70 of them, give or take -- but the one topic that has been prominent in my mind has been the one that I thought best not to blog about. Until now. Because things have changed.

Since March of this year, Casey and I have been trying to add to our little family of three, trying to give Miles a little playmate and -- let's face it -- bring another cute kid into the world. (I had to get that in there somewhere.) Month after month has gone by, with myself becoming more disappointed and wondering why in the world this was not happening for us. After all, we'd had one baby already, so we knew this was a possibility!

I'll try and skip ahead here...anyway, after eight months of trying but not succeeding, I was not only frustrated, I was having a very difficult time trying to act like things were hunky-dory after each disappointment. I did let a few people in on what was going on, but I just didn't want to advertise. I was wanting to share good news, after all! I thought to myself, 'Surely by the holidays we'll get to tell everyone that a baby will be here next spring...' and all of that. I truly thought that's how it would be. But life has many surprises, and a lot of things do not go the way we think they will go (my now-absent appendix and gallbladder could attest to that!).

I decided to see my doctor on November 17, less than two weeks ago. He assured me that things seemed to be working the way they should, but that the infection from my appendix rupture more than two years ago very well could have affected something, possibly my fallopian tubes. He told me about the HSG test, which is where dye is injected into the uterus and fallopian tubes to check for blockage and other abnormalities. I signed up for the test and had it done two days later, on November 19.

Well folks, I can now say that I do not like the HSG test. Helpful as it can be, it is not a friendly procedure by far. I'll leave it at that...really. It hurts. And I was honestly thinking that I would sit up to look at the x-rays taken when the dye was injected and be told something like, 'Well, the tubes were blocked, but the dye has cleared them out..." Something like that. I was not prepared to hear the truth, which was that one of my fallopian tubes is completely blocked -- something my doctor says cannot be fixed -- and that the other one is partially blocked. The dye could be seen going in partway and then stopping before it spills out the other side.

I was trying to take it all in, trying not to cry. My doctor was telling me that he could perform a laparoscopy on the partially blocked tube, which would give us a 50-60% chance of getting pregnant. Beyond that, our next chance would be IVF (in vitro fertilization) -- something that costs a bundle and is not covered by insurance. He might as well have told me that I'm going to need to hand over one leg and possibly and arm. IVF is not a simple choice for us.

If I'd had things my way, the surgery would have been done two days after the HSG test...but I couldn't be fit into the surgery schedule, and unfortunately Casey and I left town a couple of days after that to visit family for the holiday. We just arrived back this afternoon, and in less than eight hours I will be sitting in the outpatient waiting room at the hospital, getting ready to be prepped for surgery and most likely feeling on the jittery side. It's a normal reaction for me -- I've had about five substantial procedures/operations in the past two-and-a-half years, and that doesn't include the many, many tests and CAT scans.'s kind of automatic for me to feel a particular way before surgery, no matter how important it may be. My mind and my heart say, 'Woohoo! We're gonna get the tube fixed so there can be another baby!' while my body is saying, 'What in the world are we doing here again? More scars? More anesthesia?!? Get out -- NOW!!!'

This is what I've been desperately wanting to share with everyone for months on end now: I have had baby-fever (sounds a little silly, I know) since late last year, and every time I have begun typing a blog post I have wanted to share all of my hopes and laments. Mostly, I just wanted to keep it a private thing, but I also like this blog to be one of light anecdotes and humor. In short, I don't like bumming people out, especially those who take the time to actually read what I'm writing. But things are different, and I want to invite you on this journey, this new struggle that hopefully holds a triumphant ending.

And trust me, you'll be some of the first to know if that happens...after Casey and my mom, of course.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

John Shore's Suddenly Christian blog

I thoroughly enjoyed reading John Shore's blog post today. Makes me laugh, but makes me sad at the same time. (Click here to read the post.)

Friday, November 07, 2008

Oh, What a Beautiful Morning!

Remember when I posted all those photos of Miles last month? One of them was of him sitting on a horse, but that outing was actually something Casey had planned for my birthday. He told me on my actual birthday, which was a Sunday, that we would be going to our friend Charlie's the next morning and that I would be going horseback riding. It was truly one of the sweetest and most wonderful birthday gifts I could remember receiving. I adore horseback riding, but hardly ever get the chance. The last time I went was at the end of May in 2000. I wanted to get away from everything for a couple of days, so I found a little horse ranch two hours away from my home. I went on a sunset trail ride, slept in a little bunker and left the next day after playing some pool and receiving a fresh garden tomato from one of the owners. That's an experience I will never forget. There's much more to it than what I just said...hard to get into all of it in one blog post though.

Anyway, back to the present day...Charlie let me get used to Cricket, the horse I would be riding, while he saddled up Doc, his horse (probably the tallest horse I've ever seen in person). I was able to ride Cricket inside a fence, even move her through some barrels. I felt pretty comfortable, but there is always going to be a little bit of the unknown with a large animal. I was in control, but was I really in control? Soon enough, Charlie and I were saying goodbye to Miles and Casey as we rode off through the trees.

I'll never be able to quite put into words how incredible that experience was. We moved through so many different types of land in under an hour: grass fields, thick wooded areas, clover fields...and this was mid-morning, so the light coming through the trees and shining on the water made everything seem incredibly surreal. Charlie and I were able to ride and have good conversation for part of the time, but as we moved through the woods and were single file, we took that time to just be silent and enjoy the moment. I really didn't see it coming, but the experience was so beautiful that I felt my eyes welling up at one point. It was just an overwhelming feeling that couldn't be described -- the beauty of the scenery combined with the beauty of the gift...well, it might sound a little silly to some, but I'm sharing it nonetheless because that is what it was for me.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Oprah's 'Favorite Things' Episode

This just in: Oprah will be giving away a Barack Obama to every audience member during her live show tomorrow!
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