Maybe Baby #4 | DPO 12 & I Want to Believe

I tested again this morning. No dice. I’ll test one more time on Saturday, and after that only if I don’t start my next cycle by Tuesday.

Last cycle I was so bereft by this point and after 10DPO had lost all hope. This cycle – I don’t know how I’m still clinging on, but I am. Despite the negatives, despite the lack of symptoms, I’m still half convinced it worked. I don’t know if this is intuition or just a strong will. To be honest, I really really want an April baby, and I really really want to never pee in a cup again (at least at work). The mere thought of having to start this process all over again in another two weeks is making me weep tears of frustration.

I know how very weak and selfish that sounds. It’s not even that hard! We haven’t even tried that many times! We have tons of time! We’re still young!

Then there are the fears that pray on my mind at night (and during the day [and any idle time my mind has, really])… but those are for another post.

Yet I haven’t give up. I’m still playing symptom bingo – and losing terribly. Any tiny little thing is giving me hope, even though I know taken all together they don’t amount to much. But the temp rise this morning has to mean something!! Right!! Even though it was after a bad night of sleep… And what about the sadness and the strong urge to cry? Because that can’t have anything to do with PMS… Oh and I have this weird metallic taste/sensation in my mouth and nose! But that has nothing to do with the a/c being out at work…

 

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Paleo Autoimmune Protocol Reintroduction | Tomatoes

may-116

I’ve finally started the process of sussing out exactly which, if any, nightshades I might tolerate. Since we have a super abundant tomato plant in our garden, it seemed most reasonable to start with tomatoes. Not only could I add a few fresh tomatoes to my salads, but I could smother a gf pizza with homemade tomato sauce and enjoy.

First, these are fresh, local, organic, etc etc tomatoes, so if I’m going to have an issue with them, I’m going to have an issue with all tomatoes. That’s always a good place to start.

Second, I have steered clear of all nightshades the last few weeks and the boils I get had completely cleared up. For this experiment, I continued to steer clear of all other nightshades, including that sneaky, pesky paprika. I could go on at length about how much I have come to loathe paprika, or at least the way it pops up in the most random of places, but I’ll leave that for another day.

So, the test. The Sunday before last I made a pizza at home using all our own ingredients to limit a potential sneak attack by paprika (*shakes fist*). On Monday and Tuesday I included at least one whole, sliced tomato in my lunch salad. Then I sat back and waited.

In the past with nightshades, I’ve noticed a reaction about a week later, usually in the form of painful boils in uncomfortable places. So I thought I would have a whole week to wait before anything showed up.

Not so. By Thursday of that same week – four days from the first tomato – I already had a nasty little boil. Thankfully, just the one, but it has made biking to work uncomfortable, even almost a full week later. I think it decided to erupt on top of a nerve, which certainly hasn’t helped.

So, that’s fairly definitive. I haven’t had any boils for going on almost two months (that was the last time I had all the nightshades), but within a week of eating tomatoes I get one. I think I might still duplicate this experiment with tomatoes, just to be abso-fucking-lutely certain - but I’m already fairly convinced that in addition to having a sensitivity to eggs, I am also sensitive to tomatoes.

But! On the positive side, three servings of tomatoes only resulted in one kinda painful boil, instead of, say, the full on eruption and agony I have had in the past. So although I will mostly steer clear of tomatoes, at least I know what to expect if I slip up or indulge. It still sucks because I fucking love salsa and pizza and tacos, but I can survive.

Next on my list – probably this weekend, if this boil is completely gone by then – will be paprika, because seriously. You can’t even find hot dogs that don’t have paprika. Mustard! Has! Paprika! And don’t get me started on the number of pre-made foods that simply list “spices.” If I ever find them, I will punch – in the face – whoever allowed producers to get away without listing all those damn spices on the ingredients.

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Maybe Baby #4 | DPO 10 & I Cheated

I tested.

Sorry. (Not sorry.)

But you would have, too, if you’d just had a restless night full of dreams about positive pregnancy tests. I even dreamed that I had visited my ob-gyn to confirm and start doing whatever tests it is one does at first. Then I chickened out because doctors make me super uncomfortable and I rationalized that I had already tested positive, I didn’t need to be there. Oh dreams. That’s totally not what I would do in real life (yes it is).

It was negative. I was both surprised and unsurprised. Oddly, I wasn’t as disappointed as I was last time I tested at 10DPO. I think all those dreams just left me with a very strong conviction that is difficult to shake.

I’ll try not to test again before Saturday, but if I have another night of dreams like that I can’t make any promises.

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Maybe Baby #4 | DPO 9 & I Could Test Tomorrow

But I won’t.

(Really.)

Now that we’re on our fourth two week wait, I’m finally starting to notice patterns. There’s the excited first few days (0-3), which slowly give way to hopeful days (4-6), then that hope begins to dissipate (7-10), until I’m left with just nerves (11-12) and finally bleak despair (12-15).

The first week is by far the easiest and the most fun. I find myself thinking “I’m pregnant!” on multiple occasions with not insubstantial confidence. I anticipate the end of the two weeks with hopeful excitement and knowing that this time it will work. We did everything right, after all!

By the second week, I’ve thoroughly enumerated all of the things we did wrong and which have most certainly doomed this cycle. The excitement is gone, mostly replaced by a numb melancholy. I’m not depressed, but I just don’t feel it anymore. My language when I talk about testing and getting a positive turns from mostly “when” to “if.” I symptom check, but the absence of any – even knowing that it’s way too early – just makes me lose even more hope.

I mentioned this cycle to my wife and she suggested that it’s my way of blunting the pain if it turns out this attempt didn’t work. Like, I get one week to hope and dream freely and wildly, then I have to start reeling it in to keep from being too disappointed. Since the emotions are so disparate, it can feel like a larger shift than the emotions really entail.

And yet, conversely, I’ve found myself being more careful about taking care of myself as the two weeks drag by. I mentioned before that I was curtailing my caffeine, but for the first time in, well, forever, I actually ordered a decaf something at a coffee shop. I am staunchly opposed to decaf and even during past 2WW’s I’ve simply skipped my morning tea and had the fully caffeinated beverage later anyway. Likewise, there has been ample amounts of alcohol available the last few days, which typically leads to me imbibing a wee bit too much and getting silly, but instead I stuck with one glass or even half a glass and was. Just. Fine.

This whole wait – which we repeat ad nauseam – is both incredibly frustrating and an interesting study in psychology. How we handle the time – impassible and impossible as it can seem – tells us a lot about ourselves. If nothing else, I’ll have learned that I’m hella impatient. :P

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Maybe Baby #4 | DPO 4 & Are We There Yet??

I feel like I should start making a list of all the things I impulsively google during the two week wait. I bet it would be hilarious, all listed together.

No symptom spotting thus far, which is good because any symptoms would be in my head. Knowing that helps a lot, actually. And knowing that HCG doesn’t get produced until DPO 9 and later also helps.

I’ve dropped my caffeine amount from one pot of black tea with two heaping teaspoons, one shot of coffee, and one mug of green tea to one heaping teaspoon tea and the occasional mug of green tea. I don’t think I was actually having too much caffeine, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to cut back a little more. Besides, some days I was having a full pot of black, one or two mugs of green, and a cup (or two) of light-roast coffee, which taken all together was probably too much.

I’d rather err on the safer side, even though I’m sure I was doing fine. I was also curious to see what would happen, and so far I actually feel more awake in the afternoon. Now that could be because I’m also consistently getting 8+ hours of sleep, but, well. We’ll see.

I need more and better audiobooks to help pass the time at work. If anyone has any suggestions for totally engrossing and/or fast-paced books, I would love you for them. I like fantasy most, but I’ll take anything at this point. The time at work is definitely the hardest part of the two week wait for me, because my current work is about 10% engaging and 90% filler, so I am easily distracted and constantly find myself turning to google and search for various and sundry or simply staring off into the half-distance, wondering if it worked this time.

Did it work?? Did it?? Argh.

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Maybe Baby #4 | DPO 1

Temp went up to 98.1 this morning, which means we’re officially in our fourth two week wait. I’m not going to test until the Saturday after next – a full two weeks this time. No testing on 10 DPO for me. I just don’t handle early BFN’s well.

Things to distract me in the next two weeks: a good friend is leaving town that same Saturday, so I must shove as much friendtime in as possible; I have 25k to write on my current work-in-progress by that Saturday; there will be much hiking next weekend; cooking; I have a book to finish reading by this Thursday; sleep; planning what cakes to bake in August to celebrate my birth month; watching all the Fushigi Yuugi with said friend; seeing other friends.

Of course, even given all those things we have to do in the next two weeks, we’re already asking each other “did it work??”

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Maybe Baby #4 | DPO -1

I actually had a mostly positive OPK test yesterday and this morning my temp dropped. After so many months of temping, I know it does that before rising again after ovulation. So it looks like our timing yesterday was good, although now I’m doubting that we can get another insem in before ov.

I’m kind of on the fence about the OPKs, now two cycles in using them. Although it’s nice to have a little bit more confirmation about what’s going on, I can apparently just listen to my instincts. I know they’re a helluva lot more useful for others who don’t have clear cycles, and I do appreciate the mild peace-of-mind they give me in the days leading up to ov, but I find myself questioning them more than trusting them. Also I don’t know if it’s just my batch or not – internet cheapies FTW – but they haven’t shown a true positive yet. I’ll use one today just for fun – and I have a lot – but even if it shows true positive for an LH surge today, that won’t make much sense. Unless my temp doesn’t rise tomorrow, but I am willing to bet cold, hard cash it will.

Anyway, still feeling confident about this cycle. Things were as unromantic and perfunctory as they could get this time, which made us both roll our eyes and say that of course it’ll work then. I’m willing to take just a chemical pregnancy – just tell me that we’re doing this right.

 

Edited 1:00pm to add: It is definitely positive today. Not expecting that. So I guess my temp dip is probably associated with the LH surge? I don’t know, but I’ve peed on my hand twice today and really hoping I never ever have to do that again.

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