Sunday, March 29, 2009

Green Thumb in training...

I don't have a good track record when it comes to gardening. It would be fair to say that I am the angel of death to all things with roots and leaves. Some subconscious part of my being must take some sort of joy in decimating those poor oxygen exhalers, because I am just not capable, no matter how hard I think I'm trying, of keeping plants alive.

So I figured here in LA, I'd have my best bet I'd actually helping a plant live beyond a few days. It is sunny 98% of the time, all lawns have built-in sprinkler systems, and houses come equipped with like 6 hose hook-ups. It is a gardening paradise. I couldn't possibly mess it up. Right? Right?!

Well, we'll see. I did manage to salvage two plants out of a house-warming planter my mother-in-law sent to us when we moved to LA. Sure, 3-4 of the plants kicked it, but they didn't have a chance. I had re-potted them and set them out in the backyard, exposing them to that 98% sunlight (and have I mentioned that the sun here feels like it is resting on the top of your head? I'm not entirely convinced that we don't hover suspiciously close to the surface of the sun here during the summer months). When my mother arrived for her first visit here, she informed me that those plants? The ones "basking" in the blazing full sunlight of a Southern California summer? Yeah, they were what you call "house plants" (hence, sent to us as a "house-warming" gift). So the whole baking in the sun thing? NOT their thing.

Three of them made the transition into the house nicely and have grown slowly but steadily for the past several months. One is barely hanging on, but I can't bring myself to throw it away. So it sits next to the other two, I imagine, groaning in agony in some inaudible to humans plan language---the Debbie Downer of the three plants. It probably wishes I'd put it out of it's misery, but I can't. I prune it back, picking off the dead leaves (read: all the leaves) and hope it will spring back to life.

This week, I decided to take a leap back into the big scary world of outdoor gardening by taking Ethan to Target to buy some snapdragons, purple cabbages, pots and Miracle-Gro. I have a soft spot for snapdragons because when I was a little girl, walking to the store with my grandmother, she's stop by a patch of them and show me how they "talked". She'd lightly pinch the sides of the flower and it's "mouth" would snap open, like a mouth saying, "hi." She'd repeat the movement over and over, talk out of the side of her own mouth, and VOILA!---flower talking to amazed little girl. Seriously happy childhood memory. So I always want a snapdragon or two in my life.

Ethan and I set up shop in the front yard, complete w/ shovels, watering cans, hose, pots, flowers, etc. I had planned on putting two of my snapdragons into one big pot, but found it was too small, so I moved one of the plants to the middle. I love playing in the dirt, but I am so bad at getting the plants in at the right depths and with the right amount of soil. So now I need to go back to Target (question of the day--can I get through one entry without mentioning Target? I'm guessing the answer is "no"), and pick up some more pots so my yellow snapdragons don't die. I thought I could just dig up some dirt and throw the purple cabbages into the ground, but it turns out the ground's really, really hard. Ugh. I suck. More Target pots needed, please.

So I don't know just how long any of this stuff is going to live. But at least they are immortalized in these pictures....

Green Thumb McGhee, reporting for duty.

This is as dirty as he got. How is he my kid???!!!!

Getting just the right amount of soil into the pot...or, covering the blooms completely on that side of the pot. Not sure which.

Drowning, I mean, watering the plants...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Whatever Doesn't Embarrass You to Death, Makes you Stronger...

So Ethan's quite a hit in public restrooms and the check out line at grocery stores. Apparently there's something irresistibly hilarious about a pre-schooler who possesses certain knowledge and no filter for what may or may not be socially appropriate commentary.

Case in point one: Two days ago, after a fabulous play date and delicious lunch with friends, Ethan and I stopped at Target to pick up some overnight diapers (because peeing on the potty is kind of a once-a-week kind of thrill for us here rather than an every day occurrence) and some Breathe-Right strips (large, clear--because FORTHELOVEOFGOD, make Husband's snoring stop!!!)

It was one of those Targets with a Starbucks conveniently located at the entrance--clearly, the best kind of Target. But before I could order and adequately enjoy my tall, decaf, skim peppermint mocha, I needed to make use of the facilities.

Fortunately Ethan is still amenable to sitting in the stroller every once in awhile (as long as it comes along with a "guess what?! Mommy will get you a Hot Wheels car if you sit in this stroller for just a few minutes!! I'm not proud.) I'm normally thrilled to have him running around, darting from one aisle to the next, just to test my "no one steal my baby!!" reflexes. Keeps me on my toes. But that day, I just wanted to run into Target, get the stuff we needed (including the peppermint mocha, people), and then get out. So the stroller makes mama happy, even if it's a little challenging to push said stroller while carrying a package of Huggies Overnights and a Starbucks cups.

Why no cart, Sarah? Just put Ethan in a cart, Sarah! Then you can throw your purchases right into the back of the cart, Sarah. Dumby!

I'll tell you why no cart, Sarah. Because I'm on a self-imposed (okay, Husband-imposed) Target detox. If I get a cart, I FILL a cart. I don't mean to. It just happens. Don't act like you don't do it, too, interwebs. I see you.

So I only purchase what I can either carry in my hands or in one of their little hand-baskets (you can fit a surprising amount into those little things).

ANYWAY! I had to pee, remember? And Ethan was in the stroller. In the handicapped stall with me. While I peed. In a crowded restroom. It is at this point in our day that Ethan decided to review his latest anatomy fixation, and yells out, "Do you have a vagina??!! Is that your vagina??!"

Ohdeargod. Yes. Yes, Ethan. That's mommy's vagina.

I'm a little relieved that he has learned the right word--for a long time when he was learning "penis" and "vagina", he melded the two in his mind and created the word "ginis" (pronounced j-eye-nis). My sister in law once explained to me that he actually should be calling it a "vulva", since that is the more accurate term for what he right now thinks is a vagina, but you know what? I'm cool with "vagina" for now. Hope that's okay, Emi!

So there I sat (well, squatted) and listened to the laughter start to ripple through the womens' restroom. Nothing like being the source of bathroom comedy at the hands of your almost 3-year old. I'll tell you, coming out of the stall was a treat. Ethan was, of course, giggling because he heard the women laughing. And then ALL the women had to carry on about how hysterical it was---"Did he just say, "is that your vagina?!" Oh, how cute!"

Anyone want to take a guess what Ethan talked about the ENTIRE time we strolled around Target? My vagina.

Awesome. Truly.

So great. We survived the "Target Vagina Incident" with everyone thinking that Ethan was the cutest thing ever. What's cuter than a little boy yelling "vagina!!"?? Clearly that skyrockets above baby puppies and cuddly newborns.

I had just about gotten past that in my head when today I found myself in the grocery store, pushing Ethan in the cart (I do not have the same problem at the grocery store that I do in Target. I can resist the "one of everything" mindset when pickled pigs feet and ground veal is involved).

To get Ethan to tolerate the shopping cart at the grocery store, I have recently had to start pretending that the cart is a pirate ship, he is the captain and we have to "capture" the groceries. It's loads of fun---lots of "argggg'ing" and capturing Annie's Pizza Bites. Good times.

What I got today, however, was a pirate who was preoccupied by the either real or imagined contents of one particular nostril. No matter how hard I tried, I could not convince him to remove his finger from his nose. Through almost every aisle. To the point where I thought perhaps he'd shoved something up there that would require medical attention. Most people chuckled when they saw me imploring him to take his finger out of his nose; a few went right on ahead and judged me as an unfit mother for not being able to control an almost three year old, but I'm guessing they either never had kids or were tyrant-parents to kids who don't really like them all that much.

Cut to the check out aisle. The cashier and bagging clerk were apparently not versed in the "if you want a toddler to stop a certain behavior, ignore it the best you can," method of parenting. As soon as I wheeled Ethan past the credit card paying contraption, the bagger asked, "Hey there, little guy---whatchoo got in your nose?! Whatchoo got there?!"

And it was on.

Ethan, gleefully realizing that someone is actually interested in his nasal excavation, pulls his finger out of his nose and says, "A BOOGER!" And the laughter began. And went on and on. As did the repetition of the word "booger". And not only Ethan said the word "booger" eleventy billion times. Laughy McGigglepants the bagger and Chuckles McGhee the cashier chimed in, too. "You got a booger?!" "Hey! Good job getting that booger!"

I have honestly never seen Ethan laugh so hard. So that part of it? Priceless. The eyes of every single person in that part of the store on us while my kid and two oversized toddlers laughed about boogers? Not so much.

And just for the record? No booger on his finger. But I washed his entire hand with a wipe, in full view of the front of the store, before leaving anyway.

I think we'll just stay home tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Goodbye, So Long, Farewell, my friends...

If you have ever taken a Music Together class, or have listened to any of their eleventy billion CDs (whether it's the bongos version or the bells version--I have them ALL), you know that those words start the closing song for each class. It should go on to say, "We'll see you soon again, my friends, and make music together again."

But alas, we will not. Because of our pre-school schedule which has us starting another class of "transition" next Tuesday morning, yesterday was Ethan's very last Music Together class.

Ethan started taking Music Together classes back in Virginia when he was a wee eight, maybe ten, months old. My friend Carlin and I took our little ones to the music class mostly because the winter was dragging on and we needed something to do with them. I couldn't walk around the mall with Ethan in the stroller for one. more. freaking. minute., and the county offered really inexpensive enrichment classes. Perfect.

Ethan and Chloe were the two youngest kids there, in a multi-aged group that ranged from 6-7 months to 3 years. Ethan was barely crawling and Chloe wasn't yet walking. The smiled at each other and rolled around on the floor together, kind of clapping their hands and banging instruments together. I know at first we felt a little self-conscious because our kids could barely participate and we felt ALL kinds of dorky singing some of the more ridiculous songs (and believe me, there is no shortage of dorky songs in Music Together) when our kids were more or less oblivious.

But we stuck with it, took the class several times in a row and watched Ethan and Chloe crawl, walk, dance, clap, sing to the music, week by week, learning and growing. I never felt anything really special for the instructor--she was sort of the failed dinner theater type, with a bad perm and a soprano voice that made all the songs sound way more tragic and profound than they were ever intended to be.

When we moved to Los Angeles, my biggest fear was that Ethan was losing all sense of normalcy and routine in his life. His friends were gone, his home was gone, his classes were gone, his toys were on a truck somewhere in the middle of the country. He was adrift in routine-less unfamiliarity and newness. Not a place a toddler feels really cozy, you know?

Someone I spoke with briefly mentioned Music Together classes that they were taking in our new town and I jumped. Google, email, phone call, register. POOF!! Within the first week, we found ourselves sitting in a circle, albeit surrounded by new faces and a new leader, but hearing the same songs, and seeing the same shakers and sticks and instruments and scarves. I'm not sure who felt more pressure drain from their every cell--me, or Ethan. It was like being, just a little tiny bit, at home. I remember crying on our way back to the hotel that day, that even so far from home we were able to find something tiny piece of the familiar for Ethan to cling to. And then I think we probably went to Target and spent a shitload of money on new toys for him.

It's been almost a year since we walked into that church nursery room to sit down in Miss Saskia's circle and to listen to her play her guitar, dance around and generally captivate the kids with her calming and warm manner, and Ethan has been madly in love with her pretty much since day 1. During session breaks, he asks when we get to see Saskia again. He wants to play guitar like Saskia. He is the first to stand at attention to get his stamps on his belly, hands, feet, wherever, after class. When she plays the digeridoo, you'd think Ethan was watching G-d herself descend from the heavens just to say "hi" to him.

Next week, though, Ethan starts his second morning of pre-school and the only available opening landed on a Tuesday. And so, we had to say goodbye to Music Together. Clearly I was more upset than him---he really doesn't "get it", and I'm the one with the aversion to change and the preoccupation with being overly sensitive and sentimental. I managed to hold it together during class and was surprised that I didn't dissolve into a puddle as we drove away from class. This move to Los Angeles has forced me to tap into an area of resolve and toughness I didn't know I had---I'm finding that change isn't the saddest or scariest thing possible. So I'm excited for Ethan to move on from music class and start exploring pre-school more regularly. He likes it there just as much as he does music class, so for him, it's pretty much a wash. Maybe even better as there will be music AND running around like a lunatic outside. So it's all good.

But of course, we marked the occasion with a trip to Build-a-Bear, and we built a Saskia bear, complete with guitar. Ethan carried Saskia bear and her guitar around with him all afternoon yesterday, and insisted that I find him a digeridoo to play as well. The best I could do was a bendy straw. He seemed okay with that.

Ethan saying, "It's too bright!!! It's too bright!" when I told him to turn around and smile outside of our class. Stage mom Sarah says, "Who cares?! Smile! I need a picture for mah blooooooog!"

Ethan and Miss Saskia "cheers"'ing with the shakers. Afterwards, Ethan said, "Now drink!" and pretended to chug his shaker. I can only imagine what she thinks must go on at our house.

Choked up mommy takes picture of Ethan hugging Saskia.

Ethan at home later with his Saskia bear, her guitar, and his diaper and digeridoo. (And as an aside, WHAT is my deal with the color brown?! We need a stylist. Badly)

Saskia bear

Green bendy-straw as Aboriginal wind instrument.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Butterfly Effect

or complete and utter lack thereof.

On Saturday, Husband, Ethan and I ventured out to the local Audobon park (Husband was heartily disappointed when he punched Autobahn into the GPS and I corrected him--sorry, dear), to participate in the 1st Annual Butterfly Census. We were meeting friends with kids Ethan's age and very excited to watch the kiddos chase little winged beings gleefully through the fields, ooh'ing and ahh'ing at the glory of spring and the wonder of innocence. Eh.

We started with a picnic at the front of the park; and by "picnic" I mean the adults ate while trying to cajole, bribe and trick the kids into eating anything while it was clear they preferred to throw sand into a storm drain and chase each other around. Fine. Pick and choose your battles--best lesson of parenthood, EVER.

When it was time to go count butterflies, we picked up our clipboards, illustrated census sheets and spear-pointed golf pencils; these census people meant business, clearly, which led us to believe we'd be swarmed by hundreds of brightly colored butterflies flittering all around us. And just as an aside, spear-pointed golf pencils? Really not an idea writing implement to have in the presence of pre-schoolers. Just saying.

We walked to the courtyard that led to the walking trail--the veritable gateway to butterfly bliss! On a bench they had a collection of pre-schooler sized butterfly wings which each kid had to have attached to his or her back before we began our walk. Very cute. How could our little human sized butterflies NOT attract a plethora of much smaller, real butterflies?

And so we walked. And walked. And walked.

And no butterflies. Three-quarters of a mile we walked with three toddlers, two of whom decided they needed to carry sticks with them (hello, potential eye-injury!!). We walked up little narrow pathways, rife with poison oak (which none of us really knew how to identify) and past one long-abandoned crashed car (we're talking Studabaker here), and yet, not one. tiny. freaking. butterfly.

Ethan and his friend Alex decided that digging holes (or stabbing their sticks into pre-existing holes, perhaps created by a small, potentially angry little animals) was way more important than counting butterflies. And who could blame them, when there were no butterflies to be counted?

We met several groups of people along the pathway who were equally confused as to where the butterflies might be. And we were forced to wonder: WHY have a 1st Annual Butterfly Census when there are NO butterflies???!!

So after letting the kids play in the mud by a little duck pond for a few minutes, we sadly concurred that there was no wildlife to be marveled at and that it was time to go home. Meh. As we left the park, we noticed that the big white dry-eraser board at the front entrance showed that a total of eight, EIGHT, butterflies had been counted all. day. And five of them were the same type of butterfly, so I suppose, if they were counted by five different people, they *could* actually be the same freaking butterfly. Bah.

So fine. No butterflies. But a cute kid. Lookie (and I apologize that Blogger loads these pictures, backwards, so you're looking at the pictures in the wrong order, but there's no "right" order for cute).

Ethan and his friend play a pre-schooler's version of Russian Roulette: what animal made this hole and just how much are we angering it right now by poking our sticks into it's home?

Um. What?

Your mom's got a cell phone to call 911, right? Because I'm about to poke your eye out.

Butterflies? We don't need no stinkin' butterflies....

Ethan diligently seeking the elusive butterfly....sort of. okay. not.

Monday, March 16, 2009

My name is Sarah and I'm a Cross-Poster...

In the true spirit of over-sharing, here's a post from my "weight-loss" blog...

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Give Me an "H!" Give Me an "S!" Give me a "G!"

Put them together and what do you get?! HYSTEROSALPINGOGRAM!!!! (cue: spirit fingers).

Oh yes, my friends. It was a banner day in my world. Shall I tell you ever little last detail about it? Hmmmmm? Okay.

I woke this morning knowing that I was going to start my day by driving insanely through Los Angeles rush-hour traffic with a specimen cup of, erm, let's call it "time-sensitive materials" that were donated to our cause by Husband. Thirty minutes, from collection to drop-off---that's all the time I had. Knowing what I know now, I SHOULD have had Ethan already in the car and standing at the front door like I was responsible for running the second leg of an Olympic relay race---I could start jogging as soon as I heard Husband running down the hall, brown paper bag in hand, shouting, "go! go! go!" and he could have tossed me the bag as I jumped in the car, threw it in reverse and tore down the street. Because having him hand me that brown paper bag, thanking him with a kiss and then getting Ethan's shoes on and leisurely going to the car and getting out of the neighborhood REALLY ate into my 30-minute time limit. We left the house at 8:10.

My GPS, not knowing that I was transporting said time-sensitive materials, and not having a human consciousness of what LA rush-hour traffic is actually like, kept trying to send me up to the 101 to get me to the lab. Um. No, Rhoda (this is what we call our GPS--get it? Rhoda? Road-a? We're wicked funny). I can't get on the 101 at 8:10 am! That is getting-to-your-destination-on-time suicide!!!! Stop telling me to make a U-turn and get on the highway! You just don't know!

So I wove through traffic on the surface streets and managed to get myself stopped at. every. single. red. light. ever. erected. in. Los. Angeles. I fear that Ethan perhaps learned some new words today. Words of the four-letter variety. Sorry, kiddo.

I pulled into the parking space doing my best stunt double impressionation (thankfully everyone was still stuck in traffic on the 101 because the parking lot was empty), grabbed Ethan and that damn brown paper bag and ran to the building. I was so flustered and rushing that a doctor saw me, with Ethan in my arms and assumed I was looking for the pediatric urgent care center in the same building. "NO!" I said, "I HAVE THIS!!" and held up the brown paper bag. Klassy.

He directed me to the lab. I walked through the door of the lab at 8:35. SUCK IT, TIME SENSITIVE MATERIALS!! Woo! Hoo! I beat your clock! I was so pleased with myself at having gotten 7 whole miles in the Valley in under 30 minutes, that it actually took me a few minutes of filling out paper work to realize that the lab tech was just letting that blasted brown paper bag (and it's contents) sit on her desk. HELLO???!!! THIRTY MINUTES!!!

Finally she came to get it (hopefully to put it into a refrigerator or something?!) and I filled out the paperwork (is it wrong that I still don't know Husband's social security number? Because I don't), and then we went on our way.

That meant I had 1.5 hours to drive all the way back to our house, drop Ethan off with one of my saint-among-women friends here who are always taking care of Ethan while I'm off being poked and prodded by medical professionals of all persuasions, and then get my infertile ass down to the local House O' X-Ray for my Hysterosalpingogram (which sounds more like a function of Twitter to me than a fertility test).

Fortunately I met very little traffic on the 101 (which leads me to believe that perhaps, just maybe, my earlier frantic drive through the valley wasn't really necessary, but whatever. I got to the imaging center and was able to relax for a few minutes. And by relax, I mean sit around a waiting room with a bunch of cranky, overly-perfumed old people, watching the local FOX morning news with no volume.

I have to say, watching the soundless segment of the Octuplet mom running into and out of her gigantic new home which will house her eleventy billion children while I sat in a waiting room trying to get information about why I can't get one more fetus to set up temporary residence in my uterus was SO not cool. I have seriously channeled all my rage about this situation into that woman and I've done everything in my power to avoid seeing stories about her because it's just not healthy or productive to feel that hostile towards someone you've never even met. But man, do I loathe her.

Where was I? Oh yeah.

So they called my name. I was instructed by a dorky male nurse to "remove everything. well, I guess you can leave on your bra. And your shirt. but take everything else off." Um. Awkward. So I remove only my shoes, pants and underwear (which would have been so much easier for him to say, but he had to go and make it all uncomfortable by asking me to strip naked. Ew. It's been a long time since I helped myself into a hospital gown, and I have to say, it made my palms a little sweaty to see myself as a patient again. I've been not-a-patient for so long now, the realization that I'm going down that route again kind of hits me at every turn. I'd love to be the woman who can consider her pregnancy "not a medical condition" and give birth in the privacy and comfort of her own home, but that is not to be for me. My pregnancies are UBER-medical. And this felt like the beginning of that.

But it's okay, because if that's what it takes to have another child, so be it. (See, universe???!!! I keep telling you I'm prepared for this!! Cut a girl a freaking break!)

And then I found myself in a ginormous, cold x-ray room with the male nurse who moments ago had asked me to take it all off. And the male doctor. I kept waiting for the female nurse---the one who in theory puts you at ease by being another woman in the room?--I kept waiting for her to show up. But she didn't. So I was stuck with socially (and, erm, professionally) awkward male nurse, and male doctor, who thought it would be appropriate to try to make jokes with me about how expensive it is to have kids these days.

Seriously? You want to pull on that thread?! Because I believe I'm lying here on this table, spread eagle, letting you shoot blue dye into my uterus for something like $750. You want me to start re-thinking the cost of raising a child NOW???!!

If I ruled the world, I would require daily sensitivity-training for all medical professionals dealing with a woman who is pregnant, trying to get pregnant or has just given birth because there's NO ONE in this world more sensitive and some of the people with the medical knowledge to help them have the bedside manners of a box of rocks. Seriously.

So there was that discomfort (both of the conversation and the industrial sized speculum that's required to find my useless speck 'o cervix). And then, on the x-ray machine, there it was. My cervix. This is where you picture Seinfeld and his greeting to his arch-nemesis, Newman. "Helllllo, Cervix," was all I could think when it showed up on the screen. The bane of my existence---the sad little door with the rusty hinges and busted locks. Sigh. There it was.

It looked pretty good---long, strong. Not at all like I remember it from my pregnancy days when it was all smooshed and tiny with the "weight" of my just-bigger-than-a-grain-of-rice baby. So maybe the "no transabdominal cerclage or bedrest" OB was right. But whatever, focus. focus. focus.

The blue dye went all the way through my tubes. More easily on one side than the other. But at least it went all the way through. and was very cool to see. The fact that anyone ever gets pregnant is absolutely amazing to me, after looking at the delicate little system that makes it happen. And I went, on some level, from being sweaty palmed with fear, to sweaty palmed with anticipation. I'm a sucker for seeing how it all works and this little peek back into this part of my body renewed that fascination, and the hope that pretty soon I'll be seeing a whole lot more of the inside of my uterus. Only in the near future, I hope I'm not looking at blue dye, but a heartbeat.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

East Meets West

So, let's back up a little bit in the saga that is my reproductive funk (prepare for yet another example of the over-share).

Started acupuncture a month ago. Took herbs (in capsule form; acupuncturist says most people don't want to get pregnant badly enough to actually drink the stuff), and noticed that my post-ovulation temperatures soared like a pretty little pregnant bird all the way up to the high 98's, an excellent sign, and not something my post-ovulation temperatures usually do---they generally go up and down and up and down until they resemble what my acupuncturist calls a "saw-tooth" and what I call the jagged fangs of infertility (who's a drama queen?! not me....right?).

Last Saturday found me back in her office, fertility chart in hand (soaring pregnant bird and all), herbs consumed, and her hands taking my pulse. A smile swam over her face and she said, "I know I have only been seeing you for a few weeks and I don't know your pulse as well as I could, but that feels like a very pregnant pulse."

I took some deep breaths and gave myself for permission to believe, for just a minute, that MAYBE she was right (I mean, the chart and all), and then I dove back down into the "It hasn't happened in thirteen months--why should it happen now?" and all that fabulous negative self-talk. I mean, how could she just feel my pulse and know? And more important than that, how could my body let her, my acupuncturist, know, and not let me in on it?!

Turns out, four days and six negative pregnancy tests later, my wariness was confirmed, and it was made ever so clear to me that, soaring temperatures, "pregnant pulse" and all that fabulousness aside, I was still NOT pregnant.

It wouldn't be fair to say that my faith in acupuncture was shattered--actually, there's not a ton to shatter--it's only been three weeks; my verdict on it is still out. I know I feel better when I leave, in a more-connected-to-myself-and-more-centered-focused-and-at-peace kind of way. It is definitely good for my "Year of Living Mindfully" resolution, and for that, if nothing else, I'm grateful. Besides, looking at the wall o' babies collage in her office makes my insides warm and mushy. So, faith not shattered---but not too terribly enforced, either. I continue to look hopefully to the words of friends who either tell me about their own positive experience with acupuncture or relate stories of a friend of a friend, or their cousins' friend's sister, who got knocked up after only a few months acupuncture. So I will keep breathing through the placement of needles on my ankles, forehead, wrists and belly--hoping that the Eastern medicine will do what it says it can do and find a way to help my reproductively challenged body actually reproduce.

But I also had an appointment with a regular old Western OB this week, too. You know, the kind who scoffs at your own attempts to chart your fertility cycle, tells you to relax and just have sex, schedules you for fifteen tests and starts talking about clomid within seconds of walking into the room? Yeah, that kind.

In pure "Sarah can't get her act together" form, I have yet to get my various medical records transferred from my doctors in Virginia, so I spent most of our appointment reliving, in my own words, the experience of my last pregnancy and what my perinatologist expected from any future pregnancy. She threw an entire brain's worth of information at me in response to that not the least of which is that she doesn't do the transabdominal cerclage unless a second type of transvaginal one--the Shirodkar one--fails. My first cerclage was a McDonald stitch, not Shirodkar, so she would perform the Shirodkar stitch on me early on and hopefully have success with that. Also? No bedrest. So all of that sounds fabulous---far less invasive cerclage proceedure, no bedrest. Sign me up.

Oh. Shit. I have to actually get pregnant first. And that's when another barage of information came pouring out of her. Semen analysis, hysterosalpingogram, ultrasounds the day of ovulation, when to have sex, how often to have sex, maybe we'll use Clomid, blah blah blah blah.

So next week, I get to have blue dye shot up into my uterus and fallopian tubes while I lie on a cold X-ray table, and Husband? Well, he gets to look at porn and, as Costanza's mother would say, "treat his body like it was an amusement park." Seriously, even in infertility, men get the better end of the deal.

The Western way feels so cold, impersonal and one-size fits all--if your body doesn't do what it's supposed to do, pop a pill and force it. The Eastern way feels so much more intuitively grounded and respectful--if your body won't do what it's supposed to do, focus on the mind/body connection and work with your own energy to get it flowing correctly again.

I'm not sure which way, if either, will help me. Right now, I'm just about ready to pop Clomid into a Pez dispenser and take them every hour, on the hour, if the doctor tells that it might help my chances of conceiving. I'd walk around with needles sticking out of my belly all day. Because every month is starting to feel like a failure to me. Every time I wake up on the 30th day of a cycle and realize that I'm not pregnant, I find myself mourning that baby that might have been, that somehow wasn't, and that might never be. I hope that by putting some faith and trust in both the West and the East, we'll find a way to bring the best of them together and finally get this baby we're already in love with, made, once and for all.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

So we've hit *this* stage...

File this under "something to embarrass him with when he brings home the ladies...."

I am in possession of one I MUST BE NAKED AT ALL TIMES child. This is how I found him after leaving him alone in front of Noggin for five minutes while I talked to my mom on the phone. Apparently Wubbzy inspires him to explore his inner nudist.