Sunday, September 30, 2012

Cycle 19, CD 32 (14 DPO)

[Click here for more information about Emhart's September Photo Challenge]  

Prompt: Moon

I'm very sad that it's the last day of Emhart's photo challenge. Though I didn't come close to posting every day, I really enjoyed participating. It provided a lot of insight and perspective and  was interesting to see how others interpreted the same prompts. This was my first photo challenge and I can assure you it won't be my last! 

Last week I had a pretty monumental experience. Epic even. Just one block from my house,  Endeavour appeared in the sky for her very last flight. It was amazing to see the retired space shuttle so close. She's seen many things. Things that I can only dream of. Seeing her soar through the air, well, it filled me with wonder. It made me think of bigger things and how small, in fact, I am.

And though not a picture of the actual moon, this beauty has been closer than just about anything else. 


Thank you Emhart, thank you for connecting our small community in a joint vision.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Cycle 19, CD 27 (10 DPO)

[Click here for more information about Emhart's September Photo Challenge]  

Prompt: Cozy

When my eyes first blink open in the morning and I see this, it almost makes the day ahead seem tolerable. It also makes it exceedingly hard to get out of bed. Ms. B and Hunter have a love affair that their respective species would not condone- but is oh so sweet at its very foundation.


Things have been rather busy around these parts. There have been quite a few good days even. And then the walls start crumbling again. Mike and I are fighting and my libido is the culprit. Mainly because I just don't have one. Add it to the list of things infertility has taken from me. It's not good for our marriage though and I'm at a point I don't know what to do about it anymore. 

In other news, I'm now at the point that I'm ready to be put back into the game. No more bench warming for me. I'm traveling the next few days so this morning I had an u/s with Dr. D to make sure I was cleared to play. And I am. Lining is nice and thick, no cysts, and my ute is gearing up for a touchdown. 

I'll be harassed by TSA for carrying meds with me through security. I'll have to pull out my little letter explaining why I need to carry a bag with pointy things, tiny vials of liquid gold, and ice packs onto the plane with me. They'll yell at me from the end of the scanner and ask if I'm diabetic. Everyone will hear and I'll yell back, "No sir, I'm just infertile!" Sometimes I just like to see the looks on peoples faces. 

Which leads me to my newest little anecdotal gem. See, I'm in this weird stage where I feel like I have to out myself to anyone I talk with longer than 5 minutes. I'm not sure why because the conversations *never* leave me feeling good. But anyway, I was at the hairdresser last Friday and sometime after the scalp massage and sometime before the layers were shorn, I spilled the beans to my stylist. She's 34 and though she's little Ms. Edward Sissorhands and works magic with my shiny locks, she's not the sharpest tool. And you know her advice after I went though my spiel? She said, "Well, maybe you just don't want it enough. You know, you really have to want it in order for it to work." I sat there gap-mouthed staring at myself  in the mirror as she naively clipped away. 

"Which way are you going to go with this Tutti?" I asked myself as my hand slipped into my purse and wrapped around the handle of the sharp fork I always carry with me for situations such as this. 

Instead, I decided to challenge her logic and said, "Well, how do you explain my 2 miscarriages then? Did I only want it kinda bad so it only kinda worked or did I stop wanting it bad enough, and that's when I lost them?

She thought for a second, tilted her head and said, "I think to finally become pregnant you have to visualize holding your baby every day or it won't work.

Stupid girl didn't even know I was fucking with her. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Cycle 19, CD 19 (1 DPO)

[Click here for more information about Emhart's September Photo Challenge]  

Prompt: Garden

A close friend was scheduled to come for a visit in late July. We'd been counting down her arrival for months. I had already bought a little card and propped it on her pillow. It was a congratulations card: "congratulations you are going to be an aunt!" As it happened, I found out we lost the heartbeat two days before her arrival. 

I shredded the card and announced my devastating news to her over the phone instead. She needed to know the hornets nest she was walking into.  

A happy garden
It was hard to have anyone visit in those days leading up to the D&C. As anyone that has suffered a miscarriage knows, it is a crippling time. But as much as I didn't think it possible, having my friend with me was a wonderful distraction. Despite the despair that consumed me, she was somehow able to keep me from curling up inside myself. We went on long walks around the neighborhood. We got our toes painted. We drank in the ocean... and more than our fair share of wine. And amazingly enough, she made me smile. Especially when she yanked off her fun yellow sunglasses and made my neighbor's ordinary garden plant into something extraordinary. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Cycle 19, CD 13

[Click here for more information about Emhart's September Photo Challenge] 

Prompt: Blue

Growing up, my mother had life-threatening allergic reactions to cats. So despite my tears and incessant pleading, we were never were allowed to bring one home. When Mike and I moved in together, I saw my window of opportunity. After 30 years and a trip to our local animal shelter, (the mighty) Hunter joined our family. 

Back then, we had plenty of land for him to explore. But I was always worried for his safety. Because with that freedom, came the threat of harm in the form of vicious raccoons,  stealthy coyotes, and nasty possums. Despite Mike's constant assurances that he would be fine, I voiced my concern to the vet- allowing him to be the arbiter of truth. What he said was profound, "An outdoor cat lives a happy life. An indoor cat lives a long life." I used to hold my breath every night until he was snuggled back safe in my arms.  


Hunter was a happy cat for a quite a few years. And then we moved into the city, where he could no longer roam free. Urban living was just too dangerous. He was automatically sentenced to life of imprisonment. Didn't even get his day in court. Relegated to live a long and monotonous life. 

I feel like I understand, in a sense, what it is like to be my cat. I know what freedom feels like. The unabashed happiness and naive belief that things will be wonderful forever. And I also know what it is like to have it all come to a screeching halt. I'm imprisoned too. I look longingly out the window and wish it was safe to go outside again. And I wonder if life will ever  go back to how it used to be. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Cycle 19, CD 7

[Click here for more information about Emhart's September Photo Challenge] 

Prompt: Pure

I found a love for gardening quite a few years ago when we lived in the country with more land and light than I knew what to do with. I grew fruit and vegetables and herbs. It was amazing to watch these plants grow and bare witness to their wonderful little gifts. I would run and check on them first thing every morning and pick and prune to make sure they continued to grow healthy- forever glaring at the calendar in hopes the first frost would never come. 

When we moved into the city a few years ago, it was hard to look at our little concrete outdoor slab and feel the same sense of excitement and hope. I no longer had enough light to grow edibles or the land to dig my hands into. I had to switch gears. After several conversations with a local nursery, my path was clear. Flowers were my only option. I was crestfallen; flowers just weren't as fun. 

I was told that gardenias might fit within my growing constraints. My spirits rose a bit because gardenia is one of my favorite scents. One that reminds me of tropical places and makes me very nostalgic. However, I was warned, these were finicky plants and extremely hard to grow. Even given perfect conditions, those elusive fragrant flowers often give up too early. The buds so full of promise of good things to come, often drop without warning- never to give bloom. 

So you can imagine my surprise last week when, after two years of working with these guys, I got my very first bloom. Even if this is the only one I get this year, it was worth it. The smell is intoxicating and the flower, one of the purest things I've ever seen. 

A single, pure gardenia bloom
No, the irony of all this is not lost on me. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Cycle 19, CD 6

[Click here for more information about Emhart's September Photo Challenge]

Prompt: School

I pinky swore myself that, starting today, I was going to get active again. My life has been pretty sedentary and lacking in vitamin D for several months now. Ironic now that summer is almost over. I also could stand to loose some weight because somehow, I've gained almost 15 pounds over the last 2 years. I completely blame infertility. For all of it. So today at 5:01PM, I slipped on my sneakers, grabbed Ms. Brown (the pooch), and ventured out. Just being outside is a big step for me, never mind the 5 miles we walked. And it felt really good.

Between listening to my favorite audible blogger chicks, feeling the sun permeate my skin, and watching Ms. B's head swivel back and forth with each new smell- I felt like I was healing. Like, instead of waiting for time to do its thing, I took matters into my own hands. I made myself heal a little bit today.

And maybe it was the universe's way of applauding my efforts or the fact that I actual looked up for once, but something pretty cool happened. As I walked along, I looked over to my left and there it was- my prompt. And not in the form I anticipated.

A school of dolphins

By the time I paused Mo (in the middle of a great bit about Snooki and her meatball baby being highly annoying), ripped the phone off my arm, and pulled up Instagram- they were gone. So you'll just have to trust me when I tell you that there was a school of dolphins swimming together out in those waters. They were beautiful and majestic. They kept switching off with each other, coming to the surface every so often to take a deep breath before diving down again. Kind of like me.


Shit on it. Mike just informed me that it's a pod of dolphins or a school or fish. He's totally right. And here I was just beaming for the last two hours at how perfectly it all came together. Well, we are just going to have to pretend that dolphins swim in schools for the evening because I'm not ready to let the English language rain on my parade right now. Deal?

Damn, I hate it when that happens.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Cycle 19, CD 5

Yup, we're back to regularly scheduled programming- my period officially arrived (with all sorts of emotions). But it doesn't really matter because I'm benched. Nothing to look forward to, nothing to count other than the passing days, and no hope that we'll be any closer to a pregnancy by the end of the month. I know this is a time for continued healing and it is still early in that process- but I'm ready. I'm desperate to start looking forward again. Purgatory sucks.

I met up with my beloved Trisha last Sunday for a little lunch out in the sun. It was wonderful to see her again and deliver some in-person hugs. Surprisingly not a single tear was shed the entire time- by either of us. Rather, our time together was even more healing than I anticipated. It felt good to process the last few weeks with someone that intimately understands. We talked hopefully of the future and the strength we were trying to rebuild each day. On my drive home, I realized that I felt lighter. It's a strange confluence of events that brought us together, but I am more thankful for her, her friendship, and her strength than I can't possibly put into words.

September is going to be a long month for me. As I said earlier, it's going to entail a whole lot of waiting. So to pass the time, I thought it would be fun to participate in EmHart's September Photo Challenge. I probably won't play every day, but I'll do my best to not miss too many. If nothing else, it'll force me to look up a little more often.

Prompt: White


I change my wines with the season: whites during spring/summer, reds during fall/winter. It just tastes better that way. I know it's officially branching into fall now that Labor Day has arrived, however it will still feel like summer for at least a few more months. Which is great, because I can indulge in my favorite Chardonnay for a while longer. And this is exactly what has been getting me through the last few weeks. I figure it's ok to drown myself a while longer.

[Click here for more information about Emhart's September Photo Challenge]