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God has blessed me tremendously with an amazing husband, Doug, and two gorgeous little boys, Gavin and Joey. It has always been a dream of mine to have a large family but God may have other plans. I had a series of 6 consecutive early miscarriages when trying for baby #2. We are currently trying for baby #3 after our 7th miscarriage. I am faithful that God's plan is perfect, even when I am not happy about it. I love comments and meeting new followers so please don't be shy!

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Potty Training In Just 3 Days!

Several years ago I blogged about how I potty trained Gavin in just 3 days using the 3 day potty training method.  It was a really rough 3 days but if the goal was no more diapers, it worked like a charm! 

Since Joey turned 2 in July, the idea of potty training was looming.  I was pretty much dreading it.  Joey is a challenging kid.  He is ornery.  He was a late bloomer in the verbal department.  He just didn't seem ready.  I put it off for just a few more weeks for several months.  When November hit and Doug told me that he was going to be taking a week off after Thanksgiving, I decided it was time.

I followed the 3 day method which involves ridding yourself of all diapers and diaper like products (i.e. pull ups) and going cold turkey.  You then fill your kid full of as many liquids as you can get them to consume which gives you tons of opportunity for successes.  It also makes for many many many many... messes.  Between wanting so badly to not clean up pee for the 45th time in 2 hours and repeating the token phrase of "Don't forget to tell me if you have to go potty." 3 billion times, I was ready to give up after 4 hours.  Maybe I should wait until he is older.

By day two, I was singing a different tune.  Joey was having more hits than he was misses.  He was still having an occassional dribble if I wasn't 100% tuned in to him and his cues for needed to go potty.  But when night fell, I was pretty pleased with his progress, but I joked that if I ever have another baby I am going to let them potty train themselves.  Even if I have to wait until they are teens. Never again was I going to bother with this crazy thing called potty training. 

But, much like child birth, the reward is worth it!  When day 3 was completed, Joey was diaper free and peeing and pooping in the potty.  Every time.  No joke!  He hadn't shown any interest in the potty before.  He never ever woke up dry in the mornings.  In fact his morning diaper was always the wettest. 

Confession: I love a good night sleep and on the second night used a pull up at night.  I called it his special bedtime underpants.  After the third day of potty training, he was waking up dry every morning.  So after a week of pull up insurance at night, he is no longer using those.  I am pretty sure that the author of the 3 day potty training would scream at me, but hey, it worked for me. 

The first time through potty training with Gavin I was so stressed out about taking this show on the road.  I felt confined to my house for fear that he would pee in his car seat or need to go and I would have to scramble to find the closest potty (which is not fun at all!!).   For him, we started with a quick trip to WalMart to basically run in and run out.  I then gradually stretched the time out further.  With Joey I was more relaxed and jumped in with both feet.  When we arrived at our destination I offered the potty then did my shopping and asked again before we left.

If you are in a hurry to be done with diapers, this is the way to go.  No need for the kid to be "ready" but you must be.

My advice to you:
1. Have backup.  Don't try to do this when your hubby is on a business trip.  You will need an hour each evening to soak in a hot bath and read something that doesn't involve pee or poop.
2. Don't spend too much on fancy potties or potty equipment.  One light weight easy to clean potty will do. 
3. Have a massage already on the books.  All of the bending to help your child sit and position the goods (especially for boys!) and the pulling up and down of adorable tiny underpants is tough on the back. 
4. Remind yourself that even though it is super hard, it will be over soon and the pay off will be worth it!

If you have any questions or need support feel free to email me or find me at http://www.ttccommunity.com/index.php/community and I will be happy to help in any way I can. 
Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Just a Quickie

I am just going to do a quick cycle update today but I have some posts in the works for when I don't have two kids frantically playing with new toys while managing sugar crashes.  Those posts is going to require me to have a complete train of thought without interruptions of "Guess what Joey drew on this time?!"  It seems I can talk about ovaries and follicles while remote control cars zoom around my feet and I can even tell you about my uterine lining while kids bicker over whose turn it is to play with the Leapfrog Pen Reader. 

I went to the RE on Sunday morning and had my cycle day 12 scan.  I have a great lining again of 9.6mm and 3 follicles that could potentially pop.  The lead was a ripe 26mm and there was also an 18 and a 15 but the RE was only giving the 15 a 50% chance of containing a mature egg.  I was a little worried that the 26 was too big since it would continue to grow 1-2 mm per day and it could take up to 3 days to ovulate.  Since I had the 18 waiting in the wings, I felt better.

I decided that after learning that using half of the trigger shot (5,000 units) only trimmed a day off of the false positive tests, that throwing away almost $40 worth of medications wasn't worth it.  I triggered ovulation with the full 10,000 units of hCG.  I did notice that this time the trigger medication came in a different box and instead of it reading "Human Chorionic Gonadotropin" it was a name brand of Pregnyl.   Of course now I am worried that it will not leave my system at the same rate as the other type but... we'll see. 

I am still planning on waiting until 12 dpo to test but there is one teeny issue. When I got home from my scan and getting the trigger I felt a sharp pain near my ovary.  Then, the next morning my temp went above my coverline so for the first time since having trigger shots, I think I ovulated the same day as the trigger.  It may have even been hours after the trigger.  Kind of ironic since I think the trigger shot couldn't have already done it's job so I think that my ovulation was natural and I just injected my body with $80.00 worth of hcg merely to drive myself insane with false positive tests.  I say all of that to say, 12 days past ovulation is also going to be 12 days past trigger.  I wish I could say that I am strong enough to wait an extra day or two to test until I can be sure that the trigger is gone, but... alas... I am an addict. 

In the next week or so I plan on writing two posts that couldn't be any less related.  The first is going to be addressing our faith in God and how it relates to children and their education.  In the second, I am going to share our story of getting Joey successfully potty trained in just 3 days despite him not showing any signs of readiness.  Oh, and I hope to post some positive pregnancy tests in about 2 weeks.  We'll see how that goes. 

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!! 
Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Faith like a Child

The past few weeks have been emotional to say the least.  Between Grandma's health being on the decline and the awful tragedy in Connecticut, I have been on the verge of tears without much provocation. Each time I have shared this story, it has made me cry tears of pride. 

We were riding in the truck on our way to visit Grandma who's health has been a one-day-at-a-time kind of thing.  Seeing as how I wasn't sure if the boys would make it to visit again before she passes, I wanted to have a gentle, age appropriate talk about death. This is a topic that has yet to come up as no pets have passed, no one he knows has passed, and his concept of death is probably based on squished bugs and flowers that wilted and had to be disposed of.   I was nervous, but felt like I owed him a bit of a heads up instead of after she leaves us. 

"Gavin, do you know how old Grandma Luna is?" I asked.

"She is 100 years old!" He answered happily.

"Yes!  She is 100 years old!  That is a really really long time to be alive!  We have been very blessed to have her with us for so long.  After we live here we get to go live in Heaven!  Grandma is going to be going to Heaven to live with God soon, so we are going to visit her and tell her how much we love her, okay?"

"Yeah, but how will we get a house up to Heaven?" he asked with a quizzical expression.

"Well, we won't need to take anything with us to Heaven because God will see that we have everything we need." I explained while hiding my smile as to not give him the impression that his question was humorous instead of endearing.

"But what about a car?  Will God give us a car?" he wondered.

I paused for a second to find the right words and came up with, "If we need a car in Heaven, I am sure that God will provide it."

Gavin seemed satisfied with my response and he gazed out the window as we drove.  Then, about 5 minutes later, he spoke again.

"So God gives us the Bible so we can learn all about Him while we are down here.  Then, when we go to Heaven, we get to see how God makes stuff and does things.  That is pretty cool!"

Pretty cool indeed.  
Friday, December 14, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: Infertility Affects Everyone

What?  It isn't Wednesday?

That's okay.  This isn't going to be wordless either.

Today I went for my baseline ultrasound which is really not post worthy since all they do is give me an ultrasound and say, "Okay.  Looks good."  How is that for climactic?  Understand why I don't blog about these appointments?

As I walked into the waiting room full of high backed leopard print chairs and contemporary decor, I saw something as odd as my mother-in-law at a strip club.  An Amish couple sat waiting patiently.

WHA??

I do live in rural Ohio and can identify an Amish person and these people were clearly Amish.  I did consider trying to snap a picture with my phone, but respect that the Amish do not like to be photographed (not that anyone appreciates being photographed when they aren't aware of it) so I refrained.  So you will have to just close your eyes and picture it for yourself.  Go ahead.  I'll wait.

Still hard to believe, right?

I am now going to have to wait for TLC or Discovery Chanel to do a reality TV show or documentary on infertility in the Amish community. 

Have a great weekend!
Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Most Fertile Time of the Year

Someone shared an article in one of the secret groups for TTCers I participate in.  It explained that September 16th is THE most frequently occurring birthday.  In fact, the whole month of September is the most popular month for birthdays with August and July coming in a close second and third.
Since I started my period today and will trigger ovulation on day 12... carry the one... add 38.... Yep.  That will give me an estimated due date of... you guess it... September 16th!  This is fantastic!  But wait just one infertile second (which happens to feel more like 32 cycles)!  What if I don't get pregnant?  Brace yourself for impact!  There is about to be a deluge of pregnancy announcements in the coming months.  Don't say I didn't warn you.  This is science folks.  Can't argue with that.

So let's look a bit deeper into this phenomenon of September 16th.  This means that conception takes place on or around Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  Is it because people are feeling festive?  I don't know about you, but Christmas Eve around here is me always scurrying to bake something, wrap a dozen somethings, making last minute purchases, and this is usually happening while I don my gay apparel that is actually sweatpants and a tacky Christmas-y jeweled sweatshirt.  Actually I don't own a Christmas sweater or sweatshirt, but I will if it means getting pregnant. 


Anyone crafty out there want to make this for me?  Sipping on some festive holiday cocktails in this bad boy has to be a recipe for a baby, right?


This ought to work for Doug. I will refrain from any borderline inappropriate comments about packages. 

Are any of you or your kids the result of some Christmas time lovin'? Do I have any "cycle buddies" who might be ovulating around Christmas this year?  I'd love to see if we can be real live examples to this September phenomenon!
Sunday, December 9, 2012

Just Say No

It isn't looking good, folks.  It isn't looking good.  Chart looks great.  Temps are good.  Boobs are sore.  Tests are all clearly negative.

While I am very tempted to allow myself to feel sorry for myself, fall in a heap of soggy tissue, and sleep until AF starts, I am going to rally.  Not particularly because I want to, but because Doug is leaving town for work for a few days and Gavin isn't quite ready to cook for himself.

Tonight I will be flying solo for the ttcradio show.  I have grown quite accustomed to having Doug there so that I don't feel like I am talking to myself for an hour.  Between my utter frustration with this fight with infertility and not having Doug to help to steer my radio chit chat, this might end up being the best or worst radio show since the start of ttcradio.  Now... I really hope that the kids sleep well tonight otherwise the radio show might be people listening to me beg the children to sleep.  Doesn't that sound like fun?

I am challenging myself to turn over a new leaf next cycle.  Brace yourselves.  Seriously.  Brace yourselves for this.  I am not going to test until 12 DPO next month.  I know that with the 5000 unit trigger it will be out of my system by then and I will know for sure if I am pregnant.  I want to test on 12 dpo and if there is a pink line I can be happy.  If there isn't I can feel like I do right now and just feel that way for one day instead of for the last 3.

 I am trying so hard to stay positive.  I used to be so good at this.  Month after month I have been able to find the silver lining and this month I just haven't found it yet.  Today I am just feeling a little sorry for myself and increasingly frustrated that I am still waiting.  I know I'll get out of my funk eventually, but just not today. 

Friday, December 7, 2012

Me and My Big Mouth

Last night I took Gavin to his very first, non family, birthday party.  This was no ordinary backyard party.  This was at a McDonalds.  Gavin couldn't have been more excited!  I, on the other hand, was about to walk into a room full of people that despite me crossing paths with them twice a day three times a week, I really didn't know any of them.

We go in and about 2.6 second later Gavin has tossed his shoes and off he goes.  I smile awkwardly and try to  figure out what to do with myself for the next 2 hours of 5 year old insanity.  Thankfully, a group of moms took me under their loud and raucous wing and I fit right in. 

One of the moms was talking about how she discovered that she had gallstones by giving herself and ultrasound.  Then I asked the question that most rational women wouldn't.

"So... You just scan yourself?  Like you throw some gel on there and have at it?" 

She was clearly my kinda girl because the over-sharing began immediately. 

"Yeah!" she answered.  "When I was trying to get pregnant I would scan myself and see if I had any follicles ready to go and would go home and tell my husband it was time to put out!" she shared with the small group of us.

I tried to stop myself but she said follicles.  I can't just walk away from a woman who mentions follicles in a McDonald's Play Place.

"Are you kidding me?!  I pay hundreds of dollars every month for someone to tell me the same thing!  Oh the money I would save if I could just....  wait... you give yourself transvaginal ultrasounds?  I'm not even sure how that would work..."

"Oh!  I just put my leg up on the table," she explained, "and I scan away! How exciting for you that you are trying for another!"

"Yeah.... not all that exciting anymore.  We been at it for 2 years."

I went on to explain my losses and she asked me if I was MTHFR (which I am) and we chatted for a good 20 minutes about my uterus.  At McDonalds.  With a woman I had just learned her name and no longer have to call her "the lady who drives the blue minivan."  She now knows all about my reproductive history.

I know some people are really secretive about their fertility but I just can't stop when given an opportunity.  The woman offered to give me a scan any time.  She went as far as putting her number in my phone for me!!  It wasn't until after I was telling the story to Doug that I realized that I never asked her what or where she worked.  Wouldn't it be funny if she worked at a vet clinic or something???  I would have to think long and hard if I would want to use the same machine as an expectant Mastiff.

I did have to suffer through a few comments about how fertile they were.  For instance one just has to drink a beer and she gets pregnant.  The other just put her legs in the air and it worked every time.  Sigh... I wonder if it works with gluten free beer?

And now an update... as of this moment (10 dpo) I am clearly not pregnant.  I could be pregnant tomorrow though.  I am feeling a lot of various symptoms that are filling me with hope but I recognize that they could very well be a result of the progesterone.  Trying to be patient until I can get an answer.  Thanks for all of you that have been asking about me.  The good news is that my Monday I should know one way or another.  I'll update when I know!  Have a great weekend!


Monday, December 3, 2012

More fun with pee sticks!

This cycle I chose to trigger with half of the typical dose.  Instead of 10,000 units of hCG I went with only 5,000. 

I had friends asking me if I would consider trying a cycle without the trigger since I don't have issues with ovulation and they see me go insane every cycle trying to decipher my tests.  While in thoery I loved that idea, I was fearful that using the medications for "super ovulation" (getting 2 or 3 follicles) would be for naught and that I would only ovulate one of them and then I am not increasing my odds.  So I found my happy medium. 

I asked the doctor who did my CD3 baseline ultrasound if the whole 10,000 unit dose is needed to induce ovulation.  Before answering me he asked me why I asked.  I explained how it would linger for the whole 13-14 days and I would go insane every month being unsure if I was pregnant or if it was the trigger.  He said that I could probably trigger with 5,000 units but to bring it up at my mid cycle appointment.  Because I just can't not ask questions, I asked him why then do they use the 10,000 unit dose if less does the same thing.  His response, "Mostly because that is the dosage it comes in, but also hCG helps with progesterone production." 

I decided that even though I would have to throw away half of the dose, my mental health will reimburse me.  Already, I am thankful!  I have been testing every other day and today would be 7 days past trigger.  The test is very close to negative!  It will work out perfectly in that it should be completely gone by the time I would expect a true positive.  Just for fun, here is my three tests from this past week.
To see the photo larger, click on it.
If you want to see how they compare to my 10,000 unit trigger tests that post is here

I am happy to report that Grandma seems to be doing better every day and am thankful for all the prayers!  Hopefully my next post will be able to share wonderful news all around!  Have a great week!

One other thing... the winner of the crappy pee sticks is Hanna who suggested that a coaster be made from the pee sticks!  I haven't heard back from her yet so... Hanna: If you want some super crappy pee sticks email me or message me on facebook!  I will throw in some wondfos if you post a pick of a pee stick coaster on my facebook page!


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