Monthly Archives: June 2009

She Says… Overdue

Just as I suspected; no period this weekend. Don’t get all excited — it’s not even the “Ohmigod I might be pregnant, I didn’t get my period!” kind of not-getting-my-period, it’s the “Well, that confirms it, I haven’t ovulated since February (or before?) so we have no chance at all of getting pregnant until we get that going” kind.

I pretty much knew (no temperature shifting around the supposed time of ovulation, no cramps/moodiness, and the most obvious indicator… that I haven’t had a real period for almost 5 months!), but I still had a little glimmer of hope that all of a sudden I’d start cycling on my own. Apparently that wasn’t in the cards.

No biggie — now I wait the requisite week before calling the doc, and ask her to start me on a lovely batch of Provera/Clomid to get those little eggies rolling down the tubes like they should be. On the upside, Benjamin and I stocked up on full fat dairy during our grocery shop this week. I enjoyed a glass of 2% milk yesterday as a snack, and on my cereal this morning. It was delicious! I packed a whole milk yogurt to eat with my lunch today, and will probably include cheese of some sort in my dinner tonight. Yum! This is an experiment I can get into :)

She Says… Bring on the whole milk

http://www.quinnthemighty.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/08/milk-300x300.jpg

I know, I know, I’ve already talked a lot about a healthy diet. And I’m pretty confident that my diet is unrelated to my ovulation issues; I eat a flexitarian diet of almost entirely vegetables, whole grains and lowfat dairy. I take prenatal vitamins, fish oil and vitamin C every day. I get plenty of healthy fats from olive oil and avocados and nuts, and I try to balance protein and fiber in every meal. Blah blah blah. So tonight I was watching Access Hollywood (don’t judge!) and they were discussing “fertility-friendly foods”. Since we all know that Access Hollywood rarely has breaking news in the health department, I didn’t think much of it. But a quick Googlefest led me to some startling research.

NOTE: I am fully aware that this one research study and its “findings” are not a cause for concern, and should not be treated as undeniable truth. However, it can’t hurt to be aware, right?

The more low-fat dairy products you eat, the greater your risk of ovulatory infertility. — HealthyWomen.org

Women who had a high intake of lowfat dairy food were more likely to experience ovulation problems. An increase in low-fat dairy foods of 1 serving per day was associated with an 11% greater risk of an ovulation problem resulting in infertility. Women who had a high intake of high fat dairy foods were less likely to have ovulation problems. — Randy Morris, MD

Benjamin and I often joke that we should get a cow because I drink so much milk. Skim milk. My morning cereal bowls are overflowing, and I’ll often have another glass of milk with a piece of fruit as a snack. And a hefty pour in my cup of tea or iced coffee (decaf, these days). And almost every day I have a yogurt or string cheese for breakfast or a snack. Nonfat yogurt. Reduced fat string cheese. Choosing lowfat or nonfat anything is out of the ordinary for me, as I much prefer natural, whole foods to their processed, lowfat counterparts. However, I eat so. much. dairy. that I always figured I was better off choosing skim. Also, I recently learned that lower-fat milks have more calcium per cup than whole milk (because some of the volume in whole milk is displaced by milk fat, which has no calcium). Score another for skim! But now this.

Could my seemingly healthy dairy habits be contributing to my anovulation? We probably won’t ever know for sure… but it can’t hurt for me to test out the theory. I think I’ll stick with 1% in my cereal and switch to full-fat yogurt. Yum! Since yogurt is portion-controlled, I know I’ll only be getting one serving at a time. Anyone else heard about this? Thoughts?

She Says… Nothing’s Happening

Well, here we are again in familiar territory. The excitement of having a Provera-induced “period” (aka withdrawal bleeding) 2 1/2 weeks ago has worn off, and I’m back to waiting not-so-patiently for something else to happen. If the week of ingesting little progesterone pills had magically put me back on a normal schedule, I should have ovulated last week. But, since I am obsessed, I’ve been charting my temps (a la Taking Charge of Your Fertility) and have not seen a thermal shift (or even a thermal pattern, for that  matter). So I’m fairly certain that ovulation has not happened — yet.

Since I was away from my darling husband in Vermont last week, it wasn’t great timing for the most important element of babymaking. Nevertheless, I’d really like to sleep soundly knowing that my body is cycling the way it needs to so that SOMEDAY we can time things correctly and procreate. But alas, it sounds like my body has other plans. And although I am generally a supporter of letting nature run its course, I’m getting a little frustrated by the lack of progress.

Last night Benjamin said to me, “I want you to get preggers so we can tell our friends and family about the blog”. You bet your sweet ass bottom dollar that’s not the only reason we want to get pregnant. Now that we’ve done so much talking and planning and hoping and trying, we want to get this little adventure started ASAP. We’re ready, ok? Bring on the baby! Or at least the normal periods so we can start “trying” like everyone else. Is that too much to ask?

Three more weeks to wait until I can call the doctor again. She said if I don’t get my period by then, we can discuss “other options” and “next steps”. The date is already marked on the calendar and the countdown has begun…

She Says… Our Little Urban Farm

Growing up, I remember tasting green beans and rhubarb fresh from our backyard garden. Though I didn’t live in the country by any means (within the Baltimore city limits), the house I grew up in had a huge backyard with a tire swing, sandbox and swing set. Oh, and a little vegetable garden. But I didn’t think about that much as a kid. Sure, I helped move some dirt around while my mom gardened, and definitely helped taste the fruits of her labor, but I never really gave that little plot much thought. After I graduated from college, Benjamin and I bought our first house, a 100 year old 2-family house in the up-and-coming urban area of Somerville, just outside of Boston. Between the driveway and the alley on which we live, there is more pavement than green space; not exactly verdant pastures crying out for vegetables! However, with a few years of grass- and flower-tending under my belt, I am ready to try my hand at growing some of my own veggies.

As I have mentioned, over the last year I have become increasingly focused on eating whole, natural foods. And what better way is there to guarantee having fresh produce than to grow it yourself? I just finished reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, by Barbara Kingsolver. The book describes a year in which Kingsolver and her family challenge themselves to eat only locally sourced food (as in, mostly from their own backyard). She happens to live on a farm with rows upon rows of veggies, not to mention chickens — so I’m not equating her situation and mine just yet. However, the book did inspire me to see what I could produce for myself in an effort to understand more about where my food comes from and just how far it has to travel to get to my grocery store shelves.

So here it is… our own little urban farm, built with love at the end of our paved driveway. It’s the only part of our property that gets enough sun, so, aesthetics aside, it was definitely the best spot for veggie production. Unlike Kingsolver, I’m not counting on our little “farm” to produce enough veggies to feed us all summer, but I’m hoping for a few salads and maybe some zucchini to validate my green thumb.

DSC05290

DSC05291

DSC05295

DSC05298

DSC05300

DSC05313

DSC05314

DSC05330

Lest you think this is a deviation from my normal baby-focused blogging; it is not. In fact, I think that this recent shift towards living a holistic, natural life is directly related to the babymaking we’ve been doing. Even in the middle of a city, I want to raise my baby with a little dirt under his or her fingernails. I want him/her to experience the delicious smell of a garden-fresh tomato, and understand how we can do our part to support the local food economy. With the garden growing bigger every day, I feel like we’re another step closer to making our house into a home.

He Says…Three Years and Counting

Today is Kate’s and my three-year anniversary.  I am sad that we don’t get to spend it together or even see each other, though.  Kate is off at Norwich University in Vermont doing a residency week to complete her Master’s program.  On Friday, she will be graduating with a Masters of Science in Organizational Leadership (MSOL).  So while I am sad to have her gone for a week, I am extremely proud that she has worked so hard and is finishing her program with flying colors.  But, it’s been a little weird being home this week without her.  I travel a decent amount for work, and am usually gone at least 2 or 3 days a month, sometimes more, but I have rarely (maybe once or twice) been home without her.  When I travel, I certainly miss Kate, but I am always so busy with work when I’m gone, and now it feels very different, and empty, and lonely.  Kate definitely makes our house a home.  The kitchen always smells of yummy food when she’s here.  I can smell her perfume after she’s gotten dressed in the morning.  I have someone to look forward to spending my evenings with and going to bed with.  And I know, for sure, that Schnitzel misses her when she is gone.wedding-1

Anyways, today I will think back on our gorgeous wedding three years ago.  It was an absolutely perfect day (although not so much with the weather), every detail was beautiful and unique and very much US.  And today I will think of all we have accomplished in the last three years.  Job changes, adopting a wonderful dog, renovating our house, renovating more and more (which is probably the most stressful thing a couple can d0), and now doing what we can to start a bigger family.  Kate, I love you with all my heart, and I always will.  You are truly my best friend.

Happy Anniversary.

wedding-2

wedding-3

He Says… Bad Blogger

I have just been sitting back, letting my lovely wife Kate do all the hard blogging work.  And that’s just not fair. Because this is our blog.  I keep thinking I have something great I want to write about, and then I don’t. And now I can’t remember any of those “great” ideas.  So I will just say a few things that are not necessarily connected to each other:

First of all, as Kate mentioned, she got her period, so I guess that is exciting.  She sent me an email yesterday and part of it said, “so if we do want to get preggo, we should be “trying” this “month”. unfortunately there’s no telling WHEN within that month i’ll ovulate, so we may just have to have a lot of sex like we did in march :)”. So that is definitely exciting for me.

Second of all, I think I have realized that I don’t always listen… to Kate.  It’s not intentional, and I was not aware that I do it (maybe because I’m not listening?), but she has mentioned several things over the last few months that she had apparently told me before, and I had no recollection of it.  Now, I actually have an amazing memory, so at first I assumed that she did not tell me these things (she has a pretty bad short term memory, so that excuse worked for awhile).  But then it became clear that she had told me several things and I just wasn’t listening (so I could not fall back on my amazing memory).  Maybe it’s my old age (now that I am 30!), but I don’t want to be one of those husbands who don’t listen to their wives.  I also think, and maybe their is something gender-related here, that if I am sitting if front of technology (computer, iPhone, television, toilet, etc.), I should not be expected to remember things.  I am not sure that excuse works, though. Anyway, Kate, I apologize for not listening all the time, and I will try to do better.  I love you.

Third of all, I have been kind of excited about having a baby because it means we will probably get a new car.  I know I should not be excited about this factor of fatherhood, but I am.  We have had one car for about 4 years, and it’s been fine.  Kate takes the subway/walks to work, so I use the car most of the time.  We have a Mazda 3 5-door (basically the cool way of saying station wagon).  It’s a great car and a decent size.  I don’t like big cars, but I have realized that I would find a bigger one to be very useful for when I am hauling video equipment around.  Plus, I think we could not manage with me, Kate, Schnitzel and a baby for much more than a day trip with our current car. It’s just not big enough!  And, I think that when I am travelling for work, or whenever, really, Kate and baby may need a car.  So basically, we have decided that when we have a baby we will probably get a new car.  It will definitely be a hybrid, and will definitely be bigger than our current car, although we’re not sure what kind yet.  But I am excited.

Lastly, this new season of Jon and Kate + 8 is making me really sad.  I am not sure I can watch it anymore. The season premier was just depressing.  Really.

That’s all.  Will try to write more soon.

She Says… Finally!

Ok, the title may have given it away… but I FINALLY had a “period” for the first time since February! Wahoo! But let’s start at the beginning, shall we?

I went off birth control at the end of February after a perfectly normal period (and a decade of perfectly normal periods before that, thanks to the wonders of birth control). Benjamin and I tried our best to make a baby. When I didn’t get my period 4 weeks later, I absolutely thought I was preggo. I entertained daydreams that I was one of those deliciously fertile women who get pregnant their first month trying. Not so. A few weeks later I thought I was knocked up again. I convinced myself I had miscalculated my cycle, and now I was really pregnant. Not so. Month #3, same deal (although, admittedly, by this time I had caught on to the fact that I wasn’t ovulating, and even though the chance was slim that I was miraculously pregnant, I considered it). So then my wonderfully proactive doctor did some blood tests (all normal) and prescribed Provera as a little “physical challenge”, so to speak.

I was supposed to take the Provera for 7 days, and then wait and see what happened. At Day 7, I wasn’t feeling any terrble symptoms (I had read the symptoms could be pretty nasty), and I was optimistic. On Day 8 I started to feel a bit crampy, irritable and fatigued… but, not one to blame things on medicine, I assumed it was just a long week at work. Day 9 assured me that the symptoms were definitely hormonal, and were definitely a result of the meds (as I hadn’t felt that tearful and agitated in, umm, 3 months!). This big, red beauty also appeared around this time:DSC05341

I felt a little sorry for myself, until IT happened. And all ill-will towards that little pimple went out the window — it was all worth it. Yes! I got my period! Well, I’m not sure if you can actually call it that because (without going into too much detail), it only lasted a day and didn’t exactly present itself like my period. However, the doc herself said, “that counts”, so I passed the test. I won the Provera Challenge :)  That means that a) I love Provera, b) I am producing enough estrogen to cycle on my own, but my body just hadn’t gotten there yet, and c) now I have to wait it out and see what happens next month to see if I start cycling normally.

So, the hubs and I are cleared to keep “trying” this month, and it’s quite possible that I could start ovulating/cycling normally. So, we’re back in the (proverbial?) saddle, folks! Doc says to call her in 6 weeks if I haven’t gotten another period, and we’ll discuss a cycle of drugs (Provera, and possible Clomid to stimulate ovulation) to get things going. We’re going to make a baby one way or another!