Hi there! Let me tell you a little about me and where I am in my <seemingly> unending quest for progeny! My name is Katie. I am a jack of many trades, but I’ll tell you what I do in a list of favorite to least favorite. First, I own a photography and graphic design business called Full Circle Photography & Design. I will feature a lot of our work here as it greatly affects my mood and feeling about fertility and IVF in good and bad ways (let’s face it now, I photograph an outrageous amount of kids so cute they will make your ovaries explode). If you want to check us out, click here. If not, you’re seriously missing out – we are pretty awesome. Your choice. Second, I am a certified dog trainer (I know what you’re thinking, that makes no sense – get to know me and it totally will) and I have 3 sweet, obnoxious, wonderful, horrible dogs and 2 terrorist cats. You will see them, too. Many times they have aided in holding my sanity together and if this process produces a kid or two, sorry not sorry – my dogs are their older siblings. And yes, I treat them like my kids. Third, I am a marketing director for a small business that does cool things. I’ll leave it at that as far as occupations go.
But wait! There’s more!
While that is what I do to pay our (ever mounting – thanks, IVF) bills, there are other things that define who I am and how I got here. One of my favorite and simultaneously least favorite: I am a wife. My husband is pretty awesome. While some days I would love to strangle him, most of the time we are too freaking cute and we are very happy. A few relevant things about us that will put our current predicament into perspective: He is a LEO (not like zodiac, he’s a cancer <lol>, I mean Law Enforcement Officer) and he is also in the Army and actively deployed. As if IVF wasn’t stressful enough! His name is Tim (same as my father – yes, as awkward as it sounds) and I love him every day and like him almost every day. In all reality, this whole project is for him.
Ok, so that is me in a blog post paragraph (I didn’t think “nutshell” was really accurate).
Ok, here is where I tell you what led us to the dreaded “infertile” label. I promise to try and not tangent too much, but I might. Shortly after we were married, after the fabulous honeymoon and right as we were getting back to reality, I mysteriously missed my period. My entire pubescent life, I could literally set the lunar calendar by my periods. For me to skip one or even be late was unheard of so, by what should have been day 4 of my period I just knew I was pregnant! I was so excited. We knew we wanted kids and we didn’t really care when or how soon. We were not planning sex during my fertile windows (that would come though and honestly, I didn’t even know what that meant at the time) but we were not preventing pregnancy either, so it seemed like the shoe fit! I was 26 at the time – prime baby making age, as ‘they’ say. I just KNEW I was pregnant. Enter: The First Stick I Peed On. Alas… a negative. No pep had gone from my step! Surely, it was just too soon for this to be accurate. One handy Google search confirmed that. Knowing me (I promise, this will make sense once you do get to know me), waiting TWO WEEKS (?!?!) was not an option. That day I scheduled an appointment with a new OBGYN (my new married insurance didn’t cover my long-time, much-loved OBGYN) to have a blood test done. I went in, had the test done – not pregnant. Not only was I not pregnant, I wasn’t even ovulating. Boom. I took that first blow pretty hard. I remember calling Tim after I left and just started crying as soon as I heard his voice. Why? I couldn’t figure it out. We weren’t even really trying, why was I so upset? I like to think now that I was unknowingly divining the future. I was preemptively lamenting what I was about to do to my body, my marriage, and my stress levels. Because THAT was certainly cry-worthy. Anyway, the blood test determined I was not ovulating so this new doctor prescribed me Provera (to start my period) and Clomid (to hopefully make me ovulate). Over and over again I did rounds of Clomid then blood tests to see if I had ovulated then scheduled sex on specific days and times, I got home ovulation prediction kits (lots of sticks to pee on) and even started to send Tim pictures of the pee sticks when I had a lutenizing hormone surge (the hormone ovulation prediction kits test for) to let him know today was the day (what was I thinking, seriously…)! While blood test did indicate that I was ovulating over the course of my inital treatment, we still were one pink line at the end of every cycle. It was maddening. Meanwhile, I had no idea of the dangers of prolonged treatment on Clomid and I also had no idea I was literally ruining mine and Tim’s sex life and working on creating a rift in our marriage as a whole.
Enter —> friends. Don’t you love friends? I do. And I didn’t even realize then how important the bonds of community are when you are going through a crisis, mainly because I didn’t know there was a crisis. Our very close friends, we found, were going through some of the same struggles we were. While they were further along down the road, they had a lot of insight about my course of treatment compared to hers and all of the options there were based on our specific problems. I found that I had literally no idea what she was talking about because, since that initial blood test, I hadn’t even actually SEEN my new OBGYN, he had just viewed my blood work and then called in more meds. I didn’t know taking Clomid for an extended period could lead to worse infertility problems down the road, in the grand scheme of things I really knew nothing at all.
So, Type A Katie being Type A Katie, I took matters into my own hands (so I thought, I can only haha it this sentiment now). I switched OBGYN’s (after an obnoxious amount of research) hoping to get an appointment just for a referral to an Infertility Specialist. And that I did. I received the referral in December of 2017 and the first available appointment was May of 2017.
So, now that you know my back story, from this post forward I will post with appointment updates, any new developing leads, thoughts of a heavy mind – or an angry one – and any bits of useful information I find along the way.
Thanks for reading about me, if you have! (<—- years from now, I will read this to myself and shake my head with a grin on my face)