Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Oh, but the universe is funny

That's right. The universe has not lost its sense of humor. Remember all the fussing and fuming of 16 days ago? Remember the decision to "not try" this month? Well, I'd backed down on that decision. I thought, heck, I'm on the Clomid, we might as well make use of it. Or at least not prevent it. I wasn't doing OPKs or checking for certain icky bodily fluids or any such thing, so I really have no clue when I ovulated. But it doesn't really matter. (Here's where the sense of humor kicks in) The "trying" that occurred on CD13 left me with a urinary tract infection which has made any targeted "trying" on the key CD14-17 impossible. Til today, CD18. So unless we had a really early or really late egg, I don't have to waste my energy worrying about it this month. Huzzah. Let's hear it for the death of the 2ww. Or the postponement, at least.

And don't start stuffing my head with nonsense like, "well, sperm can live inside the body for up to two days, so there's a chance it might have worked anyhow." I know at least what continents you all live on, I will find you, and I will club you.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

First of all,

My dear party of 7 at table 83,
Thank you for the $30 tip.
Thank you for being generous to me. Thank you for forgiving me for the less than standard service I feel I gave you. Thank you for understanding that there was a larger picture at work that made my job difficult that night. Thank you for not making me tell you why. The money itself is very helpful this time of year, but more than that, thank you for reminding me of something crucial: We don't always get what we deserve. It's very easy to recognize the times that injustices have been committed against us. We rail. We complain. We gripe. But there are so many times that injustice works in our favor, and I forget that sometimes. "I do not deserve the bad things that happen to me, but by gum, I deserve the good things." Really? It's Christmas time, and now more than ever, I remember that some 2000 years ago we got precisely what we did not deserve.

Your server.

More later. Dinner's ready...

Thursday, December 18, 2008


I tell you what, Clomid is a wacky trip. The first month I was on it, I had the pleasure of enjoying many of the side effects the pamphlets warned about. Hot flashes, visual disturbances, dizziness, vertigo (yes they're different), insomnia, headaches, etc etc. The second month wasn't too bad at all. This one, after a month long respite, has brought with it all the excitement of the first month, PLUS *drumroll* hallucinations! I'm not sure hallucinations are a common side effect of the drug, but the paperwork is right upstairs and I'll go look at it soon. Til then I will say it was WEIRD and partially responsible for me getting a mere 2 hours of sleep last night. Every time I shut my eyes, the vertigo would set in like mad, followed by what I can only describe as a sensory hallucination. At first, it just felt like something huge was pressing me from the side - and by huge, I mean huge and spherical almost. Then, after a while, it started to feel like my arms and legs were huge, or at least surrounded by something huge, and incredibly heavy. So for a couple hours I was spinning through space in a huge and heavy rubber suit. Almost.

No, I've never taken a "drug". I'm aware that marijuana is a leaf, and I gather from the jokes that cocaine looks like powdered sugar. I couldn't really venture a guess about what the rest might even look like. But I know what a trip is like now.

The rest of the reason for no sleep is a small child who threw up 3 times overnight, and woke up shrieking several other times that he thought he was going to throw up. Poor kid. He's better now and keeping food down for the moment.

What concerns me at present is that this is the third week in a row we've gotten him from his mother and he's had stomach problems. Is he re-infecting himself somehow? Is it just three weeks of bad luck at his preschool? Some sort of food allergy like glutens or something? That one doesn't seem likely. But I wonder.

I have other things to say, but I'll stop back later tonight or tomorrow or something. Must go food shopping.

Monday, December 15, 2008


I think I'm starting to bob to the surface. *sigh* Talked to the doc. We're going back on the Clomid this cycle, though I'm not counting days, taking OPKs or any such thing. Christmas day is CD13, and that's all I need to know. I don't have to wonder, count, plan, etc. I can expect the cycle to end somewhere around Jan 12-14. No counting. No thinking. No countdowns. No wondering. I can have wine on Christmas Eve, Port on Christmas Day, Champagne on New Years. Huzzah hooray.

I didn't want an August baby anyhow. Ruins too many plans ya know.

So anyhow.

I haven't had much I wanted to say to my tables lately, oddly enough. They've been pretty run of the mill.

Has anyone seen Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares? Gold.

Still have a little Christmas shopping to do and an absolute bucketload of Christmas sewing to do. Heaven help me. We all went shopping yesterday afternoon as a family and had a great time. The kids did a good job shopping for each other. They remembered to think of their sibling and not themselves. Big step. We were very proud of them.

I have one more thing to buy the hubby. Pretty excited about it.


Sunday, December 14, 2008

Hope drips

It's an interesting thing, watching hope drip out of your body. Oddly poetic that it should drip (sorry to be gross) into the toilet, no? It's just rife with poetic justice that this very stuff started in my heart and travelled through my body to form a nest in my womb. And it's not needed. Again. And so I flush it away.

I've been a headcase for the last day and a half and I'm not sure why. I still half-insane-hormonal. Everything makes me want to cry. Is it just because the "want" was in every cell of me, and so the disappointment is then in every cell of me? I don't think that's it. It feels more chemical than that. But I've never had emotions like this with PMS.

Nevertheless, it's CD1 again. It's the only day I will count this time I think. I need a break. I need to know going in that it won't work, and I need to have chosen it, and I need a month where I don't wonder every day of it, stronger and stronger through the last days of it, if "this" is the time.

Tomorrow maybe, or maybe the day after tomorrow, I will find my bootstraps and wrap them around my hands and pull myself up again. But tonight, I plan to lay in the dark, stare at the wall, tell my God that I'm not angry and that I love Him, ask for help loving my family tomorrow, ask that I might not dream tonight, and then just go to sleep.

Everything's gonna be all right... rockabye.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Heads popping off

To absolute hell with all the profundity. My head's about to come off. I'm an absolute mess. Let's just say that hormones of some sort are having a hay-day with my head and I've been crying for the last hour or so. That, after being rather impatient with my stepkids and distinctly uncharitable towards my husband. Who the bleeping hell has taken over my body???

If I'm not pregnant this time, I think I might want to take next month off. No meds, no tracking, no sex week 2. I cannot handle this again. I'm totally drained. It sucks and I'm upset and if you asked me today (which you haven't, but I'm going to tell you anyway), I'd say that I'd rather know going in that it's just a puddle of blood that's going to show up at the end of the month, and not have to bother wondering about it.

No, nothing has shown up yet. But I'm a flaming mess. I hate this. I'm not a happy camper. Is there any other way to say it? I think you've caught my drift.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Don't say that, that's yogurt

My stepson says the most amusing things, every. single. day. I just rarely remember them. This one I texted from my phone to my email address to be sure I didn't forget it. We were in the middle of redefining the word "interminable" (read: elementary school band and choir concert) on a set of bleachers with probably the narrowest seats in the world (no joke. no, it's not my expanding butt that makes me say that, either, so knock off the snickering) and he was sitting on my lap. I leaned over and said to my husband, "My butt hurts." The tot heard me say it, and turning to me, said quite seriously, "Don't say that, that's yogurt." "That's what?" his daddy asked him. "Yo-gur" was the clearer response. "Vulgar?" daddy said. "*sigh* Yes, daddy, that word is yogur and you should not say it."

He's four. His vocabulary is astonishing. His minor speech impediments are phenomenal.

We've made it safely through CD28. I'm nursing these last few days of hope like they're the last sips from an awesome bottle of wine. I'm starting to stress. A bit. I think I might be. I think it's possible. Unlike last time, when I knew I wasn't. The biggie? The girls. Literally. I'm a porn star guys. Or could be. (No, there are no video cameras anywhere in the house or yard or car...) I'm also a little afraid. I don't relish the thought of being knocked back on my a** (yes, self-censorship. there may be innocent eyes reading this). Again. I can sit with my legs crossed or stand on my head all I want. But if it worked, it worked already. And if it didn't, there's nothing I can do today.

I think that's a big part of this. I'm really learning the meaning of the word "frustration". Frustration is not beating the daylights out of a fussy printer when it eats yet another page. Frustration is not stubbing your toe. Frustration is beating your fists uselessly against biology, which gives no excuses for itself, no reasons for its rebellion, and no comforting promises. I know Fear stands at the doorway to all good adventures, but as I approach Fear again, I don't know if it will open the door to a brand new life, or just another antechamber.

I hope this fast I'm in will help me cope. I'm struggling with it (the fast), but that's the point, I think. Sure, you can run a mile, but can you run a mile with 10-lb weights strapped to your ankles? Sure, you're a nice person, but can you be a nice person when you're a little hungry? It can be pretty hard to do. Believe me, I know. I'm a waitress. I've seen what a piece of bread can do to someone's mood. Now I'm on the other side. But, alternatively, I am noticing my shortcomings, and I am actually motivated to do something about them. I've been fasting for... um... 10 days? (you tell me, how long ago was the 6 day mark?) and I'm falling back in love with it. I'm looking forward to the feasting of Christmas, believe you me. But there is something wonderful and bright here... in the waiting.

Oh wait. The waiting. :) Hm.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Killing time

Magnetic poetry online. Fun. :)

throw your music here
balance life & dream
compose grace
capture joy
let a song sing you through the smears
you are icon and dust
dazzle and ash
art is old and young
and never more abstract than flesh and paint


OK. So. Nothing much is happening.

The crazy lady I work for is causing some trouble now that I'm asking to be paid for the last three weeks worth of work. She's trying to pay me less than half what we talked about. Ug. We're in the middle of the discussion. I hope it works out. I'm a little concerned though because she owns a B&B and many of the reviews of the place itself complain about the financial dishonesty of the owner. Ruh-roh. So we'll see.

I'm on CD27 and trying not to think about it. Last month, I pretty much knew it was a no-go. This time, I really can't say. Of course, it's too early to say anyhow, but still. The girls are behaving rather strangely. I'm going to give it another 5 days at least. None of this getting excited on CD28 anymore. Done that. Someone *pointing at self* has an absurdly long luteal phase. This is good. It provides lots of time for little embryos to implant and lots of yummy blood for the little vampires to attach themselves to. So, I'm trying to be thankful for that instead of shaking my fist at the 3 week wait.

Hmmm. *drumming fingers*

That's all I've got. It's cold, dark and rainy here today. So gross. I have 2 quilts I'm working on as Christmas gifts that I really need to get back to.

Happy Wednesday.

Sunday, December 7, 2008


I wasn't going to write about this. Mostly because I don't really know enough to really say anything of value about it. But I think I will. A little. I'm cold and tired and that should abbreviate things a little. I don't want to forget this place in my life. I hope someday I'm old and wise and look back and can say, "Yes, that was the road I was on..." and whatever else old wise people say.

I am a Christian refugee. I have officially left the Protestant church and don't see the trajectory I'm on ever bringing me back to it. Who knows. I don't have a crystal ball. But that's not important, really. What I mean to say is that my husband and I are refugees of the splintered church of the Protest, but we've not yet found homes anywhere else. He is rather inclined to consider Roman Catholicism. Though I have no real objections to the RCC any more, I am much more drawn to the Eastern Orthodox. He is gracious, sees the value there, and so we attend a Greek Orthodox church nearby. I love it. I love how it is actually rooted in antiquity. It doesn't have to reach back, around, or past an inconvenient history. It breathes ancient air here and now and that air is beautiful. The service is beautiful. The liturgy is beautiful. It doesn't end when you leave the building - it is carried throughout the week, throughout the year, and it's not contrived.

We are halfway through Advent, more or less. It's the season of preparation prior to the Incarnation. The Orthodox fast all through Advent, in exactly the same way as they do in Lent. Fast prior to Christmas? It seems so strange. This is the first year I've tried to do it, and I'm coming in quite late. It took a bit of self-convincing before I decided to actually give it a go. I had to remind myself of how much I loved Lent and how, oddly, I missed it, even after the Feast of Pascha (Easter). I am 6 days into my fast.

Now, to define the Orthodox fast. Basically, you don't eat anything that came from a creature with a spine. That's the easiest way for me to remember it. Plants are OK. Carbs are OK (God help me). Lobster, crabs, oysters, etc are OK. Basically, no meat or dairy. More basically yet, you become vegan. Oh, and no oil. :) I am not strong enough to give up oil. 75% of what we eat is prepared with an oil of some variety, usually olive. Maybe someday I'll be so strong. But it's a muscle I'll need to work on.

Why fast? I don't know all the reasons yet, though I am glimpsing some of them. You know how you feel when you're sick on the couch, all feverish, achy and cold? Someone suggests, "Hey, why don't you take a nice hot shower?" So you do. You know how miserable those minutes are when you're dragging yourself up the stairs, peeling off your clothes, standing in the frigid bathroom, and even those first minutes under the water? That's like the beginning of the fast. Several times, I've looked myself in the eye (in the mirror, nothing creepy here) and said, "It's supposed to be hard." But then, after a couple minutes, the ache starts to go away, you can stand up straight, and you're not shivering any more. That's like the fast. It cleans away a lot of "yuck" somehow (and I don't quite understand how yet) so by the end, you feel so clean, and so ready to actually fully greet the holiday that is upon you.

There's also a certain sharpening of focus. Every time the tummy rumbles, or every time you think, "Dang, I could really go for a roast beef sandwich, or pizza, or ravioli, or even some stinking butter" you remember why you're not going to have those things. And it's really cool. It's like the difference between carrying around a picture of your lover and actually being with your lover. The picture is cool and all, but it's so much better to be able to talk to him. Or, I guess, more vividly, there's this picture: there are all kinds of couples that come into the restaurant where I work. Some of them sit and stare at their plates and hardly talk. But the happy ones talk to each other. They remember the other one is there, and they delight in it. That's what the fast is like.

I'm six days in.

Oh. Another thing I love is the breathing-in and breathing-out that the Orthodox take part in. There is a fast, then a feast, then a time of permission but not extravagence, then the fast again, then the feast again... and so on. It so well mirrors the world we live in, the bodies we live in. We have winter, spring, summer and fall. Women have periods of shedding, periods of building, periods of fertility and periods of waiting.

There is a real objection to be raised, given the fact that we are TTC. Yes, I might be pregnant right now. No, it's not a really good idea to deny the body basic nutrients. I'm not. There are alternate sources of all the things you get from meat and dairy. I'm working very hard to be diligent in that regard. On the other hand, some part of me thinks it would be really cool to find out I'm pregnant in the middle of a fast I'm observing. Not because it would be some sort of reward, but because I want my children to grow up with their faith warm between their toes, soft on their skin, and woven into the fabric of their being. I want them to know the God I love, and nothing would thrill me more than to be the first one to teach them.

I am very happy I decided not to neglect the fast.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

How do they know?

I think my breasts are the smartest part of my body, aside from my brain. No other solitary organ knows what cycle day it is but them. Well, to be fair, maybe the others know what day it is. But they certainly haven't got a clue what they're supposed to do on certain cycle days. But when it comes to "the girls" I don't even have to check my calendar. I know when CD20 has arrived because they start throwing absolute fits. The doc said it was a side effect of the Clomid to have particularly whiny girls. I'm not on the Clomid this time. So maybe it's just in the nature of the beasts. Really, who would have thought that sacks of fat could create this much ruckus? In any case, they sure are punctual. To be optimistic, I suppose this bodes well for the time management skills of my future children.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Days go by...

I've been meaning to blog, but have been finding myself at a certain shortage of time. We had all kinds of extra people in our house around Thanksgiving. It was lovely to have them here. It just doesn't afford much blogging time, you know?

In the TTC world, I went in to get blood drawn yesterday. I JUST heard from the doc. You need at least a 3 to indicate ovulation. Over the summer, I had a 2 the first time. Then, on Clomid, I got 38. This cycle... all on my own... no meds... 11!!!! Yay body! Way to pop out an egg!! *dance dance dance dance dance*

So the question to be answered in the next couple weeks is, if I'm not pregnant this time, should we go off the Clomid? Hm. We'll see how things go.

I'm almost beside myself. Ah!

I've been thinking this last week. A lot. Because ever since I suspected ovulation, my spirits and optimism have totally gone way up. I feel like I can take the waiting so long as there's still hope. The fact that my last period was so wacky really freaked me out. I was feeling like, "Oh great, so now there's something ELSE wrong." But with hope, there's more patience. I've been wondering about this and feeling sort of... umm... weak? about it. Like, shouldn't I be able to be patient and content even when things aren't the way I would have scripted them? Maybe. I think there's a great good to be found there. But at the same time, I think that hope is a gift. To take that gift and use it well is also a good thing. It's not only one of the three theological virtues but also a promise that's been given to us. New mercies every morning. A return of all the years that the locust have eaten. (Isn't that a cool image for us TTCers who have tried and tried and face month after month of emptiness... and yet another Christmas without the thing we long for most. Those years will be returned to us.) Yes, it's better to keep walking through the desert. But it's not a shameful thing to drink deeply of an oasis. It's a good thing. It's a gift given. Maybe I'm weak, but I'm not alone.

I've been listening to The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis and read by Joss Ackland on CD. I listen to it all the way through once every six months or so. It's amazing. Every time, there's something I hear that makes me think, "Yes, yes, yes. That is something I need to change." And something else that makes me say, "Wow." My favorite bit has always been (oh, and for those unfamiliar with the book, it's a fictional series of letters written from one "Senior Temptor" to a young devil in charge of one human soul. So the "cause" discussed is the cause of Hell, and the Enemy is in fact our greatest Friend): "Our cause is never more in danger than when a human, no longer desiring, but still intending to do the Enemy's will, looks round upon a universe from which every trace of Him seems to have vanished, asks why he has been forsaken, and still obeys." It's a useful thing to cling to. And then of course there's also the bit where the Church is described as she is, not as she seems to be. Not the shattered and fragmentary conglomeration of hypocrites and sinning saints, but as "spread out through all time and space and rooted in eternity, terrible as an army with banners". Chills.

There's something else I wanted to say *drum drum drum fingers*

*sigh* I should get back to work. Heaven knows I have plenty of it spread out in front of me.

Have I mentioned this new job yet? I'm not only a server, but a web writer/publicist too. Freelance. Work at home in jammies. Awesome deal. The problem is that the person I work for is, at least in writing, horribly disorganized. This does not work well for me. I am one of those few supremely rational and intelligent people *snicker* that stride the earth and are constantly confused and annoyed by inconsistency, vaguery, poor grammar, inanity, and disorganization. If you want me to run you, that's fine. Just tell me. Otherwise, I'm fine being an employee. But really. Please make sense in your communications. Be clear. Employ the backspace key if you wrote something you don't mean. Don't get me wrong. I really enjoy the job, I really like the lady, and I'm very thankful for the opportunity. My head just sometimes spins around.

White wine helps. God help me if I'm pregnant and can't have my white wine for 9 months+breastfeeding time. Scratch that. God help everyone else. ;)

Thursday, November 27, 2008


What a great couple of days. My in-laws and sister- and brother-in-law came in on Tuesday night. Wednesday evening, my parents and brother showed up. This afternoon, my grandparents and aunt came in for Thanksgiving dinner. We had 4 generations at the table. So cool. And a great couple of days. I'm totally wiped out, totally stuffed, and totally thankful. :)

Plus, and I'm elated about this, I think I ovulated all on my own. I'm not totally sure about this, but certain bodily signs showed up that have never shown up without ovulation occurring. :-D So, I'm going in to get some blood work done on Monday or Tuesday to see if I'm right. I'm ridiculously optimistic. And our "timing" was quite good... if I'm right. *grin*

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Hiatus shmiatus

Not a hiatus. Just a lack of anything to say. The week has been pretty boring. The kids were here, they were pretty good, no major squabbles or headaches. I worked a bit. Worked on Christmas present quilts a bit. Read a bit of my Dracula book. Started cleaning the house. You know. Exciting week. I do have a couple things to say...

Dear sir at table 83,
It is not... how you say?... couth to eat a 14 oz strip steak with your hands. It is not corn on the cob. It is not a boneless buffalo wing. It is steak. Do not gnaw into it. Cut it up into bits. And please please please dear God do not dip it into ketchup before you do so. On second thought, never mind. Scratch all that. You brightened the evening of many a server. Do that every time you come in. :)

Dear party of 5 at table 101,
I should apologize to you. As a server, I base a great deal of my interactions with my tables on how they respond to me in the first 30 seconds. I'm right 90% of the time. People who do not look up from their menus, do not respond to my greeting and stare at me blankly when I ask them if they'd like drinks do not typically turn out to be as friendly, outgoing and enjoyable as you did. Plus, every last one of you was overweight and had bad teeth. My initial judgment of you was both inaccurate and unjust. I hope you didn't realize what I initially thought of you. I don't think you did. But either way, please do accept my apologies. I'd very much like to see you at my table again.
PS. Ma'am, I know having your 18 year old son sign up for the service doesn't thrill you. I'd like to thank you ahead of time for the sacrifice you are about to make when you send him off to war. I don't agree with these wars in particular, but I do deeply appreciate those who will stand up and love their country anyway.


I've also been doing some thinking and I think I'm starting to unravel my emotions around this whole TTC thing. I've really been struggling. C.S. Lewis once said in A Grief Observed, "no one ever told me that grief felt so much like fear." I think the same holds true the other way around. Fear feels a lot like grief. I'm not grieving. I can be patient and wait for good things. I've not lost anything. But the weight in my chest that seems so much like grief is more in the vicinity of fear I think. Because what is fear but the anticipation of grief? Watching a wave rise up before you would not frighten you if it could not harm you.

I know that the doctors are not concerned yet, and rationally, I'm not either. But I feel it. I don't know that I will be able to have a baby. I don't know that it's just a matter of time. I hope so. I still believe so. But the "certainty" that a young woman starts out her life with is just not there any more.

Part of my fear is not just of not being able to have a baby, but how I would cope with that. I see now the force of will that's required to not foster vices while I stew in my own impatience. It takes a great deal of fortitude to be kind, good, patient and loving when your circumstances are not what you want them to be. Honestly, I'm becoming better in many ways, but not really all ways. I'm still impatient as all hell. And my circumstances really aren't that bad now! In fact, they're downright idyllic with the one exception. (Side note, how did my sister in law do it?)

So anyhow. I'm afraid. And impatient. But wouldn't patience be easier if we could see the end?

I've been debating talking to my priest about this. Two things I would ask for: first, that I would have patience and stop fussing about this, and second, that I might have a baby. I'm still not sure what we're really allowed to pray for. I think it's good to pray for help in the area of virtue, but to ask for things is not something I'm settled on. We should not try to lead Almighty God around by the nose. He is not a God of burnt offerings, sacrifices and deals. Priests are not magicians. Sacraments are not sorcery. So all we can do is ask, I suppose.


In other news, our oven finally arrived. We bought a new oven at the beginning of September. It showed up 2 weeks later with a fatal flaw. When the oven was on, it blew out the back two burners of the range. The replacement they brought in several weeks later did the same thing. General design flaw. So, we decided to go with a totally new make and model. It arrived on Friday. And it works! We can now bake and use all 4 burners at the same time! Yay!!!

The fun came when it was being installed on Friday. Apparently, there was a piece of cardboard packed up under the heating element of the oven. Without knowing this, my husband decided to fire it up and make sure it worked before the installation guys left. You can see where this is going. My stepson comes into the room where I'm working and says, "Um, why is there smoke pouring out of the oven?"

Everything did turn out OK.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Finally talked to the doc. She's not sure what happened either, but she knows of cases just like this one where the woman ended up pregnant. I don't think I am, but with that chance out there, I'm not going on the Clomid this month. I'm not having a happy day about it.


By the time Saturday rolled around, I was starting to resign myself to another 5 week wait. I was still rather unhappy about it, but I was starting that process of gathering hope, gathering courage, gathering patience, being thankful for what I have, etc. On Sunday, it only stung a little to walk past the baby section in Target. Closer to the normal level, not the anvil-on-the-chest level it gets to be for a day or so. This morning, with still no sign of RM re-emergence, I got another negative test.

I think that God can bring good out of anything. I've seen it. I don't, however, believe that everything that happens happens for a "reason". I mean, it happens for a reason. It's not out of the blue. The body is a delicate machine and it doesn't take much to throw it off. Poor diet makes you fat or thin, stress is bad for your heart, chemicals get out of balance and all sorts of things follow. But I don't necessarily think that it's correct to think that God hands out cancer, near-sightedness, infertility, bad skin, mental issues or any other such thing specifically and for a purpose. Hence, nothing here to understand.

I wish there was a cosmic reason to point to. "Aha! That's why." Belief in the Fates is tempting sometimes. Turn the universe into a vending machine, kiss up to the good guys, stay out of the way of the bad guys, and all will go well. But there's not. There may be a cosmic benefit, and probably really a whole package of benefits, to be achieved from learning patience, peace, joy, courage, love, hope, etc, even in a valley. But I don't think the benefits should be confused with the cause.

So. I'm struggling today. Hope was rekindled, because bleeding of the kind I experienced and the little spotting that showed up last night is suspicious. And it just may be too soon for a test to pick up the hormone levels. That little candle of hope that was relit is almost harder to deal with than the finality of Friday. But swirling through my head are wonderings. Why else would it stop like that? Did I experience a very early miscarriage? But I don't know how those work. And if I can't go on the Clomid today (because the potential harm of taking Clomid while pregnant makes me highly disinclined to "chance it"), I don't get to go on it at all this month. And then how long til the next cycle starts? My body is not good at running this process on its own. If the past is any indication, I'll be taking another pregnancy test in 5 weeks, getting another negative, then going on the Progesterone, and that can take anywhere from 4-14 days to jump start anything. The length of the wait makes me feel like I'm choking.

I'm trying to find a still, silent place in my mind to put all this so that I can get on with the work I'm supposed to do today. I'm trying to be patient. All will be most well. This day is just a little harder to get through than others.

I should probably delete this whole post. But I'm not going to. Someday I will read it again and think, "Worth it."

Monday, November 17, 2008


Well, it stopped. Yes. Stopped. The Red Menace appeared, as you know, early Friday morning amidst much moaning and gnashing of teeth. Totally normal, not light-and-pink (or any such implantation-esque thing), severe crampage, the whole deal. Early Saturday afternoon, it stops. Cold. End. Has not been seen since.

Played telephone tag with the doc this afternoon and was told NOT to start taking the Clomid until we're sure I'm not pregnant. I tested last night, thinking the same thing, to no avail. I'm going to get to see another negative result tomorrow morning.

*forehead on desk*

And the forehead is not just on the desk because I'm exasperated with my physiology. I am beyond exhausted. Headache, verge of nausea (though not "nauseous"), slightly dizzy, totally unable to concentrate, pity my poor husband who must think I don't love him because I haven't heard a word he's said all day til he's repeated it thrice, exhausted. Something seems to be... amiss.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Two things

First, I am wiped out. I don't think I slept well last night. I slept for 10 hours, so most may call me a sissy. Call me what you like. I was pooped all day. And. Like I said. I don't think I slept well. I had three very emotionally vivid dreams. Hard to explain. But I think I put a lot of energy into creating them. They stuck with me all day. I did figure out, I think, why a certain figure keeps turning up in my dreams at times like this. And no, for those who know me that read this, I'm certain you're not guessing the right person.

Second. A letter.

Dear party of 2 at table 70 at 4:45 all the way up through party of 4 at 71 at 10:15. All a y'all. Listen up.

I know the economy is... unpleasant. I live in it too. I know that most things at least feel more expensive. I have to buy them too. If you want to come out and eat when things are tight, by all means. But do not think that you can order all the things you usually order, drinks, appetizers, full entrees, coffee and dessert if you cannot afford all of that and a tip. "Thanks, you did a great job!" Does not pay my bills. It's called a kiss-off. A religious tract does not put food on my table. Jesus loves me, but he doesn't regularly chip in to heat my house. He does that through you.

The bottom line: Your server is not your coupon. If you can afford 20% less than usual, that comes off the whole kit and kaboodle. Not just my ability to feed my family.

I'm not going to treat you differently after tonight. I'm not going to go to work with a sour attitude tomorrow. I'm not going to spit in your food or sabotage your evening. That's not what I'm about. I am going to do the same damn knock-up job I've been doing for the last 12 years and I know things will turn around. You've got to take the good with the bad in my job, and it all does come out in the wash. But please. Think.

And now, where is that pillow?

Friday, November 14, 2008




Hey xbox, maybe you and ET have been going about this all backwards... maybe you should try to impregnate yourself. Anyone want to wig out with me?

Of all the times to be right

It's official. We've officially tried to get pregnant in every month of the year now. Time to give Nov/Dec a second shot. Hey, maybe I'll get a hell of a Christmas present.

I'm trying to remind myself that someday I'll look back on this day, and other days like it, these "day the heart is breaking" days, and see it was so worth it. I'm trying to remind myself that this is one of the rainy days that someday, I'd be willing to walk right back through all over again. Because it was worth it. (Yes, I'm pulling from that song again, "Here" by Rascal Flatts). I'm dropping another heartache in the Offering Plate. I'm trying.

Am I being petulant? Impatient? Demanding? Should I just cool it and be calm and stop fussing? Am I blowing this out of proportion? I mean, yes, there are far worse things that could be happening.

I just feel like my children already exist somehow. That they're out there somewhere and I just want to see their faces. I do not want to wait another 5 weeks to hope again.

Well, enough of this. Here was my, "not pregnant, tears on the pillow" post. There is a roast to make, and a house to clean, and laundry to fold and work to be done. Maybe I'll start the day off with a Mimosa.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Round of applause

And a round of applause goes out to the man. He is THE man. I had a very difficult day with my stepdaughter today. No need to get into it, but I was very frustrated by the time he got home. He listened so well, only had to dodge the flare-ups from a few of my misunderstandings of what he was saying, and handled the whole situation beautifully. What a guy, what a guy.

Pretty sure my suspicions are about to be confirmed on the not-pregnant-again front. There's a big part of my internal self throwing itself against the inevitable, squealing, "No no no no no no no no." Crossing my legs and standing on my head will not help. It is coming. And there's nothing, right now, that is going to make it better.

The mind-body connection is weird, isn't it? Why is it that when we love something, we want to put our mouths on it? We say babies are cute enough to eat, for example. We kiss our lovers. We blow kisses at friends. Why is that when we're sad, fluid comes out our eyes? I mean, why not our ears? Belly buttons? Why is it that grief lives in the throat, dread in the stomach, and fear along our spines? And what is the name of that ache in the chest?

I have other "why" questions brimming in the back of my mind. None of them are quite so interesting as the "when" questions.

Vampire bite?

I've been inspecting my neck for tiny holes. I haven't found any, but I'm sure they're there. Evidence? I am totally drained of all energy and feel just a little bit "undead". Sick, eh? It's got to be blood-related somehow. Hopefully it's the production of more blood that's ensuing, and not the imminent release of unused blood. All I know is that I am a 4-year old's teethbrushing away from a nap of my own. *sigh* *smile*


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

More letters to tables

Dear Party of 4, Table 85,
Yes, I remember you. And I know you remember me. Good thing you weren't sat at my table. Because I would pass you off. Good luck with all those breadsticks. Your cholesterol level will not be as forgiving as I am trying to be. And that's saying something. You are one of my challenges.

Dear Table 81,
OK, look. I know you're not my table, but really. When you walk through the doors and sit down at a table in our restaurant, you are entering into a business agreement not only with the establishment, but with your server. You, in a sense, hire her. You do not buy her. Say "please". Say "thank you". Do not be mean to my friends. That's all.

Dear Party of 1, Table 61,
I remember you, too. But I am very very glad to see you. You are such a sweet (older) gentleman. You are kind, you are gentle, and you like my smile. I can tell because you say nice things to see it, and you brighten up a bit, which makes me brighten up a bit, and so it goes like a smile ping-pong game. And I like that. I know you're not a creep because the creeps don't care if you smile. I remember your name from your credit card, and I will greet you with it next time. And we will smile. :) haha


In other news, today is CD32. Don't get excited. We've got at least another 4 days to go til the Red Menace is even expected, let alone late. I can feel the heartache coming already. It's warm in my palm, smooth and heavy, and the day is rushing up when I will place it, along with all the others, in the Offering Box. I know someday all those heartaches will come back as richness, and well worth the treasure borne. But for now... they still await redemption.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Letters to tables

Dear table 81,
There's no need to be snippy with my friend. She offered you wine. It's her job. For you to respond, "Ma'am, we are Christians. Please do not set that bottle on our table!" makes me want to say, "Sir, so is she! And I don't recall Christ ever saying, 'Feel free to be nasty to those who offend you.' I'm pretty sure He said to love your neighbors. And I'm pretty sure that the whole Cana incident was properly recorded. They didn't drink unfermented grape juice at the time." Really, the devil is not in the bottle.

Dear table 72,
You were the delight of my evening. You looked at each other the way my husband and I look at each other. My mind went in fast forward and I hope that in 40 years we still can read each other's minds, want to, and find joy in it. Your love for each other flowed over into kindness for me. Thanks for the reminder.

Dear party of 8 at table 70,
Your kids were utter terrors and they were big enough not to be. There's no need for a 5 year old to toss his spaghetti on the floor and then grind it into the carpeting of two sections by racing back and forth between them. I was amused, sir, when you gently caught your son by the face. I wouldn't have previously thought you could do such a thing... gently. Thank you, though, for the large tip. Many people don't realize that your waitress is perfectly willing to clean up the post-Armageddon-like mess your kids leave, but really resent doing it for free.

Dear table 60,
If you don't want a waitress, go to a fast food joint. I have to ask you questions. There's no other way for me to know what you want to drink, what you want to eat, and if you need more of anything. You are the type of people that make me want to be the kind of mother who raises children to raise their eyes off the table, answer in complete sentences, and be at minimum basically polite, if not friendly.


I am a waitress. Server. Word-de-jour, whatever. I bring food to people as quickly, efficiently, and pleasantly as I can. I enjoy my job and I'm pretty good at at I think. I should be. I've been doing it for almost 12 years now. Child labor laws, my apron strings. I started when I was 14. :) I have learned a lot doing that job. I've learned that adults are a lot like children. When they're hungry, they're crabby. Sometimes, a breadstick can turn a whole day around. I've learned to forgive people who are demeaning, mean, rude, haughty, or just plain thoughtless and serve them nonetheless. Surely there are life lessons here, eh? Nevertheless, there are a lot of things I'd like to say to people. I'm going to start saying them here.


I go to a Greek Orthodox church. Someday I'd really like to be Orthodox. Officially. I'm not yet, but there are good reasons for that. So I was sitting in church yesterday, and was surrounded by three fantastic smells: the perfume of the lady in front of me, some sweet Greek bakery that was being prepared for coffee hour (these people can cook), and the incense. It was so cool, because captured in my nose was one of the primary reasons that I love the Orthodox Church. They don't divide the holy from the "worldly" but realize that holiness is big enough to fill anything that will subject itself to it. Icons are not just the paintings on gold leaf.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

New things

So we got a new tv-related contraption. A DVR I think it's called. I realize that most people already know what these things are, but I am AMAZED. And. Our new remote looks like a space ship. Way cool.

Also. We have two kitties. Their litter box is quite the nuisance. But I recently decided to try these sifting litter box liners. AMAZING. I am in love. I know they make mechanical litter boxes that clean themselves, but those seem like a little much to me.

The Red Menace is due anytime in the next 2-9 days. I really don't think it worked this time. But then, I was convinced it did last time... and several times in the last year... and have been wrong. So, if you see the way my logic is about to work, you see where I'm going. This is the first time I've thought for sure I'm not pregnant. Ergo...


I do have a new job which I am really enjoying. Huzzah for that.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


I've been informed that I ought to be blogging.

So here I am.

One year ago, I went off the pill mid (November) cycle. I had to take a short round of antibiotics that would have made the pill ineffective, so we decided what the hay, let's tempt the fates, risk getting pregnant a little earlier than we'd planned, and just quit altogether. In December of 2007, we officially started "trying".

The last real period I had on my own started January 1. Since then, they've all been as far apart as the beginning of the Noahide deluge and the end of it (at least) and Progesterone-induced, with one exception so far. 26 days ago. I'm slightly flabbergasted to realize that it's been almost a year now. I remember this time last year daydreaming about what it would be like to get a positive pregnancy test for Christmas. And now I do the math and see that the timing would be close to that again this year. Funny.

Last cycle was my first "successful" cycle since December '07. Successful in that there was an egg produced. Huzzah! I have finally gotten to that place where I think I'm settled in to the wait. I'm not yet dabbling in the river of hopelessness, but nor am I dancing in the sunshine of certainty. I think it might take a while. I'm prepared for the ache to show up in my chest from time to time for the next few months. But I really want to look out the windows and pay attention to the ride. I don't want to miss anything waiting on what's not here yet.

I have two stepkids. I've mentioned them before. For you, dear reader, it was mere moments ago that you read my last post. For me, it's been months. March-November... almost enough time to fully gestate a baby. So let me tell you about them.

Dear Disney, you've got stepmothers all wrong. This job is wicked hard. (Note to all real moms out there - I'm sure your job is way harder. Someday I'll let you know the difference between the two). We are given fully formed little people, some tiny, some not so tiny any more. Some warm to us immediately. Some are ice water. I happen to have two ranging in temperature from a toasty shower to a comfortable swimming pool. I love them deeply. They drive me crazy. I value them highly. I sometimes fantasize about selling them. Heck, "selling" nothin'. Sometimes I'd pay someone to take them. :) They are an incredible balm some days. They are simply not anything pleasant at all some days. Today, I took my stepson out for ice cream and as I watched him stuff his ice cream cone fully into his mouth and spew vanilla ice cream out the corners of his grin when he giggled, I realized I truly am in love with them. I don't want to miss out on them while I wait for more.

Meanwhile, I can opine and be profound all I like. The incontrovertible truth is that I've been on Clomid for two cycles now, and believe you me, it has been no picnic on the beach. We're talking icepicks and a bitch more like. I'm normal and sane for two weeks, and then start a slow descent into psychopath-dom with "girls" that hurt like fiends and a sleeping schedule rivaling a toddler's. Only more regular and more appreciated. My husband is a saint. He gets to put this part of our life on his resume for Heaven no doubt. He works so hard to unravel the ramblings that seem to make so much sense inside my head but come out of my mouth all screwy. Someone buy this man a drink, eh? I adore him.

But, in the words of my current favorite song, "I wouldn't change a thing. I'd walk right back through the rain. Back to every broken heart on the day that it was breaking. And I'd relive all the years and be thankful for the tears, I've cried with every stumble step that led to you and got me here." There is such treasure here. There will be more upon more in the future.

So there you are xbox. A blog post. Happy? ;)

Saturday, March 8, 2008

The mind always seems to reach for a reason, or a cause, or someone to blame, or something to fix. So what do you do when there is no reason, cause, person to blame, or anything to fix? You roil around in frustration, that's what.

We've been trying to get pregnant for going on 4 months now. Not really long in the grand scheme of things. Not so long when I know people who've been unsuccessful for 6+ years and are facing a rather resounding "no". So I know I really don't have much room to complain or fret or worry.

I just find myself right now stretched taut as a bowstring. Did I mention my last period was 65 days and 3 negative pregnancy tests ago?

I have two stepkids. One boy, one girl. Sometimes I feel that they are a more-than-deserved solace. They are here and I can cuddle them and guide them and be driven to the brink of madness by them and tuck them into bed and consider selling them off on ebay and then be softened even by their pain-in-the-neckness. Who knows why we are lovable even when we're creating pain in someone else's head. Biological built-in species preservation? Grace? Probably both.

Sometimes when I'm about ready to stuff them headfirst in a snowdrift, I catch myself, and wonder if maybe I don't deserve a baby of my own. Maybe that's why nothing's happening. But then I look around at the rest of my species and note the women and girls who keep turning up pregnant and I realize that dessert has nothing to do with it. It's just poor luck at the moment. I may wind up with a litter of children in 10 years, looking back at myself tonight and shaking my fist at myself for praying so hard and nodding at God for giving me just what I deserve for not calming down and being patient.

I learned last week that gratitude creates more patience than vice versa.