Nocturnal Musings #22: Say Something…

I just don’t have the heart right now.

Nothing’s changed.

And maybe that’s the reason.

Say something…

You think you’re fine and then suddenly you’re not.

Again.

Biding my time.

Until what? Continue reading “Nocturnal Musings #22: Say Something…”

When Your Depression Is Invalidated

One of the worst feelings you can experience as a chronically ill person is invalidation. It’s not necessarily that others don’t believe you (although that is also a tremendous problem and a discussion for another time), but that they either don’t see or don’t understand how much your illness(es) impact your daily life. Especially when mental health plays a role in your battles.

And what makes it even more frustrating? When that invalidation comes from healthcare professionals. When, to their eyes, you “don’t look sick” enough or you don’t have “enough” chronic illnesses or you’re “too young” (no matter how thick your medical chart) to warrant feeling depressed.

I have struggled with depression for a year and a half now, starting when infertility problems really came to the forefront of my life. But those issues were usurped by far more serious problems. Continue reading “When Your Depression Is Invalidated”

Share Your World: May 22, 2017

This will be a weekly post of the most random of random questions to answer- to share my world! Thanks to Cee’s blog for being the brainchild behind this!

What one thing have you not done that you really want to do? Have children. This is a painful struggle we’ve been dealing with for over three years due to major health issues on my part.

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Everything in our baby box…just waiting…yes, we love Doctor Who.

Continue reading “Share Your World: May 22, 2017”

Maybe This Time…

There are many days on the calendar that are a challenge for infertile women. Christmas for sure, when all you want is to see the new little stocking hanging with the others for the first time. Halloween is despised, as you throw up your hands at seeing one more infant in a cuddly, warm lion costume. (Last year I sat in the bedroom with earphones on while my husband passed out the candy.)

But there is no holiday out there that stings so badly as the one that singles out the fact that you are not a mother: Mother’s Day. A day just like any other for those who aren’t part of the exclusive mom club (although loving on our own mothers takes the sting out to a degree.)

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My mother and mother-in-law are the best I could ask for!

And is it really necessary for every single email on this particular day to be about Mother’s Day? Happy Mother’s Day! Because you’re an awesome mother, buy something from New York and Company, REI, Athleta, DaySpring, UncommonGoods, Wayfair, Ancestry.com, Kohl’s, and freaking Pro Compression Socks!

But I digress.

Mothers work hard to keep their families on the go day after day and should be lauded for it. Among dozens of other tasks, whether it’s packing lunches, doing countless loads of laundry, cooking dinner, driving to and from school/soccer/music lessons/birthday parties/sleepovers/etc and making sure the bath is done with enough time for a story before bed, mothers get it done.

I want to work hard for my family, too. Continue reading “Maybe This Time…”

Give Your Heart a Break

IMG_1239One more time around the sun, one more time passing through National Infertility Awareness Week as an unintentionally childless woman. I guess you could say this is my third time.

It’s an understatement to say that a lot has gotten in the way of my attempts to become a mom.

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Ready for excision surgery!

In 2014, not long after we had starting trying to get pregnant, my battle with endometriosis took the forefront. Within a span of six months, I was hospitalized, diagnosed, and had two surgeries, one of which was out of state with an excision specialist. Then recovery began, and our efforts to get pregnant resumed in 2015.

Needless to say, I did not become pregnant in 2015, and we were baffled as to why not. Continue reading “Give Your Heart a Break”

Things We Lost in the Fire

“Things we lost to the flame
Things we’ll never see again
All that we’ve amassed
Sits before us, shattered into ash…”

Things We Lost in the Fire (Bastille)

 

IMG_1123As Esther Smith said in her excellent book, When Chronic Pain and Illness Take Everything Away, “Grief is the process by which we actively release all that we feel, question, and remember at the feet of God and the people He has placed in our lives.”

At the end of the second chapter, she poses some questions that have me wrestling with my thoughts, emotions, and feelings towards God. Questioning God isn’t a bad thing. In fact, He encourages us to come to Him with our questions, fears, or doubts. If you’ve ever read Psalms, you know this to be true!

As part of my grief process, I am going to share my answers to the questions, as you all are the people God has placed in my life. I assume the intention of that is to find help through grief from a different perspective than God’s. Continue reading “Things We Lost in the Fire”

2016, In the Style of Personal Journals: March

Way behind in publishing this, but I still want to continue this series.

Last year was a rough year for me due to all the medical problems I had. I poured out my heart and soul into my personal journals, which were my lifeline keeping me somewhat grounded. To give you an idea of what it was really like to go through all that I did, the rest of this entry is only direct quotes from my journals. I plan to do this every month this year. If you want to read the previous months to set the stage, here’s January and February.

Welcome to the inside of my head and heart. Be warned, this is honest and raw.

March 1, 2016: “In other news, I actually got a reply from Dr. F about my lab results…’Well, I think we may have some answers for you! Your FSH, LH, and E2 are all low, which indicates suppression coming from the brain (hypothalamic cause)…This is very different from PCOS and likely reflects a small growth in your pituitary gland (your prolactin was elevated.) This is the most common kind of pituitary growth and is usually NOT CANCER…The next step will be a head MRI (I see you had a normal CT). As long as the pituitary gland looks as expected, we can start a medicine to bring down your prolactin levels and you should start cycling again and be able to get pregnant.’

“So I guess I might have a ‘brain tumor’ after all. I had a feeling this whole time that something wasn’t right in my head.”

March 4, 2016: “Next winter. A point at which I will still be childless, if pregnant at all yet. Which is sad to think about considering everything I’ve been through lately. A few months ago we were so sure that it would be this year.”

March 8, 2016: “I just don’t know what I’ll do if [the MRI] is negative. Given my labs and headaches and other symptoms, I feel like there has to be something there. I pray that there is, because then it can be treated and then hopefully my headaches will go away, I’ll start ovulating, and then be able to get pregnant naturally. No Clomid or anything like that. And we’ll have a beautiful, healthy baby next winter or spring. Even summer would be ok. I just hope to be pregnant by the end of 2016. And everything will be awesome. Life is going to get better.”

March 9, 2016: “‘6 mm area of diminished enhancement in the pituitary gland suggestive of a prolactinoma.'”

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March 12, 2016: “The tumor. I have a brain tumor. I really, actually, truly have a brain tumor. I’m still having difficulty wrapping my mind around that. Just because it’s not cancer doesn’t mean it’s not still affecting my life tremendously. I mean, I missed four weeks of work in two months because of the headaches. And if the medication doesn’t work or I can’t tolerate the side effects, I’ll likely end up having surgery.”

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Evil, expensive drug…

March 15, 2016: “Dr. F is starting me on cabergoline twice a week.”

March 17, 2016: “I’m still having side effects from the cabergoline. The headache wasn’t nearly as bad today, but I still needed Percocet to control it. Today I really noticed lightheadedness upon standing. Still a little nauseous, too, but not nearly as bad as yesterday. I have to admit, I’m still a little overwhelmed with this diagnosis. And as far as the cabergoline is concerned, how long do I try to tolerate these side effects before I just throw in the towel and pursue surgery? But will the med have shrunk the tumor enough that…I have to go off the med and let it grow back? I can’t imagine having to go through all of this again. I can’t do it.”

March 19, 2016: “I was reading another post where someone asked if the tumors ever really go away (are you ever fully ‘recovered’) and if there is light at the end of the tunnel. So far 27 people have responded with a resounding ‘no.’ Well that’s just fantastic. I’m frustrated now. Frustrated that this could turn out so much differently than I thought last week…I’m a walking disaster. Seriously, could things get any worse? (Shut up, of course they can. Don’t tempt fate with this health of yours).”

March 24, 2016: “Stupid amitriptyline. Dr. L had said it can cause nightmares at lower doses. I remember him asking me in the ED a month ago when I was taking 30 mg if I was having nightmares and actually, I was. And they did go away when I went up to 50 mg, for the most part. But now they’re back in full force since I decreased my dose last week. I can’t stand the nightmares. I can’t stand the urinary retention. I can’t stand the twitching. I don’t know how anyone can even tolerate the higher doses used for depression. Any higher dose and I would never pee again.”

March 25, 2016: “I can’t miss any more work. I can’t keep letting everyone down. I want that phase of all of this to be over…I’m sure they’re all sick of hearing about my health problems.”

March 28, 2016: “I just want this to be over. I want to feel like a normal human being again. But I don’t know what I have to do to get there. It’s not like I can slack off at work; that would make things more stressful and that’s not how I roll. Calling off would probably also stress me out more in the long run; some of the worst days I had psychologically two months ago were days I called off and it was the calling off that stressed me out.”

March 30, 2016: “All of a sudden I feel so overwhelmed. And nauseous. And…I don’t know, just not right. I don’t like feeling this way. I don’t know what’s wrong. What’s wrong? What’s wrong? Why do I feel like this? What’s wrong? I’m freezing and shaking. I don’t feel good. I don’t feel right. I’m nauseous. I don’t feel good.”

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