What do you think the sex(es) of the twins will be?

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Monday, December 26, 2011

surprise!

so, i decided to surprise dan on christmas morning by secretly finding out the sex of our other baby. how, you ask? by getting an ultrasound at the mall. i know. sounds sketchy, right? i was a little nervous about it, too. but when i found out that the person performing the ultrasound used to be an actual doctor and that he performed the first IVF in lithuania, i felt a tiny bit better about it.

i'm glad i did it. it was a good surprise for everyone. including me.

i'm trying to think of a clever way to tell you the results, but i'm tired and can't think of anything, so i will just get on with it.

we already knew that we were having one boy and were very excited.
now we know that we are also having a girl.

one boy and one girl. seems like an ideal combination to me. we couldn't be more pleased.

now, if we could only agree on names...

Thursday, December 8, 2011

disobedient children

So....after a very long ultrasound in which I had to get up to pee twice and both babies did not cooperate, we only know the sex of one baby. The other will remain unknown until (hopefully) December 29th (my 7th Danniversary!) when they try to do another ultrasound. Hopefully (s)he will uncross those legs.

One baby is a boy.

Both ultrasound techs said they think the other one might be a girl, but that they really can't tell for sure.

84% percent of you can't be wrong! Or can you?

The good news is that tomorrow we're off to Hawaii for some R&R and then to Utah for some Christmas festivities.

Mele Kalikimaka!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Poll

I just added a poll so you can vote on whether you think we're having two boys, two girls, or one of each. Poll ends Thursday when the truth will be revealed...

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Bunkmates

Here are pictures, as promised. I just took pictures with the camera since our scanner doesn't work. Sorry for the sub par quality (the quality wasn't that great to begin with). The first photo is of the 3-day-old embryos. The next two photos are from my ultrasound yesterday (12 weeks, 5 days).




Monday, November 7, 2011

Ultrasound numero quatro

Today I had my fourth ultrasound (one of the few perks of being an "infertile" is having a lot of ultrasounds from the very beginning). They did genetic testing. Everything looked good on the ultrasound. The twins looked like they were sleeping in bunk bed hammocks. One sac on top of the other. It was kind of adorable. I will post pictures if/when I set up our new printer/scanner. They were able to see the four chambers of their hearts, even though it's really early (the nurse said it's because I'm so thin which immediately made me love her). I saw their arms waving, their feet sticking up in the air, and their little brains. Dan gave me strict instructions because of several vague text messages sent in the past, to send him a text message giving him a report of what I saw and then the words, "this is good" or "this is bad." Last time I sent him a text saying I was anemic, he thought I was going to die and the time before that, when I compared the sound of the heartbeats on the doppler to "a hundred galloping horses," he thought something was terribly wrong.

So, "this is good."

Friday, November 4, 2011

Matt Paul's Pies


My friend Matt has started a pie business in Boston called Pie Wise. He makes amazing things. If any of you have tried the sea salt brownies I sometimes make - Matt's recipe.

He is practically giving pies away right now ($10 each last time I checked, but I told him he should charge more).

http://areyoupiewise.tumblr.com/

You won't be disappointed!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

12 weeks

Things I'm looking forward to in the 2nd trimester:

1. Getting off Zofran (for constant nausea and vomiting) so I can get on iron supplements because, apparently, I'm anemic (the two don't go well together for gross reasons that I'm not going to describe here).
2. Finding out the sex(es?) of our babies in a few weeks.
3. Going to Hawaii and Utah.
4. More ultrasounds. I like ultrasounds. I've had three so far and another on Monday.
5. Feeling a little better and getting to the Writers' Room more often.
6. Getting out of the awkward stage where I might either look fat or pregnant.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Glossary

You can read a story of mine here if you want I guess if you don't have anything better to do or anything like yeah.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Irene

Hey ya'll.

I had my egg retrieval yesterday. Surprise! Everything went well. They got 19 eggs. I've been in pain, but have been taking painkillers and chugging Gatorade and watching truly awful movies that Dan rented from the Redbox.

Now I'm just worried about this hurricane that is supposed to hit around the same time of my embryo transfer. If a baby comes out of this, maybe I will name her Irene. Or maybe not.

Anyway, that's what's happening in our neck of the woods.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Almost Famous!

"I'm gonna step out of my comfort zone and get the Waikiki beach burger." Daniel Hadley (skip ahead to 3:00)



Saturday, August 6, 2011

the process

Today I'm going to describe the IVF process to you. The clinical process. People always ask me how involved IVF is, whether it hurts, and what the time line is like. So, I'm going to lay it out for you.

Spoiler alert/warning: If you don't like talk of periods, shots, general anesthesia, catheters, or a room full of people looking at you naked, this post is not for you.

Also, the following time line always changes. You don't really know when to do what until the day of. This is just my best guess according to past cycles. Also, this is a best case scenario. Since there are so many steps to this process, things can go wrong (and often do) at any point. There are no guarantees that you will make it through any or all of these steps.

Day 1: Period starts.
Day 2: Start birth control (counter-intuitive, I know) - this does something like set your body at "zero" so all your hormones are at baseline when you begin treatment.
Days 3-8: Continue birth control pills.
Day 9: Stop pills.
Day 13: Go into the hospital in the AM for a baseline ultrasound. The baseline ultrasound is an external and an internal ultrasound to make sure everything is normal before getting started (no cysts, etc.). If you've had a baby, you know what an external ultrasound is. With a little imagination, you can probably guess what an internal ultrasound is. It involves a wand. If everything looks normal, the shots begin that evening.
Days 14-17: Shots in the stomach or thighs in the AM & PM. I will not go into too much detail about the shots because it's complicated - only to say that I use a few different medications that stimulate the ovaries to release healthy eggs.
Day 18: Internal ultrasound & blood test. Continue shots in AM & PM. Nurse calls in PM with instructions for what to do next (adjust meds, when to come in again, etc.). Usually she says to come in on Day 20 for another blood test & internal ultrasound.
Day 19: Shots in AM & PM.
Day 20: Internal ultrasound & blood test in AM at hospital. Nurse calls in PM with instructions.
Day 21: Continue giving 3 shots in AM & PM.
Day 22: Internal ultrasound & blood test in AM at hospital. Continue shots in AM & PM. At some point, maybe day 22, maybe later - but let's just say Day 22 - nurse will say to stop meds and will give you a specific time to take a "trigger shot." The trigger shot is taken exactly 36 hours before the egg retrieval is scheduled. It "triggers" ovulation. Eggs must be retrieved right before ovulation. The timing is exact. If they tell you to give yourself the trigger shot at 9:06 PM, your retrieval will be scheduled for exactly 9:06 AM two days later.
Day 23: Do nothing.
Day 24: Retrieval day. Arrive at hospital one hour before procedure. Retrieval takes place with legs in stirrups, under general anesthesia. Sperm is collected simultaneously. Eggs are aspirated with a hollow needle placed in ovaries. Wake up. They tell you how many eggs they retrieved. Go home a couple of hours later. Pain ranges from moderate to extreme. This is the most painful part of the process.
Day 25: Embryologist calls with fertilization report - they tell you how many of the eggs were mature and how many were fertilized. Begin progesterone-in-oil injections in buttocks. These shots go into the muscle and kind of hurt. Continue these injections for two weeks until pregnancy test.
Day 26: Embryologist calls again to tell you the status of embryos - how many cells they have so far. Ideally, by this day, they should have two cells (each cell should double every 24 hours).
Day 27: Hospital calls in AM to tell you what time to come in for transfer of embryos. The hospital gives you a report card for the embryos. It's a somewhat complicated rating system, but every embryo is given a grade. They select the best one(s) for transfer. Transfer occurs, with legs in stirrups above your shoulders, usually with a room full of med students watching on. A tiny catheter is inserted into the vagina and guided to the uterus. The embryos are brought in and squirted into the catheter. They are too small to see, so they put a little air bubble on each side of them so they will know when they come out and where they are positioned. Go home. Wait.
Days 28-40: Wait. Do nothing but daily progesterone injections.
Day 41: Go into hospital for blood pregnancy test.

I'm completely exhausted typing this all out and I can only imagine that you're completely exhausted reading it. And I'm only on Day 6...

Friday, August 5, 2011

what writers eat

I loved this post in the NY Times. I'm always interested in what people eat - I think it says a lot about a person - whether they're gluttons or dieters, drinkers or eaters, mundane or bizarre. I remember watching an episode of Oprah when I was in high school. Madonna was on and Oprah asked her what she had for breakfast that morning. I still remember what Madonna said: half a bagel, toasted, with butter - real butter.

So, imagine my delight when seeing these:























As I write this, I'm drinking a pot of mate and I'm about to eat some triple berry bran muffins I made yesterday.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

acupuncture

I started going to an acupuncturist last week. Today was my third visit. I've been thinking about going for a long time because some studies have found a link between IVF success and acupuncture, but it always just seemed like one more thing to do when I already have to do so much already and a whole lot more needles than I already have to endure. Did I ever tell you that before IVF I was terrified of needles? I seriously would have rather been punched in the face or had a tooth pulled than have my blood drawn. I almost fainted several times in the beginning. I still dislike needles. I'll probably never learn to like them (does anyone?), but I've learned to tolerate them. Anyway, since I started going to my infertility support group (probably the best thing I've done in this whole process), I found that many of the other women in the group do acupuncture. They said it was relaxing. I never thought needles and relaxing could go in the same sentence together. I have no idea whether acupuncture "works." I don't know whether it will increase my chances of having a baby. But I don't know that it won't either. Maybe it's the placebo effect, but I don't really care. I'm willing to try it. I'm willing to try just about anything at this point. And it is pretty relaxing. The needles are small. Once they're in, I can't really feel them. I've even fallen asleep a couple of times.

I go to a place called Acupuncture Together that practices community acupuncture. They treat a bunch of people at the same time in the same room. Apparently, this is how they typically do acupuncture in China. It ends up being a whole lot cheaper this way ($20 instead of $100). They usually put one needle in my forehead, a couple on the ridges of my ears, a few on my hands, wrists and arms, and a few more in my feet, ankles and legs. I just roll up my pant legs and lay back in the recliner. I'll let you know whether I notice any changes.

So that's that.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Progress

Just wanted you all to know that Pumpkin just weighed in at 14.1 lbs. That's a .7 lb. weight loss, folks! He's already acting much more confident. Besides a depressing setback this week (the bit about Garfield really got him down), he's ready to move on. I think this calls for a stick of Extra sugar-free gum and some Brita water. Or maybe we could watch Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

To Clarify

Since a few of you have asked and I was very vague in my last post...

No more shots for awhile. On Monday I was supposed to have a frozen embryo transfer, but the embryologist called that morning to say that neither of the embryos survived the thawing process. I didn't anticipate this since they told me that they have a 70% success rate for thawing embryos. I guess I figured at least one would make it. Nope.

So, we're back to square one. I plan on taking a much needed break for (at least) the summer. Drinking this, riding this, and planning our dream vacation to one of my favorite cities in the world.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Things I'm Liking This Week

This plaid platter and matching set of salad servers from Darlybird. Everything is 25% off for the next three days with the code COMEWHATMAY. I may or may not have ordered both on a whim this morning.

This documentary, Waste Land, was the best movie I've seen in a long time. If you like Brazil, art, or the earth, I'm pretty sure you'll love this movie. It maybe starts off a little slow, but it is a beautiful film.

This Burdick's bunny which Dan gave me for Easter. Could the polka dot scarf be any cuter? He also has a little cotton (white chocolate) tail. Good work, Dan. It's so cute I almost don't want to eat it. Except it's Burdick's and the best tasting chocolate ever.

It's bittersweet, but no more of these in my bum. And yes, the needle is literally that long.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Pampers

I have a general dislike for commercials. But I especially dislike commercials about babies. I swear every time I work out the gym and turn on my elliptical's TV (did you know that a membership to Planet Fitness is cheaper than a basic cable subscription?), there is a commercial for pregnancy tests, diapers or baby food. These commercials usually show a typical white family having a typical white baby in a typical American household.

So imagine my surprise when I watched this commercial for Pampers and actually loved it. Good job, Pampers marketing people, for realizing that we do not fit in a box and there are as many paths to parenthood as there are parents. Too bad it's only airing in Canada.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Biggest Loser, Cat Edition


Name: Pumpkin Hadley
Starting Weight: 14.8 lbs.
Goal Weight: 12.0

Pumpkin's Story:

Pumpkin was always an active cat. He used to love chasing and catching mice, taking walks around the block with Dan and visiting friends in his Utah neighborhood. That all changed five years ago when someone shot him in the eye with a BB gun. Just as he finally recovered from this horrible hate crime, his owners forced him to move across the country to Somerville, Massachusetts. He traded his lofty 3-story house for a 400-square-foot studio. Since then, he has stopped exercising and has enjoyed an all-you-can-eat buffet of tuna and dry food. Now, he's ready to reclaim his life!

The Weight Loss Plan:

Pumpkin plans on losing the weight by eating 1/3 cup of food a day. He might be surprised one of these days to find that his regular food has been replaced by maintenance cat weight-control food. In addition, he will be drinking often from his Brita water pitcher and eating at Subway. Pumpkin will be weighing in once a week and hopes to use his new found knowledge about healthy eating to motivate his parents.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Infertile Landscapes



The first photograph is from an installation called "BARREN: life on infertile soil" by Monica Weisblott. The photograph is called "Basketful."

I like to find art inspired by infertility. I've found myself writing a lot about it lately, especially in the wake of our most recent loss. I was at the Millay Colony when it happened and I was grateful to be able to lose myself in my art for a few days, all alone in the barn Edna built with her husband (also photographed here).

Infertility is so rarely talked about or represented in art. There is so much silence surrounding it. I understand why. I sometimes hesitate to write about it because it's so personal and difficult and because I don't want people to feel sorry for me or become too invested in an often heartbreaking journey. But I'm grateful for brave people like Ms. Weisblott who do break the silence.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I won, part two!

I just found out that I won this adorable dress via Shabby Apple via my dear friend Aimee. I think it will look great with my blonde hair and blue eyes, if I don't say so myself.



Dan has already labeled this year "The Year of the Lisa." So far, it's turning out that way. I hope my luck continues as I wait for the results of IVF #3. The embryos looked stellar this time and there were even two to freeze.

And speaking of Dan, he just put together this amazing skate part. I did most of the filming - which meant that Dandle had to land his tricks pretty quickly because of my impatience. I can't stop watching it.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I hate waking up from anesthesia and finding out they did things to me that i didn't sign up for. two words: ew and ouch.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Saturday, January 1, 2011

resolute

i decided to keep things simple and only make one resolution this year. actually, i have two resolutions, but i have no control over one of them so i'm leaving it in the hands of the almighty.

my one resolution: finish my novel. i have a plan. details forthcoming.