Back to the Dating Game

So I went on a date Friday night.  I met this guy on Spiritual Sin.gles.  I was impressed with the work he does in sustainability innovation but wasn't sure about the attraction part.  His one picture showed possibly not great posture and a belly... I don't mind if someone is carrying extra weight, as I am myself, but it's about how it all comes together for me in an individual's physicality.  And I have had quite a few experiences where a guy put up a picture that was extremely flattering and they looked quite different in person.  

Anyway, happily this was not the case here.  He was tall and sort of pleasingly big and had an overall appeal.  He's bald, has blue eyes, and is a little goofy looking in a cute way  I liked his eco-manly clothing style too, lol.

We went to a Kirtan (chanting) concert, which was great.  Lots of loving people and energy.  

 I warned him I was a new puppy parent and may fall asleep during the concert.  As it turned out it was engaging enough to keep me awake, but I spent a good portion with my head leaning on his shoulder, his arm around me.  This felt surprisingly comfortable.  Physically we seem compatible so far, especially considering how our evening ended.  More on that later.  

Before the concert and at the intermission, we talked.  I'm not sure our conversation styles are compatible, but he was open to the question game so that's a plus (where we take turns asking questions).  I think he's a deep person but... Well, it's too early to tell.

At the end of the night, he asked me to come in, but I had to get back to Zoey puppy. So we ended up kissing in the car.  It was very fun. :-). He has a conference this week but asked me out for next Saturday.  I just realized, however, I have the Transition Town conference until seven that day.  
Oh well, we'll figure something out.  I admit to feeling some excitement.


Fear of Commitment

Seems like forever since I've posted.  Living in surreal-ville over here.  A dog changes your whole freaking life, that's for sure!  I don't know if I've mentioned, but I had a cat for 17 years.  I adopted her in college, and she died about three years ago or so.  When she died, I said I was not going to get another cat because the next thing I wanted to bring into my home was a baby.  It felt like I was "holding a space" for the baby.  But the years wore on.  And then when I realized this latest trial was a bust... I don't know, something went off in me.  It sounds strange, but I feel like I was compelled to get my puppy - like the idea just came over me and was irresistible.  And strangely, my housemate has never really cared for dogs, but he told me that when I brought it up to him, basically he was compelled to say yes, as well.  Like it just seemed to both of us that is was the "right thing to do."

But I won't lie.  The past few days, I've felt quite a bit of fear.  It's like, "What did I get myself into?!"  My commitment issues are going off big time.  A puppy is not a cat.  They depend on you at a completely different level.  And when they are little, oh man, they are little balls of terror.  Well, terror, and love, and joy, and puppy kisses, and play, and messiness, all balled into one.  Zoey cannot be left alone in the house or she will tear the place up and pee and poop everywhere.  She cannot be left outside because I'm afraid she will get into something back there - my housemate has a lot of gardening and other junk stashed around under the porch and by the garage, etc., and then there is all kinds of "nature" crap she can pick up and chew, like sticks and pits and pods and random tree sheddings.  Likely, they wouldn't kill her, but I worry about choking.  I am a total "Helicopter Dog Parent."  lol

My days have been a constant stream of taking her out, cleaning up her messes, feeding her, taking her to the vet (she has had diarrhea, poor thing - likely from worms and changing food, etc.), hanging outside and playing with her (lots of this and it's the most fun part!), lying with her snoozing away on top of me on the couch.  She snores when she sleeps; it's pretty cute.  Oh, and then worrying about her when I'm at work the last couple days.  I asked friends to come over midday and take her out for a while but I still feel bad leaving her for several hours at a time.  We don't have a "safe room" to leave her in, so I leave her in her dog crate, which is big enough for her to move around, with a towel and a her rope toy.  Today, I came home to an accident and spent my first time period home cleaning things up, when normally I'd flop on the couch for a while.  I've definitely been a lot more active, since Zoey came to town!  And I haven't gotten a full night of sleep since friday night.  We get up twice - once in the middle of the night and once in the very early morning.  After you've cleaned up enough crap, you do what you can to prevent accidents!

Anyway, back to the fear.  Interestingly, I think it has some similarity to what I feel when I get in a relationship (like a little claustrophobia)... but with Zoey, I know it's not ending any time soon.  This is a looong commitment.  If all goes well, I'll have her until I'm in my mid-fifties or later.  It's just intense to commit to something in a big way like this.   And I want to be a better parent/friend to her than I was to my cat.  I want to let her in more and be closer companions.  I think part of my feeling compelled was knowing that this is what I need.  I too easily fall into a selfish rut of doing what I want to do when I want to do it, and ending up living in sort of a bubble.  I want to give to another being, and I want to live a full and messy life, to expand versus contract.  And damn straight this is practice for having a kid, way more than I ever would have realized.  Once I can take her out and about and for walks, after her third round of shots, I think it will expand my circle even more.  Dogs are the ultimate ice-breakers, right?

So, bottom line, I don't regret it.  And when I hold her and snuggle up and get puppy kisses and see her cute little face looking up at me, my heart melts.  But, right now, this commitment is also putting some fear in me, folks.


The New Addition

I picked up Zoey yesterday!!!  She's doing so well thus far with house training, knock on wood.  After a very playful morning, she's now snoring softly on her blanket.  Boston Terr.iers have kind of long legs in relation to their body, and she has a slight baby fawn look when she hops around and chases me, or her ball, or her rope toy (yeah, she likes to chase!).

It's a big adjustment getting a puppy, as all you dog people out there know.  My whole "routine" is just blown up.  I'm trying to get comfortable being the "pack leader."  She looks to me for direction and is constantly following me everywhere.  I have to be careful not to trip on her!  She's so smart and energetic; I can tell I'm going to want to get some more toys very soon!

I can't just jump up and do this or do that without some forethought about her.  She needs pretty constant supervision right now.  One funny example:  I'm always setting down and misplacing my glasses, so now I have a little shadow as I go back and forth all over the house trying to track them down.  It definitely emphasizes the chaotic waste of motion!  lol

But I welcome the shake up.  I'm smiling and laughing a lot and completely enjoying the affection.  She's going to be part of my family for a long time.  Without further, ado, here's... Zoey!


Puppy Names

Adendum to the last post:

Ali and Sunflower asked if I knew what I was going to name my puppy, and I thought I'd throw out some initial ideas I had and see what you all thought.  So here they are:

Olive, Shiloh, Nella, Addie, Callie, Nala, Zoey (meaning=life).  Other suggestions?

I'm kinda leaning towards Zoey.

Down and Up

Thank you for all your good wishes and for thinking of me.  It means a lot.

Unfortunately, as I thought, my test came out negative.  My cycle hasn't shown any signs of starting yet, but I had a bit of cramping earlier.  My progesterone was 5.  I'm drinking Pinot Noir and watching a lot of TV tonight.

But... I think I'm getting a Boston Terr.ier puppy on Saturday at 3 p.m.  :-)  I'll post pictures if everything goes well.  I've already bought her a bed, food, chew toys, a leash and other items.  Will try and post a picture of these below.


Trending Towards Negative

Wish I weren't saying this, but I'm feeling a negative coming on.

Contributing factors:
  1. Tested this morning and it was:  Negative.
  2. Don't feel much of anything symptom-wise, except for backaches, likely due to the progesterone.
  3. Breasts have never felt LESS sore in a tww.
Yes, it's only 10 days post-ovulation, but I felt the twinging on Friday.  If that was implantation, wouldn't it show on a test by now?  I'll keep testing until it makes no sense to test further, though.

I'm not going to even try to do another cycle after this.  The financial stars are not aligned.  I will continue taking steps to see if I might be able to get a loan.  That would be the only development I can see right now that would allow another try in the near future (the next two or three months).

You know what I'm going to do if this cycle fails?  I'm going to get a dog.  A small, cute dog.  They say it's good practice for a child.  And one day, hopefully I'll be blessed with one of those, too. 


Twinge City

Feel free to skip this part if you're not into ttc symptom watching... So, I felt what seemed like uterine "twinges" today, 8 or 9 dpo, in the lower left side of my abdomen.  :-)  This point "twinged," or sort of pulsed, three or four times in about a minute.  Who knows what's going on in there, but I do feel happy to have felt it. 

In addition, my temperature also took a second jump up today from 98.2 to 98.5.  And, lastly, when I inserted my progesterone this morning, I noticed my cervix was decidedly lower.  I never noticed this before.  I'm thinking it's a "neutral" sign (and that's what Fertil.ity Friend tells me).  Any thoughts on this state of events?

No huge plans this weekend, but my housemate is around and I'm spending time with a friend tomorrow at her moving sale.  I normally go to dance on Sundays, then out to eat.  Because I was specifically told "no vigorous exercise," I chose not to go last week and will miss this week, as well.  Missing last week reminded me what a big part of my weekend my dancing is!  I would rather play it safe, though.

Speaking of my housemate, I wanted to share with you all that I think I cursed him by talking about his relationship in glowing terms on this blog recently.  I held him up as an example of glorious companionship, and then, this week, they break up!  I knew they were still somewhat in limbo about moving forward to the next step, which logically would have been engagement, but I didn't expect a break up! 

Right before he took this action, I asked him how he would feel if they broke up, and he said both sad and relieved.  I guess that was an indicator.  Plus, he started talking about how he didn't feel a strong desire to move forward; that he really wanted to feel excited and compelled to move to the next level.  I understand what he's saying... but now he gets to rejoin me back in "The Land of Singledom," which equals, "The Land of No Sex or Intimate Companionship." lol  Anyway, just thought I'd share the weird timing, immediately following my sunny blog post about the two of them.


Halfway Through

I can't believe it's only been a week since my IUI!  It feels like a month, lol.  This progesterone is kickin' my butt around a good bit.  

Case in point:  I got all weepy after work today when I told my housemate that I wish I could shut my brain off and felt like everyone was being mean, and he said in this little mocking voice, "Everyone is being meeean."  

Well, first I wanted to slap him, actually, but then I just went inside the house, shut the door to my room, and did the loud, ugly cry for a few minutes.  I sooo needed my Mommy at that moment.  

I can tell it's the hormones, though, because it's just a different level of feeling stressed and depressed; a feeling I don't normally have.  

Anyway, one more week to go.  

Symptom watch (feel free to skip):

Things are definitely different than my last medicated IUI in June...  
  • Last time, my boobs were quite sore and this time they aren't at all, at least not yet.  
  • Seems like I'm more moody this time, but I can't really be sure.  
  • I know I had low abdominal (cervical?) cramping last time related to the progesterone.  I've had some similar cramping this time but not as strongly.  
  • I've had some cramping that feels like it's on one side or another of my uterus that doesn't last very long, but it's the dull kind of cramping, not any sharp twinges.  *Seems like twinges are more clearly connected to implantation.  
  • My bbt dropped this morning from 98.2 to 97.9.  I often have a drop or two though in my luteal phase, whether I'm ttc or not.  Usually they seem to be earlier or later, though... I do like the 6/7 dpo timing.  
So, hope is alive but I'm trying not to read to much into things at this point.  

I think I'm testing this time, though, so that'll be different.  I usually avoid it but, "No point in avoiding the truth," is the approach I'm taking this time.  I'll probably start testing Friday or Saturday.  

To end on a celebratory note, Jen had her twins!  Congratulations, Jen!


Monday Morning

No symptoms, unless - sorry for the TMI - gas is a symptom.  Then again, I ate chili yesterday, so maybe that contributed!   ha!  What an awesome way to start a Monday morning post; sorry about that! But really, that's about my only symptom on 4 or 5 dpo, other than progesterone-related stuff like very light cramping down in my cervical region.  And the expected moodiness, of course.

I don't mean to be a whiner, but this weekend was pretty lame.  I can't blame anyone but myself, though, as I said in the previous post.  If I wanted to have plans, I could have made plans.  It was just one of those weekends that makes it so clear why I would love to have a partner.  Reliable companionship and intimacy is nothing to be sneezed at.

The reality of day-to-day partnership is right in front of me, too, as my housemate is in a relationship and is always going off to meet his sweetie or talking to her on the phone into the late hours of the night.  And he complains about not having enough alone time!  lol

I can't help but also think that if I had plans, I wouldn't have been so let down by S not wanting to get together this weekend.  I think our recent talks felt really good, and I was craving more of that connection.  As mentioned, however, he is not the source I want to be relying on to fulfill that need.

Trying to stay positive about this cycle... which I do think was timed pretty darn well.  But, in looking at how my pre-ovulation phase went down, I'm frustrated with the clinic.  I knew I should have had my first monitoring appointment on Day 3, when the rude nurse said there were no appointments.  Day 5 was too late to start Fem.ara if you respond quickly.  I only had one day to do a Men.opur injection.

And it's not like I ovulated super early, even, at Cycle Day 12/13.  I guess it's a little early but not crazy early, right?  I can't help but wonder if I would have started Fem.ara earlier, we might have caught more eggs, as well.

But.  I'm going to stay positive.  The two eggs were great sizes, the timing was good (for once), and maybe the "gentle protocol" was better for my body.  Here's hoping!


Saturday Night Pity Party

I'm feeling like such a loser tonight.  It's Saturday night and I have no plans.  I haven't had a date in a super long time.  I'm letting my stupid ex, S, get to me.  I am so uncool right now.

Today was a rough day in general.  I felt disconnected and adrift.  This morning, I spent some time completing college and career counseling-related emails.  I talked to my housemate for a bit.  But he was in his room most of the day.  It was a day I could have used some companionship.  The highlight of my day was grocery shopping.  That's just sad.

I tend not to plan ahead and sometimes it bites me, like tonight.  Tonight was a night it would have been great to have plans.  If I had plans, I wouldn't have been so bored and stupid as to call S.  We had talked a couple of times and were supposed to get together again for a final round, after things settled with our first talk (I was assuming that would occur this weekend).  But last Saturday we flirted some on the phone.  That was a mistake.  I feel like I'm kind of vulnerable right now, since I'm not seeing anyone and haven't had a date in quite a while.  I felt in need of an affirmation of my desirability.

Anyway, then at the end of this week he wrote me this email, and it pissed me off.  It was so arms length and avoidant, saying he had so much on his plate and had to finish a book this weekend, etc. so how about talking again next Thursday or Saturday.  I could have just gone along with it, but it felt controlling and not at all considerate of what I wanted.  Plus we'd had these two fairly intense conversations, and it seemed strange to then go a couple weeks without talking again, as we'd said we were going to do.  And why couldn't he pick up the phone instead of writing an email?

But, honestly, I should have just let it go.  I certainly have no intention of ever being in a relationship with him again.  I don't want to depend on him for anything.  He's not trustworthy, and, frankly, he's deceptive.  Even this weekend, he said he had to finish his book, but by calling I found out that he was at a game with his son (great, no problem, but tell me the truth!) and then going out tonight somewhere.  We were talking on the phone, and he was being his slippery-eel self, trying to seem witty and charming and above it all.  And then he gets to this place and says he has to go.  Nice.

See what I mean?  I am soooo uncool right now.  I do not want this stuff to be getting to me.  So, now I've written about it, and I'm going to try and let it go.  He is who he is - not worthy of my trust or my love, not capable of honoring agreements or upholding commitments.  Not emotionally mature.  What I need to decide, though, is do I follow through on the plans we have to talk later this week?  A big part of me would like to say,  "Screw you," and bail, but then we've still got the problem of being in each other's circles.

I suppose I could withdraw from the NVC circle for a while.  That's the main one that overlaps.  My theatre and dance are my own, and he's not part of them.  The other area is the Transition Town stuff, but we're not in any regular meetings together.  We will see each other around at TT events, like at an upcoming regional conference, etc., but not on a regular basis.

What do you think?

As a side note, I wonder if progesterone is affecting my mood!  Very likely!  lol


Good Timing

Knocking on wood over here, but I think the IUI was timed very well.  It feels so good to think the timing might finally have been right, after five prior IUIs that all felt like they were done somewhat late. 

I saw the surge on an OPK Tuesday night, which I think means I was well on my way to surging on my own, if not already there, when I did the HCG trigger shot.  Then, Wednesday morning, my temperature showed a dip, and I did the IUI later that day.  This morning, my temperature rose by two and a half tenths.  So, I'm thinking the sp.erm might have arrived a few hours before the egg.  It could have been a half day prior, though, which might be pushing it on timing with a frozen sample.  What do you think about the timing?

I taught my middle school classes today.  This morning, I felt quite a bit of uncomfortable cramping.  Not unbearable, and I didn't need to take anything, but definitely uncomfortable and somewhat intense at times.  No bleeding though.  Has anyone else experience this?  By afternoon, I was fine.  It maybe have been uterine irritation, or reaction to the sp.erm, or possibly ovulation?  I hope it wasn't ovulation, as that would put it on the late side.  It felt more uterine than ovary-based, so I think it was some kind of irritation/reaction. 

Luckily, I'm not working at the college or middle school tomorrow.  I'll be doing computer work for my other job and catching up on things around the house, but don't have to drive anywhere, thank God.  I've done WAY too much commuting back and forth in rush hour traffic the past three days.  How do people do that every day, like with the long commutes of an hour or more?  Blech.  Grateful to have some home time.


HCG Humor - update

I want to check in, but I'm super tired so will probably be an abbreviated one.  Just wanted to share the bit of HCG Laurel and Hardy entertainment I put myself through today.  So, my OPK was a little darker this morning but still not a surge.  They moved my monitoring appointment up to today from Wednesday, even though I knew what has happened would end up happening: i.e. back-to-back appointments, two days in a row.  Suddenly, 40 minutes to Fre.mont seem a bit more of a pain.  Oh well.

My appointment was okay, but not quite what I'd hoped for.  Looks like two, maybe three good follicles.  One 23, one 17, and I'm not sure if there is one more or not.  There was another one in the 20s on the sonogram pics, but the NP had gone into another appointment, and the nurse wasn't sure if it was two pictures of the same follicle.  During the monitoring, I thought she said there were only two big ones.  Anyway, I'll confirm it tomorrow.

When I left, I said I didn't need her to prescribe the HCG, as I already had some at home.  Well, apparently I was flashing back to the HCG shot I had an used in my last cycle or something because it wasn't to be found after tearing through drawers and cupboards and my refrigerator several times in a panic.  Of course, everyone had left for the day.  What to do?

I decide to call the Kai.ser Fre.mont emergency line and get this fabulous nurse who found me an ob-gyn to prescribe the HCG.  I run down to the pharmacy and look at the medicine... and I recognize it!  I've got that exact medicine back at home (did I mention a couple people have passed on some sweet meds?)!  The brand name is something different, but I know it's the same human chor.ionic gona.dotropin or whatever - it's a catchy name!  Plus, I find out the price - ouch!  Okay, I'm using what I have at home!

So I have to laugh at myself, as I drive myself home after putting myself and others through needless travails.  I get home, watch the youtube video about how to shoot up HCG, and get the job done by 8 pm.  Whew!

My delay will throw the timing of the IUI off by a few hours, and I'm wondering if that makes much of a difference.  I'll give them a call tomorrow.  Anyway, it was quite a day.  The journey continues!

Update:  Oh, and:

This community means a lot to me, and I appreciate the mutual support we all share; support - and understanding - I feel is hard to find anywhere else.  It seems fitting this post is right at the time of trigger/IUI!  I woke up this morning to a temp dip so things seem on target so far...


Labor Day Drama and Positive OPKs

Hey, I'm almost to my 200th post!  That's sounds pretty cool.  This is 199, so I'll have a little festive aspect to the next entry. 

Hope everyone is having a nice Labor Day weekend.  I went to dance, as usual, yesterday, then a few of us went over to the nearby park for a picnic.  It was a gorgeous day and fun to kick back in the sunny warmth and just talk and snack. 

Z, who leads the dance had me cracking up with his stories about a camp he use to attend called "plantation farm" or something.  It had another word in it that I can't remember, but a California camp with the word "plantation" in it just doesn't sound right.  And he said he and the other kids used to do all the farm chores, like feeding the pigs and milking the goats, etc.  These were the "camp activities."  Now, doesn't that sound more like "free labor for the owners" camp?  Then, he was saying they used to sing a song with the names "Cocaine Jim" and "Morphine Sue" or something.  What happened to, "The other day I met a bear," and, "The wishy-washy washer woman"?  I've been to camp; I know what "normal" camp is like!  lol  Not sure if the humor is coming across, but it was pretty funny at the time.

Today, I'm planning to attend a potluck and games gathering through the Non-Viol.ent Communication social network group I'm part of.  Guess who's going to be there?  Yep, S (formerly known as Sound Healing Chocolate Man).  He actually emailed me last week, after seeing I was signed up to attend, to tell me he was happy to not sign up if I would feel more comfortable.  I had been thinking about the situation because his name had started to come up among friends.  I knew he had been at recent events where I easily could have been there too but hadn't for one reason or another. 

I will say that my anger over his various acts of betrayal (the most recent being his bail-out a few months ago of our agreement to "try again" for a couple of months), has pretty much dissipated.  I definitely have felt "over him" for quite a while but still felt some anger when he wrote an email back in June suggesting we should be ready to move on and be friends, and that we might write a book together.  The man was cray cray!  I didn't respond.  But more time passed and it now feels somewhat inevitable that we "bury the hatchet," as it were. 

So, I emailed back and we went to dinner Friday night and talked.  It was good.  He said he'd made some headway with his "despair work," as he's now calling it, which he feels played a big role in our relationship and final break up.  Don't worry, I did hold his feet to the fire and say I wanted him to take responsibility for the deception.  There is no excuse for keeping the facts about his ex-girlfriend's visit secret for several months (how does someone even do that?) or for not telling me earlier that he planned to move and that he wanted to end our "trying again" effort.   That was in the works for at least a week or more and, during that time, we had been talking. 

The phrase that has come up for me around the betrayals and their devastating impact on me and our relationship was that, "It didn't have to be that way."  And I truly believe that.  If he would have been honest and upfront about things, I wouldn't have felt so blindsided, and we wouldn't have blown apart as we did more than once.  In any case, things happened the way they did and we are where we are. 

We had some heart connection during the talk, once when I said I felt sad that he had seen me as the enemy.  He reached out and we held hands in that way you do when you're broken up and you're sad about losing the good parts and you wish it could have been different.    We also both agreed that the insecurity we both felt indicated a real issue - that something was not right around that reality.  It shouldn't be that way, you know? 

So, the talking was good, and we plan to have another conversation in the next week.  Believe me, I have no intention to consider getting back together, and I doubt I even want to be friends because friendship requires trust.  But I would like to be able to be congenial at events and meetings.  I think today at the event will be okay, but we'll see.  I know a lot of people there, so that will help.

Regarding my ovulation timing crisis, I did take an OPK this morning, and guess what?  It showed a light line.  So, sure enough, I bet it's going to be dark by tomorrow... which means I should trigger then and inseminate at my Wednesday appointment.  Or at least that's what I'm thinking.  I have a call and email into my doctor's office, so hopefully they'll get back to me first thing tomorrow morning.  Doing my first injection tonight anyway.  Finger crossed!


Potential Crisis of Timing?

I was just calendaring my next monitoring appointment, scheduled for Wednesday, when I realized that it falls on Day 12 of my cycle.  In the recent past, I ovulated as early as Day 10!  My average ovulation day, however, is Day 13...

I don't understand how the monitoring and cycle timing works if you're not suppressing ovulation.  You can't exactly hold the train for other follicles to catch up or that sort of thing.  My protocol includes a trigger shot.  Does ovulation occur predictably at a certain follicle size, so the doctor could tell if I'm about to ovulate on my own?  And isn't it possible that I might "prematurely ovulate" for lack of a better phrase?

Perhaps I'm over-thinking?  It wouldn't be the first time!