Thursday, January 31, 2008

Well, since you all know we're trying anyway...

I thought I would share a few nifty resources with you. Most of you will probably not be interested, but if you have family or friends who are, please feel free to aim them at my site.

This is Getting Pregnant and Dealing With Offspring Stuff, so turn back now if it bores ya... I promise it's all on topic.

Places to shop for stuff:

1. Early Pregnancy Tests

I poked around online looking for fertility advice and so forth, and I've come up with lots of info, and a few commercial sites. Here's one of the latter that I found to be pretty impressive.

A quickie review: I ordered some Stuff from them, and was impressed about the speed, efficiency, discreet packaging, and great customer service they displayed. They even threw in a few ovulation detection sticks as freebies -- WITH DIRECTIONS -- which is awesome above and beyond the call of duty.

Aside from really inexpensive ovulation detection sticks, some great book resources, vitamins, sperm-friendly lube, and so forth, they have a no-nonsense, easy to navigate, and informative site with .... drum roll please.... customer reviews! Oh, how I love me the customer reviews. That's 90% of how I shop. Free shipping for most orders (seriously, gotta love it).


Yeah, I know it's jumping the gun, but I wanted to know what it would cost me to make a bunch of cloth diapers and how many of the suckers I would have to have around. This site sells package deals that knocked my socks off, and I am feeling much encouraged. Naturally, I have not ordered from them. That would be weird.

3. Very Baby

Likewise, but oh so DIY. This is the one I started with.

(...Yes, I plan on goin' with cloth. I use cloth (and silicone) myself and I don't plan on putting a tender tiny person through anything I wouldn't be tough enough to endure my own self. Is it more difficult than disposable? Not according to this FAQ. Is it more economical? Ohhhh yeah. About $300 vs. about $3500. You make the call. More environmentally sound? Enhhh... jury is out, depends on what you read and how you wash 'em.)

Other useful stuff... mostly from Heather (thanks Heather!):


Great magazine, and this lovely article really helped me when I was feeling overwhelmed. Pat explicitly told me when he had finished crowing from the mountaintops that, if anything happened, now everyone would be there for us and we wouldn't have a terrible secret. As the author of this article says, he was right. So right. I love you all.

2. Baby Center

Likewise awesome. Loads of great information, and a lively community to back it up.

3. American Pregnancy Association

Wow, this site saved my sanity the day I found out we were pregnant. Argh! What about caffeine? What about Advil? What about fabric softener? Got concerns? This site can help you, in easy to navigate, easy to understand, well-researched ways.

4. March of Dimes

Saving babies is what these cats DO. Not only do they get active with the fundraising (we did the walk last year, which turned out to be a 9 mile death march due to odd layout planning, but was very rewarding), but they have a great, informative site with lots of well-researched advice. Got a question and want a second opinion? Yep, come here.

5. Friends.

I 'fessed up on VegWeb's sadly defunct forums that I was TTC, and a friend gave me great, great advice. It's fun having a "conception buddy" and you can double up on your research and stuff. She is just about through her first trimester now and when we succeeded (y'know, even though it didn't come to term, we DID), it was in large part due to her great advice that let me recognize when I was ovulating. Guess when we hit? Yeah... same month she told me.

Thank you, Little2Ant!

Fertility stuff that I already know:

1) Get healthy. Eat healthy, get the female partner her prenatal vitamins, get the male partner his spinach and multivitamins with minerals. (Yes, spinach! It's in like the top 10 list of food sources for almost every fertility promoting vitamin, mineral, or partridge in a pear tree. Good for you anyway.) Exercise.

2) Take your time in the sack, even if it eats the rest of your social life. Lube is the devil. It has a PH which kills the little swimmers. We sophisticates of the current age are trained to love it, but I am betting it's responsible for a lot of the spike in infertility we are recording. (Also, due to pesticides etc. sperm health seems to have plummeted in the last 75 years or so... 40% decrease! So...)

3) Consume only things you would offer your newborn. Eat organic. Don't wallow in hazardous materials. Clean up the environment. Wear gloves if you must mess with cat boxes or sick animals or whatever.

4) Listen to your body. If you feel weird and are sleeping a lot, take a pregnancy test. Count days, experiment on your cervical mucus, and so on. If you need gross and graphic advice, let me know... but zees book is supposed to be the best and most informative. I'ma read it to expand on the great stuff L2A already told me.

5) TELL people. Yes, if something bad happens they will be sad. But they will hug you when you are crushed, tell you about similar things that have happened to LOADS of people they know (it's so, so common), pray over you, and generally support you. And if everything goes as planned, they will get to celebrate just that much longer.

... okay, back to your regular programming. Just thought I'd share.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Lost Vegwebbers have a new forum -- thank you Cali!

Ask me for the address of the new forums if you need it. I have edited out the URL to prevent Cali from being spammed silly, at her request.

I am assuming the same ol' community will be there, from the kindest to the most vexing. Give me a holler in comments if you need the address, and we'll figure out a way to get it to you.

Exciting times...

I will post something more substantive soon, but life's been off the hizzy.

Pat started another teaching gig (so now he has two, each of which is about an hour's drive but not in the same direction). He will be making the transition down to our area to do mortgage things for commission, as well, rather than processing and reception an hour away for peanuts per hour.

I have also been working my behind off. That's not going to change soon... in fact I am adding a few hours to my work week while studying for my P&C license.

And -- well, I needed down time. Lots of Rock Band. LOTS of Rock Band. Ow my wrist. Ow my back. Ow my voice.

The VegWeb forums are no more, which is too bad... several new bad apple forum trolls have spoiled the barrel for the rest of us. Things went from bad to better to oh no they're back to I don't know, but it's gone away now. Oh well. The site is still phenomenally useful, beautiful, and filled with delightful recipes.

My brain's working on a new post, so expect me soon.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Try, try again

So... it's been a crazy week.

On Friday the 4th of January, I left work early. I felt sick and thought I had the flu. I had been sleeping mad long hours (I usually sleep 4 or so hours a night... I was sleeping 8-9).

On Saturday, I still felt gross. On Sunday morning at 4 a.m., I woke up and asked myself... might I be pregnant?

I took a test and peed all over the floor while I did so. Irritably, groggy at 4 a.m. and still feeling awful, I cleaned up the floor. The test had a faint pink line and another, almost imperceptible line crossing it. I felt sure that you could always see the 2nd line... it wasn't even colored in... dammit, it was day 39 and where the hell is my period when I am expecting it anyway?!

I went to throw away the test and a little voice in my head stopped me. "But there's a 2nd line."

So I did the sensible and kindly thing and woke up Pat. "Just tell me this fucker is negative so I can go back to bed. I don't feel good."

He staggered in to the bathroom and studied it blearily while he peed. "It's positive, man. You're pregnant, I told you so."

"Nahhh." I went back to bed.

Ten minutes later, I heard his voice, soft and thin and drowsy, through the wall. "It's positive, honey. It says no matter how faint the second line is, if you see one, it's positive."

"I want a second opinion. I want one of those digital tests, the ones that tell you in no uncertain terms."

"Me too."

Wide awake, we tried to wait until WalMart opened to get one of these digital newfangled hoo-dads. We eventually passed out at about 6:30 and woke at 8. We went to IHOP for breakfast (and I think we saw Nick Cage... I heard his voice, looked at the birthday party assembling at the next table and what do you know? Since it was his birthday, not too improbable... even less so since the person in question winked... weird!) Then we went and got a test.

I came home and peed on a stick again (and the toilet seat, the floor, my hands, passing motorists, and probably the Frisbee on the roof... this is not my gift, people). I slammed the pee-stick onto the counter, growled, cursed, and mopped up pee. When I straightened, nauseated beyond bearing, my eye fell on the test.

"PREGNANT." All caps. No doubt. No remorse.

I dropped my wad of tissue. "Pat, helllllp!"

We called my folks. We told many of our friends. I told my boss and office mates. I was gloriously morning sick. I had swollen boobs and I could feel weird tensions in my abdomen and I felt like a superhero and any little nicks and cuts practically healed in minutes and I glowed and everyone went happily mad and I've never eaten so many greens in my life.

Thursday the 10th, I started bleeding. I called the doctor for an earlier appointment and they told me I could come in Friday. All Thursday night, I cried, tried in vain to clench my cervix, and knew.

On Friday morning, Fran the wonderful nurse told me not to get my hopes up. We were probably miscarrying, not to worry, nature knows and there must have been something wrong.

When I went to the doctor, he confirmed it with an exam and ultrasound (and do you know you can feel the pulses of the sonic probe? It's like ground penetrating radar or something... whump! Whump!) It was probably a blighted ovum, which would never have developed into a person. The body eventually notices that it's spending lots of hormones and activity for nothing and pulls the plug on such a pregnancy.

Ah so. Or as I told Pat halfway through Black Friday, "fuuuuuuuck."

Oh, well. At least we know we're (kinda) fertile. There's always a next time.