It dawned on me yesterday as I was sitting in the-worlds-longest-meeting that I haven’t had a pee session in the past 3+ years that wasn’t imbued with more meaning than a simple emptying of the bladder should ever rightfully have. As the meeting dragged on, my cramping picked up, and I found myself both praying and fearing that my period had arrived. We’ve been waiting for the witch ever since we learned that our last baby’s heart stopped on Valentine’s Day (there’s a fun coincidence, eh?). 35 days and a 5-day course of Provera later, we’re still waiting. But as awesome as it would have been to have her crash the meeting, there’s still the fact that me and my khaki slacks really didn’t want to stand up and find I’d bled all over my boss’ boss’ chair in front of said big boss and little boss. Still, I was sad when my subsequent potty trip showed all worry was for naught. (If anyone finds my period, btw, can you give her directions to my house?)
Still, the experience got me thinking of all the crazy flowing through my mind at any given moment. If you (like me) think pregnant women go unnecessarily hog wild with the worry (“No soft cheese for me, please,” “No, that eye dropper full of wine may ruin my yet-to-be-born honor student’s future academic performance,” or “Oh my God I ate lunch meat without microwaving it!”), you should take a long hard look at you friendly neighborhood infertile’s day-by-day. Preggers McFertile over there turns health Nazi for 9 months; Ms. Bitter Infertile will be living in the neighboring ghetto of insanity for years, if not decades.
Some worries, those worries forged in n00b-ness, fade. I still remember that first post-TTC trip to my in-laws where the hubs and I felt all James Bond and Miss Moneypenney while diverting all offers of caffeine and alcohol with a wink and white lie. Over 3 years later, I’m sitting here chugging down my Metformin with some strong black coffee, and dreaming of what alcoholic delight I’ll partake in at tonight’s exhibit opening. So, yea, some worries fade.
In their place, others remain and new ones appear. Yesterday, I touched on my newest worry, born out of a totally unexpected positive ANA result. Today has been all about trying to find a rheumatologist willing to see me sooner than June (why is this so f-ing hard?), and trying to decide whether to move forward with our next cycle prior to seeing a rheumy. Infertile mind a-racing? Shouting matches with medical receptionists? Multiple emails to my RE before noon? Check. Check. And check.
What’s the inspiration for my most prevalent wonder and worry throughout the years, though? That’s right, my pee.
Unlike many of my infertile sisters, I think I’ve spent at least twice as much time in the past 3 years wishing for my period to arrive, than I have hoping it would stay away (for, oh, 9 months?). And, that’s probably a gross underestimate. PCOS, Hashi’s, anovulation, surgery, miscarriages – it’s all led to more anxious waiting for a period than even the sluttiest little teenager could appreciate. So, I spend at least half my time in the ladies’ room poking and prodding and praying for even slightest hint of red.
With three miscarriages under my belt, another quarter of my time has been spent occupied with said poking and prodding and the always delightful shoving in of progesterone suppositories. Same story as above, save the hope is for no red and you get the added bonus of the aroma and appearance of week old Crinone. Rounding out the final quarter of my time are the hours spent peeing on things – ovulation tests, home pregnancy tests, my hands – in the hope of gaining some small sliver of understanding of what my broken body is up to. Wishing for red, wishing away red, cursing the red. (Don’t even get me started on cervical mucus!)
Peeing is complicated. It’s not light. It’s heavy. And not even a bowler hat can change it.