My Story

Hi there, welcome to my blog. Yes I am a drama queen and yes I have been deemed “infertile” by a few of the medical experts in the great State of Colorado but that hasn’t made me give up my quest to have children quite yet. My husband and I have been on the emotional roller coaster of infertility since March of 2009 when I stopped taking birth control after being on it for ten straight years. I have been keeping a journal since the start of this process and thought I would share it with all of the other incredible women out there who may be going through the same thing or similar thing that I am. At age 28, I have been diagnosed with Premature Ovarian Failure (POF). With no history of fertility problems on either side of my family and normal periods before going on the pill, I was left to accept that I have this condition and that there is no medical explanation for it. Since receiving this diagnosis from a fertility specialist in May 2009, I decided I simply wasn’t going to accept that I wasn’t going to have children with my own eggs. I jumped into the world of Eastern Medicine, worked with an Endocrinologist and even went on a fertility diet trying to get my ovaries to start functioning normally. The conclusion I have come to is this…..having Celiac Disease (Gluten/Flour intolerance) and continuing to eat flour throughout most of my childhood and part of adulthood caused my body to produce anti-bodies that have now started attacking the organs/glands in my body. After a visit to an endocrinologist in December 2009, it was determined that I have ovarian antibodies which are essentially antibodies produced by my body that only attack the endocrine system. No doctor has actually confirmed my self diagnosis that the Gluten Intolerance caused this but Celiac Disease is an auto immune disorder and any auto immune disorder can cause your body to attack itself. I am currently waiting to see a Reproductive Endocrinologist to see what the next steps for me will be. I have read that doctors can try and stimulate the Pituitary Gland to get your Endocrine System running again or that you can be given steroids to help restore ovary function. I am hoping to receive one of these treatments in the near future but only time will tell. In the past 10 months, I have watched many of my close friends become pregnant while I remain a sad statistic. This blog contains my thoughts as I struggle through the process of figuring out what in the world is going on with my body and how I continue to try to stay upbeat and positive about my fertility and enjoy my life. I hope that my blog can help others would love to hear from other women going through the same thing, inspiring stories or anyone who just needs encouragement. I know and understand how difficult every day can be once you have received the POF or infertile diagnosis and want you all to know that I am here for you. Please note that some of you may feel I am sharing to much information (TMI) and for that I am sorry. If you want to read my blog…you get all the details. You never know what will be helpful to someone else right? God bless everyone and I wish you luck on your fertility adventures:0) Remember mind over matter!

My intent is to raise awareness of the issues. Please do not rely on this or any other article when making decisions that will affect you and your health. These are things I have decided to try after much research.
I am sorry I have to even ask, but this research stuff is starting to get expensive. I am just asking for $1.00 donation for posts you feel have helped you. I will use all donations to help fund my research and doctors appointments and of course report back to you. Baby dust to all of you and dont worry we will all find a way to have children.

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Save the carrot shaving from your juicer and make carrot cake or carrot muffins yummy! You can also save them to put in a salad.

Infertile – a horrible word used to make women who are already feeling bad about themselves want to jump into a pool of chocolate fudge and eat their sorrows away only to realize that not only can they not get pregnant but now they don’t fit in their clothes. A word so easily tossed around by doctors that they don’t even realize they are saying it and a word that you never under any circumstances should google unless you want your brain to explode.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Relax....and take a deep breath

So much to share today. Last week I continued to have cramps up until about Saturday. Well I thought they were cramps but maybe they weren’t?? Seems that only felt a pain/cramp from my left ovary from Weds-Saturday. On Thursday during an appointment with Mrs. W, she had me take part of the ionic footbath and set them on top of my skin where I imagined my ovaries were. Then she explained that I needed to control the switch that controlled the footbath and the separate pieces over my ovaries. Basically I was to move it up until I felt twitching or tingling and that meant I had come across an area that needed some work. The results of my footbath were that I had a lot of metal (black) and mucus and I even had some color come out of my skin where I was holding the other two tools kind of a brown light brown color?? Mrs. W said that was very strange….is that good you think? I have never been what you call normal so I am going to go with strange is good. After this appointment, my left ovary was on fire. It literally felt like it was pulsating. On my way home, I recalled a chapter in a healing book I had recently read about a woman who was involved in a bad car accident and was thrown from her car. As she arrived at the hospital and they ran tests, she was told that she had a lot of internal injuries. One of her lungs was collapsed and her spleen was ruptured. The doctors wanted to remove her spleen but couldn’t operate until she stabilized. Feeling helpless laying there waiting to see if she did in fact stabilize, the woman decided she was going to do everything she could at that moment to help herself. Being that she was not able to get up from the hospital bed, she began trying to take deep, deep breaths. At first it really burned and she couldn’t take very deep ones, but as she worked at it she found that she was able to breathe more deeply with every hour she worked at it until she was taking complete breaths. The next day the doctors came in to check her vitals, did some x-rays and found that her lung had repaired itself and that the lesion on her spleen was also better. She had healed herself by taking really deep breaths and relaxing herself. I know what you are thinking, “yeah right”. The doctors involved confirmed this happening and if you search “the healing power of deep breathing”, you will be amazed. How can something that should be so obvious for us to do on a daily basis be missed by so many? I used to think I breathed the correct way but in order to take one full, deep breath, your lower abdomen should come out and your lungs should almost burn. As you take the deep breathe you will notice that your mind is clear because you are focusing on taking the breath. This is why the experts say deep breathing is so healing, as you focus on taking the breaths, you stop stressing and your mind is at ease. Your body takes in all of the oxygen, relaxes and you feel more at ease. Try it the next time you are sitting in traffic or having trouble falling asleep at night. It has helped me fall asleep a few times since I have incorporated into my getting ready for bed routine which was already quite lengthy but breathing my 10 breaths takes less then 3 minutes. As I stated previously, I am taking the time each morning before I get out of bed to take 10 deep breaths and then doing 10 more before I fall asleep. The point of this story is that I believe that what I was feeling last week wasn’t a period, it was my ovary healing. My left ovary has never been able to be viewed on any of my ultrasounds. The fertility specialist said it was probably because it was either to small with no follicles or because it had collapsed. My new OBGYN, Dr. S, said it is because it hides behind my bowels. I think Dr. S is probably the closest to the real reason mainly because the fertility specialist also told me my right ovary was collapsed with no standing follicles which we all know is not true. I think what I felt last week was my left ovary healing. I talked it over with Mrs. W and she believes that as well. She said we shouldn’t feel any of our internal organs from the outside unless something is going on good or bad and given all of the positive changes I have seen lately, she believed the pain was good. She said it seems like my body is really cleansing and healing quickly and that it seems ready to be healthy again. On Saturday, during a trip to the bathroom, I noticed some strange CM that resembled a thin piece of paper followed by some clear stretchy CM. The thin paper like CM was in a round shape and the size of a pencil top eraser. Alarmed I called my husband which I am not sure why I did that because he had no idea what to say and then all I did was worry him. He then wanted me to take another HPT but I told him that two in one week was enough and that those things aren’t cheap. If it were up to him, I would take one every morning. The strange CM was gone after Saturday and so was the pain on my left ovary. “Things” have been dry since Saturday and I am anxious to see what changes happen the next two weeks. I have marked in my calendar when I think I could have ovulated last month and am hoping it happens again this month. Speaking of ovulation, my husband and I have decided to cancel our appointment with the fertility specialist in August and make an appointment with a new fertility clinic called Conceptions. My mother had read about this clinic in a local magazine and saw them on the news and one of my followers on this blog also recommended them. We decided that the other clinic had bad karma and didn’t think that we couldn’t go in with a positive attitude even with all the positive changes after how mean the ultrasound tech was to us that horrible day in April 2009. Conceptions will give us a new start, new positive karma and a better chance at successful IVF. It is a good decision for us and Conceptions has a pretty good success rate so I don’t feel like I am losing anything by making the switch except for the bad karma which I will gladly leave behind. I hope that Conceptions will make us feel welcome and maintain a positive attitude throughout our IVF process (should we have to do that).

Learning to say NO and how to de-stress

Weds., June 9th

After reading a great and inspiration book called “the Fertile Soul” by Randine Lewis on my recent trip. I am now convinced that part of the reason my body shut down was because of stress that has been building up internally for many years…..I also believe the other reason for my fertility issue is taking the pill for over 10 years. The book discusses how stress can and has caused many women’s fertility to not work properly or stop working all together. Until recently, I have always been a people pleaser, afraid to say no, afraid to make someone mad, afraid to go against the norm. I would just let things happen and not say anything, say yes to every party/dinner invitation I received and rushed around trying to please everyone….everyone that is but me! This has caused me to hide and harvest a lot of internal anger when people don’t reciprocate the same actions towards me…in other words in acting a certain way, I expected my friends and loved ones to return the favor….and when they didn’t I would get upset but wouldn’t say anything because after all they were my friends and family and I didn’t want to upset them. This book has taught me that I can’t do that anymore because in pleasing everyone but myself, I am loosing myself. I need to say no when I want to, express emotion when I need to and learn to not get upset when everything doesn’t go perfectly. I also need to take time to take deep breathes, message my hands and feet and embrace how truly lucky I am in life and love. For almost a month now, I haven’t been focused on my fertility problems. One because I can feel my body healing and two I just cant worry about it anymore, I need to move on. I feel great, like a new woman and I am ready for whatever life throws my way. Having said that I still need to report that both yesterday and today, I have had thin, clear, water like CM. I haven’t had anything like this since going off the pill so this is another change. A very good friend of mine had her baby this morning so after work I am off to see the new bambino and welcome him into this crazy place we call life and then will be off to help the hubby start packing up our first home together so we can buy our first home together.

To eat processed foods or not to the question

Being with my family the past week has illustrated how unhealthy today’s society truly is. Although I love them all, with the exception of one of my cousins and my grandmother, processed foods rule their worlds. Nothing green or anything resembling fruit ever covers the buffet line at any family gathering unless it is covered in some kind of sauce (ranch included). A few of my relatives have symptoms like non stop hot flashes, excessive sweating and restless leg syndrome but refuse to take things out of their diet even for a few days to see if they might be having a reaction to one of the foods they eat on a daily basis. I really wish they would. Knowing first hand how diet can cause your body to shut down or prosper (depending on what you eat), I am really worried on the health and well being of my family members. I tried to help them out by mentioning their reactions could be from what they are eating but people are always resistant to cutting things out of their diet especially products made with flour. Most people are fine with not eating as much chocolate or cutting out a few drinks a week but when it comes to cutting out pizza, bagels or fresh baked bread they are just not interested. I cant judge because I was the same way. It wasn’t until my POF diagnosis in April of 2009 that I took my celiacs seriously and decided the sacrifice was worth living the rest of my life healthy and happy. People have to get to a breaking point to make a big change like that. I am lucky that mine was before I turned thirty, a lot of people don’t find out until its to late. They have cancer or another life altering health problem caused by eating foods their bodies couldn’t process throughout their entire lives. If only health insurance covered the tests necessary to determine whether a person is allergic to wheat/flour. It seems it isn’t important enough to Americans to demand for insurance to support celiacs disease.

A Good Dose of Laughter and some deep thoughts

It has been a long time since my last entry and I feel like I have been through a lot since then. After my delayed return home from my last business trip, I was able to spend a few hours with the hubby before he was whisked away to Arizona for a few days of golf and lavish dinners on his company. I was left at home to take care of the Chihuahuas a hope that I didn’t ovulate the few days he was out of town. The first day my husband was gone I noticed I had a large amount of white and clear CM but nothing stretchy, the second day was the same but it started to get thicker and a bit clumpy and the third day it got even more thick and was stretchy. The bad thing is that it happened while he was out of town, the good thing is that it finally happened. That is another positive change in my body since starting the diet and life style changes in April of this year. I haven’t had changes in my CM like that throughout this whole process and nothing stretchy like that since last October. Things are definitely getting better, I am positive I will either be seeing a period by the 15th of this month or a pregnancy test (two weeks from when I appeared to have ovulated). This past week I have been visiting with family in St. Louis which has been so nice. I seem to smile and laugh so much while with my family and that is such good medicine. My abs are actually sore from laughing so hard so you know that it must have had other positive side effects on my body. Laughing and enjoying life is so important for anyone to do but is extra important for someone who is trying to heal. I am so lucky to have my family. They are all such a wonderful and important part of my life and I really wish I could see them more. My cousin (one of four of my bridesmaids who have had babies this year) spent a lot of time with me and I got to hold her brand new baby son a few times. I have read that holding a baby can amazing effects on a woman’s body. Perhaps it jump started one of the missing links to my fertility? While on this trip I stuck to my diet and was sure to go on a morning job every morning. I feel really good and for the first time ever, I am returning home thinner then when I left. I am usually barely able to zip my pants as I get ready to go to the airport. As I got ready this morning, I slide right in to my pants and zipped and buttoned them with no problem (not that you care about my pants). The day before I left for this trip, I went to see Mrs. W who gave me the works again. My ionic foot bath had similar results as my last one only this time I actually had clumps that wouldn’t break down in the water that were a very dark read and even more black specks. My body seems to be letting go of a lot of toxins. Mrs. W also recommended some panty liners that have an ionic strip on them that are supposed to help counteract bacteria and promote healthy menstruation. She used them to help re-align her cervix after her last pregnancy and thought they may help my periods not only re-appear but also become more regulated. I have been wearing them while I sleep at night for almost a week. The brand of the liners is Anion and they are not thick and uncomfortable at all. I figure it is one of the less weird things I have tried throughout this whole process so why not? On my flight to St. Louis, I read a book “the Healer Within” which discusses how to heal your body from the inside out. This book explained how to rub hands, ears and feet to help your body heal and also discussed the importance of deep breathing. The past few mornings, I have started my day by taking 10 deep breaths and massaging each of my hands and ended my day by taking 10 deep breaths and rubbing my ears. The book said the most difficult task is working the rituals into your daily routine so now that I have that done…..let the healing begin. Perhaps it is starting to work because I feel even more relaxed then I did before and woke up this morning with cramps. We will have to see, who knows maybe the 15th was the wrong date to be waiting for. I took a pregnancy test last Thursday before I left on my trip so I think I will wait until at least June 15th to take another but maybe my period will come before then?? Only time will tell, I will be interested to see what happens in the next week. As I sit here in the airport waiting for another flight, I am waiting to hear back from a good friend of mine (another bridesmaid) who went to the hospital this morning, 1 cm dialated, ready and willing to give birth. She was sent home after no further progression a few hours ago so I am thinking of her and hoping that she is not in much pain. I know that I will be in the same boat soon and will be interested in everything she goes through.

Entry from May 24th...forgot to post but has

I have always been a true romantic at heart. Don’t let my writing fool you. From my writing, you might think I am a feminist who doesn’t need a man to sweep me off my feet. Well I do need it and deep down I secretly hope that my husband will surprise me and most of the time he does. That is why as I write this I am sitting in an airport. You see I was out of town on business and wasn’t scheduled to leave until tomorrow morning around 10:00 AM. I finished my business early and called the travel agent to see if there was a flight out today. I figured my employer would appreciate me not staying any longer then I needed to and I wanted to surprise my husband. The travel agent said there was a flight out at 6:55 PM. That meant I could be pulling into my driveway around 7:00 PM at home surprising my husband who isn’t expecting me back until tomorrow. I thought I was such a genius! I got to the airport early around 4:30 PM and was happily working away on my laptop until I glanced up at the check in desk and saw the words DELAYED followed by the new departure time of 10:15 PM!!!! Thinking it must have been a mistake, I walked up to talk to the airline employee who confirmed that my flight was indeed delayed 5 hours due to weather in Denver. So here I sit. It is now 6:30 PM. The airport I am in reminds me of the one in the movie “the Langoliers”. It is a small airport and there are not many people in it. One might even think the airport was closed looking outside in. I have been sitting in a row of chairs that each have two plug in stations (one for my cell phone and one for my computer, now is a good time to thank God for reminding to pack my charger in the bag I am carrying on and not with the luggage I checked). My chair is on the end and is right next to one of those gumball machines that when you put the money in the gumball follows the track in a spiral motion from the round top part all the way to the bottom. There have only been about twenty people who have walked by since I sat down two hours ago and would you believe that half of them put a quarter in the gumball machine, watched it roll to the bottom, commented on the color they got, giggled and walked away. If you were thinking that most of them have been children ….you are wrong! Not a single one of them was below the age of 18. I am amazed that so many people want to waste a quarter to get a gumball that will only have flavor for maybe 5 minutes. Is it really necessary to watch and move your head with the movement of the gumball? I never knew the gumball dispensers were so popular. Perhaps I should invest in some and put them in my office at work?? I am sitting here wishing I had just stuck to my original plan and flown home tomorrow morning and hating on the gumball people. Am I the only one who thinks a huge gumball for twenty five cents is a waste of money? Granted it is only twenty five cents but three more quarters and you have a taco or some other item off a value menu at a fast food restaurant. On to news….I have weird cramping in my lower abdomen and am wondering if it is the gross airport salad I ate or something else. I pray it is something else. I know I will be pregnant soon, things just keep improving. How could they not continue until my fertility is completely restored? Our bodies are capable of healing, after all Kris from “crazy sexy cancer” healed her stage 4 cancer….if she can do that, I can get my ovaries to work again. I really think that this was all from taking birth control for 10 years. 10 years of synthetic hormones, suppressing my natural bodily functions was bound to cause some damage. I am sitting here feeling lucky that I did not get any worse side effects such as a heart attack or blood clots. All this time I thought the activists speaking against birth control were bible thumpers who didn’t want to support sex before marriage never in a million years did I consider the fact that they might be concerned with people’s health being compromised. How did I not consider that? I feel so stupid! And I feel a bit mislead. How could doctors across the United States continue to prescribe birth control to their patients knowing the possible danger? A woman my mom works with is 30 years old and recently was in the hospital with gall bladder issues. As they were releasing her, one of the nurses noticed that she had written down she was taking Yasmin. The nurse suggested my mom’s friend speak with her OBGYN about switching since Yasmin is known to cause problems with the gall bladder. My mom’s friend made an appointment and was told by her doctor that it was fine and the pill had not caused it… she continues to take the prescription. If it were me, I would have thrown the prescription away the minute I got home from the hospital. My research and experience makes me want to stand in front of high school assemblies to lecture young women on birth control and how not wonderful it is. I have to do something about this!

I have made it home and am sitting at work functioning pretty well on my four hours of sleep. I have cramps today and have very thick, half clear CM that is kind of clumpy. Still waiting for the stretchy transparent stuff to appear. While we are on the CM subject…..for those of you who don’t seem to have much CM when you wipe, I read that you should check up by the opening to the cervix to get the best sample. You can do this by sticking your “clean” finger up. Don’t worry it’s not that far and believe me it could be much different up there then what is showing up when you use the rest room. I found that to be true this morning so suck it up and do it. While sitting in my hotel room a few nights ago, I read a book called “the raw food detox diet”. In the book, the author explains the reasons why people are so afraid to give up their current comfort foods and replace them with more nutritional ones. She also explains how the human body isn’t made to break down processed foods and that is why it is so important to eat mostly natural products such as fruit and vegetables. The author rates people’s diet and lifestyle into 5 stages with stage 1 being the most healthy. I am currently a stage 3 and plan on staying at this stage for awhile since I enjoy cooked food for dinner and don’t eat all my meals raw. There are recipes provided for all of the different stages which I plan on attempting with suggestions on what to do when you eat out and travel. One of my favorite recipes in one for a drink the author suggests you drink some kind of version of at least once a day in the morning on an empty stomach. The drink/juice is loaded with all kinds of veggies but also includes a lemon (to get rid of the green taste). I tried adding half a lemon to my juice this morning and it worked! The author is a genius! I will be adding lemons every morning. One of the other things I am incorporating to my diet is to only eat raw fruit and vegetables in the morning (whole or juice form), a green salad (raw) for lunch and dinner with cooked vegetables (can include organic fish or chicken). Not to discuss elimination again but if you only give your body raw fruit and veggies in the morning, you give it a chance to eliminate the waste from the previous day before you start loading your system up with the new day’s food. The author also discusses colon cleansing and how good it is for you, especially for people who are new to eating clean and organic. If you don’t clean your pipes, the new diet will start detoxifying your body and that toxicity (waste) will not be able to leave the body because older waster will block it. The result is what happened to me…..stomach aches and gas and no one wants that. Basically I think that author of “the raw food diet) is amazing and I am so excited to try the recipes.

Reading Materials/Other Items That Have Helped Me

  • Inconceivable
  • Making Babies by Sami S. David, MD & Jill Blakeway, LAc
  • pre-seed Fertility-friendly Intimate Moisturizer
  • restoring fertility - yoga for optimal fertility dvd - you can feel it working!
  • Taking Charge for Your Fertility by Toni Weschler, MPH
  • The Infertility Cure by Randin Lewis, Ph. D.