Wednesday, June 3, 2009

stayin' alive

So, did anybody else notice that I totally forgot to do something special for my 100th post (despite the fact that I noticed it coming and was planning at least to remark on it)? No, of course not, how would anybody else know? This is my 102nd post. My 101st, somewhat appropriately, was June 1. A nice "1" kind of day. Something else, huh? I'm still a newbie around here, really. My blog isn't even six months old!

So I've now taken three days of the tamoxifen (two more to go). I feel as though I'm in the home stretch. My period is looking fairly normal. I feel pretty normal too. I feel maybe just a teensy bit more - endometrial? - than usual. I don't have crazy cramps (wrong time in my cycle for my usual ones), and of course I do have digestive issues, but I feel just a little puffy, or just a little sore, in the endometrial area. Not enough to upset me or even really distract me, just enough to know it's there. Which, for a long time, except for an ovary pinching once a week or so, I didn't feel. In the past few months, I only feel the digestive symptoms (but I feel them so much that I hardly feel like a non-endometriosis patient!).

So, this is OK with me. Maybe the tamoxifen is increasing the endo symptoms (or maybe this is a coincidence), but not really doing me any harm. Does it compound? I mean, if I take it next month too, will it be twice as bad? Also, should my scrip have said that it included refills? Because it said it didn't, even though Dr. L said I would do this for 3-6 months. Sigh. I need to listen to my voicemails and then call the clinic again. I called from the pharmacy and left a message, and I was cranky. I always feel panicky about treatment stuff, and then I realized, hey, I could get this refill thing adjusted any time in the next few weeks. I could chill out.

Anyway, I am waiting with interest to share with the whole darn internet how my CM is on my modified B6 intake. Most likely, with as little as I'm taking, and how I usually have pretty normal CM anyway, it will make no difference. But I have to take something, because my CM was practically nonexistent the last two cycles (first cycle: HSG; second cycle: SHG), and even though the procedures are an obvious explanation, I'm just so afraid that the only thing my body was doing right is gone. I want to cry just thinking about it.

Oh, and. I was looking at my charts on CD1 and realized that this past cycle, my husband and I have had sex once every two weeks. I mean, we knew we needed to get into more frequent habits for what I've dubbed the upcoming "sexual marathon," but we got worse. I mean, that's a record for infrequency, even for us. (And I LIKE sex! I mean, I can see how people wouldn't believe that.) Anyway, I brought this up with my DH, and I asked him what he thought we could do to really give this the old college try. (I stopped picking fights about sexual frequency when I went on my hiatus from treatment, but I can easily see that if we don't have sex at least twice during my fertile phase, I will scream and cry. I feel exhausted just thinking about it. Why do I have to be so defective? In every imaginable way?)

Anyway, he was really good. He had some suggestions, and pretty much he suggested communication. He pointed out that I always blindside him - it will be 2AM on a Wednesday, and I'll say, "It's the second day of my fertile phase, you were out last night, and you're leaving for a trip tomorrow morning." Or, I'll tell him, "Peak day was yesterday, and we haven't had sex in a week." I realized that I do this because I'm actually trying to sneak-attack him: he's supposed to be keeping the chart, in theory, and he (STILL!) can't even remember the difference between fertile phase, peak day, and ovulation. So I say things to point out that he's not paying attention.

He had a revolutionary suggestion: I should actually keep him up-to-date! It's an idea, let me tell you. Because, let's be honest, I could predict most of this stuff several days out (whereas he is clueless), and I never share my information. His other suggestion was that we actually make the sex a scheduling priority. So I have been giving him updates every few days, and worked out that fertile phase would probably be next Monday-Friday, and I'm planning to buy some nice chocolate on my grocery shopping next week, and get home at a decent hour, and try to seduce him before I do everything else I have planned for each evening, maybe even wear some interesting underwear. You know. Put some effort into it.

It won't work. But at least I will have the bizarre, pointless, perverse, nonsensical satisfaction - the only thing I'm earnestly seeking in these cycles - that I have done what I was supposed to do.


  1. I wonder if this female stuff is too complicated for the male brain? My dh is pretty clueless....I just have to tell him when he's needed. I need him always but you know what I mean. I try to not to schedule TTC for if it doesn't work out...we either try to force sex anyways or one of us gets upset which is usually me. Criminey! I did show him my chart and the stickers made sense to him but the codes didn't. All we can do is give them the info and let them know when. All the rest is up to us women. Blessings!

  2. During my ovulation week hubby and I have sex every other day. It's a known fact now in our house so I warn him (usually in a text during the day, lol) that I'm ovulatory and then he knows it's gonna happen before we go to bed, every other night, for that whole week.

  3. DH doesn't have a clue how to read my chart, so I usually just give him a heads up when the fertile window will be. I used to get really upset if he stayed up late and I needed to sleep and we missed a day - overall my getting tense about it made him less interested...duh. So this time, I just told him the doctor told us to BD days 10-20, skipping every other day if we felt like it, but to stay consistent. Then, I tried to stay pretty low-key, and would just let him know that I would stay up an extra half-hour if he thought he'd be coming to bed soon (I have to get up 2 hrs before him). It's worked so well that we BD'd from day 7 to day 20 only missing 4 days! And I would say about 99% of the time I didn't feel like we were that's a huge improvement. So if this cycle doesn't work, at least we can't blame infrequency :).
    Wow this is a long comment.

  4. Oh, and about the digestion. I am going to start taking Betaine HCL to give my stomach acid an extra hand digesting my food. You take it 20 min (or is it 40?) before a meal. If you feel better after, it works, if you feel worse, back off the dose.
    You can get good bacteria from fermented or cultured foods - like kefir (homemade or plain whole milk- not sugary), yogurt (same - homemade or plain whole milk kind), pickles (kind made without vinegar like Bubbies),homemade fermented salsa (or Zukay's).
    What the diet does is actually repair the lining of the gut - by reducing things that inflame it and damage it and by introducing good bacterias and healing foods to speed the process. There is an intro to the diet for people with illnesses or serious symptoms, but the full diet is really not that restrictive. I have the book if you'd like to borrow it sometime.

  5. Happy anniversary - I will take some cake, please!

    I hope your cm self-regulates again - that 'drying up' happened to me on Clomid and freaked me out. AND I hope you have fun doing the deed. IF can sure suck the joy out of it!

  6. I try not to schedule it, too, but try to happen to be extra "interested" when it is critical. Something funny happened last cycle: It was my third day of a high reading on my monitor, and I knew peak was coming soon. So I told DH as he was returning to work after lunch "Snuggling later- it is critical!" Which he thought (and maybe I wanted him to think) that we really should get together later. Which we did. The next day (peak day!), I told him the same thing! Ha! He was like, "I thought yesterday was critical?" I said, "It is always critical!" Hehe!

    I hope the side effects of tam. don't get worse!!

  7. AT my DH's suggestion, I mark when I'm expecting ovulation on our calendar hanging on the fridge. No one visiting has yet asked what "DMD" means (and for the life of me, I can't remember what the letters stand for). He's gotten better at remembering when we need to do the dance, and I've had much fewer melt downs.

  8. I felt like you for a while--sort of reluctant to let my husband in fully when it came to my intuitions and observations about when I was fertile. It felt like I would be setting us both up for disappointment every month, instead of bearing the pain alone. But I realized that he wanted to be supportive (he actually wanted a biokid waaay more than I did) and that by talking to him about my cycle, he felt more involved and in control, in a way. Talking about sex and timing can actually be sexy (if you're into talk--not all are). I hope you two can work things out and make it easier to get it on--I hate getting surprise attacked at 2 AM, too! :)

    I felt really tender, too, on fertility drugs, though I've only be diagnosed with minimal endo. I hope you feel better soon--ovulation was unmistakable on Clomid for me. It felt like a Chuck Norris punch to the lower gut...