Thursday, April 29, 2010

Convection ovens

I finally got a convection oven in the not-too-distant-past. Joe really just wanted a toaster, but I've wanted one of these bad boys for quite a while. So when we went shopping for a new toaster, I pointed out various convection ovens and we got one of them instead, for pretty close to the same price.

So far, I'm really enjoying it. We've used it to bake breakfast foods twice and just a handful of cookies (from a tub of cookie dough we got recently) multiple times. We're still getting used to it, but we love how quickly it preheats. And it cooks things faster too, which is nice.

I'm still finding that I'm having difficulty figuring out how to adjust the temperatures (if at all) and the recommended cooking/baking time on products, as well as trying to figure out which position to have the rack in. I haven't started doing searches for pages or blogs where people talk about their love for their convection ovens, but I'm just about there.

Instead, I thought I'd ask if any of you have ever used one and if you have any expertise to share with me. So, can anyone reading this help me out?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Looking on the bright side of things

"No change," the nurse informed me after jabbing at my girly parts with the ultrasound wand. Those two words weren't near as crushing as they were on Wednesday when I heard them at the second ultrasound of the week. Why? Because I figured if I hadn't ovulated or even shown any signs of pending ovulation by Wednesday (which was day 14 of my cycle), chances were that there would be nothing to see today either.

And I decided to look at what this means in a more positive light (I'm trying VERY hard here, okay?) instead of feeling down.

1. The later in the year I have a baby, the greater the tax benefit. I have heard the best time to have a baby is around the end of the year, because you get the same tax deduction whether you give birth on January 1st or December 31st.

2. I have more time to focus on jamming through my medical transcription program without having to worry about morning sickness or the like getting in the way.

3. I have more time to work on getting healthier before getting pregnant. Every pound I lose now will make it easier when I do get pregnant. This is the most important benefit to me.

4. I have more time to find a job, which is SUPER stressful. I understand being pregnant is stressful for your body. Really, anything that is stressful can take its toll on your body. So if I find a job and don't have to worry about that stress piled on top of the physical stress of carrying a baby, I'll be better off.

5. If I get a job, I may also get some better benefits than I have right now. I'm on my husband's health insurance (glad I have SOMETHING!), and it's not very good. I know he said it's changing sometime in the near future (hopefully to something better!), but maybe I could even get something like maternity leave with a job of my own!

6. I have a little longer to enjoy my husband and plan vacations without having to worry about a baby taking up our time and energy and making it difficult (or possibly impossible) to go on vacations.

7. I have more family members and friends realizing what a struggle this has been for us, so they can celebrate with us when we are able to finally conceive (or, if we find out we can't, when we adopt).

8. I know this one will sound weird, but there are some people I know (a lot more than I realized not too long ago) who I would like to have some success either before or (basically) at the same time we do. I know how easy it is to feel left out when it seems like everyone around you is expecting or done having kids, and I don't want people I care about to hurt any more. I want to be able to share their happiness with them and not feel guilty if I get pregnant and they're still not at that point in their lives. I know me, and I know I'd feel very bad sharing my excitement with them. I'd feel sorry for them, the way I sometimes feel for myself right now.

Yeah, I know it's kind of a stretch, seeing as it's just one month's ovulation I'm talking about here. And that's the point. It's not the end of the world. It's just one month that I'm not ovulating. And I'll be seeing the doctor on Tuesday so he can help figure out what we need to do to correct that. Then we'll be working on what we need to do to get me pregnant when I do ovulate (assuming that's possible, which I think it is because I have had a miscarriage before). I'm really trying to "let go and let God."

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Another ultrasound, another $110 down the drain

When I saw my fertility specialist last week, he had me come back in on Sunday to have an ultrasound from the nurse on duty. The plan was to have my follicles measured so they would know approximately when I'd ovulate. Then, when I do ovulate, they can run some tests to make sure my lady parts are conducive to having kids. In fact, they'd also make sure my husband's manly parts were up to snuff for baby-making.

So I went in on Sunday and the nurse talked me through what she was looking at. She measured my follicles but said they were too small. She scheduled me to come back on Wednesday. I paid my $110 and left. I went back on Wednesday for the ultrasound performed by a different nurse. She didn't measure anything with the ultrasound machine but basically said there wasn't any change from Sunday. This is not good news. She had me scheduled for one last ultrasound (at least for now, anyway) on Saturday. She said that if there is no change by then, they will send me back to see the doctor for steps as to what to do next. And what the doctor will do, I don't know. I paid yet another $110 and left. But this time, I was very down. I have been feeling at least a little heartbroken since then, knowing that my body isn't ovulating the way it is supposed to be, even with me being on this medication now since January. Is adding Clomid the next step? Will I quit taking Metformin and start something else instead? Am I starting all over again?

I seriously don't know how much more of this I can emotionally (and financially) take. It's like I see a little progress and get my hopes up just to have them dashed to pieces again. I'm just about to the point where I want to throw in the towel and start the adoption process. Of course that's a huge chunk of change that we don't have right there, so I'm praying that I will find a job as well as answers to this infertility journey.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The "no" experiment: I said no!

I haven't had an opportunity to say no to a favor asked to me this month... until last night. But honestly, when I said no, I wasn't thinking about the "no" experiment I am doing. I was just thinking about how much I didn't want to do it and just felt unwilling to make that sacrifice.

Our phone rang just before 10 pm, which is no big deal when Joe works the late shift, but it is very frustrating and annoying when he has to get up around 3:30 am to go to work. He'd been sleeping for about an hour, and I was just starting to fall asleep when the phone rang. It woke him up and he was about to answer it when I told him to give it to me.

I answered the phone and it was someone who knows Joe better than me (we've only talked a couple times very briefly) but talks to me like we're best buds anyway. He asked for "two favors," one of which was to have Joe call him when he got home from work. I told him Joe was home and asked if he wanted to talk to him. He said he did but after he talked to me. Then he basically gave the phone to his sister, someone I don't know at all. Before she started talking to me, she asked me for a favor. I didn't agree. I asked instead, "What's up?" She started telling me about a job she just started and wanted to set up a demonstration of a product she is trying to sell. She said I didn't have to buy anything, but I turned her down for the demonstration. She tried to push it still, but I said no again and she finally said, "I understand" and hung up. So I have no idea what her brother ever wanted to say to Joe.

I don't like the social pressure of buying things from friends. It's like there's some unwritten rule stating, "If you are my friend and you really like me and want to see me succeed professionally, you will help me do so by buying what I'm selling." Even if I only had to give up an hour or so of my time to listen to a sales pitch to help someone get practice or feedback or an opportunity to sell me something, I'm buying something by just agreeing to that, because it's costing my time.

So, I didn't allow myself to feel guilty for saying no, but I can't help but wonder if it would've been harder if I would have been friends with the woman or man who asked for the favor. I was mad about them calling so late, and I felt as though they were trying to take advantage of an established relationship he has with my husband for their financial gain. If I ever work in a sales position, I will let my friends know what I'm selling, but I will never PUSH a product or service on them. I know how much it sucks when someone tries to do that to me!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Another appointment with the fertility specialist

Today I had a follow-up appointment with the fertility specialist. There was no examination or anything, but the doctor and I had a good talk. I am supposed to return on Sunday to have an ultrasound. The doctor may want to put me on Clomid, but that depends on the results of tests that he will be starting. Because I have been having more regular menstrual cycles since starting the Metformin, he said that is encouraging and might be enough to help increase my odds of getting pregnant. He is going to test the hormone levels in my egg when I ovulate again to make sure everything is okay there. And some other tests will be run. Depending on what the results are, I may need some additional tests. So the nurse I spoke to after my appointment today said to prepare for some appointments with little warning, as they will be scheduled depending on what goes on with my body. Fun stuff! But it gives me hope and helps me feel like I may be that much closer to getting pregnant.

I was reading 1 Samuel chapter 1 today and started crying, reading about Hannah being overcome with sorrow at not being able to have kids and pleading with God to open her womb. I know that God knows what I'm going through and will comfort me through my trials. I also have faith that I will be able to get pregnant if I am meant to get pregnant, in God's own time. So I prayed for comfort, patience, and strength as I wait for God's timeline for me and strive to understand his plan for me as well. I know he has not forgotten or abandoned me.