The I word.

I am not posting about fashion today. Today’s post is more serious than what I typically post.  I am pretty emotionally worn out right now and I wanted to share with you what’s been happening in our lives.  It frames the state of mind I am in after what happened this weekend(which I will get too in a second)

I don’t know how many times in the past 13 months I’ve thought about writing a follow-up to this post, but have been unable or unwilling to put the pen to paper(or rather the fingers to the keys).  I guess I kind of thought if I didn’t write about it, I could pretend it wasn’t happening and in some way guard my heart from the hurt.

23 months.  25 cycles.  25 disappointments.  Enough time for my SIL to give birth, get pregnant and give birth again.

More than enough time to earn the official title of “Infertility”.

I’m not sure what has prompted me to write this time, other than my yearly female visit yesterday and the things the doctor told me.  Maybe a bit of it is some weird voo-doo hope that if I write about my infertility, then life will “ironically” allow me to get pregnant.  It’s happened to several other bloggers…why not me?

ETA: Also, this weekend we thought we might lose our precious angel Aspen(who is the favorite of all our dogs) which made this all the more relevant.

If you only started reading the blog in the past year and/or you don’t want to go back and read my initial post about my(at the time) impending infertility here’s the summary.

Hubby and I decided to start trying in September 2011.  I assumed we’d get pregnant right away, but to be safe I did tons of research, read all the books on conception and got us started on all the herbs/vitamins/ovulation tracking.   I did everything “right” according to all sources I could find.

Month after month went by with nothing.  I got discouraged.  9 months into it, I went to the doctor.  I knew something was wrong.  It was-I had stage 4 endometriosis.  The doctor told us IVF was likely the only way we would conceive(and that I would need a hysterectomy in a few years,) but we could try naturally for awhile yet.  Maybe the endometriosis surgery had helped clear things out enough. He told us he’d had another patient with a similar severity of endometriosis and she had gotten pregnant 6 months after her surgery.

It’s been almost 14 months since my surgery and each month has brought my cycle like clockwork(plus or minus a few days).  For the most part, I’ve buried my head in the sand and refused to *really* think about what it all means.  The only time it really gets to me are when I see awful parents doing awful things to their kids…and in the quiet stillness of my long car rides in the morning as I head to work.

My car has basically seen all the tears I’ve shed.

It’s a weird thing too, because sometimes I’m really glad we don’t have kids.  In the here and now, I like our life.  I like that I can spend most of my free time doing stuff for me.  But when I think of the future, getting older, losing my parents, ect I start to feel really sad that I might not have a child to watch grow up.

I don’t know, but I guess I don’t want a child desperately enough to spend $20,000+ for a procedure that might not even work(IVF).  Children are expensive enough…I don’t want to start out $20k in debt.  Plus, I feel like if we were going to spend that kind of money, we should just adopt.

And call me selfish or spoiled, but if we adopt, I want a baby.  I’m sorry, but I do(I don’t care what race or nationality the baby is though).  I am open to adopting an older child as well eventually, but I want a baby at some point.  I want to go through that part of a child’s life.  I want to experience as much of my child’s life as I can.

I have four dogs.  Three we adopted as puppies and one as an adult.  I love our adult adopted dog(Lili) just as much as those we’ve had since puppihood.  But I do miss that we have no pictures or memories of her as a teeny pup tottering around learning about the world.

But anyways, while I was at my yearly well-woman visit(or whatever they’re calling it now), my doctor more or less told me that if we are thinking of IVF we need to look into sooner rather than later.  I guess my odds of conceiving naturally(that were crap before btw) are plummeting and basically in the impossible level at this point.  Additionally, the more time passes, the sooner we get to me needing a hysterectomy.

I knew all that, really. He had told my husband after the surgery that we should start considering IVF.  When I had my follow-up after the surgery though, he had been somewhat optimistic and told me we should try naturally for awhile.  But I guess now, after more than a year had passed, the optimism is slowly dwindling.

It just hit me really hard this week.  And then, my period was a few days late, and I dared to hope that maybe the statistics were wrong(they weren’t wrong, I was just late)

And after all this(plus more family situations such as my parents house being struck by lightening with lots of damage, my aunt’s new husband being hospitalized and not doing well at all), yesterday Aspen got really sick.  Like really, really sick.

I’ve always adored my dogs, with Aspen definitely being my favorite, but my infertility has made me cling to them even harder.  To put it into perspective, I feel like Aspen is my heart walking around outside of my chest.  You may say it’s stupid to care for a dog that much, but I do.  There will never be another dog that will be as close to my heart as she is.

She’d been a little off for a few weeks now, being lethargic and not eating much.  She’s a chill dog to begun with and has never been a good eater, so it really wasn’t enough to call our attention to it until other problems started surfacing.  But yesterday afternoon hubby was working in his office and I was in my sewing room.  Aspen usually stays with him while he’s working, but around 2pm he brought her to me saying she had been vomiting and could I put her in the bathroom next to me(to contain the mess) and keep an eye on her.

I put her down in the bathroom and immediately knew something was wrong.  She just stood there like a statue.  Wouldn’t move AT. ALL.  When you called her or made a loud noise she didn’t even acknowledge it.  I picked her up and she went limp in my arms.  She was like a rag doll, not even supporting her own head.

I ran downstairs and told hubby I thought we should take her to the emergency vet(why do my dogs always have problems when their regular vet isn’t open??).  He said she was probably just in pain and we didn’t need to worry.  Then he took her from me to scratch her belly and noticed her skin was ghostly white.  We checked her gums/tongue/conjunctiva and they were all pale white/grey looking. She was so listless, I seriously thought we might not make it to the vet in time(I thought maybe she had had a stroke).

He immediately called his boss and said we had to take her to the emergency vet and he would make up his hours later.   We put the other girls in their cage and hi-tailed it out the door(I was wearing ratty, bleach stained clothes and no bra).   The ER is about 40 minutes from our house and I was panicking the whole way.

She started to perk up once we got to the vet and the initial exam showed nothing crazy going on.  As we waited, she was seemingly getting better.  Based on the timing of the symptoms and the recovery the vet thought that maybe she had been stung by a bee(we had taken her out about an hour before her symptoms really developed) and as her body processed the toxin she was recovering.

To be safe, the vet ran blood-work to rule out anemia or infection.  We kind of thought we were in the clear and breathed a sigh of relief.


The vet came back in a bit later with the news that her white blood cell count was good, her platelets were good(no anemia), but her liver enzymes were off the chart indicating liver disease.  They were going to keep her overnight and administer IV fluids and medications and we were going to have to transfer her to her normal vet in the morning to continue treatment.  The vet was hopeful that it was just a viral hepatitis, but it had the possibility of being a blockage/tumor/liver failure.

Luckily, she did really well on the meds and even ate breakfast.  I picked her up at 7am and she was so happy to see me.  She still had a catheter in her left front leg and they gave me a bag of fluids to bring to her normal vet.


You can kind of see the bandage around her catheter.


Her normal vet thinks it is viral hepatitis as well based on the x-rays being clear and the blood-work. She’s on IV fluids at the vet and if she does well, she’ll probably get to come home this afternoon(with oral meds).

I’m just so glad that it wasn’t something worse and she will probably be just fine.  I can’t wait to have her home and in my arms.

I will keep you updated of course!

I don’t write all this to try to garner some kind of sympathy or woe-is-me type reaction.  It just is part of how my life is right now and I do want to try to share more of my life than just clothes and makeup and other frivolous things.  And I figure maybe some of you are going through the same/similar things and you can relate.

So, that’s my story for today and I hope to be back tomorrow with some more light-hearted fashion posts(I’m aiming to wear the June Dress to work tomorrow so that should be fun!!).


18 thoughts on “The I word.

  1. Louise beckett says:

    My heart is with you in all your ups and downs. It is good to honestly face one’s feelings. Love you.

    • guitargrl325 says:

      Thank you Grandma. It helps to know you are there for us. Looking forward to seeing you this weekend!! Aspen will surely be very happy to see her great-grandma(as will the others, particularly Bailey I’m sure since she loves you most of all)

  2. Sarah says:

    Hi Tamara,

    I read your post with a lot of admiration. I admire your courage in writing something so personal. I am also very glad to hear that your beloved Aspen will be fine. 🙂 I have gone through many things in life where I felt frustrated, sad, and didn’t understand why these things were happening to me. However, later I understood the bigger plan God had for me and it was better than I could have imagined. So even if things don’t look so good now, you should know and believe that all things happen for a reason. It may not make sense now but you will understand and appreciate God’s bigger plan later. I know that conceiving is a huge wish for all moms but who knows may be you were meant to adopt and give a beautiful life to a very deserving child. I am sure that whatever you decide to do, everything will work out for the best.

    I admire your courage and I wish you all the best.

    You and your family will be in my thoughts.


    • guitargrl325 says:

      Thank you so much for you kind words. Aspen is doing much better. She’s home, a little tired, but way better and we’re so glad she seems to be on the mend.

      I do believe in God as well, and know that ultimately everything will happen in His timing. He obviously knows better than us and He will give us a child when it is our time(whether it’s through natural conception or adoption). There are plenty of barren women in the Bible who had babies! And beyond that, if we are lucky enough to conceive/have a child I will have such a greater appreciation/love for the process and the child than someone who got pregnant the first time they tried.

  3. dragonfly1121 says:

    My heart breaks for you, I don’t even know what to say? 😦 If I could give you my uterus I would. I’m not even going to try and give you some Pollyanna statement to make you smile. It plain out just sucks and I’m sorry it’s something that you have to go through. All I can say is keep believing in miracles and maybe?

    • guitargrl325 says:

      I am trying to continue believing and mostly I do think that if I’m meant to have a child, it will happen. I believe in God and I know that He can make miracles happen so it’s up to Him anyways.

      Thanks for the uterus offer(haha) though! My uterus isn’t the problem really, it’s the dammed endometriosis. Apparently it causes my immune system to go into hyper-drive and sends macrophages(cells that destroy invaders) to help clean up with blood(cause endometriosis tissues bleeds every month just like your period only into wherever it’s hanging out, maybe tmi?) and those macrophages eat sperm!

  4. Michelle says:

    It’s never easy but times like this requires us to focus on the positives of life and what we have. Sounds a little preachy but we are truly blessed. Keep on trying and continue to give a loving home to your little dolls. Be strong!

    • guitargrl325 says:

      Not preachy at all. It’s exactly the perspective that I have/been working on to have. I do feel very blessed with all that I have and don’t want to come across as seeming ungrateful(because I’m really not). It really only gets to me when I see really awful parents doing awful things to their kids and I’m like WHY? Why does that a-hole get to have a kid and I don’t.

      I believe that if I am supposed to have a child, then it will happen and if I’m not, then I am going to be okay with that.

  5. kimmie says:

    Oh my goodness, what a scare with Aspen- glad she’s doing alright and hopefully on the mend! As for the infertility struggles, I’m so sorry to hear that, and I have no idea what kind of pain and disappointment you are going through (especially with your SIL having two babies of her own in that timeframe). I hope your time to become a mom comes soon, whether it’s through IVF or adoption or another method. Don’t give up hope! And i know that everyone loves BABIES because you want to experience a child from the very beginning, but really, the first year is such a sleep-deprived blur and happens so quickly that it’s so difficult to remember. I can barely remember my 4-year-old’s first year, let alone my 1-year-old’s first few months. But yeah, I really really hope that everything comes together for you.

    and psssh, $20,000? You could just tell all your blog followers and facebook friends to give you money for buying a baby, easy enough, right?

    • guitargrl325 says:

      Well, your comment(as they almost always do) made me laugh out loud. Like legitimately out loud, not just saying LOL while barely smiling. Let’s see, I have 150 blog followers and about 150 facebook friends, so let’s see that’s only like $100/person(let’s raise an additional $10,000 so mamma can get a new wardrobe and a makeover ammiright?)

      Aspen is doing well. She’s home(yay!) and she’s definitely not back to normal but has had a massive improvement over how she was on Sunday. I have to call the vet later today and let him know how she’s doing but she seems to be getting much better.

  6. fitundgluecklich says:

    I’m so sorry to hear all this!! I feel like I can really relate!! Its only 5 months since my endometriosis surgery and I’m already wondering if I’ll ever get pregnant… they told me its so much easier right after the surgery and most people get pregnant soon etc, and yay, here I am waiting. I can’t even imagine how I’ll be in a year.
    And so great that Aspen is fine, I can also relate to loving your dog so much that it feels like its a child – I loved my cat like this, I got Baghira (and his brother) in my first own flat, right after I moved out from home, and they were there for me then. I had to put him down 1,5 years ago (2 days after christmas), without any warning signs, after 11 years of living with him – I couldn’t go to work or anything for 2 days, I was just crying. I still have the other cat and now a dog, they are my babies too 😉 (but none of them will ever “replace” Baghira)
    So, a lot of stories from me, sorry, I feel like I kind of know how you feel and can relate, but I’m not sure if I really do, everyone is different, everyones situation is different – all I can really say is that I feel with you, I’m thinking of you and I’m sure you’ll make your way!!! Hugs, Ulli

    • guitargrl325 says:

      I was just thinking about you and wondering how you were doing but I hadn’t gotten around to writing you yet. I do hope that you are pregnant very soon. I do always feel like we are the same person just in different countries because there is so much that is similar about us(though I wish we weren’t sharing in our infertility ha).

      I honestly don’t know what I will do when any of my dogs die or need to be put down. I know that I will need to take off work for bereavement of some sort.

      Ugh, anyways enough sad talk, I’m glad to hear from you and think of you often. I hope that someday we can actually “meet” in person!

  7. Kalynda says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your story! Endometriosis is such a cruel and mysterious disease. I’ve struggled with it since high school, but wasn’t diagnosed until late in college. I can’t even begin to imagine what you’re feeling after the struggles, but I’m glad you shared what you’re going through.

    • guitargrl325 says:

      It is such a crappy disease. I had long thought I might have it just based on the severity of my periods and how bad my cramps were but so many doctors just dismiss it as “well periods suck so deal with it”. I was kind of just lucky in that I changed gyno’s because my mom recommended her’s and he happens to be an expert in endometriosis. Otherwise I probably would’ve just continued on and it probably would’ve taken years to discover.

      He thinks I might also have a related disease that is basically just like endometriosis but in the muscle walls of the uterus(my mom had it but I don’t remember what it’s called) based on some of the symptoms that still remain after the surgery, but since it’s tolerable right now and I have to have a hysterectomy at some point in the future anyways, he’s not going to do anything for it right now.

      Anyways, thanks for reading and it’s really nice to “know” someone else who I can commiserate with over this crappy disease.

  8. kittehluvs says:

    I am really sorry about all the things you’re going through right now. Bad stuff seems to happen all at once, doesn’t it? Just wanted to let you know that I think adoption is one of the most noble things a human being can do. Since I was 10 years old I I knew if I ever had kids, they were to be adopted. Of course whatever you choose will be the best choice for you and you will rock it. I am hoping your doggie is doing better. When my older kitty accidentally drank some draino water and got very ill, it was a very difficult time for me and hubs thinking that we could lose him. So I understand how much we are attached to our furry babies. Anyway, hope things continue to get better on your end.

    • guitargrl325 says:

      Oh man, I would be scared out of my mind if one of my babies got into poison. I always worry about things like that happening, particularly to Lili or Aspen because they are so small(3 and 5 pounds!) it wouldn’t take much to kill them. Ugh. Sometimes I worry about having a kid and being a wreck all the time with worry because I can barely handle worrying about my dogs!!

  9. Ada says:

    Hi Tamara. I am just catching up on your blog and I am so sad and shocked to hear about your Infertility problems. Now that I am a Mom myself, I understand even more so your pain. Thankfully, I never had such a problem. Actually we conceives as soon as we tried. Do you mind me asking how old are you? As far as the procedure I wouldn’t do it not just because it is super expensive, but because it doesn’t guarantee anything. I don’t like things that are unnatural or feel artificial. I understand your desire to have a baby and hopefully something works out soon so that you get to experience being a Mom (there is no better thing – trust me), but I hope it either happens naturally or that you adopt. There are far too many needy children out there and not enough good parents.

    I am also sorry about your Dog. She is a cutie. My Parents’ Dog at some point was mine too because we have him her since I was unmarried and leaving with them. He is a Yorkie & Maltese blend. He is spoiled and sometimes not the nicest dog but we still love him to pieces.

    BTW, if you want a shoulder to vent on, you can always write to me or E-Mail me. Thanks & take it easy, beautiful. Ada. =)

    • guitargrl325 says:

      Thank you for your kind words. I completely agree with you on the IVF. I believe, that if I’m supposed to or meant to get pregnant, it will happen naturally despite what doctors say. I don’t want to try to chemically induce or do anything of that sort. And you are so right that there are so many children in need of parents that it seems rather selfish to insist that I need a biological baby when I could give an orphan a home.

      Aspen is doing way better now. She is definitely not totally healed but every day she has a bit more energy and wants to eat more food and stuff like that.

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