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Archive for October, 2008

everything looks like a cervix to me now

everything looks like a cervix to me now

okay, i’m taking another look at those fertility signs. this is because i nearly spent $300 on an ovulation monitor that has a computer doing the work after a bout of circular logic yesterday. turns out my books don’t even think it’s worth it. i’m Triangulating Sources again and it seems that it’s really important to keep a very close eye on that cervix. we were in the midst of drafting a Don’t Ask Don’t Tell agreement, my cervix and i, but it looks like i’m going to have to breach that contract.

turns out those ovulation pee sticks aren’t always very reliable. reflecting back, it seems i was a bit anxious about not using up too many of those pricey little things, selectively reading only the instructions i wanted to (an ongoing problem). and so i might have stopped calculating too soon, or maybe i should be using two a day. anyway, i stopped once the box of 7 were used up and decided i didn’t ovulate that month, which has sent me into a series of other cascading conclusions.

well i have another 27 of those to experiment with, but meanwhile, it appears that the multiple things a cervix can whisper if given the opportunity to blab count for at least 2 if not *3* of the Primary Fertility Signs!! so i’m going to get back on that horse. wish me luck.

ps … i’m also noticing a woo woo factor. shhh, the new moon might just be in cahoots with my cervix. we’ll see. *twilight zone music annnnd curtain!*

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I’m secretive about this, either out of shame or superstition. Both are stupid reasons, so I’m ignoring them to bring you this surely all too normal (thus the shame) tendency I have to collect ways of making sure my kid isn’t like everybody else. You know what I mean. Even on vacation in the Netherlands, I rabidly photographed these rancid, dour dolls with the intention of filling the nursery with something similar…

The bat is my favorite. I might make a whole bat family to accompany a fleet of squids in the crib. This will be the best part… on some days, apparently. Anyway, it’s good to get used to shifty-eyed expressions early, and not to give a flying fuck.

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then ovulation doesn’t even happen. I didn’t think that was going to be one of the things I had to put on my List of Unexpected Worries. But apparently the vicious O’Hare-laden, wounded sleep schedule travel thing I do at least monthly affects more than just my mood. Unless I used the ovulation predictor sticks at the wrong time.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that. One other sign that involves less bodily prodding and star-gazing and quite a bit more handing over of cash than the list of fabulous options below is the very scientific Ovulation Predictor Kit made up of thick white plastic-wrapped sticks you can pee on daily and gaze at with intense concentration, wondering if you should have peed on two that day. Again, the books offer complicated and varying advice and to make matters worse, the kits are also now available in boxes of not just 7, but 20. I refuse to be so obsessive as to use all 20 in one month. I’m bored just thinking about it.

Also, I’ve noticed that I have a tendency to hover over the toilet, unwrap the stick, pee, finish peeing, and then realize I’m out of valuable midday pee and apparently treating this ovulation stick like a tampon. A tampon with nowhere to go. Because it isn’t a tampon, it’s a stick I was supposed to pee on masquerading as a tampon so as to further complicate this already absurd situation. And it’s laughing at me.

I have nothing more to say about this. Except that I’m busy learning Relaxation Techniques so I can avoid the humiliation of 7 days of blank, peed-on sticks. Which I’m saving, by the way, with dates written in sharpie on the handle so I can give this baby a tractor trailer full of the waste it was responsible for before it was even conceived.

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like most things, it seems.

frozen sperm is kind of delicate. and expensive. friends of mine who’ve gone through the in vitro experience would disagree, but it’s all relative. the sperm i bought this month is the same price as my typical monthly credit card bill, without the diversity of a late-night splurge at amazon.com, prenatal vitamins, netflix, ovulation kits, and props for an upcoming drag show.

no matter, i really did it. 4 vials of Van’s sperm are waiting for me at the sperm bank and their motility is good, i think. i’m hoping they remember how to swim when i get around to thawing them. now i’m reading and re-reading my books on fertility and insemination, unscientifically triangulating the advice in bits and pieces to come up with some special grecian formula just for me. it’s like reading a menu when you’re really hungry. “bruschetta meatloaf with onion glaze and peach ice cream…” or something. not quite what the doctor ordered.

one thing is clear, because they’re all saying it: you’re supposed to see a confluence of Three Signs before you inseminate. and most women inseminate too late. more than three is even better, says the most intensely detailed book. but this same book also thinks i should inseminate with all of Van at once, and no one else is telling me to blow $2000 in one cycle. so back off nelly.

3 signs. i have a bunch of tantalizing options to choose from:

take your temperature at the same time every morning … would require a regular sleep schedule. not happening.

cervical mucus… check. i thought this was the easiest one, but now i’m reading that it can be easy to miss that special slippery kind by touch alone unless you also peer into the toilet every time you pee… light conditions aren’t always optimal. i’m already tired of staring at my vitamin-infused urine and washing my hands before and after every bathroom visit.

cervical position… can be determined by feel or by looking at it. and looking at it you get to see if it’s staring back or not, which can also be helpful information. so i made a mental note that i needed a speculum, and found myself a few days later walking through the castro with two fabulous drag king friends, one of whom declared that he’d needed a couple of speculums for a performance recently and had found them at the porn shop just down the street. so we wandered into Rock Hard, surveyed their impressive display of speculii, (nearly dropped $30 for the gorgeous red enamel) and finally settled on a good ol’ fashioned silver instrument of vaginal torture. went home and tried it. needed help holding the mirror and flashlight (!) before finally locating a very distant, recalcitrant cervix. eye firmly closed. not anxious to do that again.

ferning… this sounds so cool. apparently your spit (or cervical mucus) looks like… well… spit, most of the time, when viewed under a microscope. but when you’re having an LH surge (hello hormones prepping to drop an egg), it looks like ferns. the plant. i haven’t tried this yet, but i’m keen to, as soon as i lose my suspicion that i’m being charged $30 for a My First Science Kit.

woo woo factors… this might include the moon, insomnia, voluptuousness, me so horny, vivid dreams, “feeling” an egg descend, and changes in appetite. i don’t know about you, but i’m fairly certain the stilton cheese i overindulged in last night is going to have more of a noticeable impact on this stuff than a miniscule egg taking a hike through my nether regions.

so… what does that leave me with? i made my own chart, an excel file. let me know if you need one, you can use mine.

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a year ago, a lover I was only mildly interested in suddenly presented with a bizarre range of sudden childhood issues, turned non-communicative, and suggested I talk to the therapist.

therapist? we’d been dating a month.

I was wrapped in one of those half-quilted hotel blankets, sitting on the floor of a hotel room on a rotary phone, at a wedding I’d learned last-minute I’d be attending alone.

“well I’m having a baby with or without you. either way” I announced.

clearly I was talking to myself. not unlike that thing I’d said a decade earlier: “If I don’t have a baby by the time I’d 35 I’m doing it myself.”

hmm… a project. but one you kind of have to sneak up on. one day I found myself thinking “hey, what happens when I have to travel for work? I’m going to be one of those people with a handful of Crying Baby Everyone Hates.” and I whipped around and got into a stupid relationship, wasted another month. woah, this is heavy stuff.

I mean, every realization is crazy stunning, like a sudden immersion in something you never had to breathe before. like that time my boat flipped and I found myself immediately upside down in the river, feet strapped in, no time to think… “what is this warm flowy non-air stuff?” uh. It happens fast like that, so really obvious things about being a parent hit you like a new language that’s emitted from some other orifice.

I gave myself a year to think about it. that was a new year’s resolution. november of 07.

that was a good idea, it took a long time to wade through all those scary details. I seem to be launching into the doing phase, having graduated (at least temporarily) beyond being startled by the cost of daycare (not thinking about that NOT thinking about that), and actually weighing the pros and cons of using my first two vials of purchased sperm (from a neuroscience major nicknamed “Van” – cuz it’s more memorable than his sperm bank #) vs. a known donor/dad I’ve been vaguely fantasizing with for years. we meet in our favorite smoky windowless gay bar in a small midwestern town and imagine our very own Weetzie Bat.

still pondering.

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