Sunday, July 31, 2011


First and Foremost: I apologize for all the blank posts. If anybody is having issues with posting, try changing your browser. I kept posting with Firefox, only the title of my post could be published (Lots of hair got yanked out!!). Changing to Internet Explorer fixed it. Blogger deserves to be abandoned for Wordpress or something else that does not mess up like this.

After my second loss, my Indian RE strongly suggested I read the book 'Coming to Term'.  The author and his wife had 4 pregnancy losses (2 chemical, 2 more advanced), and he decided to do a careful study on the subject of recurrent pregnancy loss. His book covers the scientific spectrum of causes of pregnancy loss, and he has the most heartrending case studies. Its horrifying and uplifting all together to read those stories. The average women in there had about 4 losses, but many of them has as many as 6 or more. Almost ALL of them went on to have healthy children. Almost all.  Tears and joy aside, reading that book gave me a good idea of the scope of the monster that is RPL, an invaluable thing in itself.

The book also highlights that science does not have all the answers and that miscarriage is the murkiest of pools. One story in particular stood out. This woman had 4 first trimester losses. She was finally diagnosed with Factor V Leiden, which predisposes to blood clots that end the pregnancy.  At that time, heparin had not been established as the treatment for this issue. Her fifth pregnancy, with no medical intervention whatsoever, went completely smoothly. She had a healthy baby. She got pregnant again, and this time, took heparin, and that pregnancy also went just fine. What amazes me was her 5th pregnancy. If clotting was what had ended 4 of the pregnancies, what saved the 5th?  Science definately does not have the answers.

Still- there are times when it can help. I stumbled across the most amazing website. It is an archive of all the research done on the myriad causes of pregnancy loss.

I did a lot of reading up on the the two that have been implicated for me, Vitamin D and Thyroid autoimmunity.  There is PLENTY of evidence linking the two to pregnancy loss, and even more gratifyingly, vitamin D to glucose metabolism. The parts about Selenium and anti-thyroid antibodies I also found useful. This website is a treasure trove, I'm not done going through it yet.

However linked something is to either infertility or pregnancy loss, the converse also applies, there have to have been women who have many of these issues, and have gone on to have perfect pregnancies.Nothing is absolute and almost all the iceberg is still below water. 

The statistic is that one in 5 pregnancies end in loss. I have 4 friends currently pregnant. I'm the only person they know who has had pregnancy losses.  When I listened to my friend, who had just started trying and who is now 15 weeks along, a sense of failure came upon me. How could I have been the one to fail not just once, but twice? A stupid, immature feeling, but its not one that is going to go away anytime soon.

What I've learned along this painful road: tell nobody. I've made a few new friends in NYC who I'm getting closer and closer to as time goes by. One year ago, I would have happily told them what I intend to do. Now, I'm going to keep my mouth firmly shut. Nobody is going to get to know the next time around, whenever that blessed event occurs. 

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Giving thanks

Somedays, I just have to thank god that I got to live in this age.  It is a kind and politically correct time and importantly, an age where there is such a variety of things you have access to.

I'm currently working my way through the most enormous book I've ever read.  I usually tear through a book in a single setting, finishing a 400 page book in approximately 4 hours. This one I've been reading for 10 hours over 3 days and I've just over halfway through. Its the latest book in the series the completely awesome HBO show "Game of Thrones" is based on.  One of the characters just stands out for me.  He has the horrible fortune of being born a dwarf into one of the most powerful, ambitious and callous families in the land, in an immensely cruel and tough time.  His father, a complete monster, despises and manipulates him. The world he lives in constantly mocks him. His life is made so much worse because of the kind of person he is. Had he been a person of average intellect and depth, he would have blended into the background and might have lived an uneventful, mostly ignored life. But his immensely intelligent, shrewd and larger-than-life personality results in him being thrust into the complex political scene. He survives a number of horrific events, is betrayed at many turns and through all of it, is constantly mocked for being a dwarf.  He is understandably bitter about the horrific hand life has dealt him. Yet, in situations where most would have despaired, he still keeps going. He fights hard to survive and at the end of the day, remains interested in humanity and retains his innate kindness, empathy and sense of humor (though its about as black as black can get). This character, wonderfully portrayed by Peter Dinklage on the show, fascinates me. Though this is all make-believe, there have to have been people of comparable depth, born or thrust into such difficult situations. Sometimes, it seems like the more extraordinary souls are the ones more likely to be  dealt crapfests. Or is it the other way around, does the crapfest bring out the extraordinary in people? This definitely seems true of many people who have gone through hell in life- some of the most amazing people I have seen out here are the people who have been dealt the harshest blows by IF.

I have to be thankful for the fact that I live in an age where people are so much kinder (the world in this book series is unimaginably barbaric), an age where we can be exposed to the imaginations of some wonderful minds, who can create such marvelous entertainment for us in so many ways. Its something that may have been unavailable to say, our grandparents. I'm grateful for the choices we have- its not something we should take for granted.

In infertility-related news, I'm determined that I will schedule the Glucose Tolerance Test this week. I've never been so conflicted as to what I want the result to be. Why would anybody want to fail it? It might mean a future where I more likely to be insulin-dependent, with the variety of problems that come with diabetes waiting for me.  On the other hand, if I pass it, we will not know if metformin will help me. Most doctors just shrug when asked whether I should be on it, they say, why bother? You seem to have little need of it, you have no PCOS-related problems. Well, I don't.  Its just that my babies keep dying at about 8 weeks of gestation, and gee, it would be nice to have a culprit and something I can attempt to fix before rushing in headlong again. I'll still take metformin, but if I pass the GTT, it just means more uncertainty on whether I need it, and its not an easy drug to take.  Well, I can't decide what I want the result be, but will be glad to finally have an answer.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

To beleive or not to beleive....

My life, as usual, has been on fast forward. Partly contributing to that was the fact that I had my mom come visit me for the past 3 weeks. Among trips to Canada and seeing New York, a great deal of philosophical conversation ensued. Sometime in the last month would have been Turbulence's due date. Amazing as it may seem, all that causes me is one small pang every time I dwell on it, but the sorrow is not there anymore.

The philosophical conversations I have with my mom all center about one theme - predestiny. In a sense, this is like having faith in god, which I don't, being firmly agnostic. But,  for the sake of convenience or because some little intuitive voice inside me urges me to believe, I cannot rule out the idea that maybe all of this IS predestined. That there are children destined to make it out into this world.  To paraphrase my mom, nothing can stop these births. Improbable conceptions will occur, previous problems will disappear, all things will fall into place and these lives WILL come into being.  By this token, all the things that fail, for the myriad reasons, do so because they were not meant to be. However awful and tragic the circumstances of failure, no matter how close one comes to success,  if one believes in predestiny, one just says, it did not happen because it was not meant to be. This is a harsh, ruthless philosophy with absolutely no room for emotion. I accept it because it represents the ultimate escape hatch, the ultimate way to justify all the things that do not work, the lives lost. I have to explain to myself why my babies did not make it.  My mom and I have also started to talk about adoption. I'm far away from that option, but as my mom keeps saying, if that is what is in your destiny, that is what will be.

In the last post, Emily asked whether I met somebody in June as the astrologers had predicted. Sheepishly interjecting here that I had got the month they mentioned wrong, it was July. But so far, have met nobody, and would be extremely surprised if I did.  I cannot really take this stuff seriously. But upon more detailed explanations from my mom on what they had predicted, what one of the astrologers said shook me greatly.  My father had asked him to look at my chart and tell him about the possibility of marriage by looking at it.  He told my father that a strong possibility for marriage existed in this year, but I should wait till November (the 23rd actually), because according to him, if I got pregnant before this date, either I would die (this part I knew from previous conversation with my mom), or the child would die (?!?!). This part was spooky because it came out of nowhere-- nobody had asked him about pregnancy. Apparently there is a strong indication on my chart for pregnancy issues.  Some other astrologer years ago had predicted that I would have an issue in a pregnancy, that I would come out of it fine but my child would not. Anyway, after November 23rd, apparently, its smooth sailing. If there is any fervent desire to believe in astrology, I would hope that this guy is right, that I finally hit some luck in this department.