Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Gluten Intolerance

After our first meeting with our Naturopath she sent us off to the doctors with a list of things she wanted us to get tested for.  My doctor was a little sceptical however she did it anyway.  As it turns out I have tested postive for a Gluten Intolerance.  Now I'm booked in to see a specialist to have a biopsy done of my lower bowel to see if it is in deed Celiac Disease.

I have done a little of research since I got my results and there seems to be a strong link between Celiac Disease and infertility.  My infertility is "unexplained", so I'm hoping with a Gluten Free diet it might improve my chances.

Our Naturopath has had 2 cases were both women were having problems conceiving and they were tested for Celiac Disease and they both came back postive. After then turning to a Gluten free diet they both conceived in 6 to 8 weeks.  I'm not pinning my hopes that this will happen to us however it does gives us some faith.

The only frustrating thing that I'm dealing with now is that I want to start the Gluten Free diet straight away because we are on the naturopath plan and she said the best thing was to elimate "wheat" from our diet to start seeing the results.  However it's a catch 22 situation, I can't do this until I have the biopsy because then the results will not be accurate. But I will not be having the biopsy for another 8 weeks.  It's just bad timing finding out in the festive season when everyone especially doctors shut down...

So I suppose the good thing is that I can still eat normally over Christmas and enjoy all the normal treats, because once I start the gluten free diet it will be a huge lifestyle adjustment.


Bee xxx

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Is Fear the Cause of my infertility?

I’m sitting at work and chatting to my colleague (who is also a friend outside of work), and we are talking about her teenage daughter and the struggles she is experiencing at the moment. Some just being normal teenage issues and others are much more than that.
Unexpectedly this is when I start to get emotional because it all comes back to me. My tears start to flow as does all my emotions. (I start to apologise to her, silly me crying at work)

But have I just had a break thru moment….Has something that I have had little understanding over the years finally come clearer? Has the fog lifted?

For the last 9 years of living with my infertility I have had this internal feeling that it is an emotional fear that is stopping me falling pregnant, not a physical one. And I have always believed once I got a better understanding of what that emotional fear was maybe it might release me.

I can still see myself as that teenager. The chubby one. Always the “bigger one” of my circle of friends. The one who the teased about their weight.

All I ever wanted was to fit in and be like everyone else. I wanted to be noticed and liked by the cute boy in class, just like any other girl. BUT I wasn’t.

One particular popular boy had a nickname for me which he took the pleasure of calling me in front of his friends for a laugh. He called me “Porky Pig”. As a vulnerable girl this broke my heart. I used to go to sleep at night and hope/wish/dream that when I woke up I would have a new slimmer body. It never happened.

My weight issues started when I was about 10 years old. I was not an obese kid but just probably 5-10kgs overweight. I just didn’t fall into the normal size 10/12 range, more like a 14/16. I think a lot of it is genetics (as it seems to run in the family) but also as kids we were left to own devices to sort out our own breakfast and school lunches, as both our parents were either busy or worked, so it really was up to me on what and when I ate. Also as a teenager of course you love to sleep. So on a school morning you would leave it to the last minute to get out of bed and skip breakfast and only eat an apple on the way to school and nothing for the rest of the day. But when I got home I would eat crap food because I was hungry. I was a baker too, so it wasn’t uncommon for me to get home and bake a cake or cookies etc, but then my 3 siblings & I would eat the entire lot in one sitting. So from an early age I never was educated about having a balanced diet, which looking back I believe lead to me having bad eating habits. However I was a sporty kid and played netball, so at least I was getting exercise.

It wasn’t until I was 24 and planning on getting married (every girl wants to look good on their wedding day), that I actually started to follow a healthy eating & exercise plan. I lost 17kgs over a 6 months period. This was the first time in my life I felt slim. I grew in confidence and I learnt about healthy eating. It was such an empowering feeling to look good in beautiful clothes and receive lovely compliments about how good I looked. It was the first time in my life I actually felt attractive.
Since then I have continue to work hard to maintain my weight in a healthy weight range, it will an ongoing processes for the rest of my life.
So based on my past I think I scared. I’m scared of being that vulnerable, unhappy teenager living with a body I don’t like. Being judged and ridiculed again because of my size.
The funny thing is that I not scared on actually putting on weight during pregnancy because I believe pregnant woman are beautiful but it’s the aftermath of what the pregnancy leaves on the body that scares me. Well this is what I think my unconscious mind has being living in fear of over the last 9 years.

I look at my mum and younger sister (who has since just had her 3rd child) and they are the living evidence of what I fear. We all have very fair skin, with no elasticity, once stretched there is no bouncing back, believe me. Both of them have countless stretch marks over their stomachs and both have found it extremely hard to shift the extra weight in this area also, and they haven’t done so to this day. My sister jokes that her stomach looks like 100’s of train tracks. The skin is so stretched that you could do 1000 sit ups a day and there is no way you would get rid of all the excess skin. Even when my sister has not been pregnant she has been asked “when are you due?”. Because we are all prone to carrying any excess weigh in our stomachs (thanks genetics!!), it looks like you are 4 months pregnant even though you are not.

I suppose the thing is I have worked so hard to get to a place where I finally feel comfortable in my own skin and it is definitely ongoing process and my weight is something I will continue to battle the rest of my life. I know once I do have baby that the battle is going to be bigger than it has ever been and it is also going to be a new battle as the body would have gone through irreversible changes.

I know this sounds swallow, selfish or even vain but unless you have been bullied, teased, ridiculed or hurt because of something you despise within your own self, you won’t understand the scars it leaves, and you just don’t want to go back to that place again. I know I have been fearful of something but until know I haven’t been very successful in discovering what has been driving that fear. I now believe it may have been my unconscious mind trying to protect me from experiencing the same pain & disappointments I experienced in my teenage years.

I’m praying now I have a better understanding about what I have been unconsciously fearing, which is any first step to recover. I hope through rational thoughts I may be able to recapture my life and deal with this fear head on.


Bee xxx

Monday, November 15, 2010

My Pet Hates

Oh my goodness where do I start. I have so many pet hates when it comes to dealing with other people and my infertility. I have done a summary below, they aren’t in any order and depending on the day/month/year any of them could be at the top of my list. 

  • Why is it when I haven’t seen someone for a long time and we say hello to each other, they automatically take their eyes down to my belly. I feel like yelling, NO I’M NOT PREGNANT. It seems to happen to me all the time and I hate it. Maybe they do it to everyone and I’m just sensitive about it…Now it really gets on my nerves.
  • The direct questions people feel so comfortable in asking and I feel so uncomfortable in answering. So when are you having kids? Are you having problems? I just feel like asking them “So how is your sex life, how many times a week to you guys “Do It”? I think they just don’t realise how personal their questions are and you are pretty much talking about your sex life. Do you think they would talk openly to me about what happens in their bedroom? I think not. Mind you I haven’t had the courage to ask these questions yet, but it’s very tempting to see what the reaction would be.
  • Don’t you just love it when you are sitting around with your friends who are already mothers and the conversation turns to how many kids they are going to have and when they are going to have it, like it is that easy! I feel like piping up and saying “I not fussy I would just settle for one”
  • Don’t you just love when people just assume that you already have kids because you are in that age bracket or because you are married! Just like the other day when I went to the Doctors and the receptionist, (I sort of know her, but not really.) said. “So is this an antenatal appointment?” I just looked at her and said No. She then said “Oh I thought you were having another bubba”. Another bubba, I don’t even have one. Then I went to the Chemist the other day to get some worms tablets for my husband (that’s another story) anyway the sales assistant proceed to sell me worm tables for my kids and how often they should have them etc. She didn’t even ask me if I had kids, she just assumed I did, I didn’t correct her; I just nodded at her and let her ramble on.
  • The other one that really annoys me and I have already touched on in a previous post is when people say to me. “Are you pregnant or when are you due”. This normally results with me giving them an extremely shocked face, which instantly lets them know they have asked the wrong question. The first couple of times this happened to me I didn’t know how to handle it; I just fumbled an answer and nearly burst into tears. Now I just laugh it off and just say “No I’m just fat”. (The thing about this is my weight is in the correct weight range for my height, it’s just I carry any extra weight on my belly, just as other people do on bottoms or thighs, which I think I would prefer, at least it’s easier to hide ).. But don’t people know you just DON’T ask these questions unless you are 100% sure.
I have got to the stage now that when these things happen I just have to laugh; I’m well over the crying stage. Getting upset or being bitter isn’t going to achieve anything and I don’t want to be that person anymore….So for me now I just LAUGH…….

Bee xxx

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Private V’s Public

I’m new to this blogging thing and I wanted to explore the question do you go Private V’s Public?
This is something I have struggled with in my life of infertility.  Do you go public and share all your challenges/disappointments/desires with anyone that crosses your path or do you keep it private and only share with the selected few.
I think both paths have their own challenges
Going Public
I honestly believe going public is the braver option. It allows you to be open & honest with people when they start asking you questions about when you are going to have kids etc. There are no secrets and people can have some understanding of what you are going thru. However does it place addition pressure or expectations on you, say especially if you are having fertility treatment and they too are waiting eagerly for the outcome. Also what happens when you see the days turn into years (just like in my case) do peoples thoughts change from sadness for your situation to pity. This may be the time you start to hear comments second hand from people saying “oh it’s so sad that XYZ can’t have children or are having problems”. Also once you go public there is no turning back, once you have put it out there in the universe you can’t retract it.
Going Private
I think going private is taking the safer option, however it still doesn’t stop the same questions  being asked about when you are going to have kids, it just means you  have to come up with creative answers to satisfy them. Also because people don’t know or aren’t aware of your situation you may find yourself fending off insensitive comments, statements or questions.  Furthermore as time goes on you will find people will just assume or jump to conclusion about you anyway because it’s just human nature.   “Oh they have been married for like 5 years and they have no kids, I wonder if they are having problems or even if they want them”.
For Me & My Mr W (My Mr Wonderful) we have taken the “private” pathway.  This is what works for us. We have a few close friends & family member who we confide in but we don’t feel the need to share with everyone. And yes we do get sick of answering the same old questions about when we are going to have kids and having to come up with vague answers. We know people aren’t stupid, we have been married for 10 years & they see us dote on the kids we are lucky enough to have in our lives, so we are sure people put two & two together.  However we have never had the need to be open about our situation with everyone that broaches the subject with us. We are very selective on who we share with, we believe it’s no else’s business and we are over the caring stage of what other people think.
However I think what I have learnt through my own experience, that everyone is different. Not one method is the “right” way. Everyone deals with things in their own way and that is okay. What works for one person will not always work for the other.

Bee xxx