Saturday, March 29, 2008

The ups and downs...

Last night was an up

I was invited to have dinner with dear friends and their kids. They were having over a lovely couple and son. I was there during the build up of excitement of company arriving. The kids were eagerly waiting by the window. The mom was fruitlessly encouraging them to pick up their toys. The dad was baking some yummy smelling bread.

The other family arrived. My husband too a bit later when he finished work for the day. The food was wonderful. The kids were funny and honest about their opinions about the food. They tried to sneak inappropriate jokes into the table conversation. The adults collectively groaned. The kids eventually were allowed to be excused, and the adults chatted for hours over drinks, then tea, then whiskey. The kids fell asleep in a pile of blankets and pillows in the living room.

I was so happy. There is an energy about multigenerational gatherings like this that I love. I crave and savor these moments. My entire life was full of them, my mom was a master of creating holidays and gatherings. Then I left home at 18 to venture off to university. I am only now building a community of friends with kids and friends who still live near their parents.

I realized that one thing I was grieving was not having these gatherings in my life if I never get to be a parent. It was a relief to know that I was still part of the fabric of life last night. My shitty ovaries don't have to bare me from these moments.

Flash forward to today...
Today sucks...
I woke up and was just wanted to curl up and cry. So many stressful things on my to do list. Taxes in 2 countries. Donor recipient profile to finish up. Letters to doctors to write. Housecleaning. Learning that my mother must have received the email that she didn't reply to because my accountant back home (a family friend) referred to it. I need to call my mom about some tax stuff, but really I just want her to mother me through the afternoon, even though I suspect she can't.

Its a day of sad music. Wine with breakfast. Lots and lots of hot sauce on that breakfast. A very very empty house. Phone calls reaching out to friends... all of whom I ended up not being able to say anything to.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Thurdsay, Friday, Saturday... the days of the week go round and round all month long

I finally did it, I popped open the pack of birth control and took my first bite of sugar coated hormones. And really I feel exactly the same as I did the day before I started taking them.

I still am occasionally bicckering with my lovely husband who can't seem to do anything around the house at the moment with his crazy hours thanks to a huge project deadline at work (note to others.. if you ever want to pick a fight with me, wait silently practicing the line 'i can't' in your head until I arrive home after a horrid day at work, after I scrap myself off the floor and go grocery shopping, and make dinner, and start cleaning up, and then wait until I ask a 2 minute task of you, and lay your line on me... for good measure continue to repeat the phrase 'i can't' when I ask you for a neck rub, to bring your plate to the sink, and to tell me about your day. )

Well a few things are different than I remember from taking the pill years ago:
  • I am experiencing some lovely stomach cramps -- fun!
  • Its much easier to remember to take the pills at the same time everyday now that I'm not a college student - whohooo, I must be developing a touch of responsibility!
  • Sex while taking them is not a huge relief, instead it brought on sobs. I felt completely empty and barren inside and was really shocked by the intensity of this reaction, which of course only amplified it. Wasn't exactly what my husband was looking for either I suspect:)

Perhaps this 3 months will buy me some quality time to come to terms with my thoughts and feelings on my premature ovarian failure. I think I have a long ways to go. I never promised I'd handle this gracefully (though I think had lots of internal hopes for myself).

Sunday, March 23, 2008


Today I relaxed... with a deadline. I only had one last afternoon alone at my friend's house.  She kindly lent me a key while she was on an exciting vacation with her family.

I drink tea
Knitted another 10 rows on my first sweater/jumper
And listened to some NPR online.

Ah.. I always like a good Teri Gross interview.  My favourite of all times was seeing her live interviewing Ira Glass from This American Life.  But her interview with Peggy Orenstein went well with my tea and knitting today.

So now a period means time to start birth control... never before were those things linked in my mind

My period has arrived. Well I think it has. Several days of spotting and the sense that Niagara Falls is imminent. I no longer know what to think about my body. Is it a 'real' period? Is it just some break through bleeding? Estrogen withdrawal? Do I bother continuing with my very abreviated form of charting- and really what do I write for the things I am observing?

What does it matter other than I really would love to be able to understand what is happening in my body? And be clued in enough to sieze an ovulatory moment should one appear.

It does very much mean I need to decide whether to start with birth control pills. I was directed to start within a week of getting my period. I've had 2 doctors say that its worth a shot. 3 months on the pill then withdrawal from it to see if the sudden change in hormones convince my ovaries to get busy. Long shot of long shots.

I guess the BCP suppress the FSH and ovaries and gives everyone a vacation - 'cept me who would need to buy them and remember to taking them (not really a challenge, I just have always hated how I feel on the pill).

I've been thinking of FSH as a person trying to get their spouse to tell them where they are. They call out, 'hey where are you?” no answer. So they say it louder. They text them. They start banging pans. Eventually they start screaming and stomping and having a complete meltdown – because well FSH is only so sophisticated, and it just ratchets things up and up and up. Eventually the message gets through...they hear the response they want... and then they stop till the next time.

But if I were my eggs, I'd totally refuse to respond to that level of meltdown and craziness. I'd hold out of a calmer, less frantic summoning. I mean really would you respond that level of demanding tantrumming?

But then again, if none of my eggs are responding to my FSH levels at 50, doesn't that mean all the others are just too damaged, old, or slow to even notice lower levels of FSH? Just as when you start losing you hearing, it doesn't matter how hard you try or how nice that little beep is presented, until it is loud enough you can't physically hear it - that is that.

Yeah, guess I should stop fretting about the BCP decision and focus on finishing up the donor recipient profile. Which means getting off our computers, getting out, and getting a current photo of us together looking happy and fun during some shared activity. Cuz yeah we actually are fun and happy when I'm not off on my own fretting about WHAT TO DO about THINGS outside my control.

Friday, March 21, 2008

the lady

I was at a luncheon recently. And as one might expect there was heaps of lovely food laid out and great coffee and of course there was also a lady -- one with opinions, lots of them. I am too am opinanated - so I try not to judge this trait in others. Sometimes I postively relish listening to others pontificate their views --- and sometimes I, well, don't.

The Lady O'Opinions is of an age where I secretly think 'hey, we're both menopausal, but I'm the only one that knows it.' Yes I know... its a weird game I play in my head. I think its a bit like when you are a young child who has just realized that all these grown ups in your life have sex, probably - shock of all shocks- repeatedly and therefore must enjoy it, and you torture yourself for awhile trying to make it true in your head. Or was that just me...

Well one of this lady's opinions was that expecting parents really ought never to learn the sex of one's babies before the birth. That it completely takes the surprise out of it... something about that what everyone is dying to know is whether its a boy or a girl.. that there really isn't any news quite like that.

What I thought was what I want to know is are breathing and healthy! Do they have a cleft palate? Was there any internal bleeding? Heart defects? Motor issues? Hearing loss? (okay this is because of my clinical training that these things all pop in my head--sorry folks out there that already have too many things on their worry list – I used to only worry about the things that can go wrong once a baby is born, and was fairly unaware of the things that can go wrong before. Ah now I can worry from all angles!). I would probably would opt to not know, but not because I want to maintain the element of suprise for the world at large!

And then I thought, and nearly blurted out, if I actually get pregnant, the delivery is when I will get to know what colour my baby is.... cuz last I checked ultrasounds show morphology not colour.

... this is probably related to the fact that I haven't yet decided on how to answer the question on the donor recepient profile: "please circle all of the following that are acceptable for you in a donor" and then lists of skin, hair, and eye colour; height options, options for build... it is that not the most bizarre multiple choice ever! Talk about a test you can't study for....

Yeah, probably good that I bit my tongue on that one. I guess I could spin it either way --- the sadness of not having a child who is genetically tied to me and all my family before me OR that I would get to look at that oh-so-theoretical baby with completely fresh eyes. I mean forget the surprise of what sex the baby is.--that's nearly a 50:50 (yeah my work has taught me about the sliver between those two 50's too, but let's ignore that for now)--if we go with donor eggs, we might not have any idea about what our baby's skin, nose, or eyes will look like.

That could be a turly amazing gift.

I wouldn't be looking for glimmers of me in his or her face, I would just be completely open to seeing the humanity passed down from generations of people not related (and quite possibilty a few from way back that are) to me into this one very new person.

Hmmm... I wonder what that would be like. To watch a child grow up and getting to see them
without any preconcieved notions of what they will look like..... no back cover, book jacket flap, reviews, blurbs --- nothing but a human life unfolding one day at a time. Just letting their physical appearance evolve as a surprise. Just as we often do with personality, interests, vocabulary, and all the other ways children suprise us by showing who they really are (and how different that can be from our expectations - even when we think we have none).


Thursday, March 20, 2008

When feeling low.... seek words

In spite of the much appreciated relief at tossing the HRT last week and the lovely weekend of real fun, this week has been a mini-hell for me. I say mini, because I realize it is nothing compared to all the losses and battles and struggles of others, but I think I positively reeked of depression all week.

This made for really crappy interactions with friends, family, and my poor poor workmates. Oh have I mentioned that when I'm in a foul mood I develop a scowl that only true friends properly read as “oh that is just what her face DOES when she is fighting back tears or is super preoccupied with the mental battle of how do you expect me to care about trivial things about when I feel like shit about big things!” I don't want to be grumpy at work, but my motivation level has been ... well subpar these past few days.

A friend asked if I was eating or sleeping well. She has a pysch background. I have enough of one to know why she was asking. I replied that I eat when food is put in front of me. This has worked out nicely for me -- she has slipped some amazing dishes under my nose this week. I ate and she listened to my silence and she will be a friend of mine forever and ever. I will thank her later when I start talking and being social again.

I am a lump right now. My husband is working insane hours. I hurt one of my legs so I can't really walk or do sports or get out. I am craving exercise and sweating and the mind clearing power of feelign one foot fall against the ground then another and another and another....

Its a 4 day weekend and all my friends are off having adventures with their young, carefree friends or they are off to the hills/beaches/rivers/lakes/relatives with their young kids. I am watching my husband frantically work on a deadline on his computer.

And so logically I tried to imitate his behavior. But all I can do is frantically click through blogs and other corners of the Internet. Probably not as impressive as his work, but I did find some really great things today.

I stumbled upon “why not me” and her post about coming to decide to go with egg donors. Not only was it a great post, but the comments sections was a treasure trove of others who having gone done the donor egg path (or like me are thinking about it)

Which lead me to this post writen by Julia at A little bit Pregnant

I also started recognizing other people's voices as I read through the comments... little thoughts of 'hmm she really sounds like ___, oh wait it is!”

And that made me feel a lot less alone in my lump like state.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Ah, the relief of action

I pulled myself together long enough to finally do something.

I started with the basics - laundry, shopping, feeding myself, and a nice long shower (not necessarily in that order)

Then I decided yesterday that I am not going to start my HRT.

I am a person who likes to hear advice, so long as it is said in a way that I can clearly do what ever I want. I actually prefer it to the vague 'listen to your heart only you know what's best for you' Well duh --- but I much prefer someone saying, what about x, and me reacting to it, rather than always having to come up with x by myself. Sometimes I do not realize how strongly I feel for or against something until its suggested by someone else.

On that note, I have one friend who is not afraid to share her opinions. She also does this in a way that is easy to dismiss or embrace as I see fit. Yesterday she sent me a txt asking how I was doing, and somehow after a few txts back and forth she said that she didn't think I should take the drugs unless there was a postive reason to do so and that I could always change my mind later this year.

I instantly realized that I felt exactly the same. That like her I'd prefer to err on the side of more dr opinions and fewer interventions... that I'm lucky that I have enough bone density to risk losing a bit while I have a good long think. Hearing someone give me permission to do what I wanted to, not by saying 'do what you think is best' but saying 'if I were you I'd think about doing x' and that happened to be what I was wanting to do.

And this wonderful relief washed over me. I felt so good that today I was able to calmly pick up the phone and inquire about adoption. I also wrote the donor egg nurse about whether my 39 year old friend is eligible to donate.

I feel like a three year old who's just done some big thing for the first time and want to jump up, hands in the air, and shout 'I did it I did it'

What exactly I did I don't know, but I feel strong and calm again with my connection to my heart and body semi-restored. And to celebrate, I threw some of music on my side bar... just hit pause if it annoys you.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

HRT, eh?

So I bit the bullet and filled my HRT prescription. I wasn't all that satisfied with my prescribing doctor, but all the doctors I've spoken with are pretty much in accordance that I need estrogen. You know, bone loss, dementia, Parkinson, and other risks of going without it.

So I went and got some.
You know in case I actually came out of my depressed state long enough to risk adding hormones to the mix.

But then I read through the 'brief summary of important information' that came with the pills. It really was rather lengthy.

There were lots of comments about telling doctors that you are 'on birth control pills' at least 4 weeks before any surgery. Funny all those years on the pill I never realized that it was so important for everyone to know this... hmmm

But the comments that I did not find funny at all were:
  • “don't use if pregnant or think you are pregnant”
  • don't get pregnant while using this medicine, if sexually active use non-hormonal contraception eg Condoms” (boldface theirs, the only other section in bold on the entire leaflet was advice to NOT taking birth control as well as HRT)
  • There is also a helpful note that 'This is not a contraceptive medicine.”
Condoms --- you got to be joking! That is a pretty big side effect for me, right up there with risk of rare blood clots and remembering to eat daily reminder of your body's lack of estrogen.

I was assuming that my doctor understood that I was hoping against hope to get pregnant... I mean she did ask, as a side note, if I was having any trouble with grief. She said that HRT shouldn't impede ovulation if you end up miraculously ovulating. She shared her opinion about donor eggs. So clearly in my mind, she heard at least part of what I was saying, and I assumed that she could make the jump that if woman is considering going on the donor egg wait list she PROBABLY is not using condoms or other non-hormonal means of avoiding pregnancy.

As you can imagine this was a slight distraction to my day. I skipped out on work. I bought ice cream. I waited in line to buy tickets to the 3 pm movie. I lied to my receptionist when they called asking if I was willing to come back to the office to help with what turned out to be a needless task. I said yes, and walked back to the office. Probably not a great movie, oh well.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Beach wanderings

Today I was even more down then yesterday. Went to walk on the beach, and just sort of collapsed.  I must have sat there for an hour... or more... or less. Really have no idea.  I left when I noticed that it was dark and cold outside.

I honestly don't know what is getting to me more, the HRT that I am now required to take (and I completely can't get my head around) or the inferility.  I feel like the two sides of a dead fish keep slapping across my face, just as I am realizing what hit me, the other side is greeting me.  

I feel so guilty for feeling so bad when my loss is well ... I don't know.... it just seems so invisible and so  small compared the huge losses of so many others.  During the day I meet families whose children have disabilities.  There is often grief there.  At night I come home and read everyone's blogs - more grief.

And I still haven't filled my prescription for the damn HRT.  It just fills me with dread.  I know it's not for life (just the next 2 decades.... argh!). I know I can take breaks. I know I can change prescriptions.  But I also know I really don't want to. I don't want to have to. I don't want the daily reminder that I waited too long.  That I don't even get a chance to try with my own eggs.  We weren't even TTC while I was still fertile.    That I freaking am menopausal before my 30th birthday.  And I'm so flat I can't even get angry.  I just let that stupid fish keep slapping me upside the head.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Plodding along

Today was a day of one foot at a time, plod plod plod ahead, next up dinner prep. No reason to be down, just am.

I tried to reach out to a few people

Friend: had friends over and couldn't talk
Parent: appearently didn't get, didn't read, or didn't know what to do with the email I bravely wrote
Parent-type figure: recommend some scientology book

At which point I told my husband, well I guess it worked for Katie. She married short and crazy and she now has baby and funds. Then looked at my shortish hubby and said, I tried that. He laughed and laughed, which only made the tears shake out as I joined him in the sillys.

Friday, March 7, 2008

signs of hope, denial, or the unknown

Back a few years I read Taking Charge of Your Fertility as if it was a page turner. I knew it wasn't going to make me any more fertile, but I loved the idea that I could start understanding my body more.  I wanted to see signs and then fit them into a pattern, even if my pattern doesn't fit the norm at all.  

More importantly I really wanted to know if I ovulated or not and how to make sense out of my 2 week to 4 month long cycles.  Never really did, but I started to love and listen to my body more than I ever had before.

Flash forward to today.  The doctors say I am perimenopausal... ovaries are in their last twitches of functioning etc.

But I still feel that I am fertile.  I don't know what I actually mean by this. I'm grieving as though I don't believe it at all, but I still feel sexy and young and vibrant and have periods occasionally.  And if I truly didn't want a child I would opt for contraception because I am not 100% convinced that I can't conceive.  It makes for a mess of emtions that are overwhelming me at the moment.

All in all, it was a good day to stumble upon this post over at the Sluggish Butterfly  talking about intituion and wondering if you are fertile.  Maybe I'm not crazy after all. 

For tonight, my goal is not to worry about whether its hope, denial, or truth. If I feel fertile, I am just not going to worry about it. There is so much roled into that word, so much more than whether you'll be holding a baby a year from now, and for the next 24 hours I'm going to do my darnedest to not worry about how much (or little) I fit into all the aspects of the word fertile.

A simpler pattern

Well after reading the most recent post over at Her very Own, I realize that the pattern I've noticed in myself when seeing doctors has actually simplified since I left the States.  

I may be a bit down at the moment, but find solace in having left the US system behind.

I can't even put into words the relief of no longer battling the 3rd party payer system as part of every medical appointment. Actually whenever I could afford to I just skipped the stress of the battle and paid out of pocket. I could only really do that for a few second opinions here and there and may be PT appointments for a sports injury, but the healing process is so much better when not tainted by the insurance companies. It also meant I didn't completely lose my ability to go to the doctor.

I know I was playing right into the insurance company's game... I paid premiums in case of a catastrophic health issue or accident, but rarely had them pay for anything because the process was too much for me to handle, particularly when I was incapacitated with illness. They win, I lose.

One day I tried to make them pay. I was sick. Very sick with a flu bug that had transformed my body into a spewing distaster zone. One of the facilities I consult to required me to have a doctor's note to justify my absence.

I should have just shown up, I think the average lay person could see me puke a few times and 'diagnosis' me as ill, but the site was an hour away and my doctor's office only a 10 minute drive.

I arrive, check in, and find out that my appointment is with a different doctor because my primary care doctor (the only doctor I've ever really trusted after years of searching) has left the practice. Okay, I am sad, but I feel pretty sure that ANY doctor can handle this situation. I run to the bathroom, retch a bit, then come back to the waiting area. I then am called up to the main desk. Turns out I can't be seen until I switch my primary care doctor to the lady I am going to be seeing. Fine, can you do that for me? I manage to ask. Nope, only I the patient can change my primary care doctor. The receptionist lady was kind enough to dial the number, but then I had to stand there on hold for 20 minutes with my insurance company. They eventually answer, I play 'pass the words' game between the receptionist and the insurance company while I clutch a plastic bag to my chest in case I start to throw up again.

Insurance company: so you want to change primary care doctors?
Me, weekly: Yeah
Insurance company: Why?
Me to receptionist: um why did my doctor leave
Receptionist: we are not at liberty to say
Me to Insurance Company: Sorry, I don't know
Insurance Company: Can you ask someone at the practice?
Me: Yeah, I just did, they don't know.

Pause as they type lots and lots

Insurance company: Who are you switching to?
Me: Just a sec
Me to receptionist: Um, who am I seeing today?
Receptionist: Dr _____ ( a name I completely can't pronounce)
Me: Um could you write that down for me?
Me to insurance company: Just a second, I am finding out

It goes and on and on, and eventually everyone is happy, 'cept me. I ended up not liking this doctor and had to change doctors again before my next appointment. And honestly I would have paid a couple hundred bucks to be seen for 15 minutes and skip this ridiculous phone conversation in front of the entire waiting room while stressing out about what to do if my stomach started churning again. Why the receptionist wasn't allowed to make the phone call for me I don't know.

At least now I can't skip this layer of frustration and just dive straight into the emotions of not having answers as to the best way to take care of my health, not understanding what my body is and isn't doing, getting the sense that the doctors think that I'm just a simple, cut and dry case that doesn't require any thought, and hearing yet again that it would be a bloody miracle for me to get pregnant.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

A think I detect a pattern

Its a pretty simple pattern:

  • Pre-appointment 24 hours - anxiety and lack of productivity
  • Appointment - disappointment, boredom, confusion, in ability to be anything but passive
  • Post-appointment walk to car - boiling blood and rage
  • Post-car collapse in car seat - raging tears and swears and repeated use of the words dumb/stupid
  • Rest of day - emotional puddle of anger, tears, and frustration
  • A few days later - back to 'normal' knowing nothing more, having nothing new to 'do'
  •  and nothing to show for the exhausting ride I just went on.

Until the next appointment.  This is why I stopped getting bloodwork a few years ago, stopped seeing my endo, etc.  I just got sick of losing so much of my life to this pattern without any feeling of progress.

My doctor even forgot to give me the free HRT drugs that she promised during the consult.

I can't believe I paid $180 today to feel this shitty.  

I can't believe I am still blindsided by how bad I feel after the doctor visits.  

Today was a terrible horrible rotten day, and I wish I was in Australia - dancing at the CBD in Melbourne's CBD.  I guess I just go drive around the city I actually live in and find some lights to play in.

Tomorrow is another day...

....that brings with it yet another appointment. This time with a menopause specialist. I guess it is good to take care of my own health -- the whole 'put your oxygen mask on before helping others' concept.

Great in theory, but still doesn't make the full blown emotional meltdown I've worked myself into preparing for my lucky doctor any easier. I'm sure she'll be thrilled to see me walk in with these tomorrow:

I've just never gone to a doctor appointment feeling so darn healthy (and with such a need to prepare).

I mean really...
  • blood, gore, festering sores - nope
  • twisted or tweaked joints - nope
  • fever, chills, fluids coming out the wrong faucets - nope
  • ringing ears, dizziness, other irritable body actions- nope
Nope when she asks me how I'm doing, I'll just stammer something like, "ummm yes, I uh came here today cuz well I'd like uh like you to help me to treat my ummm well I have no symptoms, but several doctors told me that my bloodwork is a bit wacked out and that uh there are some studies with freaking huge sample sizes that say I could be a risk of dementia, parkinsons, heart disease, shattering bones and probably other crap I don't know to ask about which all sounds pretty miserable."
I guess its good that I'm going, because those are some pretty bad side effects of not dealing with this at some point. If only I hadn't promised myself that that point was tomorrow's appointment. I probably shouldn't have linked my personal deadline to the appointment, I already have enough avoidance issues with the medical community as is. Now I feel this huge hormone replacement deadline crashing down on me. Perhaps I'll need to set another arbitary one for myself. Maybe a good season or half year from now:) Don't want to rashly race into dealing with something the doctors and I have successfully been overlooking/denying for YEARS!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Good day

Today my friend two children volunteered me to take me on an adventure - without their parents. I played in a river. We changed a flat tire. We threw grass in the air. We got partially lost running through the woods, and had even more fun finding our way back.

I didn't think about my 5% problem at all (which is how I currently am thinking of it, both because I so often read that I have less than a 5% chance of conceiving and because I feel like only 5% of my body doesn't work - the bit between my navel and my thighs) and think I will sleep really well tonight. I know those 2 kids will, they were completely worn out by the time we hauled them to their very relaxed looking parents.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

And the results of the test requiring no cramming...

one very lonely pink line of course.

The test you don't cram for

My nausea continues as does the fatigue.

Logic says its just the tail end of the stomach bug that had me clutching the toilet like a warm comforting teddy bear. This is the voice that says, "of course you're sick and tired, you haven't eaten for a week!"

This was not the voice in my head at the pharmacy yesterday. Picture the scene. I pickup my friend and his two, very sniffly, young sons who were waiting for the bus in the rain.

Half way home the dad asks, “any chance we can stop at a drug store on the way home to grab some cold meds?"

You mean the nearest source of home pregnancy tests?!?!

"Well of course... yeah that would be simply WONDERFUL" You'd think he's just offered to stop at the best coffee/cake shop in the universe, actually he probably just read it as sarcasm until I actually pulled over.

Once there I bolted ahead to the first sales lady I see and whisper frantically "pregnancy test?" hoping to get my transaction completed long before my friend even thought to ask for directions to the anti-coughing, sniffly, wheezy so that you can rest (or send your kids to school half-sick) aisle.

The sales lady asks how late I am (and really, that's one question that has always stumped me, "ummm, maybe a month, a few weeks, I don't know, I might really be half a year early") just as one son appears at my side, grabs my hand, and attempts to drag me toward the in store slide.

That is when I see that the sales lady's 7 months pregnant belly and that she is probably assuming I am the happy mother/wife of the group doing some multi-tasking shopping with my busy (and now growing) family of 4. All hope of a quick, discrete sale is lost.

I now realize that an unforeseen consequence of being open with my friends about my situation is that being caught buying a pregnancy test when they know that you are all but eggless is even more awkward. So I crawled under the plastic slide with the kids until it was time to go.