Friday, December 20, 2013

How to Get Pregnant, by Frank Jr.

I'm doing it again. I'm setting myself up to be disappointed.

I'm pretty sure I have pleurisy--I contracted it the summer after I graduated high school, and my doctor told me then that if you get it once, you're likely to continue getting it. So every few winters or so, I have this incredible chest pain and it hurts to breathe. Bending over to pick something up is the worst part. I feel incredibly heavy, like a weight is pushing into to my sternum through my lungs. I started getting that feeling last night. Since it's lung pain, it hurts my back to sit upright on the couch, but lying down forces more pressure on my chest and makes it hard to breathe.

At Bobby's basketball game last night, I finally caved and dug in his med kit for some Tylenol. Let's be real, Tylenol does very, very little for pain. But I turned down Advil and Aleve from the scorekeeper, because Tylenol is safe. I do this every month in the two week wait. I'll cancel my blood donation or suffer through a horrible sinus infection or only take Tylenol, because, well, I could be pregnant. And I've worked so freaking hard for this baby that has never yet existed, I'm not about to take any medicine that could harm it. In a few weeks, my period will arrive or I'll cave and take a pregnancy test. It will be negative. And I'll hate myself for cancelling my blood donation, I'll kick myself for suffering (and forcing Bobby to suffer) through sleepless nights of sniffling and wheezing. And I'll pop an Advil, just to give a giant middle finger to my body and the world.

And it's ridiculous, right? All of this avoiding caffeine and alcohol and medicine. Because NONE of my fertile friends avoided these things. Bobby's cousin didn't know she was pregnant until six months. SIX. FREAKING. MONTHS. How does that happen? So why do I have to be so careful about everything I put in my body just to help my chances of getting pregnant. Chalk that up to the list of things that aren't fair about being infertile.

Plus, whenever I hear about avoiding alcohol, it kind of makes me laugh. I don't have any concrete statistics on this, but I'd guess somewhere around 50% of babies are conceived with alcohol playing a factor. It always reminds me of that Friends episode, where Phoebe is a surrogate for her brother, Frank Jr. Just before the transfer, Phoebe asks if there's anything she can do to improve the chances of the IVF working, and Giovanni Ribisi, in his awesome white trash deadpan suggests, "I know! Why don't you get drunk! That worked for a bunch of girls in my high school!"


  1. These thoughts about avoiding caffeine and alcohol having been running through my head all day! Today is CD1 and I've probably drank more caffeine than I did in the last 3 months. The BIG middle finger to the unfair world that is IF.

  2. It does strike me as pretty amazing how unaware most people are about these things. It is pretty unfair, but most things are I guess. Hopefully one of these times it will all be worth it for you! Love the Friends reference!

  3. Did this -just so we could say we tried everything!