I went back to acupuncture today. It's been a while. Not only did I reach my limit with my insurance last year, but I also was freaked out about doing much of anything during my first trimester. Plus, it was kind of crazy, between Christmas, New Year's, then I got a cold, then the Great Spotting Incident happened; it's only been within the past few weeks that I've started settling (if you could say that) into this pregnancy.
I'm such a baby when it comes to needles. Seriously, my acupuncturist just laughs at me as she takes out the needles that she uses on toddlers. Toddlers, I tell you. And they even freak me out. I'm getting a bit better since I've had so much blood drawn lately, but there's still something ridiculously unsettling about looking down and seeing needles sticking out of your knee, feet, and wrists. And if you accidentally try to scratch your head, and you hit a needle there, it's just weird.
But I do think there's something to this acupuncture. Last May, acupuncture alone increased my luteal phase from 10 days to 14. I can only imagine it was the acupuncture since it was the only thing I was doing differently. Later on when I was taking progesterone during the IUI's my luteal phase got longer as well, so for those I can't chalk it all up to the needles, but for that cycle in May, it's the only thing that had changed.
Here's something else. When I ask my Western Doctors what they think about acupuncture, half of them just kind of snicker. "Well it won't hurt," one said, "because it doesn't do anything." So then when we did the first IUI I asked him whether it was ok to keep doing it during that cycle, and he says, "well, yes, but make sure they know you're doing fertility, because there are spots they will want to avoid."
Now here's the thing. If it doesn't do anything, then why would there be spots they would want to avoid, and why would that matter?
It doesn't take a Sherlock to figure out that there's more to this story than these MD's are letting on.
Anyway, it's been over three and a half years of trying to get pregnant - and sustain a pregnancy - and I'm pretty much convinced that doctors are stabbing in the dark. Oh, don't get me wrong, I still go to them. I still listen to what my OB says, and I ask her about everything under the sun (like, is Neosporin safe?) but I also think that there's an awful lot they don't know.
So the short story is, I got needles in my wrist, knee, feet and head today.
Also, I've been feeling a lot better lately. The whole second-trimester thing is rocking. I'm exercising regularly, even though it's winter (which is a challenge, because I also hate being cold) and I'm meditating, and spending a lot of time reading books (because I figure that my reading will be kind of curtailed here in under six months). So after acupuncture I went to Panera. I could eat every meal at Panera, but J isn't as much of a fan. Whenever we go out, I always ask for Panera, and he usually just rolls his eyes. Sometimes he indulges me. But I was on my own today, so Panera it was. I ordered the Fuji Apple Chicken Salad without even thinking about it (no chicken because I'm still a veggie, extra apple) and then when I saw it, I realized there were blue cheese crumbles. Soft cheeses are on the (very long) list of things I'm not supposed to eat during pregnancy, and I immediately started thinking about what to do. Do I ask them to make me another one, without the cheese? But the queue for lunch is really long. Do I try to pick them off?
[Sidebar: These are the dilemmas with which I am faced every day, which is why I insist that actually raising a child will be cake compared to this act of trying to conceive and carry one. My mother in law just laughs at me when I say this, though my stepmom gets it. Here's my thinking: I can do everything perfectly, but I have no ultimate control over how it will turn out. Yes, that applies to parenting, obviously, but it's not your own freaking body. Plus, with a kid, you can look at them and see that they are ok. With a fetus, you can't. I could eat the blue cheese, and it could cause some terrible birth defect, and I wouldn't know about it. For the final two weeks with Baby T I was blissfully going along thinking everything was going ok, starting a google doc of my favorite names, and it turns out that my body was rejecting him, and I didn't even know it until the last day. I'm sorry, but with the exception of your kid getting really sick, I don't think there's anything in parenting like that. Your own freaking body rejecting your baby, without you even knowing it, so that while you're just hanging out doing the laundry and sticking a chicken in the oven for dinner, your body is preparing to expel him (after 7 hours of active labor, of course). You can't tell me that letting go and letting another human being just do their own thing and become their own person and make their own mistakes can be as hard as that. Maybe I'll find out that I'm wrong, but I am pretty much convinced that 40 weeks of pregnancy (God willing) will be the hardest thing I have ever done by the time it's over.]
So, do I eat the blue cheese or do I not eat the blue cheese? I decide to be reckless. I pick out the really big chunks, but for the little crumbs that are left in the dressing (which also, I might add, freaks me out because there might be raw eggs in it, who the fuck knows, this is why I don't eat out much) I figure that it can't hurt.
I'm hoping I was right, but of course, as I just stated above, I have no idea whether I'm right or not.
If you think too much about this stuff, you can drive yourself crazy. I mean, really crazy. But for thirty seconds at Panera before the blue cheese, I was really having fun, and feeling like my old self again.
Hard Times which is the silliest movie I've seen in a long time. It's set in a little village in Ireland where there are few opportunities and lots of time to come up with crazy plans to make money. Four of the least brainiest among the village decide to hijack a Pfizer truck and steal the viagra, take it to Amsterdam and sell it, and make lots of money. The truck-jacking scene itself was priceless. In a fit of fear when the three American Hummer-driving security guards show up, they dump the drugs down the well. And the drugs get into everyone's water supply. And the entire village is suddenly feeling the effects of viagra. It's on netflix instant-watch if a silly Irish movie about a horny little town harboring stupid criminals appeals to you.