I have started SO many blog posts in my head over the past...ahem...year. For whatever reason I just haven't been able to commit them to an actual post, and I don't really know why. Well, I have my suspicions, but they've been hard to admit to myself. I think the main obstacle has been that I just haven't had anything new to report on the baby number two front. There simply hasn't been extra money for anything fertility-related, and I'm still waiting to find out whether my "window" has closed. My finances have been very challenging ever since last June for reasons I don't want to get into, and for me, financial stress is the worst kind. It's what keeps me up at night, and eats away at me during the day. I don't have anyone I can fall back on financially, and now that I have a daughter to support, the worry of how am I going to hang in there until the end of the month has been tough. The bright side is that I've been able to knock off a considerable amount of debt over the past six months, and things are *really* starting to lighten up. It's a good feeling, especially considering where I was last June.
I am currently awaiting bloodwork results, namely my AMH results, to tell me whether a pregnancy might still be a possibility at my age. I have two unsuccessful IUIs under my belt in this quest for #2, but I haven't done one since last June, when I found out that it didn't work on the first day of our evacuation during last summer's big wildfire. I consulted with my RE at the end of May, and he was very realistic with me about the slim chance I have of conceiving again, based purely on my age (43). The fact that I had a baby at 40 does actually bode well, so it's definitely still possible, technically. I really need to give him a call tomorrow to see whether he's received the AMH results...my blood had to travel all the way to the Mayo Clinic in MN. I am actually considering pursuing home insemination on a monthly basis...I found a sperm bank in CA that does offer unwashed sperm specifically for home insemination. I can afford to do this monthly, but in-clinic IUIs are a lot more expensive, so I definitely can't afford to pursue that option every month. Maybe every other month or every third month. I haven't figured out whether it would be more effective to try home IVIs every month versus an IUI every third month. As I understand it, quite a few women have conceived via home insemination, so maybe it's possible. Are the advantages of IUI that much better than IVI?! The jury's still out. Lately I've been trying to more deliberately envision my life with one child instead of the two I've always imagined, and it's not easy. I would love to be content with one child, but so far I haven't been able to get myself to that place.
In the meantime, K and I have been completely enjoying our summer off! (Well, with the exception of having to relive the horror of last summer's wildfire. That's been very hard over the past week, but thankfully the firefighters have now achieved 85 percent containment, so for all practical purposes the fire is out. They're putting out the hot spots and allowing most of the evacuees to head back to their homes, many of which are still intact and many of which have been destroyed. It's heartwrenching to read the stories...the number of destroyed homes is now up to 502, with two fatalities. I think there's a part of me that's in denial that it has happened again...that it's not possible for my city to have had to endure yet another wildfire just one year later, and this time it's the worst one yet. They say it's now the worst wildfire in Colorado history. It's the third one I've been through: there was the Hayman fire back in 2002 (I wasn't evacuated, fortunately, but I came very, very close: on pre-evacuation status for many days.), the Waldo Canyon fire last June when we were evacuated, and now the Black Forest fire. Evacuation was never really a possibility for us this time--we live NW of the city, and the fire was mostly north-central and northeast of Colorado Springs proper. Completely horrifying to watch the footage of homes burning down and see the photos of nothing left of people's homes but ash and rubble. I don't think I've been able to sort out my feelings about this latest fire yet...I don't want to let the reality of it sink in too far because it's just too horrible to contemplate. It's so easy to say, "Well, it was just stuff. At least you and your family are okay." Even though that statement is true, a home is so much more than just a house, and so, so many people lost nearly everything they owned as well as a special place with so many memories attached to it. They've lost their home base, their center of operations, their comfort zone, their sense of security. It's almost too much to contemplate. The silver lining of all this (and it's a big one) has been the incredible response of our community--firefighters, companies, groups, individuals, families putting forth time, energy, money, and compassion to help out in any way they can. People have spent countless hours rescuing animals, putting together donations, pooling resources, feeding firefighters, you name it. It's been so beautiful to witness. I'll admit it, my faith is important to me, and the only way for me to describe it is that God's work is being done here. It's been an emotional week.
Well, enough of that. As I was saying, it's been a great summer so far for K and me. We've been busy doing all of the fun stuff that there doesn't seem to be as much time for during the school year. I will make a more concerted effort to post pictures etc. of our adventures this summer! I'm planning to take K camping next month, and hopefully we can make it happen. I'm also planning on swim lessons for K starting next month. She's a great girl at three...in a nutshell, she loves trains (including Thomas), everything Toy Story-related, she loves to "read" books and be read to, loves playing outside, visiting the library (which we did today), and going to the pool. She talks a blue streak all the time, loves joking around and being silly, and I just love spending time with her! She is stubborn, though (just like her mama) and we're struggling right now with her not wanting to take naps or go to bed ("I not tired!! I don't want to go to bed!"). I've quickly discovered that my skills in managing middle school kids simply don't apply with a preschooler! Speaking of preschool, she's currently on the waiting list for our neighborhood school district's preschool program. It's an amazing, high-powered school district--NOT the one I teach in, but the one we live in. To be on the safe side, I am also going to investigate the private daycare/preschool that is across the street from the school I teach in. It comes highly recommended to me by a colleague, and the location is ideal. Time will tell. :)
Well, that has to be it for now. Several other posts are still percolating in my brain, and those will most likely appear within the next few weeks. It feels good to open the floodgates again, so to speak, and write down how I've been feeling lately. I've never stopped reading others' blog posts, though I've been lurking almost exclusively. It's good to be back!