Catheleni: My husband also thinks it's strange that so many things are my "favorite". He says it dilutes the term, and I think he has a point, but that's how I really feel. I love my dog more than I could possibly love any other dog . . . except how much I loved my childhood dog or my old dog, at which point I loved them more than I could possibly love any other dog. That's just how it goes. I hope the post-positive-OPK fun times went well for you! I'm an over-researcher (although I think ShannonO did me one better this time. Yay!). I really like to read about how things work and what probabilities are for different outcomes and I have a pretty good brain for remembering roughly what I've read. And I go look it up if I'm unsure of the exact numbers. I think the vast majority of the time that someone gets a positive OPK they do actually ovulate. Once in a while, though (assuming I remember correctly), you get a positive OPK because you release LH, but then something stops you from ovulating, like a major stress/illness or something. Then it might be delayed and you might end up O-ing later (after another positive OPK). Ovulation pain, for me, feels like maybe pulling, or like a bubble, or like twinging near my ovary - just an inch or two inside of the point of my pelvic bone. The first time I felt it I was about 14 and at a friend's house, and it was her dad who told me what it probably was - I am really hard to embarrass, but that did the trick for sure. So I've always remembered. That, and I get O pains most months. I hope your cat is feeling better!
Val: Thanks for your positivity. I actually DO want it to be a positive sign, but I really can't believe that for fear I'll get burned again. Sure was a heck of a dip! That's the only time I've ever had a temperature below the coverline in my 2ww. Time will tell, I guess. As to the trouble focusing, I think it's pretty natural to have a hard time focusing on work for as many hours a week as we are expected to . . . unless the work is very variable. And I've found that sometimes people who work at the office tend to spend a lot of time chatting, walking to and from their coffee breaks, and not working all that hard even when they are at their desks. Not to say that that's great behaviour (if everyone did it, nothing much would get done, and it's unfair to the harder workers), but as long as you don't do that every day that you work from home, I imagine you're still keeping up with the other people you work with. I think this because you mentioned it, which means you're aware of it, which means you have a work ethic!
Boots: I am feeling much better now, thank you. I kind of know what you mean about wanting to be depressed, about that having a certain amount of comfort, but I come from a family with depression (my dad) and schizophrenia (my dad's mother), so I try to not dwell in the negative spaces for very long. It can be comfortable, but that's what scares me about it, if you know what I mean . . . like, I hear heroin makes you feel really comfortable, too. So if you can live in it for a while and then get out of it, I know what you mean and can totally see how that makes some sense. But I'm a little worried that I'll become addicted to that negative space, and then I'll forget how to get out. I'm definitely trying for the zen thing right now. No attachment to results . . . because there's really not much I can do about it right now anyway! Mimi is a beautiful cat, although I think I would have had to change her name . . . any two-repeated-syllables name irks me, personally. But I'm glad she's sweet enough to fit it! I like (in a twisted way) that you described Tessa's thing as "a flagrant bed-peeing incident". That's one reason I only have one cat . . . although Kitty-boo never has been much on the bed-peeing, except the time I left her with a roommate when I went away to work for the summer, and told him when I left that he HAD to change the litter box AT LEAST every couple of weeks. He didn't. She peed on his bed. He told me, and I asked him if he had been cleaning the litter box, and of course he said, "no". He cleaned the litter box and she never peed on his bed again. Zeke is completely adorable lying on his back like that, and I've actually met a kitty with a tilty walk before that was simply the sweetest cat ever. My dog thought it was creepy, though (it was at the vet). So kind of you to keep Pru, and I love her name, and she's got lovely markings. It can be a little hard to have that many cats in one space, but I think they usually can work something out, it just takes a lot of time. I so hope you get healthy and overcome the difficulties that started on your trip. That's one real disadvantage of travel, the inevitable germs you pick (well, I do, anyway). I'm glad spring break is here (or is it still coming up?) to give you a chance for some significant R&R.
ShannonO: Thanks for looking all that up! I really am glad that I'm not the only one who sometimes (regularly) takes an idea and runs with it. It does sounds like there's not much risk to exercise quite a lot while TTC (and I did get pregnant last fall, my 2nd month trying, when I had been exercising much more than I am now). I know I have exercised so much that it kept me from menstruating (and, presumably, from ovulating) before. I was just barely underweight (using only BMI) at the time, too, so that might have been part of it . . . but that was when I was working 10 hours a day at a physical labor job (treeplanting). That's seriously hard work . . . I think they say that the "average" planter walks 16 km carrying around 35 pounds, and bends over (in my case) about 1000 times per day. So it's not too surprising that that was too much. When I was 12DPO the month I had my chemical/early miscarriage, I moved a lot of straw bales. They weighed about 60-70 pounds, and we worked for about 6 hours, give or take. Well, my husband did. I got to about 5 hours and suddenly had major uterus cramping and felt very faint, so I stopped. I fell asleep on the way home in the truck (which I NEVER do, after my husband drifted off once while driving and I noticed and kept us on the road). The next morning I took a pregnancy test and BFP. I was very tired for the next few days, but we were building a chicken coop (and trying to get finished before frost), so I kept working (digging, moving dirt, digging, and more digging). I would have naps on the grass when I got tired. If I could do it again, I would not do nearly so much exercise early in the pregnancy. I don't really think that that's why I miscarried (at 18DPO), but I can't be sure that it wasn't, and I think the uterus pain and faintness were DEFINITELY my body's way of telling me to ease off. On the other hand, in revolutionary China, women worked in the rice paddies regardless of pregnancy status or stage, and they still had babies. In this case, it's just a personal thing I have about it, due to the circumstances around my miscarriage. So yeah, for me, I think pre-O is great for exercising, and I'm not going to stop myself from going for a run if I want to just because I'm in the 2ww, but I'm going to limit myself to really moderate exercise once I get a BFP. Not because I think everyone should do the same, though, that's just the decision I'm the most comfortable with. It is kind of frustrating how little we know about so many things. Tanner is cute, and looks like he likes the camera, too. Most of my pet pictures they look annoyed, because they're expecting the accursed flash. Sorry your 2ww is so unclear. Waiting is hard, but not even knowing how long you might have to wait is even harder. You have my sympathy! I've only ever used the first response early response, and I liked them just fine, but I've only used three of them ever - they all had good control lines for me.
Calycanth: I'm glad you're feeling hopeful, and I sure hope it ends in a positive for you! I find the last few days of the 2ww the hardest, but the first few days are always the slowest. I think it's the transition from pre-O, when you can actually do something to affect the outcome, to the part where you just have to wait and see. It's like I get used to the idea that I can't know yet by about day 10 (every month), but days 3-9 DPO just go so slowly.
Ramzubo: Looks like a good bet for an ovulation rise to me, I bet you get crosshairs tomorrow. It's hard for some people (men?) to understand, I think, that someone could just "feel" depressed, without it stemming from something concrete. Even when it happens to them, I think they're way more likely to incorrectly attribute it to something (anything) rather than assume that they're just feeling it for no reason. I think it's because they want to fix something, which is really quite admirable. Impossible, sometimes, but admirable.
Bel: Sounds like a great kitty . . . I'm glad he was worth all the effort. Is he named Tripod for a reason? I debated whether I should even mention the origins-of-chocolate thing, because I know how much it can comfort a person, and the documentary really ruined that for me, but in the end I decided I would rather make an informed decision than an uninformed one, and probably everyone else feels the same way to some degree. The thing that makes it easier for me to be negative about getting pregnant and not worry about it is that the month I got pregnant was my least positive month I've had throughout the whole process. I thought I might get pregnant that month, but I didn't think I probably would, so soon (my second month trying), and during my 2ww especially, I was just pretty sure I wasn't. I decided I was out when I had a temp dip at 10 dpo, and I just didn't feel pregnant by any standards I could imagine. My sister cried her ninth month trying, because she just knew it wasn't going to work, and when she got her positive hpt, she didn't believe it, even after the doctor told her that false positives pretty much never happen. She didn't believe it till she got the blood test. So I really don't think positivity is a prerequisite for pregnancy. It's possible that it helps, but it messes with me so much when I am disappointed that I would really rather just not be positive. I'm going for neutral, this month. I'm doing passably well, right now. Not great, but passably well. Laundry - there's something I could do. But I have to go to town and then if I run out of other errands I'm just sitting there in the laundromat, and then I would definitely obsess. We still need to clean up anyway, because my MIL is coming on Saturday, and her tidiness and cleanliness standards are much higher than ours . . . also, because the house was getting worse than even our standards allow. It's getting there now, though.
Birdie: I'm really not at the hard part of the elimination diet yet, the program I'm using really starts you off easy. I'm feeling way better mentally, but I still have a tiny little rash. I don't know how long that might take to go away once I stop eating the offending food anyway, though. I've got to get better about keeping my food journal, that's the hard part for me, because I'm really a grazer. We only go to town about once a week, though, so not being able to eat out is no hardship for us! I can imagine that would be really hard if that was part of your routine. It will be hard to tell if it helps, I think, because my only consistent symptom is a rash that's about 1/2 inch square total. The other stuff that might be related (depression, sore joints, two migraines ever, PMS, gassiness, diarrhea) already come and go so much that just eliminating the presumed offending foods won't necessarily help. And this diet puts you on a "healthy" diet before the true elimination diet starts. So the only major change I've made is starting to avoid food additives. That's going ok, although I need to remember to check labels before I eat some stuff. The good new is, my favorite crackers seem to be okay as far as food additives go. Yay! Your dog is tiny! And she looks nice, too. I always tell people that I like big dogs, but when I worked at Petsmart my two favorite dogs were a teacup yorkie and a bull mastiff - the two extremes in size. They just both had great personalities! So I hope my talk about liking big dogs better didn't bother you. I think that's only true even in general because I've been bitten by two dogs and had two more make an honest attempt, and only one of those was a big dog (an attempt, not an actual bite). Having seen what a dog bite looks like (when they got into our sheep two years ago ), I'm really, really glad that I've never been bitten by a big dog, but it does make me think of little dogs as more likely to bite (the first one was when I was about 7). Nonetheless, your dog looks very nice. And cute, in a trivial pursuit box!
Tank: Meeting other peoples' pets was by far the best part of my job at Petsmart. They don't actually sell animals, and the groomer and vet clinic were both a little bit separate, but I did get to meet lots of customers' pets. The cats weren't usually all that happy to be there (with a couple of exceptions), but the dogs usually were. I also met a diapered monkey (that one made me a little sad), a descented skunk (who was like a fat, lazy, lovey cat), and a weasel (who bit me on the nose - just a little). It was definitely interesting. Sounds like you had a great learning opportunity for Jake to see that children aren't all screamy and grabby - just some of them! Hopefully we'll get to be testing buddies - I should really have my period by Sunday too, if I'm going to, so I'll probably test then (unless she comes before then). FF wants me to wait until Monday, but I'm not sure I can hold out until 15DPO, I've never been past 13DPO except the month I was pregnant.
LivingSky: It cracks me up that your cat will try to lay on the horses' feet for attention! And that's a fantastic picture of your Great Danes. Which reminds me, I met a true wolfhound last summer. I never realized how ENORMOUS wolfhounds are. She belongs to the people I got Dash (my goat) from. She's so calm and friendly, but a tireless guard for their critters (they have many goats, sheep, llamas, and chickens). She really was a fantastic dog . . . they're even more uncommon than Danes, though. How do you make sure you have one with good breeding re: joints? They're a nice dog, but I know some of them live such a short time, I couldn't handle getting one and being unsure of how healthy it would be. I know there must be good breeders out there, I just don't know how you would know you had found one!
Taxlady: Glad you're still able to read, even if you don't have time to post. Hugs to you in your busy season! And in all seriousness, I would love to have a variety of young people coming to stay with us in the summers - my husband only wants one kid (I'm still working on that one . . .) and we're planning to homeschool, so I love the idea of hosting other kids for some good stretches at a time. It would be a great experience for everyone, I'm sure!
AFM: 10 DPO, this is where the insomnia usually starts to get worse. We'll see. I'm going to make a big omelette and stuff myself, in hopes that that will make me sleepy - it usually works, so it's worth a try.
I've been debating whether I should mention this here, but I figure chances are pretty slim that anyone who knows my sister in real life will also know me on here (especially since she lives so far from me). My sister recently discovered that her husband was cheating on her. I'm upset for her, but even more I'm upset at him. I will try to get over it, because she's planning to work it out with him (especially since they have a 2.5 year old daughter), but I'm just really angry at how he could be so selfish when he has a daughter - especially when something sort of similar happened in his first marriage, which was in the process of breaking up already, and he didn't get to raise his first daughter. Wise up, guy! You're not so young, and you have another chance to give a daughter the two parents she deserves. I haven't been perfect in my relationship with my husband (before we were married), but I realized that I needed to grow up before I had kids. On the plus side, it prompted me to have a talk with my husband, and he agreed that if he ever was feeling unsatisfied with our relationship and starting to contemplate finding what he needed outside of it, he would TELL me first, so I could try and help him fix it. He also said he couldn't imagine wanting to, and I think it's true. I think my sister's husband is more like me than like my husband, and he was feeling insecure and wanted someone to idolize him (the way only someone who doesn't live with you can). But it's really frustrating to me that he didn't try and figure out another way to get what he needs - he's trying to do that now, so he really does want to make this work, but he could have done the same work a little earlier and it wouldn't have caused so much pain for my sister. At least my niece is still too young to understand what's going on. My sister said she spent a few days crying on the couch, but my niece didn't seem too perturbed - she cries when a tv show she likes ends, or when she can't find a favorite stuffed toy, so I don't think it occurred to her that something more serious might be bothering mommy. Anyway, it really does sound like he's going to do whatever is necessary to make this work, and he really isn't the best at hiding things, because he's a pretty simple guy, so if my sister wants to stay with him, and she does, then I can support her in that. But for now I'm still angry at him. My sister has always gotten the short end of the stick with guys - partly just bad taste when she was younger, and always believing the best of guys that weren't the best, and settling for less than she deserved, and I thought she had finally found a nice one, and just in time, because she wanted to have kids by the time she was thirty VERY badly. Even more than me. She did get that, and my niece is a wonderful light in her life, in my parents' life, and in mine . . . I could never wish that my sister hadn't married this guy, because then she wouldn't have my niece, but I do wish he would have figured this stuff out BEFORE he hurt my sister. Grr. But none of us is perfect, and she's decided to forgive him (unless he ever does it again, in which case he'll be out like last month's dinner that you find in the back of the fridge!). So I guess I need to as well. She's not even telling my parents, because she knows that they wouldn't be able to forgive him, ever. I will, but I'm not there yet. She needed to talk to someone about it, so I'm glad I could be there - she wouldn't have told me if she didn't think I could forgive him as well as she can. Also, it means they have to put off trying for their second, which is less than ideal, as he's already in his forties . . . still fine, but less than ideal. Anyway, thanks for listening, ladies. I think it kind of makes my husband uncomfortable to talk about this with me, for good reason, so I'm glad I have somewhere to vent without being judged or betraying my sister's confidence.