REBLOG: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey, 2015 – The Geeky Cat Lady

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Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey

2011

2012: The Year of the DietOneal’s checkups

2013-2014 | 2014: The new doctor

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At the start of 2015, I sat Oneal down, and I asked if we could work on getting pregnant, really work on it. He agreed, and we made plans, and decided to go back to the doctor.

But we’re busy people, and we can get pretty forgetful.

Oneal wasn’t able to take his pills regularly. Sometimes he would run out, and we would forget to buy. Or he would miss a day or two because he was busy at work. Or one of us would go to the pharmacy to buy more pills, but we’d forget the prescription at home. Sometimes other expenses would come up, and we wouldn’t be able to buy the meds.

It was frustrating, and sometimes I worried that he wasn’t taking it seriously, that he didn’t want a child as much as I did. I tried not to say it, but I feared that he only wanted a child because he thought it would make me happy, not because he wanted a child too. It really wasn’t fair, but that’s how anxiety works.

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REBLOG: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey, 2014: The new doctor – The Geeky Cat Lady

Read the previous entries:

Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey

2011

2012: The Year of the DietOneal’s checkups

2013-2014
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Eventually, I mustered enough willpower to contact my OB. In March 2014, I told Dr. Jayjay that we had gone to the urologist that Dr. Martinez recommended, but we wanted a second opinion, another male fertility specialist. So she referred us to Dr. Nikko Magsanoc.

It was in September 2014 when we made the appointment to visit Dr. Magsanoc. His clinic was in St. Luke’s BGC, already a much more pleasant experience than UST Hospital or Chinese General.

Dr. Nikko himself was a much nicer person than our previous urologist. It was so pleasant to talk to him, and it felt like he was really listening to us. He reviewed all the test results we brought with us, and patiently explained the different numbers and terms that appeared on the tests, and how these things were affecting our ability to conceive.

Of course, we told him our medical history, how long we had been trying, and our consultations with other doctors. As expected, he ordered a seminalysis again, this time recommending that we have it done at St. Luke’s BGC’s Center for Advanced Reproductive Medicine and Infertility. He said it was important to get a baseline before he recommended any interventions.

Oneal went to CARMI, and we went back to Dr. Nikko with the results. Again he explained to us every number and term on the test. Then he talked about what he was thinking of doing.

The problem was that Oneal’s sperm count was low, and the sperm themselves were not very strong. (I’m sure there was a more detailed explanation, but I really can’t remember.) Dr. Nikko explained that Oneal could use a boost of testosterone to address these issues, so his suggestion was this: he wanted to put Oneal on hormone treatment. He explained that we couldn’t just make Oneal take testosterone, because that wouldn’t increase his testosterone levels. Instead, Oneal would take a different hormone, Clomifene, and his body would respond by increasing testosterone production (or something like that). That strategy would hopefully increase Oneal’s sperm count and improve their other attributes.

It seemed like a less invasive, less stressful solution, compared to the surgery that the other urologist was recommending. Dr. Nikko warned us that Oneal would need to take the hormones for at least three months before we would see any effects.

So we gave it a shot. We got the prescription and went to the drugstore, and we found out that the pills weren’t cheap! So we bought ten pieces, in the hopes of buying it at a lower price elsewhere.

We tried Generika, The Generics Pharmacy, other branches of Mercury, Watson’s. We asked for different brands. Alas, we couldn’t find anything with a significantly lower price. Or if we did, the pharmacy rarely stocked it.

So we bought the pills ten at a time, and every day I would remind Oneal to take his meds. “Have you taken your pill today?” I would joke over SMS or chat. I told him about the years I was on the pill, and how women had to take the pill at approximately the same time every day, and the different ways my friends would remind themselves it was time.

Then we waited.

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REBLOG: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey, 2013-2014 – The Geeky Cat Lady

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Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey

2011

2012: The Year of the Diet | Oneal’s checkups

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2013

I don’t even remember if we did anything to try for a baby in 2013. I think I gave up for a while.

I know 2013 was incredibly busy. Oneal and I went to Singapore and Malaysia. I was traveling so much for work that year: Thailand, Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam. too. Because my travel was work-related, I was busy and stressed.

Stress is never helpful when you’re trying to get pregnant.

2014

To be honest, we were getting disheartened.

Every time I saw that a friend was pregnant, I got depressed. I saw pregnancy tests and ultrasounds posted on Facebook, and bemoaned our inability to post similar news. I got angry every time yet another relative or well-meaning friend asked, “No kids yet?” I got even angrier when complete strangers asked the same thing. I began cursing our society’s culture of inquisitiveness, this ubiquitous penchant for completely disrespecting privacy. I got annoyed with all the people who offered unsolicited advice. Worse, I felt a mild resentment towards friends who’d told me, years before, that they didn’t want kids, that they didn’t think they had it in them to be parents, and yet ended up pregnant.

Why them, and not me? They didn’t even want a child in the first place, and yet they were given this gift. I had wanted it for so long, and I was denied.

It was so bad that I couldn’t bear to see friends who were pregnant, or had just given birth. I was happy for them, yes, but I knew that I would have difficulty sharing in their joy because I was trying so hard to hide my own distress. How could I cheerfully congratulate them, go to the baby showers and baptisms, with this pain and emptiness gnawing at me?

I tried to keep my feelings to myself, but there was no hiding my tears and my midnight depressions from Oneal. It didn’t help that he blamed himself, saying that it was his fault we were still childless, that he was the one with the problem. When I cried, when I was upset, when I was disappointed every month because I got my period, his face fell, and he sat on the bed beside me, dejected, unsure what to say. He would hug me and say sorry. He would wipe away my tears and say that it would happen soon, and that I would be a wonderful mother.

To be honest, I didn’t always have the energy to console him, to tell him it wasn’t his fault, because I was just so overwhelmed by my own distress. I should have hugged him back, told him we would be okay, but I was sinking, flailing, and I could barely help myself, much less Oneal.

Eventually we would recover, telling each other that it would happen soon, fantasizing about the things we would teach our child, imagining how the cats would respond to a baby. Eventually we would reclaim our determination, telling ourselves we would exercise more, go back to the doctor, find out what we could do.

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REBLOG: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey, 2012: The Year of the Diet – The Geeky Cat Lady

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Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey

2011

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In January of 2012, we started going to a nutritionist. We wanted to be healthy, so that anytime I got pregnant, we would be ready. Also, we had both gained a lot of weight after we got married. I weighed 150 lbs! (Oneal still refuses to believe it.) Oneal was at 160, maybe 165 lbs. The nutritionist, Mrs. Buena, measured us all over: thighs, arms, waist, hips, chest, I forget where else. She asked about our eating habits, any allergies and food preferences, family history, and nutrition goals. We explained that we wanted to be healthy so that we had better chances of getting pregnant.

Mrs. Buena prescribed some tests to check our cholesterol, sugar, salt, uric acid, I can’t even remember what else! Based on that, and all the other information she collected, she defined meal plans for me and Oneal. She also gave us notebooks, and sold us a food scale, so we could keep accurate food diaries, and we could list how closely we were keeping to our diet plans.

I think we did pretty well, because by April, we had lost about 20 lbs each!

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It was in May 2012 that Dr. Jayjay suggested we see a fertility specialist. She referred us to her sister-in-law, a gynecologist who specialized in female fertility. We went to see Dr. Gilda Martinez in Medical City, and told her our history. She examined me, and did an ultrasound and a follicle scan, and she gave us a diagnosis: I had a retroverted uterus, and endometriosis. Theendometriosis explained the extremely painful menstrual periods I had every month, and the back pain and abdominal cramps that came with the heavy bleeding. I also had polycystic ovaries syndrome (PCOS) would make it difficult–but not impossible–for me to conceive.

Dr. Martinez asked when I expected my next period, and timed my next appointment accordingly. At our next visit, she did an ultrasound, and found that my ovulation was normal.

Dr. Martinez had us schedule another test, a hysterosalpingogram, where she injected me with dye to check if my fallopian tubes were blocked. It worried me, because it seemed like an invasive procedure. She warned me that I would feel sore afterwards, but other than that discomfort, I should feel no pain. Within a few minutes of examining me, and watching the dye spread through my tubes on the screen, Dr. Martinez pronounced me perfectly fine. Oh, what a relief!

I think I spent more time being anxious about the results, compared to the amount of time I actually spent on the table.

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REBLOG: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey, 2011 – The Geeky Cat Lady

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Read the previous post: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey 

I have always wanted children. For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted a child of my own. A husband, not necessarily. But a child, definitely.

Given this preference, I always assumed I would be a single mother, pregnant out of wedlock, raising a child all by myself. I was fine with that.

In 2003, I met Oneal, and to my own surprise, here was a man I wanted to marry! We got married in 2010.

2011

It was in March 2011 when we decided to start trying for a child. I stopped taking my birth control pills, and in May we visited my gynecologist, Dr. Julieta “Jayjay” Germar. She was so excited to meet with me before I even conceived, and she told me to start taking folic acid. She told me, “You could get pregnant right away! Or it could also take time. We’ll see!”

Oneal was so excited for me to conceive. He started reading up on pregnancy and conception. He wanted me to stop drinking coffee, to switch to green tea instead, to have more milk and cereal.

Unfortunately, 2011 was a rather stressful time for us. Oneal’s mom suffered from the resurgence of her cancer. Her health rapidly declined, and she lost weight. She was hospitalized for three weeks.

At the same time, Oneal’s brother was getting married! While we were at the hospital, they were busy with wedding preps, invitations and guest lists, while we also had to think about dresses and suits. We didn’t know how long Mom would be around, so Ron and Ate Hazel decided to have a civil wedding in the hospital. We were all so grateful that Mom was able to be a part of it.

It was mid-September when she passed away.

Even before Mom’s passing, Oneal and I had decided to move to Parañaque. It was a big house, and we were just renting in Pasig anyway. With Mom gone, Dad would be living alone, and we didn’t want that. So we moved our life from one city to another, uprooting our entire lives, and our cats.

It was also the year I turned 30, and to be honest I wasn’t really excited about my birthday that year. I felt like our life had turned upside down. Oneal, my best friend Dante, and my brother Victor schemed with our friends to give me a surprise birthday party, and that was pretty happy.

In retrospect, it was understandable that we didn’t get pregnant that year. We had both gained a lot of weight, and we were undergoing a lot of stress. So many things were changing in our lives.

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REBLOG: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey – The Geeky Cat Lady

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When we found out we were pregnant, it was one of the happiest things to happen to us. We were over 12 weeks pregnant when we started telling our friends and family.

So, uhm, we have an announcement to make.😀 #LilAssKicker #ItsAHit #Finally

A photo posted by Regina Layug Rosero (@rejjventress) on

As we shared the happy discovery—the pregnancy test, the first ultrasound, the early symptoms—we realized nobody really knew the full story, from the moment we started trying until this year, when it finally happened. “Nobody knows everything we went through,” Oneal said.

It was true. People knew we were trying to get pregnant, but very few people knew about the time and effort–and the emotional upheaval–that went into it. “You have to write about it,” Oneal urged. I agreed, and so I wrote.

I wrote for several reasons.

One is really selfish: I need to write about it. Now we’re happy and excited, but looking back, I remember that it was such a long journey, fraught with pain, trauma and anxiety. Writing about it helps me process all the frustration of the past five years.

Another reason is that people are so insensitive when you’re childless. People assume every couple wants children. But when you don’t have kids yet, people assume and attach negative connotations to the idea that you’re “too busy” with work, that you’re “prioritizing your career” or “masyado kayong nag-e-enjoy.” But they don’t know the whole story, and they don’t realize how hurtful their words are.

To the people who think my work should take second priority to motherhood: what I do is not up to you. Screw you.

Lastly, fertility problems come with so much stigma. People think it’s a woman’s problem. Men don’t want to admit if the problem is with their reproductive system, or they think fertility issues make them less of a man. People think it’s a shame, an embarrassment when you can’t have kids. People look at you with pity. People pat your hand or your shoulder and say “in God’s own time” or “just relax, darating lang yan” and other patronizing, incredibly infuriating things. People make lewd jokes suggesting that all you need to do is have more sex. And on April Fools’ Day, people think it’s hilarious to pretend they’re pregnant.

But it’s not funny, not at all. It’s hurtful and insensitive, and it just makes couples with fertility issues want to crawl under a rock and hide forever.

So I wrote this to get that conversation going. To remind people that it’s not okay to make assumptions about other people’s reproductive choices. To show people that a thoughtless remark can trigger a sleepless night full of tears. And to remind myself and Oneal just how hard we worked to get here.

It’s going to be a long read, because it took us five years to get here. So here goes.

Source: Lil Ass-Kicker’s Long Journey – The Geeky Cat Lady

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I don’t recognize my body anymore.  – The Geeky Cat Lady

​I feel like a teenager sometimes. Every week, I look at myself in the mirror, and I don’t recognize my body. Every week, something changes. Something feels different. Something shifts. My breasts, already massive, have grown. They’re fuller, heavier, denser. Sometimes they seem pointy….

Read full article at the publisher’s site: http://ift.tt/2aG6vHv

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Why do pregnant women clutch their baby bump? – The Geeky Cat Lady

My baby bump isn’t even that big yet, but already I walk around clutching my bump! Sometimes even I wonder why. So I started writing down the thoughts going through my head every time I clutched my bump….

Read full article at the publisher’s site: http://ift.tt/2agAjq0

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UberPool, my new favorite transportation option! – The Geeky Cat Lady

I really like Uber. It’s useful for those days when I’m too tired to take the train, especially now while I’m pregnant. It’s helpful when I’m carrying a lot of stuff. I especially like Uber when there’s no easy way to commute to my destination, and when it’s raining….

Read full article at the publisher’s site: http://ift.tt/2apHmiS

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“Let’s see what’s there”

When traveling, or exploring, or simply in a new place, I don’t really mind not having a plan or a schedule. I’m happy to discover things, to wander, to get lost.

Instagram Photo

In May of 2015, Oneal and I went to Dumaguete for his birthday. We had no plan, no itinerary, we just wanted to wander around.

Instagram Photo

One evening, after a good dinner and a rum Coke that had more rum than Coke, Oneal and I were trying to decide how to get back to our hotel. We couldn’t remember if the road we were on led back to the seaside boulevard.

Instagram Photo

So I said, “Let’s see what’s there,” and tipsy, full and sleepy, we walked along the road past sleepy houses and small videoke bars and even smaller watering holes, past stray dogs and families hanging out on the street around a parked scooter. Tricycles passed us, offering us a ride, perhaps wondering what these drunk tourists were doing in this part of town. Some parts of the street made me slightly nervous despite my slightly-inebriated state. A bakery at the corner shone its bright light on the dark street, and we turned right, thinking (hoping) that this road would lead us back to our hotel. Large trucks and dirt lots surrounded us, and we kept saying out loud, “Yeah, this is probably it,” but thinking to ourselves “Yeah, I’m sure it’s safe here….”

Eventually we found the cafe where we had breakfast on the first day, and a short distance away, our hotel. Nothing happened, and we were perfectly safe the whole time.

Instagram Photo
But it’s funny and pretty exciting to walk down a strange road, to get on a jeep, and to have very little idea of where you’re going to end up.

#WhatDoesYourWazeTellYou


Source: Geeky Cat Lady

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