April 07, 2008

Brides, Birth Control Pills, Basket Stitch, and Butterflies

And...I'm back.

Mr. Spicy's sister and her boyfriend came to stay with us last Thu and just left yesterday. It was probably one of our best visits with her. We had a great time. We all went to a mutual friend's wedding on Friday (Congratulations Mrs. and Mr. Banana!) - I did the makeup for the bride which was more than a little intimidating, but no one made any clown jokes so I think it turned out OK. On Saturday we toured the area around Pikes Peak. We saw 7 Falls and Garden of the Gods, and ate an amazing meal in Manitou Springs. In fact, we ate quite a few great meals while they were here. I used their visit as an excuse to break two of my main dietary rules (no sugar and no dairy) and boy did I break them! I mean, if you are going to cheat, cheat big right??? We had Thai, Mexican, Italian, and most importantly my own homemade gluten-free banana cream pie. (Which elicited all sorts of inappropriate "pie" references - because we are all 12 years old) Mr. Spicy and I finished off the pie in bed last night (I convinced him that I needed to finish it before the week started so I could get back on my wagon on Monday) and it was delish! (If I do say so myself)

I did a lot of knitting this weekend too. I had part 2 of my Knitting 101 class on Sunday and I wanted to have a lot done on my sample swatch. Because, as Mr. Spicy is quick to point out, I must be the valedictorian of everything (unabashedly borrowing the term from Dooce) - literally - I was trying every stitch and stitch combination my little beginner brain could come up with: Garter, Stockinette, Rib, Seed, Basket... hmmm....those sound like terms related to fancy undergarments....where is my mind today? I was wanting to explore and challenge myself but also secretly hoping I would come to class and the teacher would marvel at my natural skill and pronounce me to be a knitting prodigy. The light would pour down upon me and she would realize that I was the chosen one, the one to which she should pass on her master skills , and also her pattern for the fancy lace shawl. Instead, however, I was 10 minutes late to class. And while the amount of knitting I had done did seem to impress them - there was no light, and no choir singing in the background. Which is just fine of course. I did start an actual project: a small little button-closure coin purse of sorts. I am doing it in this gorgeous pink yarn. I will try to post pics when it's finished. I am already planning projects (all for friends and family) after this one. I actually really enjoy knitting. The ability to just sit and be quiet and sort of zone-out, relax, and focus on something small and specific, letting go of everything else for a bit - while at the same time creating something beautiful - it's really quite amazing. I love just about anything where I can tap into my desire to create. And I can knit anywhere. I even find myself trying to arrive at appointments early so I can get a little knitting done. If knitting can reform my chronic lateness - that in and of itself will have almost been worth it! But getting to make beautiful things for people I love while doing something that helps me to stay calm and gives me some peace - that is really the ultimate payoff.

Took my last birth control pill on Saturday. Which meant I got to take them out of my purse finally and stop worrying that if someone saw them they might wonder why someone who is trying to get pregnant is taking the pill. I kept imagining someone seeing them and thinking maybe I was secretly sabotaging my efforts to get pregnant. Um, yeah. I think I have watched too many soap operas or Lifetime movies. But stopping the pill means I should get my period today or tomorrow....probably tomorrow. I am so anxious for this period! Once it comes - things really start kicking in to high gear....I will have an ultrasound and bloodwork to determine if I am adequately suppressed (no cysts, no dominant follicles, etc..) - and then the stims start. And the race begins....hopefully lots of strong little follicles will begin growing all together, like a pack of horses in a horse race. We want lots of strong horses, but no Sea Biscuit - no surprise horse that pulls way ahead of the others and ruins the race for everyone. This race will prove to be quite the nail biter, I am sure.

So far I have only had one or two more hot flashes on the Lupron, nothing too crazy. But my moods? Whooo boy! For the first part of the week I was manic - hyper, bouncing off the walls, saying whatever popped into my head - manic. But this weekend, the other side kicked in and I felt furious at Mr. Spicy about anything and everything. I sometimes could identify that I was over-reacting - but I simply could not help it. I was literally praying yesterday to remember that I loved him. Because in the moment? I felt completely justified in wanting to punch him in the face because he was trying to kiss me good-bye and I wanted him to WAIT 5 MINUTES. Yep. Also - that crazy-making anxiety and self-loathing began to kick in again this weekend. At the very slightest hint of criticism or of being told I might have done something wrong, or just not being rained upon with flowers and doves - I would decide I was worthless, horrible, terrible, broken, and bad - and as much as my logical mind would refute this...it would take many many hours to snap out of it.

The hard part of all of this is that when I feel these things they don't feel hormonally-induced. They feel like me. Like me, only crazy. So then I think - maybe it is just me. Maybe I am crazy. Maybe I just need to fix it or figure it out. And then I get so frustrated because I can't fix it and I can't figure it out and blaming it all on the hormones feels like a cop out. Because it doesn't feel like something foreign. It feels like me, only much much worse. But maybe that's what the hormones do? They don't make us into someone we are not - they just fan the flame of a part of us we normally are able to reign-in a little better, or keep better control over? Maybe hormones just let all the doors wide open - and all our little monsters can come out to play? That's a cheerful thought, isn't it?

My counselor had advised me (wisely so) to make a list several weeks ago (before the hormones kicked in) of what is really true about me. This way, when the monsters came out to play, I could look at this list and have something concrete to remind me that I am not just the monsters, even though it may feel that way right now. I am also the butterflies.

I really really wish I hadn't procrastinated. I really really wish that I had tried to be the valedictorian then. Having a long list of what's really true about me would be really helpful right now. Because, as hard as I have worked to really ground myself, to find myself, to pay attention, and to be fully myself at the beginning of all of this - right now I am feeling a little off balance and a bit worried I might not find my way back.

It's not unbearable - it's just that if I am going to come through this the way I would like to - well, then, the monsters simply can't be all there is.

I am going to need some butterflies too.


Kim said...

It IS the Lupron, not you. That's what it does.

I was on Lupron for 35 days.

35 days.

And it made me crazy. One night, I don't even know what Scott did, but I stood in the kitchen screaming at him in this deep, rage-filled voice. It sounded like Satan was trying to claw his way out of my throat. All the while it was going on, there was a little voice in my head analyzing it, realizing that I was WAY overreacting, and making little comments to me like, "Huh. Interesting. I should really stop this screaming." But nothing could stop it.

That's not me, and that's not you.

annacyclopedia said...

Spicy Sister! Just when I thought I couldn't possibly identify with you more, you continue to rock my world. You have dietary restrictions too? Ack! I must have details! I've had mine for almost 2 years after a health scare involving MS-like symptoms that turned out not to be MS. During the whole process I went to a naturopath, who suggested an anti-inflammatory diet. I immediately got relief from the symptoms I had, and have been eating that way ever since. Like you, I try to make the cheats count. Too often I've indulged in something that just isn't worth the aftermath (even if my aftermath is now very minimal - mostly being stuffed up or having skin issues). Send me an email at annarchyinjapan at yahoo dot com and we can commiserate/celebrate our respective food issues! Woot!

Sounds like a great weekend. Knitting is so great for the soul. Have you read any Elizabeth Zimmerman? I absolutely love her - she's like the Jane Austen of knitting. Her patterns are great, and I learn so many good tricks everytime I do one, and as a bonus, they are beautifully written and just plain entertaining to read. One of my favorite quotes of hers is: "Properly praticed, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either."

And my dear? Butterflies you have in swarms. You needn't worry about that, even if you're having trouble seeing them right now.

Alwen said...

Lovely things that are true about Spicy Sister:

You are authentic and honest

You try with all your heart to change when you realize you need to

You are passionate

You are artistic in body, soul, and mind

You seek truth, God, love, beauty

You are a seeker

You want to make life beautiful for others

You face your fears, your mistakes, and your flaws

You are loved

Spicy Sister said...

Wow. Thank you ladies. You brought tears to my eyes. You all are some of my butterflies. Definitely. Thank you for all the support and affirmation. It helps more than you could imagine.

Denise said...

Definitely the Lupron. And you will go back to normal-I promise. This is my 4th time on the stuff and it does a number on me every time. I have resorted to apologizing to my friends and family before I even start the shots. "I will be a raging bitch the next couple weeks. I'm really sorry, but it is out of my control. Please bear with me. I will be seething with hate and anger for no reason. It's not you, it's me." Actually, it's the Lupron.

Hang in there. Things will start moving more quickly once you start stims. And thank god we have a ColoBlogger meet up soon to keep us somewhat sane!

HeidiM said...

You describe the experience PERFECTLY, I love that you wrote this. My husband and I had one of our worst fights ever when I was on Lupron -- it was about whether the radio should be on or off in the car, and of course my way was the only right way. Poor guy.

If you ask me, sounds like you are valedictorian of taking on (and sharing) the IF challenge with courage and wisdom.

Hoping that warm-and-fuzzy feelings return to your world soon.

nancy said...

So you come to the springs and I go to denver. I hope you waved at me when we passed one another!

Wow - crazy. You, me and Denise are all having a big cycle right now. Well, just about right now. Although due to my mock cycle (i blogged about it) I'll have possible ET after you, but yet, we'll all be doing it around one another. Cool!