Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Weighty issues - updated

Anyone dealing with or having dealt with infertility will agree. Apart from the very obvious – the inability to have a baby – infertility also brings with it these 2:


We all know how we’re incessantly waiting – waiting for results, waiting for doctor’s appointments, waiting for schedule, waiting to start cycling, waiting for results – and the cycle continues. While we wait, normal life occurs (ok, not NORMAL as it used to be – but the new normal that we’ve settled into)

And that’s where my struggle with weight comes in.

I’m going to bare my soul here and talk actual numbers and sizes. I know there will be people who will say: “Eeks, she’s FAT”, and there will be people who will say: “Please – you have no reason to complain, do you know what half the world weighs?” I understand. I don’t want to offend anyone or tick anyone off. I am not comparing myself with anyone else at all. I am comparing myself with me. Or who I used to be.

Before IVF#1 – I weighed 124 lbs. Size 4. I could happily wear short T-shirts that even showed a little tummy. And remember, I'm petite - I'm only about 5 ft 3 or 4 inches. 

After IVF#1, I sort of settled at 130 lbs – sometimes swinging to 132. Still ok. Size 4 pants still fit me ok, but I had bought a couple of size 6 pants for my “blah” days.

After IVF#2 – I was pregnant for a few weeks and my bloating from the injections and swollen ovaries continued right on. I could not button up any of my pants, and since I did not know better, I didn’t expect things to go wrong, and I ended up buying a couple of maternity pants / jeans. Three days after that trip to the mall, we found out the baby’s heart had stopped beating. My depression after the miscarriage made me go back pretty quickly to 130 lbs and to my size 4 pants.

IVF#3 and IVF#4 happened back to back – with IVF#3 I had a chemical pg, and with IVF# 4 I had an ectopic pregnancy, which was treated with methotrexate injections. My weight sort of plateaued at 134-136 lbs. My size 4s felt tight. My size 6s felt snug.

After IVF#4, I had surgery to fix my uterus, and then moved on to IVF#5. 

Now - in between ER and FET of IVF#5 – 138-140 lbs. Some of my size 4s won’t go over my knees. Some that do go up, look obscene. And my tummy mushrooms over them in a very very pathetic manner. My 6s feel tight. There is one pair of jeans that is close to comfortable and I’m tired of wearing them all the time. Other than that pair, I’m wearing drawstring or elastic waisted pants.

You can’t really go out in those pants. So like I said, while I am waiting for my cycle to continue, my weight dilemma weighs in on me.

Should I buy bigger clothes? No. I don’t want to, I hope to be pregnant, and I will wear my maternity pants then.
Should I wear maternity pants now? No, because I feel superstitious about jinxing my chances (don’t ask me to explain why).
Should I complain about my weight? No, the intention is to get pregnant and put on 25-30 lbs more.
So am I happy about my weight – the fact that I am 16lbs heavier than I was before IVF#1? No – I’m close to being depressed about it!

I know this is not the time to be worrying about my weight – and on most days, I don’t worry. I worry when I have to go out, and when I stand in my closet for ages KNOWING there’s nothing there that fits ok.

I’m the kind of person who gets motivation to lose weight when I’ve lost some already. That’s when I’m happy to shed more, and maintain it. When I put on weight, I lose all the motivation to move my blubbery self and do anything about it.

Once again, please, I don’t mean to offend anyone by talking actual numbers here. I am merely talking about ME, and how much I weigh. This is my opinion on myself, and about nobody else.

Weight - the unfortunate by-product of IF. And it's bothering me because I'm in waiting mode right now! Oh well.....

Update: I just realized I didn't mention this. Don't worry - I'm not on a diet or doing anything drastic. In fact, on the contrary, DH has decided that I need to drink "fattier" milk, so he's not letting me get my usual fat free dairy! I'm eating well, and eating healthy for the most part. I would not compromise anything for the chances of this FET to work!! :-)


nancy said...

Hun, it doesn't matter what the numbers are. Its how you feel in those numbers. If those numbers are "nothing" to someone else, it doesn't mean you have to be happy with them. I'm 144lbs (5'7") and I'm unhappy with myself. So many people tell me I should be happy with what I weight, but like you, I want to be what I ~was~. And there is nothing wrong with that.

I know how you feel though - you are trying to get pregnant. When I gained some IVF pounds and was waiting for my FET, it felt stupid to try to lose when I just wanted to get pregnant and GAIN. My advice is not to do anything drastic, but start with some little things, like eating a bit better - which will help you not gain bad weight while pregnant.

And hell no - don't buy bigger pants! I have a whole theory about that and I'll blog about it soon.

Regardless of everything though, I bet you still look fantastic to everyone around you. We are our own biggest critics, you know?

Anonymous said...

I feel your pain I am up 12 lbs and a pant size it blows

Dora said...

I'm your height and weigh more. I don't know exactly how much, because I refuse to get on a scale until an OB makes me. When I recently went to my internist to update some blood work for the Canadian clinic, the doc told me NOT to diet. She said I shouldn't stress myself with it right now. So, there's some professional advice, pass it on. ;-)

Clio said...

Now... I'm just curious how come you always wore size 4!!! I'm 5'5, always weighted about 118, 120, and can't get any smaller than a 5! I too went to 130 now with my first IVF. I totally get your concerns with the pounds. We want to go back to our 'pre IVF' bodies, and yet, we don't.
Well... keep wearing the stretchy pants for now, until you get that BFP and go to your maternity wear. Worry about getting back to 130 (or lower) after the next nine months have passed. ;)
But, yes, like nancy said, watching what you eat is always a good idea.

Chhandita said...

Sigh Nikki...I have the exact opposite problem darling, and am as much in a soup. I am UNDERWEIGHT! I am 5'2 and weigh 105lbs (believe me i reached this weight after a lotttt of hard work)... and now these first few weeks am just OFF food and i cant afford to do tht... opps sorry for the rant, weight is just such an touch issue to discuss for me sigh...

Retro Girl said...

Wow - I can relate. And was just thinking about this as I stepped on the scale this morning. I've only been through one IVF, and actually only gained my most recent 5 lbs in the last 3 or 4 month (a month or so post IVF). My numbers all almost identical to yours - proportion wise. I'm 5'2'' and now weigh 128. Yes, the 6's are tight and the 4's are out of the question. And I really debate about purchasing a couple of 8's to get me through...but I finally did. And I will tell you that I feel much better about myself and how I look wearing a pair of pants that fit properly than squeezing myself into the others....even if they are "that size" :-).

I know, I keep it in perspective too. I know I don't have a weight "problem", I just don't feel good where I'm at. Although, I will tell you that several people say I look better with a little weight around my face...when I get down to 120 or below, my face looks drawn. Too bad I can't keep the face fat and lose the ass fat :-).

Best of luck in your upcoming transfer.

Sue said...

I was considering doing a post like this today...isn't that funny? Keep in mind, I am 5'7" and was always pretty thin. I usually wear a size 4 (sometimes 6) and am pretty healthy. Well, 6 IVF's, 1 ectopic and 1 miscarriage later and I just bought a pair of jeans (granted they are very big...) in size 12! I went from weighing 130 at the start of all of this to weighing almost 155! Yes, I am DYING for that 2-3 month break in between ER and ET so that I can lose some weight (I don't usually have a problem with this since I am yoga teacher and love to eat healthy and exercise, but C'mon!). I've been feeling awful! And, I just caved and bought that one huge pair of discount levi's because I absolutely refuse to buy clothes in this size! So, I know how you feel. If DH and I have somewhere fun to go, I almost break down in tears b/c I don't know how to dress!

I can't wait to follow your progress for this FET! By the way, I am doing the same thing- it would be so easy for me to exercise a ton right now and eat healthy (but less) and lose some weight but right now I refuse. I am giving these eggs the absolute best chance I can! If you get to CCRM next week and have some free time, email me. I'm not sure yet when my ER is and stuff, but its fun to meet blog friends IRL!

DAVs said...

I agree with Clio--stretchy pants all the way, through your BFP and beyond! Weighty worries can come later :)
BUT, I definitely feel your pain. IVF and its disappointments are bad enough, but weight gain on top of that nearly puts me over the top. I think every failed IVF should come with a personal trainer and personal chef!

momsoon said...

I will say this- this process def gets us down on ourselves in many ways- the waiting,the drugs and the disappointments can be tough on the mind, spirit and the body. And when one is "down" it makes exercise/losing weight even harder-I sometimes feel as though I am carrying around the weight of the world...
when I read your post though, what occurs to me is maybe your body is preparing for the upcoming FET/Bfp!!!
I know my non-IF friends (fuckers-oops) who say they start to gain a few pounds when before they get knocked up??!!! Maybe that is you?

All I know is that now is a time to go easy on yourself, accept and love your body (it is your friend) and it must be your ally in this baby making process, not the enemy!!

Plus, I bet if you got your bfp tomorrow you wouldn't give a second thought to the number on a tag or scale...I am rooting for you and will be following closely!!!
Ps-two words: yoga pants, good for now, good for baby...

Anonymous said...

I wouldnt worry about the weight either, it wont matter when you get your bfp!
My 2 cents, the WAIT is much more stressfull than the weight :)
Thinking of you!

MamaSoon said...

I know what you mean about the weight. Mine has collected around my injection spots specifically too. Gross. I've put on 40 lbs. The thing about pregnancy weight is that when you give birth, you get 8 lbs of it back in flesh and your water breaking takes care of another 10 lbs. Basically, it ends with weightloss and a door prize. A failed cycle ends with an extra azz cheek cemented on.

Anonymous said...

Oh my Oh my... that could have been me writing it. Even the numbers were close. I am 5'4". Before TTC I was 127. After 2 IVFs I am hovering around 138. Absolutely sad. I am using this break as an opportunity to lose some of the flab. But it aint going nowhere!
We'll get there. I have hope!

margelina said...

You are brave to discuss numbers...to me numbers are evil! I have to say, though...I understand about weight gain and all. I have been up and down so much between kids and life. After #1 I was heavier, so I got rid of small stuff, then after #2 I was smaller, so I got rid of larger clothes and bought all new smaller stuff. Then, after #3 I was heavier yet again, so I have a bedroom full of all the smaller stuff and I'm somewhere in the middle. Ugh. My advice is just have a couple things that fit you as you are now...it makes you feel better to have clothes that fit well!
p.s. I totally understand your supersition about wearing maternity clothes now : )

the Babychaser: said...

I'm gonna go out on a limb here. I don't think it's always possible to just accept about your weight gain and concentrate on pregnancy, and I've found that every time I get a negative or lose a pregnancy I'm furious with myself for letting myself gain so much weight. And then I'm depressed AND overweight and self-conscious.

So my first item of advice is go shopping and get yourself a couple of outfits that FIT. Believe me, you are NOT fat, and I bet that a lot of the self-consciousness about your body right now is because your clothes don't fit. I'm not saying to go nuts, but every girl needs a pair of jeans that fit comfortably.

Second, don't beat up on yourself for being unable to stop fretting about your weight. It's totally normal to be worried about your looks, even when trying to get pregnant. We do live in America, where we are always compared to models and movie stars.

Second, be gentle with yourself. You will lose this weight again when you get a chance. Not now, because you've got to focus on your FET and you can't really do both at once.

So that's my advice. Let yourself be sad about your weight gain. Comfort yourself with the knowledge that it won't last forever. And buy yourself some clothes that don't make you feel like a sausage.

And remember this: I would KILL to be a size 12. :-)

So if you just can't "accept" it, ma

Jill M. said...

I can definitely relate to this. IVF easily put 10 lbs on me. It really sucks to fail 3 IVFs and then end up just *looking* pg!

I say go stretchy and don't even think about your weight because you're going to be announcing your BFP soon! ;-)

Earl Gearl said...

From one weight-obsessed girl to apparently another: I'm picking up what you are throwing down. Weight is such a "weighty" matter. What one person feels is fine, is what someone else feels is too much. Do what makes you happy and don't worry too much about what other's think or get offended by. I always hated the advice people offered about how to lose weight or how I shouldn't be losing weight or what I should and shouldn't eat. Makes me crazy. I'm hoping that you will have a fine reason to gain more soon.

babycaruso said...

i have a problem with my lining also!i will let you know if the meds work for me (hopefully doing FET this month)