Friday, March 28, 2008

And now for something completely different

I've been feeling a bit, I don't know, peckish lately. Hungry, yes, but other meaning vaguely irritated, unsettled. Partly grief, partly nerves, partly spring, maybe, who knows.

We're off to the family on Sunday, back Wednesday. I have two more family stories I want to craft into posts (craft? Don't I mean disgorge in volumes of words onto the page?), but we'll see if it's possible while away.

Meantime, I was just visiting Please Give Me Back My Heart, and reading about blogging, creating a successful blog, excessive blog reading.

I'm still searching, a bit, I think, for my blogging community. Where is it? I don't really fit in the dead baby blog land all that well. While I wanted to blog about that, my impetus for blogging was my husband leaving me. I never did really find the infidelity/picking up the pieces blog land. (though I found a couple of good ones, hope The Scarlet D is doing ok). Where do I find the troubled marriage/infertility/successful pregnancy happy baby land/dead baby/infertility redux/ infidelity/cheating lying husband/can this marriage be saved/oh my god I actually am pregnant holy hell I hope it sticks blogs? Anybody else out there? Helloooooo? Am I all alone in this niche? Do I have the market cornered?

Anyway, the whole point of this is I found a blog this week, who the hell knows how, you just start clicking around and then suddenly, pow!, you're totally sucked in blowing off work to go through all the archives.

I'm pretty whitebread middle America, and I am HOOKED, no pun intended, on:

Confessions of a College Call Girl

I hope she comes back soon because, yeah. Hooked. Line and sinker.

*had to edit because, well, just fair warning, if the title isn't enough, it can get a little raw. Funny at times, poignant at others, thought provoking, interesting, and, yep, dirty as all get out, but not as often as you might think. May not be entirely safe for work.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

in my drafts box


Dear nurse at the RE's office,

I am sorry I called you twice. But, when every other nurse in the office calls and leaves messages like, "your hormones look great! See you next week!" or, "your beta is fantastic, everything looks good!" and you call and leave a message that says, "will you please call me as soon as you can, I really need to talk to you about your results," well, you have to expect a certain level of panic. I returned your call as soon as I could, and then sat around and waited, tried to surf the net, totally blew off work, and, yes, cried, before calling you back 5 minutes before the office closed. Only to hear that everything was good and hormones look fine, keep doing what we're doing. I promise I'll never call twice again.

Thanks, your most humble and grateful patient


Last week

Dear other patients of RE,

I promise you, I'm not an insensitive jerk. I am SO sorry I brought my daughter to the RE's office. It was Good Friday, my nanny was off, my husband had arranged his entire schedule so that I had full child care duty. I really really had to have my hormones tested last week. I am so sorry if I made you uncomfortable. Remember, I'm there cause I have my troubles, too. I'm one of you. I swear.

Sorry, your sister in reproductive problems

Every day

Dear stomach,

Seriously, why are you so hungry all the damn time? Look, I know the nausea is coming, and maybe sure, you think it's good to stock up a bit now before that hits, but look, I mean really. You've got at least 40 pounds to feed off of before there'd be any worries at all, so can we please cool it right now? Let's just take it slow these next few weeks, ok? With any luck, we've got quite a long way to go.

Thanks! A very grateful Which Box, despite my bitching

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Rage, rage against the dying of the light

We spend a lot of time in my counseling sessions talking about how my family does not do emotion.

My mom called me this morning crying. I've probably only heard/seen my mom
cry a half a dozen times. My aunt passed away early this morning. No more details, my cousin had called my parents this morning with just the news.

It's three hours since the phone call. I haven't heard anything since then. Logically, if things take about 3-4 days to organize, I guess we're looking at a weekend trip.

I've been thinking a lot about my aunt's life. This morning I told a friend what had happened, because we were scheduled to go to a party at her house. My friend said, god, what a year you've had. Well, it's been technically 14 months since the first awful thing, but who's counting. My husband considers this the worse year of his life. My aunt buried three of her children. What was the worse year of her life? Has this been the worse year of my life? This year, my daughter has developed the emotional capacity to say I love you mommy and really mean it. How could this be the worse year of my life?

When I was child, my mom's parents died within a year of each other. I once asked why we didn't ever go to the cemetery. My mom said, first, my parent's aren't there. They are buried there, but they aren't there - they're in my heart and mind. Second, life is for the living.

Life is for the living. That's my mom - practical, no nonsense. Remember that book The Deep End of the Ocean? I think it was one of Oprah's first picks. I read it after the hoopla, and hated it. Hated. It was long before I even contemplated children, and the mother just infuriated me. She had lost her one son. And after, she hung onto that missing one so tightly, she missed so much of her other two children. How she could she do that, I argued. How could she focus so much on the loss that she neglected her two living children?! Life is for the living. (of course, the lost son turned up, but still).

Did my aunt believe that? Is that how she buried three children and still managed to be the most loving, kind, generous person? Was it faith?

I want to know. I want to have that grace. I want my face to show I've lived a life of joy and sorrow, but that the sorrow does not define who I am.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

no decision

My aunt is still fighting. My brother and I are still not sure of what to do. Meanwhile, my sister, who lives 5 hours away from my aunt, drove there and back yesterday. She called on her way home, and when I asked how it was said, well, you know, it was ..... pretty terrible.

My aunt is conscious and aware. She's also in a lot of pain. She's swollen with tons of fluid (over 50 pounds, according to my unreliable narrator sister - is that possible?). She has a lot of sores - bedsores from being on her back since December, sores from infections. She's off most painkillers because they drastically depress her blood pressure. My sister says our two cousins have come to accept the inevitable. They want pain meds, and to make their mother as comfortable as possible. My uncle, and one doctor, are still fighting. My uncle says when this is over he will take my aunt on a cruise. I guess you could say my aunt is still fighting too, and as long as she is fighting, able and willing to tolerate the day by day, that is good, right?

My brother and I live close to each other. I just hung up with him. He said even our more distant cousins are calling and going. And he and I have not called, have not decided to go. It's an 11 hour drive. Flights aren't great - hard to get good flights to their destination, and then you'd have to do a rental car. He said he was thinking about driving Thursday,
staying Friday, driving back Saturday.

I am thinking about my husband, daughter and I driving next weekend, or maybe flying if something decent pops up. But it's not like I could - or should, or would want to - take my daughter to the hospital. I don't know. So frigging indecisive. Maybe if my brother and I did it together we could manage in two days - we're fairly decent travel companions, focused on the get there and efficient traveling.


I am watching Godspell on turner classic movies right now. I saw the play when I was in high school and loved it. This movie, not so much. Am I over the hippie phase? Is this the kind of thing that only works on impressionable teenagers? Wait a second, VIC.TOR GAR.BER is Jesus?? Wow. That 'fro is something. Vic.tor Gar.ber. I will never watch him chew scenery again without thinking of him in this sweet-faced role.

Anyway. Maybe my hormones have something to do with my indecisiveness. Except my brother is exactly the same. I had a blood draw on Friday - this time without the nurse blowing out my vein resulting in huge purple bruise. They called Friday afternoon. Beta is excellent, over 3400, and so I can schedule a sonogram. That will be a big step.

I keep thinking about sending something. Some sort of healthy food. Everyone is spending all their time at the hospital, even nights. Fruit, maybe. There's all sorts of candy and sweets that can be mail-ordered. What kind of healthy food? Any ideas?

Thursday, March 20, 2008

time keeps on slipping

Christmas 2006 we spent with my parents. I was pregnant. We spent Christmas dinner at one of my cousin's, with my aunt and uncle and another cousin. Over 20 people at the table, and it was part of that perfect time when I thought I had everything I wanted.

I grew up in my mom's hometown, with my grandparents down the road, her one brother in town, her other brother visiting often, her sister in the next town over. We did Sunday dinners when my grandparents were still alive, all holidays, big family gatherings. Lots of fun, and laughter, and stories.

My dad's family was a thousand miles away. We went every other summer, usually, and sometimes they came to visit us. My father's sister had 5 children, with the youngest about 5 years older than me. My father's brother had 3 kids, and that youngest was also 4 or so years older than me. So we weren't as close, didn't see them as often, but when I think of times with them, it's still love, fun, laughter, and stories.

One summer my aunt's family - all 5 kids - piled in the car and drive to see us, and stayed for about two weeks. I was probably somewhere around 6 or so, and I remember when they arrived the whole herd of "big kids" exploded out of the car and were all over our lawn, on our swingset, just everywhere. It was chaos, and it was fun. My really pretty cousin had a romance with the high school boy - one of the super popular kids in town - down the street, and they kept in touch for a while.

I have long wondered how my aunt and uncle have done it. Soon after that summer, their youngest girl developed leukemia. Her leg was amputed, and she spent years in treatment. I remember once we vacationed in Boston - because we visited them at Children's Hospital. My cousin died when I was 8 or so. My brother and I did not go to the funeral, we stayed with my mom's parents while my parents went. When I was in high school, my parents sat my brother and I down one night - my oldest cousin had commited suicide. He was 25. My uncle found him. It was at Christmas, and we did not go to the funeral. When I was in grad school, their youngest, a boy, died from AIDS. My parents went to the funeral, but I couldn't go.

My dad told me after the graveside service he had walked away with my uncle. My uncle sighed, and said when my first cousin had died, they had bought the plot with three spaces - for their youngest daughter and eventually for them. And now, my uncle had just filled the plot - three children gone.

I often think of how they do it. My aunt and uncle are among the kindest, most generous people I know. Seeing them is just comforting in so many ways. They exude love, they always have. There's no bitterness, or sadness, or anger. Of course, I was a child for most of the tragic periods, and haven't been around at the darkest times. I don't know their dark nights of the soul. I just know it's not changed who they are.

My dad had heart surgery in the fall. So did my aunt. My dad recovered quickly, and has had a near textbook perfect recovery. My aunt did not. She had a heart valve replaced, and had a small stroke after. She spent over a month in ICU, struggling to get her heart rate under control, her breathing back, to recover. She developed an infection in the incision. She had to have a tracheotomy to breathe. She developed sores. But she was getting better, slowly. Last month she finally left the hospital for a rehab center. A long road ahead, but slow and steady progress.

My parents called last night. She's gotten some sort (details unclear) of super staph infection. There is no antibiotic to treat it. There is no way to get rid of it. It is attacking her body, and it is slowly winning. Yesterday her kidneys shut down. She is still concious and aware, and the doctors asked the family about dialysis. And she said yes. My uncle asked her if she understood what this all meant. She was a nurse. She mouthed back to him - do YOU understand? The doctors asked about a do not resuscitate. No one answered. The doctors say they don't know when, but that she won't leave the hospital. They said it could be today, or next week, or...... After shutting down her kidneys, probably the next to go will be her lungs and that will be it.

I talked to my mom today. My dad is taking this hard. I asked if they were going for the weekend (my parents live about 3 hours away). My mom said my dad didn't want to go. He said, what can I do. We'll just be in the way, we'll be trouble and something else for my cousins to deal with, when they don't need that. My mom told me my dad had to work through this and decide what he could and could not do.

I talked to my sister this afternoon. I said to her, when it is my time, you better come. She said she would.

My husband thinks we should go this weekend. He also loves my aunt and uncle. I don't know. I don't know what to do. I'll call my brother tomorrow, and my parents again.

I'm not ready for this. December 2006, we talked about the next few holidays and how we'd spend them. My aunt and uncle talked about visiting us. My whole family talked about a trip to the old country together. I want to be 6 again, nestled in the love and bustle of my family. I don't want to be 39, figuring out if I can get to the hospital in time, or if I should save my trip for the funeral.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Am I the freak?

So yesterday after I posted, I went on a two hour tour of blog land. And found Julia's post. And then Kalaky's rant. I sure missed a lot last week.

I was on a brief tour of dead baby land for I don't know, weird reasons. Unsettled, scared, about this pregnancy. Worried about all that could go wrong. I do know too much. I've LIVED too much, and I've not even had it as bad as others. Worried about all that could go right. I've seen more than one infertility/loss blog talk about how hard it can be to hear of other's happiness. When you're 1 for 3, and 39, and kinda thinking this is pretty damn close to your last chance, there's a lot riding on it. I've added a new box. Freakishly nervous pregnant lady blog.

Pregnancy #1 - exhaustion, terrible cramps
Pregnancy #2 - exhaustion, not much of anything else, all must be fine, right?
Pregnancy #3 - I realized last night I have no memories of the early days of that pregnancy. None at all. It's bizarre. I remember vaguely the first sonogram, around I think 7 weeks. I remember telling our families at Christmas. I distinctly recall the ultrascreen. And, I think, nearly every second of the rest of the after. But the pee stick? Couldn't tell you. Exhaustion? Cramps? No idea. I remember one day at work nearly throwing up in an all staff meeting. After Christmas, before screening. I think. How is it the early days, the heady wow isn't this great buzz, is totally gone? Utterly and completely gone. Last night I tried to do some calculating, and I can't even decide when I might have figured out I was pregnant. It's just not there.

So here we are at #4. Tired, but not deep down to the bones exhausted like in 1 and 2 (and 3? who knows?). Is that good or bad? No cramps, but twinges of something - pain? - every once in a fleeting while. Hungry. I think I've gained 5 pounds in the past 2 weeks. Is this normal? Is it not normal? Will my brain ever shut up with all the things that could be happening right now without me ever knowing it might be too late?

Adding to that, the stupid pharmacy did not have progesterone or estrogen. So can't even take something that if nothing else makes me think I'm doing something proactive. Placebo effect,
what a friend you've found in me. AND, I have to travel tomorrow/Thursday, so no 48 hours later blood test to track, and no damn prescriptions til Friday, given the travel. Grrreeaat.

36 weeks of walking in the shadow of fear. And that's if all goes well.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Twisty your road

Am I doing OK left twisty your road as a comment, and it just made me laugh.


I don't even know where to start. I've been really up and down and every place in between these past few weeks. Should I stay or should I go, to quote, um, who? If I go there will be trouble, if I stay it will be double. I've known, and blogged, that life isn't linear, there are fits and starts and highs and lows and everything in between, and sometimes all of it on the same day.

My counselor and I talked a lot about my desire to have another child. She asked the classic question of what I expected from a second child and the impact it would have on my marriage. I answered very honestly - I wanted a second child for me, and a sibling for my daughter. This desire had almost nothing to do with my husband. He was either going to be a part, or not. In a lot of ways I think this is a healthy attitude. I can't do much, if anything, about him and his maturity levels. I can't say we'll still be married, much less happily married, in ten years. For a lot of people, perhaps, that's reason enough to not try again. For me, it's more of saying this is what I want in my life, and I'm going for it. Not consequences be damned, no, far from it. Eyes wide open the ramifications may have profound impact, and recognizing I'd rather life my life with two children. There are no guarantees even if there are no more children in the mix.

That said, let's not forget how I got to the blog world in the first place. There really are no guarantees. This is my fourth pregnancy, and I have one living child. And I'm 39. The odds are not entirely in my favor, and that part scares me to death.

The RE today said that even if things were perfectly healthy, at my age it sometimes happen that the woman doesn't produce enough progesterone, so he's prescribing it for the next 8 weeks or so. Hell, at this stage it's hard to even say for sure what's going on - they drew blood and I'm waiting for the results today. If all looks fine today, they'll schedule regular blood draws these next few weeks, up until the ultrasound to see if there's a heartbeat and "normal" development. At that point, they'd turn me over to my regular OB.

However, let's also remember pregnancy #3. Suspicious nuchal measurement, bad blood work, CVS, loss. My OB doesn't do CVS or advanced screening, I was at a specialist. She said at the time, if I were to get pregnant again she'd recommend not screwing around and going straight for the CVS at 10.5 weeks. I brought that up to the RE, he flipped through my history and immediately said he'd absolutely recommend that, with this same specialist.

So there is a long, long way to go. I was scared to death of the CVS the first time, and that was knowing there was something likely going on and that it would be best to know. Driven by panic and fear. This time, should I get that far, I think it might actually be harder to do it.
It was actually fairly painless and quick, with no adverse affects. But still, it's invasive, with risk associated. I read the more experienced your practitioner the lower the risk, and this one specialist is very practiced. But still....

And then let's throw in my job, and the fact the CVS would then likely be at a VERY busy, stressful time. Great. Oh yeah, my job. I can't even think about that right now, and given my 1 for 3 odds, that's just going to stay buried for a while.

I guess the million dollar question is how did my husband react? My daughter has developed a deep love of presents, and I was at Target yesterday and picked up the pee sticks, along with a few things for her. So when I got home I had presents for her (new shoes). I went upstairs and did the stick thing. I've never turned it over and waited - I always watch the - oh, crap, what's it called - my science training gets further and further away. Capillary action? Of the movement of the liquid up the stick, across the panel. Control line popped up as the line moved across it, but no other line. And I thought, ok, dummy, another waste of $15. And then the second line showed up, maybe 10 seconds in. I waited all two minutes or whatever and it was still there.

So I went downstairs, handed it to my husband and I said I have a present for you, too. He was uncomprehending for about two seconds before a big grin spread across his face. Really?!

I've learned he's a better liar than I ever thought. But there wasn't a flicker of doubt. I asked him the same question, as we'd just spent all weekend with basketball on - so what's the over/under on our marriage now. And he responded forever.

I'm not that naive, but it was a good answer.

Doctor's office just called. Definitely pregnant. He wants me to take some estrogen, too, as the number was a little low. (Beta - 653, Progesterone 16, Estrogen 128. I have no idea what that means).

I keep waiting for my movie fadeout. I guess the real lesson is there is no movie ending for anyone. Life is more than 2 hour blocks of story telling. The good news/bad news is it keeps going. Really hoping the road straightens out for a bit.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Holy crap




Well, given that it's nearly March Madness and betting season, any ideas on the over/under for the length of my marriage after this?

Tomorrow we see the fertility doc. I guess it really is ha, hahaha. Wow.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


My husband resigned today. He has said all along (to me) that the 31st would be his last day, and lately I had thought that wouldn't happen. He does not have a firm offer from his old company. He does have an interview this week, and things should move along, but there's no guarantees, much less a start date.

A few days he said to me he was stressed about resigning, because he just felt that he had let his friends down.

I wanted to say, but did not, that he let them down months ago. And more importantly, far more importantly, he had let his wife down. And his daughter down.

He said today that in telling his friends, his colleagues, of his resignation that he did say he felt like he was letting them down, but he couldn't do it anymore. He said 2007 had been the worse year of his life personally and professionally and he was done. They have a plan to build their business to a certain level and my husband couldn't commit to that plan, to the personal sacrifices it would require.

They took it well, it seems, but I wonder once it sinks in if they'll continue to be supportive. I wonder once his affair (again, how the hell do I refer to her? His ex mistress? his little tramp? his ex fling? Nothing seems right) finds out, how will she react? Maybe, hopefully, not at all. I just want it all done.

I did tell him that it hurt me when he said he let them down. He said he knew. He said he had also let himself down too.

Maybe I am too hard on him, because, frankly, I don't get how this was the worse year of his life. I don't. This past year was hard on me (though, stupid natural optimist that I am, there were great moments - with my daughter - this year. I wouldn't trade those precious experiences for anything). I feel like he went through a shadow of what I went through. Maybe that's unfair. But I don't get it.

Monday, March 10, 2008

anonymity, part 2

Back from a weekend work trip. Flew out Friday, back Sunday evening. Let me sum up the weekend work trip in one word: SUCK.

I had no weekend. I had no break. I went to sleep last night thinking how nice to have a few days off, and woke up to realize it was Monday. Not pleasant.

Thanks for the recent commenting. Anonymous blogs do seem to be the rage. I wouldn't particularly care, I think, if many of you learned more about me. I do care, very much so, if people in my real life learn about the blog life. It's a bit paradoxical, isn't it? I'd welcome you, new people, into my real life, but not real life people into blog life.

We live in a small world, though, and wouldn't it be horrifying to discover a blog person was actually your next door neighbor? Or a major client? Or funder? Or potential new employer....yeah, I think I'm keeping the anonymity for now. But, if anyone, particularly anyone who comments, wants to get in touch with the real me, drop me an e-mail at

Fun fact #1083 about which box: I am remarkably bad at keeping in touch in real life.

You might also tell me how to add an e-mail me widget-y thing to a sidebar, though perhaps I can figure it out. On my next free weekend.

Thanks also for whatever info you all have had on my reproductive life. I am taking my antibiotics and feeling loads better. Kidding. Feeling exactly the same. I did call my regular OB/GYN and ask if I had ever been tested before for mysterious ureaplasma and the answer was no.

I've got a lot on my mind. Despite near constant work, there was still thinking time. Today is a relatively free day, but Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday I have an all consuming meeting. So, I'm going to say I need a break and go out for a few hours. And take part of Friday off too. Daylight savings time didn't help, that's for sure, but a full weekend of work has left me feeling too foggy and disjointed.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

what the hell does this mean

OK, I just got a call from my RE's office. My cultures have come back positive for ureaplasma. The nurse was quite matter of fact about it, this is not a big deal, everyone has it, your culture just showed an overgrowth and I'll call in a prescription for antibiotics for you and your husband. I asked if it might play a role in infertility and she said no one really knows.

And of course you google when you get new medical information, right? And the info is all over the map, ranging from a majority saying it's not a big deal, up to 80% of women have this and it's easily passed between couples for years, to a few saying this is an STD though not one that causes any problems and it's only called an STD because it's in the reproductive tract, to a very few saying this is an STD that definitely causes infertility and is extremely hard to treat.


Have I been tested for this before? Did my cheating husband pass along an STD? What the HELL.

I am breathing. The thing is, I have to explain all this to him, and we have to both start taking the antibiotics. So I need to process through this inorder to be able to present it in a neutral way. In, out, in, out. The reputable sites all pretty much said no big deal, fairly routine. I'll hold onto that for now.

Also. I have been thinking the 17th is a long time off to wait for all the results. I considered calling the office to ask for a phone reading of the straight results. And here I had the nurse on the phone, with results right in front of her. So I asked.

Surprisingly (to me) I tested fine for everything. HSG fine, hormones fine, all fine. Honestly, I'm really surprised. I think I've noticed subtle signs of aging - lack of cervical mucous, vaginal dryness, slight changes in cycle. All subtle, but there. Which probably means my clock is ticking, but not done yet.

And then my husband. Remember 5 years ago he had varicoceles removed. Quantity and density - fine. Well above threshhold range. Mobility - they'd like to see greater than 50%, and his was 40. Morphology, they like to see greater than 20%, and his was 11. But - turns out he went to make his deposit during my cycle, which means, actually, it had been longer than 7 days since an 3jac.ulat1on. Prolonged storage in the body can affect both mobility and morphology. We'll have to tell the doctor that. Should we just have him go make another deposit before the 17th, to make sure?

And the nurse emphasized she was only giving me raw results, only the doctor could interpret them and talk about a path forward. Perhaps I should not have asked, as the 17th is still along way away. Sigh.

I know I've got some experts out there reading. I'd love any thoughts on what this all means. Are we having fun yet?


I've been mildly freaked out lately because there's a chance a couple of friends have discovered this blog.

I've been thinking lately about going more public, I guess because blogging is inherently a public act, and it feels weird not to talk about it in my real life. And, things are more stable (ha) in my life right now, so it doesn't feel as important to be private. On the other hand, let's just look over there on the right at what those archives hold. This blog was - and still is - the one place I could really pour out my fears, my despair, my anger.

So, yeah, want to keep this under wraps.

What about you? Is your blog anonymous? How would you feel if it wasn't? What do you do to maintain anonymity, and is that even possible in our information age?

Monday, March 3, 2008

the blame game

Had a joint counseling session today, with both my and husband's counselors. I find it weird to sit there with all 4 of us in the room. I think part of it is there's no lead counselor - while they work well together, it's hard to know who to look at, or who is going to speak first.

Today I did a lot of the talking, which isn't typical.

This weekend, for some unknown reason, I thought some about the weekend in October when we were at his parents house and I discovered the affair hadn't ended. My husband was upstairs soothing our daughter to sleep when I picked up his chirping phone.

It suddenly occurred to me - why didn't I go upstairs, collect our daughter, drive home by myself, change the locks on the door, get on the phone with an airline, and head out of town to be with my parents? I've been thinking about this a lot. I had a job interview out of town Monday and Tuesday of that next week, so I had practical considerations. We have a dog and a cat. But that night, those things never crossed my mind. It never occurred to me that I had options, that I was anything but the passive victim. That I had choices besides fighting to keep our marriage together.

And that really bothers me. Today, the counselors said it was clear I was still angry at my husband. And it was even more clear I was angry with myself. And that I needed to give myself some credit for being strong, for holding it together. And I don't. I was a mess. People told me I was strong, but I didn't feel strong. I felt afraid, and panicked, and anxious. One counselor said she was reminded of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) - that I had experienced too much in the fall.

What would have happened had I walked away back then? Or in November? Or in December? I don't know. It's unknowable. Would the shock of my leaving have propelled him back home? Set him free? Who knows?

So, these next few weeks my counselor and I get to explore why I blame myself when things go wrong. Which I do, all the time. I feel deeply responsible for too much. It's hurt me in the past at work, and could hurt me in this new position, if I don't watch out. It's clearly hurting me in my relationship now.

I've also been thinking a lot about the blog world. I spent a great deal of last year in deadbabyland. And there is not a single example - beyond me - I have found of a husband leaving his wife after experiencing what we went through. Not one. Antigone commented her husband had a frailty. But that's as much as I've seen.

Marriage is hard. Why is my marriage harder? I can blame him, sure. I can also blame myself.

I think we all play the blame game to some extent, some more than others. Anyone else stuck in blame right now?