Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Story of the Sticks (with pictures)

As a true, hopeless pee stick junkie, I even like stories and pictures of pee sticks. Therefore, I'll give you mine. If you don't feel like gawking at many examples of my dried-up pee, and following me on a tour down the rabbit hole that is my mind, you can just skip this post. :-)

I had no idea until I finished writing it that it was going to be so long, therefore don't feel bad if your interest wanes and you drift off to online shopping or a coma or something...

Tuesday morning, 9dpo / 6dp3dt

As I had already posted, I felt like total crap. I assumed this meant that all 3 embryos stuck, I was in store for triplets, and that HCG was running rampant through my system. Therefore, I was surely going to get rewarded with a line so early in the game.

Yeah, except it didn't happen like that at all. I peed on a dollar store stick and was instead greeted by vast, blinding whiteness. I don't even have a picture of this one because I threw it away in a fit of rage later that day.

Tuesday night, still 9dpo / 6dp3dt

Same song, different verse. Felt like shit all day long, so I still simply couldn't believe there was NOTHING going on in my system. I peed on another dollar store stick and, you guessed it, white white whitey white white. It got thrown away too. Because it sucked.

I didn't even blog about these two embarrassments because, well, how many times can I expect you wonderfully supportive people to say, "Stop it, you're peeing too early" and still have the patience to read my neurotic and irrational ramblings?

Wednesday morning, 10dpo / 7dp3dt

Woke up twice during the night and had to pee badly each time, but refused to so that I didn't ruin the sanctity of FMU. For my efforts, I was presented another glaring BFN. In the trashcan with you!

Wednesday night, 10dpo / 7dp3dt

You already see where this is going, I'm a raging idiot. Normally, I'm all about lots of pee sticks, but not multiple ones in the same day. However, this was the cycle where I discovered the magic of the dollar store HPT. I didn't know such a thing existed until LJ turned me on to them. Anyway, I was peeing on them like a territorial dog with a UTI, but I didn't care because it's only a dollar wasted!

Of course this one was negative too. I even took the damn thing completely apart and stood on my bathroom vanity to get it closer to the light. I saved this one, but who the hell wants to see a picture of a negative pee stick? Not me, that's for sure. I just wanted to keep it around in case a line magically appeared while I was sleeping. It didn't. (No one EVER said I was exactly the brightest, okay?)

Thursday morning, 11dpo / 8dp3dt

Still feeling like crap, still have outrageously sore boobs, still have a shred of hope. I bust out my last dollar store pee stick (thank GOD that I only bought 5 of them or I'd probably have tested every 4 hours) and get to it.

I wait, and wait, and wait. Nuthin'. A teeny, tiny little portion of my brain is screaming, "It is still early! This just means there probably isn't more than one!" Yeah, whatever. I threw the test in the drawer, not even willing to give it the effort of walking across the bathroom to the trashcan.

I went to work very bummed out, even cried in the bathroom briefly. I got 3 comments from co-workers on my sour mood. Thankfully, my team had a fun day planned wherein we left work at 11am, went to lunch at PF.Chang's, then went to Let's.Dish. Of course the fact that the entire day revolved around food sucked because I'm still struggling along on Weight Watchers. Guess how many things you can eat at PF.Chang's that aren't 9,527 points? Very few. Spinach, that's about it. Good for Popeye muscles, bad for mood enhancement.

Thursday night, 11po / 8dp3dt

I yanked open my bathroom vanity drawer to stare in disbelief again at this morning's pathetic pee stick. I fantasized all day about how I would curse and spit at it, taking out all of my ugly feelings on a poor, helpless little pee stick. I had even planned to let out a gutteral wail and throw it against the wall in a cheezy display of soap opera-like drama.

That's when I saw the teeny, tiniest ghost of a line. Instantly, I tore that bastard apart. Free from the confines of the plastic housing, I could see the faintest of lines. I pulled out the negative pee stick from Wednesday and compared -- no line on Wednesday's test.

Now I'm not so much of an idiot that I failed to realize I was hyperventilating over a evaporation line, but I didn't care at the time. I was desperate and grasping at straws.

Bereft of any more dollar store tests, I frantically rifled through my bathroom cabinets and found my stash of "fancy" tests. I had 2 FRERs and 1 Answer. I loathe FRERs because the variability of the line darkness from day to day drove me insane (hard to believe it could get worse than my current state of affairs, eh?).

So I peed in the cup, opened the Answer test with shaking hands, and dipped away. What happened? Nothing. I stared at that test so hard and so long that my eyes started burning. Finally, I gave up around the 3 minute mark. I know you are not supposed to read the test after 10 minutes, so I went away for 5 minutes or so (picture me nonchalantly ambling around the top floor of my house, hands clasped behind my back, whistling a merry little tune) and came back to check.

Shazam! There was a line. Okay, it was more of a suggestion of a line. But there was the faintest smudge of pink there. I gave it another couple of minutes and took a picture of it. I texted my buddy Rho, and then emailed the picture to Erin. She, being the kind soul that she is, agreed that there was definitely something there. She also agreed to pee on a stick herself. As we all know by now, hers is a mighty happy story.

I made the grave mistake of showing the ghostly-line test to Kevin. Remember him, the one who didn't want me to POAS at all? He was NOT impressed with what he saw and said, "This is EXACTLY why I didn't want you to do any of these stupid tests." Hmmph, who needs your opinion anyway, Mr. David Downer?

For your viewing pleasure, here are the tests in question:

Dollar store test with a line so faint you probably can't see it in the photo.

Answer test with a crazy faint line too, but it's darkened a little in the passing days so it's probably at least a little visible. Or not. But in real life, it's a shy little line.

I went to bed, brimming with hope. I actually WANTED to pee on a stick the next morning, it wasn't going to be like a death march to the toilet. Oh yeah, but before turning in for the night, I drove directly to Walgreen's and bought some digital tests.

Friday morning, 12dpo / 9dp3dt

I was so deathly afraid of seeing "Not Pregnant" on the digital test, I spent a full 5 minutes fretting and wringing my hands over a steaming cup of golden pee before I bit the bullet and dipped it. I popped the stick in the digital holder right away and held my breath. It blinked. And blinked. And blinked. I read the directions, it was only supposed to blink for a max of 3 minutes. I know I was coming up on the 3 minute mark and I broke into a cold sweat.

Then it came up, at the very last second: "Pregnant." I literally whooped out loud and almost fell into my own bathtub jumping around the bathroom. Because I couldn't control myself, I ejected the stick and investigated the line. Not crazy dark, but darker than any of yesterday's nonsense.

I took a picture of the digital stick before the words disappeared and emailed it to Kevin. No lines to interpret, just an obvious word. He loved it, and has never once said a thing about me peeing on sticks since then.

Here's the picture of the stick that gets inserted:

It's really light in this picture, looks better in person.

Friday evening, 12dpo / 9dpt3dt

Unable to control myself, I had to do another test. I didn't want to waste my only other digital test, so I decided to give the evil FRER a shot. It took a minute or so, and it's definitely not the darkest of lines, but there was no doubt about it at this point.

Saturday morning, 13dpo / 10dp3dt

Didn't I just say there was no doubt about it? Yeah, but I've also repeatedly said I'm a junkie. I don't know why I was saving the last digital for Sunday, but I was. So I acquiesed and peed on an FRER again. It came up almost instantly and was nice and dark.

Sunday morning, 14dpo / 11dp3dt

I went with the digital so that I wouldn't freak if the line was different.

However, in some twisted version of is-this-line-darker-than-the-others, I began counting the number of flashes it took until "Pregnant" came up. Last time (not that I'm obsessive or anything), it took almost 150 flashes, give or take a few. This time? 55 flashes. I think that's less than a minute. Woot!

Of course I popped the stick out and was appropriately pleased with the line darkness.

I vowed that today is my last pee stick day. (Except for Thursday because I can't head into Beta Day without that security blanket.)

Thank you for following me on my pictorial pee stick journey. I have no idea what the rest of this will bring, but I am at least sustained by the fact that I'm a proud owner of 6 positive pee sticks. If I wasn't afraid they'd smell, I'd sleep with them under my pillow.


Tam said...

Oh my god, I can't believe that I missed this!! Terribly sorry sweetie, I was away (for a dirty weekend hehehe!) Congrats man, I can't believe it, so this last Leah cycle was worth it!

Can't wait to hear those beta numbers go up and up and up!!

Hugs xxx

Mands said...

I haven't even started Lucrin yet and I am already this neurotic!
I am so unbelievably happy for you, and I am hoping that Beta confirms what the last pee stick said.
Fingers crossed!

Caro said...


Jackie said...

Confession: I am now nearly at 10 weeks and I still have my peestick army (OPK and HPT) all lined up on the cabinet shelf in my bathroom. I don't know if I'll ever throw them away. Also, I kept peeing on sticks until they didn't get any darker, even after I had a doubling beta by blood test. The trick to this is finding sticks with a wide range of sensitivity.

Delenn said...

Someday, years from now, there will be a box in the basement marked POAS. No one will know what it means, they will open it and find the Pee Stick Army!

Great post and Congrats Again!

(Every so often when I don't have any symptons--I POAS just to make sure)

Erin said...

Ahh, I love a good story about a crazy lady, as long as it has a happy ending! I am counting the days to Thursday!!!!!

Shelby said...

Great story! I loved it. Coming from a pee-stick junkie myself. And let me tell you- I dind't know about dollar store pee sticks either. Too bad too- I probably spent several hundred dollars worth of peesticks in the last 2 years.

Congratulations!! I'm really so, so excited for you!!

TeamWinks said...

Dang! I go out of town for only a week, and look what I miss!!!! Holy cow! This is exciting stuff! I can't stop the exclamation pointing!!! Hoping for more good news dear!

Pamela Jeanne said...


JJ said...

You keep on being a pee stick junky=) Cant wait to hear more of the great news!!

Erin said...

So I was out walking my dog after commenting and I realized it might look like I meant the happy ending wouldn't come til Thursday. WRONG! As far as I'm concerned it's already happened! Thursday will just be the epilogue, a "Where are they now?" kind of deal.

Ok then!

seussgirl said...

Yey! I used 3 sticks, btw, and was sad when I realized I'd waited too long to take pictures of the digital ones!
Happy for you!

LJ said...

Leah, I love this post. You know what a pee-stick-whore I am. I love this whole thing. It totally validates my ocd-like peeing.

I'm still just so excited for you.

Heather.PNR said...


InfertileMadWoman said...

LOL Leah, I have all of mine from 4dpt on, so I can totally feel your post!!! Keep those puppies!!! BTW, I NEVER got an honest to God positive with the DT tests until after Beta day!!!

Congrats sweetie!!!!!

The Oneliner (Christina) said...

OMGoodness i love it. You'll give a lot of hope to people that a second line may pop up after lots of negatives.
I am still so excited for you.
And thanks for all the support you've given on my blog. It means a lot, really.

Grad3 said...

It's true for all of us, I carried mine around all day.

I hope that you have checked out You'll love it if you haven't already been introduced!

Egged Out said...

that was a long story but it had a happy ending so it was worth it! Thanks for sharing. Congrats again!

Sunny Jenny said...

Dollar store pee sticks! I don't believe it! How can it be possible?? Are they reliable? I am so going shopping!

Anonymous said...

You make me laugh!

The saga of the pee sticks. Maybe if you put them in a ziplock bag, you could put them under your pillow and wouldn't have to worry about the smell! ;)

Chili said...

I love this post! I can't believe I missed the big announcement - I've been too hermit-like lately apparently!!! Congratulations!

Gabby said...

OoOoOoOo, I love this post. The pee sticks are awesome. But yea, I don't recommend putting them under your pillow. That may be a little stinky!

Meg said...

WOOHOO!!!! Congrats!!

kati said...

I like that the sticks do get darker.

I still keep my sticks from my chem. pregnancies at the beginning of the year. Sometimes I just like looking at them...

Fingers crossed!

daisy said...

I read the whole thing, every little word you wrote...twice!

Mrs. Piggy said...

holy crap. I got made fun of so bad for my 9 pee sticks, you totally whooped me on that one.
thanks for the hilarious recap :)

Kami said...

I don't know how I missed this before, but I am glad I did. I am not crazy! At least not compared to you. And my lines look the same.

Did you know you were the evil one who tempted me with your comment yesterday? You were the reason I poas'ed on my lunch break.

Reading this post also makes me even more sad for what you are going through now. God, I hope we are all just a bunch of pessimistic losers and tomorrow brings bright and shiny good news.