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Saturday, February 26, 2011

For your amusement

I really have nothing entertaining to share but wanted to tell you about two amusing moments I've had lately, both involving the Junior League:

1. Another "you know you need to take a break from thinking about fertility stuff" moment: Keep in mind that I am still taking my temperature first thing in the morning every day (if you aren't familiar with basal body temperature charting, feel free to go here for a quick tutorial, but be warned, it is not that interesting). Anyway, because I am consistent to a fault, I even took my thermometer with me to my most recent overnight "adventure" at the Children's Museum for the Junior League. In the middle of the night, I was having a dream that I was on American Idol. In my dream, I reached over to grab the microphone. In REAL life, I reached over and grabbed my thermometer and held it up to my mouth. Good thing everyone else was still asleep.

2. This morning I was volunteering at another Junior League event that had a baseball theme. As a volunteer, I was supposed to wear a baseball jersey, so being that I don't own one, I asked Brian if he had one I could borrow. At first, he offered up his Astros jersey, but then later took it back because he was worried I would mess it up. First of all, does he really think that between the two of us, I am the one that can't be trusted to keep something clean? And second, isn't this the same person that used to go months without doing laundry, or cleaning in general for that matter? Either I am rubbing off on him, or his affinity for the Astros runs far deeper than I realized.

Regardless, he didn't want to leave me hanging, so he very generously let me wear his Miami Marlins jersey that he got as a prize when he was a kid. Thankfully it fit, but I still got a few funny looks and even one, "So, what's your connection to the Marlins?" inquiry during the event.

And that is all for today. Now I'm off to watch Toddlers & Tiaras so I can learn (a) how not to parent our future children, and (b) how not to handle our finances. Thank you, TLC, for providing these invaluable lessons!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Debbie Downer has left the building (for now)

So who wants to hear about Monday's doctor appointment? Everyone? Ok, great.

I'm sure that many of you are thinking that the fact that I waited 2 days to post about it is a bad sign, and that I have probably spent the better part of the week drowning in self-pity. And while that wouldn't be totally unusual, it is not the case!

I wouldn't go so far as to say our appointment went well, because I don't think any visit to a fertility specialist is ever described as having gone "well" until the one where they tell you you're pregnant and bid you farewell for the (hopefully) last time. And when it's our turn for that appointment, you better believe that there will be a massive celebration. Or at least excessive eating of Mexican food. Which also could just constitute a normal Friday night, so perhaps I need to come up with a better celebratory plan. But as usual, I digress...

So here are the highlights from our visit:

1. The nurse didn't weigh me.

2. The nurse asked me when my last period was. I told her December 28th. She looked at me cross-eyed as if I didn't know how to read a calendar, and then told me it has been 124 days since my last period. I politely corrected her that it had only been 50+ days. Who can't read the calendar now, Nurse Sassy Pants?

3. The doctor told me that it would probably be in my best interest to go back on the Metformin (aka: the medicine that made me vomit profusely when combined with an antibiotic). He said that it would give the Femara a little more (and I quote) "oomph." Thankfully, he did give me permission to lower the dose, and so far, so good!

4. Unlike the doctor we saw last week, this one (let's call him Dr. C to keep it simple) saw no merit in resorting to injections. Amen, hallelujah, praise the Lord, because WHO wants to give themselves shots in the stomach (ok, have their husband do it, but that's beside the point) if it is not absolutely necessary? He said that since the Femara worked both times that I tried it, there was really no point in adding injections into the mix unless we wanted to end up like Jon & Kate + 8. My words, not his.

5. He applauded me for knowing what I was talking about and having done my homework! I told him I was concerned about the length of my luteal phase in past cycles (I know, since when am I the kind of person that uses the phrase "luteal phase"? Since becoming barren, that's when!), and he was impressed that I not only knew what the issue was called but that I also knew what caused it. FINALLY, that proverbial "gold star" I had been looking for all along! And for the record, I think that his nurse could afford to do a little homework of her own, but that's a soapbox I don't want to go off on again.

So all in all, it was good news, and we are feeling much better about sticking with Dr. C. I should also mention that he was much friendlier than before (maybe he's been taking cues from my blog?) and even shared with us that his wife is also a doctor and they have a 5th grade son. That loves school. Imagine that- a child of 2 doctors loving school... truly shocking.

Anyway, stay tuned for more tales of the life and times of my reproductive system. And if you're really lucky, maybe I might shut up about ovulating for 5 minutes and actually talk about something else for a change. But I wouldn't count on it if I were you!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Valentine's Day: Revisited

I hate that I had to skip over the Valentine's Day post to chronicle the latest of our fertility woes, but the appointment with the doc put me in such a foul mood all week that I just thought it would be safer if I waited :) Anyway, here are the highlights:

1. My gifts to Brian consisted of the following: A gift card to Sonic and a bag of Dunkin' Donuts ground coffee. Every husband should be so lucky, I know. For the record, he asked specifically for the coffee and the Sonic gift card was just to help feed his addiction to Route 44 vanilla Dr. Peppers. I also made an appointment for him to redeem the vintage shave gift card (that I bought him for Christmas... impressive that I made the gift count twice, right?:) that morning.

2. I also decided to put my co-workers in the spirit by giving them each Valentine's Day lollipops, and because they were probably intended for kids, each lollipop had a "To" and a "From" line for me to fill out. So with red sharpie in hand, I labeled each lollipop and set out to deliver them to each person's desk. It was after pulling the first one out of the bag that I realized that there were phrases on the back of the lollipops just like the ones on candy hearts. Thankfully, I caught this before I delivered a "kiss me" lollipop to the male co-worker that sits on the other side of me, and even more thankfully, before I gave my male boss a "love ya" lollipop. Close call.

3. Brian brought me these pretty flowers at work when he picked me up for lunch:

4. I also might or might not have consumed 2 cupcakes and a cookie that afternoon. Calories don't count on Valentine's Day though, right?

5. Brian made reservations for us for dinner at Churrasco's (basically fancy Mexican food) that night. Fortunately, we eat at the same time as elderly people, so our 6 pm reservation meant that the restaurant was fairly empty when we arrived and didn't get crowded until we were already finished with dinner. If only we were eligible for a senior citizen discount...

6. Speaking of senior citizens, we sat next to a table of 4 cute old couples where the men were all wearing matching Valentine's Day ties, and each woman had a mini teddy bear and rose at her place. They were so cute that I really was tempted to ask if we could join them, but fortunately for Brian, I refrained. I did, however, convince him to offer to take a picture of their whole table when I saw them photographing each individual couple. They noticed his Aggie ring and quickly struck up a conversation- turns out some of them were in the class of 1952 and they had apparently all 8 been doing Valentine's Day dinner together for the past 10 years!

7. Brian gave me my gift during dinner, and I have to give him props, because it was both thoughtful and unexpected! He wrapped it himself, and because he forgot to get a card, he wrote a message on the outside of the wrapping:

Sorry, I can't get it to rotate for some reason, so in case you can't read it, the first sentence says:
To the most wonderful wife in the world - I would have bought 100 tickets if I had needed to.

Because I like to ruin surprises, I had already examined the wrapped gift enough to have guessed that it was a picture frame, but I was really confused as to what the ticket reference was about, until I opened it up to find this:

I know I have probably told the story before, but after meeting Brian on the Aggie bus one day, I asked him if he would support my sorority's philanthropy by coming to the song/dance competition we put on (Songfest). He suavely responded by asking, "What's in it for me?" I then told him that if he came to the show, I would get him dinner at the Chi Omega house.

Well sure enough, two weeks later, I ran into him on the bus again, and he proudly declared that he kept his ticket stub and wanted to redeem his dinner. So the first item you see in the fame is the ticket stub.

I did, indeed, invite him over for dinner, and there was a policy that if you invited a guest over for dinner, you were supposed to pay the House Mom $6. Well being that I rarely ever carried cash, I had to write a check to her. She never actually got around to cashing it, though, so a couple of months later, she gave it back to me. So that's what you see below the ticket!

Pretty sweet, right? The frame is now sitting on the table in our front entryway, so be sure to check it out next time you come over. And yes, it's official, Brian once again wins the award for greatest husband in the world. To all you other husbands out there, better luck next time :)

Hope you all had equally wonderful Valentine's Days- feel free to share about your day!

Oh, and PS- Baby Girl (one of our imaginary friends) wanted me to rub it in everyone's faces that she got a personalized Valentine from Justin Bieber along with pretzel M&M's and dark chocolate Reese's peanut butter cups... she is so spoiled, but don't tell her I said that.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Cue the Debbie Downer sound

For all of you that are dying to know how we spent Valentine's Day 2011, fear not- I will do a recap post this weekend when I have a little more free time on my hands. For now, all I have is the remaining 33 minutes of my lunch break, and if you factor in facebook-stalking and catching up on Words with Friends, I really don't have much time to type.

I did, however, want to give everyone a quick update since we had our appointment with the new specialist. Basically, much like my appointment with my OBGYN last week, the appointment didn't necessarily go badly, but I didn't leave feeling super encouraged or hopeful, either.

The doctor was actually somewhat similar to our first specialist, in that he talked to us in very practical terms and didn't seem all that interested in any details other than the basic history of my rebellious and hateful reproductive system. Oh, and he of course had to ask Brian some basic questions as well to make sure that I wasn't trying to get knocked up by some drug addict with children from a former marriage. Realistically he was just going over his medical history, but I like to think he was interrogating him the way a dad would before a daughter's first date. But maybe that's just me.

He gave me basically the same diagnosis based on my medical records- PCOS. Although he did feel that, because I had ovulated a handful of times (either on treatment or on my own) and still not gotten pregnant, he thinks our situation classifies as a case of "unexplained infertility." This is a very common diagnosis, but reminds me a lot of the term that meterologists use when trying to guess the path of a hurricane- the "cone of uncertainty." If you ask me, the doctor is better off just shrugging his shoulders and telling me (much like the car dealership did that one time) that the fact that we haven't gotten pregnant is a "real head-scratcher."

I don't completely agree with his opinion, because I think there is more to it than that, primarily the fact that even though, yes, I have ovulated, it has been inconsistent. And I also thought it was frustrating that we just sat with him in his office for 30 minutes and he didn't even do an ultrasound or anything to see what we're working with. Glad to know I can refer to my ovaries as "what we're working with."

He also informed us that as far as cost is concerned, they do treatment cycles as a package deal. So rather than have to pay for each ultrasound, they assume you will get a certain number and use that average to determine the cost. And while I understand the intention behind it, based on the amount we were spending with our original specialist, I think it is also financially very much to their advantage rather than to the patient. Which is understandably also frustrating to me.

So basically, they would be providing us with the same services and with what we considered to be care that wasn't any more personalized than we had already experienced, but at twice the cost. Obviously we saw no merit in doing this, so after discussing it last night (translation: me being angry at the world all night and falling asleep crying), we decided to go back to the original specialist.

How am I feeling about this whole situation, you ask? I am frustrated. I am discouraged. And I have told a few people that it feels a lot like the last presidential election in that we are being forced to choose between two not-so-great options. I know that, realistically, we could continue checking out other specialists, but I really would rather just get the show on the road.

If you know me, this probably does not surprise you. I don't pride myself in many things, but I have always thought that I was able to power through less than ideal situations better than most people. Don't get me wrong- I might still whine and complain about it- but I will still suck it up and do it because, as I like to point out to my fun-loving husband, sometimes we have to do things (laundry) that aren't our favorite in order to be able to enjoy the things that are (not smelling homeless).

And now I am just rambling incoherently.

So the end of the story is that I called our original specialist back today and made an appointment for next Monday. I'm sure many of you will be able to appreciate to the fact that I had to rehearse (and possibly even type out...) the excuse I was going to give when I called the nurse as to why we recently requested that our medical records be sent from them to another fertility clinic. I had visions of her denying my request for an appointment entirely, or at the very least guilt tripping me for having cheated on them. Apparently they are used to this kind of thing, however, because she seemed entirely unconcerned when I recited my excuse for her, and went right on to setting up my appointment.

Anyway, fortunately, my office is closed on Monday for Presidents' Day (ironic considering the metaphor I made above), so I won't have to miss any work for this one. If you would like to pray for us, please pray that we would approach the appointment with a good attitude and a positive outlook. And that the doctor would be practical and clear with us, but still encouraging. Oh, and that WE WOULD GET PREGNANT THIS CENTURY.

The end :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

A trip down memory lane, Valentine's Day style

I realized recently that this year will be mine and Brian's 8th Valentine's Day together, and to celebrate, I thought it would be fun to take a look back at our last 7. Enjoy!

Valentine's Day 2004 - For our first V-Day, Brian was actually out of town, so I don't have any pictures to show. Sorry!

Valentine's Day 2005 - This was taken right before our date at the house I lived in senior year. We went to dinner at Caffe Capri and then drove out to Lake Bryan to make s'mores by the water. Fun fact: I was recovering from the flu and spent most of the time at the lake huddled in his car in a blanket.

Valentine's Day 2006 - I almost didn't put this picture up because I must have weighed approximately 600 pounds in it. But I decided it was ok for posterity's sake. At the time, Allison and I were living in Austin and Wade and Brian were both living in College Station, so they actually drove in for the night to take us out. And in fact, we made it a triple date and went out to dinner with my parents. Fun fact: Brian wanted to surprise me by not telling me he was coming to town and then showing up unexpectedly that night, but I nagged him so much about how disappointed I was that he wasn't coming that he had to give in and tell me. Oops.

Valentine's Day 2007 -
This is the Valentine's Day we had together when were engaged! Please notice that I no longer weighed 600 pounds (wedding planning = greatest diet ever!) and this was during the phase in which Brian was really embracing his facial hair. He cooked dinner for me at his apartment that night- Hawaiian chicken, scalloped potatoes, and rolls (now referred to famously as "the yellow meal"). Fun fact: In order to decorate, Brian used push pins to put paper doilies up on his walls. :)

Valentine's Day 2008 - Our first married Valentine's Day! This picture was taken in Sugar Land Town Square where we ate during my lunch break. Brian cooked me dinner again that night, but being that I was apparently feeling particularly hormonally imbalanced that day, I spent most of the evening mad at him because the house was messy and he had forgotten to make me a CD (which is what I asked for in place of a present). Don't worry, we're past it now :) Fun fact: That was the first time Brian made me a cookie ice cream sandwich for dessert, which is now my favorite "treat" to have at home!

Valentine's Day 2009 - As you might have read about, this was the Valentine's Day in which Brian took me to the Galleria to pick out a new dress (featured in this pic), took me to dinner at Benjy's in Rice Village, and booked a hotel room for us at the Omni for the night. Fun fact: The gift Brian gave me that year was an IOU for a trip to Disney World, which later turned into the trip we took to Nashville instead, since we figured we'll save Disney World for once we have kids.

Valentine's Day 2010 - I started off that weekend deathly ill, but fortunately was well enough to attend a Houston Aeros' hockey game on the night before Valentine's Day- the tickets having been my gift to Brian. We spent the actual day at church, followed by Brian attending youth group and me doing our taxes. Very romantic, I know. Fun fact: This was also the weekend that Brian told Frankie that we wanted to join them in planting a new church!

So there you have it. Happy Valentine's Day to everyone, but especially to Brian, my favorite Valentine of all :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Lessons learned

I have learned many a valuable lesson so far in our quest towards parenthood. So in the rare moments when I am trying to be positive, I try to remind myself that the upside to all of this is that I will come out much wiser than when the journey began. And in the rest of the moments, I eat a lot of chocolate chip cookies and whine repeatedly to whoever will listen about how life's not fair. I'd say I've achieved a pretty good balance, wouldn't you?

So for those of you who are going through this yourself OR for those of you who are just curious (in an "I'm glad it's happening to them and not me" kind of way!), allow me to impart some of the lessons I've learned thus far:

1. If you want to avoid being surrounded by mass quantities of pregnant people (therefore making your attempts to concentrate on anything other than how sorry you feel for yourself futile), then stay away from the following:
a) The OBGYN's office - It seems to me that those of us who have not had much success in the baby-making department should have a separate waiting area than the moms-to-be!
b) Any event involving the Junior League - Trust me. Hundreds of married women in their 20's-30's... dangerous.
c) Channel 2 news - As many of you saw on facebook recently, 5 of their anchors are pregnant at the moment. FIVE of them. And as such, they saw it fit to run a special on the baby boom the morning of my recent doctor's appointment. It was also 20 degrees outside, raining, and the tv in the room where our treadmill is had just eaten my VHS tape of "Now and Then." It wasn't a pretty morning, to say the least.

2. Believe it or not, even doctors and nurses think that you'll get pregnant if you "just relax." Oh really, doctor? Because I thought the reason I was having trouble getting pregnant had something to do with my polycystic ovaries. Should I just tell them to relax, too?

3. God uses the people in our lives - strangers or not- to remind us that He has not forgotten us. After my appointment last week, I came home and found this waiting for me in the mail from an old friend:

Isn't it cute? It's a FlipNotes pad and I love it! And she did it for no other reason than because she knows I love owls and wanted to brighten my day. Mission accomplished- thanks, Kimmie!

Also, remember the blog friend that offered to send me the leftover OPK tests in the mail? Well the package arrived this weekend and in addition to the tests, she also sent me a sweet card and a Valentine's day dish full of Hershey's kisses. Thanks, Liz!

4. Admitting you need help is not necessarily a weakness. I have always considered myself to be very strong and self-sufficient. Granted, yes, Brian refers to me as his "little invalid" because I rely on him to do pretty much everything (hey, that's what marriage is for, right?:), but when it comes down to it, I am very capable of doing most anything I set my mind to. Except, that is, creating a human life. Imagine that!

After we decided to take a break back in November, I thought we were making a very noble choice in foregoing additional treatments for the time being. And once I ovulated without the help of any meds the first time, I was further convinced that we didn't need any more help from the doctor.

Well after my appointment on Wednesday, I knew that we had reached a fork in the road and had to decide if we were going to go back to seeing a specialist. As I mentioned, I really, really, REALLY did not want to have to, because to me, it felt like we were throwing in the towel. But thanks to the encouragement and advice of some friends and family, I realized that going back to a specialist actually required a lot more courage than just stubbornly trying on our own simply because I was too proud to admit it wasn't working.

And so with that being the case, we have made an appointment with a new doctor with a new practice. We are hopeful that he will be a little more sympathetic to our situation, and perhaps even hand me a tissue if I start crying in his office rather than stare at me with a bewildered look on his face.

5. It is important to have a husband around to make you laugh. I was stressing quite a bit about whether or not we should stick with our original fertility specialist or try out a new one. I told Brian that I wanted to talk it over on Thursday night, but Parks & Recreation and The Office got in the way (naturally), so we put it off until Friday. When we sat down for lunch on Friday, Brian looked at me and started off our conversation by saying, "Ok. So we need to talk about..."

I automatically assumed he was going to say, "we need to talk about what we're going to do about the fertility specialist," and was pleasantly surprised that he was taking the initiative... until I listened to the rest of the sentence: "So we need to talk about whether or not we want to home school Baby Dinosaur on Fridays."

And even though I was slightly disappointed, I couldn't help but laugh at the fact that he was approaching a conversation about our imaginary friend's 2nd grade education so seriously! Thank you, Brian, for reminding me not to take life too seriously!

So there you have it, friends. If you have learned any lessons in your own life struggles, feel free to share!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Can't I just get an "E" for effort?

So who wants to hear something depressing? Nobody? Too bad, because I'm going to tell you anyway. I bought my third bottle of prenatal vitamins this past weekend. That means that, since we started trying to get pregnant, I have gone through two whole bottles of prenatal vitamins. This really isn't a big deal UNLESS you consider the fact that each bottle holds 240 vitamins. So the point of the story is that we have been trying to get pregnant for over 480 days. People, that is a LONG time.

Ok yes, in the scheme of things, 1 year and a couple of months is not that long of a time. But when you stop to consider that I have been more or less single-minded and focused primarily on achieiving one objective (minus the time period last Spring when Brian quit his job and we packed up and moved houses...), then you will probably agree that it's a really long time.

Sometimes I actually feel like I am studying/preparing for a big test, but the teacher won't tell me when it's going to be, so I just have to be ready and waiting at all times. Either that, or I missed the test and failed the class miserably, which is a whole other metaphor that I don't want to consider.

All things considered, I think I have been doing pretty well for the past couple of weeks. There have been no embarrassing crying episodes (just the requisite tearing up at work when someone unsuspecting looks at me the wrong way), and I even made it through Allison's second baby shower with only a handful of bitter, "I'm barren and she's not!" jokes. Now if that doesn't deserve a pat on the back, I don't know what does.

The fact that I made it through a potentially emotional weekend unscathed is due in no small part to the the graciousness of my wonderful sissy. When we arrived in Austin on Friday, in addition to SNOW, I had an anti-baby shower gift waiting for me at her house. Three of them, actually - a bag of pretzel M&M's, cookies from Tiff's Treats (which I may or may not request every time I come to town), and a gift certificate for a pedicure, which we redeemed together on Saturday. She's the best, isn't she?

I also received an e-mail this week from a new blog friend offering to send me her leftover OPK tests in the mail (she has a cute baby boy to show for her efforts, so maybe they'll be extra good luck!). And while I never would have thought I would be so touched by an offer from someone to give me sticks to pee on, I am indeed very grateful for her thoughtfulness! AND this means one less potentially awkward encounter at Wal-mart, so I consider it a double gift :)

Anyway, so that's what's new in my world. I am off to my annual check-up (jealous? I thought so) with my OBGYN tomorrow, so since there has been zero progress this cycle (43 days and counting!), I am planning to talk to him about what our options are and what our next step should be, including whether or not I need to get a referral for a new fertility specialist. I have been dreading this simply because I feel like going back to the doctor is admitting defeat, but I dread sitting in idle and essentially making no progress even more.

So we'll see how that goes. And in the meantime, I am going to try and pretend that my biggest care in the world is finding an outfit to wear tomorrow that will be heavy enough to keep me warm but light enough to not add too many pounds onto the scale when I have to weigh myself at the doctor. Don't judge- you know you do it, too!

Friday, February 4, 2011


It's been a while since I last received a blog tag/award, and especially since I received one that I actually had any interest in complying with! BUT luckily for you, that day has come!

One of my sorority sisters ("everybody wants to be a Chi Omega, everybody knows we're... red hot!"), Courtney, very graciously tagged me. In addition to being a member of the greatest sorority of all time, Courtney is mommy to a very cute little boy named Jay. And what impresses me the most is that even though she has a baby to take care of, she still manages to blog on a regular basis! Props to you, Courtney!

So anyway, I'm supposed to share 7 things about myself and tag 10 other people to do the same thing. One of those rules I'm going to follow, and one I'm not- see if you can figure out which is which :)

Seven Facts About Me (that I hopefully haven't-but likely have- shared before):

1) I have given up Raisin Bran. Ok, I haven't given it up completely, but it has been replaced in my daily breakfast routine. I have always known that Raisin Bran is pretty high in sugar, and I have always been a-ok with that. But when I started taking that terrible medicine (that has taken up entirely too much blog space), I noticed that I felt nauseous every morning after eating. So I made the switch to Multigrain Cheerio's. I suppose it was about time, being that I ate Raisin Bran pretty much every morning from 2006-2010, wouldn't you say? (Special K reigned supreme from 2002-2006, so if I follow this trend, I'll be ready for something new in 2014.)

2) I prefer winter to summer. If I could hibernate from June-August (and still earn an income), I would totally do it.

3) The Notebook is one of my favorite movies and I never get tired of watching it. The same is true for 10 Things I Hate About You and Mean Girls. Clearly, I have very sophisticated taste in films. (Can you even refer to those 3 at "films"?)

4) I think few things are funnier than a well-timed "That's what she said" joke. Apparently I also have a very sophisticated sense of humor.

5) I am way more into Lost than I (a) ever would have thought and (b) would like to admit. I can't get into some parts of it (time travel? a smoke monster? really?), but for the most part, I am hooked. We only have 2 seasons left, and while I am anxious to watch the series finale, I have been told that most of my questions will remain unanswered.

6) I wish Allison and I lived in the same city for a lot of reasons, not the least of which is because I enjoy the attention we get when we're together in public. Judge away, but for some reason I get a cheap thrill out of people pointing out how much we look alike. I even semi-enjoy the stupid twin questions, like, "If I hit her, will you feel it?" Hysterical. Every time.

7) If we ever have a little girl, I want to have an owl-themed nursery. This desire admittedly stems from my Chi Omega days. Hootie hoo!

So there you have it. Seven things you can now say you know about me. You're welcome. And feel free to do the same!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

How not to sell me stuff

Ok so some of you might have read my recent facebook status that declared, "Furniture salesmen make me want to gouge my eyes out." I realize this is a little extreme, but if you have ever been furniture shopping, then you probably agree with me.

I mentioned this before back in 2009 when we were looking for an entertainment center. The following excerpt from that post is the most relevant to today's post:

Also, furniture salespeople are pretty irritating. They greet you when you first walk in the door, and by “greet” you, I mean to say that they lay claim over your soul. And even if you politely refuse their help and insist that you are just going to look around on your own, they very casually follow you around the store and randomly pop up (as soon as they think you are interested in something) around every corner asking if you have questions. Irritating. As flattering as it is to have a personal stalker, it kind of made me feel hurried and pressured—2 things I do not enjoy.

Even though I was a young 25 years old when I wrote that, I was clearly wise beyond my years. I realize that I am easily angered, but these people get under my skin like no other.

We are currently looking for an arm chair (ideally a "chair and a half" with ottoman). We have a specific budget and specific taste. Me? Specific? Surprising, I know. So after making the rounds to all of the furniture stores in the area for the past couple of weekends, we decided to stop at the La-Z-Boy in Sugar Land last Sunday after lunch. And based on our experience, we will not be making that mistake again!

First of all, their furniture is way overpriced compared to the other places we looked (besides Star Furniture, which I am fairly certain requires you to sacrifice your firstborn child). But worse than that, the salesman that attacked greeted us at the front was the pushiest man on earth. And no, I'm not exaggerating. Ok maybe a little.

Regardless, in order to protect the "innocent," let's call him Meven (pronounced like "Steven"... oops, did I just give it away?). We were in the store for no more than 10 minutes, but during that 10 minutes, Meven "checked in" with us no less than 5 times. When he asked what we were looking for, we responded with, "Oh, we're just looking around." He sarcastically replied with, "I hear that every day, but I'm sure you didn't just come to a furniture store for no reason." Um. Nice sales pitch, Meven.

As he followed us around and asked questions about what we liked, I answered honestly. We wanted a neutral colored chair and a half that wasn't leather and wasn't a recliner. He continued to suggest pieces of furniture that didn't fit the bill, ending with a blue love seat in the corner that he thought was the solution to all of our furniture problems. After he suggested the blue love seat for the THIRD time, I, somewhat abruptly, said that it really wasn't what we were looking for.

His response? "Well maybe what you want doesn't actually exist, did you ever stop to consider that?" Ok first of all, Meven, you need to go back to sales school. And second, you need to CALM DOWN, because (a) this is just furniture and (b) trust me, our income will not allow us to meet your commission needs for the day anyway.

Once we realized that Meven was bipolar, we politely dismissed ourselves and agreed to never go to that store again. Your loss, La-Z-Boy!

Anyway, with all of this said, I realize that being in sales isn't easy, and I also recognize that a certain amount of persistence is needed. So if there are any furniture salespeople reading this post, I apologize if I struck a nerve.

But more importantly, if anyone knows where we can find a neutral-colored, non-leather, chair and a half + ottoman, please let me know. Especially if it's in a place where Meven doesn't work.