Monthly Archives: April 2007

Wow. Yum.

I swear I’m not becoming a secret corporate blogger, but this afternoon I was horribly craving a Tofutti Cutie. There weren’t any at the store, so instead I got Stephen Colbert’s Americone Dream (Ben & Jerry’s). Now, I don’t like ice cream, and I don’t like chocolate. But having seen him eat so much of it on his show, the ironic marketing got to me. And believe me, it is good. Really good. Despite the fudge covered waffle cone chunks, the thought of which, craving passed, is now making me feel gross. Ugh.

Sick in many senses

U/S results: everything looks normal so far! Still too early to see much, but like Julia suggested, we’re going with NBHHY. Nothing Bad Has Happened Yet. All of that stress for that. I woke up this morning nauseas, gagging, stuffy, achy, and overall feeling like a total disaster. I guess “woke up” really isn’t that accurate because I didn’t sleep very much.

In looking at history, I am not a declensionist, but neither am I a progressivist. I don’t believe that history has been a story of decline, progress, or least of all, cycling. I’m not sure what history has to tell us about actions we can take in the present, except that nothing is natural, nothing is inevitable, and nothing is predetermined (in the human experience, religiously/spiritually I believe that time is non-linear). It gives me peace to think that lots of ugly -ism’s, as well as celebrity worship and even “rational thought” are historical constructs, rather than something innate in human beings. All of this means that we can change things. That’s what I take from history in my personal life and that’s the message I try to get across to students. That we don’t have to accept anything at all as immutable.

Days after the shootings at Virginia Tech, some conservative pundits are blaming the victims and liberal Americans for the tragedy. Neal Boortz claims the shootings were symptomatic of the ” wussification of America.” Mark Steyn blames it on a “culture of passivity” and the lack of real men in the United States. John Derbyshire blames it on “the ludicrous campus ban on licensed conceals” and lack of a “spirit of self-defense” among the victims. [Check out Media Matters and Daily Kos for more practiced discussion, if you’re interested.] Other writers and thinkers can and will, I’m sure, do a better job of attacking each of those points on their merits. What I’m concerned with, as an intellectual historian, is the mode of thought that allows them to think and speak this way. I’m not interested in the derivation of it because, while I think it can probably be traced somewhat in the sources, we’re too close to it, too invested in it, to analyze it as well as I’d like.

I don’t understand the growth of the vehement, and in my opinion, mean in multiple senses, conservative commentary in this country. It’s something that to me, came out of nowhere while I was living abroad, and has gotten worse while I’ve been stuck in the 18th and 19th centuries for the past five years of graduate school. It’s not necessarily “new,” certainly I’ve read personal attacks in the press of the past two centuries. Rape victims, orphans, the impoverished, slaves, alcoholics, I’ve seen them all blamed for their suffering in the pages of archival material.

But college students and faculty, male and female? At a privileged private school of all places? Who have been shot, murdered, and terrorized by an armed gun man? That seems like an extension, an expansion of blaming the victim I would not have expected.

It seems like an abdication of personal responsibility, of social responsibility, being construed, incorrectly, as an examination of that same problem. If we can just argue that we’ve produced a nation of wusses, emasculated men, and children, then certainly gun violence, domestic violence, violence in media, and the poor treatment of mental illness in this country are not worth discussing.

There were acts of everyday heroism in Blacksburg, VA. I don’t want to discuss how the faculty and students responded when faced by an armed and homicidal young man. I don’t understand how anyone could look at that situation and suggest that it would have been better had everyone else been armed as well. Police officers and swat specialists are trained extensively in handling armed criminals. I don’t want to live in a society where everyone requires that sort of expertise to go about their everyday lives. I don’t think it is inevitable that seriously disturbed individuals will perform mass murder. I want non-condemnatory dialog about how this young man got to this point, about why, despite their best efforts, none of his professors were able to get him help. And I don’t want us to have any tolerance for the sort of hate-mongering, self-righteous speech we have witnessed both in the aftermath of this catastrophe and other lesser crises we’ve seen in the past two weeks.

Absolutely No Information

Ugh. They wouldn’t tell me anything. I knew that was a possibility but I’ve never had a tech refuse to tell me absolutely anything at all. I asked, “You can’t even tell me if the pregnancy is in my uterus.” She very coldly answered, “No.” We tried to argue but she even said, “We don’t even have a doctor here to read it [in the ultrasound clinic]. We send it to the hospital to be read.” Well I know that’s not true, unless things have changed for the worse, because I was in there in November and there was someone who read it on site. What’s the point though?

I put a call in to the doctor who won’t be my doctor for much longer, and have been assured in two phone calls that Dr. M has asked them to put a rush on it and I will hear as soon as they have the results.

Yes I’m annoyed. What makes me the angriest though is that it seems the more abnormal and high risk I get, the less willing anyone in this health system is to help me. That’s not totally fair, a receptionist at the student health services of all places, somewhere I have never considered as a place to get good care, was very helpful in getting my referral moved on more quickly.

But, to end this post on a hopeful note we’re both pretty sure we saw that the baby is in my uterus and although I had a bad angle of vision, Josh thinks he might have seen a flicker. So for the moment we’ll go with a living baby in a uterus. More tomorrow.

Thanks for all your supportive comments and for updating your blogs to distract me this morning/afternoon.

4.5 Hours to Go

Little steps. My u/s is in 4.5 hours.

With Natan, I couldn’t work on days I had doctors’ appointments so I spent most of the day on the couch re-reading Harry Potter novels. My new procrastination and distraction tool is apparently blogs. I’m frustrated that so few people have written new posts today because it’s only 8:30am and I’ve run out of them! C’mon, am I going to have to do some WORK before my appointment today? I did find a blog I hadn’t seen before via the Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Loss Directory. Melissa, whose sad but funny posts, especially this one, made me want to read more, caught my attention because of its title.

I’m so nauseous today, but not sure if it’s morning sickness or terror.

I wish I knew what the subject of my post this afternoon will be….

The Plan

First, thank you everyone.

I might as well post a post rather than extending my comments. At my last meeting with my current OB, I got a brief description of the plan for a next pregnancy: cerclage at 12 weeks, progesterone starting at 16 weeks. The doctors had no definitive answers for why I went into pre-term labor based on pathology reports. Some thought an IC (incompetent cervix) and some thought there was a problem with the progesterone production in the placenta, and some thought it was just a freak accident not likely to happen again. My doc falls in the IC category, but I fall into the second because I don’t believe my cervix opened “silently.” I was having contractions for weeks, which I went to the ER for and called the office about numerous times, but having not experienced labor before, I believed them when they told me they were Braxton Hicks because they weren’t close together.

So I guess there’s not much reason for me to be seen regularly before then, except that I want to be. And as I’ve emphasized on the phone, my dates are not as clear as they have been in the past because while I had two periods, they weren’t normal for me, so for all I know I’m not 5w 2d but 6w or 4w.

I trusted Dr. M and the university system until now, because I believed that no one could have known what happened would happen. And I thought that given the extremity of my situation, and the number of times doctors and hospital staff said to me that it was totally unexpected and even “scary” that no one would dare to dismiss my concerns this time. But getting jacked around right away with this pregnancy has very much reformed my thinking.

So anyway, I could entertain you all with stories about yesterday’s conversations (such as being told one doctor had an opening in July!), but I’ll just tell you the results from this morning’s conversations: I have an appointment with an OB outside of the university system! Nurses appointment April 26th and doctor’s appointment on May 4th! Earlier if they have a cancellation. As soon as I mentioned my history, the receptionist got very warm and kind and said, “Well, we want to see you as soon as possible then.” And there’s a maternal-fetal specialist they can refer me to right in the same practice.

At least all of this has distracted me from my greatest current fear, that the baby’s already dead.
Still keeping the ultrasound for tomorrow, though. Right now I actually have some hope that I’ll get good care without arguments and tears.

Advice?

I am having an ultrasound on Wednesday, as I mentioned. I have been having a long discussion with Gwynne, about the length it takes to get an appointment in our lovely university system. I’m wondering, for those of you who have had subsequent pregnancies after loss, when did you get seen?

Dr. M. saw me with our second pregnancy at 6.5 weeks because I was cramping and bleeding a bit. Although we have this scheduled ultrasound and a nurse’s appointment, I will not have a conversation with him until May 23rd unless I call and argue with the nurses and reception. I suppose I could make up a problem for some attention. It turns out the ultrasound is in the ultrasound clinic, not his office.

It seems that if I switch doctors, I cannot get an appointment with anyone else until that point unless I self-diagnose as “high risk.” And then I have to have a referral. If I want to switch to a private practice where I might get seen faster, I also need a referral, which requires an appointment with my PCP, for which I will also have to wait, unless I suppose, I pretend to have a more pressing problem than a history of pre-term labor, like the flu perhaps.

Apparently high-risk pregnancies require referrals but “normal” ones do not according to my insurance. My PCP has not diagnosed me as high-risk yet, because I have actually not seen her since 2005 (I was out of the system for a year and then I went straight to Dr. M since as a “normal” pregnant woman I could self refer).

In some ways it seems it might be easier to stay with Dr. M since I don’t have to fight with insurance then, and to just act as if I’m in a crisis every time I call the office so that the nurses have to talk to him. What do you all think?

Tomorrow I plan to put together a list of questions for my ultrasound on Wednesday. I used to just close my eyes until someone said, “there’s the heartbeat,” but now I want to know more, lengths, widths, movements, everything.

The Miscarriage

Last spring, at 10 weeks, 5 days along, I learned that our first baby had either never had or had lost its heartbeat. It was in a 10w 5d size sack, but was only 8 weeks 5 days big. Josh was in Kiev, and wouldn’t be home for two more weeks. I didn’t want a D&C, because I thought it was best to let things happen naturally, and I was afraid of damage to my cervix. I smile somewhat wryly at that now, since my cervix naturally seems to have a problem anyway. So I waited it out. When I finally started bleeding a week later, it was horrible. I woke up in the middle of the night to wrenching pain and dragged myself to the bathroom. For two days I suffered through periodic cramping, and then finally it stopped and I just bled. I hoped that I wouldn’t end up needing the D&C anyway, that the process had taken care of itself. A subsequent ultrasound showed my uterus was empty (that’s a sad situation – looking at an ultrasound and hoping to see nothing.) My period came about five weeks later, my beta hcg may never have gone below 5, and I became pregnant right away again with Natan.

Part of the reason I was so shocked by the support we got after Natan’s death was that people were anything but after my miscarriage. There were great exceptions, like my mother-in-law, in particular, who flew up to be with me. Granted, some of the same people who were not supportive after the miscarriage have still been fairly awful so it’s not entirely about the dates. One friend, my oldest friend, has a talent for calling when I clearly won’t answer the phone and then leaving long messages about “trying” to reach me. She still does that. She heard about the miscarriage from her mother first, and then called a few times after 11pm. Finally I got a hold of her and she talked for twenty minutes about everything that was happening in her life. I thought, OMG, maybe her mom didn’t tell her. So I asked if she knew what happened. She said yes, and then continued to talk about a problem she was having with her passport. One thing I clearly remember her saying was that her mom told her, “This is why you shouldn’t tell people you’re pregnant before 14 weeks.” That was the last I heard from her for weeks. After a certain amount of time, and when my hurt finally got too big to ignore, I called her again and tried to tell her about my feelings. She half-apologized, but offered excuses about her busy life. Honestly, I’ve hardly forgiven her, and the fact that she only calls now during her half hour drive home from work does not make me overly eager to answer the phone. Her husband, with whom I’ve always had a tense relationship, asked to see Natan’s picture, and teared up while holding it. I almost feel more comfortable with him now.

Other than that, we faced the normal stupid comments. So really, if I’m feeling reticent about this pregnancy, it’s more to protect myself from having to tell people I no longer trust if it ends too soon. And because I’m afraid I’ll have to face some true pity and condescension and I can’t stand anymore of that from stupid, inconsiderate people.

I do believe being open about having a miscarriage, though, helps you cope. Twenty-four days after learning we’d lost the baby, I had to go on a month-long research trip to another city. When I arrived, the only other person staying there was an obviously pregnant woman. Fortunately she left after two days. Two other women arrived then, though. It happened that they were both pregnant, one with the same due date I had had, one due a week later. They were just entering their second trimester when we arrived, so they were happy, excited. It was just the three of us, plus one of their husbands, in the house (except for two weekends my husband came to visit). T., whose husband D. had come with her, had a flare up of a chronic disease immediately after arriving. During a conversation with him about her, I confessed that I had just had a miscarriage, and that we would have had the same due date. He told his wife about it, and the next time I saw her, she was so sympathetic and cried about it. She told me about how this pregnancy was perhaps her only opportunity to be pregnant – she needs to be on misoprostol, also known as RU-486, for her disease and her doctors had only given her a year to be off of it. She only became pregnant after 3 months of trying – thus giving her only until her due date to be off the medication. During another conversation, the second woman mentioned that she had had to use IVF to become pregnant. Thinking about how easily I had become pregnant, and how easy it would be for me to get pregnant again, I actually honestly felt, well, if one of us had to miscarry, I was glad it was me. Except for a couple more episodes, that was the end of my jealousy. Of course, I didn’t have much of a chance since I was pregnant again by the end of my next cycle.

“This is why you shouldn’t tell people you’re pregnant before 14 weeks.” That comment made me feel almost ashamed. The smugness of it seems to suggest I deserved it. Reasonably, I know I didn’t bring the miscarriage on myself simply by telling people I was pregnant. I suppose part of it is that then you don’t have to tell people when it ends, which is difficult to do. But I didn’t tell anyone I thought wouldn’t be supportive. I know differently now.

Confession, Confusion

I am, apparently, pregnant. I started to suspect two weeks ago. I got confirmation a week ago, last Friday morning. But I didn’t believe it. The second line was really faint, so I thought, oh, this is a dud. I told Josh about the faint line, but I insisted that it was probably a mistake. I took another one Sunday morning, the day my period would have really been due if my body was back to a 28-day cycle. Another second faint line. I still expected my period to just show up. By Tuesday it hadn’t, so I tried another brand. This time, a dark second line. Wednesday, darker. I know it sounds totally crazy that I would refuse to believe so many tests. It’s not an “accident,” I know I’m fertile. Dr. M had said that he would think it’s okay to try after two or three cycles, so we just stopped not trying. But for some reason, I just didn’t expect it would happen. I felt like my body is crazy enough, why wouldn’t it just decide to throw some secondary infertility into the mix? I, in fact, decided I wouldn’t even write about it on my blog before 10-12 weeks, since it’s probably going to be a miscarriage, and I would like to go on denying it anyway. But then I went through the week numb, unless I was actually thinking about being pregnant, and then I’m a crying heap.

I know many women out there would love to be able to get pregnant during any cycle. And if this one ends with a living baby, I’ll be over the moon. If it ends tragically, I don’t think I’ll be any more of a mess than I would have been had it happened a year later. So I guess I’m “lucky,” relative to many women in this sad blogland. No one needs to say congratulations or feel happy for me.

I have my first ultrasound on Wednesday. That’ll be a difficult event, since it’s quite possible that even if the pregnancy is still viable, a heartbeat won’t show up yet.

As for how I’m feeling, well, I’m gagging all the time and peeing like crazy (that was the first tip off when one day two weeks ago I went to the bathroom six times in a few hours). My back is hurting alot, which freaks me out, since it’s of course a symptom of both pregnancy and miscarriage. And I was having lots of twingy feelings in my cervix, but that seems to have gone away. When I told the nurse about the weirdness in my cervix, she didn’t seem to understand.

Talking to the nurses at my doctor’s office is bringing up some anger I didn’t realize I had. I don’t blame anyone for what happened. But I remember how in the weeks before I went into full blown pre-term labor, I called the office multiple times saying I didn’t feel right, I felt like the contractions were too strong to be Braxton Hicks. I couldn’t even get them to talk to Dr. M about anything unless I cried, even though he assured us he wanted us to call anytime. So I’m thinking that I need to find a different doctor, because as much as I trust him, I cannot handle the nurses. Would you believe when I called to make an appointment, the nurse scheduled me for May 23rd?

I got really upset about that, and immediately started working on going to a different office. But then apparently the doctor learned I’d called, so I got a call back with an ultrasound appointment for Wednesday. I also don’t like that the nurse sounded dubious when I said my cervix felt weird. I just cannot handle anything less than total order and attention to any concerns I have, and I realize I’ve lost trust in them. I’m keeping the appointment though, because I can’t imagine I’ll get in to another doctor before then.

Emily already figured this out on her own, but anyone else that I know in real life, I’m not talking about it. And I probably won’t mention it much on my blog until it seems I’ve made it into the second trimester at least.

Pride cometh before

Here I go again trying to explain to myself why my annoyance at some Bugaboo-brand pushing women is not all about pain and jealousy. The feelings expressed here aren’t directed just at the anonymous coffee-shop women or random mothers of the world. I don’t talk about many of the more personal slights I experience because this blog is not anonymous enough for that. And because I’m trying to understand that people I know who hurt me are not just evil individuals, they have an entire culture backing up their insensitivity.

I read an article in the New York Times recently where a very accomplished woman called the moment she gave birth to her daughter her “proudest” moment. That statement, and the virtual nods from women around the world, encapsulates why the world has at times seemed a mean and dark place for me since Natan died. I do know the miracles that go into producing children. I do know it’s amazing that anyone is ever born considering the millions of things that need to happen just perfectly for it to have a happy ending. But I know best of all how little we have to do with any of that – despite what the constant mail I get from the March of Dimes tells me are seven simple things I can do to improve my chances for a healthy pregnancy. I know medicine can do a better job and that’s why I’m doing my best to learn about what happened to me, and what I can do to prevent it from happening again.

If pregnancy doesn’t work out or if it’s nearly impossible for you to get pregnant, it likely has little or nothing to with a personal failure. I apparently get pregnant very easily. I have yet to have a cycle in my life where I’ve had “unprotected” sex and not gotten pregnant. We see where that accomplishment has gotten me. I have no pride in that. A friend of mine struggled to get pregnant for years, but she now has a 3-month old baby – from her first cycle of IVF. Should she be proud that she had the money and the ability to get pregnant? Should any woman be proud of that?

No. Not unless you think that women who want and cannot have children ought to feel the opposite of pride, which is of course, shame. Just for fun, here’s what the Oxford English Dictionary has to say about pride:

  1. A high, esp. an excessively high, opinion of one’s own worth or importance which gives rise to a feeling or attitude of superiority over others; inordinate self-esteem.
  2. Personified, esp. as the first of the seven deadly sins.
  3. Arrogant, haughty, or overbearing behaviour, demeanour, or treatment of others, esp. as exhibiting an inordinately high opinion of oneself.
  4. A consciousness of what befits, is due to, or is worthy of oneself or one’s position; self-respect; self-esteem, esp. of a legitimate or healthy kind or degree.
  5. The feeling of satisfaction, pleasure, or elation derived from some action, ability, possession, etc., which one believes does one credit

You get the point. None of the available definitions suggest a miracle, a gift, or thankfulness. I realize I’ve picked a straw woman of sorts here. I’m sure that the woman feels all of those admirable feelings about her daughter. I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt that she wouldn’t think infertile women, or women who seem to become pregnant easily but lose it from there, should be ashamed. If she has ever in her life said that an infertile woman needs to just relax and it’ll happen, however, I take my charitable comments back. I nitpick about words (and grammar, and spelling, and style, and historical dates), but only because I realize how casual use of powerful words like “pride” can be damaging. And because I am not so convinced that many of us don’t take an absurd pride in our biological gifts.

I’m proud of many of my accomplishments even as I realize that the ability to achieve them has been a gift. Biology and destiny gave me mental gifts and the background to make a great life for myself, in terms of academic and intellectual achievement. I would never be prideful about my intelligence or the fact that I have two great parents. I didn’t do that. What I’ve done with it matters.

Having a baby that lives would be the happiest moment of my life. I am sure of that. I’ll reserve my pride, however, for later. Of course, healthy children emerge from the womb partially because the mother has demonstrated that she can take good physical care of a child. But really what does that mean? Am I proud that I didn’t drink, didn’t smoke, didn’t eat sprouts, didn’t eat too much junk? Not really, because I didn’t have a problem giving up any of that.

Maybe I am wrong. Maybe I actually am just bitter. I don’t think so. Long before it ever occurred to me that we would lose Natan, I read a passage in a book I used to admire – Christiane Northup’s Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom. In the section on miscarriages (unfortunately I cannot quote it since I subsequently got rid of the book), she mentions that in her clinical experience, women who have multiple losses, or late miscarriages, often turn out to have mixed feelings about motherhood and their femininity. You don’t say? I would certainly say that my miscarriage and especially Natan’s death has left me with mixed feelings about fertility. The suggestion her book makes that those feelings pre-existed my loss, and that if I can resolve them I’ll go on to have a “successful” pregnancy makes me feel angry. That’s an understatement – actually it makes me feel enraged. Even before the book was talking about me I understood her description, even if it seems true in her clinical experience, as abusive.

Northup’s books are meant to help women take back control of their physical health from a science that has alienated them from their bodies. It also speaks a lot about psychosomatic illness. Until I read the paragraph about loss, it all seemed so reasonable to me. Yet her idea that women, in any sizeable numbers, cause their losses because of their state of mind comes quite close to subscribing to the historical theory of hysteria. I don’t doubt that our state of mind impacts our pregnancies, but the idea that many women who think they want their children could subconsciously have enough anxiety over their pregnancies as to cause miscarriage or go into pre-term labor simply does not convince me.

I could just dismiss her, if only she wasn’t so popular. If only her ideas weren’t shared by so many other sources in our culture. If only they weren’t used by the self-righteous to justify judgments of people who struggle with their health, mental and physical.

Pride sums up what I mean when I talk about the discourse around parenthood. It’s the idea that children, simply because they physically exist, provide some sort of entitlement for their parents — an entitlement to look upon the childless as somehow childlike; an entitlement to give unsolicited advice; an entitlement to pretend that non-parents who get to go to bed at 9pm if they want to are lucky; an entitlement to believe parents have more invested in the world than non-parents.

When and if I have living children, they will become the center of my world. But I’ll do my best to understand it doesn’t make us the center of the world. I won’t let them keep me from reaching out to other women who have lost. I am speaking here of the women from the pregnancy yoga class. I actually don’t think any of them saw me, because none of them actually ever had occasion to see my face. I saw them from the backs and the side and only realized who they were, probably, because of the group feature. So I don’t blame them for not coming up to me.

I am going to go out on a limb though, and say that it would be wrong to avoid me because of my loss. Was our connection broken because my son died? Weren’t we in the class together because we were pregnant? Didn’t I have a baby? Didn’t I labor and deliver? Is my experience no longer part of the experience of childbirth and parenting because it had a bad ending? I wouldn’t join their mommy and baby group, and no I wasn’t the best friend of any of them, but what would be so wrong of me to say hello? To take a moment to congratulate them on their babies? What would be so wrong with one of them walking up to me? I wouldn’t suggest ogling over their babies in front of me, but their identities haven’t been subsumed. They should still be capable of speaking to another woman without lapsing into baby talk so it should be possible to relate to me.

I am not a pariah now, and while it might upset me to see parents with their children, if I were truly unable to handle the encounters, I would stay in. As I’ve mentioned, seeing babies does hurt, but the only thing that has made my loss bearable has been the compassion of other people. The fact that their children lived doesn’t make my loss more acute – I miss my son, not theirs. Part of what makes being in public so difficult is the feeling that I don’t belong there – that my experience is unpleasant and frightening for others. A compassionate word, heartfelt, would have made me more comfortable in the long run, even if I had cried in the short. Would that really be so terrible? If I cried in public? If everyone in the coffee shop had to hear it?

As I’ve said in other posts, Natan’s death wasn’t the first trauma of my life. It has been the worst, which surprises me very much to realize. It’s the only thing I really and truly regret–the only bad thing which I don’t think will ultimately result in anything good. It hasn’t shaken my faith as the others did, which is either a testament to that faith or to the fact that I couldn’t have managed this without it. So even as I mourn Natan, I go about my life very aware of myself, my wants, my needs, what I understand, what I don’t. I don’t want to avoid the emotions and feelings I have about his death, and about my future chances for having living children. I would rather face every baby born in the world than be treated, or have my grief treated, like an elephant in the room. Sure, as I said in the last post, I don’t want to spend multiple Mondays listening to the babies cooing in the coffee shop – but that’s as much about preserving my ability to work as shielding my pain. And avoiding the discomfort of causing them discomfort, if by chance one of them does catch my eye.


Without Commentary

While doing our taxes today, I learned the following from the Michigan Taxpayers’ Guide:

“Under 2006 PA 319, taxpayers receiving a Certificate of Stillbirth from the Department of Community Health may take a refundable income tax credit. For the 2006 tax year, the credit is set at $150.00.”

Moreover, if claiming this credit, you cannot e-file. Thanks Michigan, but I don’t think we’ll take your condolences next year around this time.