Archive | August, 2012

Busiest Day Ever.

29 Aug

Whoa…  I don’t think I’ve ever had such a busy day in my life.  But it’s over and we’re so happy. 🙂

The morning started off early with a monitoring appointment at Dr. B’s.  I’m happy to report a 21mm follicle!  It’s exactly where they wanted it.  I’ve been feeling twinges near my ovaries for the past day or so, so I’m glad that it wasn’t all in my head.  They called with my blood work this afternoon and my estrogen was a whopping 274!!! Thank you, Gonal-F!  They told me to go ahead and trigger with an Ovidrel shot and start progesterone supplements on Sunday.   Great news!

While we were anxiously awaiting closing, we stopped into Home Depot and bought our paint… and a new toilet seat (the old one was gross…).
And then we went to closing and signed a TON of papers. But after that… It was done… And the house we’ve waited 4 long months for is finally OURS!!

And now comes the cleaning… Oi… We only spent an hour or so there this afternoon, but it ended in me threatening to burn the house down and begging Jeremy to replace the toilet so I don’t have to scrape the hard water deposits out of it… 😉  I think it was the Ovidrel talking.
But seriously, there are, what I’m assuming, brown hard water deposits at the top of the toilet bowl. I bleached them, I soaked them with scrubbing bubbles, I used CLR, and I scrubbed like crazy…  Tomorrow I’ll try vinegar and lime-away…  After that, who knows…  The shower doesn’t look much better. 😦  If you have any ideas, I’ll gladly take them.

On a positive note, I replaced the toilet seat all on my own.  I’m a beast. 😉

After all of that, I still had to attend my very first grad school class.  It was underwhelming, but there may have been just a little too much excitement today for me to get pumped about going to school.

I submitted our greyhound application today late last night too.  They called tonight and scheduled our visit to their kennel to pick out our new dog.  We’re heading out there in a week and a half.  🙂

So many changes going on, but I’m loving every minute.  Even the gross toilet.  Why?  Because it’s my gross toilet. 😉

Penguin Tuxedos and Family Heirlooms.

27 Aug

At this morning’s monitoring appointment, they found 1 follicle.  The others stopped developing.  My one follicle is measuring at 19mm at day 15.  While it’s a bummer that the other three stopped, I keep telling myself that 19mm is huge for me.  At day 21 last month, I only had an 18mm follicle.  As much as I wanted to increase our chance with a couple eggs, it only takes one egg to make a baby. :/  Over the past couple weeks, I’ve had a lot of people ask me about follicles and what that means, click here for a neat clip on follicle development and ovulation.

The ultrasound tech started preparing me for the possibility of needing an IUI (intrauterine insemination).  She told me that if this post coital test was bad again, that would probably be what was recommended next. Out of the 2 post coital tests I’ve had so far, they’ve never seen a live sperm.  My body is deadly….  I told her I was totally down with that; that I just want this to be over.

BUT, the IUI is off the table for now.  My estrogen came back at 140.  Still not where we want it, but definitely improving.  AND as for the post coital test….  They found 75% motility in the sperm outside of my cervix. WOOO!!  My body isn’t the mean, killing machine we thought it was. 😉  Dr. B wants me to continue with 75 units of Gonal-F today and tomorrow and then repeat blood work and ultrasound on Wednesday.  We’re hoping for a 21mm follicle and higher estrogen.

I’ve heard Dr. B has no problem cancelling a cycle at the last minute if he thinks there’s no chance.  I completely appreciate that.  I don’t want to put any more medication into my body than I absolutely have to.  But since he hasn’t cancelled us yet, I’m going to keep hoping we have a chance. 🙂

Our weekend was busy, but good.  It started with a large box of injectable medicines being delivered Saturday morning with this sticker on the box:

 

I have no idea what penguins in tuxedos have to do with not freezing your medications, but hey.  Jeremy was home to sign for them and sent me a reassuring text that he stuck them safely in the freezer.  He thinks he’s so funny… 😉

 

I mentioned that my cousin, Tina, was going to be in town for the day on Saturday.  She brought my niece some awesome horses and a beautiful quilt that her grandmother (my great grandmother, Calli’s great great grandmother) made.  Then she said she had something for me, but she didn’t want me to cry (not an easy request these days).

She brought me this dress that had been hers when she was a baby.  She had been saving it for if she ever had a daughter.  Her grandmother, my great grandmother, made this dress as well.  The selflessness of this gift, the fact that it is such a precious family heirloom, and Tina telling me that she knows I’ll get to use it one day were too much and found us both crying.

After my parents got divorced 16+ years ago, my sisters and I lost a lot of contact with my dad’s extended family.  We’ve slowly started reconnecting with them now that we’re all adults.  My brother and I went to my dad’s uncle’s funeral in January partially for that purpose.  No one else from our family went, but we had such a nice time talking to people who knew my parents when they were kids.  I mentioned in that post how sad I was to have lost so much time with these people.  Tina is another one of those people who I’m so sad that we didn’t know better as we were growing up.  She didn’t know I had gotten married until over a year after, and I didn’t know she’d gotten married until 10 years after. 😦

Right now, I can’t even imagine how hard it would be to give away something I’ve saved for my own babies.  It would be heart breaking.  She’s such a beautiful person.  I’m more than blessed to have such a wonderful first cousin, once removed. 🙂

Infertility sucks.  But it’s causing me to become closer to my family and making me realize how incredibly important they are.

I’m still packing like a champ.  Our final walk through is tomorrow and we close the day after tomorrow. 🙂

Mini Follicles

24 Aug

I’m getting ready to call shenanigans on Dr. B’s positivity in this cycle.

I went in for my CD 12 untrasound/blood work/post coital test this morning.  I’ve been having a lot of lower back pain and everything I’ve read said that usually means your follicles are growing nicely.  I was expecting to see a few 18mm+ follicles on the scan.  Just kidding…

She found 4 larger follicles, and by larger I mean 12 to 14 mm each.  Thanks for nothing, Gonal-F.  I had one that big at last month’s CD 13 appointment without meds.  Also, the post coital test revealed exactly zero mobile sperm…  Since Jeremy’s last  test was great, I’m going to assume my very hostile body is killing everything.  Isn’t that special?

The one thing that makes me think we might be moving in the right direction is that my estrogen level is double what it was at this time last month.  109.  Still way too low, but much much better than 53.  They’re not giving up the cycle yet.  I’ve got another box of Gonal-F and will continue with 75 units once a day through the weekend.  They’re going to scan everything again on Monday and go from there.  I’m wondering if Dr. B will be at all interested in converting to an IUI if Monday’s post coital is bad again.  The Gonal-F is starting to burn when it’s injected.  I’m hoping I just hit a nerve yesterday and that’s not going to be the norm.

I’m going to try not to think about it for the weekend.  My second cousin is going to be in town tomorrow for a few hours and we never get to see her, so it will be nice to spend some time together. 🙂  PLUSSSS, our closing date changed.  TO NEXT WEDNESDAY! Yes, they moved it up.  5 days and counting to home-ownership.  🙂  I booked our moving company today too.  We officially move into the new house two weeks from tomorrow.   Also, grad school starts on Wednesday.  Out. Of. Control.

In all honesty, this is probably the best time for a failed cycle to happen.  We’re so busy with moving and school and work that I haven’t had much time to think and obsess about what’s going on.  That’s what we pay Dr. B and the nurses to do.  I’m less invested in this cycle than I’ve ever been.  I’ll be disappointed, but I’ve got enough to focus on that it won’t be nearly as crushing as past cycles.  Unless we switch to an IUI and then all bets are off and I’ll probably fall apart.  You know.

Packing is well underway though… The cats are having panic attacks. 😉

So Far So Good.

22 Aug

From 999 Reasons to Laugh at Infertility’s facebook page today:  “Don’t let infertility knock you down… Let it knock you up instead!” 😉

Getting ready for my 3rd Gonal-F shot.  I feel full, bloated, and a smidgen crampy, so I’m going to assume it’s doing something.  Other than being a little extra weepy, I feel ok.  The nurse at Dr. B’s told me to stick with benadryl for my fall allergies.  It’s better than last year when I refused to take anything, but I’m a little sleepy most of the time.  And being sleepy and weepy aren’t necessarily mixing well…  Cute commercial?  Bawling.  Happy movie ending?  Sobbing.  It’s funny though and I’m not feeling as moody as I was when I was taking clomid.  No hot flashes either.

I’m very ready for Friday’s ultrasound to see how many good sized follicles I manage to make.  We’re feeling positive though.  We close on the house in 8 days.  Our mortgage got approved yesterday afternoon, so we’re all set to go. 🙂

Feeling hopeful.

Injectably Optimistic

20 Aug

I think when I was hoping for a diagnoses, I was really hoping that someone would tell me that everything would be ok.  That everything would work out.  Or for someone to tell me that we were never going to have biological children and to stop trying.

We didn’t get either one of those things today, but we did have Dr. B tell us to prepare ourselves to get pregnant this month.  I was really nervous going into this appointment.  I had no idea what he was going to tell us.  We knew that Jeremy’s test came back wonderfully, but we didn’t know what to make of my wonky levels.  Dr. B started by telling me I have excellent ovarian reserve. WOOO!  At least my eggs are still there and available.  BUT, my LH was too high and my estrogen was far too low.  It took almost 3 weeks to make one 18mm follicle that wasn’t developed enough last cycle.
Dr. B’s plan of action?  Rather than have clomid ruin my uterine lining (and cause more cysts), he wants to try Gonal-F injections.  Gonal-F is an FSH subcutaneous injection.  Rather than using at the beginning of my cycle, he’s having me inject 75 units on days 8 through 11.  It should help my ovaries produce stronger eggs.  I hope.  I have an ultrasound scheduled for Friday and Monday.  They’re prepared to give me an HCG trigger and progesterone supplements as necessary.

I thought for sure that this month would be a wash as I’m already at day 8, but he was more than ready to try a medicated cycle.  The awesome part?  They had a 300 unit of Gonal-F in the office and sent it home with us so we didn’t have to pay for it.  Woo Hooo! 🙂

He doesn’t want to jump to an IUI yet because we might not need it.  I am apprehensively appreciative of that.  While I want us to be able to get pregnant as naturally as possible, I also want this nightmare to be over.  This might be a good happy medium.  If it works.

Having Dr. B tell us to prepare ourselves to get pregnant this cycle was interesting.  Is it really going to be that easy?  Just the right cocktail of drugs?  I’m prepared for this cycle to fail.  I’m prepared to move into an IUI next cycle.  But I’m also getting my hopes up.  I’m hoping that these virtually painless Gonal-F injections will be all my reproductive system needs to get good and knocked up.

So that’s that.  We’re both in better moods than we’ve been in for a while.  We went for another long walk along the river walk by the new house tonight.  This time we walked north.  It was quiet and peaceful.  We talked a little more about the appointment and how scary it is that we’re at the injectable medication stage.  And about how my brave husband is scared of needles. 😉

Wedding Jitters

20 Aug

For the past two years, I’ve found myself not doing things, putting things off, or changing the way I do things to accommodate this hypothetical baby.  Not taking certain vacations because my stomach is swollen from clomid.  Being scared to take allergy medicine in case we actually got pregnant.  Being afraid to commit to Christmas at my mom’s cabin because we might need to be home for monitoring appointments.  Being unsure of starting a new job on top of graduate school with RE appointments and the possibility of a baby.  Not buying any new clothes, just in case.  Anyone who has gone through this knows how hard it is to plan anything.

I’m a matron of honor in a wedding next May.  When Courtney asked me, we had been trying for almost a year to get pregnant.  But, since she had planned on a long engagement, I thought we’d have an adorable baby to drag to the wedding (or to leave with my parents 😉 ).  When she started talking about a destination wedding in Florida a few months ago, I was worried we’d be in the middle of fertility treatments or, even better, very very pregnant.  I was worried about having to tell her we wouldn’t be able to come.  Imagine my relief when she decided on a local wedding.

But then came the bridesmaid dresses.  What if I bought something and got pregnant and then had to buy another dress?  What if they couldn’t alter anything similar?   Was this going to totally stress the bride out?!?!  These seem like silly worries, I know, but it was just one more thing that my infertility is affecting.

We went bridesmaid dress shopping yesterday afternoon.  I casually mentioned possibly needing something to be very alterable.  Court was super quick and willing to accommodate our hypothetical baby.  She quickly changed from short, sleek dresses, to long, flowing dresses without batting an eye.  David’s Bridal even carries a strap on bump so you can make sure the dress looks nice over a belly.

So here I am, in all of my bellied glory, feeling both sad and amused.  And feeling all the more honored to be apart of this wedding.  And thankful for this friend who is willing to be so supportive.  Thanks for being such a chill bride, Court.  You’re wedding is going to be beautiful!

I’m leaving in a few minutes for our appointment with Dr. B.  Cross your fingers for a diagnoses.  Any diagnoses is better than what we have now.

Support Groups = Awesome

14 Aug

Tonight was a wonderful night.

I started seeing a therapist a couple of months ago when I thought I just wasn’t handling things as well as I should be.  I wasn’t sure what I was hoping for, but I was hoping for something.  The woman I was seeing didn’t really have any background in infertility.  At first I thought it would be ok, but the longer I was seeing her, the less I felt she was helping.  I felt like she was more validating my feelings rather than helping me through some obvious problems.  I was really on the fence about going back to see her.

Tonight I went to my first Resolve Infertility Support Group.  If you’ve never checked out the Resolve website, you need to. Now.  Resolve is the National Infertility Association.  It’s full of great information on everything infertility.  They also have a section on finding support groups in your area.  Being only 24, I don’t really know anyone in real life who has going through any kind of infertility.  Our families are chock full of fertile myrtles…  And while I completely appreciate reading other blogs, I was really craving physical interaction with women like me.  I was tired of feeling so isolated and alone.

Honestly?  Going to that support group was one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself.  There were 9 of us total.  And it was wonderful.  I know no one ever wants to find themselves in that situation and I’d rather I never had to set foot in that library meeting room, but I can’t even begin to describe how much better I feel about myself.  I don’t feel so incredibly alone anymore.  Spending two hours talking about things that I’ve never said out loud or that I’ve never had anyone in my life really understand was the best kind of therapy.  While blogging and reading blogs is nice, actually having a conversation with someone who completely understands all of the terms and medications and tests and feelings was unbelievably helpful.  One of the ladies was even using the same RE as I am (and she LOVES him too).  My story wasn’t the worst one and it wasn’t the easiest one.  There were women working on their 4th rounds of IVF,  women who havve barely seen a doctor and everything in between.  For the first time in the past year, I didn’t feel excluded or on the outside.  I didn’t feel uncomfortable around other women. I didn’t feel like I had to hide anything or explain myself.  It was wonderful.

I feel empowered as we continue on.  I feel more peaceful about the way this past cycle ended.  I’m looking forward to seeing Dr. B next Monday and getting a diagnoses.  I’m also very sure now that I’m not going to see my therapist again.  I might look for someone more specialized in infertility in the future, or I’ll just keep going to this support group and see how it goes.  I feel great for the first time in a long time.  It was the ultimate reminder that it’s not just me; I’m not the only one who is struggling through this.  And it couldn’t have come at a better time.  Yesterday was really low.  Tonight I feel like I’ve done a complete 180.

We might never have a baby.  But it’s not just us.  And it’s ok.