Tag Archives: north carolina

Oh, here it goes again

17 Jun

I know I’ve been off the radar here for the past 6 weeks.  Honestly?  I just didn’t know what to say.  I can’t get a handle on my emotions half the time, so putting it into writing would have been a hot mess.  I had nothing new to post as it took more than 8 weeks for my period to come back post miscarriage.
I was all ready to begin a week of provera when it finally started on its own.  The funny thing (and I mean this in a completely not humorous kind of way) is that I was without a period post pregnancy for longer than  I was actually pregnant. It was a relief when it started on its own because it felt like my body was telling me that it was ready to try again.  My body was actually ready before I was.  I still don’t feel ready.  But I know if I don’t do this, if I take too much longer, I won’t ever be able to.

I started my birth control on Friday.  UNC does 3 to 4 weeks of birth control, which puts our 2nd FET at the beginning of August.  About 6 weeks to go…

Today, I went in to have my 2nd saline ultrasound of the year done.  They needed to make sure everything was clear post miscarriage and, thank God, it was.  But I’d forgotten how much those hurt.  While they hurt during for me, I think the 6 hours afterwards are always worse.  I curled up on the couch and zoned out all afternoon.

They also did the mock transfer today.  This was one of the features of UNC that I really liked.  They do a trial transfer just to make sure there are no surprises on the day of.  If you remember my first transfer, it was an awful experience.  I was so crampy and so stressed out and Dr. T did NOT help things.  Today, after she got the speculum in, she was super encouraging and told me just to relax and breathe.  She did three trial transfers before I even knew what happened.  I didn’t feel a thing.  She was so gentle.  I’m pretty sure I told her that I love her.   And I do.  I’ve been in and out of this office a few times since we decided to switch to them in May and each time I see them, call them, or email them, I’m so impressed with the quality of their care.  I was carrying so much stress and fear about this transfer and I have to say that today they alleviated 90% of it.

Tomorrow, they’ll call with my FET schedule.  After that, I still need to have my embryos shipped.  That’s a process that deserves it’s own post entirely…

And outside of infertility this month….

My oldest little brother graduated from high school on June 1.  I got to fly up to see it happen. 🙂

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We celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary last Thursday.  A movie was about all I could manage.  I love him.

 

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And we joined my Jeremy’s family in Kentucky this past weekend for the first annual family camping trip. 🙂

 

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Ps. I’ve lost 7 pounds!  You probably can’t tell, but I can! 🙂

Apple Turnovers and NC Knitting

30 Jan

I’ve been to the fertility clinic 5 times in the past 8 days.  I’ve decided to make it a habit to go to a bakery and buy an apple turn over and a small cup of coffee after every blood draw/ultrasound.  After going to a few different ones, I think I’ve found the most delicious apple turnover in Cary, North Carolina: Once in a Blue Moon Bakery.  Seriously, the best I’ve ever eaten.  Sugar Buzz Bakery is a close second. 😉  It’s the little things, right?  And it makes blood draw/ ultrasound day a little less unpleasant.

And how is everything going?

So far so good!  I went in for blood work on Monday and they found my estrogen was just a bit lower than they wanted it (135) so they upped the gonal-f to 100 and left the menopur at 75.  I went back in Tuesday and my estrogen had gone up to 245, which is great.  My ultrasound showed at least 20 follicles all 7mm to 11mm.  Tuesday’s ultrasound was pretty unpleasant as I’m starting to feel my ovaries.  They don’t hurt unless they get pushed on, but it’s not the most comfortable.  And considering my retrieval is at least a week away, I’m assuming it’s only going to get worse.

Today’s ultrasound showed at least 12 follicles (she didn’t count them all) measuring between 8 mm and 13 mm. My estrogen came back at a whopping 753!  That’s a huge jump in just a couple days. 🙂  Starting ganirelix tonight to make sure no ovulating happens before everything gets nice and big.  They like to trigger when most follicles are between 18 mm and 23 mm.  We’re getting there!

Symptom-wise, my headache isn’t as bad as it was over the weekend.  It’s just dull and in the background now.  I am tired and super bloated.  I would love to just sleep for the next week.  I know i was bored pre-IVF, but these days I am so incredibly thankful that I don’t have to do this AND go to work.  You ladies who do both are super women!

I’ve been knitting up a storm for the past few weeks.  Want to see? 🙂

The floor in our new house is very… scratchable… And our dinning room furniture was in desperate need of a makeover… AND the dark furniture and the dark floors needed to be broken up…
Thus.. Chair Socks.  I just love how cute they are.  And they can go right into the washer and dryer. 🙂

chair socks

I started these before Christmas and finished them up a couple weeks ago.  They were an interesting knit, but I think I’ll do the heels differently next time.

Love Socks

Click for pattern

I made these for my mom’s birthday.  She got them on Monday, just in time to wear them through Illinois’s bitter cold week.

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Click for pattern

I made these baby socks out of some left over sock yarn.  I made myself these socks a couple years ago and just love that our baby will have socks that look just like mine. 🙂

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Click for pattern

And finally, this baby sweater.  I bought this undyed wool specifically to knit during our IVF.  I knew I’d want to knit something baby related, but didn’t feel like trying to find a gender neutral color that I loved.  After I knit it and a matching hat up, I found I actually really liked the color.  It’s a soft cream color.  I might end up dying it later, but for now it’s going to stay like this.

Mossy Baby Sweater

Click for pattern.

I’m sure more baby knitting and sewing will commence over the next 6 weeks until we know the results of our FET.  It feels hopeful, like I’m putting good vibes out there and preparing for the best possible outcome.  We’ve been joking that if both of our embryos make it, I’ll have to duplicate everything I’ve made so far. 😉

Blood work tomorrow and blood work and ultrasound on Saturday.  More soon! ❤

And We’re Off!

25 Jan

I went in for blood work and ultrasound on Thursday.  I was so excited when they told me that as long as my blood work came back normal that I would be starting injections!!  I was bummed when my estrogen came back way too low and went in the next day for more blood work.

Thankfully, Friday’s estrogen level was great and I was cleared to start meds last night.  I’m taking 75 ius of gonal-f, 75 ius of menopur, a prenatal, and an aspirin every night.  I go back in Monday for more blood work and another ultrasound and they’ll probably raise my meds then.

By this morning, I had a nice migraine going on.  I hope that’s not going to be a trend for the next 10 days.  The injections themselves are killing me.  My gonal-f and menopur are mixed together into one injection, but instead of going into my lower tummy, they’re going into my upper arm. 😦  I’ve never given myself an injection in the arm before and it’s hard.  And it hurts!  It’s intramuscular, so the plunger does NOT want to push down and it burns the entire time.  BUT, it’s doable.  And I can give them to myself, so it can’t be that bad.  Jeremy is assisting by pinching skin for me, but even that is a little hard for him. :/

I still don’t have my lupron, my prometrium, or my progesterone in oil.  My insurance company is taking its sweet time approving them.  Thank goodness I still don’t need them just yet.

Estimated retrieval dates?  February 5, 6, or 7.  Less than 2 weeks to go!! 🙂

Meds are Here!

20 Jan

Fedex came at a decent hour this afternoon and dropped this crazy mess on my front porch.  Things just got real. Yikes!

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The gonal-f is stored safely in the fridge and the rest has taken up residence on the counter that houses my coffee maker.  Because I won’t be needing that for a while.  The length of some of those needles is nauseating…  It’s hard to believe I’m still missing three medications.

This week is going to consist of a lot of waiting.  Jeremy is working in Maryland for the week.  I never love it when he goes out of town, but this time is different because our parents aren’t just down the street anymore.  It’s going to be a very quiet week until things start moving.  And I do hope they start moving soon because I am ready to get going.  I am ready to get this show on the road!

2014!

2 Jan

Well, 2013 is officially behind us and I am so excited!  2013 was a big year for us.  I finally got a diagnosis, had my lap and lupron, had 3 more IUI’s, started looking into adoption/foster care, moved to North Carolina, sold our house, and finally got IVF coverage.  A year ago I wouldn’t have been able to fathom all that happened this past year.  It was a hard year, but it was so productive.

Our current timeline looks like we’re about 4 weeks out from my egg retrieval and 7 weeks out from our first transfer (give or take a few days here and there).  I’m not nervous yet.  Just excited.  All 6 of our IUIs filled me with complete dread.  My goal is to go into our transfer feeling calm and positive.  So far, so good. 7 weeks to go… 🙂

We had our IVF education class on Tuesday.  It was basically going over all of the various medication and how to inject them.  The class consisted of us and another couple who were obviously new to fertility treatments.  Jeremy and I sat and took it in.  There wasn’t much that we already didn’t know.  The other couple took notes frantically on everything the video was saying.  I feel bad for them because the video did a good job at scaring you with medication side effects.  I wanted to hold their hands and tell them it’s all going to be ok either way.   They looked nervous.  Did I look that was when we first started?  Do I still?

The one difference we learned at this class is that they don’t want subcutaneous injections injected into my belly like I usually do.  They want it done intramuscularly into my upper arm.  When I asked her why, she told me they’ve found they get better responses to the meds that way.  Good enough for me.  Follistim, menopur, and ganirelix acetate in the arm, progesterone and lupron in the butt, and then baby aspirin to fight the clotting.  Excellent.   Jeremy didn’t realize that progesterone in oil injections are daily.  Poor husband.  If you remember, Jeremy doesn’t like needles.  I made him promise when we moved here that he would suck it up and give me my injections because our clinic is a good 40 minutes away.  I used to drive to Dr. B’s for my lupron and novarel injections, but that’s not really an option any more.  Hopefully after the first few, he’ll be a little more desensitized. 😉

That’s all for now.  Just waiting for my period to start. WOOO, periods!! 😉

36: IVF, Here We Come!

11 Dec

Today marks our 36th month of trying.  That’s 3 years.  I haven’t felt the need to discuss the past couple because it wasn’t like we were going to magically get pregnant naturally.  lol.

Anywho, we met Dr. T this evening.  It’s true what they say that everything seems to move a bit slower down south.  Our original appointment of 3:30 got pushed to 4:30 and we didn’t actually see him until 5.  He was, however, quick and efficient, less personable than Dr. B, but I don’t need a new friend.  I need a doctor who can perform a medical miracle.  I need a doctor who has found a way to combat OHSS and a doctor who tells me my chances of conceiving are close to 70%.  I need a doctor like Dr. T.

Enter: Lupron Trigger Protocol.

In normal IVF, you take birth control for a couple weeks to settle everything down.  Then you move on to heavy injectables that stimulate the ovaries into creating ridiculous amounts of follicles (and therefore eggs).  You then use an hcg trigger to trigger ovulation.  Then you go in for your retrieval where the doctor sucks all of the eggs out of the follicles, combines them with some sperm in a lab, and transfers embryos back into you 3 to 5 days later.  Any leftover embryos are then frozen.

With Lupron Trigger Protocol, you still take birth control for a couple weeks and then move on to really heavy injectable to stimulate the ovaries.  Instead of triggering with an hcg injection, you trigger with…. a lupron injection.  It still causes ovulation, but it effectively squashes your estrogen and uterine lining.  The eggs are then fertilized and the resulting embryos are frozen.  During the next cycle, you take a couple low dose estrogen injections and then have a frozen embryo transfer (FET).

The reasoning for this is 1) The lupron trigger eliminates (or so Dr. T says) the chance of OHSS because it lower the estrogen.  We saw last summer than I react well to lupron.  We don’t need to be afraid of really beefing up my ovaries. Excellent. 2) Dr. T believes that the estrogen numbers with fresh transfers a couple days after a retrieval are too high for optimal embryo health.  I can see that.  Waiting until the following cycle allows him to create the perfect embryo environment.

This plan sounds awesome to me.  Every time I end up with OHSS they tell me that it will have no effect on our chances of conceiving, but I have a really hard time believing that.  I worry every time that it’s going to impact us because my body is angry and in pain and that can’t be conducive to baby making.

Lupron Trigger Protocol used to be done with fresh transfers until they realized that it didn’t work very well when it came to maintaining a pregnancy.  They’ve done a great job at tweaking it and the miscarriage rate is as good if not better than an hcg trigger fresh transfer.  Dr. T has put our chance of conceiving around 70%.  Dr. B had only given us a 40-50% chance.

Another excellent thing?  Because we’ll be able to push the meds and retrieval process so hard, we should end up with a good number of frozen embryos.  A frozen transfer with this clinic is only $1000.  That’s what we paid per IUI in Chicago.  We could end up with our entire family in one go.

So what’s going on in the meantime?  This month, Dr. T wants to schedule a saline ultrasound.  I’ve never had one.  I’m not looking forward to it.  😦  He also wants to do a couple other blood tests because a lot of my original tests from Dr. B are over a year old.

After that?  We’re ready to roll as soon as my period starts in January.  Wooo hooo!!

Still Packing

19 Nov

We started loading our shipping container yesterday.  It’s pretty bittersweet.  

Because we want to keep the house looking as staged as possible, we’re having to pick and choose from each room what should get packed first.  Last night, we decided my bookshelves were going to be our first task.

I have a lot of books.  I love books.  They’re functional decoration. 🙂  That also means I have A LOT of book shelves.  Here’s what they looked like in our living room yesterday morning:
ImageThat engineer husband of mine calculated that this was close to 1,000lbs of books.  We turned the shelves on their sides and packed them with books so we could use every single inch of space.  

Here’s what my living room looks like without them…
ImageIt’s so sad and boring now.  We should probably hang a picture there, but I don’t feel like putting another hole in the wall for just a week.

BUT, it all condensed and packed really well and now I know that our house will fit into 2 of the shipping containers that we ordered. 🙂  I’m getting more and more excited as we get closer to our moving date (a week from Friday!).  Our house has had a few showings and we’re trying to be calm and zen about it selling.  It will sell.  It will.  🙂

Tonight, we’re tackling my office and family room.  We have this container until Thursday and container 2 comes on Friday.

I’m thinking of this next week as the home stretch.  It’s almost over.  And then great things are going to happen!