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Monthly Archives: November 2011

The World Be Buggin’

Ok, so I’ve been a terrible blogger.  There were so many other bloggers who posted during Thanksgiving, and I don’t know how they did it.  I only had my mother for a week, I only cooked for 3 people, and I still never found the time.

My thoughts have been all over the place too.  A lot of emotional ups and downs.

Yes, we’re so happy to be pregnant.  Yes, we’ve enjoyed going to baby stores and are starting to pick out what we would like for the baby.

Then, last Tuesday happened.  I started spotting.  Brown spotting, only visible when I wiped.  Never anything in my underwear.  I wasn’t cramping was I?  No?  Yes?  I had to remind myself that I KNEW what cramping felt like.  This wasn’t it.

I called my RN to check in with her.  I know that small brown spotting isn’t a bad thing, but it worries you.  It sucks.  She re-assured me that it was fine.  That brown blood is old blood.  That my girly parts are letting out discharge and some old blood is going to come with that.  If it gets heavier or red, that’s when to worry.

It was still there on Wednesday, but went away after that.  I relaxed a bit, but the thought of miscarriage is always in the back of my mind.  Infertiles know that they’re never safe.

Which only means that we’re left to be utterly amazed by the pregnancy craziness going on around us.

I can’t believe the number of early pregnancy announcements I’ve been seeing on Facebook.  Just yesterday a friend of mine announced hers at 9-10 weeks!  One of those disgusting Kardashian chicks just did the same thing.  Are you kidding me?!?  You are all still at the risk of miscarriage!!!

I don’t wish it upon anyone, but miscarriage can happen to anyone at any time.  I unfortunately also had a friend that went to their 20 week ultrasound to see the sex of the baby, only to find out that there wasn’t a heartbeat anymore.  They had already announced the pregnancy on Facebook and therefore also had to announce the miscarriage.  It was a young, healthy couple.  I know that that’s only a 15% chance of it happening to us, but we had about the same chances of being infertile and we know where we ended up there.

I really feel like I don’t want to announce or buy the baby anything until it’s born.  Baby shower?  No thank you, that’s just asking for miscarriage.  I don’t know if I even feel safe talking about it.

I know so many women who go crazy over every part of becoming and then being pregnant.  I’m not worrying about things.  I’m not scouring the internet.  I’m not over analyzing anything.  No, I’m going into hermit status.  Don’t think about it.  Don’t talk about it.  Don’t do anything, and maybe we’ll fly under the radar and it will be ok.

I’m a different kind of crazy.

I just feel so isolated from all the other pregnant ladies.  I can barely go on message boards.  I get so annoyed.  It’s either, “Oh, this was a total surprise!”, “Oh, I thought I was X number of weeks along, but my doctor said I was less number of weeks along.  I guess I have no idea when my body ovulates!”, “I didn’t get pregnant this month, everyone on here be sorry for me!”, or any other number of just really ignorant posts.

It’s hard for me to accept how stupid the fertiles are about their bodies and pregnancy.  I have no patience for people who want attention because they didn’t get pregnant their third month of trying.  Then finally, I just can’t join the bandwagon of going crazy obsessing about miscarriage.

At least I don’t think I’m obsessing.  I like to think of it as a mindful awareness. I’m not at threat level red.  Just yellow.

Doesn’t help though that I started brown spotting again yesterday.  I had it again today.  I’m not super worried, but it just an annoying reminder that it could happen.  1 in 4 women spot in their early pregnancy, and half of those are miscarriages.

We go in tomorrow for our 6 week ultrasound.  I’ll let you know how it goes.

Beta #2

 

  I apologize that this isn’t going to be a long post.  I’m exhausted….all the time!  I guess that would be my main symptom.  I’m also still getting little round ligament pains, constant hunger, and mood swings.  There are times that I’m minding my own business and then I just want to cry.  No reason.  Not thinking of anything sad or emotional.  I just want to cry.  And eat.  Followed by more sleep.

So my second beta test was today and it’s looking great!  Went from 211 on Friday to 752 today.  So we’ve scheduled the first ultrasound for Dec 1st.  We’ll get to see just how many are in there.  Squee!

I want to be more excited.  I want to be over the moon, but I know better.  My RN said that looking at my number’s she doubts I’ll have a chemical pregnancy, and she said based on how young we are that she doesn’t think we’ll have any chromosomal problems and miscarry.  I just can’t not be cautious though.  I won’t feel good until after week 20.  I try not to think about it too much.

Mom is coming in for the holiday week today.  I’m excited for her to be here and to help us out.  I’m super excited for Thanksgiving.  The nice thing about not being at our big family Thanksgiving is that we only have to fix the things that we like.  We’re not even having a turkey because none of us really like it.  I did pick up a small ham, but it’s mostly just side dishes.  Perfect!

I’ll try to post something longer later in the week.  There are a lot of things going on, and lots to do.

But first I need a nap…

Well

  It wouldn’t be the first (or last) time I was wrong.

  We’re pregnant!

  I don’t even know what to think right now.  I’m happy, I’m nervous, and I’m sad.  I’m nervous because I know we’re not out of the woods yet, and that we can still miscarry.  Although most of our friends and family know what we are going through and we’ve told them all our awesome news, we’re going to wait a bit to say anything on Facebook or tell my small nieces.  

  I’m sad because I’m lucky.  To say we’ve only been TTC for 18 months may sound a lot to some, but to many it’s not.  I’ve only been blogging for two months, and I’ve been able to find and read many other blogs of women who are having a much harder time than us.  I almost feel guilty that we got pregnant on our first IVF.

  To all those out there I say, “I’m sorry.”  I’m sorry for what you’re going through.  I’m still going to keep up with you, send good thoughts your way, and I promise I will never ever take this miracle for granted.  I wish the best for you all, and I hope that the ups and downs you go through will be worth it.  I know some of you might stop reading, and I completely understand.  It’s ok.

  Gosh, it still seems surreal.  I never thought we would get here.  I don’t know what to do with myself. I’m still so gun shy though.  I just don’t want to get so excited and then miscarry.

  The nurse that called said my numbers were really good.  They like to see somewhere in between 10 and 750 (she says they never see a 750), and I was at 211.  I’ll go back Monday to get blood drawn again to make sure the numbers are where they should be (they should double every 48 hours).  If they are then we’ll have an ultrasound on week 6 (I’m at 4 weeks 2 days now).

  Now here’s the question:  How many are there?  They said that we’ll hopefully be able to tell at that 6 week ultrasound.  I kind of hope it’s twins so I don’t have to go through all this again, but I’ll be happy for however many healthy babies I can get.

  Oh, and if we do carry to term, my estimated due date is my birthday, July 25.

  I just don’t know what to do with myself now.  I just want to say a big thank you to everyone who sent thoughts, well wishes, and prayers.  We appreciate it so much and are forever grateful.  

  Hopefully good things to come, so stay tuned if you like.

Levels

  I’ve felt really disconnected lately.  Sort of how you feel when your depressed, but not.  There’s no highs, no lows.  I’m just on a sort of pause.

Friends and family keep asking me how I am.  I think they’re thinking about things more than I am.  They’re so excited and hopeful for me.  I can’t feel anything.

I hate being a downer, but I just don’t feel it.  In my mind we failed.  It’s not waiting to see if we’re pregnant.  It’s waiting to confirm that we’re not.

Not that I’m just wandering around moping.  I’m just waiting until I can move on.  DH and I talked about what we wanted to do if it didn’t work.  He wants to try at least once more, but we can’t afford to even think about it for at least 6 more months.  I just don’t know if I can wait that long.

There have been women who have TTC for years.  We’re on 1 and a half, and I don’t know if I can do it anymore.  I don’t know if I’m strong enough to be in this constant state of pain and struggling.  I don’t know if I have enough strength to go through the adoption process.  I’m tired.  I’m tired of the heartbreak and the tears.

Part of me doesn’t want to give up on the dream of a family, but part of me just wants to free myself from it.  It’s so much harder with the holidays coming up.  Seeing images of parents and children celebrating together, and the pain of thinking that I may never have that.

They say when a child buries a parent it reminds them of their mortality, but when a parent buries a child, it’s their immortality that they lose.  That’s the hardest thing about infertility.  After DH is gone, I will have no one to take care of me.  Then when I die, there will be no one.

So what do we do?  Do we keep putting ourselves through this or do we let it go?  Do I allow myself to move on with my life, but it has to be child free?  What would I even do with myself?  I gave up everything to dedicate my life to a family.  Now that’s not an option.

It’s so painful to accept that.  Why can that be an option for billions of people, but not for us?  Why can’t we have a simple thing like a family?  Why do we have to be outcasts?

That’s what it feels like.  Like even if we do accept that we will never have children, and figure out our way through life, we will be outsiders.  The rest of the world lives in families with children.  It’s in everything.  It’s life.  People have children.  We can’t.

Infertility changed everything.  It changed me, and I don’t always like it.  I went through a lot in my life, and I felt I came out a pretty empathetic, kind, not very bitter person.  Infertility made me jealous, angry, and bitter.  I know it will take me a long time to work through that, and it makes me sad.

That’s the part that makes me want to move on.  I want to be happy again.  I want to free myself and have a purpose again.

*********************************************************************

Ugh ok, enough Negative Nancyness from me.  Let’s pretend we have a glimmer of hope.

I went in today for my progesterone level check.  While I was there I mentioned that I was having quick sharp pains in my ovaries/uterus the day before.  One was even so strong that I literally said, “Ow!”

The nurse said she wanted to take a quick look on the ultrasound to make sure I hadn’t hyper-stimulated.  The uterus looked good and thick.  The ovaries still had some follicles in them, but they were all way under 40 mm and were diminishing.  So I was fine.

What do they think it was then?  Round ligament pain….  Now don’t get your hopes all up!  I’ve had twinges in my ovaries a week before my period before.  Not as severe, but they hadn’t been as stimulated.  It doesn’t convince me.

I’ve taken a couple of HPTs and they were both negative.  Not that even if I was pregnant it would show up this early.  I was actually kind of bummed that there wasn’t any HCG left from the trigger shot.  If you don’t know, that should have given me an early false positive.  It just would have been fun to see those two lines.  Even if it wasn’t real.  I’ve just peed on probably 50 sticks and I’ve never seen two lines.

My BBT has also went up a bit this morning, but our bedroom is the coldest room in the house and it’s finally starting to feel like fall in Texas.  So last night I went under the flat sheet.  So I’m not convinced that says I’m pregnant either, it may just be from the added sheet.

So when will we finally know?  My beta test is scheduled a week from today.  I’ll get my blood drawn in the AM and they’ll call me with results later that afternoon (hopefully).

RMA called this afternoon to tell me my progesterone levels looked “beautiful”, and to keep taking the same injection amount.  Yeah…

I really do appreciate all the thoughts, prayers, and well wishes.  Don’t worry, I’m fine.  No anxious freaking out.  Sorry, I don’t mean harm by being so poo poo on everyone’s positiveness.

Either way, we’ll know in a week.

20 vs 2

I hope that you’ve figured by now that if I don’t post on the day that I have big things going on, I don’t have great news.  Not that it’s the worst-case scenario news.  It’s just usually situations that I have to take the time to live and deal with before I try to put everything to words.

Yesterday was our transfer day.  I got to the office in San Antonio almost an hour early because I was afraid I would run into traffic.  I didn’t mind though because I knew I needed to get my bladder full (it pushes up your uterus so it’s easier for the transfer).  So I just watched tv and sipped on a Strawberry Frappuccino.

They actually surprised me and took me back twenty minutes early.  They had me in the same room and in the same bed.  The nurse asked me if my bladder was full, and I told her that I was working on it.  She gave me a bottle of water to sip on.  I guzzled down the whole thing.

Then the embryologist came in.  He showed me this picture:

  It’s the two embryos they were going to put in me.  He then went on to tell me that two of the embryos arrested (meaning they stopped growing), and that the last one wasn’t looking good.  None of them had reached blastocyst, and the two they were putting in were only morulas.

  I asked him for grades, but he said they didn’t grade things below blastocyst.  I asked him what he thought of the last one, and he said it really only had a less than 50% chance of surviving.  If  something happened he would call me, but it doesn’t look like we’ll have any to freeze.

  On top of all of this he says, “You just had a weird stimulation.”  Everything looked great.  My bloodwork was good.  The follicles looked good.  They got 16 in the retrieval, but only 10 were mature and out of that only 5 fertilized.  Although all 5 looked good on day 3, they just started crapping out.  The reason?  We don’t know.

  So I guess these two looked hopeful enough to go ahead and put in, but I was pretty devastated.  After all of this.  After all that I’ve been through with the fertility diet, the exercising, the acupuncture, the injections, the lab work, ultrasounds, and surgeries all we had to show for it were two not good enough to grade embryos.  What hope do we really have?

  They wheeled me into the operating room and by this time my bladder was about to burst.  They helped my legs into the stirrups, and put the ultrasound thingy on my stomach (not helping the bladder).

  The doctor then came in, he put the speculum in, cleaned out any cervical mucus, and then they put the catheter in and injected the embryos.  It probably took about 15-20 minutes, but all I could think was, “don’t pee on the doctor!  Don’t pee on the doctor!”

  When they finished they put a catheter in to “relieve” me while I was still laying down.  They must have been there 10 minutes.  The nurse who gave me the water even said, “I didn’t think you’d drink the whole thing.”  Just following orders.

  They then wheeled me back to the first room, and tilted the bed so that my feet were a bit elevated.  I stayed like that for about 30 minutes, and then my acupuncturist came in to give me my session there.

  I felt calm and relaxed, but solemn.  DH had to go to work and I knew that he was waiting for my call, but I didn’t know how I was going to call him and not get upset.  I felt like we’ve already failed.  How was I going to tell him that?

  After the acupuncture I headed home.  As I was leaving it seemed like the staff was giving me those eyes and smiles of “well it might work”.  When I got on the main highway I gave DH a call.

  He tried to stay positive, but it was hard for him to argue with me when he didn’t know what a morula was let alone a blastocyst.  His lack of educating himself about anything we were going through was irritating enough, and I could only look forward to explaining our crappy situation to the rest of our friends and family.  I just wanted to be in bed.

  Which is pretty much where I was for the rest of the day.  I tried to be positive.  I talked to them.  Promised them that if they grew big and strong and buried themselves in that I would give them toys, candy, puppies, ponies, and weekly trips to SeaWorld.

  I don’t know what to think at this point.  There have been pregnancies from morula transfers, but not as many as blastocyst.  We didn’t get any to freeze, so if this doesn’t work I have to go through stimulation and retrieval all over again.  That’s even if we want to go through with IVF again, or if we can even afford it.

  Then this morning I’m watching The Today Show.  They had the Duggars on, and sure enough they were there to announce that they are pregnant with their 20th child.  And people wonder why we are Atheists.

Fun Fun Fun Five

Can You Find Waldo?

 

It figures that on the night we get an extra hour I can’t sleep.  I’ve just got too much to think about.  I can’t turn my mind off.

DH and I waited until we heard from the lab to go to Fun Fun Fun Fest.  I knew that the place closed at noon, so when 11:55 rolled around I decided to call and see what was up.  Of course, no one answered so I left a message.

At 11:59 my phone rang and when I went to grab it, it sent it to voicemail!  FUDGE!  I hate that phone sometimes.  They left a message, so I listened.

They said that everything looked good, and gave me instructions for the transfer happening on Monday.  He never told me though how many embryos we had!

This is the moment all sanity left me.  I just broke down.  How could he not tell me?  How could this be the one call that my phone decides to be dysfunctional?  I started to sob.  How many did we have?  What did “everything looks good” mean?  All five?  One good one?  Will we have any to freeze?  Will I have to do this all over again?

I called again, and had to leave a message for the doctor on call.  That message must have sounded crazy.  I was half sobbing/half trying to sound collected.  I know I was being a little insane for just wanting to know how many embryos we had, but I HAD to know!  I couldn’t wait two more days.

To add to my insanity, apparently the lab called back and my phone never rang.  They left a message again, and AGAIN DID NOT say how many embryos there were.  I was a mess.

Finally the actual doctor called me back and I was able to answer.  I felt so bad that I was sounding crazy.  I apologized for my insanity, but I was having an anxiety attack over it.  We had just lost 11 would be embryos, I had to know what we had now.  The doctor was actually really nice about it.  I’m sure I’m not the only crazy infertile person to call her crying.

All five have survived!  I couldn’t be happier.   I’m not sure if they are going to put one or two in, but we have five!

I can’t explain the feelings of knowing that there is finally an embryo out there that shares DH’s and I’s DNA.  There is a physical manifestation of our love for each other.  We never got to have that before, and those 8 cells mean the world.

So the transfer is set for Monday at 10 am.  I’ll be getting pre and post acupuncture sessions, and I hope that will allow me to get some relaxation.  I’m really not worried about the transfer.  I’m worried about what comes after.

I don’t know how I’m going to survive the next two weeks.  How can you not think about it?  How do you not over analyze every twinge you feel?  What’s going to happen if it doesn’t work?  I guess you never really know how you’ll react until that moment.

I’m just not good with no control, and that’s pretty much what the next two weeks are.

Five?!?

I'm down, don't judge me.

My apologies for not posting yesterday.  It’s dumb, really, but I just wasn’t in a great place.  I didn’t want to talk about it.

I went for an acupuncture session yesterday morning, and about half way through I got the call from RMA about our eggs.  Out of the 16 they collected, only 10 were mature, and out of those only five fertilized.

I should be happy with five.  Five is better than none, but I couldn’t help but tear up when my acupuncturist came back in.  I’m just so scared.  Just like that 11 eggs were gone.  How many are going to grow and survive to day 3?

Everything was just going so well that I guess I was dumb enough to let my guard down.  I never thought I would have to think about what if we don’t get any embryos to put in me, let alone freeze.  What if I have to do this all over again?  How soon are we willing to do it?  If we can even afford it.

I’m mad at myself.  Infertiles know better than to just assume the best is going to happen.  Even if we do have really good odds because I’m young and there’s nothing fertility-wise wrong with me.  Odds don’t guarantee me anything.

Now where I get my acupuncture (and work) is the same building that RMA is in (not the main building in San Antonio, but the smaller arm in Austin).  I’m very close with the nurses there now, so I popped in to tell them the news.

I’m glad I was there when I got the call and was surrounded by people that got it.  They comforted me and reminded me  that five was good.  They said that you lose the most the first day, and that most likely what we have on day 3 is what we’ll have to work with.  They said that they hope I get at least four so that we can put two in and freeze two (they won’t freeze just one).

I also told them that the lab assistant that called me needed a bit better bedside manner.  Not that she was really bad, but when she called me and told me I tried to stay positive.  She then said, “well it is a high number of immature eggs, but it just depends on how your body reacts to the hormones.”  Now I didn’t ask about the eggs, and I just really didn’t need to hear anything about things that I can’t help now.  I don’t need to focus on what happened, I need to hear confidence on what we do now.  Then she gave me the good ole “you only need one!”  To me this is just as bad as saying “just relax”.  I’ve only needed one for a year and a half now and where are we?  It also only takes one to fail.  It’s just not reassuring.

I thought the two week wait would be bad enough, but the two day wait until day 3 results is torture.  I really have no clue how this is going to turn out.  I made it a bit harder on myself because so many people know what we’re doing, and they ask me what’s going on all the time.

It’s not their fault that they don’t know how it works, but it’s not fun to keep telling people how it works and the million things that can go wrong.  I’ve heard so many times lately, “Wow, I just didn’t realize there was so much to all this.”  It’s sad that because it’s so easy for most people they don’t really realize how much of a miracle it is to create life.

Ugh, I really don’t know what else to say about it.  There’s nothing I can do.  Just have to wait and see what happens tomorrow.

At least we’ve got three day passes to Fun Fun Fun Fest this weekend.  So jamming to Passion Pit tonight will make me feel better.  Of course I have to take it easy, but it should be fun fun fun none the less.

Oh, and on the final note I want to say that I don’t know what the big deal with the Progesterone shot is.  Maybe DH is just great at giving it or I just have a lot of cushion, but I barely feel it.  It’s nothing to worry about.