Monday, December 30, 2013


Hey y'all, just checking in.  I'm not posting much because there's not much happening.  Just freaking out and hating the TWW.  You know, the usual.  Hoping our beta will be positive...and then afraid that it will be positive.  What if something goes wrong?

Everyone always wonders if my (potential) pregnancy will be considered high-risk because of all the struggles to get there.  The truth is, it would be treated like a normal pregnancy unless something happens to prove otherwise---just like with any other pregnancy.  Even though we have tried without any success for 5 years, they don't have any reason to believe I can't carry a pregnancy to full-term since I've never suffered a miscarriage.  The only difference is that I would get an ultrasound earlier than most because the RE will check things out around 6 weeks before releasing me to an OB.  Wow.  It's crazy to think I might actually be pregnant.

I'll post my results, but probably not until after our second beta (if the first is positive, we will have a second one two days later to make sure things are progressing normally).  We want to at least tell our family before the blogging community.  My mom would kill me if she wasn't the first to know (after the husband of course!).

And before anyone bites my head off...yes, we will be telling people earlier than most.  I understand that things can happen and I can't control that---but I will want to have a support system to share in the good or help me survive the bad.  I've waited too long for this to not tell people right away.  Besides, pretty much everyone we know are aware that we are doing IVF and so they are already asking about the results.  I post about my whole life here anyway.

I will be back in a few days with the news :)

Friday, December 27, 2013

The waiting game

You know that commercial for the home pregnancy test that mentions how science is getting close to determining pregnancy immediately after it happens?  Wouldn't that be awesome so we didn't have to sit around waiting for that damn positive and driving ourselves crazy?

Maybe then I wouldn't spend so much of my free time---granted, when you're unemployed, all time is basically free---googling to find out when the earliest possible time is to get a positive test after a 5-day transfer.  I'm a nutcase.  After 5 years you'd think I would learn some patience.  I mean, this isn't my first rodeo with the dreaded TWW people.

But like I said, I'm a nutcase.  I knew I'd never make it to my beta without testing at home---even though my husband made sure to point out the bold and underlined part of the Embryo Transfer Instructions that stated I should not take a test at home because it can cause false negatives and unnecessary stress.  I convinced him that I should be able to test the day before at least.  I also explained that I would be taking tests the whole time so that I could test the trigger shot out of my system.  The trigger shot they give you is HCG, which is referred to as the "pregnancy hormone".  It is the hormone that your body produces when you are pregnant, and is therefore the hormone that HPT's detect to determine whether you are pregnant or not.  So if you take a test at home too early, it may give a false positive because it is detecting the HCG from the trigger shot, not from a pregnancy.  I made sure to test the shot out.  I got a very faint positive on the 25th, which would've been 2dp5dt (2 days past 5 day transfer), and 9 days after taking the trigger shot.  Therefore, I figure it should be out of my system by now.

Maybe I should try to make it to my beta...

...who am I kidding?  I'm sure I'll test this weekend.  But I won't post about it.  If my mom finds out that the blogging community found out before her I will never hear the end of it :)

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Happy Christmas Eve!

Dr. R called today to let us know that they were able to freeze 6 embryos yesterday, and 1 additional one today.  7 embryos.  Wow.  Who knew?  It's a Christmas freakin miracle.  This cycle has been so much more successful that I ever expected based on our 5 years of failure.  Maybe this really could work.

Stupid hope.  It's such a foreign concept to me, and I don't know how to deal.  I've been looking at baby names, baby clothes, baby doctors.

Someone stop me.

Monday, December 23, 2013


Well folks, it's official.  I am PUPO (for those not from this crazy IF world, that means Pregnant Until Proven Otherwise).

This morning we got the call that we still had 10 beautiful embryos alive and kicking.  Several of them were "textbook" blastocysts.  Dr. R said that they were basically perfect.  Based on his recommendation, we chose to do an eSet (elective single embryo transfer) with an embryo that received their highest grade.  We had 4 left to freeze today, and 5 more that they hope will be ready to freeze tomorrow.

The transfer went off without a hitch.  We were given a picture of our gorgeous embryo.  I cried.  Even the husband teared up.  It was a special moment.  I didn't really expect it to be as emotional as it was.  I mean, how many people get to see their child before it even implants?  Science is amazing.  I texted the picture to my best friend and my mom.  My mom asked if that was her grandbaby.  Seriously?  Tears all over again.

So what happens next, you ask?  Usually they do a pregnancy test 9 days after a 5-day transfer, which would be New Year's Day.  However, because of that, they gave us the option of coming one day early if we wish.  Well, of course I jumped on that!  So we will have our blood test on 12/31/13.  Basically, I will be ringing in 2014 with either the most joy I've ever experienced.....or possibly the most alcohol I've ever consumed.  Just kidding.  Kind of.

Oh well.  Yay for PUPO!

I want to say a special thank you to all my readers, and my friends and family, for the amazing support I have received during this process.  I couldn't have gotten to this point without you.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Should I have told everyone or kept it to myself?

We have had the most awesome outpouring of support from our family and friends during the IVF process.  They have supported us financially by buying my crocheted goods from my Etsy store.  My mom even donated money to us to help because she is just that kind of mom.  And everyone asks how we are doing and tells us how excited they are every time we get together.

The problem is, I am kind of regretting telling everyone.

Please don't misunderstand.  The support is incredible, and having people to talk to about the process has helped a lot.  They even ask all the nitty gritty details, which I actually love to talk about.  But now, I feel like we will be letting down so many people if this doesn't work.  Those that don't live in the infertile world don't understand that IVF is not a sure thing.  They don't follow blogs that are filled with stories of loss and sadness.  That tell stories of people having to do numerous IVF cycles before getting their bundle of joy.  And although I try to stay positive, I also know the real statistics.  That although my clinic has a 76% success rate, that means 24% of cycles fail.

Now everyone knows the timeline we are on for this cycle.  They know when to expect good or bad news...except they are all expecting good news.  It's science! How could it not work, right?  I don't want to let anyone down...

Sorry for sounding like a Negative Nancy.  I just had to get those thoughts out so that I can focus on only thinking positive thoughts about our transfer tomorrow.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Transfer scheduled!

Well, we officially have an appointment for our transfer!  I got a call today from the on-call doctor, and she let me know that all of my 13 embryos are still alive and kicking!  3 of them are slightly behind the others, but I am still amazed at the progress so far.  Because they still are progressing, we are staying with the plan of a 5-day transfer.

It all happens Monday.

My life might change that day.  Honestly, my life will change regardless of the outcome.  After going through this process, I don't know if my body heart can take it again.  And I know we can't afford to go through it again.  This is our chance.

This is so real now.  I am actually letting myself really hope for the first time in a long time.  I am constantly throwing out baby names to the husband, lingering in the baby section of the store.  Planning for the future.

No turning back now.  I will start the new year out as either a mom-to-be or...well, I don't know what the other option is at this point.  Let's hope for the former :)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

First egg retrieval = success :)

We had our egg retrieval yesterday.  Despite me being a nervous wreck, the procedure went off without a hitch.

The doctor came out to see me in recovery, and he let me know that they collected 23 eggs!  I was so surprised and overjoyed because I had convinced myself that they wouldn't find anything even though I had seen the follicles with my own eyes on the ultrasounds.  So we took our happy asses home to spend the rest of the day relaxing.  My amazing husband waited on me all day, cooking me soup and fetching me crackers and whatever else I wanted.  He is so good to me (even though he left all the dirty dishes in the sink for me to take care of today).  Even though I felt great when I left the doctor's office, I spent the rest of the day with some pretty bad cramping.  I tried not to get off the couch except to use the bathroom, and even that was pretty damn uncomfortable.

When I woke up this morning, I felt better.  Still, I have tried to spend most of the day sitting down because the cramping is still there.  I had to start my endometrin suppositories and my estradiol supplements today, so they may be partly to blame for the extra discomfort.

Dr. R called today to give me the fertilization report.  Some of the eggs were not yet mature, one was post-mature, and a couple didn't fertilize at all.  However, we now have 13 embryos!  I had so many doubts, and this news made me feel so positive.  He said they will call again Saturday with another update.  Depending on the status of our embryos, they may choose to do a 3-day transfer that day.  But hopefully, they will still be progressing normally and we will get to do a 5-day transfer on Monday.  

Fingers crossed for a Christmas miracle :)

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Egg retrieval is scheduled!

Tomorrow is the day at last!  Egg retrieval is scheduled for 10:15 am, and my emotions are all over the place.  Part of this is because of the hormones I'm on, and part is because I am excited/scared/nervous/anxious/excited.

I don't know how I'll feel tomorrow, but I will post about my retrieval when I feel up to it.  Let's hope for good news!!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Cycle Update

Sorry I haven't provided more updates, but I have been sooooo busy driving back and forth to appointments and trying like hell to finish my many crochet projects in time to get them out for Christmas.  In fact, I am trying to use the few minutes I do have available right now to update you lovelies before I head to another appointment.

I had a second monitoring appointment on Thursday and a third yesterday morning.  According to my scans and bloodwork, my ovaries are performing like rockstars!  I am a perfectionist, so this is great news to hear.  My lining is right where it should be and I have about 5 follicles measuring over 16 mm as of yesterday.  Apparently, they like to trigger when 25% of them are over 16 mm, so I'm expecting to have them tell me today that it's about time to go.  I would then take the trigger (HCG) shot tonight to tell my ovaries it is finally time to release their many many follicles, and then I would have the retrieval 36 hours later.

On another note, I went to my best friend's baby shower yesterday after my appointment.  Usually, I try to avoid these like the plague because it is just hard to watch all those adorable little things being opened.  But she is my very best friend family, and I didn't want to miss it.  I know that she had a hard time telling me about her pregnancy and I have tried my hardest to show her how happy I am for her, regardless of what I am going through, because I love her and I can't wait to meet her little one.

After opening her gifts, she took a moment to thank everyone for coming and for throwing such a beautiful shower.  Then she teared up and told everyone to be thankful because not everyone can get pregnant easily---or at all sometimes---and that she knows how lucky she is.  Then she proceeded to tell everyone that her friend was going through IVF and she was so excited for her.  Really, she just shed light on that taboo subject that nobody wants to talk about, but us infertiles try so hard to make other people understand.  She didn't mention me by name, but I was of course crying at this point...and my mom was crying...and her mom was crying...etc.  She was worried about me being upset because she called me out like that, but how could I be upset by something like that?  It was one of the kindest, sweetest, most thoughtful things anyone has ever said about me.  And the fact that she did it at her shower, when all the attention should be on her, meant even more to me.  I just thought you all should hear about it as well.  Those of you that have gone through these struggles understand that all we ever want (besides a child of course) is for people to try to understand what we are going through.

So thank you to my very best friend for being so selfless in that moment, and for reminding me that I have an amazing support system pulling for me.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

1st Monitoring Appointment Results

Yesterday was my first monitoring appointment, which meant I had to go in for a blood test (to check estradiol levels) and an ultrasound to see how my body is responding to the treatment.  I was worried going in because I haven't had any side effects besides an awful headache, and I thought maybe that meant I wasn't responding well.

I was wrong.

The nurse counted 21 measurable follicles!  After just 4 days of stims!  I'm not sure exactly what they look for this early, but the nurse seemed very happy.  There are 10 on the left side, measuring between 5.67 mm to 12.41 mm, and 11 on the right, measuring between 5.64 mm and 10.43 mm.  My lining was over 5, which she said is perfect for this point in my cycle.

My coordinator called me later in the day to give me my instructions.  I am staying on the same protocol of 150 units gonal-f and 75 units menopur each night, but I am also adding in cetrotide starting tonight.  This will help to prevent me from ovulating before they want me to.  They also want to monitor me closely to make sure I don't develop OHSS (ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome), which is not ideal by any means.  It happens when your ovaries are over-stimulated, and can result in bloating, weight gain, shortness of breath, nausea and vomiting, and lower abdominal pain.  It can be very serious if not caught early, but my doctors are great, so I'm not overly concerned.

Overall, I'm very excited about the process so far.  I'm a little nervous about what comes next, because I don't know the quality of my eggs or anything yet.  We would never know these things without doing IVF, so if nothing else, we will get answers from this.  But hopefully we will get a baby from it!

Tomorrow is my next appointment.  I will have more bloodwork and an ultrasound.  They will also do my pre-op appointment for my egg retrieval.  This is getting so real!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Day 2 of Stims

Not much going on around here, but I thought I would at least check in.  I started my injections yesterday.  After we got the mixing down, it was a really easy shot.  Thank goodness we are doing subcutaneous injections this time.  Last time, they were done intramuscular, which sucks!  Have you seen the size of those needles?  Ugh.  No thanks.  I'll take those little sub-q baby needles anytime.

No side effects yet, which is great.  I've experienced just a little bit of pain/burning right after doing the shot, but that's it.  No bruises yet either, so that's a plus.

I went to a birthday party today for my husband's coworker's daughter.  She turned 5.  Usually these kinds of events put me into a panic.  After all, we are typically the only couple there without a child (this was no exception).  However, it went better than expected.  There were several adorable babies there (military families are especially fertile), which usually just makes me sad.  Instead, I held them and put one to sleep, which always makes me happy.  When the other women asked about children, I told them that we are in the middle of an IVF cycle.  This was huge for me.  For some reason, I never have the guts to tell people in those kind of situations.  I think I just don't want to make them feel awkward since nobody ever knows what to say about it.  Surprisingly, the husband actually tells people way more often than I do.  So I took a page out of his book and told them the truth, instead of just sidestepping the question altogether.  They were supportive and asked questions, which I love to answer.

My next update will probably be after my monitoring appointment next week.  Have a great rest of your weekend y'all :)

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Baseline Ultrasound

Yesterday was my baseline ultrasound.  For those of you unfamiliar, this is the start of my IVF cycle.  Basically, they do an internal ultrasound to make sure the BCP did its job in keeping my ovaries quiet and that my endometrial lining is where it should be.  Luckily, everything looked perfect, so that means shit is about to get real!

I will start my medication on Friday, 12/6.  Here is my daily protocol:
-prenatal vitamin
-81mg aspirin
-150 units FSH (Gonal F)
-75 units Menopur

I will go in on 12/10 for my 1st monitoring appointment and bloodwork to make sure my levels are where they should be and that the protocol is working like it should. From there, Dr. R will determine if we need to make any changes.  I am doing an antagonist protocol, so I will be starting Cetrotide at some point in my cycle as well.

My meds shipped out yesterday, and they should be here today.  There were some issues with my Rx, so hopefully I will receive everything I need.  I scheduled an early delivery to give me some time to fix things if there are any problems. Let's hope there are no issues!

More updates to come as things progress :)