Sunday, October 28, 2012

She is Here!!!

Ashley Marie arrived very early today at 3:24am. Right on her due date, lol. She weighed in at a sturdy 8 pounds, 2 ounces and is 21 inches long! She is so precious and worth it all. I couldn't be more in love.

Birth story to follow when the dust settles just a bit!

A few pics for you...


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Oh Wow!

Cannot believe how long it has been since I have posted... seriously nuts.

I do look at your blogs regularly and often have posts swimming in my head. While in the middle of my sabbatical I attempted to analyze why I was having trouble posting...  One contributor is that I haven't wanted to rub this pregnancy in the faces of those still in trenches. Another is... every time I would think of posting... someone I care about in the blogosphere was getting bad news.  :(  Thinking of each of you and am hoping my posts don't hurt you even more. *Big hugs*

As for an update... a long overdue update...

Still here and still pregnant! 39 weeks and 2 days today. Cannot believe we are getting close to the end of this chapter. Baby girl is measuring good (5 pounds, 15 ounces at our 36 week ultrasound) which should put her around 7.5 pounds if born soon. She is head down and giving me nightly aches and pains. At my appointment last Thursday I was 1.5cm dilated and 50% effaced. Hopefully this has progressed some by now. 

Pregnancy as a whole has been amazing. I am still super active and mobile. Walking 3 miles a day and still doing my prenatal yoga. I find that movement helps with the aches and pains. I have gained 17 pounds total as of this morning which I am pleased with. I started out the pregnancy about 10-15 pounds heavier then my norm (after 3 ivf cycles) so definitely wanted to keep the weight gain under control through eating healthy and not giving in to crazy cravings. Sleeping has been a big issue as of late... Either I can't fall asleep or I wake up in the middle of the night, wide awake. I really am not able to nap either so that has been tough. I have been taking a Unisom (with doctor approval) every 4 days or so to try get a good nights sleep and it really helps. I sleep so great those nights!

Still on my blood thinners for the MTHFR clotting disorder. Switched from Lovenox to Heparin at 37 weeks in preparation for delivery (there is no reversal for Lovenox). The two shots a day are annoying but it is what it is. Can't believe I am still giving myself shots. Lol. I have flashbacks of my IVF cycles every time I load the syringe.

Emotionally I have been having a hard time this week. The anticipation is killing me. It actually isn't even about meeting her or wanting her here right now... more to do with worrying about this all getting taken away from me. We are so close, I can taste it... what if it all went away today? What if it went sideways at this point? I just want her out and safe. Where my body can't fail her. Not sure why I am re-starting the "what if" game at this point but just trying to not let my anxiety get the best of me.

Can't wait to show you pics of the finished nursery and some maternity photos I had taken! Wanted to get an initial update out first. I miss you all!

I leave you with a few recent belly pics (from a few days ago). This thing has gotten huge!   :) 




Thursday, May 24, 2012

"It Is Time"

"It is time" to start embracing this pregnancy. After 17 and a half weeks of just hoping it would come to me naturally... I have decided I might need to get involved in overcoming this lack of connection, paralyzing fear it is ending at any moment and put hope forward.


Not exactly sure where to begin in this process but I might be starting with opening a pregnancy book(s). And maybe even a journal of some kind. And while we are at it... I might even make Adel open one also (I have a "What to Expect When Your Wife is Expanding" book that has been collecting dust for some time now). I have lot of books that have either been bought, gifted or handed down during my various pregnancies that I have faithfully kept on the shelf in an effort to keep me from having to pack them back up when this pregnancy ended far too early... but it hasn't ended... and it's time to start appreciating that.


My Many Pregnancy/Baby Books... Pulled from the Shelf! 


When I was in the workforce... I used to be a training manager. I would manage the training of an organization's employees on all aspects of their job... position training, sales training, customer service training, leadership training, etc, etc. One of my favorite classes (one that I would often facilitate myself) was a customer service class where I would talk about moments of impact with a customer. That every call/interaction with the customer was an opportunity to impact the customer positively or negatively... and how the employee needed to make these moments of impact with the customer an invaluable experience with our company. In a positive way of course. That even a complaint call... especially a complaint call... was an opportunity for greatness... a moment of impact with the customer. You get the idea. This weekend I was watching "The Vow" and they had a different (more in depth) play on the moments of impact. The movie says that life is all about "moments of impact... that these flashes of reality that turn us upside down... change us". It also stated that "The truth is we're the sum of all moments we've experienced with all the people we've ever known... and these moments become our history". "These moments of impact define who we are". So while watching the movie I start thinking of my life's moments of impact... and eventually started focusing on the ones from my TTC (trying to conceive) journey. I can see how I have changed though the years, through the torture of this process. Through all my pregnancies and through the losses. Each one affected me in some way. I am more guarded, nervous, emotional, unsure and crazy as a person for sure, oh and more broke (financially, haha). But maybe, just maybe... I can also find positive changes from this journey... like this stoic patience I have developed, this crazy strength to preserver, a deep respect for the medical advances that make this all possible (regardless of the fact that it's torturous) and lastly (this isn't a change but more of a reassurance... we could all use a little reassurance once in a while) the confirmation that I picked the right person to go through this journey with. My moments of impact have changed me... and I am on the heels of an impact right now. This pregnancy is yet another moment of impact. This baby... however it turns out... will change me/is changing me. And I need to let it. With all of me. And if I take the moment of impact one step further and apply my training vision to it... this moment of impact is an opportunity for greatness and completely comes down to how I handle the impact. From today, I am choosing to embrace this impact... and all the precious moments that come with it.


A little background on my level of crazy today... I had my anatomy scan this morning. At 3ish in the morning I woke up for one of my many nighttime pees and was struggling to get back to sleep. All I could think about was my impending appointment and realized I wasn't even excited to find out if I was having a boy or a girl. WHAT? Who isn't excited about that? Seriously. I really was indifferent. To me the appointment was another opportunity for something to be wrong. The gender was of secondary interest to the panic of possible bad news. These thoughts stayed with me for the rest of the night and into my morning routine... I started panicking about knowing the gender and fearing the connection that would be formed once I knew... cause then it would hurt so much more when this ended badly. Eventually, cause I am a crazy hormonal chick I start thinking of what a bad mom I am already. That I didn't even believe in the little nugget and didn't care what the gender was. I wasn't excited. That I was using the pain of this journey as an excuse to not even connect with my child. Queue the tears. I became a sobbing mess. When the tears started to dry and the crazy subsided... I decided "it is time". The little nugget deserves it.


Onward to the appointment! Anatomy scan was perfect. Everything looked exactly as it should. Baby has the four chambers of the heart, all digestive organs, brain checked out good, 10 fingers, 10 toes, etc. And we are having A GIRL!!!! Lol. We were definitely unprepared for a girl after being told at 12 weeks were possibly having a boy. I guess this is a prime example why 12 weeks is way too early to be guessing. Halfway through the scan I asked the tech to check again... "is it still a girl?" Haha. Yes, it was still a sweet baby girl. OMG. I don't even know what to do with a girl... I have always envisioned boys! Eeeep! Regardless, we are ecstatic and can't wait to spoil her rotten. Go Team Pink!


So there you have it... a bit of an announcement, an awakening and a promise to embrace this impact.


At 17 weeks and 4 days pregnant, I have made my first big decision as a mom... and that's to go all in...


Please be gentle with me baby girl.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Oh Mai Belly...

My belly has begun to emerge... This is very exciting to me. Definitely helps make it more real. 

Seems I have seen picture after picture for months now of those at the same point (or close to it) in my journey and their bellies are so much bigger! I have been so jealous of their beautifully present bumps. 

My lil bump has literally arrived just this week (today I am 17 weeks, 2 days). I am still in my normal clothes but do need a belly band for some of them. My low rise pants still seem to be ok for now. I have also still been able to sleep on my tummy which is so nice... not sure what I am going to do when that becomes uncomfortable. Lol. 

I am so happy with the development of a visible sign that this is actually happening. I find my hands moving to this little bulge in such an adoring manner and know it is helping me connect in some small way. 

Without further adieu... here's mai belly: 



17w2d

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Long Overdue Update

Sorry I have been away for so long friends. 


Still in a really weird place with this pregnancy and actually am feeling guilty about it. Things are going great! I have no reason to believe this might not be my take home baby... but I am still holding my breath. I still am not opening any What to Expect books and still don't talk about it. That makes me feel guilty. Guilty that all I do now when I blog here is question what is happening. What I have worked so hard for. I know I will get more comfortable as time creeps on. As we keep passing milestones during this exciting time. Just for now focusing on the little steps we have been making and putting one foot in front of the other each day. 


Again so sorry to have gone missing. Thank you for still being here. 


Now for some fun updates! 

  • Today I am 15 weeks pregnant! OMG! We passed a huge milestone at 12 weeks when I officially became the furthest along in any of my pregnancies! So glad our little nugget is still hanging in there!
  • I graduated from my RE at 12 weeks! Goodbye Dr. Cold and hello Dr. Confident (my ob - more on him later). The day of my last appointment with them was also my birthday! I brought the staff Sprinkles cupcakes which of course were a hit and even ordered a couple extra for the hubby and I. They even tweeted(?) a pic of us saying congratulations... do I look exhausted or what? Lol. 
The Famous Sprinkles Cupcakes!
Tweet about our 12 week graduation from RE!
  • Along with graduating at 12 weeks... I also got to finally drop the progesterone injections and estrogen patches! Dropped them cold turkey. I was terrified but all was fine. So nice not having to deal with those. Still on my daily Lovenox (blood thinner) injections which are a pain (literally), those will continue the whole pregnancy. The bruises on my belly are so gross. Haha. No bikinis for me anytime soon. Lol. 
  • I had a birthday! Turned 34 on April 20th. It was a nice b-day. Hubby and I went to the San Diego Wild Animal Park on that Saturday and just enjoyed walking around and seeing the animals. That is just one of my favorite things to do. Love me some animals. 
  • We have begun telling people. Not the general public... definitely not on fac.ebook or anything. But we told his mom and siblings (who have no clue the struggles we have been through to make this happen). My mom and dad already knew but we did also tell my siblings grandparents, a couple aunts/uncles and close cousins. So slowly but surely the word is leaking out. I can't say when I will feel comfortable enough for a fac.ebook announcement but we definitely joke about just posting pics of our baby when he/she finally arrives. I am not much of a fb'er anyway so waiting till then would work for me! Haha 
  • I have an OB doctor! This is exciting. Found a great guy that is a part of the hospital we would want to deliver at and have had a few appointments with him already. He is great. I have named him Dr. Confident. At my last appointment with him he got a real sense of my fear and uncertainty about this pregnancy and stated... "Denise, there are a lot of things to still worry about but a miscarriage isn't one of them. Start embracing what's happening here and lets start planning a nursery." Uhmm... did he just say the m-word? and wow did he just tempt fate or what? While I appreciate his confidence... I am still nervous. I do get what he was trying to say and am working on letting go of the fear. The hardest part of transitioning from the RE to the OB is the complete lack of appointments. I was used to weekly appointments for the first 12 weeks (w/ ultrasound) and now get one just once a month (which doesn't even include an ultrasound!) Crazy. 
  • NT scan went great! Had my NT Scan just last week and it went well. Baby cooperated and the (not very nice tech/nurse/whoever) was able to get all the pics she needed and indicated our risk for Down's, Spinal Bifida, etc was low. Like 1 in 17k or so. We had done PGD on the embryos in advance so we had an idea everything would come back negative/low risk but I couldn't give up a chance to see the baby!
  • 70% a boy. At our last ultrasound (13weeks) the tech decided to see what she could see for the sex of the baby and thought it might be a boy! It was of course super early and I am not counting on it at this point but she did say... 70% chance it's a boy. Maybe knowing for sure will help me start connecting with the little nugget. I go in for my anatomy scan on May 24th and should get a more definite idea then! So exciting! We would be ecstatic with either but I have always seen myself with a boy.
I think that is a decent update for now. I really need to get cracking with documenting some of my symptoms, crazy dreams I have been having and other pregnancy related items. Might even be time to do a "bumpdate" (eeeep). We shall see. One step at a time. Haha. 

Again, I can't say it enough... so sorry for my hiatus and thank you for still being here and supporting me during my journey. 

P.S. Congratulations to all the recent BFP's on my blog roll! So excited for all of you!
Alissa at MissConception
Lanie at Unruffled Lanie
Her Royal Fabulousness at Waiting for Little Feet
Belle at Scrambled Eggs
Hope I haven't missed anyone. So sorry if I have!

I leave you with my favorite pic of the little nugget! 

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Strength in Music

This cycle began with me in such a weird place. 
As you know... it was my 3rd IVF cycle. I had just come off of a miscarriage of twins (one baby lost at 5 and a half weeks and the other a week later) from cycle 2. I was beginning cycle 3 in hopes of creating my 5th pregnancy. 4 previous pregnancies and no babies yet at home. To say I began the cycle unsure and scared is an understatement. I was scarred, terrified, hurt and braced for disappointment. I remember driving to my baseline appointment not even praying for this cycle to work but rather for it not to hurt (emotionally) as the others had when things went wrong. I was praying for my self preservation. 
On the way to my first monitoring appointment I heard a song on the radio. It was a rap/pop song called "Good Feeling" by Flo Rida. It had a really catchy chorus that sang: 
Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, sometimes I get a good feeling, yeah
I get a feeling that I never never never never had before, no no
I get a good feeling, yeah
Oh oh, sometimes I get a good feeling, yeah
I get a feeling that I never never never never had before, no no
I get a good feeling, yeah
The rest of the song is rappy and I couldn't even tell you really what it says... but the chorus is really what struck me. 
I heard it again on my way to the second monitoring appointment as well. 
And again on the way to my third monitoring appointment. This however wouldn't not be considered unusual since it was a popular song at the time and surely was played over and over and over daily. For me though... the catchy chorus over time became a mantra for my cycle. I sang/yelled along with it on the way to my appointments and began to hope this cycle could maybe be different. It gave me to strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other and restored my faith in this process. I continued to hear this song randomly played for all of the drives to my monitoring appointments and transfer. This carefree chorus permeated my hardened, battle scarred, uncertain shell and provided hope... or a "good feeling"... about this cycle. 
This week I heard it again played randomly on the radio. I was on the way to my weekly ultrasound for the little nugget. It still has a way of lifting up my spirits and allowing hope to fill my soul. It is definitely still my mantra for this cycle. 
Can't believe I am 10 weeks and 4 days today... and still pregnant. Can't. believe. it. 
The little nugget looked great on Tuesday, measuring where he/she should, etc. 
As I slowly come to grips with this pregnancies progression, I am one-by-one peeling back the layers of fear and pessimism. Maybe this is it? Is my take-home baby less then 7 months away? I surely hope so... and I hope this "good feeling" continues and grows stronger day by day.  
I leave you with the video for my special song. ***Keep in mind... the first 33 seconds is the important part***. Isn't amazing how the right song, at the right time can affect us? 





     

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Doing Good!

Still here, still pregnant. 9 weeks and 4 days! Wow, I can't believe we are at 9 weeks and 4 days. I am in shock. Still not really believing it.


The little nugget looks great on the ultrasound this week and my progesterone levels are back up (to 38). The increased dosage seems to be doing its job and I am hoping that is the last scare for a few weeks (at least).


So glad things are still going good. Maybe I will allow myself to start getting excited soon?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Worried?

Ultrasound went great today (8w2d). The Little Nugget is looking more and more like a baby and less like, well... a nugget. Heart was beating away (Dr. Cold still wouldn't give me a beats per minute amount) and things measured right on track. Dr. Cold seemed optimistic and told me to it was time to start thinking about my OB and making an appointment. All very exciting news. 


Then I got a call from them a couple hours ago indicating my progesterone levels (tested today) had dropped quite a bit. I have been on 1cc nightly (PIO) from the beginning and in recent weeks my progesterone levels had been increasing on their own! I was under the incorrect assumption that maybe the baby had actually begun producing it already (which I heard today doesn't happen till 10 weeks). My weekly progesterone levels have been 26, 27, 30, 37 and today... 26. They like to see the number over 20 so it is still in range. But why did it drop so much? Is this my indicator I might miscarry? I know progesterone levels can drop as a precursor. Dr. Cold instructed us to increase our nightly dosage from 1cc to 1.5cc. This has me worried. He stated he wasn't concerned about the drop in levels, but then instructs us to raise our dosage? 


Why are these numbers fluctuating? I am not jumping off the cliff just yet... but worried. Why must we be so fearful during these exciting times? 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Continuing Protocol



I know I have been rather quiet lately... Still holding my breath. 8 weeks and 1 day today. 


Wanted to post about the meds/shots I am still on! Hopefully these things are each doing their part to keep the Little Nugget fed, happy and wanting to stay put for a long time! 


So here is my current cocktail list: 


PIO (Progesterone in Oil) - Oh how I loathe you. Lol. For the first few weeks, I swear this nightly shot wasn't a big deal. Yeah, it hurt and yes it made me sore for days afterwards... but I just dealt with it. Recently however, this shot has been a bitch. My hips are sore upon sore. It just seems as though they never get a chance to heal (even with us alternating hips each night) before we are sticking them again. I even threw a full on tantrum one night last week when it was time to do the shot. Full on. Like a two year old. Kicking things, yelling, punching the air. Hubby thought I was possessed for sure. Meh. I think I just had reached my limit for a minute and started feeling sorry for us. For all of us. This should be easier. This whole process should be easier. My clinic actually has their patients on this till 12 weeks (from what I understand) so only 4 more weeks to go! An interesting fact I didn't realize... My lil nugget has actually started producing his own progesterone! I have been getting weekly progesterone checks to monitor the number and they have been as follows over the weeks: 26, 27, 30, 37 (they like to see the number over 20 initially). The jump to 37 surprised me since my dosage has remained consistent at 1cc per day. This rise hopefully means things are progressing as they should! 


Lovenox - An important one. Blood thinner medication for my MTHFR mutation (clotting disorder). This is also a daily shot but this one goes for the whole pregnancy. It is fortunately a sub-q shot but it stings/burns like hell and leaves beautiful bruises all over my belly. Super hawt. As much as I hate the burning fire I have to inject nightly... I am so thankful we know about this disorder and have something I can do to help keep my body from clotting against this pregnancy.  


Vivelle (Estrogen Patches) - These patches are easy and painless. They stick to abdomen and just hang out. I am on two patches and change them every other day. I will also be on these till 12 weeks along. Only complaint I have about these are the price. Expensive lil buggers. $90 a box and I go through a box every 8 days. Only 4 more weeks to go! 


Prenatals - Nothing to exciting here... I take the prescription prenatals called Duet. Two pills daily. I have been taking these literally for about 4 years (since our first miscarriage 2/08). I was given different samples to try at the time and these were the only ones that didn't make me nauseous if I took them without food, so I have stuck with them. 


MetaNx - This is also something I take for my MTHFR (clotting disorder). This mutation affects the way my body processes B6, 12 and Folic Acid so this prescription vitamin provides these in their active form so my body is able to use it. I take one pill twice a day. This will be continued the whole pregnancy. 


Baby Aspirin - Still on baby aspirin also. One pill a day. I think this will end at the 12 week mark also with the PIO and patches, but I am not certain. This is commonly used during IVF as it helps block vascular constriction. There are many other reasons to use it in IVF listed in this article


Acupuncture - I have continued my acupuncture appointments, twice a week. My acupuncturist would like the twice a week appointments to continue through 12 weeks and then drop to once a week. I do enjoy the time to just lay there and daydream. It happens to be one of the only places I allow myself to believe this is actually working/going to work. I daydream about being pregnant, what our baby might look like and what type of child he/she might grow up to be. As soon as the hour is up... I go back to my safe/rational thinking (doesn't include daydreaming) but in that hour... I connect with the being inside me.


That is it for the meds/shots/procedures! A pretty lively cocktail list of fun!      


Also, wanted to share a list of don'ts I received at my first ultrasound from Dr. Cold. It is instructions for the first trimester (through 12 weeks) of pregnancy. Since I don't graduate from his office till 12 weeks (I know some clinics graduate sooner) this list is supposed to handle all the things I should not be doing till I get handed over to an OB. The list is rather restricting. But of course, I am following it as best as I can. A few notables are: 
No Sex
No Airplane Travel (till after 12 weeks, then consult with OB)
No Having Hair Colored, Permed or Straightened 
No Exercise. None. 
No Caffeine, Alcohol, Sushi, Unpasterized Foods. Minimize Intake of Hot Dogs/Cold Cuts
No Sunbathing
No Hot Baths
No Dental Work 


Fun stuff! 


Still praying my little nugget is doing ok in there. I see him/her again tomorrow. I can't wait. 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

We Have A Heartbeat!


Tuesdays appointment went well! 

Our little nugget (I know.... we have to come up with something better to call him/her, lol) has a heartbeat!! 

The little flicker was beating so fast! It was really amazing to see. 

Dr. Cold didn't give me the BPM (beats per minute) amount... which I am actually ok with. That means I won't stress about whatever the number is. Perfect for me. Haha. 

I am so excited we saw the heartbeat. This is one of those steps I needed to really start believing this is actually happening. I am not there yet but Tuesdays appointment was a definite step.   :) 

Thank you for all the support, suggestions and advice on my last post about "Inhabiting the Middle Ground" between being hopelessly infertile and currently pregnant. I appreciate each of your words and understand now that it will just take time. Time and milestones (like Tuesdays appointment). 

YAY for a heartbeat!!! 

Friday, March 9, 2012

Inhabiting the Middle Ground



In a weird place emotionally. This weird middle ground between being hopelessly infertile and currently pregnant. Just standing between the two realms.... waiting to be pulled one way or the other. 

Adel and I are just going through the motions of life. Neither of us discusses being pregnant. Outside of attending our weekly ultrasound together, it just doesn't come up. It's like we are both waiting for the ball to drop. We have been here before... and it hurt so bad when it didn't work out. I imagine this avoidance technique we have adopted silently for this cycle is an act of self preservation? Not wanting to get close to our pregnancy or he/she inside of me... just in case. 

I still haven't felt the joy yet. Sure I was excited when I got the positive HPT and beta. For a couple hours even. Then excited again when I saw the ultrasound. I was excited then for the rest of night! But the next day... back to status quo. This defense mechanism is amazing. What do I do to bring these walls down? 

I also have only cried once. The fear crept under the walls briefly and I had a human moment. Adel had just got home from work and I opened up a discussion about our lack of excitement/interest/connection/etc for this pregnancy. Shortly after beginning the talk I just needed a hug, and couldn't stop crying. I blubbered on about how scared I was. How hurt I would be if we lost this baby too. It was the first time I had hugged him in a long time. Like really hugged him. Have I been subconsciously pushing him away (emotionally and physically) during this cycle also?

I am afraid to open a pregnancy book, afraid to daydream about pregnant life and even afraid to post on here... as if either of those things may pose a problem to this pregnancy. 

It's official... I have lost it completely. Lol. 

Any ideas on how and when to bring these walls down? Is this just what pregnancy after infertility/loss is? 

Ultrasound on Tuesday at 7 weeks and 2 days. Hopefully we will see a heartbeat. 

Thank you all for continuing on to this next part of my journey with me. I couldn't do this without you. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Girls Weekend, 1st U/S and A Call for Support

Hope everyone had a great weekend! I know I did! Had my annual girls weekend with some of my college, sorority sisters in Northern California. We all used to live together and since moving out 12 years ago we have maintained this "special weekend a year" tradition. The 9 of us lock ourselves in a cabin in the mountains and just hang out. There is usually a good amount of drinking (this was my first sober year), board games, self reflection and reminiscing about the past year. This weekend is incredibly special to me and I am so glad my cycle allowed me to still go this year. I was terrified I would receive bad news at my beta last week and just be a hot mess this weekend. So glad it didn't work out that way. Plus, I got to tell all my girls we were pregnant in person (they all live 7 hours away from me)!!!! How exciting is that! Of course, I would prefer to have waited to tell anyone till we were a bit father along but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to do it in person. They are keeping it quiet for me for now. The weekend turned out great and as usual... I can't wait for next year.   :) 


Had my first ultrasound today. It is obviously very early, 5 weeks and 2 days, so not much can be seen. We did see one sac. So one baby it is. Adel was a bit disappointed. He really had a feeling that both embryos had taken and we were having twins. He asked the doctor like three times what "happened to the other one"? Lol. Really? Poor guy. I told him "my uterus ate it". I think he just thought our quality of embryos this time was so great that it was done deal or something... I however, know the statistics don't work like that. Twins would have been great from an instant family perspective but I am over the moon for one baby. Another appointment next Monday where they will zoom in to try and see the fetal pole. Hopefully this little guy keeps hanging out in there. 


Lastly, it is with a heavy heart that I ask for some support for a fellow infertile. My friend Laura is losing her baby after a successful FET (frozen embryo transfer following a failed IVF cycle). Last week the baby had a heart beat, was on track and looked great. Yesterday when she went in at 7 weeks and 5 days the baby had no heartbeat. She is scheduled for a D&C tomorrow. She had her pre-op today and took a last look at her baby. My heart is absolutely broken for her. No one should have to go through the pain and suffering that we in this community do. Laura doesn't have a blog of her own but she does read mine... please send some support and prayers her way. 


I am so sorry this has happened Laura. I am thinking of you and your hubby in this difficult and unfair time. I wish there was something I could do to ease your pain. *Big hugs to you*

Thursday, February 23, 2012

IVF #3: Beta #2

Had my 2nd beta today.


For reference this is 12DP6DT (18DPO). The number was 770. Beta #1 was 335 so the second beta doubled nicely!


The numbers indicate 1 growing baby. Which I am ecstatic about. Twins make me nervous. 


Very thankful for my doubling beta. Hope it keeps going up and up!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

IVF #3: Beta #1

Had my first beta today. For reference, today marks 10DP6DT (16DPO).


The number was 335!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I am very, very excited.


I hope so much my body decides to hang onto this one. Please.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Two Lines...

Pregnancy test is coming out positive. 


Been getting a positive since 5DP6DT. Eeeeep! 


Excited but nervous. 


Looking forward to my beta tomorrow. 


To the other BFPs out there... so very very exciting. Stay healthy and positive during this special time. Can't wait to see your updates as things progress! CONGRATS! 

For my friends with recent negatives... I am so sorry. I know your hurt/pain and wouldn't wish it on anyone. Big hugs to you and your families while you process the emotions and begin to heal. Thinking of each of you.

Friday, February 17, 2012

6DP6DT



Still here... waiting. Lol


The 2ww is such a mindf**k. So many emotions. 


Sorry I have been so quiet. Have been trying to stay off the computer, google, etc to keep my mind from going crazy. Sorry for my recent lack of comments on your blogs, I really feel so bad. Just trying to stay positive and in the zone. 


Been reading a lot (books). Like 500-650 pages a day. No joke. Lol. Well, at least it keeps my brain busy. 


Beta is on Tuesday the 21st. Still praying this third times a charm.  


Miss you and I will be back soon. 

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Transfer Complete!

We had our transfer today and it went amazing.


Your positive thoughts and prayers worked!


We arrived at Dr. Cold's office (actually it was on yet a different floor of the building his office is in. This one is connected to the lab) about 15 minutes early for our 11:45am appointment time. We were called back by the embryologist shortly after who stated she had good news for us! Yay!


Out of the 7 embryos biopsied for PGD yesterday, 3 were chromosomally normal. OMG. This. was. huge. I was expecting 1 really. Again... my previous cycles have gone like this... 11 retrieved, 6 biopsied, 1 normal... 20 retrieved, 17 biopsied, 3 normal. So yay!! 3 normal, great news thus far.


We then moved on the discuss the qualities of the normal embabies. They were really good quality. One was graded an AA and two were graded BA. We have never seen our embryos graded better then a BB. SO this was very exciting. Also, all 3 embabies had already completely hatched out of their zona shell already. These guys were all ready to go!!!


Due to the good quality we decided to transfer two embryos. We were able to freeze the third one (again, we have never had any to freeze before).


An unintentional side effect of PGD is learning gender information... so we knew we had a boy (grade AA) and two girls (grades BA). We put in the boy and one girl. Eeeeeep! We shall see what happens.


Transfer was normal. "Get undressed from the waist down, feet in the stirrups, this flash on the screen are your babies going in, etc". Neither of my clinics have handed out valium. Man that would have been nice. Haha. I also have never had to deal with the full bladder thing that many fellow bloggers complain about. Very lucky there. After the embryos were placed, I had to lay there for a half an hour before getting dressed/leaving. Hanging out with hubby in the dark transfer room with my babies, finally where they should be, was nice. We talked a bit during this time but mostly just hung out quietly, taking it all in. Regardless of what happens, I love him... and our life.


Currently lounging it up on bed rest. This office has a pretty strict bed rest policy. 3 days strict bed rest, only up to use the restroom and then 4 additional days of house arrest. Lol. That is nuts... but I have no reason not to follow it. I have a bunch of movies and books ready to entertain me. It is also nice this happened on a Saturday so hubby gets to hang out with me for two of the days.    :)


Today I am feeling encouraged. I know my emotions will be on high alert the next couple weeks and I may not always feel sunny. But today, was a good day.


Oh and... yes, I definitely brought the fertility tiki with me today. Haha. Hey, we need all the help we can get!


I leave you with pics of our little ones! Girl is on the left, boy is on the right. 




Thank you all for being here.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Egg Retrieval and Super Bowl

Ahhh.. Last Sunday. Egg retrieval and my 10th annual Super Bowl party... cause those two events totally go together right? 


Wanted to get this written down for documentation purposes. 


Egg retrieval was bright and early Sunday morning. Actually it wasn't bright. It was still dark since I had to be there at 5:30am. Really? 5:30am? OMG. PLUS I decided it would be best to get fully ready for the day beforehand, since I was unsure I would be feeling afterwards. SO I showered, blew dry hair, curled hair and did my full makeup. Haha. They must have thought I was nuts showing up to retrieval at 5:30am all done up like that. 


The retrieval was done in a surgery center on the first floor of the building my RE is also located in. With my last two cycles the retriveal process was a bit more casual... I would only undress from the waist down, hop up on the bed, get strapped in and go to sleep... but since this retrieval is done in a surgery center I had to fully undress, put on a gown/grippy socks/hair net and be wheeled in the surgery room on a hospital bed when it was time. Very serious. 


The procesdure it self went well... I think. I was outty. Seriously, I don't even remember going to sleep. That stuff is amazing. I am a huge fan. 


Woke up crampy and sore but the awesome nursing staff was right there with some drugs to help with that! Dr.  Cold tried some nonchalant walk-by method where he threw out "hey we got 17 eggs, call you tomorrow" and kept walking by. Bastard. Lol. I stopped him and wanted more information. Truth is... I am just not that comfortable talking to him (with his infinite coldness) but I had a question for him. This question was definitely a "down the road, what if" question BUT... considering I knew this would be our last face-to-face time before transfer, I wanted to take adantange of asking it then. So I begin... "Dr. Cold, I know we have some time before discussing embryos but I really want get a plan in place for PGD. If we get to day 5 and there are only 2 embryos, I would prefer to just transfer them and not do PGD. Is there a minimum number you prefer to see before biopsying for PGD?" His response "Those are what if scenarios I am not willing to discuss at this point. Yeah, I am not going to talk about those situations now. Take care and I will call tomorrow with a fert report" *Walks off* Uhmmm... really? I started bawling. I don't know... maybe I am just unstable. But I was really upset. Really? You can't just answer my question? I get that there are a million things that could go wrong before we discuss a day 5 scenario. I also know that it is a moot point if we have more than 2 still alive and kicking at day 5. I was just wanted to discuss my wishes and get a common practice answer from him. Meh. He's a douche. But again... I knew this going into this cycle. 


Dr. Cold walks away and I start crying up a storm. Lol. I am usually not a crier after surgery so I am definitely blaming it all on Dr. Cold and our interaction. They bring hubby back and I tell him about our insensitive bastard of a doctor. The nurse comes over to console me and lets me know that most of the surgical staff feel the same way as I do. She personally has worked with him for like 15 years and she has always found him to be cold, clinical and an egomaniac. Apparently though, the rumor is... he becomes semi normal after a few cocktails. Soooooo liquor is the ticket apparently. 


The rest of my surgery center experience was amazing. The staff was absolutely great. I had to sit/lay around there for longer then usual since I was given an IV of Hespan (to help avoid OHSS) after the procedure. Once finished with the IV I got dressed and we headed home. READY TO PARTY FOR THE SUPERBOWL. Lol. 


Took a few hour nap to wear off my fentanyl/versed/dilaudid haze. Woke up around 1pm knowing people would start arriving at 2:30pm. We were only having about 7 people over so it wasn't a big party but it happened to be his mom, his sister, 2 brothers, etc. So people that the house needed to be cleaned for, food needed to be good and most of all... these are people that really would know if something was wrong with me (since they know me pretty well). None of them know about our infertility struggles. I knew it was going to be an interesting challenge hosting a party that day... but really what were the odds our retrieval would land on that day? Lol. Retrievals are always moving targets. We were sure it would land on a different day. Anyway, back to the party. 


I had prepped everything accordingly the night before (Saturday). All the food was basically ready to go. Short of throwing it into the oven when it was time. I had also fully decorated the house in football gear. It looked so cute.   :) 


The party went really good I thought. Had to pop a vicodin at a couple different points in the day as I just seemed to be getting more and more sore as the hours wore on. Towards the end of the third quarter of the game I was ready to lay on the couch and have everyone go home. Haha. From that point on... the end of the game couldn't come fast enough. When it did, everyone hugged, said goodbye and I immediately went to bed. I had been cleaning up as the party was going on for the most part but I did leave up the decorations and various cups and whatnot out. I was just not into feeling up to being the cleaning crew at that point. That waited till Monday (maybe even some was left till Tuesday, lol).


All and all... egg retrieval and Super Bowl were both successes. Crazy they had to be done on the same day but this is just another example of how infertility has truly taken over my life. No days are sacred. 


*PGD post is still coming (it will give me something to do while on bed rest)* 


Transfer is tomorrow at 12:00pm (day 6). 7 embabies are still alive and have been biopsied for PGD. We will get the results of this testing right before the transfer. Please, please, please let there be some normal ones. 

Egg Retrieval

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Embabies Day #3 Update



Got the update on my growing babies!!! So exciting.


As you may remember, we had retrieved 17. 11 of those 17 fertilized (with ICSI) and out of those 11... all 11 are still dividing/growing/kicking/hanging in there. One is not looking too good but 11 nonetheless. From what I understand, they are looking for embryos to be 6 cells or more on day 3.


Here are our embabies stats:
1 - 3 cell, grade B (this is the one not looking too good)
1 - 6 cell, grade A
1 - 7 cell, grade A
2 - 8 cells, grade A
5 - 9 cells, grade A
1 - 10 cell, grade A


Looking good so far. We won't get another update till Friday (Day 5) when they do the biopsy for PGD. This is always the scary part for me. We historically haven't produced many chromosomally normal embryos. IVF cycle #1 we had 11 eggs retrieved and only 1 was chromosomally normal. IVF cycle #2 we had 20 eggs retrieved and 3 were chromosomally normal. Scary to know our numbers take such a hit with PGD (well, it's not PGD's fault). I will post more about PGD and our experiences with it over the next couple days since I know some of my blogger friends were interested in knowing more about it. Stay tuned.


Still feeling really yucky. Really yucky. This is the worst I have felt after a retrieval. By far. I am basically still in bed. Lol. My whole torso hurts. Like even behind my breast bone. Not just in pain in my abdomen, it runs all the way up my torso. Just trying to take it easy and focus on feeling better before my transfer on Saturday. So glad I have a few more days till then.


Hopefully I will be able to be more talkative tomorrow... I really want to go into more detail about retrieval (for those new to IVF'ers out there) and talk about PGD. Just not feeling up to it yet.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Fertilization Report

Out of the 17 eggs retrieved yesterday all were mature and ICSI'd. 11 fertilized. There is also another one on the fence but 11 for sure. 


I won't hear anything more till Wednesday. Transfer is scheduled currently for Saturday (we do a day 5 PGD biopsy and transfer on day 6). 


I am currently trying to heal. Really sore and uncomfortable. Been in bed all day.   :( 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Done with Retrieval

Back at home and wanted to give a quick update.


We got 17 eggs! There are being ICSI'd today and we will find out the fertilization results sometime tomorrow.


A bit sore but still pretty drugged from the IV (man those drugs are amazing).


Heading upstairs for a napper before I need to get ready for the super bowl party I am hosting.


Thank you all for the prayers and well wishes!!!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Calm Before the Storm



I always look at the day before retrieval as the calm before the storm.


It is usually just a quiet day, hanging around the house since usually one is pretty uncomfortable at this point (this time is no different). There are no shots to take and I have done all that is physically possible for their cycle. This is the calm.


But a storm is brewing on the horizon. A storm of pain, nerves and waiting over the next few weeks.


Tomorrow my body will be violated and ravaged by an aspirator. Again. The drugs will be amazing as always I am sure... but once I awake... I will be left with empty follicles and a sore abdomen. The soreness will last for days with probably Tuesday-ish being the worst of the pain (this has been my experience). Tomorrow also begins the waiting... waiting to see how many fertilized, how many make it to day 3 & day 5, how many will be normal once PGD has been completed and how many will make it to transfer (I am not even expecting any to freeze since I haven't in either of my first two cycles) and waiting to see if it worked. Lots of waiting and lots of nerves cause things could go wrong at any of these points. I won't even go into the storm of emotions that is on the horizon. Either extreme happiness or more sadness coming over the next few weeks. As I said... a storms a brewing.


Anyway, back to getting things ready for my super bowl party tomorrow.


Have to be at the surgery center at 5:30am for retrieval. OMG. 5:30am. That is nuts.


Wanted to wish a GOOD LUCK to two blog friends that also have their retrievals tomorrow morning. Sometimes and Millionbabysteps, I will be thinking about you and hoping all goes well tomorrow. Crossing my fingers for both of you.

Friday, February 3, 2012

It's Trigger Time


Well not for a few more hours. But we are very close my friends. 


Is it a problem that as I was typing "It's Trigger Time" for the title... all I could think about was the Je.rsey Sho.re saying "It's T-Shirt Time". Lol. Really? Omg, if you don't currently subscribe to this lowest form of reality tv... don't start. It's pretty bad. But alas, I love it.


Appointment went fine today. Still 19 follicles but seriously like 6 of them are ginormous (i.e. 29mm x 27mm). Way too big in my opinion. The doctor in me (self taught, lol) says that if there are actually eggs in those, they are going to be over mature for sure but I am not going to stress over such things I cannot control. The size of my follicles and amount of eggs I am currently eggulating is just one of those things.


E2 came back at 4445 (after 11 days of stims). 


No Follistim or Luveris tonight... officially done with those for this cycle. Still taking my Lupron and Lovenox (blood thinners for MTHFR) tonight. Trigger is happening at 7:30pm (7500iu). Also starting Cabergoline tonight (to help keep any OHSS at bay). 


Eeeeep. I am getting nervous. 


I'm still hoping... 3rd times a charm.