Wednesday, March 30, 2011

It's Official...

I waited till I got the official results back from my RE to post, but I am writing this the day before I go in for my beta. It is over. It didn't work. I am not pregnant. I am heartbroken. There is no accurate way to describe how sad I am right now. How do you mourn something you never really had? I feel broken and empty, and it feels like it will always be this way.

I feel bad for Garry too. He has no clue what to do or say to make me feel better. Probably because there is no way to make me feel better. He keeps saying it will work next time and we still have two more shots at IVF. But it isn't that easy, right now all I see when I think about our next cycle is more disappointment and pain. I don't think I will ever get the optimism I had for this cycle back. I have heard stories of women doing 6 or 7 IVFs before they got their take home baby.

I keep trying to imagine our lives without children. And as much as I love Garry with everything I have, the thought of the two of us puttering around our house alone with our dogs for the rest of our lives makes me want to curl up in bed and sleep for as long as is possible. No kids waking us up at the crack of dawn on Christmas morning to go open presents, no first trips to the beach, no reading books before bedtime. Just the two of us watching TV and going to the movies every date night for the rest of our lives. I know eventually I could be happy and not feel like we are missing out, but right now I don't even want to try and imagine how it will feel.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Progesterone In Oil is the Devil

Overdramatic? Maybe. But true. First of all the side effects of PIO exactly mimick the early symptoms of pregnancy. So while you are trying to find hope in everything your body does it could all just be PIO tricking you. I have been on the injections for 9 days now and I am exhausted. I can't remember ever being this tired before. Not even before I got diagnosed with Crohn's and couldn't sleep through the night because of all the pain I was in. I slept 8 hours last night and yet right now I feel like I could sleep another 8 and still feel tired. It is noon and I am honestly thinking about taking a nap before work.

Every single muscle in my body aches. It feels like I worked out a little too hard and now everything is protesting. The worst is without a doubt my boobs. Just putting on a bra is pure torture. And those are just a couple of the side effects I am feeling. There is also the crabbiness, the headaches, and the slight nausea. All side effects of PIO, all symtpoms of being pregnant. It is a serious mind f*ck.

One week until my pregnancy test. I can make it till then, and this will all be worth it if it comes out the way I want it to. Ok, nap time.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

4dp3dt and some pictures...

I am four days post three day tansfer, and The Champ is all I can think about. Literally every move I make I get paranoid that it was the wrong move and I am going to accidentally dislodge the little guy. Completely irrational? Yup. Can I help it? Nope.

I have also been analyzing everything my body is doing. I have the usual boob soreness that comes with the Progesteron In Oil injections, so I am not putting too much weight on that. The thing that is making me stop and go hmmmm is my stomach. I haven't been nauseous exactly, but I have had weird food aversions. Normally every morning I have a protein shake, this morning I couldn't even finish half of it because I wanted to yak. I have also been having very vivid dreams, and I remember them in perfect detail. And usually they involve zombies. Both of these things could mean absolutely nothing, but I can't help but wonder if they might mean something. I will be testing at home before my Beta test on April 1st, but I won't be sharing the results here until I get to tell my family and close friends so they don't find out from my blog.

This week I got really bored while taking it easy around the house, so I decided to set up a little photography project. I fished all of my needles out of my sharps container and did a little photo shoot with my IVF meds. Here is what I came up with:

IVF Meds New WM-6

IVF Meds New WM-7

IVF Meds New WM-1

IVF Meds New WM-3

IVF Meds New WM-8

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Champ

The Champ 2

That is our little Champ. I can't stop staring at the picture. I even made it the background on my phone.

I am over analyzing everything I do right now. Just walking to the bathroom terrifies me. But I have to say I am really excited, and for right now at least I have no doubt that this is going to work. I look at that little blob and I see our future kiddo. This is dangerous territory.

This whole cycle was horrid. From the very start when I thought the IVF wasn't going to be covered by insurance right down to only getting 1 embryo and landing in the hospital. But I think about The Champ being ahead in development and hopefully snuggling in right now and I am nothing but conifdant that this is all going to work. That terrifies me. I have been confidant with every cycle that it was going to work, and we all know how those turned out. But now we are at a place that we have never been before. There is an actual embryo inside me. Not just the potential for sperm and egg to meet, but the beginnings of baby. How cool is that?

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Champ is home

I am posting this from my phone because I am currently on bed rest at my parents' house, so I will keep it short. We transferred our lone embryo this morning. He is still fighting it out and exceeding expectations. On day 3 an embryo is supposed to be 8 cells. Our little Champ was 10 cells with no fragmentation. The RE gave it a grade 1 which is the best grade he gives. He said that if we were only going to only have 1 embryo this is the one to have. They also decided to do assisted hatching on the embryo, this means they make a little hole in the out shell of the embryo, this helps it to implant. So now I wait a week and a half to go in and test to see if this worked. I also got a pic of the Champ so iwll try to post it in the next few days.

Friday, March 18, 2011

It Only Takes One

That is is the sentence I am chanting under my breath all day. I got the update from the RE this morning. I have one little embie growing strong. He said even though we only have one it is perfect. On day 2 embryos are supposed to be 4 cells, mine is 6 cells and has almost no fragmentation (for more info on embryo development here is a link). I am very happy that my little embie is growing strong and hanging in like a champ. I am over being sad about only having one. This is going to be the one.

So we go in tomorrow morning for a 3 day transfer. Hopefully tomorrow The Champ will be at least 8 cells and still have very little fragmentation. I will be taking the entire weekend off from work to be on bed rest. My RE only requires 24 hours of bed rest, but I want to give The Champ a fighting chance so I plan on staying in bed for two full days and then really taking it easy for at least a week.

I am very excited to see a picture of my Champ tomorrow, and i am going to try and get pic to share here. Wish me luck and please continue to send growing vibes to our little fighter!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Well This Sucks

Nothing turned out the way I thought it would. Let's start with the retrieval.

Everything with the actual retrieval went pretty smoothly. When I got to the office and was signing all the paperwork the girl in the curtain next to me was getting her report on how many eggs they retrieved and i was very jealous because she got 19. But I tried to brush it off and concentrate on my retrieval. They took me back to the room and started hooking me up to the IV and monitors. I always find it amazing how fast the drugs work to put you under. One minute I remember the anesthesiologist telling me to take a deep breath and then I am waking up in the recovery room. The bad news: they got 4 eggs. I was really disappointed. I was hoping all 7 of my follies would have something in them. The RE even tried to get something for some of my smaller follies, but no luck.

I felt pretty good after the retrieval. Even stopped and got donuts on the way home. Then about two hours after we got home I noticed the pain on my right side (where most the follies were)was getting worse. I went upstairs to go to the bathroom and the pain started becoming unbearable. I called for Garry and he called the RE's office. They called in a script for Tylenol 3, but in the time Garry left to get it and got back the pain tripled and I was on the ground begging for him to make it stop. So we went to the Emergency Room. Long story short, I developed a blood clot by my right ovary. Not really sure why I got it or what it means, but they said it should dissolve on it's own. They kept me over night to keep an eye on my blood work to make sure I wasn't bleeding someplace they couldn't see, but everything looked ok this morning and they sent me home.

Now for the really bad news. I got my fertilization report and things aren't good. Of the 4 eggs retrieved only 3 were mature. We did ICSI (they inject a single sperm into each egg) on those three. 1 fertilized normally. 1 fertilized abnormally and they had to discard it. One they aren't sure if it fertilized. i guess there is a small window of time to see if the egg fertilized and the embryologist isn't sure if the point has already passed or if the egg just didn't fertilize. She is going to watch it until tomorrow to see if something develops. So as of right now we have one fertilized egg. And as the embryologist was so kind to point out, there is no guarantee it will continue to develop.

I am heart broken and very angry with my body right now. I worked so hard to get to this point, and I feel like I am being punished. Everyone always says "it only takes one" but right now I have no faith that one will make it long enough to be transferred back to my body. I have even less faith that my body would be able to do anything right even if it does make it to transfer. So now I just wait to hear back from the RE tomorrow on what we are doing.

I am off to take more Tylenol 3 and a very long nap.

Monday, March 14, 2011

It's go time...

So I had my second, and it turns out final, follie check today. I won't lie, I was a little disappointed today. As you will recall I had 8 solid follicles with 2 more that could have been something on Friday. Today I have 7 solid follicles and the other three stopped growing altogether. I was really hoping that I would have over ten follicles today. But my stupid left ovary has failed me once again. All three of the follies that puttered out were on the left side, there is only one half decent follie on leftie.

Don't get me wrong, I am happy I have any follies in there at all, because I know there is no guarantee. But I went into this thinking I would be a pretty decent responder, so I am a little disappointed to find that I am not as decent as I thought I would be.

This doesn't mean that this cycle won't work though. And I am trying my best to stay up beat and optimistic. I have heard lots of stories of women who have retrieved under 5 eggs and still gotten pregnant and gone on to have beautiful babies, and I absolutely believe that could happen to us as well.

So tonight is go night. The 7 follicles that are left are ready to go. I trigger at exactly 10:30pm this evening and go in at 10am Wednesday morning for the retrieval. I am very nervous and excited to get this part of the process underway.

The good news is that the raging case of diarrhea I had over the weekend seems to be resolving itself. I am not sure if my stomach problems the last couple days are meds related, Crohn's related, or just a bug that I picked up. Whatever it was though, it sucked! Although I did lose 5 pounds over the past three days so that is a bonus. That makes my official weight loss 68 pounds and 9 BMI points. Not too shabby.

Ok, the next update will be post Egg Retrieval. Everyone send as many Egg-cellent Egg vibes my way as you can muster up! Thanks!

Friday, March 11, 2011

First Follie Check

Everything is looking pretty good in there so far. My right ovary has 6 follies between 10-13mm and few that were too small to count yet. The left was being a little bitchy and wouldn't come out from behind my bowels. The ultrasound lady said she thinks she saw four on there, but she could only measure two. So I am counting that as 8 definites with 2 maybes.

I am sticking to the same doses of my meds for the weekend: 225iu Gonal F, 75iu Menopur, 1 baby aspirin. We are also adding in the Ganirelex tonight which prevents you from ovulating before the doctor is ready. I go back in on Monday for another ultrasound and more blood work. The ultrasound tech said if she had to guess she would say we would be ready for trigger on Monday and retrieval on Wednesday. I am really hoping that is how it turns out!

It symptoms news: I am feeling insanely tired all. the. time. I am really not sure it is because of the hormones, or the fact that I have only been getting 4-5 hours of sleep a night, or because I have been running all over the place all week and it is just catching up with me.

I am also feeling my ovaries more and more. I have also started to notice a little bit of bloat in the tummy area. I haven't been too emotional yet, just a little more teary eyed than normal. I have also lost my appetite entirely. I am nauseous just about all the time, when I try to eat something it goes away, but after a couple bites it comes back only worse. At this rate I will lose even more weight despite trying to just maintain weight for my cycle.

That is it for now, see ya Monday after my 2nd follie check.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Why Hello Ovaries

Just a quick little post this time.

I have done three nights of stims and I am starting to be very aware of my ovaries. They don't hurt yet, but they feel a little heavy and tingly. I am dying to know what is going on in there. My first follie check is tomorrow morning. Hopefully I have lots and lots of follies growing in there.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Since the weight loss I have been slightly obsessed with checking out my body. I am very embarrassed to admit this, but it is true. Mind it is only in clothes that I do this, I still run from mirrors when naked. I have a theory that you can tell the difference between a fat person's house and a skinny person's house without ever seeing them. Just count the number of mirrors in their house. Less mirrors = most likely a plus sized person lives there, more mirrors = a hot skinny person lives there. I have three mirrors in my house; one is on the inside of a closet door that is almost always shut, one is in the bathroom and you can only see from the neck up, and one is on an antique dresser we use as a bar and so is mostly obscured my bottles of booze.

Anywho, when I am fully dressed any shiny surface I pass by I have to glance at my bod as I walk by. I don't know if it because I am still a little in disbelief that I was able to drop over 60 pounds, or just that I think I look damn good in clothes right now.

Today I wore a shirt to work that I haven't fit into since before I started dating my husband. I loved this shirt, it was my going out shirt when I first got home from college. I am convinced I look better in it now than I did when I was 24. The obsession with checking myself out has reached a high today wearing this shirt. And I have gotten about 6 compliments on it, and on how good I am looking after dropping the pounds. It feels nice. I am used to getting compliments on my hair color (which changes a lot) but people don't usually comment on my clothes or body.

I suppose I should enjoy it while I can. I am sure eventually the infamous IVF bloat will settle in soon and I won't be admiring my reflection for much longer. And hopefully after that I will start getting a bump and then I will obsessed with my body for a whole other reason. But I just feel so silly for always looking at myself, it is not like I anywhere close to being skinny, or even average, I am still firmly plus-sized. Just a slightly more streamlined plus-size now.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Baseline and I already messed up my meds...

So first things first, my baseline went well today. All my bloodwork came back normal so I got to start stims tonight (more on that later). I also had an ultrasound to count the number of resting follicles in my ovaries (antral follicle count). This is how the doctor determines the dose of drugs to start you out on, and it is also a good indicator of how many eggs may mature and make it for retrieval. I was a little disappointed in my antral follicle count. I was hoping for 10-15 but I only had 8 total, 4 on each ovary. I know that doesn't mean this won't work or that we won't get plenty of eggs. I was just hoping for a stronger number right off the bat.

So as for my stims, I am starting out on 225iu of Gonal F, 75 iu of Menopur and one baby aspirin a night. And yes, I did indeed mess up my first Menopur injection. The deal with Menopur is you have to draw up a solution and mix it with the powdered drug and then draw that back up to inject it. For some reason the first time I tried all this there was a huge ass air bubble in the syringe. When I tried to get it out a good amount of the drug squirted out too. Oopsie. Garry thought it would be ok, but I didn't want to risk it so I just tossed the first attempt and mixed another one, this time everything worked out perfectly, and I got both injections done with no other problems.

Now I go back on Wednesday for more bloodwork and then Friday I go back for yet more bloodwork and my first follicle check.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Let's Get This Party Started!

That's right, it is time to get things started. Today is cycle day 1 of my very first (and hopefully only) IVF. After a lot of biting my nails Aunt Flow showed up, and only a day late (she loves to keep me in suspense). Tomorrow morning will be my baseline blood work and antral follicle count (a count of how many resting follicles are in the ovary before starting stims). I am ubber excited. I have been reading up on antral follicle counts and what they could mean to the outcome of an IVF cycle so that I will know what is going on tomorrow at the ultrasound (why hello dildo cam, I have totally missed you... no really... ok maybe not). I will update with all the details from the baseline appointment as soon as I get back home.

So just to catch everyone up in case you have missed something, let's take a trip down memory lane and look back at what brought us to this place:
1 year trying on our own.
7 rounds of Clomid, three with IUI.
1 round of Gonal F and back to back IUIs.
58 pounds lost since April 2010 (65 since January).
About 30 hours on the phone talking to (wanting to scream at) insurance people.
More tears than I can count, one complete emotional break down in my Human Resources lady's office.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Getting Impatient

I think it is hilarious that this IVF has been a year in the making, and with 5 days to go before we start stims I am all of a sudden incredibly impatient. We are talking it feels like time has come to a crawl. My days feel endless. It feels like Monday will never get here. I know I should be enjoying this time before Aunt Flow has arrived and before the dozens and dozens of injections I will be giving myself in the coming weeks, but I am not. I want Monday to get here now. I have done all this work, and now I want see what this whole IVF thing will bring for us, more heartache or the family we have been dreaming of.

It is getting harder and harder for us to stay calm and not get over-excited. On the way home from our injection class today Garry couldn't stop talking about baby names. It was kind of cute actually. He said that he is kinda hoping for twins. I had no clue he thought about it all that much.

But there is a reason he is hoping for twins. You see back when we first started seeing an RE Garry was very nervous about becoming the next Jon and Kate. I assured him that would never happen to us because I would cancel any cycle that even had the possibility of producing more than three babies, but he wasn't very convinced. So we struck a deal. If we got pregnant with twin boys he would get to name them, and I would have no veto power. I agreed thinking he isn't a complete nut and would pick semi-normal names. I was wrong. He wants to name our hypothetical twin boys Tomax and Xamot. For those not in the know, Tomax and Xamot are GI Joe characters. So it turns out my husband is a complete nut. I hope that if we would by some amazing coincidence get pregnant with twin boys he would come to his senses and not name them after cartoon characters, but I really don't know. And is it weird that we talked about it so much today that they are actually starting to grow on me? Garry kept talking about how we could call Tomax 'Max' for short (which I think is actually really cute).

Before we knew it we had talked for the entire ride home (45 minutes) about what we are going to name our hypothetical children. Well not the entire ride, we also spent some time discussing the nursery. Oy, are we setting ourselves up for heartache or what.

So followers, what do you think of Tomax and Xamot as the names of our hypothetical twin boys?