Monday, December 23, 2013

I skipped a cycle

I did a fresh and I skipped blogging about it.  I wish I had all of my numbers written down -- but I just needed to skip it.  As you can guess -- it didn't work.  We tried an aggressive approach where my doc was aggressive with the drugs, and then we froze all the embryos so my body had time to recover before transfer.  We transferred 2 frozen in early Nov.  BFN.  About to transfer the remaining 2 in early Jan.  After that we have one more fresh cycle paid for. After that cycle... I don't know.  After my last bfn, it occurred to me that I can't just do this forever.  We shall see...

Monday, August 19, 2013

been a while

Well... I haven't been posting about my cycles as much.  I do want to track it, but I've been, I guess, trying to ignore it as much as I can.  That last transfer I posted about was a BFN.  I've since transferred the one remaining frozen (that survived and tho was stuck in the tube did wind up inside me).  I just found out that too was a BFN.  I've now done 2 fresh and 1 frozen since L was born and I have no frozens left.  Will have to start over.  Feeling discouraged. My re is starting to question my protocol as well as thinking I should be putting back more than one embryo which after this last time, he doesn't need to be the one convincing me -- I'm already there.  Anyone reading this who's done any ivf knows how much thought, money, hope, time, planning, favors, etc went into these failures.  For the 1st time since I had a baby, I am now honestly wondering if I will get to do it again.  Back to a lot of the old, terrible ivf emotions.  Bitter.  I know I'm lucky to have one kid.  I know.  It is just exhausting to have to work so hard for something so important -- that is usually just handed to people.

Sunday, July 7, 2013


Egg retrieval June 28th.  16 eggs.  Fert report: 10 were mature, 7 fertilized.  Day 3: one dropped off - 4 8 cell excellent, 1 7 cell great, 1 6 cell okay.  Day 5 transfer: only 2 left: an 8 cell and a 10 cell.  RE said a good cycle for me (depressing-ish).  We got twin-nervous and did the cautious thing and only put back the 10 cell.  It was so depressing.  I was crying when I told the RE our decision.  To do all this and only have a 30% chance instead of 50-50.  Especially with my background it feels ridiculous to be conservative about how many we put back.  I feel like if this doesn't work, we'll do a frozen cycle for our 1 frozen.  If that doesn't work, I'll never transfer just one again.  I don't feel as upset now.  But I feel like the odds are way against us this time.  I don't feel any different physically... not that that means anything.

On the way to transfer I heard this Indigo Girls song i used to be into in high school and the chorus was "multiply life by the power of 2" and I thought it was maybe a sign to put 2 back.  But we didn't.  Hopefully the one we put in is still thriving.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

You know you've done too much ivf when...

The heating pad you bought for and exclusively use for ivf related things pops open.  Gross clay stuff started falling out.  I found it a little depressing -- who ever wears out a heating pad?  And all for ivf.

If this current cycle is my last (because it's successful) then I will chalk it up to some significance about it getting me through my ivfs...

Egg retrieval was Friday at 6am.  We were much calmer than the time before when C was really sick and we weren't sure they'd let us go ahead with the cycle.  It was a fairly pleasant experience.  16 eggs were retrieved (though we knew only 10 had a real chance of being mature).

Got my fert report yesterday (suuuper late -- like I think my RE forgot and I texted him around 6:30pm -- he emailed and texted back around 8pm -- he's normally great about everything but I sat by my phone all afternoon like I was waiting for a boy to call).

Anyway, 10 eggs were mature and of them 7 fertilized.  It's actually exactly the number i had in my head.  If I were a normal ivf-er, I would be very happy -- though everyone, I bet, always wants more with these things.  But with me, I just don't know.  I usually get high numbers of eggs that dwindle down to very few good embryos.  So I'm trying to be positive and think that i have less quantity hopefully because this cycle is different -- and those 7 embies are stronger and healthier than my usuals.  I will get a follow up report tomorrow sometime.  Then really we'll only know what's what on day 5 (transfer day) when I'm on the table and we hear what our fate is and make a split second decision that might determine our future family.

Friday, June 21, 2013


It's happening.  I'm cycling.  I started Menopur last Thursday so over a week ago.  Last appt I had nothing growing.  Got the same speech as last first u/s: was I doing my shot right?  Where was I injecting? It's concerning but since it's exactly what happened last time I'm not freaked out.  I have an u/s tomorrow -- hopefully there will be something going on. Of course the nurse warned me not to order my meds too far in advance in case the cycle's canceled or something... um, thanks for the pep talk.  I'm hopeful.  I'm nervous.  I really want this to work.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

and so it begins

Again.  Just started Lupron injections, baby asprin and Metformin (used to make me incredibly nauseous -- hoping that's not the case).  I start dexamethazone tonight (made me gain weight in the past).  Fun.  I'm going to try and stay on my weight watchers points and keep exercising and hopefully I won't gain a ton.  And if I do, at least I'll know I did what I could to prevent that.

I'm also hoping that the timing of starting my cycle the day of L's 1 1/2 b-day is a good sign -- though I've certainly been burned almost every time I look for significance in any of this shit.  So let's just say I'm extremely hopeful that this is the begging of my last ivf cycle.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

small talk

My favorite neighborhood Thai place is run by a very sweet woman.  We've had honest conversations in the past about ivf because she sneaks in private questions in our chit chat and I always answer her honestly... kind of to show her how personal her questions are.  Like once when she asked how much ivf costs, I told her.  So since L was born, our chit chat is usually pretty light.. how's the baby, how's work?  Pleasant.  But today when she threw in one of her classics "when are you going to have another?" I said we're trying.  No smile on my face to make her feel better.  Lately I've been really blunt when people ask about it.  I just feel like it's not my job to make other people feel more comfortable during ivf talk.  I'm the one living it... it's not my job to put in extra effort to sugar coat shit.  So when she asked if we were going to try all "the stuff we used to do" (ivf) I told her we already did and it didn't work.  She looked genuinely sad.  I gave her a little smile.  I actually love my random honest, personal relationship with the Thai lady who knows me by my order even though I order different stuff each time.  But look out, anyone who tries to sneak personal questions into our small talk... cause you're gonna hear what's really going on.

Monday, April 8, 2013

2nd beta in

Officially over.  I can stop my meds... nothing more depressing than getting progesterone shots for nothing.  Now we can start the ritual: sushi, alcohol, going and doing all the things I thought I might have to put off for 9 months... I am going to plant my ceremonial herb and veggie garden that happens when a cycle fails in the spring... I'm going to go back to spin class.  Get a dumb gel manicure.  Clean kitty litter!

Though this weekend was HARD, I'm feeling better.  Haven't cried over this that much... a bunch Saturday.  Maybe once yesterday.  Today: nothin'.  I think it helped that I had the morning with the kid and he's back to saying "Mama" and putting his arms around my neck.  He smushes his face into mine... he has a cold and the subsequent booger fountain that comes with it... but I don't care.  I'm just happy to have him showing me some love after the shit storm of post-ivf/ohss distance between us.

This is going to sound strange... but our old failed cycle ritual involved going out of town last minute, just driving wherever, doing whatever... trying to spoil ourselves.  It never fixed anything... but it was something to do together to mourn.  This weekend was confusing. We're lucky enough to have a kid, but he was sick, needy, cranky, sleep deprived from his cold... and we couldn't just do whatever.  We tried going to the aquarium (take that, failed cycle -- blissful family fun!).  But it wasn't.  The kid was cranky, the aquarium crowds were crazy.  We maybe stayed for an hour and left.  We walked around the marina and I cried.  Nothing about the day was fixing anything.  It was a hard day.  We were sad.  We thought about just spontaneously going somewhere for the night but we didn't have the kid's overnight stuff with us... plus the reality of it was it would just be work to bring him.  Didn't know how to get a last minute babysitter for a sick kid at 3pm.  So we went home.  Again, I know I'm INSANELY lucky to be a mom... but it just meant the sting of the cycle failing was just sitting there.  On us.  Real life had to keep going.  We're parents.  Lucky to be... but in this particular situation it was complicated.

My WTF appt. is Thursday.  I'm guessing he's going to say to do everything the same.  I think if he wanted to try something very different I'd be scared.  I don't want to have to rediscover another thing that works for me... that could mean extra cycles of figuring that magical potion out.

Another part of my post cycle ritual is hating my post cycle/ohss body.  Feeling gross from being sick, from not working out, from eating weird shit.  I'm trying to just start taking control of that stuff back without being so hard on myself.  What's weird is when I look in the mirror I'm not that upset.  But I know I'm 35 lbs heavier than I should be... I imagine.  Haven't stepped on a scale in 6 weeks.  It really isn't fair that you not only don't get pregnant but you're left feeling gross about your failed-cycle-body.  I feel like I've whined about that about 20 times... maybe cause I've had about 20 failed/cancelled cycles.  I'm actually not sure what the exact number is.  I'm nervous to do the math on it cause it'll be depressing and I'm trying to not wallow in all this.

Friday, April 5, 2013


I tried to get my head ready for it just in case.  Still doesn't prepare you.  First, let me whine:

I can't believe we have to start over.  That we have NOTHING frozen.  That we have to cycle, I have to get OHSS just for a chance.  I can't believe how much thought went into something with ZERO results.  How much money and time and physical strain.  How many OTHER people had to help -- for nothing.  How I've been a shitty mom to our 16 monther the past few weeks because I couldn't physically deal.  How he now reaches for his dad when he's upset.  How much planning was for nothing.  How much talk and hope went into something when we got NOTHING out of it.  How there are a ton of shitty, shitty people in the world who never have to deal with this.  How I thought this may have actually been the end of our ivf journey... but instead it has to happen ALL OVER AGAIN.

Okay.  now let me spin the positives:

I'm lucky that other than IF, my family and I are healthy.  My husband is great.  My kid is great... and oh yeah, holy shit we have a kid!  We know I CAN get pregnant.  We are lucky that we can afford this IVF journey.  We have a great support network.  We know there are some advantages to having kid #1 get a little older before kid #2 is born so it's a little easier of a transition for him.  I know the only way to be successful with ivf is to keep trying... and even if each cycle only gives us one shot -- at least we get that shot... a real shot.  I really do believe one of these times will work.  And though it might take a few more tries... It's likely that if we do this once or twice more it will work.

I believe that last paragraph but it's going to take a while before I feel that it's true.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

On the eve of my first beta

Just read this and I appreciate both how simply and well put his points are and also that it's written by a man:

Monday, April 1, 2013

so dumb

Until today, I was not feeling hopeful.  My body is still coming off OHSS and it can take a couple weeks to get back to normal.  So after a full morning of stuff -- I couldn't keep my eyes open and I crashed for an hour.  Woke up to my alarm and really had trouble getting up.  My appetite is now back (because it went away during OHSS).  I logically know my body is so jacked up from the actual cycle that it is 100% a waste of time to read into anything.  But there was definitely a shift where now I'm feeling more eager for my beta.  Great.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

and here we are

The ohss is on it's way out.  I have zero energy but feel much better.  Part of me is hopeful that we might actually have a chance... and a big part of me feels like this isn't our cycle.  Maybe it's just my self-preservation instincts sending up those walls... or it's that feeling that since most of our eggs/embies were not viable -- how could we actually get a great result out of this?  Except I know that it can work. Because the last cycle was almost as bad and we got pregnant off it.  Yes, we transferred three great embies last time and only one took... but it only takes one.  So I'm not moping around... not totally positive.  Somewhere in between.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

ET was yesterday

Our fertilization report from day 3 was:

1 good embryo, 1 fair and 5 poor.  They can always change for better or worse.  The night before ET we went over possible scenarios that could be sprung on us at ET.  We could get a call not to bother coming in cause they'd all fizzled out.  We could have a hard choice of only having one to freeze (and genetically test).  We could have a few good ones and have to decide how many to put back, 1 or 2.  Really don't want twins.  Don't know if I can carry them.  Really don't want a failed ivf cycle.  I found myself feeling angry that I had to be conservative with how many to put back because I not only have a shitty fertility lot.  But I have a shitty pregnancy lot.  I felt like I was being doubly punished.  Wah wah wah.  Back to the charming personality of an IVFer.  Anyway, we showed up for transfer.  Found out only 2 embryos survived... one good and one okay.  Our doc felt like though he couldn't guarantee anything, it was less likely for us to have twins with 2 (especially these two) than most folks cause, in simple terms, it was less likely for us to get preg than most folks cause we were coming into it with poor sperm, mostly poor eggs, a history of shit... and 24 eggs that lead to 2 embryos.  So we put them both back.  Despite the disappointing nature of this cycle... I was thrilled to have something to put back and we really just need one to work.  Hope it's one of these.

Monday, March 25, 2013

fertilization report

out of 24 eggs:

3 were immature
8 were misshapen/grainy/irregular... not viable

So 13 mature eggs... turned into 8 embryos

I'm currently waiting for an update but we're scheduled for a day 5 transfer so it can't be terrible.

There were also some sperm issues which could be linked to C's fever.

My uncomfortable-ness is increasing by the day but it's not insane. Yesterday I felt ready to try half percosets.  Today half didn't cut it so I took the second half.  And I feel soooo much better.  And I was worried it would make me sleep all day but I've been pretty energetic.  Maybe too much because I'm starting to get tired now.

I've been drinking my liquids/eating my gross soups at weird times.  I'm back in that OHSS place where I don't have an appetite... but all in all, drug management is working.  I think my least favorite part of the day is laying on my belly to get my progesterone shot.  Tomorrow I have a work meeting so that should be interesting.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

The Morning After

I woke up around 6.  The soreness from egg retrieval mixing with a weird uneasy feeling in my gut (literally and figuratively).  My left butt cheek is sore from my 1st progesterone shot last night.  That my mom had to give me.  Why?

Well... yesterday when my alarm went off at 4:30am to get ready for my ER, I saw that C was in bed next to me in his scrubs.  He'd made it home from being on call just a few hours earlier.  I touched him and felt that he was HOT.  We took his temperature and it was 102.8.  We were both nervous about what that would mean for retrieval... would his sperm be okay?  Do we call the doc?  How after all this ivf is there still new shit to pop up and shake it all up???

Instead we got ready, he took some Advil and I drove him to our appointment.  It turned out that because it was a new fever, it would be okay.  But after C did his sperm "deposit" he went to sleep in the car -- it's a tiny waiting room and we didn't think it was fair to the other patients that day to have a sick guy there.  So I was there alone.  It was okay because they took me right in.  They said I was a hard stick... a relatively new thing.  After the IV went in I felt a little nauseous.  I also felt like I was going to cry.  Was I scared?  I'd done this quite a few times before.  I'm supposed to be good at it by now.  I guess it's so stressful leading up to it -- so many things could go wrong (for me anyway).

I woke up and heard there were 12 eggs and still counting.  I asked for C.  The called him and he came right up and helped me get dressed. On the way out we asked how many eggs they got.  The receptionist looked at my chart and said "2+".  What the fuck does that mean?  A nurse read it... it said 24!  She had misread the 4 as a "+".  Oh, lady.

I'm pretty sure that's the most amount of eggs I've ever had retrieved.  Which is exciting.  Maybe this cycle will be even better than the last.  Maybe it's just getting my hopes up... we'll see.

We got home and C and I fell asleep on opposite edges of our bed -- he didn't want to get me sick; I had no desire to be touched.  I woke up a little later to C shivering.  Guess he's not getting better right away. My mom is here -- taking care of little one.  I was trying to take care of C -- me hobbling around getting an extra blanket, something to drink.  My mom doing the same for me.  It was a funny caretaking exchange.  (Of course my mom would've done all that stuff -- I'm just trying to to what I can when I can so I don't exhaust everyone since I might be less able later).

I woke up a few hours later and felt sore but good.  Got stressed out when I realized my mom would have to do my shot.  This is the one that always hurt and I got sorer as the night went on and wished I could just lay on the couch and let C handle everything -- but he was a mess himself.  The shot didn't hurt -- good job, Mom!  But it left its normal, lovely lady lump behind.

I slept pretty well... but woke up about an hour ago at 6.  I feel an uneasiness.  I know what it is.  It feels like there's a circle the size of a small paper plate around my belly button -- and under that circle is a sinking, uncomfortable feeling.  It's the beginning of OHSS.  I expect it might be bad this time with all those eggs.  I HOPE it will not be bad because every cycle is different.  But I am nervous.  C is nervous.

I wouldn't leave the ER without my percocet prescription.  Last OHSS I tried to go without using it and it wasn't until the end that I caved and felt slightly human.  I don't want to hold out this time -- but I could hear myself asking for it (my doc already said he would do it -- I was just afraid that with C sick and my groggy post ER that we might leave without it).  Anyway, I sounded like an addict.  As if I did this cycle just to get that prescription.  I told the doc, he could give me Valium ( I remember getting some last transfer and realizing how much it helped)... whatever would help with the least amount of potency.  So I have the  Percocet prescription on the dining room table... I was hoping that I wouldn't need to get it filled, but waking up feeling this thing in my gut makes me think that might be where we're headed.  I've got my fingers crossed that my "gut feeling" is just some other thing related to having retrieval yesterday and that I'm worried for nothing.

Still, I'm thrilled to have so many eggs.  We'll see how many fertilize.... then after that it's wait to day 5 to see how many survive.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

like prepping a bomb shelter

I'm about to go grocery shopping... ready to hole into my house post retrieval (which is set for 6:30 am tomorrow).  I already feel bloated, a little nauseous, pressure building.  And that's just the normal stuff.  What I'm nervous for is A: the results.  How many eggs?  Are there any?  Did the trigger shot even work?  And also B: the looming and likely OHSS.

So today we prep: Laundry done, house ready, I need to download a shitload of stuff on the dvr.  Sounds like a fun staycation, right?  It won't be.  It's stuff for me to barely pay attention to while I roll around, trying to get comfortable while in a sick haze.  Something to catch my attention for small spurts to pass the time.  I need to go buy salty stuff... mostly soups to drink.  Need to do everything I might not be able to do in the next week if this shit gets criz-azy.  Luckily my mom is here to help.  Hopefully there will be no going to the hospital but it's nice to know there's someone here to watch the little one if that happens.  There will be the weekend when C is home, too.  My sister and her husband will be around then.  This will be fine.  This will be temporary.  With any luck it will be the last time I have to do this.

Monday, March 18, 2013

taking notes

Okay.  Just in case (and I so hope not) I have to do another ivf cycle, I want to sort of take some notes on what's happening with this cycle.

I started doing Lupron shots a month ago (10).  Went down to 5.  Got my period.  Stayed at five.  Did 2 Delestrogen butt shots.  Started Menapur (3 vials and estradiol suppositories or "vagina burgers") 2 and a half weeks ago.  On Sat. they had just started to grow with a 14 lead... (I'd switched from stomach shots to top of thigh shots to aid absorption).  Today I have about 19 eggs; an 18, five 17s, eight 16s, three 15s, two 14s...  it looks good.  My lining has been good this whole time and it's now a 12.  Doc thinks the estrogen primer (delestrogen) slowed my response/helped my lining.  I'm set for retrieval either Thurs. or Friday.  It looks... GOOD.  I'm hopeful, excited.  Will feel better after tomorrow's appt when I hopefully get the ok to trigger, will feel better when I wake up from ER to hear that they actually got eggs... and so on and so on til I bring home a healthy baby.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

dumb stuff

why I want this cycle to work out: peace of mind, ease of process, $

if it doesn't i will try to remember these dumb positive things: I will have more time to lose weight (before getting pregnant) and I won't have a baby born right around L

I feel ridiculous even thinking about those things when there will be bigger concerns like ivf working and avoiding having another preemie... but you can't take the girl out of the infertile

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Back at it

Yesterday I went back to my RE to check in.  See what needs to happen for #2.  I don't know when exactly, but he said I can start as soon as Feb. but not to wait much longer than a year.  I'm on progesterone to induce a period, cause despite my optimistic previous post.. the bleeding I had wasn't a true period. I haven't had a period since L was born 13 months ago.  And now since I haven't lost most of the baby weight, I'm about 25 lbs heavier than when I started my last couple fresh cycles.  I'm technically obese. Though I don't think losing a few pounds will greatly change the outcome of my ivf or pregnancy, I'm trying.  Pretty hardcore.  Because I am not someone who can casually lose weight.  The last few months have reinforced that fact.  So now I have to figure out exactly when to start, but I'm sure it'll be sooner rather than later. I was surprised to feel excited to be back at the RE's.  not full of dread, not depressed, no tears. Hopefully I'l be lucky and avoid those feeling this time around.