Saturday, September 10, 2011

Easing on down the road

Unfortunately this cycle didn't work out!  I wasn't very surprised but was still disappointed.  Even though I ate those nasty brazil nuts & tried to visualize myself with my 2 little embryos implanting, I just felt... off.  The three days after transfer were the happiest, but then after that I just didn't feel anything.  Once the doubt settled in it stayed!

The best thing I did, though, (& I went against what I said I was going to do!) was test starting at 7dp3dt.  I thought I could wait but seeing BFNs really did prepare me for yesterday's test result.  So when I got the beta news I handled it much better than otherwise.  I know that some people understandably become stressed & depressed seeing a BFN so early but it did the opposite for me.  I said, wow, damn, maybe it's still early, can't even worry about it.  Stress has taken out many a people & I consciously work to keep mine at a minimum.  Plus with work keeping me busy I was able to take the focus off myself pretty damn well.  Even though the beta news wasn't favorable I am a firm, firm believer in 'there's a reason for everything' & I knew given my age & stats my road would be a wee bit steeper.  A few minutes after I hung up the phone I had to reflect: I am grateful that God has stayed with me this whole time & has allowed me my first, yes first, IVF cycle.

I've decided to change REs, though.  I feel like I got the one-size-fits-all protocol given my circumstances & this particular RE is cold as a fish.  I need to feel like my RE is rooting for me & not just there for my co-pay.  As a matter of fact I made the appointment for the new RE even before I got my beta news!  When you know, you know!  I'll provide an update in a few weeks.  I'm hopeful :-)

(Thank you, SmartOneKym, for checking on me, sorry it took me so long to update!  And thanks to everyone who stopped by and sent their good luck wishes!  This blog was the best decision I've made, it's been such a blessing to connect with people who don't even know me but who send such positive energy & who choose to care for someone they've never met :-)

Monday, September 5, 2011


(All these IF acronyms and codes: 5 days past 3 day transfer) I'm trying to stay off the internet because I'm hoping for the most peaceful, least stressful 2ww as possible. Praise God, 2 embryos were fertilized and were implanted in a 3-day transfer, which was a trip in and of itself. Seeing their picture, a miracle.

I had to have a full bladder for the transfer and arrived to the clinic with it super-full. First off, I was made to wait about 20 minutes before the transfer. There was no way I could hold it and had to pee right before the transfer. I was told not to totally empty my bladder, which I didn't, but it swiftly filled back up again. Still had to wait another 10 minutes -- finally brought back and prepared for transfer. The procedure began and as much as I tried to keep my eyes on the ultrasound monitor the more I looked at my full bladder the more I had to pee. I managed to chill while my embryos were implanted, couldn't stop smiling but that lasted only a moment. Knowing I had to lay there for 20 additional minutes I asked for a bedpan or catheter but was told they don't provide that to patients. WTH?!! That was the dumbest, least considerate move this clinic has made yet. Everyone walked out and I lay there trying to keep it together... but I couldn't hold it in another moment. Yes, I peed all over that table. The nurses were so sweet about it and said I wouldn't be the last to piss up their space. (If they had bedpans or catheters, they would likely have 0 incidents of table pissing.)

But that was it! And that was 5 days ago. I stayed home that day and the next day and went into work twice. I tend not to believe in needing bed rest after transfer but I work in a stressful environment so it was nice to relax and stay in the bliss. I'm trying to stay offline as much as possible because I have been tempted to look up every twinge and sensation and see if that's a symptom of a looming BFP. No symptoms = BFP or BFN, cramping & pulling = BFP or BFN, spotting = BFP or BFN. Only way I'll really know is by the end of this week.

I'm a firm believer in 'don't worry about about anything, pray about everything' so I've been steady praying. And the internet is the worst thing to have access to at a time like this! Thank God for On Demand and DVRs... I'm all caught up on Intervention, Deadly Women, Hoarders, Bait Car, have a month's worth of Judge Judy to plow through.  Signing off!  Best wishes, madame 2ww'ers!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Praying for Wednesday

Wow, I meant to update this on Friday but how distracting these last few days 'til today have been! I took the trigger shot on Friday night at the exact time I was supposed to take it. Later that evening my breasts were tender but I think that was the extent of the side effects. Started doxycycline (antibiotic) prior to egg retrieval which was today.

And they got a whopping (weak drum roll please) 3 EGGS! Seems that I had more follicles than eggs, totally surprised me. I honestly thought they'd get as many eggs as I had follicles. And I won't know until tomorrow whether these eggs were able to be fertilized. I'm scheduled for a Day 4 transfer, which my quick Google research says is as good as a Day 5 transfer. I start Endometrin tonight and I also start taking Estrace. I am salty though that my doctor didn't come talk to me after the retrieval. Every other procedure I have had my doctors have always come to me and provided information so I could be reassured and informed. It was the nurse instead who relayed the 3-egg status.

In Jesus name I pray that my 3 little eggs are mature and get fertilized and become healthy morulas that are transferred on Wednesday and develop into healthy babies that I will birth and raise and love.

This post-anesthesia nausea I'm dealing is no joke! I'm going to lay it down and take it easy, leaving all this in God's hands.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Onto the Ganirelix

Things are progressing! I was initially concerned that the follicular development wouldn't be where they ought to be at the 8 day mark. I was just glad to hear what seemed like good news. I wish I could report what was seen on the ultrasound but as quickly as he mentioned the number on the right and left was how quickly it flew out my brain. But my doctor was pleased with the progress and I was able to start Ganirelix yesterday. Weird little pre-filled syringe and that needle's a mess -- it's slightly thicker and a bit duller. Damn near had to stab myself to get the needle in; did I mention how proud I am to be able to do these shots myself?

I was going to write an update yesterday but I still haven't been able to shake the constant fatigue. And whereas in the last week I've been eating like a baby bear, today I had zero appetite.

Even writing this I feel my eyes closing shut... so I'm going to oblige them. Good night, sweet dreams.

And to Khaddafy, you smarmy, wicked bastard: Kick rocks.
And take that murderous f*cker in Syria with you.

Saturday, August 20, 2011


This week I thought I was tired due to my cycle wrapping up plus I wanted to escape the dull head throbbing I've been dealing with over the last 7 days. But this fatigue is out of this world! I was sitting at work and needed to nod off. I walk down hallways and immediately want to lay down because my whole being is worn out. I don't want to do ANYTHING but sleep.

I'm also feeling low aches in my ovaries so at least I know these shots are doing something. My only concern is I wonder if I've been under-monitored by my doctor. When I went in mid-last week I was told to come back on Monday. That's almost 5 days of not being monitored and I thought monitoring had to occur much more often. I was also told not to take the Ganirelix until instructed. Ok, makes sense. But I don't have too many injections of Bravelle and Menopur left and ain't I supposed to inject with those vials and add Ganirelix? Hell if I know. What if I have to take these shots beyond the amount of vials I have? All these questions, can't stress myself. Even with these concerns I'm feeling surprisingly chill. I have already decided that if this cycle doesn't go my way I'm leaving this RE and go with another that's highly recommended for older women going through IVF. Gonna just roll along and see what Monday brings.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I have had a dull headache now for the past 3 days that I believe is a side effect of these injections. All I want to do is sleep to escape the throbbing because pills aren't helping & I don't want to take too many. And if I sleep I may forget to do the injection, which surprisingly I almost have at least 3 times. You would think that since this is what I need to do to get pregnant it'd be foremost on my mind.

I will say that I have become quite the pro with these injections. The only mistake I made was when I removed the Q-cap I was supposed to put on the smaller 27G needle to then do the injection. Instead I put back on the original (long) syringe needle that was, like 5 inches long. When I did the injection the needle almost came through on the other side of my skin. Not pretty...

Signing off, computer light's making my head hurt worse. Good times!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

So Many Vials...

Per doctor instructions now that I'm off BCP I had to wait for AF to arrive before I could start the Bravelle and Menopur injections, and she came first thing this morning.  Thank God because I'm ready to get this started!

I had my injectibles set up from the night before so I'd be ready to go. I reviewed the injection guide over and over but still had it on hand in case I needed to refer to it. I also saw videos on Youtube to help me visualize all the mixing and switching of syringe needles. So many thank you's to those women for so sharing so openly. I was prescribed 225 units (3 vials) of Bravelle and 75 units (1 vial) of Menopur. So I had to make certain I had the proper vials on hand including the sodium chloride (water), even got a little OCD by reading/re-reading/re-re-reading vial labels before I got the show on the road.

Wiped the top of the vials with alcohol, withdrew 1 mL of water, got vials and injected/withdrew the solution, screwed off the Q-Cap and put on a 27G needle, cleaned skin with alcohol, put in needle at a 90 degree angle, injected, held for 5 seconds, withdrew needle, discarded needle -- piece of cake!

This whole process took much longer than the wretched Lupron injections, about 10 minutes, but I think I'll get the hang of it quickly. And the solution did burn a little under the skin. I have to do this morning and night, and I have a follow-up ultrasound later this week to see how I'm doing on this dosage. Then the Ganirelix!

Ooh I'm praying these injections are successful, that (Lupron hiccup aside) there are healthy, quality eggs to retrieve. God willing: IVF, next stop!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Google Fast

The countdown to shooting myself back up begins!  I had another ultrasound today, and I also had a baseline blood draw.  Now that I am off BCP (again) as of yesterday I just await AF, which should come by Saturday.  Then I can start with injections of Bravelle and Menopur.  Since I haven't been taking Lupron I was instead put on Ganirelix.  Antagonist protocol.  I didn't even know what that protocol meant so of course I've been on the internet tonight playing med school resident.

Which brings me to the downside.  I could have asked my doctor more questions like what are the rates of success with this protocol vs. any other but it's like I didn't want to hear any bad news / low odds / longshot, etc.  Not the smartest way to go about this but maybe I start injections and see how they work (and hopefully how well they work)... so like a fool I'm searching 'antagonist success IVF' reading how it may result in lower pregnancy rates vs. long lupron protocol.  Wow, great.  Got the bad news I was trying to avoid from the damn doctor.  But it also may be better with poor responders, and since this is my first cycle I have no idea in what category I may reside.  Plus who knows how I'll respond given my high FSH/low AMH.  And I'm not even going to touch the great time I had reading about egg quality and egg quantity and cancelled cycles.  The internet is the devil.

I have been realistic about the odds since embarking on TTC as an SMBC and have tried to not let some of the worries deter me from doing this on my own.  I'm grateful I'm a praying optimist or else I'd get my Ciroc and call it a night.  And please let this mercury retrograde wrap itself up right quick!  Alas, what else can I do but begin, back up off Google, and give it to God.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Allergic to Lupron!

As I'm driving home from work yesterday my bottom lip suddenly felt more plump than normal. Thought it was my mind playing tricks because yesterday the heat was set on cremate.  Then I get home and look in the mirror -- face looked puffy.  I was like, what the hell, ok, no problem. Sometimes my cheeks get round after I eat (hadn't eaten for at least a couple of hours but whatever).  I started talking on the phone later and realized my speech wasn't sounding right because my tongue felt a tad thick. I finally perused deep into the Lupron side effects beyond hot flashes, night sweats and vaginal dryness.

Under SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL ATTENTION it read 'an allergic reaction is unlikely... symptoms include swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue...'. You gotta be kidding me.

So I called my doctor's office first thing this morning and spoke to one of the nurses.  My biggest concern was that this month's cycle would be pushed back as they find another suppression drug.  But alas, a new plan for Plan B(aby)! I have to get back on BCP (did I mention I threw the rest in the garbage after I took what I thought was the last one yesterday?) and stay on them until my next ultrasound in about a week, then I can start stimming as per my IVF plan.  I will likely be put on some other drug, starts with a G but I couldn't process the full name.  Off to CVS for BCP!  Still on track, thank you, God!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Ciao, BCP

That's it!  After months on BCP + baby aspirin I'm finally done!  I put on a few extra pounds being on BCP but was finally able to get back in better shape just a few weeks ago.  I'll continue to take baby aspirin daily given the benefits but I am relieved to say it's a BCP wrap.  Lupron's steady as she goes & syringe-ing went much better this morning (thanks for the tip, SmartOneKym!)... now I await AF & the next step in less than a couple of weeks is to begin stimming with Bravelle & Menopur + 5 units of Lupron.  Man, I'm moving right along... wow.  Alas, time to make nasty wheatgrass (oh, I'm going all out this cycle).

Edit: Of course all was going way too blissful -- just noticed that I should be injecting Lupron in the PM!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Lupron, 10 Units... Done!

I set my alarm to wake me at 5:30 a.m.  Hit snooze once because I needed just 10 more minutes to get my mind prepared.  But I got up, got my Lupron, syringe, and 2 alcohol preps and got to work.  I used one prep to wipe the top of the Lupron bottle, then I peeled back the syringe packaging.  Stuck the needle through the cap, drew out 10 units (not at easy as I thought).  Wiped an area under my belly button and to the right.  I didn't hesitate -- I got a fatty pinch of skin in my left hand and stuck the needle in with the right.  Pushed down the plunger, waited a few seconds after that.  I then pulled out the syringe and discarded the needle in the biohazard container box that came in the FedEx shipment as part of my prescription. That's it!

Honestly, the hardest part was drawing out the 10 units of Lupron.  (All the Lupron injections will come out of this one bottle, FYI.) The syringe plunger was a bit stubborn but I tried not to let that raise my anxiety.

There's a slight, very mild burn at the injection site.  Tolerable but noticeable.  From setup to administering the shot to clean up, the whole process took me less than 5 minutes.  Helpful for when I get ready for work in the mornings; I thought my nerves would make this take a whole lot longer. Day 1, done!

Let the menopausal side effects begin...

Friday, July 29, 2011

Tomorrow's the Day

I decided to be a SMBC earlier this year and can't believe that I'm actually about to inject myself with Lupron tomorrow. Even though I was 'trained' in how to give myself injections at my doctor's office a couple weeks ago I just didn't process that I would actually be shooting myself up with fertility injectibles.

THEN three gigantic boxes were delivered by FedEx that contained all my meds: Lupron, Menopur, Bravelle, Estradiol, Doxycycline, Novarel... the reality of what I'm about to do to myself hit me and I immediately went into denial. Once the boxes were opened I just left them there on the floor until the next day. 'Overwhelmed' doesn't come close to describing what I was feeling but it's a fair start.

But I have been on BCP for three months and after wrapping my brain around this leap I made I told myself, this is the only way to get to the babies I have been dreaming of into my actual life.

I had my baseline ultrasound yesterday, finally get off BCP on Monday, go back for another ultrasound in less than 2 weeks, egg retrieval and transfer some time after that, God willing!

Got my act together and began to open all these boxes and get everything unpacked and sorted. Got the injection instructions out and reviewed them. Got on Youtube and found some great videos that walked me through how to give myself the injections. Began this blog that I hope will help me process all my feelings about this exciting, extraordinary, lonely, blessed journey.

I got this... tomorrow morning I'm going to give myself my very first Lupron shot!