Saturday, December 31, 2011


I am now 16 weeks and I have been feeling the baby moving around over the last couple of days.  It is so cool!  It feels like a little fish or frog swimming around in my lower pelvis.  It's not strong, but I know it's nothing I've ever felt in my body before.

Monitoring movement has given me something to do while I'm quarantined in the bed with my head on an icepack.  My headaches have come back with a vengeance over the last couple of weeks.  I don't know if it is the increasing blood volume and my blood vessels dilating or what, but it's been a headache almost everyday lately.  Nosebleeds are more under control though.
I bought my first belly band yesterday, because my pants are getting pretty tight and unfortable in the waist.  And my appetite has gone way up.  I need to eat something every 3 hours.  I don't think weight gain is going to be a problem, now that I past the first trimester.

Yay for the new year!  I am very excited to but 2011 to bed.  Time to roll out the New Years Resolutions.  Last year, I resolved to mediate 30 min/day.  That lasted about 2 days.  This year, it is going to be to start waking up early (7am) and going to bed around 10pm.  I want to spend less time surfing the net and more time walking my dog.  I love reading blogs, but I have to say it's become a bit of a bad habit in that I am not attending to things that need to get done around the house.  So maybe limit my internet time to 30 minutes a day.  We'll see!

I am almost to to my quota, so I will sign off!  Happy New year to all of you and may the New Year bring you much peace and happiness!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Rhinitis and Merry Xmas!

Well, I think my cold is actually rhinitis of pregnancy.  I am 15 weeks today and saw this on babycenter corresponding to week 15 of pregnancy:
If your nose is stuffed up, for instance, you can probably chalk it up to the combined effect of hormonal changes and increased blood flow to your mucous membranes. This condition is so common, there's even a name for it: "rhinitis of pregnancy." Some pregnant women also suffer nosebleeds as a result of increased blood volume and blood vessel expansion in the nose.
I went to the ENT a couple of days ago, but he didn't want to do anything about my nosebleeds without the blessing of my OB, so I'm just putting lots of ointment up my nose and sleeping with a humidifier on my face.   Seems to be helping some.
I guess out of all the side effects to have this isn't too bad.  I would rather have this than hemmorhoids or hyperemesis.

I wish I could say I have a bump, but I don't yet.  [Sigh.]  Maybe in another month?

I met with a friend of mine who is 29 weeks pregnant; she did donor egg IVF and was the first person who told me about IVF.  Our local acupuncturist set us up.  We were talking about the need for an infertility support group in our area.  I would like to start one, but who am I kidding?  I am pregnant, so I don't know if people would really appreciate seeing a pregnant woman when coming to a infertility support group (sounds like an oxymoron).  However, I feel like I have alot of information and experience to share.  This will probably go on the backburner, but what do you guys think about a pegnant woman starting a infertiliy support group?

I can't believe Christmas is in 3 days - doesn't feel like it.  I wish this rain were snow.  We are doing a low-key Christmas with my family (2 1/2 hours away).  Most of my shopping is done except for stocking stuffers.  
Christmas is a marker in the life of the infertile;  "By next Christmas, we will have a baby or I will be pregnant. . . "   I am so thankful that this year my prayers have been answered and my heart goes out to all of you who are still in the trenches and I hope that 2012  brings lots of BFP's and healthy pregnancies and babies to everyone.  

Friday, December 16, 2011

The dreaded cold

I caught a cold, which is not surprising considering the amount of people I was around last weekend at the wedding  Lots of close talkers.  My huband's jacket had dried spit marks on the shoulders from people spraying while attempting to have a conversation with him over the band music.

The only good thing about this cold is that it is moisturizing my nasal passages and giving me some relief from the chronic nosebleeds I have been experiencing lately.  2 nights ago I just laid my head down on my pillow and my nose started bleeding spontaneously.  I think it's all this extra blood flow and volume I have going on.  I had a capillary in my right nostril cauterized with silver oxide at the ENT this time last year and I really don't want to go that route again.  Very uncomfortable and I don't think it actually worked that well.

My humidifier sucks. It's extremely loud and barely has any output.  I ordered a new one on Amazon yesterday and am considering taking this one back to Walmart.  But I hate going to Walmart, especially this time of year.  Does anyone have a brand of humidifier that they like?

Last night, I watched Secretariat.  I had always resisted seeing this movie for some reason, but I am running out of things to rent on Netflix.  It was a great movie and a true story.  I remember when I was explaining how IVF works to my aunt and she said, that's like Secretariat.  So if you need a feel good movie for the holidays, this is a good one.

I started reading this book by the woman who created the Dooce blog.  I seriously laughed until I was crying last night.  She did not have infertility issues (knocked up the second month of trying), but she is so funny, you forgive her.  I found it at the public library and I figured I might as well read about post partum depression and get myself prepared the that, because I saw a graph of what my are hormones do after pregnancy (it's like a complete cliff dive) and I'm a little scared it might send me off into the deep end.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Post Wedding Weekend

I survived the wedding weekend, even though I had to suffer through 2 migraines.  One started during rehearsal dinner (possibly triggered by fellow bridesmaid's strong perfume).  I had to miss the wedding day brunch on Saturday which was hosted at my mom's house.  I hid at my grandmother's house.  Thankfully, the migraine subsided for the actual wedding ceremony and reception.  The band was incredible, though I did not throughly get into the dancing as much as usual due to being completely stone cold sober.  One of my cousin's bridesmaids, who is a 34 year old doctor, pulled out the worm on stage.  I was in awe.  I think the last time I did the worm was 20 years ago! In case you need a refresher on the worm, here is this link -

Needless to say, I woke up the next morning and felt like I had drunk a bottle of champagne.  Another migraine.  It completely sucked!  I think it was the overstimulation of loud music, yelling over the music, salty food and freezing my ass off in a strapless dress in December.  Tylenol doesn't help much.

I did share my news with my friends this weekend and everyone was so genuinely excited for us.  My hometown is small and my mom has probably told half the town my troubles with getting pregnant.  In a way, sharing the news is like an initiation into the "Club."  People love to talk about their kids and now I can be interested and excited, instead of bitter and uncomfortable.  It's weird, but I do feel a little bit of survivor's guilt.  I don't want people to think this was an easy thing for us.  So I preface the news, we are "finally" pregnant.   I have absolutely no shame in doing IVF to get pregnant.  I thought the whole process was fascinating and I am would happy to talk to anybody who is having trouble getting pregnant about it.  I feel like it saved our life and our marriage in a way.

I ran into a friend at that wedding who is doing IVF at CCRM and she told me they have 11 normal embryos waiting for them!  I am so excited for her.  She did about 3 (or more) unsuccessful cycles in MS and decided she would go to Colorado for last resort.   I can't believe she had that awesome of a result.  Surely, there's a take home baby in there somewhere.

Well, those are the highlights of the weekend (minus migraines).  I have had nice day recovering.  My husband is on a business trip for 4 days in Denver, so I am enjoying the peace and quiet.  Now time to get going with Christmas gifts for the fam.  If Christmas came more than once a year, you'd have to put me in Whitfield  (what my grandmother used to say all the time - Whitfield is a mental hospital in MS).

Love to all you out there - I am so excited about these great betas and BFP's that are popping up everywhere!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

13 weeks - Pink or Blue?

I have made it through the first trimester!  I had a doctor's appt today.  Pretty routine stuff.  Got my flu shot.  My doctor found the baby's heartbeat (151 bpm) with the fetal doppler. I will not go back to see her until Jan 3.  That will be the longest time without seeing a doctor since before we started IVF.  I feel free!

At last week's 12 wk NT ultrasound, we found out the sex of our baby and it's a BOY!  We are revealing this tomorrow to my parents in person.  I have the little pics that point out his little package.
Now that I know that I am having a little boy, it seems alot more real to me.  We are already thinking of names and whether to circumcise or not.  We will have a good long time to ponder these things.

The nausea and fatigue seems to be lessening.  I am taking prenatal yoga classes 1x/week which is nice (I'm the smallest belly in the class).  It's great to be at the point that I feel good about sharing the news with people outside family and close friends, though I am not ready for a FB announcement and don't know if I ever will be.   I am in my cousin's wedding this weekend, so that should be alot of fun.  Lots of socializing, eating, and dancing to look forward to.

Hope all of you have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

12 weeks

Phew!  Made it to 12 weeks. I am completely off the supplemental hormones and have "graduated" from CCRM.  It's a little scary not to be on hormone support, but so nice not to have to drive to Tupelo just for a blood draw.

Today was our NT scan at the perinatologist's office in Memphis.  We had a great ultrasound.  The NT measurement was 1.4, so low risk for problems.  It was so amazing seeing our little baby moving around. Placenta looks high and the u/s tech said it is posterior which means I may begin to feel movement around 16 weeks!  Heartrate was 161.   Overall, I am very pleased with the results, even though they are not entirely conclusive.  We'll have to wait on lab results from the first blood draw and then another one in 4 weeks.  I can feel my uterus starting to come up over my pubic bone, but still not a noticable bump and clothes fit the same.  I have maybe gained a pound.  I think it's because I am on synthroid which increases my metabolism.

I have a slight headache, so am going to keep this short and sweet.  I am thinking about everyone out in the blogosphere, esecially Newbie at Infertile in the City who is now awaiting genetic testing of her embryos and Krista at The Infertility Road who is PUPO!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Week 11 - Thanksgiving

I've been offline the last few days due to staying with my parents for a Thanksgiving break.  Glad to be back home!  I spent 3 full days with my sweet 8 month old niece who lives in Savannah, GA and my 2 sisters and mom.   It was fun getting a preview of my future life.  I got to change a poopy diaper this morning.  Good times.   I really hate that my sister and neice live 9 hours away, though Savannah is a great place to visit.

I am still not visibly pregnant, but I did get to try out the fetal doppler that I ordered when I got home this afternoon.  It was a little difficult to get a accurate reading of the baby's heartbeat, but we detected it at about 130-140 bpm.   I don't want to get obsessed with it, so I think a once a week reading will be enough.   It just gives me a little peace of mind to know that he/she is still swimming around in there.

Last night, we went to see Twilight- Breaking Dawn.  Probably not the best movie for me.  Bella has a pretty freaky pregnancy!

On Thanksgiving, my dad's side of the family celebrated my grandmother's 90th birthday.  My grandmother has dementia, though she still has the same personality.  She has no short term memory and she has gotten very frail.  She was appropriate in her reaction to her great - granddaughter, but she kept asking whose baby it was.   My 90 year old grandmother and my neice are similar in that they both need round the clock caregiving, help getting dressed, getting fed, and dressed.   Though it is a little sad to see my once vibrant grandmother, now frail and dependent, I suppose it is the cycle of life.

During the Thanksgiving meal prayer, my father added that he was particularly thankful for me and my husband being pregnant.  All my aunts, uncles and cousins were very excited for us.  My aunts knew that we had been out to Colorado.   It was fun to finally share the good news, though I am still not quite out of my first trimester.

As of today, I am off all supplementaly hormone therapy!  No suppository tonight.  No estrogen patches.  I feel like I am riding a bike with no hands!  I'll check my levels on Monday.

Hope that all of you had a restful and joyful Thanksgiving break with family and friends.   Thanks to all of you for your support, humor and thoughtfulness over the last year.   It has definitely made going through IVF alot easier.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

10 weeks

I can't believe I into the double digits now!  We had an ultrasound and OB appt this morning.  I think my husband was more nervous than me about the ultrasound.  The tech started off with an abdominal view, but it was too fuzzy, so I got the vag u/s which was ok with me, because it provides a much clearer image.  We actually saw him/her moving around.  We could just barely make out legs and arms.  It's still so small, but everything is measuring on schedule.  Big sigh of relief. . .
We scheduled an appt with a maternal fetal medicine specialist in Memphis for our NT scan on Dec. 1st.   I'll be happy to check that one off the list and am looking forward to getting a better view.
Not too much to report. Down to 1 progesterone suppository and 1 E2 patch.  Should know how my numbers look this afternoon.
I still had a little bit of spotting at the beginning of the week, but it was so scanty, I didn't worry too much.  
I am so relieved that the ultrasound went well today - part of me still waiting for the other shoe to drop.   

Friday, November 11, 2011


I just got the call from my nurse with about my prog and estrogen levels; they were 31.5 and 691.4 respectively.   I'll stay on 2 prometrium and 2 patches through Monday and then wean to down to 1 each on Tues!  We'll check my levels again on Thursday and then if all looks good they will wean me off everything! Kind of scary, but it will be so nice not to have adhesive residue all over my belly and wearing the panty liners 24-7.  Not to mention all the trips to the lab and the follow up this entails.

My energy level has been good today.  My cousin is getting married in a month, so I am trying to get all my dresses and shoes lined up.   I wish I could get my hair highlighted, but probably want to avoid that until I'm at least in my second trimester.   Don't really have much in the way of a bump yet, just look bloated.

Tonight, I am so excited for FlyGirl to deliver her twinks!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

26 is dead!

Wahooo! Mississippi has voted down the Personhood Amendment!  I am so proud!  Hopefully it will not come back again.

I started spotting again tonight.  This is so annoying and somewhat distressing.  It is kind of rust colored (not fresh) and pretty light, but it still worries me.

I was filling in a baby journal that my sweet sister sent me from Amazon as a gift and thinking to myself is it too early to start filling in this book.  And then I went to the bathroom and saw the spotting.  When am I going to be able to just relax?

Election Day Nov 8th

I voted No on Amendment 26 this morning and I hope the majority of Mississippi will too.  Our stupid governor voted for it, after he had concerns about it.  Coward.

A lawyer named Brad Prewitt is one the directors of Personhood Mississippi and he had both of his children by IVF.  When interviewed about this and what he thinks about denying this opportunity for other infertile Mississippians, he replied, "Life's not fair."  Can you believe that???

In other news,  I just saw on yahoo that Michelle Dugger is pregnant again with her 20th child at age 45.  WTF?  She delivered her last child at 25 weeks due to preeclampsia.  Does she really think it is a good idea to have another baby after that?   I don't understand this at all.  Do you think she did IVF to get pregnant? How does a woman with 19 kids have time to do fertlity treatments?  The couple on TLC I really want to get pregnant is the Little Couple.  

I had another bout of spotting that started last Friday. It was a lot lighter and darker in color, so I didn't immediately freak out, but still a little disconcerting.  We had just been cleared to resume sex that morning, but have decided maybe we should just avoid sex in the first trimester.  My nurse said that it is probably old blood that is just moving its way out by gravity.  I did have a little subchorionic hemorrhage that showed up on my 6.5 week u/s and not on the 8 week one, so I bet that is what it could be.  

The nausea has come on stronger these days, but more in the afternoon and evenings.  And constipation.   One bad migraine.  Par for the course, I suppose.  

Tomorrow, I will go down to 2 prometrium/day and 2 estrogen patches and will get my levels checked on Friday.  My progesterone was 17 last week (down from 25 the previous week) and my estrogen was in the 500's.  Hopefully, my body is starting to produce its on hormones.  

Thursday, November 3, 2011

8 weeks!

Finally, today I am 8 weeks.  We had our second ultrasound today and it was abdominal (no dildo cam) and the baby is measuring on track and the heartbeat (which we heard!) was 149 bpm.  The baby looked much fuzzier on this abdominal ultrasound, but the heartbeat was so clear and strong!  I can't believe such a little peanut can make such a loud noise.  It was truly amazing and I am so relieved that s/he is still going strong.

Yesterday, I had a good day, not feeling so nauseous and tired.  I actually took a long walk which is the first bit of real exercise I have had in a couple of months.  Today, I'm tired because we had to get up early and get my labs done in Tupelo before the u/s.  Hopefully, they will fax results to CCRM this time!  I am still on 3 prometrium suppositories and 3 vivelle E2 patches.  I will be happy to do away with the midday progesterone suppository.

My next appt is 2 weeks from today.  I can't wait to start showing, which probably won't be until at least 12 weeks.  I don't think it will feel real until I get a little bump.

In other news, things are really getting heated up around here over Initiative 26 (Personhood Initiative).  Our governor, Haley Barbour, said he had some concerns over "ambiguous" language in the bill, but says he is undecided on which way he will vote.  At least he is not backing it 100%.  I'll keep everyone posted on what happens next week with this.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Labwork Debacle

1) Yesterday, I go to local hospital lab for prog. and estrogen labs.  The lab tech says they will fax to CCRM by lunchtime.
2) I call local hospital to confirm labs have been faxed.  They say yes. 
3) I email CCRM to confirm receipt of labs.  They email me at 4:00 and say no labs.
4) I call local hospital.  They say blood is being sent off to other location for testing and will not get results until Sat. WTF?!  
5) Husband and I decide to drive to Tupelo hospital lab because we know they can at least do testing in hospital, so I can get results Friday.
6) 3:00 pm today, I email CCRM to confirm they received labs from Tupelo hospital. 
7) Receive msg at 6:30 my time that they did not receive labs. 
8) Call Tupelo hospital and they say they sent results through computer.  I said, no, you have to fax them, CCRM is not in your computer.  She says get nurse to call me and I can release records.  Then she calls me back and says, it's ok, I found another time where we faxed the results to CCRM, so I can fax them without talking to your nurse.  
9) Thank god!  

If you have even bothered to read the above tedious litany, it is just outlining the all the bs and beaurocracy of hospital labs and their inability to execute a simple little thing as an out of state Lab order.  

Yesterday, I lost it on the local lab people. I will never step foot in there again.  Fortunately, Kathryn, my CCRM nurse, calmed me down and let me know that this labwork is not absolutely urgent.  

I have never had a problem with Tupelo hospital lab getting the results faxed, so I don't know what happened.  The lesson here is follow-up, follow-up and follow-up. 

CCRM doesn't really help matters in that they wait until 4:30 to tell me they haven't received my labs.  I guess since I am pregnant, I'm not top priority, which is understandable I suppose. 

I cannot wait to be off all these supplemental hormones, because that will mean not having to schlep myself over to Tupelo to get blood drawn and then worrying about my labs getting faxed to CCRM.  

I am definitely feeling "morning sickness" that lasts all day.  I am also experiencing some reflux.  I bought my box of Saltines yesterday and  I think they really do help.  All thought of food makes me feel nauseasted.  I hope this goes away soon. 

Well, thanks for letting me vent my frustrations that come with out-of-state FET.  I hope everyone has a very stress-free weekend!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

And we saw . . .

One baby with a heartbeat!  I still can't believe it!  I was so nervous beforehand.  I could tell right away that there was baby in the little gestational sac.  Technically, it is still an embryo.  She/he is measuring exactly on time, 6w5d. We saw our little embryo's heart flickering away at 115 beats/minute.   There was a little dark spot of blood on my uterus at the top, but the doctor thinks that is due to implantation and will probably be gone by next week's u/s.  Though it is still early days, I feel optimistic about the weeks ahead.  However sitiing in a waiting room with a bunch of third trimester pregnant women made me feel somewhat inadequate.  I think my stomach is actually flatter than it was 4 weeks ago.

We got to the doctor's office at 1:00 and did not leave until almost 4:30.  Thank god they did the ultrasound first or I would have been a basketcase.  We really liked the OB.  She is young and knowledgeable and has lots of energy.  She was totally on board with doing as many sonograms as I want in the first 18 weeks (until I can actually feel the baby moving inside me).  She seemed sensitive to the fact that I will need more reassurance and information than a normal pregnant woman.

I also found out that a friend of mine who has been undergoing fertility treatments for a long time got a strong positive beta today. Last week, a cousin of ours got her BFP after her first go at IVF.   It's good news all around.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Tomorrow's the Big Day

Tomorrow I go to a new OB-gyn for my first ultrasound.  I am pretty nervous and keep running the different scenarios through my head.  Of course, the most prominent scenario is a bad one.  I've been distracting myself with Jeffry Eugenides new book The Marriage Plot.  The characters are pretentious little Ivy Leaguers, but it is entertaining and taking my mind off tomorrow's events.

During the last week, I also read Kate Atkinson's Started Early, Took My Dog.  I am halfway through Charles Frazier's new book, Nightwoods.  I have spent a small fortune in books this month.

The nausea is definitely coming on stronger and I have no desire to cook anything.  I have been subsisting on cereal, cheese toast and strawberries.  

Today seemed like a busy day for IF'ers across the land.  I hope that everyone gets what they are hoping for and more.  

Thursday, October 20, 2011

6 weeks update

Thank you to everyone who made me feel better about the spotting incident.   I don't know what I would do without y'all and this blog.    I would be at the mercy of Dr. Google and all those scary statistics.  It hasn't happened today and I am praying that it was an isolated incidence.  Still not too heavy on the symptoms, except a couple of nights, I have woken up extremely parched and had to drink alot of water.  Food is fine, except lots of things I normally eat like yogurt and pretzels don't seem appetizing.

I got my 6 week numbers from my nurse today: E2 - 2079;  P4 - 16.5;  HCG - 41,370

She was happy with the numbers and said I can go down to 3 estrogen patches on Sunday, but to keep the progesterone the same until the ultrasound. 

I will need to recheck estrogen on Tues and then recheck everything again on Thurs.  The nurse said I will need to do labwork every couple days while they are weaning me off the meds.   

I am going to check to see if my local hospital can do STAT labs on estrogen and progesterone.  It would make my life a little easier.  I've gotten to be friends with the lab tech at the hospital in Tupelo.  She calls me Butterfly Girl, because I requested the butterfly needles because my veins are so small and hard to find.  

Unfortunately, while I was checking out, they told me I will owe $550 for today's labwork.  Holy crap!  And the sad thing is that my BCBS $1500 deductible is not even close to being met, even with all the thousands of dollars of medical care I've had this year.  The CCRM nurse told me to make sure that they are billing it to insurance as "High risk pregnancy" and also I can get my ob-gyn to write my orders next week and then insurance will probably apply it my deductible at least.  And once I meet my deductible, I will have to start over in January.  Oh well, any little bit will help. 

On a side note, I attended my first protest yesterday in front of the Courthouse on the Square in Oxford.  It was a Mississippians for Healthy Families ralley coming out against Amendment 26.  I saw alot of people I knew and there were alot of college kids there.  A woman from Jackson gave a little speech about how she had her 3 children from IVF and she wants this opportunity to be there for all Mississippians if they are diagnosed with infertility.  We don't need lawmakers telling RE's how to do their jobs.  It was good for college kids to hear this because this is their future.  While I am not happy that this ammendment is going to be on Nov. 8th ballot, it is bringing more awareness to infertility and IVF.   It also makes me really glad that my snow babies are in Colorado and not Jackson, MS.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


The last couple days, I've noticed that I have become increasingly obsessed with checking my pantyliner and TP for fear of spotting.  And this morning that fear became a reality.  Even though I know that spotting is fairly common during the first trimester, I would really rather not experience this.

It was light brownish red and kind of watery and not a huge amount of it.  I am putting myself on bedrest for the rest of the day.

It really shook me up.  It just makes me realize that I am not out of the woods and really have no control on the outcome of this pregnancy.  This has been the longest 2 1/2 weeks of my life - Tomorrow I am 6 weeks and will get my hormone levels checked - I would like to throw an HCG in the there too.

I am looking forward to next Tuesday's ultrasound, but also dreading it, because this will be either be the best day or the worst day of my life.   There is just so much riding on this.   I can't bear the thought of having to start over.  When I see what so many women have to go through to get a viable pregnancy, I am a lightweight, but it just seems like it would be so daunting to do another FET.  I have been on the freaking hormones for 2 months and I just really want this to work!

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Whew, made it through one week.  I went to Tupelo this morning and got my progesterone and estrogen blood levels drawn.  The CCRM nurse let me know that they good and just continue doing what I am doing.

After we left the hospital lab, I called my sister-in-law to ask who her OB was and we happened to be riding past the office, so we decided to go in and make an appt.  So my first u/s will be on Tues, Oct 25 at 1:15 pm.  Yay!  Hopefully my insurance will cover this early ultrasound.  My SIL said she loved her OB and that she was the type of person you would want to hang out with.  I actually saw her walking down the hall and she was smiling and had a cute haircut, so I think that's a good sign.

No big-time pregnancy symptoms, except very slight tugging senstations in my lower pelvic region.  My appetite has been good so far.   Sense of smell is heightened.  I can smell everything!  Boobs are sore, but they have been that way since I started all the hormones.  Don't know if I have gained any weight, but I feel like I am losing muscle tone since I have not exercised in earnest in a month.  I have done absolutely no exercise since the transfer and this is probably the longest time in my life that I have not exercised.  It's kind of nice to have a break, but my sleep has really been affected by the lack of exercise.  I have had insomnia every night this week and can't fall asleep until about 2 am.  I finished reading One Day in 2 days due to insomnia.

Right now, I am working with my husband at his law practice (yep my dietetic career went down the toilet this past year because of infertility), so I don't have a set time I have to be at work.  It's great that I can sleep late, but I do not like being a night owl.  I am thinking the hormones may have something to do with my insomnia.  Did anyone else have this problem?

I am still terrified of the first ultrasound, but am trying to act "as if."  I think if I hadn't had a blighted ovum before, it would not even be in my mind to worry about the u/s.  I miss being naive.  I feel like if it was an embryo that would turn into a blighted ovum, it would not have made it to Day 5.  And CCRM really does have amazingly high live birth rates, so I am taking refuge in that right now.

My town is getting ready to turn into a madhouse this weekend due to SEC Football.  Alabama vs. Ole Miss.   I am not that into football but it is fun to go out to the Grove to see people.  Lots of drunkedness and college sorority girls in very short skirts and very high heels. My brother has been known to wear his kilt.
It will be a good distraction! Hotty Toddy!  Have a great weekend!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Another 2 week wait

I am lying flat on back on the couch waiting for the P4 suppository to do its thing.  Got a little time on my hands.  I was pretty taken aback by my high HCG levels and did alot of scouring of the web to see if it is really that predictive of twins.  My conclusion is that there is no way to know until you get the U/S because there is so much variability in HCG numbers.  There is about a 5% chance that a blastocyst would split which would lead to monochorionic identical twins (share the same placenta) which can lead to some serious complications.  I am of the mind not to worry about twins as it is statistically unlikely to occur.  It is more likely that I just have high HCG numbers.

Also I started fretting over my P4 levels because the nurse said they were 10.something on Sat.  I emailed the nurse and she emailed me back saying they were 14.4 and they want them >6 when you are on the suppositories, so that gave me a little peace of mind.

I go in on Thursday for a E2 and P4 check and that is it for the week.  My first u/s would fall around Oct. 25th.

I got called into Jury Duty for the first time ever, so I am going to try to get out of it because of the doctor's appointment, bloodwork that I need to do over the next couple weeks.  I think I have a pretty good excuse!

In other news Ammendment 26 - the Personhood Ammendment is gaining support of politicians on both side of the table in Missisippi - it just makes me sick.  They are supporting it just to get votes.  Though I think the medical community is starting to come out against it.  It will make me so mad if it ends up passing.

I hope the next 2 weeks pass quickly!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Beta #2

We dragged ourselves out of bed at 6 am on Saturday to get up to the lab in Tupelo, but it was all worth it!  CCRM called me at 11:00am and let me know that my beta went up to 1200!  It rose by 200%, so they are feeling good about my body accepting this pregnancy.  No more betas needed.  The next step will be testing my Estrogen and Progesterone levels on Thursday.
We got a congratulatory phone call from Dr. G on Friday, so that was nice.   It still seems so surreal.
I am in disbelief that this actually worked for us.  I am so conditioned for failure, it's hard to wrap my head around success. The next big hurdle will be the ultrasound and checking for a yolk sac and fetal pole.  We had a blighted ovum in 2009, so once we get past the first u/s I think I will relax.  But it seems there is always something to worry about.  This weekend, I will celebrate making it this far.   I am so thankful.
No real symptoms to speak of, just a little more winded, but that could be the fact that I have not done much exercise in the last month.  No nausea yet, so I am going to try to enjoy food while I can!  Hope everyone has a beautiful fall weekend -

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Beta Day

Last night I got a headache while watching Parenthood episodes (ironically) and I thought it would go away with sleep but it did not.  So we had a repeat of the migraine/nausea/vomiting car trip to Memphis.  It was pretty bad.  I just wanted to hurry up and find I wasn't pregnant, so I could take my migraine medicine and end the pain and suffering.   When we got back home, I made my husband go get a pregnancy test, so I could find something out fast.  He obliged and put the test in the pee cup I prepared for him and about a minute later came running to the room handing me the test and I told him to lay it flat so it can do its thing.  He was like "read it" and it said "Pregnant"!
At 1:00 I got a message from CCRM that my beta was 405 and my progesterone was 10, so I think we might be having a baby.  Still a ways to go, but I am pregnant for the meantime!  Now if I could just get rid of this headache!  Thank you all for your prayers and support.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


I am so ready to know something.  I really wish I could POAS, but I have to drive to Memphis tomorrow morning regardless (3 hour round trip), so for my sanity's sake, I think it is better I have a little carrot in front of me for that drive, otherwise I might be acutely clinically depressed and drive off the shoulder into a ditch somewhere. "Anticipation, Anticipation, it's making me late, it's leavin' me waiting. . "
Also, I have Pearl Jam "I'm still alive" in my head right now. 
I report no pregnancy symptoms to speak of, so this will be a pleasant surprise if we get a BFP tomorrow.
My sister who lives on a coastal waterway in Savannah says she saw a mama dolphin with her calf and thinks this is a sign, so we shall see!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Day of Mindfulness

My husband and I set out early this morning for Magnolia Grove Monastery for a day of mindfulness with  Thich Nhat Hahn  It started with a 1 hour mediation walk and there were about 400 people, so it was very cool to take a quiet walk through the woods with that many people.  The talk that he gave was about 2 hours and my mind wandered alot thoughout it, but it was amazing to be in the presence of such a gentle, enlightened being. Thay (name that he goes by) talked alot about non-being and being and how we all came from something and when we cease to exist in our human form, our energy will continue on, so in this way we are liberated from time.  Very metaphysical stuff.   My mom ended up driving over for it, so it was nice to visit with her as well.   The weather here has been phenomenal, so that has helped my mood and outlook.

I am trying do things to distract myself, but I am thinking about what's happening or not happening in my uterus alot.   I felt a little bit of cramping in my lower pelvic region yesterday, but not so much today.  I am trying to keep my expectations down.  I am already feeling like I need to start planning for my next FET.  To have it work on the first try with one embie just seems too good to be true.  And believe me we're putting 2 in there next time if this doesn't work.  

I got my husband to hide the HPT tests.  I just don't think I can handle the stress of finding out outcome of this FET more than one time and though it is very tempting to go the POAS route.
Only 3 more nights after this one til beta day.  Wish me luck!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Back Home

We got back in yesterday afternoon and it is really nice to be in my own house again.   With my puppy dog.   I think I have finally gotten the valium out of my system.   Luckily progesterone is sleep inducing, because it would really suck to have insomnia this week.  My day of bedrest and our flight back was thankfully uneventful.  My husband won't let me pick up anything and it was kind of nice having a sherpa at the airport:)
  So what am I going to do to distract myself over the next week?  I can't exercise, have orgasms, sleep on my belly, or take baths.   I think I will work on being very mindful, so I don't accidentially trip over my own feet, which I am prone to do frequently, because I am usually buzzing around like a little bee.  Thich Nhat Hahn is in Batesville this weekend for a retreat at his Magnolia Grove Monastery and we are going to go Sunday for the Day of Mindfulness.  1 hour walking meditation followed by a 2 hour dharma talk.  Hopefully this will give me some insight on how to get through this week, the next 8 months or another FET if need be.  I need to practice nonattachment and equanamity this week.  Que sera, sera.  Well, off to change my estrogen patches!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Transfer went very smoothly today.  Since our transfer was not until 1:15, we had a leisurely morning.   I check in at 11:30 and got blood drawn and then went upstairs to get ready for pre-transfer acupuncture.  It was so relaxing and meditative.

The only stressor of the day was my bladder.  I chugged a bunch of water before acupuncture and thank goodness the nurse let release some because I had about 45 min until transfer after my session.
At 1:15, Dr. Gustofsen came in and prepped me and did a quick trial run with the catheter and the embryologist wheeled in the "embryo wagon" which is like an incubator that premies are in.  She showed us our perfect little blastocyst on the screen.  She said that it had survived the thaw 100% and that the embryologist that thawed it said it was one of the prettiest he has seen.  It was beautiful to see!

Dr. G seemed to have a little trouble navigating my cervix and the u/s tech was really pushing down on my bladder, so it was pretty intense there for about 5 minutes.  But I think he got the embryo where he/she needs to be my uterus.   I was so happy to have this part over and am not ashamed to say that I did take advantage of the bedpan because had  30 minutes of post transfer acupuncture and I needed to be able to relax.
The rest of the afternoon consisted of a little reading, a valium induced nap and my husband waiting on me hand and foot.  I'm not used to being so still.  And I worry that every little move I make is going to disrupt the embryo.  I hope she/he digs in quickly.  It's still hard for me to wrap my brain around this whole thing and believe that the little ball of glowing light I saw on the screen today can take up residence in my uterus and become my child.  I am so incredibly grateful that I have had so much support through this process and I really hope that I can remain calm and positive until beta day (next thursday).  Thanks everyone for your hopeful thoughts and prayers.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Back in Denver

Well, nothing much to report, except we are back in Colorado and ready for our transfer at 1:15 pm tomorrow!  The FET cycle has been way more chill than the full stim cycle.  It's nice not having to go in for all those ultrasounds and bloodwork everyday and have the stress of waiting for the phonecalls for further instructions.
We actually got into Denver on Saturday, spent an afternoon in Boulder, then back to Denver for the night, so I could get my progesterone levels drawn on Sunday at CCRM (it was normal).  Then we headed up to Fort Collins where I lived for 3 years while I went to grad school for nutrition.   I hadn't been in there in 3 years so it was so nice to see how things had changed since I left and reminisce about the good ole grad school days. Colorado State campus looks like it underwent a renaissance after I left.  Lots of new buildings and student centers and Huge indoor rockclimbing facility.  I hope that I can persaude my child to go to college there one day!
We did a great hike in Lory State Park called Arthur's Rock.  Did not make it all the way to the top, but did get some great views of Horsetooth resevoir.  The weather is amazing.  The leaves are just starting to turn.  In about 10 days it should be peak color in the mountains.
Right now I feel calm about the transfer, but am sure I will be a nervous wreck tomorrow, until I get my acupuncture and Valium.  I wish it was just a tad bit earlier, so I wouldn't have as much time to fret.
I'm impressed that I have managed to remember to take all these meds at the right times.  The progesterone is kinda yucky, but I prefer it over the PIO shots any day.  These hormones are making me feel pretty good actually.  No headaches!

Well, I think I need a nap.  Ahhh, vacations are nice.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

It's a go!

Thank y'all for all of your reassuring comments.  I just talked my nurse and she said that we are good to start prometrium tomorrow night.  One more Lupron Shot! And this is a good thing because I only have one more needle in my house.  My Estradiol level was in the 2000's.  No wonder I feel like I am already pregnant.  Nothing sounds that good to eat, but I can still eat without a problem. 

So now I'll stay on 4 patches of estrogen, 1 estrace/day.  Tomorrow, I will start prometrium suppositories 3 x day, Medrol 1x/d, Tetracycline 4x/d, baby aspirin 1x/d.  No injections!!! 

I have to get my progesterone level checked on Sat., so I will probably swing by my old fertility clinic early to get a blood draw on my way to the Memphis Airport.  I went there this morning and ran into a childhood acquaintance who is doing IVF.   She said if this cycle did not work for her, she was considering going out to CCRM.  I feel like I need to start a IVF club in my town!  

Possible lining issues?

Agh!  My lining is 12.5 mm and I am worried that this is too thick.  Apparantly, they like it between 8-11. The nurse will let me know after she talks to Dr. G.  I have a feeling it's going to be ok, but there is always uncertainty lurking around every corner.  
I will give an update later today.  Has anyone had problems with lining being too thick?

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Vote NO to Amendment 26!

Y'all, there is a frightening amendment to the Mississippi constitution that is on the ballot for Nov. election this year.  It's the "Personhood" Amendment which aims to overturn Roe v. Wade.  If Mississippians vote Yes to this, then an embryo will be given the same legal rights as you and I, therefore any type of abortion will be made illegal, as well as stem cell research, some forms of birth control (IUD because it prevents implantation).  IVF could possible be considered a crime if leftover embryos are used for research or discarded.  If it is passed and taken to the extreme, a MS resident receiving fertility treatment, even out of out of state, could possibly be prosecuted for murder.  I've always been pro-choice, although infertility has made me realize what a gift conceiving a child is, but there are some circumstances where abortion may be appropriate and really I don't think it is my business what another woman chooses to do with the life inside her within reason.
The ironic thing is that this PersonhoodUSA organization is headquartered in Arvada, Colorado, right down the road from Lone Tree.  Coloradoans voted down similar attempts to change the constitution in Colorado, but have managed to gain ground in right wing conservative (and might I add less educated) states like Mississippi.  Pray this will not come to pass.  If it does, I'll be gettin' the hell out of here.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Turtle Call

Well, It's been pretty serious over here at Tortoise Baby, so I thought I would lighten the mood with this link.  The guy the turtle called is actually my brother who is in the process of restoring an antebellum home.  He is almost finished with the project.  This turtle call makes me laugh everytime I listen to it.  I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Morning update: I just had the strangest dream.  I dreamed that my sister in law who is very fertile (3 children) decided she wanted to do IVF after not getting pregnant for 9 months of trying.  The nurse came into the waiting room and was like we can't do the transfer unless you pay your bill, and my SIL looked at me and was like I need your credit card.  I just about lost my mind and would not give it to her! Somehow it worked out for her they did the transfer.  And then I was so upset again, because I just knew it was going to work for her and not for me.   This dream was so threatening.  SIL rivalry!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


It's time to up the estrogen to 3 patches a day and estrace tablet in the hooha 1x/day.   Yay,  I have been headachey on the lupron.  Dr. G. said it was ok to take my migraine med until 3 days before transfer, so that is good.  

Thank you all for your supportive comments on my dilemma.  I think I have decided to go with a single embryo transfer and do two of these and if they don't work, we can up the ante, though I have a feeling it's gonna work!  My husband put it into perspective for me and says I need to think about this decision from the baby's point of view instead of what I want.

I may be overthinking this whole twins thing. . . there are so many very good outcomes with twins that I have seen on the blogs and in my real life. Why am I feeling so cautious?  My mom is going to think I am crazy for not transferring 2.  She really wants twin grandbabies.  I don't know if I can even tell her my plan.  That's the bad thing about being open about the IVF process is that you are open to their opinions as well.   I like this quote posted on Waiting and Wishing blog: Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway. Eleanor Roosvelt.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Phone consult

Had my phone consult with Dr. Gustofsen today.  I don't know why, but I was nervous before it and it's just a damn telephone call.  The first order of business is to decide how many embryos to transfer.  He said he would be fine with either 1 or 2.  So now we have the dilemma of 1 or 2.  Dr. G. said it's basically up to us and was not trying to sway one way of the other.  My husband brought up the point that we do not have access to cutting edge healthcare in Mississippi and if we had twins and they ended up in the NICU here in MS it would not be ideal.  He thought that was a valid reason to transfer 1. 

Before this phonecall, I had resigned myself to transferring 2, but now that Dr. G said he would be fine with 1, I am back to square 1 with this decision.  There is the issue of chomosomal testing.  We did not do this, because no one recommended it to us, but now since we are considering going the SET route, I would like to do it because it will increase our chances.  During a regular FET, do they thaw the embryo out 1 at a time or do they thaw them all out and pick the best one that is thawed?  I emailed Dr. G. that question, but some of you may know.  If they thaw them all out anyway, I would want to do the genetic testing.

I feel pressure to do 2 to make sure it works, but on the other hand, I really want a healthy, uncomplicated pregnancy. If I lived in Denver, the answer would be easier.  I would do SET.  Y'all - I just hate these kind of decisions, because I go back and forth between the pros and cons and it makes me crazy!
I think I may just let my husband take responsibility for this decision. 

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Get my Juju workin'

Today I went and picked up these two West African fertility dolls that my uncle brought back with him from his stint in the Peace Corps in the 70's.  (see below!) It's a male and a female (2 feet tall).  My uncle and his wife have 4 children and they claim they helped them, so he wanted to give them to me.  They are a little scary and have been up in their attic for 20 years.  I put them on either side of our bedside tables.  I'm hoping they work some magic!  Can you imagine if I brought them out to Colorado with me!

This weekend was good.  The party last night for my cousin who is getting married in December was fun, but I got a headache.  I did take a little bit of imitrex, because I can't stand having a migraine.  This is the last time I am going to take it, because of course Dr. G and the nurse don't want me to take anything except what is prescribed.  So the next 3 weeks are going to be very low-key.  No social obligations.  No stress (yeah right!).

Last Friday, I ran into a friend who was actually the first person in Oxford that I met that was going through fertility treatments.  She and I lost touch a year ago.  She never responded to my emails,  so I thought she didn't want to talk anymore, but she told me when I saw her that she never checks that hotmail account anymore, so that made me feel better.   She is finally pregnant after going though alot to get there, so I am so happy for her.

At the party last night, I told a couple of my friends that I was doing in vitro.  Everyone I talked to was super supportive.  I am so over my fertility struggle being a secret.  I talk openly to my family about it, which is really nice.   The closer I get to the transfer the better I feel.  I am ready to have my consult with Dr. G on Tues at 9:30.  Did any of y'all get the APA test where they test to see if you have any blood clotting problems?  This phone consult is $100.  Is there anything I should be sure to ask him?

Thursday, September 8, 2011


Whoohoo!  I finally made it.  My nurse instructed me to go ahead and start estrogen patch today as well and go down to 5 units of Lupron and start baby aspirin.  So excited!

I am so tired today.  And hungry.  I started a digital photography class tonight, so hopefully I will learn how to use my DSLR camera better, rather than just keep it on the automatic mode all the time.

My nurse also said that I will keep my transfer date the same, if my lining looks ready to go by then.  So no changing up flights.  I am so glad to finally be at the this point where I feel like I am actually doing something.   Things are moving along!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

CD 33

I've never gone this long!  I did a pregnancy test this morning just to be sure.  Of course it was negative which is a good thing with all the lupron I have been on.  I feel crampy and saw tiny bit of color on the tp, so I think AF is eminent.  Been craving milkshakes and potato chips - sweet and salty!  I caught a bit part of Pulp Fiction this weekend in the hotel. I saw the scene where Uma Thurman orders a $5 shake and I have been craving one ever since.  This song has been in my head for 3 days.
Here's to lupron milkshakes!  So happy for Kelli this morning!  Thank god for all you women helping me get through this crazy time.  

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Lupron and late period?

Thanks for all the get well comments! I am recovered from my cold, mostly.  I'm on vacation in St. Petersburg, FL which has been wonderful.  Good to take my mind off of fertility stuff.  This is the first time we have taken a non-fertility related trip in a while.   Though it is never far from my mind when I see little kids, babies and pregnant women everywhere.  My sister-in-law had her greek wedding ceremony today (she was also married in an Episcopal ceremony earlier this month).  Her husband's mom is Greek.  It was really beautiful and they kept saying things about their children's children and babies during the ceremony.   Maybe we should have had more fertility blessings in our wedding!

In other news, tomorrow is Day 30 of my cycle and AF has not made her arrival.  Dr. Google tells me that lupron can sometimes delay the onset of your period. Has anyone experienced this if they started lupron on Day 21 of their cycle?  My breasts are very tender.  I know I can't be pregnant, because we used protection.  Grrrr.  Hopefully, she'll show up tomorrow and I won't have to push back my transfer date.
Why does it take a month to grow the uterine lining? So far the lupron has given me daily headaches in the afternoon, but that could also be related to traveling and not sleeping well.

I wish I could say I was further along with this cycle, but it seems like it is just taking forever!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Caught a cold

Yep- feeling pretty yucky right now.  I thought I was going to dodge it, but it came on full force last night when I was trying to fall asleep.  I guess this is not a terrible time to get one and hopefully it will make me immune to them for the next couple months while we go through FET.
I keep almost forgetting to take my Lupron at night.  It really feels like I am forgetting to do something with this laidback protocol.  My only complaint is that it is too damn long! I've read through other blogger's experiences with FET and the main complaint was that time just drags by. 
I have out of town trips the next 2 weekends and then a breather weekend and then we fly out to Colorado, so I think it is going to go by faster than I expect.  The weather is getting cooler which is lovely.  I played tennis yesterday and am super sore.  On top of my stupid head cold.  Hope that this thing doesn't linger.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Day 1 of FET protocol!

My progesterone level checked out ok, so I was given the green light to start lupron injections tonight.
I am happy I don't have to change my calendar or flights.  It seems kind of surreal that we are actually doing this.  But it's about time dammit!
I had a good day of shopping in Memphis today after my early morning lab draw.   Now I am pooped and ready for a nap.  

I hope everyone has a good weekend and the hurricane doesn't affect anyone. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


I have anger management issues.  Big time.  I am not going into the details but it had to do with money and a certain somebody (not my husband but he bore the brunt of my rage). I thought my head was going to explode last night.  I literally went beserk. I wanted to throw things and hit stuff.  I am glad I was not pregnant last night or I think I would have caused miscarriage.  I ended up going for a run at 10:30 pm to work the energy out of me.  The situation had nothing to do with infertility (except maybe the money part indirectly), but I don't think I would have reacted the way I did if we were not going through infertility.  I guess I am on a hair trigger.

I would say I am fairly conservative with spending money.  I will splurge from time to time on a nice dress or outfit, but I try to keep myself in check.   I am keeping an xcel spreadsheet on how much we have spent so far on infertility treatments in the last year.  I won't quote the total, but it blows my mind.  On the bright side we will probably pay no taxes this year.  I feel like if I input the costs into my spreadsheet, that somehow I have more control over the situation.  There are so many hurdles with infertlity and I have to say this has been a hard one for me.

I had to take Benadryl in order to sleep last night, because I got so worked up.  Could it be all those hormone fluctuations still messing with me?  Feel groggy today, but alot more mellow.

I went to see The Help this past weekend and enjoyed it.  Hard to believe it wasn't that long ago that people acted like that.  I talked to a couple of people in the ticket line who were students at Ole Miss when James Meredith integrated in 1962.   Oxford has changed alot since those days, thank god!
On an infertility sidenote, one of the characters in the movie is dealing with recurrent miscarriages.   And this actress that played this character leads a "cruelty -free" life, so the drumstick that she is eating in one of the scenes is made out of tofurkey.   (I am acquainted with the chef who cooked for the movie).

Going to get my progesterone test taken on Friday to see if I ovulated this month.  I think I did and that machine didn't pick it up for some reason.
Take care everybody!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

No detectable LH surge

Hmmm - I don't know if the clear blue easy fertility monitor missed it or if I did not ovulate this month.  I am Day 15 and typically I ovulate early.  My cervix feels hard and there is no CM today.  The nurse still wants me to have my progesterone levels checked next Friday.  If I didn't ovulate this will most likely push my calendar back.  Oh well.  May have to spend $300 on changing flights.
This is not a big deal in the scheme of things, but I am getting bored of my life right now.  I live in a small town where there is not that much to do.  When I moved here 3 years ago, I would never have thought we would still be trying to have children.  I need a new focus!  I am tired of thinking and worrying about getting pregnant - can I please just get to the next phase of my life?  Part of my funk may be related to limiting my exercise.  I wish I could start training for a marathon (a new focus), but I read studies about IVF not working as well for women who exercise too hard.  I needs some new inspiration!
Anyhoo - I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

6 weeks pre-FET

We have about 6 weeks until we go back to Colorado to meet our embryos!  As my mother in law said "I hope they are not too cold" without me.  I think about them all the time.  I bought our plane tickets yesterday.

I think my hormones are wackadoodle from last month's rollercoaster.  I have been using my clear blue easy ovulation predictor and and I am on Day 12 and no signs of ovulation yet.   I bled for a much longer time this month.  I hope I ovulate, so my progesterone is the right level for me to start lupon on Day 21 of this cycle.  Did anyone have issues with the first cycle after IVF?

It's kind of sad that we can't try this month, but then again it takes the stress down a level. We had to buy condoms, because our the ones we had expired a long time ago!

Well, I survived my sister in law's wedding weekend!  It was fun, but slightly exhausting.  I kept thinking that I am so glad I'm not pregnant right now.

One of the bridesmaids had 8 month old twins from IUI, so I talked to her alot about what twins are like. She seems to be coping pretty well.
I just found out one of my sister's friends is cycling at CCRM this month, so I am excited for her.
Infertility is everywhere I look nowadays.

I am so happy for Sooz over at

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

FET scheduled!

Woohoo! I am on the calendar for Tues, Sept 27th.  No BCP in my protocol, so this will move it up a couple of weeks!  I will start lupron on day 21 of this cycle and then start estrogen patches on Day 3 of my next cycle. I can't believe that it's only 2 blood draws and 1 u/s.  Will be so much less stressful.  I hope my uterine lining cooperates.
So this month, we have to not get pregnant because I am starting the lupron early.  In a way, I was looking forward to one last ditch effort, but now I don't have to worry about that.  I think I am going to do my clear blue fertility ovulation predictor tests, just so I can know when I ovulated.
Gotta buy another set of plane tickets.  It's gonna be here before I know it!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Back to Normal

Well, I feel like I am finally getting back to my old routine.  My plants are watered, the laundry is done, the refrigerator's restocked, bills are paid, the dog's been walked.  35th birthday came and went.
We've been harvesting okra out of our community garden plot.  Our tomatoes haven't done squat this year.
I think all these hormone fluctuations took a toll on my body.  I have been detoxing.  I have had some mini-hotflashes (doesn't help that it's 100 degrees outside).   I have been sleeping solid for 8-9 hours and having crazy dreams again.  I feel like I did not dream at all in Denver.  
I went on my usual 3 mile walk yesterday and felt fine.  It feels like I own my body again and I am not at the mercy of all these hormones.
I did have a spell of sadness yesterday morning just thinking about how we're not done yet.    I just have to tell myself that this is going to work and try not to worry so much.
So, FET Ladies, I have a question.  How long does the FET last?  Do you have to take BCP?  or can you start Lupon on Day 21 of your cycle.  I wish I could do the unmedicated cycle, but since we are traveling to Denver, I can't take the chance that we would have to turn around and go home due to ovulation.  Why do they not want you to ovulate?  Is it because they can control the hormones better?
And have any of you heard of "endometrial scratching"?  It's supposed to increase implantation of the embryo.  My mom's friend was saying her daughter had it done after she didn't get pregnant with the first transfer and then did the scratching thing, and she got pregnant twice.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Day 5 embryo report!

I thought I was going to go crazy waiting for the phone call.  I have been tethered to my cell phone all day long.  The embryologist called me at 4:04 pm.  Drumroll. . . We have 9 frozen blasts! Mostly all great quality!  I am so proud.  And grateful.  We are halfway there.
Now, I can take a break from the babymaking project and focus on my sister-in-law who is getting married in 12 days.  It is a relief to know that this month I do not have a 2 week wait!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Home Sweet Home

Ahhh, such pleasure in the simple things.  I am so happy to get home to my little house, my dog and my yard and my bed!  I took a 2 hour nap and it's probably the best sleep I've had in 2 weeks.  I can't believe I was gone for 2 weeks.  I feel like I was away at summer camp.  I won badges in giving myself injections, growing follicles and embryos, avoiding OHSS and keeping my sanity intact.  Yay!  All of my clothes reek of the Hampton.  I glad I couldn't really smell that musty hotel smell while I was staying there.

 I am thrilled to be done with those awful injections.  The cetrotide was a bitch.  I had a really hard time getting the air bubbles out of the syringe.  The needle is a bad design.

Well, my birthday is Tuesday.  I will be 35.  The age in which theoretically, fertility takes a nosedive. Maybe I have outsmarted my biological clock.  Our embryos will be always be 34.  When I am 40, it may be more possible for me to have a healthy baby than, say, a normal fertile at 40.
The best birthday present for my 35th year will be lots of healthy embryos resting peacefully on ice at CCRM.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Day 3 Embryo report

We got the call right before we lost cell phone reception and all 15 embryos are still going strong!  So relieved! They are 6-10 cells and very little fragmentation.  I should hear on Monday how many they were able to freeze.
I know I won't completely relax until Monday, but this report is so reassuring.
It just makes me wonder why we couldn't achieve pregnancy on our own.  We did do ICSI on all of them, so maybe fertilization was an issue. . .
Thank you everyone for your supportive comments during this extremely emotionally and physically challenging time.  It's really helped to get such positive feedback from women who have been through it.

We had a great trip up in the mtns today.  I saw a coyote, elk, and a marmot!

Tick tock tick tock

It feels like an eternity waiting for the Day 3 embryo report.  I had a terrible dream last night about my embryos that I won't even go into.  It's funny that when I signed up for IVF, I thought, finally I will now have control over my fertility, but it's definitely not the case! I had no control over my rising estrogen levels, no control over my follicles growing, or the embryos dividing.   I feel sorta sad about leaving them in Colorado, but I know it's for the best and we will be back very soon.  I was just so hoping to be knocked up this month.
This is our last day in Colorado, so we are headed up to Rocky Mtn Nat'l Park again and we are going to drive all the way up over the Park on Trail Ridge Road. Get above treeline which should be beautiful.
I am feeling back to normal, if I could just have a bowel movement.  I ate two bowls of raisin bran this morning, so hopefully that will move things along!
No signs of OHSS - the only leaky capillaries I have are in my nose - I am having issues with nosebleeds, probably due to the dry climate.  Last injection of cetrotide today - whoohoo!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Fertilization Report!

We got word this morning that 18 out of 24 eggs were mature and 15 out of 18 eggs fertilized!  I know it's too early in the game to count my chickens, but I am so happy that we have this many embryos to grow.  We will get a Day 3 report on Friday.
I had an u/s (nonvag thank goodness) this morning to see if any fluid was accumulating in my 3rd space and it looks like I am in the clear.  I need to drink about 100 oz of fuid a day, so I am going to be a peeing machine!  I got up 3x last night to pee.  I am feeling pretty good today actually, sleeping better with the dexamethasone in my system.
We talked to our nurse this morning and she says I should take 1 month off before FET, so that puts us back out here in October!  Just in time to hopefully see the fall color in the mountains.
Feels so good to be feelin' good again!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Retrieval Over!

Retrieval went smoothly and they got 24 eggs!  I am so excited and relieved that this part is over.  My estradiol went back up to over 7000, so I am glad we are freezing.  Dr. G did my retrieval, so I was glad to see him this morning.  I have no memory of even being wheeled out to to OR.  I did get nauseous and had to yack out the car door at a stop light, but other that that and I feel ok.  Should know something tomorrow morning about the fertilization report.  I'll keep you posted!

Monday, July 25, 2011

"Freeze All"

So, I got word today that Dr. G. recommends "freeze all" embryos and come back for FET in order to avoid OHSS.   I have to say I was a little disappointed, but I don't want to end up sick.  My sister in law's wedding is in 2 weeks, so I need to be healthy.  Honestly, I think my mind and my body needs a break from all this.

I have to continue the dostinex and also start cetrotide tomorrow after the retrieval.  More and more drugs into my body.  I hope there are not too many side effects.  I felt very nauseous today around lunch.  I don't know if that is from the HCG shot or the dostinex.  I don't have much of an appetite at all.  

My retrieval isn't until 11 am tomorrow, so I imagine I am going to so thirsty!  I am not going to go all out on the salty foods tonight.  We'll start that tomorrow after the retrieval.  Hopefully I will tolerate the anesthesia ok.

Today we went up to Rocky Mountain National Park and it was really nice.  My husband brought his fly rod and I just hung out on the bank of a creek and rested.  I wish I had been up for a hike, but I didn't want to push it.   We'll have to do that next time we come out, which will not be too long!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Trigger at Midnight!

Thanks for all the supportive comments on how to combat OHSS.  My estrogen went down enough to trigger tonight, though it is still up in the air if they will do a fresh transfer or not.  Dr. G will make a recommendation early this week.  The nurse I talked to gave me a lot of good info and clarified the situation for me.  I'm ok with a FET if we have to go that route- looks like it works well for alot of women (Manni!).
The reason I am at risk for OHSS is that my Day 3 labwork looked like I would not be a good responder.  My FSH was a little elevated, my AMH was borderline and my antral follicle count was only 10.  So they started me off with too much stimulation hormones.  Now I have 2 900 unit cartridges of Follistim left over, what is that, like $1000?  One of the cartridges got punctured and only 37 cc's were used.  What a waste!

They got me taking Dostinex to combat OHSS.  I was pleasantly surprised that my insurance covered it. The nurse said it might make me nauseous.  Ugh!  I am ready to be off all these meds.

So, we ended up calling a nurse who does home visits to administer the injection.   My husband did not feel comfortable giving me a shot in my hip and I am kind of relieved that he does not have to do it.  He has never given a shot in his life.   He needs to get hands on training before he practices on me.  Having a nurse come to me is an extra expense, but will give us peace of mind and probably a less painful IM injection experience.
Today was just another beautiful day in sunny Colorado.  After my morning u/s and labwork, I did a very small hike in Lone Tree that looked out onto the front range.  Went down to the REI in downtown Denver and watched people tubing down the Platte River.  Been to Whole Foods 3 times today.  One in Highlands Ranch (for breakfast), one on Hampden Blvd (for midafternoon snack) and then one in Cherry Creek just for the hell of it.  Maybe tomorrow would be a good day for just driving into the mountains.  We'll have to see how my ovaries feel about that.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Possible OHSS - Coasting

My E2 jumped up to over 6000 today.  The nursed called me and told me to come to the clinic and pick up Ganirelix, an injectible med, that will hopefully lower my estrogen levels.  She told me to stop everything except the Ganrelix and the dexamethasone. 
 I feel fine and have no bloating, but I guess my body is just super sensitive to the stimulation meds.  I was hoping to trigger, but don't think I can due to the high estradiol levels.  The nurse reassured me that this was very common and everything was going to be ok, but I am still worried.  There was another couple out in lobby waiting for the nurse to bring them the same medication, so that made me feel a little better.  I've been an emotional basketcase this afternoon with all these hormones raging.  I feel so vulnerable, overly sensitive and irritable.  I pray that these E2 levels go down, so I can trigger and get on the other side of this IVF process.  

Friday, July 22, 2011

Estrogen Levels

My estrogen levels are way up there (3400) and I have only been stimming for 7 days.  The nurses say it's high, but not worrying them too much, but I wonder if they are just saying this so I won't stress.   I have a follicle on my right that is already 18.5  and then I have a bunch that are smaller on the left. . I wonder if they gave me too high of doses in the beginning.  Since it is my first IVF cycle, I don't have anything to compare it to.  I feel fine and I am not that bloated yet.  I just hope that we can do the retrieval.  If we have to come out here again for FET, I am fine with that. 
I went down to 37.5 units of Follistim and 37.5 of Menopur.  It will be interesting to see what my E2 does tomorrow.  
I need to go Circle and Bloom before bed!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Update on CD6

Just got a call from my nurse and my dosages are being dialed way down.  75 units of Follistim and 75 of menopur.  She said my estradiol was high, so they want to try to bring me down, so my follies (14 of them) can grow steadily and slower.  Fine by me.  I can tell that my ovaries are working hard.  I wanted to go hiking today, but I could feel pressure in my lower abdomen region, so I opted for strolling up the Boulder Creek Path (it was raging with all the snowmelt they had this year) and renting a cruiser bike.  I have a feeling that this will be my last "active" day in Colorado.  There are so many pregnant ladies in Colorado and cute little babies and toddlers everywhere!  Since I have been doing IVF, I don't feel as jealous and bereft when I see pregnant women.  I feel like my turn is coming soon!
I am signed up for a massage tomorrow after my morning appts.  Then I go pick up my sweet loving husband at the Denver Airport at 3:30 pm.  I'm ready for him to get out here!  This is the best time to be out in Colorado.  It's hot, but it ain't nothing compared to Mississippi.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Made it to Denver!

Whew!  That was a haul from Mississippi!  The air feels so good out here.  When I unpacked my clothes from my suitcase, they were damp from all the humidity down south!
 I had my first U/S - labwork appt.  My follies are growing, maybe a little too well.  They want me to decrease follistim from 300 to 150.   I don't have huge numbers, but respectable 9 on the right and 5 on the left.  They are keeping me at 150 units of menopur.   I have no clue what my hormones numbers were.  I am off tomorrow, so I have to glorious day to myself.  A good friend of mine has a 1 month old baby girl, so I am planning on hanging out with her and her little one tomorrow.
I am staying at the Hampton Inn and Suites in the Tech Center.  It is very comfortable and clean.  The only issue I ran into was the rental car.  I opted for the insurance on the rental and cost $50/d (more than the rental cost itself).  Turns out my credit card will cover any collision, so I had to drive all the way back to Hertz location at the airport to get the insurance off.  It was a pain, but will save me a bundle.
I have been so tired today due to the altitude - hoping I will be acclimated in a day or two.  Just trying to stay headache free.  So I am going to take it real easy.  It's kind of nice being by myself and being quiet.  I am on vacation!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

And It's Off to the Races!

First stim injection of Menopur this morning.  I had a little trouble getting the diluent out of the vial, but finally got the hang of it.  It stung a little bit more than the lupron, but it wasn't as bad as I anticipated.

Little inspiration reading for today:

Stop trying so hard to make it happen.  Stop doing so much, if doing so much is wearing you out or not achieving the desired results.  Stop thinking so much and so hard about it.  Stop worrying so about it.

We can take positive action to help things happen. We can do our part.  But many of us do much more than our part.  We overstep the boundaries of doing our part into controlling and coercing.

Do your part in relaxed, peaceful harmony.  Then let it go.  Just let it go.  Force yourself to let it go if necessary.  "Act as if."  Put as much energy into letting go as you have into trying to control.  You'll get much better results. It may not happen.  It may not happen the way we wanted it to and hoped it would.  But our controlling wouldn't have made it happen either.

Learn to let things happen because that's what they'll do anyway.  And while we are waiting to see what happens, we'll be happier and so will those around us.

Excerpted from "The Language of Letting Go" by Melody Beattie

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Green Light

Suppression check done and I am ready to start stimming on Saturday!  However, I had the most horrific morning.  Had a headache last night and went to bad early with an ice-pack.  My head still hurt when I woke up this morning, had to get R to drive me to Memphis.   I started getting nauseous and ended up vomiting at a gas station.  My appt was a complete blur.  I did have about 12 follies on the left and about 8 on right ovary and no cysts, so hopefully that is a good number to start with.  R called the acupuncturist and he fit me in at 9:30.  I managed to make it through the session, but vomited again right after the session.  And again the 1.5 hr car ride home.  My poor husband!  Finally made it home to my bed and called CCRM nurse and she said that I could take phenergan to knock me out ad stop the n/v, since I am not in a real sensitive time in the IVF cycle.  Thank god for that!
 Usually I take imitrex when I feel a bad headache coming on, but since it is a potent vasoconstrictor, Dr. G wants me to avoid it.  Once I get to the n/v state of a migraine, the imitrex does not really do that much.  So  I am going to have to be so so extra careful to avoid headache triggers when I get to Colorado.  One of them is altitude.  But I did read that dexamethasone treats altitude sickness, so maybe it will help with that.  Did any of you find that the stimulation hormones gave you headaches?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Naptime for ovaries (and me)

I started feeling like I am going to start my period and I am spotting a tiny bit, so I am actually relieved for a change that my period is coming on, so I will be ready for my suppression check on Thursday in Memphis at my old fertility clinic.  I'm hoping it won't be too weird since I chose not to pursue IVF through them.  My old RE did leave to go do animal research, so I have somewhat of an excuse.  I am so tired today and my head kinda hurts.  It is 100 degrees outside and nothing is moving. I am laying on my cool couch and thinking about streaming a movie.  I have not seen any good movies lately.
I am so ready to get to the Stim stage of IVF.  I just feel like I'm not doing much right now.   The reason this cycle is so drawn out is that the lab was closed at the beginning of July to be cleaned or otherwise, I would probably have already been done with retrieval.
I've pretty much got the hang of Lupron injections.  I need to figure out how to use this follistim pen.  And the menopur comes in ampules, so I need to see how to mix that.  Everthing will be going in my belly, except for the lovely trigger shot.  And I don't exactly have a whole lot of cushioning on my belly, so I hope I will be able to rotate the sites enough.  So, here's hoping my ovaries are sound asleep and my hormones are chilled out.  We'll see in a couple of days!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Strange Dreams

Last night I started the Dexamethasone and I woke up at 5 am having this bizarre, but beautiful dream that I was swimming in a cool clear aqua blue ocean and had to swim way out where I met 2 whales, a male and female, and I had to lay my hand on their foreheads which was supposed to bring peace to the world and to me.  It was such an awesome dream that I had a hard time going back to sleep.
Does anyone else have super strange dreams while taking in all these hormones?
I hope dreaming about the whales is a good sign - I have a friend who is really in to animal dreaming, so I will have to ask her what this means!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

1st day of Lupron

I did my first Lupron injection today!  Yay – baby steps towards IVF.   It really wasn’t bad at all. 
I had a snafu with a bridesmaid dress today.  First it was shipped to Tampa, FL then the Bella Bridesmaid girl called and changed the shipping address to Oxford, Nebraska when I live in Oxford, MS.  It was supposed to get here today. And now it won’t be until a week from now. WTF?  
I have to order another bridesmaid dress for a December wedding and it is basically the same dress just a little bit different style and color.  Hopefully, I will be pregnant in December, but who the hell knows.  I don’t know if I should order a couple of sizes up and just take it in if I am not.  
So, yep, these dresses are stressing me out!
I guess if these dresses are my biggest problem today, then life ain't so bad.
I finished reading State of Wonder by Ann Patchett.  It was slow at first and picked up in the last 100 pages.  The characters were a little flat and annoying to me.  I think it would be a good book to either check out of the library or wait for paperback.  I did not think the author was particularly sympathetic to women who have fertility issues.  The author is 48 and childless, so I don’t know if it was something she struggled with herself or if she just decided to devote herself to her writing.  She has written 5 novels and I have heard that writing a book is not unlike birthing a child.
So my whole family sans me and my husband are on the beach in Destin, Florida right now.  We elected not to go this year because I will be “vacationing” in Colorado for 3 weeks.  Still I miss the beach and hanging out with my family.   
Yesterday I went to Memphis and it was nice to take a fertility unrelated trip up there for a change. I got my hair-did and got to pick up a few things at Whole Foods.  The first thing the stylist asked me was “do you have kids?”  I told her that we were working on that.  She has a sis-in-law who did IVF twice and it did not work and then she got pregnant naturally.  Don’t you love those stories?!   
I hope everyone is doing well out there in the blogosphere. 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

This past week. . .

I just got my meds in yesterday and I cannot believe what I have gotten myself into.  I don't start lupron injections until this next Wednesday.  The birth control pill is already making me moody and irritable, so can't imagine what I am going to be like in a few weeks!

We decided not to go anywhere for the Fourth, so I've been cleaning my house, shortening newly-installed blinds and touching up the paint on our new interior doors.  And I baked a delicious batch of chocolate chip cookies.  I have also been combing through blogs trying to find successful IVF stories at CCRM.  I still can't decide if blogging is good for me or not.  Because when I see an IVF that doesn't work, it makes me worry.

I went to a book reading by Ann Patchett for her new book State of Wonder.  It is about a group of scientists that travel down to the Amazon in do research a new fertililty drug.  It is total fiction, but I think it will be an interesting read.  I'll let you know if it is any good.

One other thing happened this past week.  I got attacked by chiggers.  For those of you who are not from the South, they are tiny red bugs that bite you and leave you itching for weeks!  The acute state is over, but I will have to be more careful about venturing in the woods around here.  I have 35 of these bites all over my torso and bikini line.   I look like I have the chicken pox.

And I'll just post one more picture of my furbaby - she is so sweet and quite the opportunist!