Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Busy Plans, Testing and Cycling Update

Thankfully this winter we have a lot of busy, fun plans. It is always nice to stay busy so that I don't constantly keep thinking about our cr*ppy IF. Here is our schedule:

January 10-15: Arizona to visit FIL and his wife
January 22-25: DH snowmobiling in Michigan
January 25-26: Colorado for one day work-up
January 29-February 1: I go scrapbooking
February 6-8: Northern Minnesota to visit friends
February 11-14: Nieces to stay at our house while my sister and her DH go to Las Vegas
February 19-20- DH goes to Ice Fishing contest in Wisconsin

I am really excited to go scrapbooking tomorrow. I am going with 15 other girls to a crafting retreat. I know about half of the people that will be there including my mom, sis and good friend, L. DH, DS, my dad, BIL and nieces are going to spend the weekend ice fishing on one of the local lakes. When us girls get back on Sunday we are going to meet up with the guys and kids at my parents house and watch the SuperBowl together. The guys are planning all of the food and cooking for us girls.

I heard back from my OB and she is able to perform the E-Tegrity test to check for the beta 3 integrin protein in my endometrial lining. I have to supply a couple of the things needed for the procedure and then ship it off to the outside lab myself.

I also called the local hospital today that has my serum in the freezer. I have to go there tomorrow to give them my doctor's orders and then they will take care of shipping my serum off to CO for me.

Dr. Schoolcraft said that all of our stuff would be current for one year. Although, I am almost certain that we will have to at least do the communicable disease blood work every six months as mandated by the FDA. I figured that if we for surely decide to cycle locally to finish out our warranty program that I would do the fresh cycle in March/April. If we have any frozen embryos from that cycle then I think we would be able to cycle again in June/July. If we fail both of these cycles then I am hoping that we would be able to do the egg retrieval at CCRM in November/December (I want the medical tax deduction in 2009!) and then do the CGH frozen transfer in winter 2010. Man, that seems like a long time way! Hopefully, it will be well the worth the wait!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

CCRM Review

I apologize in advance for this being a long post. We got back late last night from CO and our work-up at CCRM. I was amazed at the size of the clinic and how many patients were there. Many of them were there, probably 8-10 couples, to also get their one day work-up done as well. Amazing and quite the testament to CCRM and how well-respected and known they are for being one of the top IF clinics!

So here was our day...

8:30- Meeting with Dr. Schoolcraft- We did a quick review of our IF history. He talked to us again about doing CGH, where they test all of our chomosomes. He said that with my age, my ability to produce lots of eggs (7 of which were "true" blasts on my cycle in August and he thought that their lab could get more blasts) and already carrying a child to term he thought that we would have no problem conceiving again. He said that he wished that all of his out of town patients had such great stats as I do. He also said that he is brutally honest and if he thought that we needed DE, DS or a GS that he would tell us that. He doesn't forsee us needing any of these. He did say that he would give us a 60% chance of success and if we do CGH he told us he was able to be "bold" in saying that we would have success in one cycle because of my age, egg producing capabilities and having L. He then said that I was an "interesting patient" because most of the couples that come to him from out of state he can look at their chart and know exactly what went wrong with their past failures. With us, he can't. He doesn't know why we have not had success. He was so nice and asked about L and told us that he wants to help us "give L a partner in crime".

9:00- Semen Analysis and Antibody Testing (ASAB) with Chromatin Assay- M had to give a sample to be sent off to South Dakota to check for DNA fragmentation and then CCRM likes to do their own SA to measure the motility, morphology, and count of sperm. I had to give a blood sample to check for antisperm antibodies. We will find out these results in the next couple of weeks and I will explain more then if anything is found.

9:30- Baseline Ultrasound and Doppler- I had an u/s to look at my uterus, lining and my ovaries. I have 6-8 resting follicles on each ovary. Now, I am not normally one to brag, but my ovaries rock!! That means that I have plenty of eggs to work with, so to speak. For those that don't know, when girls are born they are born with all of the eggs that their body will ever produce, wheras with guys they produce new sperm every 70-90 days. With having so many resting follicles I am not at risk for DOR (diminished ovarian reserve) which is another IF diagnosis. My lining was thin, but that was to be expected since AF just stopped. My uterus looked good, nothing abnormal. The doppler is done to check blood flow to the uterus. Good blood flow means that it is easier, per se, for my embryos to implant. The doppler was high, meaning that I have restricted blood flow to my uterus. To improve this I have to avoid caffeine and do electro-accupuncture while cycling.

10:00- Nurse Consultation and Medication Teaching- We met with the nurse to go over their processes and procedures and to talk about medications. This was kind of a boring meeting because we went over a lot of the same info as we had to do at our local clinic. It was a "ins and outs" of IVF sort of meeting. Since we have done four cycles, we pretty much know what we are doing by now. She did give us information on how to get my cycle day 3 labs sent from my local hospital to CCRM and information on the E-tegrity Test. This test needs to be performed by someone local (I will be calling my OB today to see if they can do it) on 9-11 days past ovulation. I have to monitor my ovulation with an OPK and then schedule the test. They will go in and scrape my lining, just as I had done previously with the endometrial biopsy, and send my tissue to an outside lab. The test measures my beta 3 integrin. This protein is needed in my endometrial lining for implantation of my embryos to occur. I have heard that the treatment for this is be on Lupron for two months prior to your cycle. If my lining is found to be absent of this protein I will explain more. The nurse also told us that they collect two sperm samples prior to egg retrieval. One of them will be frozen in the event that a sample can not be given on the day of egg retrieval or if it is an "off day" with M's sperm. We have been wanting to do this at our local clinic, but they don't find it necessary. Since M's counts have been all over the board, we were really excited to know that they highly recommend doing a frozen sample in addition to a fresh sample on the day of egg retrieval.

12:00- Lunch break- Self- explanatory:)

12:30- Hysteroscopy- Dr. Schoolcraft performed this on me. Hysteroscopy is used to look inside of my uterine cavity with a fiber optic telescope. Once the telescope is inside, he inserted carbon dioxide into my uterus with a tiny little tube so that he could visualize it better. This test is done to see if I have any fibroids, polyps or adhesions. My uterine cavity came back normal. At this time, Dr. Schoolcraft mentioned the restricted blood flow to my uterus. He actually said that my "blood flow looked funky". He didn't seem concerned about it, but then talked to me about avoiding caffeine and doing electro-accupuncture.

1:00 Business Office- We met with the business office to go over the cost of everything. They estimate that the work-up is $3,600 (I haven't tallied my receipts yet, but I know this is a high estimate). For ONE IVF at CCRM, they estimate (depending on how many stim meds you need) that it will cost between $15,000-$18,000. ICSI will cost an additional $2,600. CGH will cost an additional $5,000. I will also have to pay someone locally to monitor me before we fly to CO on cycle day 6 and we will also have to pay for all travel arrangements. I am estimating that we will be somewhere around $30,000 for one cycle. Holding a baby in my arms: Priceless. The up side is that we will get a refund from our local clinic of $25,000 if we don't have success there (more on this later) or if we decide not to cycle there again.

1:30 Consent Review- We both had to agree and sign a bunch of documents that talked about things like what to do with our embryos in the event that M dies, I die, we get divorced, etc. The documents also informed us of the risks of doing IVF, consents to do assisted hatching ICSI and cyropreservation.

2:00- Blood draws- My poor, dear husband hates needles. He had to have two vials drawn for further testing and I had to have five vials drawn for further testing. I will explain more later if anything is found.

Finally, our appts were done! What a long day and one filled with a lot of wait time between appts. After we left there we started talking about everything and DH mentioned that we should maybe do our one last cycle at our local clinic. We initially signed up for their warranty program that guarantees us three fresh cycles and any resulting frozen cycles. So far, I have only done two fresh and the two resulting frozen cycles. DH asked ever so delicately if I would be happy doing only one more cycle at CCRM and then being completely done and not doing the last remaining cycle at our local clinic? He gently asked why I am so afraid to have potentially six failed cycles? I guess my answer is that I don't like to repeatedly feel like a failure. I know that we are young and we have a lot of factors on our side as Dr. Schoolcraft pointed out, but dang it, I just want a baby!

DH explained that the next time we could cycle at either CCRM or locally would be in March and then if we have two more failures locally that we could go right to CCRM. He thinks that since we have completed the work-up that the stress will be off somewhat and that we know we are ready to go there in the event that we have failed all of our cycles locally. Not to mention too that we have already paid for one more fresh and any resulting frozen cycles locally with the warranty program. And whether we quit the warranty program now or we go through all three fresh cycles, we still get the same amount of money back -$25,000.

We also talked about the timing of everything too. DH will be going back to work in March (he is self-employed and works in construction and we shut down in the winter months in MN as it is too hard to dig with the ground being frozen) and the timing for cycling at CCRM in the spring is not good. We would prefer to cycle there in the winter months so that he doesn't have the stress of trying to conduct business long distance during his busiest time.

This all makes tons of sense to me. I know in my previous post I said that I wanted 2009 to be a defining year for us on whether or not we have another biological Angel. In thinking about this, I am not sure that I agree with that anymore. No matter when we decide to "give up" and if we don't have another Angel in the process, it will be difficult to say that our IF journey is over. So, why rush it? As Dr. Schoolcraft pointed out, if I am young, produce lots of eggs and have a child carried to term (things on my side), what is my hurry? Right now, time is on my side, so why don't I just take advantage of it and finish my cycles locally?

Of course, I may change my mind tomorrow, but it feels good to write this out and insert logic into my pea brain. DH has a good point and he is part of this journey too. I know that we have done things that neither of us ever thought we would be doing or would have had to do. And I know that I have been the one in the drivers seat pushing forward and calling the shots. So, for once, I think I will leave it up to DH and let him call the shots. After all, the shots I have been calling haven't been working and I feel like I need a break from being in charge:)

Friday, January 23, 2009

Fears of the Unknowns

I was driving down the road today and all of the sudden it hit me! We are flying to CO on Sunday for our work-up! In my mind I was thinking "Holy sh*t, I can't believe I am doing this. I am flying halfway across the country to have a baby!". I got butterflies in my stomach and then I started to panic. If we decide to cycle out there and we fail, I will be so utterly devastated. Even though CCRM is one of the best clinics, not everyone has success there. What if we cycle there and I have a worse response and don't produce as many follicles/eggs and our embryos end up being worse quality and none make it to blast for the CGH testing? I have always had great response and tons of blasts to choose from on our two fresh IVF cycles at our local clinic, but what if CCRM puts me on a different protocol and it just doesn't work for me? What if we do CGH and none of our embryos come back normal? What if we spend all of this money on ONE cycle and it fails? What if I leave there feeling my lowest of lows and still no baby to take home?

Of course I wouldn't go to CCRM with no hope. What would be the point? I do have hope that I will have another Angel. I do have hope that L will not be an only child. I do have hope that CCRM can get me pregnant. I do have hope. Ah, yes, that tricky little thing called "hope". On so many bright days it is my best friend. On so many dark days it is my worst enemy. Hope and I have a love-hate relationship.

I would like to think that 2009 will be the defining year for us. Either we will have another biological child or we will not have another biological child. But, how can I possibly think that way, in all reality? Unless I have a hysterectomy, as my fellow blogger Planet Davila pointed out (, then I will never completely lose "hope" that we will have another Angel.

And what if CCRM is not the magic for us that it is for so many others? What will we possibly do next? Will we give up our dream of expanding our family? Will we go through the lengthy process of adoption, as my fellow blogger A Miracle to Come, so thoughtfully wrote about ( Will we look at donor egg, donor sperm, donor embryo, or surrogacy? Will we live with broken hearts for the rest of our lives? I mean, what will become of us, really? I just don't know. I sure wish I had answers to all things Unknown.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hello, Visitors!

A couple of weeks ago I added a visitor tracker at the bottom of the right side bar of my blog. Many people have told me that they have been reading my blog, but I wanted to know how many. I have had almost 400 visitors to my blog in the past couple of weeks! I realize that a lot of these are repeat visitors, but I am just surprised that so many have stopped by. I want to thank you all for reading my blog and listening to me ramble day after day about my cr*appy IF life. If you stop by and feel comfortable doing so, please say "hi" by leaving a comment. If you don't have an account all you have to do is type in the "encrypted" word and then click on Anonymous and your message should post. If you are having difficulties, please let me know through email (friends and family) or IVFC.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Remembering Myles and Cycle Day 3 lab

Please take a moment today to help me remember Myles. He was born one year ago today and is a little Angel whose life was far too short. My dear friend, Niki, is his very wonderful Mommy. I met Niki on IVFC and she also goes to the same local clinic as I do. We have met IRL and she is an amazing person whose spirit shines through. Please take a look at her blog and remember her sweet little boy with me. She has a video montage of Myles's life on the right side bar of her blog, if you wish to view it.

I went to the local hospital today to get my cycle day 3 labs drawn. They agreed to draw my blood and turn it into serum and then store it in their freezer. When I get back from CCRM next week I have to bring my orders from Dr. Scool.craft to the hospital along with the shipping kit and they will send it to CCRM for me. Once CCRM gets the serum, they will test it in their own lab. Woohoo! I am so happy that they were able to do this for me without the doctor's official orders. They are literally saving us a whole month in getting started to cycle at CCRM, if that is what we decide to do.

Monday, January 19, 2009

AF Update and Karotyping Results

AF arrived bright and early this morning! I am so glad I didn't take Pro.vera to induce AF. I would probably still be waiting for her to arrive. I called CCRM this morning to confirm our appointment for next Monday, January 26!!

I also asked for the instructions on what needs to be done to draw my cycle day 3 labs before going to CO. They are not legally supposed to give me any instructions since I am not technically their patient until we go there next Monday. She did tell me that if I could find someone to draw my blood for me that they need 2 tubes of serum and that it needs to be frozen and then I can put it in a cooler and bring it on the plane with me. If we wait until next month to do it then we won't be able to start stimmining until March and then we will be in CO when M starts back up to work this spring, which will be really inconvenient. If we could stim and do the ER in late February/early March it would just work out a whole lot better. Tomorrow I will start calling my two OB offices and the local hospital to see if they can do this for me without official orders from CCRM. If not, we will just have to wait to get the official orders from CCRM on Monday and then have it done next month and send it to CCRM for testing.

I also received a phone call from my local RE today that M does NOT have a balanced translocation. Now that he has been tested, I will be going in tomorrow morning to have my blood drawn to get tested for a balanced translocation. If my clinic would have just let us both be tested at the same time, that would have been way more convenient.

It's been a productive day, that is for sure. I have booked our flights, hotel and car rental and I am just about to call my Dad to confirm that he will take L while we are gone. I should feel relieved that everything is coming together, but somehow I am feeling a bit stressed out. Hopefully this will all be worth it in the end and I will be holding a baby in my arms soon. The "what ifs", "what should have beens" and "if onlys" are already starting to pile up.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Spotting and Karotyping

Well, I think that AF is on her way! I have been spotting all day today, which is not entirely abnormal for me. When I first started spotting this morning I was practically giddy! I have not been this excited for AF to arrive since before I was married (and, yes, Mom, I did have "fun" before I was married). Hopefully I will wake up tomorrow and she will be here in full force.

To prepare for our trip to CO next Sunday-Monday, I looked at airline prices today. They are really reasonable and less than we paid to go to AZ last week. We will only be there one night and we plan on staying at the least expensive place that CCRM listed on the area informational sheet that was sent out with my packet. When we go down there next week, we plan on looking at some of the other hotels listed so that we can figure out where we want to stay for our extended trip if we cycle there.

Today we were at my parents house and my dad just had surgery on Thursday. He had a bone spur on his foot that broke and was having tons of pain. He told us that he could take L when we travel to CO next week. What a relief! I was already trying to figure out what to do with him since all of the people I trust to take him work on Mondays.

I also called my local RE on Friday to ask if they had received the results of the karotyping for a balanced translocation on DH. It has been five weeks and they have not received the results back yet. They originally told me that it takes a "couple" of weeks to receive the results. I asked the nurse if she could follow-up on it and let me know on Monday. I am expecting a phone call back from them tomorrow. If it turns out that M does not have a balanced translocation, then I will be tested.

Things are starting to roll along, finally.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Infertility Scar

I have had so many swirling thoughts lately that I don't even know where to begin. I keep thinking about the "infertility scar" I mentioned in a previous post and trying to define what it all encompasses. There is just so much that is involved in this journey that it is hard to put it into words so I am going to share some stories to convey my thoughts.

I was at the gym the other day waiting for my DH to get out of the locker room. One of the trainers came around the corner and walked by me on her way to the restroom. My first thoughts were, "I wonder how she conceived? Did she have an easy or tough time? I wonder if her baby is healthy and will be born healthy?" and then I followed my thoughts up with a quick prayer for a happy, healthy baby to be born for her. This woman was a complete stranger to me. Three years ago I wouldn't have given her a second thought.

In November I received my fourth IVF BFN on an HPT. An hour later we walked out the door to go to an extended family gathering. DH asked me if I wanted to stay home so that we could veg out and lick our wounds. I told him that we should go. On the 45 minute drive there I cried and tried to compose myself. When we got to the family gathering there were two precious miracle newborn babies there. They were so adorable in their matching outfits and scrunched up little arms and legs. I wanted to hold them so badly, but I just couldn't do it as I didn't want to lose it in front of anyone. I congratulated the parents on the birth of their babies and then I left there feeling so guilty for not asking to hold them.

On December 1, I cried on my dear son's 4th birthday when I got the official BFN news from my clinic. When L asked me why I was crying I said my standard, "because I am so happy I have you". Then I hugged and kissed him and thought about how horrible of a mom I am because I let our IF affect his special day.

There have been so many pregnancies announced in the time that we have been TTC. It's funny because when I hear the great news of the expecting deep down I am always honestly happy for those that have been able to achieve this miracle of life. I would not wish the h*ll of IF on ANYONE. It's just that I remember how sad I am for myself. I know that this is completely selfish and I hate myself for feeling this way.

***As a side note to the other people's pregnancies thing: Why is it that when you are going through IF that people think you want to know about everyone else's pregnancies? I know this gal and she always tells me when someone she knows is pregnant. I have never met these people and have no clue who they are, but she consistently tells me about them. The people are usually a friend of a friend of a friend. Why does she think that I want to hear about them? It's all kind of curious to me. It would be like me saying to someone who has an illness that is struggling to survive on many days that I know someone who was cured of the same illness. Is that supposed to give the person struggling "hope" that they will cured? Hmmm, I don't think so. I think it would make them feel worse in so many ways.

Hopefully I will be pregnant again someday. Even though I have so many cycles under my belt that tricky thing called "hope" always comes back. Many people would think that once I am pregnant I will be back to "normal" again. I think that I have read too much, talked to so many people and learned so much about what can go wrong that it saddens me to know that I won't have that ignorant bliss that I had when I found out I was pregnant with L.

Overall, many days I am happy and lead a "normal" life. I have made great friends through his process whom I will have in my heart for the rest of my life, some of whom I have never met IRL. I have also seen some really great friends and family be even better friends and family. The support we have received has been unmeasurable. I have also let some friends go in this process for various reasons that I am fine with now, but saddens me that things turned out the way they did.

Yep, the Infertility Scar has changed many parts of who we are. I try to remember that our IF should be a small part of who DH and I are. But when it comes to those in my life that I love and care about, I would give anything to them. Even though another baby has not come physically to us, s/he has come to us in our hearts and souls and I would give anything to have s/he.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I'm Back and Freezing... toosh off! AZ had a forecasted high of 74 degrees today. When our flight landed in MN this afternoon, it was -16 degrees. Yep, that's right...NEGATIVE 16 degrees. Yikes! We were swimming in the pool yesterday and right now my hands are numb as I type this.

We had a surprisingly good time in AZ. It was a really relaxed vacation and we didn't do that much, which was just fine with me. The last 18 hours we were there were....let's say "annoying"...because we checked into a hotel for the night and there were so many small things that we were not happy with at the hotel and the airport this morning. Otherwise, everything went really well with the in-laws and better than expected:)

Last night after an "annoying" day DH and I were sitting on the couch at the hotel watching AI and then I just started crying. I also started crying at the pool yesterday as I watched DH swimming with L. Also, my tears are in my eyes now as I type this. I just keep going over and over in my mind that I really don't want L to be an only child, and I have at least a 1,000 reasons why.

As much as I am grateful to have L, I know that I will also be so grateful to have another. And, as much as I want to get to CCRM and end our IF journey, I know that is just an artificial wish. I only want it to be the end of my IF journey if I bring home a child. I don't want to have a failed cycle at CCRM. I already feel like such a failure on this journey, I don't want to have the ultimate status of "failure" at one of the best clinics.

With all of these tears falling at the drop of a hat I am bit hopeful that AF will show up any day...

Friday, January 9, 2009

Popsicle Stand

Well, we're getting ready to blow this popsicle stand! That's right, we are heading out of town. We are leaving tomorrow to go to Arizona to see my FIL and his wife. We will be back next Thursday, January 15. It will be nice to get away for a couple of days into warmer weather and some relaxation. We don't have any real big plans while we are down there, which will be nice. We don't even for sure know where we are staying at yet! We will stay with FIL the first and last night for sure and then we may get a hotel for the other three nights. We are just going to play it by ear.

We are bringing our laptop with, but I don't know how much time I will have to post. Although I am quite addicted to IVFC and the blogs I read, I am going to trying to refrain from checking them every day while in AZ. I hope you all have a great week!

And, hopefully AF will show shortly after our return...

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Only Child Blues

After laying in bed last night and talking and crying to my dear husband I had a bit of of a "crabby hangover" this morning. I woke up not feeling like the happiest of campers this morning. By mid-afternoon I was feeling much better and then we went out to dinner.

We went out to dinner with MIL tonight and L wanted to sit at the end of the table. There was a large group that were sitting about 15 feet from us and the adults were on one side of the long table and all of their kids were seated on the other side of the table, the side closest to us. Throughout dinner I noticed that L was sitting to the side and eating his spaghetti and watching this group of children. He was smiling as he was eating and giggling every now and then. For some reason I just got so sad and my tears decided to drop. I just really want him to have a sibling that he can always play with and talk to. It made me so sad that he was sitting there all alone and just watching all of these other kids play, like on the outside looking in.

It isn't that he doesn't have little friends that he plays with. We are really active and I make sure that he is involved in things with other children. It is just that siblings share that common family bond- their parents. They are the ones that you are connected to, whether you want to be or not. My sister has always been the one to tell me when I am wrong and to back me up when I am right. She is the one whom I can call crying and upset and she may think I am crazy at times, but she still loves me (right, sis?). She is the one whom I can have a huge fight with and be laughing with five minutes later. She is the one that will hopefully still be with me when our parents no longer are. I won't be alone, all by myself.

I just don't want my dear son, L, to be alone- in any sense of the word. I want him to have sibling to lean on, no matter what happens in his life. I want him to have a sibling to complain about his mom and dad to. I want him to have a sibling to show the ropes of life to. I want him to know so much about life by having a sibling to go through life with. I want his children (hopefully) to have cousins. I want so much for him to have a sibling that it makes me so sad that he very well may not have one.

And yes, I am SO, SO grateful to have L. I know how lucky I am to have him. Through this IF journey he has been my shining star. He has wiped away my tears at times and has made me laugh when I have gone through some of my darkest days. Last night he asked me why I was crying and I gave him my standard response, "because I am so happy I have you".

As much as I wish for a sibling for L, I also wish, hope and pray for all of my IVF/IF friends who so want a child for themselves. There are so many great woman I have met over the past 2.5 years who have gone through so much on their journey to create and complete their family. IF is a pain I would not wish on anyone, even my worst enemies.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

CCRMs Instructions (CM/tmi mentioned)

Well, I talked to the nurse at CCRM this afternoon. She said that with the progesterone level of 2.3 that I have already ovulated in the last couple of days. She said that progesterone is usually less than 1 if you have not ovulated and in some labs it can be up to less than 1.5. My local RE says that if your progesterone is less than 3 it means that you have not ovulated. In short, CCRM says that I HAVE ovulated. Local RE says that I HAVE NOT ovulated.

CCRM thinks that I will get AF in about 10 days on my own (without taking Provera) and has scheduled me for my one day work-up on January 26. This means that AF has to come by January 22, in order for me to go there for my work-up since I have to go between cycle days 5-13.

After talking to my dear husband and my mom I have decided to wait it out and see if AF arrives in about 10 days or so. I am just so, so tired of taking all of these medications. Also, the CM I had over the last several days is somewhat consistent with ovulation.

Is there anyone else out there that is confused besides me?


Cruel Joke

I went in to my local RE today to have my b/w drawn. They only wanted to check my progesterone and not LH. My primary doc can do both progesterone and LH, but it takes two days to get the results. So, I stuck with my local RE and just did my progesterone and I hope CCRM is okay with it. My progesterone came back at 2.3, which indicates that I have not even ovulated yet, ugh! I am so p*ssed at my body right now, in fact, I don't think that I have ever been this mad at it- even through all of my BFNs. I have NEVER been more than one day late for AF-EVER! Now, I am trying to coordinate and my plan my trip to CO so that I can end my IF journey and she doesn't show up. It like a cruel joke, honestly!

Up until this morning I had no hope that I conceived naturally, but this morning that spiteful thing called "hope" started creeping in. In my head I knew that a natural conception would not happen at this point so I kept pushing it out of my head- thankfully. Imagine if I had my hot air balloon inflated with that "hope" sh*t how devastated would I be right now?

Oh no, now I am just p*ssed. I just REALLY wanted this month to go smoothly. I felt like I was truly enjoying life and was completely fine with AF arriving this month and was looking forward to getting started at CCRM so that I can end our IF journey this year. Now, everything is messed up again. I feel like I have been planning my life around our IF for so long that when this journey is over I don't know if I will be able to live normally again. It is all just so frustrating and irritating. If I wasn't so p*ssed, I would be laughing because it is just so incredulous to me that my body just does not want to cooperate, no matter what.

Anyways, I have been prescribed Provera by local RE to induce AF. I have to take it every night for 10 days and then AF should arrive 1-2 weeks after I stop it. That is another 17-24 days before the wicked witch will come, hopefully. Yippee, I get to take more meds (insert sarcasm).

Oh, and I left a voice mail for the nurse at CCRM so that I can get her instructions, hopefully they are the same as my local RE. Working with two RE's is really interesting....

Monday, January 5, 2009

AF Update (tmi post)

Okay, I am getting irritated. Still no AF! I am three days "late" and this is highly unusual for me. I called CCRM and the nurse wants me to get my progesterone and LH hormone levels checked to see if I have ovulated this month. By doing this we can better estimate when AF will arrive and then re-schedule my one day work-up at CCRM since I need to go there between cycle days 5-13. I haved left voice mails for the nurse at my local RE and for the nurse at my primary doctor to see if they can run these labs and how quickly I can get my results. I am supposed to call CCRM back once I get my results.

In addition to no AF, I have been getting more and more CM. I have had it every day since New Years Eve, but today there is WAY more of it than in days past. The nurse at CCRM said that it is because I am having a change in my hormones. She thought that maybe I am just ovulating now, but I explained that I have had CM for the last six days (you don't typically ovulate for that one, usually only 1-2 days). She also said that it is possible after a failed IVF cycle to have a delayed menstrual cycle. I just think it is weird that I had my last BFN on 12/1, AF arrived on 12/5, and now I am late for my second post-BFN cycle AF.

Hopefully I will be able to get my blood drawn tomorrow to check my hormone levels and get some answers. Besides the CM I have had a mild stomachache since yesterday. It doesn't hurt that bad, more annoying than anything. I wish AF would hurry up and get here as I am totally stressing myself out about this.


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Thank Yous and AF Update

There is a group of girls that live in my area that I have met on IVFC. All of them have done or are getting ready to do an IVF cycle. We have gotten together a few times this year and we talk often online. This morning there was supposed to be 6-7 of us that were going to get together for breakfast. However, the lovely road conditions did not cooperate so only two of us showed up (K- I had a GREAT time chatting with you this morning!!). Not only has this group of girls gone through their own IF struggle, they have also provided a source of support for me. A bigger source than they probably even know. These local girls, and so many others on IVFC, have provided me with support, joy, compassion, empathy, understanding, knowledge, insight and hope, just to name a few. A BIG thank you to each and every one of you for helping me through this IF struggle.

In addition to the IVFC girls, I also need to thank my dear friend, S. We have been friends for several years and every year that passes gets better because of her great friendship. When my ex-BFF and frenemies deserted me, she was there. When I had my two chem pgs, she was there. For every BFN I had, she was there. For every disappointment and infrequent joys I have had, she was there. When she was pg this year and delivered her her beautiful baby boy in November, she was there. She didn't exclude me from her happy times and isolate me from this wonderful time in her life. It's friends like these that you never forget. I will never forget the generosity, compassion, empathy and understanding that she has shown me during my IF struggle and the great friend she was before I began this struggle and who she continues to be to this day. She is one "constant" that I can always count on and for this, I am eternally grateful. Thank you, S!

I have another dear friend, P, who I would like to thank too. She has been a guiding light and has shown me a beacon of light in this journey. We have so much in common and she always provides great insight. She has shown me the Lord in a way that no one else has. She completely "gets" my situation in a way that no one else has due to her own current situation. Together we have commiserated, cried, laughed, ranted, depended on the Lord, cried, laughed and drank coffee together. Did I mention.??! ..we've cried and laughed together:):) Thank you, P, for always being strong when I am weak and allowing me to be strong when you are weak.

Over time, I will thank others who have helped me along the way, but today I thought I would focus on friends since I kicked off my day with breakfast with a friend.

Still no AF. Tomorrow I will have to call CCRM and post-pone my one day work-up appointment. Hopefully, I will wake up tomorrow and the wicked witch will be here. Why is it that AF arrives when you don't want her to and then she doesn't come when you do want her to? I just wanted to be able to plan ONE thing, that's all...and, of course, AF had to go and ruin my plans, again **sigh**.

(And, no, still no hope that I am currently pregnant. I haven't tested and I don't plan on it.)


Saturday, January 3, 2009

Working Out and Waiting for AF

One week ago DH and I joined a local gym. So far this week we have gone to work out five times and we are loving it! I never thought that I would like working out. My dear husband works a ton of hours in the summer doing manual labor and never had a desire to then go to a gym after a long, hard day and work out. Since I have never really enjoyed working out, much less by myself, I have never wanted to work out. Now that it is winter and we have more time, we have made it a priority to get to the gym. We have joined a somewhat family-oriented gym in that there are a lot of people just like us working out, ie., not everyone has huge muscles and are super know, the kind that makes you feel self-conscious.

I hope that we stick with it for at least the next several months until I cycle again. In the past 2.5 years I have gained about 15 pounds due to all of the meds and stress of IF/IVF. I was looking at my wedding photos earlier today and I was nice and thin and I really want to be that person again. Not just in how I look on the outside, but how I felt on the inside on my wedding day. I want to feel like every day is the best day of my life. I have had a lot of good days in the last 2.5 years of ttc #2, but I so wish that I didn't have the "infertility scar" that so many of us have after going through this. I will save more thoughts on this for a future post.

AF was supposed to arrive by this morning and now I am officially "late" (and no, I don't have any thoughts that I could be pregnant). I have never been a person who waits patiently. And I have always had a regular 28 day cycle, almost down to the minute. But, of course, when I want AF to arrive, the wicked witch doesn't arrive on time. I am sure that my body is a bit confused after being on medications for the last 18 months. However, I am hoping that I will wake up tomorrow and she will be here so that I can finish planning our trip to CO and AZ. We may have to juggle the dates around a little bit for our AZ trip depending on when AF arrives. I will write more about this later if I have to make some travel itinerary changes.

Now, where did that white pair of pants go...