Wednesday, February 29, 2012

We're Set For Transfer

Yep. We are doing a three day transfer tomorrow at 7:45am. I debating on whether I will take the offered Valium. Not sure how I feel about a three day versus five day transfer, but at least we have something to transfer!

The nurse from the clinic called today and told me that 3 out of the 4 fertilized eggs were looking great-that they had cleaved to four cell. I would expect that, by tomorrow, they would be 6 or 8 cells. The other egg was still growing, just not as fast as the other three. So, altogether, I am not unhappy with these results. I'm feeling cautiously optimistic. Basically, they said that the doctor usually does three day transfers when there are not a lot of embryos to choose from. This makes me feel better about the three day transfer, that it doesn't necessarily mean quality is poor, just that quantity is.

So now the question is, if those three continue to grow, how many to transfer??? Dan and I have been talking and, in our heart of hearts, we really do not want twins. Mostly because of my history with mild pre-eclampsia. I'm worried about the toll on my body, though I know that I might not necessarily get pre-e again. But I just worry about carrying twins. This dilemma is really weighing heavily on me, on us....though I do feel very fortunate that we have come to this place where we have been given the *chance* to have to make this decision. After all, there were several points when I didn't think I would even get the chance to become pregnant, my body was so uncooperative. I just don't know what to do though....

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

I May Have Hit Rock Bottom...

I may have hit rock bottom-for this cycle (because I refuse to be overly dramatic). I was right. It was cursed. Three weeks of stimming, a week of feeling like shit, all those doctor's appointments....

So if you haven't guessed, my fertilization report was NOT good. I almost started crying when they told me, but was able to contain it.

21 eggs retrieved
13 were mature and they were able to do ICSI
4 (4!) were fertilized by today

Four! I think I want to vomit. How can I only have four eggs be good-out of 21. I am feeling pretty devastated at the moment...especially because I know that all four won't survive to blast stage. I'll be **lucky** if two survive and are of good quality. I literally feel sick over the whole thing.

I am just hating my body right now. It won't ovulate on its own, and it won't even produce good quality eggs. I really thought we would have good quality eggs, with many being fertilized. I mean, we got pregnant with Alex on our first round of injections and I only had TWO eggs then. I thought that meant that I would have no quality issues. Perhaps we were just supremely blessed!

PCOS. I know the egg quality issues have to do with PCOS. How can it be so debilitating in so many ways??? I realize that everyone has their cross to bare, and that this is mine. But I still hate it. I hate that Dan and I have to go through this roller coaster. I was hoping that this would be the last time I would have to stim. That even if a fresh cycle didn't take, we would have embryo's for a frozen cycle and they would take. Now I strongly doubt that we will have anything to freeze. I don't even know if we will have anything to transfer at this point!  And cue the tears to start....

I feel inadequate. I feel like a failure. How is it so hard for me to do something that is as easy as breathing for so many women? How can I not do something that women are wired to do?

So anyway...Dr. K still feels that some may still fertilize. I don't see how, if they haven't, by this point. But I guess he still thinks so. I think he's being overly optimistic. Maybe it's because they weren't even retrieved until around 2pm yesterday...maybe they just haven't had enough time. But in my heart, I don't think so. He is still planning on a five day transfer. I think he's a little bit nuts. But I'm supposed to call on Thursday to check on my little embryos. And see if I have any more...

But we may be switching to a three day transfer. That's fine. I just hope that some of my little guys make it :(

I'm so sad, so discouraged, so mad at my body...

If you can... could you send up a quick prayer for (or think some good vibes for) my four little guys? We need all the good vibes we can get...

Monday, February 27, 2012

Retrieval, Check.

And everything went really well! I'll probably make this fast because I think that a nap is in order...

So the doctor who did the retrieval was super nice and the nurses were all great too-definitely calmed me down. The drugs they gave me were outstanding, lol. I went off to a nice sleep and woke up pretty easily, without feeling drugged.

In the end, we got 21 eggs. I will have to wait until tomorrow morning to see how many fertilized. I am trying to mentally prepare myself, because I know that a fairly large number may not actually fertilize. And of those that do, even less will become healthy blasts.

It's so weird to think of my eggs, soon to be fertilized, as not being *in* me any longer. It's odd to think of all this stuff happening at a clinic 10 miles from my house. It's strange to me to think of someone bent over our embryos, studying their characteristics. It's just all so foreign. But it's the end result that I need to keep in my sights.

So I'm going to get some sleep now, and drink a ridiculous amount of SmartWater too. I am armed with Dostinex and Lovenox to hopefully prevent OHSS. I *seriously* hope I do not get it. Sending up a little prayer for our little embryos....

Saturday, February 25, 2012

We Are ON.

We are scheduled for a retrieval on Monday. We go in at 12:30. Yikes! I am having trouble wrapping my head around the idea of IVF. We kind of just fell into it, versus making the conscious decision to pursue this route of treatment. I feel unprepared. I feel excited. I feel scared. Seriously-can I just have ONE emotion at a time for once??!!

So I was really excited to get a time. But my estrogen levels caused me pause. It was around 5700. That seems awfully high. The nurse didn't seem too concerned and they gave me a prescription called Dostinex to help prevent OHSS. But I gotta say, the thought of OHSS scares the crap out of me!

Basically....I have all the warning signs for possibly developing OHSS: PCOS, estrogen above 4000, tons of large and medium sized follicles. I really am kind of freaking out. Stupid Google. Ahhhh-why do I Google things? What would possess me to think typing "OHSS" into Google would be a good idea? I should have known better. I know that I can be obsessive. That I can be a worrier. Using Google in such a manner is never, NEVER a good idea. Because what comes up? All the BAD stories, of course. Stories about women ending up in the hospital getting their bellies drained, gaining 32 pounds in 4 days, being sick as a dog.

So I'm scared. It really sounds horrible-and dangerous. But I guess the only thing I can do is hope for the best. I've been really weepy the last few days too. MUCH more than typical, as I'm usually pretty even-keeled. So yeah, that makes things look that much scarier. Stupid hormones :o

Trigger is at 1am tonight-er-tomorrow morning. I'll be the one setting two or three alarms, just in case....

Friday, February 24, 2012

What the H*ll Do You Mean, My Estrogen is Too High?

My estrogen is too high, or rather, running of the risk of getting too high for IVF. Really? Really! After 19 days of stimming, my cycle could be cancelled because I have too much damn estrogen?! Seven days ago, I had too little. Now I have too much. 19 days of stimming. Six or seven monitoring ultrasounds, three gonal F pens, 523451532 blood draws, a vial of shattered Lupron. All this and maybe I don't even get to ovulate the 17 damn eggs I have in me right now. What a waste. I just can't reconcile all of this work and heartache for *nothing*. I've already cried today. Now I'm just pissed. I'm mad at the world. I'm mad at my doctor-unfair or not, I'm not quite sure yet. I'm mad at fertile women. I'm mad at Facebook (because today, of all days, there was another pregnancy announcement), I'm mad at my body. I'm mad that it's cloudy and cold. I'm just mad. And sad. And scared.

So the ultrasound today showed about 17 follicles, ranging in size from 13-19. My lining was a 12. Meg, the nurse practitioner, absolutely ruled out being able to safely do IUI and we talked about converting to IVF. It all seemed good. I was excited. I was relieved because, as you might recall, I considered this cycle cursed only five days ago. Meg did mention that my estrogen cannot be above 5,000 or 6,000 (can't remember which) on the day of retrieval or else we would have to cancel. She gave me some medicine (can't remember the name) to take if my estrogen was too high and it's supposed to bring it down.

Well. I got my blood tests back. My estrogen was a 4070. Pretty damn close to that cut-off and I'm not even ready for the procedure yet :( And that was with decreasing my Gonal dose from 225 to 150 last night. So I went from 1529 to 4070 with a decrease in meds. Crap. So Meg called and told me to decrease my Gonal to 37.5! Please, God, let that tiny dose of Gonal stop my estrogen from rising any higher! I'm scared of OHSS, but I'm also scared of cancelling. All that work! All those eggs! All that time! And for what???!!!

So I'm pretty down. I'm anxious. I'm mad and I'm so gosh darned tired. I remember being super tired towards the end of stimming with my daughter. It's alarming how quickly treatments can turn my life upside-down again. A few months ago, everything was going well. We wanted another baby, but it was not a focus. We were enjoying our time with Alex, our time with each other. Now it's like baby making is all I think about. How my day goes depends on blood work results. Every pregnancy announcement is a slap in the face. And I feel more and more different from my "fertile" friends. This is precisely what I did not want to happen. I didn't think I would have to go through this pain again. I thought having one child would alleviate some of the aching. But the ache is still there, just different. It comes from a different place. A place of wanting to give my child the gift of a sibling, of wanting to make my husband a father again, of wanting to complete our family.

I keep trying to tell myself that things will work out the way they were supposed to. I think of my miscarriage. I cried for days when that happened. I mean, cried. I have never cried like that. It was all I could do, I could barely do anything else. God, what a low point. But if I didn't have that miscarriage, I would never have had Alexandra. Things worked out for a reason. I hope things work out again, for a reason. But I'm afraid they won't. I'm just afraid.

Please God, give me a chance this cycle. And please, let us have one more healthy baby.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

You Know You're an Infertile Part 3

You know you're an infertile....when...

1. Your dentist knows that you are trying to make a baby

2. You feel the compulsion to try to "beat" your (pregnant) friend to all the good names by staking claim to a name. Oh yeah, and you aren't pregnant at the time.

Both things happened today. Ah, it's a good day to be infertile! Ok, not.

Number one speaks for itself. Every time I go into the dentist's office, they inquire about the status of my womb. We talk about how heavily medicated I am-depending on the month and/or the time of month-and then they bid me adieu, cheerfully hoping me to be impregnated by my next visit.

Number two....I'm a possessive monster when it comes to names. I have this unnatural (but kind of understandable) fear that all the good names will be GONE by the time I get around to having a second child. So that being said, I like to lay out my choices ahead of time. Tonight, for instance,  I went out to dinner with three girlfriends. One is twenty weeks pregnant with a girl. When we asked her about names, she said that they weren't sharing.

Ok. I get that. Because, really, who wants everyone else's opinion? thinking was that I had to beat her to a good name so she couldn't use it (or if she decided to use it, would realize she was "stealing" my name) because, seriously....she may be on to her second or third by the time I get to having another. So I say, "Oh well when we get pregnant, we've picked out a name for a girl already". I go on to say the name (which, incidentally, is Lilah Madeline). Just putting it out there. Just in case....and, in other words, back off my name.

Can I blame this craziness on my uber high estrogen levels????

Clinic Called...

...and they want to lower my Gonal dose from 225 to 150 units. Not sure how I feel about this :/ This is my 18th day of stimming and I think that I will have a nervous breakdown if things don't work out at this point-either through IUI or IVF.

I think they are a little worried about how fast my estrogen is rising: going from a 64 to a 532 to a 1500+. They really don't want my estrogen to be over 5,000, a level it could very well get to if my numbers keep increasing the way they have been.

Basically, it's a 50/50 shot between having to go the IVF route or IUI. By lowering the dose (so I was told) they hope that one of two things happen:

Scenario one: it gives some of the smaller follicles a little extra time to catch up to the bigger ones so that if we have to go IVF, I will have a larger amount of mature follicles.

Scenario two: A few of the bigger ones will keep growing, while the smaller ones stop and we can continue with an IUI.

What they are afraid of is going forth with an IUI when I have a few mature follicles, and several "borderline" mature ones...because no one knows if they would mature upon doing the trigger shot.

And let the dance begin! I have no idea what will happen whatsoever. I'm nervous about decreasing my meds but understand the reasoning. I guess I just need to place my trust in these people, knowing that they do this all the time. But it's hard to give trust when you want something so badly.

I'm just hoping to *get the chance* to try to get pregnant. Please, please, please....let me have a two week wait....and a healthy baby at the end would be GREATLY appreciated :)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

What WILL It Be?

What will happen? IUI? IVF? God forbid, cancellation? I had to add that last one in there, because I don't want to jinx anything...and of course, I'm also afraid of backsliding.

So today's appointment went well. I brought Alexandra with me, and it's always nice to show her off there since, without that staff, she most likely wouldn't exist. She was a very good girl but became really upset when they went to take my blood! Poor kid still remembers her two year lead test.

Anyway. Here's the deal. Lining was around an 11. There were at least five dominant follicles on my right ovary, measuring between 10 and 14. This is good. They grew! They were measuring around 7 and 8 two days ago, with a few 10's thrown in. My left ovary, per the norm, was hiding and she couldn't get a great look at it. However, from what she did she, it looks like I have at least two or three dominant ones on that ovary as well. She said there could have been more, but she simply could not get a proper look. estrogen went from a 532 two days ago to a 1529 today! So it basically tripled in two days' time. Holy cow! Like I said before...I'm pretty sure my estrogen was only in the two hundreds for the IUI cycle that I became pregnant with Alex. So this is completely new ground for me!

So things are happening! I go back again Friday but am praying that my little follicles continue to grow big and strong and healthy! What a roller coaster this cycle has been.

I wonder what will happen though? It's kind of up in the air at this point in time in regard to IUI vs. IVF. I think that it really could go 50/50 each way. I mean, if all the stand-out follicles I have growing how continue to grow, then we'd have to do IVF. However, if some of them stop growing and let the other ones grow bigger, IUI still may be an option. My fear, of course, as usual, is that progress will just arrest. I'm so worried about that :/ I'm hoping that, at this point, that happening would be very unlikely.

And if I do have many do we implant (assuming we get some good embryos)? I really am worried about twins, not because we are daunted by having two more kids, but because of the risks associated with carrying twins. I had a *very* mild case of pre-eclampsia with Alex. She was delivered at term and my blood pressure never sky rocketed or anything (and I was only spilling trace amounts of protein)...but the thought of having it again worries me-especially with how strenuous it is to carry two at once. I know people are probably thinking " can end up with twins through IUI too". And that is true...but there's a difference between having two or three well developed follicles and having two good quality embryo's placed. Twins in the latter scenario are more likely.  So do we just implant one? But then I feel that the chance for success would go down.

Agghhhh! I'm getting ahead of myself. We'll just keep moving ahead and I guess make those decisions if/when we get there. Grow little follies, grow!

Monday, February 20, 2012


Ultrasound #5...or was it 6??? I can't remember! Too many of the darn things.

So, for the first time yet, we've gotten some good news :)

1. My lining has grown again from an 8 to almost an 11
2. I FINALLY have some measurable follicles for the first time! They measured two or three at around a 10 on one ovary. My other ovary was hiding (which it seems to do quite a bit), so they couldn't really see what I have there. But I'm happy that something is going on!

3. Estrogen on Friday was a 64. Estrogen today, at only three days later, was a 532!!!!!! I don't think my estrogen was that high when I was inseminated the cycle I became preggo! And we're not even anywhere near ready to inseminate!

So...I'm praying and keeping my fingers crossed that the numbers continue to rise and the follicles (and lining) continue to grow. Of course, at this point, I'm worried about back-sliding again. So I guess I'm being cautiously optimistic.

I'm also wondering if I will actually need to convert to an IVF cycle. If my estrogen keeps climbing and a bunch of follicles mature all at one, it may be a reality. Which is kind of exciting ;)  We'll see....

Sunday, February 19, 2012

This cycle is....cursed.

So who has two thumbs and dropped their bottle of Lupron, shattering it to pieces? This girl here. Yes-shattered. Completely. Totally. In pieces. Lupron all over my tiled kitchen floor. I experienced a moment of such desperate depravity that I considered getting a syringe out and sucking up some of it from a particularly large glob on the floor. Then common sense got the better of me and I realized that I shouldn't be injecting myself with ANY material that has touched my kitchen floor.

So I called Freedom Pharmacy's after-hours people, and they were completely useless (and also completely rude-which is NOT my normal experience with them) and then I called my fertility clinic. They said that they would probably be able to loan me some that I could replace when my replacement arrived. Hope so! The good news is that I got my shot in tonight, prior to the destruction. I very nearly started crying when I dropped that vial. To be quite honest, I'm surprised I didn't-since I seem to be a hormonal basket case lately.

And before that--yes--this day keeps getting better....before that, here's what happened:

We were at our friends' daughter's first birthday. They have three kids under five (4,3 and 1). Obviously they do not have issues making babies *insert bitter sarcasm*. The husband, who is my husband's close friend says the good ol' "So when will you be having another baby"?

Now, this I expected. It inevitably comes up, in some form, at any family function---but children's parties--forget about it! Not only will it come up, but it will come up multiple times from multiple people who inevitably have two or three kids already. Anyway, I expected the question. I'm ok with it. I know that no one really means any harm. So I tell hubby's friend that "we're thinking about another one" and that "we wanted our children to be about 3 years apart". That second part is kind of a lie, but it sounds good as to why we don't have a second child yet.

So I'm ready to move the conversation along, and hubby's friend says, "You sister and I are over 4 years and 2 months apart and....well....I gotta tell you....that was WAY too big of an age difference". He goes on to lament about how they weren't close growing up and so on.

Well. Thanks for the pressure. Now not only do I get to worry about NOT having a second child at all, but having them too far apart. I thought I had laid that particular fear to rest...but now I'm not so sure.


And I got to watch Alex being so sweet with a three month old baby at the party....patting his leg and rocking him in his seat. She was so careful, so vigilant. She would be a good big sister. It was, from Glennon's blog, a "brutiful" moment (brutal and beautiful)....

Fifth ultrasound tomorrow. We'll see. I don't know where we'll go from here if that 225 dose doesn't work. I mean, how high can they really take me?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Monitoring Ultrasound #4

Well. Very mixed results. My lining hadn't really changed-still around an 8, which is good, I guess. Heck, at least it didn't shrink again! And STILL no measurable follicles! Can you believe that????? I might just be a freak of nature. My estrogen is back up into the 60's. It was a 49 on Tuesday and it's now a 64. So up 15 points. I don't know if that's a good rate of growth or not. It still seems kind of marginal. But again-at least we didn't slide backward.

We talked about where to go from here. The nurse whom I met with today was great. She feels I should keep moving forward with this cycle (rather than cancel), since my blood work on Tuesday showed me basically still at baseline levels. I guess, because no growth has really occurred, we don't really need to worry too much about long stimming cycles and the affect on egg quality (since pretty much nothing has grown enough to "age"). So, I've been bumped up to 225 units of Gonal and I go back on Monday for another ultrasound. If nothing happens by then, I really don't know what we'll do....

I asked the nurse if they have ever had a woman who does not respond to Gonal. She said no....said it's just a matter of getting the "magical" dosage. Darn-I hope I'm not about to prove her wrong.

So I was pretty sad driving to work from that appointment...which is not how I like to start my work day. Sad, frustrated...annoyed.....sad. For some reason, I kept remembering something a fellow mental health practitioner used to say when dealing with grief counseling: "sometimes, all you can do is sit with the pain".

Sometimes you just need to sit with the pain. And so I did. I let the sadness wash over me and didn't berate myself for feeling sad. I didn't try to talk myself out of it or bargain or plan a next cycle or next route of action. I just sat and felt the pain. I didn't make excuses for feeling sad. I just sat and weathered the moment. And for whatever reason, sitting with the pain worked and I felt like I could go about my day a little bit easier. Perhaps it came down to me validating my own feelings. Perhaps, there is something powerful in acknowledging that you're in pain and being okay with it, even and especially if you cannot fix it.  Because, really, when you get down to it...what other choice is there but to function, to be okay with it?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

What Will Happen?

So what will happen at ultrasound #4 tomorrow? I wish I had a clue. I am kind of just expecting that it will be a flop, that this cycle is kind of just a wreck. Of course, on the other hand, a part of me thinks (wishes) that the extra dose of Gonal will have worked some miracles. I guess we'll see....6:45 appointment tomorrow morning. I'm nervous, but I'm also just kind of resigned. I will be very disappointed  if we have to cancel-but I think that I am in an *ok* place about it.

I also think I'm done with IUI. I'm not sure yet....but we might go to IVF next. Our insurance covers three. And if we don't even get preggo the first round, if we have some embryos to freeze, that means I could have a frozen transfer and not have to stim. I hate stimming. I hate the roller coaster.

So we shall see. But like I said, I'm kind of in this strange disappointed, resigned but still hopeful place. Weird...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

BAH! Monitoring Ultrasound #3



....Sucked so badly that I almost didn't even feel like going over the whole dang thing on here. The only reason I will is so I can have a record of all this crap that I have gone through. I don't know why I want it....perhaps to guilt trip my kids someday, if I ever need to. Ok, kidding (mostly).

So, to make a long story short: lining shrunk from an 11 on Saturday to an 8 (which is still good...but it shouldn't be shrinking). No measurable follicles STILL.

And....Estrogen dropped AGAIN from a 56 on Saturday to a 49. The highest it had been was a 68 on Thursday. So yeah, it has dropped almost 20 points. Which is bad. Which is really bad considering that estrogen shouldn't be dropping and my levels should be well into the hundreds now :(

I suck. That's all there is to it. How much of a failure do I feel like,  that I can't even ovulate or respond when on some potent drugs???? Ok, so maybe I'm indulging in a pity party. But I don't care.

I'm cranky too....cranky because I KNOW that they should have raised my dose on Saturday, when they first saw my estrogen falling. But they didn't. And now it's lower. It's basically to its baseline level (which was somewhere around a 44). I don't know if they are just being super cautious, or if they haven't been paying close enough attention to my results. They have an excellent rep-but this just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

So the plan: keep stimming. I've been bumped up to 150 units of Gonal from 112.5. We'll see if anything happens. I'm pretty desperate for something to happen, and am worried that nothing will. I'm kind of feeling like, even if we do get some follicles, this cycle has been so screwed up that it will be a bust regardless.

So yeah...I'm feeling pretty down. I didn't necessarily expect a pregnancy right away, but I expected the chance to get pregnant. I just feel so inadequate. Why can't my body work, even on medication??? What is wrong with me? And now that I'm typing this, I'm beginning to cry...which I haven't done all day. I just can't believe that I'm not responding. And that wakens the fear that I will NEVER respond and therefore will never have another baby :( I'm just feeling very sad and useless :(

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Second Monitoring Ultrasound :(

So I have been feeling pretty sad all day :( My ultrasound didn't go great. The good news first: my lining is at an 11, which is up from an 8 on Thursday (and they only want it to be at 7 for triggering). So yes, I was very happy with that. The not-so-great news: no measurable follicles. I mean, I have a ton, in true PCOS fashion...but nothing taking the dominant role yet. The nurse didn't seem concerned and said this was very typical for PCOS. All the nurses and doctors keep repeating the same thing to me: "low and slow". This is their approach to dealing with PCOS.

But that's not even the news that got me upset. I take awhile to develop good follicles. This I remember. It sucks, but I can deal-as long as SOMETHING develops. The bad news, the thing that has had me down pretty much all day is that my estrogen levels DROPPED from 68 to 56 :( That's not supposed to happen. Those levels are supposed to steadily increase.  So once I got those numbers (on the secure patient part of the website), I called the on-call nurse who said that they want to keep me at the SAME dose I have been on. The reason? Because women with PCOS have levels and follicles that can take off and go super high in a day or two. They are afraid of this happening.

So my big fear, of course, is that we'll have to cancel the cycle :( :( All the monitoring, early morning ultrasounds, blood draws, roller coaster of would be all for nothing if we cancel. I think that I am more upset about the prospect of not even getting the chance to try to get pregnant, than if we did the IUI and for whatever reason didn't end up pregnant. The thing I don't get is how my lining could have thickened if my estrogen fell????

Please send some good wishes my way :( I had envisioned things going slightly better than this. I know that it's just a bump in the road, but it just sends me straight back to life as I knew it three years ago. All those fears and inadequacies from before were never really gone, I guess...just hiding under the surface.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Monitoring Ultrasound #1

Monitoring ultrasound #1 was....."eh". Pretty anticlimactic actually. My appointment was at 6:30am, which meant that I had to leave the house at 6 and usually I'm NOT even awake by that point, much less showered, changed and leaving the house. So that was a challenge. And as much as getting up that early (5am) sucked, thank God for early morning appointments or else I don't know how I would work this all out with my work schedule.

Anyway, tangent over. So basically, there were NO follicles on either ovary that were big enough to be worth measuring. I went into the ultrasound trying to be prepared that we don't usually see much in the very beginning. And really, I had only been stimming three days. But it was still disappointing to see that my ovaries were looking very PCOS in nature-a gazillion tiny follicles, but none taking the dominant path. All the nurse really said was that my follicles were being stubborn. She didn't seem too concerned though. My lining was good though! Already almost an 8 when they like to see it at 7 for IVF or an IUI! So that's a bit of good news.

Anyway, I've been upped from 75 units of Gonal to 112.5 units. Not a very big jump, but they are afraid of overstimulating me. Hopefully it's enough to wake my sluggish ovaries up. Estrogen was only at we have a ways to go! My big fear, of course, is that I am not going to respond properly to the medicine. I tend to take a long time while stimming, so none of this is unusual. Still nervous about it though.

Next ultrasound it Saturday morning...hoping that it is a little bit more eventful in the follicle department! Geez....I hope I have something that is at least measurable!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Stupid Statistics.

Ugh. Statistics are getting me down :( Yes. I am down at only cycle day 7 (and only day three of stimming). I just keep thinking about that 20% success (for IUI/injections) rate per cycle--and that's 20% on the *higher* end. I could be looking at 10-15% odds :( But lets not go there. We'll stay with 20%. You know what that means? That means that there is an 80% chance that this cycle will be a bust. That it will fail. Crap.

I know, I know. I shouldn't read so much into statistics; they don't tell the whole story, after all. There are an infinite amount of variables that go into whether a cycle is successful or not. But it's still daunting. I'm not usually a "glass half empty" kind of girl, but I'm not loving 20%. It's like....what the heck...after all the medications and stimming and monitoring and blood draws and ultrasounds (transvag., no less!) and 6:30am appointments....shouldn't the chance for failure be somewhat less than 80%??? I honestly do not know how people reconcile those odds when they are paying out of pocket for treatments. My heart goes out to them :(

So anyway. Tomorrow I go in for my first monitoring ultrasound. I'm not really expecting it to be exciting, as it's still so early in my cycle and I don't usually show much happening at this point. My guess is that they will raise my Gonal-F dosage by one or two units. I'm not feeling much happening "down" there, which is typical for me even when stimming...but I *think* that I have a bit more cervical mucus than usual (darn it, but I hate that phrase! Mucus...blech!).

Just found out today that one of my good friends (lives out of town now) is having a baby girl :) This friend also has PCOS and while she never admitted to any sort of treatments, I'm guessing that she had something. And I'll admit it. I'm jealous.  Happy and jealous. I think this one hit a chord with me because I absolutely love love love having a girl. I would LOVE to have another girl...even have a name tentatively picked out (still has to pass the husband test). So I actually think that hearing that it was a girl made it sting a little bit more, despite the fact that she absolutely deserves a healthy baby and they will be great parents.  Oh, and Fertility Gods--just for the record--we would be absolutely THRILLED with a healthy baby boy too. Just sayin' ;)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Baseline, check!

Good cysts...we're all ready to go! We're starting out with 75 units of Gonal for today, Tuesday and Wednesday. I go back for another ultrasound on Thursday and again on Saturday. They are being conservative with the dosing because of my (relatively) young age, the fact that I have already had a baby, and my pcos means that I am more likely to over-stim. But I'm pretty confident that they will need to raise the dose-I don't remember 75 units ever doing that much for me before, but I guess things could be different now, almost three years (and one baby) later.

So I have already taken my Gonal and Lupron shots. It's like riding a bike, really...but I don't remember the Gonal shot stinging so much going in. Oh well, I am sure I will get used to it. Ok...well I'm drained! Night!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Send it MY Way....

Some "no cyst" dust, that is! Because, and I'm being serious, if my medicated cycle is delayed by a cyst...I will (very) likely fall apart into a sobbing mass on the exam table. I've done it before, I can do it again. Those poor nurses...having to deal with me (and hormonal women like me) before 9am.

Anyway, I'm ready and rearing to go. Today has been an "excited" day, where I have been largely optimistic throughout the day. Most negative fertility related thoughts have been kept at bay-go me! I did realize, however, upon leaving the shower, that I now need to keep up on a STRICT shaving schedule. Now I think that most women relax with leg shaving in the winter. I, for example, tend to shave the bottom half of my legs more than the top during the winter. Welllll....that's gotta change. So now I have got to take the extra time in the morning to shave my WHOLE leg. And trust me...mornings at my house...I have not a minute to spare! But whatever....if I get a baby, I guess that it's small potatoes. If this cycle does not yield a baby, then that's another story. Kind of similar to the song "I shaved my legs for this?!" isn't it?

Wish me luck!

 There it Gonal-F pen refrigerated and ready to go! Right next to the bread and left over spinach calzone ;)

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Let the Mind Games Begin....

It's like magic: baseline scheduled....BAM....mind games begin! I'm talking about being transported back to my old ttc/pre-Alex days. It's amazing how, despite all that's happened in the last three years, I can revert back to my old fertility related madness. For instance, I found myself Googling "success rates per cycle for IUI and Injections". OMG. Seriously!?! I totally can't be doing this already?! Surely I can't be slipping back into my old obsessive tendencies quite yet? Shouldn't I at least have one failed medicated cycle under my belt before I go reasearch crazy?  *sigh* It's obscene how much time I used to spend on Google....

And oh wait! Here comes my other crazy tendency, back to torture me: the good ol' "all or nothing" line of thinking.

What do I mean by this? second I feel superbly about this coming cycle. I feel like it will most definitely, absolutely work the first time and we'll be blessed with a healthy child in 9+ months from now. I'm chafing at the bit to get those darned injections into me. I'm confident, I'm happy....I'm dreaming about the "Big Sister" shirt that I will buy Alexandra.

And then the crash. The persistent thought that nothing will ever work...that I am an idiot and should have begun treatments A LOT sooner because they will take forever to work. That there's no way in hell that my first cycle will give us a baby and that I'm silly to even entertain such thoughts. That I will be lucky if Alex is 10 by the time we have another baby....might as well give away all the baby clothes I have. That Alex was a one-time divine intervention and we were just really really ridiculously lucky.....And so on...

Honestly. How is it even possible to convince myself of my cycle's failure before I even start? My specialist, who is very VERY holistic, would have an absolute fit!

So what will happen? Who the heck knows?! The reality is probably somewhere in the middle....which doesn't make me super happy because I want to be pregnant n.o.w.

Just so you know....that internet search about IUI/Injection success rates.....the quote was anywhere from 6% to 20% success rate/cycle. Damn. I hate Google.

 At a bounce-house birthday party...Dan taking Alex down the big slide


Bouncin' with the birthday boy

Friday, February 3, 2012


That's baseline ultrasound is scheduled: Monday at 8:15 am! Good ol' Aunt Flo came full force today; and of course, the old bat came at like too late to get in today...and they only take emergencies on Saturdays....sooooo...Monday it is! But I can't complain too much. At least she came. At least it's not cycle day 64 and I'm still waiting. Now if only she will stay far far far away this time next cycle!

I figure I will be starting my Gonal-F injections right on Monday, as I will be on day 4 by then. I'm excited. I'm anxious. I'm dreading the whole "every other day" monitoring thing. I now know what goes into stimming and treatments, which may be a good thing and a bad thing simultaneously. But, once again, I can only be grateful that such treatments exist. Thank God I wasn't born 50 (or even 40) years ago! LOL...I started to type "30" and then realized...what the hell?! I'm 31? How DID that happen?????

Anyway, if anyone would like to send some fertile dust my way-I would surely take it!