Thursday, January 27, 2011

FET – Postponed

First, I want to thank you all so very much for the sweet comments about my little one’s due date coming and going. You are the only people in my life that get it. You understand what it’s like to long for someone who isn’t there, and have it cloud everything in your life. So thank you, I cherish each and every one of you.

On Tuesday, I not only had the due date of my baby, but I also had an ultrasound and blood work to determine how I was reacting to the Lupron. It had been eight days since I started the Lupron, so they expected me to be nice and suppressed, and started my period already or very soon. In the ultrasound, they could tell that something was wrong. I had a beautiful follicle developing, about 15 mm! This isn’t supposed to be there! The nurse said that the blood work will tell us what’s really going on, and they’ll let me know what to do. Well, the blood work shows my hormones were raised, not suppressed. They expected the estradiol to be below 60, and instead it was 308. Basically I had the complete opposite reaction to Lupron than most people – instead of getting my period and suppressing everything, it stimulated everything and I was about to ovulate! I was instructed to stop taking Lupron, and start BCP’s. Hopefully these will suppress me sufficiently, and I will be able to start the estrogen patches and pills in 2 weeks when I go back, and do the FET on or around February 25. Which would be awesome (not exactly) – we have a friend coming and staying with us for a week, and he’ll be here during my three days of bed rest. Oh well, you do what you have to do, right? I told the hubs he could have a guy’s weekend – kind of. He reminded me that coming home to a lonely emotional woman stuck in bed is not the ideal guy’s weekend…

The hubs is more concerned than me about the Lupron reaction, it seems. He keeps asking why I reacted this way to Lupron, and I have no answers. I’ve done a little googling, and I can’t find any other stories of people stimulating on Lupron. This doesn’t make him happy. We probably should ask the doctor, but it takes a few weeks to get an actual appointment with the doc, and I’d rather wait to see if the BCP’s suppress me enough. I wonder if it’s because I didn’t do the BCP’s first before Lupron, because I was impatient and just wanted to go forward with the FET. Who knows. I’m just glad to be off Lupron – I am not a fan! I was feeling all kinds of rage (I yelled at the remote control on Saturday), and it gave me huge headaches and I couldn’t sleep. Last night was my first decent night of sleep in a week – it was wonderful!

I’m annoyed about the two week delay, but not that upset. Another two weeks where I can live my life, and not stress or freak out, and not worry? Doesn’t sound so bad. Awful, isn’t it? This is where I am, I feel like I’m in a huge rush to have a baby, and yet I don’t really want to do it, because it’s just so darn hard!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Missing You

Today is the due date of my baby that I lost in June. I had five wonderful weeks with my little one – five weeks from the time I got my BFP to the time I had the ultrasound and there no longer was a heartbeat. My baby died at 8 ½ weeks, and there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t remember him.

I wish I could go back, I wish I could relive that time. I’m afraid that I never will have a time of pure and complete joy in another pregnancy. Because now I know what can happen. After I knew it wasn’t ectopic like my first, I was thrilled beyond belief. I thought I was going to have a baby in January. I was so happy, and couldn’t wait to meet my little one.

It’s been hard watching my bloggy friends have their babies. I have quite a few bloggy friends that have had their babies in the last month, and a couple more to go, all of which were my early pregnancy buddies. They are still my friends, and I’m thrilled that they are now (or soon will be) mothers. But I can’t help but think about the times we had when I was also pregnant right alongside them.

As I embark on my first FET cycle, I’m feel… I don’t know. I thought I would be pregnant by now. I thought there wouldn’t be any way that I would have this due date come and pass without succeeding at one of our treatments since. But here I am. And I don’t have a lot of hope for the upcoming FET, I just feel like it’s something I must do. All I feel today is sadness and longing for my baby that I lost in June. He was the one – he was supposed to be my child. And for some reason my body rejected him. But I will always remember him, as he taught me what it feels like to be a mother.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Calling All Good Thoughts!!!

All right, ladies. I need some help. Please send all the positive vibes you have to California… My best friend in real life just transferred three embryos yesterday, and I’m really hoping at least one sticks!

I first talked about my friend last April here, when I was proud to announce I am an IF mentor. She started her IF treatments last year with Clomid, and unfortunately, it didn’t work. Based on her age (she’ll be 41 in March), her RE suggested that she pass up IUI’s and go straight to IVF. She was so excited to be going through IVF around the same time as me (she thought that meant we will have babies at the same time…). But it’s been nice to have gone through it, and be able to give her advice as she started shots, did the procedures, etc.

She responded amazingly for a 40 year-old woman. She had 19 eggs, 17 of which fertilized, 10 of which made it to 5 day transfer. She had 3 embryos transfer (recommended for 40+ years old), and 7 may be frozen, depending on what they look like today. I spoke with her last night, and she’s over the moon – so excited! And I’m excited for her!

I really hope this works. I would rather it work for her than me – I have more time. I have always felt bad about talking about my age issues when talking to her – she’s 5 years older than me and she reminds me of this constantly! She’s been such a good friend to me for such a long time, and she has been great through my infertility struggles. She even sent me flowers when I had the miscarriage in June.

When I found out we were going through IVF together, I bought matching fertility bracelets for the two of us. Although I haven’t been successful with IVF (YET!), I really hope this works for her. There’s something in the back of my head that needs it to be successful for her. I don’t know how to explain it, but I think I’ll be happier for her success than mine! I guess part of it is because I’ll be so nervous during my own pregnancy based on my history, and I have no reasons to be nervous for her – she’s never been pregnant.

We both have a dream of being pregnant together, and raising babies together. (We don’t even live in the same state, we rarely see each other, but we talk at least 1-2 times per week.) As soon as she heard my FET transfer date (February 11), she immediately figured out that we will be a month apart. I’m so afraid of any other result than both of us getting pregnant. I’m afraid of what it will do to our friendship – although I know we’re strong enough friends to handle it, I hope we don’t have to! But if it has to be either one of us that gets pregnant, instead of both, I hope it’s her. I really do. So please gather all the positive sticky healthy baby vibes you can muster, and send them to California. Send her peaceful 2WW vibes, and maybe me too. I feel like I’m in a 2WW too!

Monday, January 17, 2011

FET – it’s on!

Thanks ladies, for all your wonderful comments. You were very helpful. I was a good girl and told the nurse all about it this morning at my appointment – I had sex on Friday (day 16), egg whites the next day, took OPK’s on Saturday and Sunday and they were negative, all the details. I started the conversation, “I have a confession. I had sex.” She was so nice, and very professional about it. She assured me that other people have done much worse (like some of you said!). And then she was the one to tell the doctor. Based on my bloodwork, and the ultrasound, and my history (been going to him for 15 months – all this history is finally worth something!), the doctor concluded there’s no way I’m getting pregnant this cycle, and I should start the FET cycle. Wow – this is the first time in a very long time that I’m happy about someone telling me there’s no chance I could get pregnant…

So tonight I take 20 units of Lupron, do this for 5 days, decrease it to 10 units on Saturday, and come in to the clinic on the 25th unless I get a period earlier. I’m very excited to do this FET. I think it will be much easier than the fresh cycle, and maybe my body will be more receptive without all those stimming drugs.

Now I have a few more weeks to keep going on my weight loss plan. I haven’t lost a ton of weight (7 pounds from my heaviest in my December IVF cycle, 3 pounds since January 1), but I’ve been walking for 40-50 minutes for at least three times per week. And I’ve been tracking everything I’ve been eating. These were my two biggest goals, and I think the exercise is already shifting some of the weight around, as some of my pants are feeling looser. On Friday, I put on a pair of jeans and was horrified that they were so tight – I didn’t understand it, but I wore them anyway. It took half a day to realize they were a pair of jeans that I haven’t been able to wear in a probably a year since they are a size smaller than my regular jeans… Pretty cool!

So things are good – I have found that my attitude is great if I’m doing something good for my body, like exercising and watching my food. And I’m really working hard at handling everything like an adult. And you ladies were also right – the fact that we could have sex with abandon speaks volumes for how we’re doing… I can’t believe I was able to forget!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

So Stupid!

When we discussed our plan for the FET, the doc said the general protocol is to start BCP’s when you’re period starts, start Lupron around day 17-19, then have a period, start estrogen for your uterine lining to get thick, 17 days after that, do a transfer. We had the appointment with the doctor on day 12. I asked if we needed to wait until the next cycle, and he said no. We could start Lupron this cycle, if we assured him we weren’t pregnant. We hadn’t even had sex this month – of course I could assure him this!

And then… last night, we had some drinks, and in a moment of foolishness, we had sex. In the moments after, as I was in post-sex bliss, the hubs asked, “Is the doctor going to be mad at us?” Oh crap – I forgot! I had told the hubs after our appointment on Monday, either we try naturally this month, which would be the next couple of days, or we just go for the FET. Neither of us have any confidence in us conceiving naturally – this has never happened. So the hubs calmed me down last night by reminding me that it’s too late – yesterday was day 16. I’ve never ovulated past day 14.

But I just went to the bathroom, and found copious amounts of EWCM. I didn’t have any all week – just creamy stuff, but it never reached the point of egg whites. I’ve heard that semen can look like cervical fluid, but 12 hours later? At that point it’s all liquefied, right? I just did some research – Lupron causes birth defects – don’t get pregnant while on Lupron. I’m supposed to start Lupron on Monday.

I know your advice is to ask my doctor, but I don’t want to – I’m embarrassed to ask! I can’t believe we did something so stupid. And it’s probably going to delay us a month. I’m 99% confident that we won’t get pregnant – it’s too late, my chances are slim to none that it will work, but what if it does? What if this EWCM means I haven’t ovulated yet? Crap!!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

WTF Appointment

I had my WTF appointment with the RE (WTF – why didn’t I get pregnant?). It went well. I asked the RE about why the IVF didn't work, and he said it's just based on probabilities. He said that with each blastocyst transferred, we have a chance of about 50% that it will implant. So with 2 blasts, we had about a 75% chance. But we just fell on the 25% side. I asked if the Lupron trigger could have decreased the chance of implantation, and he said it could, but with the additional progesterone and estrogen I took, it shouldn't make a difference. I also asked about the chances of a FET compared to a fresh cycle. He said that FET's used to be worse, but now with the super fast freezing method (vitrification) they have success rates similar to fresh. The hubs asked about transferring 3, and the doc wouldn’t object to it, but didn’t think it was necessary – it’s up to us.

So we’re on for a frozen cycle. The plan is to start Lupron Monday – wow, that’s close! And then get a period around the 26th, add estrogen to build my uterine lining, and the transfer around February 11. It’s not a great time to do the transfer at work, but I may not have a job by then anyway (doubt it, but still), and I’ve learned a long time ago not to prioritize my job when it comes to stuff like this…

The hubs is pushing for 3 embryos. I told him I would think about it. I know it would increase our chances, but what if they all take? Sounds super scary – triplets? I know, it’s better than none, but really? I don’t know – must think about it.

I have to tell you guys about the resolution of the fight with the hubs on Friday. I’ve been going to therapy for over a year, and she keeps telling me to stay in my adult when having fights, or in communicating difficult stuff with the hubs. She said I really need to practice this especially before I become a mother. It’s true, this woman at work told me yesterday about the fight she got in with her son and how much she yelled and cussed at him – I definitely don’t want to be that kind of mother!

So after receiving the email, “I think we should wait a year before doing anything else,” I waited. I didn’t respond to him. I posted about it on my blog. And I thought. “What would my therapist say? Stay in my adult. What does this mean???” And so I thought some more. He emailed me later about something else, I responded calmly – no snide comments. And then I went home and coached myself, “Stay in your adult. Remain calm.” And I did. The hubs came home, and I was nice. Not overly nice, but adult, and calm. We got in the car to meet others, and he just kept talking about random stuff. Historically, things like this would blow over. OR I would get angry, and it would escalate into a huge fight. I didn’t want to either one of these – this is not what my therapist has taught me to do! And so at a lull in the conversation, I took a deep breath and very calmly said, “I don’t like the way you handled that email today.” And you know what he said? I was so shocked! He said… “I’m sorry.” No big explanation, no defensive behavior, no blaming me. Just “I’m sorry.” Amazing – he never apologizes! Seriously, never! So I said, “Thank you,” and we moved on our merry way. Everything was fine. And I’m so incredibly proud of myself for handling the hubs little temper tantrum well. This alone is something to be happy about!

Well, that and the fact that we’re starting again with treatments… I hate waiting!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Not-so-fun Online Predictor of IVF Success

Want to know if IVF will work for you? You like taking quizzes? Then this is for you. Some Brits created a handy little online quiz which will predict your success at IVF. You can find it here. I hate it.

I put in my stats for my first IVF, and it said I had a 29% chance. My second will have a 17.6% chance. I don’t like these numbers. I liked my doctor’s crazy optimism that I was an “easy case” – except after my IVF failed… Then I didn’t like it anymore. Apparently not so easy. According to the SART report, my clinic has 49% of retrievals resulting in live births, and 53% of transfers resulting in live births for my age group. I liked those numbers enough to go forward with IVF, but now I don’t – I don’t really believe any of it. Oh, and I just had the pleasure of seeing the percent of transfers of frozen embryos resulting in live births is 21% for my clinic. Fan-freakin-tastic. So what is it really? Slim to none?

Oh and will someone remind me to not talk to my husband about anything related to IVF unless it’s absolutely necessary? I knew this before, but things have been going really well with us lately so I just did something stupid. I sent the link above to him, and told him the 29% and 17.6% chance numbers. He responded via email, “Dumb – another thing you found to be pessimistic – good job.” And I responded, “Really? You converted this into insulting me? Unbelievable.” (which was dumb – I should have just ignored it) And he responded, “You are unbelievable. I think we should wait a year before we do anything else.” And then he declined the outlook invitation I had sent him for the WTF appointment with the doctor on Monday.

Before anyone (besides me) freaks out, please know – this isn’t real. He’s not really saying that we should wait a year. He’s throwing a temper tantrum. He’s done it before, and he’ll do it again. I just talked with my therapist a couple days ago about communicating with the hubs. I know I can’t change him, but I can change how I respond to him. A year ago, I would have burst into tears (ok, I’ll admit, I just cried a little), and sent back an email continuing the fight, saying pissy things. Maybe something dramatic like “I can’t believe you immediately jump to calling everything off – don’t be ridiculous.” Or even, “I don’t need you anyway – we now have frozen embryos that I can use!” (Of course, he does have to sign consent forms… Don’t hate me because I’ve thought about this.) My therapist calls this being an adolescent. She tells me to stay in my adult. React in a rational adult way. I have to figure out how to do this. Right now, I don’t trust myself to respond. And so I don’t.

I know this will blow over – it always does – but I didn’t want this today. And so I move on with my life. I’m working like crazy, expecting a layoff, looking forward to Monday’s doctor appointment (I can go by myself – been to plenty by myself), and trying to make it through January without thinking too much of my sweet baby’s estimated due date coming up in a couple weeks. Other than that, now I have to figure out how to resolve this stupid husband thing…