Wednesday, December 10, 2008


I am still flying pretty high from our u/s results yesterday! Dr. Williams spent a lot of time with us after the u/s and it was really much harder to say good-bye than I expected. I have been with him, and Nancy, his nurse, for five years through some of the most difficult and rewarding days of my life! At one point, I realized I was holding the doc's hand and not Dave's! There is absolutely a bond, and I guess after all this time there should be. He thinks that the babies look very very good and released me to my OB for the duration. We saw and heard the heartbeats, although he did not tell us, and we didn't ask the heart rate. He noted that it was normal.

I am feeling physically about the same, hungry, nauseous, and unbelievably tired.

Here's what the babies are up to this week:
Week 7 of Pregnancy: Your Baby's Limbs Develop
How does your baby grow? Pretty fast, actually. At 7 weeks pregnant, your baby's length is approximately a quarter of an inch — the size of a blueberry. Sounds pretty tiny still? Consider this for a little perspective: Your baby is 10,000 times bigger now than it was at conception a month ago. The biggest fetal growth this week is your baby's head (the better to store all those smarts in), with new brain cells being generated at the rate of 100 cells per minute. How's that for a budding genius? And talking about buds, your baby is going out on a limb this week as his or her arm and leg buds begin to sprout and grow longer (and stronger), dividing into hand, arm, and shoulder segments — and leg, knee, and foot segments (though the limb buds look more like paddles than hands or feet at this early stage).
Also forming this week are your baby's mouth and tongue. And although your embryo is just one month old, it's already gone through three sets of kidneys. The ones in place now are the permanent set and are poised to begin their important work of waste management. In about a week, your baby will start producing urine. Lucky for you, there's no need for diapers (yet). As your baby matures inside you, much of that urine will be excreted into the amniotic fluid, swallowed again by your baby, and then excreted again in a continuous cycle.


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Throwing caution to the wind...not exactly, but I am more confident!

We had our 7wk u/s today and we saw and heard our two babies heartbeats! I am so relieved. RE said everything looks great and we now have a 95% chance of delivering at least one baby and a 90% chance of delivering both! Those are odds I can live with. For today, I am feeling more peaceful and confident. (Remind me tomorrow!)

I'll post more details tomorrow...I'm tired!


Monday, December 8, 2008

Tomorrow will tell

I am so so so nervous for our 7wk u/s tomorrow. I know that I should be re-assured by my nausea, fatigue, sore breasts, and heartburn but I'm still sort-of waiting to find out it's all been a dream. It's not that I don't have hope, I think it's a kind-of self-preservation. Like if I worry I am somehow shielding myself if there is bad news. I have no reason to believe that anything is wrong. I have strong symptoms and I have had no more bleeding since that one spot over a week ago. I hope to feel more re-assured after our ultrasound tomorrow. The appointment is at 2:30 so I will try to update tomorrow evening.

Please continue to send prayers our way!


Thursday, December 4, 2008

Employed no more...

I had decided before the results of my pregnancy test that I would leave my job at the end of the year to care for my new nephew, and my cousins daughter who is 6 months old. I won't start watching them until after the first of the year and I wanted to have a little time to myself before that begins. I gave my notice this week that my last day will be next Friday. My boss was great, the owner was great, my co-worker was NOT. She's one of those people that the world revolves around so she was accusatory. Asking WHY couldn't I have told her?! On and on about how it will affect her.
I'm still happy about my decision, but as with all changes I'm a little apprehensive.
I am still feeling very very tired and mildly nauseous.

Can't wait for Tuesday to get here!


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

6w-Let the Nausea Begin!

Please don't think that I'm complaining. I will happily endure every single wave of queasiness, it actually makes me feel more confident that those little ones are doing what they are supposed to!

I still have the MEGA cold that started last week. I finally went to the doctor yesterday and she gave me an antibiotic. I am starting to feel a little better.

The nausea is sort-of a wavy, sometimes heartburn feeling. It's more distracting that actually uncomfortable. I also can't stomach the thought of some foods, which is new.

I am still nervous. I hope that this next week goes by quickly, and without incident. I can't wait to see those heartbeats next Tuesday.

Here's what's up with the babies this week: (from

Week 6 of Pregnancy: Baby's Head Takes Shape
This week your baby's crown-to-rump measurement is anywhere from a fifth to a quarter of an inch, and growing — making it the size of a sweet pea (your little sweet pea!).
During fetal development, practitioners measure embryos as small as yours from precious little crown to cute little rump. That's because as your baby grows, his or her legs will be bent, making it hard to measure the full length of the body. When you are 6 weeks pregnant, your baby's crown-to-rump measurement is anywhere from a fifth to a quarter of an inch, and growing — making it the size of a sweet pea (your little sweet pea!).
So, if your womb had a view, what would you see? The folds of tissue in the prominent bump on top (the head) are developing into your baby's jaws, cheeks, and chin. And are those little indentations on both sides of the head the adorable dimples you always hoped your baby would inherit from your mom's side of the family? No, they're ear canals in the making. Small bumps on the face will form the eyes and button nose in a few weeks time. Also taking shape this week: your baby's kidneys, liver, and lungs.

Have a great day!


Monday, December 1, 2008

Scary, but good

I hope everyone had a great holiday!!!

Ours was super busy, and of course I have come down with a terrible chest cold! I'm going to see a doctor sometime today.

As for the title, on Saturday after I got home from acupuncture I noticed a spot of bright red blood when I wiped. Of course I was terrified, but I tried to remain calm. I called the RE and he assured me that it is very common, but told me if I was scared I could come in on Sunday morning for an u/s. I rested for most of the afternoon Saturday and have not had any more bleeding.
We went for the u/s Sunday which was 5w5d. Before he preformed the scan he told us what to expect. He said that he felt it was too early for a heartbeat. He said he would like to see a gestational sac in the uterus and maybe we could see a yolk sac inside it which would be a very good sign.
He scanned and said "there's a nice looking sac in the uterus, and there's another one!" Both pregnancies had visible yolk sacs, but he was right that it was too early for heartbeats. After the scan he explained all about vanishing twin syndrome, and we know the risks, but for now TWINS!!!!

So, for now everything is good and we're scheduled for our 7wk u/s on Dec 9. I'm still nervous, but taking it one day at a time.


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

I want to wish everyone a very happy Thanksgiving!

I am so very grateful for the blessings in my life.


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

5 weeks

It seems crazy that I'm five weeks pregnant and just found out last week! The heartburn hasn't really gotten worse, but the fatigue sure has. I could fall asleep as I type this! I have a slightly sore throat today, but I think it's because I was really stuffy last night and may have slept with my mouth open!

I am really excited for Thanksgiving and I'm going to try and get to bed super early tonight and tomorrow so that I'll be rested up, even though I am relatively sure that none of my family will let me do much of anything anyway!

Dave and I are going shopping on Friday will all the crazies and I can't wait for that either! I'm getting my first NEW washer and dryer! My parents got me a used set when I went to college eons ago and while it still chugs along its not very efficient. The set I've had my eye on for awhile is going to be on sale Friday and with the baby(ies) I think its time.

Speaking of the baby(ies) here's what's going on this week: (from

Baby's microscopic heart begins to beat this week—although it won't be detectable with one of those cool Dopplers for a few weeks, so you'll have to wait a little longer to hear that satisfying "whoosh-whoosh" you're so anxious for. Here's what else is under construction: With the beating of the heart, blood will begin to circulate throughout the body. Your baby's first organ system will be up and running! The beginnings of the brain; the cardiovascular, nervous and reproductive systems; as well as all other major systems are under way. Your baby's new digs—the amniotic sac and the placenta are still forming at this point. All that high-speed development and your baby is only 2 millimeters long—about the size of a sesame seed.

Thanks for all the continued support!


Monday, November 24, 2008

3rd beta is in!

A huge sigh of relief!

3rd beta is 2383. We wanted to see numbers between 1250-1950 so these are great!

Ultrasound is scheduled for 12/9 at 2:30. I also got to schedule some ob appts! That's really freaky for me!!!!

Over the past few days the gravity of this has started to hit me. I am so so grateful that sometimes I cannot stop the tears. I thank God every day. I never imagined the humility that this blessing would bring. I spent a long time struggling with the 'why me' aspect of infertility, it took me a long time to understand that if there is a why, its not for me to understand.

I sorta feel that same way now, I use an online support group and there are so so many deserving women there. These women, and many of you that visit my blog, have supported and encouraged me thru some of the darkest days of my life and we've never even met. I feel like 'why me' in a totally different way. I'm not saying that I would give this up for anything, but it just makes me wonder WHY once again.

Along with all of the Thanksgiving prayers I offer up this week I will be sending up my requests for their (your) peace and for resolution of their struggles, whatever that may be.

Please join me.


Sunday, November 23, 2008

Not too much to report

Today went pretty much just as I predicted yesterday. My Mom and Cousins came to help and we're now all ready for Turkey Day.

I had a lot of trouble sleeping last night. I woke up at 2am and couldn't get back to sleep until 6. I slept from 6-7:30 and was up again. I hope to get some good sleep tonight. I don't think anything was bothering me, but who knows.

I go for my final beta tomorrow morning and so long as its good they'll schedule my first u/s. I am excited but nervous, still waiting on that shoe to drop!


Saturday, November 22, 2008

Love Family Thanksgiving

Today was our 'Thanksgiving' with Dave's family and we took the opportunity to share our good news. It's so much fun!!!!! They were all very excited, they know how long we've prayed for this news.

Dave has 8 living brothers (of 9) and they are all married, so it makes for a full house, but that's exactly what I love about it. We had all the traditional stuff, plus one of my sister's in law made a delicious chocolate oreo cake! YUM!

It was really great to visit with everyone, but now I'm beat. I just haven't had my pre-ER energy level return.

Tomorrow is shaping up to be just as busy! My Mom and a couple of my cousins are coming over to help prep for Thanksgiving. My Mom is actually going to really scrub my bathrooms, which I am afraid to do yet. (All the bending and stretching.) Maybe I'm being too cautious, but I don't want any regrets. My cousins will help with the turkey, which I always pre-bake and freeze, and they will also help with pies and homemade noodles. I normally do it on my own, but can't with the lifting restriction and they are all more than happy to pitch in.

I love this time of the year. I enjoy my large family so much--we are lucky to all still be within about an hour of one another. I am looking so forward to Thursday.

Physically I'm feeling better today. Mild, infrequent heartburn, and some fatigue. I had some minor cramping this morning, but I think I might have been mildly constipated (sorry TMI) because it's all better now. I have not had any more brownish discharge.

I went to acupuncture today, and while I was able to relax and enjoy the first half, I was restless for the second. I think I might have been pre-occupied with party stuff.

Off to bed---enjoy the rest of your weekend!


Friday, November 21, 2008



That's all that I can think of today. I don't think I've even been so hungry in my life! Perfect timing for Thanksgiving! I am trying to eat stuff that's not too horrible for me and I'm also trying to increase my protein intake without having to resort to shakes. I had bariatric surgery about 5 years ago and now that I'm pregnant I have to really be careful that I get enough calcium and protein. It's hard though because I also want to keep my fats down. I'm sure I'll figure it out!

I'm pretty tired today, I slept good but woke up way too early. Still have mild heartburn.

I go for a third beta on Monday!


Thursday, November 20, 2008

2nd beta results are in!

The number today is 491!!!

We were looking for a 66-100% increase from Tuesday's 179, so something from 280-358. 491 is awesome!!

I had a tiny bit of thin brown spotting yesterday, from what I expect is implantation. I asked the nurse and she said no worries, it's very, very common; so for now I'm not going to worry about it. Jill and Julie (whose blogs I follow) both had it and had beautiful babies!

Dave is very excited to know how many little ones we've got! I KNOW he's hoping for twins and while I think that it would be great, I'll feel blessed with any number of healthy babies.

Physically I'm feeling mostly ok. I have some mild twinges in my abdomen from time to time, increasing heartburn, and am still very very weepy. I love every minute of it!


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Cautious Optimism

I am still over-joyed, but a bit more cautious today. I think I will feel better tomorrow after I make sure that this number is going in the right direction.

I feel about the same physically, although I have a little more heartburn today. Dave is, of course, very excited and suddenly very protective! We are trying hard to enjoy this and not stress-out, but it's proving easier said than done!!!



Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Hard to find the words...

For me speechless is rare!

The results of my beta are in and its POSITIVE! My beta was 179 today. I'll have it re-checked on Thursday and again on Monday, and there are no guarantees, but it's a good strong start!

It's so hard for me to put all my gratitude into words.

I am feeling such a strange mix of emotions. Joy, of course, awe, shock, amazement, fear, relief. I know it's just the first hurdle and it's very early, but I've gotten back one emotion I've been seriously lacking in the past week, HOPE.

It feels so good think again about 'being pregnant' and actually 'having a baby.' In all of these last days of obsessing I have not allowed myself to venture into that territory.

Thanks to all of you out there who I don't even 'know,' and those I know and love, for your patience with my whining, your compassion for my pain, and your constant support through this whole process. I cannot wait to share the ups and downs of this new and exciting experience with you all.

Monday, November 17, 2008

I feel like it failed...

I have no basis for my feeling other than our poor embryo quality and the fact that it didn't work before. I just have this self-protective gut feeling it's a BFN. I have tried to remain calm, and positive but am failing at the task.
I cried my eyes out last night, and prayed and prayed for acceptance. I really just want to feel 'done,' so I can move on. I know that Dave will want to keep trying, but I also think that it's mostly because that's what he thinks I want no matter what I say. How can I expect him to know what I want if I don't? Well, clearly I WANT to be pg, but you know what I mean.
We have been at this for so long, its such a huge part of our lives, I guess I might be coming to the point where enough is enough.
I am still holding out a thread of hope that I'm wrong and therefore I won't have to deal with any of it.

Please if you pray, PRAY that I will have the courage and the strength to face this and find some kind of peace.


Friday, November 14, 2008

Another busy weekend

Will is amazing!

He has a cleft chin and these HUGE hands for a newborn.

I am so happy for them!

My weekend is my typical mad rush! Tonight after a quick stop home for a shot, I am meeting my sister to pick up my niece(13) and nephew(17) who are both coming to help me out this weekend. I still have a lifting restriction and am supposed to only do 'light' housework (whatever that is.)

We are having Dave's family for 'Thanksgiving' on Sat the 22nd, my family on Thanksgiving, and a small dinner party on Saturday the 29th, so I need to get my house in order. I also want to make and freeze some Christmas cookie dough. I have acupuncture at 11am tomorrow and want to stop by the hospital for at least a few minutes.

Dave has decided that NOW is the time to re-build a closet on the landing that needs to be done before painting and laying new floors. I am terrified of the mess he'll make.

I'm nuts, when my house is a mess it makes me a nervous wreck. We have COMPLETELY remodeled a 1901 farmhouse so one would think I would be accustomed to it, but I'm not.

I hope, with help from the kids that I'll make some good headway this weekend so there won't be so much to do next weekend.

I'm feeling pretty good--still some mild cramping and still very hungry all day. Today I had some mild tummy queasiness, but nothing remarkable.

More soon.


Thursday, November 13, 2008

He's here!

My new little nephew is here!!

William David arrived this afternoon via an unexpected c-section. Momma and baby are doing just fine. He is 8lbs 6oz, 20.5 inches long, and has a head full of hair!

I can't wait to meet him after work today.

I am feeling ok. Having a work issue that's bugging me, but overall feeling good. I still have some crampy feelings, but nothing painful.

More soon.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

More Encouraging News

While progesterone results are not an indication of pregnancy, higher progesterone results correlate with better pregnancy outcomes.

They want the level to be around 15. My level came back at 28.8. It's NOT a predictor of outcome, but it does show that we're definitely in the game.

Today, I'm tired and still ravenous.

My brother and SIL are going in to the hospital today to have their first baby! I'm really excited to meet my new little nephew!


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

No frosties

I just talked to the lab and he said that even though they did continue to grow that they had not reached full blastocyst stage by today so they won't be frozen.

I am glad that they continued to grow, but I am dissappointed that we don't have any back-ups to freeze.

I am feeling even better physically today. I have some mild cramping and pulling sensations in my abdomen, nothing painful.

I've also been ravenous ALL DAY. I cannot seem to get or stay full!

Please keep your prayers coming for a good strong progesterone result tomorrow!


Monday, November 10, 2008

A Bright Spot

I'm sure it's been pretty evident that I've been less than thrilled with the way this cycle has played out.

I sometimes wish I had the naivete that I had the last cycle. I wish that I could believe the upbeat embryologist who said that a 7, 6, ect were "really good" for day three, but because I know better I have lost a lot of the hope I had for this cycle. It's not all gone-just diminished.

Today I got some good news which I can definitely use! Four of the six embryos that were left are still growing!!! We won't know if they can be frozen until tomorrow, but that they are still dividing is very good news for the stronger ones that are in my tummy!

Physically I feel so much better! I'm at the office today and although I'm tired (probably from all the lying around I've done!) I'm glad to be out of the house. A trip to the grocery store last night was disgustingly exciting!

I go for a progesterone test tomorrow, but I won't have the results until Wednesday.

More soon!


Sunday, November 9, 2008

Finally out of bed!

We did have a three day transfer on Friday.

We transferred:
1-7 cell grade 1
1-6 cell grade 1
1-5 cell grade 1

I am feeling physically better, but of course I had hoped that at least one embie might be eight cells.

Time will tell.


Thursday, November 6, 2008

What a Difference a Day Makes

The news is much better with the embies today!

Here's the scale: they should be 2-4 cells 1 best-5 worst

12 Fertilized
9 divided (3 stopped growing)
1-4 cell grade 1
1-3 cell grade 2
1-2 cell grade 1
5-2 cell grade 2
1-2 cell grade 4

He had a lot more details for me today-I just don't think he was prepared for me to know what to ask yesterday.

He said that originally there were 5 embies that had no vacuoles of the 12. (I didn't point out that 7 of 12 is not 75%, because I was feeling generous.) Anyway the funny thing is that one of the ones that didn't have vacuoles didn't divide and another is the worst. (2-cell grade 4) also one that had several yesterday is the 2 cell grade 1. So they can't always tell how they'll do by how they look.

The odds are looking much better for us today.

I feel a lot better today emotionally. I'm still in a good deal of pain. Maybe like a 6 out of 10. I stayed home today so I could have painkillers and to try and be as ready as possible for ET (transfer) tomorrow. They are still going to schedule me for a 3dt tomorrow, BUT if they look really awesome in the morning they may re-schedule me for Sat or Sun (5dt).

Thanks for all the support!


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

IVF #2 Fertilization Report-Not What We Hoped

Got the call a few minutes ago from the lab. It starts off very good.

15 mature
12 fertilized normally

The embryologist said we are planning for a 3 day transfer on Friday, but if they look really good we may push back to Sat or Sun. I responded that we were hoping for a 5 day transfer. His response was not good news. He said that the reason it was likely to be a 3 day transfer is that 75% of the embryos have vacuoles. The vacuoles mean that they will likely not develop normally. So that means that we are down to three (or so) decent embies already. He said it's possible that they will continue to develop but he won't know more until tomorrow.

Needless to say I'm really disappointed. I put my body thru hell for more eggs and ended up worse than I ever dreamed.

If anyone has any info on vacuoles they can share please do-I have no idea what I'm dealing with.

More embie info tomorrow.


More difficult than expected

The good news is that they got 18 eggs!!!! (and we got an AWESOME new President!)

The not so good news is that I'm in a lot of pain! ER was much more difficult this time with my ovaries being so engorged. Also, my left ovary was tucked behind my uterus making it difficult to reach. I went to acupuncture after the ER which helped a lot, but I am in MUCH more pain than I was last time. In fact, Dave didn't want me to go to work today because it's so bad. So I'm at home resting.

I am anxiously awaiting my fertilization report and will try to post once it comes in!


Monday, November 3, 2008

Swollen to the point of bursting

That's me...all blown up!

I feel pretty crappy--I think the hcg trigger shot did me in.

My complaints: (Yep, I'm making a list!)
1. My ovaries hurt.
2. I'm dead tired.
3. I can't get a deep breath.
4. I can't get comfortable.
5. I feel physically huge.
6. I have heartburn.
7. I itch all over.
8. My back hurts.
9. I wanna go home.

Other than that-I'm great!

I absolutely know that it will all be worth it for a BFP, but I feel miserable and I want to complain.

I am still excited and nervous, but much less enthusiastic because I don't feel good.

Sorry to be a bummer. Hopefully will post good news tomorrow!


Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Details

Good morning!

I got the call yesterday with my exact instructions, but was too busy to post. I am disgustingly hopeful, and I feel really good physically!

My pattern has been to be completely upbeat the first part of 'the wait' and for the bottom to drop out the second week. I am hoping to stay optimistic throughout, but we'll see.

Here are my instructions:

Last dose Lupron 5units-Sun 11/2 am dose

HCG 1ml-Sun 11/2-10:50pm exactly!

Home Pregnancy test-Mon 11/3-7:30am (to make sure shot was done correctly)

Minocin-Mon 11/3-4x's with meals

Nothing to eat or drink after midnight on 11/3

Xanax-Tues 11/4-8:50am exactly

Report to lab with sample-Tues 11/4-9:35am

Report to clinic-Tues 11/4-9:45am

Egg Retrieval-Tues 11/4-10:50am

Please pray for our success. We absolutely believe in the power of prayers and good wishes!



Friday, October 31, 2008

Ok, so now I'm a little nervous

We're really gonna do this again!

E2 came back at a pretty safe 1926.

We are going to trigger on Sunday for retrieval on Tuesday, election day.

A friend from my online group said that if she went to retrieval on Election Day she was gonna wear her YES WE CAN! button. I so wish I had one! We voted absentee (thank God) so we don't have to try and squeeze that in too! I'm also glad that I'm not gonna be on bedrest on election night, because I don't think I'd be allowed to jump up and down and scream (fingers crossed!!!)

Here are the instructions I have so far. The nurse will call me tomorrow with exact times for Sunday and Tuesday.

10/31(pm)-Reduce gonal-f to 150iu

11/1(am)-5u Lupron, no gonal-f

11/1(pm)-Reduce gonal-f to 75iu

11/2(am)-5u Lupron, no gonal-f

I'll post my exact instructions for posterity when I get them.

So here we go. . . the wait starts Tuesday!



Needles, Needles, and More Needles!

First thanks for all of the support! I am really feeling pretty good. Tired, but overall very good.

The monitoring this morning was good. Doc is a little worried about hyper-stimulation, he had a very concerned look while doing my scan. I have a LOT of follies-probably 10 or more on each side. I pushed him to go for a lot of eggs and it looks like I'm gonna get my wish. I have to wait for my E2 this afternoon. Looks like I may trigger Sunday for Tuesday retrieval.

I went to my first acupuncture session after my scan and was really surprised by how knowledgeable she was about IVF. She is confident that the increased blood flow to the uterus caused by acupuncture helps with implantation. She had me feel my belly (where my ovaries are distended) when we started and then again when we finished. The difference is AMAZING. My ovaries are still big of course, but at first my tummy was hard to the touch and after it was soft. I also left feeling confident and relaxed which is a nice side effect!

Most of the studies I've read don't point to exactly why acupuncture works, just that is seems to help. At this point, we've tried everything else, so why not!

So I will post this afternoon with my E2 and my instructions!


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Do you know where your ovaries are this morning?

I can tell you the EXACT position of each of my ovaries!!!

At my scan yesterday my right ovary was much more active than the left, but I think lefty may have caught up because she is aching today. I am not really that uncomfortable, my belly is noticeably bigger for the first time this cycle, and I'm tired, but mostly still feeling pretty good.

I have been debating since the last IVF about trying acupuncture. It's not that I'm afraid of it, but that I worry about the additional expense. So, I called a center near my IF clinic and she had a lot of good info and thought that even at this late stage she could help. I made an appointment for tomorrow morning after my monitoring ultrasound. She said we would schedule another appt the day of ER and again on the day of ET.

What made me decide to go for it?

I think that $200.00 or so dollars at this point is a reasonable amount of money to risk if it will in any way improve our chance of success. I'm not saying that $200.00 is not a lot of money, it is, it's just a LOT less than the $10000.00 it will cost should we need (and decide) to do another cycle.

I am giving this cycle everything I've got!

Thanks for all of the continued support!

Keep on prayin'!


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

First Monitoring Ultrasound Update


Last IVF I was only at 156 at this stage! I am so psyched. I am hoping, and praying, (and crying b/c that's what I do these days), that we get enough follies to go to 5dt.



Awesome First Monitoring Ultrasound

I had my first monitoring ultrasound today and the doc said that there were too many eggs to count!!! He marked down at least 3x's the amount of eggs I had during my last IVF.

I will get my E2 level and instructions this afternoon. I looks like I will be going for another u/s on Friday or Monday.

I had a burst of energy last night and got some household stuff done. I am super anal about my house, so I want to try and have it as clean as possible before ET and hopefully it will stay (mostly clean) for Thanksgiving. I am planning to clean this weekend too, if I'm not too tired!

I will give an update with the E2 later!


Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Instructions to retrieve overage in Gonal-f Pen

FIRST-I am NOT a medical professional--this is just how I do it and others will likely have better ideas!

I try to get pens in small doses (like 300) b/c then I get more overage b/c there's some in each pen instead of the overage in one 900 pen.

I use the pen until it would not let me dial any more doses (when you pull back the plunger it doesn't click), but you will still be able to see liquid in the pen.

Open a new syringe (like you use for Lupron, diabetic)

Insert the needle into the gray top of the pen (without the tip on it.)

Draw back on the needle until you have all of the liquid in the syringe.
{In my limited experience (I've done 3) each pen has about 150iu in it, which will take your syringe up to the 25 mark.}

The 25 mark on the diabetic needle is 150IU of gonal-f; the 50 mark (full) is 300IU.

I also do not 'prime the pen' as per the instructions. I dial 37.5 and the just barely push the plunger to see if liquid appears on the tip of the needle. If there is no liquid, push a little harder, if there is still no liquid push till it clicks and start again. I have only had to push it all the way in 2x in 4 cycles of meds. This saves what you would've used in the priming.

NOTE : I am only sure on the conversion for gonal-f. It is 1:6. If you take something different call a specialty pharmacy like BioScript or Scraff's for the conversion.

The three I have done have saved me $360.00 in meds!!! WOO HOO


The tiredness persists

As indicated in the title, I am still dead tired. It also hasn't helped that my stomach has staged a rebellion the last couple of days! I really don't feel THAT bad, just tired and tired of being in the bathroom! Dave gave me a great back rub last night as he has agreed to do every day during this process. On Sunday night I fell asleep before I could get it so I made sure to tell him I was going up to bed at 7:30 last night. I did get to sleep really early, but my stomach had me up every couple of hours, so I'm not sure how much real sleep I got.

I succeeded in saving the leftover meds from the gonal-f pens and I used it this morning! There is like 150iu ($160.00worth) leftover in the dosage pen and I can't bring myself to throw it away! If anyone is interested in how I saved it just leave a comment with your email and I'll send you directions.


Monday, October 27, 2008


I seemed to have conveniently forgotten how dead tired these drugs make me. I started injections on Saturday AM, and by Sunday I felt like I was half in a coma all day! Today it's a tiny bit better, but it's gray and cold so that makes me want to get in bed even more!

My cousins' wedding was beautiful. Her new husband sang a beautiful acoustic version of 'Brown Eyed Girl' there wasn't a dry eye in the house. I so LOVE to be with my family we all had so much fun! I also got to hang out with my cousins baby who I could just eat up!

Overall things are going well, I'm just so DANG tired!!


Friday, October 24, 2008

Back in the....continued

My E2 came back today at 46. The nurse said that's right where they want me to be. On to the good drugs!


Back in the saddle...or the stirrups as the case may be

A friend from the online infertility support group I rely on, shared the following quote with me the other day when I was feeling down.

"Courage is being scared to death, but getting in the saddle anyway." ~John Wayne

Well today was my first ultrasound and blood work for IVF #2 and I showed up, so I guess I am back in the game!

The b/w results won't be back until this afternoon, but my ovaries are very quiet and filled with too many small follies to count which is awesome! I expect the b/w to be completely normal considering the u/s, so it's looking like I'll get to start the stims in the am!!

I'll try to post this afternoon with the final go-ahead.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

On the Upswing

I am feeling better today.

For me, telling my secrets always takes away some of their power. I still will have to deal with all of these feelings and emotions, but now that I've come clean about them it doesn't feel like it's consuming me!

We live 45min-1hr from the clinic, so to avoid the mad rush I have made some hotel reservations 2 miles away. I booked the whole week and will just cancel what we don't need.

My switch to Lupron in the morning has been smooth, and my nurse assures me that my error won't screw up the cycle. On Saturday morning I'll take 150iu of gonal-f and Saturday eve I'll take 225iu. That's 5 vials a day!!!! I'll be on it for 10-12 days. If you figure $60.00/a vial times 50 vials--donated meds have saved us $3000.00. We could NEVER have done another cycle this year without them.

So to all of you who have ever donated your leftover meds to your clinic--THANK YOU!

The current dose is a 66% increase from my last cycle. Last time my E2 was only around 1500--which is nowhere near OHSS. I had 10 follies retrieved, 9 mature, 6 fertilized, and 3 survived to day 3 for transfer. The three survivors were about a day behind in growth, but had grade A appearance. So our goal this time is to up the dose to try and get more eggs. I want to try for a 5 day transfer which my clinic only does if you have 10 or more mature follies. I also would like to have some to freeze, and I don't feel like upping the dose will endanger my health.

The other thing we're doing differently is Dave's sample collection. Over the course of years of treatment, Dave has been tested many times, and has always been above normal. He has always collected at home. For our IVF cycle we were instructed that he MUST collect at the lab. For the first and only time, his sample was of super low volume. That forced us into ICSI and I think also may have contributed to our embryo quality. He has been tested again since, with a sample from home and was again above normal. So this time we have been given permission to collect at home or at the hotel as the case may be.

My progesterone came back last time at just 15, and after that test, the RE instructed me to up it from .5 to 1cc for the second week, so I am going to ask tomorrow if I can just take 1cc from the start. Even if it doesn't help I think it will make me know that I'm doing everything I can.


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Anxiety is building

I can start to feel myself getting kind-of keyed up. I have a general feeling of low-level anxiety and tension. I know that its due to my impending injections--the real start of my IVF cycle.

I think that over the course of the last few days I am starting to understand, or at least acknowledge that the reason I'm feeling all of these mixed emotions is that I have to once again face "what if it doesn't work?"

I guess that maybe I'm not feeling guilty about hope, no one would do this without it. I am starting to wonder where we will go from here if it doesn't work again.

You might think that we're old hats at this, but we rarely make solid plans about what we'll do if the current one doesn't work.

We talked hypothetically that we would do 3 rounds of IVF, but to be honest I NEVER thought we'd need more than one. I have made it clear to the Doc that this is our last shot--at least with him, but I don't really know if that's true. I have no idea how we would pay for another one (we have no coverage), if we should do another one, and who we should do it with if we need another one.

I am terrified to face the possibility that this won't work, and I know from experience that it might not.

I am terrified that the next round of decision making might be the one that I have to come to terms with not having biological children.

So that's it.

It isn't guilt.

It is pure FEAR.

And I am terrified to face it.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

When Hope Hurts

It's typical for me that as the actual cycle approaches and the possibility exists that I MIGHT actually get pregnant, hope creeps in.

That hope is at best a double edged sword.

Of course I want it to work, and I think that it's possible that we will finally get our BFP, but there is a dark side of hope that makes me feel like an idiot for having any at all. We have been trying to start our family for more than five years, and here we are still trying, so to have any hope that this is THE cycle makes me feel guilty and stupid.

I also know that whether or not I believe it will work, if it doesn't I'll be devastated. So, in that respect I guess it doesn't matter whether or not I allow myself to hope.

I feel sort-of like a crazy person for all of these feelings about my feelings, but I'm not really sure what to do with all of them.


Monday, October 20, 2008

A little bummed

Well I figured out that I've been taking my Lupron wrong! The nurse said that the box says to take in am, but I must've missed it!!! I asked if that would screw us up and she said no. So I guess we wait and see!

Our party on Saturday was really great. We had lots of family and friends join us. We spent Sunday relaxing and re-grouping, and don't have much planned for this week.

I go for my suppression check on Friday morning and then I will start gonal-f on Saturday am and drop the Lupron to 5IU.

I'm feeling bummed about the mistake, but I think I'm starting to get tired from all of the events this month too.


Friday, October 17, 2008

Nothing much to report

I have intended to post almost everyday this time, so I have a record for myself about how I felt as I went thru the IVF process again, but I find that I don't have much to say. This is a very rare occurrence for me, as I usually have more to say than any one person should.

Mostly I don't feel that different.

My restless legs have definitely intensified. I never required medication for restless legs until the Lupron suppression phase of the last IVF. I had had incidences of it in the past, but few, and never frequently enough to require medication. Once it started though, it has persisted. I have had to remain on medication. Now even with the meds, my legs are going crazy. I finally called the doctor yesterday and I'm waiting to see whether to up the dose or try something new.

My mood has been up and down, but not extremely so. But then again, I'm probably not the person to ask about that!

I have had some mild acne, more than usual for me, but not so bad that it's gross.

My energy has been pretty good, but I have a lot of stuff that I HAVE to do this month, so not feeling like it doesn't really matter.

Our BIG fall party is tomorrow. I'm excited, but ready for all of the prep to be done!


Monday, October 13, 2008

Fantastic Fall Wedding

This was an amazing weekend for a wedding. The weather was perfect, the leaves were just right, and the bride looked amazing! Our wedding this past weekend was an outdoor one at Burr Oak Lodge in Glouster, OH. It was one of the best weddings I have ever been to. The setting was fantastic, the food was good and the band was phenomenal. Stacy and Rudy are going to continue to be so happy!

On Sunday we were forced to return to the reality of our hectic lives! Dave had to go and work on a project at one of our rental homes, and I had a long list of to do's for this weekends wiener roast. I think I got everything done I was supposed to, but time will tell.

On the fertility front, I started Lupron injections of 10IU on Friday evening. As I popped the plastic seal I noticed that it expired in JULY!! I went ahead with the weekend's injections, and I called the doc today. He said that it would probably be fine to keep using it, but he ordered in some more so I'll inject the good stuff starting tonight. It's always something!!!!

I am still feeling teary-eyed a lot, but mostly I'm feeling good. My skin is breaking out like a teenagers, but I am willing to endure this minor problem.

Hope everyone is feeling good. Prayers are always welcome!!!


Friday, October 10, 2008

Another weekend, another wedding

This weekend is the wedding of our oldest friends as a couple. We have been married nearly 6 years and they were engaged before we were married!!! We sort-of figured that they wouldn't ever get married since they never seemed interested in making it "official." We were shocked to discover that they were taking the plunge! The wedding this weekend is at a Southern Ohio State Park Resort Lodge, it will be beautiful! We are travelling there early tomorrow morning to help set up and decorate. I am really looking forward to this little break, even though I will miss my little doggies!!! They won't even notice I'm gone, because they will be getting spoiled rotten by their Grandma!

I start Lupron 10IU tonight when I get home, so I hope I don't have any adverse effects from it. I didn't bother me before. The BCP's are making me emotional. An online friend posted on her blog about the effects of BCP's that really sums up my topsy-turvy emotions.
For example, I am a strong Obama supporter, and I cried all the way to work because good poll results were released....real tear jerker, huh?!? I don't really feel bad or sad, I just tear up over nothing. The only other side effect that's driving me crazy are my restless legs. I was up most of the night last night and they've been bad again all day. I hate the weird sensation.

It will all be 1000 times worth it when we have our family, but it helps now to vent!

More soon.


Tuesday, October 7, 2008


One would think that after enduring nearly 6 years of infertility that I would have learned the virtue of patience. Unfortunately, that is not so! The pool company was supposed close the pool yesterday and didn't show up AGAIN! It's the 3rd time!! We obviously called another company, however now that we're in a pinch we have to take whomever is available and it's going to cost a lot more money. I guess this is another good example of getting what you pay for!

The carpet cleaner did show and he did an AMAZING job. The carpets look great, but I hate that terrible drycleaning smell in my house. It was so strong that I couldn't sleep in our bed. I left the windows open and the fans blowing today so I hope by the time I get home it will be aired out.

My girlfriend whose wedding is this weekend called last night from Tennessee and asked if I could come to the venue early and help decorate, so we're not going to be home at all on Saturday which means I'll have to cram a lot of prep for the wiener roast into Sunday.

I start Lupron at 10IU on Friday so I get to pack all my needles and crap to the wedding. The last time I was on Lupron we flew to NYC it seems like everytime I'm on this crap I have to haul it somewhere.

Still looking forward to a night away with Dave--he's been working so much and helping my Dad get a project done, I've hardly seen him!


Monday, October 6, 2008

One Down

The wedding on Saturday was a resounding success! Our friends make a great couple and they are going to be very happy.

We attended the rehearsal dinner Friday evening and then got up EARLY on Saturday to tackle the pool furniture and accessories. I am so happy to say that we were able to get everything, cleaned, deflated, and stowed away for the winter. The pool company was supposed to close and cover the pool on Friday, but the technician was sick, so hopefully they will arrive to do it today. Gone are our summer patriotic buntings and flags, it's sad to have to put all that away, but I'm glad the chore is done.

Around 11am on Saturday I started heating the food I had made previously and frozen for their casual reception. I went over to the church and set up the buffet at noon, so that all we had to do was add the food at about 3:30.

The wedding was small, plain, and lovely. The food was extremely popular and we managed to get everything cleaned up just in time for me to get home for the Buckeye game.

On Sunday after I cleaned up the dishes from Saturday night, I started on my big project for the weekend---cleaning out closets, and unpacking winter clothes! I managed to get through them all; man that is hard work! The winter clothes are cleaned and hung and the summer stuff is all put away. I am very pleased to report that I was able to part with 10 bags of stuff!!!!

Sunday afternoon my reward was a trip to the pumpkin patch! I got all of the fall stuff I love, bales of straw, corn shocks, Indian corn, and of course pumpkins! My front porch looks amazing! I 've just got to figure out what to do with the side porch!

Today the carpets are being cleaned while we're at work so one more task is complete gearing up for the big party!

I'm not having side effects from the BCP's--my energy level is actually quite high. I start Lupron on Friday, so I'll have to wait and see what that will bring!


Friday, October 3, 2008

Let the Wedding Extravaganza Begin!

This weekend begins a marathon month of weddings and events for us! Tonight we have a rehearsal dinner for our closest friends and tomorrow I cater their wedding and Dave will take the photos. Luckily, it's small and we're happy to help them maintain a tight budget. I am a social butterfly and don't mind being on the go constantly, but I fear this month will really wear on Dave. He does ok socially, but doesn't always enjoy it!

Next weekend our other very close friends are having a large out of town wedding that we will attend in Southern Ohio. There's no work for us to do at this one, and even though I just got back from a trip, I am looking forward to a night in a resort with my husband.

The third weekend in October is the only one free of weddings for us, but it's hardly a break because its the weekend for our annual wiener roast. Every year we invite both sides of our very large families, all our friends, and basically everyone we know to a huge outdoor party. We live on 5 acres, and don't have neighbors to bother. It is a really good time, but it requires a lot of planning and hard work to pull off!

The last weekend in October I will be starting stims for IVF#2 and we will attend the wedding of one of my first cousins. This last wedding is local, thank God, but I fear that by this time Dave will only let us stay for the vows, (well maybe the food) before he wants to go home to his little used recliner.

I have NO IDEA how I will manage to keep our house clean, yard mowed, laundry done, and prepare for our biggest party of the year, but I know somehow I'll manage and it is very likely a blessing that I will be busy up until time for the nitty gritty of IVF to begin.

Stay tuned for all the events November has in store---our calendar doesn't clear up much!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

A Recurring Angel

I'm sure I've mentioned before how much I LOVE the nurse at my RE's office. But I have to hold her up on a pedestal once again!
I've been with the same doc for several years and have come to really depend on his nurse as source of sound advice and constant support. She has laughed and cried with me many times and we would not be able to do this second IVF if not for her. She went to the drug rep on our behalf to help us out with meds for this cycle. When we got our orders the other day and realized we only had half of what we needed, she even succeeded in getting us a little more. We'll still have to buy some, but she saved us thousands of dollars because she was willing to go the extra mile once again.
I am so so grateful that God gave me her as an advocate and a partner in this process.

I hope that each and every one of you are as blessed as I am to have someone like her to root for you!


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

My legs are running and I'm sitting still!!

Hey everyone!

Mostly I'm feeling ok, not a ton of side effects from the birth control pills. Although, just like last time it has really intensified my restless legs. I had incidences of restless legs before IVF but they were rare and usually related to medications like Benedryl, but once I started Lupron with my first IVF, my legs became unbearable. For those who are so blessed to have never had it, it is the most insane sensation. It doesn't really hurt, it kind of itches and forces you to move and kick. I was given a prescription for Mirapex which has helped until now, but my legs are back at it, so I think I'm going to have to ask for an increased dose.

Nothing more to report for now.

Stay tuned...


Monday, September 29, 2008

IVF # 2 Calendar

Cancun was incredibly HOT!!! The massage I had at the Spa was amazing, and all in all it was very relaxing.

I started my cycle on Wednesday September 24 so I started BCP's and antibiotics on Friday September 26. I got my calendar today and I am scheduled to begin Lupron on Thursday October 9th at 10 IU. I'll finish BCP's on October 16, baseline ultrasound on October 24, start Gonal F 375IU/day on October 25. My first monitoring will be October 29, and my retrieval and transfer will be around Nov 5-11.

I am ready to get started again, but am of course nervous and unsure if I can handle any more disappointment. I'm trying to be positive and am cutting out caffeine and trying to eat according to my Fertility Diet plan.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Sorry for the delay in posting. I was terribly upset that I didn't ovulate. I am feeling better now.

Let me explain the title. On Sunday we had winds in Ohio over 70mph. My hubbie and I helped my grandparents and a neighbor get all of their patio furniture and stuff put away and then headed home. We secured most everything, but as the wind picked up Dave went out to fasten down the roof on the garage and I went out to the side yard just to make sure we had everything taken care of. Well just as I walked toward the house a HUGE, I mean HUGE tree came down on me, my car, and the house. I crawled out and I am very blessed to report that I only have a mild concussion, and some bad scrapes and bruises. I'm going to be fine and I am at a point in the cycle that it won't be affected.

I have a FREE trip to Cancun that I will leave for on Monday with my Mom and I am excited! I need the break to relax and unwind before the IVF begins!

Hope all is well.


Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Progesterone of less than 1. No ovulation.


Monday, September 8, 2008

Still Waiting....

I went for my progesterone blood test this morning. It was very anti-climactic, just a regular old blood draw. The tech confirmed that I won't have results until tomorrow, so the wait to see if we've even got a shot continues. I'll keep you posted. . .


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

How to Over-Analyze Every Single Possible Symptom

Hi everyone,

As of today I am still very hopeful! (Probably too hopeful.) I really feel like a miracle is possible for us this time.

I hate though that my crazy mind focuses on every twinge I feel as a possible early predictor of the outcome. My head calculates when I could test, when I would be due, how long into pregnancy I would work, ad infinitum. It is WAY TOO EARLY for any of that, but I cannot stop the thoughts.

Anyway, the days are passing quickly and I'm looking forward to, rather than dreading, the progesterone test on Monday.

Please keep the prayers coming my way!


Monday, September 1, 2008

So Far, So Good

I took my shot at 6:15am on Saturday morning. Have I mentioned how much I hate IM shots!?! I survived and we went on to have a good day at an annual flea market that my hubbie was really looking forward to.

Ovulation occurs 36 hours after the HCG shot, so we planned timed intercourse for around 5:30. Romantic isn't it? Our schedule worked out fine and so we are now officially in the two week wait. I'm lucky that I get a progesterone blood test next Monday to confirm ovulation and see if there's even a chance. So I guess it's really a one week wait and see!

I'm ready for a miracle-please pray for us!


Thursday, August 28, 2008

And then there were three

I was originally scheduled to got for monitoring for this final Clomid cycle tomorrow, but had to switch b/c of a co-worker scheduling issue. I just got back to the office.

As I said yesterday, I have had NO side effects this time from a 250mg dose, but guess what...3 yep 3 eggs are going to be mature!!!!!! I will take hcg trigger Sat am to ovulate Sun eve. RE will check progesterone on Monday 9/8 to make sure of ovulation and beta will be 9/15 if prog. level comes back ok.

This just blows me away! I totally know that to ovulate doesn't mean I'll get pg, but that is our primary problem, so at least we've got a shot! I am feeling very grateful!


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Mad Dash

So I made the mad dash to the clinic with my husband's sample this morning! We live about 45 minutes from the clinic, so the trip always puts me into panic mode b/c I have to get it there within an hour! The reason for today's sample is cryo-preservation. At our clinic, when you have IVF you are required to have a back-up sample frozen in case there is a problem with the sample on the day of egg retrieval. This is the last step in the process for us until the meds begin.
I am having none of the normal Clomid side effects, even though I was on a monster dose this time, so I don't think that I'm going to ovulate! It's great that I feel good, but not so great that the Clomid isn't going to work AGAIN!
Anyway, I go on Friday at lunchtime for monitoring and I'll know more then!


Monday, August 25, 2008

Time marches on

I have a strong feeling that Clomid isn't doing much for me this cycle. I have had almost no side effects from it. I go for monitoring on Friday at 12:oo, so I guess we'll see. I fully expect that it is going to be a waste of time. If this cycle doesn't pan out I will start provera immediately and then BCP's once my cycle starts to prepare for IVF. I will let you know Friday where we stand!


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Another round

Well, my cycle did FINALLY start on Friday August 15, so I had my blood drawn Monday and started Clomid 250mg/day.

The RE called on Tuesday to say that my numbers look better than they ever have! My FSH is only 2.5, which is outstanding and everything else falls in normal range.

I'm hosting a bridal shower this weekend, so I'm busy with that and at least I'm not having Clomid headaches yet!


Monday, August 11, 2008

Holding Pattern

Well, I posted last Monday that I should start my cycle by Wednesday of last week. My body has had other ideas! I STILL have not started my cycle!

It's so frustrating because I wrote the check this week for IVF#2 and am ready to move forward with this cycle so we can get rolling with the IVF. I called Nancy, my nurse, today and she said we have to wait until next Monday before we do anything--sometimes a cycle is just slow to start!

So here we are waiting again...we have waited and saved and raised money, now that we have it my body is on strike!


Monday, August 4, 2008

Almost ready...

I took the last provera today, so I should start my cycle today, tomorrow, or Wednesday. I will go on cycle day 3 for bloodwork for the IVF. They look at my FSH, TSH, prolactin, and others to make sure everything still looks good. I am going to take 250mg of Clomid this cycle, also starting on CD3. This is my last try with Clomid, I won't take it again if I don't ovulate on this dose.

I am starting to get a bit nervous to start all of the IVF crap again-it takes so much out of me!

Hope everyone had a great weekend!


Monday, July 28, 2008

A taste of life without Infertility

I know that I have been mostly absent, and I am sorry for the infrequent updates, however it has been beacuse I have really been enjoying my life lately! I sometimes go for hours on end without fretting about IF--that is a miraculous blessing for me. I have been so consumed with it for the past years that it's nice for it to ease up a bit.

I did receive the packet for my second IVF on Friday. We are going forward with another try of Clomid for the upcoming cycle, but with the less than stellar results of the last two cycles, I'm not expecting much.

I have about another week of provera to start my cycle, then I'll have blood drawn on cycle day 3 before I start taking Clomid that day. The day 3 blood work is for an IVF cycle I desperately hope I don't need. If Clomid doesn't do it this time I will start birth control pills in late August and be ready for injectible IVF meds in late Sep, early Oct.

I can only pray that it doesn't turn out that way!

Hope all of you are enjoying life as much as I am lately!


Monday, July 21, 2008

Arrested Development

Well, I just got back from my appointment and unfortunately the 11mm follicle is still only 11mm. It looks like I won't ovulate this month after all! I am disappointed, but not shocked. I talked with Dr. Williams and he want to try 250mg of Clomid next month and if doesn't work then I'll start birth control pills for IVF #2 in September.
On the bright side, I had a terrific weekend. Tons of pool time and a great party for my aunt.

More soon. . .


Friday, July 18, 2008

A bit of good news!

Well, I went for my monitoring yesterday afternoon, which was cycle day 11 and I had an eleven mm follicle on the right which is right on track to be mature on Monday!!!!!! I go back at 1:00p on Monday for another look and to get my HCG trigger shot.

For those of you who are blessed with ignorance of these things, a follicle should be between 18-21mm to be considered mature. Once a follicle reaches the appropriate size, the body releases a surge of HCG to finish maturing the follicle and release it. Ovulation (release of the follicle) occurs 36 hours after the HCG surge. In the case of someone who doesn't ovulate, like me, the Clomid helps to develop a follicle, once the follicle is large enough, HCG is administered via injection. 36 hours after the injection the egg will be released. TA DA OVULATION!

If only getting pregnant was an easy as they warned us in sex ed!


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Oh my aching head!

My head is killing me!!!!! I have a headache every minute of every day. Gee I love Clomid!

I am feeling ok otherwise, planning and organizing for a party at my house on Saturday. My cousins are hosting a 50th birthday party for their Mom at my place and I have a few things to do to get ready. The weather is supposed to be great so I am really looking forward to it.

My cycle monitoring appointment had to be re-scheduled to Thursday afternoon, so I will update on Friday morning.


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Evil, Evil Hormones

I have been feeling totally crappy! I can't even blame it on the Clomid, because I didn't take the first dose till last night and I've been feeling like this since Tuesday.

I have no patience, or tolerance. EVERYTHING annoys me! I have a headache and I'm in a horrible mood! I'm sure I'm a real joy to be around.

The last two nights I have been in bed before 8pm and can hardly drag myself out of bed in the morning before 7am.

I cannot wait for this to break and to feel like myself again.

I keep telling myself that this will all be worth it----if it works!


Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Fresh Start

Well, even though I swore I had no pre-menstrual symptoms, I started my cycle yesterday evening. I will begin taking 200mg of Clomid in the evenings tomorrow thru Sunday July 13. I get terrible headaches on Clomid, which will be more than worth it IF I ovulate--not so much if not!

I feel cautiously optimistic this time, I did get pregnant on 200mg of Clomid before, but I also am realistic that I didn't even get a good follicle with this last cycle.

I'll keep posting updates....stay tuned!


Monday, July 7, 2008

Amazing Support Wonderful Weekend

I hope that everyone had a terriffic, relaxing 4th of July weekend! Mine was fabulous!! I love entertaining and was happy to do a lot of it!

I took Thursday off to get ready for the party on Friday, and to spend some time with my niece and nephew that I don't see very often. Thursday was RAINY, but I got everything done and the rain cleared up just in time for the Buckeye Lake fireworks. The fireworks were great again this year and we had terrific seats.

On Friday the weather didn't cooperate, but we had a great time anyway! We were finally able to get in the pool in the afternoon.

We also held our 1/2 and 1/2 drawing to raise money for our second IVF attempt. Our families sold $466.00 worth of tickets!!! My sister-in-law's parents won, and generously gave us their 1/2 as well!! I, of course, cried my eyes out! It is amazing to have such wonderful support.

As far as treatment goes, I am finished with the provera and waiting for my cycle to begin to try Clomid again at 200mg days 3-7 this time. I am optimistic, but I also believe that we will likely need to do another round of IVF.


Friday, June 27, 2008

Swamp Thing

Our swimming pool was crystal clear and beautiful for the first seven days and then it went wacko! After tons of more chemicals and some time it is looking better-but it has been so frustrating!

I have been taking Provera for two days now, I have eight more to go, to start a new cycle. I am going to be taking 200mg of Clomid this go round, hopefully I'll get some good eggies!

So, for now we're in a holding pattern-just living our lives and trying to save every penny.


Friday, June 20, 2008

This one's over!

This cycle is over--150mg of Clomid did not produce a follicle large enough for me to ovulate. This has happened to me before and Dr. Williams wants to try 200mg next month to see if it will produce any better result. I am a little bummed, but it isn't too bad. I think that we MAY be able to afford another round of IVF in September. Our raffle is being held on July 4th and the drawing is growing every day. If anyone still wants tickets please email me. The address is


Monday, June 16, 2008

High Expectations

I know better--or at least I should! I had very high expectations for this Clomid cycle that are plummeting FAST! You could probably guess that my eggies aren't doing so hot. I only have a 7 on the left, and an 8 on the right. They need to be 18-22mm in order to be mature. He want's to remeasure on Friday to see if I'm going to ovulate.

I feel okay-just frustrated that it can NEVER be simple and easy!


Summer Fun and Growing Eggs

Happy Monday! I had a wonderful weekend! The water was delivered for our swimming pool on Friday and Saturday so after nearly three years we have managed to save the pool and finally get to enjoy it!

On Saturday I went to a family graduation party for my 2 cousins who just finished their college degrees. It was a terriffic time and I was glad to spend time not fretting about infertility!

We spent Father's Day at my Grandparents' house with the family. My Grandpa has made a nearly complete recovery and I am so grateful to see him enjoying life again. In the afternoon we came home for a dip in the COLD pool and a couple of my cousins and thier husbands came over. I am going to LOVE all of the entertaining this pool will allow me to do!

As far as the cycle I am on day 12 and I go this afternoon to check to see if any eggs are ready to trigger. I am having some tenderness and pain on both sides, so maybe I'll get lucky and have more than one!

I'll post results later.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The All Clear

I went for my second HSG (dye test) today. I had one several years ago and at that time they could only see one tube clearly. Today both tubes and my uterus were clear of all blockages and abnormalities. The HSG test is also supposed to increase pregnancy rates for 3-4 months so I'm excited about that too.

Today is cycle day six and I am on the 4th of 5 days of Clomid. I can feel the effects of the drug. I have a lot of nervous anxious energy and feel sort-of mean and intolerant. These side effects seem to be worse than the gonadatropins in relation to my emotions. I keep telling myself that this too shall pass!


Thursday, June 5, 2008

A New Beginning

Well today is officially the beginning of our first cycle of Clomid in several years. I am pretty optimistic and I think I will feel even better after I see the results of the HSG. I will begin Clomiphene Citrate on Saturday and continue until Wednesday. My HSG is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon! I will update about my progress through the cycle! Wouldn't it be amazing if we didn't have to do another IVF?????


Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Sun is shining!

The sun has been shining here for several days and I feel like it is reaching my heart as well. Each day brings a brighter outlook. As much as I dreaded having to wait and save this time has given my heart some time to heal.

I am about three or four days away from the beginning of my cycle. I will take Clomid 150mg on cycle days 3-7 and I will also have ultrasound monitoring to confirm ovulation since that is one of the few things my insurance will pay for. I am also going to have a repeat HSG (dye test) to make sure my tubes and uterine cavity are clear of adhesions. I am trying to be cautiously optimistic. I have gotten pregnant on Clomid before (m/c), and it would be amazing if that happened and we didn't have to go through another IVF. Also, while each negative hurts my heart, the Clomid cycles aren't nearly as bad as the IUI and IVF. They don't put the financial strain on us and that relieves some of the emotional burden.

This past Saturday was my cousin's baby shower. Thank God it came this far after our negative--I felt ready to handle it. It was difficult at times, but my family are my biggest supporters and advocates, and while they don't always understand they always try. Despite the difficulty I really did have a good time. My cousin will me a terrific Momma and while she did not experience infertility her life has not been free from heartache. She lost her Dad really young. The closer she comes to delivery time the more acceptance and peace I have.

I am really looking forward to this little girl, after all I am doing all of this for the joy of a baby--I might as well take as much joy as possible from this new little one!


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Permission to feel

I spent the long Memorial Day Weekend sort-of low key. I feel somehow lighter, my worries are beginning to melt away just a bit. My Grandpa is doing well--he gets to go home from the hospital today!
I also read (or skimmed) several books about infertility this weekend. Some were personal stories and others were technical manuals. The more informed I become, the more I realize what a total crap shoot this whole process is, and yet it gives me hope, peace.
I know that millions of other couples struggle with this too and I am a member of an online support group that does help a lot, and I have noticed among all of us in the group there seems to be a sense of guilt and shame not just because of the infertility, but also because of how we FEEL about our FEELINGS.
I have shared that my 1st cousin is due to give birth very soon and that my sister in law is pregnant and due in November. These will be the first babies of our generation in our family and I am very happy them, however it causes tons of conflicting feelings. I DO sometimes feel envy, jealousy, pain, and I simultaneously feel ashamed, guilty, and angry at myself for feeling that way. I notice that many other women have similar experience, but none, me included, seem to know how to resolve the conflict. Explaining it helps some-confession, I guess. I do NOT want to be a negative person, or someone who wallows in my own misery, but I feel like I might as well give myself permission to feel like I do, since I'm going to feel it anyway. It's not just pregnancies that cause these conflicts, but my own Hope for a successful treatment causes them as well. I want to be positive, yet I try to to "get my hopes up!" I also actively struggle to force myself to have a life outside of my infertility-I cannot remember a day that I haven't thought of it and I sometimes have guilt about that too! It is such a crazy, disturbed almost, way to live.
I am happy, but this seems to CONSUME me and I cannot imagine how my life might be without it.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Near Miss

I have been absent this week because of a family emergency. My Grandfather had open heart surgery to remove a tumor the size of a large orange from his heart. He is 73, and up until about a year ago he was vital! He walked his little chihuahua Bruno up to three miles a day. He had a fall and broke his wrist, nothing major. Then he had a minor surgery on his knee followed by a total knee replacement. He then had spinal surgery and has never totally recovered. No wonder with a HUGE TUMOR ON HIS HEART!!! He is at Riverside Hosp in Columbus and doing well.

As usual, my family has pulled together and rallied around him. I am so thankful for this blessing in my life! It's really easy to take it for granted--until something bad happens! There have been a minimum of 5, maximum of 20 family members with my Grandpa at all times. Other patients don't have anyone with them-I can't imagine that.

My grandparents began a family with difficulty-they were poor and unprepared, and while there was always LOVE there was strife as well. They raised four daughters, who gave them eleven grandchildren (plus spouses). I know that there are other large families, but ours is large and super close! I see them ALL several times a year and it is easy to forget that not everyone has this kind of support.

I know I will survive infertility and have a family of my own somehow; but it will be thanks, at least in part, to the "family of my own" I have now.


Thursday, May 15, 2008

CDC Couples Survey and Fundraising Part II

Dave and I agreed to participate in an oral study that the CDC and Resolve is doing about couples experiencing infertility. The researcher called last night and was really great! She asked basic questions about our diagnosis and insurance information, so I was thrilled to vent my rage about the lack of coverage! She said that she was getting TONS of other responses similar to mine. It is so sad that money, or lack there of, forces people to choose between whether or not to have children.

Enough of that!

We have decided to try another tack with our fundraising efforts! We are holding a 1/2 and 1/2 drawing on July 4th. From now until then we will sell numbered tickets for $1.00 each or 6 for $5.00, we will draw a winner and contact them on the 4th of July. The winner will receive 1/2 of all of the money collected! So the more tickets we sell the bigger the pot!

Once again our super supportive family will help by selling tickets and one beloved family member (who is in the accounting field) has agreed to be treasurer so that there is nothing improper about the money. We could not have made it this far without all of this terrific support!

Tickets are open to anyone, if any reader wishes to purchase tickets, please email me at

Hope is back with a vengeance now--I am sure we will find a way to have a family of our own! I feel like myself again.

Please feel free to contact me with questions or fundraising suggestions!



Monday, May 12, 2008

In the spotlight. . .well, sort-of

Our story was featured in our Local paper yesterday, The Zanesville Times Recorder. We were pleasantly surprised to find it on the FRONT PAGE! Here's a link to the article.
I sort-of thought that our phone would ring with "I saw you in the paper!" calls, but it didn't. We're pretty open, so most people that know us know about our struggle. I thought that the reporter did a great job of telling our story! The only addition I would have made is information about the fact that our health insurance can choose not to cover our medical condition. That part still makes me nuts!
Our saga continues, we keep scrimping and saving and we hope that those who can give will, and those who cannot will pray for us.
Time will tell.


Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Hope creeping back in

Since my mini-meltdown on Friday I feel new! I feel like I have taken control of my treatment, my life. I still don't like that I'm not pregnant, but I have hope again that it will work, somehow. I feel once again that it's just a matter of time.
We have decided to go ahead with a few cycles of Clomid starting next month while we're saving and raising money for another IVF. I honestly don't expect that it will work, but the doc thinks that it's worth a try so I'm up for it! I have continued my eating plan from "The Fertility Diet" and am still feeling pretty good. I am really trying to get more exercise, but I get bored easily, so it's rough.
On Monday evening the reporter came from the Zanesville Times Recorder. She was great, really professional. I was very glad that she seemed shocked and sort-of outraged that insurance can choose not to cover our medical condition. I really think that the general population does not know how all of this works, and if more people knew something might finally be done about it! Our story will appear in this Sunday's (Mother's Day ;0) edition of the paper, and I'm sure she will tell our story well. I will post a link to the article here if it appears on their website.
Once again this year there is a bill going NOWHERE in the US House that would require infertility coverage at very little cost to consumers. Please go to to contact your representative and ask them to support this bill. It should at least get a vote!! Even if you already have coverage, please go for the rest of us--it's important!


Monday, May 5, 2008

Follow-up with RE after failed IVF

Heartbroken. . . I finally felt it. Friday I went to a follow-up with Dr. Williams armed with about 30 questions regarding the failed cycle. I have been sad about the failure, but until I sat down in there and started discussing it I hadn't really felt the loss. As we went over the cycle and he gave me positive recommendations for another cycle, IF we can ever afford another, I finally felt my heart break by the defeat. Everything he said was positive, he would be more aggressive with my stimulation, he would increase the Lupron. He says that I am still an excellent candidate for IVF. He suggested that since I had a pregnancy (miscarriage) from Clomid 3.5 yrs ago we could try a few cycles of that while we try and save money for another IVF.
I spent the rest of day crying on and off, and felt better for it. Dave was great, compassionate, as always. I didn't realize that I was holding on to all of that pain and I was glad to have let it go.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

List of Questions for RE at IVF follow-up:

I have done tons of research this week to prepare for our IVF #1 BFN follow-up with our RE. i really do love him, but I need to know the answers to some tough questions and I think I may have been too naive to ask in the past. I'm posting the best list I've come up with, please feel free to add and additional questions you think I could ask. Thanks!

Why do believe this cycle failed?

How many cycles does it normally take for couples with similar circumstances?

Should we consider additional testing?
CC Challenge Test?

Should we try again if we can afford it?

Considering our circumstances, and the number of years we have undergone treatment with you, can you offer any fee reduction?

If there can be no reduction, can you offer a payment plan, guarantee, or some sort-of shared risk?

Do you have any donated medicine that we could use?

What would you do differently this time?
Different protocol
More stims
Letrozole with FSH

Do you offer Ultrasound Guided embryo transfer?

I’ve noticed many other clinics with success rates upwards of 60%--do you know what they’re doing to achieve such high rates?
Colorado Center for Repro Med 62% live birth; 2.4 t/f; 1236 cycles
Texas Fertility Center Austin, TX 53% live birth; 2.2t/f; 675 cycles
Vermesh Center for IF CA, 60% live birth rate; 2.6t/f; 500 cycles

Are there any new or experimental procedures we could try?

How do you feel about alternative medicine, such as acupuncture?

Am I a candidate for trans-vaginal ovarian drilling, should we consider it?

I’ve been on the same does of Metformin for years, should I increase it?

What was the quality of the eggs retrieved?

Why did we lose so many?
10 at retrieval
9 could be fertilized
6 fertilized
3 developed

Are there different culture medias to try that may improve success?

Why was a day three transfer chosen versus a day 5?

Are success rates higher with day 5 transfers?

Many clinics are pushing day 5 transfers what are the benefits/ risks?
RHI Pittsburg, PA 52% live birth rate; 1.8 transferred

Would you consider me to have luteal phase defect?

Would assisted hatching help us?

Could the missed PIO shot have contributed to the failure of the cycle?

My Mother took the drug Bendectin during her whole pregnancy with me, could that have any effect now?

I have been following the “Fertility Diet” should I continue that eating plan or should it be modified?

I have read that weight loss can reduce the effects of PCOS; I have lost considerable weight since beginning this process, why do you think we’re not seeing the results of that?

Is there anything else that you think I should be asking you, that I haven’t covered?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Whole Story. . .

I have a good life. I should be happy, I have way more than some, but something's missing. A baby, a family, a whole different life. My husband and I have battled infertility for more than 5 years and at times is has consumed our lives, the treatments, the praying, and the dreaded waiting. I knew, or at least suspected, at a relatively young age that I would have trouble getting pregnant. I was diagnosed with PCOS (poly cystic ovary syndrome) in my very early 20's which causes me not to ovulate. I saw several different doctors over those early years, not for second opinions, but due to the nature of my fly by the seat of my pants lifestyle. Remarkably they all made the diagnosis seem like "No big deal," I just needed to take birth control pills. "What happens if I want to get pregnant," I asked, although I had no plans or means to do so. "Oh-we'll just put you on Clomid-it's no big deal," they said. Boy, were they wrong! I'm sure for some women that's how it works, but not, alas, for me.

After sowing my wild oats in my late teens and early 20's I cleaned up my act, and settled down a bit. I met my devoted husband (DH) at 24 and we were married just before my 26th birthday. In the rural area where we live, that's actually kind of late to marry and begin a family, so we were anxious to get started.

I went to my regular gynecologist and told him we were ready to start trying. He suggested we try on our own, which we did for about 6 months. I went back to my ob/gyn who started on low doses of Clomid and we began the dreaded temperature charts. Have you ever tried waking up in morning, lying totally still and taking your temperature every day??? It's no fun. Clomid and other drugs to treat PCOS are not covered by our health insurance and seemed costly to us at roughly $100.00/ month, little did we know then how cheap it was!

After another 6 months and no BFP (Big Fat Positive) we were referred to a Reproductive Endocrinologist, Dr. Steve Williams at Ohio Reproductive Medicine in Columbus. I liked Dr. Williams instantly! His manner is so open, and he patiently explains our options, risks and chances with each treatment approach we try. He also has an awesome staff-Nancy his nurse has really become a friend, she laughs, pray and cries with me at every turn. I am confident that they do their very best to help me.

After an initial workup by Dr. Williams, he confirmed the diagnosis of PCOS and explained that this disorder effects millions of women, yet insurance companies are not required to pay for the necessary treatments to achieve pregnancy, so they don't. He explained, that we would try the least expensive, and least invasive procedures first. Lots of women get pregnant with just a little help. He prescribed Metformin to help battle the insulin resistance part of PCOS and we tried Clomid with ultrasound monitoring and timed intercourse. We had 4 BFN (Big Fat Negative) cycles and then, finally on the 5th cycle we got a BFP! Unfortunately, I had a very early miscarriage. These cycles were costing us approx. $450.00/month so we were not able to afford cycles back to back. After the miscarriage we did 2 additional cycles with Clomid, both BFN.

Dr. Williams asked us to come in and discuss other options. He told us about a procedure called IUI, (Intra Uterine Insemination.) He recommended that we try stronger fertility drugs called gonadatropins, along with ultrasound monitoring, and instead of timed intercourse they would inseminate me with my husbands sperm. This treatment approach was more successful, more risky, and much more expensive than any of our other treatment plans, the drugs alone are about 3200.00 per cycle. We saved for months in between each treatment and tried 4 cycles over the course of 2 years, all BFN!

We had another meeting with Dr. Williams, who said that maybe my previous abdominal surgeries (I've had 2) had caused adhesions which were interfering with the IUI treatment, and he said it was time to try IVF (In Vitro Fertilization.) Ohio Reproductive Medicine has good success rates with IVF about 40% of patients take home a baby with each cycle. We decided to try and we saved for nearly a year. We just completed our 1st IVF cycle---BFN. I see Dr. Williams on Friday for his take on why it failed. I'm 31 now, and am starting to run out of time. We can no longer wait and save for a year or more between cycles without directly affecting our results.

We've willingly, happily, made sacrifices along the way so that we can continue to pursue this dream, this yearning, this need. We're very average. We're not poor, but we are definitely not wealthy. We both work full-time, DH takes side jobs, we drive used cars, cut coupons, and don't have the latest and greatest--and we're really, really happy that way!! Unfortunately these things are no longer enough to allow us to pursue having a family. We're out of resources and asking for help. It's hard to ask, but I don't believe that God would have built me to want this so deeply if He didn't intend for it to be.

Our local paper has asked to do a story and our Credit Union will set up an account to collect donations. We are working on community fundraisers, like silent auctions, and drawings that will help us raise the $9500.00 we need for another cycle. We are willing to do whatever we can to reach our goals. Prayers and suggestions are more than welcome. Thanks for your interest in our story.

Amy Love