Saturday, July 30, 2011

frustrations and firsts

Frustrations - working with the lab here in my home city to get our lab results down to the clinic has been a nightmare. Partly because the IVF nurse they paired me with is a moron and partly because the lab cannot do Stat E2. By the time I am writing this post we have called our clinic three times because the first order my IVF nurse called in was for HCG and not E2. Good thing I read :) and caught it. Then they said they faxed over the updated order but they did not and the nurse blamed me for giving her the wrong fax number. But I know I didn't because I have the fax number memorized because I've been having blood work faxed there for the last 4 1/2 years at a rate of almost once month. This was all occurring a few days before I was to get the blood work done. When I arrived on Friday morning at 8 am I discovered that the had not faxed the lab and the clinic did not open till 8:30. The lab tech was awesome and took my blood and clinic's phone number to harass them for me. I also left a frantic voice mail. Finally the correct order was faxed but she forgot to tell them STAT so by 4pm that day I did not have my E2 levels. To top it off the lab swore they faxed the clinic Hammers results but the clinic swore they hadn't received them and my nasty nurse was all mad at us saying that we would have to cancel the cycle if he didn't get it done. But even though we had paper documentation showing that the blood was drawn, she still was crappy about it.

Firsts - Finally today after we called the lab twice and the clinic twice I got the long awaited phone call that Hammer's blood work was received as well as my own. It was worth the wait. I have the highest day 4 E2 ever! Higher than the average people!!!!! For the first time in our lives they are DROPPING our meds to slow us down!!!! I cannot believe it. I only pray that this is a good sign that we have healthy eggs growing. Even if the number is no different than before if they are healthier that is all that matters. We are so thrilled.

I even made up a chart of where I compare to the average for each of my cycles so you can see just what I mean by best ever.

I cannot wait until Monday when I go in for our u/s to see how things are going. So for the next two days I will decrease my Follistim to 200, give 1 vial of Menopur, and 1 vial of Ganarelix. I will continue with my last stimulation acupuncture treatment on Sunday afternoon as well as continue my Circle and Bloom IVF/hip opening yoga sessions.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Hit Me Baby...One More Time

Today I made the long trek down to our new RE's office. I am totally out of my element with this protocol so the whole time I kept thinking that I needed to be 'quiet' and follicle free. So when the ultrasound showed several follicles on the first ovary I had an internal freak-out moment. But when he said things were looking good on that side I was confused and it must have showed. He reminded me that there is no suppression and they want to work with the body's natural process of starting follicular formation and that things were timing very well. So normal breathing patterns resumed and I was given the all clear to start my meds tonight.

My meds are different than what I originally thought. When I asked about the changes, he said that he thought more about our needs and decided that Follistim and Menopur might work better. So that's what I'm using. I have to say that the Gonal was easier since I didn't have to load anything, just put on a needle, turned the dial and pushed. The whole spinning plunger on the Follistim is a bit disconcerting but I'll get used to it.

I feel totally normal this cycle, no extreme fatigue, hotflashes, and drugged brain. It's wonderful. I can only hope that my body is preferring it as well and it leads to better quality embryos. I am continuing to do acupuncture this cycle as well and really enjoy my quiet times. To add to those quiet moments, I also downloaded the Circle and Bloom IVF relaxation and imagery mp3's. They are quiet nice and lead you through visualization of your body doing what it needs to do at peak performance. From what I read if you really let yourself get involved with the process the results are much better so I'm embracing my body mind connection imagery as much as possible. I've been trying to put them at the end of my fertility yoga sessions with lots of good hip openers. School is continuing to go very well and it might actually be proving to be a blessed distraction. I hope it makes the 2ww go by fast as well since I will be immersed in studying rather than guessing and second guessing myself.

I go in for a blood draw on Friday and will get the next set of instructions for my cycle. Here's to visualizing those follicles growing healthy eggs!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Cycle Day 1

Well after much confusion, Aunt Flow has officially arrived and I am scheduled for my cycle day 3 ultrasound. I think that 'irritation' confused her a bit but nonetheless she is here and we are ready to get started. I will also be incorporating the Circle and Bloom relaxation tracks as part of our cycle treatment in addition to our regular acupuncture. So for the next three days I will be thinking quiet thoughts for my ovaries. *Shhh* Be very, very quiet so that we can get this thing going.

P.S. I had a question about the IM shots; there will be no PIO this cycle as we will be using the suppositories and Ovidrel is subq so my tushy is completely spared :0)

OK, now for some quiet thoughts....

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Officially 'Irritated'

Yesterday we drove down to the satellite clinic for our education and pre-treatment treatment. It was a really nice, newly remodeled clinic. The staff was very nice and we went in right away to have the endometrial irritation portion of our appointment. To call it an ‘irritation’ is a vast understatement. It’s more like an endometrial torture session. I practically ripped Hammer’s arm off I was gripping it so hard. I happened to look up once at him and he was stark white and had a look of fear and concern. I’m assuming it was for me but it might have also been from the very real possibility of losing his arm. I took 800 mg of pain killers but it was nowhere near enough. I guess the positive side was that my cervix behaved and did not require it to be clamped to keep it stabilized which I hear is also incredibly painful. I still hurt from where they took the biopsy and I have to continue low doses of painkiller to be comfortable at work.

We did have good news though that both of our kayrotyping came back as normal. This was such a relief because I have been nervous waiting for the results and think that maybe there is something wrong. But all that worry was for nothing!

Afterwards we had our educational appointment where they went over my protocol, showed me how to use the follistim pen, how I could mix it with the Menopur to reduce the number of shots etc. It was here that we realized I will have NO IM shots!!! My little tushy is completely spared the pain of those gigantic needles. Instead of generic HCG which has to be mixed and administered in the muscle, they ordered Ovidrel which can be given subQ. And no PIO either because they ordered the suppositories. Seriously I’m going to think I’m missing something this cycle because it’s going to be sooo easy in comparison to what we’ve done in the past. That and I am going to be knocked out during the retrieval instead of wide away with only some dilautid and xanax.

So our cycle will start once AF shows up. On day 2 or 3 of my cycle I’ll drive down for an ultrasound to see if everything is quiet and if so we’ll start the stims. I’m getting very excited and am really praying that my body will be super nice and quiet because I really, really don’t want to go through an other ‘irritation’ or should I say ‘torture.’

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Things I Forgot to Mention

1.  We are having karyotyping done to see if there is anything genetic that might be hindering our getting pregnant.  If it's me we could do PGD but if it's Hammer then it's much more difficult. We're praying that our results come back normal for both.

2. I started school!  Well prereqs anyway.  This all was getting started back when we thought our last cycle had ended.  I had just began the process of what it would take to get into the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner program back in November when our world turned upside down.  And after we had our appointment with the andrologist Hammer was still leaning toward adoption.  We discussed and thought that it would be worth while to start the school  process.  Honestly, I really didn't think we'd be doing another cycle as Hammer seemed like he really had his mind made up.  But here we are, me working FT, going to school on weekends and planning an IVF cycle.  Good times.  Now if I could just ensure that I don't have a retrieval/transfer on Sat during class :)  But honestly I'm just not going to worry about this.  I've done this enough times to know the ropes and that everything works out just fine.

3.  I've also made a commitment to not doubt this cycle and to just believe that it will work.  Because it has before, twice.  So I need to have faith that we are in the right place, with the right team.