October 29, 2012

IVF #1, Days 29-31: Recap

Since we received the wonderful news, not much has changed.  I still feel like I'm talking crazy, saying, "I'm pregnant".  I don't "feel" pregnant.  I mean, yes, my body feels different, sore boobs and sore and tender lower abdomen (endo is way more sensitive right now, with every movement), I'm extremely exhausted all day every day, and some nausea and nasty indigestion has definitely kicked in.  Oh, and I'm struggling to fit into my pants because I'm soooo bloated! ...but it's not to an extreme where I feel it's not my norm (from IVF meds or endo).

I want to be super duper excited, but I'm still just a tad hesitant because it's all so surreal.  I wonder when and if it will ever feel real.

I will go in for my second Beta test tomorrow.  I'm praying that the numbers are doubling as they should.  If I get great news again tomorrow, then maybe I'll feel a little more like it's real?

KJ, still doesn't know because she made it very clear that she does not want to know until there is an ultrasound to confirm that everything is going well.  It's been really tough not saying anything in front of her.  We've been very careful about not letting her overhear our excitement or conversations.  I can't wait until we know our first ultrasound date so that I will at least know when we might be able to share the news with KJ.

Symptoms:
  • complete scatterbrained and forgetful
  • exhausted/sleepy/tired
  • bloated
  • indigestion and nausea
  • super emotional
  • hot flashes —right after my nightly progesterone in oil injection
  • very sensitive lower abdomen (I assume it's due to endo, because of the pain)


Here are some other things that have gone on:

10:27:
When we got "the phone call", we were at La Cantera.  We had just left Build-A-Bear and we were buying a soft pretzel, talking about the two for one special they had going on.  I heard the phone ring and saw the caller ID . . . my heart started racing.

The nurse told me that my numbers looked "Fantastic", beta was 500, and that everything looked great with my progesterone level.  Then she said, "So, I want to say, congratulations!  You are pregnant."  I immediately said, "oh yay!! Praise God!! Thank you so much!!"

As soon as I hung up, I jumped up and down a few times, while gripping Chris's jacket, beginning to cry, and said "Hun!!!... She said everything looks fantastic.  My Beta is 500!!  Hun, it's real!!  We're pregnant!!"  (of course I said this quietly, but with a ton of joy and excitement.  I needed to make sure KJ would not hear.  She was off to the side, playing with some of her new stuffed pups —she was lost in her world of imagination).  Chris was so happy he stopped what he was doing, ordering or paying for his pretzel, and hugged squeezed me.  It was a great moment.

Jokingly, he said "I just found out my wife's pregnant!", to no one in particular.  He didn't care who was around...  Yes, we got some strange looks from the lady that handed us our pretzel and drink, but we didn't care.  We were so giggly and excited as we walked back to the car.

Then we were off to Austin, for my nephew's first birthday celebration!
road trip to Austin

I knew I wanted to tell my mom and sis in person.  So, I waited until the party was over and everyone was gone (or at least at their car).  I shared the news with my mom and sis and it was perfect!  We all cried and hugged and it's that special moment you always think about.  :)
*If I would have waited one more minute, before telling them, Chris would have exploded from holding it in from 11am until around 4:30pm or so.  Lol  He was being so silly (we were joking that he was just like the "surprise lady" from SNL!! LOL




10/28:
As soon as I woke up, thanks to a picture on facebook, of sausage for breakfast, I was immediately wanting to eat bbq sausage links and egg.  Here's the really crazy part... I don't really like sausage.  I'll eat it when it's covered in mustard, wrapped in bread or a tortilla.  But Sunday morning, I really, really, wanted some blackened bbq sausage with a side of scrambled eggs.

Chris stopped at HEB, on his way home from another errand, and he bought some sausage links.  I cooked them exactly how I wanted and I enjoyed my plate of sausage links and eggs.  I didn't want anything on the sausage, not even mustard.  It was just perfect!  —and then the nausea kicked in...

In the evening I was forced to go to Fiesta Texas (lol).  I say forced only because we had to go get our passes done so that we wouldn't miss out on the free upgrade/perks, that ended on Sunday.  So, KJ and met Chris out there.  (he had already been out there with a friend).

I was nauseous the entire time I was there.  I couldn't ride a single ride with my KJ :(.  It was so frustrating.  The only thing I could tolerate was sipping on my ice cold water.  Oh, and everywhere we walked, there was a strong smell of people, turkey legs, roasted corn, popcorn, hamburgers, pretzels, etc... and did I mention people!! Ugh!  It did not help!

Visiting Fiesta Texas for the last night of Fright Fest

Once we all got home, and I got my nightly injection, Chris went back out with his friend to a haunted house.  KJ went to bed and my bff came to visit!  :)  It was so nice to have some girl-time in a quiet house.  She gave me such a sweet and thoughtful gift:
"morning sickness relief kit"
Includes: Ginger chews, Peppermint oil, and Sea-Bands.  :)


10/28:  Info I was reading in one of the [many] books my sis lent me.  Our embryo(s) will be 22 days this friday, 11/2!!  The early stages of life are truly amazing!

October 27, 2012

IVF #1, Day 29: Beta

Today has been a very long day (Spent the day in Austin for my nephew's first bday!)... So, I'm getting straight to the point today.

Here's the update:

October 24, 2012

IVF #1, Day 25 & 26: We're pretty convinced...for now.

Yesterday and today, our minds accepted the fact that we are "currently" pregnant —according to our hpts!!

It still feels like crazy talk if I just flat out say "I'm pregnant".  I've been dreaming about these days.  The days when I take an hpt, see the two beautiful pink lines, and run out to Chris, crying and saying, "WE'RE PREGNANT!!!".  However, that's not how it's gone down.

Chris says that it's "no surprise" because we transferred two embryos into my uterus.  I, too, agree that it's not really a "surprise" —but I still really think it feels so unreal... like a really long, very realistic, dream.

Yes, we still know it's super early, and that things can change from one day to the next, but for now... we are pregnant and as happy as can be! :)

Saturday, we will go for my blood work and get our results later in the day.  I'm praying that our blood results match with our hpt results.

**side note:  yesterday, we asked KJ when she would want to know "the news", if we ended up pregnant.  I asked her "would you want to know right away or would you want to wait until it's a bit more certain, like with a first sonogram or something?" (because we have talked with her about "pregnancy loss".  She understands what it all means, but we understand that she is still just a child, and a loss of that type would be tremendously hard for her.)  Surprisingly, she said that she would rather find out once it's more certain, with a first sonogram.  I told her what a mature decision that is.  (I was really surprised.  With as much as she talks about it, just about everyday, I really thought she was going to say she wanted to know asap.).  It's going to be very difficult for me to NOT spill the beans too soon!!!  lol

How I've been feeling:
  • Not too much of a headache today —just off and on for a little while.
  • Super sleepy.  I just want to stay in bed all day (but I can't.)
  • Still super thirsty, all day long.
  • More endo pains and pull-like feelings in my lower abdomen.  (I expected to feel something but I'm kind of annoyed with the endo pains right now.)
  • Crazy sweaty-hot flashes
  • irratable
I am still on nightly 'progesterone in oil' injections.  I did have to switch back to my right side last night.  My left side is a wimp and just can't handle the pain as well as my right side.  Although, tonight it REALLY hurt again.  :(  Maybe my butt muscles have just had enough!?  A one and a half inch needle piercing through the butt muscle, every single night, is pretty annoying at this point —but we will continue for as long as we need.  Anything to help the baby(ies) make it further and further!!

I still can't believe that the possibility of a little life (or two), growing inside of me, is real... like actually happening, right now... It's not just a dream anymore.  I'm so very very thankful to God.  Every single moment that we can continue this journey is a true miracle and blessing!!!

Here are our current hpt results:

October 22, 2012

IVF #1, Day 24: Well, well, well....what do you know?!

Tonight's line was.... DARKER!!!  :D

True excitement came out tonight.  I feel more confident that we are going to get the results we want.  We still know, because it's so early, that things can always change.  But tonight, we allowed ourselves to be giddy and excited.

Chris still didn't share any words or expressions of excitement.  How I knew he really was excited was when he immediately wanted to take a picture of yesterday's and today's tests, to show the progress between the two.  I told him I knew he was secretly excited and then I saw that little side-smirk he gives when he is trying to hide something... hee hee!!!

We are just super anxious to hear "official" results from our doctor, this Saturday.  Then I might feel comfortable saying the phrase, "I'm pregnant".  Right now, it still just feels so unreal.  All I can really say, comfortably, is "the test is positive" and "it's getting darker; that's great news!". 

Tonight was our 11th, consecutive, butt injection of progesterone in oil.  :(  (my left side really can't handle the pain the way the right side did.  I just might need to go back to the right side again.)

Today's symptoms:
major migraine all day long :(
severe thirst (no matter the constant water intake)
tight pulling on my ovaries (endo pain)
exhaustion (even though I really did nothing)

Oh, and last night, I actually didn't have any dreams, that I remember.  I tossed and turned all night long and got up three times to tinkle.

Counting down the days... super excited for Saturday's Beta test!

October 21, 2012

IVF #1, Day 23: Too early to test?

Yes, that's all I've been thinking of today... crazy?  Normal?  Should I?  Could I possibly wait another five days?!

So, I did a LOT of "googling".  I searched for "how early can I test of 5 day transfer?", "5dp5dt", "how long before hcg trigger is out of system"... and several other different ways to word it.  Everything I read, stated that the trigger shot (which has hcg) should clear out around 10 days after the shot.  Today, is 12 days past having the shot.  I also read about several (many) positive pregnancy tests at 5 days past 5 day transfer (5dp5dt).  That's where we are today, 5dp5dt.

After Chris got home, from buying me some crunchy Taco Bell tacos (which I threw away, and called to complain about, because they tasted fishy!!  UCK!!!) and some glazed HEB donuts, I've been really craving both for a about a week now, I asked him what he thought about testing tonight.  A week ago, he said he did not want us to test early.  Tonight, he said "Test if you want!".

We went upstairs, together, to test...

I was SO nervous!!  I was already choked up with emotion.  I dipped the stick and set it down.  I stared at it and within less than a minute this is what I saw...

Two beautiful pink lines!! (Our first "BFP", big fat positve").  We are just praying it lasts...


I started crying and shaking immediately.  I really expected it to be negative because it's so early.  I am also still a bit concerned that it is only positive because of my hcg trigger shot.  Even though it should be out of my system, can you blame me for still having my doubts —even though it's obviously right there in front of me?!  (oh, and Chris's reaction, when I asked him how he felt about it, as I was trying to gather all my thoughts and calm myself down, "Well, it's no surprise!" —lol, typical guy reaction to first IVF cycle??)

I plan on testing again tomorrow, hoping to see a darker line!! :D  (and again around Wednesday —because I now only have one test left and I need to order more!)

So, "Yay, praise God!!", for now . . . I'm really hoping and praying this lasts!!! :D

(we weren't sure about posting this info so soon —because of the possibility of it not lasting...  But since this is part of our, very real, IVF journey, no matter what the outcome is, I felt it was really important to document it...I know I'm not the only "IVFer" who just can't wait to test and is anxious to know if the early positive is "real"... )

I'm thankful to God for tonight's positive (because I really never ever thought I'd get a chance to see two beautiful pink lines —a second time ... even if they don't last) but I also do understand that this is His plan and we don't know the final outcome...  *so I'm super shocked and excited —but I'm trying to stay calm until it's "officially" confirmed (so don't get too excited just yet ;) hee hee).

October 20, 2012

IVF #1, Day 19-22: The waiting game continues...

Tears, tears, and more tears...

I thought I would be emotional from the menopur, follistim, ganirelix, etc; instead, I'm emotional while on progesterone.  Is that normal?  I'm flustered often and feel "blue" most days.  So many thoughts run through my head and I work at staying occupied, to avoid more emotions and thoughts.

We are currently down to one car (and it's the one that is in worse condition) —Bummer!  Also, we are looking to re-home our adorable German Shepherd puppy, that we got for KJ.  —I feel so very sorry for KJ.  It's not her fault, nor the puppy's, that my health and capabilities are not where they need to be in order to raise a puppy, her size (approximately 35-40lbs, maybe more?).  I can't risk throwing my back out again.  I can't risk being layed out from severe endo flare-ups.  And most importantly, I can't risk, messing up this round of IVF over a pup —no matter how adorable and fun she can be...  The fact of the matter is that she is more than what I can do right now and I don't know what kind of limitations my future may hold.

On top of all the other stuff, I have not been working, so things are getting tighter and tighter right now.  I have to say, thankfully, we are in a very good place in our relationship, because last year, all these things, piled on top of one another, we would have been at each others throats, with intense silent treatments, daily —probably.  So, praise God for growth and unconditional love! 

We got through the first part of "the wait".  Now, we just have to make it 'til Saturday...  I really think this week will be tougher than the last.

I haven't been sleeping well at all —tossing and turning all night long, with sweaty-hot and shivering-cold flashes.  Also, I've been having very intense, uncomfortable, dreams (where I or my family are in danger).

Today is day 22.  We are still on 1cc of progesterone, nightly.  Tonight was the first night I needed to switch to my left butt cheek.  Tonight's injection was our 11th progesterone injection (10 were all on my right side, all bunched up in about the size of a quarter).  Last night, I think Chris passed through a blood vessel or something, because it's super duper sore AND has a puffy green bump (reminds me of when I used to pop blood vessels, on my wrist(s), when I used to play volleyball —but on my butt. lol)  It HURTS!!! :(

side effects that I've notice:
super sleepy (like needing several hours of a nap during the day to make it through 'til bedtime)
I get crazy "munchies"
Super thristy
sore "boobos"
very irritable
more random endo episodes
...so basically, it's like a very long stretch of PMS  (poor Chris and KJ!)

Sorry I haven't been blogging everyday, these past few days.  It just feels a little depressing that my only updates, really, are "very emotional again today"... lol  I hope it ends soon.


October 18, 2012

IVF #1, Day 20: Oh what a morning!

What a day it's been already!

Horrible endo pain woke me up at 5:32am.  I had been rolling around, in bed, trying to let it pass, hoping to just stay asleep.  But this was the kind of endo pain that makes you wonder if your ovary is about to explode!

The only way I can explain the pain, for those who don't know what endo pain is like, is... Imagine your ovaries are balloons.  Normally, you aren't even aware of where they are because you don't feel them in any way.  However, these "balloons" feel as though they are just tiny water balloons that someone is over-filling.  They keep stretching and expanding, fitting more and more water.  They felt as if they are to the point where they are riiiiight about to explode.

If you can imagine that kind of burning, stabbing, pulling, twisting, tearing, -like excruciating pain —that's the kind of pain that woke me up at 5:32am. And I'll tell you what caused it.  It might be TMI for some of you... (but if you've been reading my blog long enough, you'll know that my version of "TMI" might be some what different than 'the average bear's'.)  When my intestines fill up, as in, I have to "go potty", it causes endo pain.  When my bladder fills up, it causes pain.  When I empty my bladder, everything re-shifts and causes another episode of pain (most times).  When I "go potty", my intestines are now empty and re-shift and always causes another episode of pain.  Sometimes the 'before' pain is so much worse than the 'after' pain.  Sometimes the 'after' pain is so much worse than the 'before' pain.  And then sometimes they are both just as paralyzing.

I've been regretting not getting another surgery before IVF only because it won't "just go away" —unless someone lasers it out.  So, if I end up pregnant, which is exactly what we are praying for, I will have to fight these pains every.single.day. of my pregnancy, and for a while afterwards.  If we don't end up pregnant from this round of IVF, I feel very strongly that I will opt for a surgery first, to get rid of as much endo and lesions as possible, before starting a "FET", frozen embryo transfer (since we had one embryo survive long enough to be frozen!).

*endo pain and full episodes can also occur, for me, if I go from a sitting position to a standing position too fast (get up too fast), switch laying positions too fast, lean too far forward while in a sitting position (polishing toenails, picking something up from the floor, lean forward to tie my shoes wrong, do a full-body stretch (laying or standing —arms over head while both legs are straight.  Also, too much walking, standing, or movement (sweeping, yard work, vacuuming, mopping, or even recreational, etc.).  Sneezing causes pain, if I don't crouch down or curl up somehow, before, to brace for the forceful explosion, along with coughing, gagging (I do unfortunately have a very sensitive gag reflex and gag every single time I brush my teeth. lol).  And here's the real personal one... I'll share it only because I really try to spread awareness of how extreme endometriosis/"endo pain" changes a person's life.  After every single orgasm, I suffer with 20-45 mins of a painful endo episode (typical endo "episode": entire body tense from excruciating pain, have to focus on breathing to help keep nausea away.  When any extreme episode finally passes, I am EXHAUSTED, no matter how energetic I felt prior to the episode, and my whole body tingles from finally relaxing and getting good blood flow.)  Now, that really puts a damper on things, if you can imagine!  It's one thing to mess with my personal daily life, but it's really upsetting when it messes with my relationship! 

If you, or someone you know, experience anything similar to what I just described.  Please do NOT brush it off as "menstrual cramps" (because, yes, it does flare up even worse around 'that time of the month'); make an appointment with a doctor and tell them exactly what you experience and that you are concerned you might have "endometriosis".  And here's another important part to this:  if they don't do anything about it (look into it further) keep going to new doctor until you find one that will listen and take you seriously!!

I was 12 years old when I had my first signs of this horrible disease.  We thought it was just horrible menstruation — little did we, my mom, sis, and myself, know that "horrible" menstruation is the first sign to something being "wrong".  (I didn't get [correctly] diagnosed until I was 26!)  It's not normal. (now back to my blog... lol.  I just absolutely felt the need to share from my experiences and perspective.)


I got up to "go potty" and, a whole 28 mins later, the pain started to calm down.  I crawled back into bed, knowing that Chris's alarm would be waking him up in 30 mins and my alarm would go off in an hour and a half.  It took me an entire hour to fall back to sleep.  Thirty minutes later, my alarm went off.

KJ was the worse grump, when I went in to wake her up!  Cranky, yelling, complaining, whining, crying —very extreme this morning.  I did my best to help her be positive, but it didn't seem to do any good.  (I did my best to keep my blood pressure down and avoid "stress", as instructed after the transfer.)

We managed to leave on time and it was perfect —no traffic!  I had to be at RMA, Medical Ctr., by 9am, to get my progesterone level checked.  Everything was going so well... until my car started acting up.  I had already driven for 15 minutes; I only had another 10 minutes to drive, but I knew I wouldn't make it safely.  (my car refused to accelerate into fourth gear.  The engine just revs instead of jumping into fourth gear.  Then, at times, it would'n't even accelerate past first gear!)
   
"Don't stress...don't stress..."

There I was, 10 minutes away from my destination, parked in an unfamiliar neighborhood, crying.  I called and had to have my appointment moved to tomorrow.  I prayed and got back on the road, heading home, driving mostly in "2", second. —not "D"... that scared me too because I was afraid I was messing up my car even more, but that was the only way my car would accelerate enough to keep momentum.)

I reminded myself that there must be a reason for this —because on the way home, my car worked just fine, going into all the needed gears, most of the way.  If only I could have kept driving to my appointment!  It did, eventually, start acting up again when I was just minutes from my house, but still on the highway!

I made it home safely, by 9:17am, put some eggs in a pot to boil, and I'm now trying to "relax".  Car trouble is never a way to "relax" though. lol   

Today is "2dp5dt" (two days past 5 day transfer).  I have 9 more days before we test for pregnancy!


'To a better day!

October 16, 2012

IVF #1, Day 18: Transfer Day!!

Today, felt like a dream.  Everything about it felt like a dream...

Woke up at 7:45am.  Went to wake up KJ but she was a grump.  I sadly walked out of her room to go shower.  She realized I was really excited and that she might have hurt my feelings; she yelled from her bed, "Mom?!  I'm sorry if I was rude!  I don't mean to be rude!  I'm just tired."  I was happy that she was considering my feelings and apologized all on her own. :)

We left the house later than I wanted to because we were still grabbing last minute things for KJ (snacks, her book, a sweater, etc.).  Chris drove.

We signed in three minutes late.  No biggie; they weren't busy.  We were the only ones there.  We took a family photo to remember that moment.  It was full of excitement and joy!


I got called and the three of us quickly followed the nurse.  I was instructed to change into the gown, hair cover, and booties, once again.  I hopped into bed and then the embryologist came out.  She happily showed me a picture of our two beautiful embryos that "made it", without any doubt.  She said there was a third that might make it to freezing, but they wouldn't know until Wednesday.  (the fourth one definitely did not make it to day 5.)

The embryo on the right is the strongest.  She said it looks "perfect"!  The one on the left isn't quite there yet —it still has some work and catching up to do.



That's when she said that it is completely up to us, because we are down to just two embryos, if we want to transfer both or just one.  What a huge decision to have to make right then and there!  She stepped out, so Chris and I could discuss our plan.  I quickly told Chris that I want both to be transferred; he looked like he was going to pass out! lol  I reminded him that all this time, from beginning of IVF process, we had both been saying that we really hope they let us transfer two.  But now, he wasn't sure.  It was real and we needed a decision soon.  After some discussing, he was fully on board to transfer two (a high-five and all. lol!)

Dr. A made his way in to talk with us.  He gave us some medical facts and statistics on a twin pregnancy.  I'll be honest!  It really made me think twice about transferring both embryos.  But then I remembered that there are no guarantees that two embryos lead to a twin pregnancy.  I've known of two embryos leading to no pregnancy at all!  I had to remind myself that God is in control —over medical facts and statistics.  (I mean, when KJ was born five weeks early, according to the "charts", but was almost 7lbs, I remember how the statistics and medical facts were showing that she would need NICU and tubes.  We were told that she would develop slower.  I remember being really concerned, but then seeing how God took care of her and kept her out of NICU, never needing to go even once.  She's one smart kiddo and her pediatrician would always comment on how "amazing" she's coming along, more advanced than the "average kid", between 12 months and 4 years.  It's because God is amazing like that!).

So, when the doctor left the room, to give us time to, again, think it over, he left the room reassuring us that there is no "right or wrong answer", that it's our choice completely.  Chris seemed unsure about it just because he was really concerned about medical health of having twins (between myself and two babies).  I had to remind him that this does not guarantee twins; the way I saw it was, it was giving us two chances at the same time, instead of just one chance, at conceiving a baby.  He kept asking "what do you think?".  Without hesitation, I was telling him everything that was crossing my mind.  I kept coming back to the fact that God is in control.  If he hadn't had it in "our plan" to have a baby these past four and a half years, that we've been trying to conceive, then just because we transfer two does not mean that He does not have control over "our plan" anymore.  I, very strongly, felt that if twins were in our plan, God would take care of everything according to His will.  If all this time, only one baby is in our plan, then God will make sure it happens that way.  There was no other way for me to put it in words.  I just knew, and still know, without a shadow of a doubt, that God is fully in control and will bless us according to His plan for our lives.

I could tell Chris was still a bit hesitant but he said "okay, I trust you" and I remember thinking, "me?. . . you trust me?  What about God?  Don't you trust Him??!"  (then I thought, "Well, if I am trusting God and Chris is trusting my trust in God... then I sure hopes that means he also trusts that God is in control —no matter what we, or doctors, say or do...?")  So, we gave them our decision.... "Transfer two."

It was such a surreal experience for me.  *except as rough as Dr. A was, it reminded me that it was very real.  lol.  I couldn't hold back my emotions (I had already balled just when we saw the picture of our embryos.  It became as real as this whole experience can possibly be.  Life had been created and there it was, in picture form, right in front of my eyes.) and the staff member that stayed by my side, during the entire procedure, was absolutely God-sent and amazing!  She explained everything in detail.  Especially when things felt too rough, she calmly reassured me that it was almost done and she even offered for me to squeeze her hand (because I had a death grip on the blankets).  *for some reason, this particular doctor, in the two times he has had to be in my "personal areas", has seemed to be too much in a hurry and extremely rough.  :(  very disappointing!  Watching the transfer take place was amazing and emotional.  The idea of two fertilized embryos going into my uterus was incredible and almost too much to take in at once.  I did my best to enjoy every moment and just slow my thoughts down... one thought at a time; one moment at a time.  Only God knows what our future holds.

I was wheeled out to the recovery/rest area and told to lay completely flat for 30 minutes.  The three of us were more quiet than usual; everyone was kind of doing their own thing...

Laying for 30 mins

Keeping me company, eating her snacks. :)

Once the time was up, I changed and we drove home.  I laid on the couch the entire day, until we went to bed at 11pm or so.  (I did make sure to remember my progesterone shot on time.)  "Doctor's orders" were to lay flat for the rest of the day; tomorrow, you can sit up but still don't do anything —let your husband take care of all the cooking and cleaning."!! :)  (sounds like a great plan to me! haha)

I still can't believe that I'm laying around with two little embryos in my uterus... the only thing that reminds me that this is not a dream is when I look at our printed picture of our two beautiful embryos!!  I'm full of awe and amazement —that God has allowed us to see such early, early, stages of life... How amazing is that?!!!

I will go for a progesterone check on Thursday, at 9am.  They need to make sure my levels are 'just right'; if not, they'll have to raise my daily dose (injection).  The anticipated pregnancy test (blood work) is scheduled for October 27th!!!  Only 11 days away!!!  Wow —just wow.

We are counting down the days...

 *a few more pics:
Dr. A was nice enough to give us the petri dish, where our embryos fertilized and grew for 5 days, as a keepsake!  It's so small —only about the size of a quarter. (you can see the number "4" scratched on the dish, lower left side.)
Nightly injection of progesterone.  (doesn't he look just a little too happy


October 15, 2012

IVF #1, Day 17: Night before Embryo Transfer

Tomorrow, our little embryos will be 5 days old!  Tomorrow we will transfer one or two of them (we won't know for sure until we get there).  So, tomorrow is the BIG-BIG day!

Today, was a pretty great day.  I felt so much more like my normal self.  My bloating was down significantly!  I was very pleased.  (I was able to fit into some denim shorts that weren't even close to closing last night!).

This evening was the BEST time we've had, as a family, in a very long time!  In honor of International Babywearing Week, we decided to  share some laughter:


Five minutes before the pic was taken, KJ came running downstairs, saying "In honor of babywearing week!" —and she ran downstairs wearing a pull-up DIAPER!!!  LOL  (I gave it to her to use, for play, with her stuffed animals)  I had to explain to here that it was not baby week —baby wearing week! haha.  She changed to her night gown and happily joined in on the fun. :)

We laughed so extremely hard —I nearly pee'd my pants!! LOL  The laughter lasted, for what feels like, all night.  It truly made tonight the best.night.ever!! hahaha

My bum is super sore, from the nightly injections of progesterone.  I decided not to alternate sides, every other night.  I figured I'd rather have one really sore side, instead of two annoyingly sore sides.  I'm not sure how much I'll last with this plan.

I'm really, really, hoping to sleep better tonight.  I've still been waking up multiple times, to tinkle.  It's more annoying than anything.  I don't understand it because I don't tinkle that often during the day, when I am actually drinking glass after glass of water.  But at night, I can't sleep more than an hour or two before I absolutely have to get up to tinkle.  Last night I even had to get up twice in one hour again.

Not much more to update about today.  I successfully kept my mind busy, around the house and with KJ's school work.  So busy, that at 11:48pm, Chris reminded me that we still needed to do tonight's injections.  I flipped out!  I can't believe that I forgot.  It should have been done around 10pm.  :(  I hope it doesn't change or mess anything up... I am still on Doxycycline, Medrol, and, of course, the progesterone injection.

I don't have much else to share but here are a few more pics from tonight:


 
We literally dropped everything as soon as we remembered we had forgotten the injection.
Chris crashed right after he gave me my injection.  It must be tough giving nightly injections... hee hee.

IVF #1, Day 16: finally felt a little normal

I had been laying around, in the house, since Thursday's egg retrieval. Not necessarily by choice...my body just wasn't getting back to that "normal" feeling.

Is it the whole IVF process? Is it the daily progesterone injections? Or was it needed recovery time from egg retrieval? How about all of the above!?

My back felt much better today. Almost normal again! My insides didn't feel like they were bouncing around in there, for the most part. Now my mood seemed much more sensitive and "on edge" (similar to pms).

Leaving the house, today, was actually to rescue my hubby. He had left the house to go to Lowe's, needed to stop for gas first --but he forgot his wallet. So he called me and asked to meet him down the road to give him his wallet. He asked me to go to Lowe's with him and gave me his puppy-dog eyes when I told him I had just planned to go right back home. (I had literally thrown on a bra just to leave the house...no makeup, hair not done, comfy house-shirt (with tiny holes!), and crocs! --I was NOT prepared to go to a store. ). I decided "what the heck?! It's Lowe's, I might not stand out toooo much..." Lol. So, kj and I hopped into Chris's car and headed to Lowe's. (his face lit up like like he got a shiny new toy!)

Buying a new mower at Lowe's, the only reason for going, turned into also buying some pretty flowers and a huge barrel-like planter. Oh, also a pumpkin, four ceramic flower pots, and some other random stuff. :)

We got back home and got straight to work --mow lawn and clean out flower beds. We love our lawn now, but our body's sure hate us for it. Lol

I'll be honest, this morning started off really rough. We were on each others' nerves and I was so sensitive and took any huff and puff, that came out of his mouth, as a personal insult... We haven't had a moment like that in months! I didn't even want to sit at the table with him, to eat the sausage biscuits we had made together. It was crazy.

I took a long shower and shaved my legs, while listening to K-LOVE radio, and then I took some time for myself (self-care: plucked my eyebrows --that's my "me time", lol). That was enough time for me...until he walked into the same bathroom and crowded my space. :(

Once I joined him and kj downstairs, I sat on the single seat to keep some space and gather my love and kindness, and it all passed. We both changed our attitudes and became loving towards one another again (phew!). Then came the "I forgot my wallet moment"...

I'm so glad our day got better. I'd like to think its just crazy over sensitive emotions right now due to everything we are going through, with IVF. But I know I have to take responsibility for my own thoughts and actions, too. I have to work harder right now to continue to be a loving person. (It's not always so easy.)

During the emotional roller-coaster of the day, we received our 'day 3 embryo update':

"...Your embryos look great today. All 4 are dividing and progressing as expected. We will do your embryo transfer on Tuesday at 10:00am. Please be here at 9:30. There is no anesthesia, so you can eat and drink as you normally would. You can shower, but please do not wear any perfumes or scented lotions. We are going to need you to have a full bladder for the transfer, so be drinking water as you are getting here. There is no need to be in pain or hold it all morning, just simply be drinking on your way in. Once you get here, one of us will come out and talk to you about your embryos and what we are going to transfer. ..."

So we still have four beautiful embryos!!! Praise God!! We are still so amazed.

Tonight's meds:
Progesterone injection
Medrol
Doxycycline

No new side effects --still having SERIOUS hot flashes and still super bloated; is bloating still normal at this point?

Lets see what tomorrow brings. :)


October 14, 2012

IVF #1, Day 15: two days post retrieval

Not much happened today.

I rested all day. Laid on couch and watched tv, read my nook, took a nap. I went upstairs to lay in bed, watch some shows on Hulu Plus, read some more. I came down later for dinner and family time.

My lower back is still recovering. And my uterus and ovaries are still achy when I laugh. :( I wonder just how much pushing around they had to do, to get to my left ovary. It really aggravated my insides.

Tonight's meds: progesterone injection, doxycycline, and medrol.

Hubby and I are currently laying down, in the living room, watching Hunger games (again! Haha). *im blogging on my iPhone.

We are super anxious to get the 2nd update, tomorrow, about our embryos!! I'm praying we'll still have all four.

I sure hope I can sleep to tonight.
*oh, last night I was still up to tinkle all night --except ever two hours, instead of every 30 mins. Very strange!

Nighty night!

October 12, 2012

IVF #1, Day 14: 1 day post egg retrieval

We aren't even at the 'two week wait' and today was seriously one of the longest days I've had in a long while.

I couldn't sleep last night; so I stayed up watching Battleship.  I probably fell asleep around 2/2:30am.  I thought I was going to sleep in, from being so tired.  Instead, I was up to the bathroom, to tinkle, twice an hour from 11pm to 3am.  Then it slowed down to once every hour until around 7am.  I had NO idea I would be up, tinkling all night long!  However, I didn't have any choice because a full bladder makes for horrible endo pain.  So I teeter-tottered in the dark, very carefully, across my room many, many, times . . . and didn't get sleep —no big deal; I just wasn't expecting such an eventful night.

I opened my eyes at 8am, to check my phone for the email from the embryologist.  Nothing.  I made sure to turn up my ringer, so that I could hear when a new email came through.  8:23am, "bing!".  There it was, "Your IVF cycle".
Hi Michelle,
How are you feeling today?  Hopefully not too sore.  I just want to give you an update on how things went yesterday.  We collected 9 eggs.  Of those eggs, 7 were what we call mature and were able to be inseminated.  Eggs must reach a certain stage of development in order to be inseminated.  Of those 7, 4 are fertilized.  So you have 4 embryos.  They look great!  I'll contact you again on Sunday to let you know the time of you enbryo transfer on Tuesday.  It will be in the morning sometime.
Honestly, the email made me sad.  I did not expect to drop down from nine to four in one night.  I knew the numbers would drop between retrieval day and transfer day; I just really didn't expect to lose five over night.  I tried to stay positve.  I'm just praying that they survive another fours days.  Please little embryos, make it to our transfer day!

My belly was still sore from yesterday.  My back was another story!  :(  My lower spine, all the way to the end of my tailbone, was so extremely achy, stiff, and causing a lot of problems.  I had been recovering so well —from injuring my back last November (bulging disc, which caused the fluid to  escape, and pushed up against some nerves).  I was able to do normal activity, like brush my teeth, paint my toenails, change my clothes, dry off after shower, etc. with out limitations and pain.  Not today!  I could barely move!  It was soooo extremely painful.  I figured it just had to do with the fact that they had to really push around on my belly to get to my left ovary —it probably put a lot of stress on my lower spine.

On a better note, I'm not peeing every 30 minutes! haha.

Tonight was a great night!  We had my parent's over for "mexican night" (aroz con pollo and pinto beans for dinner and my mom and Chris made leche quemada for dessert).  It was a wonderful time together! ... and then we had to get back to [our] reality —injections.

I had Wednesday night and last night off.  No injections needed.  But tonight, we had to start my progesterone injections.  Chris did a great job, again.  He darted it in like a champ!  And he pushed in the oil nice and slowly —to avoid "the burn".  However, I think, towards the end of emptying out the syringe, Chris must have started to tilt it or something; it felt like it was slanting and digging in my skin.  :(  It burned a bit more than necessary.  KJ watched nervously and held my hand, when she heard that I was in pain from the needle, saying, "It will all be over soon.  I'm right here, mom."  —and we all survived.  ;)

I'm not sure if it's the progesterone or not but I'm sweating like crazy!!!  I got the injection about two and a half hours ago and the hot flashes started about an hour ago.  I'm used to hot flashed from my wacky hormones, before IVF, but these are much more extreme and lasting much longer (similar to when I was on Lupron).  *new side effect, I guess.

Now I'm sitting here, wondering if I should bug the embryologist tomorrow.  I'm anxious to see if we will still have four embryos.  She did say that I could contact her if I had any questions over the weekend... does this question count??

I hope to get a good night's rest —with as little interruptions as possible.  I'm super bloated, but not OHSS bloated.  My back feels a bit better tonight —but my tailbone is still aggravated. 


October 11, 2012

IVF #1, Day 13: "Day Zero" (egg retrieval day)

It all started with waking up from only five hours of [broken up, restless] sleep.  I kept tossing and turning, dreaming about our little embryos...

KJ was having a 'meltdown'-morning.  :(  Traffic was insane!!!  Travel time was exactly the one hour I had prepared for.  We signed in and it all begin.  *I'll skip the nitty-gritty of, well, my hunny's portion of this appointment. ;)  Once it was my turn, I went to the back and was instructed to leave nothing on and to put the gown, hair cover, and booties on.  Oh, I was allowed to keep my "fun socks" on! (yay!).  I got in Bed 1 and all the routine questions were asked by the nurse and the anesthesiologist.  I signed and initialed the routine forms.  I got hooked up (EKG) and had my vitals checked (blood pressure, temp, blood sugar) and then the dreadful IV was next.  The nurse said that she's really good at IVs and that my veins look "great"... and then she missed the first try!!!!!  She said, "...yeah, sometimes people's veins roll".  I have NEVER had that happen!! (and I've had way too many IV's to count)  She moved over to the next arm and tried it again.... I was so nervous —but she got it!  Praise God!  (but it was in my inner wrist; I'd never had that before.)  Chris and Kryssa were brought back.  We took a family photo, gave some kisses, and the nurse went over the discharge info (monitor temp, weight, take Doxycycline, Medrol, and progesterone injection, daily).  The anesthesiologist gave me my happy medicine and I was wheeled away...

I only remember looking around and getting really drowsy.  I remember being asked to scoot down, and thought to myself, "are you serious?!  I can barely control my eyelids right now and you want me to scoot my entire body down??" haha and then they even asked me to raise my legs into the stirrups... yeah, I don't remember past raising one leg and not knowing where to put it.  lol

I heard the nurse telling me "we're all done!  You're out now..."  I heard KJ saying "hi mommy!" and then Chris said "they got nine eggs hun!" —that definitely woke me up! (for about a minute haha) I was in and out of sleep for a few mins and then the pain started... Oh!  It was HORRBIBLE!!!  ( I was told the recovery would be painful because they were going to be pushing on the outside of my belly to try to move the ovary, that is attached to my uterus, into a workable position.  And they were able to retrieve something from my left ovary; praise God!!  (I don't know how many —but they did their best and got what they could.))  I was given tylenol and then minutes later I was being escorted to change and leave (it always seems like you get kicked out so quickly. haha)

I've been able to eat just fine and I got a nice long nap when I got home.  KJ and Chris having been doing a great job helping me around the house (Chris cooked a yummy yummy dinner!) and I have been resting up.  Im in a lot more pain than I expected.  The endo is really flaring up and my insides feel like they were stirred up and left to settle over time.  I hope I feel better by tomorrow —because Chris will back to work and it's just going to be me and KJ...

Oh, and the coolest experience of today was when the embryologist came to speak with me.  When she was telling me what they would be doing, I asked her "So, are you the one that will physically be putting the sperm in the egg?'  and she said, with a nice big smile, "Yup!  I'll be the one making your babies for you!"  I just cried... and through my happy tears, I told her how amazing that is!  I know that God is the creator of life —but to be the one to actually be working with such delicate parts of 'life'...AMAZING!   She also told me that our transfer should happen on Tuesday.  *I did ask about one or two embryos being transferred —she said that if they are all strong and "superstars" then they will transfer one.  If they are slowing down in their progress around day 3 then they will transfer 2.  But won't really have the final answer until day 5, Tuesday.  (today is considered day zero)

So, we shall see! :)


our family photo before I was taken back  (I'm so glad KJ has been a part of this experience!)
"Fun Socks" of the day



Delicious 'orange chicken' with white rice and rangoons that my love made!

October 10, 2012

IVF #1, Day 12: the night before our Egg Retrieval

I'm not "excited"... I'm anxious! Super super anxious.  I look forward to hearing the final "egg count".  And then I look forward to getting the first phone call on Friday, letting us know how many successfully fertilized.  Then on Saturday, the next phone call with the new update, and so on... A huge part of me still feels like this is a dream or something.  I have a hard time believing that in just a few more days, we will have a little embryo, or two, transferred back into my uterus.

This is real, huh?  Endometriosis, blocked tubes, and almost four and a half years of trying to conceive our second baby —and still God has blessed us the entire time.  We are so blessed to have this opportunity.  The words I find myself thinking most are "This is crazy!...Thank you Jesus!"

So, I am thankful.  Even when things get tough, I remind myself to be thankful.  Even when I feel broken, physically, spiritually, and emotionally, I remind myself of how we are blessed in many other ways.  And even when I have my moments of sadness, which seem to come and go randomly; I allow the tears to flow but then I ask God to hold my heart and carry me through...

Tomorrow is a really big day for us —but I am most anxious to see our embryos, the final product of these steps (and then, God willing, the final result in approximately nine months, a beautiful baby!).  I shared with Chris last night how I'm having a challenge when I pray because I talk with God, saying "I know in your word you say to ask and you shall receive...but I also know that you plan is greater than I can ever imagine.  So, I am asking for a miracle, a baby, Lord; however, if it is not your will for us, now or ever, please, please comfort us along the way...".  But it's just a never-ending circle because then I go right back to "but in your word, it does say if you ask you shall receive...".  See!  haha.  I guess I'm just praying for a miracle —either way.  :)

We will be waking up around 6:30am, maybe a bit earlier, and then hopefully we will leave the house no later than 7:30am.  I need to arrive by 8:30am and the procedure should begin by 9:30am.  I don't know the order of how it all will go down.  I just know I will be put to sleep and then they will do their thing (extract the eggs from the ovaries with a needle through the vaginal wall, using an ultrasound wand as their guide).  At the same time, Chris will give his swimmers to someone else who will do their thing ("wash" the sperm and select the best ones to inject directly into each of the retrieved eggs (ICSI)—which will actually happen tomorrow too!).  We were told that we will get the final egg retrieval count tomorrow, before we leave.  Then, each day that follows, we will receive a phone call updating us with the progress of our fertilized eggs.  (This is what I really really am excited for!)

See, BIG day tomorrow! :)  Will you please be in prayer with us?  Thank you SO very much!!
I'll update again soon.

IVF #1: Random things to share

Of all the things to fill my mind, I found myself thinking, just now, "I really really hope that if the embryo(s) attach and become a pregnancy that I experience morning sickness!  Because then I know I'm pregnant!!" lol  I had not a single amount of morning sickness when I was pregnant with KJ.  Back then, I was super thankful and I loved it.  This time around, I wonder if I am going to feel like it's "not real" unless I feel some kind of huge change, daily...

I'm sure that's normal, right?  Crazy thoughts . . . hoping to become pregnant and be reminded every day.  Okay, maybe it's silly to some —but it crossed my mind and made me agree with myself.  lol

Something else that has happened and I forgot to mention in my daily posts:
The day that I was visiting my parents... last friday... Remember I mentioned spending the day with my parents and going out to some stores with them?  Well, we were shopping at Sam's Club and out of nowhere, we weren't even having a convo about IVF, Kryssa holds my mom's hand, looks up at her, and says "Grandma, maybe you should get IVF, too!!  Then I can have a baby..." she was about to say cousin but then I told her it would be her aunt —all while we were cracking up (and tearing up from laughing so hard) over what KJ had just said!!! LOL  My mom lovingly explained to KJ that God made women's bodies to not be able to have children after a certain age (but in my head, I was thinking . . . "hm, but IVF with donor eggs, and even sperm if needed, could work..." hahaha).  My poor child just want anyone to have a baby at this point.  She desperately longs for a little baby in her life, as do we.  :)

KJ has been involved with most of our IVF talks.  I've explained how it works (they take daddy's sperm and mommy's eggs and they fertilize the egg with the sperm.  Then they watch to see which ones are forming correctly and they will put one or two back into mommy's uterus in hopes that it attaches to the lining and grows into a baby... *I still am partially thankful that she has not asked, yet, how that normally happens without IVF.  I haven't had to explain how body parts come together and I really don't think I'm ready to explain that yet... is that wrong of me?  What if she already knows —because she knows about individual parts and has figured it out??  ugh!  I don't even want to think about it now...*   Okay, so, she knows that the injections I've been on are to help produce as many eggs as possible and she knows that the eggs are going to be retrieved on tomorrow, Thursday ... This morning, 6am, I go in to wake her up and, so randomly, she asks me, "Mommy?... are the eggs they are going to retrieve just like regular eggs, like the eggs we eat?"  My heart melted with love —over her child-like thoughts.  I love hearing her questions as she grows!  I giggled as I kindly told her "no" and then reminded her that they are super duper micro-scopic...  As I got ready for my appointment, I just kept laughing, in my head, thinking of KJ thinking about her mom filling up with these "regular eggs, like the eggs we eat"... LOL  I wonder if she thought I could lay eggs too. hahaha!

Last, but not least, I have been so overwhelmed with love towards our KJ.  She has been so considerate, loving, and helpful, in any way possible, during this whole process.  She has held my hand several times, when she would see me cringing from pain of the Menopur injection.  She has kept me hydrated —she loves to serve me ice water; I think, in her mind, it helps relax me (which it does because I love drinking ice water throughout the day).  Most nights, during injections, she would call out from the stairs, asking if she could watch —saying, "I can't sleep knowing you're getting your injections..."

This IVF cycle really has brought out the best in our family.  We don't know what the outcome with be —new baby or not.  But the journey alone, so far, has been such a blessing!  (not to mention the connections I've made with other people, so-called "strangers", that have traveled this same journey;  all the love, support, prayers, and encouraging words from family, friends, and fellow "IVFers"!  I am so grateful.)

October 9, 2012

IVF #1, Day 11: 10/9/12

I am noticing a pattern now.  The closer we are getting to our halfway point, our egg retrieval date, the more challenging it is becoming to stay positive and have great days. 

Today, I'll be honest, I did not want to get out of bed.  I was so emotionally drained and 'in the dumps' that I just wanted to stay in bed.  However, for my KJ's sake, I made myself pull it all together and get out of bed.  I never want her to remember or feel that "mom didn't care about me; she just laid in bed, sad, all the time..."  So, I got up and went downstairs.

Endo has really been flaring up.  It's aggravating.  I often wonder if it's going to be a daily problem if we ever do get pregnant.  Many info sites claim that endo tones down or even "goes away" during pregnancy, but I tell my hunny, "I can understand if maybe endo stops growing during pregnancy... but for the endo that has already grown and fused organs and tissues together, it doesn't make sense that it won't cause pain as your insides shift, stretch, grow, etc...".  I'm really scared at the thought of having endo pain every single day during a pregnancy.   I'm concerned that it will lead to another preterm labor (which I really believe is what caused preterm labor with KJ).  I've read, in forums, from other women that have experienced horrible endo pain during their entire pregnancy.  The endo pain that I am currently experiencing now is just frustrating and upsetting!  I wish there could be an end to it...

I was nervous all day about the "butt injection" (the trigger shot of Novarel).   And to top off my day, my back problems flared up today too.  So, I basically just sat on the couch most of the day trying to keep my mind busy (between KJ's school work and trying not to focus on the amount of pain I was in).  The only medicine I can take right now is Tylenol (I bought the rapid release).  It's just a bit of a joke compared to the Norco (10-325) I had been on, prior to IVF.  I tolerate pain pretty well these days —because I have no other choice.  If Tylenol doesn't take the edge off, I just pray and try to distract my mind to make it through that moment (or entire day) as best as possible.  Today has been one of those days.  :(

Chris should have gotten off from work at 4pm.  I was really looking forward to that time because I was expecting him to call, as he usual does (everyday, on his way home).  He didn't call until 4:38pm, I believe.  I had held it together as long as I could on my own.  As soon as he called, I broke.  And, once again, he was loving, supportive, understanding, and encouraging.  I try to stay positive for him because I know it's a lot to carry —always being the shoulder that's cried on.  But he is SUCH a blessing in my life!!  He listened as I cried it all out and then he comforted me with laughter, love, and encouraging words.  He reminded me that God's plan is perfect and that "He's got this".  He reassured me that Thursday's egg retrieval will go smoothly and that he will be by my side all day to take care of me.  He told me that if I needed to stay home tonight, instead of going to our 'marriage group night', at church (which has been a totally amazing experience for us) that he will understand and we could 'relax' together.  And then he even offered to pick up dinner so I wouldn't have to do anything for the rest of the evening/night.  (when he got home with WingStop and Snow White and the Huntsmen I knew it was going to be a great night!)  Of course, it really helped me feel better.  I just really wish I wasn't having so many of these days/moments.  I want to feel normal again.

The "butt injection":
Chris watched the instructional video for the new injection and then we just watched tv to pass the night away (KJ was already in bed for the night and I needed some serious distraction from what was only hours away).  We watched Parenthood, which I absolutely LOVE and then we watched the movie he had rented.  We were counting down the time together ... until he decided to take a "nap". lol  We were instructed to give the shot at exactly 11:30pm.  Why so late?  I have no idea.  These last few nights, we had been going to bed between 9:30pm and 10:00pm.  So, having to stay up until 11:30pm, to give a shot, made us even more sleepy! haha.  At 11:20pm, I grabbed the ice pack —to numb the area and warmed up the heating pad —which we were told to use, to massage the site after the injection.  Chris had asked me to mix the liquid with the powder —so I woke him up as I mixed the medicine.  Thankfully, the nurse from Monday morning had drawn circles, one on each side, to mark the correct injection site.  Chris used the alcohol pad to clean the area . . . but again, I needed to pray first —for peace and comfort and for Chris to be confident and to have a steady hand... and then I laid down, ready for the injection.

My heart was racing, my breathing sped up, and I was sweating bullets, seriously!!  I kept feeling his fingers pulling the skin tight, like he was instructed to, but I wouldn't feel the needle.  He probably did this for an entire two minutes, while I was going crazy with nerves. LOL!  He apologized, and laughed, for taking so long, and I just continued to grip my hands tightly.  I felt a small sensation but didn't even know he had already darted the needle in until I asked, "did you put it in yet?" haha.  He told me yes and I just started thanking God!  It didn't even hurt.  I couldn't feel anything (like what I had imagined).  But then I asked, "do you see any blood?" (he was supposed to draw back, while in the site, to check for blood).  It turned out that he was so nervous that he completely forgot to check for blood; he was already done pushing all the medicine in!!  We freaked out a bit and then I told him I'm sure it will be okay (because I didn't want him to get scared that he did something wrong to me) ... he said that he did check, after he was done, and that there was nothing.  I don't know if that would have made a difference. haha. but I'm sure he freaked out and needed to still check, for his own peace of mind.

I was so amazed at how wonderfully he did.  As we were cleaning up, to go up to bed, I was coming down from my adrenaline-high and talking up a storm! lol  He was so calm and quiet; I just had to ask "were you even nervous??"  He told me that he definitely was but he got over it once he was done.  haha.  It was just me that took another 10 mins to calm down afterwards. lol

I tried googling "intramuscular injection forgot to check for blood" (and other versions of the question).  I found some info how some nurses don't do it at all and others say it's a must —to prevent the medicine from going straight into a vein because it could cause problems in the lungs...?  My injection site did not bleed at all so I figure he did not inject it intravenously.  Hm!  oh, well, right?!

Another rough day with another great ending.  :)  Praise God! 

October 8, 2012

IVF #1, Day 10: 10/8/12

AM:

I had my ultrasound/lab appointment at 7am (way too early!).  Thankfully, Chris was able to go with me and stay with KJ, while I went in for my appointment.  I normally just take her with me (one of the downfalls of homeschooling:  I never ever seem to get to do anything on my own anymore —even the private important things that aren't considered "fun".) and she normally behaves well.  However, on Friday, I noticed that she was waaaay too comfortable in the waiting room.  Which, that is a good thing —except when it turns into laying on the couch because she's "tired", which I don't doubt she was, and then whining a bit too loud, in my opinion, when I told her to sit up... so embarrassing.  So, having Chris, waiting in the car, with her is like a treat to me! haha.

I did the usual —sign in, sit and wait (which wasn't more than 3 mins today!), get my blood drawn, empty my bladder, undress from the waist down, flip the light switch on — turning a light on outside of my room letting them know "I'm ready", lay back for the ultrasound, and cringe and concentrate on trying to relax until it's over —because the endo does NOT like the ultrasound wand!  But then something unusual happened...  She was calling out the measurements of each follicle, on my right ovary, and the tech was inputting the info on the computer.  "16mm, 18mm, 19mm, 17mm..." etc. ( didn't get a total count.  I forgot to ask.) and then she moved over to my left ovary.  Now, my left ovary is always in it's very own, strange, place.  I had mentioned to Dr. B and Dr. A, at different times, earlier in the journey, that they have always been attached to either my abdominal wall or the uterus itself.  But neither of them seemed concerned about it.  So, I always figured it wasn't going to be a problem.  So, this morning, Dr. B positioned the wand in a very odd way, in order to see the follicles.  She seemed a bit alarmed by where it was located but I didn't think anything of it because it's always been the trickier one to view.  She started calling out the measurements of the left follicles, "9mm, 12mm, 10mm, 11mm...".  Uh, even I know that's not supposed to be like that —and this is just my first time at this.  My left ovary did not respond correctly over the weekend.  It's like the follicles just stopped growing! :(  Why?  I'm so disappointed.

Dr. B then tells me that my left ovary seems to be hidden behind my uterus.  Hello!!  I mentioned that in the very beginning! Ugh.  I let her know that it is pretty typical of the ovary to actually attach itself to the uterus —not just "hide".  Then she says, "that's what I was going to ask next, if it attaches with endo...".  I asked her if they would still be able to extract eggs from it and she tells me that they won't know until the day of the retrieval.  "We'll try and see if we can get it to cooperate!" she says.

Trying to keep an optimistic view, I ask her if she thinks that my right ovary will be enough for the retrieval.  Thank God, it's actually the one that responded the best, of the two; so she said that it looks good and they will be able to use it.  As positive as I'm trying to remain, it was a tough piece of information to take.  I was crushed!  You go into this doing everything right —all the injections, cutting out caffeine, chocolate, and alcohol, minimizing carbs, etc, in hopes to get as many beautiful eggs as possible.  But then to hear that it only worked half-way, despite all of our efforts?!  :(  So, heartbreaking. 

Even if my ovary does somehow, miraculously, move into a good cooperative position, the follicles aren't even the size they should be.  The only peace and comfort I get from this news is that God knows what is best for my body and our future.  Only He knows the outcome.  I have to trust that His plan is much more of a blessing than I could ever imagine.  This "bad news" about my left ovary could actually  be a blessing in disguise —I just don't know it yet.  It's not easy staying positive but I have no other choice.  Holding on to negative "what ifs" will only cause stress and low emotions.  Every time I start thinking of those negative "what ifs", I tell myself that God's got this.  It's such a comforting reminder... "God's got this."

(this song always seems to have such a special meaning in my life...)



Our retrieval is set for this Thursday at 9:30am.  We have one more night of three injections and then our trigger shot is set for tomorrow night at 11:30pm.  That's the scary one! lol  It's an intramuscular and it is a much longer and thicker needle —has to go into my backside... waaaaah!!!


******
PM:

Well, I just got my last Menopur, Follistim, and Ganirelix injections!!  (I hope it's the absolute last I ever have to see of them!)  Chris did the Menopur and Ganirelix; I did the Follistim (I just like the fact that I can give myself injections now. haha!).  I'm definitely emotionally drained tonight.  I've been doing all I can to stay positive after this morning's appointment.  I stayed super busy today, cleaning and cooking my favorite chili and cornbread.  I just wanted the shots to be over and done with, without causing me to get thinking too much about this morning or starting with the negative thoughts.  It was easy to let myself start thinking 'what's the point of doing all this if it's already not even working properly'... So, Chris did the injections and we celebrated with a nice little kiss.  I threw out all the empty glass containers and boxes and then condensed as much as I could.  Our box of medications looked so much more empty after condensing what I could —it made me feel a bit better, seeing proof that we've come a long way so far!  We are almost done and I know we are and will be blessed no matter what the outcome will be.

Thank you so much for all the encouraging words, prayers, and continued support —on facebook, instagram, twitter, and even through "old fashioned" texts!  ;)  I love hearing from everyone!

October 7, 2012

IVF #1, Day 9 , 10/7/12

What a Sunday...

I slept in, again, just a bit.  I woke up with another headache.  I was asked to cook breakfast, so I did (I enjoy cooking for my loves —especially when it's an easy request.).  I made chorizo with egg and toast on the side.  Chris and I sat to enjoy that, while watching tv.  KJ had already eaten, so we had some quiet time, to ourselves downstairs, while she played up in her room. 

I felt super bloated all day and I just felt drained.  Later, KJ's friend came over to play for a few hours and I continued to lay on the couch.  Out of nowhere, I got energy!  I got up and started cleaning and doing laundry.  *Chris had gotten up to cut the front lawn —but the mower didn't work so we are still stuck with the creepy, nasty, lawn.  :(

Chris had to go run some errands (new car battery because his died yesterday, spark plug for the mower —in hopes to get it working, and some groceries for the week —yes, he is awesome and is always happy to make the grocery run!!) and took KJ with him.  I might not have given him much of a choice, which I feel a little bad about.  He was ready to  walk out the door (I think he was dealing with some moods from, honestly, I have no idea... maybe he had his breaking point?  He's been my strength and encouragement all these days and I wonder if he is just as exhausted...) and I just blurted out "you gonna invite Kryssa?!"  It probably came out more as a demand rather than a question.  I didn't mean it that way.  I was just really hoping he was going to invite her out of the house so that I could rest and not have to send her off with him. 

They were gone for hours and in that time, I had laid down, watched some tv, and then decided to read my nook... and out of nowhere, I got nauseated and another migraine started.  :(  The only thing that has really been bothersome, so far, with the injections, have been the many many migraines, the few episodes of nausea, and the never ending bloating and endo pain.  Not as bad as I thought though.  I'm surprisingly less emotional on these meds than I was while taking the three pills of birth control, daily.  I thought these meds were going to mess more with my moods.  Thank God that they didn't or else I don't know how I would be handling the other side effects.

I read until I couldn't keep my eyes open.  I was soooo extremely sleepy.  I figured closing my eyes and resting for a short while might possibly help how I felt.  A short while turned into 45 minutes!  wow.  I opened my eyes and thought "oh, I probably only slept for four or five minutes..." I checked my phone and saw that 45 mins had passed!  I still didn't feel any better.  How sad.  The nausea was so much worse and I just wanted to go upstairs and sleep until morning —but I couldn't.  I still had injections due within the next few hours.  I sent a text to Chris asking him how he would feel if I just did it all myself tonight (I don't want to take away his part in this journey, which, for now, are giving me the injections) —I explained how I was feeling and that I just wanted to get the injections over with so I could go to bed already.  He immediately sent a text, "I'm coming home now".  I was so relieved and touched that he would come home, literally, as soon as he heard that I still wasn't feeling well and that it had, unfortunately, even gotten worse.

I  was forced to get up to tinkle (if I let my bladder fill up too much, I deal with 30-45 mins of regrets because it causes a painful endo episode!).  I looked around the house and saw a few things here and there that I could clean up, while Chris was on his way home.  A few minutes later I saw them pulling into the drive way.  I knew I could slowly help bring some groceries from the car.  To my surprise, as I stepped out on the porch, to help, he was walking up with a beautiful bouquet of flowers!  He said some very kind words of encouragement —along the lines of "these are for you . . . for all that you've gone through and will go through . . . to encourage you and remind you that you're doing great..."  Yes, I cried.  And then KJ came in for a group hug.  hee hee

My hunny . . . what perfect timing.  It's amazing how a loving act of kindness can help one feel so much better!  The evening went on much better than the day had.  Moods were happier and more helpful/loving towards one another.  ...and then it was time for injections...boooo.

I decided to try them all by myself tonight.  Chris was still right beside me, for moral support.  Oh, and KJ was right by my side too.  :)  When I got through all three, I was so proud of myself again.  I can't believe I've been able to give myself injections.  It's incredible!  (but I still haven't been able to watch my blood get drawn, at my routine labs. haha.)

I have another appointment tomorrow.  Hopefully we will find out our retrieval date and see some beautiful, enlarged, follicle-filled, ovaries!

Almost to the halfway mark...


October 6, 2012

IVF #1, Day 8: 10/6/12

I woke up around 9:30am and felt great. Then the bloating kicked up a notch and all I wanted to do was lay around and sleep. Since starting the Ganirelix, I have noticed that my 'all day sleepy' feeling has gotten better.

Later in the evening, we went out for dinner and I experience some horrible ovarian pain -from sitting so long with my jeans pushing on my tummy(?)

My injections went well. I did one and Chris did the other two. He did much better with the Ganirelix, which has the thicker needle. I was told to alternate from left and right side, every other night. So last night was supposed to be my left side but I was only able to do one injection on that side. It bled way more than expected and it hurt way too much, too. I ended up switching to the right side for the other two injections.

Nausea is off and on and my energy level is the same.

Here's to another successful night!

October 5, 2012

IVF #1, Day 7: 10/5/12

Wow, what a day!  It started with rushing, through rush-hour traffic —again, to get to my 7:30am appointment.  Seven growing follicles on my right ovary and four on my left.  The largest measured at 12mm.  I had no idea they grow so quickly (two days ago the biggest was almost 8mm)

Dr. B told me to add the Ganirelix injection tonight and that I would need to schedule an appointment for tomorrow morning, just in case my estrogen level came back too high —not sure I really understood what that meant.  I just understood that they want to make sure I don't ovulate before Monday.  I ended up getting a call, later in the day, letting me know that my estrogen level came back just fine and I don't have to go in again until Monday.  By then, we should be able to get an 'egg retrieval' date.

Today was a rough day.  I broke. :(  I had been holding it together for 6 days.  However, today I was an enormous ball of emotions and had a messed up stomach and a horrible migraine —again!! (it was something like the fourth day in a row).  Luckily, my mom happened to have the day off today.  I went over and KJ and I spent most of the day with my parents!  Of course, we went to some stores (and I finally found some super comfy yoga pants that actually fit very well around the bloated belly AND in length, for my short legs —haha!) and then we hung around their house for a bit too.  To top it off, my mom invited KJ to spend the night!  I was able to come home and get a two hour nap —uninterrupted!! (well, besides my hubby calling to check up on me)

Tonight, we were supposed to take advantage of KJ being out of the house.  We had thought on having a nice date night, starting at 8pm or so and going all into the wee hours of the night.  However, my stomach was acting like it had some kind of bug (which it doesn't!); I think it's just the meds.  :(  Needless to say, we stayed home.  I thought it would be a good idea to get my injections over with —that was our "fun" for the night. LOL!  (aside from watching a few episodes of The Big Bang Theory)

I took a HUGE step tonight... I was able to give my own injections!!!  Wow, right?!  For me, it's definitely a HUGE wow!!  Oh, correction, I gave two out of three injections.   I did the Follistim and the Menopur.  The Menopur was horrible to give!!! :(  It hurts so much for some reason.  My hubby probably only takes like 10 seconds  (at most) to empty the syringe into my belly.  However, I, on the other hand, probably took an entire 45 seconds to empty it out into my belly!!! ahhhh!  It was not easy because every time the medicine pinched and burned I would stop and then go super slowly... I'm not sure I want to do that one alone anymore.  Okay, now the new one tonight, was a hilarious moment!  It had a thicker (larger?) needle.  It was still a short one, that goes in the belly.  But it just did not look super thin like the others.  I let Chris do that one because I wanted him to still be a part of it.  I had no idea he was not going to dart it in on the first try!! haha, yup!  He hesitated and started to go in slowly.  It barely poked in and then it just started to push against my skin.  He panicked and pulled it back out!!!  Seriously!! lol!  We exchanged a very interesting look as I told him, very calmly, to just dart it in there.  But... he still went in slowly and it did NOT feel good.  haha it was a thick needle.  He did, however, empty out the syringe in my belly very gently and it didn't hurt one bit.  It felt very strange when he pulled the needle back out.  I don't look forward to having to do this two more times (and then I hope we are done with that one).

So, today was an interesting concoction of emotions and events.  :)  *unfortunately, I've been feeling my hands and feet swelling since about 30 mins after the new injection (Ganirelix).  Not sure if I should call on-call doc or see what happens in the next half hour or so.

Oh, and endo did flare up this evening  (and late last night at bedtime)  :(  —before the injections.

Let's see what tomorrow brings (hopefully no migraine, crazy gurgly stomach, or swelling of my hands or feet)...

October 4, 2012

IVF #1, Day 6: 10/4/12

Woke up feeling blugh. :( still had to get up and start my day. Chris got home from work super early so we went to my favorite Mexican restaurant, downtown. I enjoyed the food and enjoyed being out and about. From there we went to Main Event, to bowl. I wasn't sure how much I'd be able to bowl because of my back...

Three hours of bowling later, yes, that's right...three hours of bowling!! Haha. We had a BLAST!! Chris and I are thinking it might be our new little sport/hobby together. I hadn't bowled in several years and I didn't realize how much I missed it. :)

It was a great day out -and then we had to come home for injections :(

Menopur and Follistim. Nothing new there. BUT I did try to give myself an injection...I froze and couldn't get past the invisible shield, approximately 2cm from the skin of my belly. Chris had to help me out -took if out of my hand and did his thing.

I WILL get over my fear...one of these days.

October 3, 2012

IVF #1, Day 5: 10/3/12

Ultrasound/labs appointment was this morning at 7:15am.  Doc found 4 growing follicles on each ovary.  I started with ten on my right and seven on my left, on September 28.  I'm hoping I get more before retrieval... I don't know what is the norm for Day 5 but I can't imagine that eight, total, is enough.  :\

I was shocked when the nurse told me that we could know a retrieval date as early as this Friday!  I can't believe that we are so close to the retrieval date already!!  It's always just been "the week of the 8th" . . . well, that's next week already!!  It seems to be going by so quickly!  wow.

Nurse M. told me to continue with 150 Menopur and 150 Follistim.

eeek!  this is crazy; just days away from figuring out the retrieval date!  This is soooo real.

To get my mind on other things for a while (between work and IVF, my mind and emotions have reach the max, right now), KJ and I met with a friend and her kiddos and finally saw Finding Nemo 3D and then had lunch at Cosi —Yum!!  Then I crazily shopped for three and a half hours!  And that's that I really hate clothes shopping for me.  But I really needed some new clothes because I am having a LOT of trouble fitting into my current clothes right now.  I'm sooooo bloated and uncomfortable.  :(  No pain.  Just some serious discomfort with the, now, tighter waist bands.  I was able to find one Maxi dress (but its strapless and one size too big and I think I will only wear it at home).  I really need to find some more comfy clothes!

Oh, and tonight, I was actually able to watch Chris poke the needle into my tummy!  (and it wasn't even as scary and nerve-wrecking as I imagined it would be) What a HUGE step for me!  I'm serious, I just might be able to give my own injections soon. ;)

Other changes:
*I've noticed that if I walk to fast, I feel a pulling pain (like endo) on my ovaries :(
*Spotting has stopped completely.(Nurse M says it's not unusual to spot and cramp during this part of the IVF cycle.  Good to know. )