Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Next Steps

In an earlier post I had mentioned that I usually have a Plan B in case of IVF failure. This plan B includes something nice to look forward to in order to help cushion the blow. IVF #2 Plan B resulted in the best little puppy-wuppy in the whole world. Who's the BEST PUPPY?? UR the BEST PUPPY! YES U ARE! YES U ARE!

Um...sorry. Ok where was I? Oh yes, Plan B for IVF #3. Well, I don't really have one.

At one point I wanted to get a tattoo to cover up the ill-advised "I'm 18 and I do what a want" tattoo I got on my back in 1998. I no longer really like it and its in the gag-worthy colors of purple and teal. I've wanted to get a whimsical, black silhouette tree. However, since the affects of tattoo ink in the bloodstream is pretty unstudied and unknown, I don't want to risk anything right now. So, that will have to wait until sometime later in life.

I think my plan B will just have to be my yearly cabin retreat at New Years with college friends, and the fact that I won't have to explain why I'm not drinking. To put it politely, me not drinking at this event would definitely be noteworthy.

I am also moving forward with our "next step" decision making. I have a consultation with SIRM on Thursday. I am thinking about coughing up the $250 to get a consult at CCRM. We'll see.

Unfortunately, I don't get my WTF appt with my current RE until 1/25. Guh. That is forever away. Especially since if we decide to go there again I would want to cycle in April, and that would mean starting Provera in February since he likes to have me on it for 2 months prior.

We'll see. I was definitely frustrated with his easy dismissal of me at our last WTF. I was hoping he wouldn't mention Donor Eggs, but it was about all he talked about. I know he wants me to have the best possible chance for success, but I wasn't ready to hear it, and I personally feel it was too soon to bring this up.

I think if this cycle had gone as poorly as the first two in terms of retrieval, fertilization, and quality of transfer, I would be looking at Donor Eggs a lot more closely. But since we had a great response, and some pretty good looking day 3 embryos, I would like to pursue this protocol some more and see if it can be tweaked at all to produce some more mature eggs (always a problem for me), and a larger batch of quality eggs. This cycle, even though it was negative, has given me more hope that it may still be possible with my eggs. At this point in time, that is all I need to keep going forward.

It won't be all I need for very long, but for right now it is.

I really hope that my RE is more optimistic when I meet with him in January. He has given us great discounts since we have had to do this multiple times, and staying with him is the option that makes the most sense financially and logistically. I just hope he makes me feel that it is the best decision emotionally as well. If he's an ass, I might push N8 to let us throw some big money at SIRM or CCRM. We'll see how those consults go.

Until next time...

Saturday, November 27, 2010


I feel empty of hope. I don't think we'll be able to have a baby with my eggs. I thought I was prepared for this, but it is hitting me really hard.

I want to give my parents a genetic grandchild. I am their only chance.
I want a baby with my reddish hair, my Mom's shyness, my Dad's uncanny memory.

I want to not feel intense jealousy towards some unnamed, unknown woman when I think about donor eggs.

For now I think our options are:

1. Try again at our clinic in April. Because you know the old adage, "when at first you don't succeed, TRY TRY TRY again". Doesn't have the same ring, but oh well. This would be the cheapest next option.

2. Pull out the big guns. Get some credit cards. Go to CCRM and do a fresh cycle with the knowledge that if(/when) it doesn't work, we at least gave it everything we had.

3. Do a Donor Egg Cycle. Admit that my eggs just suck. No explanation needed. Doesn't matter that I'm only 30 (and remember they sucked at 28 too) They just suck for no reason and will never create a child. I know I will be able to get over my insecurities about a donor egg cycle. I know I have it in me. I will be so happy to give birth to a baby, to nurture it, to know my decision gave him or her life. Plus, they will have the best Daddy in the world.

I keep wavering between all 3. We'll see. Stay tuned. Thank you for all your support.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Ignorance is Bliss

When I went in for my retrieval 2 weeks ago today, my husband and I were put into a section of "rooms" that were divided by those sheet things.

Next door we could hear another couple who were clearly getting ready for their transfer. It also became clear that they were doing a 5 day transfer.

When the nurse came to visit them, the lady said something along the lines of, "My friend said I should ask about Blasto-sites".

N8 and I just kind of grinned at each other. "Blastocycsts" I whispered. "What a newb, psht". Even though it provided a little comic relief for us, it was also quite sad. Because I really envied this person.

It was her first IVF, she was doing a 5 day transfer, meaning she likely had some great blastocysts to put back. She would likely get pregnant and this experience would have a limited impact on her life. She would likely remain ignorant of so much, including the pain of multiple IVF failures.

I am now prolonging my own ignorance. I no longer want to know about this cycle.
Today I will celebrate Thanksgiving with my family, and I want to continue to remain ignorant as long as I can.

I've never waited until Beta day to find out and I doubt I will this time, but I am now thinking I will test on Saturday. For now, I will bask in this unique bliss of not knowing.

Hope all you and your families have a great Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Put Down the Stick!

I have decided to put away the stick at least for 2 more days.

I am bowing down to my reader's superior wisdom and my own terror.

Thank you for all of your encouraging words and support. They mean more than you can know.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Not doing so well

Today is 7dp3dt and I have a confession to make. I am an obsessive POASer. Its shameful, I know. But I cannot help myself.

I had to take a booster shot at 2dp3dt, and so I started testing so I could tell when the booster was out of my system.

Well, the booster is definitively out of my system today.

Today the left line was Snow White, and she just became my least favorite Disney Princess. The bitch doesn't want to give up any of her little people.

I just spent the last hour bawling my eyes out. I am trying to hide it from my husband, because he only wants me to "think positive" and "hope for the best", but I am unable to do that right now.

I was really hoping I would see the line fade and then see it start to get darker. Tomorrow I will be using my last pee stick, and if Snow White insists on sticking around I don't know how much hope I can hold out for this cycle.

As far as symptoms go I am not sure I have had any that I haven't had before on other BFN cycles.

1. My boobs hurt like hell
2. I have been cramping on and off. I had an especially painful one that doubled me over yesterday while Christmas shopping that was surprising in its strength.
3. I sleep way too much and am still tired all the time.
4. The one *new symptom* would be clogged ears? Is that a symptom? I don't know, but its annoying. I feel like I'm underwater.

The symptom I want the most, I still do not have--Peeing on a stick and making it turn pink.

Fun with HCG

Ever wonder how long it takes for the HCG trigger shot to be gone from your system?

My lovely husband has created the following program to calculate the exact time it should be out according to the product's line of a 1/2 life every 33 hours (this claim is made by the Ovidrel website).

Of course, the prevailing wisdom is that approximately 1000 hcg is processed every 24 hours. Which is a lot different than a 1/2 life of 33 hours. So, this estimate is extremely conservative.

**Edit: Apparently the following is only currently working using Google Chrome and Internet Explorer, sorry Firefox. Input your Date and HCG concentration in IU. Ovidrel has claimed a 1/2 life of 33 hours, please review the website of your particular brand to see its published 1/2 life. The mimimum is the amount of HCG in your system that would produce a positive. I have input 10 has a good base.

Start Date, Time
HCG Start Concentration (IU)
HCG Half-Life (Hours)
Minimum Threshold (IU)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Embedding

Though it may sound like blockbuster scream-fest, it is actually what should be occurring in my uterus today.

I gave my embryo pictures a strict talking to.  I let them know I will not tolerate any slacking in the embedding department.  I can only now pray that Huey, Dewey, and Louie don't take after their father and my pleasant asking voice basically guarantees said request will not be fulfilled, since said embryos did not come up with the idea themselves but were rather directed to perform said embedding...sigh.   

I think it goes without saying that I am also going insane.  

At least Modern Family is on tonight, so I may have a 1/2 hour respite from my constant fretting.

If you my dear internets have any ideas out there for ways to distract from compulsive behavior during the 2WW, please advise.

Until then I will be glued to Dr. Google like a well-behaved blastocyst to a triple striped lining.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Progesterone Side Effects

I've had them before, and now they are back with a vengeance.

Last night, I dreamt that I got a shipment of Chia heads shaped like my new brother in law's head.  I made hair for them using mashed potatoes and baked them in the oven.  I was excited to give them as gifts for Christmas.

WTF PROGESTERONE! Get out of my head.

1dp3dt.  I'm sure there will be more to come.  

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Day 3 Transfer

Well, I got the call this morning to come in.  I was a bit crushed we didn't make it until Tuesday.  In fact, I was sure we'd come in there and have doc tell us we have jackshit to put back in, but why not try with a couple of low quality embabies. 

I think I felt this way...well, because its happened twice before.

However, things weren't all bad news bears.  Out of the 8, 5 were of good quality on day 2.  Of the 5, 3 looked promising today, so doc decided we might as well get these 3 in today.

Today we transferred a 6-cell embryo, an 8-cell embryo, and a 10-cell embryo.  They were all described as beautiful. 

Fun fact, when I got into the room, they said they had 2 6 celled and a 10 cell, and one of the 6 cells divided into 8 cells prior to the transfer.  I think it was trying to impress its Mommy.  I was suitably impressed.

I feel good.  This was our most promising cycle and our best chance yet, so I am going to use all the positive reserves I have left to think good thoughts about  this cycle.  Thank you all for your support and well-wishes!

Saturday, November 13, 2010


Of the 17 retrieved, 10 were mature.  Of the 10 mature, 8 were fertilized.

I am very happy with this result.  Its not perfect, but given my history of pretty dismal, pretty good seems perfect to me.

I find out tomorrow how my 8 are doing.  I am nervous.  I have never had a great looking embryo.  I am hoping there is at least one in there, dividing all prettily, anxious to become my baby.  Depending on how things look they'll either have me come in tomorrow, or they will hold off until Tuesday.  That I have a chance of making it to a 5 day transfer is definite progress.

If all else fails, I think we have at least found a protocol that gives us a good batch of potential, and I am grateful for that.

Will update tomorrow!

Thursday, November 11, 2010


First, I want to say Happy Veterans Day to all who have given service to our country.  Your sacrifice makes our country great.

In a small part of the country, we also celebrated Ooctye Aspiration Day!  The process went off without a hitch.

I love Ooctye Aspiration Day.  I get pampered.  I feel proactive. I get to go nu-night with the help of a strapping anesthesiologist.  This is the part I love the most.  IVF is a process that is all about WAITING.  The anxiety and constant pressure of the second hand ticking its way into our subconcious'.   But in this moment, a handsome man leans over me and tells me, "You will start to feel Slee.....".

AND then BAM I'm awake again covered in warm blankets.  No waiting at all.

After I woke up I had a running mantra in my head.  "At least 5, at least 5, at least 5".

And then my lovely nurse peaked around the corner, gives me a huge smile and in a theatrical whisper said "SEVENTEEN".

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Putting away the black nail polish

Don't worry; I'm falling out of love with my sadness.  My emo fest from yesterday has dissapated, leaving with it the knowledge that a new day always looks brighter, and that I need some new black eyeliner.

My ultrasound this morning looked pretty good.  I would say I have at least 5-6 follicles that are ready to go if we trigger today.  My nurse is betting that I will trigger today depending on my E2 levels.  It was almost under 3000 yesterday, so I am hoping today is the day!  

My mood was also immensely improved by my dear husband who brought me home an Orange Crush and a Symphony chocolate bar, which was the perfect snack for watching the premier of Conan (who just makes me giggle like a school girl, i love him!)

I also read a couple of good posts from Dr. Sher on coasting and I think my doc got it exactly right, so I'm not as worried as I have been.  Keeping a hopeful mindset for Thursday.

Monday, November 8, 2010


Coasting Day 2
Nothing new to report
except how quickly dread darkens
my flickers of hope

Saturday, November 6, 2010


Coasting.  Brings to mind lazy summers with calm pools of water supporting my weight while cottonwood seeds float around me.
In actuality, it means the my E2 level is so high fluid may cut off my ability to breath, causing severe pain and vomiting.

So, after today's scan one of my follicles has taken off at 18.5, then rest are all below 16, with a large chunk at 11.  We finally got a good look at Lefty and discovered she's been hiding due to the shame of only have about  4 measurable follicles.  I am worried.

I am worried that the rest of the follicles will not pick up the pace.  That again, I will get a batch of mostly immature eggs.   Tonight I take my last dose of FSH, then I am cut off completely on Sunday.  I didn't even ask for my E2 level.  I was a little afraid to know.

Monday will hold more answers.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Body Snatcher Alert

Day 8 ultrasound was a bit anti-climactic.  On the right I had a 15, 14, 13, a couple of 12.5, and a bunch of smaller follices.  13 follicles in all on the right.

My left ovary continued to play hide and seek.  She shows up but only when the wand is impaling other organs that I'm pretty sure I need.  I actually had to ask Nurse Probby to dial it back a few notches, and I can usually take pain like a champ. What we could see showed a 13.5, and a couple of 12's.  She thinks there are more but we couldn't get a good enough look to measure.

My nurse just called and due to my E2 level of 2,100! (color me shocked, I've NEVER had an E2 level of 2100 and I once stimmed for 17 days)  has decided to take me off of Menupur and I will only be doing 150ml of Follistim tonight.

I am so confused.  I have searched for pods in my basement, just in case I have been invaded by some alien being without my knowledge, but to no avail.

I am now worried about OHSS and my doctor canceling my cycle.  My E2 seems way too high for the number of follicles I currently have cooking (though its true we can't see all of Lefty).

On a good note, they want me to come in for a scan tomorrow.  My normal office is closed on weekends so I have to drive over 1.5 hours away to get to an open clinic.

For now I just need some hope that my follies will continue to grow without my E2 going crazy, or myself for that matter.

If anyone reads this and has any past experiences or advice, please share.  I am in need of reassurances tonight, or a heaping dose of tragic reality if the case may be.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Revolution 9

Extremely busy week here.  I wish I could have planned an IVF cycle where I would have limited outside stressors, but my job makes it pretty hard.  November is one of the least busy months, but I still had to give a presentation in front of hundreds of people at our annual conference.  I really enjoy my job, so I can't complain too much.

So...maybe just a little complaining?  I hate the anxious feeling I get right before I have to make a speech.  I get terribly nervous that I will completely lose my train of thought and just stand there with my mouth open...uhhhhhhhh.  Luckily, I was able to get through it with a minimal amount of my "space cadetedness" shining through.    I'm so relieved that it is over and I can go back to my compulsive IVF obsessing instead...much less stressful. Right?

In ovary news, mine are doing shockingly well as of my first ultrasound on Tuesday.  My left ovary tends to be a coy bitch and hide behind my uterus, but Righty was a showstopper!  The nurse counted many follies on my right and it went a little something like 12, 10, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9....I kind of loss track after a while.  Needless to say I had a lot of 9's. I was very happy in a 'what the hell is going on' kind of way, the surrealism of the moment reminded me of "Revolution 9" by the Beatles.  This is pretty much what was going on in my head.

In order to understand this surrealism, you would need to know that in my first IVF my day 5 had barely anything to look at.  My Estroidal level came back at 57....after 5 days of stims! 

My Estroidal level after 4 days of stims was 920 this time.  What the hell is my body thinking?  I have never read about such variation, but I guess it goes to show that every cycle really can be completely different.

So, for now I am caustically optimistic.  I go in for my 2nd checkup tomorrow.