Friday, December 30, 2011

Fuel for the fire....

Sometimes I have really good ideas....

Eating buffalo wing flavored pretzels about 1.5 hours before you'd like to lay down and go to sleep at 5.5 weeks pregnant does not happen to be one of them.

Heartburn has been kind of a typical visitor at bedtime for the last several nights, thankfully I finally wised up and bought some Tums for my nightstand. I'm crossing my fingers!

Also, random question... What app do you use to blog from your iPhone- the one I use tends to make me grumpy!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

And the crazy dreams continue....

For the last several days I've been complaining that my mouth tastes like I've been sucking on dirty pennies. It is so incredibly gross. I feel like I'm constantly brushing my teeth.

Last night I had a dream in which I needed to take some pills and therefore needed to eat something. My husband suggested something with some fiber- dollar bills. He fed me three, similar to how you'd feed them into a vending machine. Gross. Upon waking up my mouth tasted like I'd been sucking on a bag of old dirty coins all night... Ick!

Other over the top dreams I've had recently have included my brother dressed as Santa trying to 'put me to sleep for a little while' with a syringe in his hand, being caught audibly growling in my sleep and  there was also one about riding a turtle as a form of transportation. Just keeping things interesting I guess.

In other news, we had to remove our Christmas tree from the house today. I don't know if it was just now starting to smell like a fir tree or if my supernatural sense of smell is just arriving, but I couldn't take the smell. It is usually one that I love, not today- it had to come down!

One week from tomorrow!!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Yesterday I reached the five week mark. It is a weird to think that it will have been a little more than two weeks since any kind of testing when we go in for our ultrasound at 6w3d. I'm looking forward to it, but it is all a little scary at the same time. After having a miscarriage in August I feel like there is just this 'what if?' hanging over our heads. I'm trying really really hard to ignore it, but it is there. All the time. 

I had my check up with my PCP yesterday to go over my thyroid levels from Thursday. He agreed that while it would be good to have it lower, we caught it super early and it really wasn't super high. He drew blood again yesterday and it was only 2.47 instead of the 3.75 it was on Thursday (different labs). I have a feeling it has to do with my dose of estrace being cut in half beginning last Wednesday. I had been taking the morning dose three hours after my thyroid medication (as recommended) but I just have a feeling that made it spike up. My doctor did increase my dose yesterday from 75mcg to 100mcg,  and even with my level coming back at 2.47 yesterday I think my body will do fine with the increase. One less thing to worry about. We'll recheck in 4 weeks. 

Not much more to report. I have a few symptoms here and there but nothing horrible. I'm pretty sure the highlight of my week was picking up my endometrin refill this morning and not having to pay a cent for it! $45 copay + $ 50 coupon = ZERO out of pocket!!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Always Something...

When I had my second beta drawn on Thursday my TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) was elevated. Not off the charts elevated, in fact it was still within therapeutic range, so not horrible, but concerning just the same. Since the prescribing physician is not my RE, they are requesting that my PCP (the prescribing physician) monitor and manage my thyroid care. Thankfully I was able to make an appointment for Tuesday to check in with my doctor and see where I need to go from here. I'll be five weeks tomorrow and hope the changes in medication will take effect quickly. When I started thyroid medication last year within 4 weeks my level had nearly cut in half and within 8 weeks it was less than 1/4 of what it was when I started, so I'm feeling pretty confident that we caught the rise early and it will quickly be remedied.

When I consulted Dr. Google on the matter I read all kinds of scary things, but I also read that high levels of HCG (hello 889 @ 11dp5dt) and increases in estrogen (2036 @ 9dp5dt) can elevate TSH. My RE reduced my estrace dose down to 2mg /day from 4mg/day starting last Wednesday, so that too could help improve the levels. We'll see.

The moral of this story? Even if you don't have thyroid issues pre-pregnancy it is a good idea to have your levels checked early in pregnancy. It isn't something my clinic tests right away, so I had to ask to have it done and I'm SO glad I did!

I'll be sure and update tomorrow after the appointment!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!

We're celebrating the holiday with some super fun news to share with our immediate families. I'll be sure to share all about it once the weekend is over. 

I hope that you all are enjoying the weekend and have managed to find at least a little holiday cheer this season!!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Catching up on socks...

Socks from beta day #1- 12.20.2011 
Thanks Jessica!!

Socks from beta day #2 12.22.2011 
Thanks E!!!

Thursday, December 22, 2011


Good news. Thank God!

When I went in to get my blood drawn this morning it was kind of an out of body experience. The receptionist gave me a knowing smile, the girl who drew my blood congratulated me on a great first beta, I ran into my nurse while I was waiting to check out and she was SO excited for us. In addition to being happy for us, she also could see the fear on my face and promised to call just as soon as she got the results.

My blood was drawn at 9:45 and she called (after what seemed like an eternity) at 12:27 to say that my level was.....

889.3!! We were looking for right around 800, so we will happily take an over achieving embryo or two :)

Yahoo! I'm so happy I can hardly stand it. We've made it over a hurdle that we didn't clear last time. Now it is time to take it one day at a time... Today I am THRILLED!

Also, in case you were wondering.....

Beta #2

I'm terrified.

I don't have any good reason to think things aren't progressing just fine, but the pregnancy from our last IVF cycle ruined me. I am so scared to get a call today that either starts with 'unfortunately' or ends with the words I heard last time... 'we'll just have to wait and see.' Today I'm looking for words like congratulations, pregnant, doubled, 800.

The worst part is, I feel like such a jerk for even posting that I'm scared. I mean Tuesday brought some pretty great looking numbers, numbers that some would argue sound an awful lot like twins. But, I try to be honest. And if I'm being honest, I'm terrified. Like really, really terrified.

Hopefully I'll be back this afternoon with some great news, until then say a prayer- cross your fingers- send good vibes... whatever it is you do, please do it!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Signs and Symptoms...

...that I am indeed pregnant. I am still daily looking at sicks that were dipped in urine (days ago, YUCK!) just to see those two lines that mean everything. Even if I'm still in disbelief that this is for real, there are a few things that serve as gentle daily reminders....

  • Hello, maps for skin! I've always had visible veins, but it's reached a new level. The inside of my arms are kinda grossing me out!
  • Oh-my-nipples! Seriously, ouch. The ladies MUST be roped in at all times!
  • A feeling of bloat. Constantly. Some days it is uncomfortable to the point of doing the rubber band trick with my jeans. FYI, I may never button my pants again- who knew a rubber band could change EVERYTHING?!? Having my pants feel tight is weird given the fact that I've actually lost weight since we started this IVF cycle.
  • I'm hungry. Maybe not weird for the general population, but when you've spent the last year on a metformin induced hunger strike, being hungry is very strange.
  • A blazing feeling in my esophagus. After eating the most bland things (like a banana) I feel like there is a bit of a fire brewing in my chest.
  • Toast- still on the NO list. I made grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup for dinner late last week not really thinking about the whole toast thing. I couldn't eat it. My husband thinks it is hilarious. He is constantly saying things like 'yeah, I get it. I mean, toast is super spicy and flavorful. It totally makes sense that the thought of it makes you want to vomit.' Blah, blah, blah... weirder things are bound to happen!
  • Waterworks! This one is twofold. I'm a pee'ing machine- I used to be able to hold it for hours. Now if I don't wake up in the night to go, it is a delicate dance to the bathroom in the morning when my alarm goes off. Seriously, once I'm upright it becomes a VERY pressing issue. Also, I may not full on cry, but the eyes get glassy over the most ridiculous things. Like pretty much every episode of Glee. It is like being on lu.pron all over again.

And you know what? I love every single one of the crazy things happening with my body. This morning when I seriously nearly pee'd myself when I got out of bed I was so happy, because I know it is for the absolute best reason EVER!

Soooo, there may be an explanation for the crazy symptoms so early and the insanely early positive HPT (4dp5dt). My nurse just called with my beta... 398 at 9dp5dt. That is nearly 4 times higher than the positive we got with our first IVF cycle. E2 was 2,036 (starting just one estrace tomorrow) and progesterone was nice and high at 83 compared to last time's 14.4 at this point. 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Telling Hubs...

Hubs and I rarely do Christmas gifts. We both usually buy things that we want, when we want it so at Christmastime we usually focus on others, celebrate the holiday in other ways and exchange an annual ornament. A couple of weeks ago I found a pair of shoes that I liked, nothing extravagant, just a pair of TOMS. Since I can't make a decision to save my life, I didn't buy them the day we saw them. Instead I thought about it for a couple of weeks. On Friday I told hubs and I was going to buy them for myself as an early Christmas gift (because I love to justify a purchase) and he agreed as long and I wrapped them for myself too, Ha.
I already knew I was pregnant (and he didn't yet) so I thought this might be the way I would tell him. I figured I would tell him that if I was opening my "gift" early, then he should also. I had bought him a shirt, so I wrapped it up and made him an ornament. I opened my gift first- oooohhhh'd and ahhhh'd over the shoes I'd just bought for myself. Then he opened his. I love that moment. Even if he was VERY cautiously optimistic in that moment, I loved watching him get more excited with each passing minute.

Only a couple more days until beta day. I desperately just want it to be a higher number than last time (106), not that it means ANYTHING in terms of this baby/ies sticking around, but I need it to be different. In the meantime I keep praying for the babe/s snuggling in and continue testing just to watch the line get darker and calm my little infertile heart. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Confessions of an addict...

It has never been a secret that I thought this cycle would work. And with knowing the thrill of being pregnant (even if I only knew it  for a very short amount of time) I wanted to know as soon as I possibly could. My doctor and nurse would both likely shoot me if they knew I was testing at all before my beta, and if they knew how early it began I'm sure I would get a pretty hefty lecture. However, its my choice... and I made it... at 4dp5dt. There I said it. I took a test mid-day just four days after the transfer of two perfect little blasts.

Oh, were you wondering what the result was? Yeah, it was positive. Two pink lines. No squinting needed- positive. I began wondering if it was a little leftover HCG trigger in my system (10.5dp trigger), so I remained cautiously optimistic (read: nearly wet my pants with joy) and decided I'd retest around the same time the following day to see if the line lightened or darkened. 

It was darker. I'm pregnant.

In all honesty, when I tested at 4dp5dt I was testing in hopes of seeing a negative. I wanted to know the trigger was gone, and that anything I saw from there on out was actually a pregnancy, not the dang trigger. So, when the faint line appeared I wasn't exactly sure what to think. I didn't even tell Hubs that I tested. I waited until after yesterday's much darker test to break the news that we are once again expecting. 

After everything that happened last time I was terrified that I'd be too scared to get excited this time. I felt so jaded after our miscarriage. I didn't think I'd ever feel that same joy that I felt in July. 

I was wrong. I've never been so happy to be wrong. Well, maybe not all wrong. I do still have thoughts like 'well, it was like this at this point last time, too- and we know how that ended up' but, as quickly as I think it, I also toss those thoughts aside. This pregnancy deserves to be celebrated for as long as it lasts- hopefully about 36 more weeks!

For the moment, I am thrilled. I know that the days that pass between beta one and beta two will be hard because it was then that it fell apart last time, but for now, we are celebrating :)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


I'm kicking myself for not writing down more of my symptoms from our last IVF cycle. Why, you ask? Because, I'm becoming more neurotic by the day.

Seriously, there is no fooling myself this time that I'll be able to wait until beta day (Tuesday) to know my fate.. At this point I'll be lucky if I make it to the weekend without peeing on something that has the ability to make some lines.

As for symptoms? They can pretty much all be explained by hormonal changes thanks to all of the supplementation I'm on. Buuuut, in case you're wondering, or God forbid, I have to do this ever again......
  • Effing crazy dreams
  • Uterine cramping
  • A seriously oily face
  • Random dizzy spell in line at  the grocery store
  • Weight loss - with ZERO effort
  • Extremely sore nipples
  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Fatigue
  • Pretty serious aversion to toast (weirdest aversion ever!)
  • The beginnings of a rash on my belly (3dp5dt)
For the record I had all of these, minus the oily face and the weird toast thing last time... And I was pregnant.

This is totally normal, right?!?

Effing crazy dream. Like for serious.

Last night the following things happened in my dream....

  • Hubs and I arrived 3 hours early for our embryo transfer. 
  • He decided to have an elective surgery while we waited. I stayed in the car during said surgery.
  • The doctor who did my ET walked by the car while I was sitting in it, knocked on the window and asked if I wanted to have an ultrasound. He said he'd bring the machine out to the car. (uh, what?)
  • Just then, my husband came out from his surgery and we drove away. We passed the doctor pushing the ultrasound machine while driving away. 
  • We ended up at my parent's house (2 hours away) just before my transfer was scheduled to start. At this point I went to lunch with a bunch of people I didn't know. 
  • I finally realized that I needed to be at the transfer, so I started frantically trying to call the clinic. 
  • I could not for the life of me get my phone to work. It did look an awful lot like a tv remote and did seem to work with the TV, perhaps that was the problem! 
  • In fact, my phone was so useless it seemed like a good idea to walk into a grocery store, cut a head of cabbage into quarters with a freaking sword and use it to call the embryologist.... in London. 
  • At this point, I lost my shoes (pretty sure that is when I took off my socks in my sleep) stole a car and took about 85 wrong turns trying to get to the clinic for my transfer.
  • And then I woke up... 
Someone please interpret that mess...

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


A few random things...
  • My two days of bed rest are O.V.E.R. but I've been taking it pretty easy today. I've spent a good chunk of time on the couch, but it felt SO good to be able to get up and make my own lunch. 
  • Progesterone suppositories are gross. 
  • I still have 3 Christmas gifts to buy... the same 3 I've had left for the last 4+ weeks. My husband's family is IMPOSSIBLE to buy for!
  • Pinterest has been my saving grace through bed rest. 
  • My husband cannot get home soon enough today! Am finally allowed to shower today, but last time I got super dizzy in my first shower after ET, so I'm waiting until he gets home. 
  • I'm feeling good about this cycle. That was shaken a little yesterday when there was only one freezable embryo- but I'm feeling better, more confident today. 
  • My beta is one week from today. 
  • We're having dinner with friends on Friday night- I'm looking forward to doing something that does not revolve around IVF. 
  • Here are my socks from the transfer....

Monday, December 12, 2011


It's amazing how nice it sounds to lay around all day, when in reality it isn't all that glamorous. I think I could dig it more if the "no more than a 45 degree angle" rule didn't exist! I've finished all the Private Practice that Netflix had to offer and began watching Glee this morning. This afternoon is going to require something more or I may go crazy!!

I'm currently (not so patiently) waiting to hear about our other three embryos. I'm hopeful all three are still growing and will be frozen alongside our two from our first cycle later this afternoon.

I'm already thinking about when/if I'll test. I'm fairly certain it is more of a question of when than it is of if. Last time I got my fist positive at 6dp5dt... that would be on Saturday.

***update*** I just heard from one of the embryologists- we have one embryo to freeze. She said it was very similar in quality to those that we transferred yesterday. So, even though I was wishing for more... Quality over quantity! BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Two Perfect Blasts....

We just got home and settled in after our transfer. You'll remember that we've heard no updates sine the initial fertilization report on Wednesday morning.

Of our 9 retrieved eggs, 7 were mature, 6 fertilized with ICSI and as of this morning 5 were still growing!!!! The doctor performing the transfer today said that while I'm not much of a quantity girl when it comes to eggs retrieved, I'm certainly a quality girl when it comes to embryos.... Yay, finally I do something right!!!!

We transferred what the embryologist called 'two absolutely perfect blasts.' The remaining three all looked good but were growing at a slower pace (exactly what we saw last time) and depending on their status tomorrow, they will be frozen.

The transfer itself went perfectly, but leading up to it with the speculum was kind of a mess! It had to do with my full bladder making it difficult to visualize the cervix... It took three speculums. And, I'm fairly glad I didn't see the last one because I'm pretty sure it was enormous!

I'll be spending the rest of the afternoon in bed watching tv... I know I'll be bored and tired of laying by the time the 48 hour mandatory bed rest is lifted on Tuesday morning, but for now laying in my cozy bed being lazy and waited on hand and foot is a pretty sweet deal!!!

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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Retrieval Socks...

These were my socks on retrieval day. I feel like this picture makes my feet look they have the absolute most absurd shape... oh-well.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Sometimes early is good...

Early is not great when your period arrives in that fashion, but when your embryologist calls early, its a good thing. Not because she'll always have good news, but because you can stop worrying. Knowing is always better. But, when she calls early AND has good news it makes your day!

IVF #1:
13 Retrieved
8 Mature (62%)
4 Fertilized (50%)
4 Blasts made it to transfer/freeze (100%)

IVF #2:
9 Retrieved
7 Mature (78%)
6 Fertilized (86%)

So far, it appears that things are looking up in spite of starting out with less. From the start this was our hope. Now we wait some more. We will not hear anything more about our embryos until we arrive on Sunday morning. 4 more days of waiting. In the meantime I'm going to hang on to hope. Last time we found that once we found the mature eggs and hooked them up with a good sperm we made some pretty dang great embryos. So, until Sunday morning at 9:45am, I'm going to think positive and be hopeful that those six are growers and fighters!

Today is a very happy day!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


>Though we were hoping for more, we'll take the nine eggs that were retrieved this morning. We all were expecting more, but for now we will be thankful for nine, watch private practice with the heating pad and wait for tomorrows mature/fert report.

And we're off...

We're on our way to the egg hunt.... I'd do almost anything for a drink right now. My very fist thought upon waking up this morning was WATER!! But, that will have to wait. I have IVs to get, naps to take and eggs to be collected!!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Easter came early...

In the last several days I've taken to calling my ovaries egg baskets. I mean, they kind of are, right? I only thought the baskets were full yesterday, holy hell, post trigger they feel like they're bursting at the seems. Like to the point that sitting isn't much of an option anymore. I'm either standing or laying/lounging, I don't totally remember how I felt at this point last time, but I'm guessing I was in a similar boat.

I'm trying to get a few more things done today before tomorrow morning's retrieval. If I can get the kitchen clean, a couple loads of laundry done and squeeze in a quick trip to the grocery store I'll be a happy camper.

The trigger last night was pretty I uneventful, which was a welcome change from our IM mishaps that we've had lately. That stuff stings, but we managed. Today is my favorite medication day of the whole cycle... Nothing but my usual meds, prenatal and a baby aspirin- so easy!!

I'm looking forward to my drug induced nap tomorrow!! And maybe, just maybe I'll have another life changing moment while I'm coming out of anesthesia again :)

Injections are O-V-E-R!!!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Ten days in...

I had yet another ultrasound, this time with the final doctor in the practice that I had yet to see. He's a fairly well known doctor when it comes to IVF, and I was glad to have someone who has seen plenty cases tell me it was time to TRIGGER!

My follies grew significantly (which did not go unnoticed by me!) and it looks like several are very ready and there are multiple that will get their final nudge with the vial of menopur I took this morning, tonight's follistim dose and the 10,000 units of HCG that will be swimming around in there later this evening. All of this means we're scheduled for a Tuesday morning retrieval! Yahoo!

I am so ready!

Lining- >10mm triple stripe
Right side- 9 or 10 contenders + 3 smaller (largest 19mm)
Left side- 5 or 6 contenders + 5 smaller (largest 20mm)
E2- 2549, a much healthier number than this stage last time-- thank goodness!

Final follistim, lupron and dexamethasone doses.
6pm- 100iu Follistim
8pm- 5iu Lupron
9pm- Dexamethasone
9:30pm- 10,000units of HCG

Three more injections!!!


You know what's rad? Dull needles.

The past TWO mornings poor hubs has tried to give me my IM menopur injection and the needle wouldn't go in with his normal pressure. This in turn freaks him out a little and we have to change the needle and go through the build up again. Both mornings we've managed, but seriously- not an enjoyable experience!

I'm crossing my little fingers that tomorrow will be trigger day. I have a sneaking suspicion that I'll be back on Monday for one last look and triggering orders, but a girl can wish, right? Grow, follies, grow... I am ready to be DONE with the needles!!!!

My energy level is pretty much non-existent. I got in my bed last night about 7:30 and read until I had to take a pill at 9 and then promptly fell asleep and slept soundly until 6 this morning when it was time for another injection. I'm not sure if it is from the meds, or my lack of exercise, but it is killing me.

This weekend it's time to get organized for some lazy days ahead... Cleaning, ironing and maybe a couple of make ahead meals. I still haven't finished decorating for Christmas, and I'm on the fence about finishing. As of now we have a couple things up in addition to our Christmas tree. The thought of getting everything else out seems a little daunting 9 days into stims, knowing that we won't be having anyone into our home between now and Christmas makes it all seem silly. Thoughts?

Friday, December 2, 2011

Stim day 8...

Another day, another ultrasound. When my doctor walked into the exam room this morning she asked how I felt, my response was something about a bag of marbles in my abdomen. It's true. It just feels kind of heavy in there, but I also know that the worst is still ahead, so I'm trying to savor the moment.

This morning we saw 9 follies on righty and 5 or 6 good follies on lefty. The average size right now is between 13-14mm, with the largest follies measuring right around 15. My lining is nice and cozy at 10.4mm. E2 came back today at 1437- that is a little more than doubling in 48 hours. Tonight I'll stay at 100iu of follistim, and tomorrow night I'll decrease to 75iu.

She still thinks we'll trigger Sunday or Monday making our retrieval Tuesday or Wednesday morning.

Until then, we press on. I'm back for another ultrasound and blood draw bright and early Sunday morning- this time with the only physician in the practice that I haven't seen in my 15 months with this clinic. In the meantime I'll keep watching Private Practice... I'm about 1/2 way though season two. 

Thursday, December 1, 2011

For the record...

Private Practice may not be the show to start watching during your IVF cycle. In addition reading 'Sing You Home' by Jodi Pic.oult is not the best choice either .... You're welcome.

Am I taking my own advice? Nope. How is it working out for me? Uh, I'm hormonal- the best way to describe this one is comical.
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