Tuesday, November 30, 2010


I did not think I would post anymore, but I am just so down and out tonight, I need a place to vent.

I picked up another round of birth control today. For some reason, it feels like I am taking two steps back when I start a fresh pack. I know it is necessary to manipulate the timing of the frozen transfer in January (if I have anything frozen), but is seems so counterproductive.

I think part of my frustration tonight is because I have yet to receive my "freeze" results. I am still wondering if I just went through 10 days of hell for nothing.

My friend Michelle got me this wonderful daily devotional called Streams in the Desert, and I have really enjoyed reading it daily. The lesson from yesterday was about how a vineyard owner pointed out that he only stops trimming vines when they have stopped producing fruit. Otherwise, he continues to prune them back so that they continue to grow, in the same way God does in our lives.

Man, I am sick of being pruned.

Almost a year has passed on this journey towards pregnancy, and I feel my soul slowly giving up hope. So tired financially, physically, and most of all emotionally. I have huge bruises on my arms from the IV last Sunday and everything still aches from producing so many eggs. I got another bill in the mail for that visit. I am just sick and tired of paying medical bills. I feel weary.

I have been so touched, though, by how caring people are. I guess the outpouring of love does not exist without the pain, so I would not know the support and love I currently feel without going through this dark valley. Michelle also gave me a hope and peace ornament for my tree, and even just thinking about them makes me cry. I am struggling for both tonight, to be honest.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Bye for Now.

I think this is the first time, in over five years, that I have been praying for AF to come to relieve this bloating. I look about five months pregnant.

I went out and about today and am so thankful to be feeling better in time for Thanksgiving.

This will probably be it for a while, as there will be not much new between now and January:-) Praying for a decent freeze in the meantime.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

This cycle sucks

and other ramblings.

Out of 17 embryos fertilized, only 3 are normal. That really stinks. I am not sure if these three even made it to freeze yet. I should find that out maybe later this week?

It just stinks because I really wanted to make it to transfer. I am not out of the game yet, but I can't help but feel that way. It still has to freeze, then un-thaw. Only 50-70% make the un-thaw.

I am just praying and hoping for really strong embryos. I cannot help but feel like all of this was a waste. All this sickness and pain...just to result in this.

I can finally say that, after 6 days of feeling completely rotten, I feel better today. I am eating and walking around. My house is still pretty darn dismal- thank God for a long weekend.

I am so happy that I trusted my gut and bought two packages up front. So bummed, though, that 1 of the 2 seems like a wasted cycle. Praying hard that the All-Knowing Breath of Life will allow me to make it to transfer in January, or this Christmas is going to be really difficult.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Weekend Update

The last few days have been...rough.

OHSS did not care that it was my birthday. She reared her ugly head, leaving me bedridden most of the weekend. It culminated Saturday night with violent vomiting for hours on end.

We took a trip this morning to Rochester Hills to see Dr. S- he gave me an IV of Zofran and some additional tablets to take home. He also checked my ovaries- they are both around 8.5 cms, so about the size of softballs. No wonder I have been so sick.

Thankfully, I feel much better tonight. In the last four days, I have eaten two slices of bread and a half of small McDonald's fry. Tonight, I actually ate a whole bowl of scrambled eggs and feel a lot better!

Looking forward to my "abnormal" report and how many made it to freeze, which should come Monday or Tuesday.

Friday, November 19, 2010

I'm here

Early start to the morning yesterday. We got to Rochester hills and I did not start getting nervous until I had to put the surgical hat and booties on. The egg collection itself did not take that long- around a half hour. It then took me about two hours to get the pain management under control and for my mind to wake up.

They popped 25 follicles and retrieved 18 eggs. As I was being wheeled to my car, I threw up. Back to the room I went. I then got a shot for nausea that hurt because of the placement in my leg. The car ride home was not fun--at all.

Last night, I felt pretty miserable, and kept telling Josh that I never want to do that again.

Thank God for my mom- who had the boys overnight again and came to take care of me today.

The good news is that 17 fertilized, so I am hoping that they thaw well and continue growing.

I guess if I am to get Ohss, it will come tomorrow. Hoping and praying that stays away and the pain doesn't get any worse. Who knows? Maybe this is like giving birth- you forget how painful it is OR maybe next time I won't have so many eggs so it won't be an issue.

January 14 is the first available FET...so hopefully I will make it!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Here Goes Nothing

10,000 IU of hCG tonight to trigger ovulation.

If I am going to develop OHSS, I just started the ball rolling. Let's hope it doesn't get too bad.

Hartog's new wife

is pregnant. I got the e-mail this morning.

I am thrilled for him. He completely deserves it.

Still, it is hard. At this stage of the game, I just don't want to hear about how they think it is a boy and cannot wait to pick out a crib, stroller, etc. I need to stay as far away as possible from all things baby, or I turn into a sobbing mess.

So hard to be in this delicate balance of being thrilled for other people and yet so sad for myself.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Another Day, Another Drive

Early take off time this morning-8:30am. Had to make sure my bloodwork could get in before the daily cut off.

First, I seriously have the best friends in the whole world. The three people that know what we are going through all e-mailed me today to see what they could do. I am humbled. It honestly made me cry. I am so thankful God has put people in my life that love me like that. I am getting all teary even now!

Eggs are ready to hatch, that is the good news. E2 levels do not look bad- 3642 today. I got the call around 3pm to take one last shot of Bravelle tonight and then my hCG trigger tomorrow night at exactly 10:30pm. SO happy I do not have to go back tomorrow, which was the plan when I left the office today.

Thursday is the day they will retrieve the eggs. I am surprised I actually made it to retrieval with this disaster of a cycle. Now I am hoping I do not fall into the dismal 1% that ovulates before they can retrieve the eggs.

I will not know until Friday/Saturday/Sunday if I will get OHSS. That is probably the second most plaguing question I have tonight.

The most pressing is how many embryos will I have at the end of all of this, and if they will they freeze and unthaw well. The cryopreservation of embryos is so much better than it used to be...but it still is not foolproof or as great as a fresh transfer. I will not do a FET (frozen embryo transfer) until January. Feels like forever and a day away. Although, it is almost better to have this hope through the holidays (provided I have a few to freeze). Had I transferred and not gotten a BFP, I would have been gutted.

FWIW, putting up my Christmas stuff was not a great idea. I am not sure if it is the daily blood draws or the massive amount of eggs I am lugging around, but I got wore out really quickly. I ended up getting sick around 9pm. Now, my house is trashed. Thankfully, I have the next two days to work at getting it picked up and the Christmas stuff finished.

I am in prayer tonight- that I do not ovulate early, that I do not get OHSS, that the eggs turn into great quality embryos and are actually able to be frozen.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I am absolutely nuts

In anticipation of having a long recovery this week and next (provided I actually get there and also that I get the moderate form instead of the severe form of OHSS), I had the excellent idea of putting up Christmas stuff tonight...so that I can enjoy it while resting.

And that makes me flipping nuts.

Not Cancelled Yet

Follicles have grown- most of them are between 16-18 mm. There are 12 larger ones, which should mostly make it to egg retrieval.

Gabs and gabs of smaller ones which probably won't make it to maturity. These ones are surprisingly the ones that give them the most problem with OHSS.

Which, is freaking me out. I am just praying I do not get it in the most severe form.

Took one vial of Bravelle today and then I go back tomorrow for more bloodwork and another u/s.

Hoping my E2 levels have slowed down.

Looks like (if I do not get cancelled before) thursday is probably the day of ET.

Saturday, November 13, 2010


E2 levels 3,300.

Not really sure what this means.

My mom graciously went with me today to my u/s, which was such a nice break for me from all the driving. We then went to Howell outlets, and had a nice afternoon shopping. I do not get to go much with my mom (without kids), so it was a special treat.

Lead follie 18mm, and a bunch in between 13-16mm.

I go back tomorrow at 8:30 to decide whether to go forward or cancel. My E2 levels cannot double, or I will for sure be cancelled.

Good news is- no meds tonight! YAY!

Bad news- my body is going through the ringer. I am so sore from all the blood draws and extremely tired from carrying around all these eggs.

6am is going to come early tomorrow.

Friday, November 12, 2010


Just found out my mom has a tumor in her uterus. She went today to have an ablation done. They do a routine ultrasound before they start the procedure, and found the tumor.

She goes for surgery the 21st of December to remove it. The Dr. does not think it is cancerous, but it could be. He blood pressure is so high that they cannot even think about doing the surgery before that. I think normal is 120/80 and hers is 190/106, possibly due to the meds she is on to prevent ear infections. Which raises another concern- if she goes off the meds to get her blood pressure down, then what happens to her ear infections? UGH!

There goes my backup plan of having my mom be my surrogate.


What I am going through pales in comparison to what my mom has on her plate. Just praying that it is not cancer.

I feel so bad for her because she really takes on the brunt of what I am going through as well. When your child hurts, you hurt. She has shed many tears with me in the past week, which can't be helpful for her blood pressure issue.

I cannot live without my mom. I rely on her so much. Trusting God tonight to carry me through these next two months.


I swear this process goes up and down more than a yo-yo.

My E2 levels look right on track, so who the heck knows what is going to happen?

I am not good with Math, but let me see if I can explain this.

The dominant follicle should be at 18-20mm before trigger. They grow around 2mm a day. My E2 levels double every two days, and I am trying to trigger before they get to 3000 pm/ml.

Day 5 462
Day 7 1077

If my dominant follie is 16mm tomorrow, then it should be 20mm by Monday. According to E2 numbers (if they maintain the same doubling rate), my E2 would be 4-5000 on Monday. Too high. What they can do is "coast" me. Withdraw the Menopur/Bravelle and then wait for my E2 levels to come down below 3,500. It has been shown that coasting for less than 3 days does not negatively affect the quality of the egg, while helping to reduce the onset of severe OHSS.

I will obviously NOT be doing a fresh transfer, but I am starting to wonder if I will get cancelled this time around or not.

Sheesh. It is so hard to decide.

The BEST case scenario is to have a few frosties to transfer in January. Maybe then I can buy a My baby is "cooler" than yours onesie. A girl can dream.

I am trying my hardest to trust God in the process, knowing that He has and will take care of me.


I am getting frustrated!

The machine to monitor my E2 levels is broken. They sent the bloodwork out to another office, but it is so frustrating to not have them.

They provide the information to complete this crazy puzzle I am in- will I get moderate or severe OHSS?

I am just hoping I will get some answers tomorrow, although I was told that I will not see my regular doctor since he does not work on Saturdays.

To cancel or not to cancel...I cannot stop thinking about it!

Thursday, November 11, 2010


I am debating cancellation.

Going to see what my E2 levels are tomorrow from the past two blood draws.

Really worried about OHSS and would rather lose $4000 in meds/office visits than be seriously ill.


Sometimes, having information at the stroke of a keyboard is good...sometimes not so good.

I went today for my Day 7 (? cannot remember) ultrasound. I still have 20 eggs in each side. The good news is that they are growing equally, and a fair amount of them should make it to egg retrieval. Whether they will be of great quality or not remains to be seen.

I asked what the chances were I could avoid moderate to severe OHSS, and Dr. S said that he can pretty much guarantee I will get it.

That is where the google finger is not so great.

Reading horror stories of OHSS tonight is making me sick to my stomach.

I am just hoping and praying that it doesn't get bad enough that I need hospitalization. I really do not want to be in the hospital over Thanksgiving.

I hope that I will get SOMETHING out of all this hard work. My biggest fear is to go through all of this and then have nothing to freeze or have everything die in the unfreeze.

SO thankful tonight that I bought the two cycle package. Seeing the train wreck this cycle has been, I would be even more nervous if this was my only shot.

That being said, I am hoping I do not have to go through this again. The driving back and forth by myself all the time gets old.

Here we go...

Off to my Day 7 appointment. I have just been praying that God will remove the worry from me. There is nothing much I can do to control any of this.

The last two appointments I have left in tears, though, so I guess a little bit of dread is understandable.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A little update

Numbers did not come in for my estrogen levels yesterday. Apparently the machine malfunctioned, so they will have them tomorrow morning. I was kind of hoping they would come in and my meds dose would be lowered.

Thankfully, I am not yet feeling the massive amounts of eggs. I have heard it can be really uncomfortable when they start to get larger and ready for withdrawal.

On another note, I did cry less as the day went on. Going about the business of cleaning my house and taking care of Brycer really helped keep my mind off things.

That is, until I got the nicest surprise from Kristi. She gave a card to Josh to give to me tonight. It was supportive and thoughtful, and I am so touched by the gesture. I had not yet even talked to her about what we are going through. She knew the general plan was to try and have another baby. Yesterday when she asked me how I was and I started bawling, I am sure she figured out it is not going as well as I'd hoped.

She referenced two versus in there that she has held onto this year:

Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose."

Here I am crying my eyes out again. I am just going to try and cling onto those promises as I go into tomorrow's ultrasound.
I am not even sure what I am crying about.....but I just cannot stop crying.

This morning, a friend asked me how I was doing, and I just started bawling. And not a pretty, one tear slipping down my cheek sort of crying. An all out, mouth curling, hysterical cry.

I am guessing it is from all the hormones.

It just feels like I have lost one of my two chances at this, and I am so sad about that.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

One more thing

Just to add to my thoughts for today, I think the suckiest part (and the part that is making me cry) is that I cannot get back to that 70% success rate. We purposely sought out this doctor, who is 2 hours away, partly because of his excellent success rates.

The absolute most that the DR will transfer right now is 1, which is around a 50% success rate. He does not know if he will even do that, and I am kind of thinking it wouldn't be best to go forward and transfer. I have googled and googled tonight, and it looks like a lot of people think they will not get OHSS, and then they get pregnant and the symptoms come in spades.

Which also means that I just paid for one transfer that I will not even use.

Oh well, I am guessing that is a drop in the bucket in this whole process.

I can say one thing for sure- I am staying off facebook (too many pregnant people) and going into "hiding". This crying at the drop of a hat is not great for living everyday life. I went to Josh's basketball game tonight. Someone asked me how I was doing and I just started bawling.

Oh, and Josh is a gem. Thank God I have a husband so good with words- he knows exactly the right thing to say to make me feel better.

OHSS risk

I was super worried I would not have eggs.

Good Lord, I have eggs.

Around 20 in each ovary.

Which seems like it would be a good thing, right? Just the opposite.

The short of it is that we probably will be out this month, which is terribly disappointing. I run the risk of OHSS, a life threatening condition.

Josh and I are still trying to decide if we are going to try and retrieve these eggs for freezing, or start over in January. With this many eggs, the quality can be really poor.

Tomorrow's E2 numbers and Thursday's ultrasound might help me decide where to go from here. The biggest disappointment is thinking of freezing. Transferring 2 fresh embryos have a success rate of around 70%. With a FET, the success rate goes down to 40%. This is not even counting all the people I know whose embryos have not made the thaw.

So disappointed, honestly.

Monday, November 8, 2010


I think if I had to put my finger on what I really miss about getting pregnant naturally, it would be the simplicity of it all.

With Kayden, we literally had sex...and were pregnant.

There weren't doctors and shots and pills and ultrasounds and bloodwork. The list is never ending, and all stressful.

To get pregnant, and then just BE pregnant, is what I miss the most about doing it this way.

Don't get me wrong, I am thankful for the technology. If it did not exist, I am positive we would have only one child.

But, it was so nice to do it the old fashioned way.

A rough day

Today has been a rough day. I just found out two more people I work really closely with are pregnant.

I know it shouldn't matter. I have two beautiful kids.

It is just hard.

Because I have two kids, I know what I am missing.

Tomorrow is weighing heavily on my mind.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Getting Better

with mixing shots, that is.

The first night, it took me almost fourty minutes to get each medicine diluted and mixed. Tonight, I did it in eight. The last vial is the one where I get most worried, seeing that ALL the medicine is in there and I would hate to screw it up!

I am supposed to take them every night at the same time, but that did present a problem with the time change last night:-) I ended up just doing it at the same time, even though technically it was an hour later.

The last two nights I have done leg shots. Although they hurt more going in, I think I prefer them because my stomach has been really sore.

Two more days to the five day ultrasound. Hoping and praying that I am a good responder.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Another Round of Meds

I thought it would be interesting to take a picture of my nightly med routine.

See those five vials?

One is water, and four are dissolving tablets. You shoot the water with the long needle into one of the dissolving tablets.

You then suck up the water and shoot it into the next one. The tops are designed so that even when you tip it, nothing comes out. It actually is pretty cool...if I did not have to stick myself with it, that is.

I get nervous when I get to dissolving #4, because all the meds are in that one little vial- $700 ($350 out of my pocket, $350 from insurance) by the time I am finished.

I don't even own a coat that costs as much as ONE vial.

Once you suck up all the water, I wipe my skin with alcohol, switch to the smaller needle and hope I don't hit a vein:-)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

First Injection

Injections went well tonight. I must have thick skin (or a really fat stomach!), because they do not hurt at all. I thought I would have to get Josh to do it, but he was busy so I quick did it. The needle is so small. Honestly, Bryce biting me in my stomach during playtime hurt far worse.

The hardest thing is learning how to mix them correctly. You have to take .5cc of liquid and mix it with four vials of powder.

Of course when the nurse showed me what to do, it all appeared so easy. Tonight, when I had to do it myself, it was much more difficult. Largely because I wanted to make sure every last drop of medicine was injected and there was still a tiny bit in one of the vials.

There are two ways you can pull medicine out of vials- with a Q-CAP and a needle. The Q-CAP works as a needle and simply screws onto the syringe, allowing you to then pull back the syringe and drain the liquid.

When using a straight needle, you insert it through the top, and then pull back the medicine. The tricky part is that if you get too many air bubbles, you lose a small portion of medicine when getting those bubbles out of the needle before injection.

I was messing around with both the Q-CAP and the needle tonight, and I can't decide which one is better. I think I can get a more accurate pull with the needle, with fewer air bubbles.

The only side effect I have noticed is, since starting birth control, I have had headaches on and off.

Scratch that.

Since starting Flagyl (for the parasite), I have had headaches.

Someone once told me that they thought the needles and mixing and ultrasounds would be the worst part, but that paled in comparison to the emotional side of this all. I am early in my journey, but I know just what she is talking about. When I faced possible cancellation because of the cyst, I realized I am already SO invested in this, it will be hard if it doesn't work.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Good news! An answer to prayer!

The cyst is non-functional, and my estrogen levels look good. I got the all clear to start tomorrow.

Shots, here we come!

Flu...stay away!

Eggs...please respond to meds!

My Goals: at least 10-12 eggs fertilized
2 good hatching blasts to transfer

Realistically, my biggest goal is to make it to transfer. Grow, eggs, grow!


My son has the flu.

And you know what happens when kids have the flu- they give it to parents.

Why does this all have to be so hard?

Now I am worried about getting the flu, as I want to be in the best shape possible (and the healthiest possible) for what is to come.

This whole sickness/parasite/cyst stuff is seriously stressing me out.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Thwarted before I even begin!?!

Went for my baseline ultrasound today- and I have a leftover cyst from a previous ovulation. They took blood work today, and they will be able to tell by my estrogen level if it is functional or not. I am praying and praying it is non-functional so I can begin on Thursday.

If not, I think I have to wait a week. Which doesn't seem like the end of the world- it just would be a wasted trip to Ypsilanti today. Since it takes me five hours round trip, I would rather not go just to chew the fat with the nurses:-)

Honestly, part of me wonders--will this whole cycle be bad? If it is starting off sucky, will I regret even starting? The thing is, I would hate to wait until after Christmas. Seems so far away.

I am just praying, honestly, that I can start on Thursday. I have been waiting so long, and just want to get on with it already.

This is going to be hard.

Really hard.