Saturday, February 28, 2009

Show and Tell:

For Show and Tell (from Mel at the Stirrup Queens), I share an affirmation I found after my second miscarriage. I remember the feeling throughout my whole body: I lost something. I felt that my body was mourning just as my heart was. I read this frequently, and although it is bittersweet, it inspires me to keep trying.

A Mother's Prayer or Affirmation After Miscarriage

In this time of loss I call upon my spirit within to guide me to my strength so that I may find peace and completion.

I will use this strength to demand of myself and others my need to grieve completely, for this will be my first step to healing.

During my time of grief I will seek guidance not only from my inner spirit but from loving persons who may offer wisdom and comfort.

I need to understand that the soul as well as the physical body needs healing and to pay attention to this. I will learn to accept that the soul may never heal completely.

I will learn to live not in fear and once again see beauty in my world and purpose in my existence.

In spite of my new knowledge that things happen that cannot be controlled, I must call upon the places within me that tell me I do have control over much of my life and use this control to aid my healing.

Let me recognize the gift in my ability to conceive and carry life however briefly.

Let me take joy in my ability to love so deeply and desire to nurture a soul unbeknownst to me.

Let me find healing in the belief that this oul knew my love for it and that that love helped it to pass to another place.

Let me honor this short life not only with my love but in finding meaning in its existence.

Let me recognize this meaning in not only my ability to survive, but in my fullest appreciation of all the moments motherhood will bring me, along with my deeper compassion and sisterhood to other women who've experienced loss.

Let a part of this soul be reflected in the spirit of my future children, born or adopted, so that I may know it through them.

I will listen to and trust the place in my deepest heart that tells me I will once again be reunited with this soul and will fulfill the need to hold it in my arms.

I will help myself to feel comfort in the knowledge that there is a star in heaven that belongs to me.

by Stacey Dinner-Levin

Friday, February 27, 2009

Infertility makes me crazy

Seriously nutty. This week has been really hard- waiting to find out if I can start next week, if the cyst has shrunk, how my E2 is. I feel like we've been waiting for something for the last 18 months. For my period to start, for me to ovulate, for the IUI's to work, for my surgery and finally to start IVF.

I am aware it is strange to WANT to inject myself, have more wild hormone adventures and shell out many thousand dollars for something with no guarantees, but here is the thing: it is our only hope.

Recent crazy behaviors*
1. Glaring at pregnant women, especially if they have three kids in tow.
2. Wanting to throw up in my mouth at the mention of Octo-mom.
3. Crying over pictures of my daughter as an infant.
4. Major eye rolling at the complaints of pregnant women who wanted a different gender.
5. Pretending for a second that my bloated birth control belly could be a bump.
6. Sneaking looks at maternity clothes, late at night, while eating M & M's.
7. Examining anyone with a child over one for a tell-tale baby bump.
8. Wanting to burst into tears when someone asks when we will "give" A a sibling.
9. Fist-shaking at celebrities like Nicole Ritche who seem thin AND extra-fertile.
10. Having the sneaking suspicion that I will be voted off the island for being unable to conceive on my own, Survivor style.

*I know that these behaviors are not always justified.

I am thinking that Crazy Infertile Behavior needs a home in the DSM-IV of psychology. Really, we should be diagnosable and easily identified. Maybe I should wear some kind of badge: "Lock up your chocolate, hide your bellies, here comes Crazy Infertile!"

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

E2 is 56.2 and Suppression Check #4

GAWD! You really can't keep my ovaries down. Five days ago it was 58.6, so our decline is a slow one, but they "really like" to see it under 50. This is not making me happy. I will now have suppression check number 4 a week from today with The Man to tell me if we can start stims.

I enjoy asking "what if" questions whenever possible to anyone with any medical expertise. So I asked Nurse C:

1. Q: What if it stays at 56? A: You can start as long as the ovaries are quiet.
2. Q: What if it goes up? A: It almost never does. But you never know.
3. Q: Do you think I'll get to start on time? A: I think so, but we'll see.

So basically, no new information... and more waiting. I am sure my husband thinks I am a crazy Infertile since I am not happy about this news, but I just want someone to say, "Ok! You can start!" and not have to come back for another scan, or blood test.

What do you think? Am I too programmed with bad news, miscarriages and delays to be happy when the news is good? Are you cautiously optimistic?


No, I didn't mistype. That is the 2 HOUR wait...

I had my ultrasound this morning, and it was hard to tell if the cyst was much smaller. It looks like it might be collapsing, which would be great, and my lining is "nice and thin". The Man (my doctor in charge) said we could start to get excited about starting stims on the 6th of March as long as my E2 blood work is less than 50.

I usually get the blood work calls around 2 or so, so here I am, freaking out in the 2hw, and begging the universe that my cycle won't be delayed YET again.

I also cheated and looked up due dates for a March 17th retrieval:
Singleton: December 7th
Twins: November 15th

Why, oh why do I torture myself so?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Another visit from Wanda

Tomorrow I get the pleasure of a vaginal ultrasound (which my friend calls "Wanda"). Because really, it wouldn't be a real week unless at least one person looked at my ovaries with a condom-covered camera, right?

It is a check to see if the dreaded cyst has continued to shrink and if my Estradiol (E2) is down again. My last cycle was postponed because of the monster cyst driving my E2 up, then finally canceled when the cyst GREW. Not only did it grow, but my E2 was over 600 and they wanted it below 50. Slight problem. At last check, after being off of Lupron for 10 days, it was down to 58. WOOT!

A person's E2 should go down on birth control and then Lupron, but apparently, my body is not a fan of Lupron. After the cancellation, I insisted that we switch me to an Antagonist protocol. I had read (I have a degree in Googling) that some people don't ever have a cyst until they start on Loopy Lupron. That is me! I read on the Wayward Stork that Lisa had had similar problems and had success with a new protocol, so I did some research and was changed over.

So if all is well tomorrow and then a week later at the suppression check (read: payment due) then I should be able to start stims, Follistim and Menopur on the 6th of March. I am nervous that tomorrow they will find a new cyst, or maybe the old one will have divided and multiplied! Since I have already been canceled once and delayed in order to have my tubal surgery, I am hoping that we will finally get our chance.

Jen at Maybe if You Just Relax likes to put her thoughts to lyrics, and lately, I have been too. Here is my song for the day:

Cyst, cyst go away.
Come again some other day (but not for a few years.)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

I am a hippo. Or, Why do they make Infertile Gals take birth control?

You know those inflatable water ring things- an inner tube, if you will? Well, I appear to be wearing one...under my skin. Over the last week, I have gained a good five pounds, find my wedding rings are not fitting and am seeing some un-pretty lines where my socks are cutting the circulation off in my legs. The culprit: birth control.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand the that the egg-makers have to rest before the IVF cycle starts, but with the number of times my cycle has been delayed, I have been on and off the bitch for about 9 weeks which is TORTURE. Aside from the hippo-like water retaining properties of the little suckers, I also find that my hair falls out and eating a half pound of gummy peach candies seems like a good idea.

Truly, I didn’t complain all that much about the Lupron because, c’mon! I was starting! But after the cycle was cyst-delayed, and I was placed back in of the oral contraceptive purgatory, I started to get really pissed off. I thought I’d be fat and hungry during stims, and was quite prepared with flowy shirts and loose pants, but now? Already? So basically, I am no longer just sterile (remember, no fallopian tubes) but also in a permanent state of PMS. Please send diuretics and candy, stat.

What about you? Any fun pill-related side effects?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Pleased to meet you

I have been inspired by the camaraderie and support I have found reading fellow less-than-fertile's blogs, to document my increasingly long journey to have a second child. After our daughter's birth, we have had three miscarriages, discovered damaged fallopian tubes (who needs 'em anyway?) and are now, officially Infertile. I am currently waiting for another shot (no pun intended) at IVF (was canceled last month due to a stubborn, whore of a cyst) and am crossing fingers (and toes) to start stimming on March 6th. I never forget how lucky I am to have now 2 1/2 year-old A, and we cannot wait to grow our family.

My Rap Sheet

7/7/2006: Birth to healthy girl, A. Conceived with ease and blissful ignorance.
10/2007: Weaned A in an attempt to ovulate and try for #2
1/14/2008: BFP
2/25/2008: Missed MC at 10 weeks, blighted ovum
5/12/2008: BFP
6/18/2008: Missed MC at 9 weeks, Trisomy 18
6/2008: Extensive bloodwork reveals no known problems
7/2008: Start Clomid
10/2008: Fail post coital test, IUI #1, BFN
11/2008: Clomid/IUI #2, chemical pregnancy
12/2008: Decide to start IVF prep, HSG reveals tubes need to be removed (damaged from previous PID before A's birth)
12/30/2008: Double salpingectomy (fallopian tubes removed)
1/20/2009: Start Lupron for IVF, long Lupron protocol
1/29/2009: Suppression check finds HUGE cyst and high E2 (150), cycle postponed
2/7/2009: Cyst larger, E2 608 (!!!), Cycle cancelled
2/8/2009: Change protocol to Antagonist in March
2/12/2009: Start BCP
2/20/2009: Cyst shrinking, E2 down to 58... hoping with all hope to start on time

You may now consider yourself up to speed. I am looking forward to sharing the rest of this adventure with you (read: commiserating).