IVF #3 – It’s Over

After the scare of having cysts last week, we were told that we could move forward with the IVF cycle. Started Lupron, Gonal-F, and Menopur. At the next appointment days later, they did not see any cysts yet saw six follicles growing, one measurable. Hopes raised. But the estrogen number was low. And then this morning they barely saw any follicles and estrogen was still hanging out around 20.

My nurse called this afternoon. Cycle has been cancelled.

My doctor will call tomorrow and talk through next steps. I know he will talk about donor egg at this point, and neither my husband nor I have any interested in this. Honestly, it will feel like he had a baby with another woman. I would prefer that my doctor shake things up, do completely different meds.

Or we have to face the truth that it just won’t happen for us.

My other option I’d like to consider is going to the OTHER fertility clinic in town. It’s a little farther away, inconvenient for us both to get there, parking is a mess, but it could work for us. My co-worker switched over to them last year and is now pregnant through IUI and due later this month with her first child.

I’m thinking… if my doctor pushes donor egg and no other cocktail of drugs, I’d like to go to the other place and at least get a second opinion before throwing in the towel.

BTW, the place we go to claims to have the highest success rate of getting women pregnant. The other place is a huge name in the medical industry. So I feel like we can’t go wrong with either clinic. Neither are holes in the wall.

Good luck to you all and hang in there.

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It’s Official… IVF #3 Has Begun!

Good news – estrogen level was below 50 so they aren’t worried about cysts (at least not for now). I started Lupron tonight, will continue that twice a day for a while, and add some Gonal-F and Menopur in a day or so. It’s my famous high-dosage cocktail of fertility meds. Same protocol as last time.

I’m not excited yet, and I feel guilty because of it. I have breathed a sigh of relief, gotten myself organized and already feel stressed over the calendar. We’ve got an out-of town graduation party to attend in about 10 days, my father-in-law is having major heart surgery this Friday, and … oh, that’s right, I still have to go to work and concentrate.

I did lose weight in these two months since the D&C, about 10 pounds. I bought a FitBit which encourages me to be active everyday. And I’ve been eating a lot better. I’d like to stay on this healthy streak while going through this cycle. If we make it to transfer day, I won’t be able to run for a bit.

And here’s something I’d like to share with you all. During my hiatus, I tried to think of all the small tasks I could do before this IVF round started again. I scheduled other medical appointments (podiatrist, dentist). I filled all liquid soap dispensers in my house. I made sure that the bathrooms all have extra toilet paper rolls. The car has been vacuumed. I made a huge Amazon purchase of little things I’ve been meaning to buy. It’s like I want to do all of these small things so they won’t look like big honkin’ things while I’m a crazy lady. And you might say, “Don’t you mean crazier lady? Who the eff thinks of filling soap dispensers?”

Starting IVF #3… maybe?

My cycle started yesterday so I had my first monitoring appointment this morning. I’ve been waiting about 10 weeks for this!

BUT… the tech said she saw cysts in both ovaries, two were measurable. I’ve never had cysts before (that I know of). She said it could delay the cycle, that it might be from leftover follicles from last month, and that the results from blood work would show if they are causing estrogen to be high. Can’t start until estrogen is below 50.

Anyone else have this happen? Anyone with history of cysts?

Ganirelix, anyone?

I have 6 boxes of Ganirelix, 250 mcg each, purchased in November 2014 with the intention of using in IVF #1. All unopened, all available for anyone who wants it. Pharmacies won’t take returns. Is what I’m doing illegal by offering it here? Message me if interested.

I’ll post something in about two weeks when I start round 3. The things that have happened in the past two months since the D&C leaves me shaking my head at people. Such as….

– My mom had me in tears, asked me if I was expecting. Keep in mind that I gained weight this winter and we don’t tell anyone about IVF. I admitted weight gain but also blurted out that I had just lost a baby. Really… who asks a woman of child-bearing age if they’re pregnant? We would never ask a man if he’s gained weight. Unless there’s been an announcement, don’t ask! My weight is a private struggle I’ve had for most of my life. “Thanks for making me feel shittier, mom.”

– Women with young children with their “completed” family … when I hesitantly admit that we are trying to conceive but having problems, I get “All you have to do is get shots in your butt! That’s what Jamie did, twice!” I kept quiet, but you all know what I was thinking.

– Baby shower at work for woman who has been TTC for many years… happiness for her. And jealousy. With a swirl of hope. Side story… Her mom is Greek and made “the best baklava in the world” for the shower. Quite honestly, I’ve had better. It’s called MINE. I’m not Greek, but my baklava would outshine this one any day.

I’m still reading your posts. Loving the great news, and hoping to have my own to share one day.

Another Month of THIS S***?

The good news – my beta’s at “negative”. Which I learned in my clinic means below 5. It only took 3 weeks from the D&C to get to negative.

The bad news – I thought I could start IVF #3 when I started my cycle again. NOPE. Because my doctor doesn’t want me on The Pill (it messed me up in IVF #1) AND he wants to do another sonohysterogram/saline ultrasound, I’ve got to wait until the cycle after that. That could be END OF MAY. My next cycle could take a while since the D&C; I’ve read it could be 5-6 weeks.

The doctor wants to (1) make sure I have no polyps (never had them before), (2) do the sonohysterogram between days 5-10 of my cycle, and (3) I can’t be on the fertility meds at that time.

What the what? Are you kidding me? He also added that another month isn’t going to make a huge difference. If it were something like a 6-month wait, that would be another story.

TICK ….. TOCK…..

And then I think… do I really want to go through another roller coaster of emotions again?

BTW, I just finished season one of “The Affair”. That’s some good TV. I would usually watch it on my ipad on the stationary bike or treadmill. I need another show to keep the body moving. Any recommendations?

10 Days Past D&C

I can’t hide the fact that I’ve had a rough time since the D&C. The bleeding finally stopped after 6 days, but then I had a clot which the doctor said is normal; it’s like the blood pooled in one area and all came out at once. TMI, I know, I’m sorry. I had a blood test done to test the hcg level on day 8 (106) and a nice, long talk with my doctor by phone about the results of the tissue analysis.

They couldn’t find anything wrong with the baby because it’s as if the baby decomposed so much from the time it died to the time I had the D&C. All they could say was that there was nothing wrong with the tissue from my uterus.

My doctor doesn’t think we should do PGD testing or ICSI next time. The PGD will test the fertilized embryo to see if anything is chromosomally wrong before placed back inside me. The ICSI puts one sperm directly into an egg making fertilization happen better. He said in both of these procedures it will “muck up the eggs” (his words, not mine). Anything that will put the eggs at risk is not something he wants to do. I only had four eggs at retrieval: 3 matured, 2 fertilized. Two of three fertilized is about 70% which is what they want so therefore no ICSI needed.

My hcg number was good this week, I thought it would be higher but he said higher numbers are for women whose pregnancy lasted longer. The D&C makes the number go way down. I have a feeling that it will take a while to get to “negative” (he doesn’t say “zero” which makes me feel like I need to do something magical to get to negative). Then they wait for the period to start and I can start IVF again.

Yesterday I was in a meeting at work sitting next to a woman who has kids my age and little grandchildren. I haven’t seen her in and while, and I forgot that I told her months ago that we wanted to have another. After the meeting she asked if I had any news to share. I was like “Oh, um, no. I was pregnant but we lost the baby.” And then I started crying, which I hate crying at work. I think it was the first time I said those words out loud to someone else. And I know that I looked like I had a bump. I still have this extra weight and I was wearing a corduroy skirt with a big button so when I sat I looked even frumpier.

This morning we had friends over who have two little kids. We haven’t seen them in about six months. I went out to greet them in the driveway and she looked down at my belly and had a big smile, pointed, was like “Aaahhh!!!” And I was quick to say “oh no, I’m not pregnant”. It sucks to look like there’s a bump but I just need to work out and eat better. There’s a limited number of clothes in my closet I wear these days.

I want to thank everyone for their support over these past few weeks. I didn’t respond to some comments left last time, but I continued to read and hold onto hope. I find all of the blogs really informative. And you know what? I think we’re all pretty amazing people.

D&C & So Forth & So On

The D&C was yesterday. It was quick and painless, although its now 36 hours later and I have cramps and bleeding. My nurse said she would call the day after to see how I was doing and to schedule next week’s blood draw to watch the beta go down. And of course, no call. This has been typical and I am always feeling like I rank pretty low. They are a well-known clinic in my area and even have commercials on the radio. Ironic we heard one in the car on the way to the D&C yesterday. They claim to have the highest birthrate of any clinic in the country.

Since hearing a week ago that there was no heartbeat, my doctor and I had played phone tag for several days. I was also waiting to hear when I was scheduled for the D&C; retrievals have a higher priority. After finally talking to my doctor, he pushed my nurse to get me scheduled for when he was working. Basically, in the time I waited, other patients had their retrieval and transfer.

I didn’t wear lucky socks. I said “F*** it” and wore whatever I wanted.

I can see how infertility can pull a couple apart. For those who are going through treatments, one may want to go on, the other not. There can be arguments over spending the money. They could disagree on going forward with another way of getting a child. And a couple could fall into the trap of what happened to me and my husband: a breakdown in communication.

It was a remark he made to me Saturday night, just two days after finding out. I had been saying things like “Might as well ___ since I’m not pregnant.” It was maybe only three times (much more in my head than out loud). I think he got tired of it and he told me I only had about a week to say those things. I almost took it too harshly, as in “he’s only giving me a week to get over this loss?” But then I thought that maybe he was more emotionally affected than I knew and he didn’t want to talk about it. So I didn’t say anything, only talked logistics, and he stayed silent to give me space. We didn’t spill all of this until last night, after everything was over and we were whispering in bed. We both realized how we were wrong, how we should have been talking, how there was no reason for us to feel alone when we have each other.

I think I was saying those kinds of statements because I was being so careful while pregnant. Everything I ate and drank, any form of exercise, consideration of taking a bath… it all went out the window once I learned I was not pregnant. It was kind of liberating to be normal again, and it was also helping me see a positive light in this dark time.

Next steps: blood draws about once a week and wait until beta goes zero or negative. They say that can take about 6 weeks. Then of course I need to start my next cycle. So IVF #3 might not take place for at least two months. It was an easy agreement to go forth with #3.