Sunday, December 4, 2011

One + One Is More

Come follow Andy and I at our new joint blog venture One + One Is More!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

10w1d Bump

Happy almost Thanksgiving!
I can't believe we've made it to the double digits weeks!  I'm so thrilled that everything seems to be going great and the twins are right on track.  I have so much to be extra thankful for this year.  It's been a tough year, there is no doubt about that.  But I'm feeling like it's all been worth it.  Every tear shed, every heartbreak has led us to where we are.  I can't imagine being anywhere else.

Andy and I have had lots of deep conversations lately, some concerning this blog and it's future.  This blog has been all about our hoping, wishing, and praying for a baby.  It's been about the journey to getting there.  Now we're pregnant with twins, have graduated from the RE, and are quickly approaching the second trimester.  We think it's nearing time to end this chapter of our journey and begin a new one.  In the not too distant future Andy and I will be starting a joint blogging venture.  So stay tuned for the details!  We're both really excited about the ideas that we have.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

We graduated!

I cannot believe I am writing this post.  Today we graduated from the RE!  It's bittersweet since we love him and the nurses but it is so incredibly exciting at the same time.  We have our first appointment with the OB next wednesday so we thankfully don't have to wait very long.  I'm being completely spoiled getting to see my babies every week!

The twins are absolutely perfect so far.  Their heartbeats are both in the 140bpm range and today they both wiggled their arms and legs about.  But apparently they're already little tricksters!  They designate A and B based on proximity to the cervical canal.  In pictures A has always been on the left and B on the right.  But today?  They were switched.  The RE spent awhile double and triple checking things.  It's also weird because it's always seemed like they have had their own sac and placenta, but this week it looks like they might actually be in the same sac!  Talk about confusing.  We're hopeful the OB will have better ultrasound equipment and if not I know the MFM will for sure.

Last night I baked chocolate chip cookies for the RE and nurses, I wanted to do something small to thank them for all that they have done for us.  The RE repeats at every visit that the majority of the work was done by us they just added the little extra push to get us here.  But I truly feel that without them we would not be pregnant, let alone with two healthy babies!  After our visit today they surprised us with a onsie for each baby that has their logo on it (but nothing tell-tale fertility related).  I love them!  I thought it was so sweet.

I'm finally beginning to feel like this pregnancy is real and getting excited.  I actually have a little bump already!  I was planning to wait until 12w to take pictures but I think we'll take one this weekend at 10w.  We're settling into the idea of twins.  At first it's just super exciting and overwhelming, the full implications didn't really hit us.  But now we're talking about serious finances.  Yikes!  Andy will be a stay at home dad (SAHD) as we have always planned.  I would absolutely love to stay at home but I earn much more money so it's not feasible.  We definitely need to tighten our belts but we know it will be doable and oh so worth it!  We're also talking names.  We are really similar in our preferences and are already starting out with two boy names and one girl name decided on.  So now we're just working on that second girl name in case it's needed!

So I'll leave you for now with what you're really wanting to see...cute babies!

Friday, November 11, 2011


I say I'm going to be better at updating then I miserably fail!  Oops.

Today I am 8w6d along with our twins!  So far we have had four amazing ultrasounds and have seen the heartbeats three of those times.  Our appointment on wednesday was the best one yet!  They're at the super adorable gummy bear stage.  Baby A danced a little for us, moving their arms and legs about.  Baby B seemed to be snoozing but wiggled a few times during the heartbeat count.  It was SO incredibly cool!  I can't even begin to describe the awe and amazement that fills me each time I see our little babies.  I am just so filled with joy that God chose to bless us doubly!

My RE prescribed me Zofran this week since "morning" sickness had taken hold.  It seems to work really well for a short time, but it wears off too quickly.  I'm a little obsessed with the weight I need to try to gain.  I'm a rather small girl to begin with, 5'3" and about 120lbs to start.  I need to gain a minimum of 20lbs by 20 weeks and 25lbs by 25 weeks since it cuts the risk of pre-term labor in half for those carrying twins.  Preterm labor and bedrest terrifies me, but they're both very real possibilities.  We're just hoping and praying that everything continues to go really well with these little ones!  I will do anything it takes to keep them growing and healthy for at least 36 weeks!

My birthday is just two days away!  This is the first year in awhile I'm actually excited for it.  My mom is taking me shopping for maternity clothes today.  I know I'm only almost 9w along but I think I'm starting to show a little already.  My friend who is 25w with twins said she has been consistently about three to six weeks ahead in belly size, so that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!  All I know is that it got cold in Texas a few weeks earlier than usual and I realized that I have next to nothing warm that fits.  My mom is infamous for trying to spoil the crap out of me (and Andy), and she is beside herself with excitement over the twins.  So I have a feeling I'll be coming home tonight with tons and tons of new clothes.  I'm not going to complain!  I am thankful for all that she does for us.

I'm sorry to all my blog friends that I haven't been good about commenting.  I tend to read during the day on my iphone and for some reason commenting doesn't work well.  I do read and think about you all daily!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Happy Halloween! Almost

What?  A post not about babies?  That's weird!

Andy plays a computer gamed called League of Legends.  He used to play World of Warcraft and I hated it, but I don't mind LoL.  It has definite stopping points and doesn't take up ridiculous amounts of his time.  This year his video game was having a costume contest and I agreed to help him try to win.  So without further ado here are his entries!

The Inspiration

Andy's take.  I think he did a great job!

Inspiration for my costume.
I was so exhausted by the time we got around to taking the photo!  But I'm proud of all the effort Andy put into it.  I think he did a great job!

I'm not getting into Halloween the way I usually do.  I'm just too tired!  Last year I got really into decorating our front yard.  We had orange lights in the trees, a big spider and pumpkin in the yard, gravestones...None of that has made it's way out this year.  But I'm looking forward to our annual tradition of carving pumpkins tomorrow.  Every year I buy a new stencil book and try to carve something exciting.  Usually we'll watch some episodes of Buffy or maybe the Gremlins as we carve.  I'm also looking forward to passing out candy to the neighborhood kids on monday night!

Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

We have heartbeats!

I have two absolutely beautiful hearts beating within me, in addition to my own! That is just incredibly humbling and awe inspiring. Seeing the two flickers on the screen yesterday is one of the ultimate highlights of my life to date. I am so in love! Next up is another appointment on the 2nd.

I'm sorry I have been a bad blogger and bad commenter. I feel exhausted 24/7 and find it difficult to do much more than mindlessly watch tv when I get home from work, after taking a nap. But I'm loving every minute of this exhaustion!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

First Ultrasound (x2!)

I was honestly terrified for today.  I tend to do a good job at staying positive and hopeful 97% of the time, until I'm tired and heading to bed.  Andy has witnessed numerous tears sessions beginning while I'm laying in bed, before we pray.  There is something about that time where doubt and worry overtakes me.  I've been so scared to have another loss.  But today ended up alleviating a lot of that worry!  I know it's still possible but I'm choosing to focus on the good.

Our appointment was at 3:45pm but of course he was running more than an hour behind.  When we were let into the room at a little past 5pm I was so ready to hear the bad news and be done with it.  But then he said, "there is baby A...and there is baby B"!  I instantly started to cry happy tears.  I am so amazed that God has chosen to bless us with not one but TWO healthy babies!  We're still incredibly early but our RE was very optimistic and his attitude was contagious.

The RE was using technical terms like "gestational sac" and "fetal pole", which I'm well versed in but Andy isn't.  After about three minutes Andy leaned forward in his chair and said, "So...there are two of them?".  I started cracking up!  All my fears just released right then and there.  I was laughing so hard and the RE was trying to take a good picture of our kiddos but I couldn't stop!

Squee!!!  Look at our little munchkins!  Okay okay, I know they don't look like much yet.  Andy says he thinks the two of them along with the rest of my uterus kind of looks like an owl's face?  Whatever, I think they're the two most adorable blobs in the world.  They were measuring right on track!  No heartbeats yet, but we weren't expecting any since I'm only 5w5d.  We go back on wednesday to see them again and hopefully see the heartbeats!

Tonight I am beyond excited and happy.  I'm even content.  I said in a previous post that I have really felt led on this journey; the way a spot opened up with my new OB, the way she was thorough in testing, how the RE had an opening right away, my surgery, even the timing of our Vegas trip!  It has all lead us to this point and hopefully to our take home babies in June (or May, since it's TWINS!).

Thursday, October 13, 2011


That's our second beta number! 1,253!

Yesterday morning I got up early for my drive across town. When I got there another woman went in ahead of me and it seemed to take awhile. When she left both her arms were bandaged. I was called back and the nurse told me she had blown the veins in both of that woman's arms. Not exactly a confidence booster!

**Don't read if you're squeamish**
She stuck my right arm and the blood wasn't flowing properly. She said either I must be a slow bleeder or there must be something wrong with the needle/tube. I'm actually a really fast bleeder, which was proven a few seconds later when the needle popped out and my arm resembled a fountain. I had the turnicate on and was making a fist. The nurse desperately tried to cover the geyser. Once I stopped gushing there was puddles of blood all over the desk, the chair, the floor, and myself. It got on my dress and white cardigan.
**Warning over, it is safe to read**

The poor nurse was really upset and said it had to be the equipment. Turns out she had just used the first three needle/tubes from a new batch. So she grabbed a new box, we both took deep breaths, and in 30 seconds it was over and she had the sample from my left arm! I had to call my boss and say I was going to be a little later than planned, since it looked like I was wearing a Halloween costume.

I waited all day for the results. On Monday my RE called a little after 11am. When it was 1:30pm and I hadn't heard anything I started to freak out and imagine all the worst case scenarios. At 3 I finally called up to ask. The nurse who had drawn my blood said that the RE hadn't reviewed the numbers yet and they weren't supposed to release them until he did. But she took pity on me and told me it was over 1,200 and my progesterone was over 20! I cried tears of relief and said a prayer to God thanking him for this blessing. They called me with the official number around 6pm, I'm so glad the nurse took pity on me! I would have been a wreck waiting that long. So like everything else, I feel that things are happening according to God's plan. If I hadn't had issues with my blood draw I would have had to wait longer to know the number doubled!

Next up is an ultrasound next Thursday!

Monday, October 10, 2011

My New Favorite Number


My first beta at 15DPO was 514 today!  I am in awe of that number.  I know the doubling time is what matters most, but I'm loving that 514 is our starting point.  I go back in on Wednesday morning to see how it's doubling.  If all goes well I will be having my first ultrasound next Thursday on the 20th!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Please Let This Be Ours!

I have thought about this post ever since I started this blog.  I've been thinking even more about it for the last 24 hours.

We are pregnant!

Having had an early loss I am feeling excited, scared, nervous, happy...everything all wrapped up with one conflicting little bow!  We are desperately praying that this is our take home baby (or babies).  Desperately.

I was going to hold out until today to test because I'm going to a bachelorette party tonight and wanted to know before hand (at 12DPO).  But when I woke up yesterday morning I just knew.  It was going to be negative and I didn't want to wait until a happy day to see it.  So I used a FRER.  I was honestly amazed to see a second line!  So I took a digital and a wondfo (I saved my pee, of course because I'm crazy like that). "Pregnant" and positive!  I ran into our bedroom waving the FRER and told my sleeping husband to get up to look at the second line because we're pregnant.  I don't think he's ever woken up more quickly!

We laughed, we smiled, we cried, we prayed.  I called into work to say I was going to be late, there was absolutely no way I could have headed straight in with all the emotions I was feeling.  Andy took me to a donut shop for breakfast, we ate yummy glazed donuts fresh from the oven and kolaches.  I made it into work an hour and a half late but I didn't do a single bit of work.  I mainly sat at my desk and prayed.

I took another test this morning and it's even more positive than the one yesterday.  I know you can't go by the darkness of the line but it totally made me feel better.  I tested out the trigger shot but there was still a part of me that was terrified this was too good to be true.  I go in for my first beta on monday morning.

I'm holding onto the hope and the faith right now that this little one is going to be ours to take home in June.

Monday, October 3, 2011

My Thoughts on Twilight

****Spoilers below if you haven't read the books or seen the movies****

Am I the only one who gets pissed off by the Twilight series?  I'm specifically talking about Breaking Dawn, but really the whole series annoys me.  I am an avid reader and TV watcher.  My favorite TV series of all times is Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  Sarah Michelle Gellar, with the help of Joss Whedon, made vampires and vampire slayers cool way before Stephanie Meyer came around.  Way before True Blood, even!  Sunlight should kill a vampire.  They shouldn't just sparkle magically when in direct sun!  At least in Vampire Diaries they have nifty rings that magically allow them to be in the sun.  But sparkle?  Really?

Let's not even get too into the fact that Bella should have totally chosen Jacob.  He's hot.  He's a werewolf.  He's sweet.  He's hot.  Instead she chooses skinny, pale, sparkly Edward who wants to eat her just as badly as he wants to hook up with her.  Yeah, that's a real smart choice.

The trailer for Breaking Dawn has begun showing on TV and in movie theaters.  It shows Bella and Edward happily getting married, having destructive honeymoon nookie, and then Bella's whacked out pregnancy.  There are just so many things insanely wrong with that storyline!  How the eff does a vampire get someone pregnant in the first place?  Vampires are not alive!

I know it's seriously just the stress of dealing with IF, especially the fact that I'm on day eight of Prometrium, but it really irritates the crap out of me!  A stupid sparkly vampire can get an 18 year old whiny brat knocked up, but I'm so broken that my perfectly healthy LIVING husband can't get me pregnant.

*************Spoilers over!*****************

Alright, deep breath!  I told you Prometrium is turning me into an angry person!  It doesn't help that I have the most MF I have ever had in my life.  I'm tired, I'm bloated, my face is breaking out like crazy, my boobs are ridiculously sore, I'm nauseous...  I know it's the Prometrium.  I know it is.  But a girl can't help but hope!  That is the title of my blog, after all.  I forget that sometimes.  I created this blog initially in the hopes of getting pregnant and getting our healthy take home baby.  I need to remember that hope is not a bad thing, it's something to embrace and cherish.  This ideas is totally opposite of what I initially started to write, but I think I like it better.  So there!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Caution Should Be Used

"Caution should be used when driving or operating machinery."

I am on day five of Prometrium suppositories.  I had really minimal side effects from Femara, Gonal-F, and the trigger shot.  But as of last night Prometrium is officially kicking my butt!  That warning should really read, "This drug will turn you into an irrationally angry person.  Use extreme caution when operating deadly machinery as side effects will not last long enough for you to be deemed unfit to stand trial."

This was me in my car today.  Except I wasn't smiling.  I was stuck in traffic and instead of just singing along to the radio like I usually would, I got mad.  Really really mad.  Andy has always talked about how he wishes he had telekinesis.  So I started imagining what I would be like if I did, if I was like Magneto from the X-Men.  I imagined flinging the cars aside with my super powers and them exploding in giant fireballs.  The idea of fireballs was somehow extra satisfying and soothing.  It also helped pass the time!  Of course I would never actually want to harm my fellow commuters...but they really made me upset just by being in my way!

I've noticed several other instances of being upset over stupid things that wouldn't usually bother me.  But every time I realize I'm being irrational I try to take a deep breath and remember that it's just the medicine and my hormones.  These side effects are a good thing since it means they're doing their job!  If this is what it takes to get our baby I will gladly do it.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

What happens in Vegas...

...we're hoping and praying doesn't stay in Vegas!  I'm going to do a short TTC update before continuing to the more fun stuff about our Vegas trip and 4th wedding anniversary.

We had another RE appointment on Wednesday and the ultrasound showed that I had a great follicle on either side and a good one on the right.  So potentially three to ovulate, but two at the minimum!  I like the sound of that.  I had two more Gonal-F shots on Wednesday and Thursday night, then I triggered on Friday night!  It's amazing how just two weeks ago I was scared at the idea of shots, now I've done nine and they're no big deal.  I don't love them but they're not horrible.  I do have one big bruise on my abdomen, for some reason out of the nine shots one bruised.  I guess that's not bad, right?

Now on to the fun stuff!

The 22nd was our 4th anniversary.  I am more in love with Andy today than I was the day I married him which is so hard to believe.  We've experienced so many ups and downs, but we've weathered it all together.  He is my rock.  As he was sweet enough to tell me earlier, "This is only the beginning.  4 years.  If our life was a book, we would still be on chapter 1."  That's so true.  Four years is nothing compared to the amount of time we will spend together.  I am so looking forward to seeing what year 5 brings us!

So on our anniversary we flew to Las Vegas!  We had an amazing time.  Our feet and bodies are sore from so much walking, and by the end of our trip we were more than ready to come home.  But it's going to be a trip we talk about for the rest of our life!
We stayed at the Luxor
It was a nice hotel.  We were really happy that we were at one end of the strip, further away from the crazy party areas.  The downstairs was really nice but the rooms and hallways are in need of an upgrade since they're a little run down.  But for the amount of time we were in our room it was perfect!
When we got to our room we got a phone call from room service that they had a gift to bring us.  My mother-in-law and her husband bought us chocolate covered strawberries.  They were delicious!

Of course we had to go to the casino pretty quickly.  We allotted ourselves $50 each per day that we were there to gamble.  My dad had jokingly suggested to Andy that he place all of his first days bet on one blackjack hand.  Andy is crazy, so he did.  He turned that $50 into $200 in less than 5 minutes!

So here is where things get a little crazy...Over 15 years ago I was a dork and really into Star Wars.  Yes, I embrace my nerdhood with open arms!  I was searching around on the internet and found a chat room.  In the chatroom I "met" a boy, just a little older than me.  We started chatting and continued for a number of years.  We've kept in contact through Facebook in recent years.  The day before Andy and I left for Vegas this friend posted that him and his wife were going to be in Vegas soon.  Turns out they were going to be there at the same time we were!  Keep in mind, I've "known" him for over 15 years but we've never met IRL.  Well, now we have!  We met up with them on thursday night to wander the strip and get a drink.  Then yesterday they treated us to a brunch buffet.  It was great meeting them!  I can tell that we would all be good friends if we lived in the same area.  I loved his wife!  It was so weird and random that we ended up all there at the same time.  
Playing the gigantic slot machine at New York New York
Andy rode the roller coaster at New York New York while I shopped.  I am not a rides person!  Andy said this was his favorite ride of the trip.
1. Andy puts the $1 into the giant slot machine
2.  Andy pulls the lever
3. Umm, they're all lined up...What does that mean?
4. Hey, I won! 
This photo needs to be large to see the funny progression!  I love #3 where he's just staring at it.

We had frozen hot chocolate at Serendepity 3 by Caesar's Palace, it was delicious!

And watched the fountain show at the Bellagio.
We went to the Stratosphere...
and Andy rode all three of the crazy death defying rides.  I watched.
On Friday night we went to Fremont street.
It was a pain in the butt to get to, but totally worth it!  The light show was incredible.
One of our last stops on Saturday before the flight home was M&Ms world.  My initials, before getting married, were MMS so growing up my grandpa and grandma always bought me M&Ms related things.  It was special to get to go into a place like this and imagine how they would have bought out the store for me!

It was an amazing time!  I'm so glad that Andy and I decided to take a trip for our anniversary.  I feel happy and refreshed, despite being tired and sore.  Now we're working on year number 5 and hoping and praying that what happens in Vegas does not stay in Vegas!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Rollercoaster Ride

This journey is a total rollercoaster.  One minute I'm optimistic, the next I'm down in the dumps.  One minute everything seems to be going well, then next the rug is pulled out from under me yet again.  You would think by now I would be used to roadblocks and to changes.  Wrong!

I had my CD10 monitoring appointment with the RE, so I had another date with the dildo cam!  That sucker owes me dinner.  I have one good follicle at 12 on my right, then a few smaller ones at 9.  I think there was one on my right and two on my left.  This is good, but not great.  It means more fun Gonal-f injections!  So Andy and I had to hunt down a pharmacy that had it available, then wait around for awhile for the prescription to be filled.  We are 100% out of pocket so thanks to a little trick I learned on the 3T board on The Bump, I asked if there were any discounts available.  Our bill for the Gonal-F went from $555 to $278!  It's still a horrendous price but I'll take 50% off any day!  Apparently they have manufacturer coupons just sitting behind the counter.  If this cycle is a bust I'll definitely be asking again, on all my medications!

So today I'm feeling a little defeated and I think Andy is too.  I know we're just starting out on this journey compared to a lot of people, but this freaking sucks!  I can't believe our insurance doesn't pay a single dime for anything relating to IF.  We have a decent amount of savings for a young couple, but I can see us easily spending it all in a matter of months if we're not successful.  It's a really scary thought.  But I know our baby will be more than worth the money, time, blood, sweat, and tears it takes to get them.  So I'm trying to remain positive and optimistic.

In better news, the countdown to Vegas is on!  Just a few more days until we'll be enjoying our 4th wedding anniversary!  I wish it could be a trip completely away from TTCAL and IF, but I'll probably at least have to do my trigger shot while I'm there if not a Gonal-F shot too.  But that's okay.  I'm just really looking forward to a trip with Andy, just the two of us.  I love taking trips with him!  He makes me laugh and smile like no one else can.  This is going to be a much needed vacation!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Nervous for News!

Today was my last day (hopefully) of Gonal-F injections!  They really weren't bad but I'm so glad to be done for now.  I'm really nervous for our RE appointment, bloodwork, and ultrasound tomorrow.  I'm so scared that my lining will be too thin, I won't have any good follicles, I'll have too many good follicles...Deep breaths, Melissa!  Seriously.  I'm just anxious to find out what the heck is going on in there!

If all goes according to plan (which we all know never seems to happen in this TTCAL/IF journey!) I'll have two nice sized follicles and be ready for a trigger Tuesday or Wednesday night, right before we leave for Vegas for our 4th wedding anniversary.  Hubba hubba!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I Did It!

Gonal-F injection #1 is done!  Yay!

I've been dreading it for weeks.  Even more since we found out the needle was visible at our injections training last week.  See, originally I thought it was in pen form where you wouldn't have to see the needle.
I was a little freaked out about sticking that thing in my abdomen!

Thankfully Andy was at the injections training with me and really helped.  I love that I have such an amazing partner to depend on! We're definitely in this together.  Andy prepped the needle and primed it for me.  Once we had read through the instructions half a dozen times each I finally stuck the needle into me.  I kind of blanked.  I pushed the button and we heard a click, I pressed it again and we heard another click.  The directions say to press it until it's clicked and then leave it in for at least five seconds.  I think I left it in for at least 30!  I wasn't convinced it had clicked enough.  When I finally pulled it out I accidentally pulled at a slight angle so I think my abdomen is more tender right now than it will usually be.  I still was paranoid that I somehow hadn't dispensed the entire dose, so Andy and I scrambled to google to look it up.  We're now 99% certain we did everything correctly.

I think the worst part of this is just being terrified of messing up.  The meds are not cheap by any means, and it's stressful on us both.  It's a little scary to think we might do something to screw up this chance.  But I think that's also a perfectly normal concern at this stage, right?

I'm really proud of us for making it through injection #1!  Only three more to go, hopefully.  Then a trigger shot!  Right now I feel more hope and excitement than I've felt in awhile, which is also scary.  I want to be optimistic, but not too much so.  I don't want to have to deal with the disappointment of an unsuccessful cycle if I get my hopes up too much.  There is definitely an intricate balance to it when you're IF and TTCAL!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

My Feet Were Huge!

Today was honestly a good day.  I never in a million years thought that I would say that.  Our EDD, the day I have been dreading ever since our miscarriage, was actually a good day?  Crazy talk!

But it's not crazy.  I got to cuddle on the couch with my wonderful husband, our furry kiddos, and watch two movies.  We went to the pharmacy and bought our stash of fertility medication.  Coke icees, popcorn, a walk around the block, homemade calzones, and chocolate chip cookies were also involved.  Plus, I am finally feeling better after my surgery.  Let me tell you a little tale of the allergic reaction from hell...

Two posts ago I discussed how my recovery after surgery was a lot more difficult than expected.  My pain was continuing and at a much greater intensity than expected.  Then my feet began to swell.  In all reality, I think my feet had been slowly swelling ever since the surgery.  They had become painful and the bottoms cracked by sunday, but I just assumed it was due to lack of lotion.  Silly me, right?  I honestly never looked at my feet until wednesday morning.  When I did I was surprised to find them a little swollen.  I was worried, but really not too concerned.  On thursday I attempted to go into work for four hours, before my postop appointment.  I made it the entire time but didn't get any work done.  My feet were continuing to grow in size.  My pain level was also growing, despite my continued vicodin use.  Have you seen the newest Star Trek movie?

Andy said my feet reminded him of Kirk's allergic reaction.
I would agree with Andy!  My feet were freaky huge.  We went to the RE's office a little early since I had called ahead to tell them what was happening.  The whole staff felt bad for me and didn't know what was going on.  My RE said either it was an allergic reaction or he might have nicked my kidney during the surgery.  Umm, what?  I had blood drawn and was told in the meantime to take lots of benadryl to see if it helped.

Thursday is pretty much a blur after we got home.  I was in incredible pain and discomfort so I slept for a long time.  That night I had alarms going off practically every hour to take either benadryl, vicodin, or ibuprofen.  It was not a fun night.  But friday morning finally dawned and I felt significantly better.  I got the call from the RE's office that my labs were completely normal, no kidney damage.  My foot swelling continued to decrease throughout the day and last night I was able to sleep on my sides for the first time since the surgery!  Small accomplishments mean a lot right now.  My feet now look completely normal, for me anyway.  My pain is also gone.  I still have some tenderness and discomfort, but nothing like what I experienced before.

So it was definitely a bizarre allergic reaction, but we don't know to what.  I'm wondering if maybe I'm allergic to the surgical mesh or glue used during the surgery.  I will definitely ask to be tested before I have surgery again!  It was scary.

But all is well that ends well, right?  Our EDD is almost over and I'm feeling more positive and upbeat than I have felt in awhile.  I never thought that today would be good or that I would end it feeling pretty happy.  I miss my angel, I always will.  But I'm ready to move on.  I'm ready to tackle infertility with lots of fun drugs and somehow hopefully get our take home baby in the end!

It's Here

It's here.  The day I have been dreading for so long.  9/10/11.  Our EDD.

When we first were pregnant I imagined this day being filled with tears of the happy variety.  Instead I sit here with sad tears in my eyes and an incredibly empty ute.  After our loss I assumed that I would be pregnant by now.  Instead, today marks CD1 of our very first injectables cycles.

But you know what?  I'm okay.  Mostly.  I did cry some this morning, and I'll probably shed some more tears as this day progresses.  Especially thanks to all my girls on TTCAL who are reaching out to make sure I know that our little one is not forgotten.  What would I do without their support?  I think I would be an emotional wreck that Andy would have to be scraping out of bed this morning.  I know Andy is incredibly thankful for all the support I've gotten through this blog and TTCAL, but I don't know if he truly understands how much better I am functioning because of them.

So today I think about our lost angel.  I know I will get to hold them in heaven one day and for that I am so thankful.

I might do another post later to document fun allergic reactions after surgery and our exciting injectables plan...

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Time Goes By Slowly

Geez, time sure goes by slowly when you're recovering from having your insides mangled!

It turns out that I was taking my pain medications wrong to begin with.  I didn't pay close enough attention and was only taking two vicodin every four hours, instead of pairing it with Ibuprofen.  Oops!  By the time I realized how quickly I was going through the vicodin it was too late.  So yesterday I tried to wean myself off of it and start the ibuprofen a little too quickly.  Major stomach upset then occurred.  It was not a fun night for Andy or myself! ~ Written monday morning but never posted

Now it's wednesday morning, a few minutes before my next vicodin fix and almost an hour since my last ibuprofen.  I'm starting to actually find a small balance between pain, nausea, and a loopy inbetween that I shall call highness.  I think this recovery has been more difficult than either Andy or I expected.  I seriously figured that by Tuesday morning I would be ready to return to work physically, but I would call in to "enjoy" another day off.  Instead I called in yesterday and will call in again today because I'm just not ready  I can feel it though, I can feel the beginnings of normalcy taking hold.  At least I hope it's normalcy and not just another wave of nausea.  It's become a little hard to tell lately.

In good news, Andy and I got a new bed yesterday!  We are officially upgraded from a full to a king!  I wish I could just plop down and snuggle in, but right now sleeping requires some complicated pillow positioning and maneuvering.  But soon...soon I shall break in the bed the way I want to!  Yeah, you know what I mean (insert eyebrow waggling here).  For now it's enough to know that Andy is enjoying the ocean of our bed.  For once I don't think he felt me get out of bed.  There seems to be plenty of room for the fur gang, too!  It's all very exciting.

Now it's time for me to finish my Lorna Doone packet, chug some more water, and pop another pain pill.  Maybe next time I write I'll not only have more to say but I'll be able to say it more coherently?  What a novel idea!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

In Recovery

I'm on vicodin so please excuse any misspellings or grammar mistakes!  I might ramble too.

I had my exploratory laproscopy and HSG yesterday.  I was pretty nervous beforehand.  I've had surgery three other times in my life;  Tonsils removed when I was 5, wisdom teeth at 13, and major jaw surgery at 15. Jaw surgery was obviously the worst of any of them since I had to have my jaw wired shut for six weeks afterwards and I have two metal plates installed.  Even though that was tough it's been a really long time since my last surgery and I don't remember much about the day of or the days immediately following it.  I've had plenty of experience in waiting rooms while family is under the knife, but not of being the patient myself in awhile.

Thursday was my last day at work until Tuesday (although I'm thinking of calling in sick that day).  Only three of my work friends know everything that Andy and I have been through this year, I've even chosen not to tell my new boss at this point.  I walk with Christine every day on our morning break so I probably confide in her more than anyone else.  On Thursday she surprised me with this homemade card:

Isn't is beautiful?  It was also exactly the words I needed to hear!  Being anxious about my surgery wasn't doing anyone any good, let alone myself.  So I tried to relax as much as possible.  It's tough, but having a great friend remind me to trust in God helped a lot.

Yesterday morning we were up early and made it to the area of the hospital 30 minutes early.  I noticed an Einstein's Bagels nearby so Andy and I stopped to get him some breakfast.  I was on a no food or liquid diet as of midnight so it was difficult to sit in there and watch Andy eat his yummy bagel sandwich and drink his OJ, but I'm glad we had time to stop for his sake!  We got to the hospital at 10am and then got me registered and back to a preop room very quickly.  I got changed into the lovely gown and slipper socks, then they added my bracelets, blood pressure cuff, and heart/breathing monitors.  
Don't I look comfy?
They quickly came and and gave me my IV, too.  I really hate IVs!  I think that was the worst part of the whole morning for me.  They gave me a numbing shot before they inserted it into my left top forearm but I don't think it did much good.  That sucker hurts!  The nurse putting it in almost blew my vein too, but thankfully it held.  I think I would of cried if she had to redo it!  Then we waited...and waited...and waited some more...the nurse and anesthesiologist came in to talk to us a few different times.   My RE was running late getting to the hospital and there was one surgery in front of me.  So while I was scheduled for surgery at noon I didn't actually go to the operating room until almost 2pm.  

Andy left to go have lunch with his best friend Andrew while I was in surgery.  I'm really glad he got to do that since I know how much it sucks waiting for your loved one while they're being operated on.  He says that he got back to the hospital about 30 minutes before my RE came to talk to him.  The RE found mild endometriosis on the outside of my uterus and two 1cm cysts on my right ovary.  The endometriosis and one of the cysts were completely removed.  The other cyst was connected really closely to the blood supply to the ovary so my RE did not feel comfortable trying to remove it.  That cyst was popped and drained.  

I'm not sure how long it took for me to wake up in recovery.  I felt a little nauseous so I was given some IV drugs for that and finally some water.  My throat was little sore from the breathing tube so the water felt so good.  Andy was brought back pretty quickly to keep me company.  I got to get up and go to the bathroom, since peeing on your own is one of the necessities before they'll let you go home.  I was surprised at how quickly I was released!  I think about 5:30pm we got to head home.  I wore male large pajama bottoms tied loosely and a baggy tshirt which was pretty comfortable all considering.  I had brought a pillow to put between me and the seatbelt, but that was too big.  So I put Andy's sweatshirt folded up inbetween my abdomen and the seatbelt.  That worked perfectly.     

It took us about an hour to get home, which was pretty impressive for rush hour traffic!  I took my two vicodin as soon as I got home.  Andy got me situated on the couch and made me two things of easy mac, then I had some chocolate pudding.  The vicodin seems to make me feel wide awake for two to three hours after taking it, then I feel like passing out until my next dose is due.  I read plenty of other people's stories so I have been taking my pain meds every four hours on the dot.  I've heard that once the pain gets bad it's really difficult to get it under control. 

I laid down in bed at about 9pm last night and stayed there for the most part until 11am.  Every four hours I got up to get my meds, pee, and move around.  I have to keep the upper half of my body elevated so the excess gas can escape more easily.  If I lay all the way down my right shoulder begins to hurt badly due to the excess gas pushing on my diaphragm which apparently connects to shoulder nerves.  I think I only slept for about an hour and a half at a time throughout the night.  I spent a lot of time playing on my iPhone and watching rented tv shows on it.  Poor Andy slept on the couch as a result.  

All in all I feel pretty good.  Definitely sore and uncomfortable.  I have an incision in my belly button and one above my bikini line.  They're both covered by a plastic band-aide which should stay on for a day or two.  The stitches will eventually dissolve on their own.  Right now, despite the discomfort, I'm really glad we chose to have the surgery before beginning treamtents.  We'll never know for sure if the endometriosis and cysts were what was causing our difficulty conceiving, but they weren't helping!  I feel so much more optimistic about our chances now!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

It's a Great Day to Be Alive

If you're having a rough day I highly recommend listening to "It's a Great Day to Be Alive" by Travis Tritt.  It's my newest happy place song.  I find that about once a month I tend to find a song that makes me at least a little happier every time I hear it.  It's the song that I turn waaaay up when I hear it.  Usually you'll find me in my car with it blaring, me singing along way out of key, and dancing along.  Most of the time it's a faster paced song, but I love the lyrics and the vibe of this one!  It's really about just embracing the little things in our lives that make us happy.  I definitely need some more of that in my life!  So today's blog is sponsored by the idea that it really is just a great day to be alive!

Today is my mom's birthday!  My mom and I are incredibly alike in a lot of ways and I seriously count her as one of my very best friends.  So after church today Andy and I drove over to my parent's house.  We took them to my very favorite Chinese restaurant for lunch.  So delicious!  I had my favorite chicken and broccoli.  The only thing that makes me sad is that I ate the entire plate of food, no leftovers!  Then we stopped off at Marie Calendar's and I bought a coconut cream pie.  It is one of my very favorite desserts and mom's ultimate favorite.  Yumm!

When we got back to their house mom and I started working on a mod podge project.  A few weeks ago I found Mod Podge Rocks, a blog all about decoupage projects.  So for her birthday I got her several wooden picture frames, the mod podge glue, some brushes, and some finishing spray.  My mom is very in to fabrics and scrapbooking, so we had lots of supplies to work with.  I wish I had remembered to bring my camera!  I was a little nervous to begin with since it required more planning and spatial skills than I give myself credit for.  But I think mine turned out pretty well for my first attempt!  I left it at their house to dry so I'll post a picture of the final product when I pick it up.  I already have lots of ideas for my next attempt.

Andy and my dad enjoyed watching Hillbilly Hand Fishin' while we did our arts and crafts.  After some pie Andy and I made our way home.  Now I plan to enjoy watching some bad tv (I have a texting date with my friend Debra while we watch True Blood in an hour!).  It really is just a great day to be alive.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Here We Go!

Today was our second appointment with our RE.  It's CD3 so I had my antral follicle count.  The AFC showed 8-9 follicles on my right side and 5-6 on my left.  Not so good for a 28 year old!  Our RE said it's definitely low for my age group and paired with the FSH, estradiol, and AMH it's concerning.  But he said he's still very optimistic about our chances.  He didn't want to say that I have DOR, but I think he's an optimist and didn't want to officially give me that depressing sounding diagnosis.  If I don't have DOR right now it seems like I'm well on my way there at an earlier age than normal.

So today I started taking BCPs to gear up for my laproscopy and HSG that will hopefully occur next friday.  If all goes according to plan I will stop taking the BCPs on the 9th and begin taking Femara on the 13th.  Based on my AFC our RE highly recommended the FSH injections, so I'll begin those after the Femara.  We'll finish it up with a trigger and TI!  Geez, it all sounds so complicated.  I'm a little overwhelmed by it all.

I'm especially overwhelmed by something he said about not thinking IVF is in our immediate future, but since I'm a planner I should start thinking about it.  He said he would likely only recommend three cycles of injectables, maybe one with an IUI before he would think it would be time to move on.  Yikes!

I don't feel so good...
In other news, my poor chubba bubba is sick.  On sunday he was chasing Andy around the house when he suddenly stumbled and fell.  We giggled about it, thinking he was just being a clumsy kitty.  But then I thought it looked like he was walking a little funny and holding his head to the side.  I watched him, but didn't notice it again.  Later that night Andy told me that he had seen the same thing.  So off the the vet Asthma Boy went on monday morning.  He wouldn't tolerate them looking too closely at his ear, so at the vet's recommendation they put him under to for a better look.  Turns out that he had a massive bacterial ear infection which had lead to a burst ear drum.

He was sent home with us on a general antibiotic while the pathology was sent to grow in a lab to make sure we were treating it correctly.  I got the call from the vet yesterday evening that Asthma Boy has a very highly resistant strain of bacterial infection which requires icky antibiotics.  Our only choice is to give him an oral medicine that causes blindness in 10% of the patients.  Our vet has actually seen it cause blindness, so it's not your typical side effect warning.  We don't really have a choice since the ear infection is causing him to feel crummy and his balance is really off.  I'm just hoping and praying that he recovers quickly and doesn't lose his eyesight!

I've been a crummy blogger lately since everything has felt on hold until after my surgery.  But I'm hoping that after that I'll be able to start making more interesting and fun posts!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Dealing With It

At first I felt great relief that we were finally getting answers and finally getting help. I even wrote a post a few days ago about embracing this path and learning to help others through it. I thought I was handling things really well, until all the emotions came crashing down yesterday.

Why us? Why were we the ones to lose our baby? Why are we the ones to have to deal with infertility? I know so many of you have wondered the same about yourselves. What makes us be the ones to be dealt two horrible hands, when all we want is a precious baby? I know that this is Gods plan for us, but some days it is easier to bear than others.

Yesterday I started off the day a little extra sad because we closed on my grandpa's house, it now belongs to another family. It just was a harsh reminder that my grandpa is gone, I won't see him again until I get to Heaven. I think it's been somewhat easy to "forget" that and pretend he's still in Oregon, gardening and visiting his neighbors. But I know it's not true. But it makes me so sad every time I admit to the reality of it.

Then yesterday at break time I was walking with a dear friend when an acquaintance stopped us to tell us his fabulous news. His wife is pregnant again, about fifteen weeks along. I know I must have had a deer in headlights look when he first started talking, but I think I recovered quickly. I plastered a smile on my face and offered congratulations. After all, a baby is a very exciting thing! I can be happy when others get what they dream of. Until he uttered words that turned him into a fertile ho, "it took us SO long! We started trying in February!".

Wait a second, hold up. Your wife is nearly four months pregnant in mid August and you began trying in February? Jerk. I commented that a few months really isn't long to try and he just looked at me incredulously and said I obviously have never tried to conceive before. I made up an excuse that my cell phone was ringing with an important call and got away quickly. I practically ran to the handicap restroom and locked myself in before the waterworks began. Ugh, why did I let that bother me so much? I should have used it as a teaching moment to let him know that not everyone conceives so easily with healthy pregnancies. I'm sure I'm not the only one he'll hurt talking that way. If I had stepped up and talked to him maybe I could have prevented someone else experiencing that. Maybe I still will.

It's just such a fine line to walk. Both miscarriage and infertility are taboo subjects, even though they shouldn't be. I hate bringing people down by talking about it, but how else are the subjects going to become less taboo? No matter what, I need to improve my poker face when being confronted with this type of situation. I can't continue to hide and cry every time I'm blindsided. I'm a strong woman, it's time I started acting like it.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

This Is My Path

This is my path.

It's not the path I would have chosen for myself, or for anyone else.  It's not an enviable path, it's not a fun path, it's not even enjoyable.  But miscarriage and infertility have become a part of me.  As much as I despise both of them, without them I would not be the me that I am today.

So I choose to look at my path in a different way.  Obviously this is the path that God has chosen for me, so who am I to argue?  Instead I want to look at this and find the things I can learn, the things that I can change, and the things that I can do to inspire and lift up others.

I don't have control over this path, but I do have control of what I do now that I'm on it.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Of Coughs and Plans

Today was our first appointment with a RE.  I wasn't nervous beforehand because I had myself convinced of what he was going to say.  I was 100% convinced that he was going to say I have DOR which means our only chance of conceiving a healthy baby would be IVF, but we could try a few months of IUI first if we really wanted.  See, this is where Dr.Google and other people's histories will fail you!

When Andy and I first walked into the office I knew that I was in the right place.  The office is decorated tastefully with leopard print fabrics in tans and browns.  I don't think I've mentioned it here, but I love animal prints!  I have a very strange obsession with zebra and leopard prints.  I wish I could wear them without looking like an idiot, but I usually just settle for admiring them from afar.  We even have a rocking chair that is upholstered in leopard print fabric that I chose when I was eight years old!

But I digress.  We had to wait about 30 minutes past our 3pm appointment time, which had me getting anxious.  I've been sick for a little over a week with a super annoying cough.  When I'm sick I tend to suck it up and deal with it, I hate to visit the doctor.  Poor Andy has slept on the couch for the last 5 out of 7 nights, I think!  So while we were waiting I was hacking away.  The poor receptionist commented that she wished she had some water to give me and that a summer cold must really suck.  Yeah it does!  We were finally led back to our RE's office to wait.  On his desk he had a framed real four leaf clover.  I was really excited to see it!  Several months ago, I think in March, Andy and I found our first ever four leaf clover in a potted plants in our yard.  At the time I was so sure it was a sign that we were going to conceive a healthy baby right away!  Well, flash forward at least five months and obviously that wasn't the case.  But maybe, just maybe, it was a sign that this RE will help us get knocked up..  A girl can dream, right?

I really like the RE.  He spent a long time explaining everything to us, as well as listening to our questions and answering them.  He doesn't believe that I have DOR!  His healthy range for FSH is less than 13 (mine was 10.8) and estradiol is less than 80 (mine is 56).  He explained that every lab does the test slightly differently, so although it was "elevated" at one, it likely would have been normal at another.  He wants to do an antral follicle count on cycle day 3 to verify, but isn't worried about AMH even if it's low (haven't gotten those results yet).  Woohoo!  For now, based on my history he thinks I likely have an ovulation defect paired with a luteal phase defect, both of which are highly treatable.  Yay!

He laid out several options for us.  On CD3 I will definitely be having the antral follicle scan, just to confirm that I have the high count he's expecting.  Either way, I think our course of action will be the same.  On CD5 I will likely go on BCPs for approximately two weeks.  Some time shortly after I start the pills I will have a diagnostic laproscope to check for endometriosis or any other complications.  Given my mom's history of stage IV endometriosis it seems like a good idea to check it out, and insurance will pay for it now.  If we don't conceive within a few months this would be the next course of action and insurance would not longer pay for it, so it seems really smart to get it out of the way now.  Although I can't say that I'm looking forward to surgery or BCPs!

If the laproscope is normal I will go off of the BCPs shortly after and four days later take a five day dose of Femara.  Our RE feels that Femara has a better response and fewer side effects than Clomid, and I'm quite okay with that.  Here's where our options differ:

  1. After the five days of Femara I will do a trigger shot around day 13, depending on the monitoring ultrasounds.  We then will of course have timed intercourse, then I'll take progesterone until AF (or continue until 12 weeks if pregnant).  The RE projects that our odds of conceiving per cycle are about 10-12% higher than we would have just trying on our own.  He said the risk of multiples is very low.  Cost is $500 plus meds straight out of pocket per cycle.  I believe insurance will cover a portion, but that needs to be confirmed tomorrow.
  2. Or, I will take five days of Femara as well as injectable FSH.  I wish have a trigger shot, timed intercourse and progesterone.  He projects our odds to be 20% higher than trying on our own, but a 20% risk of conceiving multiples.  Cost out of pockets is $1,000 plus meds, but again I think insurance might pay a portion.

Towards the end of our appointment I started coughing uncontrollably and our RE asked if I had seen anyone about it yet.  Andy immediately chimed in (after being relatively quiet throughout the appointment) that I would definitely be seeing someone ASAP because I was getting worse.  The RE checked my lungs and prescribed me a Z-pac so I don't have to go see someone else.  Did I mention that I really like him? So now we have a plan and I have antibiotics! 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

More Questions Than Answers

The ultrasound went great. It was my first experience with the fun "dildo cam", but it wasn't bad.  I'm probably the only weirdo on the face of this planet who actually liked it!  Not like that, sicko.  I enjoyed the scientific aspect!  My right ovary has three follicles growing (16, 15, 13).  It's kind of neat to know for once which side I'll be ovulating from!  No cysts were seen.  The ultrasound technician was laughing at me because I was asking her all sorts of questions as she did the exam.  She said it was pretty rare for someone to know as much at this stage as I do!  I'm not sure it was meant as a complement, but I took it that way.

The appointment went as expected since I don't have cysts.  Due to my elevated FSH and estradiol (which suppresses FSH, so that's bad) it's likely that I have diminished ovarian reserve (DOR).  More blood was drawn to test AMH which will confirm this tentative diagnosis.  My OB highly recommended clomid with IUI for next cycle, but I opted to be referred to an RE.  When the technician was drawing my blood for the AMH test she said she'd never seen that lab order there before.  That definitely made me feel better about pushing for an RE referral!  If the office has no experience in my probable diagnosis then I'll feel much better going to someone who does.

So now we wait.  I was lucky enough to call the RE at the exact perfect moment.  I was told that usually it's about a three month wait to get in as a new patient, but I called within minutes of someone cancelling their appointment for next Wednesday.  So I go meet him next Wednesday!  I'm excited that I get to go in so quickly, but I'm nervous too.  Right now I'm trying not to worry too much until my AMH results come in.  

I'm just really thankful that I went with my gut.  I originally wasn't scheduled to see my OB for the first time until the 9th, but now I've had all of this testing done and get to see the RE on the 10th!  If I had waited it might have been the new year before I got in to see the RE.  Lesson learned, trust your gut!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Knowing Is Half The Battle?

I waited impatiently all day long for the nurse to call me with our lab results.  When I hadn't received a phone call by 5pm I assumed I would have to wait until tomorrow.  At about 5:40pm the nurse called me with the results. 

Andy essentially has super sperm, the nurse said his SA values were "beyond perfect".  My values were less so.  FSH: 10.8, estradiol: 56, prolactin: 6.4, and TSH: 1.3. The FSH and estradiol are both elevated which could indicate diminished ovarian reserve.  The nurse scheduled me for an ultrasound on Wednesday afternoon to see if there is potentially any ovarian cysts causing the elevated estradiol.  If not, then we probably have our reason for not having conceived (and stayed pregnant) yet.  Yikes.

So I guess in this case knowing is maybe 10% of the battle?  I'll definitely update again on Wednesday night once we know a little bit more.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Waiting Is Never Fun

I did CD3 bloodwork on Wednesday and Andy did his SA on Thursday.  Now we're just waiting for the results!  I really hate waiting.  I can deal with whatever the results are, good or bad, but the unknown drives me absolutely batty.  I'm hoping we'll hear back on Monday.

Andy and I took our Dad's to see Cowboys and Aliens today.  It was nothing spectacular, but fun.  At the very beginning of the film it shows a very dry environment.  My dad turned to me and said, "That looks like my backyard right now!" as he did his dorky dad laugh.  At the same time I hear my father in law turn to Andy and say, "That looks like my town right now!" with his dorky dad laugh.  It totally cracked me up that both our dad's told the same cheesy dad joke!  I really can't wait until Andy gets to start telling them to our kids.  I know he's already practicing!

I'm CD6 today, so rapidly approaching the "try" time in a little less than a week.  A few weeks ago a girl posted on TTCAL that she was giving away several boxes of my favorite digital OPKs to whoever was willing to pay shipping.  Look at my haul!
80 digital OPKs for just $15 shipping!

So I think my wondfo's might be relegated to the back of the bathroom closet for a few months!  I really feel a peaceful pessimism this month.  I have some hope because I know God's timing is perfect and anything is truly possible.  But I'm not nearly as hopeful as I have been.  It's actually a peaceful feeling for me, I no longer feel the pressure to be pregnant by our 9/10/11 EDD.  I thought I would be devastated since it was a silly deadline I gave myself during our loss, but I'm finding that it's okay.  I just really hope we get our results soon!

Monday, July 25, 2011

We have a plan!

After all my anxiety the appointment was actually amazing!  I absolutely love my new OB.  She took 30 minutes at the beginning of the appointment to sit with me, talk about everything, review my charts, and discuss a plan.  Since I've had two pap smears within the past few months (thanks to my last OB losing the first specimen, grr), I didn't have to have another one.  She just did a quick physical and pelvic exam.

So our plan is this:  Since today is CD1 I will be going in for CD3 bloodwork on wednesday.  That blood work will include testing of my Rh factor to see if that's an issue.  Andy will be submitting his SA sample sometime this week too.  I'll be doing 7DPO bloodwork sometime mid August.  If anything comes back abnormal, we'll design a plan around that.  If everything is normal but we're not KU I will be going in for an ultrasound and an HSG at the beginning of next cycle (around CD 7).  If all of that is normal we'll have the fun diagnosis of unexplained infertility and she will recommend Clomid, probably with IUI.

I'm a little terrified at the idea we might jump to IUI so quickly.  She stated that for those with unexplained infertility she feels that IUI is the best chance to conceive quickly.  She was open to the idea of a cycle or two of monitored clomid first.  I think right now I'm going to wait to see what all of our testing reveals before I think about this too much.

My new OB strongly recommended acupuncture, so since I was off of work early I decided to call for an appointment.  Several months ago, probably in February, I bought a Groupon deal for two acupuncture sessions at a local clinic.  I went to one right away, but wasn't a fan so I've had the second appointment to use up for quite awhile.  The guy told me that if I could show up by 3pm today he could fit me in.  So I had 19 needles stuck in me today, and I liked it!  The acupuncturist specifically chose spots related to fertility, and I was able to actually relax and take a small nap this time.  I have another appointment scheduled with him on August 16th.

At the end of the appointment he asked me to stick out my tongue.  He immediately went, "Ohh, your tongue definitely shows significant problems!"  I seriously struggled to keep a straight face as he explained that my tongue indicates my body has a problem managing hot and cold.  According to him my body will overheat or freeze because I don't regulate temperature well.  Umm, okay.  He tried to convince me to take some herbs, but I told him since I'm having testing done I don't want to take anything different.  Maybe it's totally legitimate, but I have a hard time believing anyone can diagnose me based on the appearance of my tongue. 

So all in all this is probably the happiest I've been on CD1 since before we started TTC.  I wish I had gotten a BFP this last cycle, but I'm happy to at least have a plan and hopefully some answers soon!  Thank you to everyone who commented on my last entry.  Reading your comments really brightened the past few days for me!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Don't Worry, Be Happy

I've heard the saying that 90% of the things we worry about never even happen.  But I think it's human nature to worry, no matter what the probable outcome will be.  I am most definitely not exempt from that!

Today I called my new OB's office in hopes of moving my appointment to a closer date.  My appointment will now be on Monday, the day I expect my period to arrive (barring a surprise BFP).  I thought I would feel relief at getting this ball rolling a little sooner.  After all, my original appointment would have been at least halfway through my next cycle.  But instead I felt sad.  How did we get here?  How has it been almost 12 complete cycles of trying, 7 since our loss?  Not just regular cycles, but perfectly timed cycles.

My mom and dad had a hell of a time conceiving me.  I was their only pregnancy in at least 14 years of trying.  I was conceived after 9 years of trying and I know they continued to try to give me a sibling for many years after my birth.  My mom had stage IV endometriosis and required a lot of fertility treatments to conceive me.  My parents had actually given up on ever having a biological child and were pursuing domestic adoption when they found out they were pregnant with me.  Growing up I never once doubted their love for me because I was told from an early age how much I was wanted.  I'm thankful that my children will grow up knowing how desperately Andy and I wanted them.  But I'm scared about how long it's going to take to reach that stage.  A year ago, as I was going off birth control pills, I never once imagined that I wouldn't at least be significantly pregnant by this date. 

What if the testing shows that something is wrong with me or Andy?  How do we move on?  How far do we plan to go in treatment options?  How will we pay for the treatment?  What if testing doesn't show anything wrong at all, what then?  I have so many fears and worries going through my head right now.  I'm scared to get answers, but I'm terrified not to.  I know that our road has not been nearly as long or as difficult as many of my TTCAL and blog friends.  But I'm nervous about our future.  Deep down I really feel that Andy and I will be parents one day.  But I'm not sure how or when. 

I am a control freak and a huge planner, they are definitely two of my biggest faults.  So I'm struggling to let go of my worries and put it all in God's hands.  It's pretty obvious that I cannot control or plan our TTC journey.  Writing all of this out is definitely therapeutic for me as well.  I hope in a few years all of us going through problems right now can look back at the words we've written recently and smile.  I have a feeling our future selves would tell our current selves that it is going to be okay.  It's all going to work out.  It might be in a totally different way than what we're thinking or imagining right now, but it will work out. 

A special hi and thank you to any visitors from ICLW!  I appreciate any and all comments, and I look forward to meeting new blog friends!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Rain Is a Good Thing

My daddy spent his life lookin' up at the sky
He'd cuss, kick the dust, sayin' son it's way too dry
It clouds up in the city, the weather man complains
But where I come from, rain is a good thing.
~ Rain is a Good Thing, Luke Bryan

I live in Texas, so when I tell you that rain is a good thing...believe it!  Our yard is so dry that the grass is baked and the ground is cracking.  Today it finally looks like it might rain a little.  I will be so incredibly thankful for any drop of water we get from the sky!

Now it seems that I might be ripping off Maria at Every Day Is A Country Song again, but I just can't seem to help it!  Luke Bryan is one of my favorites and this song is special to me.  I'm ashamed to admit that until about a year ago I disliked country music.  One day Andy convinced me to listen to our local country channel because he said it was less processed music.  Skeptical, I gave it a shot.  This song came on and I was instantly in love with it!  I slowly began to listen to the country station more and more.  Now I'm a country girl!  Luke Bryan and Joe Nichols are probably my top two artists at this point, but I enjoy them all! 

Today has been a good day.  It's honestly the first day in a really long time where I can say, "today is a great day!".  I got the news at work that I'm going to be helping out a different unit, which just so happens to be run by one of my favorite people.  I've really wanted to work for him for awhile and he's told me he was working on it.  Now I get to!  It's temporary for now but will likely officially go permanent in a few months.  I'll have a lot more work to do, which I'm excited about.  For the past few months I've been bored out of my mind, usually spending about 7 out of the 8 hours surfing TTCAL on the iphone.  It's made me lazy.  I'm looking forward to actually doing work that I enjoy again.

Andy and I also found out that we're owed a very decent chunk of change.  He quit his job with the state in December to pursue his dream of becoming a freelance copywriter.  We forgot all about his retirement fund with the state!  He called about it today and we found out it will be more than enough to pay for the new flooring we've been talking about getting.  Score!

Zoe is happy today, which makes me happy as well.  I always call the time when I lay on the couch, watch TV, and snuggle with her couch time.  Today we got our brand new magic couch time machine!  AKA cable and DVR.  Andy and I haven't had cable in over two years, but since we're switching internet providers it ended up being cheaper to get cable for a short time too.  I'm not complaining!  This definitely means more couch time in our future.

Rain, good job news, great money news, and a happy Zoe...What more could I ask for?  Oh yeah, how about a BFP and a healthy pregnancy resulting in a healthy take home baby?  That one has not been granted yet, unfortunately.  I'm 7DPO today and have absolutely no mind fetus whatsoever.  Maybe that's actually a good sign?  I'm not holding out much hope, but the siren call of my wondfo HPTs are getting to me.  I'll probably start testing in a few days.  Somehow seeing repetitive BFNs doesn't bother me as much as the wondering.

I hope this good news, happy day streak will continue for the rest of the week for us and for everyone we know!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Bad Blogger

I haven't been very good about keeping up with my blog lately.  I start to open a new post, write a word or two, then realize it's something I've already said before.  I have found that trying to conceive after a loss creates a lot of the same feelings cycle after failed cycle.  The part that really sucks is that I know conceiving is only a very small portion of our battle to get our take home baby.

On Wednesday I had a full out ugly meltdown in front of Andy.  I absolutely hate that we have to have sex on certain days.  How in the world is that fun or sexy?  I've been trying to keep it exciting, but sometimes it's really difficult.  I'm not in the mood, he's not in the mood, but we need to do it.  I would never forgive myself if we didn't get pregnant that cycle, I would feel like it was because I didn't try hard enough.  My meltdown consisted of me sobbing "it's not fair" repeatedly.  Andy was so sweet and comforting, and he let me see a glimpse of his pain.  Because you know what?  He's in pain too, this process sucks for him too.  It was a wake up call for me.  I always think about my pain from our loss, rarely his.  How selfish is that?  I'm appreciative for the reminder that Andy and I are in this together.  Although I may be more open about my pain, it doesn't mean he's not hurting too.

Thankfully I'm now in the two week wait portion of my cycle.  Andy did tell me that he has a good feeling about this cycle.  My first thought was "at least one of us does".  Maybe it's a coping mechanism but I have very little hope for this cycle.  Sure, we had perfect timing.  But after six cycles of perfect timing, I'm not going to get super excited and hopeful.  I'm not sure I could handle the letdown again.  So I'm putting all my faith in God, as I should.  We will get pregnant and have a healthy child in his time.  So I pray that if it his time we get pregnant and I find peace with whatever the outcome.  If it's not his time I pray for patience and the strength I need to pursue testing with my OBGYN.

Andy and I started the couch to 5K program this week.  I was motivated by several of my TTCAL friends who decided to start it this week too.  I'm the type of person who enjoys being physically active, but if I'm not accountable to someone 9 times out of 10 I'll choose to stay home watching TV.  I'm a bit of a couch potato.  Thank goodness I have good genes and don't require too much activity to keep my figure relatively slim.  But since our loss I've gotten extra lazy and I think I've been afraid to really work out.  When we told my mother in law and her husband about our loss, her husband said maybe it happened because I'm too skinny.  I don't know why, but that has really lingered in my head and bothered me.  I know that's not why.  But it's still there, at the back of my mind.  But this cycle I decided to join my friends in this program.  It starts out very slow (although the first day kicked my butt!) and after nine weeks of three workouts per week you should be able to run a 5K without stopping.  

I am proud to say that Andy and I completed week one!  Today marks workout number one of week two.  I'm very excited and happy to be doing it.  I feel so much better mentally and physically.  I really enjoy running through the streets of our neighborhood with my husband.  I put on some music and am able to forget all my worries for the 30 minutes we're out there.  I've also been sleeping a little better, which is a huge plus!  The only rough thing is that in Texas it's HOT.  At 9pm, when we usually go running, it's still a little over 90 degrees most days.  But at least the sun isn't beating down on us.

I could go on and on with the other boring things going on in our life right now, but instead I will just leave you with a picture.  We took Zoe and Pixel for a walk the other evening.  When we got back Zoe ran straight to the tile floor in an attempt to cool off...

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Wonderful Weekend

Another wonderful weekend is coming to a close.  I'm not enjoying my job at the moment so it's tough to look at another five days of work coming up and be happy.  But I know that the five days will pass and then I'll have another weekend to enjoy!  Work isn't all bad either.  I'm lucky to work in the same building as some of my best friends, who I'll get to see on breaks and maybe even for lunch.

On Thursday I was lucky enough to get to meet up with my TTCAL friend I met in May.  It was so much fun!  I love that girl.  I know that she's struggling and it breaks my heart, but I'm thankful that I can be there for her and vice versa.  We sat at a local restaurant and talked, cried, and laughed for over four hours.  I don't think our waitress liked us very much, but oh well. 

Friday night Andy took me to see Horrible Bosses.  Now, I have to admit something...I think Andy and I are addicted to seeing movies in the theater, while eating popcorn and drinking a coke icee.  So far this year we've seen probably at least a dozen movies.  Since I've been back from Oregon (a little less than two months) we have seen Bridesmaids, Thor, Pirates of the Caribbean, Super 8 (twice), X-Men, Transformers, Horrible Bosses, and Monte Carlo (saw it with my mom, not Andy).  Yeah, I think we're definitely movieholics.  In the next few weeks I'm sure we'll see Harry Potter, Captain America, Cowboys & Aliens, and Rise of the Planet of the Apes.
Anyways, Horrible Bosses was hilarious, raunchy, and offensive.  They definitely pushed a lot of boundaries.  Andy enjoyed it more than I did, I definitely think it's more of a guy film.  But I enjoyed it over all.  

Last night Andy and I hosted a poker night at our house.  Four friends and Andy's dad showed up.  Six of us played.  I won!  I have some serious poker skills!  Okay, not really.  I just had a lucky night.  So I won $15.  I put in $5 to play and so did Andy, so in reality I won $5.  But I'm not complaining!  It was a fun night.

Today I took my mom to Cafe Monet, a paint your own pottery place.  My mom is finally starting to feel better since her back surgery.  She felt up for seeing a moving on Monday and painting today.  It makes me really happy that she is doing so well!  
I painted a piggy bank.

My mom painted a frog jewelry box.  This is the lid.  She's talented!
 Our works of art won't be completed until Friday so I'll try to remember to post the finished products then.

That pretty much sums up our fun weekend.  TTC is going well, I guess.  I gave up on the pomegranate juice since AF was even lighter than usual.  I don't think it helped anything so it's not worth the taste for me.  But preseed is two big thumbs up!  I have an appointment for a new OB in mid August, so I'm just trying to relax until then.  We haven't had success on our six perfectly timed cycles since our loss, so I'm not holding my breath that we're going to be able to do this on our own.  But that's okay.  It has to be okay.

Thank you for all your wonderfully sweet comments!  I really appreciate them!  I don't know what I would do without the friends I have made on this journey.