IVF Round Five

Here we go again! It was touch and go for a few days but here we go again.

I had planned to start this cycle with this month’s period but by Monday I’d started spotting and hadn’t received insurance approval yet. I called the clinic only to find out they hadn’t even sent the request to the insurance! I was shocked.

The nurse told me she’d find out where my request was in the queue and she’d call me the next do to let me know if we can start but it didn’t look good.

The following day the nurse called to say that they wouldn’t be able to send in my request in time and I’d have to do the cycle next month. Sigh. I was very sad but I made peace with it. Decided that more time to prepare can only be beneficial so I was okay with starting next month.

Then Wednesday she called again and turned my world upside down. They’d actually sent off the request the previous day and I had the go-ahead to start birth control. Well I had to do the mandatory preggo test the following morning but for all intents and purposes, we were a go.

So Wednesday was a pretty fantastic day to begin with and then N called to let me know that our new RE contacted him with results from his latest sperm sample that was to be frozen. You’ll remember that we were going to send these results to the urologist to let us know if it was a good sample or not. Well it turns out that the sample was excellent. The count had doubled and the motility was great. Of course since my husband took the call we didn’t get any numbers but I can just get the numbers when I call them again.

We’re still waiting on approval so obviously the thief of joy that this journey is, isn’t letting me celebrate just yet. I’m just taking my pills as instructed. If everything goes according to plan I’ll start stims around the first week of November. We’re doing 300iu Gonal-f and 150iu Menopur. The same protocol from round 2 which yielded or record 3 embryos to test.

So we’ll take it one day at a time and I’ll try to keep a level head but I like the sound of this cycle so far… so far.

 

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IVF Season 4: Episode 9-11

Date: 7.29 – 7.31

Starring: 10 units microdose lupron twice a day, 0.5mg tablet dexamethasone, 225iu Gonal-F twice a day

Produced by: 12 follicles (10 on L, 2 on R) ranging from 11 – 15 mm. Estrogen at 2100 on day 11.

Directed by: Oh so much nausea.

Synopsis: I can’t tell if these counts are good or not. My retrieval is supposedly set for Thursday which means only 2 more days of stimming and I don’t think that’s enough time to get more follicles to grow. And he wants me to drop the Gonal-F to 200 now as well. Don’t know if that’s good or not. I’ve definitely hit the mid-cycle bump. Not feeling very confident right now as I’m writing this. It’s because I’m comparing cycles (comparison truly is the thief of joy).

I go back on Tuesday. There’s really nothing else I can do except wait and chat to my eggs. Especially my right ovary. She’s making it so hard. *sigh*

At least birthday month starts tomorrow! I have plans for almost every weekend which is fantastic and I have 2 vaca days that I have to use before the end of the month. Groupon Getaways here I come! Just have to get through this week.

I’ll leave you with a pic of my left ovary. I think it’s cute that it looks like a fist. I can’t almost hear is shouting “follicle power!”. I’m proud of you lefty, thanks for carrying the team.

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Best enjoyed with: Bacon, egg, avocado and a mushroom for breakfast and we’ll be having salmon and

Outtakes:
PSA

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IVF Season 4: Prologue

So here we go again. My parents left yesterday. Thankfully I have a busy cycle ahead of me to keep me busy. The house is really quiet. I can’t stand it. I have to write down what’s going to happen this cycle before I forget and mess it all up.
July 11 – 18: Took 1 active birth control pill daily
July 19: Supression check. All clear. Estradiol < 5. Progesterone = 0.251.
July 19: Meds arrived – 1 Vial Microdose Lupron, to be refridgerated. 3 x 900iu Gonal-F pens, to be refridgerated, 20 dexamethasone tablets, 1 vial of HCG trigger, syringes, sharps container, alcohol pads.
July 20: Spend the day Googling Micro-dose Lupron protocol. Get excited about prospects. Get anxiety attacks about possible outcomes. Slowly start to fall apart. Try like hell to pull self together. Breathe.
July 21 – 23: Begin Stimulation – 10 units Microdose lupron AM and PM, 2.5mg tablet dexamethasone
July 24 – 28: 10 units Microdose lupron AM and PM, 2.5mg tablet dexamethasone, 225iu Gonal-F AM and PM.
July 28: First monitoring appointment, await further instructions.
August 4: Tentative egg retrieval!!
So, from what I’ve been Googling, it sounds like this protocol is given to women with diminished ovarian reserve or who don’t respond well to stims and while I’m seeing better results, I’m not seeing huge yields of eggs. But again women are going from 2-3 eggs to 5-7, which is slightly better. My RE said he wants a lot of eggs from me and I’m averaging 12 eggs per cycle and, honestly, if I get 15 I’ll be happy.
My biggest concern is quality. I read that dexamethasone can help with quality so that is making me feel better but I’m doing what I can for the most part. I am currently suffering through separators between my teeth in preparation for the braces on Friday. They are torture and I can only eat soft food. The other night I had custard and a protein shake for dinner and tonight I had egg salad and jello. So my diet isn’t the best but I’m not drinking so I’ll take that as a win.
I was also having trouble deciding what time to take shots. They said to space it out 12hrs. I decided on 6am and pm because I have to take the morning shot before monitoring  appointments which I do at 6:30. It’s good because then I don’t have to take shots in the bathroom at work but bad because if we ever go out I’ll be taking shots in public places again. It’s just 2 weekends of shots, I can do this.
I’m excited to start tomorrow. But I’m more excited to get these damned separators out of my mouth.
Ready, set, go!

Refreshed! Relaxed! Ready!

Another round of IVF is upon us! But first, a big congrats to all the BFP’s I’ve missed, big hugs to everyone else still struggling and a big hello to everyone who’s reading this :). I felt some guilt for disappearing and not being able to be supportive. But I have to remember that these breaks are important and you can’t give your all to anyone when you don’t have anything to give. So I switched off and put my feet up and prepared for a relaxing month and a half off… or so I thought.

The first 3 weeks were a nightmare. A nightmare. I had a huge work deadline this last term that became suddenly life or death in the last three weeks. I was had to teach myself how to finish the project in new software and we ended up having to restart a few times, abandoning all our best laid plans. I hardly slept stressing about the project and the last week, I worked 16 hour days for 7 days straight. A  nightmare. Now, my poor husband works 14 to 16 hour days for 6 days a week so in actuality it was an eye opening experience for me. I’m definitely going to be less “complainy” with him. I don’t know how he does it. I was a whiny little b*tch those last couple of days.

Thankfully the nightmare ended with a long weekend. We planned a quick Groupon weekend getaway about an hour out of town. We did some hiking and eating and drinking. It was much needed because when we got back my parents landed in the country. They’re here for the month. It’s really good having them here and I was able to take all of last week off to do some touristy stuff. We did Newport, Boston and a few others here and there. This weekend we’re going to New Hampshire and their last weekend we’re going to Martha’s vineyard and then they leave :(. They’ll have been here for a month but it feels like it’s flying by.

And amidst all of this, my best friend gave birth to her second son. He’s so cute! I love his fat cheeks! And Game of Thrones wrapped up their most incredible season to date. I get goosebumps just thinking about it. I’m in a GoT discussion group (don’t judge!) on whatsapp and we’ve all decided to start from season 1 to keep us going until season 7.

And so… here we are… IVF Season 4. I just got the call to start birth control this evening. We still have 2 weeks before stims start but here’s my tentative timeline for this cycle.

July 17th: Stop birth control pill
July 18th: Suppression Check/Baseline appointment
July 20th: Begin Lupron
July 26th: Begin Gonal F 225 iu
August 5th: Retrieval with PICSI

Phew, just writing that is making me excited. August is my birthday month and so far has consistently been the best month of every year for as long as I can remember. I’m putting it into the universe that this trend will continue. When I turn 35 I will be celebrating our awesome results. It’s going to be a great cycle, my friends!

It’s good to be back.

 

Today Was a Good Day

I’m having a good day today. In case the title of the post wasn’t clear.

First, food. The school’s culinary department has a healthy eating program. For $50 you get 3 meals a day and a snack for 5 days. So I ordered 2 for both of us and the order came in today. This may seem like nothing but food makes me excited. Especially when I didn’t cook it. I love cooking but I love eating more and I was really excited about this week’s menu. scallops Mozambique with cauliflower rice. vegetarian lo mein with asian bbq chicken and caprese stuffed chicken breasts with roasted broccoli for the dinners. Even writing this is making me excited.

Second, PICSI. The RE called this morning to tell me that he had a meeting with the embryology department and they’re going to do everything they can for us to do PICSI our next round. He said that he can’t guarantee that things will be ready in time but I told him that we decided to start in July so he sounded more positive. I guess they need specialized equipment and a specialist to come in and help them. I’m so excited! I know that PICSI isn’t going to be the missing puzzle piece but I’m just happy that Dr G is going the extra mile.

Third, and most importantly, insurance. You guessed it. After 5 months of fighting to get my claim reimbursed, these punks finally approved my claim and I should get my money in a few weeks. Granted I had to throw a tantrum on the phone because the guy told me the claim was denied. But damn it, they approved! I really hate raising my voice and I was very shaken up after the phone call but I’m glad I did and I’m glad it’s sorted out. I just sent in my second claim yesterday but hopefully this won’t be as big of a nightmare since I know exactly what to send in now.

Bonus fourth. It’s pay day tomorrow!!!

This upcoming weekend is going to be hard. Saturday, my father-in-law’s memorial service and Sunday, Mimi’s baby shower (I deleted the post I wrote about her but maybe some of you will remember). I hear there’s going to be a bar at the shower so that’ll help. I know I am not obligated to go but I’ve been in a good head space wrt pregnancies and stuff and I’ll get to see some other friends who I miss so I don’t think it will be bad.

I’m glad to be able to share some good news from my camp with you guys. I know it hasn’t been sunshine and roses over here but that’s how this journey goes right?

I’m about to go dig into one my dinners. No, I think I’m going to make grilled cheese and a glass of wine wile Ice Cube breaks it down for me.

xxx

Please!

I didn’t get a call on Sunday for some reason but yesterday I heard that we only have three embryos left on day three.

I cried. Will we ever get more than 3 embryos to biopsy? The numbers are just getting worse and worse the more cycles we do. If this cycle fails I’m going to start looking at other clinics. And I really don’t want to do that. I love my clinic. I despise the distance with every ounce of my being but I know that driving in to Boston for appointments and such isn’t going to be fun either. Do I just stay the course then? Because the commute is my only gripe at this stage.

Anyway. So, three. They supposed to be biopsied tomorrow. Please please please guys, just hang in there. We need some good news, please.

IVF: Season 3, Episode 3-5

Date: 4.18.16 – 4.20.16

Starring: 75iu Menopur, 300iu Gonal-F, 5mg Melatonin, Ubiquinol, Pre-natal, Vit C, D, E, B12.

Directed by:
Left Ovary – biggest at 11mm
Right Ovary – biggest at 12mm and 11mm

Synopsis: This really has been the most boring cycle. And tiring. It’s probably the melatonin but I’ve been a zombie all week. But all in all, I’m happy about the mundanity. No surprises, no stress.

All shots have gone off without a hitch. Had my first monitoring appointment this morning. She said I have 5 on one ovary and 3 on another but didn’t say which had which. But shout out to my right ovary for having the 2 biggest so far. My lazy girl has come to the party finally! The voicemail the nurse left wasn’t very informative. She just said, everything is going well and to go back on Friday with Ganirelix. No estrodiol levels or anything. At first I wanted to call to find out but I’m okay not knowing. It’s too early for anything and I don’t want to go on a comparing frenzy anyway. Calm and boring is the name of this game.

So far so good 🙂

Food: Been generally healthy (low carb, low sugar, no booze), minus the cake and prosecco on Sunday. No interesting recipes. In fact, we need to go grocery shopping.

Outtakes: (Prince Eric’s face cracks me up)

How-it-was-supposed-to-be-

source: collegehumor