Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Feeling Antagonistic.

Or maybe it's just the protocol talking  :)
I came prepared. With a barrage of questions. He only laughed a little :)

My IVF consult went well yesterday. Quite, well, in fact! We talked for a while about our TTC history, and the RE was fully supportive of moving on to IVF at this point. No "ehhh, you may have success with an additional IUI or two" or "geeee, you haven't really earned the big guns yet." Just a simple "From my perspective, I would recommend moving on." His main reasoning is that with the number of cysts that my ovaries present with (yesterday had 25 on righty and 20 on lefty), they aren't comfortable taking a more aggressive stim approach for an IUI. Afraid to wake the "sleeping giant" or something like that. So no WONDER we haven't had very good stimming for our two IUI's- their hands were tied, lest we populate a baseball team all in one go. Move over Octo-mom, Multiples-Meier-Mama is coming to town!

Because of my super cysty ovaries, he also recommended we go with the Antagonist protocol, which involves stimming with both Menopur and Gonal F or Follistim, and a Lupron trigger. He thinks that I'll have a great response to the stims given my "loaded gun ovaries", and wants to try and avoid OHSS by using the lupron trigger instead of an HCG trigger. I'll get more details when I talk to the coordinator. Oh, and he did say that it's our choice whether to use PIO or Endometrin during the TWW, and that the research suggests that they're equally effective... but he just feels more comfortable with PIO.

So with all that, the decision was pretty much made. We've stressed over this long enough. The fact that we got to this point sucks, but I have to put the doubt over what could have been behind me and get to my happy place. My happy "I'm going to have a needle shoved through my vaginal wall to retrieve mah behbehs after my ovaries have been inflated to the size of softballs" place. Ummm... that's a happy place, right? Right? <crickets>

He didn't see anything that he thought would indicate a need for more testing in terms of preemptively diagnosing an implantation failure. The only supplements he recommended were OTC prenatals. Dr Boy does need to go in for a repeat SA, mainly so they can do a much more in depth look at morphology. Our clinic requires that sperm hit a certain threshold for morphology in order to try to fertilize naturally, otherwise, they require ICSI. Either way, that's not a problem. He had fine morphology before. (side note- any supplements or other things he can do to improve morphology? 'Cause it'd be nice not to have to spend that $1500. Just in case.) I need to have a saline sonogram to check out the condition of the cute ute. That's pretty much it though!

We then had a date with wandy to check out the cyst. And to see if I can skip my period this round and go strait to BCP! I have about 7.2mm worth of lining built up, but NO dominant follicles. And it's CD19, so really? We can put this one in the books as annovulatory. Even better though, no cyst either! That sucker went away all on its own.

Because of the lack of a dominant follicle and the fact that the cyst shrunk down to nothing, he cleared me to start the BCP right away, without waiting for a new CD1. Which works WONDERS towards the whole getting on the calendar for a December cycle goal.

Long story short- we're good to go. I'm waiting to hear from the clinic's IVF schedule coordinator, but I will most likely be starting BCP this week to get ready for a Dec cycle! AHHHH!!!! Which means that by New Year's, I'll either have a BFP, or a really friggin' good reason to drink :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Ya'll, I am terrified right now.

I have an IVF consult meeting in 90 minutes. I made that appointment two weeks ago, when I went in for my WFT appt for the failed IUI #2. I figured I'd at least make the appointment, so that Dr Boy and I could discuss the matter while we were on vacation the following ten days.

We went on vacation. We had a BLAST. (side note: i heart boston. and maple syrup. and db's grandma.) We bam-chicka-bammed. And it was FUN. All of it, not just the pervy stuff, you pervs!

Dr K found a 22mm cyst on my right ovary during the WTF. That was the one that measured either 14 or 15mm the day we triggered, not the 18.5mm on the left that we thought would be the mature baby-maker. I kept thinking, "Awwww, it's mommy's first cyst!" Dr K said to go about our business and let the cyst shrink on its own. I felt some pain for the next few days in that region, but it's mostly gone away, as hopefully the cyst has. He even said to OPK CD12-20 just in case I had that miraculous rebound that sometimes happens.

No miracles here, but that's not the point.

The point is, I have my IVF consult in 90 minutes, and I'm terrified.

I know with all my heart now that it's what we need to do next. We need this. Both of us. To know that we're trying everything we possibly can. To get on with being normal again. To become parents.

Right now though, sitting here on my first day back to work after vacation, I'm flipping my shit. What if the cyst didn't go away? What if it doesn't shrink with BCP? Can we get an IVF cycle in with a retrieval before Christmas? Why does Christmas matter I'm jewish! Why will stims work this time when they've been so sheisty before? Will they judge us for making this decision after only two IUI's and three clomid cycles?

And the biggest one of them all: Will this get us our take-home baby?

Wish me luck. I've never felt this full of anxiety. And I think I'm going to vomit from it.

#1 on the Essential Infertile's Google Reader List

999 Reasons to Laugh at Infertility

And specifically, the post I linked to. So. True.

Every last step.

OK, except the lack of tampons because I like to coupon shop and have two years worth of tampons underneath my sink.

But all of the rest of them!

Please read and enjoy :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

On Luck.

I've always felt lucky.

I did well in high school, got into every college I applied to, ended up with a couple of scholarships. Sure, I worked hard, but I was damn lucky too. I met Dr Boy the first weekend of college. I got to do a summer of training at NASA. I got into a great graduate school, paid for. And they actually PAID me to get my master's degree (though this was standard for what I do, it was still awesome). I did a career path internship that landed me a job as soon as I finished grad school- in my home city. Dr Boy matched at a residency program in that same city.

I'm not saying all this to be all "Wow look at you!" I just have been incredibly lucky in life. So much so.

I guess this is where our luck has run out. 34 months of trying to make a baby. Two years no natural cycling. Four unmedicated natural cycles. Three rounds of clomid. Two months of injectables with IUIs. No luck.

I always thought that I'd be one of those lucky ones to end up pregnant on their first month of meds. Or on their first round of injectables with IUI. But I'm not. I'm finally coming to terms with the fact that I really, truly, honestly fall into the infertile category. That's me. I'm that. I'm not an IF impostor anymore- there's no "nah, she hasn't tried hard enough to be part of the club yet."

Dr Boy and I have been struggling with the decision of where to go next. Initially we had planned on trying out three or four IUIs. But secretly, really, we figured we'd be off this roller coaster in one or two tries. No one really plans on doing four IUIs. They end up there because the previous one was unsuccessful. I never really let myself think about the possibility that we'd have to do anything past one or two. I mean, I couldn't really be that broken, could I? That unlucky? That's just not me.

But it is, and I'm so done. Dr Boy is done with this. I'm over my ridiculous darwin flip out. (which I really hope didn't offend anyone because it was just me being batshit crazy and not judging anyone AT ALL I SWEAR I THINK IVF IS A WONDERFUL OPTION) We've scheduled an IVF consult for the week we come back from vacation (two weeks from today). My brain is telling me this is the right choice, but my heart? It can't accept the fact that our luck has left us. My heart keeps saying that no, no, you're over-reacting. Stop being such a crazy person and just keep on with the IUIs.

I can't reconcile the two. Logical me says to just do the damn IVF and enjoy the much higher chance of conceiving. Illogical me says that I haven't worked hard enough to earn the IVF. Logical me is thrilled to have finally made this decision and wants to get back on the Hope train. Illogical me says I don't deserve it yet. That I haven't put in the time.

All of me, though? All of me is terrified that my luck has left for good. And that even though IVF gives us a better chance, it won't be good enough. And I don't know if I can take that.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Nope Squared.

I had some really light dark brown spotting yesterday afternoon, and immediately my mind rushed towards implantation bleeding. I mean, I was 11 DPO, so it was still within the realm of possibility, right? On the late side, but I hadn't been cramping at all yet (last time I had lots of pre-AF cramps) so I didn't think anything of it in terms of AF.

I went to my hour-long swim class which was awesome (did some of my first flip turns! actually make progress on this fitness thing!). I ate my last meal for 24-hours (Yom Kippur), planning on only drinking water through tonight. And then AF arrived, pretty much all at once, cramps and all.

Super. IUI #2, fail. And I guess technically, on CD11. Which means I can add a short luteal phase to my resume. I was on no progesterone support this time around because that hadn't been a problem last time, though really, AF only arrived 12 hours earlier than it did with IUI #1. The RE said they didn't think it would be a problem.

Whatever. It was obviously a problem this time. Along with a piss-poor response to the stims overall. 3 vials of menopur for most of the cycle, 19 shots, and only one measly 18.5 mm follie? Lame. My RE always calls my ovaries loaded guns because of all the cysts from my dang PCOS- Guess they're loaded guns that keep misfiring.

This month is a break of sorts. We'll be out of town CD8-18, which means no stimming for us. I'm not sure what we're going to do next. I do have an appt on Monday morning to discuss things. And probably do some crying.

I'm good at that.

Good luck to the billion of you (at least it feels like) that were cycling at the same time as me this month- and thank you for all the support!!!

(dear god is it sunset yet? i'm flippin' hungry)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Depression Hurts. A baby can help.

I'm not good at the TWW. I'm 10 DPO today. No testing yet.

I get depressed. I've suffered from clinical depression since my senior year in college. I started to see a therapist for a little while, then started Lex.apr.o. I felt a whole lot better, but a little numb. Like, couldn't cry during dumb movies, which for me was a huge difference.

When we decided to TTC, I weaned off the drugs. I let it take three months to wean off a silly 10mg rx. But I did it, and I was *ok*. Ish. Fast forward three years, because we're coming up on the anniversary of when I officially stopped taking the drugs altogether. I still go through rough patches, for sure. I can feel them coming on, and it usually last a few days.

Retreat, ignore phone calls, make excuses not to see people. Take on a cranky pants attitude with Dr Boy. Take long afternoon naps, refuse to cook. Sometimes it's bad enough that I'll call in sick to work. But I know I come out of it within a couple of days. It's often preceded by a few days that are just awesome. Like the universe balancing me out- can't have too much happiness now, that's not in the cards.

The happy this time around has been a series of amazing workouts. I've been running again, and Monday night I went to a swim class again. I kicked ass in swim, and while I'm still one of the worst runners in my class, I'm getting better. Stronger.

So of course the sinking started Tuesday. I can't focus at work. I have quite literally done ZERO work at work this week. I feel awful and sick to my stomach admitting that, but it's the truth. I have been getting headaches every afternoon. I've been short with Dr Boy. I mustered up enough energy to make pasta and leftover chicken for dinner.

I hate it.

I know I'll be ok. I really just want this to be worth it. Living better through a chemical-free lifestyle better be worth it.

Please just let this be the time it works.