My sweet 16

I had an ultrasound this morning, this is the first one I’ve had since taking the injectibles. My right side had 6 and my left had 10, the nurse called it Sweet 16. I know they’re not all going to mature but that number gives me hope today. Hope that the drugs continue doing their job and that we’re one day closer to retrieval. I go back on Friday to see how I’m progressing. The science behind this whole process absolutely amazes me and the things I’ve learned along the way is more than I ever anticipated. I’m excited to see what Friday has in store for us.

 

I remember a time when taking shots was fun!

Yesterday I started my shots…cue holy hell breakdown, is this really happening?!? I cried and not because I’m scared of the needles or the meds that are about to invade my body for the next 10 days. I cried because we’ve worked so hard to make it to this point when we never thought we’d have a chance in hell to do IVF.

John mixed the Menopur which was a little overwhelming since it was our first time but he was a champ. After he gave me the shot he kissed my belly and surprised me with a present, he told me that he has a present for me for everyday he has to give me a shot. I love this guy so much! I have so many thoughts running through my mind right now. I hate to admit it but I’m a glass half empty girl, I’ve been this way my whole life. I had an ephiany as I was coming into work this morning, we’ve worked too hard to have this fail and that’s what I’m going to keep telling myself maybe even shouting it every time I have a negative thought that enters my head. We deserve to be parents and I’m not going to let the waiting game and the statistics define what we’ve set out to accomplish for the last 6 years.

Last week I gave the clinic a payment of $10,190 and you know what I felt good about doing it. We ended up not taking out a loan because the interest rate was so high (yeah over 8%..I think not) so instead we took it out of our savings. Someone said…that’s why you have savings and there’s no better thing to use it for than this. It literally took someone else saying those words to me that made me realize savings was the way for us to go. Thankfully my insurance does have a fertility medication allowance so I only had to pay the co-pays for my meds which came to $240. That seemed like a big win for us!

I have an ultrasound scheduled for Wed morning, I’m not really anticipating anything huge to happen during that appt since it will only be the start of stim day 4. I’m expecting that as the week goes on I’m going to start getting moody because of the hormones so I’m trying to mentally prepare myself. I thought it would help by watching my carb and sugar intake this week (thank you pcos) and I’ve been going to the gym and walking on the treadmill and I’m trying to drink more water. I’m sure this is all a mind over matter thing but at least it’s something to distract me.

I wrote in my goal journal at the beginning of the year that I was going to enjoy the journey so here we are in the thick of things but yet still 3 months away from transfer. I’m going to try my hardest to take one day and one appointment at a time.

Break a leg.

Literally…I’m sitting in the hospital waiting room while John is in surgery having his leg broken to fix his dislocated knee. It’s so weird because I’ve been through 5 surgeries and he’s been the strong one and the one who always kept it together for me and now I’m the one that has to step up to the plate and be the strong one. The timing on this is terrible, he’s going to be on crutches for 6 weeks and will have to wear a leg brace for 8 months…seriously 8 freaking months!! Did I mention in 25 days I start my meds for IVF. If we survive this we’re going to take a celebratory trip because we’ll definitely deserve it.

Yesterday we met with our IVF dr to go over all of our test results. The only thing that came back a tad abnormal was the morphology of his sperm, they weren’t the best but with IVF that won’t matter. I feel hopeful. On one hand I feel like time is dragging but on the other I feel like I want it to drag so John can start his healing process and I can start mentally preparing for all of the hormones that I’m going to be shooting into my body.

So things are moving along in all aspects of life right now. We’re refinancing our home with a cash out to pay for our IVF and it’s almost to the closing phase. Crazy that we’re taking out $15k and the payment is only going up $150 and that’s with shortening the loan by 5 years. I think that’s a win for us! My main focus is taking care of my honey and hoping that his recovery is a lot quicker than they expect because I’m going to need him once I start the IVF. I just love him so much and I want him to be better.

I’m a Pageant Lover

I’m a pageant lover….I’ve run in one, I’ve judged one, I watch them and I totally support what they represent and the amazing gift you get by being involved whether you win or not. I never went to prom and it’s probably the one thing from my high school days that I truly feel like I missed out on and it’s something that weighed on me for years after the fact. Silly I know but I wanted that whole getting my hair done and dressing up experience. When I was in my 20’s I met a girl who ran in several pageants and she talked me into running….finally I could have my prom experience! Talk about putting yourself out there, I was surrounded by beautiful talented women all who by the way had past pageant experience. It wasn’t the best time in my life for running in a pageant, I had lost my job and was trying to keep my shit together from a breakup. Somehow though I put my game face on and for 3 months I attended cocktail parties, went through etiquette classes, sat through interviews with judges, answered the dreaded fish bowl questions, visited schools and nursing homes, was in a fashion show and met people that have forever changed my life. Those 3 months taught me so much about myself. I have a voice and I can stand up in front of room of 100 people and talk and know that that I’m not going to die of embarrassment. I’m just as beautiful and talented as all of those other girls that were running even though I didn’t have the past pageant experience that they did. I never imagined how much I would gain from just being a candidate, I found Myself and the self-esteem that I had been missing. The night of coronation I got to experience “My Prom” I had the perfect gown, my hair was done and I was ready to cross that stage with a new confidence that I’ve never had before. There were 4 princess and 1 queen crowned that night, never in a million years did I think I would be one of the girls that was crowned but I was. So for a year I dedicated my life to being a princess, for every event I dressed up, put on my sash and crown. We attended even more coronations, parades, dinners, and parties that I ever imagined, the final count came back at more than 400+events for the year. I traveled and met thousands of people along the way and hopefully left a lasting impression on some of them. During my reign I built a relationship with the other 3 princesses and queen, we truly became a Royal Family and I love them just like they are my sisters. I’m sharing all of this with you because last week I got together with my Royal Ladies and as we were gabbing away catching up on each other’s lives I blurted out “I’m doing IVF.” In the past I’ve been very selective in who I share my journey with, it’s only been a select few. I’ve reached a point where I’m tired of keeping this to myself, I want to tell anyone and everyone who will listen. They were super excited for me but what touched me the most came from my friend Stefanie, she said to me “having a baby will be the biggest jewel in your crown.” OMG she just melted my heart and made me tear up, I am going to cherish those words for the rest of my life because she’s so right. Infertility, the miscarriages and surgeries have brought me to such a dark place but I’ve survived…John and I have survived and when we start our IVF protocol next month I’m going go in there with so much hope and believe with all of my being that my jewel is awaiting us.

RE Appt.

I sat across the desk from the RE as he paged through a ream of paper. Those papers are the last 5  years of my life. I chocked back the tears thinking about the diagnosis, surgeries and losses, now they were all sitting in front of me in a nice and neat file folder. Gosh I wish the last 5 years had been that nice and neat. To be honest I don’t know how I physically or mentally got through those  years but here I am today talking to an RE about giving it one last shot and trying IVF, something I thought I would never be able to do.

We scheduled a tentative date of March 26th to start the process. Both John and I have a few follow-up things to do before we can proceed so that will give us time to get those done. Considering my age and our miscarriage history we decided to do the Preimplantation Genetic Screening (PGS). We both feel good about that decision and I know it will be money well spent. Any words of wisdom from anyone else who has gone through the screening please share your knowledge with me. The RE wanted to know if once we found out the genders if we would want to implant one vs the other. I guess I never really thought that would be an option, I guess that’s something to think about if we make it to that point. Probably a blog post for another day.

So how am I going to make it through the next few months and not worry about it everyday? Will I produce enough eggs, what if they don’t make it to 5 day, what if we do the screening and we don’t have any that come back normal, how crazy are the shots going to make me, am I strong enough to go through all of this, how in the heck will we pay for this! These are the things that have been occupying my brain since I made the appt back in Nov. I know I drive John crazy with all of my overthinking, heck I drive myself crazy with my thinking!

Things just got Real really quick!

It’s like someone just gave me $30,000

I’m terrible at opening my mail, I’ll let it pile up on the table for a month and then I’ll put it in a plastic shoe box and maybe I’ll go through some of it but chances are I won’t ever touch it. Well with it being a new year I told myself I wanted to get more organized and that means tackling the container of mail that I’d been neglecting. Most it of it was junk…until I came across the letter from my insurance company about my fertility treatment, I’m embarrassed to admit but the letter was dated 10/17. This paragraph brought tears to my eyes…

Beginning Jan 1, 2017 Ameriprise Finanical has elected to increase the lifetime maximum fertility benefit to $20,000 for medical expenses and $10,000 for pharmacy expenses.

All I can say is WOW! Our appt with the RE is on the 17th and let me tell you this news definitely puts the money part of my brain at ease.  Maybe Baby in 2017!

Lots of Love in 2017.

I absolutely love New Year’s. For the past 3 years now I’ve made a new year’s resolution and I’ve actually stuck to it. There’s something empowering about setting a goal and looking back and knowing you accomplished it. I get all giddy this time of year, reflecting on what the last 365 days has brought my way, it’s been a good year and I have a lot to be grateful for.

A few weekends ago John and I went to Vegas, we decided that instead of buying each other Christmas presents we wanted to create a memory together instead. Traveling is always our way to re-connect as a couple and get the uninterrupted quality time that we sometimes miss out on when we’re at home. It was a perfect 3 days and I’m so glad we took the time and money and spent it on us. This Love display was right outside our hotel lobby and I couldn’t help but take a picture. Going into 2017 I really want to focus on the Love and the Hope that I have to bring home our baby. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the journey especially when it’s not going the way you wanted, this year I’m going to take a step back and really reflect on how far I’ve come and all of the amazing people and turns of events that have gotten me to this point. I already know of some pretty exciting things that are coming up, I have my appt with my RE on 1/17 and I’m in line for a promotion at work.

Cheers to a New Year and lots of Love and Hope in 2017.

A Birthday Blessing

A week ago I turned 42…ugh 42 how did that number creep up on my so quickly. I actually love my birthday, I always take the day off of work and I do whatever I want to do. This year was a very mild winter day for MN, there actually wasn’t even any snow on the ground. I shopped and shopped a lot. Do you ever go to the mall and everything you try on just looks fabulous on you? I was having one of those days, maybe because it was my birthday. I want to back up my day a little bit, I had a list of two RE’s offices that I needed to call to see what their qualifications were for taking on a new client..ie: will you take me because I’m 42 now and if you do can I use my own eggs. I had a message out to the Center for Reproductive Medicine, she called me back the morning of my birthday…this could either make or break my special day. She told me that they don’t really have an age restriction but they only let you use your own eggs until 44. OMG…I can use my own eggs! I have an appt to meet with the RE on Jan 17th. I totally thought IVF would not be an option for me because of my age and on my birthday I found out that it is an option, what an amazing gift! I called my insurance company and I still have $13,000 left to use toward my infertility treatments, I’m going to use every last penny and I’m going to be proud that I did. I’m ready for the holidays but more importantly I’m ready for 2017!

PCOS and Time

Two things have been weighing on me this week. The first is how much I hate I mean literally hate PCOS. I was on the treadmill at the gym and I caught a side view glimpse of myself in the window and I wanted to cry. Kid you not my belly looks like it’s 4 months pregnant. So I made a vow to myself to never wear a spandex top of any kind to the gym and to start tracking my food again using the Weight Watchers app. I don’t know what else to do, as I’m getting older it seems to be getting worse. It’s a cruel joke that having this makes me look pregnant when that’s the one thing in the world I would kill to be and just can’t be. And if one more person asks me when I’m due I’m going to bitch slap whoever it may be.

Side story…I was out getting lunch last week and there was a woman in front of me checking out and the clerk was telling her how she made a huge mistake, she asked one of customers if she was eating for 2. I was eavesdropping on the conversation but it really made my blood boil and broke my heart at the same time because I’ve been on that receiving end of that question and I know how much it hurts when someone asks you that. I wanted to tell that clerk that she probably made the girl cry, I wish I had a mean enough bone in my body to say that but I just couldn’t. People need to stop being idiots…end of rant!

The other thing that’s been consuming my thoughts is how much time I’ve been wishing away. I can’t wait for my cycle to get here, I can’t wait to see how many follicles I have, I can’t wait to see when they’ll schedule my IUI, I can’t wait for the next 2 weeks to be over so I can test. I wish I had a Do-over card because here I am 5 years later wishing that I hadn’t wished so much time away.

I have a 45 minute commute into work each day and during that time I think…like a lot. For awhile now I’ve been struggling with what my life will be like without kids and I had this epiphany a few weeks ago, if we don’t have a child my life is going to be exactly like it is now. I’d been searching for what I thought was going to be this huge answer when in reality I’ve been living the answer for some time now. The realization actually made me cry. I wonder if people who want children that don’t end up having them find peace with it?

So that’s where I’m at with things for this week. In baby making news, I missed out on meds this month because I was on vacation and I started my cycle (always my luck). I have a general idea on when I’m ovulating so we did it the old fashion way. Do any of you get symptoms when you ovulate. TMI…I spot after sex during that time. Am I the only one? I asked the dr and he said that could be possible but it never use to happen to me before. So now I’m in my 2ww and if nothing happens this month we’ll go back on meds for the last 2 months of the year. If still nothing it’s going to be time to really do some soul searching because I told myself I was only going to do this through the end of the year. I’ll tell you what I’m not going to do is wish the  next 2 months away because I’m not sure I’m emotionally ready to close this chapter yet.

I’m tired…

When I first started this blog I thought I was going to be the best blogger ever…I was going to have all of this insightful information to share with the world and it would be an outlet for me to get all of my feelings out. In reality this blog hasn’t been any of those things for me. Each post I write makes me realize that my time trying to become a mom has almost reached its end. I’m tired…tired of  the dr appts, the meds, the timed intercourse, the mood swings. I’m tired of getting my hopes up and then having to live through the tww only to see another negative test. I’m tired of pasting on a fake smile every time I go into the clinic thinking that this time is going to be different, this is going to be the one for us.

I went in last Thurs for my IUI, I had 3 follicles. We sat in the waiting room for 35 minutes until they finally called us into a room. Seriously just throw us in an empty room so we can get down to business and leave the sample…It was annoying that they didn’t do that. We had about an hour and 15 mins to kill while the sample incubated and got washed so we went and grabbed something to eat. When we got back to the clinic we got called back right away. It took the dr all of 7 mins to do the procedure and then we were left to ourselves. 20 mins went by and the nurse stuck her head in and told us we could leave. The whole thing felt cheap….and not in the money sense! I get it people are busy but how about a 30 second conversation just to make sure that I’m feeling ok or telling us when we should start our timed intercourse or when should I start my progesterone. I didn’t leave the office in the frame of mind that I was hoping. So now here I am 4 days into my tww, the progesterone makes me feel like shit….I’m tired of feeling like shit because of the drugs. It seems like it’s a vicious cycle. I know I’ll only start to feel normal again when I stop all the meds and admit defeat. That will just bring a whole new set of issues to deal with. I guess I just don’t know where to go from here…