Tuesday, July 31, 2007


Am I a productive member of society? I'm not sure. Many things I'm trying to accomplish just don't seem to be headed in a positive direction. Come, let's explore the list ...

1. Getting pregnant. Well, of course you already know all about my inability to achieve this one. 'Nuf said.

2. Fixing my pipes. (No, this is not a reference to #1, my pipes aren't the problem there at all.) The pipes in my HOUSE, silly. My house was built in the 50s, thus we mostly have galvanized pipes. Which after almost 60 years begin to rust. Now I have a rusted, leaking hot water pipe in my basement, right at the junction to the feed upstairs for the bathroom. According to the plumber, this means if they try to just repair the leaky elbow, the pipe feeding upstairs will snap and we will need to open up the walls and replace those pipes too.
So, I went through several steps to try and arrange to fix this problem. I had the plumber give me a rough estimate. I contacted my contractor-neighbor to open up the walls for said plumber. I enlisted my husband to take out a home improvement loan. Then when all these tasks were completed, I return to the plumber to schedule the work while I am on vacation. He then informs me that he might not be able to do it then, despite allusions to the contrary at our first meeting. When I leave repeated messages asking a general time frame he might be able to do it, I get vague return messages. Finally, last Friday, he arrives at my house with his brother/partner and they again review the project with me. Promising to "check some numbers" and get back to me to schedule a time, they leave. What do I receive in the mail on Monday? An ESTIMATE. No phone call, no date, nothing.
I am done with them.
Now this project is back to square one. And I really never wanted to spend thousands of dollars on a house that I am SELLING in less than one year. I never wanted to open up the walls and ceiling of my kitchen, which I painted 2 years ago! I never really wanted to be doing any more painting, when all I have left of the entire interior is the living room (I have done all the trim, windows, ceilings and walls of virtually the entire house! Now I will have to start over again in the kitchen. UGH!)

3. Taking care of my dog, Lu Lu. Also known as my lack of a professional job. Today she came inside all squinty-eyed and painful looking in one eye. I suspect she either has a foreign body or corneal abrasion. Normally, when I was in practice, I could handle such a case with ease. Topical anesthetic, thorough exam, fluro stain for an ulcer, flush copiously, dispense topical antibiotics if needed. Wah La! But with no clinic at my disposal, I'm stuck. I may have to take her to the vet in the morning. Do you know how painful it is to have to make an appointment and PAY someone to do what you already know how to do? All because you don't have supplies? or an assistant? I feel like a complete loser.

4. Taking care of my family. Okay, as a SAHM I guess I'm sort of doing that. But today it was so hot, and no AC, so it was hard to be motivated. I'd like to be prep-ing to paint the living room, but with the pipes thing so up in the air, its hard to have 2 main rooms out of commission at the same time. Plus, we are leaving in 2 weeks to go visit my family and babysit my niece while my sister and hubby go to Italy. We will be gone 2 weeks, and I'm not sure I can complete the paint job before then anyway. That's when I wanted the pipes done. And my desk is a mess, bills everywhere etc. And the laundry isn't done. And there is a TON of ironing to do. And the garage is still full of the left-overs from the garage sale. And I have stuff to post on Ebay. And, and, and ...

Well you get the picture. I'm not sure I'm a contributor. I think I am just a taker, a parasite, whatever term works for you. I don't earn an income. I paid lots of money to put letters after my name, but don't use them. Oh wait, I haven't paid all that money yet; I'm still paying it. Oh wait, I'm not paying it, DH is paying it. Oh, and I didn't even cook dinner for him tonight. (Ok, before you think I'm too horrible, I did feed the kid, and DH is on-call and likely to be at the hospital all night, so ... it wasn't too lame of me)

Yup, that's right, just label me a drain on society. Now if I could only get the drains in my bathroom working ...

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Polarity Meme

Okay, so lucky duck Sticky tagged me for this ages ago. But I'm finally getting around to it.

10 Things I hate, in no particular order:

1. INFERTILITY (uh, this really is #1 though, isn't it #1 for all of us?)
2. An overtired, and thus psychotic, pre-schooler, notably mine (J)
3. Pretentious people who use big words just to show they know them, and who think their children are remarkable -- even when they eat sand
4. When DH leaves my car's sun visor unhooked and I go to put it down and it WACKS me on the head
5. When people don't know what to say about IF, and so say "maybe it will just happen"
6. When I overhear people give inane "medical advice" about their pets -- like taking voodoo root will cure Fang's tendency to chew off your fingers
7. That I was right, and the puppy we picked 3 years ago did develop raging skin allergies
8. When said puppy, now dog, insists on barking non-stop for 5 minutes at the paperboy/mailman/delivery person
9. My husband's long, long, long hours, and how they make him so tired he only hears 1/8 of what I say
10. Going to a social function where I hardly know anyone and have to make small talk with people I'll never see again

10 Things I love
1. My amazing, loving and devoted husband
2. My amazing, loving and comical son
3. Our goofy, barking beagle mix who has sad eyes and loves to cuddle and never bites J, despite the torment
3. My parents, who never stop amazing me with their support and respect for me, how they treat me as an adult
4. My veterinary education, even though I'm not using it everyday it's help make me who I am
5. Edy's Espresso Chip ice cream, heaven in a carton
6. A glass (or two) of lovely red wine and some friends to play cards with
7. A great camera and time in a darkroom (which I haven't done in decades, but LOVED)
8. Going antiquing and finding a great deal or exactly what I had in mind
9. Decorating magazines, the gamut -- Martha, Country Home and Living, RealSimple, Home and Gardens -- I just wish I could do the shopping
10. Painting, not the arty kind, but my house. I love seeing the transformation of a room and hearing my DH say "you're right, it looks totally bigger now," HA!

Okay, I didn't think too hard about these, but maybe that's the best way to get to know a bit about me. So now the TAG. I'm new to blogging and some of you have been around a little longer, so if I tag you and you've done this already ... sorry! Here are a few ladies I'd like to know more about if they are up for it ... Tag to some of my fellow 2ndary IFer's Leah at My Dusty Ovaries, and (I know you are busy but when you have a chance) Bean at Where is My Happiness , and a fellow scientist Caro at ThirdTimeLucky?. Hope you have fun Ladies!

To ALL the BFP ladies: I sincerely wish you good luck, speedy progress to the 2nd trimester and beyond, and all the joys that go with it.

To ALL the ladies in waiting: I sincerely wish you peace and serenity as you strive to build your family and perservere through all the difficulties. I am with you gals!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Sleep is good

Its amazing what a difference a full night's sleep makes in your day. Last night Resident-Boy got called into the hospital at 2 am, so no ruckus at 5 am to wake the child. Aahh, blissful sleep until 6:45 -- wonderful.

We had a nice day at a playground with a little wading pool, and well rested child makes any outing better. So I'm feeling a bit normal today. Isn't that a nice change?

Oh, and sorry for the ung-dly long post yesterday! I had a lot stored up.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Endless Weekend

First, thanks to all of you who kindly visited and left love. I heart you all.

Note: child discussed below, please skip to section below the stars for strictly IF topics

Second, its been a crazy few days. I was roped into a visit to lovely Toronto to spend time with the In-Laws. With Resident-Boy (aka DH) having very little time off, and rarely most of a weekend, you can understand how I was bitter about having to share. While I strive to teach the 4-year-old to share, it is admittedly not my strong suit. Especially after the BFN.

My Parents In-Law live part-time in the desert of the southwest, and part-time in Canada. They used to stay with my DH's sister, her husband and J's cousin while in the Great White North. However, now SIL is in midst of ugly divorce. She has been trapped in apt with soon-to-be-ex while they struggle over custody. Anyway, this is relevant in that now 'Rents In-Law no longer had a long-term place to stay with their 2 dogs. So, this weekend was the end of their time in cooler climes.

Naturally this meant they wanted to spend time with Resident-Boy and his son -- oh and me too. We were invited to come to town and join family at MIL's dog agility event. As typical of the In-Laws, this was an all weekend event. Now, agility has been a good thing for my MIL. She has lost weight, stayed active, made friends in her new desert city. But now it consumes their life. To the point where it is interfering with relationships. (Anyway, their craziness could be an entire post in itself.) The point here is, we did NOT want to travel 2+ hours to Toronto to meet SIL, to then travel probably another hour to said event. To then spend hours waiting for MIL to spend 2 minutes putting dog through his paces.

I was so proud of DH for saying outright that this is not how we wanted to spend the weekend. He wanted to go on Saturday and spend time with his sister and take the kids somewhere FUN. So we did ... sort of. We met SIL and planned to go to Center Island, where there are amusement park type rides and a splash park. Well, the weather was beautiful and it all sounded like a good plan. But the travel was a bit involved. We met SIL and her 4-year-old, walked about 3-4 city blocks to subway, took two trains, then waited with a zillion people to crush ourselves onto a ferry to get to the island. By this point J was exhausted, since he got up at 5 am (this is a recurring problem). We splashed at the splash pad and rode a few rides, ate ice cream. Then it was time to smoosh back onto packed Ferry for the return trip, two subway trains and 4-block walk back to SIL's place.

Okay, so you would think this day is over and we put exhausted children to bed, right? Oh no, because you have not met the In-Laws. We then get into a car and go to DH's uncle's to have dinner with them and the 'Rents at 7pm. (If you are not aware, 4-year-olds who rise at the crack of dawn generally implode at this hour) We finally get back to SIL's at 10pm at which point 4-year-old children are asleep in car.

Now, how did we spend our lovely Sunday? Are you ready? At the dog show. Yes that's right, the dog show. At dinner on Saturday, we were happily informed that the event was on our way home, about half way between Toronto and our town. Lucky us! Now we could wake up at 6am, since that's J's hard-wired wake-up time, and head to the country after breakfast. All after spending an oh-so restful night on SIL's pokey-spring laden sofa bed. And of course, J was on his best behavior (not) after only 7-8 hours sleep.

Ah, finally you think this weekend is over (and this insanely long post too). But not yet. Monday brings the arrival of the 'Rents for the final good bye on their way south. It was actually a nice afternoon since I was in charge of planning. The most strenuous thing we did was sit in the lobby of the local pool and watch J attempt to swim.


I'm still not sure where my emotions are headed. One moment I am just trudging through each day, and the next I think my head or chest is going to explode. I've had passing moments of deep anxiety, others of extreme irritability. I'm not sure if these are DHEA side-effects or just a sign of my repressed emotions. I think the latter, as I am working like hell to repress.

It was ironic how erratic my thoughts on our family were this week. Early in the week I took J to soccer where there were two families who were clearly created via international adoption. Both looked very happy, well-adjusted and complete. I wanted to talk to them but I am not that brave. Watching them, I thought -- WE can do that. We are liberal, open-minded, and loving people.

The next day we went to story hour at the library. It was particularly crowded. I watched a bunch of different types of kids. I looked at them and thought -- I don't want those genetics. I know that sounds horrible, and I am ashamed of those emotions, but those were my honest thoughts. That if I considered an egg donor, our child could be like any of those in the room. And I didn't want them. I wanted us.

Then over the weekend we were at this family place, and there were bellies everywhere. Everywhere. And it was hard. I didn't lose it, but I wanted to. DH said stupid things like maybe that would bring us luck. He tries so hard, but just doesn't get it.

I don't know where we will end up with all of this. I guess I don't have to figure it out just yet. But waiting is not what I am good at, I'm better at doing. But what should I be doing -- IVF, DIY, adopting, DE? How will this end? I hate waiting, especially when I don't know exactly what it is I'm waiting for. Waiting for what?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Here I sit

Thank you to everyone for checking in yesterday. And thanks for being there but not saying too much. I don't think I could have taken encouragement.

Today I am angry. Frustrated. Impatient. Exhausted (emotionally).


Tuesday, July 17, 2007


AF arrived last night. My body has disappointed me yet again. Roller coaster of emotions going on, still need to call RE today for upcoming plan. I'll fill you in later when I figure out where I'm at. Ironically, I got an email about an adoption agency orientation this morning. Is that supposed to be a sign?

Monday, July 16, 2007


Okay, things have been a little crazy and I don't really have many pics of my own. But here are some views of where I live.

This is a FAMOUS attraction near where I live. Lots of wacky newlyweds (used to) like to go there. In fact, it is where my parents honeymooned!

These are some beautiful gardens that I like to visit and take pictures. My profile image was taken here.

MORE TO COME SOON, I promise. I'll add them to this post.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Blue, Pink, who knows?

Yesterday we went blueberry picking, and it was a beautiful day. Clear, sunny and NOT hot. Okay, before you start to think we are berry picking freaks, you need to understand that my kid eats produce like its the only thing his body can digest. Ok, that and candy. Anyway, being broke and needing lots of fresh produce equals seizing any opportunity for cheap goods. And these were pretty reasonable, and yummy.

Today, I POAS. This was stupid, incredibly stupid. I am only 7dp IUI, 9dp trigger. My rational self knows that this was an endeavor in fruitlessness. But my irrational self was in desperate need of action, even irrelevant action. So, it was negative. Obviously, all this tells me is the trigger is gone. And I have no more HTP (it was an old one hanging around the linen closet, it was taunting me ... pee on me, you know you want to). I almost bought more today, but frankly couldn't decide which was more cost efficient -- the 2 pack of cheap tests that might not be definitive for several days, OR the single 5-day-early test, which still could be a false negative for many days. Basically the scientist in me said ''BUTTHEAD, why are you (literally) pissing money away on tests that will just drive you crazy and not tell you anything for sure?" So I didn't buy any. But I want one. One with 2 pink lines, or a plus sign or whatever.

I mostly arrived at this insanity because my body is toying with me. I intermmitently have mild sore boobs, maybe a nauseous moment. But this has happened to me before in other stim cycles, but never wound up with a pregnancy. I don't know if it is the hormonal roller coaster that makes my body torment me this way, but it is cruel. I'd like to think things are a little different this time. Maybe my boobs are a little more sore, maybe they feel bigger. But I just think this will end, and then I'll be certain this cycle failed, HPT or no HPT. To top it off, tonight I've had more twinges, cramp-like but not quite. WTF does that mean?! Implantation, AF coming? Who knows.

All I know is that IF has crippled my (previously lovely scientific) mind.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Protocols, DHEA and more -- Part 2

Okay, so DHEA seems to be a hot topic among many of us lately. I am definitely NOT an expert, as I haven't even started taking it yet (still in the 2ww post IUI). But I thought I'd at least post the little info I have and a couple of sites I found that you might want to check out.

Here is how the US National Library of Medicine defines DHEA, its uses and potential side-effects -- such as "In women, the most common side effects are abnormal menses, emotional changes, headache, and insomnia." Reality recently experienced some of these and found a way to combat the insomina. The biggest precaution I've found is in individuals with arrhythmias, as DHEA can possibly cause arrhythmias. "Individuals with a history of abnormal heart rhythms, blood clots or hypercoagulability, and those with a history of liver disease, should avoid DHEA supplements."

Some of the preliminary work with DHEA in infertility is/was being done at the C.enter for Human Repr.oduction in NYC. You'll need to look through their website to find several different areas regarding DHEA. This article also showed some of the positive aspects of DHEA in infertility.

Regarding dosing -- well, my dear Dr Mumbles has yet to give me a dose, as I am still in my 2ww. But I have heard a variety of doses. Rumor has it that at CHR they use 25mg micron.ized DHEA three times per day. One thing must be considered -- that this is a "nutricutical" and is not regulated by the FDA. Therefore you must be careful about the quality of the product you use and the continuity of the quality. There was a good discussion over at Aurelia's site today, so read the comments. Okay, I'm done disseminating data. Hope it was helpful to have in one place and not redundant.

As for me, I'm trying to not head to the store for HPTs. If I start POAS now, I could track the downfall of the trigger and then watch. But honestly, I can't afford that many! I'm having some mild intermittent breast tenderness, and my ovarian discomfort lasted longer after this IUI than any of my others (although this is the largest number of follicles I've had for an IUI). I think this is all most likely from the progesterone made by my CLs. I've had similar symptoms after other IUIs, but then they stopped after implantation window. I'm 6dpIUI, so still a little to early to say. Probably might get a sense this weekend, but who knows. I hope I don't get too emotional because we have this big beach party with all his resident-mates. The whole department gets together. I really want to enjoy this family day and not let IF screw me up. Its going to be hard not to think about though because my IRL friend who cycled just before me will be there. I think she is amazing and has been through so much. So far she has a positive after this IVF, but with some significant spotting/bleeding. She's hoping there is one embryo holding on. I hope so too! But we are sure to talk about things. I guess I just have to keep perspective and hope, right?

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Protocols, DHEA and more --PART 1

In the last week or two I have seen quite a bit of discussion and questions about what drugs are in which protocols, along with interest in a supplement (DHEA) for women who have poor response to ovarian stimulation. So, the scientist in me consulted Dr Google and his peers and gathered a bit of data and some helpful links, which I thought I would share. You certainly should pursue your own research, as well as discuss ALL MEDICATIONS AND TREATMENTS with your RE. Also, please note this information is certainly NOT exhaustive, but will hopefully be informative.

PART 1 Protocols

I'm going to briefly describe a few things then refer you to a great website with nice diagrams. Okay, its here -- but will you still read mine?

There are 3 basic types:
1. Lup.ron
2. Antagonist
3. Microdose Lup.ron Flare

All these protocols generally begin with a course of BCP to suppress the hormone axes. The main differences are in the method used to prevent ovulation prior to the desired time (ie the maturation of multiple follicles).

Two of the protocols use Lup.ron early in the cycle to suppress your pituitary gland. This will suppress the release of various hormones which allows for multiple follicles to be recruited into development (that's right, your in the army now). Once the pituitary is shut down, stimulation drugs are given and can be carefully controlled (usually -- yeah I know, a bunch of you have had OHSS!). Lup.ron's suppression also stops your body's own release of LH, thus preventing ovulation, again allowing multiple follicles to reach maturity. This lack of LH surge is why we take the hCG trigger shot, as hCG mimics the surge.

In the antagonist protocols, rather than use a drug early on to shut things down, stimulation meds are given along side your body's own hormones. Then as multiple follicles are approaching maturation, the antagonist (Cet.rotide, Gan.irelix) is used to prevent the LH surge. Again hCG is used to trigger full maturation/ovulation. Antagonists only take 24hrs to shut down the pituitary, whereas Lup.ron takes 10 days for complete suppression (this is why under the standard Lup.ron protocol you take it for so long). Antagonists are generally taken for a few days near the end of your cycle.

In the microdose flare Lup.ron protocol, a short period of suppression is used. In tiny doses Lup.ron actually stimulates the release of your body's own FSH from the pituitary, for several days before the suppressive action kicks in. This results in a "flare" of natural FSH. This natural flare of FSH is combined with drugs containing FSH to stimulate the ovaries. This is the protocol of choice or last resort in "poor responders." (I don't believe this would be used in cases such as PCOS, since they potentially have issues with over response).

AGAIN consult this lovely website. It has simple charts with a break down of the timeline and explains all the protocols. In regards to the Microdose Flare Lup.ron Protocol, I also found this site very informative (ignore the Beverly Hills nonsense at the top). It also discusses other standard protocols as well.

I hope this is helpful to some when you are reading about a friends travails during a cycle. Please, if you note any errors or have other sites to recommend, please email me or leave them in the comments and I will update.

Tomorrow (or maybe Friday) ... DHEA. Is it the cure-all for you crusty ovaries? (God I hope so!) Stay tuned for Part 2.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

I did it!

Okay, maybe I am a little computer incompetent. But the picture is there, right? Take that nasty old blogger. Ha!

Oh, and thanks Mel for reminding me to hit the local library today (it is one of my faves and J and I go regularly). It was a cool and cheap respite from a sweltering day. Guess what I found there? A brand spanking new book on ART and its effect of the world. Note: this is NOT a guide book, but an examination of how ART is effecting various aspect of society etc. I'm super curious how this is going to read. I'll keep you posted. (Check out my new widget on the right)

And to any who have not yet signed up ... get your sorry booty over to Impatient and join the Virtual World Tour. Have no fear -- car sickness, fear of flying, dread of packing -- it can all be conquered on the Virtual World Tour! See you there!

Also, soon to be released ... the Polarity Meme.

Monday, July 9, 2007

I'm okay, You're okay

Thanks for the positive comments yesterday. Sorry if things sounded too dire. I'm actually not doing too badly. I think I was really reflecting on a lot of the emotions I've been feeling over this journey, and wanted to get them out on paper (screen?). Plus this head cold has been kicking my ass and my ear is full of fluid, again.

Not that all those things I wrote aren't true or real. I think I've just come to accept them at this point. I want to change how I approach things, but it will need to be little steps at a time. There is already enough uncertainty in my life.

So my big goal tonight was to add a picture to my blogger profile that would also show in the About Me section. Sorry, not a pic of me but of some flowers. I loaded them up to Picasa and pasted the link in but it keeps telling me error in URL. I made the image small (under 50Kb) and even used the help section and only pasted the recommended part of the link. But it still won't work. I'm annoyed! I am computer capable damn it!

I survived this past weekend with the In Laws. My MIL was a big help in keeping J occupied. I just wish they wouldn't try to do so much. Ever since DH and I were dating, I can't understand why his family tries to pack something into every minute possible. Come on, his folks are officially at the geriatric stage! Anyway its too hard to explain, and I'm realizing I'm not nearly as clever and witty as so many of you out there.

Well, DH is actually coming home tonight. He got his butt kicked this weekend while he was on-call. And it sounds like today wasn't much better. Meanwhile I had a crappy day with J -- he had some asthma today, secondary to the cold, and the meds make him wacky. He was driving me up a wall and it was sweltering hot here (no air conditioning in our house). So I'd love to dump all over him about my 12 hours with the crazy child, but I'll have to hold back to be supportive of his struggles.

Let me just say, I LOVE DH! And he treats me like a queen (when he is around). But I am tired of things being this way. Waiting for scraps. I think that's why we feel disconnected from each other. I'm fried from managing J for 10-12 hr days, and then he comes home from his 12-14 hr days and I just want to dump J on him so I can get a break. They go off for one-on-one time (which is important). But then once J is in bed, DH is either exhausted or has reading to do for the next day. I know his residency is a bitch (it is a 5 year surgical program). And he can't really complain or whine to his colleagues since there is still a lot of "suck it up" and old boys mentality in his field. So he needs to do it with me. But I'm a little tired of the supportive role. He tries to be supportive of the whole IF thing for me. But he just doesn't get it, nor does he have the energy to really try. I know if he wasn't overworked we would deal with it more as a team. But right now he is SO immersed in his training that we can only manage our life by divide and conquer. He works and I deal with everything else -- J, the house, bills, IF, all of it.

Sorry I'm done now. It will get better and we only have one more year to go. I can't wait. Oh did I mention that at the end of that year we will move to Los Angeles? Yes, one of the most expensive cities in the country, and completely across the country from my elderly parents and my family. Sorry, now I'm really done.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

At Risk Behavior

Sometimes I wonder if I have a problem engaging in life. Am I just an expert at avoidance? Do I not know how to be part of meaningful relationships? Why do I feel so disconnected from life?

I have had brief hopes that this IUI will work. But then I squash them. I know I am afraid to leave the familiarity of IF treatments. I think this is why I was so happy with my last conversation with Dr Mumbles. Not (just) because other treatment options might get me pregnant, but because it means there will be no substantial change in my life.

Since leaving Pennsylvania (my home state) 4 years ago, I have withdrawn from life. I have left behind my family, friends, the only colleagues I have known. And then I hid myself in raising our newborn son. When it came time to consider returning to veterinary practice, I balked. Citing problems with work hours and availability of childcare and DH's crazy schedule ... I avoided it. I was afraid. Afraid to meet new people. Afraid of responsibility. Afraid of failure.

I feel disconnected. From my life. From DH. From my family. From my son.

I want to blame what has happened to me. I want to blame my need for another child. I want to blame DH's career. I want to blame everyone and everything. But I know the responsibility is mine. The only change can come from me.

I'm searching for the next step in my life, and trying not to make it just success over IF. I want to find my path, my meaning. I want hope in my life ... for all my life and its joys. I think its time to put myself at risk. At risk for failure, disappointment ... and happiness.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Sick and Tired

Boring post today. Had IUI this am. Swimmers were great. Four follicles were mature, but I'm surprising not as sore as I'd expected (hope they all burst). Here's hoping one of those bad boys were in decent shape.

Took a nap this afternoon while MIL took care of J. Woke up with a head cold, yuck. So I think I'll read about you guys and write about me later. Its going to be a long 2ww.

I promise I'm going to post some info I found on the different types of protocols and DHEA next time. Later.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy "END of your IVF cycle" Day!!

It's official. Like a bad sitcom, we were canceled after a few episodes for poor audience response.

Friday we try to salvage with IUI, but odds are poor. My progesterone is about the same today. Luckily I met with Dr Mumbles (formerly known as Dr K) so I got the chance to corner him and make him admit that it was the writing, not the actors, that was the reason for the cancellation.

Actually, he said right off the bat that he didn't want me to worry, and they WERE GOING TO GET ME THROUGH A CYCLE. He said this quietly, but with determination. I felt like a private under a great general, one who leads with quiet, firm, steadfast vision. I know how important it is to feel your RE is making it his/her personal mission to get you pregnant (see Mel's post). I'm really luck to have found Dr Mumbles, and that he is only 10mins from my house. I really need to count my blessings more.

He said things are not good, but he still wouldn't label me a "poor responder." Thanks G-d. Cause no one likes to be labeled. He felt my response during IVF #1 was decent, it was just this one that blew big, fat, hairy, chunks (an old puking reference of mine). He actually brought up trying DHEA, so that was refreshing since I think of him as pretty Mr Scientific.

So here is the best news, he assured me that the financials would be taken care of. They will back bill my insurance for the IUI (bw and u/s) -- the meds we have to eat. But that for another cycle he will make some arrangement to get us the meds or something. He just kept saying -- don't worry about it, we will get it all taken care of -- and not in that car salesman sort of way that you just don't trust.

Just when I was accepting THE END was here, and actually feeling ready to let go (sort of) -- along comes a new surprise to sneak HOPE back in the door. He was frank that there aren't a lot of tricks up his sleeve, and we are very near the end of options. But he seems sincere in thinking we can get through a cycle. He wants to try a microdose protocol, which sounds a little like a hail mary, but I'll have to consult Dr Google.

Wish me luck for Friday. I'll keep you posted (posted get it?).

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

From bad it can only get ... worse

First, forgive me, it seems I've made a blogging style mistake. It should have read:

F*CK, F*CK, F*CK. (asterisks now properly placed)

While not absolute, it seems IVF will be canceled, and converted to IUI. Bumping my meds back up did lead to follicular growth, but now my progesterone is rising, indicating my body entering luteal phase. Apparently this can be a poor prognostic indicator for positive IVF outcome (see this or this BUT this may be ok with PCOS ). So tonight it was more Menop.ur and a dose of Cetrot.ide, Menop.ur again in AM then off to see Dr K. Again they will check E2, progesterone and likely recommend trigger that night for IUI on Friday. I'm not sure just how crappy our chances are even with IUI, so I'll have to ask. We know DH swimmers are top notch and there are no major barricades to entry. This we know thanks to our lovely blighted ovum experience back in December.

Last night I was in tears on the phone with my mom. Its strange, as a teen I despised her. In my twenties I tolerated her. In my thirties, I miss her. I don't know how as a mother of six relatively healthy children (and no miscarriages that I'm aware of), she can achieve such a high level of empathy. Except that perhaps I should have given her more credit in my teens. She sent me a silly ecard this AM about how she wishes she could have given me a hug. It made me cry all over again. Why wasn't she affectionate in my youth? I can remember it from when I was little, but not as much when I was pre-teen and teen. Neither of my parents are very good at overt or public affection. In fact, when DH and I were dating they would tease me mercilessly for always ending every call with "I love you." Now, as they approach their mid 70s, I make a special effort to end calls with them that way. They still stumble over it and don't usually reply in kind, but now I know for certain it is on their tongue, and in their hearts.

As is typical of my life, DH is on-call tonight. For you non-hospital types, that means he has to stay and perform all the emergency surgeries (in his specialty) that come in tonight. Summer=parties=accidents=trauma=surgery. So with my shitty news, he is not hear to commiserate. Although being Prince Positive, he would just repeat his (in)famous 3 lines:
I love you
Everything will be okay
It could still happen

Remarkably, I was more distraught last night. Today just confirmed my fears. And somehow I've felt a bit at peace. I think because now it is officially beyond my control, and at least now we won't spend additional thousands on IVF procedures that are unlikely to work. We can not afford to do any more cycles at this point, and these results seem to indicate that would be unwise (with my eggs) anyway. We won't be living in one state for more than 12 mos for the next 2 yrs, so starting adoption seems questionable. Plus with DH in his final year and doing surgery all the time, I don't know that he could attend the required home study classes. So I'm not sure there is really anything I can do for quite awhile. So maybe I will let the obsession go and enjoy the beautiful son that I have. Maybe.

Maybe not. Today I looked at info on DHEA supplementation in older women or those with premature ovarian failure. Some of you have mentioned this before. I'm not convinced this is a solution. But the few articles I've looked at seem slightly promising, and I think Aurelia mentioned that it may be discussed more at the big upcoming fertility conference in Europe. Okay, get ready for MAJOR TMI. I would love for this to help my eggs, but I'm more interested in whether it would help some other symptoms. Specifically, major discomfort with intercourse (yes, that's right, I said it). I know this is a side-effect of lots of the meds used in ART (evil clomid and even BCP), but in the last few months I've had this problem even when not on meds. I mentioned it to Dr K just before this cycle, and joked that maybe menopause was coming. But he just "tut tut'd" me and said he didn't think so. But now I do. It is bad enough to have your sex life ruined by the battan sex march, but to end up with no eggs, no baby and now maybe no good sex? That WILL kill me. I'm wondering if DHEA supplements might help elevate my basal estrogen and testosterone to make my life better. So, I'm going to bring it up tomorrow. Dr K will want to put it off until after this cycle, but I know he is away the rest of the month (probably at the big conference). So, I'm going to try and be forceful and push for a brief discussion. Have any of you had such problems, that you are willing to share?

Its late and I should end this ung-dly long post. Thanks for listening and trying to bolster my spirits.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Maybe, maybe not ... looking like NOT *UPDATED*


Things were looking up Sunday. Six follicles, not bad size. Dr K backed down my meds a little. Now today my E2 DROPPED, and no real growth. I'm so tired of my body failing me. I want to cry so bad. But J is watching TV and will freak if I lose it. He actually asked today when I'd have a baby in my belly (we've been talking a lot about animals and their babies lately). I was hoping that was a good omen, you know, him being interested. Maybe G-d, or whoever, would be listening. FU*K.

They said that if we can't get to trigger by stim day 14 that I'm toast. The likelihood of pregnancy is really low. To top it off I'll probably have to buy another grand worth of drugs, and could still get canceled. FU*K.

And it screws up all my plans for childcare for transfer (if we even get there). I'll have to either scramble having friends take him, or put up with having my FIL here all week waiting for ET. I don't think I can take that added stress (he's not my fav). FU*K.

Despite all my talk last post about being willing to go with DE, I'M NOT READY. I'm NOT ready. This sucks. FU*K.

That bitch hope just crept in to tease me and than ran off with some other woman's ovaries instead. And she left mine sore, but possibly unlikely to even produce an egg. Bitch. FU*K.

Waiting for DH to come home (which could be 4-6 hrs!) so I can blubber properly as this day requires. FU*K.

Nothing really new to report, but DH came home and took J to the park, so had a few minutes to vent. I'm not sure if I really want to get to retrieval. The way things have gone, it seems fairly unlikely to have a positive outcome. Maybe we should just cut our losses (financially) and move on. It is so unfair.

Even my favorite nurse had me peeved at her:
Nurse: Well, your body is just not responding to the meds.
My brain: DUH! What would you like me to do, have a stern talk with my pituitary and ovaries? Hello ovaries, could you please get your asses in gear and join the team effort?

My brain asks: So do you think we will make it for retrieval by Friday?
Nurse: *scoff* Um, I don't think you will be ready by Friday. We can do retrieval on the weekend ... if we need to.
My brain hears: What planet is this chick on? Doesn't she realize she's never getting to retrieval?

Nurse: Ok, Dr Slick is really booked tomorrow, but I squeezed your US in at 8:15.
My brain hears: Dr Slick is busy with real patients tomorrow, you know ones who's ovaries actually work. But we don't want to cancel your cycle since it will finance his summer vacaction house, so we'll give you a cursory wanding when it suits us. Oh, and then maybe we'll cancel you anyway.

Ok, DH back. Time to get ready for the blubbering session. More tomorrow about how IF is sucking us dry of money and happiness.