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Sunday, May 31, 2009

We're well on our way!

Life for the last 3 days has been CRAZY! We left on Thursday night for NYC. We drove about 5 hours and stopped to sleep, then drove the rest of the way. We ended up getting stuck on the train into the city for about a half hour.."mechanical difficulties". We finally got to the clinic and the first thing I did was get my FMLA form signed! That was such a relief. I then had my post op check from the Hysteroscopy (all is perfect, said I am totally cleaned out, nothing left) and they did my follie/lining check. They are basically monitoring me for when I ovulate so they can do the embryo transfer. My lining is already at 7.5 which they said is perfect because they expect at least a 7 for the transfer and I have about a week until the transfer is done! So, after that we left because this time we didn't have to wait for the results. On the way home they called and said that we need to be back this Thursday for b/w and u/s. Then the doctor called and said that they haven't received the pathology report back, and that it can take up to 2 weeks so hopefully they will receive that by the time I go back. The day of the embryo transfer is getting so close and I couldn't be more excited!

Anyhow, we drove back and then stopped to have dinner with my family since my aunt is in from California. After that we headed to my parents to help get ready for my sisters graduation party. When we got there we realized that my dog was going to have her puppies that night!! SO, at this point mind you we have only had 2 hours of sleep, LOL! Anyhow, we continued to help her and we decided just to stay the night at her house because we didn't want to move the dog in the middle of labor. So, we ended up going to sleep at about 12:30am and I woke up at 3pm to hear a little tiny puppy!! She had birthed the first one and had started cleaning it up. At about 5 she had all of the puppies (all 6!) and we gave her a bath. They are adorable! We have 2 white, 2 tan, 1 dark tan, and 1 black. Anyhow, then we went to bed after that and slept until about 8:30 so we could get everything ready for the graduation party.

I got ready, and went with my mom to get last minute things, got back and started making the food and setting up and everything. At this point my legs were KILLING me! I was starting to feel sooo drained. The party went great though, awesome turn out!

I am still feeling so exhausted though, I don't know how many more times Ross and I can do the drive to NYC! Driving there and back for a 15 minute appointment is getting bad, LOL! I know it is definitely worth it but I think I am going to try to fly this week! Though, the flights don't look too promising, none of the times work out to what I would need!

Alright, this was short and sweet, but I have GOT to rest! I am sooo tired still!

**Jenn**

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Decided to go to the ER..

Here's the scoop:

My bleeding still hasn't slowed down. I went pee last night around midnight and had a ton of blood gush out when I sat down, and then when I woke up at 6 I had a TON more just like fall out. It was so disgusting. Anyhow, I got in the shower and was getting ready for work and just started feeling really weak and light headed and shaky..so I told DH that I thought I needed to go to the ER. Well, we got there and had to wait about an hour as I am guessing they were slammed from last night with the holiday..there weren't many people in the waiting room but they didn't exactly take my bleeding much of a priority. We got back there and I changed into a gown and the nurse said that once the doctor came in he would probably want to go a pelvic exam so I would have to take my underwear off at some point. He came in and started asking questions about what I had done, yada yada. Every single person thought it was ridiculous it seemed that we were traveling to NYC for IVF. I didn't want to tell them I was participating in a clinical trial because since I work in insurance, I knew that if they even put a clinical trial diagnosis on the claim, it would get denied..even though the procedure was done as a normal patient and I am paying for it. He did my pelvic exam and said that there wasn't any sort of problem and the blood was just coming from my uterus. He spoke with another doctor and then they checked my blood levels and gave me an entire bag of fluids. They then called my doctor in NYC and they decided it would be okay for me to go home, but I just need to be checked out when we go to NYC on Friday.

So, it appears there's not a real issue (which is what I was really concerned about) and I guess I will just let it run it's course. I am cramping pretty bad again and bleeding really heavily still..it just confuses me that I have no idea where all of this blood is coming from. I already had my period about a week ago and it just seems like so much more than that.

I just keep hoping that it will slow down but it doesn't seem like it's going to any time soon. Guess we will have to just wait and see for our appointment on Friday! This is going to be a long trip if I am still bleeding like this..Holy cow.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Okay..so maybe I'm not feeling so hot.

Okay, so if you have a weak stomach, I will warn you now to turn away. If not, I'm still sorry if I am being too graphic for you, but when you live a life of infertility..it's what I have to deal with.

I had been feeling great after the Hysteroscopy. I only had some slight spotting and minimal cramping..I thought I was in the clear. Sunday morning I went pee, and had nothing when I wiped but by noon it was like a faucet was turned on. I had felt kind of weird and was cramping a little bit but I honestly didn't think much about it. I waited for about 2 hours to see if it would let up and it didn't so I called the clinic. The lady that was in the operating room with me actually got on the phone and asked me questions like how heavy it was and what color it was. I told her that it was bright red blood and it was a lot when I would sit down on the toilet. She put me on hold while she talked to the doctor and came back and said that if I filled 1 pad in 1 hour, then I needed to go to the emergency room. Otherwise, I needed to be seen the next morning. I told her that would be really difficult because I live in Ohio and she said just to call them back with what I had to do because they would need to put that in my chart.

I waited for awhile and never filled a pad. As a matter of fact, it was the weirdest bleeding I have ever had. It never hit the pad, it would only come spilling out when I would sit on the toilet. When I say spilling out, I mean spilling out. There was so much that the water was all red in the toilet. I felt like total shit. I was sooo crampy and uncomfortable from the pad. I contemplated all day on what I should do because it honestly just didn't seem normal. The paper they sent me home with said that I wouldn't get a period for about 30-40 days as basically what they did during the procedure was completely clean my uterus out..so where was the blood coming from?

Later Ross and I decided to get something to eat so we went to TGI Fridays. I felt fine until after I ate..then I felt like I was going to throw up everywhere. Afterwards though we went and walked around Walmart because I wanted to see if it would come out or not. Luckily on our way home Kim (from mybabyish) called me and made me feel a lot better. She shared her experience with having a D & C which is mostly the same thing, except I wasn't having a miscarriage. I decided to wait it out through the night and give the clinic a call in the morning.

I called this morning and spoke to a different nurse. This time she made it sound like it was totally normal since I was on birth control for 3 days before the procedure. I just found it so weird that the girl yesterday sounded really concerned about the bleeding, and today she sounded like it was fine. So..basically all day I just held out and have been dealing with it. Though it seemed to get heavier today as I finally started bleeding onto the pad. This morning though when I woke up I felt like I was going to vomit after looking into the toilet. It just came pouring out..SO gross.

It's these kinds of things that people who can get pregnant so easily don't understand! It's these kinda of things that we have to go through! It's not just frustrating, it's physically painful and horrible.

Ok, that's my rant for now..I'm going to watch it and maybe call my OBGYN tomorrow to see what they think.

Oh, and sorry if this was TMI!

**Jenn**

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Hysteroscopy....CHECK!

So, we're back, AGAIN! For some reason this trip seemed so much more exhausting..I think I'm starting to hit a wall.

Anyhow, we left earlier than we usually do because I had to be to the office at 8. We wanted to allow 1 hour from the train station to the office, but we ended up being about 10 minutes late..but that was okay. I for some reason just can't stay awake over night to save my life. Ross always ends up driving the whole way because I just basically crash. This was the first time we had to pull over for about 30 minutes for him to get a power nap. I don't know how he does it to be honest.

When we got to the clinic, they took me upstairs relatively quickly. I went up, they put my band on me and I changed into the beautiful gown, booties, and hair net. I waited there for awhile, I saw the lady before me having the same thing done come out and she talked to me about it and said it was so quick and she wasn't hurting at all. That was reassuring because at this point my leg was shaking like crazy! Anyhow, I talked with the nurse for awhile, she is such a sweet lady. They then called me back and I walked back, got up on the table and was once again open to the world to see. I have definitely lost all modesty. Legs high up in the air, spread, and gown pushed back with about 3 or 4 people in the room=NICE. LOL! Anyhow, the anesthesiologist was awesome. He put my IV in so quickly and within probably a minute I was out!! I woke up in the recovery room which freaks me out a little bit because that means I had to of gotten off of the chair in the operating room, into a wheelchair, and into another chair in the recovery room. LOL, none of this I remember. I just remember waking up in the chair. I basically just laid there for probably 10 minutes because I felt so tired. Once I was okay I got up and got changed and then talked with the nurse about what they found.

They found some Endometriosis overgrowth and she said it scraped off really easily, and that they cleaned out my entire uterus so it's basically all brand new that way I have a better chance of the embryo implanting. YES! I felt so great about that and then wondered if that was the reason all along. It seems like my eggs can fertilize easily but I am wondering if the problem lied in my uterus with not a good place for it to implant. Let's hope this is now solved!

Anyhow, we met with the clinical research guy and he said he would like us to be back this coming Friday for an ultrasound and bloodwork. Luckily this time we don't have to wait (which is going to feel like even more pointless for driving 8 hours each way for something that takes 15 minutes..but it IS worth it I keep telling myself!). He sent me home with Estradiol and Progesterone to take once they call me back with those results. He just wanted to give it to me then so I have it.

One thing bad came out of this whole trip and that was that he wouldn't fill out my FMLA form. I am devastated by this because I am out of days that I can use at work and now that I am on unpaid time off, each section of days counts as an occurance I think. So, I think I will get one from this past trip, next week, and then the transfer. That would be 3! I am so nervous because I HATE having things like that on me. I'm just so scared that it's all going to crumble now..I just pray that it won't.

Anyhow, on the way home I think it was the longest of all. We ended up having to stop again for 30 minutes because he was just too tired..and me, I wasn't any help seeing that I was sleeping off the anesthesia still. Once we got home we were sooo glad.

I really felt fine after the procedure, just a little spotting. But as the day went on I started to cramp a bit and spotted more. I think it was just from the car ride being so bumpy and everything. The next day I didn't go to work because I was having such a hard time waking up. That anesthesia had the best of me I think, It was honestly painful to wake up the next day.

I am really thankful that we won't be missing my sisters graduation party. Our appt is on Friday and her party is on Saturday. I feel bad we won't be able to help get ready like we had originally planned, but thankfully my family is so supportive and they know what we need to do.

The transfer should be in about 2 weeks..so please keep your fingers crossed that it can be on like a Thursday or Friday so I don't miss too much work! I have to have a job! Sometimes it just seems so unfair that no one really gets what this is like. Really.

Until next time!
xoxo
Jenn

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Back to NYC!!

Okay, so we are headed back to NYC tonight!!! Tomorrow I am having a Hysteroscopy to clean out anything that could prevent me from getting pregnant, like fibroids, cysts, etc. I'm not sure what to expect though. All I know is that I can't eat after midnight (which driving during the whole night without any food/more importantly no iced coffee..I'm going to be reeeaaaalllyyy fun!) or drink, that we have to be there at 8am, and that I will basically be in a "twilight". I have never been in that, just always been put out the whole way. Anyhow, I have read that cramping and some spotting is normal afterwards..my question is, HOW bad will the cramps be. I cramp like crazy when I have my period and I swear they better not be like those! We have decided to drive home tomorrow unless I don't feel well, then we will try to find a cheap hotel and then drive back on Friday.

I am just SO amazed at how perfectly this has come together so far (knock on wood). It's like it is meant to be. I mean EVERYTHING has come together. When I started spotting on Saturday I was so bummed that my Hysteroscopy would be pushed back further because you aren't supposed to be on your period during it. Well, typically I will spot for about 3 or 4 days before the "real" thing comes. Think that happened this time? NO!!! Why? God works in mysterious ways!!! He knew that I had to have my Hysteroscopy Thursday and by golly, it happened!

If you read this, sorry if it's all TMI. This is a reality for us and when I say I am a very open person, I mean it. I'm just so used to posting on bulletin boards and that's where you can release it all, and I just don't care who knows anymore! It is a true battle of winning and losing. A battle of heartache. It's so nice to be able to have friends who have gone through this same thing, because they can understand when you get a negative pregnancy test and you just want to break down and literally lose it. My heart aches for a girl on the board who did a Frozen Embryo Transfer (as I will be too) and her first beta was a 9, and today it was only in the 3's. It's obvious what that means, and I'm just so sad for her. It's hard to watch other girls (AND yourself) have to go through this month after month. Then you get to see people in your life get pregnant over and over again without barely trying or calling it an "accident"! Well HELLO! Where is MY "accident"?!?! Sorry, I went off into a bit of a rant, but it's hard to make other people realize how many emotions really go into this. People say "oh you're young" but they just don't get it. I am just thankful we have found out while being young.

Okay! Gotta finish eating my "last meal" as I call it before having surgeries, LOL! Then gotta hit the shower and then hit the road!

Until next time,
**Jenn**


Monday, May 11, 2009

And then there were 2

Hey everyone..if anyone reads this, LOL. Just wanted to post to say that the other 2 they were waiting for didn't make it. I guess they were progressing like they expected them to and so they had to destroy them. So, we have 2 frozen embabies (embryos..I just like to call them embabies because they are my babies..or at least the closest thing I have ever come to my baby!) that will wait for us until later this month or the beginning of next.

At first I was a little discouraged with only having 2 frozen..but then I got to thinking about it and then I had to wake up and say "HELLO! That's more than you would have had!! AND it's the closest we have EVER come to being parents!". So, I am ecstatic about 2..I just pray that when it comes time, that they take them out, they both survive that. If they do..I know they are tough, tough, tough and will be able to handle anything!

Mother's Day was a little bit difficult as it is every year. But this time it was a little easier just knowing I am a mommy to 2 little embryos. You might think I am crazy..but they are a part of me and may one day become my little baby. Just keep praying for us, PLEASE! In a week from Thursday we head back up for my Hysteroscopy. Hopefully that won't be too painful..yuck. After this whole thing is done I don't even want to know how many people have been "down there"!!!

Gotta run!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Freeze Frame!

Alright so just a quick update: they have frozen 2 of our little 'embabies' and will freeze 2 more tomorrow. I am assuming this is because 2 of the eggs were fertilized the day after the first 2. Soooo, so far so good!! Yes!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

It's been awhile, but we are doing the IVF trial!!

Okay, so I have been really bad about updating this thing. I need to get in the swing of doing this! Anyhow this one might be a long one so bear with me!

Basically our first visit to New York City was back in March. They basically went through all of the paperwork and talked to us about what is involved. They told us that if we were accepted there was a possibility they would cancel us if it wasn't working. I had an ultrasound and they drew some blood work. They had to check how may antral follicles I had..I was slightly below the amount required for the trial but they said it was okay. One thing that struck me was the doctor asked if early menopause ran in my family and that my ovaries looked that of a 40/70 (couldn't understand what he said) year old! My reaction? "WHAT?!" Anyhow, he said he wasn't certain as he couldn't tell on the ultrasound but it was still quite alarming. The trial coordinator talked with the doctor afterwards and basically had to decide on whether they were going to offer us the trial. He called us back to his office and said that he had good news and he also had bad news..of course I asked for the bad news first! He said that we weren't great candidates as I have less eggs..he said my ovaries are about 10 years older than I am..but his good news was that they were going to accept me into the trial anyways!! I was so ecstatic! I was scared, nervous, happy, and basically anything you can imagine! So, he gave me birth control pills and said that I would begin them the day I go for my bloodwork which would be a few weeks after that.

So, once this cycle started we headed up to NYC on Monday, April 20th, for the beginning of everything. They did bloodwork and the coordinator said my levels were a little bit higher than they like and that I really wasn't a good candidate for the trial but they were going to go ahead with it anyway. He chose the envelope which would determine my fate of which route of IVF we would be going through. We were put into the Mini IVF which I was sooo thankful for! Conventional IVF focuses more on quantity of eggs, where as Mini IVF focuses more on QUALITY which is more important to me! So, after that visit he gave me Clomid to take and said I would be taking it for many days and also gave me 3 doses of Menopur.

We went home, mind you traveling to and from is absolutely INSANE! We usually have to leave at 11pm and drive through the night. It's about a 7 1/2 hour drive. We arrive to the train station at about 8am, get on a train to go into the city, get on a couple Subway's, and then walk to the office..it's pretty time consuming and exhausting but totally worth it. Anyhow, I started taking my Clomid and Ross gave me my injections in my tummy..I am thankful he is so graceful with those..sometimes they sting but that's not his fault.

We had to head back on Friday, April 24th for more blood work and ultrasound. They said that things were progressing well and that I need to come back on Monday. So, on the 27th, we did the drive again for the same thing..blood work and ultrasound. This time they said we had to come back on Wednesday! So, not only did we get home Monday night around 11pm, we had to leave exactly 24 hours after that for another drive!

We arrive on Wednesday the 29th for the same stuff, blood work and ultrasound, waited 2 hours for the results (by which we went to Neil's Coffee Shop for breakfast, and that is like my favorite place now!). When we got back they said that they needed us to stay through the weekend as my levels had jumped up so much in only 2 days. So, that night I was supposed to take Clomid and another Menopur injection. We left there and called my mom to book our hotel room online since it was a little cheaper and then headed back to pick up the car in Newark, NJ and drive to the hotel which was in Queens. That took like 2 hours, traffic in NYC is just crazy! No wonder why people don't drive! LOL! So, we got to the hotel and took a well deserved nap, got up and headed to dinner. When we got back, Ross was getting the injection ready and realized they sent us home without a needle! Can't give myself an injection without a needle! So, I freaked for a few minutes and then called the answering service to the clinic..a lady called me back and asked for a pharmacy number so she could call in a needle. Well, we weren't from around there so we asked the people at the hotel and all they could do was point to the pharmacy a few blocks away..so poor Ross had to run while I sat on the phone with the nurse. He got the number and then the nurse called in the needle but they wouldn't allow it since I wasn't getting medication! Mind you, we stayed in a SCARY party of town..so, I can see why they wouldn't allow that! We were in Jamaica, Queens and were surrounded by scary people and a lot of homeless people..it was truly heartbreaking.

Anyhow, we didn't do the injection and only did the Clomid, we went back to the clinic on Thursday and they said that the Egg Retrieval would be on Sunday (we were previously told it would be Saturday). So, they gave me an hCG shot, told me to continue to take Clomid, and I also began taking Indocin..which I am assuming that is to prevent ovulation. My blood work was good and my ultrasound was showing that I would possibly have 6 follicles for retrieval. We went back again on Friday for the same stuff, and then they said I would have to move the retrieval to Monday! So, they gave me another hCG injection and I went on my way after the ultrasound and bloodwork, same meds as the day before.

Same thing really for Saturday, only difference is I began taking a nasal spray at 9pm that night (after all of the same stuff..ultrasound, blood work, etc) and again at 10pm. Sunday I had to take the nasal spray at 10am, this is basically to release the eggs. Sunday they only did bloodwork and said that they would see me on Monday..not not before the coordinator literally almost gave me a heart attack! When he was there he said "we have a problem". So he basically said that my pap smear had expired and that they had no blood work on file for Ross. Which totally made sense because when I had my screening blood work that is required for all IVF's, Ross was sitting in the chair to get his and they said he didn't need it! So, I questioned it but they said it was only for me. So, basically he said we either had to do it right then or they would have to cancel me. Of course I said, alright let's do it! I was not about to go through all of that for nothing! So, after that, we went on our way. We had decided to spend the day at Times Square..it was a nasty day though, but still very cool to see! We sat down and ordered at Planet Hollywood when I received a phone call from the clinic. It was the coordinator (of which was supposed to be on a plane to Texas..so I hope we didn't make him miss his flight!). He said that they needed to see me right away and that the Egg Retrieval had to be right then. So, I freaked out a little bit and we had to tell our waiter that we had to leave..I felt horrible but was so thankful they hadn't made the food yet! So, we grabbed a small can of pringles to share so I would have something in my stomach and basically ran to the Subway station, had to get on 2 different ones, and then had to basically run to the clinic. When we got there there was barely anyone there! They did an ultrasound to make sure everything was okay and took me upstairs. They had me change into a gown and then gave me a Valium. I just sat there until it kicked in, then when it did I felt soooo loopy! It was kind of a nice feeling! LOL!

Anyhow, they took me into the room and I got into the chair/table thing and showed everyone in the room my goods because I had to put my legs in the stirrups(hey at this point, who HASN'T seem them?! Right?!). The doctor was soo great and friendly he described everything to me! He gave me 2 shots of local anesthesia on my uterus..which surprisingly didn't hurt at all really! Just felt like a little pinch! Then he had to do an ultrasound to locate the eggs. When he was about to grab one he just told me to breathe in and then breathe out really hard and that's when he got it. So, all in all we ended up retrieving 6 eggs! It was really cool because I was able to watch everything he was doing! I saw the ultrasound on the screen and then saw the egg in the thing the Embryologist uses..too cool! I was able to see the egg of what might potentially be my baby one day!

So, after that I changed and then had to wait for Ross to do his job. Men get off SO freaking easy when it comes to infertility..LITERALLY! Here I am getting pumped full of hormones, getting so much blood work that my arm is black and I look like I shoot up cocaine, having a huge ultrasound want shoved up my WhoHa, and he gets to "do" his little job into a cup?! Damn! It's okay though, going through all of this for years has made me a much stronger person that's for sure!

Anyhow, we went back to the hotel afterwards and just watched TV. We left early on Monday morning to come home. On our way home we got a message that 2 of our eggs had fertilized, 2 were a little immature and they did ICSI (a procedure where they actually inject the egg with sperm..giving a much better chance of fertilization) and said they would call back today (Tuesday) with those results, said that 1 egg was abnormal, and 1 was degenerate..which basically means that it was missing some Chromosomes.

We got the call today that the 2 that had ICSI both FERTILIZED! YES! So, right now we have 4 and they said it's possible we will have 1 more but they are watching it as it hasn't matured yet.

So, that is that! Our next step? We will wait for a phone call on Friday..with doing a Mini IVF, they always freeze the embryos before the transfer. So, once they do that they will let us know how they have done and if they are okay. Then, on May 21st I will go back to NYC for a Hysteroscopy. They are doing this (it is basically a D&C) to clean me out from anything that could prevent the embryo from implanting. Since I have previously had endometreosis (and probably still have it now) they need to "clean me out". So then after that happens we will do the transfer and continue to pray that it works!

So, that is that for now! I will keep things thing posted as the information comes in now!