Sunday, February 27, 2011

Pregnant....until proven otherwise

Okay y'all just a quick update. We just transferred 2 morulas (early blastocysts) into my tummy. I am still laying here on my back for the hour until I can go home.....but we are thrilled and feel so hopeful.

I will post pictures of hem soon nd do a longer update later, but for now I am headed home to be pampered and relax!!!

Thanks again for all the prayers......we desperately need them now.
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Friday, February 25, 2011

Gut wrenching decisions.....

So it's only 11am but it has already been such a gut-wrenching day, full of tough decisions. So here is the low-down. We got 5 eggs from this cycle- all 5 were mature- and all 5 fertilized. That was Tuesday- fast forward to today when I had to go to the clinic for a possible 3-day transfer, and we now have 4 perfect 8-cell embryos!! One died at 2 cells and is no longer viable!

So as we sat down and discussed our options, we felt so torn, this is why...... All along we have been wanting to do a 5-day or blast transfer. We have never done one and after 4 failed IVFs and 11 perfect embryos on day 3 and all BFNs, we felt we had to try something different. SO the agony came in today as to whether to try to take all 4 to blast (Day 5) or do a Day 3 transfer today.

Sweetness was so torn, bless his heart. We want this so badly, and we want all 4 our babies to become perfect living, breathing babies we can bring home. But getting there is the hard part. We asked about just taking 2 to blast and freezing the other 2 on Day 3 (today). They highly advised against that , saying we don't know if the 2 we choose to go to blast will even make it there- and then you have no fresh cycle which is a better chance at getting pregnant.

Ughhhh the debating and praying and analyzing was so hard. But after much prayer and consideration, our best educated and prayed-out decision was to try to take ALL 4 TO BLAST.

Now I know the statistics are only 50% of Day 3 embryos make it to blast stage, but we feel like we will always wonder for the rest of our lives if we did not try this before we quit fertility treatments. Please know that there is a chance that all 4 could not make it and we have nothing to transfer. We rebuke that in Jesus' name- but we have to prepare ourselves for it nonetheless.

So here I am back at home, preparing for the baby shower I am throwing tomorrow, which by the way will be much easier since my transfer was not today. But I am praying a hedge of protection around our 4 precious babies, and asking God to be a BIG God in our lives this weekend, and show those doctors that all 4 can make it to blast stage!!! All four, not 2 but all 4! We are trusting the Lord completely. We want His will to be done in our lives.

We can rest knowing that if He wants us to have these babies, nothing will get in the way; if He doesn't have that for us, then nothing is going to work.

So we are begging all of our prayer warriors, and special friends who are walking in this journey with us- to pray with out ceasing until Sunday morning that all of our precious little ones make it- and LIVE!!! We know that this is not too big for God??!!! He can and will do it! We claim it!

Thanks again for all the love and support, we COULD NOT do this with out you guys!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Quick Fertilization report

Just to let you guys know that all FIVE eggs fertilized normally and are growing!!!! This is such an answer to prayer and we are so grateful for this chance again. Please don't let up praying for our little ones.... Lord protect them until we are together again!!! Thank you all soooo much!!!!
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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

not exactly as planned.......

Hey gals- I know many of you are anxiously awaiting how today went. So here goes....

Let's just say it did not go as planned, but may turn out "okay" in the end. So they took me back to the operating room, and when I came out they told me they only got 5 eggs!!! What??? 15 eggs? No, FIVE eggs!!!! Needless to say I was not happy. I KNOW I had more than 5 eggs but obviously some follicles had no eggs in them. the Doc that harvested my eggs said that I clearly have low ovarian reserve, which basically means I probably do not ovulate each month or at all, and even when stimulated with these killer hormones I am not getting a good amount of eggs.

But 5 eggs is all we got- so we go with it. Then Sweetness goes to give his "sample" to fertilize the eggs, and they come back and say there is no sperm in the sample! Are you kidding me? This is from the same guy who they told last time that he had over 1 billion sperm per ml, and now none????? So after a bit of discussion with the doc, we remember that he is taking a testosterone supplement everyday because because his was so low- and he felt TERRIBLE, and it has a risk of DIMINISHING your sperm count- but obliterating it was not anything we expected. But luckily we thought ahead and froze a sample a couple months ago BEFORE he started on the testosterone medication. So they thawed out one of the tubes of sperm and they then came in and said that there was good motility and about 48 million in that one tube. So finally some good news.

So after all this drama went on, we were cleared to leave, and I was still very groggy, and we came on home and I have slept off all the anesthesia all day.

Honestly I am nervous about what they will say when they call tomorrow with the fertilization report. They ICSI'd all of them, so best case scenario is we get 5 great embryos growing as they should. The doctor working with us today said it is likely that we will not make it to blast day (5 days past fertilization). So if that is true we will have to do another 3 day transfer- and the kicker to that is it will fall on Friday and remember I have to throw a baby shower in my house on Saturday!!!! So my mom is on standby to assist if needed.

SO I have no idea how this will turn out but it feels so uncertain. I think there is NO chance we can ever get pregnant on our own with me not ovulation and sweetness now not making sperm on this medication! Ughhhh is an understatement. So I am asking all my prayer warriors to please pray for our little embryos that ALL of them will make it tonight-- their first night of life. WE REALLY DO WANT ALL OF THEM! I can not pray for only 2 to make it?!

So I will let you know tomorrow how it all turns out. Lord, please be with my precious little babies tonight- may we hold each one in our arms in November!

PS- I am sitting here watching my DVR show of Oprah from last week- and Celine Dion is on showing off her beautiful new twins. I am so encouraged to know that she conceived these twins on her SIXTH attempt at IVF!!!! I have some hope:)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Trigger tonight!!!

So in 3 short hours I will be taking my trigger shot (pictured above), and stimulating the follicles to ovulate the eggs I so hope lead to us holding our precious babies in our arms soon. I am feeling pretty yucky and really want this to be over!!! But I know it is for the most worthy cause ever!

I will be going to work tomorrow as usual and try to make it through a whole day- then Tuesday bright and early at 7am we have to be at the clinic to harvest all these eggs!

We covet your prayers during this time as we need as many eggs as we can possibly get- if this doesn't work we need embryos to have to do surrogacy with. Thank you for coming on this very long, very emotional journey with us. We could not have made it here with out our friends supporting us so completely!

I also want to give a shout-out to my special friend Tammy, who started her BCPs today in preparation for her DE cycle coming up soon. I'm praying for Tammy and so hope that this is your cycle sweetheart!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Almost ready!!

So went to the clinic this morning and we have some seriously large follicles!!! About 6-7 on each ovary! My estradiol has soared up to 1553 and boy am I feeeling yucky.

So the plan is as follows: trigger shot on Sunday at 11pm and then the egg harvesting will be Tuesday morning at 7am!!!

We are feeling so hopeful and really are praying that we can carry these embryos out to a blast. If we can they will be transferred back into my uterus next Sunday Feb 28th.

I will keep you up to date on all the happenings of our exciting week!!!
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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Meditation CDs from Circle and Bloom

I have mentioned several times that I am doing a meditation CD set to try to relax and reduce my stress this cycle. Several of you have written and asked me for the name and I keep meaning to do a post about it- so here goes.....

The picture above is a shot of the CD set cover and I can not say enough wonderful things about this program. It is a 4 CD set from Circle&Bloom and they have a guided meditation that you listen to every day of your cycle from 3 Pre-cycle days all the way through the beta test, even special ones for the dreaded 2ww! So basically about 18 sessions, 2-days for each session.

I HIGHLY recommend this to women who are looking for ways to increase their IVF /IUI success and maybe can not afford acupuncture or other methods. The whole set was $69, and is fully refundable if you are not satisfied. You can download them or purchase the CDs, and it s made so that the Egg retrieval and transfer sessions can be listened to during the actual procedure! How cool!!!??? I really love them- they are not too long (about 13 mins each) and they are SOOOO relaxing I end up falling asleep. Which probably is not the best because you need to be awake to get the full benefit.

If you are interested in purchasing them please go to this website: Circle and Bloom.

Good luck my friends- and baby dust to you all!

Stimming Day 5

So after 5 days of stimming with 350 units of Folli.stim and 2 vials of Repro.nex each evening-My ovaries look something like this. Full of follicles!!! My estradiol today was 573 up from 202 on Tuesday!!! Its still rising nicely. The US this morning was pretty good- my lining is looking great (3 layers like they want) and the follies were about 10-12 mm, and it was estimated that I had 8-9 follicles that were big and right on track. We compared to the last cycle n this same day of that cycle and my estradiol was lower than today and I also have several more follies than I did then.

So we are trucking along- staying on the same doses of meds each morning and night and we will check back in on Saturday morning. It looks like they will be harvesting the eggs on Tuesday and embryo transfer on Sunday. This is perfect timing because I am throwing my girlfriend Amanda a baby shower in my house on Saturday Feb. 26, it would really not be a good thing if my transfer fell on that day.

I will take pictures when that time gets here so you can see the shower. I am actually doing okay with this, not emotional about it- just happy to bless a friend who I know would do the same for me if it actually was me.

We will go in on Saturday again and I will let you know then what the verdict is!!!!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The eggs are percolating!!!

This morning at the clinic- I went in for my first follicle (egg) check of this cycle- and the bleeding had stopped completely!! So I am so relieved to not have to deal with that.

The US looked great- my follicles are still small but they are coming along at a nice pace. We don't want them to get big too quickly or they will have to cancel the cycle.

My estradiol went from 20 on Thursday to 202 today. So that is a nice rise- and I'm sure it will quadruple by next visit!! Thank you all for the sweet emails and comments on Facebook- they keep us sane as we get through this last IVF stimulation.

I turned in my FMLA paperwork to Human resources this afternoon- just waiting to see if they are going to approve it- I should find out really soon. Also, have not heard anything about the job opportunity that was calling and checking my references last week. Just trying to be patient.

I am still planning on being out of work from the egg retrieval (which should be about Feb. 24) until April 4, 2011 on my 5 week leave.

I go back on Thursday morning to get checked again and I will keep you posted!!!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Yes it is the day of love..... all things hearts and flowers and red......

Speaking of RED- I just started my period! Yes I did- right in the middle of my stimulation. If you remember from this post, I did this last time I was stimming. I just called my favorite nurse Bethie- and she assured me not to worry. I go get checked tomorrow morning at the clinic- and we will assess then. She said worse case scenario is that we retrieve the eggs and fertilize them, then freeze all of them and do a transfer under a highly controlled cryo cycle. Ummmm that's not exactly what I want to do, but I will do it if it means not losing anymore of my babies.

Lord- please make this right and make it stop bleeding. This is not the time. And the weird thing about it all is the fact that it TOTALLY goes against everything we know about hormones. IE I am injecting all these drugs which increase my estrogen level to superphysiological levels, which in theory means you should never have a period- because you start when you have the big drop in estrogen and progesterone each cycle. So why someone tell me does MY BODY DO THIS????? It is so jacked up that seriously its no wonder I am never getting pregnant!!
I am trying to just keep the faith and know that it can all still work out. There is about 8 days before my retrieval and another 5 days before the transfer- so trying to chill...... take a deep breath in ...... and trust Him!

Well I am still at work and now I have to go inject my 5 shots before my class begins in 1/2 hour at 5:30pm. Yes I have to teach ALL DAY on Valentine's Day and don't even get to see my precious Sweetness. But I do love you boo...... more than you'll ever know. You are the reason I stay sane in all of this- you are my calm in the storm- my most precious gift!!! Your wife I will forever be. You truly are the love of my life!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The stimulation is underway......

Yes the stimulation is underway, tonight will be night 3 of stimming. I am taking 5 shots a night- and boy are my ovaries letting me know they are there! So here we go..... this is the last time I can put my body through this. But we feel really hopeful and I am trying desperately to hold onto that little bit of hope that is rising again.

I have not heard anything about the job- and I have another possibility in the works also- really praying the Lord is moving me on to bigger and better things!

Please pray I can make it through this next week of stimulation- which is typically harder on me than most women due to many reasons particularly my neck injury. The hormones exacerbate my injury and my pain meds can not get me out of pain when on these high levels of hormones. So that is what I am dealing with- and I am VERY willing to do this one more time if it meant I could give my Sweetness a child, and make us a family.

I will keep you updated after my follicle scan on Tuesday morning.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

IVF #5 is underway......

So this morning we awoke to 3 inches of snow here!!!! That was a huge surprise! Needless to say it put a bit of a kink in the morning commute to the clinic for Baseline Day- but nonetheless we got there. Blood work and an Ultrasound later- we were in the office signing paper work and such.

So then when I called the phone tree tonight to see how much medication to inject tonight, they actually want me to start stimming tomorrow night. I will be cycling on Tuesday and Thursday and Saturday to accommodate my teaching schedule. So they don't want me to stim for over 4 days before being monitored.

Also something great happened today, I have a real good possibility of getting a job locally that I have been applying for and praying about. They actually called a reference today and are verifying my credentials, so I am soooo hopeful, and needing a change in my daily venue (if ya know what I mean). I would appreciate my girls praying for me in regards to all this!

Overall a pretty great day, Sweetness and I are feeling soooo hopeful and I am trying to rally the hopes once again in the hopes our dreams can come true!

Will update again later!! Thanks for coming on this journey with us again!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

2 days until it all begins.......

Well everything is chugging along as it should. We go to the RE on Thursday morning to get started. Its baseline day for IVF #3 !!! Hopefully my ovaries are REALLY quiet being on all this Lu.pron. I mean it has made me soooooo mean this time- I am so agitated sometimes I even want to get away from myself- weird I know but its how i feel sometimes. I will be so glad to stop taking this stuff.

And the state law in Virginia says that you need an STD panel on both husband and wife once a year- but NO NOT MY CLINIC- they want it every 6 months!!!! Do they realize how much this junk costs???? I mean we already have all negatives from July '10 but no.......we have to get it again. So I told the nurse how much it costs and she told me we could go to the health department and they will do it for FREE!!! Really???? Ive never been to the health department, but Sweetness and I are going there Thursday morning before we head to the clinic for baseline day. the tests take 2 weeks to get back but as long as we have them to the clinic before the transfer we are good.

And one last thing, I called my acupuncturist to set up my appts for next week while stimming. She was so condescending and rude that I can not afford to come as much as she wants me to (at $85 a pop), I called her back and told her that she was creating stress for me in this situation and that I feel like I am going to decline any further treatment. She was apologetic but I still just feel like it is a waste of money that I really don't have. I am trusting the Lord for the outcome of this IVF, not whether I've had acupuncture or not.

Speaking of job is so stressful that I really can not hardly wait to be off the whole month of March. My job is making me take FMLA to be off, so my doc is filling out the paperwork and I can pick it up on Friday- hopefully my work will approve it. I just really can not work for this place any longer- the lady that is over me is so nasty and rude. She literally has me in tears most days. So I have some leads on new opportunities, please pray that something will come through and I can get out of this very unhealthy environment.

Other than that, Sweetness is healing, and improving everyday from the fall 3 weeks ago, its still a work in progress but we appreciate all the prayers! I will update as soon as we find out on Thursday what our real plan of action is for this our final attempt at a family through IVF!!!! thanks again for all the love and support- we love you all!!!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

An update!!

Yes well as the picture says, my birthday season is here (or should say has gone). My birthday was this past Saturday and it was really a nice day. Sweetness and Mom took me out to a very nice restaurant and had some real upscale dining, and really enjoyed the piano player right near us! Awesome place to enjoy a birthday!!! Sweetness gave me some Armani perfume and lotion! Smells divine! Mom took me shopping for several blouses etc. Just a very nice day!

We arrived home and my precious friend Tara had sent me some beautiful pink roses to my house. She is truly one of the kindest, most thoughtful friends I have. She is always thinking about everyone but herself!!! Love you Tara bell!

But thank you to all my friends who sent cards and little gifts to make me feel loved!!!

In other news, life has been pretty tough lately. Sweetness slipped and fell on the ice outside his office and hit his head, among other things he cracked up. We were at the hospital and he was diagnosed with a severe concussion. It has been a rough past week since all this occurred. Please keep him in your prayers that he would not have lasting effects from this, because this is not his first or even second concussion.

In other news, my job has been stressing me until I am physically ill. I can no longer take the issues and unethical behavior I feel like I am subjected to, so today I was prepared to resign, and Sweetness and I would face this head on. Well...... my boss agreed that instead of that option for me to finish teaching this mod (end Feb. 24) and take the next one off (of course without pay, but off nonetheless). So I am feeling the relaxation coming over my oh-so-stressed-out mind. I still have my job if I want to come back in April, but I have the chance to look for other things and most importantly focus on my family.

Speaking of family.....lets talk about IVF. Our desire for a family is really so great that sometimes it can consume you. But I am trying to do a lot of things different this time, ie- acupuncture, no caffeine, pineapple, meditation and a 5-day transfer. Of course reducing the extreme stress I am under is going to help. But I am excited to tell you that in ONE WEEK from today we have our baseline visit. We will begin stimulation that day, and hopefully the embryos will be put back into me on or about Feb. 28th!!!

We are really hoping this is our time and praying praying and more praying!!

This has gotten to be a very long post, so not to bore you any longer, I will wrap it up!! Thank you again for all the support and encouragement! I will be much better about updating here as we proceed!!!