Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Yet another setback....vulgar vent ahead

Why,why,why did I decide to cycle at a clinic outside of NYC? Someone remind me. Was it to save money? Or so I didn't have to drive 6 hours a day? Is that worth the incompetence and utter stupidity I am dealing with at this local joint? Here I go questioning myself and my decision again but I'm seriously pissed.

I had a nice talk about H's latest SA with the nurse yesterday during my monitoring appt. Remember? I talked about it in my last post... Anyway, I asked her if we needed a repeat since the count was a little low (300,000) and she said no because we were doing ICSI and I am not going to have 300,000 eggs. She looked at his past SAs and agreed that there was a slight improvement in the count and a huge improvement in the motility (how fast they move). As far as I was concerned, we were good.

H got a call at work from another nurse at the clinic telling him that he needed to repeat his SA and be prepared with backup sperm "just in case". The poor guy was devastated all day and he could not reach me to discuss. I just finished telling him yesterday how everything was better and some dip shit nurse completely crushed him. He had the sense to tell her to go back and look at his records and confirm the improvement. She came back and tried to tell him that they always recommend backup sperm and that she saw that he did always have a sample to produce so he should be fine but the damage was already done. He feels horrible about himself.

How the fuck are they going to say that he might not have enough sperm? At Cornell, 50,000 sperm were plenty for the 10 little eggs from my last cycle. They don't even blink at the small's normal there. That's a lot more than many of their patients can produce! Not to mention, some men can't even get sperm to come out when they jerk off ....they have a procedure where they stick a needle in their sack and pull them out. They can only get a few but in most cases, that's enough. My husband had 300,000 they can chase down to make an embryo with. I feel like I am being cared for by freaking hillbillies.

Sorry for the strong language but I am fresh from getting the news from H. I don't like anyone hurting my man and I don't like knowing more than the people who are supposed to taking good care of me.

Now, I'm suddenly worried......

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hurdle # 1....I'm over it

This is not going to be the most clever post, I'm afraid. Between trying to get to anywhere through the maze of road closures (thank you, Irene) and being short staffed at work, I am lucky I can put 2 words together right now.

I had my 1st follicle check today...I'm on CD 6.

My E2 is 138. Since I am obsessive and I have a blog that chronicles every measurement, I also know that in Nov 2010 it was 189 on CD 6 and in March 2010 it was 210 on CD 6. It just keeps going down the older I get, it seems......

I think I may end up with a few less follicles but I'd be ok with that if the quality is there. It looks like I have about 9 follicles right now. That could go up or down....too early to tell. My next check is on Fri. so I 'll be sure to report on my findings.

We also got the results back from H's latest SA. There's good news and bad news. The counts didn't change as much as we were hoping. He produced around 300,000 swimmers. He has had samples below 100,000 so it's not horrible but he was expecting it to go up into the millions. I knew better but didn't want to dash his hopes. It's not like I am going to have 300,000 eggs so we'll definitely have enough for embryo making. The motility shot up to 33% from a mere 6% though and that is huge! Still not much hope for getting pg on our own with counts so low but you gotta celebrate the little wins,too.

I'm feeling like shit....headache,sore ovaries and bloating but it will all be worth it in the end,right?

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Time to do some shots!

Nope, not lemon drops and tequila....follistim and menopur by way of the needle...not in a sweet little shot glass from my collection of wedding shot glasses thanks to the tidal wave of weddings we attended a few years back. Come to think of it....some of those couples are divorced or loaded with children while we are still trying for our 1st baby.

It's just like I bugging my husband to do the mixing of the menopur (I'll stick myself but I'll leave the prep work to the chemist!)while I get everything set up and stand over his shoulder until he remembers how it all works. After 6 tries I am not sure how he doesn't know but this is the same man who cannot find the cinnamon in the pantry despite the fact that it is always in the same place!

Other than me starting my meds, there isn't much else to report. The most notable thing that happened was my husband telling me that my pants don't look as baggy anymore and consequently, me bursting into tears.

A little background......I've lost about 12 lbs. since my last cycle in Nov 2010. No meds=weight under control. I probably would have lost even more if I didn't have to quit working out for a month thanks to the lap debacle and if my social life wasn't so active. This summer has been a whirlwind of parties and butt may be bigger than it should be but I have lots of nice memories. I still have about 10 lbs. to lose before I reach my pre IVF weight, though.

So..... in my mind, H was telling me a.) that I look like I am gaining weight before my cycle even starts and b.) that I'll never reach my goal weight. Before you start judging, I know that I will gain weight when I get pg and I am so good with that but weight gain and no baby is like an extra big F U.

Luckily, H reminded me that 5 extra lbs show up with Flo every month (along with chocolate cravings, zits and extreme sensitivity). He's out of trouble and I am wearing my fat pants. They are still big and hopefully, they will stay that was until I have my pg test!

Friday, August 26, 2011

You've come a long way, baby.....

Actually, I have. But as a former Virginia Slims smoker (yes, that's probably why my eggs are in such bad shape, I've already beat myself up over that several times) I am taking this op to use the tag line from their old ad campaign to brag about how proud I am of myself.

I found myself in a situation a few nights ago that would have upset me if it had happened earlier in my journey. I was at a party and found out that an acquaintance was pg. It really didn't bother me and I'm kind of surprised it didn't. Classic "annoying to an IFer" story: KU by accident....had no idea,etc. but when I found out, I didn't blink. I think I just get it now. One person's life has NOTHING to do with mine. People will get pg. I may never or I might next week. (Please God!) People may wish they had an amazing hubby like mine or that their house is as clean as mine or that they have no gray hair like me (thas right bitches!) but if they focus on me and my stuff what does that say about them? I don't want to be that person that looks at everyone else and lives a life of longing. I never was like that before IF and I know I can't be like that now. Sometimes, it easier said than done but I'm a work in progress.

A year ago, I wouldn't have handled the situation so well but I have a different perspective now. I'm ok with where I am and the fact that our lives may never change. That it might be just the 2 of us growing old together. We'll just have lots of toys and cars and maybe even a beach house but no one to share our stuff with. I'd rather be painting a nursery and saving for college tuition but I may just have to be satisfied with the pretty great life I have.

Don't get me wrong. I want this cycle to work out so much and I want to be pregnant again. This time I would like a healthy baby at the end of 9 months. I am so much better with letting things take their natural course,though. If we need to move onto DE, so be it but there is no guarantee that will work either. Also, I am having a problem finding donors who fit my health and uh,looks profile. (No judgement please. I mean, if my good looks are going to go to waste, I am going to need to replace them with someone even better looking. LOL!)

A few days ago, I posted about being numb. I think I changed my mind about that diagnosis. Could I have possibly reached the final stage of grief....acceptance?

Monday, August 22, 2011

What's new?

A few things, like.....

1. IVF #7 has begun. (whispered in hushed tones)I started taking estrogen pills and Ganirelix shots on Saturday. (That really snuck up on me!)

2. My protocol. (Way different than the EPP I've done in the past.)

Here, I'll show you:

EPP at Cornell= pee on O sticks until I see the smiley. Call my own personal nurse (usually around cycle day 14) and slap on an estrogen patch every other day until patch #4 which I leave on until I get my period and a horrible rash in the shape of said patch. They had me taking the Ganirelix for a few days starting on cycle day 2with the stims.

EPP at CNY= 2 estrogen pills a day and 1 Ganirelix shot from cycle day 21 until Flo shows. Then I call some random nurse and start stims on day 3.

*******Some clinics use Day 2 and some use Day 3 for the baseline appointment*******

3. H has been doing really well on the chinese herbs,Clomid and HCG. I won't get into details but let’s just say things looked healthier when he um, tested it out. He has a repeat SA on Thurs. and we are both very anxious.

Both of us are pretty moody now thanks to the meds..... we are acting like a couple of teenagers. Let's hope the meds are turning back the time on our body parts,too. Ginger on estrogen and Ganilrelix + H on Clomid and HCG = Fireworks. Uh, not the good kind. He is mean and I am more sensitive than usual.

I'm trying to stay positive but it's so hard once I start the meds. It's been almost a year since I cycled. Do you believe it? November marks the anniversary of cycle #6. Where did that year go?!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

I may be going numb.....

Lots of things used to bother me about not being able to have a baby. Bother might be understating it just a bit....I guess you could say that I was pretty disturbed. Like when I would hear a pregnancy announcement every other day or when I had to spend $ on a gift for someone else's baby shower or when some idiot would post one of those bullshit posts on FB that say something like "Only a mother can feel....blah,blah,blah....repost if you are a mother and would die for your kids!" You know the posts I'm talking about. They usually pop up around Mother's Day but I have seen them all year round. It's what makes all of the infertiles "hide" and "defriend" people and block their asses so we never have to see the bad prose ever again.

I was hurt and sad and angry when BIL's wife announced she was pg last August at my house when everyone was visiting from out of town. (At 5 weeks....I think that's called a missed period,BTW.) My ILs insensitive comments about us needing to get on with our lives and forget about children didn't help the situation....nor did it help when the baby was born and my MIL sent out an email to everyone she knows(including us)that said " We are sooooooo happy and sooooooo excited to finally be grandparents". (Did I mention that no one knew about our infertility or IVF cycles until she told them all against our wishes?)I never thought I would be able to handle seeing the baby, or seeing my ILs with the baby or even seeing pictures of H's brother with his wife and baby. I never thought I could handle my ILs non stop baby talk or my MIL saying that she likes it at H's brother's house because she gets to share the bathroom with the baby (Ummm, he's like 2 months old and I'm pretty sure he is not using the toilet just yet.)

Okay, I'll admit that this all sounds very bitter but that's not where I'm going with this post. My point is that I think I have become desensitized to all this stuff. Pregnancy announcements are not really bothering me these days. I can actually be in a room with a pregnant woman now without breaking out in hives. (Babies never were a problem for me. Neither were my infertile friends pregnancies. I could always find joy in my heart for those ladies who know what it is to struggle with reproduction.)Sure the crap my ILs say can bother me at times but I get over it pretty quick.

I'm not sure what it all means. Am I finally letting go? Is my spirit broken? Everyone tells me I have a great life, even without children. Am I finally starting to see that and accept that it might never happen? I still want a child more than anything but it seems so far away impossible at my age. Sure I try to think positive and all that but I feel like I have become so nonchalant about having my own child now. Is that the right attitude to have going into IVF #7? On the one hand, it seems like I can handle things so much better but on the other hand....I still long to be pregnant and hold and kiss and cuddle my very own baby. Maybe I am just finally recognizing that I need to live the life I have instead of the life I want....the life that everyone around me seems to be living. I know I'll be ok....and I like that feeling.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The aftermath.....

I was just starting to feel like myself again...I started my regular workout routine again, I got a pedi, and I went to the beach with H. We even stopped to luau with old friends (some I have not seen in 10+ years!)Life felt like it was falling back into place nicely. What perfect timing! I mean, IVF # 7 is due to start in about 2 weeks. But life has a way of tricking you....

When we got back from vacation, I had a window envelope from the ambulance company waiting for me in the mailbox. Nothing good ever comes from opening a window envelope...especially on the weekend. (Why do all these scary insurance related materials show up on Fri. or Sat? You can't possibly call anyone....everything is closed. H & I are convinced "they" have it planned that way to make you stress out or at the very least so they can eliminate some of the irate calls they are bound to receive.)

So, my window envelope contained a bill for $960. Apparently, calling 911 is really expensive. The ambulance company that I used (like I had a choice) was out of network. Was I supposed to call a bunch of different places to make sure they accepted my insurance? I was convinced I was about to die so that may not have been the best strategy. I spent a good portion of my Monday making calls to my contacts (thank goodness for my connections)to fix it. I submitted a claim and I am only responsible for my copay. Whew!

You would think I would have been through enough after all that. Not yet. Next came the business of trying to order the meds that I need for my upcoming cycle and dealing with the insurance company. I am too confused at this point to really even explain what happened but let's just say I was given 2 different totals, my credit card was charged the day I called and they sent me a bill for twice as much as I had already paid. There were also 2 missing meds that the order taker did not tell me were coming from a different company because they were not considered "specialty meds". I had to ask the rep I spoke to today at least 6 times if it was shipping via Fed Ex or regular mail before I got a straight answer. It's a good thing I know a little bit about insurance. Otherwise, I may have chosen to overdose on fertility drugs in the middle of that lengthy conversation.

I'm still waiting on 2 meds and a few more bills. I hope the bills don't come on Saturday and I hope the meds arrive before I need them next week! Another rocky start.....

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