Wednesday, August 29, 2012

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

Pictures of Spermies
"Egg and Spoon" clock in the restroom

Men, just follow the spermies to where you need to make your "desposit"


The artwork I get to look at while having my blood drawn
The Sperm-mobile! (I blurred out the contact info)
I went in this morning for my lining check - was told it looked perfect :) Hoping they pass that info along to Embie#2 ! I start the PIO, doxy and medrol on Saturday.
If anyone has any tips for the PIO I'd be happy to hear them!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Being bribed?

Excuse me while I vent for a moment...I just received the follow-up email from our doctor's office regarding the cost for another round of IVF. I honestly feel like I am being  bribed to do this. Not only are they offering the discount, now they are going to throw in 15 vials of Bravelle to help with the cost of meds. She also made sure that she sent the information regarding the financing companies. I am feeling super irritated with them right now. I've emailed our doctor to let him know that we've received the information and that, unfortunately, we can't afford another round at this time. I am wondering if he'll up the offer...

I feel like I need to find some way to relax between now and next Friday. Any suggestions are welcome...trying to find something that would be free. I am going to do some goo.gling for yoga.

Hope y'all are having a Terrific Tuesday!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Decision Made

We've made a decision and finances played a MAJOR factor in our deciding on the next step. We have decided to go ahead and transfer Embie #2 and hope for the very best.

I spoke to someone at our doctor's office this morning and we would receive a discount for the next round but it would still cost us a lot of money out-of-pocket. Unfortunately, our pockets just aren't that deep. I think the worst part of making this decision was when I said something to the person at the doctor's ofifce about it being cost prohibitive and her reply was "Well, can't you finance it? Do you have the information about the financing companies? You could just finance what you would owe our office and then pay for the testing and medications."

We are both comfortable with our decision and going to stay positive as possible.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Thank you

I just wanted to say thank you for all of your comments and positive thoughts while we are trying to figure out our next steps. It has really meant alot to me to be able to know that there are people out there pulling for us.To say this has not been is easy would be an understatement.

I am hoping we'll be ale to get some answers from the doctor's office about what another round of IVF would cost us. I know our credit would not be as much as it was after the IUI, but maybe it would be feasible for us to try another round. If so, we would do that and then transfer embie #2 along with any that we get from another round. One of my biggest fears is that we might not get to the point having embryos to test.

On a positive note, I was finally able to catch up a friend from home today and we talked for quite awhile about what J and I are going through while trying to become parents. She is the proud mother of quadruplets thanks to ART. It was great to be able to talk to someone who is a good friend and also knows what it is like to struggle to become a mother. She was so supportive and it was so good to spend the hour catching up with her.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The results are in...Updated

The PGD results are in. J received an email from Dr. A in his work email this morning saying the results are in and asking when we could chat. I called back and Dr. A is not available right now...receptionist said she is hoping he'll be able to call us this morning. I am a bundle of nerves. Any prayers, good vibes, thoughts are most appreciated! I am hoping to give you an update today! Fingers and toes are crossed for good news!!

So we got the call from Dr. A. He apologized for having to give us the results over the phone and said it was not his preferred way to deliver the results. Our first embryo came back as having severe abnormalities. It had 47 chromosomes. 1 16 was missing and there was an extra 17 and an extra 21.

As for embryo #2 the results were inconclusive. So now we have decisions to make. Do we transfer without knowing anything, as if no PGD testing was done? Do we set it aside and start a new round of IVF? Another option was to thaw it again, re-biopsy and send of the cells again. We took that option out of the equation while on the phone with Dr. A as it did not seem worth the risk at all. We are going to take the weekend to talk about it and come up with a decision. So please keep sending the good vibes our way.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

(Not so) Wordless Wednesday

View from Palapa at Sunbreeze Hotel, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize

For those of you who are here from ICLW - welcome! San Pedro is my "happy place"...J and I were married here on the beach in April 2010. Since then we have been back 2 other times. Again in November 2010 for Thanksgiving and to celebrate my big 4-0 and again for Thanksgiving 2011. We absolutely love it there. The people are incredibily friendly and the scenery cannot be beat. Typically on our first morning on the island we are up with the sun and start our day relaxing on the hammocks in this picture.

It's also an amazing place to heal. In November 2010 we went just 2 weeks after my first m/c and when we went in November 2011 it was a month after my 3rd m/c. It has allowed us down time where we can reconnect and process all that we have been through.

When we were there last year we met our wedding photographer for lunch for Sunday BBQ on the beach (a tradition in San Pedro) and while we were at lunch there was an adorable little girl who must have been about 18 mos or so and she caught my eye. Apparently, I caught her eye too because she randomly came up to me and put her hand on my lap and just looked up at me and smiled. It was so strange and so cool at the same time. The first time it happened I could feel myself getting choked up but after it happened a couple of times during lunch it just made me smile and feel good about what our future might hold. (She was playing in between the tables and would go off and play and then come back to say hi.) A few days later we were at breakfast and at the end of our meal we noticed that she and her mom were there too. When they were leaving the little girl noticed me and came right up to me. She did the same thing as before...just came up, put her hand on my lap and smiled. It was really something. :)

Hope everyone has a Wonderful Wednesday!!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

August ICLW

Welcome to my little piece of the blogging world. I haven’t been here for very long but the benefits I’ve reaped have been wonderful! I am so grateful for the support I have received.
Currently, I am in the middle of a whole new type of TWW. I am going through my second round of IVF…we have two frozen embryos right now and are waiting for the results of the PGD testing. I am really hoping we’ll have results at this time next week. We had to send a blood sample this week in order for the lab to map out our chromosomes as a part of the testing for the embies.
Here is more about us and our journey:
·         I suffered three early miscarriages between October 2010 and July 2011.

·         After the 2nd miscarriage I had the blood work done for the RPL panel and had an HSG. Good news was all was clear on the HSG…bad news? I have a Robertsonian Balanced Translocation. In a nutshell, the long arms of my 13th and 14th chromosomes are fused together. I have all of the correct genetic material but it becomes a problem when trying to conceive.

·         Found an RE in the area based on the recommendation of one of J’s co-workers. His wife gave birth to a healthy baby girl after 5 rounds of IVF that resulted in 3 losses.

·         I did not respond well to the meds in the first round of IVF in May so it was turned into an IUI. BFN L

·         2nd round of IVF produced 10 follicles that resulted in 4 eggs at the time of retrieval. All 4 were mature and all 4 fertilized with ICSI. After 5 days 2 were biopsied and their cells were shipped to NJ for testing.

·         We have a 66% chance that each embryo will be healthy. When I think of that other 34% I just think of the quote above to remember we have a good chance of having at least one healthy embryo. We feel like we’ve already struck out enough and now it’s our chance to hit a home run. (Grand slam if both are healthy!)
·         We live in South TX…all of our friends and family live in MA. It gets lonely for both of us at times. Blogging really helps take away some of the lonely feelings.

·         We have 2 golden retrievers who make us smile each and every day. I don’t know how we would have made it this far without them. I think they have become therapy dogs for us. J

I look forward to reading and commenting this week and getting to know you a bit better.

Happy ICLW!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Another blood draw

I was lucky enough to go get another blood draw today. J got to have one too!
He did much better than I did...the tech didn't have to move the needle around to get his blood.

I recevied a phone call from Dr. A this morning after he spoke to the director at the lab in NJ. The ;ab will  be able to determine if the embies have a balanced or unbalanced translocation - yay! However, they need a sample of our blood in order to map out our chromosomes for the testing. Dr. A's office will overnight the samples so they should be in NJ tomorrow. I am really hoping this doesn't delay the test results - something tells me it might. As long as we have the results back before I am scheduled to start the PIO I'll be happy.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Better today

I am feeling so much better today! All went well with appointment this morning...We were both relieved when Dr. A walked in the door behind us. The other doctors are nice and we like them, but we both feel a lot better when we are able to see Dr. A.  The blood draw only needed a little wiggling to get things improvement over the last few draws! Lining was looking good and I am guessing that my levels were good because I did not receive a call back from the office saying anything else. Started the estr.ace today...still need to consult Dr. Go.ogle about the side effects.

We were both very grateful that we were able to sit and chat with Dr. A after our appointment. It almost didn't happen because our nurse, C, forgot about it. We chatted with her for a bit and got our calendar; checked out and thing we knew C was chasing us down in the parking lot. So glad she did. Dr. A took the time to answer everything and not once did we feel like we were keeping him from anything. He let us know that he emailed the director of the lab in NJ that is doing the PGD testing to confirm the answers. Right now, it looks like they would have to create a special probe in order to test the embryos for the Robertsonian Balanced Translocation specifically. Dr. A did say if it was a balanced translocation the testing would come back as healthy as the embryo would have all of it's genetic material. We have a 66% of each embryo being healthy and right now that feels pretty good! We feel like we've already had our three strikes and are due to hit one out the park! If all goes well we are looking at a transfer date of September 7th. Fingers are crossed!

Oops!! I just realized I hit "publish" without updating you on the embies! We asked Dr. A about their grading system and he said they don't use one. He said it was subjective and in our case it really didn't matter. What was going to matter was the results from the PGD testing. So I guess hearing that they look "really good" truly was a good thing. :) Dr. A also told us that he had to be honest with us and based on our first try at IVF he never thought we would get to the point where 2 were biopsied and sent off for testing. We asked what would happen if we were lucky enough to have both come back healthy; he said he'd transfer both of them. J is a little concerned about that so we'll chat about it over the next few days because for all we know that won't be a deicsion that needs to be made. Fingers crossed, again, that we do have to make that decision!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Frustrating Friday

I am going to blame my mood on it being CD1. Please excuse me while I need to vent. After the retrieval I was told be sure I called on Day 1 and a new calendar will be set up for me. Yesterday I was spotting and hoping it would turn into CD1 but it waited until this morning. I called to speak with a nurse at 9:15 this morning. She wasn't available and I was asked if I wanted to leave a message or go to her voicemail. I said whichever will assure that I get a call back today. So I left the message with the receptionist as she said the C is really pretty good about returning calls. I was already feeling slightly frusrated because I had sent an email to C on Wednesday and still haven't received a reply to that...add that to our never getting the call from the embryologist on Sunday and getting the "oopsy" phone call on Monday morning and I am feeling irritated with their office.

2:00pm rolls around...still no call, so I decided okay I'll call back. Get to talk to C this time and really, I don't think she had the time to talk to me. Gives me the excuse of patients and meetings all morning as to why she couldn't call back. I tell her why I am calling and she asks when I started. Um, hello, I said it's Day 1 today so wouldn't that mean I started today?? She said I'll need to come in on Day 2 for baseline U/S and bloodwork - am I coming in tomorrow? I said I guess so. I was just told to call on Day 1 and here I am calling. It was just ridiculous. Then I had the nerve to ask a couple of questions and I really felt completely rushed off the phone. My appt is for 7:15am tomorrow and she said I'll be one of the first patients so we'll have time to sit down and go over everything.

One of the questions I had was regarding our embryos. I asked about their grading system and what it meant to have "really good" looking embryos. I wasn't given much of answer...however, she did say that the lab won't say they look good unless they really do look like quality embryos. So hopefully having "really good" looking embryos is a good sign.

Keeping my fingers crossed that the cells are passing all of the tests they are being put through in NJ.

Thanks for listening :) I hope y'all have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

Wishing I was snorkeling today instead of working and dealing with our tenant in MA.
(Picture taken at Goff's Caye, Belize last November)

Monday, August 13, 2012

It's a Whole New TWW

Where to start...I guess with the good news. :) We have two embryos that looked great on Day 5 and their cells have been shipped off for the PGD testing. So now we are in a whole new type of TWW as we should have results back from the lab in about 2 weeks. Everyone seems really positive and happy that we have two that could be tested. There was a piece of J and I that really hoped we'd have 3. We had the good news on all 4 fertilizing so we both thought that maybe just maybe we'd get more good news with how many embies made it to Day 5. I am trying really hard to feel positive about this.

I think I am having a hard time because I am still stuck on the fact that we never received the phone call from the embryologist yesterday. I had been told to expect the call late morning...well, when 4pm rolled around and my phone had still not rung. (I made J call it at one point during the day to make sure it really was working!) I ended up leaving a voicemail at the message center for the on-call doctor. She called me back within 10 minutes with the news. This morning I missed a call from someone who works with the embryologist reiterating the same news and saying "Sorry for not calling yesterday; guess I got caught up in my day." I think I am glad I got it as a voicemail because I don't think I would have been overly pleasant on the phone. The stress from waiting for that call was miserable.

To end on a happy note J and I went to play mini-golf yesterday to celebrate our first date anniversary. Corny, but true. J found an indoor mini-golf place - it was glow in the dark Monster Golf. It was SO loud! We both left with headaches but definitely had a lot of fun letting go and having fun for the afternoon.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

To call or not to call

Today is Day 3 for our embies and I am not scheduled to get an update from the embryologist until late morning on Sunday. That seems sooo far away!! I am debating on emailing one of the nurses to see if there is any info -  mainly are they all still there. J thinks I am silly and should just wait until Sunday. So, do I contact the nurse or just wait for the call from the embryologist?

On another note, I talked to my Dad last night and told him about our progress thus far. He was very excited to hear the news and said he could hear it in my voice that I was feeling better about things. That was really  nice to hear. I explained about how our next update is on Sunday and that cells would be shipped off on Monday for the PGD testing. He told me that he really didn't understand my chromosomal I took a few minutes to explain it to him. After I finished he asked if it is hereditary and I replied yes. He said "Hmm...I am guessing that it's on my side then. You know Nana had quite a few miscarriages in between me and your aunt." I've guessed that it was on his side, too, but never said it out loud to him. It made me so sad to hear him say that it must be from his side. Thankfully we spent a few more minutes catching up on things after that so the conversation did not end on that note.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

More updates

I received the phone call from the embryologist...I held my breath when I saw the number pop up on my phone. He said all 4 eggs were mature and all 4 fertilized!! There may only be 4 but let's hope this is a case of quality over quantity. I'll receive another call on Sunday morning after they have matured a bit more and been biopsied. Hopefully we are able to send out 4 samples for testing on Monday. I'll be keeping my fingers and toes crossed until then.

I am feeling much better today. Yesterday was alot more miserable than I had anticipated. No real cramps but definitely seemed like I had mild OHSS symptoms (according to Dr. I feel less bloated today and the pain level is down, so that is good. I decided to go to work - if I can't handle a full day I'll leave early.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Quick update

Just a quick update, as I still feel like I've been hit by a truck. Things went well - except for getting the IV started. The nurses waited for the anesthesiologist to work his magic for that. I am pretty glad they did considering where it had to be done - inside my left wrist.

Out of the 10 follies only 4 eggs were retrieved. I am a bit disappointed but I am going to do my best to stay positive. It only takes one.  :) Hopefully we found that one today!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Super Saturday

We had another appointment this morning to see how the follies were doing and I am happy to report that they are doing great!! We lucked out and were the first patients seen this morning. We managed to get there before the doors were unlocked. Crazy. There were two other couples waiting, but we were the goofy ones standing outside the door like we were there for a Black Friday special. Only downfall to the appointment was the blood draw. It took 3 tries, 2 nurses and both arms...oh well..what a few more bruises when you leave with great news. Ready for it??

We trigger tonight and retrieval is scheduled for Monday morning!!! I am in awe that this cycle is going as planned. I can't remember the exact number but I think we have about 10 follies...the largest is an 18 and the smallest a 12...there were a couple of other small ones in there too. I was also told that my estrogen level was much better this time around. The nurse said that this cycle all around is looking far better than the first one. I haven't felt this positive in awhile and it feels great!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. :)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Thankful Thursday

First a shout out to "lo"...Happy Birthday!! I am happy to report that my follies delivered her birthday wish and grew!

I have 3 on the left measuring about 14 each and 3 small ones in there too. On the right...only one, a 12. The doctor seemed really positive about everything. My lining was looking good too - measuring just over 9. Blood draw went okay - not too painful and she got it right away. Only downfall is the new's uglier than I had anticipated. Oh well. So tonight it's three shots: meno.pur, brav.elle and cetrotide. Good times ahead!! Back to the office on Saturday at 7am for more monitoring. Fingers are crossed that things keep moving in the right direction.

The odd thing is after we were done with the appointment I was anxious, not happy or excited, over the news that we received. I am pretty sure this is our last shot at IVF, so I am really hoping we get to the point where we have an embryo to implant. That seems so far away, so for now I'll focus on the positive and hope for more good news on Saturday!

Today I wore my "good luck" socks and they worked!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

It's two post kind of day! I decided that after having such a tough morning I needed some pictures of my favorite place to help me feel better, so I am sharing them with you. :)

These are of Goff's Caye in 2010 we went here on a snorkeling trip with people from our wedding party, then we went back in November for my birthday...we were so lucky that day, we had the entire (albeit small) island to ourselves! Unfortunately, we lost all thos pictures when our laptop died. So we went back again in 2011 but this time we had to share it with people from a cruise. As soon as we docked J and I practically ran to the water so we could get in before the tenders from the mainland arrived. In doing so I forgot sunscreen...not good at all, unless you enjoy looking like a lobster!!

An aerial view of the caye - we were able to snorkel around the entire island. Amazing!

J rushing to get our stuff set up on the beach.

Looking out to sea.

Wacky Wednesday

Wow did today ever start off as "one of those days"...I had to go to the dentist for a cleaning this morning. My husband told our dentist that we were going through IVF during our first cycle because he has work that needs sto be done that we just don't have the funds for right now. The dentist was extremely understanding and empathetic. J ended up seeing him just after we had been home for the memorial service for his dad and the failed IUI; so Dr. S knew we were going through a lot at once. I was anxious as to whether or not he would say something to me this morning. Sure enough he did. It was kind but it still stung. He commented that we've been going through a lot and I replied "We really have." Then he said to me "It's hard because we never really know what G-d's plan is for us." That one really through  me for a loop. I know I live in the South but I just didn't expect my dentist to bring G-d into the conversation. When I got out to my truck I bawled. Being hopped up on hormones and having comments like that made just do not mix well together at all!
Tomorrow is a monitoring appointment and blood work...really hope those follies are growing!!