Monday, April 27, 2009

Finally Aunt Flo!

My lovely cycle started on Saturday - hallelujah!!! I was super excited about this, and tried to get Bobby to share my excitement, but he was so involved in the draft I don't think he could hear me hollering in the background :-)

I called my nurse but because it was the weekend and they are in the middle of a series I knew not to expect a call back until today. Well, I waited and waited and finally thought it wouldn't hurt to leave one more message for my nurse.

I just got a call back from her and she said that they wanted to do day 3 labs (blood work) on me, which means I will be headed to Spokane tomorrow (FYI day 3 labs can be taken on day 2, 3, or 4). I'm not sure why they want to do Day 3's on me - I needed them my first series, but I don't remember having them on my second series. I also could just be forgetful, because honestly all this IVF stuff is starting to run together. I should look back at my past blogs to see if I had day 3's the second time around. Ok, I'm getting off track.

So I will be starting my birth control pills tomorrow night and taking them until sometime in June. My nurse said that after tomorrow, she will be able to start working on my calendar and she can say for certain that my hysterscope won't be anytime in the next 2 weeks - which is great because it gives me time to go to my OB and get a referral.

On a side note - I am having a blah day. I don't know if it's because my hormones are still a little out of whack and add in that I just started my period...or maybe it's because if my first series of IVF would have worked, I would be having a baby right about now....or maybe it's that it seems everyone I know, that has a uterus, is pregnant or has just had a baby. Ok, maybe that was a little exaggerated, but sometimes it just feels like that. Freakin Spring - it seems babies are popping up everywhere.

I will blog when I know results from my day 3 and get my calendar. Till then.....

Friday, April 24, 2009

A little of this and that

Well, my monthly friend still has not paid a visit - grrrrrr....I swear, when you are doing IVF, the only time you want your cycle to start is just prior to a new IVF series. Everything depends on the start date of your cycle and in my case it is taking its sweet ass time getting here. I look forward to this for many reasons: we can mentally get in IVF mode, we can order our meds, we basically get the ball rolling...but most importantly we get our calendar!

Ah, the calendar. This one piece of paper is the lifeline for IVF. It is the holy grail, if you will. The calendar has all of the information that will guide you, tell you your appointments, what and how much of your meds you should take, and it lets you plan. And for people like me (and you too Nicole :-) ) planning is soooo important. It gives you a sense of control over the whole thing when in reality you have no control what-so-ever. Now, all I need is for my darn period to start.....

On another IVF related note, I got a bill in the mail a couple days ago. "What the hell", you say...yes, what the hell indeed. I thought I was all paid up because at our appointment last week I wrote a check for the balance on our account (2 hysterscopes that insurance did not cover). But then I see an envelope in the mail and I think, "odd, what could they be sending me?". When I opened it I saw a "Welcome to your third series, in order to start your series you need to pay the following...blah blah need to send us $1800 for ICSI...blah blah...and send $600 to the anesthesiologist while your at it...blah blah ....oh and why not sign away the rights to your first born?

Ok, I made the last part up - but I was a little caught off guard by this letter. Not because I didn't know or expect these fees, but I had honestly forgotten about them. Rats! I only had the cost of the meds on my mind and was not happily reminded about these other fees.

The other night Bobby and I were talking about how we hope that I don't have to have another D and C. And while I was thinking, yeah I don't want to pay the money or have to go to a hospital and have a surgery...he said that he feels bad for my poor uterus.
What now huh?
Yes, he says..."you have to think that your uterus is completely beat up. I mean, you've had 3 D and C's and the last time the dr. had to scrape scar tissue off. It's like you uterus has been in a war".

Tee Hee, this made me laugh because in my head I pictured my uterus (which I have seen too many times to count, so yes, I can actually picture it) and it is all covered in scars and bandaids, maybe propped up on one side by a crutch........Yes, I am weird - but this picture of my war-torn uterus was just what I needed. I have put my body through a lot, and while it would be really easy to get mad at it for not cooperating in this baby-making process, maybe I should think of it as doing the best it can, fighting to help me get pregnant even if it lacks the ability, continuing on in the fight even if it's a losing battle. Go Uterus! (LOL - I told you I was weird)

Oh, and one more thing - I decided to do acupuncture this time. I figured we only have one shot left why not try everything ever reported to help increase the chances :-) If anyone has any other suggestions for things that might help us along, I'm open to hearing them.

Hopefully I will be able to post again soon and let you all know the details of my upcoming round.
Till then....

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Drawing the line....

Where we do we draw the line? (warning - this is a super super long post!)

That was the question of the day yesterday...But let me start from the beginning.

We had our follow-up, or as I've seen posted by other IVFers, our WTF, appointment yesterday. Bobby was able to go with me and I was happy to have him there. On the drive up we talked about what we thought the dr. would say and came to an agreement that no matter what, we were done with IVF after this next round...if it didn't work we would move forward with adoption - we were getting excited about adoption again...we were all smiles, hope and happiness.

We get to the appointment and as we are waiting Bobby sees a Newsweek that had this huge article on Epilepsy that he wanted to read. (this info isn't really important, but I refer back to it later). Just as we are about to read the article, the Dr. calls us back to his office.

We sit down and he starts talking to us about how we had 3 perfect embryos transferred and none implanted. Duh! We were there, tell us something we don't know. Then he said he's pretty sure that we are looking at an implantation/attachment issue which they can't really do anything about because that is the one area that they just don't have a lot of control over. He said that we were at a little disadvantage because of my overstim and having to do a frozen cycle (I guess your odds are a third of the odds of a fresh cycle). So, he says he wants to go ahead with a fresh cycle this next go-around.

I asked about my polyps and he said we would do another hysterscope to see how much they've grown. If not much, then he can put me on an endometrial suppression until we start the series, but if they have grown back then I'll need another D and C. We asked a bunch of questions...about assisted hatching - which he said wasn't really for our situation, although he did say that if this fresh didn't work and we did another fresh, that he would transfer 4 embryos on day 3. The only problem would be that if all 4 embryos took, we would have to do a "reduction" because of the size of my uterus (it's kind of small). This was a big fat "No" on our part, we would not do a day 3 because we would never consider reduction. That took care of that option.

Then we asked what he thought was going on and he said he really didn't know. That although it was most likely an attachment issue he can't say for certain. And that all 11 embryos that we froze were perfect quality, but it could be that they aren't progressing once in utero. That I have an "odd uterus". That we have stumped him and he can't tell us what is wrong. GRRRRR.....we went through this for either a pregnancy or closure (and by closure, I mean the Doc giving us a reason why after 6 years, we have yet to get pregnant.). Looks like we might not get either.

He felt so bad for us that he told us that if we wanted to pay the fee for the frozen transfer we did in March ($3500), that he wouldn't count that as one of our 3 tries and we could have 2 more fresh cycles. I heard this and I don't know if it was the money we would save or the chance to try "just one more time" after this next time, but it was like I had drunk the kool-aid...screw the plan Bobby and I had agreed on - I was on-board for this new option. We told the Doc that we would have to think about it, but in my mind I thought "heck yes, wrap it up, we'll take it".

Then he told us that if after the next 2 fresh cycles didn't work, we might need to consider a gestational host..dun dun dunnnnnnnnn! There it was. If it doesn't work soon, we are in fact in that 7% that can't get pregnant with IVF. If it didn't work the next 2 times, the doc thought we should explore that "host" option. We told him we weren't thrilled with the idea of having a host, although we might have one waiting in the wings, and that we would probably just rather pursue adoption. He looked at us like we were crazy and told us adoption wasn't a great choice.
* ok, read your chart buddy...because we have already adopted and it was wonderful *
He went on and on about how expensive adoption was (ummm...about $9000 less than what we've spent on not getting pregnant in his office) and how there are often a lot of complications - K, cause IVF has been so smooth for us. Finally I interrupted him and told him that we had already adopted and that pretty much rendered him speechless.
We talked a little longer, agreed to do the fresh cycle in June and then he took us to a room to meet with our nurse.

In the room, she said that we will be doing the long down regulation again, but this time I will be doing half the dose of meds that I did last time and they would monitor me more closely for hyperstim. I am to call the first day of my cycle, and start on birth control. At that point, we will schedule my hysterscope. Bobby and I asked her about the deal the Doc had offered us, and were wondering if we could wait to pay the $3500 until after we found out if the 3rd try worked. She said she would ask the finance people, but she thought it would be one of those "you pay it and if you get pregnant the third try you wouldn't get it back, so you kind of risk it kind of things". Kind of like the 3 times option, if you pay for 3 and get pregnant the first try, you don't get any sort of refund. We both kind of balked at this. If it did work, we will have paid an extra $3500 for nothing! We finished talking and then got up to leave. When we got to the elevator, I noticed Bobby still had the magazine. He said he decided to steal it and he was kind of fired up when he said this. He's so an act of rebellion about being asked to spend even more money and being pissed at the Doc for being so down on adoption, he decided to steal their magazine. He's crazy when he's mad, I tell ya :-)

So, we get in the car and go back and forth about paying for the frozen transfer to get our 2 tries back. It was a gut wrenching decision. Could we afford to do 2 fresh cycles because even though they are part of our 3 tries, we still have to pay for meds (a couple thousand), hysterscopes 9$450 each), d & c ($6000 if my insurance won't cover them) and any number of things that pop up? At this point we have already spent double what we thought we would spend. Can I take the loss if they both don't work. If it does work, will we be upset that we spent the extra $3500 for nothing? There is a possibility that we could still hyperstim and end up doing a frozen cycle anyway. How will doing more cycles affect our time with Connor? Will we have money left over to adopt? When do we say when? When do we draw the line?

Finally at the end of the day, we decided to NOT pay the $3500. We went into this thinking we would have 3 tries. That was our plan and we're stickin to it! If they don't work, we will adopt and maybe in a year or two try to do a frozen transfer. Yes, maybe we don't get the 3 fresh tries. But we have one more chance in June. And we have to believe that it will work, and if it doesn't maybe I am not meant to be pregnant. But I know I am meant to be a mom, I love being a mom...but I also know that there are many ways to make a family and maybe we are trying to force a way that isn't meant to be. We could go on and on with IVF...the doc could say give me one more try, ok, now just one more some point we have to lay our cards down and walk away from the table. At this point we can still do that without losing all of our money - if we keep doing IVF we'll sink ourselves into so much debt that we'll never be able to add to our family. It's just so easy to think that "this next time will be the time it will work", that you can easily lose sight of what is important. And for us that is adding to our family.

So, once we made the decision to stick to our plan and finish IVF with this June series, I felt peace . But I also felt a little sadness. One more try at getting pregnant and then I need to let it go. One more try and then I need to get back to the place I had finally managed to get to the first time we stopped infertility treatments. One more try - maybe we'll finally get it right, or maybe we'll be starting a new path (and a new blog) towards adoption.

I will be blogging during this third try, and it looks like things will start up here in about a week. If your still interested keep reading. If you have comments about our decision, I welcome them - even if they are comments of disagreement. I will post again soon. Third try, here we come!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Maybe going solo

Ok everyone...I only have 6 days until we meet with the Dr. to have our follow-up appointment. I'm now not sure if Bobby will be able to go with me. He said it depends on work, and that he'll know the night before. Great. Just what I have to go and hear what the Doc suspects is wrong, by myself. AND to try to remember it to relay it to Bobby when I get home. The reason this frustrates me is that it is nice to double team this appointment. When I am processing info, Bobby always chimes in with great questions and vice versa. Now, I may have to process and chime - are these two tasks that I'm capable of? Who will I obsess about every word the doc said with on the drive home? These are seriously things that I worry about.

I also found a little glitch in my "series this summer" plan. I am not sure if my insurance will cover another D & C this year (or rather, so closely to the last one I had). If they won't, then I may have to wait till 2010, because the surgery costs right around $6000. My insurance covered it the first time, but I just don't know - damn those insurance companies that don't feel the need to cover infertility. I say Boo to them!

Ok, ok.....I am probably just freaking out about nothing, but I have little to occupy my mind when it comes to the future IVF so I think while I wait to hear from the Doc I have started creating drastic scenarios. It's really not a pretty side of me.

Alright, short blog I know - sorry I can't entertain today.

Till next time.....

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Back to a normal life

I'm just posting because, frankly, I haven't posted in awhile and I kind of miss it. Things have been going really well lately. I am done with good old aunt flo for the month, and am feeling energetic and hopeful for the future.

Last Saturday Bobby decided I needed a little post IVF pampering, so he took me out to dinner and then home, where he arranged for Connor to go to Grandma's, he poured me a lovely glass of wine, and ran me a wonderful bath filled with rose petals, surrounded by roses and candles, and then he left me alone to soak in silence...ahhhhhhh! To quote the commercial, "the hubs....he's good". I was thrilled and ohhh so relaxed afterwards. I could get used to this kind of pampering :-)

My appointment with the Doc is in 2 weeks. Yay! I have a ton of questions, some of them supplied by you wonderful people - so thanks for those. They mostly include asking about assisted hatching, my uterine lining and other such wonderful topics. I feel like I am armed with great information to ask the doc, and hope that he can supply equally great answers.

But the other fabulous thing is our name has already been passed along to 2 pregnant people thinking about adoption...they are both long shots and I don't really expect either to work out - but the amazing thing is that I have such wonderful people in my life. When I said please put the word out, I was pleasantly surprised and touched at how soon people started "looking" for a possible addition to our family. It makes my heart swell to know that we are surrounded by so much love and I hope you all will continue to think of us if you hear of someone that wants to pursue an adoption plan.

That's about all that's been happening on the home front - I can say that through all this crazy IVF hullabaloo we managed to potty train Connor (with the exception of overnight) and transition him into a big boy bed. I feel proud of these accomplishments considering we were both working full time, and dealing with all this infertility stuff.

Oh, and I forgot to mention...I told you before that we were thinking about doing the June series, and we still are as of now. However, my job situation is iffy...if any of you have heard, WSU is taking a 29% cut and will be laying of at least 500 people - Yikes. This is good and bad. The good is: because of my position they have to give me 6 months notice or pay me 6 months severance - this means I might just decide to stay home full time (if we can get health insurance through our Construction company). The bad news is we might not be able to get health insurance very cheaply, plus the loss of income might interfere with future family plans. And the Iffy news is: we won't find out if I still have my job until sometime between June 1 and July 1. Which coincidentally falls right in the middle of the June IVF series. See my dilemma? I wonder if I want to add that stress? I guess we'll have to see what the doc says and then see what things look like at WSU in a month or so.

Ok, I always say I won't blog until my appointment, but let's be honest....I can't stay away. So I'll probably blog again soon.