The new plan.

First off, an update since my last post.

My last cycle came to an official end on Dec 31. I took this as a symbol of a fresh start with the new year – see you never fucking again 2016!! Hello 2017!

 I could feel the hormones wear off as the days passed and I got back to the gym a little bit which has helped incredibly with my mental health. That last cycle was a real bitch. I was most affected by side effects from the medication; from feeling the mood swings from hormones to having the skin on my neck blister and peel from the Viagra. It was awful but it’s what we do when we want something oh so much!

So finally, two weeks after starting birth control I made the call to our RE to find out the next step for us to take. As much as I had wanted to know our plan earlier, I needed time. Time to get my hormones levelled out, to get my head straight and to just chill the fuck out. I hadn’t even cried since finding out that our pregnancy was a chemical pregnancy and that it was ending again, I had shoved it all so deep down that although the emotions always seemed to feel right at the surface, they seemed to stay buried.

That changed the day I called the clinic. I had left a message for the receptionist to let her know that we had an early loss (my monitoring is completed at a different clinic in an entirely different city) and I was calling with regards to getting a plan in place for moving forward. She called back the next day looking for clarification and informed me that the last beta she had on my file was only 9 so it wasn’t a chemical nor was it an early miscarriage as 9 is technically a negative result. She went on to say that for it to be a chemical pregnancy, my beta would have needed to have at least gotten into the double digits. I quickly explained to her that my earlier betas HAD gotten into the double digits and that my beta of 9 was the final bloodwork I had completed before stopping meds.

You want to know how she replied? (you really don’t as I know anyone reading this blog is going to find this as awful of a response as I did)

“…Bummer.”

No joke.

She proceeded to ask if I wanted an appointment with the RE or if I just wanted him to write up another protocol and send it over. I quickly tried to ask for an appointment and say goodbye before hanging up as I could barely keep it together. I bawled – a big, heaving, ugly, sobbing cry. My phone immediately starting ringing again and I saw that she was calling back but there was no way I could answer so I let it go to voicemail. Then she called again, right after. I thought maybe she had realized what she had done and was calling to apologize. I listened to the voicemail and it said that she had just gotten a call after we hung up (it must have been her very next call because she was calling me back within 2 minutes) with a cancellation for 930am the next day and was wondering if I could make it as it is in the city 2 hours away. I immediately contacted my boss to take the day off and called her back to take the appointment.

I worked until midnight that night and was rather tired from my big sobfest but was up at 5am the next day to catch the bus, which took me to the train, which got me to the subway system that took me two blocks from the clinic. I made it a half hour early and waited in the waiting room with a number of other patients. I usually have no problem driving to the clinic; however, we had a solid 24+ hours of freezing rain and didn’t want to get my car into an accident on the busy highways.

My RE came out to the waiting room to get me himself and sat with me for over half an hour as we discussed our next plan. He’s amazing and every time I see him, I’m reminded of that. My RE cares about me and that alone means the world to me. He even told me that he wants to get me pregnant because he wants me to get him out of my life as soon as possible. He also told me that I’m a tough project for him – which is par for any kind of medical issues that I’ve had and I always hear this from Doctors; I kind of find it entertaining now, especially since I know he’s working super hard to finish this project. Between the afternoon that I got the last minute cancellation to the next morning at 0930am, my RE had met with the head Embryologist and his team to come up with a new plan for me and get new ideas.

He is still trying to avoid using Neupogen in my cycles so the plan we have moving forward is this:

  • They will be trying to mimic a natural cycle (which I have never had)
  • As I am on BC now, I will continue to take it for the usual 21 days and stop and have a bleed
  • I will call in my CD1
  • On CD3 I will start Menopur 75 units for 11 days (dose may be adjusted based on FSH levels)
  • Somewhere between CD3 – CD6 I will have an Endometrial Scratch done
  • After 11 days on Menopur, he will jack up the dose to 300 units for 3 days
  • I will then take 10,000 units of HCG
  • Three days later I will start on 50mg (1cc) of PIO shots
  • On day four of PIO, I will have another Matris Ultrasound to check the receptivity of my endometrial lining
  • On day four, I will also start 5 days of Medrol (corticosteroid)
  • If my Matris score is between 6-10, on day six of the PIO shots I will have the transfer

I have been fully warned that this may not work as there is no way to know how my endometrial lining will respond to these medications. He was worried that perhaps the Viagra is only creating a cosmetic effect for my lining; therefore, although it is getting thick enough the quality might be suffering. I had suggested the scratch, which he was supportive of, as well as Prednisolone but he was hesitant to us it. He has prescribed a different corticosteroid, Medrol, for the days surrounding the transfer.

Fingers crossed for this upcoming cycle. Let’s hope we’ve found the right steps to make it a successful one!

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FET Cycle #1

So I started this post nearly two weeks ago, as a significant amount of time has passed, it will be a long one that will cover the entire period of time…

So I’m just over a week past CD1 of our first ever FET. I called the clinic last Thursday to call in my CD1 and to let them know I had gotten my period on the previous evening. I was scheduled for a baseline ultrasound and bloods the following morning – thankfully, my day off. At the clinic, the nurse informed me that my lining was currently at 5mm! I see this as being good as last time it was only three. Once I got home; however, I started thinking that since I was still bleeding heavily, it’s most likely that the measurement will go down before my lining starts to build up again.

The nurse called me that afternoon to instruct me to start my medication the next morning. I am to take Viagra 4x/day (vaginally) to help with blood flow to the uterus. I am also wearing an Estrogen patch, 100mg that I replace every 2 days. I am also taking the low dose Aspirin 81mg daily, along with the pre-natal vitamins, Vitamin E and Vitamin B Complex.

I started attending acupuncture appointments again and my acupuncturist has been extremely supportive and caring. She has me going in every 3 days or so and is doing what she can to help blood flow to my uterus in hopes that it will be more responsive this time. She has also been trying to reduce some of the side effects I have been having from the Viagra. Oh my – the nausea has been pretty consistent, along with the headaches and random bouts of becoming very flush.

I had a nine days before my next lining check and it measured at 6.6mm. Again, they called me a few hours after the ultrasound to tell me to continue taking all of the same meds as my Doctor wants my lining to be thicker. I was still struggling with the Viagra side effects pretty badly so I was frustrated that they were extending that one longer than expected. I was asked to return two days later for my next lining check.

I drove the 50 minutes to my monitoring clinic at 6am so that I could return back to work for 8. While I was getting the trans-vaginal ultrasound, the nurse told me that she had two measurements coming in over 7mm, and one measurement even thicker than that. I shed a few tears as I had prepared myself for bad news but hadn’t expected to hear something positive! Unfortunately, she had the other ultrasound tech come in to double check and I could tell something was amiss. She left the room and after I changed, I walked out and found three of them conferring with one another. The first nurse came to me and told me that it seems my lining was only measuring closer to 6mm. I left stunned and headed to work. They then directed me to add Estrace tablets 3x/day and stop taking the Viagra.

Another four days pass before my next check but the nurse had that morning told me my lining was again measuring above 7. I explained what had happened at my previous appointment but she assured me that all of her measurements were coming in thick enough. Afterwards, the called to tell me to start taking my Progesterone in Oil shots (25mg/day) for three days. I was then to increase the POI dose to 50mg and begin taking Endometrine vaginal suppositories 2x/day.

So that was last Saturday. I have been taking all of my meds & vitamins, eating healthy, going to acupuncture, using a heating pad and getting light exercise. I am now sitting here the night before transfer, hoping that tomorrow morning – after driving two hours to the clinic in the city – my lining will actually be thick enough and of good enough quality to follow through with our scheduled transfer. I hope that tomorrow night, I start my two week wait and can be considered PUPO (pregnant until proven otherwise). Fingers crossed….. I’ll let you know.

Wish me luck xo

The Month of August (give or take a little) 

Before my last (cancelled) fresh cycle, I had made a conscious decision to schedule plans for the remainder of summer; some that I wouldn’t have been able to follow through with had our cycle been successful. With that, I can’t say enough how amazing the last month was for me. I took a forced break from infertility treatments so I decided to follow through with all of my scheduled plans to the fullest – I ate delicious food, drank yummy drinks and focused on me for a little bit.

In Canada, the last weekend of July/ first weekend in August is a long weekend. My husband had to work so I took the weekend to just relax with my puppy. Sometimes, all I need is a little down time to help me re-center.


The first full  weekend of the month, we had a girls day at my friend’s house, poolside.

 We indulged in strong drinks, great food and some awesome adult games.By the end of the night I was convinced that if I walked home (across town) I would have a much clearer head. My loving husband showed up and drove me home after I had walked approx.15 minutes – and was barely any closer to my destination! Thank goodness he knows me well – haha. The next day, we finished off the weekend by having a staff get-together at a co-worker’s house which was lovely. I chose not to have anything to drink as I still wasn’t feeling great from the night before but enjoyed a delicious potluck dinner.

The second weekend in August, my girlfriends and I attended Foam Fest, a 5Km fun run at Wasaga Beach. After an extremely hot and dry summer, it was the first weekend of rain we had. The run was rain or shine so we woke up early that morning and drove the 3 hours to the run location for our 10:30am start time. The run was fun and we then checked in to our super sketchy motel to have a fun night. We had planned to spend the day on the beach but due to the ongoing rain, we only managed about an hour of sand time. We ended up just having drinks in our room and catching up on each other’s lives – for the most part – though I didn’t share about my fertility journey as not everyone is in the loop.


The third weekend in August was spent camping with my husband and our puppy. It was an amazing weekend away. We stayed at a Provincial camp ground and our site was fairly isolated from anyone else. We went for late night walks under the stars; and on the second night, we were able to listen to the final Tragically Hip concert that was being broadcasted from a number of different campsites. The weekend was hot and dry until we woke up to rain on our last day. We packed up our tent in the pouring rain and headed home before breakfast.



The fourth weekend, I travelled to 6 hours to Montreal for my sister’s bachelorette party. We spent two nights in a gorgeous condo (Airbnb), enjoyed champagne, had some delicious food at amazing restaurants, went dancing, and toured around Old Montreal. It was wonderful; unfortunately, the drive was very long and due to having limited sleep, I had to pull over on the side of the road for a twenty minute nap. All in all it was a great weekend with a great group of girls.
Although last weekend was technically not a part of August, it’s still worth adding to the list My husband and I, along with his family and another close family that he grew up with, stayed at an island cottage in the 1000 Islands, about 2.5 hours away from where we live. It was an amazing long weekend. It’s was so relaxing and I couldn’t have thought of a better way to wrap up such an amazing month/summer.


Now I sit here patiently awaiting CD1 to arrive (literally could be any second now…) as we jump right back into our first FET cycle. I’m trying to keep some of my positivity from the last month going although some of the anxiety is starting to creep back in a little. But I’m ready to finally be moving forward again after our wait. Fingers crossed my lining will co-operate and we will be able to go through with transfer this time!

I’ve become a lot more quiet… 

Sometimes,  when my anxiety is sitting a little more in the forefront and my thoughts often flit to all things infertility, I find it so much more difficult to have the energy I need to give to other areas of my life. It can feel all consuming.  I believe I have previously mentioned that I work in a youth detention/custody – a place that requires a lot of emotional energy and personal effort to make a shift run smoothly – and some days I struggle to find that in me. I wish this wasn’t the case but there are days, more so than not lately,  that I just don’t want to go into work because I don’t have the energy I know it requires. 

Sometimes,  it presents itself in my struggle to tolerate other people’s negative dispositions,  moods or attitudes. I want to scream at some people that I really care for because I try my damnedest to have a good attitude despite everything on my mind and in my heart – yet they’re sitting there complaining about everything and having such a negative attitude about life and it’s absolutely draining. 

Yesterday I had a number of people approach me (who know me well and are aware of our situation)  to see if everything was ok as I was being particularly quiet (I withdraw when overwhelmed/upset/anxious/etc.) but I found that I didn’t feel like sharing that I was just having a rough day because of infertility. Period. Nothing particular had gone wrong,  we’re not currently in a cycle or anything but people just don’t get how emotionally draining infertility is and sometimes I find it pointless and exhausting trying to explain something to them that they’ll never understand. I don’t share all of my infertility/ivf thoughts with my husband,  family or friends because I hate the thought of that being the only thing they think I can focus on, or dominating all conversations. I choose the things to share with my husband because I want our relationship to be about so much more than infertility and IVF – plus,  I don’t want to force him to think about it nearly as much as it dominates my thoughts. It’s like getting into an argument in a relationship that you cherish – you choose your battles wisely; therefore, I carefully decide which discussions/thoughts are more important. Also, if anyone who isn’t struggling with infertility even had an idea of the thoughts and how all consuming they are, I’m pretty sure they would think I’ve gone off the deep end. 

When it comes down to it though, it’s exhausting. These feelings and thoughts are exhausting; especially for someone who withdraws when overwhelmed with thoughts and feelings.  Having the support of my husband, friends and family is wonderful but some days I wish we hadn’t told anyone because it would be less exhausting to fake my way through a smile when I’m struggling. It’s a win/lose situation really and there’s really no way around it.  

I certainly don’t want to make everyone think that I am unable to think of anything else – that’s not the case. When I’m participating in am activity, out with friends or involved in something particular, I’m usually all there. I can get away mentally from it all for certain periods of time, it’s the quiet times or the triggers that send my thoughts back to all things infertility…

My infuriating body

I wrote the following last Wednesday, Aug 3. I wasn’t sure if I would share it until last night when the saga continued ….

Some days I hate my body. There are times when I don’t want to get out of bed in the morning because of how I feel about my body. There are days when I could cry myself to sleep because of this body of mine…. And I feel helpless to change sometimes.

It might not be what most people are assuming right now. Yes, physically, I could stand to lose 5 pounds… or 20. Yes, I wish clothes fit me differently or that I was a few inches shorter or my hair was a little less flat…but that’s not at all what has such a profound effect on me. I’m talking about my body’s inability to do what it was designed to do. I resigned myself to need donor eggs because I was born with bum ovaries; however, I was told that with everything else going for me, we might be looking at a 70+%success rate with ivf and donor eggs. Now it’s been discovered I have an unresponsive lining. It stays real thin and they’re not entirely sure what to do for me.

In addition to all of this, I don’t get a natural period – only bleeding when I take a break from birth control hormones… Or that’s how it’s supposed to be. Today I started spotting for the second time in a week.

This might not seem like anything big but when I can’t seem to rely on my body to act normal even with meds coursing through my system, how the hell am I ever going to be able to trust my body when it counts.

Unfortunately it’s hitting me that I can’t. I have no trust in my body to do what it is supposed to do, to react how it’s supposed to react.

We all know that person who “if something could go wrong – it will” for them… Well, unfortunately that’s me. I’m that person that everyone knows. I’m tired of it and sometimes it just hits me at a low point and it’s hard to deal with. Today is one of those days.

Once I’m done my next cycle, I am cleared to go forward with an FET. For most people, that would mean a 4-5ish week wait…. Who knows what my body will surprise me with this time or how long I’ll actually end up waiting.

 

Written today Thursday, Aug. 11…

Well I ended up stopping my birth control and getting my period. It lasted from Wednesday to Tuesday which is NOT normal for me. Then, last night I started bleeding yet again; yet nothing so far this morning. WTF body?! Staaaaaaahp itttt!

What Polyp?!

I went in for my polyp removal procedure just less than two weeks ago. I took my meds as prescribed leading up to the procedure, didn’t drink fluids or eat for 12.5 hours leading up to my appointment. (The direction was to not eat for 8 hours and not drink for 6; however, due to the timing of my appointment, it ended up being longer as it was already past those timeframes when I woke up in the morning.) My wonderful father drove me into the city for the procedure as my husband was working and I was not allowed to drive after it was completed. I arrived a half hour early as requested and they got me all set up.

The nurse completed all of the pre-removal prep and had me undress my lower half, then sat me in the stirrups. Then I waited – for what felt like an eternity. What a classy way to sit around waiting for someone, lol. I tried to distract myself by listening to the monotonous beeping of the heart rate machine.

Finally, the nurse returned with the Doctor and they started my IV; pumping me full of conscious sedation. I was quite loopy. The procedure itself actually wasn’t too bad, just a little uncomfortable and a few painful twinges. Once he was done, the Doctor informed me that there was no polyp. WHAT?! I had been afraid of this. I sat there in stunned silence, trying to focus my thoughts; however, the meds were making that task rather difficult.

Afterwards, I was brought into recovery for an hour and a half while they replenished my fluids and my loopiness started to subside. When the doctor returned to release me, I asked him about the results. He reiterated that there was no polyp in my uterus and was unable to tell me what two separate Ultrasound Technicians had been seeing. To reassure me, the Doctor brought up the photos of the inside of my uterus and told me to take pictures of the screen to bring to my RE during my follow up.

I was given a prescription for antibiotics and released. The two hour drive home was torture…. I became nauseous about 15 minutes into the drive – right around the time that we were getting onto a major highway that we continued to travel for the next hour and fifteen minutes. Within minutes of getting off the highway, we were able to pull over so I could throw up….Then the pain started. I hadn’t been given the usual pain killer that they prescribe as I am allergic; initially, I had thought that it really hadn’t hurt that bad and I’d be fine. For a few hours I had some pretty severe pain in my uterus. Once I got home, I laid on the couch and used a heating pad to ease the pain until it subsided. I continued to throw up ever half hour until the evening and my husband brought me some deliciously awful fast food to help calm my stomach as it hadn’t been given any food for nearly 19 hours. The next day I felt much better with only some mild cramping.

I waited until the following Monday to follow up with my clinic but work got crazy for a few days and I wasn’t able to call until the Wednesday of last week. I left a message on the answering machine, which informed me that I would receive a return call within 24-48 hours…unfortunately, they are closed Fridays and today is a holiday Monday here. I am hoping to get a call back tomorrow to see if we can proceed with an FET.

I had a bit of. a scare this weekend though – I am still taking BC for the hormone replacement (due to having ovaries that don’t function properly) and for some reason started to bleed. I panicked as I have not yet been given the green light for our FET cycle and couldn’t call the clinic to ask what to do. The last thing I wanted to do was miss this cycle and have to wait another month, since we just waited a month to complete the polyp removal for no polyp. I called in my day 1 just in case – leaving another message on another answering machine. It turns out though that I believe I was just spotting and everything seems to be ok. I did get a call back today from the Day 1 coordinator and she instructed me to follow up with my RE tomorrow when the holiday is over and if it turns out to be more than spotting, we can still move forward on Day 4…so for now I am calmed.

…for now.ed4ae491673209f958560e59083e92fc

Polyp Removal

T minus 2 days until I go in for my polyp removal. I had my consultation appointment last week and was able to book the removal for exactly a week later as I told them I wanted to move forward with an FET as quickly as possible!

The Doctor did a external and internal exam, a trans vaginal ultrasound, a culture and a pap….lucky me.

They explained the procedure to me and what will happen and then gave me my medications that I am to take on the day of the procedure. On med I take vaginally 4 hours before my appointment to help soften the cervix. The other ‘3’ I was to take orally one hour before my appointment to help with pain, infection prevention, etc.; however, due to my Codeine allergy, he was not able to give me the oral pain medication to take – so now I get nothing for that. I’m a little nervous about how much this might hurt. I will be placed under conscious sedation at least, but I’ll be awake for the whole thing.

I also have to fast for 8 hours before my 1pm appointment so I will be SO SO hungry and thirsty. I’m hoping we can at least start moving forward with an FET shortly after this so fingers crossed we get the go ahead!!!