Friday, October 29, 2010

beta #1

Is 310!!! Holy shit, that is more than twice what I was hoping for.  According to beta base, 137 is the average HCG level for 15dpo.  Now I realize my levels are probably a little higher because fertilization occurred the day I'm counting as O day, but not that much higher.  I am so happy that it is that high!  I go back in on Monday.  Fingers crossed for doubling!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

9dpt...HCG levels are now high enough to be immediately detected on HPT.

And so they are:

Actually, this test is from yesterday.  As you can see by all the posts that just magically appeared, I've been getting positives since Monday.  I just wanted to be sure it was real before going public.

And to celebrate, I carved a pumpkin in honor of my BFP.  I plan on telling my parents by showing them this picture,  I'm not sure they'll get it right away, but I think it is a cute idea.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


8dpt...More HCG is produced as fetus develops.

I took another FRER this morning and I was pleased to see it was darker than Monday's FRER.  The cheapies sort of look like they are getting darker, but it is hard to tell because...well, they're cheap.
I saw my accupuncturist today.  I told her about the positive tests and her response was "well, be could still be just chemical at this point".  WTF lady?  My first one was chemical and you knew that, you don't think I don't realize that?  First the RE receptionist and now her.  I'm trying to stay positive here.  Why is it that everyone acts like it is not real???

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


7dpt...More HCG is produced as fetus develops

It has been less than 24 hrs and its already killing me trying to keep this a secret.  Part of me wants to shout it from the rooftops, the other half is terrified that the stupid nurse might be right.  I called this morning to see if I could move my beta, and she said friday was the earliest they'd do it "because the medication could still be in your system".  I tested out the trigger, yes, I used the cheapies but it was blank on transfer day and I've had almost non-visible evap lines since then.  I don't think the level of trigger shot can vary day to day.  Today is 14 days past the trigger shot, I am almost positive this is real, but that little seed of doubt is keeping me from officially announcing.   I'm hoping I can hold it in until Thursday..that is when my little timeline says HCG is high enough to be detected on an HPT, and I know you all will want answers once I post that.

Monday, October 25, 2010


This is a secret post for now.  But after a very long emotional day, I tested again when I got home.  You know, just to see.   The first cheapie had a faiint 2nd line come in within time window but it wasn't dark enough to be sure, I've had evaps/false alarms that dark.  So I used a second cheapie...also a second line.  I still was not convinced enough to break out the FRER, but there was no way I was going to be able to wait and see tomorrow morning, so I used my last clearblue test.  At first it looked liked all the others, nothing but that stupid blue evap line...but after a few seconds it looked a little darker.  After a minute or so it was definately darker than an evap line.  So I used the FRER.  I got a faint second line.   All that freaking out was for nothing.  I even got a positive digital.

The line on the FRER is hard to see but it is there.  I wish I could say I felt the same excitement as the first time I saw the word pregnant pop up on a digital, instead it was more of a satisfied feeling if that makes any sense.  We've made it this far, now on to the next hurdles.


6dpt...Placenta cells begin to secret HCG in the blood

All the stress and worry that I managed to not have too much of during this cycle has finally caught up with me.  I actually cried at work this morning.  Last week I added/changed some stuff on our website and it took me all freaking morning because people kept changing their minds about what should/shouldn't be on the main page.  So when boss came to me and said I had to change it again, the frustration was just too much and I ended up in tears.  I've been testing with crappy internet cheapies and other than an evap line or two, they have been negative.  So I was feeling depressed before I even left for work, and R said I need to stop reading the support boards because it doesn't help.  I told they do help, and then as I walked downstairs as said "you don't help".  Which, in the 2ww, is true.  He is wonderfully supportive at all other times, but for some reason he thinks I should have undying faith that everything is fine during each 2ww.  I try, but it usually only lasts until about 11dpo, when I start being realistic instead.  He came downstairs and we talked a bit before work, and he said I shouldn't get so worked up and that we still have a week until our beta and me stressing isn't going to help.  Of course I know that, but it doesn't make it much easier.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


5dpt.. Morula is completely implanted in the lining and has placenta cells & fetal cells

I don't really feel any different at all.  I've had some random cramping, but nothing I wouldn't normally have.  I suppose I shouldn't feel anything until we've reached the point where the embryo starts producing HCG, but I can't help beginning to lose a little hope.  Of course I made the mistake of lurking on one of the success after infertility boards, and there are women on there that got their BFP as early as 4dpt.   I realize that is not the norm, but my embryo was already hatching, shouldn't mine be ahead of the curve too?

Friday, October 22, 2010


3dpt.. Implantation begins, as the blastocyst begins to bury in the lining

So I haven't been sleeping so great, and I have a feeling it will just get worse.  I was unsure whether I should blog this, because it might be a bit TMI, but at the same time it is also funny, so I'm going for it.  After our transfer we were handed an instruction sheet with directions for bedrest.  The final two lines read:

No sexual intercourse and NOTHING in the vagina.  This also means NO ORGASM.

Now, when you are staring at a ceiling for 45 minutes, holding this paper with nothing else to do, the word vagina alone becomes hilarious enough.  The fact that the paper is telling me what I can and cannot put in my vagina is even funnier.  My bladder was not happy.

Anyway, I didn't think a whole lot about the instructions as they were pretty easy to follow.  Well, I forgot what happens when my body is amped up on hormones (self-made or injected/taken).  I should add here that I often wake up in the middle of a dream, then go back to sleep and continue with the same dream.  Wednesday night I woke up in the middle of a sex dream, started to fall back asleep, jolted myself awake and though "oh, shit! I can't have this dream!"  Yeah...never occurred to me that I might break the rules while sleeping.  Last night I managed to have dreams (nightmares?) about having sex dreams.  That was even more confusing...waking up from a dream while still dreaming.  And of course I dreamed that I couldn't wake up, woke up spotting and lost the embryo.  WTF

Thursday, October 21, 2010

We have snowbabies!!!

The embryologist called right before lunch and told me we had 7 make it to freeze!!  I am so thrilled.  All along R and I told ourselves that we'd be really happy if we had 7 left....and we do!   They froze 2 on the day of transfer, 2 yesterday, and 3 today.  It is a huge relief knowing that if our little embie doesn't take, I don't have to go through a whole new cycle anytime soon.

2 days past transfer (dpt).

This is a timeline for what happens during/after a 3 day and a 5 day transfer.

this is what happens in a 3dt :
1dpt ..embryo is growing and developing
2dpt... Embryo is now a blastocyst
3dpt....Blastocyst hatches out of shell on this day
4dpt.. Blastocyst attaches to a site on the uterine lining
5dpt.. Implantation begins as the blastocyst begins to bury in the lining
6dpt.. Implantation process continues and morula buries deeper in the lining
7dpt.. Morula is completely implanted in the lining and has placenta cells & fetal cells
8dpt...Placenta cells begin to secret HCG in the blood
9dpt...More HCG is produced as fetus develops
10dpt...More HCG is produced as fetus develops
11dpt...HCG levels are now high enough to be immediately detected on HPT

5 day transfer:
- 1dpt ..embryo is growing and developing
0dpt... Embryo is now a blastocyst
1dpt....Blastocyst hatches out of shell on this day
2dpt.. Blastocyst attaches to a site on the uterine lining
3dpt.. Implantation begins,as the blastocyst begins to bury in the lining
4dpt.. Implantation process continues and morula buries deeper in the lining
5dpt.. Morula is completely implanted in the lining and has placenta cells & fetal cells
6dpt...Placenta cells begin to secret HCG in the blood
7dpt...More HCG is produced as fetus develops
8dpt...More HCG is produced as fetus develops
9dpt...HCG levels are now high enough to be immediately detected on HPT

So today hopefully my little blast is attaching to my lining.  Some time latter today I should find out if we had any embryos make it to freeze.  Fingers crossed!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

full transfer story

So here is the longer version of yesterday.  I woke up early in anticipation of our final fertility report.  The first time they called at 8:30 and the second time was around 9:30 so I expected the call to be somewhere in there.  They still hadn't called by the time I left for my acupuncturist appointment at 10.  If you've seen He's Not That Into You and remember the scene where she is constantly looking at her phone even though it hasn't rung....yeah, that was me. 
I finally texted a friend I'd met through on of the message boards that had cycled at our clinic in March, because I was starting to freak out that something was wrong.  She reassured me that she didn't get her report until she went into the office for transfer, so I felt a little better.  At 11am I decided to call anyway, because I really wanted to know what we were working with before I was on the table deciding 1 vs. 2 embryos.   I talked to a lab tech and she wasn't able to tell me much of anything, only that they'd selected a few for possible transfer and were still watching others.  She couldn't even give me a total count of surviving embryos.   So I this point I go into complete meltdown mode, on the drive home from my acupuncturist mind you.  It wasn't so much just the lack of embryo detail, but I think it was the breaking point for me for everything.  I'd done so well up to this point and I was terrified of it all going to hell.  I spent the entire 30 minute drive crying/fighting tears.  I kept telling myself to toughen up and stop because if R saw me all red eyed when I walked in he'd think they all arrested on us.  Luckily he was upstairs working and I had time to re-check my paperwork, which said they'd give the final report prior to transfer, rather than specifying the morning of transfer like I had thought.  Lesson learned, re-read before freaking out.

So the transfer itself went fairly easily.   I forgot to factor in lunch still sitting in my stomach when I timed my water drinking, so it hadn't quite made it all the to my bladder when they first checked me and we had to wait an extra 10 minutes or so.   They took me back to the same creepy room they used for the retrieval, but at least this time R was with me and there was no unnerving asshat of an anesthesiologist bumbling around.

One of the other four REs did the transfer.  He came in and spoke with us briefly about our embryos and reiterated that it is the clinic's policy to only transfer one embryo.   I asked if the quality of the recommended embryo was high to give us good success rates with a single transfer...his response was that he gives all couples a 50/50 chance no matter what....gee, thanks.   I should have straight up asked him what grade it was, but since I didn't know enough about grading to help us with our decision right then we just went with his advice.

The transfer itself didn't take too long.  We were able to see the blob of fluid our embryo was get injected into my uterus.  Then they moved me over to a gurney and rolled me back to the recovery area, where I had to stay, lying down, for 45 minutes....with a full bladder.  The nurse said if I couldn't make it, to send R to the nurses station and they'd help me use a bedpan.  There was no way I was going to let that happen, so I managed to hold it, while trying not to laugh at R or anything else.  Very difficult when you have nothing to do but stare at a ceiling.   Once my time was up I got dressed and booked it down the hallway to the main bathroom, which was thankfully empty.  There was a bathroom right next to recovery, but it was primarily the collection room, complete with magazines and a TV.  This of course, was the butt of many of R's jokes as I waited to get up, since we'd never seen/used it, which, needless to say, was not something I planned on doing then.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

embryo transfer is complete!

I will post a longer version tomorrow, or just edit this post, because today was not without stress, but I am too tired now.  We transferred one embryo.  I do not know the grade, but was told it was a high enough quality that our chances were good with just one.

Our embryo:

There was one more good blast that will probably be frozen today and another 8-9 they are still watching.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Day 3 fertility report.

This morning I actually woke up from a nightmare crying.  I had a dream that the embryologist called and said only 5 embryos were still alive and they were all 1 cell and none would make it to day 5.  It took me a minute or two to wake up and realize it wasn't real, but naturally I couldn't get back to sleep knowing that the real call would be coming in a few hours.

So the real report was much better than we expected.  All 17 all still dividing and are in various stages.  I didn't ask for exact numbers, for once I'm okay without all the facts, one less thing to worry about.  My paperwork says they should be between 4 and 8 cells by now.   R asked if it was unusual for all of them to still be alive and I told him I have no idea (anyone know?).  It's not exactly something I'd ask on one of the support boards, where many would love to have a report like that, no questions asked.

I also talked to one of the REs.  Ever since the ER, I've more or less been feeling like crap.  No fever and no weight gain (a miracle I haven't figured out yet) so I didn't think it was OHSS, but something clearly wasn't right.  I've had terrible stomach and abdominal pains for almost 4 days now.  It hurts to eat and it hurts more when my bladder is full (a problem for the transfer).  The RE said it was most likely the doxycycline that I'm taking, so I should stop that and call them back if it doesn't improve or is worse by tomorrow.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Day 1 fertility report!

Are you ready???

We have......17 embryos!!!!!

R and I had both been hoping for that many, so we are very happy!  Our next report will be on Sunday and the final report will be Tuesday morning before our transfer.  We are hoping at least 7 make it to freeze.  We will wait until the final fertility report to decide how many to transfer, but assuming everything is good we will transfer one.

Also, R gave me my first PIO shot last night and it wasn't bad at all.  I lay on a heating pad for about 5 minutes beforehand and again after.  I can't even feel a lump now.  Hopefully they are all like that.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

21 eggs!!!

We are so happy with that number!

I wasn't nervous going in to the office, but once I got there and they took me back to the IVF rooms (never been back there before) I got nervous.  Of course as soon as I went back they wheeled the patient before me past, looking miserable.  Then they stuck us in this creepy rather bare room with chair, a locked medical storage cabinet, some other built supply cabinets like normal offices, and what I will call the horror movie chair.  It had the same teal cushions as all the exam tables, but it was like a sawed off dentists chair with foot stir-ups..  And nothing around it but a small light.  I can only assume that is the transfer room.

So the nurse moved me to another area to check my vitals and get me changed.  I briefly met with my RE, which made me feel better because I didn't know which RE would be doing the retrieval, but she has been in there several times before so I was more comfortable knowing it would be her.  I also met the anesthesiologist, whom I told about my very high tolerance for all pain meds and anesthesia (can you see where this is going?) Then they take me to another room, which was also semi-creepy because it did not look like any surgical procedure type room I've ever been.  Oh, and there was a big sign outside the heavy door that said "Procedure Room"  how vague and ominous is that?   So at the far end of this room is the table, with braces for my legs.   I get up on and lay down and the anesthesiologist starts trying to get the IV in.

You may remember that both my hands have bruises from failed b/w attempts.  The larger of these is on my left hand, which is, of course, where he started.  It was extremely painful when he put the needle in, and I was gripping the nurses hand and staring at the ceiling trying not to burst into tears (partly from the pain and partly because of nerves).  Finally it felt better...I glanced down at my hand IV!  Instead there is bloody gauze pad taped to my hand and the anesthesiologist is muttering and moving around to my right side.  So I had to go through that painful crap again.  He did have success with my right hand and everyone said I'd be getting a nice "cocktail" soon and wouldn't feel a thing.  Um, wrong.

My RE walked in shortly after the IV was in place, took one look at my hands and sympathetically said "you called it" (I had expressed concern to her earlier about that).  She also said I'd be feeling fine in no time.  She had told me earlier that I'd probably feel some of the beginning stuff such as the fluid for the abdominal ultrasound, so I didn't think too much of it when I could feel the speculum go in.  At this point I was getting some drugs, which just made me feel more relaxed and semi-dizzy.  Shortly after the speculum was in, I began to feel sharp pinching pains, which I realized was the needle retrieving my eggs.  Mind you, my RE specifically reassured me that I'd be semi-awake but feel NO PAIN.  Yeah, it wasn't jump off the table awful, but it felt like being stuck with a bloodwork needle on the inside.  When I said (or perhaps mumbled something incoherent) that I could feel the needle, my RE said "we are almost done".  After that they must have upped my meds, because I do not remember being wheeled out into the recovery area.

Afterword I was just really tired and dizzy.  I wasn't in a whole lot of pain, but I felt pretty bloated.  Right now it just feels like horrible intestinal pains, which, in all honestly, is actually what some of it is.

Tomorrow we will get our first fertility report!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Trigger wasn't that bad

At 8:40 last night I started mixing everything up.  The Novarel powder took longer to dissolve than the Bravelle did. Gentle twisting on a flat surface did not do the trick, I ended up having the raise the vial to the light and turn gently side to side to get the last of the powder off the bottom.  R did the injection.  I stood in our kitchen leaning slightly against a bar stool and we counted to 3.  On 3 the needle was in and I thought, oh that wasn't bad at all.  After the injection it did get a little sore, and it turns out R forgot to check for blood before injecting, so that could be why.  It feels like a mild bruise below the injection site today but it really isn't as bad as I expected.  I imagine that once I have a whole bunch of PIO injections it will be worse, but I am very relieved the needle didn't hurt.

Less than 24 hrs until egg retrieval!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Triggering tonight!!

I had follie check #7 today.  I have 9 follies on the right and at least 10 on the left.  My E2 was 2400 so I am triggering tonight at 8:45pm and we will be back in the office Thursday morning for our egg retrieval!!  I am so excited to be moving to the next step!

Monday, October 11, 2010

almost there, check #6

I was with one of the nurses I really like this morning, so I told her the mixed responses I had over the weekend and she said she'd see if she could really give a better idea of where we are.  My lining looks good, I didn't see the number, but I could see it looked better on the screen.  My left ovary looks huge, I'm still amazed I feel mostly okay.  The biggest follie was 17x20, and the right ovary had a 17 too.  Of course it will depend on my b/w results, but the nurse said I'd trigger Wednesday at the very latest, most likely tomorrow and a very slight chance of tonight if my E2 has shot up too high.  I did ask about how many follicles looked mature enough to get an egg, and she said today there would be between 15-20.  I have 12 on the left and 9 on the right.  I'd guess all 9 on the right will be mature enough, and 2 or 3 on the left that won't make the cut off by tomorrow.

I have learned the hard way that diet really matters during stims.  I figured it would, so I've basically stuck to Phase 1 & 2 of the South Beach diet so far (mostly phase 1).  This past weekend I had a 30th birthday party, a baby shower and then ended up getting stuck going out to eat while shopping with a friend.  I've gained 4lbs of bloat since yesterday morning, so I will not be eating french fries again any time soon.

My E2 is up to 2072, keeping my meds the same and going back in tomorrow.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

"not quite there" check #5

Today was a little better u/s wise.  It was the same RE but she measured my lining in a different spot today at 8.2, so at least somewhere in there it is thicker.   She said everything was growing, but I was not quite there.   Unluckily, when the nurse called back, not quite there means several more days.  My E2 is up to 1434.   I am feeling pretty good, but I do not know how I'll make it through 3+ more days of bloodwork.  Yesterday the tech stuck me in my left arm and lost the vein, so she had to poke around a find it again.  It was still bleeding when I tried to take the gauze off 3 hours later.  So today she tried the right arm today and couldn't get the vein at all.  Then she stuck my left hand (remember the right hand still has a bruise from a blown vein on Wed) and I swear she hit the bone.  I started tearing up and almost full out crying in the chair.  She had to get another tech to come look and they finally got blood from the same vein as yesterday.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

4th follie check

Today was my 4th follie check and I saw one of the 4 REs (usually it is a nurse). This one is known for being blunt, so I guess I got a reality check of sorts. She measured my lining which was only 6.2 and that was fine because I was probably still early. So I guess that 7.3 was just a fluke.  I feel like we are no better off than before now.  Then she looked at my right ovary and asked if this was my first time back for monitoring!! It sounded like she didn't think I'd even made a weeks worth of monitoring progress.   There was a huge back up in the office today, about 13 people were waiting when we got there.  Needless to say, she didn't bother to count the follies, only agreed with prior numbers.   I could see that the Ganirelix had kept the biggest one at 15, so hopefully we won't lose that one because it is too big after trigger  . I am so depressed about my lining though, it is no thicker than it was for my IUIs and I've heard "it will thicken up later on" too many times to believe anymore. So it looks like I have several more days of stims, maybe more.  I did ask if Wednesday was the earliest I would trigger and she said probably.

My E2 is up to 1102, so we are slowly getting there.  I go back in tomorrow.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Follie check #3

After 8 days of stims, I have about 7 follicles on the right and 10-12 on the left.  I had some 10s, a few 12s, a 13 and the biggest at 15.   I doubt I'll get to be average and only stim for 10 days.  Boo.   The nurse I don't care for did the u/s and measured my lining at only 6.3, but I don't think that was right.  Hopefully a nurse I like better calls back with my b/w results so I can ask if they have an idea of when I might trigger.   I didn't feel like asking the nurse there.

My E2 is at 701 and I go back in tomorrow.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Started the Ganirelix

So I am now giving myself 3 (sometimes 4 when I have to switch Follistim cartridges) shots a night now.  I figure it will all be pretty much downhill from here as far as comfort level goes.  The shots themselves don't hurt much more than the Bravelle unless I hit a vein, in which case it burns immediately and I find a new spot.  I've come to realize though, that all 3 burn like bitch for 20-some minutes after, and I know at least the HCG and Follistim hurt even worse if the injection sites are close together.  So I am injecting one shot each on the left and right of my belly button, and the HCG below it, in hopes of spreading out the pain. 

General discomfort has really started too.  I don't eat much in one sitting because my belly area feels full at all times, so I only eat enough to not be hungry and I try to eat small snacks throughout the day so I'm not depriving myself of needed nutrition.  If I walk to quickly or move around too much my ovaries start whining in protest.  It sort of feels like ovulation pains, not quite as sharp, but the persistence makes it just as bad.  Remember those commercials with the talking stain?  It's kind of like that, only inside my head.  I'll be in the office trying to talk to a vendor all I get is "blah, blah blah, wish you could focus on the convo, but all you can think about is meeee!" from my ovaries.   I really, really hope I can trigger by Tuesday, because I don't know how I'll make it through another whole week of this.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

follie check #2

This will be short because it hurts to type.  The lab tech couldn't find a vein in either arm so she went with my hand.  The vein blew as soon as she stuck the needle in so now I have a big bruise that hurts like a bitch every time I move my hand.

Everything looks good, righty has about 6 follies with the biggest about 9, and lefty is the rockstar with at least 10 follies, several around 8/9 and the biggest at 10.  My lining was 7.2ish so that is also right on track.  I am starting to get a little uncomfortable now, but no bloat weight gain yet.  The nurse said I will probably start the Ganirelix tonight, so I will really start to feel things in the next few days.

Monday, October 4, 2010

First follie check!

My first of many monitoring appointments was this morning.  If you've followed my blog from the beginning, you are probably already bracing yourself for bad news, because in general, my early monitoring results tend to suck, especially my lining.  I went in prepared to find that my lining was so thin that my uterus had sealed itself shut and closed for business permanently.  Surprisingly, this time, the nurses were actually right and in 3 short days it went from 4.8 (before heavy AF) to a normal 5.8.  Lets hope that trend continues.   My right ovary didn't seem to have a whole lot going on, but I could see a few small black dots, which the nurse counted to about 5-8 follicles.  My left was doing a little better, with 8-10 follicles, the biggest 2 at 8 and 6.  No idea how good this is, but I am pretty happy with it.   So far I am feeling pretty good.  AF was a beast of course, but I have lost about 6lbs of water weight since stopping BCPs.  Have I said how much I hate those things?  The follistim pen takes a little getting used to, and the first 2 nights of stims left me with some tiny bruises, but they don't really hurt.

The nurse called back, my E2 level is I get tomorrow off and go back in Wednesday.

Friday, October 1, 2010

2 years

That is how long we've been TTC.  I went back at looked at what has gotten where we are today.

  • 562 basal temperatures
  • well over 100 OPKs
  • at least 40 negative pregnancy tests
  • about 10 evap lines
  • 4 positive pregnancy tests
  • 1 chemical pregnancy
  • 63 RE appointments, including:
    • 2 sonohysterograms
    • 1 hysterosalpingogram
    • 1 Laparoscopy
    • 1 mock transfer
    • 2 physical exams
    • 5 baseline exams
    • 21 monitoring exams
    • 1 progesterone check
    • 2 cd 3 bloodwork panels
    • 2 female infertility bloodwork panel
    • 2 genetic testing panels
    • 9 beta/quantitative panels
  • approximate grand total of 54 vials of blood (for me, 8 for R)
  • 2 sperm analyses
  • 1 sperm freeze
  • 2 rounds of Clomid
  • 23 Bravelle injections
  • 3 trigger shots
  • 3 IUIs (first was back to back IUIs)
  • 110 Endometrin suppositories
  • 67 birth control pills
  • roughly 2000 pre-natal vitamins (prenatal, DHA tablet, extra folic acid)