Saturday, November 20, 2010

Week 11

My recent obsession....? The Brighton Hot Dog Shoppe-have you ever tasted a hot dog with cheese and onions more delicious than at the Brighton Hot Dog Shoppe? Their fries are also a-mazing! I know everyone says you aren't supposed to eat hot dogs while pregnant...but its like an life is starting to revolve around hot dogs. Even Duncan is starting to love my new addiction-he knows when I am bringing it home and snuggles as close as he can to me hoping something might fall...and it usually does-recently I have been inhaling my food.
On another note, we are going to get my stoller today...I am so excited! I'm sure it will just sit in a box the next 6 months-but I love it. I am getting the Graco Duo in Pippin-it has adorable little elephants on it!
Stats on us!
How for along? 11 weeks
Weight gain? Nothing new to report about the same
Maternity clothes? For sure
Stretch marks? Still no!
Sleep? It is what I look forward most to everyday. Now if I could only sleep through the night
Best moment this week? We got to hear our babies heartbeats!
Movement? Still too early
Cravings? The Hot Dog Shoppe-and Icees
Genders? Patiently waiting
Inny or Outy button? Still in!
What I miss? Being able to eat and it not going straight to my butt
What I am looking forward to? Ultrasound coming up!
Milestones? I'm still pregnant!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Double Blessings-Week 10

Wow, I am such a bad blogger-my last post was in September. I promise I will try to do better! So, I guess I have a lot to catch people up on...On October 1 we found out I'M PREGNANT!!! Yay!! After three years we have been blessed with a health pregnancy! About 7 days after my blood test I had my first ultrasound-and on the screen were two perfect little sacs!! We were so excited I think it too everything in us not to cry!
Since then I have had a few more ultrasounds-the one you see on the left is a 3D picture taken from my last ultrasound a week ago.
Its amazing how I haven't even met them yet-or know what their gender is...and I love them more than life its self. They are just so perfect and already are bringing us so much joy. I love to sit and think about what sex they are, what they will look like, will they take after me or Doug? We are so blessed-we don't know why we have had to travel down this road-but I can honestly say that it has been worth it. The years of tears, disappointment and doubt-none of it matters anymore.
Stats on us!
How for along? 10 weeks
Weight gain? Uh 7-10 lbs
Maternity clothes? Have been in maternity pants since week 5..yikes
Stretch marks? Thank God...NO!
Sleep? Love it, live for it
Best moment this week? My 3d ultrasound-seeing baby a dance like his momma!
Movement? Negative
Cravings? Any and all fast food
Genders? unknown
Inny or Outy button? Still in!
What I miss? Absolutely nothing!
What I am looking forward to? Baby doctor appt this week
Milestones? The babies have reached the size of a prune..and have tiny arms and legs! yay!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Transfer Day

So, today was it....our transfer day! We had a different doctor perform our transfer Dr Sanfillipo-he was amazing! I was so pleased with his bedside manor. When Dr Sanfillipo came in we got the final result of our embryos-Of the five, three were mature. All three of the mature ones fertilized. Today we had two embryos come in at 6A (6 cells, quality A) and one at a 4B (4 cells, quality B). He said the 6A's were perfect (the B was still pretty good)! You can't get anything better than an A. The picture I have showing is what a 6 cell embryo looks like (this one is not mine). We had only planned on implanting 2/3 of the embryos-however, the 4 cell was not able to be frozen. The embryos need to be at least 5 cells. So, instead of discarding the embryo we decided to implant that one as well.
Once we made the decision to put all three in we went back to the OR and got prepped. It truly was one of the most amazing things I have every seen. They inserted a catheter then all of a sudden on the ultrasound you see three little white specs-my embryos. It truly was amazing-I was almost crying on the table.
I have been on bedrest allllll day-luckily Doug bought me lots of Grays Anatomy to watch and some chick flicks and my aunt brought over some amazing food for us....yum!!
Yesterday, Doug and I went to the Christian bookstore. I was casually going through the books when one caught my attention called How God Makes Babies. The first page I opened said this. "From the very moment the sperm and egg join together, so many details about the baby are already decided. If the baby is a boy or girl, what color her eyes will be, what color hair she will have, whether she will be tall or short, if he will have big feet, if she has freckles...and more." "Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you. Before you were born, I set you apart for my holy purpose. Jeremiah 1:5" Isn't that amazing! These embryos are only a few cells-but they have a sex, DNA....amazing!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Retrievals and Candless Birthday Cakes

Today has been a crazy day. A day of crazy highs and crazy lows. First, I finally made it to retrieval. I had to be at Magee by 7am-I had my surgery a little before 8am. All of the girls there were great. They took such good care of me! I was so thankful-my own doctor was the one to do my procedure. There are 3 physicians who perform IVF and they all have assigned OR days-so depending on what day you go in you may get another doctor. Dr Wakim is amazing-he is such a kind and gentle man. We were able to get 5 eggs/follicles. I was hoping for more-but 5 is better than 1. I will call in tomorrow to talk to the embryologist to see how may fertilized. I then go back on Saturday to get hopefully 2 embryos implanted.
It's been hard to be so excited for this procedure today-today would have been our twins first birthday. So instead of planning a big princess party or superhero party-I am planning surgery dates and implantation dates to try and get pregnant. Some days are much easier than others. There is never a day that goes by that I don't think about it-I am not sure if that is something that is going to change or not. But other days the feelings of grief are so overwhelming. Its like I am living those days all over again.
I am so thankful and lucky to have such a wonderful husband and family. Doug's mom brought us over a bunch of food this afternoon and my mom is on her way over with my fav salad from Mad Mex. My little Dunky Dog is another saving grace in my life. I swear he knows when I need him the most. When I got home from surgery today I ate my lunch-then he hopped up on the couch and snuggled as close to me as he could and we took a long nap together!
Say prayers for fertilization ladies and gentlemen!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Answered Prayers

During this journey through IVF we have prayed....a lot-for many different things. IVF is so different than trying to conceive naturally. When you just "try" to have a baby you don't think about all of the different "things" that go into creating a life-LH levels, E2 levels, progesterone, follicle size, time of ovulation, sperm count and motility and so much more.
The other day I got a call from one of the nurses basically saying that my ovaries were "underachievers." For someone my age they typically expect 10-20 follicles...I only had 3 viable. To even make it to retrieval you need 5. I was talking about this with one of my good friends at work and she really made me think about the differences between trying naturally vs ART (advanced reproductive technology). And I never really thought about it that way-I've never really known it any other way. Most couples just do their thing and surprise-9 months later you get a baby. On the reverse end of it-it can be a little more stressful-I know every little detail of my future baby's conception-I know every hormone level-I know every injection I take-I know how many follicles each ovary has-or doesn't have. I am so thankful for my friend bringing this to my attention because-knowing every single detail gets me so stressed and so anxious. I go to Magee every morning about 7 or 730 and get a call with results by 2-3 in the afternoon. That wait just kills me.
That conversation with my friend really made me realize that there is NOTHING else that I can do. I have gone to every appointment my doctor has asked me to. I have taken every injection on time. If my follicles are slow to grow-there's nothing I can do-It is in God's hands and that's where I need to leave it. And that's exactly what I have done the past few days. I had a pep talk with my ovaries. I said they need to shape up or ship out. Then I just prayed....and prayed and prayed and prayed. I prayed that the follicles would grow. And I am so happy to say that I got a good report today. 3 more mature follicle showed up on today's ultrasound!! Hopefully in the next few days a few more will show up. God can and will do amazing things when you leave your worries in his hands!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

My stomach will never be the same again...

So, I have come to the conclusion that my stomach will never ever be the same again..I know I have no model physique or anything...but I have lost a lot of weight and I looked...O.K. Don't get me wrong... I don't want to be one of "those girls" who whines and complains that she can't get pregnant then, when someone is doing something to help her get pregnant she complains again. I am not trying to do that. I am just stating The Simple Facts of IVF. I am now into Cycle Day (CD) 9- and Day 5 of injectables. On Tuesday I started my Ganirelix-which shuts down the pituitary-so I don't ovulate on my we have that in the am. Then Repronex, which causes my ovaries to produce more eggs in the pm. So-as you can see by my picture my body is a little irritated with me. I have a rather large bruise on my lower left abdomen and some itchy red spots on the right side of my abdomen. What is harder to see in the picture is the size my stomach has ballooned out to. Seriously....I look like a blimp....I have had to pretty much pack up my clothes and resort to loose dresses and yes....stretchy pants! ;)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Shoot Me Up Baby!

Shoot me up with the good stuff baby! Project IVF has commenced! My lovely box of baby making meds arrived the other day as you can see by the picture on the left.....lots of stuff to "shoot up with" Doug thoroughly enjoys the job of "shot giver!"
I go in on Saturday for my first appointment-baseline bloodwork and ultrasound. That night I will start "stimming." Which is just a fancy way of saying Ovulation Induction-I will begin to inject 225u of Repronex into my abdomen for approx. 10 nights to try to get my ovaries to produce as many eggs as possible. About 4-5 nights in I will start another injectable that goes into my abdomen that's called Ganorelix-that shuts down the pituitary glad-that will prevent my body from ovulating on it's own. After those 10 nights I will take another injection of HCG-the pregnancy hormone-that will prime the eggs- I will go in about 35 hours later and have a minor surgery and have my eggs taken out. While I am having surgery-Doug will give his "sample." They will then put his sperm into a centrifuge and spin out all the dumb sperm (the slow swimmers, ones with out tails, missing heads te he-I make myself laugh!) Then my eggs and his sperm get put together to make BABIES!!!!!!
3 Days later I go back in and 2 beautiful embies will be put back in my uterus....Then the fun part a Progesterone injections....That's right a 2 inch needle gets shoved directly into my boney butt for 2 whole weeks!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Nurse Talk

Today was our financial meeting and nurse talk. We first met with the financial counselor-to be sure we don't have any "questions." Right....she just wanted my fat check! Shortly after one of our nurses Lisa came in to talk with us. She was wonderful! We signed all of our consent forms....which was about as many as you sign when you buy a home. We also discussed our medication protocol. We are officially ready to go!
I am so excited to start this new chapter in our lives...but its also so scary. I have dreamed of being a mother since my parents gave me my first Cabbage Patch doll. I loved it, cared for it and nurtured it...I could not wait to do that for my own baby some day. As I've gotten older having a family just always seemed so matter of fact, that it would be easy for us. No one ever thinks this is going to happen to them...After a while it really starts to effect you. It effects your womanhood-something that seems so easy as becoming pregnant and carrying a baby I can't even do. One thing that I have always felt like I was supposed to be good at-turns out I really suck at. It really effects your relationship as well. What is meant to be an intimate part of your marriage is now public knowledge. Your doctors begin telling you when to be intimate with your spouse-so what was being done out of love for each other now becomes a chore and planned each cycle. Its not just the two of you-but your doctor, your friends and parents..all with "helpful" advice. Like I said-its so scary what we are about to do.....with the money we spent-I could have bought a modest car, got a killer breast augmentation (or 2), or put a decent size down payment on a new home. All of those things have guaranteed outcomes....this doesn't...only about 50% chance of success. That intimidating-all this money for just a chance, a glimmer of hope. It's a scary thing-one thing I have really had to think about is that I may never have a baby-it may be part of God's plan for us to not have a family (**insert knife in heart**).

Thursday, August 12, 2010


I had to laugh. I was on facebook today catching up on my newsfeed....when I saw the status of one of our old students status' read "FMF." That was one I have never heard of before. Apparently neither had many other people. So people were guessing what it could possibly mean...I appreciated the guess of one young girl..."Eff My Follicles"
Thats sort of how I have felt about mine lately!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Confession: I am addicted to peeing on things

I'm not too proud...I can admit it...I have an addiction...and its nothing pretty either like buying shiny lip glosses, or new clothes....I am addicted to peeing on things... I like to pee on sticks-you know like ovulation predictors (OPK's) and pregnancy tests...
I know that it may be too early to test...I know what the answer is going to be ahead of time. But I just can't help myself (With the price of these things I might as well pee on a $5 bill). I think about it all day long. From the time I get up until the time I can get my hand on a pee stick.
I have peed on sticks in many different places-my house, my parents house, church retreats, public restrooms, it goes on...I have a problem..I have tried some interventional strategies...I have tried to pee on a Q-tip-but it just doesn't do it for me-it doesn't give the same high....You don't get the smiley face or lack of face...or the single pink line (I have yet to see the elusive two lines).
Which brings me to today. I tell D- "D, I really need you to buy me a pregnancy test today." He says fine. So I come home from work and they are on the table....But what does he buy....EPT. I despise EPT. God love him-he rocks my world. I would never say anything.. But we have been doing this about 3 years favorite is First Response. So up to the bathroom I go. I read the instructions...(I know being the expert I am I should know the ins and outs-but I'm not familiar with this brand) Can you believe that the instructions actually say "do not put in your vagina." No, really?! Anyway, I do my thing...wait, and wait. Suprise, suprise its a negative....again. No shocker there. So I was feeling mildly depressed and decided to go to Marshalls and bought myself the beautiful shoes you see me wearing above. No baby-but I am the mother to a pair of Nude Guess Shoes.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Not the only one with a defective uterus

It appears as though I am not the only one with a defective uterus around here...thank God! When my mom had her gallbladder taken out several years ago I bought her a stuffed gallbladder from the iheartguts website. While searching their site-I found this adorably cute stuffed uterus...only to find that like me she too is 2008 she was recalled...
Apparently Miss Uterus failed a simple "pull" test. If pulled the ovaries may detach and become a choaking hazard. It also says in bold print Keep Away from Children.

At times I feel very similar to this plush times I am a potential choking hazard...and there must be a warning sign on my back that says keep away from children...

Monday, July 19, 2010

Baby Doctor Appointment

So-we had our pre IVF consult with our RE (love him). We went to go over previous testing, what to expect with our IVF procedure and any questions we had.
While at our meeting he gave us a "rough" protocol for our cycle. Its going to be intense-lots of early mornings-but will hopefully be worth it in the end. Day One, two or three-baseline bloodwork and ultrasound. Then begin nightly FSH injections (follicle stimulating hormone) to encourage more eggs to be produced. With that I will be required to go in about every other morning around 7 am for bloodwork and ultrasound to track my progress. Around Day 6 I will add another injection to my regimen that will shut down the pituitary-so my body doesn't release the eggs too soon. Once the doctor feels the follicles are the right size I will stop all injections and "trigger" with HCG the pregnancy hormone-that will release my eggs. About 36 hours later I will have my Egg Retrieval-I will be put under anesthesia and they will go in with a small needle and aspirate the follicles and pull the eggs out to be fertilized. They will then be taken to the lab and join with the sperm and allowed to fertilize. Three days later they will pick the two embryos that have developed the best and they will do our embryo transfer which will hopefully result in a baby.
We have a 47-48% chance of success with this procedure-which sounds really low-but compared to our projected 15%-its so much higher. There is a risk of twins or triplets-but we will be happy with whatever God gives us and we know we are never given more than we can handle. (just please don't give me quads-I may have a hard time with that!)
Next up is our nurses talk-we have to go in and sign all the consent forms..but more importantly they want our money! Dr W I hope you enjoy your new Ferrari I have purchased you-perhaps you will give me an honorable mention when you drive around town.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Money, Money, Money!

Whoever said babies are expensive wasn't joking! We just found out that we were approved for our loan so that we can go through with IVF (yay!)....I would tell you how much it was for but a. you would think we were insaine and b. you would say are you sure you don't want to adopt? (and yes, at this time we are not ready to...and it costs 15K more to adopt-so we will try this first)

So, we have figured out that assuming our IVF is successful (remember, there are no guarentees)-we will be paying for our FIRST child until we are approximatly 86 or dead-which ever comes first. Assuming we die-our child will be responsible for paying off the loan for their existance. Duncan is also very excited at the possibilty of a baby brother or sister in the future. He, however, is not excited at the fact that he may need to share his Juicy Couture dog carrier as a baby bag or give his dog clothes as hand-me-downs for a time as we get accustom to our new "mortgage." lol

**Please do not take our humor for seriousness. We feel that God is going to use our heartache and difficulty for a better good. D and I have dealt with our infertility and deal with it in many different ways-humor being one :)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Punta Cana for No Baby Mama!

Yep, thats right... we just booked our summer vacation to Punta Cana! We are so excited-we went in September and had a blast. We wanted to go to the same resort..but we missed the special price...But good news for us we ended getting this beautiful place you see to the left-which is a "5 Apple"-better than last time!

We are staying at the Riu Bambu-for 7 nights all inclusive! I cannot wait to lay by the pool-with my SPF 50 (don't want to chance melanoma!)-with a good book and RELAX! I can just see it now....

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

This baby better be freakin' awesome...

As many of you know D and I have been trying to have a baby for quite some time. Our journey started in November 2007...after about a year of trying we decided to see a Reproductive Endocrinologist (RE). At that time we were given medication to enduce ovulation-after a few months we were very excited, we had conceived a baby-but not just one baby..TWO. Unfortunatly, several weeks later-and several complications later both babies were lost.

After several months of healing, our physician recommended more advanced treatments (naturally, more expensive ones as well). Unfortunatly, none of those treatments resulted in a pregnancy.

At that point D and I decided we needed time to re-group and pray. We both feel that we are meant to be parents and have a family of our back to the doctor we went! We went back several months after our last treatment. News was not as good as we had planned. Our chances of having a baby on our own is only about 15% and our only real option is IVF (yes, thats even more expensive than the previous treatments!) Now, before you all start giving us advice....we have tried taking a vacation (we've taken 2), we're realxed (it's in God's hands), yes I've tried standing on my head, no I don't want your children (although I am sure they are cute)-you name it I've pretty much tried it...That leads us to where we are today...

Many people are very curious as to what we are doing, and how our progress is. So I will do my best to keep everyone up to date on whats going on! Currently, we are doing our Pre IVF testing. Basically making sure we are healthy enough to go through IVF. I started my testing last week with a bunch of blood tests and an ultrasound. Yesterday, I went back in for a whole gammet of tests-bloodwork, physical, annual test, sonohysterogram, cultures and much much more. I was poked and prodded and had things shoved in unGodly places. Good news, most of the test results came back good-we are just waiting on the other results to come back in the next week or so. D is next, he has a few tests he has to have done. First was bloodwork, so I took him to where I work. He got himself all worked I was drawing his blood he tells me this baby better be freakin' awesome. With us as his or her parents-I don't see how he/she could be anything less!