November 30, 2010

Guess who came to visit??

Aunt Flo! And right on schedule... Which is a good thing, I guess. For as irregular as I have been my entire life, it's great to know that things are sorta working in here! But I really must mention... My cramps are horrendous!!!!! Like I can barely function from how bad my pains are :-/ I already took 3 advils and am hoping they will go away. Ugh! This is terrible!

So yeah, I have some updates... we have pushed back our TTC window to March, which sucks!!!!! But we have a good reason... Mr DBuds company got Aflac which begins on January 1st. They have good benefits for Maternity and stuff, so it works out. The only bad thing is that we have to hold off a bit so we can benefit from the benefits :) I guess it's good in a few ways because I will be getting myself checked out (made my first Dr's appointment to get referred to an RE), and we can have more time to save some money, etc.

But right now, my cramps are so bad that I have to end my short post here. I will be around later when I compose myself...

See ya later!









Never thought this day would come...


We have a beautiful gestational sac and yolk sac!! Measuring 2 days ahead. 5w5d.

Absolutely THRILLED!!!!

They said everything looked wonderful so far!

We go back on the 9th to see the heartbeat. I can't wait!!!

November 29, 2010

The road is now mapped out

Mr. PB and I just returned from our RE results appointment. Dr. A seems very optimistic due to our diagnosis and young age (I am 27, DH is 25). Dr. A believes that we have unexplained infertility, but he is having Mr. PB do a repeat S/A to rule out mild male factor infertility. The original S/A results bad; there was 20 mllion (or 25, I can't really remember) and 25% motility. It is the motility that makes him think it may be a mild MFI, but he says a lot of things may cause that, especially our 5 days of abstinence prior to the S/A. This time we will strategically plan to ensure that we can take full advantage of my upcoming O and get his S/A completed.

We have a plan! We are going to start with a Clomid cycle (50 mg) combined with a double IUI (insemination 2 days in a row). Mr. PB is a little nervous about all the side effects listed with this drug. While I am looking forward to the hot flashes, especially during these cold NE winters, he is fearing the hormonal mood swings that he knows are coming. Even without drugs, I can be very moody the first few days of my cycle. Mr. PB maybe contacting some of you looking for a crashpad that first week or so.

Overall, I am very excited to have a plan. We know that it can take another year or so, but at least we have a plan. I am just hoping we are a lucky couple that gets it the first shot. I am sure we won't, but that is why I am happy to have such a great support system, both online and in real life. I thank you ladies for everything you have given me over the past few months.

November 28, 2010

Getting Better

Hello, everyone. Just wanted to check in to let you all know I'm still alive.

Wow, what a depressing month it has been. But I have to admit, I am feeling better. Its probably been about a week since I have cried and I've been feeling a lot more like myself.

However, I have made the decision to go back on my antidepressants. I have been off of them for almost 2 years now because I was TTC. But right now, I need to jump back on that bandwagon. I am not myself and I am a little scared of the path I have been taking. I know the patterns and what they lead to, and it needs to be dealt with sooner rather than later.

FYI - TTC on happy pills is a no no. This is fine with me. I need some time to repair and recover both physically and emotionally. I have toyed around with getting back on BCP, but I just can't bring myself to do that yet.

Right now I'm going to focus on my diet, my emotional health and my marriage. No more obsessing about babies, miscarriages and peeing on sticks. A welcomed break.

I wanted to give a huge heart-felt thank you to all the Buds and readers here at Bloomin' Babies. The kindness and compassion you have shown to me has really touched my heart and has made me get through one of the most horrible times of my life. To the other Buds that are going through what I am, I hope you find comfort soon.

And to my dearest, darling Sunflower Bud - I am so, so happy and excited for you and wish you the happiest and healthiest 9 months anyone could have. God knows you deserve this.

November 27, 2010

Failed Induction


Most family & friends know already, but we went in on Monday night for an induction to meet our baby - and it failed. We were home Tuesday night. Here's the story...

We got to the hospital right at 5pm, checked in at the Emergency Room and they sent us up to Labor & Delivery. After our admittance and answering a ton of questions, the nurse attempted to insert my IV. Each time she tried, my veins would collapse. What can I say, my veins were shy! I was really swollen - apparently more than we thought - because even the anesthesiologist couldn't get anything. Once I told them they'll 100% get the vein in my elbow, I finally was free from the poking. They were trying to avoid my elbow for comfort but after one blown vein (which I have a nasty bruise from) and five different pricks I didn't care.

Around 6pm the nurse checked my cervix and I was hard, high, tight & closed completely so she got new orders from my OB to start cytotec orally. The original plan was to start low dose pitocin but that plan also came with the thought that I'd be somewhat dilated when I got there - wronnnng! So, we got my first dose of cytotec orally and within 20 minutes I started to contract. They weren't hard or long, but they were definitely there.

10:30pm came and I got checked again, a little softer and a fingertip dilated! YAY for progress! Got second dose of cytotec orally.

2:30am and I'm ALMOST at 1 complete cm, though still hard. Nurse wanted to let me contract on my own for a bit to see if that would help. It didn't, so I was given another dose of cytotec at 3:30am, this time vaginally. Almost instantly I had contractions about a minute apart. They were hard too. My pain level went from about a 3 to a 6 within probably 10 minutes. The contractions kept me up through the morning until around 5:30am when I dozed off and apparently my contractions fizzled out and slowed way down in time & intensity.

Woke up at 7:30am when the doc came in the room. Absolutely zero progress, in fact now I'm only a fingertip again - so I regressed from a cm. DAMN IT! He gave me a few options: 1. Break my water now, wait for things to happen naturally before being put on pitocin. If they don't, we'll start pitocin. 2. Start pitocin without breaking water, again wait for things to happen but this will be much slower. I didn't want to break my water this early - because I was trying to avoid a C-Section at all costs. My cervix was clearly not doing anything, even with the medicines so I opted for option 2. He was fine with that so he said he'd come back at the end of the day and see what I'm at.

Throughout the day I was contracting between 1-7 minutes apart, sometimes they were right after each other - sometimes it fizzled. I seemed to contract better when laying almost all the way down, so I was quite uncomfortable for most the day.

Well, 5pm rolled around and my OB came to check on me before his D&C he had scheduled... zero progress. He said I was MAYYYBE a bit softer, but my cervix didn't move. Awesome. I started crying. Clearly my body wasn't ready. So he offered the same two options as well as taking me completely off the IV/meds so I could eat & get some rest - or go home if I wanted. I wanted to go home. CLEARLY this wasn't working. And, I was frustrated and tired. So, we stopped the IV.

I made the right decision, as soon as the pitocin was out of my system (it has a 20 minute half life so it takes about 40 minutes total) my contractions stopped completely. Then we were on our way. I felt so defeated. I felt guilty, my husband felt guilty... it was a really rough time.

I won't ever choose to be induced again, it's such a frustrating process. It's worked well for many people and I know many who have had nothing but successes... it's not for me. Doctor said we can schedule another induction if I wanted to this week - I said no. So, here I am, waiting for Little Monster to come on his own. If he's not here by next Sunday, 12/5, I get an automatic C-Section at 41 weeks.

Since we've been home, I've had maybe a handful of contractions per day - but nothing major. Here I am, a day before our Due Date, starting to get frustrated. I've heard it 10,000 times - baby isn't ready, my body isn't ready... but mentally I'M READY. It's been a year and a half since we found out we were going to be parents, we lost the first one, and it took 7 cycles to conceive Little Monster, plus the wait of the pregnancy which has seemed to DRAG.ON. Physically I am doing fine - not too much pain/comfort problems.. but emotionally I am exhausted. I'm so ready to hold this little guy in my arms.

But, instead, he is teaching me patience. Which, is okay. I just hope he doesn't decide to be TOO stubborn and make me have a C-Section next weekend... otherwise I could have opted for that route at the induction and had him already. We shall see what's going to happen :)

For now, we wait. And wait some more. Here's my gigantic belly, incase you don't want to read the entire thing you have something to look at!


November 26, 2010

What I learned being KU - the 3rd tri edition!

Wow this took me much longer to get around to posting than I expected - sorry about that. Baby Worry Bud is definitely keeping us busy, but despite how busy I've been, I was determined to post this list because it's so fun! Now that my time blogging as a Bud (I'll still be around as the blog administrator) is coming to an end (I have 1 more final/goodbye post in me), I'm hoping another Bud will take this "What I Learned" series over & carry on this BB tradition started by the awesome Glow Bud! Anywho, here goes...

  • There is a good reason people tell you not to buy too many blankets & clothes for the baby beforehand - you end up getting lots of that stuff as gifts from friends & family as well lots of hand-me-downs from your friends that have had babies before you. If you buy lots on your own, you'll end up with a clothing mountain in the nursery! (Photo Credit)
  • Wearing 3+ inch heels for over an hour standing up is most definitely NOT a good idea. *Back story - one of my BFFs got married when I was like 6.5 months pregnant & she is really into heels, so she selected these cute, but awfully high strappy heels for all the bridesmaids to wear. Well, I thought I'd be okay since most wedding ceremonies are pretty short. Well, no...her ceremony was an inter-faith ceremony where they tried to incorporate traditions from both cultures & well, it was L-O-N-G. And long story short, my feet & cankles ankles were not happy!
  • Being 7+ months pregnant is not conducive to try & rush doing anything.
  • Try to get as much baby stuff done as early as possible because once you start getting big, it's hard to accomplish even the smallest tasks, especially cleaning around the house. (Photo Credit)
  •  Don't even attempt to walk any sort of distance outside in the 90+ degree heat & humidity...it's nearly impossible to cool down.
  • The nursery is PERFECT...really, it is!
  • If you plan to get a 3D u/s don't wait to do it too late - we did mine at 30 weeks & the baby was so squished up in there that it was pretty difficult to get good pics & we only got about 2...and that was on the 2nd try!
  • Maternity dresses make you look 10x bigger than you actually are, but they are so comfy!
  • Baby lodged under your ribs = extremely painful & uncomfortable!
  • Don't believe everything you read about going into labor - you don't have to lose your mucous plug or have a bloody show first...my water just broke out of the blue!
And that's all I got for the 3rd Tri Edition of What I Learned being KU! Hope you enjoyed reading & maybe even learned a little something! I'll be back soon with my final Bloomin' Babies post as Worry Bud & although I know Baby WB will keep me busy enough, I'll still miss sharing our adventures here on BB - more on that in my next post. I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving & wishing everyone a safe & happy weekend!

Thanksgiving

Look! Cherry Bud's chart is having a cross-hair fluke! (ETA: Oh, Maybe not....)

Thankfully, we made it through Thanksgiving with NO questions about when we would have kids and only one mention of "When you have a baby..."

We discussed our possible adoption plans with my SIL's, who are wonderful and supportive and understanding.

We ate Pumpkin Pie and Cinnamon Rolls and Turkey and Mashed Potatoes. I held and snuggled my youngest niece and got my baby fix.

I all-around avoided being depressed about my lack of baby bump.

Happy Thanksgiving, Bloomin Babies and my fellow Buds!

November 24, 2010

Exhale...

Now I can breathe. All week, I've held my breath worrying and waiting for the 3rd beta.

3, 456.

Doubling time of just shy of 24 hours.

In my nurse's words, "you can breathe now."

I promised to stop testing. Promised to try to stop worrying. Promised to start just enjoying what we've worked so hard to achieve.

I'm pregnant.

I'm going to be a mother again.

I have one hell of a beta.

First ultrasound is Tuesday morning.

I have SO much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

The craziest thing though? It's been almost 2 years of tears, depression, crying, despair, struggle and almost giving up. And now that we're finally at this point.... those 2 years don't feel quite so long anymore. I had no idea it could feel like this. All that hurt and anguish and bitter just melted away and is replaced by joy and complete and utter awe.

My prayers are with each and every one of my fellow Buds who are struggling right now. Hurting. Feeling that anguish and despair. That makes this so bittersweet for me. I want each of you to be feeling this. And I can't wait until the day that you do. A day that I know will come. You are not alone. And you are supported and loved.

Full Term Update

Who'd have thunk it?

Certainly not me.

More than 2 years ago, I had no doubt I wouldn't have any trouble getting pregnant. I was however, convinced that I would have trouble STAYING pregnant. Between my mother, my aunt and my grandmother, there must have been 15-20 miscarriages between them. I was sure I would follow that line.

Then 1 year ago, I was in the midst of what would be my 1st failed IVF cycle and about to sink into a horrible depression.

Who knew that my problem would be GETTING pregnant. Not staying pregnant.

Because apparently, STAYING pregnant I can do just fine.

Which brings me to today.

Despite my AMH. Despite MFI. Despite DOR/POF. Despite MTHFR. Despite 3 fibroids. Despite all of our diagnoses and a failed IVF cycle... and in memory of our lost twin... today I am 38 weeks pregnant.


Full Term.

Holy crap.

Our appointment today was largely uneventful. My cervix remains closed, although softening. Dr Loh can feel and move the baby's head, but she says still not any lower (i'd argue that... i'm rapidly losing anything that could be considered "below my belly"). I mentioned that movement has been very minimal the last 24 hours, so I got a quickie u/s to check our fluid levels (absolutely fine). Smudge is SO big. I can't even believe how big. I remember the days when we could see the whole baby on one screen. Now you can barely see one PART on one screen. It's amazing. The arms are up by his/her face with little fists. Dr Loh says Smudge's tone is great. Knees are drawn up and yep, those are feet in my ribs... crossed at the ankles. Maybe this is a little lady after all... I guess we'll see.

We also did an impromptu non-stress test (NST) to check the heartbeat patterns. So I got to sit on the monitor listening to the most beautiful sound in the world (my baby's heartbeat) for a half hour. It was wonderful. Smudge did exactly what s/he was supposed to do... when s/he wasn't trying to run away from the probe. This kid HATES being monitored in any way. It's really funny. We've been playing chase the baby for 8 months though. Why stop now, right?

Best news of the 38 week appointment. I lost a pound! Yay - go me. So after the 36 week debacle of gaining 4 pounds in 2 weeks, then holding steady at 37 weeks, at 38 weeks I have gained 20 pounds for the pregnancy. I am very proud of myself.

So - that's all for now. I hadn't had any contractions in about 36 hours until tonight, when I had 3 in the last hour... so i'm not holding my breath, but we'll see what happens. I think it's pretty funny that since becoming pregnant, we've thought i would deliver on thanksgiving. I guess we'll see. I did pack my bag the other day. That's surely going to keep me pregnant until 42 weeks. (Unlike if I hadn't packed at all - then i probably would have delivered 2 weeks ago.)

Horray for full term. Hooray for a healthy Smudge. And most of all... hooray for the difference a year can make.

Embryo transfer complete!

Today I am 2dp5dt. (In English, 2 days past my 5 day transfer).

A 5 day transfer is done 5 days after the egg retrieval (as opposed to a 3dt, which is 3 days past the ER). 5 day transfers are usually done when you have a lot of high quality embryos and they want to see which ones are the best on day 5. I am lucky to have had 6 perfect ones on day 3 so they waited until day 5 to do my transfer.

The ET itself was quick and easy. They let Mr. Sassy Bud come in with me and we got to watch on a TV screen as the embryologist scooped the embryos up in the catheter and brought them into our room. Then we got to watch them being inserted on the ultrasound machine.

I can't remember the specific grading of the embryos, but they were great! Here's a picture of them:

At this stage they are called blastocysts. The mass is where the baby will form.

They also gave us a picture of where the embryos were placed:

The plus marks are where the embryos are. Not many people get an ultrasound this early, so I guess that is a benefit of IVF! Haha. I had a progesterone draw today. I will have my beta pregnancy blood draw one week from today. I'm not sure if I can keep from POAS until then, but I will probably have Mr. Sassy Bud hide all my tests so I don't test too early.

November 23, 2010

Put the tests down!!!

Because I still refuse to believe this is real and I'm just waiting for the other shoe to drop, I've been testing.... and testing.... and testing.

But I think once you reach the point where your test line is darker than your control line... it's time to stop. This one is from a few days ago.... the one I did tonight the control line is barely visible.


I also did one of those Clear Blue digital tests that have the Conception Indicator tonight. It said 3+ on it which = 5 weeks.

Hoping that means I'm going to have a really super great incredible beta number tomorrow!!!

So far, I'm not feeling much. For a bit there I was wondering if I was imagining the tests! But today I woke up with a twinge of morning sickness which proceeded to get worse throughout the day, peaking this evening. Once I ate, I felt much better. I'm also just tired. Very very very tired.

I've had horrible dreams of waking up bleeding and miscarrying. I just need to get passed those first couple ultrasounds so I can feel better about this.

Mr. Sunflower Bud is 100% convinced that it's twins. I'm leaning towards singleton.

We did make a deal though.... twins = we'll find out the gender... singleton = gender is a surprise!

One Month Out...

It's been one month today since my miscarriage. And I'm still feeling pretty blue. The week leading up to the miscarriage was really, really hard, but it seemed to get easier from there. About a week ago, I got really emotional again all of a sudden, and have stayed that way since. I'm crying at the drop of a hat again, I feel very detached from what's going on (at home and at work), and I've lost my appetite again.

We've told a few people now about our loss, and while they say all the right things when we tell them, nobody has asked since how I'm doing. Granted, they probably wouldn't like my answer a whole lot right now, but it would still be nice to be asked...

Mr. Magnolia Bud and I have decided to give it another week, and if I'm still feeling like this once we're back from our Thanksgiving travels, I'm going to call a therapist. Thanks to the profession I'm in, I feel lucky to have a referral line open to me 24/7, and am able to see a therapist for free when I need one. Honestly, until now I haven't felt so vulnerable, so alone, or so helpless in my entire life.

I'll leave you with two good things that have happened, despite the emotional roller-coaster. I've been traveling a lot for work. Two weeks ago, I was in Atlanta and was able to spend a long evening with one of my best friends. It was the first time I had met her son, who was such a joy to spend time with. He is such a happy baby, and she is so excited for us to be TTC. Last week, I was in D.C., and was able to reconnect with a dear friend. We've known each other since we were 14--freshman year of high school--and spent more hours together through high school and the first half of college than I would ever dare try to count. We lost touch after that (my fault), and it was incredibly good to reconnect last weekend. I hope it's the start of rebuilding our friendship.

In other news, I'm still waiting for AF to show, though I had a teeny bit of spotting over the weekend. My temps are still all over the place, and I wonder if AF showing will give me the closure I need to move on.

November 21, 2010

Contingency Plan

I'm not sure why, but after writing this post, I feel like it may be a bit...umm....controversial, perhaps. Who knows? You be the judge, I suppose.

December marks the beginning of our ninth month TTC.

Only our fourth cycle, but our ninth month.

This blows my mind. I was positive, when we started trying, that, due to my historically long cycles, it might take us a month or two longer than I might like. But I knew, I just knew that I would have a baby by June. When I filled out my husbands FAFSA and it asked how many people would be in our household by June 2011, I actually put three.

Don't judge me.

The point is, I am becoming painfully aware of how close we are to the year mark, and the unofficial but still flashing-in-neon "diagnosis" of "infertile". I say "diagnosis" because I won't be headed to an RE when if the year mark hits.

Mr. Cherry Bud and I decided, early in our TTC journey, when we were faced with the "To Clomid or not to Clomid" decision, that fertility drugs weren't the road for us.

Let me stop for a moment and mention that I think modern medicine is a wonderful thing. I have seen so many beautiful, perfect babies born through the miracle of modern fertility treatment, and I see nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing wrong with it. Nothing. And I repeat, nothing. It simply is not the right choice for us.

So, at the one year mark, we will begin to save money, and, when it becomes financially feasible, we will begin the international adoption process. My heart has been drawn toward and broken over the children in Ethiopia, so that is where we will probably be looking to adopt.

I have told my parents, who know we are trying, about this "contingency plan" of sorts. My mother is convinced we will be pregnant any day now, so it's pointless talking to her about it, and my father gave me the "but there are American children who need love". And let me say this, because I know, if we choose to adopt, we will hear it A LOT.

There are people in this world who are meant to adopt. Some, like our very own June Bud, have found their families by adopting domestically, and some are meant to adopt internationally. Some are meant to do both. All I can say is that, if we get to the year mark, we are part of the group that is meant to adopt internationally. I have done research on both methods. Thought and prayer has gone into the decision, and we know.

Part of me is dreading getting to the year mark and not feeling my future little one kicking inside me. Another part is the part that is scouring adoption websites and blogs, wondering if my baby is halfway around the world, not even born yet, not even the same race or nationality as me, but still mine.

Feeling thoughtful,
Photobucket

No Escape

Well hello blogosphere friends! It has been awhile since my last post. Life has been slightly crazy (although I suppose that is always the case). The last couple of weeks have kept pace with the last year or so, with the same themes emerging as always; 1) Fear about our employment situation, 2) Irritation about our forced inability to TTC at present, and 3) The ongoing desire to get my butt in gear and shape up! So an update in all of my regular categories;

1) EMPLOYMENT: Mr.Fitness Bud was passed on to the next phase of the hiring process for the job that he received a contingent offer for. This is GREAT news. We are fairly confident that he will make it to the end and receive the final offer, but again, after such a difficult year, it is hard to have much confidence in anything. He has a computer based test on Tuesday, and once he passes that, he will move on to the next phase of the process. Thoughts and prayers are welcomed and appreciated! As for me, I don't remember if I mentioned that I got a temporary extension of employment by way of being hired on as staff for the recount in our governor's race. This only buys me an extra month, but it is a lot less work than I was previously doing, and surprisingly enough, more pay, so I really can't complain. Timing is less than impeccable, since this position ends shortly before Christmas, but I am still hoping and praying that something else will come my way in the very near future. If the process goes quickly for Mr.FB, I will have significantly less worry about the timing of my own employment!

2) TTC: Like I said, there is no escape from the constant reminders that basically everyone around me is pregnant, and I am not. I went halfway across the country to visit a friend, whilst there, had lunch with another friend in the area, and what do you know, she announces that she is pregnant. Now, I really and truly could not be more happy for this friend. She is the best kind of person, and will be a wonderful mom. But it still stings, and I feel like a terrible person for feeling that way. I don't even venture onto Facebook much anymore, because I can hardly handle the easily 30% of my friends who are expecting or recently gave birth, and all of their glowing pregnancy pictures or cherubic photos of their little ones. Mr. FB and I talk constantly about how we wish it was our time. How we desperately want children. How he can't wait to be a dad, and how I hope that I have no trouble becoming a mom. I don't know if these conversations make it worse or better, but they are hard to avoid......we are in too deep now. We know this is what we want, and nothing will change it. I had my annual OB visit last week, and it was a sad reminder that my visit last year was a pre-conception visit. I have stopped charting, and just decided not to purchase more PNV's because it gives me false hope. Once this employment thing is worked out, I will go forward with gusto, but not now.

3) SHAPING UP - Well, I have no new pictures to post this week, but I have lost 3 pounds, so I feel good about that! Yesterday I splurged on a piece of pizza and a cake pop, but aside from that, I have been very good. I am actually excited about eating healthily, and excited that I will hopefully start seeing more results.

Until next time,

Fitness Bud.

November 19, 2010

Discoveries

I've discovered something about myself during the TTC process.

I really want a baby.

That's not what I found out about myself. I obviously knew that. Stay with me.

I really want a baby, but I am really, really spacey.

What this boils down to is that, technically, and if anyone asks, which they don't, but if they did, technically, I am taking 1 Prental vitamin, 2 Vitex (see? I don't even know what amount) and 2 cups of Green Tea a day, plus using cheapie internet OPK's daily.

Technically.

In reality, my days look sort of like this:

- Wake up
- Stumble to the bathroom
- While brushing my teeth, allow my eyes to meander across the counter
- Spot Prenatals and Vitex
- Say "Oh snap! I forgot to take my Vitex last night! But I am a responsible, mindful adult, so I'm going to take my Vitamin and my morning Vitex right now."
- Feel adult and responsible
- Go downstairs, running late as usual and forget to make a cup of tea. Don't sweat it. I can drink two later, right?
- Go to work
- Remind myself several times during the day that I need to A) Take my afternoon Vitex B) POAS C)Drink two cups of green tea.
- Stumble home from work mildly exhausted
- Forget to POAS until after 830, when I will suddenly remember but it is too late now
- Make myself a cup of tea that is NOT green. When it is empty and I don't want to drink anything else, remember that I was supposed to have Green Tea.
- Completely forget about Vitex
- Bed
- Repeat

So, to summarize, while Mr. CB and I are keeping to a decent BD schedule, and I am monitoring my CM and I am temping, everything I'm supposed to be doing to help my body along is pretty touch and go. Truth be told, with only taking one Vitex a day, I may as well just start popping jelly beans and calling them fertility aids. I'd probably take them more regularly, actually.

I wonder if Mr. Cherry Bud would buy that.

"No, honey, they help with CM production. And ovulation. and they're basically sperm food. It gives them a sugar high so they swim faster."

Making a resolution to stop losing my mind,
Photobucket

NOYB!

OMG, I totally lied all over my eye doctor's paperwork yesterday. I went in for my yearly check-up, been going there for years, but he's got all these new forms to fill out and I was unprepared for the invasiveness of the questions. It was like a TSA infertility patdown.

Let's see what I wrote down:

Are you pregnant or nursing? Yes/No
Not hard to guess my selection here. But, if they asked if I was menstruating, I would lie and circle "No." I'm surprised the form didn't ask for my LMP.

Please list your current medications, including contraceptives: _______________________
Um, where do I begin here. Does stopping BCPs for this cycle mean I don't take them, or I didn't take them last night but still in general I take them to cycle but not for actual controlling of birth? Lupron shots. Estrogen patches starting tonight. Estrogen pills shoved in dark places starting next week. Progesterone shots in the fanny. 4 doses of folic acid plus prenatals (with built-in stool softener) plus calcium.

Well shoot, there wasn't enough space for me to write all this down so I just left it blank.

Please list all major surgeries: ___________________________________
Do you REALLY want to know? What do 2 egg retrievals and 2 D&Cs have to do with my eyes? Like I'm going to tell you this. My parents go to the same clinic. Loose lips sink HIPAA ships. No thanks.

I left the line blank. It's not like I lied and wrote "None," right?

<List of health issues omitted but basically I had to go and put check marks next to all kinds of symptoms and maladies>

Other health issues not listed above: ______________________________
Am I supposed to write "infertility" here? Seriously? If my health insurance won't treat it, it's not a health issue and therefore I don't have to indicate it here. Thankyouverymuch.

What do you like to do for fun?____________________________
At this point I was so annoyed that I left this line blank. This is what infertility has done to me. (But the truth is I love photography, so I'm not completely devoid of inner life and happiness. I just don't feel the need to answer this question on some stupid form.)

In other more relevant news, I had my suppression check yesterday and everything looked perfect. No cysts to foul up the cycle, and I have to say that I thought my uterus looked pretty good (the lining was thin as expected, but I just thought it looked really good on the screen). I start my estrogen patches tonight and decrease my Lupron, which is a good thing because I've got a Lupron headache that's driving me crazy.

I'll check in as the cycle progresses.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Golden Bud

November 18, 2010

Here at 37 weeks, I'm like the post office....

... delivering the post in the rain, sleet, snow and now even in the face of a completely dysfunctional laptop.

My mother used my laptop the other day. She was waiting for the crib delivery for me while I had an appointment. I thought I was being nice by leaving it all internet ready for her. Ugh. That night it was all over. Thankfully, Mr DB is an IT manager and got right on trying to figure out what was wrong. Initially, my virus scanner found two cookie trackers and a virus, which it scrubbed... but later, a more advanced scanner found traces of a "rootkit", which apparently has some positive connotations, but not in this case.

So, i've now been without my laptop for 2 days. Hopefully I'll have it back by tomorrow morning, because I really need to do some school work.

Anyway, so here's me - on my husbands MacBook. I have no idea how to use this thing, so bear with me!

I know I said I'm like the post office - but in this case, the only thing I'm delivering at this time IS this post. As of my weekly appointment yesterday, my cervix is still closed, but softening. I am taking evening primrose oil twice a day to help that process, but like many of the "wives tales", they're not going to work until your body is ready for them too. And I'm only 37 weeks 1 day. I'm not in a big hurry. Smudge will come when s/he's ready. I've been taking my vitamin C though, to help make sure that my membranes don't rupture before i go into labor. The last thing I want to do is be watching a clock, and be given a limit on how long they'll let my labor go. As long as they stay intact, i'm good to go. Smudge is dropping though. The head is closer to my cervix than last week, so that's a bonus.

Last week was a really disappointing moment for me, when for the first time in my pregnancy, I had an uncontrollable weight gain. In 2 weeks I had gained 4 pounds, which I was horrified about. Until that point, I had been doing REALLY well. I'm blaming it on a number of things.
  1. I had finally given in to some cravings, which I hadn't before at all. Oh bread - how I missed thee.
  2. I wasn't as good about my water intake.
  3. I was drinking a LOT of orange juice.
  4. I was eating a bit too much salt.
All of those things combined did not do me any favors on the scale. But I'm THRILLED to report that although I didn't lose weight this week, I also didn't gain anything. So, i'm at 21 pounds for 37 weeks. Not horrible, I don't think. Yes, it's over my initial goal of 20 pounds for the pregnancy, but I think at this point, if I don't go over 25 i've done a really good job.


37 weeks and counting!

Meanwhile, we've been busy trying to get everything ready for the baby in the house.

The nursery is just about done. Auntie DB is coming by on sunday to help me get everything ready while Mr DB finishes a couple of projects that I would like done before the baby comes. But this is where we are right now! I still have a couple of diapers to prep, but I'm going to wait another week. A VERY generous online friend is sending me some diapers, and I'm just going to wait to wash them all together. Check out our nursery so far... we're almost done!!

Story Corner

places to hang out in the living room


diaper central

oodles of prepped diapers

our crib

So, i know this isn't a very exciting update. 37 weeks pregnant. Nothing exciting to report. Taking the EPO to try to help things along. Drinking my Red Raspberry Leaf tea to strengthen my uterus for labor. And waiting.

Waiting.

Waiting.

Waiting.

I'll leave you with this. It made my day yesterday when we got home from the doctor. In the middle of November, when everything else around it is dead and dying.... the morning after a horrid thunderstorm with damaging winds... this little guy refuses to give up and go. Sticking it out, knowing only the strongest will survive.

Stubborn Dandelion


There's a full moon this sunday.... i'm not saying anything, and I certainly won't be surprised to be just a little more pregnant on monday than I am today. But i'm a big believer in the full moon. So, I guess we'll see!




ER and Fert Report

Yesterday was egg retrieval day. I went in at 9am and they brought me back to the room where they do the ER's, which looked like a hospital. I was completely under for the procedure so I don't remember anything about it, but the whole experience wasn't too bad. I laid in the bed for an hour or so after and then Mr. Sassy Bud drove me home. I spent most of the day sleeping afterward. I am not in much pain today and I am back at work.

The doctor also called with our fert report this morning. We had 28 eggs retrieved yesterday. Out of those 28, 24 were mature, and they fertilized 20!!

We are definitely looking at a 5 day transfer with that many embryos, so I will go back on Monday for the ET. My cycle has gone so well that this has to result in a BFP, right? I'm scared to even think that far in advance.

Tonight I start progesterone shots (PIO) so that should be fun. They are supposed to be the worst of the shots that I have taken so far, but at this point I am not really phased by anything.

I will update after the ET unless I hear any other news on Saturday when they call with an update.

S/O SSDD

I want to start by sending my thoughts and prayers to all our buds who have recently lost their little ones. I can't even begin to imagine how you are feeling. I hope you all get your sticky baby soon.

As I was walking around the mall the other day, I was thinking about my next post. Something my mother had said to me the night before was ringing in my ear. "Remember years ago," she started, "when you desperately wanted to find the guy you were supposed to marry. This process isn't much different than that. You found a fantastic guy and time for a baby will come." Not totally comforting at the time as I had spent the night before with my college friends and the conversation revolved around my friend's pregnancy, shower, etc. However a few days later, I can accept it a little better. Maybe this is an SSDD process, same sh!t, different decade. Haven't I experienced all this before. The pain at hearing about a friend's (no matter how distant) engagement. Have to keep it together through my cousin's wedding, when I was as single as I was all through high school. See women with engagements rings everywhere. Every commercial on TV was for David's Bridal or an upcoming show about yet another couple getting married. Holding hope that every guy I dated (and there were plenty in college) was the one and we would live happily ever after. I was even engaged at one time. At the time the ending of that relationship was devastating, but looking back, it was the exact right thing to do. Will I think the same thing about this crazy TTC journey? Is my life really just repeating itself?

It is beginning to get bad. When I was on said shopping trip, I noticed that mall was decorated for Christmas. I remember last year around this time thinking "I will have my baby by next year or at least be very pregnant." It's crazy (and a little painful) to think we are no closer to that goal. I have only become a little more neurotic and depressed. It seems like anything will set me off. Santa waved to me in the mall and I had to duck in the nearest store to try to keep the tears from falling. I see adds for performances of the Nutcracker and my eyes water. This was my favorite thing about the holidays as a child and I can't wait to share it. When did the season that was my absolute favorite time of the year turn into the time of year I am seriously dreading?

I am desperately trying to hold onto the old adage of "It will happen, when it is meant to", but I am not the most patient person. Unlike the journey of trying to find the "one", if I don't succeed one night, I can't go out and try the next. I have wait an entire month to try again. At least our results appointment in about two weeks (November 29th). As scared as I am to know that something is wrong, I am even more scared that everything is going to come back and say there is nothing wrong, just unexplained infertility. I don't know if Mr. PB and I are ready to jump into medical interventions, but I also don't know if I could really continue just trying.

Ladies, I wish you a happy and fulfilling Thanksgiving. I am lucky to have a large and healthy family, which includes all four of my grandparents and four little 2nd cousins. I just need to focus on them until I am blessed with my own. Next time I post, I will have results for you.

November 17, 2010

Mixed Feelings...

I was taking some time to catch up withy fellow Buds, and wanted to start off by sending my heart and my thoughts to my girls Golden Bud, Magnolia Bud, Sarcastic Bud and Blueberry Bud... As someone new to this TTC journey, I can't even begin to imagine what you are going through. We are here for you! I am praying that you will all have your take home baby soon...

And to Sunflower Bud, congratulations!!! :) What an exciting time!! A H&H 9 months to you and your LO.

Well, the Holidays are here... We cannot deny it anymore. I went to the Mall with my mother the other day to buy a gown for a concert, and couldn't help but notice the beautiful Holiday decorations and Christmas music :) it truly is the most wonderful time of the year!!!!

I finally got my insurance card, and will begin converting myself into a lab-rat soon, having various tests done, and searching for a good RE to see if I can get my weight under control, and start a family with Mr. DBud.

I was kind of hoping we would've had a nice little "We're pregnant" announcement for our families on Thanksgiving... but it doesn't seem like that's the case. I am sure I'll still POAS that day, for kicks, but I have a feeling I will just see a BFN. This cycle was a bust for us, considering my schedule completely sucked and I was lazy about temping and stuff. Shame on me :-/

Though, I must admit, I still feel a bit lost with this TTC stuff. I always read about fellow buds drinking teas, and taking vitamins, etc... I want to learn about that stuff too. Like, what else can I do to give my fertility a little boost?? Any advice?? :)




- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

November 16, 2010

And we have doubling!

I had to go in for a repeat beta today, only 24 hours later because we're leaving for vacation tomorrow. They weren't expecting much, just hoping for a rise.

Well, we got a rise.

25!! A little over double in 24 hours!!! Squeeeeeee!!!

I POAS again this afternoon and my line was even darker. There was definitely no squinting needed at all.

Symptoms so far are some nausea, fatique, lots of cramps and serious gas. But I am so incredibly thankful for each and every one of those!!!

SSDD

That's code for "Same Sh!t, Different Day," an acronym I borrowed from Stephen King's movie DreamCatcher. It perfectly sums up the life of an infertile. You know, the real kind. The ones who aren't TTC'ing unless they're in a DE 2WW. The ones who don't BD unless they feel like it. It's all hurry up and wait. Initial here. Sign here. Put your legs here. No "Hail Mary OE cycle" that ends in a BFP. No spending months publicly mourning a loss in a blog and then one day writing "Monday: a line. Faint, but there."

In other words, I have nothing exciting to report.

But life goes on. I'm eating poorly (but satisfyingly and deliciously). I drink soft drinks. I drink hot tea. I take a hot bath every night. I stopped taking prenatals for awhile (but for everyone's sake still take my megadoses of folic acid). I haven't even printed out my FET calendar. I'm going by memory. Today I sent DH to the clinic to sign paperwork and pay for this cycle ($2795). On Thursday I go in for a suppression check. I know how it's going to go: everything looks great, lining is thin, no cysts. Blah blah blah. Been there, done that.

Can we please just get this over with?

Just an update...

Not much is new in June Bud land! We are patiently (well, for me it is IMPATIENTLY) waiting for the adoption application to arrive from adoption agency we have decided to work with. Sooooo, in the meantime, I am trying desperately to focus on brighter things...like the holidays!! We are very busy between now and then, so it will probably all pass like a BLUR!

The most fun part of the holidays is that my almost 4 year old, has a great understanding of the holidays now, and already has a Christmas list a MILE long. It is so funny to hear him talk about Santa, and what he wants him to bring etc etc. It will be fun to see his reaction Christmas morning, because although he was cute last Christmas, I think he thought we just bought all the toys for him and he was just one lucky little kid! So, I cannot wait to see his face when he thinks Santa really came. We are also going to visit family in MA and NH over the holidays, and I am looking forward to him seeing snow...so it better snow!

Onto other topics. I am still dieting. It has been 3 weeks and I am only down about 13-14 pounds, so it is driving me crazy. I keep telling myself not to give up, but it sure is hard!

Hope everyone else is doing well!

Love,

June Bud

November 15, 2010

Today...

Today I am frustrated because my OPK's, while slowly darkening, are stubbornly refusing to show a positive.

Today I am jealous because a high school friend got to see her LO's heartbeat

Today I am remembering the sweet baby I held yesterday, her chubby, jelly filled cheeks, and how much I wished I had been holding my own.

Today I am refusing to allow the fear of never being a mother overwhelm me

Today I am ecstatic because of Sunflower Bud's BFP. Congratulations again and again, my dear!

Today I am heartbroken because of all the lost LO's here on Bloomin' Babies. Magnolia Bud, Golden Bud, Sarcastic Bud, and Blueberry Bud...ladies, I don't even know what to say, but each of your updates absolutely broke my heart for each of you. I wish there was some magic I could work to give each of you your take-home baby. Life is indescribably unfair and you are all in my prayers.

Photobucket

Beta #1 is in

12.8

Not that fabulous. The nurse said it was low but it was within normal range for the timing of my cycle.

I'm praying that this is a sticky baby. I don't know if I can handle another loss.

Since I can't go in Wednesday for a repeat beta, I am going tomorrow afternoon around 4pm. That will be about 32 hours since the last draw. They are hoping for a decent rise.

My progesterone rose to 35 which she said was fabulous.

*fingers crossed* Please God, let this be it.

I need to play the lottery...

If you recall, the RE gave us very dismal odds at this cycle working due to poor stim response and a sperm/CM issue where most of the sperm were paralyzed once they hit my CM.

Well, I did it. I beat the odds.

I never in my life thought I'd be posting this.



I went in for my beta this morning and am still waiting for the results. On a whim, I decided to POAS and was in complete and utter shock when that popped up on the screen. The line on the FRER was barely there, almost nonexistent. I screamed and then started crying.

I am in total shock.

I'm due on my birthday. :)

Triggering tonight!

I can't believe it's time already.


Today was my final monitoring appointment. The RE said everything looks great and I will be triggering tonight! That puts the egg retrieval on Wednesday morning. The nurse should be calling this afternoon with the exact time that I take the trigger shot.


Stims were not too bad at all. I had a headache one day, and I am extremely bloated. I did end up with a skin infection that I am guessing was from all the hormone changes, but that is almost cleared up and isn't causing me any discomfort anymore.


I tried to keep track of how many follicles there were this morning, but honestly there were so many I lost track! My lining was at 11.1 and the RE said that was a great number. I am glad that there have been very few issues during my cycle. I guess we are lucky that MFI was the only thing that was keeping us from getting pregnant.


I will update after the retrieval. Hopefully I have lots of eggs!

November 14, 2010

No June Bug for us

Today I went in for an u/s to confirm a heartbeat (7w3d) and I was diagnosed with a missed miscarriage. There was no heartbeat. The only ominous sign was a small amount of brown-streaked CM last Tuesday. I guess that was it. I still feel pregnant and my cervix is still closed. I haven't had any cramping yet. I am going in tomorrow for Cytotec. I have a d&c scheduled for next Wednesday just in case the Cytotec doesn't work completely. I knew finally getting pregnant was just too good to be true.

I was thinking today that it is so cruel that all four of us buds who would have had June babies lost them one after another (Magnolia Bud, Golden Bud, Sarcastic Bud, and now myself). Sometimes life just sucks. I pray all of us Buds still waiting will get our sticky, healthy, take-home babies -- G-d knows we want them badly enough and deserve to be moms (or second-time moms).

November 13, 2010

Tough

I never thought I would say this, but I think this is the miscarriage that has finally broken me. Every day seems like a struggle, and is not left without some sort of tears being shed. I think most of this comes from the fact that I am still bleeding. We are almost reaching the 3 week mark, and I am reminded of my loss every day.

I finally passed tissue last night and immediately broke down into giant, unattractive, sobbing tears. Never did I think that 2 years ago when I decided to have a baby, that all of this heartache and frustration would be what was in store for me. I have spent my life trying to prevent unplanned pregnancies so I could further develop myself and my career - and after waiting so long, this is what I have to deal with? It just doesn't seem right.

We went to the High Risk Pregnancy Specialist on Monday and were told what we have always been told. All of your tests are normal, and because of that reason, we feel you will have a positive outcome. Really? Because I'm starting to lose hope of anything positive. They said they could not even classify me as high risk because I was losing pregnancies so early. This I do not understand.

I'm not sure where I want to go from here. All I can tell you is that right now? I am emotionally and physically exhausted. But what I do know is that I been pushing both my mind and body to the limits for the past 2 years and I think it is time for both of them to take a break.

Finally some good news for a change!

I had my 7dpo blood work done yesterday. My estradiol was 221 and my progesterone was 28.1. The nurse was very pleased with both of those numbers and said they were wonderful.

She knows I've been stressing about that 14mm follicle maturing so she told me that a woman in the office triggered with an 18, 14, and 14 and found out yesterday that she is expecting triplets. She said we can't be 100% sure but there are some good indications that my 14mm most likely matured and released an egg too.

I tested out my trigger and it's completely gone now. So now I wait for it to turn dark again. :)

I've had some serious exhaustion which has been putting me to bed much earlier than normal for me. Last night, I had sore boobs and yesterday afternoon some dull cramping for about an hour. Hopefully those are all good signs!

November 11, 2010

Beta Update and Hello from Atlanta

I got a call yesterday from the midwife to let me know my betas are already down to 21. That's a good thing. (Except it doesn't feel like a good thing...I want to still be pregnant!) Mr. Magnolia Bud and I are definitely excited to get back to TTC as soon as we can, and as lame as this sounds, I'm excited to take my supplements again. I'm taking this cycle off of everything to give myself a break, but I am looking forward to being proactive in the vitamins I'm taking.

Also, just wanted to say "Hi" from Atlanta! I'm here to give a presentation at a conference, and it's the first time I've spoken at a national conference. My program was this afternoon, and it went really well! There was great audience participation, and I think everyone who attended my session found the topic and materials useful. I've been really, really sick the last two days, and when I was still throwing up late last night I was very worried that I wasn't going to be able to make it downtown to speak today. Thankfully, about 11pm, I started feeling a smidge better. Today, I still feel weak and a little queasy, but I was well enough to get out of bed, shower, and give my talk. I'm resting up now, since I'm meeting one of Mr. Magnolia Bud's best friends for dinner later. Hope I'm on the mend!

Lots of love,
Magnolia Bud

November 10, 2010

Spent $600 in 5 minutes!

Hi Buds and Bud readers! Long time, no see. I've been trying to stay away from all things baby for awhile but wanted to submit a quick report.

I had my $600 out-of-pocket hysteroscopy today, just to confirm that my uterus isn't scarred shut or some other nightmare diagnosis. I am happy to report that it looked flawless! I am not happy to report that I wasn't told to take Ibuprofen beforehand and this time it hurt like hell. But it was totally worth it to confirm that my uterus is in good shape for our upcoming frozen embryo transfer.

Speaking of which, I started Lupron last night. I am also on BCPs (for now) and my suppression check is on November 18. I'll begin estrogen patches and supps shortly thereafter. So now it's hurry up and wait until December 17. We will definitely be thawing and transferring 2 this time. Assuming all goes well, we'll still have 3 frosties left for another cycle.

Will get caught up on the Bud reports this weekend.
Take care everyone!

Golden Bud

No time for anything :-/

I have been so incredibly busy... I can't even begin to explain!! The only times that I have been home are to sleep and shower. Between work and the Opera, it's just crazy! Thankfully after this weekend things will slightly let up... And I have to say that I am truly thankful for tomorrow's Holiday... But then there's a recital, and the Holidays and a Wedding... Life doesn't stop!

I haven't even been able to chart... :-/ according to FF, I am ovulating this week, which is really not fitting into our schedule (boo). On top of that there's just no energy (especially on my end) to BD. I put Mr. DBud to help with laundry this week too, because I am so overwhelmed!!! Ugh... Yes, I know, I am such a Diva! Haha :) thank God for him! He really helped :)

Well, the good news is, I finally got my insurance card! So I am going to make an appointment to get a referral for the R.E.... I was looking, and found one that specializes in fertility... So we shall see!!

Other than that, it is what it is... My cousin had her little baby girl this past weekend... She is one of those lucky ones getting pregnant on het first try... Ha! If it were only so for all of us on here...



- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

November 8, 2010

The End...and New Beginnings

Today I had my final appointment at the midwife's office for this pregnancy. No internal (thankfully), and two tubes of blood (betas...phlebotomist drew into the wrong tube the first time around). I'm not going to be going back for repeat betas after today. The midwife recommended waiting for two periods before we try again, so that puts us at January (give or take) before we can TTC again.

I stopped spotting yesterday, and the midwife told me that with normal use of cytotec, women will have a period about four weeks after using it. Because the bulk of my miscarriage happened naturally, she thinks it may come earlier than that, or around that time frame. Since I'm charting, she said I'd probably have some indication (hopefully ovulation) that AF is on her way. We also talked about fertility supplements and fertility teas, and she recommended starting to drink a fertility tea to help my body recover after the miscarriage.

I expected this appointment to be a relief, knowing that we could move on, but instead it made me sad. Sad because I should be hearing the heartbeat on doppler now; sad because this is the end; and sad because we have to start over...and we can't start over quite yet.

So for the next couple of months, I'm going to work on getting my body and mind back in baby-ready shape. My half marathon/full marathon weekend kicks off two months from today (it's the Disney World Goofy Challenge), and I'm taking part in the 200-situps challenge with several online friends. I'm also going to continue with my yoga practice, and to make some headway on my 101 in 1001 list I'm going to be taking part in a Yogathon in December: 108 sun salutations in an afternoon to raise money for lung cancer research.

That all said, my posts for the next two months will probably involve workouts, charting, stories from my travels, and projects around the house. I won't be enjoying the break from TTC, but I'm going to make it productive.

Next time you hear from me, I'll be in Atlanta! I'm heading down to speak at a conference, but am more than happy to visit--we used to live there, and one of my BFF's lives there (with her 7-month old baby, who is TOO adorable). I'll be there the rest of the week.

Hope you all have a good week.
Lots of love,
Magnolia Bud

Started Stims

Yesterday I went to the RE for my suppression check. Ovaries, lining, and bloodwork were all good and they had me start my stimulation meds last night.


I am taking Follistim, Novarel, and Lupron. I am not having a good time with the side effects so far. I was up all night with pretty severe pain in my left breast. Hopefully this passes quickly. Taking 3 shots a night is not all that fun either. I have a lot of bruising on my stomach. At least no one else will see it. Now that the complaining is out of the way, I STARTED STIMS!!!! Things are moving quickly. Hopefully ER is soon!


My next monitoring appointment is in 2 days. I'll update with our progress.

November 7, 2010

Fitness Post #1

Well friends, after my last post I promised I would be more diligent about posting regarding health, fitness, weight-loss and all of the things I am currently struggling with. I never thought I would say it, but my job is finally over, meaning 2 things; 1) I am officially unemployed, 2) I have officially gained an additional 80 hours per week that were previously lost to my job. I figure if I even spend 10 of those working out, that I am in really good shape!

After my last post, I was so appreciative of the comments that I recieved. It feels good to be supported in these struggles, and to know that there are others who have been through it, and/or are willing to encourage me along the way. I have spent the last several days catching up on sleep after being completely consumed with work for the past several months, so today was the first day that I have really been "back in action." I did laundry, got out of the house, and started setting myself up to get healthy and accomplish my weight loss goals.

This morning I met a friend for a walk. We did a 4.5 mile route and kept up a pretty good clip. I had every intention of taking the pup for a walk when I got home, but as per usual, my back was bothering me, so instead, I am trying to talk myself into going to the gym and riding the bike for a bit. :) Today I also signed back on to The Daily Plate. I decided that I need to keep good track of what I am eating so that I can get my calories under control and really start making progress towards losing weight. I stayed within my calories today, which was great, but I realize that I will need to be a LOT more conscious in the coming weeks or I will easily fall back in to the trap of mindless eating and continued weight gain.
Although I am so incredibly embarassed about this, I have decided to take the plunge and post some weight loss progress pictures, in hopes that it will keep me accountable, and maybe help someone else too. It's strange to be on a board where most women are posting beautiful pictures of their growing baby-bellies, and here I am posting my fat belly, with hopes that it will get smaller before it gets bigger! I beg of you, please be gentle in your criticisms, this is really hard for me to do, but I am doing it anyways, for the reasons I mentioned above.


My goal is to post the following weekly:


* Progress photos (See below)


* Previous and current weight 148.6 (current)


* Previous and current measurements Chest: 37" Waist: 33" Hips: 43 1/2"


* Accomplishments and setbacks for the previous week I signed up for the Daily Plate again, and I went on a 4.5 mile walk today. Setbacks....still eating when I am not hungry, and not drinking enough water. Since this is my first post however, I hope that I will have more positive things to say next week!

So without further adieu:




Don't Pee on Your Hand and other lessons from OPK's

I'm a week into my first round of OPK's, and while I haven't gotten a positive yet(completely expected), I am enjoying the sense of "doing something". It makes me feel productive. I also feel much more educated on a few things that I wish I had known before I started using them.

1. If you care enough about the environment not to own little plastic cups (but not enough to care that you are throwing away a tiny pee stick every day), and you use a little ceramic cup that you totally make sure to wash after every use, DON'T leave the cup out on the counter. Even after its washed and sanitized, which it is, your husband doesn't want to accidentally drink out of it. Hide this stuff.

2. If you keep your HPT's in the same box as your OPK's, make sure you retrieve your OPK's before asking your husband to hide the box from you. Getting the box back when it's time to start testing for O will initiate an interrogation ala the Mcarthy Era, and will end with you yelling "I just want the green ones! They SAY "ovulation" on them! Now bring them to me or we'll never have a baby!"

3. Holding out a pee stick to your husband with the words "Does this look negative to you?" without explaining to him what he is looking at will only earn you the words, "I can see your pee on it". Granted, once you DO explain what he is looking at, he will be more than happy to help you out.

4. Learn to aim. Peeing on ones hand is not advisable, as the fingernails do not detect LH. Also, it's a little gross.

Still washing my hands,
Photobucket

Busy, Busy, Busy ...

Mr. Blessed Bud and I have been extremely busy with work and I recently started working part-time for the holidays. With all of this pre-holiday hustle and bustle going on, we have decided to move our IVF cycle to January 2011. It is not that far away when you think about all of the pre-cycle things that have to be done the month prior to starting stims. Since my clinic cycles in groups, I will be back on BCP's in December, which is right around the corner...


Photography Credit



Until Next Time,

time is seriously flying!


Today marks 37 weeks for Little Baby MB! Meaning, I'm full term and he is safe to come whenever he'd like!


It's been a while since I posted, but not much has been happening. Since I've been on modified bed rest I've just been trying to take it easy. We got a lot of our home renovations completed a few weeks ago in preparation for baby. The nursery is coming along nicely, too. It's sooooo close to being done! This is the Art wall! I'll post more about it once things are more finished in there.

My Dr appointments have been going well. Baby MB is passing his NSTs with flying colors each week. Last week we had our growth ultrasound, he looks just like his daddy. It's incredible. He's got the chubbiest cheeks!

We've got a *possible* induction date set for 11/22 if for some reason my blood pressure goes back up (Doc just wanted to book it in case this happens)... but I'm hoping he comes on his own here soon!

Sending lots of baby dust to everyone out there! Thank you for joining me on our journey :)

6w3d update

I realized I hadn't updated in quite a while! Last Monday I had my 3rd beta draw at 25 dpiui (5w4d). My hcg level was 3567, up from 279 at 18 dpiui, so thankfully there was a nice doubling. We also saw the RE that same afternoon. He did do an u/s, though he warned us that there would likely not be much to see. All we could really see was a small gestational sac, but it did give us peace of mind that at least Baby G implanted in my uterus. Also, we only saw one sac, so while we can't quite yet rule out multiples, all indications point towards a singleton pregnancy.

Prof. L told us that our chances of an early miscarriage are 15%, compared to the normal 10%, but if we are able to detect a fetal heartbeat, the chance will decrease to ~7% and will again further decrease to 3% at the end of first tri. I am still so scared but at the same time so hopeful, too. When I was struggling to get pregnant, it was difficult to think beyond the excitement and thrill of some time getting a BFP. Now that I am there, I haven't really experienced the ecstacy I imagined because I am so frightened to lose the little life growing inside me. I am so scared of waking up one day soon to "game over" and having to go back to square one with the dreaded fertility treatments.

Everything about this process has been so hard and uncertain until now, it is difficult to imagine that anything could proceed smoothly without lots of emotional pain. In short, after a lot of disappointment, finally being pregnant just feels too good to be true. I am just trying to remember, that even if my odds ARE worse than the average gal, the odds still are in my favor that this pregnancy will continue and I will get my Baby G at the end of it all.

Our next u/s will be next Sunday (exactly a week from today) at 7w3d. I pray that I will get to see our baby's strong and perfect heartbeat, the most beautiful image I can possibly imagine.

November 6, 2010

It has been quite a month

About two weeks ago, Mr. PB received some bad news. He had been laid off once again. This economy has hit him hard since he is a warehouse/manufacturing worker. These seem to be the first jobs cut. When we found this out, we were a few days into my cycle and a few days away from our first RE appointment. As I mentioned in my last post, we decided to keep our consultation to begin the process of getting answers, but we, more specifically I, decided that we need to put our TTC on hold. I just couldn't try to expand our family with only one income.
I went to my HSG on Monday. It was definitely an interesting experience. The doctor pegged me as a teacher right away and began talking about my curriculum and books as he was beginning the procedure. Definitely a little awkward. The HSG looked good. I was all clear. He did notice a slight abnormality in my uterian shape, so I will have to have an ultrasound to make sure that there isn't a fibroid or anything pushing it in.
On the heels of that good news, we found out Mr. PB got a job. It is about 40 minutes from our house and a decent pay. Just in time for O! TTC looked like it was on again this month. However that fact that he had to be in by 7 AM threw a wrench into this plan and his scheduled S/A. I ended up calling the lab and begging for him to be moved to the end of this week. While they were able to fit him in on Thursday, it wasn't the best timing. We had been avoiding, so he hadn't released in about 6 days at the time of the S/A. However when we made the appointment on Tuesday afternoon, there was really no way around it. We were able to BD that evening as well and catch my O, but I am not sure how effective it was with his S/A earlier in the day.
I still have to schedule day 3 bloodwork and an ultrasound before hearing our results on November 29th. I am not sure I can wait that long. I think I will be harassing our RE's office to try to get the results earlier. Hopefully the next few months are a little less crazy.

November 5, 2010

I demand a recount!

I love my baby. Smudge is going to come out, come hell or high water. If I have anything to say about it, the birth will be med-free and my doula will be a huge source of support for me.

To that end, I specifically requested a 6 1/2 pound child.

I don't think that was out of line - i've been through a lot to get this far, and i figure the least I deserve is a relatively easy birth.

So - to find out today that Smudge (at 35w2d) is measuring about 5 pounds and 12 ounces... well, I almost fell off the ultrasound table. Now, before you start telling me how those measurements can be way off and blahblahblah... yes I know. I'm not completely delusional. However, you also have to remember that IVF pregnancies are frequently monitored a lot more closely, and i've had a LOT of measurements done. Most done by the same sonographer at the perinatologist. So, this isn't just based off of one growth scan. This is based off of many scans in the last 5 months.

I can also tell you that we saw, very clearly, one big fat thigh, when he was measuring the femur today. No chicken legs on this kid. I just hope some of it is in his/her cheeks as well!

35 week 2 day belly shot. We forgot to take one wednesday when I turned.

Anyway - measurement wise, everything looks great. Head is measuring 35w3d, femur 35w3d and abdomen 35w5d. Baby had a full bladder today - but hey - so did mom, so that's fine. Smudge is DEFINITELY head down, but not engaged in my pelvis yet. That feeling in my ribs - i was right - it's not a foot. It's a butt. I kept telling DH it was WAY too big to be a foot. However, feet... straight down - like reverse breech. At least during the u/s when we saw a foot right by Smudge's mouth. Hands were balled up in little fists on either side of the face. But, as I'm typing, they're tapping on my cervix and I have some weird movements kind of on my liver, so who knows where this kid's extremities are now!

So, right now, Smudge is positioned really well. Head down, butt up, and body kind of everywhere. S/he certainly is big enough.

We also picked our pediatrician today. It was a really close contest; there were two that we loved. But it came down to convenience, and one just had better hours and was much closer. So - we're just about ready. Sometime in the next 5 weeks, I'm going to be a mom.

Holy crap.

Let the wait begin!

Wednesday's monitoring appointment was a bit better. My follies grew to: 18, 14, 13, 13. One dropped off so they didn't even tell me the measurement. My E2 took a nice leap to around 350 which they were very pleased with. The nurse told me that it indicated that there *could* be more than one egg. That would make me happy because I was a bit bummed at only one good follicle.

They had me trigger Wednesday night at 7pm. I shoved a bag of frozen corn down my pants to numb that butt cheek good and cold. Mr. Sunflower Bud seemed to really enjoy doing that shot. I only cried just a little bit. :) I am so not a needle person at all.

I'm hoping that the 14mm follie caught up to maturity by ovulation. I'm having cramping pains on both sides so hopefully that is a great sign of ovulation on both sides. The 18 was on the right and the 14 was on the left.

Thursday morning was the second post coital. This test was not good. My cervical mucous was much better than it was on Tuesday. Dr. P said it was clear and flowing and he was very pleased with it. However... the majority of DH's sperm were not swimming around freely. Instead they were staying in one place just shaking like they had been electrocuted or having a seizure. Dr. P let me see this under the scope and it was the weirdest thing. Mr. Sunflower Bud's sperm analysis was "donor quality" so we were perplexed by this. Dr. P believes that one of us has a sperm antibody that is causing the sperm to react this way. He estimated that only around 10% of the sperm on the slide were actually swimming properly.

So... our chances for this cycle working are much lower than we anticipated. We're giving it our all with sex twice a day until Saturday but we're really just kind of looking at it as a learning cycle. They will be better able to adjust my dosage of Follistim next cycle now that we now I need to start out at a more aggressive dose since I didn't respond very well to the lower dose this cycle.

We're also scheduled for IBT testing to determine if one of us has the sperm antibody. Mr. Sunflower Bud has to have another SA since it's been a year since his last one and they are also going to do infection testing on him as well.

Going forward, Dr. P said that we will go straight to IUI and will not consider TI anymore due to the "shaking sperm" problem.

As is in my nature... I've already started testing out the trigger because I just enjoy seeing 2 lines on a test. Already getting lighter, yay! Hopefully it won't last the whole 10 days.

November 4, 2010

Unmotivated Bud is Unmotivated

My chart is behaving a bit oddly. My temps are a good bit higher than they normally are this early in the cycle, but the hills and valleys thing looks only too familiar, so, you know, whatever.

Right now, my motivation to temp and chart is falling off the proverbial deep end. It's not that I'm giving up. Not even close. I'm just finding myself waking up in the morning and forgetting to temp, and then saying "oh well. I'll temp tomorrow." Or, like I did this morning, waking up at 7:30, rolling this way and that (because if I ignore the fact that its morning, it can stay bedtime, right? Right?), and probably completely muddling my temp. So I'm not really sure that my temps are incredibly accurate, but CM doesn't lie, and there is no way I'm ovulating any time soon.

A few firsts this cycle:

Vitex: I can't be sure if it's doing its job or not, though my sex drive is lower than normal and I've heard that's a pretty common side effect. Affect? Effect?

OPK's: Started those on Tuesday. A little early, perhaps, but I have forty of them and I don't want to miss the elusive surge. Illusive? Elusive?

NaNoWriMo: I'm participating this month. I don't think that has anything to do with my fertility, but it's still pretty nifty, I think.

Trying to force myself into motivation,
Photobucket
 

Bloomin' Babies Copyright 2010 All Rights Reserved Bloomin' Babies Designed by Kate M. Gilbert