Monday, March 31, 2014

Me time

Right now I'm spending time resting up and keeping these two little embryos safe. You'd think that watching seasons of Friends while learning how to knit and having endless time to waste on Pinterest would be heavenly, but it's not.

I'm not made for this. I'm made to be cleaning, organizing, creating and being active. I went downstairs today to stretch the legs and warm up my heating pad (cold feet) and I could see dust and dog hair on the floor... I really really wanted to just sweep. 

But these to little ones are my future. The sweeping, dusting and scouring can wait till next week, now it's all about keeping them cozy. 

So I have big plans for the coming weekend that include finishing Canyon's baseball quilt, organizing the office and going for a walk. 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Bumps and Music

Friday was the day I was expecting a phone call from the office updating me on my embryos and giving me the instructions for the the transfer. I waited all day, never letting my phone out of sight. 

Finally it came time for Zach and I to drive up to Salt Lake to go to a concert (don't worry I took it easy) that we had purchased tickets for months ago. We drove up to UVU to drop C off with his grandma and the phone rang. 4:55pm. Last minute. The nurse informed me that only 2 of the 26 embryos were in the normal development range and the rest were VERY far behind. They weren't expecting the others to make it. The two that were our now lead embryos weren't all that great either but good enough to wait and do a day 5 blastocyst transfer. 

I was a little devastated. We drove to Salt Lake quietly, Zach holding my hand as I mulled over what it all meant. We ate a little dinner and I decided I didn't want to ruin the night and pushed it aside. 

The concert, Wakey! Wakey!, was held at this little place called Kilby Court. Seriously tiny. I think there were maybe 30 people in attendance. It was amazing. I got to sit and listen to amazing music without all the pushing and shoving. The opener, Casey Shea, was amazing and his first song was about someone he loved but couldn't have, let me tell you I balled my eyes out. There is a little one waiting for us and I just didn't understand at that moment why it had to be so hard. 

After my hysterical break down things just felt better. I was at peace. I still didn't love what was happening with our little embryos but it was all going to be okay. 

Jallette Johnson preformed next, and was awesome. I had never heard of her but I think I'll download some of her music. 

And then there's Wakey! Wakey! They were amazing. I'm not kidding. No amount of disappointment could keep me from enjoying the atmosphere and the music. 

We drove home with higher spirits and a resolve to be okay with whatever happened.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Ovarian Hyper-stimulation Syndrome

After yesterday's update things went down hill. My abdomen started to swell and I went up three pounds. The pain was worse and I was having a hard time breathing. My fluid out put was a little low and by 10 last night I was about ready to call the clinic's emergency line. After some deliberation, I drank another protein shake, took my hydrocodone and went to bed. I went to bed dreaming of having to cancel my fresh cycle and wait; it broke my heart just a little. 

Good news, in the middle of the night I started diruesing. I eliminated over a liter of fluid. I woke up being able to breathe and down 4lbs. I am so grateful. Today I'm going to be taking it even easier than yesterday, and hopefully things won't get any worse. 

I want to send a little shout out to all my friends, especially those close. Everyone has been so willing to help with little Canyon man. We definitely don't have a lack of love and support. Thank you all. We couldn't do it without you. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Egg Retrieval and Fertilization Report

So I've given some of the update on Facebook but I'll run you through all the fun deets.

Yesterday was egg retrieval. We dropped Canyon off at a good friend's house and arrived at the clinic at about 9:30am  The nurse anesthetist came out and got me at about fifteen minutes later. He started the IV and we waited for Dr. Gurtcheff. Once she arrived they put me under heavy sedation, and apparently I was in the middle of a sentence and then just conked. I'm not sure how long the procedure was but I remember waking up thinking they hadn't done it yet. It was the strangest feeling not being able to completely wake up.

Eventually they helped me up and walked me to the recovery room, where I promptly fell asleep in the comfiest recliner I've ever been in. I woke up again when Zach came in. My sweet man couldn't stop laughing. Apparently it was entertaining to watch me try to wake up. (Excuse the following language but remember I'm a pre nursing student) I do remember turning to Zach and telling him they stuck a huge needle up my vagina and asked him if they stuck a needle up his vagina. Apparently I wasn't all there.

After a few minutes the nurse came in with post-op instructions and then Dr. Gurtcheff came in with the final egg count. 35. I know, early menopause here I come. Craziness. She reminded me that rarely are they all mature and we'd have more information the next day. We then discussed my pain. The number of eggs indicated that my ovaries had been hyper stimulated. They sent me with charts to watch my fluid intake and out put as well as a list of symptoms that would show up if my OHSS gets severe. Fortunately, I had been preparing for this and had already started drinking tons of electrolytes and protein shakes. The doc put me on bed rest for the next few days and asked that I continue to drink high volumes of Gatorade and two protein shakes a day. If the OHSS stays mild enough we can go through with the transfer on Sunday.

The rest of yesterday was painful but I made it. Today is a little better and I'm happy to report the OHSS is still mild. Tomorrow will be the true test. If we can make it through tomorrow and Friday with no severe symptoms, we'll be in the clear.

At about one o'clock, the lab called with the fertilization report. They said that 30 of the 35 eggs retrieved were mature enough to fertilize. 26 of those actually fertilized. I can't even tell you how happy I am they are doing so well! The next report will be on Friday. We are planning a 5 day transfer and will know for sure on Friday if they are doing well enough to go through with that.

Although this has all been much more difficult and painful than I expected, I'm so so so grateful for all of it. I'm grateful for my doctor, the nurses and even the ornery nurse anesthetist. I'm grateful to be laying in bed with my feet elevated, trying to take care of my body and prepare it for the little ones we'll be transferring in in 4 days. I can't wait to have them where they were meant to be.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Oh these ovaries

The best part about PCOS is that once you start stimulating the ovaries, they turn into type A overachievers. 

Mine are no exception. 

We are doing the retrieval a day earlier than planned and to be honest, I'm surprised they waited this long. The follicles were past the necessary size yesterday morning. 

So tonight, 10 o'clock, I'll do the HCG trigger shot. Thirty six hours later I'll be under anesthesia and they'll be getting all those little eggs out. 

It's all a little fast. I have so many a emotions fighting for space in my mind right now. Excitement is still trumping them all with the most space but fear and anxiety can't help but seep in. It's sick how badly I want this to work. I've been trying to prepare myself for a negative result, just prepare so I don't completely shut down. It aches just thinking about it. But with all that I still feel peace and hope. We are so lucky to be where we are right now and I wouldn't have it any other way, even if the little one doesn't stick. 

So folks, we are getting a little closer. I sure hope we will have some good news in the coming days and weeks. 

Love you all!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Half Way? An IVF update

Sick of this yet? Don't you fret, it's almost over. I promise I'm not offended if you decide to stop reading, I guess this is mostly so I don't forget how it all went down.

So, today marks what we are assuming is halfway done with the stimulation injections: Follistim and Menopur. Both are used to stimulate the ovaries to start maturing tons of follicles. On Monday, after 3 rounds of injections, I had a blood draw in the office to check the estrogen levels and such. Pretty much checking to see how well my body is responding to the stims. The phleb usually says something along the lines of no news is good news. Well 5:55pm rolled around and I got a call. The first thing I said to Danica (who I totally love, one of my favorites over at UFC) was "Oh no something is wrong!". She totally laughed at me. No joke. Danica said I'm responding TOO well to the meds and the cut my dose of follistim in half.

Now here's a little side note. I have PCOS. You already know this but its kind of a big deal when it comes to stimulating the ovaries. What a Reproductive Endocrinologist worries about with PCOS patients isn't really pregnancy, once you get to the IVF point, but causing OHSS; Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome, read more here. If the OHSS is severe enough it is grounds to cancel the transfer of fresh embryos and start all over and do a frozen embryo transfer. We DON'T want that to happen. So the fact that they are paying such close attention to my levels is a blessing and I'm grateful to have such a great team working to keep things running smoothly.

Tomorrow I'm scheduled for another blood draw and my first, post-stim ultrasound. It's a little crazy how excited I am about the ultrasound but I can't wait to see how many follicles are developing. We'll also have a better idea when our egg retrieval will be. Right now we are aiming for Wednesday Marc
h 26th, but depending on how quickly, or slowly, the follicle mature that day can move.

Things are going so well. I am a little scared to have to much hope and excitement but it's hard not to. I have to keep reminding myself to calm down, relax and enjoy the journey.

Glad I have all of you along for the ride.
First morning of injections, reconstituting the Menopur before injecting. 6:30am and the dogs think it's time to get up...

Thursday, March 6, 2014


I've been working with a nursing program for about and year and a half. I was completely qualified to start their program in February of 2013 but finances were tight and we weren't sure it was the right time (is it ever the right time to go back to school?). My amazing job at the hospital offers tuition reimbursement so we've decided that it's totally a possibility. I was all lined up to start March 1st when I found out I had missed a hoop.

In October of 2012, they had waived the need for a public speaking class since I already had a degree. Turns out they changed that 4 months ago but forgot to let students who had already applied know. Searching for quick ways to get out of it (hey I took a COMM class called mediation and I'm a court registered mediator, can that count??) and my only feesible option was to take a DSST exam to test out of it. Guess what? The closest testing center that offers it, a whoppin 2 hours and 9 minutes away. Yeah. Great. 

Today was the day. I've been studying for a month and a half and I'll admit I was STRESSED. I mean add an exam and a long drive to my 4 in a row work week, relief society brunch I need to plan and starting IVF and you've got yourself a basket case. 

My amazing aunt agreed to watch my little man so I could set out to jump through the "hoop". 

I made good time, until switching from I-15 to a smaller (but still divided-2 lanes on each side) highway. I hadn't seen a posted speed limit and assumed it was 65mph. I was going 5 over...pretty standard right? Wrong... It went a little like this...

Turns out I was actually going 10mph over the limit. The officer was SO kind and hurried to give me my ticket so I could make my test... 

The test went fantastic. My over studying really paid off and the questions were much simpler than I had imagined. I sure love the free resources on the internet. I really couldn't have done it with out high speed internet. 

I shouldn't get too arrogant, official results won't come for 3-6 weeks but I feel great about it all. 

Thank heavens this was the last nursing hoop I have to jump through before the program starts June 1st ( believe me, I triple checked with the advisor). Definitely a ton of stress off my back.

Now for my four in a row, brunch and some serious hormone shots! 

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Getting real

Loud knock on the door today. The dogs were certain it was a home invasion. It was just the fed ex guy delivering the medications.

Meds. Lots and lots of meds. Like an overwhelming amount of fertility meds. 

This is happening. Deep breaths, people, deep breaths. Here we go....