Daily Blessings

Throughout this fertility journey, no matter how much life has thrown at me, I will remember my blessings & affirmations each day.

Archive for the tag “reproductive endocrinologist”

pink or blue?

Today at the RE office when I sat down for my blood draw, the phlebotomist & I were making small talk about the weather, the weekend, etc. She’s a really sweet, older woman. And although she’s “new” to the office, I’ve already grown fond of her. Anyways, she remembers my preference for a butterfly when she draws my blood & I appreciate that. I am no wuss at all when it comes to needles, it’s just that being on blood thinners obviously makes me a little bleedy. With the old phlebotomist, I bled through my cotton ball and all over my coat twice. This hasn’t happened with the new lady, so I’m thankful for her.

So after she vampires my blood out of my vein she asks me, “pink or blue?” They had gotten new bandaid tape and I got to pick. “Pink!” I said. She wrapped me up and said, “So are you hoping for a girl?” It totally caught me off guard and I answered sort of sheepishly, stumbling over my words, “I just like pink…” lol I’m a girl, duh, I’m going to pick pink! But I guess they did that for good luck for the patients & just for a little fun. I thought that was a really cute idea. It brings a bit more humanity to the whole TTC with the RE process. The process can feel so scheduled and sterile that I can see how it can become monotonous, even to the employees at the clinic.

So thank you, phlebotomist-lady-whose-name-I-don’t-know-yet. You made me smile. And didn’t bruise my arm.

Til next time…

CD3 – Yet Another New Beginning

I realize I owe a update for where my last cycle stands. It was our first medicated / monitored cycle with the RE {Reproductive Endocrinologist}. Where I left off was in November after a few days of stimming. My e2 (estradiol) levels were a whopping 1500. My medication dosage was being backed off slowly, as to not overstimulate me. And by “overstimulate” I guess I don’t mean OHSS. Rather,  my doctor didn’t want me to produce more than 3 or so mature follicles by the end of my cycle since I said I wouldn’t “selectively reduce.”  That’s a whole other blog topic there.

So, my Bravelle was lowered & lowered again. And then my estrogen bottomed out.

It went from 1500 to 620 then to 217. Major FAIL. This all happened around a weekend. Now, I need to state that my RE’s office isn’t down the road from our house. It’s over an hour away. So for 6 days in a row, I drove back & forth to the office and the lab to figure out what was happening with this e2 level.

My medication was upped again to 1 Bravelle, then 2 Bravelle & 1 Menopur, then 2 B & 1 M. Lord Jesus, I could not wait until Monday came around to see what was happening on the ultrasound screen. Luckily, my husband was off for a 4 day weekend, so he was there to bear the brunt of the crazy with me,

Monday came & I prayed before the ultrasound (just as I did every time but once). I thought for sure that there would be nothing on the screen. That I had lost all my follies.

But they were in there!  A few huge ones & lots of other ones. I was shocked, relieved & very concerned all at once. With an estrodial level so low, how did I have all these follicles? Every mature follicle should produce about 200-300 (according to my own doctor’s stats) units of estrogen. Some doctors will say each should produce 100 units. Either way, my blood levels did not match what I was seeing on the screen. No one really had answers for me at this point, other than my e2 finally went back up to 590 & I was to trigger that night.

So my husband gave me my Lupron trigger & we did what we needed to do over the next few days, blindly hoping for the best. I started my regular supplements. A laundry list of hormones in pill forms, suppositories & patches. I had been doing my Lovenox injections every day since I started the stims, as well as my NeevoDHA, baby aspirin & folbic. It was a lot to remember. None of them I minded more than the Lovenox. It’s just such a bitch of a shot.

Well, we hoped for good news, but in my heart I sort of knew it wasn’t happening. The estrogen snafu threw me for a loop & I knew something there wasn’t right.

My hcg came back negative last Thursday, but it was expected. I had tested at home a few times beforehand, which originally I said I was not going to do. But in my heart, I needed to be mentally prepared for that news. When my nurse called, I did not cry. I was upset, but I had done my crying the days prior. I was ready to move on by this point. And I was happy to get a small break from the Lovenox to let my belly heal.

So today is CD3. AGAIN. It’s the same old song & dance, isn’t it? I wonder how many cycle day 3’s I’ve had since I started TTC? Surely there have been a lot.

I visited with my RE yesterday for a follow-up & to get a gameplan for the future. It seems like just yesterday when I was walking into their office for the first time, but over 4 months have come and gone. My next monitored cycle will happen in February, with the commencement of bcp’s after my January AF (menstrual cycle). If we want to, we can try naturally this month while we’re on vacation (mmm vacation sex), but that means dragging along the bag of goodies (progesterone, lovenox, etc).  As always, we’ll continue patience & see what the future holds.

 

 

 

Stimmin’ like a Villian

My dear friend AF finally arrived 8 days ago. I started my stims / injectables / whatever you want to call them (ovulation meds) on Friday. Oh and my other bff, Lovenox.

On my first scan Monday, the ultrasound tech said I had about 30 follies. There were a LOT. As I was laying back, relaxing with the wand of shame inside of me, I was looking at the u/s screen thinking… yep, that seems like a lot. My E2 levels came back at 714, which I was told was on the high side of normal (for a Time Intercourse TI cycle). So my medication was adjusted!

Today, Wednesday, my E2 levels came back at 1500. I had less follies this time, but they were growing nice & big. Mmm juicy. The nurse this evening said I had 4 that were 10mm or larger. I had about 15 follies total this time. Again, my dosage was adjusted (lowered). I started out on Menopur + Bravelle, and now am on 1/3 – 1/4 vial of Bravelle!

Them ovaries are a-workin’.

Friday is my next scan & we’re hoping for great results. Praying for great results…

First Visit To The Fertility Clinic

1) a lot of bloodwork. A LOT (like 14 tubes full)
2) Lupron Challenge starting CD2
3) sonohysterogram, hysteroscopy, endometrial biopsy & cervical/vaginal cultures
4) semen analysis for hubs + blood work
5) Reconvene Oct 9th with results & a game plan

This is the mini summary of what our game plan will be for the next couple months! I was very pleased with the clinic as a whole. The staff was friendly, educated & professional. It was a really cozy environment, which I found comforting. I got an extensive medical history done with the nurse, who was an actual nurse…not a fake medical assistant like regular doctors offices. A pelvic exam by the doc (which was normal) & he checked felt my thyroid and listened to my lungs.

My talk with the doc lasted probably an hour. A lot of it was us chatting about my past (and my shitbox ex) & he talked about his family and life also. It was a really nice bonding experience. His “bedside” manner was gentle yet he was knowledgeable. It wasn’t like what the online reviewers had written… He agreed that we need to get to the bottom of my fertility issues before throwing a bunch of medicine & procedures at me. He spoke with me at great length about egg quality and sperm quality & then implantation issues. We’ll address these issues with the tests above, plus a Recurrent Pregnancy Loss blood panel, chromosome analysis on myself & hub, plus a ton of other lab tests. I get high off lab tests… they make me randy. My insurance will cover all lab testing & procedures like the hysteroscopy, so he wanted to cover all bases. Those bases related to immune issues, ovarian reserve / egg quality, sperm quality, & Uterine/Fallopian tube health.

All in all, I went into this appointment with an open mind & heart with no preconceived ideas {which was difficult}. I was able to maintain my focus and stay calm, and I had a really good experience. Special thanks to my dear friends who are praying for me & supporting me.

So this is my first real step in my fertility journey, which started 3 years ago almost to date.  Sure, I had a break throughout this timeframe, but once I got that first BFP, my life was never the same. And never will be the same.

Today, I’m hopeful.

CD2…onto July

*sigh*  Our vacation / family trip was indeed no vacation. There was family drama started by my MIL on day 5 & her incessant need to meddle in her ex’s business (my FIL) caused screaming and fighting between herself and my husband. The woman can be a total manipulative bitch nightmare. We had 2 nights at the lake with the grandparents after that culminating event, which was magnificent. It was fun & relaxing. Needless to say, we did not want to return to reality back at “mom’s house.” I’ve said it probably 10 times before: once you move out and become an independent adult, staying with mom or dad becomes sheer torture. {That’s been 10+ yrs for me}

My symptoms during the first part of my 2ww were so promising. But then the all the stress just threw my body for a complete loop. Its no wonder a fetus didn’t implant… plus wave runners were involved during the lake trip… shakin’ up my uterus.

I’m feeling the need for change still when it concerns this fertility journey. My zen, calm state is gone. I regret giving up acupuncture, my herbs, etc for this last cycle. I have my phone consult tomorrow with the RE (Reproductive Endocrinologist) tomorrow & my new OB GYN appointment on Friday. Then we’ll go from there. An IUI and/or LAP may be in my near future. Technically I think if I asked for it, we could do IUI this cycle and a LAP in August…

On a side note, we’re moving soon so most of my loosely constructed plans will have to wait til mid August. In a way, this is a good distraction from the depressing state of lack of pregnancy I’ve been experiencing. All I know is that taking a TTC break is not something we are willing to do, or even want to do. It may be time to get more aggressive…

Post Navigation