Monday, November 28, 2011


I want to die. Keel over, kick the bucket, etc.

My E2 only got up to 2100 at its highest. I shouldn't have OHSS, right? So why is this so bad??

This weekend BLEW. I was in bed from 11am Friday when I got home till this morning. Seriously, I didn't even get up to take a shower. So gross. That's how horrible it was.

It's getting SLIGHTLY better every day, but not significantly, not in that way when you say to yourself, "Oh wow, i feel better today." Just in the "I don't want to put a gun to my stomach and pull the trigger, but this still hurts pretty damn bad."

It's my stomach. Not even my uterus, which would make sense, but higher up - like, right below my boobs down to my belly button. My uterus is a bit sore, sure but nothing like my stomach. It's like the worst stomachache ever x 1,000,000. I think I have asciites or whatever that's called. A lot of fluid in my stomach. I actually had it after my first, terrible heart surgery, so I remember the pain (it actually was not THIS bad, believe it or not).

I just caved and called my RE just to make sure. I don't see how it can be OHSS since I didn't have THAT high of E2, but maybe it has to do more with the number of follicles you have, not your E2 number? With 17 maybe that's why?

All I know is that I don't understand how people with actual high E2 manage this. This is effing miserable. I can't do anything. I also am so so thirsty- like cotton mouth thirsty. I did Google enough to keep downing coconut water and gatorade, but STILL. Miserable I tell you.

I have the lowest pain tolerance, I swear. You would think it would be better given all my surgeries and stuff, but nope. Ugh.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Retrieval and Fertilization

Egg retrieval was on Friday. This being a new RE, it was a different experience. L got to be in there with me! That was pretty cool. I fell asleep sitting next to him and he was able to tell me everything that went on when I woke up.

They got 17 eggs. Not bad at all. I admit I thought they'd get some more (how bratty am I?) They kept asking if we were sure we didn't want to do ICSI, over and over again. We had talked about it and decided in advance not to. Our first cycle we did ICSI and only 5 out of 12 fertilized. I ended up with a chemical. Our second cycle (the horrible one where my E2 plummeted from 1300 to 350 right before retrieval) we didn't do ICSI (because they retrieved 18 and only 4 were mature) and 12 ended up fertilizing. Even though there may be no connection it made us less inclined to do ICSI ever again. But this place, like my old place, does ICSI for everyone, even if there's no male factor. I don't get it.

L's sperm is fine, motility, etc...we have no issues, so I don't understand why they push ICSI so much. I did some googling searching and couldn't find anything promoting ICSI unless there's male factor, fertilization problems, etc. So I felt good about not doing ICSI, until they asked me about 5 times if I was sure(guess this means I should never be interrogated by police, right? They'll have convinced me I'm guilty even though I'm innocent in about 5 minutes!) I was sure the first 3...then I started thinking maybe we should do it. L remained adamant in the end so I stuck with him, and I'm glad we did.

11/17 isn't awesome by any means, but I guess it's right on track with the 12/18 from last time. And that ended in my twin boys, so here's to hoping this ends up equally well (well, actually, better, since I miscarried last time).

We're already scheduled for a 5 day transfer on Weds.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Just a Petty Post

My SIL found out TODAY she is pregnant and announced it to everyone tonight. Way to keep that a secret for more than 3 seconds. Not looking forward to Thanksgiving tomorrow when that's all that will be discussed.

She is 4 years younger than me. She got married 2 months before me. She got engaged 2 years before me and because I tried to be nice and not steal her thunder we had an 18 month engagement so they could get married first. I've regretted doing that ever since. We could have started trying that much sooner. Out of all the friends and people who've gotten pregnant in the last 3+ years, I wanted to be pregnant before her. And have my baby. I accomplished the first but never for very long. And now here's another person who just has no problem.

L and I are the oldest in our families so I'm used to being first for everything. I know it sounds bratty. It was hard enough not to be the first to get married in his family (even though I was the first in my family's generation) to be married. I thought for sure, starting 3 years ago that we would be the first to have a baby. Nope.

And she's a teacher. And has it perfectly planned out (she's due in July) for her job. Isn't it great to be her?

Yes this post is petty. I'm just pissed. She announces she's pregnant today and I get to trigger. Awesome.

Trigger tonight

My uterus feels like it's humming. Hmm...

Today's appointment shows that I'm indeed ready to pop (hell if I can never say that while pregnant, I'm going to say it now). They stopped counting at 18 follies, and there are likely more/bigger ones. I do still have that one outlier at 25 that they're going to sacrifice, but the others are all around 18 right now.

My E2 came back today slightly lower than Monday's. Man, am I sensitive to the drugs or what? I was 2109 on Monday and am 2023 today. I asked if I should be concerned with the drop and they said no, it just means it's time to do trigger.

So I'm triggering tonight for a retrieval on Friday morning. Ugh, I'm so uncomfortable and so bloated right now, but I don't feel as sick as I did on Monday. My guess was that it was the big increase (from 160 to over 2100 in a matter of 5 days!) Now that it's leveled out I'm better adjusted.

L and I also applied for a private loan at our local credit union earlier this month, as we need to have a lot of money on hand at a moment's notice if we get an adoption call. We've been playing phone tag with the bank because we don't have any need for the money right now but they finally got ahold of me today and I asked when the latest we could "close" on the loan was. Technically it's 30 days from date of application but I explained that we needed it for adoption and the lady said she'd speak to her manager to see what they could do. She just called me back and said that while they couldn't hold it open for ever, they would check in with me every 2 weeks or so to see how things are going. I'm hopeful that when they get sick of waiting THEN we can close on the loan (instead of having to reapply all over again). Even if that only gets us an additional month before having to close, hey, that's one less month of having to pay interest on a loan we're not even using right now. Yay credit unions - where you're treated like an actual person and they care about your story!

Hoping I'll be able to enjoy T-day tomorrow without feeling like a beached whale :)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Okey dokey

Looks like most likely I will do trigger on Weds. followed by ER on Friday. Which sort of sucks because we were going down to visit family for Thanksgiving,so we will have to leave at a decent hour to come back Thursday night.

Today I officially "exploded", I feel. I've felt icky all weekend long. No wonder, my little ovaries have almost doubled in size since we began stims. I have a ton of follicles now...they only measured about 10 but they were so squished together they couldn't measure them properly. My lining is just under 10 and triple right now, and the follicles are measuring mostly between 14 and 18 mm...which a few smaller around 12mm (guessing these won't catch up in time) and 1 outlier at 23mm. The nurse said they would probably just sacrifice the big one since i have so many smaller yet still good sized ones.

And my E2 was out of control - 2100. And L and I made the decision on Friday night to keep the stims at the level the RE recommended (still on 3 Bravelle and 2 menopur) because as L said, I had tripled the previous two days and he was nervous about it doing it again. So even with the recommended dosage I still more than doubled (in 3 days).

Just got a call from the nurse telling me to lower my dosage back down to 2 vials Bravelle and 1 menopur. I asked if they were worried my levels were too high/overstimulation/cancellation and she said no. As long as my levels don't decrease I'm fine with staying at this level of E2. Now all we need is for the follicles to increase.

2100...just imagine - never gotten to that point before! 1300 is where I always maxed out.

Looks like Lupron was never for me.

Friday, November 18, 2011


Yay yay yay!! Appt. this morning with the same bitchy nurse who gave me such attitude two nights ago, but it went well. I was much more pleasant, she asked me straight out if I had raised the Bravelle so it wasn't even uncomfortable when I said yes AND she looked relieved that I had. Didn't tell her we did 4 Bravelle vials on Weds. and only that we did the 3 yesterday.

My follicles still haven't gone much of anywhere, which made me concerned at the time. Now ranging between 10-13 (almost 14). In a way that's great, none are out in front ahead of the others. But sheesh, when will they kick into gear?

My E2 levels? I've been stalking the portal...494!!! Wahoo!!! That is triple what they were on Weds. Very good. I was hoping for at least 400, secretly hoping for 500. Pretty much there. Now I need to be careful, because it still appears that my follicles are not really dispensing the E2 given their size, and that number based on the FSH I'm injecting. At some point (I'm thinking when greater than 15-16mm) the follicles will take over and start producing their own E2 and then I will need to be very careful about the amount I'm injecting.

But as for right now, this is good. I'm SO glad I didn't add merely one menopur like they originally said. I'm not even upset I did that extra vial on Weds. night. While the numbers triple, the follicles haven't "exploded" and started going nuts, far from it. It's so nice to see me actually respond to something!

I'm beginning to see this really isn't rocket science. I feel like i have a good handle on this works, and since they're giving the nurses the ability to make med changes themselves without much info, I don't feel nearly as bad changing my dosage myself. While the nurses may have seen more patients, no one has seen me for 3 cycles except me and L.

So now, I'm back to debating what to do. Things have progressed so well, they will keep me on the 3 Bravelle, 2 Menopur, but I am debating doing 3.5 vials myself (originally I debated going back to 4 if my E2 still sucked (but was at least 300) but I don't think so at this point. I'm basing this on my previous cycles, where i would get to 800 and then never double again. After around 800, I'd go to 1100 then maybe 1300, despite them upping the dosage. So since I've taken an AVERAGE of 3.5 vials of Bravelle over the last two nights, i'm half afraid taking 3 vials for the next three days (I go back on Monday morning) will actually serve as a DECREASE in the dosage.

L and I will talk about it tonight. I almost wish I was going back in 2 days instead of 3 so I would have an earlier idea on if I will take off or act like I usually do. But I'm thinking that my follies will range between 14-16mm on Monday (fingers crossed) and still won't be anywhere near trigger size. I'm aiming for my E2 to be around 1100-1200 on Monday as well.

So, leaning towards the 3.5 instead of the 3 vials, although I might compromise with myself and do 3.5 today and tomorrow and only 3 on Sunday night. We'll see. But at least I'm finally starting to get somewhere! Never thought I'd be saying that with "only" an E2 of 494 on Day 12 of stims!

Thursday, November 17, 2011


The actual doctor called us this morning. I made L answer the phone because I didn't trust that I could act with courtesy. He apologized for the lack of communication yesterday but insisted that going this slow was fine and he didn't see the need to push up the meds any more.

But I medicated myself last night, with L's help. I just don't believe them. It may work for other people, but this is my 3rd IVF cycle and it is not working for me. So we jacked up the meds on our own last night. Alot. Did the 300 iu of Bravelle (4 vials), up from 2 vials, and added a menopur. Tonight we will go down to 3 vials of Bravelle. But all they had told me to do was add that one menopur.

So tomorrow at my appt. when they ask me about my meds (because they ask what I'm on every time, despite the fact that they know it) I can't lie. I don't want them to think that any growth is due to their stupid dosing.

I guess i just don't see the problem with dosing high for a few days. If it actually was too much, they can always drop my dosage (or I can, since I did it on my own). But honestly, I'm terrified that tomorrow my E2 will STILL be under 300). At that point, I think it's time to shut the whole thing down...

I don't know what they're going to say when I tell them I dosed myself. To be perfectly honest, I'm only going to admit to the 3 I took tonight (the one extra Bravelle vial, instead of 2) and I'm going to blame it on the fact that that stupid nurse I spoke to last evening told me I could take an extra Bravelle if I wanted to. she didn't look anything up, didn't even know what day I was but she said so, so even though it's not in my record to do so, I did it.

FX for tomorrow. Please let me see some growth. Pretty pretty please.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Dose Me

My new RE is more worthless than the first. I can't even imagine that it could be possibly true.

No one called me after my b/w this morning (that I checked on my online portal). I had left a message at 11:30am. I called at 4:10pm and they were CLOSED (WTF?) so I hit the "must talk to someone now" button. I got someone who had no effing clue about what was going on with my cycle and that it was perfectly normal. I'm no newbie at this and I wasn't taking that for answer. That whole "you're just starting so and we don't want you to overstimulate" is what every single person has told me thus far and I'm at 160 - nowhere close to overstimulation!!! I finally told them, "I'm not just starting - I'm on day 11 (actually 10) and I KNOW 160 is not a good number (for comparison, even my crappy cycle last time had me 1300 at this point). At which point the nurse on the phone got silent, and then said to me, "Well you can either continue on with meds, you can add another vial of Bravelle (What is she, making up shit as she goes? She didn't even know what day I was on!) or you can just cancel the cycle."

So fucking helpful. I actually hung up on her I was so pissed. Not professional in the slightest but I'm so beyond that point. I'm so desperate for one single thing in my life to go right. Just one. Why can no one understand that?

So I can either take nothing tonight or I'm just going to self dose myself, since they seem to be making up my dosages left and right now. What say you, experienced IVFers? Today on day 10 of stims my E2 was at 160, my follicles between 10-12, my P4 at 0.3 and my LH at 1.02. I'm on 150 iu of Bravelle and 75iu of Menopur (they did tell me to add another 75iu of Menopur but I know at this point it's not enough to do anything). I'm debating keeping the 150iu of Menopur and adding another 150 of Bravelle, to make it 300 iu Bravelle, 150 Menopur. I need to kick start this and at this point I'm not really concerned about ruining anything since in my opinion this cycle is ruined already.

Any suggestions?




Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Sorry guys, I forgot to mention that this cycle is with a new RE. I did end up calling them yesterday after I got my levels and told them in no uncertain terms that this has happened before. They still wanted me to trust them but they also said they can raise the dosage each time I come slowly and they don't want to jump from 0 to 60 and raise my dosage by too much, which I understand. That's what my last RE did and that cycle was nuts. Still, I don't play the trust game anymore.

I'm worried about getting cancelled. I've heard if your E2 is too low, they will do that, but my follicles do appear to be growing, so we'll see. I had a nightmare last night that I went in for another check and my E2 was only at 243. If it's not at least 300 tomorrow I don't know what will happen (and if it does make it to 300 tomorrow I'm still going to be bummed with how low it is).

Still, I did my two bottles of Bravelle and 1 of menopur and am hoping it did something.

Nothing on the adoption front. It's been almost a month since we've been homestudy approved but we haven't heard anything. I know that's not that much time but every day kills me.

And I just learned that a friend of ours (practically the last one) is pregnant. And L knew about it for about a month now and didn't say anything. I seem to remember writing this all before about someone else. Did he not learn the first time from how upset I was? I'm ready to rip him a new one.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Day 7 of Stims

This cycle doesn't looking to be any better than the first two, at least on paper. I don't know the deal with my body.

No BCP, no lupron. After 4 nights of stims, my E2 was at 101 and I had two follies around 10-11mm, with a bunch of smaller ones. They kept my dosage the same (1 vial menapur, 1 vial bravelle) and added ganirelix (which I thought was a mistake) because I had two "sizeable" follies.

Today, after 7 nights of stims, the nurse (a different one) measured only 3 follies (even though I swear I saw more) between 11 and 14. My E2 was only 154. WTF?

My E2 never seems to go anywhere (see IVF #1 and IVF#2). My FSH is 3.3 so I don't understand it. I can't even blame lupron this time (clearly it always created a flare effect for me before). While I don't think I needed ganirelix yet, I think it also helps keep follies together in size so I don't know if I should have waited another day or so. It lowers your E2 a bit, but even if it was 200-300 today I would still think that's low.

Every single IVF cycle I have been told my doctors I have the potential to have so many eggs, yet it never ever happens. I have a great egg reserve and lots of follies but they keep things low and I never respond in the end. It just looks like potential every single time, but never reaches the potential.

I mean, I don't want OHSS so that's good in a way, but I'm tired of hearing the same thing. I spoke up today and say I've heard that I'm probably just a slow starter for 3 cycles now and they are worried it could get out of hand. but it's never gotten out of hand, so can they change things?

But the nurse said I just need to trust them. F that, all I've done is trust REs and look where I am today. I go back in on Weds. and even if I double I'll only be at 300 for 9 days of stim. Ridiculous!

What is responsible for low E2 levels on stims? Especially since I have a good FSH and a LH at 1.0 right now. I don't get it.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Back in the saddle

Well then...

Today's CD4. Yup, got AF on Friday. That cycle was just a mess then. I have no idea when or if I O'd, but the cycle was 39 days long. I tend to have longer cycles (usually 31-34 days) so I have no clue what the hell THAT was about.

So I'm onto a new cycle, and just saw my new RE this morning. Fingers crossed this goes better than the old one. So far, what I love most about them is that every little thing goes into a patient portal that I can pull up any time I want! No more me asking the nurses for exact numbers and them looking at me like I'm so annoying because I don't take "it's appropriate" for an answer. I mean, I can even see how big my ovaries measured this morning! Very cool.

This is going to be a super quick cycle, which I'm also very excited about (unless it ends up ruining Thanksgiving, which it may well do). I'm not on lupron this time. I asked for a new protocol and boy, I guess I got it. I'm also not on any BCP. Holy cow, this is awesome!! I will be retrieving (hopefully) before Thanksgiving, that's how quick this is. I start stims tonight (doing Menopur and Bravelle this time) and they are hoping I retrieve around 11/18 (I'm never as fast as they think I will be,so probably a few days later).

They are staying away from lupron this time because looking at my old cycles they said Lupron causes people to flare, which is fine for some (most?) people, but I would start off well and then basically get oversurpressed. So I will take ganirelix toward the end but that's it.

It seemed like the nurse was the one basically deciding how much medicine I should take, which was weird. We talked about it, and how I thought I should be on a more of a steady dose instead of the craziness my last RE did. She looked at my ovaries and said she thought that I might be have a very mild version of PCOS - which I've NEVER heard before. I don't think it's altogether true either. While I have irregular cycles I do ovulate (albeit later than most people) and I do get AF. I don't have any facial hair (I actually have really thin hair) though I do have cystic acne (even at 33 years old) and I am overweight. I don't know. If there's such a thing as having a *touch* of it, maybe I do. She thought I had the very real possibility of "exploding" (with a ton of eggs) from my U/S so she's starting me on a very low dosage of the menapur/bravelle combo. I go back on Friday to see how I do. It should be interesting since I'm not on lupron this time.

Fingers crossed, I'm very nervous. I really want to get above 1300 estrogen this time, I never have before.

L is away on business till tomorrow night so I have to give myself the injection today. I've never done it before (he always mixes it and everything so I'm very nervous! (I know, I'm so spoiled, but it's worked for us this whole time).

Thursday, November 3, 2011


I'm probably going to do another IVF cycle next month (which is really starting about a week from now). We're not getting profiled yet so I don't think I'm breaking any "rules".

I did a natural cycle this month and today I *think* I'm 13dpo. I say that because I did OPKs and never got a smiley face, but had ovulation pain and really wet CM a couple of Fridays ago and then it stopped. Therefore, I should be getting AF on Sunday. I did take an HPT yesterday at what I thought was 12dpo and it was negative so I'm just waiting for AF to start, and even though we're homestudy ready for adoption and I'm probably going to do an IVF cycle next month I just feel so down about it. Bleh.

I don't understand why I feel so guilty about starting another cycle. I don't understand my SW's prohibition on it, when she said, "but if you get pregnant naturally, that's fine!" Why is it insidious if you attempt to bring about a baby through fertility drugs, but if you just get lucky it's no big deal? It doesn't make sense to me.

It's so exciting to be shopping for baby stuff. The carrier has been in my car since Saturday (still in the box) and the travel system is getting shipped to me (it was discontinued so we bought it now so it would match the carrier even though we have no need for the travel system). Every day feels like a month and I just keep hoping for a call. It's been only a little more than a week since we were homestudy ready so clearly I have so much longer to wait, but I just want it to happen now! Ha, doesn't everyone?

I just wonder if our baby-to-be has been conceived yet, or if it's a boy or girl or what it will look like. I can't wait for them to be ours. They are wanted so much.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Oh, the irony...

So the irony wasn't lost on me that we sat in 2 days worth of adoption education classes, Friday and Saturday night, and were there when my BFF's baby was born. Classic.

The classes were actually pretty good and interesting. On Friday night there were two speakers, the first being so fun and upbeat. I turned to L and said, "Why couldn't SHE have been our social worker?"

And then (cue music, dun dun dun DUN....) was our social worker. Seriously, such a debbie downer, making everything so negative. there were about 20 of us in the class and I think we all felt that way after she spoke. It made me feel a little vindicated afterwards...

She kept talking about the pervasive loss her children feel as a result of their adoption, and maybe it will come with time, but I do not fully understand it. Older child adoption, international adoption, foster children, THAT I fully understand. But her children were domestic adoption, and with her since they were 36 hours old. I certainly don't remember anything from 36 hours old, do you? While I do understand a general feeling of loss from being adopted, that your mother did not necessarily give birth to you, but your birth mother chose to make the best decision for you to have someone else raise you, I don't understand a pervasive sense because those kids have never known anything else. If they were adopted at 6 years old and knew other families, or were in an orphanage in Russia, or the foster care system, shuttled back and forth, then it would make sense.

In fact, the first speaker (whom I loved) spoke about her older child adoption from Russia. She adopted the child at 8years old. At 6, the child and her full blooded sibling were adopted by an American family, but the family ended up keeping the sibling and sending the older daughter back to Russia, where she was adopted 2 years later by the first speaker. Pervasive sense of loss? Oh yes! How horrible that must have been to have been sent back, and as a kid, not really understanding why (and as an adult, I may not be able to understand it either). My social worker's kids? Not at all the same, in my honest opinion.

Anyway, for the most part the class(es) were nice. Some we didn't need because we're done with our homestudy and profile now, and it would have been nice to have done this several months ago. But most of the classes are 5 hours away from us and we got lucky that they were doing a weekend near us so we jumped on it. They also showed us examples of profiles and I have to admit (braggy here) I thought ours is so much better. I hope it works for us, anyway.