Monday, July 22, 2013

It's Raining Babies!

At my current age...I really just keep thinking that I MUST come to terms with this new reality.  BABIES ARE EVERYWHERE (and are going to continue to be in to the near future).  Effectively...it's raining babies while I crawl through the barren desert.  This week included 4 down pours.  One friend of HB, who of course has been married a little over a year, had already announced their pregnancy....this weeks "top that"....they're having TWINS.  I don't know why...that made it so much worse to me.  I did learn that there is a family history of twins.....  It's really amazing how lucky people are in the world...I bet they don't even know it.

Second down pour...my brother and SIL have found out they're having a girl (yes they're the ones who did a family announcement at 6wks).  I really am happy for them.

Third down pour is that my dear friend N delivered her baby girl (3 wks early).  It's her first child and she's 42yo....so there is hope (right?)  I actually held a one day old.  N is very aware of our struggles...and has been amazing about making sure I only do things that I feel comfortable with--which I applaud her for having such an awareness during her time of elation.  The baby was of course adorable.  The new born was very warm to snuggle and was sleeping with her tongue sticking half way out.  It wasn't as gut wrenching as I had worried the experience would be.  Of course it occurred to me that we failed yet another cycle around the time N got her BFP....so I did briefly thinking "that could've been me".  But it's not...and as the months tick by....I have to start to acknowledge...that it may NEVER be me that holders her newly birthed child against her.

And of course...down pour number four.  The royal baby has been delivered to this earth!  Given all of the hoopla I fully expect Prince William to go atop Big Ben and hold this child towards the sun as the Lion King soundtrack is piped through all of the speakers and radio channels of London.  And this one will never go away....first pictures...first steps....etc.  I wonder if my yahoo home page will ever be the same again?  I've mentioned before that I had attached to Kate Middleton as my go-to girl because of the proximity of our wedding dates.

But our friends and the world are moving on with their bundles of joy....as I type at a Starbucks to avoid 1.5 hours of traffic, on a cycle that didn't even produce an LH surge,  contemplating my next step towards career suicide (I mean "shift").  What does "moving on" without a child look like?  I haven't fully considered it....but maybe I should start.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Can't even get a smiley face!

Dear body,
FUCK YOU!
Hugs and Snuggles,
Jen K

That pretty much sums it up.  This month I've taken Femara and have been painstakingly doing ovulation tests from CD12 to CD20 (previous smileys have never been past CD18).  I've been sneaking into a public bathroom at my new work place and doing this each afternoon (see previous post).  Why in the afternoon you may ask?  Early in TTC land I missed an LH surge and had researched that the surge actually takes place in the afternoon and that you're more likely to catch it if you test in the afternoon.  Since making that change I've never had a problem (please don't read that like I'm all braggy about it--remember...I'm just as baby-less as the person with long cycles and who is unable to use an ovulation predictor).

I guess that good ol' body wanted to remind me that "it can always be worse".  And after 9 straight day's of testing...nothing but the empty void circle.  No smiley.  Just when I thought there was SOMETHING my body cooperated in doing....it failed me.  I can't even do a Femara and TI cycle right (round of applause for the ridiculousness of that!)  3 months Femara was my parting gift from my RE...so it's unmonitored.  For all I know I have some cysts (?) which I've never had before!  Maybe I should have waited a month after the FET?  But my plan was to take the month off before the NEXT FET planned for November.  Uggg.

Not only that...but towards the end of these shenanigans...I ran out of my old OPKs and had to buy new ones for a crazy mark up (usually buy them on Amazon).  AND...the damn things are now even MORE COMPLICATED (do I really seem like the girl that needs more complication in my life?).  Officially called Clear Blue ADVANCED.  NOW...the tests tell you negatives (empty void circle), "high fertility" days (blinky smiley) and PEAK day (smiley--no blink).  Given that I now live 1.5 hours away from my husband and home...WTF am I supposed to do on a "high" fertility day...but NOT "peak".  Not that any of this matters this month...because those didn't smile back at me either!  At least these "advanced" tests are to be performed in the morning...which does make my life a little easier.

THEN...as I was reading the package insert (yes...I actually do that)...under the picture of the empty void circle it actually says something to the effect of "low fertility, sex is just for fun".   AHHHHHH!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Yes...I'm hiding in a bathroom stall....how's that weird?

Very little remains of the life I lived 6/30/13.  I now live with a friend (A), sleep on a futon, only get to go back to my REAL home with my husband and kitties on the weekends, fight traffic for up to 1.5 hours on my way to the futon from work, have no internet (except at work...which makes blog posting very difficult), I went from a private office to sharing a room with 8 people (not even a cube), and everyday I fight the urge to run away and go back home.  If you recall...I could have stayed with a friend 25 minutes away but that would also include a newborn starting in August.

And...since I'm using my "consolidation prize" femara this month...I'm currently stalking Mr. Smiley face.  It goes a little something like this...in the afternoon I attempt to sneak a pee stick, pee stick reader, and tiny paper cup (like the swish cups kids use...mine have zoo animals)...all into my pocket.  I then take an elevator to leave my department and go to a public rest room--otherwise I'd have to use single stall bathrooms right beside my bosses office.  Then I try and find the most private bathroom stall (oxymoron), do the deed, and then stare impatiently at the blinkie message.  The whole while other bathroomers are entering and exiting, having conversations about a good movie they've watched, shaking the stall wall as they close the door and almost knocking off my pee stick.  I do this at work because if I get a smiley I'll drive 80 miles West to home...and if not...I'll fight traffic and drive 32 painful miles East...back to my sad and lonely futon.  And then I repack my life in my car every morning because I don't know where I'll end up.  This is the new me!  Holy Shit!  I really don't know how much longer I can do this.....

We finally shared our infertility issues with my MIL.  She has many of her own health issues so we had not wanted to burden her with ours (and of course always hoped we could just share the good news--which we've never gotten).  Given that we're basically at a decision point between IVF#2 and adoption we thought it'd be a good time to share.  When we told her we thought she might be a little happy to know that we were even trying....but nope...she went on to share her own infertility experiences in the 70's and basically said that her life dreams had already been crushed because she's divorced and her son (HB) doesn't live near her (only 3 hrs away) so she'd never get to see a grandchild anyway.  WOW.  I hate to say it...but part of me regrets telling her. :o(

In not sad and depressing news....I went to my first ever Resolve meeting!  I can do this because my futon is in a bigger city than I actually live in (big enough to have a Resolve meeting).  I didn't really know what to expect.  It got off to a bumpy start when the facilitator asked for new volunteer facilitators...because she is 6wks pregnant (sigh).  But she was very nice and went through hell to get there (3 IVFs and finally lucky with out of state donor eggs).  After that hurtle was cleared the meeting went fine.  It started like an AA meeting "hello my name is __ and this is the crap I've done).  I liked it.  I can't say that I was overwhelmed by the experience but I liked it enough to go back next month.  There is an interesting range of women there which was nice.  Everyone is at different places on this long journey.  I tried to share some of my experiences and advice for the newbies.

Well...I'm going to drive East tonight...and hope that tomorrow brings me a smiley face.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

WTF and Starting Over...AGAIN

Greetings Readers.  I'm finally shaking off the bone deep disappointment and self loathing that is...another negative cycle (FET#2).  But honestly...I wasn't as hurt this time as I've been in the past.  I think it's just because I never allowed myself to even be hopeful this time.  I never thought it'd work...so the realilty slap down didn't leave me too fall to far.  I'm not entirely advicating being a life pessamist but it's just what I felt this cycle.  And I hate that I was right.  In my imagination I would have symptoms with early pregnancy (which I know is not always true) and I felt nothing even close. Another two embryos "bite the dust".

WTF?  So we had the debrief meeting last Thursday.  The conversation mainly focused on "what went wrong?"  Well unfortunately we're still VERY MUCH in the "unexplained infertility" wasteland.  But now...we get to add the modifier of recurrent implanation failure (ooohh cool...another label that means jack $*%!...exceept that we're not pregnant and may never be).  The short version is that Dr. .J thinks we have a really good chance of getting pregnant with another fresh IVF cycle.  She wants to give me lower levesl of stims and wants to let the eggs mature one day longer before harvest (next time).  She came to this conclusion from our day 3 embryo growth numbers.  At day 3 embies should be at 6-8 cells....we had many at 6 and none at 8.  Basically our 27 embryos grew...but all grew a little slower than expected.  Even though 7 made it to freeze they had to wait until day 6 to freeze them.  Dr. J also said she's seen many women get pregnant with exact same quality eggs and there still is not clear cause of our infertility.  And basically all of the embryos we've been using were from one fresh IVF (like all from the same egg carton)....so if the others haven't worked it's unlikely the final 3 will because they were all exposed to the same conditions.

 SO.  What in the heck should we do with all of that info?  We've been aggressively saving money for the past 2 years but it's not even enough to fully fund an adoption at this point.  But with adoption at least (in theory) there IS a baby at the end but with IVF (as we've proven)...it's just one big MAYBE. My clinic has a 3rd party company that offers a "refund program".  3 fresh + 3 frozen for a big upfront payment...but get 70% back if no take home baby.  *SIGH*

At this point Dr. J agreed to give me 3 months of Femara...kinda like a "parting gift"....thanks for playing...you didn't win the new car BUT now you have a year's supply of fabric softner....thanks (?). Our target goal for the final FET is November.  Dr. J agreed to transfer all the remaining 3.  She is very conservative....so this tells me she has little hope that they'll work for us.

Last Sunday I said my sad good-bye to my insurance.  The one and only factor that even allowed this to have this amazing opportunity.  Dearest insurance...I'll miss you!

I started my new job on Monday.  It's a one year position and is 1.5 hours away from my home...my husband....my giant kitties...so I'm staying with a friend only 45 minutes away.  But it's not my home.  I bought a futon and have a folding table desk.  "Hello, my name is Jen and I sleep on a Futon at a friend's house."  WOW...this is my new life.  I get to go to my real home and my real life on the weekends.  Every day on the drive back to my futon I think "how many more days do I have to do this?" Answer:  362.  The kicker (you ladies will LOVE this one)...my new office is in a Women's Hospital so in between breaks of our orientation sessions I've sat in the lobby and watched several new Mom's be wheelchaired out with their new miricles swaddled in blankets.  This is my life....