Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Beta 9 and 10

Ok, really, whoever posts about their tenth beta?? I have now had MORE blood draws post IVF than I did seems like something is wrong with that!! My poor veins really need a break! It's sad when everyone in the office knows me as the "hard draw" and I think the nurses fight over who has to draw me.

But I digress...we do have some good news.

Monday's Beta was 183 and today's was 86.5!! We have had two good drops and my numbers are well below any danger levels. It really looks like this is finally coming to a close. W is very excited to be able to resume "normal activity." Once I'm officially down to 0, then I get to meet with Dr. J to discuss our plans from here but since I know we will have a break of a few months I'm anxious to get back to exericising and hope to lose a few pounds while I'm hormone free.

And the best news...I don't have to go back until next Wednesday!!!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Last trip to Babies R US

When I was TTC the first time, I really wanted to go to Babies R US just to "look" around. I never got around to it and as months past, W knew it was a good idea to keep me out of that store. He made a new rule that I wasn't allowed in the store until I was pregnant. He knew that there was no way I could handle a trip to the store. When a baby shower rolled around I would hope they were registered at Target and if not, I ordered online from Babies R US.

We celebrated hearing Jr's heartbeat by going to Babies R US and over the next 2 years there were LOTS of trips and thousands of dollars spent in that store. Over the past year, I have made fewer and fewer trips. My "baby" is growing up and just doesn't need anything from that store (besides diapers but I don't buy them there). Over the weekend, we headed to the store for what will probably be our last purchase for awhile. We ordered the toddler rail for Jr's crib. When we bought the crib we never actually planned on using it as a convertible crib becuase we thought we would have another baby before Jr. was ready to use it as a toddler or full size bed but when we realized that it would be over a year now before we would need the crib for another baby, it was time to take that step.

I didn't realize how hard it would be to make that hasn't been hard in a long time. But now, my baby is growing up and I no longer have a baby. I am back to where I was 4 years ago...longing for a baby and babies r us is just a painful reminder of that.

Monday, March 22, 2010

I love my doctor ob that is...not my RE!!

I think my RE is ok, but in the 9 months that I have been a patient of his and who knows how many trips to the office, I have only met him 5 times (two of which have been in the last couple of weeks becuase of the ectopic pregnancy). I don't doubt his knowledge about infertility and I do think that he will help me achieve a pregnancy...BUT I am simply a name on a chart. When we meet with him, he likes to talk...not listen...and if we do ask for something and he agrees to it, I am sometimes then fighting with the nurses to get it becuase he never shared that information with them.

My OB on the other hand, knows how to listen. I originally started seeing Dr. D when we were approaching our one year TTC mark the first time around. My former OB refused to look further into why I had so much abnormal bleeding and I was upset with a few other things. I loved Dr. D from the minute we walked in the door. He listened and he took action. Throughout the next few months of treatment, I felt that he was always doing what was best for me and continued to listen. During my pregnancy, I felt the exact same way and when I developed complications and had to be induced earlier than I would have liked...I knew I was in good hands.

Last summer, when our time came to move on from Dr. D, I was sad. I had really hoped to be able to stay with him, but he and I both knew there was nothing more he could do for me. Fast forward to last week...when we found out on Wednesday that my numbers had started rising again, we wanted to meet with Dr. D not only for a second opinion on treatment but also to discuss the possibility of surgery since he is the one who would have done it. Twenty minutes after I called, we were sitting in his office talking this out with him. He suggested the second dose and since we trust him so much we took his advice.

Saturday afternoon the phone was Dr. D checking on me. He knew I was nervous about the shot and especially the side effects and just wanted to make sure I was OK. I couldn't believe he had called...I am not his responsibility right now and yet he still checked in on me...on the weekend. I didn't get a single call from anyone at the office that is supposed to make sure I'm ok...but Dr. D called.

Like I said, I have no intention of leaving my RE but it is things like this that get me even more anxious to get pregnant and be back in my comfort zone.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Welcome ICLWers

Welcome ICLWers! This is my first time participating and I am very excited - I can't wait to meet new people and find some great new blogs to add to my list. If you are visiting my blog for the first time, you will find that I pretty much only write about our infertility. I have an IRL blog that talks about our life, our son, etc. and frankly I don't have time to write about it twice. This is an anonymous blog...that isn't becuase of you. I'm not worried about you finding out who I am, I am worried about people IRL finding out about the blog. I started this blog becuase I felt like most people IRL didn't want to hear what I really was thinking or feeling. If they hurt my feelings or make me mad, I want to be able to write about it without fearing they may find it.

If this is your first time here, my husband (W) and I are trying to get pregnant with our second child. We had our son (Jr.) in 2007 with the help of Clomid and began trying again in June of 2008. So far we have done 5 natural cycles with Clomid, 3 Clomid IUIs, 1 Clomid/Follistim IUI and 1 IVF. I did get pregnant from the IVF however we found out at 6 weeks that it was an ectopic pregnancy in my left tube. Unfortunately this little guy doesn't want to go away, so that is our current struggle. Once my beta numbers are down to zero we have to take a few months off to let my body recover but then we will be doing a FET (probably in July).

I hope you stick around and read some of our journey...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I spoke too soon

Yesterday I had another beta. We were expecting another low score and to get permission to leave on out trip.
Unfortunately, when we got our results back yesterday, we were at a 553 (Monday's was a 502). Not only was the vacation cancelled but we also had to go back for another dose of the methotrexate this morning. We considered going ahead with the surgery instead of a second dose but we were able to meet with my OB before making the decision. I really trust his opinion and although he said he would do the surgery if we wanted it, he suggested the second dose.

Since I always like to look at the positives, I am handling this dose MUCH better than the last dose. Although I was extremely tired I felt good otherwise.

I have another beta on Monday and we'll see where things are then.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Good News...finally

My beta today had dropped into the 500s!! I know that dropping beta scores are not usually something to be happy about it but in this case, it is. It looks like this chapter in my fertility journey is finally coming to an end. If things continue the way they are going I won't need a second shot OR surgery and we may even get to go on our trip this weekend!!

The methotrexate usually takes 5-7 days to work so they were actually expecting my numbers to increase today. The fact that not only my numbers came down but that they came down so much probably means that my body was already starting to take care of this on its own.

Keeping my fingers crossed for good results on Wednesday so I can get the all clear to take a week off and finally put all of this behind us and move on.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

I didn't think it could get worse...

I didn't think it could get worse...but I was wrong.

Tuesday's beta was 602...they put me back on my progesterone and told me to come back Friday for another beta and an ultrasound.

I spent hours reading up on what was going on. I was 99% sure that regardless of what was happening, this was still not a viable pregnancy. After all my research I came to the conclusion that it was a blighted ovum/empty sac.

I went in for my ultrasound expecting bad results, but I wasn't expecting what they found. Looks like my little Fred is camped out in my left tube. Yes, we made it into the less than 1% of IVF pregnancies that are ectopic. It was very clear and we could even see the yolk sac. They said that based on how clear it was they couldn't believe I couldn't feel it there. The nurse immeidately went into panic mode. They started drawing all sorts of labs, checking my blood pressure, etc. Dr. J was in a different office that day so he wanted to see us in a couple of hours at the other office. In that time, we had to go to the pharmacy and pick up the Methotrexate that they would use to start ending the pregnancy.

When we met with Dr. J, he couldn't believe the results, he said it really only happens a couple of times a year. We discussed the option of surgery vs the shot. Our biggest fear is that this will drag on for weeks only to end in surgery anyways so maybe we should do the surgery and end it now. He convinced us to give the shot a chance and see what happened. If we needed a second dose, we would then probably do surgery instead.

All my labs came back normal (checked liver, etc.) so they gave me the shot of Methotrexate around 2 and sent us home with very strict instructions to call if we started to feel anything abnormal.

We decided to head out to dinner to get our minds off everything and during dinner I started feeling horrible. I was lightheaded, achy and was shaking. We called the on-call doctor and he said they were normal side-effects of the Methotrexate...fabulous. I didn't sleep much last night and woke up achy and sore this morning...luckily the shaking had stopped.

So now we wait...they said I am a ticking time bomb until my beta numbers start to decrease which may take 5-7 days. I am second guessing every twinge, every ache and wondering if we need to head to the emergency room.

I think our biggest frustration in this is that it will be at least July now before we can do a FET...

And the icing on the cake...we were supposed to leave for our annual ski trip with the in-laws on Thursday. I don't ski so it was just going to be a relaxing week for me and I was really looking forward to it... but Dr. J thinks it is a bad idea. We planned this whole IVF cycle around being able to take the trip we knew we would know one way or another how things had ended. We figured worse case scenario was that we couldn't go becuase I was pregnant and needed bed rest or something...we never imagined we would have to cancel the trip becuase of this...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The List

I have been thinking the past few days how I can put my feelings about the last couple of weeks into words. I am obviously heartbroken about this loss. Since this is my first miscarriage, I can't say how I would have felt if this had happened before but I think I was more attached to this little guy since I knew so much about him and even SAW him three weeks ago. We named him, he was Fred. I still have no idea how my husband came up with that name, and it wouldn't have been his name if he had been a boy but he still had a name...just like Jr. was munchkin until the day he was born. Yesterday, I wrote "Fred D-day" on my calendar on November 5 even though I'm sure I won't need the reminder. Then I started to wonder where I will be on November 5. Will I be pregnant? How many more cycles will we have tried by then? What will have happened to my 4 frozen babies?

I will miss him. I will miss the idea of him. I will miss the food aversions that he made me have. I will miss the twinges that made me know he was there. I will miss worrying if he is alright. I will miss W talking to him...but I will never forget him.

As far as moving on, I feel like I am left with one huge positive and one huge negative about my fertility future...

POSITIVE: I got pregnant. In the last 21 months of trying, I have never made it that far. I truly feel that the IVF was a success, it was the pregnancy that was the failure. This gives me hope for the future...more hope than I had a few months ago when we decided to move on to IVF.

NEGATIVE: I feel like I have a list of failures. I have a list of how many cycles I have tried over the past 5 years, the number of negative cycles and how many treatments have failed but something I have never had to add to my list is a miscarriage. Now I have one more way in which I have failed...

Monday, March 8, 2010

Post IVF/Pregnancy Loss Consult

This afternoon, W and I went in for our consult with the RE. We were totally viewing this as a Post IVF consult but they were viewing it as a pregnancy loss consult. i think the difference in opinion shows how I still haven't wrapped my head around the fact that I was ever actually pregnant. Dr. J kept going on and on about how he knew we weren't ready to talk about the next step, but we were. I think that is our coping strategy is figuring out what to do next and knowing that although this little baby didn't make it, we have 4 more ready to go.

So here are the key points from today
- Dr. J is 95% sure the miscarriage was caused my genetic abnormality but is going to run the immune tissue labs tomorrow to rule that out

- We can't start on the BCP until I get a real period which could be anywhere between 3 - 6 weeks from now. That range unfortunately means that our FET could get pushed back to JUNE!! We had really been hoping for May (we were never planning on April since we are heading out of town for 9 days in a couple of weeks).

- As far as the number of eggs, Dr. J said that if we needed to do another fresh cycle, he would probably do everything the same but would up the Hcg to try to mature a few more.

- my four frozen babies are frozen in 3 sets, two are individual and two are together. We were very happy about that since we are leaning towards only transferring one again.

Overall, I think it was a good appointment. I'm glad we got in so quick so we can move on and start thinking about the future instead of dwelling on the past.

Beta #5: The Beta that didn't happen

Originally I was supposed to go in at 7:30 for my beta this morning but after Friday's results and they rescheduled my consult with the doctor they said I could wait and have it done at 3 when I was there for the other appointment since waiting until Tuesday for the results wasn't a big deal at this point.

Before the beta story though, I went off my meds on Friday afternoon and starting having light spotting on Saturday and Sunday. This morning I woke up with heavier bleeding that seemed to have small clots in it and maybe a little tissue.

The wierd thing is that I took a pregnancy test this morning, my first since Friday morning and it was the darkest one I have had yet...the line was even darker than the control line.

So with all the bleeding, I knew this was definitely over (I haven't had any of the pregnancy feelings since Thursday) but was VERY curious about what my beta was. I went in for my test and consult and 4 attempts later, the nurse still hasn't had any luck getting a good vein and gives up! I have to go back tomorrow morning for them to try again. I felt bad for the nurse since she felt so awful! I know I'll have some pretty new bruises to add to the ones I already have. I really wish I didn't have to do this all the way back to 0, I'd love a little break from the needles!!

Hopefully tomorrow I'll have a number for you...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Beta #4: The beginning of the end...


Although it did rise, it obviously wasn't enough. They told me to go off the progesterone and let things take their course. If it was only the number I might still try to tell myself that there is still a chance but last night I had some spotting and today my "pregnant" twinges went away and the normal pre-period cramping started.

So those are the physical facts, I'm still processing the emotional...I'm sure that post is coming soon. However for now, I am going to turn off the computer, eat some chocolate cake and and have a pity party with my husband.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The "P" word

I can't make myself say it. Despite the fact that my HCG levels may be less than stellar, I am "technically" pregnant...but there is no way I can say that outloud. I have put up a wall...a huge wall of protection that is guarding me from getting attached to the idea that this could actually work out. At this current moment, I have more reasons to be hopeful that doubt...1) my numbers are rising at a fairly steady pace 2) I don't have any bleeding or cramping and 3) I feel EXACTLY the same way I felt at this point with Jr. (tired, lots of twinges in "down there" and food aversions). The only thing not going my way is that the numbers started off extremely low.
Tomorrow, I have an acupuncture appointment. I know the first thing he will say when he walks in that room is, "well??" And I don't know what I'll say, probably "I don't know" followed by my explanation of how I'm trying to set a record for the most betas.
I have an eye appointment tonight and am supposed to get my eyes dilated. I know I need to tell her about my current situation to make sure I get the "safe" meds, but can I make those words come out of my mouth. I feel like a poser.

I'm not really pregnant...I just have HCG in my long will I continue to tell myself that before I let the wall crumble down???

Beta #3


So I more than doubled again. All they are telling me is that they will continue to watch me very closely, so tomorrow is Beta #4.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Beta #2


So the number is obviously going up however it may be going up too fast...

I new my score would be a little higher since I have been POAS every day and my line was getting darker.

They are still very concerned about an ectopic pregnancy so i will be going in for another beta on Wednesday and probably an ultrasound on Friday.

Today the nurse actually mentioned the "v" word...possible viable pregnancy...but I can't let myself consider that yet...

However, what I can no longer deny, I am pregnant. I may not be tomorrow, but I am today...