Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Eggs Have Landed...

So ER was yesterday and it went pretty well. They were able to fish out 10 eggs, 2 of these were cracked (cracked??? seriously? how does that happen???) but the other 8 were mature. I got my fert report this am and 7 out of the 8 fertilized.

Overall, I am pleased. I do have a few questions for Dr. P though because the whole point of tripling my Follistim was to get a stronger response. We ended up with the exact number of eggs - 2 less actually because of my broken eggs. We did achieve a higher e2 level -1949 last time almost 2300 this time, but still not high enough to avoid HCG boosters (I will know for sure on Friday at ET). I know this cycle was a little crazy & I got sick with a sinus infection, but I can't help but wonder why I wasn't a little egg factory this time? I know it only takes one and I am happy with my 7 little embies, but just curious why I didn't have any change this cycle. Perhaps a downside to cycling back to back? Who knows...

The ER kicked my butt! I slept all freakin day yesterday. I woke up long enough to eat and that was about it. I even went to bed at 10pm and slept until 7:30am. Can you say run-down much??? I guess it all caught up with me. I feel fantastic today - very well rested, refreshed and no pain.

In case inquiring minds want to know, I had a little chat with the anesthesiologist at ER and asked her to explain to me how general anesthesia and this neuroplectic anesthesia are different. Basically, general anaesthesia paralyzes you and they add muscle relaxers into the mix to make your body like putty. Neuroplectic anesthesia just makes your brain unconscious and gives you amnesia. She said your body actually reacts to the pain - patients actually jump when needle aspirates the follicles, but we are able to immediately relax and we have no memory of it.(*disclaimer -I am no scientist or dr. and this is my layman's explanation...) Crazy huh? I probably shouldn't have asked because it made me a little jumpy just before I went under - I could have a had a little freak out on the table, but thankfully I got it under control and the meds kicked in...

I am anxious to resume getting the new house in tip-top shape and even more anxious to get my little embies in to snuggle down for 9 long months. T-minus 36 hours until transfer...

Monday, April 28, 2008

Moving, Meds & Mom

Both the move and stimming are behind me. The move went smoothly and was relatively stress free. We unpacked and settled in record time - I guess that is one benefit to moving 7 times in 7 years. I still have some organizing to do in the bathrooms and office and I am looking forward to hanging photos and doing the decorating. I hope to post some pics soon!

Can I just tell you how much I love my new house??? I love it, I love it, I LOVE it!!! It has such a warm and "homey" feeling. The neighborhood is amazing and all of my neighbors have stopped by to introduce themselves. This may not sound like something to be surprised by, but considering the rude people in my old neighborhood, this is a wonderful and welcome change. Oh & how excited am I to be a renter instead of a homeowner?!? Exhibit A: A/C was not working when we tried to turn it on on Saturday so we called our landlords (who are amazing, by the way), they came over, couldn't get it going and called the HVAC guy. HVAC guy comes today - fixes blown circuit board and capacitor and landlord pays the $600 - now that is what I am talking about!!! I love renting!

My mom was down helping us all weekend and she is the best. I miss her so much and wish we lived closer. We had a great weekend - lots of fun & lots of laughs. She truly is one of my best friends. She has so much on her plate right now. I was sad to see her leave last night...

One thing that did not go so smoothly was the install of phone, internet and tv. In fact, I am still without all of the above. They tell me perhaps on Wednesday the tech gods will bless us with their goodness. I can only hope. I came to the office with Sean today just to get my internet fix!

In other news, I triggered last night and ER will be 1st thing in the morning. Can we talk about how disgusting trigger makes you feel? Sore, tired, bloated, achy, upset tummy, full...BLECH!!! I hate it - it is the worst part of IVF for me. I just hope I do not need the boosters this time.

I really have not had anytime to think about my cycle. No time to obsess or over analyze everything. I barely had time to remember to take my meds - in fact we had a near crisis when I realized that we were out of Follistim after Saturday night's shots. Thank goodness I triggered on Sunday and didn't need it anyway - the nurses would have solved the problem for me I'm sure. I'll spare you the details but let's just say it was HIS fault...

I am excited about ER tomorrow, but still a little ambivalent. I started to get a little emotional about it last night, but I think it was everything - the move, mom leaving, & the meds all coming to a head. I am okay though, but I think in my mind I have already assumed it is not going to work this time and that is a complete 180 from where I was this time last cycle.

I am not sure I responded as well as they had hoped I would. I was on 225 of Follistim for 9 nights (up from 75U last cycle) and they are guesstimating 15 eggs. That would be great, but I would be surprised. On Sunday, I had 8 follies between 18-21 and the left side was not really responding too well. Last cycle I had 10 eggs - if we get between 10-15, I will be thrilled. I guess I just thought with such an increase in meds my #'s would be much higher - even my E2 has been lower. I don't know what is was @ trigger because E2 machine was broken yesterday, but it was 787 on Friday and RE made the decision to trigger based on my follies. We shall see. OK - now I am starting to over analyze...I digress.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Family First

I feel like my head is spinning. I started stimming for IVF #2 on Friday night and we have been packing like crazy for a week or so now. The big move is on Weds, my mom arrives Weds night and we have a long week ahead of us. I just hope to be fairly settled before ER so I can rest up.

I have been having a tough time sleeping and I am not sure if it is the meds or everything that is going on. I have been cheating with the caffeine lately & I don't think that is helping matters, so I have sworn it off totally this cycle. I find myself laying there making all kinds of mental to do lists and planning out the rooms in my new house. I end up tossing and turning and getting all frustrated, it stinks. I am tired and need some sleep!!!

Sean's allergies are killing him and I feel terrible for him because it is kicking his butt. Stims are not kicking my butt yet, but I am sure it won't be long. Here are my dosages:

5u Lupron
225u Follistim
75u Menopur

Although the shots are not kicking my butt yet, they are bruising me something terrible. I don't know what is going on this time around, but my belly looks awful. I didn't have a single bruise for IVF #1. Maybe I will have a different outcome this time? The more bruises, the higher the success rates? We can only hope.

In other exciting news, Sean's company, Family First Mortgage Group, has just been approved to lend nationwide! This is a huge development and we are super excited about it. We need to work on a nationwide mailer or advertising campaign, but for now, we are sending letters and emailing everyone we know to put the word out. So, consider this my little commercial and please check out our website and pass it on to friends and family and please let us know if we can help you with any home financing needs at any time. An interesting tidbit about the company is that the name, Family First, was inspired both by our struggle with IF and the importance of family in our lives. Also, our logo, the Celtic knot was inspired by Sean's Irish heritage. His parents and his 4 siblings were all born and raised in Belfast. They came to the States in 1972 to flee the troubles in N. Ireland. Sean was the only child born in America and given the nickname, "The Wee Yank" by his relatives in Belfast. When we were brainstorming and designing the logo, it was very important to us that all the pieces have personal meaning to us. We are so happy with the way it has all come together and I haven't seen Sean this happy in a long time.

Could we possibly having any more going on right now??? Stimming, moving, a growing business. No wonder I can't sleep and my head is spinning. I am excited though, so many new beginnings...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Thoughts on the eve of IVF #2

Ivf #2 is here and I have my game face on, but it also has stirred up lots of thoughts and emotions. I am ready for this cycle, but I feel very differently this time around. I am not quite so hopeful, definitely not so manically excited, a bit more realistic and maybe even a tiny bit ambivalent? I know what to expect this go round as far as the meds, procedures etc...and that definitely helps with the anxiety and excitement factor... I can only hope and pray for a different outcome this time around...

I am also having a really hard time processing all the bad news on the nest and my other IF message boards. Seriously, every single day there is someone going through something terrible and life altering - a BFN after umpteen IVF cycles, girls trapped in BETA hell hoping and praying for a sticky baby, a failed adoption, a BFP negated by a chemical, an ectopic, or an early m/c in the blink of an eye, devastating 2nd trimester losses due to incompetent cervix and placental abruption, giving birth to a miracle baby or babies and having him or her taken away far too soon due to a rare birth defect or illness...These are things that happen every single day in the world of infertility.

I have shed so many tears for my TTTC sisters. No one should ever have to go through the loss and grief so many of these women have to experience, let alone women who have been to hell and back just to conceive in the 1st place. I have such a hard time believing that any God could bless these woman with a pregnancy that was so hard fought for, only to take it away so soon. WHY??? It defies explanation or reason to me and I am a big believer in the "everything happens for a reason" mantra. What reason could there be to take away the life of a tiny, little infant and shatter their families' hearts into ten million pieces??? I will never understand and I will never forget these women and their stories...

As Sean often reminds me, there are also hundreds of miracles that I witness everyday on the boards and that is certainly true. My heart bursts with joy when women are blessed with BFPs and happy, healthy infants, but heart also breaks for all that everyone has been through - the testing, the procedures, the fights, the heartbreak, the loss, the disappointment, the lost hopes and dreams, the tears, and also for the embryos that will never be babies that we hold in our arms, but always in our hearts...

Friday, April 4, 2008

We found a house!!!

Just when I was starting to get nervous, we found a house to lease!!! I heart Craigs.list! Ok, a little background - when Sean made the decision to leave his former company and start Family First Mortgage Group, we decided we would sell the house and lease for a few years. Why???

Well, we have a big, fat, ugly mortgage payment and Sean wants to be able to focus on growing the business without the stress of so much overhead and maintenance. The mortgage wasn't so big, fat & ugly when he had a big, fat salary and big, fat bonuses and big, fat commissions, but all of that came at a big, fat price and in the end, it wasn't worth it. It has always been Sean's dream to own his own business so we took the leap of faith and Family First Mortgage Group was born. You should visit our website - it is our pride & joy right now

Anyway, we put the house up and it sold. Since it is such a craptastic market, it took awhile and we had to come wayyyyy down in price, but the long term savings benefit will off set that in no time.

We knew we wanted a comparable house in a nice neighborhood and those are few and far between. Most often, they are priced sky-high, ugly as sin or they want you to hand over your first born as collateral. So, when I saw an amazing looking house at an amazing price on c-list this week, I jumped on it. I went to see it & promptly fell in love. It is perfect!!!!

It is in an incredible neighborhood that we have always coveted and it is a complete rehab so it is more like new construction than a "rental". They re-did the house from top to bottom. It is comparable to our house in every way & all of our furniture will fit, so, no additional storage costs. The house has:
  • formal living room
  • formal dining room
  • family room
  • 4 bedrooms
  • 2.5 baths
  • finished basement
  • plenty of storage
  • a decent sized yard
  • neutral colors

And the best part - a brand, spankin' new kitchen! Porcelain tile floors, stainless appliances, granite counters, beautiful cabinets - is lovely. It kicks my current kitchen's ass with its' white vinyl floors, white appliances, blah counters....Oh & it comes with a 50 inch plasma tv mounted over the fireplace.

I might even like it better than the home I own and I get to live there for 50% less than my current mortgage. Who-hoo! I feel incredibly lucky. The landlord seems amazing and takes care of all the major maintenance -inside & out. They were going to sell it, but they kind of blew out the budget during the rehab and the market just won't justify their asking price, so they decided to rent it instead & lucky for me they did!

We will be moving on April 24th - yep that's right- right in the middle of my stims for IVF #2! We decided to push the move date up a little bit so that we could be moved in before ER/ET. It is going to be fun stuff. My mom is coming down to help us - thank goodness! I love my mommy!

To be honest, I was not looking forward to this entire moving/leasing process, but now I am very excited about it. It feels right - new beginnings all around - a new business, a new home & a new cycle! Wish us luck -April is going to be one crazy ride!