16.5 weeks – and there’s a baby in there!

Through the ultrasound today, there were no concerns identified. Fluid level was more than double what they like to see. Cervix looked good. Placenta didn’t appear to be invading inappropriately. How strange would it be if after all these surgeries and all the struggle with scar tissue, that we wouldn’t actually suffer any of the typical problems from scar tissue during pregnancy? I can pray.

“Dinosaur” (as named by Preschool J) was pretty chill. Only stretching out a leg and rolling away from the doppler when we tried to hear his heart. Preschool J joined us at the ultrasound today. We had his portable dvd player along for the visit as he’s not a fan of sitting still, but loves a good movie. He looked up and remarked how cool it was then went right back to his movie. He did say that Dinosaur was waving his foot at us and that he wanted to come out. !!!! Um, no, not yet, he’s only the size of a baked potato, we told him. :)

While I told my co-workers about our glorious news around 13 weeks, I have held off announcing to students. The cloud over my head of “I don’t want to tell them and have to un-tell them” kept me from sharing and also kept me hiding my baby belly as much as possible. I’m relieved to share our secret (I’m not a fan of keeping secrets) and also wear more of my clothes.

Other than a secondary sinus infection on top of the viral infection that I still have from four weeks ago, I’m feeling pretty good. No more nausea, but definitely getting achy in my hips and belly near the end of the day. All is well. It’s all worth it. Preschool J frequently kisses or rubs my belly and says, “I love you baby brother.”

Beta 44 – now grow baby grow!

Staying the course with all meds. Feeling slightly nauseous, tired, all the normal stuff with all the progesterone and what not. 44 is not very high, but it can grow, so now we’re all praying baby sticks around and that number grows exponentially by Tuesday.

So grateful to get this chance. So grateful to have my little man, J.

J was a rainbow baby for us after our miscarriage. Now, two miscarriages later, we are hoping for a second rainbow baby. I guess that would make a double rainbow in our family. Praying for that double rainbow and believing that God knows best.

Modified bed rest day 2!

I don’t remember the bed rest part being this boring. I’ve plenty of books, movies, things to do but I’m just tired of sitting. I’m not good at “being still” for very long. 30 minutes tops, really.

So, day 2 is almost done and my awesome parents have been taking care of everything they can, mostly chasing and entertaining the always busy Toddler J. He gave me a hug the morning of the transfer and said “I love you, brother.” Then, after transfer said, “I can’t wait to see my brother.” I asked him how he knew he was going to have a brother and he said, “I just know.” He then informed me that he wants two, a brother and a sister. Asking for the moon and the sky, too!

The transfer was a breeze. Started my 32 oz water intake 15 minutes early just like in the trial transfer, then took the valium, had acupuncture, and just as we walked out the escalator, our embryologist greeted us and brought us back. Perfect timing. Frosty baby embryo #3 was transferred at 11:33am on May 29. #3 was a day five embryo so our embryologist said implantation typically happens between days 5 and 7, so possibly not even until tomorrow. #3 was hatching out already, so I imagine it would be likely to connect sooner than later, but given my history of scar tissue and FET failures, who knows. Just praying this one is super sticky.

Started lovenox this morning and continuing the baby aspirin, vitamins, progesterone in oil (IM every day), estrace suppository (twice a day), and delestrogen (IM twice a week). I had one more subQ hcg shot this morning with the final one in three days. Baseline pregnancy test is 9 days post transfer (Friday, June 8) with final pregnancy test 12 days post transfer (Monday, June 11). If I have a positive, I’ll go in for another intralipid infusion.

Trying to think positive. As of this moment, I am pregnant!

Decision Day. Lining 7.3!

FET is a go!!

Last week, the ultrasound revealed a triple layer lining at 5.8mm. Today, just five days later, the lining was at 7.3 and our doc felt good about moving forward with the transfer. The human growth hormone was added to my protocol after some new research came out in December of 2017. Maybe it was that. Maybe it was the time off from treatments. Either way, God is in control and whatever happens is for the best. We may not understand it, but He knows better than us.

We trigger tomorrow, then switch to other meds, cutting out the pentoxy, viagra, and vitamin E, adding progesterone every day and hcg shots every couple days for a week. After transfer, I’ll also add lovenox shots. After meeting with my doc today, I did an intralipid infusion. The IV needle is never fun, but it really wasn’t a big deal. The taste of the intralipid is so strange. Why do I taste it when it’s put straight into my blood? Crazy.

Super bloated and craving chocolate. Even had a dream that I ate a deliciously soft, even fluffy chocolate cookie AND a brownie….. with a panic attack soon to follow due to “messing everything up” but then I woke up. Whew. ;) I have the most vivid dreams on IVF meds.

 

Finding balance.

Sometimes, I clean. Almost always, I cook. Rarely, I bake. Often, I am in the moment, enjoying and soaking it in. Sometimes, I fall apart. Many times, I take a deep breath and try again, or walk away. More often now, I’m reading scripture. Always, I love, even if I don’t like the behavior, I love the other human beings trying to do their best like me, even if it’s sometimes, almost always, rarely, or often.

Trying to find a balance between my professional goals and my personal life; fun and the desire for home-made meals, cleanliness, tidy rooms, and a well-behaved and happy toddler; wife and mother and daughter and neighbor and friend.

It’s a first for me since quite a while back. I’m finally able to look for a “normal” balance outside of the IVF realm.

In the midst of IVF, there is no balance. While life is going on outside of treatment (family, professionally, globally), that treatment is all-consuming. Medications. Appointments. Complimentary treatments requiring more appointments to aid the medications or relieve symptoms. More medication: needles and pills and suppositories and supplements and patches and more needles… and more pills.

And the hot/cold highs/lows and crashes.

And the tears. The guilt. The loss.

But the toddler, he is proof that all that stuff can work. He is ridiculously intelligent and challenging and I don’t even care if I only think that because I’m his mom – because I’m his MOM. Something I once thought was quite possibly impossible. I’m so thankful.

 

Infertility – Asherman’s Syndrome

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Good night, sweet prince.

Our first beta on Friday was 7 and that number fell even further to 3 today. I knew it was coming, because a 7 at 11 days past a 5 day transfer is not a good number.

Estrogen is sky high 2000+ and progesterone is over 100. The crash will be fierce.

I did absolutely everything I could do. Prayer. Prayer warriors. Acupuncture twice a week for 6 weeks prior. Blood-building diet. Bone broth. High protein diet. 2-day bedrest. Acupuncture on site before and after transfer. Didn’t lift anything over 10 lbs. Barely used any stairs. Watched funny movies. Ate pineapple core for 5 days after transfer. Took Lupron, Cialis, Pentoxifylline, intralipids IV drip, low dose aspirin, extra vitamin E, food-based prenatal, extra methylated B vitamins, extra vitamin D, estrogen suppositories and injections, progesterone injections, HCG injections, no exercise, no caffeine, no chocolate, no coffee, no dairy, no sugar, no alcohol, no gluten, organic as much as possible, and still… no success.

I cannot take this burden on myself. I did everything there was to do. Now I pray for peace that only God can provide – that which passes all understanding.

But tonight, I say good night to our baby boy, our prince. We will meet you again one day.

Be still.

Exodus 14:14 “The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.”


So, I’m doing my best… Bedrest day 1. My clinic required two days back when we transferred baby J, but now they say just one. Since the transfer in March with one day of bedrest did not work, I’m going back to two days (nobody told me to, I just decided it was best to go with what worked before).

Baby J is at daycare and hubby is at work.

By the way, look at the size of that embryo! The others we transferred were never coming out of their shell like this one. The dense part near the bottom center is the baby and the rest will turn into placenta. The transfer was smooth. No need to give time for the bladder to fill and no need to empty any off the top. In the past, I’ve needed just a little more time or was overfull. Guess that repetition has helped me.

Trying to find funny stuff to watch over the next two weeks. If you have any recommendations, please let me know! I’ll watch “Sisters” for sure. Anything else?

Jimmy Fallon is my “go-to” right now. Here’s one for you all:

http://www.nbc.com/the-tonight-show/video/first-textual-experience-with-sting/3107263

Jimmy is hilarious, but Sting… well, he’s Sting… sooo good. And yes, all I’m doing in bed right now is eating.

In less than 24 hours…

…we will get to meet our third frozen embryo. We are cleared for takeoff with our FET scheduled for tomorrow at 2pm. I can hardly believe it!

We are so grateful for all your prayers. Only God could give us the endurance for this and the strength to believe this can work.

The endometrial lining was between 6 and 7mm with a triple-layer. The scars in the basalis layer of my uterus are still there, but “the embryo doesn’t know they are” said our doc today. Ha! Funny stuff he says.

If you want to reach me, I will be doing … well, basically nothing except focusing on positive energy, prayers (for so many people also needing prayers right now), and doing my best not to annoy my loved ones who will be waiting on me for the next 2, or 3, or 6 days. :)

Please stick around and meet us in about eight and half months, little frosty em-baby!

Surgery #5

Yep. Fifth surgery on this tough mudder of a uterus.

I get so frustrated that she isn’t doing what she should but she has been through a lot and she keeps trying. She has survived the worst of scars and, according to my doc, looks pretty good. He removed one patch of scar tissue and a few nodules, but she looked pretty good. He even wonders if there was some embryo issue (even though we had PGD, it could’ve been something else, not chromosomal) and if the failure really wasn’t to blame on the lining… who knows.

What I do know is that he said, “this is your last surgery. I don’t want to do another surgery because it looks good.” So, I’m going to take that and run with it.

We look good.

We are going to heal well through healthy movement, great food, happy times, and reduced stress. We are doing everything we can to build a safe, healthy home for our next embryo to grow strong. We look forward to bringing another brilliant, independent child into this world to love and cherish.

I started estrogen injections and suppositories this morning. Here we go… again!

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