The pill.

So, while this isn’t big news, we are back on the pill over here. Good news is that I made it through 7 months without ANY medication. No hormones. No pills, patches, injections, ultrasounds, blood draws, nothing. Unfortunately, that changed last week because the duration and strength of my periods were less and less, which is not the way we want things to go if we want to avoid surgery and have any chance at building a lining to transfer our final embryo. Good news, again, is that I DID have a cycle of normal length on a regular basis without any medical assistance.

So, good news and less desirable news, but I’d say I already beat the odds of being in pre-menopause by my mid 30’s (because I’m there, dude). If it weren’t for physician error, I would have a functioning lining in my uterus and have a very good chance of a successful pregnancy. No lawsuit or anger will ever change my circumstances in that concern.

At the moment, the medication plan is to follow the pill for one month, then estradiol by mouth in AM and suppository by PM for 28 days, followed by progesterone pills for 7 days, then, repeat the estradiol/progesterone protocol for 2 more months. So, four months of medication and another evaluation to decide any further course of treatment.

I feel surrounded by babies. My heart still aches to have another. I pray that we will, but I’m also enjoying spoiling Toddler J with all my love and snuggles. He amazes us every day… and challenges us, too.

Our family is experiencing other hardships on his side and mine. We are praying for his father and my brother. Praying for healing that surpasses all expectations.

We ask for your prayers right now, for our family and for our own future. We pray for faith in His will and guidance. We also pray for the knowledge, foresight and wisdom of the medical professionals who provide care for us and our family. I find myself taking my health, strength, sight, etc. for granted every day.

Lord, we are ever so grateful. Help us use these gifts to bring the glory to You. Amen.

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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.

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!

HCG 3 and Asherman’s Syndrome

We continued meds for another couple days and had one final blood draw this morning. It revealed the HCG at 3. We drank a beer and I ate some chocolate. I’ve two beautiful men right here in my arms. I spent Monday mourning the loss and have done my best to celebrate and spoil my two right here.

This journey through IVF with multiple diagnoses and Asherman’s to top it all off, has been an impressive one. We have come so far, especially considering that Asherman’s diagnosis was less than a year ago and had completely incapacitated my uterus with scar tissue. We made it all the way to transfer and even had a positive pregnancy test. I am grateful to have found all the professionals and prayers that brought us this far.

We are not done yet.

I received a message loud and clear Tuesday morning when baby J threw a complete tantrum with flailing arms, crying, screaming, wailing, and kicking. He had a bowl of blueberries right in front of him, but he desperately wanted the bowl of blueberries in the fridge. He wouldn’t look at those in front of him, wouldn’t enjoy them, wouldn’t even acknowledge them because he was fixated on the ones he didn’t have in his bowl.

Loud and clear, I was reminded to take time to love appreciate who I have right here, rather than fixating on who I don’t have right here, right now. I do believe I will meet all my babies one day when there is no more illness, death, sorrow, or pain. When we are all young and healthy for eternity.

 

Pentoxifylline and Cialis.

I just have to put it out there, because I haven’t found any other account of it.

If you are also experiencing these two, please please comment and share your experience.

These two are not my friends right now, but they are part of my plan to grow a healthy endometrial lining for our upcoming FET.

Last month, I also took Pentoxifylline and suffered from a nasty headache in the migraine territory, accompanied by nausea and dizziness. It lasted about two days, but when I learned to take it WITH food, it seemed to ease up and go away. I was also taking Viagra suppositories last time, so it could’ve been my body adjusting to both of those.

This time, the Viagra suppositories have been replaced by oral Cialis. I don’t know if that makes any difference, but here we are, and I’ve been struggling with all-over aches from my neck to my knees, but mostly moderate to severe aches in my lower back and hips. I finally found sleep last night by sleeping on my stomach. Today, I managed the morning just fine but gave in to some help from Tylenol this afternoon. So. Much. Better.

I have an early ultrasound and blood work in four days, so I’m hoping I can hold on until them or that the aches would subside by then.

Anybody?

I’m just so curious to see if anyone else in on this stuff. I can’t see that there are any studies going on and I always wonder about the long-term results from all these meds. I guess I’m off the standard prescription for IVF and FET patients and I’m now onto the somewhat undocumented stuff. Fun. ha.

I kinda have to psyche myself up for my next dose of fun. Makes surgery not seem like such a bad alternative.

Okay, okay. This will all be good. We will learn from it and I hope these crazy meds will make a beautiful lining together. Which will grow a beautiful baby. Who we can spoil with love and kisses. Can we really be that lucky?

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