Thursday, September 25, 2014


Well, it went great overall.

BJ and I arrived in Chattanooga at about 10:45.  We tried to shop at Hamilton Place Mall, but we never noticed how perfumey (I made up a word...I know) stores were.  It's not just we finally went to Spencer's because it did not smell like anything.  I ended up playing with that "Magic Sand" for 15 minutes...It's pretty calming...98% sand 2% polymer minimal residue...If you are a worrier like me...then it's good stuff...Plus it comes in pink...(Christmas is coming, afterall so *hint,hint*, BJ).

So since our Hamilton Place Mall trip lasted only 45 minutes...and 2 stores, we decided to go furniture shopping because 3 years later I've never found a dining room set I was willing to put in my house.  So that got us through lunch and we ended up in the parking lot of the fertility center 8 minutes early.  We waited for about 10 minutes past when my labs were supposed to be drawn, and because I am Mary Katherine Roberts, I told BJ...they are going to parade out of there and tell us they are sorry but none of our embryos survived the thaw.

Lets review...The Fertility Center almost exclusively does frozen embryo transfers now.  The success rates with frozen embryos have been higher than fresh.  They thaw embryos all.the.time.  So I was just making myself crazy for no reason.  Instead, out comes Susan, our embryologist sent from Heaven, with a huge smile on her face saying that our embryo has already been thawed and had started to continue to develop.  So because I have enough hormones in my system to keep an elephant pregnant, it was really hard to hold it together. They drew my progesterone and then it was time for my massage. The Fertility Center's masseuse, Rachel, is the most amazing woman. By the time I got to her, and of course, I was being escorted by Susan because she was explaining what she looked for and how so far Baby Roberts met all of that criteria, I started crying.  Not sad tears, but I just won Miss America tears, because none of this ever goes well for us.

Anyway, Rachel remembered me from 3 years ago, and she wanted to do a hot rock massage to try to get the soreness out of my hips from my 2x a day progesterone shots. I have never done a hot rock massage, they're nice.  Rachel asked if she could pray with me, she did.  And much to my heart she prayed for strength for BJ and I no matter what the future had in store for us.  I thought it was a very Episcopalian of her, so I appreciated it.

It wasn't long before they were ready for us in the pre-op area.  Jan the IVF coordinator gave me my discharge instructions.  Lay low for 72 hours and Susan came back and consulted with us once again.
She gave us a picture of Baby Roberts:

Baby is at 1:00...Just for perspective, here is a blastocyst compared to the eye of a needle...

So she told us she hatched the zona pellucida with a laser after she took this photo to give Baby Roberts every possible chance.  

We went back for the transfer, and with minimal struggle Dr. Donesky got the catheter where he wanted it, and the transfer was completed.  He told us he was very pleased with the quality of the embryo.  I rested for 20 minutes...during which Susan came back and gave us a worry stone with the word 'Hope' on it.  She told me she really liked this one because of the burgundy in it, and it has been in her office for a long time, but she wanted to give it to me.  She  laid it on my tummy. 

I'm sure they go out of their way to make all of us frequent fliers feel special, but they do a good job of really making it seem genuine, even if it's not really special treatment.  Plus talking to her, really made the time fly by so I could pee!!!  (They do an abdominal US for this procedure so you have to fill your bladder...and hold it for however long it takes plus 20 minutes.)

So since then I've been a couch potato as instructed.  I've had some twinges, occasional sharper sensations, but I'm very aware that I have a uterus.  I have no clue what this means.  I know with my chemical pregnancy I had some sharp cramps, but I don't even remember what day they were on. I remember I had already given up at that point and was an emotional basket-case.  This time, I'm feeling optimistic. I know my mother had piercing implantation cramps when she had my brother...That was back in the day when they killed rabbits to see if you were pregnant...but it was so early they could not be for sure whether she was indeed pregnant.  I'm choosing to believe this is just implantation stuff until proven otherwise.

Peace, Love and Hopefully Implanting!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

I'm Just So...


I'm so incredibly frustrated, sad, embittered and angry right now.  I know it's anxiety, lack of sleep, and hormone-fueled, but it feels awful, nevertheless. The worse part is that there is no one to be angry at or frustrated with because it's just aimed at life in general.

I'm angry that no one seems to understand why I'm angry.  I'm angry that I'm having this meltdown the night before my embryo transfer. I'm angry that there is a TV series "I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant" but there isn't a show "I Didn't Know I'd Be Infertile."  I'm angry that we have to go through all of this, and it very possibly (as BJ and I well know) won't work.  I'm angry at people who say "Well, it's not going to be worse than the other times it didn't work."

Every attempt is the worst one yet, because every attempt requires us to pool together all the resources we have including hope.  We drain our hope every month we try thinking this will be it. Else we wouldn't try. And when it doesn't work, we are literally hopeless until we can try again.  It's exhausting and I don't want to be hopeless anymore.

I'm angry that I've become so good at failing.  If you could only imagine failing at something so simple. Imagine it taking 5 years to pass your driving test and never understanding why you failed in the first place.  Imagine consecutively failing a prerequisite for getting into your dream job for years on end as you watch everyone else ace it.  Imagine no one really caring.

I don't know how I feel about tomorrow. I was positive yesterday, negative the day before, and just angry today.  I'm really scared the embryo(s) will not survive the thaw, and it will all be for naught. I'm hoping this is just the pre-transfer jitters.

Peace, Love, And Tomorrow will be better,

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Progesterone Shot #3

This is going to be a long 2 weeks...

Peace, love, and at least it's my blood, 

Mary Katherine

Friday, September 19, 2014

Progesterone Shot #1

One could reasonably assume that having a nursing degree would mean that this would go easily. But alas, it went rather terribly. After knicking my ass twice, I realized that doing it while staring at myself in the mirror was not going to work for me. I tried propping my booty up on the counter to use the mirror. I learned that I must have enough self-preservation to not stick a 1.5" needle in myself...well, at least not while looking myself in the eye...err...ass...

Yes, I want children, yes I'd do anything for them, but I just had a mental block on jabbing myself tonight. I called in BJ for moral support. I talked him into rubbing my feet for me while I jabbed myself.

And after a couple of 1,2,1,2,1,2,3s and a fit of laughter, I managed to break through my dermis. Unfortunately, it was slowly, so as I sit here I can feel the soreness creep in. I could almost hear the needle tearing through the tissue, YUCK!  

BJ was brave and stayed with me the whole time. He did have to lay down afterwards because not being the one to get a shot is extremely difficult for him, but I love him so much! 

Fortunately with me, I know another nurse or two, so I have some resources. So I put a cute little kit together to take to work

So anyway, only 28 more shots to go!

Peace, Love, and IM shots,

Thursday, September 18, 2014

It's Go Time!

Well, we got the official green light after today's scan. I'm awaiting my email for the exact timing, but I start my progesterone shots tomorrow evening.  They will be twice a day instead of once a day like with a fresh IVF cycle.  I'm sure my hips are going to look amazing by the end of this...

It's finally the why am I feeling so sad?  I know this is the part where we let go.  We can't control the outcome. Thinking about not conceiving...or as I call it, killing this baby, is just devastating.  I'm scared that this baby won't survive the thawing process, although the chances are extremely low because of how healthy we went in.

I'm scared to be optimistic, and I'm scared to not be, which has just left me in a kind of numb haze. I'm sure, especially with all the hormones, this will change daily, or hourly...sorry BJ.

It's just so easy to take your meds at the right time, show up for appointments, and adjust.  But the act of conceiving a child, the thought of it actually working after it has failed over 50 times, success just seems so foreign.  I know people are going to tell me, "It's all about attitude." But if it really was, I would have gotten pregnant over 4 years ago.  There are factors in play, that I just have to accept that I will never have control over.

I think what I really dread...not the transfer, but Oct. 4th when it is time to test.  I can't stand the thought of being in that fertility clinic one more time for a negative result.  But I'll do it, because this is the one thing I want most in the world.

Peace, Love, and Courage,
Mary Katherine

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sunday Funday

One of the reasons I like my fertility clinic as much as I do is because they never let a little thing like a weekend prevent you from trying to have a baby.  That being said...

I have 2 quiet ovaries and my lining is up to 11.27 mm.  Ten is the goal, so YAY!!!!

(Not Dr. Donesky, I'm afraid...)

Now I have to prove I can hold onto it for a few days.  So they gave me another dose of Delestrogen in the arse.  It was only half the dose I had on Wednesday and I'll continue on just my estrogen patches and baby aspirin until Thursday...Thursday will hopefully be the day that I FINALLY get going with progesterone, too. Progesterone is what makes the lining stick, where estrogen builds it.

If all should go well, I'll be ready for a transfer the week after this one.  Then the terrible part.  In fact I got pretty sad thinking about it.  I mean this part...we had options, time, and different methods for controlling the ongoings of my uterus...but no amount of drugs can force an embryo to implant.  It's just the sad reality.

I keep reminding myself I've never done it with healthy embryos...I'm so tired of losing at this game. I'm so tired of being infertile.  I just want to make it past the first beta HCG test to the 2nd one and "pass" that one as well. I want to see and hear a heartbeat.  I want to watch my tummy grow for a good reason. I want to feel a baby kick. I want to have to worry about stretch marks. I want to read, sing, and play music for the baby in my belly. I want morning sickness so bad, you could not understand. I want my husband to see me pregnant with his child. I want to be too uncomfortable to sleep. I want my husband to fall in love with this child before it's born.  I want him to fall in love with me again.  I just want to move on with my life...instead of feeling like I'm stuck in my mid-20s.

The only thing we know for sure, is that I definitely cannot have a baby, if I don't keep pressing on...

Peace, Love, and Pressing On,

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Is this a little something?

I think something is happening...good or bad remains to be seen tomorrow, I guess.  I noticed the last couple of days that feeling of irritation or inflammation in my lower abdomen is back.  I really haven't had it since I went off birth control.  So I guess I have enough estrogen in my system now to wake my endometriosis back up...*sigh* It's always something. On a positive note my ovaries were quiet.  Maybe all my estrogen from the last 2 weeks was telling them to, "back the Hell off." So at least I'm not trying to ovulate which could throw us off.

I've been off all my medications for about 6 weeks now. I was thinking I was cured of my IC for the first couple of weeks, but alas, I'm getting up to pee anywhere between 2-5 times at night. Honestly, its not really any worse than it was before I knew I had the problem, so I can't complain too much, and I wake up and my FitBit is already registering 200-300 steps, so...BONUS!

All this in mind, I'm really hoping that my lining looks better tomorrow.  I'm really ready to get going on this.  To think, originally next Friday I should have found out if the transfer worked.  Now I'm just going to be changing my estrogen patches one more time.  I've waited YEARS to become pregnant, so a little more time should not be too much to ask. It just seems like someone is jerking the carrot stick away as soon as it's within reaching distance.

I keep reminding myself of this. It's easy to forget, but a couple of weeks is not near as bad as 4.5 years we've waited. I'll keep taking my vitamins and appreciating the fact that I have this opportunity. I feel confident that I am in good hands medically.  It's just a matter of letting my body get to where it needs to be.  Which expecting it to behave normally is kind of irrational considering the fact that it's the reason we've had to pursue fertility treatments in the first place.

Well, here's hoping that conditions have improved so we can move forward!

Peace, Love, and Estrogen patches, pills and shots; OH MY!

Mary Katherine

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Well, Damn!

[insert string of cursewords here]

So, I was anxious for this appointment, and kinda-sort of prepared for it to not be perfect, but I wasn't ready for my lining to be thinner.  So our NP talked about putting me on different forms of estrogen. After conferring with Dr. Donesky they decided to try the Delestrogen shot. I got it in the office, and I will go back Sunday to see if this has made any difference.

A little later in the day my NP messaged me to tell me my estrogen actually went up to 147, and my progesterone has stayed low enough that this cycle is definitely still a go...just behind schedule.

So the  short of it...our embryo transfer obviously wasn't today, won't be next week, but might be two weeks from now.  In pregnancy terms...I'll be 5 weeks pregnant, but not know if I'm really pregnant until what would be 7 weeks for a normal person.  I'm going to be about 3 weeks behind... We were kind of joking about that in the fertility clinic...If I conceive, I'll be term @ 41 weeks instead of 38 weeks of pregnancy. It's like an elephant pregnancy.

So I guess I'll know more Sunday...I have to get my first refill ever from our fertility pharmacy on my estrogen patches. I'd hoped it would be under happier circumstances...

Peace, Love, & Not Ready to Quit,

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Well, Bummer

No embryo transfer for me next week...dammit.  It's difficult because you get excited, but alas, my body is just doing what it seems to be best at...being difficult.

It's not really a big deal, it's just that my body is being slow to respond to the estrogen.  I've been wearing four 0.1 mg estrogen patches at a time since Monday, but my lining is about 5 days behind what they were expecting.  I had thin linings before I started fertility treatments.  In fact, it was one of the many "this may be the culprit" to figuring out what was keeping me from achieving a pregnancy. So this is not completely shocking, but it's hard not to be disappointed, or scared that this is the start of failure.

Of course they want to follow me more closely now, and of course I can't come when they want me to because of work. Ugh...It's super frustrating.  It's one thing I really resent about being infertile.  I mean a meeting, a work schedule change, a business trip can make the difference in being able to try to have a baby and a whole month's worth of medication being blown.

So other than trying to not be super-bummed and having no idea what's next, I'm fine, I guess.  Well, I mean I'm infertile fine, which is really to say that I'm devastated but so used to being devastated that it is practically my default setting.

On the upside, I'm not having many symptoms from the estrogen, but then again, maybe that's the problem???  In fact, let me check [logging into my portal to check labs]. Ah, estrogen only went up from 45 to 59...When I was doing a stim cycle it would be 2,500, while I don't need for it to be that high...probably closer to 200 would be ideal.  Actually, 40s-50s are what my levels should be during menstruation. So at this moment, with 4 estrogen patches on, I'm practically at the lower end required for bone phenomenal...

I've tried...really tried, to not go supplement/diet crazy this go around, and I can't handle it anymore.  I feel like I'm poisoning my child already.  So as I read about estrogen levels like a nutter, all I'm finding is how bad starches are on estrogen levels. So here I go, probably, all ape-shit, throwing all the food out of my house that might have anything related to rice, corn, flour, starch, potatoes, sugar and what have you out of the house...

Poor BJ...

Peace, Love, and Trying to Focus on the End-Game,