Much belated update..

7 06 2013

It’s really painful to check in here on my blog reader and see how many infertiles are pregnant or have a newborn (or two).  Painful and annoying.  Just like coming in to work and having everyone be pregnant or returning from maternity leave.  OK fine not EVERYone but at least 3 women out of an office of 40.  Where is some of that water so I can have some?

I met with Dr Braverman in NY in mid-May.  The short version is, I don’t know very much about whatever is wrong with me, and Dr. B has some ideas but needs to do more research and reading.  We don’t have a plan in mind for next steps– although I did get two more pricey tests run by Reprosource– and right now we’re just kind of in limbo, waiting on results.  The problem is I have only two blasts left.  If I had ten, we could kind of tinker with things… but at best I have two transfers left.  So frankly, I’ve kind of checked out.  I’m pissed at the whole deal.

I mean, seriously, WHAT THE FUCK.  I may not have done everything right in my life, I may have made stupid choices and made stupid mistakes, but I have not been a BAD person.  And in all other arenas, there wasn’t ANYTHING I couldn’t accomplish, given enough hard work and determination on my part.  So really– life– why?   I did my best, I found the best doctor, and… what the fuck.

I guess you could say I’m already starting the process of wrapping my brain around childlessness.  (The transition from childish to childless is much quicker than you might imagine.)

I’ll let you know when I get the next results and what Dr B says.

 





Yeah, so, about that whole pregnancy thing…

7 05 2013

This was my first transfer ever.  I’d done the one egg retrieval at Sher’s in Vegas, and made no blasts.  Two ERs with Dr B, 4 blasts, all frozen because we had to get my cytokines down to hope for a safe transfer.  Anyway–

My first beta was on May 1, eight days after the FET on April 23.  I’ve lost track of how many days old those blasts were, either 5 or 6, but the late A one was hatching after the thaw, and the early B was still dividing and differentiating between the “lump” that would become a baby and the “surrounding layer” that would be a placenta.  That beta was 371, and on Thursday May 2 Dr Braverman called to tell me I was pregnant… that even though I was doing biweekly hcG boosters (5000 units each), this number was sufficiently high to be definitely pregnant.  All good!

Second beta on May 3.  He emailed me on Saturday because the lab still hadn’t gotten him the results, and after some scurrying (they had a bad fax #) he emailed to tell me there were problems– the beta was only 128.  This was problematic of course, but he wondered if the first beta was somehow unusually high because of the booster, and my friend L___ suggested maybe I had two embryos implant and then one died.  So I was upset, but trying to hang on and be hopeful.  The third beta Monday (yesterday, May 6) would be crucial.  If it went back up, good, and if not, bad.

So, yeah… about that whole pregnancy thing.  Yesterday’s beta was only 101.  Definitely a chemical.  Dr B told me to stop taking all my meds, and I’ll get another beta Friday to follow it down to zero.  I’d already redrawn blood for a massive panel of (some old, some new) immune tests last week Wednesday, so I’ll be seeing Dr B in NY on the 18th to go over the results in person and figure out a few things:

— was there some new change in my immune status, which would be fixable leading up to another FET?

— if not, that kind of makes me think it was a chromosomal thing.  We have two frozen blasts left, an early C (C for Crud) and an early A (for Almost enough to make me excited.)  So, one more shot, basically.  (And I’m so freaking happy we didn’t take Dr B’s advice and put all four back at once.)

Although Dr. B (pre-FET) told me that I was on maximal immune therapy, I’m thinking there was enough time since my last humira dose (February) that maybe the TNF/IFN went back up.  Or something.  To me, right now, the lesson learned is, retest the immunes before the next FET!  Like, closely before.  Like a minimal number of weeks before to have the results but maximize their “freshness” and relevancy.

Anyway.  Cried on the sofa last night and then killed a few innocent pieces of pizza.

One more chance, folks.  *sigh*





not so fast

6 05 2013

chemical

 

crap

 





Pregnant!

2 05 2013

Sorry for the lack of updates.  I’m hoping only my fertility-challenged people read this because it’s way too soon to make a general announcement.  BUT, I have to give credit to Dr Braverman.

 

We transferred two embryos, a late A (the best) and the early B, on April 23.  They thawed perfectly thanks to Carlo’s magic skills, and got right back to dividing and growing.  The A was in the process of hatching.  Transfer was a snap, I got up and hiked all over the city with my husband and elderly aunt, had a big meatball sub (the Meatball Shop in the West Village is TO DIE FOR)… came back to Austin and got back to training jiu jitsu and even sparring, though no knee-on-belly, by Sunday the 28th.

And today Dr. B called me with the beta– which is not predictable as far as doubling time goes because I’m on hcG boosters (as well as the neupogen, lovenox and prednisone)– but he said the 371 number was well above what hcG boosters alone produce.  (He said that’s usually 50-60, and he knew a healthy pregnancy that happened with an 80.)

So I go to NY again mid-May for my first ultrasound.  And I’m as always swamped at work, so I have to get back to that.  Just wanted to say– Dr. B is the best. 🙂





Another update…

2 04 2013

FET is scheduled for 4/23.  I am sorry I haven’t been blogging… just no time and no interest.  Have a lot on my mind and this isn’t the place to sort it out.  But I’m happy to be moving forward, and I wish you all luck. 🙂





Progress, slowly.

28 03 2013

I haven’t blogged in forever.  Sorry.  Work crushed me, and then I spent a week in California working a big jiu jitsu tournament.  

I’m feeling very resistant about blogging lately.  I have lots of stuff going on in my heart, mind, relationships and so on… but just no real desire to share it.  Forgive me if that sounds weird (I mean, what’s the point of having a blog then?)  But it’s just too much, too personal, and I’m dealing with it inside my head.

The bottom line is, I start lupron tomorrow, and FET is scheduled in NY for April 23.  I’ll be on neupogen and hcG boosters (as well as all the usual suspects– prednisone, lovenox, gluten free, etc.)  I think the hcG boosters make pregnancy testing useless, so I am guessing I have to wait for an ultrasound to see if it/they “took.”

Hope you’re well 🙂





Finally, we start the FET cycle.

10 03 2013

Today is cycle day 1.  I should be getting my calendar for meds and whatnot in the next few days.  I start BCP today and I hope I don’t have a MASSIVE battle ahead with my insurance company to cover my meds.  They’re prescribed for my endometriosis, after all, which is a covered condition.  C’mon now.

I met with a hematologist, twice.  No coagulation problems, homozygous for the c667 MTHFR mutation, but my homocysteine levels are normal.  Everything normal, in other words, and even the C reactive protein levels (a marker for inflammation) are low.  However I did get a diagnosis of neutropenia so I’m hoping he’ll write me a script for neupogen.  That.would.be.sweet.

My immunologist called me back and has been great- she’s trying to chat with one of my nurses at Dr. Braverman’s and hopefully I can get some IVIg through her, though my igG numbers were just fine.

I’m meeting with an endocrinologist (who specializes in thyroid issues and subfertility) next Monday the 18th.  I think I’m mildly hypothyroid.  Here’s a list of symptoms to be concerned about from http://www.StoptheThyroidMadness.com.  I’ll make the ones I have in red.

  • Less stamina than others
  • Less energy than others
  • Long recovery period after any activity
  • Inability to hold children for very long
  • Arms feeling like dead weights after activity
  • Chronic Low Grade Depression
  • Suicidal Thoughts
  • Often feeling cold
  • Cold hands and feet
  • High or rising cholesterol
  • Heart disease
  • Palpitations
  • Fibrillations
  • Plaque buildup
  • Bizarre and Debilitating reaction to exercise
  • Hard stools
  • Constipation
  • Candida
  • No eyebrows or thinning outer eyebrows
  • Dry Hair
  • Hair Loss
  • White hairs growing in
  • No hair growth, breaks faster than it grows
  • Dry cracking skin
  • Nodding off easily
  • Requires naps in the afternoon
  • Sleep Apnea (which can also be associated with low cortisol)
  • Air Hunger (feeling like you can’t get enough air)
  • Inability to concentrate or read long periods of time
  • Forgetfulness
  • Foggy thinking
  • Inability to lose weight
  • Always gaining weight
  • Weight loss (a small minority experience this)
  • Inability to function in a relationship with anyone
  • NO sex drive
  • Failure to ovulate and/or constant bleeding (see Rainbow’s story)
  • Moody periods
  • PMS
  • Inability to get pregnant; miscarriages
  • Excruciating pain during period
  • Nausea
  • Swelling/edema/puffiness
  • Aching bones/muscles
  • Osteoporosis
  • Bumps on legs
  • Acne on face and in hair
  • Breakout on chest and arms
  • Hives
  • Exhaustion in every dimension–physical, mental, spiritual, emotional
  • Inability to work full-time
  • Inability to stand on feet for long periods
  • Complete lack of motivation
  • Slowing to a snail’s pace when walking up slight grade
  • Extremely crabby, irritable, intolerant of others
  • Handwriting nearly illegible
  • Internal itching of ears
  • Broken/peeling fingernails
  • Dry skin or snake skin
  • Major anxiety/worry
  • Ringing in ears
  • Lactose Intolerance
  • Inability to eat in the mornings
  • Joint pain
  • Carpal tunnel symptoms
  • No Appetite
  • Fluid retention to the point of Congestive Heart Failure
  • Swollen legs that prevented walking
  • Blood Pressure problems
  • Varicose Veins
  • Dizziness from fluid on the inner ear
  • Low body temperature
  • Raised temperature
  • Tightness in throat; sore throat
  • Swollen lymph glands
  • Allergies (which can also be a result of low cortisol–common with hypothyroid patients)
  • Headaches and Migraines
  • Sore feet (plantar fascitis); painful soles of feet
  • now how do I put this one politely….a cold bum, butt, derriere, fanny, gluteus maximus, haunches, hindquarters, posterior, rear, and/or cheeks. Yup, really exists.
  • colitis
  • irritable bowel syndrome
  • painful bladder
  • Extreme hunger, especially at nighttime

Interesting, no?  We’ll see.  Anyway… if my calculations are right, absent a calendar, I think I’ll be FET-ing in late April.  🙂








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