getting serious again

6 06 2014

Three years ago this week, I publicly announced my pregnancy for the first(and only) time on facebook. I was already sick, and so we had to tell my stepkids so that we could choose when to go public. I thought the hard part was past. No. It wasn’t. We’re about to start the week of hell- starting with the day before my ultrasound when I had spotting, the day of, announcing that it was ectopic, having to still work during this week, daily blood draws and ultrasounds, and of course, the final topping on hell cake- the miscarriage starting on father’s day. Every year this time is brutal. For some reason, this year is worse than last. I don’t know why, but I’m just trying to deal and get through it. A lot of the time I can just cope with the losses- but then on days like today, everything is fresh and raw all over again feeling.

I’ve spent the last few months focusing on getting healthier. Eating better, working out more, better habits at home. It’s slowly paying off. I wish we could afford to wait to ttc until I get to my goals, but that could take forever- and then even longer to ttc. We’re waiting to do any further MA after that, but god, I hope like hell we don’t need it and can get pregnant on our own. We’re getting serious about trying again- no temping(can’t with the style of cooler we use, no control in temperature), but charting all the signs and starting OPK’s early on to track everything. We aren’t going to force it if we don’t feel it, but we are really trying to focus on this and the end result we want.

I’m hopeful that when this time next year rolls around, that it won’t be as miserable, that there will be some hope again…..

 

but then, this is me….who knows wtf will happen.

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Supplements and TTC

21 04 2014

I originally wrote some of this post content almost a year ago after our third loss in 6 months naturally. I’ve edited it to update how things stand now, so if it reads weird..forgive me.

 

After this last loss, I started looking into supplements. The Mr was totally done with this rollercoaster unless we went to the RE, but I wasn’t ready to go to the RE, and after researching our local RE, was able to convince him to give me another chance. He was going to be mostly gone for a few months anyway, and a few hundred bucks for a large supply of vitamins and supplements that would last me a few months wasn’t that much out of pocket anyway compared to going back to the doctor.

I did a lot of googling. A lot. I read more message boards and obscure forums than I can count. I talked with friends with DOR and RPL, with PCOS and Endo and many other diagnosis. I had basic labs drawn to make sure that nothing was going to be a concern and picked a few specific issues to focus on:

  • egg quality- this is hard to judge without doing IVF, but there is a lot of thought out there about ways to improve egg quality for RPL
  • hormonal balance- with PCOS, my hormones are always out of whack, so I wanted to try and naturally balance them
  • immune issues- one of the biggest unknowns in regards to infertility is immune issues. this is a very new area of research so this is all just things that people are trying

I played with various dosages based on what I had found on message boards, but ultimately added a basket of supplements to the top of my dresser and took a bunch every day.

  • Ubiquinol- a specific form of CoQ10- I take Jarrow brand
  • Fish Oil- take a high quality in pure form and large quantities. Make sure it is mercury free
  • Prenatal- good quality, there are several brands, do your research
  • D3
  • Green Tea- only before O, antioxidant
  • Pomegranate
  • Zinc
  • Super B complex
  • DHA
  • Selenium
  • Melatonin 3 mg(recommend taking this at night)
  • Inositol- also take at night
  • Fertility Blend-from vitamin shoppe, also only taken through O

I took all of these per day, sometimes multiple times a day, for 6 months. During the time I also ate healthier, was exercising more, and traveled out of town more than once. In the end, I decided I couldn’t justify continuing to take all the meds since I had yet to achieve a successful pregnancy. I’m finishing out what I have of each bottle, and continuing on with some of them. I definitely felt better on all of them, but cutting my budget down allows me to save more towards IVF.

I am continuing on:

  • Prenatal
  • Ubiquinol(slightly lower dosage)
  • Fish Oil(slightly lower dosage)
  • Pomegranate
  • D3
  • B complex
  • Prenatal
  • Calcium
  • Melatonin
  • Inositol
  • Fertility Blend- only when we are actively TTC on a cycle

All in all, I’m pretty happy about this compromise. This is the second month I am not on all the supplements and I don’t feel much different, but if I do notice a difference, I’m open to changing up my routine again. I have been sleeping better, feeling more awake in the mornings, and noticed less PMS moodiness since I started this..and clearer skin too.

 

In addition to my supplements, the Mr was also on a few:

  • FertilAid(because it was easier getting him to take those than all the broken down supps)
  • Fish Oil
  • Vitamin E

He has continued to take these meds, mostly because I don’t give him a choice. It’s the least he can do to avoid paying 20K for IVF, so he takes his meds with a minimum of manwhining.

Hopefully all these will pay off in the long run and bring us a healthy baby, even if further medical intervention is required to get that.





summary…

11 06 2013

<a summary of the past 6 months, because I don’t feel like publishing all 50+ posts I have in draft form as password protected.>

In December, I had just miscarried after a shocking natural bfp. While I was miscarrying, I got the flu, horrifically. I spent almost 3 weeks miserable in bed after meds and everything, just completely exhausted. Influenza is no joke.

We knew we wanted to ttc again but weren’t going to really try anything. no opk’s, nada…just pretending we were naive and innocent people. We figured come spring we’d try again and hope for a late fall due date. We went home to visit in january for a few weeks and since we were staying with family, didn’t really have much of a chance to dtd much less think about ttc. We got back to where we live supe.rbowl weekend and I tested just so that I could have a few drinks without worry. It was positive. 3 weeks later I miscarried again, days before my pren.atal appointment. and then that weekend my friend lost her sweet baby that I posted about.

Needless to say I was a completely and emotional wreck. As much as I desperately wanted to be pregnant and have a baby, emotionally I was in a place where I just could  not handle the thought of TTC. We avoided for my march cycle and then DH convinced me to try again in April. However my body was beyond fucked up with stress and hormones, so it took forever for me to O. I wasn’t even sure if I had ever O’d and was thinking it would be an anovulatory cycle.

Nope. Mother’s Day brought a faint BFP. The next day it was darker. One beta was good..the second not so good. I miscarried less than a week later. At that point DH said enough. We either had to be done TTC naturally or I had to be willing to go back to the RE. I can’t be done, so I guess we are heading back to the RE.

However, I’m not willing to do IUI’s right now. I just can’t spend that kind of money for now. I’d love it if they’d give me meds to ovulate, a trigger shot, and progesterone, and tell me to come in for bloodwork and monitoring. Let me do what I want please…but I’m not hopeful. I think we’ll start in July..just depends on when we can get in to the RE.





Limbo.

3 06 2012

I’m not a fan of the 2ww, but I don’t think anyone is. After the trigger shot, now I’m just stuck waiting, and waiting, and waiting.

You see, while my RE schedules my beta for 18DPO, if you have known progesterone issues, you can get a beta done any time after 11 days post trigger if doing a single shot, and 7 days after your last booster if doing multiple shots. Tomorrow is 12 days past trigger.

Theoretically, I could go in for a beta tomorrow, but at only 11 dpo, if I am indeed pregnant, my numbers are most likely to be very very low, and possibly even not high enough to count. That would mean going in for a repeat on wednesday, and another on friday most likely. Or, I could wait until 14DPO(thursday), and go in then. That would mean a repeat on the weekend, which is really sucky because the office closes early. I mean, I could wait until my scheduled beta a WEEK from monday, but really, who is going to wait that long for a beta?

The thing is, I’m lost. I don’t know what to do. Theoretically, I could get a BFP tomorrow. I could get a BFN, but still not be out. However, no matter what I decide to do, as soon as I pee on that stick, I’ll be in worry mode. I’ve not had good odds with pregnancy. I can handle a BFN, and it being a BFN from the start. It sucks, but I’ve seen enough of those over the years to just suck it up and move on. But a BFP terrifies me, because it brings with it a little glimpse of hope, and when that hope is yanked away, I can never get it back.

So for now, I wait. I’ve got at least one more day before I can know any answers. After that, who knows.





Angry

1 06 2012

(this post has been written and edited several times over the last few years, over different blogs and even private journals. however, it still fits and here is the latest incarnation of it. please note that these are my experiences, and not necessarily facts in every case. your case should be discussed with your doctor.)

I am so angry at our situation that I cannot even begin to express my feelings properly. I’m angry that we can’t just TTC like normal people thanks to the fact that my husband had a vasectomy years ago, and the reversal was not very successful.

Long story short- X and his girlfriend found out his senior year of high school that she was pregnant.  They got married, and moved into his parents basement after he graduated. Shortly after, their first child was born. 5 months later, X joined the military, wanting what was best for his family. Right after he finished basic training and technical schooling, his wife found out she was pregnant again. Their second was born just shy of two years after their first. X was 20, his wife 19. She was done, and when the baby was 5 months old, told X that he needed to get a vasectomy or their marriage was over because she didn’t want any more children. What makes me angriest in this story is what comes next- A worried X, trying to save his marriage, went and saw his doctor. Two days later, he had a vasectomy done at TWENTY years old. With no counseling. No warnings about the odds of reversals being successful. NADA.

There’s a lot more that happens in there, but a year later, after coming home from deployment, his marriage was completely over. Even more happened after that, but the kicker is this. You see, stupid ex has now had another child. She was able to go on and have more kids at 23, because she hadn’t gotten fixed.

X eventually met me, and since we wanted to have kids together, had his vasectomy reversed. Our surgeon let us know that due to the time that had passed since his initial surgery and the type that had been done(not just clips, but cut, burn, and clips), our odds of the surgery being successful were slim. Even if it did succeed, we’d be looking at 18 months or so before things scarred back over. We went ahead with the surgery knowing the odds, but hoping for once we’d be lucky.

Obviously, we’ve not been so lucky. We had a few good months of great counts post surgery, and then dismal ever since. Things have not scarred completely back over, but they are bad enough that every RE has told us they’d do TESE if we do IVF to get sperm. Other than that, our only option would be to try a second reversal, going straight to the testes and bypassing the originally cut completely, but the odds are not likely for it to work very well.We haven’t talked closely to a urologist about this in a while since we decided to go the donor sperm route.

This isn’t the only story I’ve heard in our years in the military about doctors who hand out vasectomys like bandaids. I’ve heard of so many that allow patients to have them done with no counseling, at a young age and without good reason. Our local military facility has recently adopted the rule of 30 years of age or 3+ children, along with two counseling sessions required for the procedure to take place. I’m glad that these guidelines are finally being put in place so that someone else might be spared going through what we have had to deal with.

Some words of advice for those who are considering a vasectomy with the thought of a possible reversal someday:

Vasectomy is a very easy surgery. You’ll be tender for a few days, and have a few followups to ensure your count is clear, but that’s it. A reversal is MUCH more intense. 4 weeks of no sex, usually 1-2 weeks out of work, several followups to ensure your count is back, and a potential time factor. The closer to the initial procedure the reversal is done, the better the odds of success. After 5 years, your odds start to go down drastically. Post reversal, there can be scarring that forms that is painful and requires further surgeries as well. Antibodies can form, causing further complications, and the quality can have gone down due to lack of functionality over the years.

If you think you are done, but are not 1000% sure, get an IUD, use condoms, use BCP, anything other than having surgery performed with the option of reversing it years later. Most insurance companies will NOT cover the reversal, so that is an additional expense to consider, and they can get quite pricy. I really strongly recommend doing something temporary for at least one year, if not two to five years to be SURE you are done before you take that final step, because it seems like more and more people are regretting this decision each year.





Looking Back: The Calendar Day I Want To Skip

29 05 2012

I know I’ve got some other posts going on right now, but I want to take a look back at where we have been and how far we have come in the last years. This series of posts is going to be ongoing for quite some time. Most of this is for my own memory keeping, but I’m putting it out on my public blog  because it just might interest someone else.

 

Today, is Tuesday. May 29th. The last Tuesday in May. and a day I could forever be content to skip, or sleep through.

You see, today should have been my due date with the pregnancy that we lost on our anniversary.

A year ago today, I found out I was pregnant with Itty Bitty. And instead of that day being filled with joy, I was terrified. I think I knew all along that there was something wrong with the pregnancy, but I didn’t want to believe it.

A year later, I’m stuck in the same place. Cycling, not a mom, and struggling. But at the same time, I’m in a better place. A year ago, I wasn’t sure my husband even wanted more kids, or if he was just agreeing to this since I wanted it so much. In the last year, I’ve seen him mourn the losses we have had, encourage me to cycle again when I am ready, and just prove to me that he truly wants to have more kids. Just last week, when I was a sobbing mess over the fact that I only had one follicle and hated myself for being a bucket of tears, he reminded me that it only takes one, and that we know for next time that I have a horrible time on that drug. I said I didn’t want there to be a next time, that I wanted this to work, and he said “But we wanted 3 or 4 kids, right? So we’re going to have to do this again at some point.” That only made me cry harder, but at least I had good reason this time. This time, it was because I KNEW that even if we only end up with one baby this time, I’ll get a chance to be a mom of 2 or more, because he wants this as much as me.

3 years ago, we’d just been dealt the final blow about TTC on our own, and I wasn’t sure our marriage would make it. 3 years later, we’re stronger than ever, and I know we can make it through anything after the struggles we have dealt with. 3 years from now, hopefully we will have welcome at least one little one into our home, and aren’t stuck in this limbo anymore.





IUI #3, done..and now we wait

25 05 2012

IUI #3 was scheduled for the 24th, and at the worst possible time of day(30 minutes earlier or 30 minutes later the drive is 25 minutes, at that time it’s over an hour). I went a bit earlier so that I had time to find parking(not my favorite spot, but only another lot away from the door, which is better than I normally get). I got in there, did the usual routine, and waited for Doc Euro to come in. He showed up with one of my favorite nurses(I have two, the one who did my trigger and the most experienced, who is their IVF nurse and ‘special case’ nurse).

That’s when things got horrible. I have a history of painful and difficult IUI’s due to my endo twisting my uterus and pulling on the cervix. In september, they ended up using ultrasound to guide the catheter to get it through. Dr. Europe remembered this and was prepared, and that was why he had picked the IVF nurse to assist him today. Long story short, 4 speculum, 3 ultrasounds, several attempts to bend the catheter, and one ten.aculum on my cervix later, the IUI finally got done. My 20 minute appointment turned into a visit of over an hour. I don’t have the exact count numbers from the IUI since the paperwork wasn’t in my chart yet from and.rology, but I know m RE was very pleased and said they were excellent.

Beta is scheduled for 6/11, and will be that day whether AF has started or not. Office policy now requires a beta after every medicated cycle before you can start meds for a new attempt. I’m fine with that after what we dealt with last year. Now it’s just a wait and see to figure out if I’m going to manage and wait that long to test. Anyone want to place bets on how long I will make it? For comparison’s sake, last year on IUI #1 I started testing at 11DPO, had heavy bleeding at 12DPO-14DPO, and finally got a BFP at 17DPO. On IUI #2 I tested out the trigger and got a negative at 9DPO/11DPT, and a BFP the next day at 10DPO.