Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Travel to India?

After loads of research, we are contemplating going overseas to have IVF. The Malpani Clinic in Bombay (Mumbai) offers IVF at a cost of US $2500 and meds US $800. Since I would be traveling without C, the clinic would let me stay there for a fee. The total trip would take about 10 days. The overnight rooms have free high speed internet access, so I could take my laptop for work.

The only fear I have is for the unknown.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Why not Maximize our Chances?

Since we are about to spend over 20K for IVF, I figure it is time to get into better physical shape. I did a search on google for different things that may interest me and I came across a website, BeginnerTriathlete.com. It is a great website! I found a program that I can do called Michael Pates 22 wk Total Sprint Program. It consists of biking, swimming, and running. So far, I am on my 3rd day of the program. I have been eating well and sticking to the routine. It would be great to be down 20-30 pounds in October.

Here is a link to my training log:
I started on Yasmin Birth Control Pills yesterday. It seems contradictory to getting pregnant, but they should help my Endo while we wait for IVF. I am going to try my best to take them everyday.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Are you pregnant?

One thing I will never understand is why there is always one person that has to ask, "Are you pregnant?". Maybe you gained 10 pounds. Maybe you are having some Pre-Mense bloat. My cycle is due any minute and I have having some serious bloat issues myself. Well, one of my co-workers (one of the ones that inspects you from head to toe in their presence) asks me with a smirk, "Do you have some little one's in there?" I said "Excuse me?" "Are you expecting" she said with her mouth twisted. I said loudly "No. I'm just FAT!" I heard chuckles from the nearby offices. I chucked myself and moved on. That experience got me thinking. Some people seem to feel that they are entitled to say anything that comes into their minds. Are they unhappy with themselves? Do they really have nothing else to do with their time? Or, Could they really just NOT have a CLUE. It could be any or all of the above. I have learned through similar experiences to do my best not to let people like this get to me. There must a cause for such poor candor. Another co-worker came up to me after the encounter and said, "It isn't you. She acts like that with everyone. I told B that she looked like she was losing weight and S replied No. It must be the shirt".

Friday, July 13, 2007

Caught Up!

I am finally caught up to the present! Tonight C & I are getting together with my mom, step dad, and brother to have dinner at a restaurant called Houston's. I am feeling much better today! I have my ups and downs, for sure, but today is a good day.

Different people in my family have been telling me how things could be worse, or be happy for what you have, but they don't understand when they have not dealt with infertility. But, I feel like I am turning a corner. I have been having more good days then bad and I am ready to take charge of my life again. I was mad at the world, even God, but I am finding my peace.

I am going to start working on a plan to better myself. Due to my M/C I had to drop my MBA courses this summer, but I will be back on the ban wagon at the end of August. IVF is in October, so I would like to lose around 30 pounds before hand. That means eating right and exercising. Exercise might be just what I need to get those endorphins going. Endorphins = happier Christina.

We are straight broke until next Friday, when the money flood gates open, but for now I will be eating the cheapest stuff available which goes against my 30 pound goal. Tomorrow I will start exercising. Next Friday, I will revamp what goes in my pie hole. :-)

IVF for the Sweethearts

We had our post M/C follow up with Dr. S on Wednesday. Before our last cycle, Dr. S. told us that if the cycle didn't work that we would move onto IUI w/ Injectible Medication. C & I assumed that would be our next step. Our insurance doesn't cover IUI w/ Injectibles, so we were prepared to hear that we would have to spend $3500 per cycle. But, when we went into the consult, Dr. S. cut straight to the point. He said that due to my ectopic pregnancy and the fact that I am starting to feel my Endo coming back again he said that the next plan of action needed to be IVF! He said that with my age and factors that our per cycle success rate is 75%. 75%! We said that we needed 3 months before we would be ready to begin, so Dr. S. suggested that I get on Lupron injections and BCPs to suppress the Endometriosis during that time. C reacted more on the finances. I reacted more to my emotions. What can I say?

We were given 2 options:

100% Refund Plan (If no live birth, after seven cycles, money back)
Cost: $24,900.00
Includes 7 fresh cycles & Resulting embryos
Everything except meds: $2-6K per cycle
& Anestesiologist Fee: $500.00

A La Cart (per cycle)
1 IVF Cycle: $9,500.00
ICSI fee: $2,000.00
Meds: $2-6K
Consult: $160.00

Once at home, we discussed our options. We knew that it would not be smart to do per cycle. So, we have decided on the refund plan. If it doesn't work, then we will persue other family building measures. Next question, Now to get $24K in three months.

How do you feel?

(Thoughts from yesterday) I don't know what stage of grieving I am in. I thought that I was at acceptance, but then the littlest thing throws me back a step or two(Depression or Anger). I wish that we hadn't told anyone what happened last month. I was feeling great yesterday. My BIL's SIL was in the hospital getting ready to have a baby girl and I went during my lunch break to stop in and wish her my best. When I went into the room, I felt happy and glad that everything was going well. When my BIL's wife and her mother walked in my emotions totally changed. They said nice things, but there eyes and body language were saying something completely different, like, "What are you doing here? You don't belong. & didn't you say you were going through something. You don't belong." I was ready to go right then. When my BIL stood up 5 min later to announce that he had to go handle some things that was prime to to split. I know that people have the best intentions, but things that they do can be cruel even if they don't intend for them to be. Maybe I am looking into this too much. Well, back to Anger. Tomorrow is a new day. "God please grant me the serenity to accept....."

Infertility Sucks!

Since this is the start of my blog, I thought that I would update you on our TTC (Trying to concieve) journey thus far. I have had one child naturally in 2003. When our son was almost 2 years old, we decided to try for child #2. Since we have had two suprise pregnancies, we thought that getting pregnant again would be a piece of cake. This is a breakdown of the last two years:

March 2005-May 2005: Just have fun relax and it will happen! Had IUD removed.

May 2005: Purchased our home and BFP 2 days after closing! Perfect timing, huh? Tested again, 2 days later, BFN. Not to upset...we will get pregnant again soon enough.

June 2005: Discovered Baby Center & Fertility Friend boards and become an addict. Learn about charting. I ovulate on day 12 and have a 26 day cycle like clockwork. I should be pregnant in no time.

October 2005: Start trying lubricant to promote fertility and take prenatals and extra folic acid. Got a BFP just in time for Holloween. This time the trick was on us and not the treat. :-( BFN after two weeks.

November 2005: The pain, the pain! So, much pain it is hard to concentrate. Went in for a consult with my PCP. PCP not much help. Had an U/S. All clear. Decided that I would wait and see if pain went away on it's own.

January 2006: Can't take it anymore! Scheduled a consult with the OB/GYN that delivered my son. She felt that I may have Endometriosis. The only way to know for sure would be to do a Laparoscopy. Gave me stronger pain meds while I made my decision. I did lots of research online about treatment options for Endo and hubby and I decided that a Lap was needed.

March 2006: Laparoscopy scheduled for the 29th. During surgery, doctor discovered Stage 2 Endometriosis, Adhesions, and PCOS. She removed what she saw and said to start TTC right way. We should be really fertile for at least 3 months!

April 2006-May 2006: Pain free! The surgery must have worked. Still no BFP. Dr. M wanted to take a wait and see approach. Time is my fertility, so C and I decided that it was time to go to a specialist. We checked around for the best RE under our insurance coverage and scheduled a consult.

June 2006: Finally into the RE (fertility specialist). Dr. S. told us the testing that would be required. If everything looked good, we would start doing IUI w/Clomid when the testing was completed. When C & I were leaving, a nurse looked at us and said "Aren't you too young to be here?" I wanted to slap her. She's lucky I'm a Christian.

July 2006-August 2006: Lots of testing. Among the tests done: Endometrial Biopsy, Hysterosonogram, Pelvic Exam, Blood tests, Screening, etc. Please Lord, let a baby be at the end of this journey! Testing took two months. C's sperm analysis came back perfect. Super Spermies! Glad it's only one of us with an issue.

September 2006: Started Metformin 2000mg. (1000mg morning, 1000mg night/daily) Gastrointestinal issues for 500?

October 2006: Finally treatment can begin. On day 13 we had an U/S that showed 3 mature follicles on the right ovary & 1 on the left. I then got the HCG trigger and was sent home to await my 1st IUI. (We did B2B IUIs) I just knew that C & I would get pregnant on the first shot. Whatever issues I had, would magically disppear with just a little assistance. WRONG! BFN all the way. Dr. S. said that it was a picture perfect cycle, but for whatever reason it didnt' work.

(Protocol: Clomid 100mg CD5-9, Estrace CD 10-14, HCG trigger, Prometrium 200mg 2X a day during luteal phase)

November 2006: Cycle #2 canceled to to multiple cysts on my right ovary.

End of Dec 06-January 2007: Did IUI cycle #2. Same protocol as IUI cycle #1. This cycle I didn't feel confident. I was starting to feel the Endometriosis come back and knew in my gut that because of the Endo it would not work. Suprise, suprise, BFN.

January 2007-March 2007: C & I needed a break. Financially and emotionally TTC was taking it out of us. At the end of March, we set up a consult with Dr. S to discuss our next steps. Since I expressed to Dr. S. that I thought the Endo was back, he suggested that we do another Laparoscopy to make sure things were OK before proceeding to another IUI cycle.

April 19 2007: Had my 2nd Laparoscopy. This time Dr. S also did a Hysteroscopy to check out the inside of my uterus. After surgery, he informed us that I had Stage 3 Endo (after 1 yr!), adhesions blocking my tubes, and multiple polyps in my uterus. It took about two weeks, this time, to recover 100%.

May 1st 2007: First day of cycle since Lap! Felt renewed hope that this can happen for us. Dr. S. said that we would follow the same protocol again. C & I didn't want to get too excited, so we didn't test when AF was due, but when on our camping vacation and thought nothing of it. Two days after we got to the cabins, I started to feel very nasuas and tired. I had a EPT Pregnant/NPregnant test (that I had been saving for a least six months) in my travel bag and decided that it was time to take the plunge. In the cricket infested bathroom, I got up the courage (6am) and peed on the stick. The hour glass flashed for at least two minutes before the lovliest word of all appeared. PREGNANT! I ran and started to jump on the bed where C was sleeping. He had the biggest grin. We were both so happy. I was sent to do blood work at the local LapCorp on two seperate days and levels of HCG were rising appropriatley. All of the TTC that we had done vanished and we began to hope for the future that we would have with new little one(s). Our EDD was February 5, 2008. Life is great! C says that I am glowing.

June 2007: I start to have a pain on my side. I called Dr. S's office and they tell me that because of the Clomid and HCG trigger my ovaries could have some Hyperstimulation and that it was normal. A few days later, I can hardly walk and I am spotting red blood off and on. C & I went to HCHC and get checked in. They ran a bunch of tests and gave me an U/S. At six weeks, the U/S tech was unable to find a fetal pole or sak in my uterus. Being that I was complaining of pain on my right side they started to assume Ectopic. My HCG blood results came back at 2660. It was 2064 5 days earlier, so they didn't double. Our miracles fate looked pretty much sealed up. On Monday, June 11th, Dr. S did another U/S in the office and still saw nothing in the uterus. He told C & I that there was no chance that this was a viable pregnancy. We were told that we needed to drive 45 minutes to a pharmacy that had a drug called Methotrexate. They had to administer it in the office, so we picked it up and drove back. Nurse J. instructed me to lower my pants and bend over. (All of the things I had to do and this is the one that was the hardest for me) She said that I needed two injections in each cheek. In my mind I was very angry. This just seemed like a cruel joke. That we had done something in a formal life to piss off the powers that be. It seemed that I would never have the family that I dreamed about since I was a child. Maybe, Maybe not. For the time being, the greaving process is where I will be.