Maybe Baby(ies)

So here we are about a week-ish later and J is lying by my feet on the bed with Bubba (our handsome grey and white Manx cat) snoring beside her. We went out to dinner and now she’s so tired she can’t keep her eyes open. These fertility medications definitely put her through the ringer this time.

As you know we went to the doctor last week and found out the cyst was gone and everything looked great. Fast forward through 5 days of Clomid-induced loss of appetite, insomnia, and irritability and she went to her second appointment/ultrasound on Thursday the 17th. That brought the good news that she took REALLY well to the medication this cycle and had two beautiful golf-ball-sized follicles ready to go, one on each ovary. This is great news, considering our fertility doctor won’t inseminate with more than 4 follicles and we really just don’t want to go the lesbians-making-babies TLC/Lifetime movie route. Thanks, but I’m not cut out for show business! 😉

So the doctor slated us for doing the HCG trigger shot (pregnancy hormone injection which induces ovulation within 36 hours after taking it) at home at 9 pm that night and then coming in on Saturday the 19th at 9 am for the insemination.

Saturday? What? Yep, our doctor has Saturday hours for cases like this… Cool!

Now, let me tell you a story. It may not be as funny to you all reading this as it is to me but J was FREAKING out that I had to give her a shot. Let alone, in her stomach, near her belly button. She has an unnatural aversion to belly buttons and plain and simple, they just gross her out enough for her to throw up. LOL I love my wife. So I have to give her a shot, which thankfully I’m experienced with since I have a sister that has required Insulin injections since she was 6 years old. J meanwhile, is a little disturbed. As she laid down on the bed so I could wipe the injection site with the alcohol wipe she is basically laugh-crying with nervousness. I used a trick my sister learned of numbing the area with ice beforehand, and that put her a little more at ease. I also warmed the injection a little by rolling the syringe around in my hands for a minute. Ready, set, go…I’m counting down “3…2…1…” and she tenses up beside me! Of course I flipped out as the needle is an inch from her skin and jerk away. I thought she was going to kick me as I went to stick her! I didn’t want to hurt her! So we tried again, pillow pulled up over her face as she’s continuing to laugh-cry and “3…2…1…” and its in. She said I was a little slow sticking her and pushing the plunger in, but hey! What can I say, I was worried and it could have been a LOT worse. Regardless, injection at home was a success but she is really hoping we don’t have to do this again…like ever…but I’m sure that’s for more reasons than just the shot. 🙂

So fast-forward again to today and we had our insemination at 9 am. The office actually had a few other people in there for various reasons but we were called back right away and set up in the room. The doctor came in shortly after and informed us that our sperm sample was excellent, 30 million and 98% motility, which are EXCELLENT numbers! J was really nervous again since it was so painful last time, but I was able to stand up by her head and hold her hand the whole time (good practice for labor and delivery!). The doctor had to switch out the equipment for her comfort and his ease (apparently she has a “kinky” cervix that would not allow the catheter to go in), it was over sooner and much less painful than last time. YAY!

We went out to breakfast afterwards at Mimi’s and just lazed about the house today since she is cramping and feeling generally icky from the invasion as well as the hormone shot. The medications really affected her this time, but the doctor said that means she just took really well to them. We keep saying that maybe we will have twins, after all, there were two follicles ready to go, and she has had cramping in both ovaries today. While we keep laughing that maybe there will be twins in our future (which we would LOVE!), we are trying not to overthink anything and honestly we feel a lot more relaxed about everything in our lives right now, including the pregnancy journey. I think we finally both realized that we’ve got to stop stressing out about the things we have no control over. Can we control whether or not we get pregnant this time/next time/any time? No, so do what we can to take care of ourselves and be patient. In the meantime, we’re focusing on working toward some goals we’ve set for ourselves and just enjoying being together.

I am so happy and blessed with our wonderful life, and I hope that we can add a baby (or babies!) to our little family sooner rather than later. So here we are, waiting again, and we’re OK with that. At least we are making progress instead of having to sit out for another cycle. We are going to get massages next weekend and then J goes in a couple of weeks for the blood pregnancy test, and until then we are just going to sit back, relax, and (try to) be patient. Wish us luck with that last one!

See you in a couple of weeks…

B

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And The Two-Week-Wait Begins…

Here we are again, standing at the beginning of the two week wait. Somehow I think this time will be the “longest” ever!

This morning J and I went to the fertility doctor’s office. We checked in and took a seat. Another couple was called in before us and then it was our turn. We took our deep breaths and she got up on the table, ready to go. She was a ball of nervous energy and of course, I was there to be the solid support, calm although inside I was jittery too! This was our first time having the insemination in the doctor’s office, so it felt like the first time all over again. At least this time we didn’t have to figure out how to get the baby batter out of the tube and just where do we put it? The doctor came in with his nurse after about 15 minutes (thawing time, I’m sure) and gladly announced that Todd had great motility in this sample! Awesome! This had been a silent fear of mine, that we would get right down to this moment to be told that the sample just wasn’t up to par, or some other imagined reason that we wouldn’t be able to proceed. Regardless, there was no need to worry as the sample we ordered was guaranteed to have 20+ million post-thaw, and today we had 37+ million post-thaw. We were all very happy to hear that.

The procedure was pretty straightforward: the doctor puts the sperm into a catheter which is then inserted up through the cervix, into the uterus near the opening of the fallopian tubes. Discharge sperm through the catheter, remove it, and she laid there for 10 minutes to keep it all in. She had some pain/cramping during the procedure, but overall it went quickly and smoothly. She’s been having some cramping still throughout the rest of the day, but its been getting less and less so that’s good at least. Our next step is for her to get her progesterone levels checked via bloodwork on March 8th to make sure she’s got enough progesterone to sustain a pregnancy and aid implantation, and then if she doesn’t get her period on March 16th, she goes in for a blood pregnancy test.

Of course we are hopeful but we have just been praying that the pregnancy will happen when it is the right time and that when it does we will have a healthy baby in there! I think that is all that anyone can ask for and we are impatiently waiting for the 16th to find out one way or the other. I have to agree with J on this one – I am nervous it didn’t work and nervous if it did…we know how to deal with the “no” by now…its the “yes” that we are going to freak out over! Our lives could change forever in a matter of weeks….

She said she wasn’t going to buy any pregnancy tests so she wouldn’t test early. I told her I would believe it when I see it. 😉

-B

 

Leap Day

Happy Leap Day everyone! I am writing this from New Orleans on my family vacation. J called me this morning to tell me all about her doctor’s visit and ultrasound this morning. Let me just start by saying that so far, this entire process with the fertility doctor has gone so quickly and smoothly. I am so thankful for this!

Everything in the ultrasound looks great – she has 4 follicles ready to go and that is the most he’ll inseminate with so that’s just perfect. He asked her if she was sure she wanted to proceed knowing that there is a (remote) possibility all 4 will become embryos and she said yes. We have come too far to say no now! Plus no one is really thinking that it will happen; the most likely scenario is twins (which as mentioned before, we are OK with). Regardless everything is progressing quicker than expected as she took to the Clomid really well. She has 1 follicle about to go, 2 good-sized ones, and 1 small one…so at the doctor’s office today they went ahead and gave her the Ovidrel shot and she’s scheduled to come back tomorrow at 9:45 a.m. to have the insemination.

I can’t believe how quickly this is all happening. It seems like we waited so long and that we were just hurrying up to wait but now…its all just moving along without a hitch so far! I am so happy that everything worked out and she was cleared to proceed this time around, otherwise that is a lot of money that we would have put out to just have to wait and start over in a few weeks. I mean, of course, we may still have to just start over in a few weeks if she doesn’t get pregnant this time around, but at least we get to complete a cycle this time and give it a shot.

We are a flurry of emotions…nervous that it will or will not work, and balanced on the precipice of the unknown…just think, tomorrow could be the day. Or it could not be. For now, we are trying to remain positive but not oblivious, but for me it is really hard. I am just ready to get home to my own bed and so happy that I get to be there with her tomorrow for the insemination. What perfect timing 🙂

I’ll update you all tomorrow on how it goes! I’m heading home now…long trip ahead.

-B

Overwhelmed

All I can say is WOW.

We went to the fertility doctor yesterday and it was my first experience with the whole thing. We checked in a little late due to J’s dentist appointment running over and had to wait for two other women to be seen first. Once we were called, the nurse took us back to take J’s vitals, check her weight (she’s down 10 pounds after a month on the low-carb diet YAY!), and then we were ushered off to a lounge/meeting area. This office is definitely well-dressed.

So we wait about 5 minutes for the doctor to come in and he brings in her chart and her HSG results. Everything with the HSG was perfect, so that’s a relief that she doesn’t have any blockages in her tubes or anything abnormal in there. Next comes the bloodwork and we find out exactly what he suspected: she is insulin resistant and what is happening is that 2 hours or so after eating her blood sugar is dropping too low (she was a 47 after her 2 hour glucose test, but at least she never left the “normal” range even once her sugar spiked at 1 hour). He advised her if she feels a little dizzy or lightheaded a couple hours after eating to just have a small snack and some juice to get some natural sugar in there to clear out the extra insulin. Easy enough! So in reviewing the blood work we find that she doesn’t have any STD’s (no surprise there) and her estrogen is fine. The only problem is that she isn’t producing enough progesterone which means…she didn’t ovulate.

Now if you remember my previous posts or just have some common sense you can figure out that no ovulation = no chance of getting pregnant. I could tell she was devastated! The words flashed across her face without her having to actually say anything… “Its my fault we’re not pregnant…something’s wrong with me.” I squeezed her hand, silently assuring her that everything would be okay. The doctor went over everything and gave us his recommended course of action: Clomid for 5 days (to prepare her follicles for ovulation) and then a shot of Ovidrel to force ovulation. She’ll take the Clomid and then has an ultrasound back in his office to make sure follicles are ready to go and that there aren’t more than 4 or 5 (basically his words were “We don’t want any reality shows around here, so if you’re going to release a ton of eggs we don’t want to inseminate and give you septuplets!”). So she goes in again on 2/29 (when I am in New Orleans nonetheless – I am very upset about this!!) and as long as the ultrasound shows all is well in egg-land then she’ll get the Ovidrel shot that day and the insemination will probably be that Friday.

Yep, you heard right…Friday March 2 is the tentative day of baby-making. I can’t believe it! It feels like this whole process has taken forever.

Now before we can inseminate we have to:

1. Order three vials of Todd to be shipped to the doctor’s office (they will store it for free while we are trying, so we can save on shipping costs, plus they do a 75% buy back so w00t w00t!)

2. We have to meet with a psychologist to make sure we are mentally and emotionally prepared for this journey…which we got a call back from her today that we should have started this process a month ago (well thanks for telling us a month ago!) but she would try to see what she could do and is going to call the doctor for us to verify…ugh.

3. Pick up her medications AND pay for them…they are not covered by insurance and by the way, its like a $200 copay EACH TIME we go to the doctor.

Needless to say, we are a little stressed out right now. And stretched thin! Between my trip next week, our lease signing & inspection, all these doctor appointments, and work being a pain in the bum…well we are ready for a vacation. And to win the lottery.

Until the next visit…

-B

Third Time is the Charm? I hope so…

Well disappointment strikes again and we are not pregnant. We were so stressed out because we wanted to try again come September but we knew we wouldn’t have enough money after our vacation to pay the nearly $1000 for one more go. Nevertheless, J’s mom came to our rescue and bought the next round of sperm for us, all we had to pay was the $200 shipping fee. THANK YOU! We are, once again, hopeful, yet cautious, that this try will be THE ONE, but I guess you can never know with these things for sure. We got the tank in today and we are going to be trying again closer to the weekend once we get the positive OPK. If it doesn’t work this time, then I think we are going to go see Dr. C again and ask for some bloodwork and J may have to go on fertility drugs like Clomid….I hope it doesn’t come down to that. She doesn’t tolerate hormones or pills very well and I just hope we can do this as naturally as two lesbians can. We’ve been looking at this fertility clinic up near her workplace, but it looks closed. I can’t find anything online about it either so we’re kind of at a loss. We love our NYC donor, Todd, but if its cheaper we may have to go with a closer donor if we can figure out anything about this local fertility clinic and the services they offer. So…here we go yet again…keeping our fingers and toes crossed as we prepare for our third try.

Wish us luck!

-B

Here we go again!

So much for avoiding undue stress! We ordered according to the period tracker so that we would have the sperm on time for ovulation yet lo and behold she ovulated earlier than predicted AGAIN this month! Ty was once again super helpful and got our sperm shipped to us overnight and we inseminated on day 2 of the positive OPK, just like last month. There wasn’t as much excitement or hoopla this time around but that’s okay, I think we relaxed knowing what we were doing (sort of!). My birthday is next weekend and we are driving up to Atlanta to see my favorite band perform live, Death Cab for Cutie. I can’t wait – this is one of the first big trips we have taken alone together and I am sure it will be super fun. The best birthday present I could ask for, though, is a positive pregnancy test! I am hopeful and keeping my fingers crossed. We’ll know yes or no by the 20th so I’ll post to you then! Wish us luck!

-B

If at first you don’t succeed…

Then try, try again! I think both of us were a little realistic that Jenn wouldn’t get pregnant on the first try. Nonetheless it was still disappointing and a little sad to see a negative pregnancy test (not just one but more like 6!) throughout the last week and a half while over-analyzing every little symptom for possible signs of pregnancy and not quite believing it was a no until the very last hurrah – Jenn got her period today. At least we know that we can try again next month since we already paid for another straw last time (which if you recall, Ty placed in storage for us for FREE! in case we needed to try again). All we need to pay is the shipping fees and we’ll be set to go again next month….we’ve scheduled delivery for August 10th and I’ll have to take my lunch break to run to FedEx to pick up the shipment since it is a weekday but that’s okay. Hopefully we can time this right and get it earlier rather than later like last time and avoid some undue stress!

-B