Beta #5: facing the inevitable

Today’s beta was 323.

This week we went from 193 to 291 to 323.

Not good. No doubling there. 

My nurse said ideally 1 of 2 scenarios will occur:

  1. My body’s HCG will naturally start to decrease bringing with it a natural miscarriage
  2. My betas will continue to slowly rise indicating an Ectopic pregnancy

She also said I could stop my meds today or stay on them until Monday when I do my next blood draw.

Initially, I was against this concept. Why would I stop by meds if I’m not 100% positive that my baby is gone? My levels haven’t dropped. They are increasing!

I went to Mr. Google looking for that last sliver of hope. I typed in “Misdiagnosed miscarriages”, then “low and slow rising beta successful pregnancy“.

Each scenario had one common denominator: the betas may not have doubled, but they consistently rose and the increase tended to get greater in size between betas – unlike my decrease. 

Lindsey – it’s time to be realistic here. 

I might stop by meds tonight. My ass could use the break. My husband thinks I should stay on them until Monday.

Emotionally, I’m doing alright. I grieved quite a bit last week when we got our initial beta counts. I was positive they were too low to be viable, but somewhere along the line the universe decided to give me hope.

Misguided? Misdirected? Or just plain beautiful?

How is hope ever a bad thing?

Well…

In this case, it prolongs the inevitable.

And it’s time to face it.

My baby is not going to survive.

*cue the water works* 

If you had asked me this morning, I would have told you I would have done anything and everything to prolong this pregnancy until I could go for an ultrasound. I needed that ultimate proof.

But now, I don’t want it to continue any longer than it has to if my baby isn’t going to be healthy and safe in my arms at the end of it. It’s weird to know my baby is inside me now, but that she won’t be for much longer.

What do you do when faced with a miscarriage diagnosis?

I can hardly believe I have to ask that question.

Beta Day #2: realistic instead of optimistic

I won’t deny it. My hope is dwindling.

Since my Beta of 47 on 12dp5dt, I’ve pretty much lost all symptoms. I had huge swollen, sore boobs. I couldn’t lie comfortably due to the tug in my lower abdomen. I had to pee every hour. I was EXHAUSTED.

There is a slight tug, ever so slight, but the rest is gone. Last night, I even slept through the night without having to pee.

The only thing that throws me off was I experienced some brown spotting yesterday afternoon. It was gone by the evening,  but I hoped so much that my bean was just snuggling in.

Being the crazy POAS addict that I am, I peed on a FRER about an hour ago (yes folks, that was 3am SK time) . It had lightened up to the equivalent of what I saw at 9dp5dt.

That is not a good sign.

I’m going into this beta expecting it to drop. I feel like I’ve lost my little bean. I know I felt pregnant three days ago and now,  I don’t.

I’ve got 2 hours until I need to get up and battle the old people for a spot in line at the blood lab. I better get some sleep. 😦

Me + hormones = disaster

CD 13. 

This week has been a variety of ups and downs. 

Tuesday:

I had a CRAZY SORE OVARIES. I ended up leaving work early, contacting my Reiki Master and having her send me some distant energy healing. I fell asleep giving myself some reiki (yes, I’m a Level 1 Practitioner – soon-to-be Level 2). When I woke up, I was feeling WAY WAY WAY better. My pain had dropped from an 8-9 to a 0-1. 

Wednesday:

I had an uber productive morning at work. I’ve been feeling a bit uninspired lately, but it was good to get the creative strategy juices flowing again.

In the afternoon, I had an acupuncture appointment. She found some blocks and was able to loosen them with some persistence (yes, a few needles kept falling out) and some moxa. 

I also did my HCG trigger shot at midnight. It’s a good thing my husband set his alarm as a reminder because we both fell asleep around 11PM, only to be woken up by the lovely BEEP BEEP at 11:30pm. 

I actually feel like the trigger shot is easy peasy now. I get more worked up about mixing it right than I do about shooting myself up. 

Thursday:

Today was an emotional nightmare. We planned on BD-ing last night, but that didn’t happen as we both were exhausted. The change of plan was to fit in a romp between the sheets this morning. 

I know that sounds close to IUI time, but I thought we could try it closer and see if that affects my husband’s counts and/or BFP success. 

Well… that didn’t happen.

Because my husband stressed himself out and “couldn’t perform”.

He kept getting calls from work, then he was worried about whether I was feeling sore still or not, plus he was supposed to be at the farm today getting ready for seeding. One thing lead to another, we didn’t have sex and my emotional breakdown began. 

I took the day off work (like I needed to do that right before a day off for IUI! Grrrr). I spent my time between crying on my bed and relaxing in the bathtub. I wasn’t THIS emotional earlier in the week. WTF is wrong with me today? 

I hope this isn’t a sign of what the pregnancy hormone will do to me WHEN my time comes. 

I calmed down late this afternoon and managed to get some work done from home. 

Tomorrow is IUI #3. 

I am praying that this is our miracle month… otherwise, I’m saying sayonara to Clomid and asking to be put on something else. 

Oh the life of an (in)fertile! 

So, what do you do? Do you have sex before and after IUI? Have you noticed if it affects his counts? Fill me in ladies!

The uneventful 2ww

CD 17. 5dpiui.

On Friday, I was excited about how well I was handling this 2ww… then I realized it was only 2dpiui. Oh fuck… Another 12 days to go.

This cycle I have less side effects from the HCG trigger and the progesterone, so far.

Except this weekend I was absolutely EXHAUSTED! I am not a nap person,  but this weekend I slept for 2.5-3 hours each afternoon on top of a good 10+ hours of sleep each night.

I just went with the flow and honored what my body was asking of me. I’ve got a 6:20am flight to Winnipeg tomorrow,  so I took advantage of the sleep while I could. Tomorrow is going to be a loooong day

So, that’s my uneventful 2ww so far.  9 days til Beta…

It’s trigger time: game on baby!

CD11. Trigger Day. 

Today, I had my first follicle monitoring ultrasound of this cycle. Back to the OB/GYN since she’s not on vacation anymore. 

And the results are AH-MA-Zing! My left side is dominant this month with a 20 and a 15. My right has a 12 and two 11’s. 

A 20?!?!?! I’ve never seen one that big on an ultrasound yet.

It’s funny how us (in)fertiles are amazed at the biggest little things. 

This month, I got an extra dose of Clomid crazy. My husband is ready to throw the fertility drugs out the window. I have been extremely irritable, emotional, and just downright bitchy. My ovaries are also swollen and sore, almost comparable but not quite as bad as the December cycle. 

I knew there must be a pay off! And it turns out a nice juicy follicle is it! Are follicles juicy? How would you describe them? Lush? Round? bah! whatever. 

I do my HCG trigger shot at midnight tonight. Whoohoo! And for once, I mean WHOHOO! Trigger shots are not comparable to liquor shots, but I’m still excited. Let’s get this show on the road.  

IUI #2 is scheduled for Wednesday. Him at 11am, me at 12:30pm. 

I’m hoping for a easy rest of the week. Work is crazy busy right now, but I’m trying my best to let it go and focus on maintaining a consistent level of sanity. That means: please be nice to me HCG. I know we’ve only met once but why can’t this be a win-win relationship? 

I feel better today, but that’s probably because we have a game plan. 

IUI #2 – here we come! 

 

 

 

 

2ww update: positive visualization vs. realistic pessimism

CD22. 8dpIUI. 6 days til beta. 

I sorta tested out my HCG trigger.The sensitive internet cheapie showed just the faintest line yesterday at 9 days post trigger.

I’m contributing my feeling better to the lack of HCG in my body. It really dragged me down last weekend. I was exhausted, depressed and alternating between the chills and extreme hot flashes. I’m experiencing the typical progesterone side effects,  plus this afternoon I noticed some light pink discharge. It didn’t appear until I was doing an internal CM check, but it was enough that it showed up a bit on my panty liner after I got home from work.

Could this be implantation? 8dpIUI would make sense… or is my cervix just irritated from the progesterone pills I’ve been popping up there 2x day? Or maybe it was my finger? Why can’t anything be straightforward when taking fertility drugs? 

I’ve also been visualizing implantation. Each time I feel a twinge, I speak to my uterus and the fertilized egg. 

Uterus: you are soft, lush, warm and welcoming.

Egg: welcome home! Momma is sooooooo ready for you. Bury in deep and get comfortable. You are in for the long run. 

Visualization is just a mind fuck as I keep telling myself and my family that I’m NOT pregnant. I feel like having low expectations may lessen the blow if we get another BFN or it could make the BFP even that much more special. I appreciate that my parents care, but I hate when people ask me how things are going as my cycle draws to an end.  My mom always tries to be encouraging right up until my flow starts. At that point, I can tell the game is over.  BFN after BFN, it becomes highly unlikely that my uterus will magically stop contracting and implant an invisible egg.

I guess time will tell which method is more effective: positive visualization vs. realistic pessimism. Maybe next month, I should try just ONE at a time and not both? 

As of now, I’ve decide to ignore all symptoms and POAS on Sunday, 12dpIUI. I can’t bear going into the beta on Tuesday not having an feeling either way. Knowing me, I’ll probably POAS on Monday again.

I have a few sensitive cheapies left and I stocked up on the Costco pack of Clearblues. I’ve read that Clearblue has a higher evap rate, but the Costco pack is half the price of a 2 pack of FRER. I’ll take my chances. 

Good luck to all you other ladies starting your cycles, entering your 2ww or getting ready to test. Last month, lots of women seemed to be successful. It’s bound to happen for at least one of us this month. 

Baby dust! Xo. 

1 DPIUI: progesterone & pineapple

1 DPIUI

Progesterone Day 1. 

Today was fairly uneventful. I woke up feeling better than yesterday, not as bloated and crampy. 

I started my progesterone suppositories – 2 pills vaginally 2x daily. I only have one day to speak for, but so far no complaints. It’s not as gross as everyone says, but this is coming from a persistent cervical mucus checker. I’m used to sticking a finger or two up there to see what’s going on. I decided to leave that alone this cycle. No checking whatsoever. 

I also decided to try a pineapple to help implantation. I picked one up at Costco yesterday when I grabbed my progesterone prescription.

 

Pineapple and progesterone

On With Great Expectation, I read the post, Three days post transfer plus what’s the deal with pineapple?, where she explains how to prepare your pineapple. My hubby cut it up for me as a pre-supper snack.  Yes, my husband is baby-ing me beyond belief. He wouldn’t let me do ANYTHING tonight. The plan is to eat 1 piece everyday for 5 days including the core. Not such a bad deal. Pineapple is yummy!

I’m feeling great. Not stressed. Not worried. No symptom-checking like an insane woman because clearly that’s insane, it’s only 1DPIUI. 

I keep trying to use positive visualizations. Sperm meet Egg. Egg meet Sperm. Now, you will be getting to know each other really well. My uterus is soft, cushy, sticky, perfect for implantation. BFP, BFP, BFP. 

Either way, this month has already resulted in a few positives:

  • We got some good news with hubby’s counts
  • We made it through two cycles of Clomid craziness
  • I gave myself my first shot ever
  • We know what to expect if we have to go to the clinic again for Round 2

To make the 2ww go by faster, I broke down into key milestones or events I’m looking forward to: 

  • Thurs Jan 9 – Acupuncture! 
  • Fri Jan 10 – attending the BE-Loved Body Empowerment True Colours Gala. This intuitive art show and gala supports promoting a positive body image for all women. This is something I can totally relate to. (In)fertility has NOT made me feel sexy. 
  • Sat Jan 11 – The wonderful woman who is repainting my washstand is coming by to drop off the end tables and help me pick a colour! OHHHH exciting! 
  • Thurs Jan 16 – My sister and her boyfriend are coming from Fort McMurray for a visit. 
  • Fri Jan 17 – We are all attending a Neil Young and Dianna Krall concert
  • Sat Jan 18 – SPA day with my sister! Much needed. I’ve been wearing fuzzy socks all the time to keep my feet warm, but my toes are currently missing their standard polish. 
  • Mon Jan 19 – My sister and her man leave 😦 
  • Tues Jan 21 – BLOOD TEST! 

I’ve got lots to look forward to, but I hope can keep my mind busy on the in between days. 🙂 

 

 

IUI #1 – we did it!

CD 14. IUI #1 is done.

Our hotel stay last night was slightly awkward. I laid on one queen bed on my laptop, while my husband laid in the other watching a Netflixmovie on the tablet. It felt like we barely said a word to each other all night. Although he tends to retreat inwards when he’s upset, I very much am a talker. His silence was getting to me, but really what did we have to talk about? We both knew there wasn’t much to say until after this morning.

We got to the clinic just before 9 am and filled out our paperwork. They called my hubby in to give his sample and I was left alone in the waiting room. My mind was racing with all of the potentially bad things that could go wrong: What if he can’t do it? What if he drops it? What if the sample numbers are bad? What if…

I felt like crying.

Instead, I turned to my biggest comfort: the blogs. I kept hitting refresh on my WordPress app until a new post from Maeussle showed up. Thank you! You have no clue how much you helped me regain control from a potential breakdown this morning. I was reminded that online I am never alone. 🙂

After 10 minutes that seemed like an hour, my hubby came back out and we were free to go until my appointment at 10:30 am. 

The office was much busier when we got back. It turns out (in)fertile women are much friendlier than the pregos I commonly run into while being monitored at the ob/gyn office. Eye contact was made and I even got a few smiles from other nervous patients like me. She smiled! She gets it! Oh, I could hug you right now if we weren’t entirely strangers! Maybe next time I will have enough courage to strike up a convo.

They called us in to meet our RE. She was very nice while she went over our history and the game plan. I spoke to her about my persistent pre-period spotting and she agreed to put me on progesterone. Whohoo! Every (in)fertile’s dream! Fuck. I’ve been avoiding buying feminine products in the hopes of getting pregnant. Guess this means I’ll be needing to stock up on panty liners. 

We moved from the RE’s office to the procedure room. The nurse was very sweet, except my cervix didn’t get along with her. She had to try a few times to get the catheter in. I cursed in my head, reminding myself that she was doing the best she could.

It was over before we knew it. The nurse instructed me to stay lying down and that the doctor would come by with our sperm count and blood requisition.

The doctor said she was impressed with our sperm count as it was above average.

Total count: 60 million
Motility: 82%

My husband literally high-fived me while I was still laying on the table. He was ecstatic.

I was relieved. *whew* Cross another worry off the list. I guess those vitamins, supplements, healthy eating and instructions for him to not have any alcohol the week before IUI are paying off. 

Above average sperm count + Clomid + Trigger = Potential BFP?!?! *fingers-crossed*

My goals for this 2WW are to:

  • Stay optimistic, yet realistic
  • Keep my stress levels to a minimal – as instructed by the doctor, the nurse and my husband
  • Listen to my intuition. I truly am only going to do what I want and what my body needs.
  • Not POAS too early

I take the progesterone starting tomorrow until January 21 when I go for the blood test.

Until then, here’s hoping.

HCG shots, shots, shots, shots, shots…

In the hour leading up til HCG time, I had this song stuck in my head. So, I made up my own version. Alright. I got lazy. I  made up my own version, but only to the first verse. 😀

To the tune of Shots by LMFAO ft. Lil’ Jon

When I walk in the doctor’s office
All eyes on me
I’m clearly the in(fertile)
Why can’t drugs be free?
We take clomid
We take HCG
We came to make a baby
Let’s get it on
Shots shots shots shots shots shots
Shots shots shots shots shots
Shots shots shots shots shots
Everybody [x2]

CD 12.

1 day til IUI

HCG shot taken at 11pm

The verdict: easy peasey. We (in)fertiles really build ourselves up. Once we conquer the task at hand, we usually realize it wasn’t so bad after all.

That was me all day, counting down the minutes until shot time.

I spent this evening watching The Vow with Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum. Channing was a nice distraction for a few hours. I should have been smarter though. Hormonal + love stories = crying mess.

At 10:50 pm, I ventured upstairs to finally get this thing over with.

My fertility clinic gave me a handy 10-step sheet. My husband insisted on helping and gave me the instructions step-by-step.  He did good until about Step 4. I had read and memorized Steps 1-3. It started to get hazy for me around Step 4. I listened to his instructions, paused and told him that didn’t sound correct. I grabbed the paper from his hand, read Step 4 and realized I was right. Like always. Men can never follow instructions. 

My husband is notorious for throwing the instructions to the side when putting stuff together. In the end, he usually misses a piece and has to start all over. I love him. I truly do. But, following instructions is just not his thing.

So, I read the instructions to myself as I moved along. Step 9 was THE STEP. I knew where I was going to inject, but looking at the needle in my hand and my tummy in the mirror was just too much for me. I stopped and asked my husband if he could do it. He mumbled something about how I would be fine and to stop looking in the mirror.

Believe it or not, some tasks are more difficult for me because I have gigantic ta-tas. I often dread how enormous they are going to get when I am pregnant. Not a gift. More often a nuisance. So yes, there I was standing in my bathroom, HCG shot in hand, attempting to juggle my giant bra-less breasts out of the way, so I could look down and find that perfect spot to inject myself. My husband ask me if I wanted him to hold them for me. Not funny. 

I finally finagled my way to a spot to the right of my belly button.  I went for it: inserted needle, injected HCG, pulled out needle. Task complete.

HCG shot

I was surprised that a little bit came out after I pulled the needle out. I held my hand over the spot and lightly massaged it as the instructions requested. The only after effects I’ve had are some slight tingles near the injection spot.

On a pain scale, I’d seriously rate this like a 0.5. I have an extremely high pain tolerance though. Could I do it again? Definitely – if I have to. And we all know I’m praying I don’t. 

We’re having an extremely cold spell up here on the Canadian Prairies. We couldn’t even get the vehicles started today. If the weather forecast is still cold and snowy for tomorrow, we will leave mid-afternoon to go to Saskatoon. I’d rather be safe and sit on my butt in the hotel room 5 minutes away from the clinic than have the weather get in my way.

Two sleeps to go. IUI#1 – here we come.

Amazon drones will deliver babies?!? I’m in!

For a tech-geek like me, this comic is amusing. Check it out: http://www.geekculture.com/joyoftech/joyarchives/1933.html

This may seem absurd to fertile people, but not to me. Now that we’re moving into IUI, I feel like we’ve entered the “anything goes” territory.

Dildo cam up my vajay-jay 5 X a month? Sure why not! Insert catheter into cervix – a hole that normally only microscopic sperm swim through? Sign me up! Remove all forms of intimacy and turn the conception of my child into a medical procedure? There’s nothing uncomfortable about that! 

I had my second follicle monitoring ultrasound this morning. We have one follicle measuring a ripe 17, and another at 13. Still a few days to go.

I finally spoke to the clinic in Saskatoon. This place really does exist!

Our schedule is:

  • Wednesday December 11 at 10 pm – HCG trigger shot
  • Friday December 13 at 8:00 am – Hubby’s appointment to provide the goods; at 9:45 am – I’m in for IUI.

Since we do not have a fertility clinic in our city, we have to travel 2.5 hours to the nearest clinic. I am so grateful that we got in with a doctor who has a partnership with the clinic = no referral wait list.

Canadian winters are unpredictable. I don’t need to be stranded in the middle of nowhere in a blizzard come appointment time. So, I booked us into the Delta Bessborough the night before. This place reminds me of a castle and I deserve to feel like a princess for at least one night this month.

That leaves us at CD 13. 4 days til IUI.

Wish me luck.

I’m praying for a Christmas miracle.