November 30, 2009

The big “O”!!!

Posted in Infertility tagged , , at 1:37 pm by lifebytheday

Accoding to the RE’s office, as of my blood test this morning, I have OVULATED!!!!!!!!!  All on my own!  Well, that’s not quite true, I’ve been taking Metformin for about a month.  My last period was in September and we were just getting ready to induce AF so that we could start BCP’s, but somehow, I just KNEW I had ovulated this time.  The symptoms for me are intense ovary pain for 3-4 days, followed by incredibly painful and irritated nipples (sorry, TMI ;-)) for another 3-4 days.  I’m still not sure at what point in that week I actually ovulated…but we’ll get a better idea once AF arrives.  So yeah, the RE wants me to wait for AF naturally, and then start the protocol after that.

I’m not even thinking there’s a possibility of a BFP – the ovary pain is so intense that I don’t want S anywhere near me at that point ;-), and then the other days overlapped with Thanksgiving and house guests – but I’m feeling so happy about the fact that my body is doing SOMETHING!  It could be that I’m finally reacting to the Metformin, or it could just be that it’s the first cycle after an induced period (I think that’s what happened over the summer)…but it makes me hopeful that my body might actually WAKE UP after it goes through one pregnancy. 

So anyways, more waiting…but I don’t mind as much this time.  Although, I guess that means I should cut down on the drinking for the next week or so…just in case? 😉

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UPDATE – I just hit 5,000 visitors to my blog!!  Yay!  And THANK YOU!!!

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November 29, 2009

Couch potato no more!

Posted in Exercise tagged , at 10:05 am by lifebytheday

Yesterday, Bailey and I did our first workout of the couch to 5K program – yay!!  It’s been a long time since I worked out regularly, but I’m now committed to getting back in shape.  The fact that I’m going to gain weight anyways (hello IF-meds?) is no longer an excuse – I need to be healthy in preparation for our upcoming pregnancy!  The couch to 5K program is a great way to slowly get to where I want to be (running a 3K, 5K, and maybe even a 10K someday)!  So yesterday’s first workout started out with a 5-minute “brisk” walk, at which point I was like, puh-lease, this is so easy, I should just run for the 20 minutes.

Good thing I didn’t, lol!  The whole point of the program is to gradually increase your stamina so that it is not such a shock to your body.  So yesterday’s workout consisted of the 5-minute walk, then 20 minutes of alternating a minute of jogging and a minute and a half of walking.  By the 15-minute mark, I was really feeling the pain.  It didn’t help that it was FREEZING and GUSTING wind.  So, I ended up walking the last 5 minutes, but all in all, I felt like it was a pretty successful first workout.

One question though, for any of you fitness buffs out there (Jess? ;-)) – what does it mean when the skin on my legs (thighs mostly, even up on my hips) gets crazy ITCHY?  Am I not getting enough oxygen or something?  I used to have exercise-induced asthma (hence the reason I just don’t run), and I noticed it again yesterday.  I’m not going to use that as an excuse this time around though…calling the doctor on Monday for an inhaler!  But besides my wheezing and thighs-on-fire legs, it went great! 😉

November 27, 2009

This year, I’m thankful…

Posted in Life tagged , at 10:01 am by lifebytheday

…that I didn’t kill my husband during Thanksgiving preparations! 😛

In about six hours, S’s best friend arrives from Ireland, so in addition to cleaning and cooking for Thanksgiving dinner, we were also trying to finish our guest room remodel.  (The guest room is the room that we expanded the bathroom into, so it’s been a construction zone in there since October.)  I know, we’re crazy…but this is how we roll.  Nothing like house guests to motivate finishing a project! 😉

Not only did S finish the bedroom, but he also helped me clean (vacuumed the whole house, I HATE vacuuming, lol), cooked the turkey, and was the perfect host as always.  We had a wonderful day with my family, and I was reminded once again, how lucky I am to have him.  We definitely don’t always see eye to eye 😉 but at the end of the day, I know that he will always be there for me.

So, I know that I’m a little late in sharing my Thanksgiving thanks, but I want God and the universe to know how much I appreciate what I have.  This year, I’m thankful for…

  • my husband, who knows when I need a hug or a kick in the pants, and always knows which I need when 😉
  • my parents, for everything (but most recently for all the cooking and cleaning they did yesterday)
  • my brothers, grandfather, aunts, uncles and cousins, for reminding me how fun, crazy, and wonderful my family can be
  • my home, for providing us with a place to welcome family and friends, and making them feel as comfortable as if they were in their own home
  • my furbabies, for giving me someone to love, cuddle with, and take care of (and for proving what a softie S can be ;-))
  • my job, for allowing me to learn new things, meet new people (and pay the bills!)
  • my and S’s health (as I write this post, I’m watching a Dr. Oz special on free clinics, and I feel very blessed that we can afford to buy the insurance that keeps us healthy)

And last but not least, I’m thankful to the doctors, nurses, and drugs (!), that will hopefully soon help me to have one more reason to give thanks.  Happy holiday season everybody!  (((((hugs!)))))

 

November 24, 2009

Six degrees of separation, PCOS style!

Posted in Infertility tagged , , , at 3:49 pm by lifebytheday

A(nother!) friend of mine was recently (and tentatively) diagnosed with PCOS.  I was just talking to her sister and realized that, of our group of eight women – we get together once a month for a girls’ night potluck 🙂 – 50% of us have PCOS!!!  That is INSANE!  So of course, I immediately hit up Google, which claims that the number is more like 5-10%.  So what’s going on here?? 

I have long maintained that hormone disorders like this are due, in large part, to the hormones added to our milk, meat, etc.  For this reason, I try hard to buy only organic meat, dairy, and vegetables…although, sometimes my wallet precludes complete adherence to that rule.  But one thing I know for sure, my kids (and me, once I’m pregnant) will be eating ONLY organic.  I know, I’ll be the mom all of the kids hate, but I’m willing to sacrifice popularity. 😉  Or else I’ll get very good at tricking them!

But seriously, this is SCARY!  And so much more serious, medically, than *just* not being able to get pregnant.  To my readers, how many people do you know with PCOS?  And has anybody heard anything definitive about causes???

(P.S. For those just diagnosed, check out my Resources bloglist to the right).

November 23, 2009

What a pain in the…

Posted in Infertility tagged , , at 1:48 pm by lifebytheday

OVARY?!?

For the past few days I’ve been having pain in my left ovary, similar to the pain pre-ER (when there are typically 30+ follies in there).  AF hasn’t been in town since September 19th, so I don’t know if maybe things are, ahem, building up in there?  Or could I actually be ovulating on my own???  Without going into too much detail, there are some other indications that that’s a possibility, so I guess it’s BD for S and I tonight!  (Bummer that we were “too tired” last night, lol.)  I go in for a blood test a week from today anyways (before I start taking Progesterone to move things along), so I guess I’ll just wait and see what happens.

Oh, also, question for those of you who have taken Metformin.  Did it ever affect your appetite?  I don’t remember that from before, but my old RE definitely kept asking me “have you been losing weight?  no?  that’s strange…” LOL.  It’s weird, but my appetite has definitely gone downhill…which would be great, except that I still want sugar, snacks…basically anything that’s NOT good for me. 😉

November 22, 2009

I never thought I’d say this…

Posted in Life, Remodeling tagged , at 6:45 pm by lifebytheday

…but I’m SICK of shopping. 😛

S and I left our house at 10am today, and I didn’t pull back in the driveway until 5pm.  We were on the hunt for a bedding set for the guest room, and coordinating paint and carpet, along with the few bits and pieces needed to finish up the bathroom and guestroom renovation.  S’s best friend from Ireland arrives on Friday (oh, and we’re also hosting Thanksgiving ;-)), so we have some incentive to wrap things up! 

We hit up Tar.get, Low.e’s, and Wal.mart before S lost patience.  Came back home and S went to work sanding the plaster in the guest room, and I went back out…to Home G.oods, another Tar.get (bedding, success!), and Home De.pot (where S joined me to pick out the paint and bring the carpet home in his work van).

We just came home, made pizza, and started laundry…and now we’re watching football, praying that the Pats win!  It’s been a busy weekend, and we did NOT get as much done as we had hoped.  We always do this, delay until we HAVE to get something done, and then make ourselves crazy trying to do it.  It’s going to be a busy few days… 😉

November 21, 2009

Hello ICLW!

Posted in Infertility tagged , at 4:21 pm by lifebytheday

Continuing the theme from yesterday’s post about the fantastic community I’ve discovered online, over the next week I’m participating in November’s ICLW (International Comment Leaving Week).  This is a great opportunity to find some new blogs, and get some new readers as well!  I’m so excited to meet some new people and hear about their IF journeys…so in honor of ICLW, a quick recap of me and my blog!

My husband (S) and I got married in June of 2004 and threw out the BCPs in March of 2006.  I had never had a regular period and suspected that we would have problems getting pregnant, so we started “trying” sooner than we might have.  Good thing we did!  After six months with no period, I got tested and was diagnosed with PCOS.  The next step was Metformin, for several months, followed by Clomid, but still no period or ovulation. 

In September of 2007, I started seeing an RE, who re-did some tests and two cycles of Clomid (ovulation, but long, un-trackable cycles), and then took us through two cycles of IVF (in February and June 2008).  The first cycle produced 16 eggs, but only one mature embryo, and was a BFN.  The second cycle had similar results, but I had some complications after ER (internal bleeding and OHSS), so we had to freeze our one embie.  In November of 2008, we did an FET, which unfortunately was another BFN. 

At that point, we had lost our insurance benefits, and decided to try to regulate my cycle “naturally” for a while.  So for nine months, I did acupuncture, dieted (no dairy or sugar), took vitamins and herbs, etc.  In all that time, I had one spontaneous ovulation, but no luck.  I recently started seeing a new RE (the IVF director at Mass General Hospital in Boston) and have started back up with Metformin, in preparation for IVF cycle #3 in January.  I’m SO hopeful that this January will be the end of my story!!

So anyways, that’s me – thanks for visiting!

November 20, 2009

The kindness of strangers (and friends)!

Posted in Blog, Infertility, Life tagged at 4:30 pm by lifebytheday

I was reading the RESOLVE bulletin board updates this morning and clicked on a discussion called “You know you’re infertile when…”  Some of the responses were sad, many were hysterically funny…and some just hit too close to home.  The one that struck me the most read “You know you’re infertile when…At one point or another you want to smack just about everyone you love, but then cry over the failed fertility treatments of perfect strangers.” 

While I don’t necessarily agree with the first part of that statement (more on that later), the second piece rang so true for me.  Since I’ve become a part of this fantastic infertility community (almost 100% online!), I have been constantly amazed by how much support perfect strangers are able to provide one another.  There are very few people we know IRL (in real life) that know exactly the right thing to say at any given time (those who do know who you are ;-)), and it makes such a difference to be able to talk to and hear from other people going through the same thing.  Although we may still be jealous of other people’s BFP’s, it takes a true infertile to empathize with (yet another!) BFN, or delayed cycle, or insurance issue, or…fill in the blank. 

For so long, I put off creating a blog, thinking that no one would be interested in anything I had to say…and then even after I had started, sometimes the pressure was paralyzing!  I’ve gradually realized that, for me, the therapeutic value of writing is as, if not more, important, and that I don’t necessarily care if other people read it.  With that said, the “community” is really what makes a difference, and I LOVE hearing from readers.  If I can help even one person feel like they’re not alone, then my blog will have been a success. 

So back to part one of that comment…yes, there are occasionally times when I want to kill someone, usually a member of my family.  [One of my lowest moments was a SCREAMING match with my brother, mid-Lupron, followed by a stalemate that led to us not speaking for MONTHS.  Our relationship has just recently recovered.]  But there are other times when I am surprised anew by how lucky I am to have certain people in my life. 

I had a funny conversation yesterday with one of my best friends (she writes a great fitness/life blog, check it out!), where we spent 20 minutes over IM moaning about the parts of our body that we didn’t like.  My favorite part of the whole exchange was that each time I would say something, she would contradict me or tell me about something she loved about me, and vice versa.  Although that convo wasn’t IF related, it made me realize that there are so many people in my life who love and support me, and I feel very grateful.

So – along the lines of yesterday’s post – just a big thank you to everyone who has ever commented on my blog, given me a hug (or a reality check!), or put up with my Lupron mood swings. 😉  You mean more than you’ll ever know.

November 19, 2009

The power of writing.

Posted in Blog, Life at 4:23 pm by lifebytheday

Yesterday’s post was the second time I used my blog as a way to download all of the random and contradictory thoughts swirling around in my head.  It was certainly not the first or second time my blog has proven its therapeutic value, but it amazes me how much clearer I feel about an issue, just by writing it all down.  It’s almost like I can clear out my head enough to make a decision…and it seems to have worked that way both times. 

By the time I finished my blog, posted it, and went back to the published link to proofread (I know, I know…an occupational hazard of being an editor ;-))…I pretty much knew what my decision would be.  Comments from my lovely readers then serve to solidify my decision…it’s fascinating, even if people don’t have the same opinion as me, the contradiction helps me judge the commitment to my decision.

So, all that to say THANK YOU.  Thanks for listening, thanks for commenting, and thanks for creating a community where I feel comfortable enough to share!  And in case you’re wondering…I’ve decided to go full steam ahead with everything.  Whatever happens, happens…wish me luck! 😉

November 18, 2009

Question/worry o’ the day

Posted in Infertility, Life tagged , , at 3:45 pm by lifebytheday

TIMING.

As anyone dealing with IF knows, infertility takes away all ability to plan or control the act of having children.  People might think that IVF represents the most control possible – i.e. you know when you’ll be doing the retrieval and transfer (roughly), and can plan around it – however, there are so many factors which negate that control and ability to plan.  First of all, there are insurance approvals, and the bloodwork and other tests required beforehand – these things could take weeks or even months.  For some people, money also becomes a factor, and procedures must be put on hold while you save money.  Then, you have to take into consideration whether (and how) you’ll respond to the medication – will you be stimming for days? weeks?  Finally, after everything is complete, there’s the 2WW (two week wait), when you wait to find out whether or not you are pregnant.  And the piece with the LEAST control POSSIBLE?  After all of that, it may not have worked, you won’t be pregnant, and you will have gone through all these steps for nothing.  You then have to somehow find the strength to move forward, and try to forget about all the plans you had made for 9 months from now.

All this to say, that there is really no point in trying to “plan” the perfect time to have a baby.  Now that I’ve received insurance approvals and feel like we are actually moving forward, I’m doing what all IF patients do…counting months.  I had previously done the 9 month addition problem, starting from the target of mid-January, which would give us a due date of early- to mid-October.  Great, right?!  However, I’ve also just realized that that means that I’d be 7 months pregnant in early August, just too pregnant to travel to our big company sales meeting. 

I’ve recently started pursuing a local sales job in my company (not my cup of tea really, but required in order to get promoted to the job I really want), under the theory that if this next IVF doesn’t work, I’ll want something to keep busy with, and if it does, sales would actually provide me with a lot of flexibility.  If I need to puke all morning and go on campus in the afternoon, I can.  I can work around doctor’s appointments and take naps.  Seems like a win/win.  I’ve submitted my name for two local positions that should be opening up soon – one rep is retiring, and one is hoping to come back inside (as an editor)…but for now, more waiting.

So now I’m trying to decide – do I postpone our next IVF to February, so that I’m only 6 months pregnant in August, not 7?  Or do I move forward ASAP in case this next round doesn’t work, again?  Then again, if we end up transferring two and have twins, I probably won’t be able to fly at 6 months anyways, so maybe I should just plan on not being at the meeting and move forward as planned?  And on the other hand, when will this sales opportunity materialize anyways?  Will the timing work out perfectly enough that I’ll have to be interviewing while on meds for our next cycle?  And maybe I won’t even get the job, in which case I wouldn’t want to postpone our next cycle!  UGH!!!  Someone save me from myself…! 😛

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