Gunning Towards The Finish

I’m not sure whether these qualify as treats, but they definitely count as tricks:


This morning I had another UltraBlood combination. Pending what the doctor saw and my levels, there was a chance tonight this evening could be THE TRIGGER shot night. A nurse usually calls between 1-3pm with my update instructions, so I was anxiously awaiting the trill of my phone. Once it started ringing, it didn’t even get through the first full ring, anxious nerves had me all jumbled up. I am happy to report, that this evening, I DO NOT have to inject the Menopur, the Gonal F, or the Cetrotide. 
I am doing my trigger shot! Promptly at 8pm as the nurse instructed three times. We were originally going be using the Lupron, but that was changed today. I should have asked why, but I was just relieved to hear we are finally moving forward. I’ve previously used the Ovidrel for my trigger shot, so I’m not worried about that. I am relieved (for the time being) that there is only this one last injection to give. 
…and THURSDAY is my egg retrieval. Ahhhhhh!!! The excitement, jitters, anticipation, nerves, and anxiety are all over the place. This is a very good thing as I am so uncomfortable it isn’t even funny. I can’t imagine having more follicles than what I have. My clothes don’t fit, I’m bloated all throughout my abdominal region, and the pressure is so uncomfortable. 
However, despite all of the above, I am trying to stay relaxed, focused on the specifics, and being calm. Easier said than done for me, but I’m making a valiant effort.

Shots, shots, shots.Β 


Not exactly the type of shots I was thinking of, but how the times have changed. Above is the listing of what I’ve been doing since 10/13. Excuse the sloppiness, I have three different tracking lists. Crazy, yes. Obsessed that I’m going to goof something up, YES!

So far this week I’ve had an UltraBlood combo Sunday, at 7:15am, over 45 minutes away from where we live. Funnnnnn. The woman that was doing my blood work couldn’t find the vein in my left arm, so she fished around for a while, but was kind enough to ask me “does this hurt?” My response, “after inejcting yourself every night you kind of become numb to needles.” Which is the truth, it didn’t hurt, and I’m a human pincushion. Eventually she withdrew the needle and over to the right arm she went. Had my ultrasound, and it was time to drive home. Again, Monday morning, I had another UltraBlood. The heat wasn’t on in the office yet as I had the first appointment, so that made the ultrasound that much more comfortable. Went over had my blood drawn, and that was that! 

My dose on Sunday was reduced, and it’s been down to 75 of the Gonal F since then. I return for another UltraBlood combo tomorrow. The bruising on my stomach has almost completely disappeared. I still have little scars, but I am hoping that they heal or at least fade, right now it just looks like I have random brownish colored pin dots on my belly. 

Last night while puttering around on Pinterest, I discovered this gem:


I’m about one more injection away from bursting. I have seven follicles that are measuring, meaning that they are 14+. Until today I haven’t really given much thought about what could be happening over the next few weeks. 

Here are my top 5 concerns…these are providing that everything goes smoothly, and there aren’t any unforeseen changes. 

  1. Anesthesia at the egg retrieval. I’ve never had any. Ever. I’ll be in a twilight sleep, sounds all sparkly (hehehe,) but this is really bothering me.
  2. That this is considered a surgery. That freaks me out. Again, I’ve never had surgery. So now we are taking two things I’ve never had done, and I’m getting both done, at once, on the same day.
  3. That I have to actually have the embryo transfer. Sounds ludicrous, but hear me out. Isn’t those little containers/Petri dishes or whatever they are stored in, they are safe. They are growing. They are, truly alive. Once the transfer happens, that can change. Once the two embryos are transferred into my body, they can not take. 😱 …and there’s a chance of this, a pretty decent chance. (Please don’t tell me to be optimistic. Obviously, if we didn’t want a baby we wouldn’t be doing any of this. I have to stay level headed. I have to know the statistics and keep them in mind. I can’t be blind to the fact that I can leave that office pregnant after the transfer, and then shortly thereafter, learn that we aren’t. 
  4. The 10-12 day wait to find out if we are actually pregnant. 
  5. Nothing takes. By that, I mean the fertilization doesn’t work, and we have to do this all over again. (Again, I’m fully aware that there’s a very probable chance of this.)

Four Down

I’m going to keep it quick tonight. This evening was my fourth night of the Cetrotide injections. They seem to get worse every night. About 30 seconds after the injection I feel like I want to claw my skin off of my stomach it is so itchy I cannot even believe it! Instead of any more bruises, I now end up with a baseball size red spot for roughly 2 to 3 hours which eventually disappears. My stomach is full of little scars from all of the injections,  not exactly pretty but I am hoping that with time they’ll go away. 
I had an UltraBlood combo this morning. All went well and later this afternoon I received a call about my treatment and a dosage update. I was instructed to reduce my Gonal-F dose to 150, and to keep the Cetrotide at the level I was currently using. I will be doing this dose tonight-Saturday, and will be headed in Sunday morning at 7:15am for another UltraBlood combo! 
Here are a few things I’ve decided have made this round of treatment easier.

  1. For my ultrasound appointments I wear a pair of my husbands crazy patterned socks. He can’t attend these appointments due to his work schedule, so it’s like he’s with me when I have the socks on.
  2. As of this current moment, I’m more comfortable with IVF than I was with the rounds of IUIs. 
  3. Being obsessively detailed with my injection information and doses. 
  4. I sing a song to myself during the ultrasound. Crazy yes, but I don’t particularly like small talk.

Now for the good news! Not only did the nurse inform me that I could lower my Gonal F dose, but “you have a ton of follicles. None are mature yet, but they look great.” Hallelujah. Previously my follicles hadn’t matured until the 12th day of the Gonal F injections, so apparently we are close. 

Gonal F & Cetrotide; Night 1

This morning was my first UltraBlood combo of this cycle. There was someone getting their blood drawn when I arrived, but the ultrasound tech wasn’t in the office. Needless to say, I write down my name on the check in sheet at the lab, and was getting my blood drawn within minutes. After that, a quick twenty step walk to my doctors office. The ultrasound tech was ready. My appointment was at 7:15am, but I had both my blood work and ultrasound done prior to that time. It’s the little victories here, and this is of course one that I will take, as it meant I wasn’t late for work.

This afternoon, around 3:30pm, I received my update call from the nurse. Continue with the Gonal F injections at the 225 dosage tonight, Tuesday, and Wednesday. In addition to that, I am to start the Cetrotide. This will be my first time adding solution to the powder in the vial, extracting, changing needles, and then injecting. Here’s a picture of my medication and injection line up for this evening:

Injections done. Gonal F, no big deal, is it sad to say I’ve gotten used to that? One benefit is that the needle is small, and the dosage doesn’t seem to be as much solely due to the fact that the area where the medication is stored, is wider. In my head, that makes the injection amount seem less, and go by faster…ready set, here we go injection #1.

Now onto the Cetrotide. I had to mix the power in the vial with the premeasured solution. O always enjoyed science and chemistry in high school, but this is completely out of my normal thought process of what one should be doing on a week night. Mad scientists, watch out, I’m on your heels! 

Even after changing to the “injection needle” it hurt like a SOB. I could feel the fluid going into my body (weird,) and could then sense it dispersing throughout after the injection was done. Not exactly a comforting feeling. This whole process is still very bizarre to me. One fat that is really helping me mentally, is that they are stopping me from ovulating. As I tend to ovulate earlier in my cycle, this is GREAT news for me because I know it’s being suppressed, and my body can’t do anything about it. Which of course, goes against everything I should want, because getting pregnant is supposed to be “natural.” 

Ha. Ha. Ha. 

My souvenir kits now look like this…

Here’s my daily dose of positivity for you. I’m trying something new, and completely out of my wheelhouse, but maybe that’s a good thing. Yes, I’m aware it’s now evening, but you take what you get. 

I’m Unstoppable.Β 

At the end of August, many of you that read the blog knew I was done. Not just I, but we were done with this whole infertility shitshow. 

  • I was drained.
  • Always on edge. 
  • Tired of the disappointment. 
  • Annoyed.
  • Didn’t feel like myself. 

As a “Type A” personality, I struggle immensely with things when they don’t go my way. I know what sounds asinine, but this is me:

“…Type A individuals as ambitious, rigidly organized, highly status-conscious, sensitive, impatient, anxious, proactive, and concerned with time management. People with Type A personalities are often high-achieving “workaholics.” They push themselves with deadlines, and hate both delays and ambivalence.” This was taken from Wikipedia. 

I’ve been planning Thanksgiving dinner since August. Our Christmas party has been planned since the middle of September. I make meal plan charts for dinner each week. I have seven calendars: the one on my phone, a blotter at work, a “fun” one at work, my outlook calendar, the dry erase calendar at home, my planner (yes, I know I’m probably one of the only people left using one,) and my gmail calendar. You now may have a better glimpse of why when things don’t go as planned for me, I struggle. Take my Type A add in infertility treatments, and we are bound for nuclear type explosions. 

We (I,) needed a month off to get “in control.” Really, I needed a period of time to readjust, focus, and be completely removed from the yo-yo of what had become daily life. 

This past Thursday marks the start of our first IVF (whattttttttt?!?) cycle. Tonight was the fourth night of my Gonal-F injections, dosage level is at 225. Puffy, tired, but otherwise feeling good. Tomorrow is my first UltraBlood combination. Wonder what kind of damage will be done to my veins this time around; more to come on that. 

8.26 Pt. 2

I got my phone call from my doctors office yesterday (Friday, 8.26) at 2:10. Here’s how the conversation played out in my head: “you have a handful of mature follicles measuring between 18-20…do your HCG shot tonight…we will see you Sunday morning for your IUI. Things are looking very good.”
Here’s how the phone call really went: “you still have no mature follicles…you are going to do another Gonal F injection of 112.5 tonight and Saturday night…you have an appointment Sunday morning at 7:30am for another ultrasound and bloodwork…have relations both Friday and Saturday night in case we miss your ovulation.”

Here’s what I asked: “can you tell me what size the follicles measuring? As of Sunday I will only have 112.5 left of the Gonal F, will I need more?” 

Here are the responses: “they aren’t measuring at 12mm yet, we don’t record measurements when they’re smaller than 12…you should have enough, we ordered you 1,350units total (she must have done the math,) and then said, ‘oh, yes…you’ll need more. We have a sample pen at the office you can come pick up.'”

And…of course, here are my thoughts: “I hate this. Will anything go right? I don’t want to do anymore injections. Why aren’t my follicles growing? More damn bloodwork. Why isn’t my Gonal F dosage increasing? Another damn ultrasound. How can someone else think they might MISS my ovulation? This time I’ll get to drive over an hour one way for an appointment that will take less than 10 minutes. Nothing like scheduled sex. Why can’t I get pregnant?”

9 In No Time

Just finished my 9th Gonal F injection for this cycle. It’s hard to believe it’s been nine straight days of injections. It will be an early Friday morning for me as it’s the 3rd UltraBlood combination appointment…at 6am 😳

Overall I’m not thrilled with how I was feeling yesterday and my blog post. No regrets, but these are the highs and lows of this journey. This week I seem to be cruising steady in the “low lane.” Hopefully tomorrow will bring a lane change, along with some mature follicles; it will also be CD12. 

My nerves and anxiety are partially due to previous experiences with another doctor around this time frame in my cycle. There were two mistimed cycles where my ovulation was “missed,” and everything leading up to that point in time, was going well. Follicles were steadily growing, lining was looking “lush,” and poof: we’ve missed it. So I’m hyper aware of what cycle day I am, and when things should be happening. Fingers crossed for tomorrow! 

Aerial Perspective


So there’s that perspective: the aerial view. Tonight, again, my injection was at 112.5. Tomorrow I go again for another UltraBlood combination! 

So now for side effects, I have none…except for one!!! Ha. Yesterday and today there were fleeting…twinges? Flutters? Twists? Contractions? (Oh goodness, bad word choice.) These aren’t cramps, not at all; I know what those are and what those feel like! In all seriousness though, I could feel THINGS. Things that were MOVING. It was weird. It is bizarre. We can chalk this up as some follicular growth! 

Cinco βœ”οΈ

20 minutes ago was my fifth injection of Gonal F at the dosage of 112.5. 

Tomorrow morning, I get probed and punctured. I’m officially undecided if I’m sarcastic because it’s funny, or sarcastic with this topic specifically because it’s a level of self protection. I suppose I’ll call it both when it comes to the infertility journey. After the ultrasound has been reviewed, and the labs are back, the “team” will consult. From there the dose will get adjusted; up or down, it’ll still be injections. 

I survived the first five! Here’s my “basket of trophies.” HCG injection was from a previous unsuccessful cycle while taking Clomid. I know that there aren’t many needles in there compared to others, but this is where we are during our struggle. 

Quickie

It’s been a long day. So for that reason, and that reason alone here’s the rundown. 

That is my injection ready to go and all packed up for a road trip to Plymouth for a friends wedding. Travels quite well don’t you think? My purse is already the size of the cooler, so lugging two items around that size was hella weird. With that, I shot up tonight in the passengers seat of my husbands car. That car was parked in a Dunkin Donuts parking lot. 
β˜•οΈ πŸ‘ΆπŸ» πŸ’‰ 🚼 🍩 🍼
A few quick thoughts on that: babies equal lack of sleep and the adults are required to drink copious amounts of caffeine; donuts should be given as a prize after self injections are administered; I shot up in a parking lot. Clearly if I’ve figured that correctly, I’ll be pregnant tomorrow!!! Yeah yeah yeah…I know that’s not how it works. Isn’t that where dreams of having your future children came from? Listen with what we are paying this future kid won’t like Dunks, he/she will want a Starbucks Gold Card. Too bad mommy and daddy spent that money having you, and now won’t be able to afford their own Starbucks.
Ha. Nothing like having one side of a dress around your waist and your husband staring at you while you hastily jam the needle into your gut. Like I said it was a long day. Aggravating as well. Apparently when I’m already exhausted and aggravated, I have NO ISSUES getting the disposable needle to thread correctly onto the Gonal F Redi-Pen. What gives? πŸ€”

Side effects:

  • Still have that tingling feeling underneath my skin, but now it feels  much deeper. Almost like the sensation that something is in there crawling. 
  • Two red dots from my previous injections, but no bruising. Tomorrow I’m sure I’ll see some lovely blue and purple. I’ll try to take a picture tomorrow of my 2 current dots! 
  • Bloating. Like out of nowhere, POOF there’s the bloat. I didn’t realize it until tonight after getting ready for bed. 

Alright love muffins that’s all I have in me tonight. Sweet dreams of coffee beans! 

XoX