Saturday, December 3, 2011

In Hiding

Sorry for the long delay, but I have been hiding because I AM PREGNANT:)  I am days away from my second trimester and have my fingers crossed I make it. Yay...almost! No, really, we are excited and pretty much celebrating. I just have that little voice in the back of my head of my doctor saying that Lovenox does work for 80% of the women, but the other 20% it just delays your miscarriage to the second trimester. Please pray I'm part of the 80% this time! Next ultrasound is in a week and a half and I promise to post more after that :) I have been religiously doing 3 shots a day for the past 13 weeks, patches, pills and terrified to do any sort of exercise. That, unfortunately has led me to an early weight times!  I guess I can't complain, right? Thanks for the continued prayers and support. I can't tell you how everyone has helped us to survive this struggle and come out on top...hopefully! :) Talk soon :)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Just waiting...again

I'm still here, I'm just waiting for results again. Hoping to have info for you all know how much I LOVE least school is keeping me busy this time. While I have a platform, I just want to take this opportunity to send prayers out to a fellow infertile sister, Guiliana Rancic. She and her husband, Bill, have put their struggle out there for everyone to see and gone through this tough time in front of many tv viewers. Now their struggle only gets worse by her diagnosis of breast cancer recently and my heart just breaks for her. But I know she can fight this just as she has fought infertility for the past few years. My thoughts, prayers and this post go out to her in support. We love you, Guiliana! Be strong and fight this disease just as elegantly and bravely as you have fought infertility.

Friday, September 30, 2011

2 Little Embies

They are in there...we just hope they stay put this time. Awaiting a blood test is the most agonizing thing I can possibly think of right now. I have to say, being at school and preoccupied has helped pass the time quite quickly. I cannot worry about doing too much, standing too long or other silly things while I am too worried about my students and who just put their booger on the wall (yes, that really happened today!). Nice to laugh in between all the anxiety, worry and complete and total fear. I still have a positive attitude, sure, but waiting, just plain sucks, no matter how you look at it. Even if I do have a positive reading, not sure I will believe it. I will have to talk myself out of worrying about a miscarriage just about every hour...yep...that sounds about right. I am already going to the bathroom every hour just to make sure I'm not bleeding. Although each time I don't find any, I still am only appeased for about 30 minutes until I start worrying about it again.

Shots aren't getting any easier either. Room is running out on my belly in between all the bruising and patches. I'm also already having a bad reaction to the Progesterone shots as well...just keep telling myself this will all be worth it.  It better be.  All this over analyzing every move I make, cramp I feel, and pinch I take really takes a toll on a person's psyche. I keep telling myself I can't give up, but eventually at some point I might. Adoption is a very real possibility. But in the back of my mind, I am afraid of that option because it means I gave up on a possibility of our own flesh and blood...sounds silly, I know. But I was very attached to the idea of going through pregnancy and I'm afraid of what will happen if I accept the fact that experiencing that may never happen for me.  Not to mention how much of a failure I would feel like as a woman. Okay...time to stop worrying about that and worry about being pregnant now. Stay positive. I tell myself this every 5 minutes. Don't worry. Calm down. Don't stress. Pray. Relax. Envision the embryos. All of those thoughts seem to be a on a repetitive cycle in my head. It is out of my hands now and I need to relax into that thinking. But first...I have to pee.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

7 and 7

Seven embryos thawed and seven survived! The first of many miracles to come hopefully:) I am truly surprised and very thankful that they survived the thaw. I couldn't believe it when I got the phone call. I thought for sure the phone conversation was going to go something like, " Holly, we're very sorry, but we have to cancel this cycle due to none of the embryos surviving. All of your shots this time were for nothing." BUT, that's not at all what happened.

So out of the seven, they were all still growing the next day as we awaited a time for our transfer. That was still excellent news. Usually most of mine stop growing at some point or another and we end up with only two good ones to transfer.

When asked how many we could transfer, my embryologist said only 2. At my age still, 2 is their protocol since they really don't want anything more than twins. Triplets are a really difficult pregnancy, however, I wish I had that final decision. This is my 7th go around and I would like to be more aggressive. No offense, I don't want to see them anymore. I don't want to do this EVER again. But, they just can't be persuaded, unfortunately.

Everyone failed to mention how much Lovenox burns! So I am enjoying the Progesterone shots as well as the Lovenox twice a day. 3 painful shots a day...there better be a baby on the other end of this path! I am quite calm, which I am also thankful for. So hopefully, all of this...the abundance of embryos, the painful shots and the calm of my mindset...ends in success this time.

Fingers crossed and bountiful prayers! Until the next update...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Fear Has No Place Here

For the past two weeks, I have been terrified that I haven't been ready for this round of treatment. I was scared that being so busy with school would negatively impact my abilities to focus and implement my protocol. If you think about it, that is slightly true. I did forget and take all of my antibiotic at once and today I forgot to have them draw the circles for my husband to play target practice on my behind. However, this, as I have said in a previous post, is my 7th time doing this. I AM READY. How could I not be? I know exactly what to expect. I am familiar with all the procedures, medications, blood draws, waiting and vocabulary used. I was afraid I wasn't ready because of just that...fear itself. I know what I'm doing. I know what's happening and I know all the possible outcomes. I have plans of attack for whatever the outcome is. I have been praying like crazy and doing everything I am supposed to do (unless I forget to, ha!). Fear has been driving this lack of confidence. Fear has been in control. As of today, not anymore. Fear can take a backseat because if I end up pregnant or not this time, I have to be proud of how much I have tried and gone through to get where I am.

As of Sunday they will thaw 6-8 of our embryos and from then on, it's in God's hands. Not an ounce of my worrying will matter. My faith will. My lack of stress will. Any amount of stress and anxiety caused chemicals I welcome into my body at this point, will negate any amount of hormones trying to help these embryos attach. Fear doesn't have a place here. Fear cannot control embryos growing and multiplying cells. Fear cannot determine which embryos survive the thawing process. All I can do is what is up to me and that is focus completely on keeping my body healthy and calm to welcome little embies into my warm and welcoming environment. When I look at it in the context of if I am not relaxed or healthy, these embryos won't stick, I am more inclined to work on lessening my anxiety and stress, which I can, to some extent, control. At least I can control that more than whether the embryos survive the thaw or any outside factors that may or may not affect me during my wait time. Fear is not in control, I am. Even if the worst occurs---another miscarriage---we have a plan. We will be okay. But we will not focus on that. We will welcome the embryos the day of the transfer and completely visualize them going through the entire process inutero. We will remain positive and pray to God who will answer our prayers as long as we are listening and are in total reliance on his power and ability to give life. Fear is not in control. God is.

I can do THIS and all things through Him who strengthens me. I was just thinking today and realizing (in awe of myself) how confident, relaxed and completely full of faith in God I was just a few short months ago. I was wondering where that had disappeared to for this round. I wanted that same feeling again to feel ready, but it just wasn't happening. I was in tears last night and couldn't stop. I couldn't fully explain why, but I was just pleading with God to change my heart and my mind. I was beginning to think I lost my "mojo". I wanted it back. I wanted that confidence I once had. I wanted to feel "ready" and be relaxed about the whole process again.  Well I must have found my "mojo" today and I couldn't be more thankful. It came back just in time and all I can do is smile. I can do this, I keep telling myself. I am doing this. I am working full time, taking care of our home, laundry, dogs, dinners, each other and we are going to create a family. I can do this. I can do bed rest and the shots again. I am doing shots again. I am in control.  I know I never lost my faith, it must have accidentally been placed on the back burner again. Life gets in the way, but we can't let it. I can't let it. This is my life. Being a mom. Having a family. I am strong, confident in this time and positive we can survive and I envision it being successful. Can you see it with me? Fear has no place here, where this woman is about to become a mom. One way or another.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Again, Really?

Blood draw appointment this dreary Saturday morning at 8am and what am I greeted by before my coffee has had time to take effect? Kids. Sitting at the reception desk again. One, cute little girl playing computer games while her mommy checks people in for their INFERTILITY appointments. So completely insensitive it is again and I am just in shock. I forgave the last incident as explaining to myself that it was a one time occurrence, probably because her babysitter canceled on her at the last minute. But nope, she must just bring them when it's her Saturday to work. Nice. Real nice. Nothing like having the fact that you don't have children yet rubbed right in your face as soon as you walk in your doctor's door.

Thankfully my appointment only took literally a minute for them to draw my blood so I could get the heck out of there and go about my day of sulking about my situation. On my way out, my husband is coming in the door to be with me at my appointment. Too bad it was already over! So we went to sit for a minute in the car before he had to leave for work. What do we see at 8:11 this morning? My doctor just coming into work. Really? You know you have 8am appointments and you are only at work for 2 hours this morning. You are really going to put yourself behind to start? Why should I be surprised? At my last 8am appointment, I saw him coming in at 8:20.  I love him to death, but his punctuality sucks. He is completely on his own time schedule and his patients can just wait for him. It stinks knowing we are at his mercy.

So my Saturday just started off all wrong. I gave up coffee in preparation for my transfer, knowing that caffeine could be harmful to the embryos. Apparently, I picked the wrong day to stop caffeine. All the rain and college football on TV made for a very non-productive day. Although it was greatly needed. All my anxiety has added up to a nice-sized rash on the side of my neck. All this worry about school, preschool starting, parent orientation, the transfer and as always my weight has me losing most of the sleep I attempt to get at night. Not to mention the hormone fluctuation has me hotter than I can ever remember, more nauseous and on the verge of tears every five minutes. Not the best week in my world. I am praying next week goes a little smoother and is a lot cooler to save me from these hot flashes.

On a positive note, we are getting closer to our transfer. Our next ultrasound and blood test determines when they will thaw the embryos! We are beginning to get excited and in the right mindset for welcoming an embryo into my hopefully very prepped and ready uterus. All the soreness, cramps and oily skin tells me we are getting close! This time I am anxiously awaiting bed rest just for the pause I will be forced to give my body and take with my only focus being relaxing, resting and being a good incubator. Hopefully at my next appointment I won't be greeted by a 5 year old as a reminder that I don't have one yet.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

7th Time's A Charm, Right?

That was my exact question to my doctor this morning as he came into the exam room. He laughed and said, "it's whatever number it needs to be for you." No, not what I wanted to hear. I wanted to hear, yes, it sure is. We have everything figured out and all diagnosed now so nothing else should stand in your way of having a baby. Great. Whatever number it needs to be for me. Well if it isn't a 7 or 8, we won't be back. So for all of our sakes, let's pray for that lucky number 7 to take, shall we? So far, this time doesn't feel lucky. I way more stressed out than last time, not as confident and a lot more symptomatic than I remember. I have continued to bruise myself so badly with the Lupron that my husband has had to take over giving me the shots for the time being. I have had the most severe headaches I have had in a long time, and for a kicker, my eye has decided it's going to twitch. Constantly. For about a week now. AWESOME. I asked why that was and my doctor immediately attributed it to stress. Great, how do I get it to go away when the stress just keeps piling on?

On a good note, my teaching job is going wonderfully. Although preschool hasn't started yet, so that is still to be determined and hopefully not too much more stress or I'm afraid my body will just shut down on me. One of the things I was afraid of has already happened. I found out today I messed up my regimen by overtaking my antibiotic. Oops. I knew working and going through this at the same time was going to be tricky and I was so afraid to miss something. However, in this case, I didn't miss anything. I missed stopping it! Luckily, it's not that big of a deal. I'm just exceptionally clean of bacteria at this point:) And the prescription can be refilled for when I need to continue taking it in a week. I was supposed to take it for 7 days, stop for a while, then take the last 5 days. I just forgot to stop and kept right on going. So proud of myself for finishing it because it was very strong and upset my stomach. It also interacts with the prenatal vitamin so I have to make sure I take them at separate times throughout the day and I cannot have dairy when taking the antibiotic. It was quite annoying to work around so I am slightly annoyed I have to take it yet again for another 5 days. But that is the least of my worries. I have to make sure now that I apply my estrogen patches on time and don't mess those up! I also have to pray big time that when they do thaw the embryos that some of them survive or all of this will have been for nothing. For some reason, that fear has crept into my mind over the past 24 hours and won't leave. Now on top of my fear of another miscarriage, I am constantly worried about that...there goes the eye twitching again.

My husband and I are a little worried because both of our minds have not been focused or in the game at this point. Hopefully the doctor's appointment today turned things around and we can focus, relax and let these actions work so we NEVER have to speak of such things again. Twins. Twins would be nice. Even one. But we want a baby, a family, and most of all, this struggle to be over. These wants are so strong now, they are needs. Persistent prayer. Funny, no, ironic. That's what I taught my second graders about this week in class. Abraham and his persistent praying and how it finally paid off in the end. Too bad it only took him how many years?? Hopefully for us, our prayers are answered after 3 years. I ask for your prayers that I may not forget any more of my regimen, get rid of some of this anxiety and stress and that my damn eye stops twitching so that when I am on bed rest I can REST! 7th time better be a charm.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Shots, School Bells and Guiliana Rancic

Sorry for the long lapse in between posts, but since I last posted, I landed a teaching job full time. I feel very fortunate and blessed at the moment, but mostly overwhelmed. Partner that with my anxiety level and I have just been down right exhausted. However, I have to maintain focus for the kiddos, myself and my FET regimen which has now begun. We are working towards our first frozen transfer. It seems so surreal to have come up so quickly. It's kind of nice knowing the waiting after our miscarriage will soon be over as well. I guess time flies when you have a job and aren't just sitting around all day focusing on not being pregnant, huh?

Since the shots of Lupron began, I have done quite a number on my belly with the bruising. I guess it's just preparing me for what's to come with the times! Instantly, I'm hot most of the time and gone are the days of a good night's rest with the regular anxiety, school anxiety and FET anxiety all rolled together in a neat little ball for me! Or should I say, GIANT ball of stress? Despite all of that, I think I have been managing quite well thanks to my organizational skills and on-top-of-it-all-ness. For that I look to Guiliana Rancic for strength. She and her husband, Bill, have a reality show about their lives, but a lot of it covers their struggle with infertility. The woman has it all put together on the show. Of course they have oodles of money to throw at the fertility treatments each time, however, you can tell her pain and loss she feels after her miscarriage. But she doesn't let that give her the automatic right to become a negative person or dwell on what she doesn't have. She sticks with her positive attitude 99% of the time. Her sister is  pregnant with baby #4 on the show and that doesn't bother her one bit. Guiliana's niece even came right out and asked her if she was upset by that. Guiliana responded in the way that I want to carry myself from now on...not the least bit bitter, but in fact happy and elated for other people's blessings which in no way affect her blessings and the timing of them. Got all that? Sorry for the rambling...blame the Lupron! But the way she handled the situation and later explained why she felt the way that she did makes perfect sense in my mind. I shouldn't be upset at pregnant women. It's not their fault I'm not pregnant. God just hasn't blessed me with the same fortune, YET. From now on, I vow to be a completely positive thinker. Yes, I have had strong faith throughout this time in my life, but I have been a little upset lately at how irritated I get when I see a pregnant lady. I have to learn that my emotions are separate from my faith as someone kindly pointed out to me last night. It is completely okay to be upset at a situation, but still have faith and trust in God that all things will be handled by him on his time. We just can't let those emotions take over and take control over our faith or else that will suffer.

So with this new revelation, I hope to continue spreading the same message Guiliana does. Yes, you can be upset or sad, but in no way does another pregnant lady affect your getting pregnant or not. You may think this odd that I just am figuring this out now, but years of pent up frustration from infertility can cloud one's judgment of themselves and how they act. Actually, a friend of mine is just recently pregnant and while for a moment I was sad it wasn't me, I have been nothing but excited for her from that one moment on. It is possible to separate your situation from others. It just is very difficult most of the time with all the emotions getting in the way. It's not our fault, we are pumped full of hormones on these treatments, but sometimes taking a step back and a different perspective can help us gain some control again over our thoughts and actions.

So school anxiety taking a precedent right now over every other anxiety, it feels nice to have something else to focus on. I like a routine and a school routine is one I am quite use to, so it adds a sense of comfort and stability that hasn't been there in a while. Fingers crossed all this other anxiety doesn't get in the way of me staying calm on bed rest. I have already planned my lessons out way past when I would be gone for that to try to fend off any unnecessary worrying ahead of time. Let's hope it works and I get to buy all the cute maternity clothes to wear to school...hehe.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Hidden Battle

Anxiety. We've all heard about it. It can be mixed with OCD or depression or I'm sure a slew of other things. Defined in the dictionary as being a.) distress or uneasiness of mind caused by fear of danger or misfortune b.) earnest but tense desire; eagerness or c.) a state of apprehension and psychic tension occurring in some forms of mental disorder. Now I knew I was a little uptight at times, always been a worrier since I can remember, but never really thought much of it. My type A personality is known to anyone who meets me. But the anxiety part goes a little deeper. Thanks to current events like this constant infertility battle for the past 3 years and now the miscarriage, my anxiety has increased ten-fold. I have always thought of anxiety as a disorder that people should be able to control. If they would just calm down or slow down, it would go away. HA! For some, that may be the case, but for others, it's a complete slap in the face. I know that now because I have been experiencing it full blown for about a month. Mostly definition numero uno has caught me by surprise recently. As I have said, always a little uptight, fearful of new or unknown things, but not enough to let it stop me from doing things. Terrified of heights, yet still ride roller coasters kinda thing. Not a fan of crowds, but won't miss a Keith Urban concert when he comes to town. You get the picture.  However, my inability to control my anxiety is making it worse. I like to be in control, but the loss of it drives me even more crazy. Not sure if this affects most women suffering from infertility, but I'm willing to bet it does. Not being able to control the one thing in your life you want to is upsetting to say the least.

This past weekend my husband and I wanted to get a way for a bit. Enjoy a weekend in Pittsburgh to celebrate our 5 years of marriage and to get some furniture at IKEA for our guest room we are redoing to pass the time. Supposed to be fun, maybe a little relaxing and some adventure mixed in. All fine and dandy until my anxiety sneaks up on me and starts swirling thoughts in my head. We both wanted to ride the incline (fun in my mind until I'm on the stupid thing). So we get on to go down first and I'm terrified to move from my seat to see the beautiful view of the three rivers coming together. Whatever, I survived. Did I mention, I had to ride it again to back up to the top where our car was parked? Then I started to sweat. The people in the car with us were very nice and trying to get me to relax by making me laugh. But they were really making fun of me for being scared. In my defense, those things were built in like 1870...that's pretty old to still be operating without any problems or not crashing down to the bottom of the hill even once?! Yes, I survived to do this post and it was nice to say that I've been on it, but terrifying to go through at the time. Your mind starts racing, sweat starts rolling and adrenaline kicks in to overdrive. For me, it causes a feeling of shear panic. I can't tell you what I'm afraid of when it's happening, you just see terror on my face! Of course my husband wants to do the lookout at the top. I couldn't even bring myself to walk to the edge of the platform as I would have done in the past. Not this time. He took the pictures. That wasn't even the worst part as far as my anxiety is concerned. Navigating around downtown Pittsburgh is hard enough, but again, I found myself not in control and it was driving me nuts. I have a good sense of direction, I can get places fairly easily, but for some reason, this time, it really made me nervous. Again, we survived, found our hotel and even had some time to relax before dinner. The cab ride to dinner...nervous. The walk back to the hotel after dinner...nervous. The escalator to get into the Pittsburgh Zoo...REALLY nervous. If you have ever been there, you know what I'm talking about. Yes, it's just like the escalators at the mall, but, HELLO, it's 10x taller and feels a heck of a lot steeper when you're on it!

The incident that broke me was shopping at IKEA. Shopping...I love shopping. I love it so much, I love going out the day after Thanksgiving, even with the crowds. Well, probably not this year. This year I will be in my safe little home. IKEA was a complete madhouse with people. We made the mistake of going on a Saturday afternoon, when everyone in the tri-state area goes. We had never been so we had no idea what to expect. At least we did look online first to see what style of bed we wanted. That helped a lot. It just so happened it was at the top of the escalator too! First display, boom, there it was. Easy. Done. Right? Wrong! We decided that since we drove that far, it would be a good idea to look around to make sure that's exactly what we want. Well, remember how I hate crowds? Much worse crowds of families and screaming children just to remind us we don't have any. AWESOME.  So we fight our way through the crowds, following the arrows and the path set out before us through the showrooms. Just to realize that's the set we wanted all along. We fight our way back to the same display and I break down in tears. I can't catch my breath. I feel like I'm treading water, but sinking slowly and can just barely keep my head above the surface. That's what anxiety does to me. That's what it does to me every time I feel a loss of control now. That's what this miscarriage and infertility struggle has done to me. I have lost control of having a baby, my weight (thanks to the hormones), how my body reacts to the drugs, how the procedure turns out, if the embryos survive the thawing, how many are transferred, how my body will react to the embryos, if the baby will survive....the list goes on. All of those add up to anxiety now spilling over into other aspects of my life. Wherever I feel like I'm not in control and by control I mean I have a good sense of what's going to happen or I have a plan (Type A personality)...wherever that goes wrong or different from what I envisioned, anxiety sets in.

Now, medication to me is not the answer. First, I can't medicate when I'm about to do an FET. So that's out. And for me, I want to control it. I want to get it under control like it was before the miscarriage. Why it's heightened now, we can all see, but I want it to go back to me just being a little anxious and not a lot of people being able to tell/notice/see. I pray every day for a sense of calm that I did have during the process in June. I pray every day for this downward spiral to stop. Again, I've said, I will not be beaten. But this hidden battle that I have been fighting for a month is starting to get the best of me and I wanted to share this because I know I'm not the only one out there. One, I'm not the only person suffering from anxiety and two, I'm not the only infertile woman suffering from anxiety. When you see me, I won't be talking gibberish to myself, rocking myself in the corner. That's not what this is. This is an inside battle over fear. Fear of failing to become a mother again. Fear of not being successful in life the way I wanted to be. Fear of not making enough money to try again or to adopt. Fear of letting myself and my husband down. Fear of gaining too much weight from infertility treatments (which leads to more weight gain from the worry alone). Fear of being useless in life without a child to take care of.  Fear of never having my dreams come true. Fear of having too much anxiety. Fear of what people will think. All of those fears compound in my mind and weigh heavy on my chest and heart. I have days where I barely notice them. Then I have days (usually combined with outside stress) where I can't tread the water anymore and I start to sink below the surface. I pray for better days ahead, that's for sure. Getting this off my chest, will surely help. Starting the process for the FET and feeling like I have control over that will help as well. As long as I feel that I am working toward the end goal, I am okay. It's when I feel like I'm floundering out there without a paddle to go in any direction that I start to lose it. So if you see me and I seem flustered, I'm okay. I really am. Just fighting the inner demons of anxiety one day at a time, the best way I know how, with God, my husband and my friends and family.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Prayer and Poem I Hope to be Saying Very Soon

We are so close baby, please don’t give up on me now.
We have already beaten so many odds and sometimes I wonder how?
Doctors told me long ago that I might never be a Mom,
I need you to hold one and grow with me, we have to prove them wrong.

I can imagine you in a few months, kicking and moving around inside.
A reward for all the years we struggled, for all the tears I have cried.
I can imagine already your sweet sweet face, you’ll have your Daddy’s smile.
He’s been so strong wanting you so long and believed in you all the while.

We make this promise to you sweet baby and trust my every word,
We will love you and protect you always and your needs will never be unheard
Make just one promise to mama sweet child, that’s all I’ll ever need.
Please don’t leave me now sweet baby. Grow with me. Be my seed.

Monday, July 25, 2011


Frozen Embryo Transfer, you await us in the near future.  You cost another $3,000...that's a whopping $25,000 we have sunk into fertility treatments in the last few years. That's not including the co-pays, blood tests, MRI scans, laparoscopy and unpaid time off work. When you look at it that way, I almost would rather save up for adoption instead of spending another $3,000. However, we REALLY want our own child right now and we want to use our embryos we have frozen. It only makes sense. Now that they have found I do have a blood clotting disorder, it makes sense to try again because there is something they are changing/fixing in the way we will do things this time.  And by blood clotting disorder, I mean I have 4 genes that have mutations on them that can account for blood clots in my normal everyday life (yikes, something else to worry about for the rest of my life!), but especially during the implantation process. I have had two positive readings from my IVF attempts, only for them to turn negative or me to miscarry a short while later. That, to my doctors, implied that something was going wrong at or around implantation. Leave it to my blood to do things wrong. Not only are my brain and ovaries not functioning probably in my body, now it's my blood too! AWESOME! One more thing stacked against us for conceiving. Just another challenge to overcome, I suppose.

So our FET will be soon, not saying exactly when. My husband and I have decided to be the bearers of only good news from now on. Not a lot of you will understand because I have been so open this far. But last time really took a toll on both of us. We were there, our dreams almost coming true, only to be stripped away from us so soon. So, this time, I plan to blog, but I will watch the specifics until we know for sure one way or the other. We want to tell people "we're pregnant" or "we're adopting". Not "we're miscarrying again". Make sense?

For this frozen transfer, our doctor plans to thaw 6-8 (we asked for 8) embryos to be thawed...hoping we have at least 4 to work with. 50% of the time, the embryos don't survive the thawing process. With those 4, we hope for excellent quality embryos to grow for a 5 or 6 day transfer again. However, depending on the quality, they could transfer anywhere from 2-4 embryos. I definitely gave the okay for 4. Let's not hold back, please! I am ready for whatever blessings are out there for us.

Drugs involved are about the same. They have added a blood thinner for me, Lovenox, to battle the unruly blood I have in my body! That means 2 shots of that a day, plus the Progesterone the entire first trimester. Then 2 shots of the Lovenox a day for the entire rest of the pregnancy...I BETTER GET A BABY OUT OF THIS. I still start with the Lupron to keep my ovaries and eggs out of this round. This round is focused solely on the uterus. Estrogen patches and suppositories...oh joy! So with the Lupron, estrogen, and progesterone, plus stress = crazy me while trying to conceal the time frame...hmmmm. The good thing is less blood draws, less doctor visits, but still the same 3 day (now strict) bed rest. I will tell you we have planned for a weekend where my husband is off this time and not at work!

With all of this and the possibility of it not working, I have decided to sell Silpada jewelry to supplement our income. All of the money made selling the jewelry will go toward this FET, the next FET (to use the last 8 frozen embryos) and adoption. I have attached a link to my page if any of you wish to look at the jewelry! Seriously, no pressure...but if you were going to buy jewelry anyways, why not support a fellow infertile sister, right?

My box of fun (drugs) does arrive soon and it looks to be just as big as the last one! Luckily, none of it needs to be refrigerated and I don't have to worry about it expiring anytime soon:) Because of the miscarriage, it is advised (to all women) to wait at least 2 cycles before trying again. So we plan on at least that before we attempt an FET. Plus, we have to save up the money first! In the meantime, I have been busy cleaning the house and organizing like a mad woman. In all honesty, for a social worker. In case of adoption, they come to the house and all that jazz. So in my OCD mind, I must clean! I must organize closets, remove all of our items, to make room for potential babies. We are finishing a guest room in our house this weekend as well so our house looks more complete to outsiders...haha. Just things we can control in our lives right now since the one thing we want the most, we can't.  It's nice to have a project to work on together too, since we envisioned ourselves working on the nursery together this fall.

Fingers crossed my blood cooperates and the blood thinner works. There is a chance that it will just prolong a miscarriage my doctor said, but we aren't going to think about that! 80% of the time, this blood thinner creates success...that's what we will think about:)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Speed Bumps and Road Blocks

All of life can basically be compared in driving and road sign analogies. Each little hiccup in someone's life can be compared to a speed bump that makes you slow down, look around and be careful about the direction you are going. Some speed bumps can turn into road blocks if you're not careful or don't slow down enough while driving over them.  A change in career, having a baby, buying a house, getting a divorce, losing someone you love. All of these major life changes or difficulties can affect our lives in good ways and in bad. Today, let's look at the good.

A miscarriage to some may not be just a speed bump, but a road block or even a fork in the road. For us, it's both. We have a road block because we are now stuck until we save up enough money to try again with a frozen transfer or save up for adoption. It is also a fork in the road because which way do we go? Do we do the FET or adoption? I thought my previous 5 fertility treatments were just speed bumps slowing us down until we could get to the other side and have a baby. Now, I'm convinced I'm right. They made us slow down to realize that it is a family we truly want and we will do anything to get there. During those speed bumps we held hands to get through the roughest parts and stayed together to someday make it to other side still in tact. We prayed to God for strength and even cursed at times when we didn't think we would make it. It reminds me greatly of the time on our honeymoon in Hawaii when we were on the road to Hana. It's a treacherous road that's mostly on the side of a mountain and one lane the majority of the way. I was scared to death, but I knew, eventually we would make it to the other side. We had scary moments of falling rock or looking straight down over the side of the cliff and seeing nothing but water. We felt isolated and alone, away from everything we knew and loved. We felt a rush of adrenaline and a sense of adventure. But mostly we felt alive and strengthened by each other. That is exactly how I would explain our infertility journey. We are still alive and we are still together. You can't be more blessed when you think about it that way. To some it is the end of the world not to conceive your own child. But as I have said before, I will not be beaten and my path keeps looking brighter. I may or may not have a blood clotting disorder they can fix. I have just started a new job/career that will help us to save up the money we need to do whichever path opens up...FET or adoption. We just celebrated 5 years of marriage and 11 years of being together. We have survived some of the worst speed bumps a marriage can go through and are coming up on some of the last ones in our infertility journey. There is an end in sight...THANK GOD. How this will all end I'm not entirely sure. Our car will not come out unscathed (the car being my body!). It has endured many pokes and bruises along the way, but what's life without a little adventure, right?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Identity Crisis

This has been bothering me for as long as I can remember. I believe that being a mother is a role that is meant for me, one way or another. However, not being able to achieve it at this point in time is a little disconcerting.  It leaves me lost a lot of the time. Don't get me wrong, I know who I am, but I'm not the WHOLE me YET. Make sense?  I know I am somebody's daughter, wife, friend, etc. but I am not yet somebody's mother and that bothers me. That is the one piece of my identity I want to have and without it I am not whole.

Especially right now, not knowing what sort of job I should or shouldn't do leaves me feeling as though I am floating out at sea without a raft. I have nothing else to focus on or to take my attention away from not being a mother.  Our anniversary is coming up quickly and I love the fact that I am a wife to my amazing husband, but with all the fertility treatments, we have nothing left to spend on each other. That is the one identity I relate most with right now and we can't celebrate it in a big way which leaves me a little sad. I know in my heart I wouldn't be able to watch other people's children again because I wouldn't be fully committed and that's not fair to the children or the parents. When the time comes to try again or go through the adoption process, my mind would be consumed and I would have to take time off again. Not fair for anyone. So that's not an option. I have applied in mass quantities to jobs I have found online, but nothing seems to be jumping out at me. That part of my identity needs the most attention because it is when I find myself with nothing to do that I feel the most lost and useless. Once I have a purpose, something to work toward, something to help us save up the money for a baby again, I will feel stronger, useful and more myself.

I have found that I have struggled with this crisis for most of my adult life. I have known forever that I wanted to and was going to be a mom. That is the only thing I have known for sure in my life besides the fact that I was going to marry my husband. I have gone between jobs and careers several times already (with much criticism from others), some my fault, some not. But it's because I can't fulfill that part of me that needs filled by being a mother. I try to find things/jobs to fill the void, but nothing will satisfy it until I have the ultimate dream job in my mind. Now that I am so close, I am floundering and flailing around wishing yet again, I didn't have to fill the void with something else until it was my turn to be a mother. It's not because I'm lazy and don't want to work (which is what some people think). Those people don't get it. Only if you have been in my shoes, do you get it. So please, don't judge. I am fully committed to finding a job, one that suits me perfectly for this point in time. Something that makes me happy, that is exciting to me and that can work around our trying to conceive or adoption. Something that works toward helping us achieve our goal of becoming parents. I will work so hard at this job knowing that it is helping our dreams come true. In the back of my mind, I think I have found this job as I have said before. I am still deciding and praying over the issue to make sure I don't make a wrong decision. However, I am feeling strongly about this choice and believe it to be the best one for me right now. With the routine, something else to focus on and income coming in to help us, I will have another piece of my identity in place until my time comes.

Please don't take this post the wrong way, I am still positive, hopeful, full of faith and upbeat for our next attempt, however and whenever that may be. This is simply sharing how I have felt throughout my quest to one day become a mother. I am sharing one of the deepest and darkest sides to my journey so that others going through this very same struggle can know they are not alone. This may not be every woman's struggle as she's going through infertility, but it is certainly one of mine.

Another piece to the puzzle, we finally get to meet with our doctor again next week to discuss the thrombophilia test results. Prayers for some issue that can be easily fixed so our journey can continue shortly! I will let you all know as soon as I do!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

I Will Not Be Beaten

This failure will not beat me, I've decided. I haven't cried in 3 days (that's not to say I still won't from time to time), but I think I've turned a corner. I have hope again. My faith got me through. My husband got me through. I got myself through. The fact that I can actually exercise again finally without any pain from the progesterone shots is a huge step in the right direction for me. I can feel myself regaining control over my body in the ways I know how. I have gone back to focusing on my eating habits, exercising, drinking much needed caffeine and just being the me I was before we always get so caught up in IVF land. It's silly, but it won't be until I lose the stupid 8lbs I gained through this process that I will feel completely me again. But I hate that reminder, and it's a significant one when my clothes don't fit right all around my belly. Ugh. I always hate that part. If I find a job, with a routine, that will also help tremendously. I will have something to work towards another try, another shot at our dream, and possibly adoption. Whatever money I make will be termed "the adoption fund" because that is exactly what it will be. I am leaning toward a job that I can do on my own time and still go to the many doctor's visits or classes for adoption that will be in our future. A job that I can have fun doing and is low stress. I am praying over the decision and covering all my bases before I dive right into it. This ability to move on with my life, our lives together, lets us know we are not beaten. We will not be. It can be done. I know, women have moved on and gained success in pregnancy after miscarriages, but for a short week, I didn't think it would be me. I didn't think I would be able to go a day without breaking down into tears at the thought of what I just endured or the sight of a pregnant lady that's not me. But I am living proof of that now.

We are still waiting for the test results on the thrombophilia panel to see if I have a blood clotting disorder. Again, for some strange reason, I am hoping to have one. Easy fix and higher hopes of pregnancy. We have 16 embryos that need to see if they have a fighting chance and we can't let them go until we try. As soon as the job situation is figured out and I believe we have to wait a month or two to let my body reset, we can try again. Frozen embryo transfers aren't as involved, thankfully. A couple days of shots beforehand and of course after, the transfer and the bed rest. Your blood test is closer to the time of transfer as well since you wouldn't have to wait for the HCG shot to vacate your system. Not as much waiting involved. But hey, I should be pretty darn good at that by now, right?

One of the biggest questions I have for my doctor is how else can I get the progesterone into my system and is it just as effective as the shots? Because the aftermath I have each time from those shots is absolutely ridiculous. Not being able to run from so much pain for weeks afterward just doesn't seem right to me. Maybe my body doesn't absorb it correctly from the shots at all.  Maybe that has something to do with the failures as well. It's definitely worth looking into if we're going to continue to throw every penny we earn at them! Hopefully we will find out at the beginning of the week and not the end!

For everyone out there that supported me and my husband throughout this entire process, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Thank you for following and listening to my story. This ability to share it all has helped me a lot and in ways I never imagined. I always said I wanted to share my story to get the word out and to possibly help others if I could and I am so happy to say that I have achieved those goals. I hope to continue to do so throughout the rest of my struggle and plight with infertility. A lot of you were scared that I shared too much and too early. What if I miscarried? Well, there you have it...I did. That's just one part of my whole story and that's okay. I get that most people don't share until they are past their first trimester, but you know what? People still miscarry into their second trimester as well. It shouldn't be looked down upon for sharing so early. I understand that it is so touch and go early on, but that's part of every woman's journey. And for IVF women...we can't help but know that early. So if we share with you as soon as we find out, just be excited with us up until the point (which hopefully won't ever happen) we miscarry. Don't say to us that most women don't tell right away...we aren't most women. I am okay with sharing my story and all of it. It is one that doesn't end for me even when I can eventually hold a baby in my arms. I would have to do IVF or adoption each time we would want another child. This blog could be running for years to come, but I'm so glad to be able to share it because I am not alone.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Kinda Pregnant, Maybe Not, Yes Definitely, Not Anymore.

Those words describe the ups and downs of my last two and a half weeks. The only one that remains is NOT ANYMORE. I was so close. I was pregnant. Now I am not. That fact kills me every night before I go to bed and every morning when I wake up. At first, I was okay with it. Whether it was because I half expected it from all the spotting or I had turned my sights to adoption. Now, I'm not okay with it. I want answers. After my scare of spotting on Thursday, June 23rd, I went in for a blood test just to make sure everything was okay. The nurse called and said my numbers looked great! They went all the way up to a 321 from a 53 so she said everything was fine. Well as the weekend progressed, the bleeding continued and with that so did the worry and the anxiety. Monday morning came and I had to call. The receptionist that answered wasn't exactly the most empathetic person to me that day. Her exact words to me were "well my mother bled the whole 9 months with me so I don't know what you're worried about." Thanks lady, but I'm not a bleeder. In fact I don't bleed AT ALL, that's why I'm your patient! So if you could just kindly connect me to my nurse, that would be great. Well the next lady wasn't much better. "You can come in if you want just for your own peace of mind." OK. I think I will since no one else is worried and it's my body. I think I know it better than you two nitwits. So of course I go in and have to wait HOURS for their phone call back. I waited all the way until 5 o'clock. OK, the office is closed now. Was anyone going to call me back? I took the initiative and called them. That receptionist wasn't kind either, she just sent me straight to someone's voicemail to be left there until the next day. So I called back and asked for the IVF nurse...the only lady they are supposed to connect me with in the first place. Of course I had to leave her a voicemail. But what do you know? She called me back in 10 minutes. WTH?  Anyways, she of course informed me that "it wasn't good news" My numbers had dropped back down to a 71. I would need to come back in later that week to make sure they keep dropping and I can stop all of my protocol of meds and shots.  Well that's just wonderful. Thanks for the $6000 failure...AGAIN. Now was it because of the Progesterone mix-up? I will have to wait for answers until I can finally sit down with my doctor hopefully sometime next week. Until then they are conducting a Thrombophilia (sp?) panel to check for any blood clotting disorders that could be to blame here. Let's hope there's something there that is an easy fix for the next round.  I have 16 frozen embies that I would like to do something with SUCCESSFULLY if at all possible. The test results won't be back until next week sometime and I will meet with my doctor when that happens. Until then, I am in a constant state of limbo.  Between job or no job, baby or no baby, FET or adoption, sadness or anger, happiness or devastation, tears or no tears. My husband of course probably thinks I am about to go off the deep end because I am so touchy/angry/snippy/pissy/tearful/whiny and just plain upset I would guess a good 90% of the time! But I mean...can you really blame me? Look at what I've been through in the last 2 months or even the last 2 years of infertility. Miscarriage tops it all. That was my ultimate fear that I just faced and stared down every moment of the past week.

Now, anger aside, I will tell you, my faith remains unshaken. Yes, I am upset, but I have not lost faith. I am not upset at God. I am a planner and without a plan I feel lost, angry, name it. My plan has to somehow get to completely relying on God's plan without knowing what it is. Right now that's a little more difficult, but I will work every day to get there.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Slow Torture

That's what the nurse who takes my blood calls this process. This process of waiting to see if the numbers respond and rise as they should. Yep. I totally agree. Going from a 16 to a 22 to a 53...not bad! Still not where they are supposed to be, but not horrible. So...almost yay?! Until today, when I woke up to spotting/bleeding...not sure on where to draw that line. Can we say freak out? I about lost it. I was so scared about the implications of that blood, I didn't want to call the office to tell them. I didn't want it to be real. I wanted to hold on to that little embryo as long as I could, praying that it would magically hold on to me! Well, I broke down and called the nurse. She asked me to come in a day early to test my levels. I originally wasn't supposed to go back until tomorrow. So I went in around 10 for the blood draw and had to wait until 4 o'clock for the results! From a 53 to a! That more than doubled. Okay, but why am I spotting? I guess it's normal. I've heard from several previously pregnant ladies. I will trust them, but I still don't like the blood! Please stop now! And don't come back for another 36 weeks!

So the 6 hour wait in between the blood draw and the phone call was the worst and most agonizing 6 hours of our lives! Thank God my husband was here for most of it. We just don't know when the sigh of relief comes and we can relax. My guess is never. Not until the baby comes out and maybe not even then. We, of course, have yet another blood test scheduled for next Thursday and will pray the numbers continue to rise as they have been. Not ready to celebrate just yet and if you are friends with me on Facebook, please don't say anything!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Enough Is Enough

So I'm still wavering in limbo being "kinda" pregnant. Today my numbers rose, but only slightly to 22. The nurse's words were, "it's not a good prognosis, but still come back Monday for another test." REALLY? I understand it's not a no, but at this point, I JUST WANT AN ANSWER. I also understand that at this point I am pregnant until my numbers stop rising, but they should be doubling, not going up by only 6 points. Very frustrating to say the least. At times throughout the day I just want to cry and give up and others I can't possibly see myself relinquishing hope. How could I? I am actually pregnant at this point. But I can't celebrate it. It's not how I pictured it to be, not one bit. I can't smile obnoxiously with a glow and just stare at my belly all day and it really annoys the heck out of me right now! At this point my husband and I just pray that the numbers somehow miraculously skyrocket by Monday. Not sure which bruised arm they want blood out of that day, but they can definitely take their pick!

To be completely honest, I'm not sure at this point if I can go through this again. These past two days have just taken their toll on me and my husband. And the fact that they kept 11 out and only 2 survived for transfer, leads us to believe that the 16 frozen ones don't hold out much hope for us. Some of them won't even survive the thawing process and who knows if they will make it long enough to do a day 5 or 6 transfer again. I know for a fact, I don't see myself going through an egg retrieval any time soon again, if ever. If it were up to me and we had endless amounts of money, I would be signing us up for adoption right now and completing the paperwork, coursework and throwing whatever money they wanted at them for a chance at the family we so desperately want. The thought that kills me right now is I know that in a few days I could possibly be having a period to pass the closest chance we had to a baby. I wanted pregnancy. My husband wanted a belly on me. We wanted the silly classes, labor aches and pains, nausea, uncomfortableness, maternity clothes, ultrasound pics and the opportunity to say "we're pregnant" to our friends and family. That dream is quickly vanishing before our eyes and it seems almost too difficult to handle at this moment. But, again, I must be patient and it is certainly not one of my finest qualities. Only time and prayer will tell which path we are to follow. Thank God I have my husband.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

"Kinda" Pregnant

Well, the waiting this morning wasn't as bad as I had remembered, but now the waiting is worse. I got the call a little before 12:30 and the nurse states that I got a positive test. I asked incredulously, "Really? Are you sure?". She replies, "Well you got a 16. That's not as high as we hoped, but you're in the ballpark. As long as the number goes up on Saturday, we're okay."  Oh, okay. My head is reeling with this information. I was expected a "yes" or "no" answer today. Not another "maybe". That is the hardest.  Yes, a no would totally devastate us, but now to wait another two days is almost unbearable. That alone was enough to send my calm and positive energy quickly spiralling downward. After I got off the phone with her, I simply turned off the TV and went straight upstairs to lay down. I cried, "hold on little one, hold on!" All we want is you. Look how hard we have worked to get you and now it's your turn to work hard for us. It's all out of our hands now. We have no say, but to rely on faith and pray that this science and technology works this time. I'm telling you people, not sure if I can handle this again. This maybe crap is for the birds.  I will let you know as soon as I do on Saturday.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Little Anger to Pass the Time

Less than 48 hours to go and the time seems to be slowing down. I have planned several lunch dates, watched more movies, read more of my books and darkened my tan to pass the time! Trying to be as calm as possible is a little bit harder than I remembered!  Although, receiving three alarming statements from your doctor's office in one day doesn't help!

1.  I called my doctor's office first thing in the morning yesterday because I noticed I was starting to not absorb the Progesterone and was getting welts on my backside. This happened last year and I did not want it to happen again and affect the outcome! The nurse said to come in and they would re-draw where my circles were and change the sites slightly. When I got there, she asked me which pharmacy I received the meds from and mentioned that they had called the office recently stating they were discontinuing sales due to patient complaints of reactions and when they looked closer, they realized something wasn't right with how they compounded it. WHAT?! Why didn't anyone call and tell this to the patients on this specific type of Progesterone? That would have been nice.  Now I'm thinking if I'm not pregnant, it could be the damn manufacturer's fault for not doing their job and then their due diligence with following up since they caught their mistake. Why didn't my office call their patients that they knew were on this type? UGH. Frustrating! So thankfully they switched my meds and gave me the new ones for free. Thanks a lot...hope I'm still pregnant in two days!

2. I also called to see how many of the other blastocysts left over were frozen on day 6. None.  They didn't survive. The embryologist said in fact, they got worse. Okay, great. But don't worry, he says, that doesn't mean the two we transferred would have. Those were the strongest and the best two. Okay, but that doesn't stop my mind from going there! Saying more prayers!

3. Still a little shaken from my morning enlightenment, I receive a phone call from the financial lady of our doctor's office yesterday afternoon. It went a little something like this:
Lady:  We haven't spoken recently, have we?
Me: No, why? I didn't think anything had changed from last year.
Lady: Well, our office likes to contact all patients ahead of time, so there are no surprises and they know what they are paying up front. You remember, you pay and then are reimbursed by your insurance. I apologize, I've been on vacation and your charges just landed on my desk. You were probably wondering why no one told you what to pay or asked for your money, weren't you??
Me:   Yes, I was wondering, but we were going to pay when I came in Thursday for my blood test. Yes, I remember. We are paying the same way we paid last time.
Lady:  And how is that? Have you reached your lifetime max on your insurance? Your charges come to $6175.00.
Me:  No, I'm pretty sure we haven't and I'm paying with the Healthone card. (Gulp in my head at the amount!)
Lady:  Healthone card, what is that?
Me: You know, the Care Credit card we got through your office last year for medical expenses.
Lady: Ooooh, we haven't been affiliated with them in a while. Not enough patients utilized their services so we stopped that.
Me: (Well, no one told us that. ) in my head, which should have been out loud! Okay, well we will pay Thursday when we come in. We weren't aware of the changes.
Lady:  Okay, great. Thanks and good luck!
Me: Thanks...bye. I was hoping my hormones would have taken over during that phone conversation and put that lady in her place. Like, why the hell didn't anyone call us ahead of time? That office knew we were planning IVF for this exact time for 8 months. What the heck? You couldn't have been on vacation for 8 months, surely. Somebody should have informed all the patients that used that card of the changes in the office's acceptable forms of payment. All they had to do was look in my file! A little warning would have been nice, is all I'm saying. My hormones came out only after I got off the phone, but apparently it isn't that big of deal fortunately. Not so fortunate for other patients caught in this dilemma, I'm sure! If this would have been our next attempt...there would be no way we could pay them in two days. Oh it's going on plastic, but we will pay it. What would they have done if we said "oops, we can't afford that! No one made us aware of the charges ahead of time. Sorry." Would we be washing their dishes, valeting their cars for them? Honestly. They would have had to figure something out because THEY dropped the ball. I fully plan to mention something to the office manager when I'm in there Thursday. Or maybe I'll wait to see my results first.

Those predicaments helped me pass the time a little, now it's the last stretch of the waiting game and the longest! Don't be surprised if I take some time to post the results. Family members will have to be notified and my husband and I will surely need alone time either way! If the results are positive, just pray for strong embryos and the "stickiness" factor...that they stay in there! Hopefully with my new and correctly working Progesterone that will be the case!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Helpful Quotes I've Found/Heard

"The English language lacks the words 'to mourn an absence.' For the loss of a parent, grandparent, spouse, child or friend we have all manner of words and phrases, some helpful, some not. Still, we are conditioned to say something, even if is only 'I am sorry for your loss.' But for an absence, for someone who was never there at all, we are wordless to capture that particular emptiness. For those who deeply want children and are denied them, those missing babies hover like silent, ephemeral shadows over their lives. Who can describe the feel of a tiny hand that is never held?"  ~Laura Bush

Remember, life may lead you where you least expect, but have faith that you are exactly where you are meant to be.

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all."
-- Dale Carnegie

Dear Father in Heaven,

I pray to you today to protect and guide all of Your children who are plagued with the devastation and frustration that fertility issues cause them.

For all of the women who are going through egg retrievals today, give them peace and calmness to alleviate their fears and phobias and physical pain. Bless them with an abundance of viable eggs and healthy fertilization. Watch over the development of the babies and keep them warm and safe.
For all of the women who are going through embryo transfers today, give them patience and hope for all of the blessings that You may endow on them. Give them healthy and strong babies to survive the difficult yet joyful journey that they have ahead.

For all of the women who are going through the two-week-wait today, give them courage and strength to wait for the joyous news. Allow them to focus on the positive outcomes and to pamper and treat their bodies as the shrines they are.

For all of the women who have faced a cycle that was unable to fulfill their dreams and have made the decision to try again, bless them, Father, for they carry on in spite of pain and disappointment. Strengthen their resolve and show them the joy of their commitment by blessing their homes with a new life in the cycle to come.

For all of the women who have journeyed through the deserts and have found no more strength to carry on in the face pain of such bitter disappointment and frustration, shower them with Your Love. Give them peace and remove any grief and anger that they rightfully feel. Open their hearts and their souls to Your Word and to Your Will. Show them paths and choices that might lead them to the desired end.

For those who have received the blessings of a child, protect their family with Your Strength, guide them to Your Way, show them Your Love and leave Your Imprint in their hearts to have them be beacons of light for the rest of the world.

In Your Blessed Name, we pray. Amen

“Impossible situations can become possible miracles.”

Never let go of hope. Someday you will see that it all has finally come together. What you have always wished for has finally come to be. You will look back and laugh at what has passed and you will ask yourself…How did I get through all of that?

"I've seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn't ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I've seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
...Broken hearts become brand new
That's what faith can do" --Kutless

"Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today."

Don't be afraid to take a chance, it just might be the chance that changes your life

I have decided to be happy, because it's good for my health. - Voltaire

"When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us." Helen Keller

Thank you lord for all the blessings in my life
help me to remember them as I face the challenges of infertility
I pray I can surrender myself into your hands
let me accept the reality of this situation
and have the wisdom and courage to take action where I can
strengthen my body, mind and spirit to endure
the trials of infertility. Keep me ever mindful of the needs of
others and grant us your peace.


"The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering.”

"to get through the hardest journey we need take only one step at a time, but we must keep stepping"

“Life is a series of experiences, each of which makes us bigger, even though it is hard to realize this. For the world was built to develop character, and we must learn that the setbacks and grieves which we endure help us in our marching onward.”

Friday, June 10, 2011

Rough Day

It's almost over. I can make it...right? It's getting harder as the hours pass on. It's lonely with my husband at work and even though friends and family have been stopping by to visit. I love having them here but I don't want them to feel like they have to be here. At times I want them to stay and then others I just want to be alone with my thoughts. All the ups and downs thanks to hormones no doubt. The past two days I have been nothing be cautiously optimistic, hopeful and full of faith. Today, not so much. I try. I pray. I read scriptures to uplift me. It's getting harder, but this is ultimately a test of faith that I must pass. In my reading I came across a passage in Matthew telling us not to ask God for signs for that is not faith. I must stop asking for signs of pregnancy but rely solely on my faith that God does hear my prayers and will answer them in his own way. Hard.To.Do. But I must. As I stare out the window, longing just to smell the air and feel the breeze, I must remind myself this is all for a good reason and my faith will get me through. The tears may come and fall, but that doesn't mean my faith must waiver. It is strong. I am confident in our odds and God's miracles. But there is always that little doubt in the back of your mind that won't go away and sometimes pushes to the forefront like today. It tries so hard to get you down and make you not believe. A fight that goes back and forth in my head each hour of this day.

I have started and stopped 3 movies today, watched about 10 mindless shows on TLC and read quite a few pages finally in one of my books. However, I made the mistake of watching The Baby Story. I should have known from my temperament this morning that this would not be a good choice for me today. Yet, I still turned the channel and couldn't take my eyes off the screen. In this particular episode, the couple already had a child and was adopting another one from Korea. I was doing fine watching it and was actually interested because I was proud of TLC for finally taking another approach on the show. Not every woman has a baby on her own or naturally. As I continued to watch, the husband and soon to be big brother stayed behind while the mom went overseas to bring the baby home. Still doing well at this point. It wasn't until the mom emerged from the airport with her whole family crying and screaming in excitement and happiness that I, too, started to cry. The expression of the mom's face said it all to me. How I would feel when I could finally bring home a child that would be ours. I lost it. Crying uncontrollably for a good 10 minutes. My poor husband comes upstairs unaware and instantly tries to calm me down so I don't upset anything that may be happening in my uterus. Finally, I was okay, but then the Pampers commercial came on and talked about how no matter how the baby comes into the world (showing IVF, surrogate, adoption, etc.)  they are always...something...can't even remember because I began crying again at this point. Just an emotional day I guess. The bed rest getting the best of  me or the anxiety of wanting to know starting to rear its ugly head.

This too, shall pass. Tomorrow will be a new day, one full of hope and positivity that I had just yesterday and still sometimes today.  Hoping for a better day since I will have a change of scenery tomorrow...the couch! Woo hoo! I get to move downstairs and just take it easy down there. That will surely lift my spirits. I will keep relying on verses to get me through such as this: Psalm 62:5 Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in Him.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Transfer Day!

These are our little embryos that they transferred this morning! All went well and there were several that looked good, but these two were the best and the most ready. The bottom one is even beginning to hatch from its shell and that's what it does right before it attaches...crazy! I love science! I am currently on day one of bed rest with at least two more to follow. I will probably hang low through the weekend just to make sure! The first 48-72 hours after transfer are when they implant themselves and the most crucial for laying around. Pretty nifty! So the darker masses you see in the embryos would potentially become the fetuses and the lighter masses around them would become the placentas. Our embryologist was much happier with this cycle, especially since we were able to do a day 6 transfer. Last time with our day 3 transfer, the embryos were only 5, 6, and 7 cells. This time they are between 60 and 80 cells! So our outlook is good with a 50-60% chance of success this time:) Don't stop the prayers! They have lifted us up this far and I hope it only continues from here:) Thank you all for all your thoughts, kind words, food and prayers!
This time is a much happier, calmer and somewhat easier cycle and I can only hope it continues with good fortune next week with my Beta test (blood test to see if it worked and I'm pregnant!).

Already, I am finding myself uncomfortable laying around. Switching sides only does so much for comfort, view and change of location! The progesterone shots in my backside make laying here quite painful, not to mention my ovaries still being enlarged from the egg retrieval. Tylenol it is for me and I still continue with the Gatorade to ward off any symptoms or potential Hyperstimulation. I just keep looking at the pics of our embryos and know that it's all worth it. I felt extremely calm and happy this morning (could be due to the Valium they have you take), but also because I felt God again with us. I was able to go through the entire cycle seeing my doctor at each visit, including today, which greatly helped reduce any anxiety and fears I might have mustered up in nightmares. So I feel completely confident and hopeful:) All I have to do is lay here and hope that God's will is for us to have children this time around. I will read my numerous books, watch so much TV and movies it will be ridiculous and bother you all with multiple blog posts I'm sure! Oh and did I mention, eat? That has been a hobby of mine today that hopefully won't continue at the same intensity for the next few days! I've managed to fend off any additional weight gain. However, I see that possibly changing over the next 72 hours! Oh well...all worth it! I have to give those embryos nutrients to grow, attach and burrow like crazy! My husband was so cute today bringing me all the veggies, fruit and protein he could find in our fridge. Tomorrow and Friday with him being at work, he will stock a cooler next to the bed for me to eat out of all day! A girl's gotta eat, right?

Now it's just a 7 day wait until we see if it worked.  Here's to bed rest!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Holy Eggs, Batman!

My egg retrieval was Thursday morning and I have to admit, I was really nervous. I just kept remembering all the failures of last year's attempt and they clouded my mind the whole morning leading up to time I was called back.  I didn't sleep well the night before and was up way before my alarm. However, those feelings washed away the minute the nurse called my name. She had the kindest smile on her face and genuinely wanted to know how I was doing. She reassured me everything was going to go smoothly and basically kept me calm until I passed out from the anesthesia. As I the IV went into my hand and the oxygen mask over my face, I just looked up and asked God to hold my hand. After it was all said and done, I woke up to my husband and the nurse and the excruciating pain and nausea. I had the hardest time coming out of the medically induced nap I endured for only an hour. My husband mentioned it took longer than usual just as the embryologist came in saying, "we're still tallying up the eggs, but so far the count is 37!"  WHAT? REALLY?!  37? That's unbelievable. I was so shocked and amazed, but couldn't keep my eyes open long enough to display my excitement.  The whole procedure took quite a toll on me and with good reason. They retrieved a grand total of 40 eggs from my body. The embryologist was amazed, but extremely concerned with my risk for OHSS and how horrible the rest of my day was going to be because of the pain. I agreed about the pain, but was just too ecstatic over my egg count to really pay attention to how serious it could be.  Finally after an hour in recovery, I was able to stand up to try and use the restroom. Unfortunately, I was not successful because of just how painful it really was. The nurse told me to sit back down and when I felt comfortable to try and get dressed. They had to bring me wet towels, ice chips, and an alcohol swab to decrease my nausea and hot flashes.  Eventually the nausea subsided enough I could get dressed and go home. They informed me that they would call the next morning to let me know how many of the 40 were mature, fertilized, frozen and out to be watched every day until transfer. The number 40 was stuck in my head and a smile stuck on my face. I came out of the office to a world full of sunshine (literally), happiness and peace. The drive home, although excruciating with all the bumps on the road, was exciting to me. Exciting for the fact that we have a real shot this time! 40! Even if a lot didn't fertilize, that's still more than last year (15 eggs) and we surely will have some to freeze to try again if this time doesn't work. That's all that kept running through my head. If this time doesn't work, it's not over! We can try again for sure.

As the day went on, I felt great. I didn't care about the pain and my husband and I just relaxed outside most of the day. I worked on a good sunburn and loved every minute of my day. I took the Vicodin each time to fend off the pain as much as possible and was truly able to relax for first time in weeks. I even took a small nap...I NEVER TAKE NAPS! I prayed to God numerous times throughout the day just thanking him for being so good to us. As night fell, I began to get anxious about the next morning's phone call. I reminded myself it was all in God's hands and was able to fall asleep. Aside from getting up multiple times to use the restroom and trying to get comfortable in spite of the pain, I feel I slept pretty well. Morning came and relaxation went out the window. I had to find things to do to fill the time until the phone did ring. I put a load of laundry in the wash, swept the floor and intentionally woke up my husband (at 10am, so don't feel bad for him) before I did anything else to land myself in the hospital with OHSS. We decided to lay outside on our deck again to pass the time and sure enough the phone rang!

The embryologist called with great news! Out of the 40 eggs, 35 were mature! He ICSI'd all 35 and 27 fertilized. Out of the 27 that fertilized, he froze 16 of them and kept 11 out to watch their growth. How amazing is that?! My hopes have soared along with my excitement and praise to God. I mean, I thank God every day for a thousand things, but today, I was especially grateful!  We have 11 embryos to watch and work with, hoping they are of good quality and grow big and strong. He will call back tomorrow morning with more news of how the 11 are doing and when he thinks my transfer day will be.  If all goes well, he's really hoping for a day 5 or 6 transfer, right at the blastocyst stage so they are ready to attach when they get inside. If the embryos aren't faring too well outside on their own, they will have to transfer them back on day 3, being Sunday. So tonight we continue with the steroid pill so my body doesn't reject the embryos when placed back in, the antibiotic to protect them from bacteria, the Vicodin for the pain and the progesterone shot for the best possible environment for the little future bambinos. Fingers crossed for more good news in the morning!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

They're Ready!

So it went exactly as I had hoped, which for some reason leaves me a little uneasy. Like I am waiting for the other shoe to drop, you know? Anyways, we have at least 4 follicles measuring at or over 18mm which is what qualifies us to get the green light for egg retrieval. I have lots of other follicles around 17, some at 15 and I even saw one at 13mm. So there are plenty in there, let's just pray for good quality!  I am to do the HCG shot tonight at 9:30 exactly, which will be 35 hours prior to my egg retrieval Thursday morning at 8:30am. At my last appointment my estrogen level was over 700 when it should have been around 100 or 200, so that's not a problem. I have one more blood test tomorrow morning to make sure all levels are good for the egg retrieval.  Exciting times! I'm just starting to get nervous something is going to go wrong. So all day today I will be trying not to focus on those thoughts.

Instead I will focus on taking the meds as I am supposed to, staying calm and hydrated to ward off OHSS, staying positive and praying for success. For one whole day tomorrow, I do not have to give any shots to myself! I will still get poked for the blood draw, but at least I don't have to do it! They gave me a new protocol to follow starting with my HCG shot tonight. Blood work in the morning, last meal tomorrow night and no eating after midnight, no liquid after 4am. We have to be at the doctor at 8am Thursday morning for an 8:30 retrieval. We have to bring with us the first progesterone shot, Vicodin and crackers to take the first Vicodin. The procedure doesn't take long, about 30-45 minutes, followed by 30 minutes of recovery. They will give me the first progesterone shot during the procedure. I will still be under so I won't feel that one! However, they have already drawn the circles on my backside for my husband to have a target zone for the remainder of the shots!

They will then call us each day to inform us on how our embryos are doing and when we should go back for the transfer. More than likely that will be Sunday...happy birthday to me! Hopefully that is just another sign of good things to come.  I was given strict instructions not to do anything strenuous for the next 3 weeks as my ovaries are very enlarged and tender and I'm at risk for OHSS. Don't worry! I won't be moving from my bed for a full 4 days after my transfer to hopefully give those embryos the best possible shot at attaching! I will just continue to try to be the best incubator I can be.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Cycle Day 11

Ugh. I feel them now. The nausea, soreness, protruding belly, weight gain (not cool) and just all out discomfort let me know everything's going as planned. I take Tylenol as often as I can but it's starting to not work as well and sometimes doesn't even touch the pain I feel in my abdomen. Don't get me wrong, I planned for this. I am excited about this. I just forgot how uncomfortable I really feel during the time when my ovaries fist bump each other. I can't wait until my ultrasound in the morning where my doctor again gets to say how enormous my ovaries are and press on the outside of my belly to watch them move up and down on the ultrasound screen! Hopefully tomorrow will be it. My doctor will say the follicles are large enough and I will plan for my HCG shot 35 hours prior to my egg retrieval. Fingers crossed because as this week goes on, it only gets worse. I always end up with a mild to moderate case of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS). I already have the Gatorade stocked up and waiting to be drank to keep the fluid in those cells instead of seeping out and causing destruction in my body! We don't want fluid shifts in the body, trouble breathing or more weight gain at a rapid pace. That's all dangerous. I have given up on walking because at this point, standing is uncomfortable. Forget standing. Sitting, reclining, laying down on my back...yep, all slightly painful. But you know what? I'm ecstatic! Well, you might not be able to tell by looking at me because I feel miserable, but I'm jumping for joy on the inside that this is all going the way it supposed to. The way I remember it. The way my doctor said it would so we can achieve our goal. He said I could be in more pain. He said he would be more aggressive. He even said I could end up in the hospital with full blown OHSS. That's okay by me as long as the end result is what we want! So I've slowed down considerably. But that's okay. And some of you may laugh because I'm not usually able to slow down and relax. For some reason, this time, I'm calm. Weird, but good. Hopefully it's a sign of good things to come. I have stopped worrying about the dishes in the sink, the laundry, my tan (it's too freaking hot now to lay out and be sweating and have abdominal pain!), and any other frivolous worries I was trying to take on. Last night I started to worry about whether my husband would be home to give me my HCG shot and how I would go about getting it, if he wasn't. He literally rolled over and said, "you're just trying to find things to worry about now, it's okay, just get some sleep. All you have to worry about now is being a good follicle incubator." I love him. Not only does he make me forget about my worries and make me laugh to lighten the mood, but he puts things in perspective when I start losing sight of the goal and try to maintain control when I know deep down it's out of my hands. So what if he's at work when I have to have my HCG shot, I have friends who can give it to me. Several have offered already! Don't be surprised if you get a call! I have to maintain my calm for the sake of my follicles. I am doing this, and I will continue to be calm all week. I will get anxious around the time of the egg retrieval, but who wouldn't? That is excitement for the next step in the process, not worry.

So cycle day 11 and the shots are going well. I am starting to bruise but I always do. I have little pin pricks all around my belly button and on the insides of my elbows from them drawing blood.  I am curious to see where my estradiol level is tomorrow. I hope it stays high and doesn't bottom out like last time! I am sure with maintaining my high dose of Follistim that it will be where it should. My doctor was very pleased at my last appointment with the progress of the follicles. He stopped counting around 10, but they were all pretty symmetrical and around 8-11mm. We are hoping that tomorrow they will be 17-20mm so they are done cooking and can be retrieved!

If you read my last post, I mentioned the last thing I had to worry about was a cookout we were having out our house on Saturday. That went off without a hitch! We had just over 50 people show up, eat and have a good time! I couldn't be happier with how it turned out and I loved getting the chance to see everyone! So now, I just have to focus on being a good incubator like my husband said. My dogs are doing a good job of keeping me company and I have focused on my list of things to do to keep my mind off of the whole process and worrying. I have been working on a 1,000 piece puzzle, playing some sort of word game and reading on my Kindle, watching Cake Boss (I love that guy) on TV, reading other books and magazines, doing lots of Facebook stalking and laying around outside and inside the house. Somehow I have managed not to go crazy yet! I am waiting for that to happen when I'm not supposed to leave my bed. But I will continue to pray for this contentment with my situation and continue being happy about being in pain! I will post again after my doctor's appointment to let you all know how it's going!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Cycle Day 7

And the soreness begins! But that's okay because that's how I know those little follies are growing in there:) For exercise I told myself I would continue to walk until the day of my egg retrieval, but it seems to be getting a little more challenging with abdomenal cramps and pain. I went from 2-4 miles a day down to just 1, but oh well! There's nothing I can do about it and I'm not going to push it. Shots are going well other than a few mistaken finger pokes after the shot is all over. I have been having a lot of headaches from the hormonal shifts, but nothing Tylenol can't help. I have to say, I'm a little scared at how sane I actually feel. This might be due to the removal of most of my stress, thank God. I seem to finally be relaxing out of my type A personality. Maybe that's because I've just about crossed everything off my to-do list! The last big thing is our cookout Saturday which I am so looking forward to, but having people over always stresses me out just making sure the house is clean. So hopefully I will keep myself in check that day and not worry too much since the house is already clean!

Things don't seem to be going too bad, just a lot of baby news lately that always gets me down. My former boss just had a baby Tuesday night, a few friends found out the sex of their babies and the occasional passing by of a pregnant lady when I'm out and about or watching TV tends to bring out the tears these days. Then there's a lot of women in the infertility groups that I belong to finding out they are pregnant. I am so ecstatic for them, I really am, but I just hope and pray each time that it will be me in a few weeks with the same news. Always during the process do your hopes and eagerness for this to happen seem so much more intense. It's beginning to be just about the only thing I think about throughout the day other than when I'm actually involved in conversation, watching TV or reading a book. Even then my thoughts start to wander. I try so hard not to be rude, but sometimes I just can't help it. So if I talk to any of you in the next three weeks and you see my mind start to drift off, please don't take it personally!

My doctor's appointment is tomorrow! We are so excited and anxious to see how the follicles are progressing it's ridiculous! I am truly hoping they tell me to come back Tuesday and that's the last day of shots so my egg retrieval would be on Thursday. That would be ideal! But only time will tell. To make sure i see my doctor, they are sending us to the Canton office tomorrow and we are very pleased with that. We don't mind travelling to make sure I see him instead of my previous doc.

That's all the news I have for today! Stay tuned to see how the doctor's appointment went tomorrow!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Good and Bad Moments Each Day

Today is a good day, so far, that is. It can be ruined or made even better by the slightest thing. My emotions go up and down at the drop of a hat and my abdomen is already sore. Thankfully, that's because my baseline ultrasound went really well and the Lupron did it's job! It kept me from ovulating so I have tiny follicles already in there just waiting to thrive on the Follistim! I am in day two of Follistim shots or "stimming" as the infertility world terms it. Stimming is exciting to's a step in the right direction after 11 days of Lupron shots where I felt on hiatus. I was just in a holding pattern in my head, waiting to begin the REAL stuff.

So in my process, this is Cycle Day 4. I continue the prenatal vitamins, baby aspirin, extra folic acid tablet, Lupron (now down to 5 units) and Follistim (300 units) until my next appointment on Friday. The stim shot is quite funny to watch me try to give to myself. I struggled with the first one last night because I was so used to the Lupron quick in and out shot. I forgot how slow, if you can even call it that, the stim shot is. You have to wait for it to dial down to 0 after it having been all the way up to 300. Now, I know it's not a long time in any sense, but when you are giving yourself a shot, it tends to feel like forever. Especially, when you struggle to push the pen top down because the dose is so high. When you are pressing down, it's like the clicking of a roller coaster until it gets to the top of the hill. Click, click, click....300, 275, 250.......100, 50....finally 0! I did it! Thank God that's over. Ouch...because I had to switch hands in the middle of it to get a better angle at pressing the top down, I bruised my belly by moving the needle around. Oh well...many more bruises to come I'm sure! As soon as the shot was in, it was like a rush of adrenaline. We are finally doing this again! My husband and I were so elated last night, all fears, anxieties and doubts washed away by one shot. Hopefully it lasts through the two week wait...highly unlikely!

Throughout my days on these shots, I go from being excited, happy and very productive in my nesting/super cleaning process, to crying at commercials, songs, words somebody says or pictures I see. It's overwhelming sometimes just how much the pendulum can swing in such a short span of time. I have to keep reminding myself to stay grounded, not to get too angry at the little things and for God's sake stop wanting to cry every 5 seconds! It's absolutely ridiculous!

As I mentioned above, the baseline ultrasound went really well. That turned my bad Saturday that I was having into a good Saturday at that moment. The bad part came from the waiting for an hour when I knew I was the first appointment of the day just to see the doctor. Oh yeah, and the fact that the receptionist somehow thought it was a good idea for her to have a "bring your kids to work" day. What the hell? Really? All I could do was laugh with my husband at how insensitive the whole concept was. You're a receptionist at an infertility clinic. There's a room full of infertile men and women desperately trying to conceive children. What makes you think bringing your children to sit with you at the front desk is a good idea? I can't believe the doctors allow that in their office policy somehow! And of course they weren't well behaved, polite and quiet children. No. They were running in and out of the room, talking and yelling loudly, fighting with each other and eating donuts. Now, I was the 7:45 appointment before they really started seeing patients at 8 am.  So I of course was immediately taken back for my blood work and then sent back out to wait for the doctor. Just before 8am, I could hear his voice and got excited. I shouldn't have. I love my doctor and he is definitely worth the wait. But when you see that you have a room full of patients waiting on their Saturday morning as well. Don't you think it would be a good idea to get moving? Instead, my husband and I, and the other patients, just sat there and listened to them converse with the kids about the donuts and the weather and what they were all doing for the weekend. We heard laughter and jokes, but not one person's name called back. Somewhat unprofessional in my eyes, but hey...they make the big bucks that we are so desperately throwing at them so I guess they can make us wait as long as they want. They know we will! I finally was called back at 8:20, but still waited in the room for another 25 minutes until the doctor came in. REALLY??? Oh well. He had his happy face on and was extremely friendly, nice and talkative so I guess I shouldn't be so impatient. I just think that was a little too long and a little too outrageous with the kids for a fertility clinic to be conducting themselves in that manner even though it was a Saturday morning. But like I said, my bad day turned to good when I saw those little follies growing. Again...all the anger washed away by a single ultrasound and the words "all clear to start Follistim".  We're just hoping Friday's experience isn't the same.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A Lesson On Etiquette Again

Even though I have posted this before, I feel as though it needs to be said again. I have friends who recently have had the most absurd things said right to their faces without that other person thinking of the consequences of their words. Some of the most ignorant still remain as "just relax", "just adopt", or "there are worse things that could happen"...ok that last one really gets on my nerves!!!! I found an article last week on infertility etiquette. One of the things I like about this article is that it talks about how people dealing with infertility go through grieving differently. Here's an excerpt:

Infertility is, indeed, a very painful struggle. The pain is similar to the grief over losing a loved one, but it is unique because it is a recurring grief. When a loved one dies, he isn't coming back. There is no hope that he will come back from the dead. You must work through the stages of grief, accept that you will never see this person again, and move on with your life.
The grief of infertility is not so cut and dry. Infertile people grieve the loss of the baby that they may never know. They grieve the loss of that baby who would have had mommy's nose and daddy's eyes. But, each month, there is the hope that maybe that baby will be conceived after all. No matter how hard they try to prepare themselves for bad news, they still hope that this month will be different. Then, the bad news comes again, and the grief washes over the infertile couple anew. This process happens month after month, year after year. It is like having a deep cut that keeps getting opened right when it starts to heal.
As the couple moves into infertility treatments, the pain increases while the bank account depletes. The tests are invasive and embarrassing to both parties, and you feel like the doctor has taken over your bedroom. And for all of this discomfort, you pay a lot of money.
A couple will eventually resolve the infertility problem in one of three ways:
  • They will eventually conceive a baby.
  • They will stop the infertility treatments and choose to live without children.
  • They will find an alternative way to parent, such as by adopting a child or becoming a foster parent.
Reaching a resolution can take years, so your infertile loved ones need your emotional support during this journey. Most people don't know what to say, so they wind up saying the wrong thing, which only makes the journey so much harder for their loved ones. Knowing what not to say is half of the battle to providing support.

Another favorite topic is when women complain about their pregnancy...seriously never do this in front of me, especially not right now!

Don't Complain About Your Pregnancy
This message is for pregnant women-Just being around you is painful for your infertile friends. Seeing your belly grow is a constant reminder of what your infertile friend cannot have. Unless an infertile women plans to spend her life in a cave, she has to find a way to interact with pregnant women. However, there are things you can do as her friend to make it easier.
The number one rule is DON'T COMPLAIN ABOUT YOUR PREGNANCY. I understand from my friends that, when you are pregnant, your hormones are going crazy and you experience a lot of discomfort, such as queasiness, stretch marks, and fatigue. You have every right to vent about the discomforts to any one else in your life, but don't put your infertile friend in the position of comforting you.
Your infertile friend would give anything to experience the discomforts you are enduring because those discomforts come from a baby growing inside of you. When I heard a pregnant woman complain about morning sickness, I would think, "I'd gladly throw up for nine straight months if it meant I could have a baby." When a pregnant woman would complain about her weight gain, I would think, "I would cut off my arm if I could be in your shoes."
I managed to go to baby showers and hospitals to welcome my friends' new babies, but it was hard. Without exception, it was hard. Stay sensitive to your infertile friend's emotions, and give her the leeway that she needs to be happy for you while she cries for herself. If she can't bring herself to hold your new baby, give her time. She isn't rejecting you or your new baby; she is just trying to work her way through her pain to show sincere joy for you. The fact that she is willing to endure such pain in order to celebrate your new baby with you speaks volumes about how much your friendship means to her.

The full article is from Resolve's website and it sums it all up better than I ever could! Check out this incredibly written article on infertility etiquette. And please, keep all this in mind whenever speaking with someone because 1 in 8 struggle with infertility.