Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sunday funny

And now for some breaking news.

Godspeed, childless couple.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Enjoy yourself!

Hey there, my sweet bloggy friends. I'm still around, just taking a step back from the day-by-day, play-by-play analysis of my early pregnancy, both online and in real life.

I had one ticked-off-yet-cleansing sobbing episode about how crazy IVF (and all its possible outcomes) makes a girl. It started right after I did the greyhound Heimlich on my choking doggie. The incident happened quickly, as these things do, but in the moment I believed I was losing my precious furbaby, and you would not BELIEVE the bargaining chips I flung at God while thrusting at the spot where my pup's barrel chest turns to teeny-tiny tummy. It worked on the fourth or fifth try, thank goodness, and she was and is fine. The only after effects for her were a cough and a curiosity as to why I (a) wouldn't let her eat the bloodied treat she'd spewed across the floor and (b) couldn't stop hugging her for the next 3 days.

That happened the night after my third beta. The crisis helped snap me out of my head and realize that I was going to be on my own with the pregnancy — with no new official word about anything — for another 2 weeks. From then until my ultrasound, it was going to just be me, myself's ever-changing symptoms, and I. (Sorry, bad grammar all around.) And I had to start letting go and letting things be.

I can't say that I won't be super nervous when scan day arrives next Wednesday. But while there's still a bit of a buffer between now and then, I've been sticking to my even keel, keeping myself calm, and focusing on OTHER THINGS.

For ince, of late, I've been doing an excellent job of really concentrating on work for a change. I have my holiday gift-giving plans mapped out. I'm about to stop pretending to work for this day and go make the world's best pumpkin pie (or so I am assured by the recipe). And I plan on reveling in my entire wine-less holiday tomorrow, taking a special moment to express my deep-down gratitude for all that has gone right this year. DH and I started 2008 with a low 15% chance for pregnancy using IVF and rapidly lost ground when an RE retrieved, literally, no eggs from the henhouse. Since then, we've had 2 pregnancies from 2 IVF transfers (!) — and somewhere in the midst of this, that, and the other we managed to grab our beloved marriage by its hair and yank it to safety *just* as it tried to step in front of a speeding bus.

I have a lot to be thankful for. And I'm going to enjoy it.

Hope you enjoy a happy Thanksgiving, too!

Video time. Yes, I've posted two versions of the same song. The first has the best sound, but the costumes in the second demand to be shared.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Wanted: Attitude adjustment

Think I can get one on c.raigslist? For cheap?

I had my third and final pregnancy-confirming beta this morning. It went from 170 to 324, which translates to a 91 percent rise every 48 hours, or a true doubling time of 51–52 hours.

At this early stage my clinic wants to see a minimum 2-day rise of 66 percent, and I am well over that. In black-and-white, it is positive news. My RE seems satisfied.

So now we wait for my first ultrasound.

Meantime, I will work on coaxing my positive attitude out of hiding. I know right where to find her — rocking in a corner, holding her breath.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Today's beta news

I'll keep this short:

Saturday's number was 91.8, and today's was 170.

Because it didn't quite double in 48 hours, I'll go back for Round 3 on Wednesday.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

First beta in

Today's beta was 91.8 at 15dpo/12dp3dt.

After IVF #2, my first number was 192 at 14dpo.

"And —?" you say.

Well, even though the only thing I should have wanted was a positive, normal-range number today, I secretly had my sights set on something higher than what I got.

I know that each pregnancy is different, that the doubling time we'll see on Monday is what matters, that at face value a lower normal number is not "worse," that I need to suck it up and feel the joy . . .

I UNDERSTAND ALL OF IT, promise. Just wanted to cop to where the infertile, post-miscarriage mind goes, even with good news that has not one shred of negative substance to it. It's a sickness.

In the 2 hours since taking the phone call, I've been actively working on getting my heart to come around. Sometimes all it needs is a little push. Right now, happily, it's sidling up to my head, giving it a squeeze, and saying "Sorry I'm late . . . I'm here now, though."

To summarize, the number is perfectly normal. Yay for that!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Brown is the new beige

I wasn't going to update today — thought I'd give it all a rest — but I just read the comments from yesterday's post and I wanted to take a minute to say THANK YOU for all the support. I really appreciate it.

Nothing new except that the beige-y tan spotting turned definitively brown. (In case you're wondering, I'm wearing blue today. It's one of the cheery blues, somewhere between baby and sky. No sad-sacking going on.) The spotting output slows down with increased water consumption, so I'm keeping my tall glass filled. Wait, no, I guess I'm keeping it empty. Strangely, I feel waterlogged and maddeningly thirsty at the same time.

Also, I switched to softer toilet paper today because my delicates are chafed from way too many trips to the loo. Seriously, it was a problem. (Thanks for that idea, foof!)

My beta is still on for Saturday.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Spotting as an accessory

Yeah, well, I started spotting beige last night, and it's still here today.

I spent most of the night praying, playing my meditation CDs in my head, and reminding myself that spotting before beta happens all the time with perfectly viable pregnancies. Spotting is not uncommon with IVF-ers. It could be old blood or other internal goo from the ER or ET. It could be leftover from the start of implantation. It could come from one of two implanting embryos deciding to disengage. It could be nothing specific. Or it could be my period trying to start. (DH rightly pointed out last night that the period option is, at least, outnumbered.)

I'm at 12dpo/9dp3dt. My tests are still getting darker and I'm seeing "Pregnant" on digitals. All that's reassuring for now.

Once I finished approving this morning's HPTs, I shot myself up with a nice dose of womb-enhancing progesterone, breathed deeply, and got dressed. For my own brand of "I refuse to wig out" calming distraction, I accessorized externally to complement the shade of my unseen companion: beige-based argyle sweater, light khaki socks, camel eyeshadow, and a small spritz of Coco for kicks and whiffs. Oh, and I'm listening to Diana Krall in my office. She's kind of beige.

Doing my best to go with the flow.

Dare ya to call me a weirdo to my face!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Wish you were here!

If you were here, I'd offer you some tea and then wow you with my 2-test series of positive HPTs. They are still too faint to scan or photograph well, so you really need to be in the same room to appreciate yesterday's whispery pink test line (which showed up after several minutes) and its remarkable transformation into today's "Show me your urine, and I'll show you my face" bubblegum-hued beauty.

I know. It is inappropriately early to squawk about being pregnant. Gauche, really. I am only 10dpo/7dp3dt. Too many unknowns. And way too many knowns: 43 years old. Low odds for sustained success. First-hand experience losing a chromosomally abnormal fetus made from a perfect-looking embryo. The betas might stink and the baby might die. (Harsh, yes, but I want to be clear that I see clearly through my misty-gray glasses.)

However, I've made a personal vow to embrace the light of this last chance. I'm choosing hopefulness over gloom and choosing it NOW. Surely that will be difficult some days. But I've got it covered today.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Halfway through the wait

One week since ER, one week till beta.

One day since I felt the sharp, stabby uterine pains and body-temperature shift that flipped the tiny switch on my hopefulness meter.

Same day since I got a "surprise" package from Sephora . . . and then flashed on the hazy-crazy memory of shopping the Internets while waiting for a kernel of embryo news last Saturday.

This draggy part sure does drag, but I've felt surprisingly perky today.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Embies on board!

That should be on a bumper sticker. Or better yet, a static-cling window decal so you can quickly and discreetly adjust your status.

Here they are, my 8-celled beauties. They were compacting on themselves as the embryologist snapped their portrait. (So cute how they wanted to keep dividing.)

All 3 are strapped in for the 2ww ride, and I'm officially PUPO.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Quickie update: Transfer tomorrow

We're set for transfer tomorrow at 10 am Pacific.

As of this afternoon, all 3 embies are still growing. I have no info beyond that WHATSOEVER, and I did my level best to get it!

From the nurse's wording ("We've determined which embryos are best for transfer"), it certainly sounded to me like 2 out of the 3 are looking better and may be the only ones available to put back. But when I asked for a number, she wouldn't say, and when I quoted her words back to her to support my reasoning that we'll have fewer than 3, she wouldn't repeat what she'd said or confirm my suspicions. She simply said all 3 were still growing. No doubt she just LOVES trying to communicate with us end-of-cycle/end-of-rope IVF chicks.

I mentioned that I'd gotten much more information during our last cycle (allowing for the possibility that it was different because my RE was the one calling me then), and she said, "Yeah, we've really backed away from that approach. We want you to hear it straight from the embryologist."

So we won't know anything until we check out the photos and sign the final report 15 minutes before the procedure.

I am a bit of a wreck today. Things aren't TOO bad. No crying or shouting or screaming. Just moments of feeling super low and others of feeling startlingly scattered. DH has done his best to logicalize me out of the down moments, and that does work on me.

I'll spend the rest of the day watching movies, cooking/eating a big pot of chili, harassing the dog for snuggles, and spending some time with my meditation CDs. Maybe I'll hit up DH for a back massage, too.

This is kinda fun: When I logged on just now, I noticed yesterday's post that I titled "3, 3, 3" (for 3 mature eggs, 3 embies, 3-day transfer) was posted at 3:33. I did not know that!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

3, 3, 3

As predicted, 3 of my little eggies were mature. The lab ICSI'd them, and — hallelujah! — all 3 fertilized.

Our good fert success in both possible cycles makes me even more certain that IVF was right for us. If nothing else we know that DH's sperm and my eggs are amenable to hooking up and trying to make a go of it. They just need the help of an expensive matchmaker. I always knew it!

In our April/May cycle 6 fertilized and so the RE felt confident enough at this point in the game to schedule our transfer. No such luck today. But the clinic was nice enough to narrow tomorrow's possible phone-call window to 2.5 hours for me.

Please pray with me, people: Divide and stay healthy, divide and stay healthy, divide and stay healthy!

If we get a healthy bub from all this hubbub, I am totally buying this print.