Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Embryo donation!!!

I know this seems fast but that's because it is. Our clinic called back today informing us that there are three different sets of donated embryos up for recipients. These three couples already have children from IVF and no longer want to have any more so they are graciously donating their frozen embabies to needy couples like us. They have already signed the paperwork relinquishing their rights so now they just need a family. Our clinic doesn't offer them to people outside the facility. There is another interested couple meeting with them next week to look at the profiles as well.

I don't know everything about the process yet but I do know we get the privilege of looking at non-identifying facts about the couples like height, weight, eye color, hair color, occupation, etc. The families do not have to pick us. Once they sign them over to be donated, they are the responsibility of the clinic to find them a good home. No home studies or adoption agencies. Yay!

We are going to the clinic this week to look at the profiles and decide which group of embryos we want. If everything goes well, then they can be our's very soon. That doesn't mean we will use them right away. Obviously the events of last week have left us too hurt to try again soon. But if we don't go now to get some, there may not be any to get when we are ready. She said the demand for donated embryos is high. There are thousands of embryos in storage of course but most of them will be used by the family they belong to or will remain frozen indefinitely because couples struggle with what to do with them. I am so happy that these three couples thought better of the second option and chose donation. They may be able to provide us with the child of our dreams!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Good news and bad news

So our doctor called today with good news and bad news. Bad news first: We probably cannot have our own biological child. He thinks that because we've been having trouble conceiving for 6 years and now have had 3 early miscarriages, we most likely have poor embryo quality. We do still have a frozen embryo from our IVF cycle that he says is good quality but he's concerned that out of 20 embryos, we've only had one to freeze. That was always concerning to us as well. The good news is we do still have options about pregnancy. He mentioned egg donation but we don't want the baby to be only genetically related to one of us. So the next option is embryo donation.

Embryo donation is when couples who have undergone IVF and have frozen embryos that they don't intend to use for a future pregnancy. (I know most of you already know this but I'm linking this to my facebook where most fertiles aren't familiar with our stinkin' disease.) Instead of donating them to research :( or just letting them die altogether :(:( couples who have completed their families donate their extra embryos to needy couples such as ourselves. Technically it is adoption but without all the craziness associated with adoption. Once the couple signs a paper donating them to you, they are no longer their children but your's! You get to become pregnant with them and when you have the baby, it's your's. They relinquish their rights to the embryos even before the transfer of them into your uterus.

Although it's definitely not want you dream about, we feel it's the next best thing to having your own biological child. I get to be pregnant like all the normal women of the world so I get to be in charge of the prenatal care of our adopted child. We get to bond with our adopted child unlike traditional adoption. But the most important part about this for me is the biological parents cannot take the baby from us or change their mind after he/she is born. I have a ton of respect for couples who undergo traditional adoption. It's such a wonderful gift to a needy child and the parents who get to adopt him/her. But it scares me to death. I'm scared about the prenatal care of the biological mother of course but mostly I'm scared about them changing their minds. And if I'm being totally honest I have an intense need to be pregnant. I know that may sound selfish but it's how I feel. I was only pregnant a week this time and it was one of the best weeks of my entire life. I'm not ready to let that go.

Our doctor said that they have around 80% chance of success with this because the embryos are usually high quality since they are from people who have already experienced successful pregnancies and of course they are blastocysts since they made it to freeze. Although we're deeply saddened at the fact that we will never know our biological child here on earth, this does give us tons of hope in the midst of our grief. Of course for today we're not only grieving the child we just lost but the second child we lost (Happy 4th birthday today Caleb Bradley) and now the loss of any future Brad/Lyndsey babies. It's truly a sad, happy day.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

It's the little things that hurt the most

Grief is strange. One minute you're mad, the next minute you're sad and then you might even think something's funny and laugh. But then when you laugh you feel guilty. How could someone who just miscarried a child into a toilet and flushed him/her down the toilet laugh about anything? So then you cry again.

Then there's your refrigerator. The place that contains all of the healthy foods you bought to help nourish your little one. I am not a healthy eater really but when I get pregnant, I do my best to eat as many fruits and vegetables as I can. I even bought Carnation Instant Breakfast shakes to make sure I was getting everything my baby needed. Now all I want to do is eat a bunch of crap. Well if I'm being honest I really don't feel like eating at all. Why should I when there's nothing inside me worth eating for? Luckily I have the BEST husband anyone could ask for. Without me even mentioning this, he threw out the rest of the cantaloupe I had cut up and threw away that Instant Breakfast stuff. As hard as all of this is, I am so lucky. I know he is hurting just like me but he always seems to take care of me. I wouldn't trade him for any baby and if it means I never become a mother, I will still always have Brad and that makes me smile on this depressed day.

Next is the laundry. Laundry seems simple enough to do now that I'm not in pain anymore (physical anyway). The first problem with doing the laundry is where we sort the clothes. I'm sure like many of you, we have an empty bedroom that's waiting to become someone's room. In the closet of this room are all of the things I've kept from all of my miscarriages so that I will never forget those babies. Needless to say, this room is not the best place for me to go into right now but I did. I start sorting my clothes into the floor and there's the dress that I wore to Nashville when I felt so sick and couldn't finish my meal. There's the dress that I wore when I went I received my positive beta.(I have to wear dresses everyday because I still can't fit into any of my pants.) There's the sports bra I had to wear every night because my boobs were so sore. And there's the tankini bathing suit (I normally wear bikinis but I had so many bruises due to my Lovenox shots and of course I'm still bloated from the IVF) I wore on the day I starting loosing my baby. I can't do the laundry.

I will get through this. I have before. But what's different about this time is it was a pregnancy from IVF so they could look at my embryos and choose the best 3 and I took the shots that were supposed to prevent another loss. What else can be done? We have been reading about autoimmune issues being the cause for recurrent pregnancy loss. I know several of you have taken Prednisone and done the IVIG infusions for these issues so I would love to know more about it. The only thing that is keeping me going right now is the fact that I did get pregnant again. It had been 4 years since my last positive test so to even get pregnant is progress for us. I'm not ready to give up yet. It still may never be possible for me to carry a baby full term but I can't quit until I'm sure and we're not there yet.

Friday, July 27, 2012


My HCG was 4 and progesterone was 2 so there's no possible chance that I have an unaffected baby still in there. So that's that. It's over. Well actually it's only just begun- the pain of passing clots and wondering if that's the one that contained your baby. The pain of knowing you were unable to provide a proper place for your child to grow. The pain of wondering if there was something you did or something you didn't do. The pain of wondering if it was a boy or girl, who she/he looked like, her personality. As bad as all this is, you know you'll do it all over again because there's still that small hope that next time it will be your time. But then next time becomes this time and you're right back where you started once again.... Childless.

The mourning is back and it's worse than before

I'm miscarrying. Ok I don't know that for sure but when you've done it twice before you get pretty good at self diagnosis. It's not too hard to figure out when you are passing tons of blood with clots and horrible cramps. It all started Wednesday morning with a small amount of spotting. I called my clinic and they said as long as it was spotting, I was fine. They also said that doing the Crinone suppositories daily could cause spotting since everything is very vascular right now. I didn't spot the rest of the day so I wasn't too worried about it. Yesterday morning I woke up with the same type of spotting that I had the morning before. I take my Crinone before bed so I figured that was the cause and it wasn't a ton or red so it was not too concerning. Around 3:00 yesterday I started cramping and bleeding. I called my clinic and she said it could be several things. It could be fine or it could be a miscarriage. She said not to stop taking my medications because I could only be miscarrying one of them and the other two or just one may be just fine.It's something called vanishing twin syndrome where the other baby (or babies) are fine and the other twin or triplet dies and either gets reabsorbed by the other babies and there's an empty sac or you can miscarry it altogether. She scheduled me for another beta today but she said it won't tell them much since I've not had one since last Friday. I've had two clots since I talked to her yesterday. I got my blood drawn but the lab tech said I might not get it back today because of my insurance. I started crying and told her I was having a miscarriage and she said she'd see what she could do. I haven't heard back yet but I'll post it as soon as I know. I was farther along than this the other two pregnancies. I thought I might lose this one too but I thought I could enjoy it for longer than a week. I hate my life today. And note to self-when you have a history of miscarriage, don't have baby gaga automatically post on our Facebook wall showing your baby's progress. I don't know why I thought this time might be different. I guess I need to take this Lilypie ticker off my blog too but not today.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Beta Results!

Well I am pregnant! Although I am beyond excited, I thought about how this would make those of you feel who haven't seen that BFP or have recently miscarried. I thought about how I felt when I saw someone else was pregnant again and it wasn't me. It always gave me tons of hope to see others with problems get pregnant but let's face it-when you aren't the one getting that postive poas and beta, it hurts. So please know I understand where you are at and I don't take sharing this news with you lightly.

My HCG was 91 and my progesterone was 40. I thought 91 seemed a little low but the clinic said it was a good number. They don't have you go everyday to see if it's doubling which is a little concerning but let's face it. What can they really do if it's not? Plus I think that might drive me crazy with worry, especially with school getting ready to start again. My ultrasound to see how many are in there and if she/he/they are measuring on track is August 6. That is my first day of school! It's just an inservice with no kids so who cares, right? I'm going to see if there is something else I can go to next week to make up for it.

I have a lot of hope for this pregnancy but I'm still scared. Part of me thinks there's no way God would take this baby from me after all the years of blood, sweat and tears to get here but we all know His plans are not our own. When I got pregnant the second time, I just knew He gave me that child after loosing my first and I thought things would be fine. When that baby was taken as well, it really shook my faith for a little while. I have learned that although we should have faith that He will take care of us in every way possible, sometimes the things that happen to us don't make sense and with IF you still have to guard your heart.

As far as symptoms go, I do have a few. Of course the boobs are still very sore. That may be the pregnancy or the Crinone so it's hard to say. I am burping like a dude! I never burp. I've done these weird hiccup things everyday since I was 16 so I guess that's why I never do. I've also had these waves of nausea the past couple of days but today it was here all day long. It's not like I feel like I am going to throw up. It's more like feeling car sick.  I've been having some really crazy dreams too! I've been writing everything down so that one day I can transfer it to a pregnancy journal. I had a pregnancy journal with my first two babies and I never got to write very much in them. I've decided to wait until after the first trimester and then I'll buy one. I don't need a third one that has nothing in it.

I would like to say THANK YOU to all of you who have offered me support through this process. We couldn't get through something like this without each other and I want you to know how much love I feel with every comment. But most of all I want to thank God for His faithfulness. I don't know why we had to travel this road to get to a baby but He does and He only wants what's best for His children just like earthly parents. I hope that in 9 months Brad and I will get the chance to parent our child(ren) by the example He's shown us. Thank you Jesus for my dancing day today!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

I think I'm pregnant!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What do ya think? (That second one said 4th morning urine because I ran out of tests and had to go buy some so it's wasn't first morning.)My beta is tomorrow morning!!!!!During my other two IVFs I had already started on Tuesday so to make it to today is amazing. I have had some almost black spotting but not very much at all so I truly believe it was implantation bleeding Sunday and Monday. I think I'm in shock. I haven't seen two lines in four years. Wow. Thank you Jesus. My mourning is turning into dancing already!

Monday, July 16, 2012

The beginning of the end, maybe?

Last night I spotted pink. It was just a tiny bit but it was enough to steal my hope. Beware of this next part TMI!!! This morning it was a small amount of brownish. So I got super mad! How could this be happening to me again? Endomertial biopsy, assisted hatching, three embryos. There's nothing else that can be done now. I got mad, then I sobbed and then just to be sure, I took a HPT. It was positive. So now I don't know what to think. I've not had any more spotting since early this morning so maybe this could be implantation spotting? I know everybody thinks when they are trying to get pregnant that it's always implantation but it does fit with the schedule of when it should have occurred and the color of the blood is the same as what I've read about. There hasn't been any red and it's been such a small amount. Plus I did get a faint positive. I don't think it could still be the trigger since I took that on July 2 but it's a possibility. I'll take another if i don't start and compare the darkness. AF stay away! You're not welcome here! Prayers are appreciated as always!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Symptoms or side effects?

So I hate being on this Crinone progesterone gel. Yes, it's gross but that's not why I hate it so much. The side effects mimic pregnancy symptoms. Tiredness, sore breasts, enlarged breasts (ok that one I like),headaches,lower abdominal pain. So although the trigger shot is probably out of my system by now, I'm having all of these symptoms but you don't know if it's pregnancy or the progesterone. I'm trying to believe it's the medicine so I don't get my hopes up too much just to get let down again for the 400th time but it's hard not to think it could be something else when you boobs hurt this bad. Brad gave me a hug last night and I screamed. :/ Anyone else had these same symptoms while taking Crinone and gotten a BFN? I'm halfway through this 2ww and as you know everyday is the equivalent of two days. Come on Friday!!!!!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

My odds just went down (imho)

The nurse called this morning with my frozen embryo report. Zero. Out of the nine embies growing none of them made it to blast. I told her that didn't give me much hope for the 3 inside me right now and she said one really didn't have much to do with the other. She said they put the best 3 back so not to get too discouraged. I know she's right but I am discouraged. Out of 20 embryos, we've had one make it to freeze. And these are just the ones they've let grow to day 5, I'm not counting the embryos they've put inside me, which now has been 7. That's 27 embryos altogether. :( To me that sounds like your embryo quality is crap. Especially since the 4 best ones they've put back in my two previous cycles haven't worked. After the second failed IVF, I asked if we needed to move on to donor embryos and the doctor said that that was more for 40-year-olds. But now I'm thinking maybe that is what needs to happen. I'm not saying I can't get pregnant with one of the three they transferred. It may very well happen. But I'm just saying if we can't get any more embryos to blast than one out of 20, the odds aren't good.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

What God Meant

The following was taken from another infertile's blog. I can't tell you what reading this meant to me. I hope this touches the rest of you as well, especially those of us who God has chosen this path for us. This makes infertility seem more like a blessing than a curse. What God Meant Author Unknown     What do I think God meant when He gave me infertility?   I think He meant for my husband and I to grow closer, become stronger, love deeper.   I think God meant for us to find the fortitude within ourselves to get up every time infertility knocks us down.   I think God meant for our medical community to discover medicines, invent medical equipment, create procedures and protocols.   I think God meant for us to find a cure for infertility.   No, God never meant for me to not have children.   That's not my destiny; that's just a fork in the road I'm on.   I've been placed on the road less traveled, and like it or not, I'm a better person for it.   Clearly, God meant for me to develop more compassion, deeper courage, and greater inner strength on this journey to resolution, and I haven't let Him down.   Frankly, if the truth be known, I think God singled me out for special treatment.   I think God meant for me to build a thirst for a child so strong and so deep that when that baby is finally placed in my arms, it will be the longest, coolest, most refreshing drink I've ever known.   While I would never have chosen infertility, I cannot deny that a fertile woman could ever experience the joy that I know awaits me.   Yes, one way or another, I will have a baby of my own.   And the next time someone wants to offer me unsolicited advice, I'll say, "Don't tell me what God meant when He handed me infertility. I already know." May we all be blessed with that refreshing drink at the end of our journey.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Three's Company

We transferred three embryos! They were 7, 8, and 10 cells. We don't know the grade because they don't tell you there but I'm sure they aren't A's at 34 years old and they probably wouldn't let us do 3 if they were. I'll post pics later. Right now I'm enjoying my day of rest. We are confident in our decision and that feels nice.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Short Update

All 12 embabies are doing well. Since its only day 2 we don't know the quality yet but we will tomorrow. When we get the grades it will determine whether we put back 2 or 3. I would love to hear your opinions on the subject:2 or 3? Transfer and decision-making time is at 7:15am tomorrow!

Friday, July 6, 2012

A Dozen Krispy Kremes

I woke up at 5:30 this morning to check my phone to make sure I didn't miss a call about our fertilization report. Nope. We go to get a dozen Krispy Kreme donuts because the sign was on (and yes we eat the entire dozen between the two of us), still no call. We drive home and it's around 4:30 and the clinic closes at 5:00 so I called and left a message. They called me back within 10 minutes with a report of 12 out of 13 eggs were fertilized! For two people who can't make babies inside of me work, we sure are good at fertilizing these eggs.

We talked about wanting to know the grade. If they are good, we'll do 2. If they are so-so, we'd like to do 3. The nurse said it was totally up to us although the doctor will probably try to talk us out of it one more time. She also said it was up to us if we'd like to do the 3 day transfer or the 5 day. We definately want to do the 3 day because they can't do assisted hatching on the blasts. Plus we want to freeze our others on day 3 because when they've let our 11 other embryos grow to day 5, only 1 has made it to freeze. She said they will call us tomorrow with the cell-count report and we would be able to determine which way we want to go. 12 embryos. I knew there was a reason we ate 12 donuts this morning. ;)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Lucky 13

My retrieval was this morning and everything went well. They got 13 eggs. I know that seems kinda low compared to most women's retrievals but for me it's a good number. IVF 1 we got 9 with 7 fertilized. IVF 2 we got 8 and all 8 fertilized. So 13 is the most I've ever gotten and tomorrow we'll find out how many fertilized. I expect to have a large number because fertilization hasn't been an issue for us. We told the doctor we would be willing to put back 2 but only if they were grade A. Any other grade, we'd like to do 3. He said ok so now we are just waiting! These next few days can't come fast enough.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

It's time!

I had my final ultrasound and blood work on Monday. I had 14 follicles and my retrieval will be Thursday morning. We did discuss putting in three. He wasn't too happy about it unless we did "selective reduction" otherwise known as aborting one of your babies. For those of you that are ok with that, that's your business. But as for me and Brad, we wouldn't ever do that. I mean which one of your children do you pick? It's just horrible for me to even think about. So needless to say (from great advice from a friend) we are only putting two in if they are a good grade, three in if they aren't great grades. I think that's a good compromise and then none of my babies have to die unless they die on their own. At least then it won't be anything I did to cause it. Our retrieval is on my niece's 10th birthday. I think that's a great sign.:)