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So, I have never been good at following “rules” and of course the whole no testing rule is one that I could not follow at all. I got my first ever real positive HPT on 11/4! That would put me at 11 days past ovulation if this was a “normal” cycle.

The clinic would not move my beta test up, so I had to wait until 11/11/11 for it and it was 441 (14dp3dt or 17dpo). It is a great number and I am so very excited. Next beta is 11/18 and our first ultrasound is 11/25….no Black Friday shopping for us. 😉

Now of course it is super early, but finally after 5 long years I am pregnant. We are so very happy and will continue to enjoy every moment. My friends and family are over the moon. I am so lucky to have such a great support system.

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Triggering tonight!

So tonight is the night, our trigger shot, which will prepare my body to ovulate at this right time for the egg retrieval. It is a huge intermuscular shot give in the buttocks. BLECH! Not looking forward to it at all, but glad we are here.

My egg retrieval is set for 8am sharp on Tuesday. At last count I have 21 follicles, but some were a bit on the small side. I have been very uncomfortable the last fews days since I do have a high amount of follicles. We will know how many after the procedure on Tuesday and then get a fertilization report the next day. I will be happy with 8-10, but at this point any will be great.

I am still super nervous about the egg retrieval procedure. I have heard from some that it isn’t bad at all, to others who say it is horrible. Here’s hoping I am on the good side of it. I should sleep through the whole thing, they give you IV sedation. Then I will come home and be on bed rest for the rest of the day.

Our clinic does three day transfers for fresh cycles and then grows the rest out to 5 days to freeze. As long as I get a few to freeze I will feel like I can breathe easy, knowing that if this doesn’t work we can do a frozen transfer. Which is amazing to both Brian and I that we might have babies in the freezer, or totsicles as my friend calls them.

So we are excited, nervous and everything in between, but most of all thankful for having this chance to have a child. In this country it is not a given, most people are 100% out of pocket and many cannot afford it. So I am counting my blessings.

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So I took my first shot of Lupron this morning. Brian did a great job of injecting it and it just stung a bit. No real side effects yet, but it has only been a couple of hours. My last birth control pill is on Tuesday and then as soon as AF shows I call the IVF department and go in for an ultrasound. If everything is clear, we start the stimulation meds. 

We are going to be using a combination of Menopur and Bravelle to stimulate my ovaries. It is a pretty standard protocol to use. So in the next couple of weeks we will be going forward and having the egg retrieval and embryo transfer. I am so glad it is finally here!  It has been a long road and while this isn’t a sure thing, it has much greater chances for a positive outcome.  I am on,y really dreading the progesterone in oil shots…..they are intermuscular shots, given in the rear. The needle is 22 gauge and an inch and a half long. And if I end up pregnant I will have to continue them for 8-10 weeks. Yikes. But the end results are worth it! 

I have been really bad about updating because I have had a horrible cold and then stomach bug, but it all seems to have gone away just in time. 

As for other news, I am teaching a dyeing class on Saturday for our local guild, it should be a fun time. Also, I broke down and ordered a new iPhone 4s!  It will be my first iPhone and I am super excited. It will be here on Friday. I have a Droid X now and really am not happy with the Droid operating system and my phone seems to have a mind of it’s own sometimes. Since I have and iPad and iMac it only made sense to get and iPhone too. Now everything will sync together. I am especially excited about the new Siri technology, it seems really neat. 

So I will try to update regularly throughout the IVF process. It really helps to write everything down. 

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It is onto IVF for us…..

Well our last IUI sadly didn’t work. So we had our consult and have made the decision to go forward with IVF. IVF is a much more invasive process and takes longer. It is about six weeks from beginning to end for the type of protocol we are using. I will be on what they call the long Lupron protocol.

Right now this is where we stand….I am waiting for AF to show. I call the clinic on that day, then we go in on cycle day 2-4 for bloodwork for both, an u/s for me and a s/a for dh. I also start on birth control pills that day. Seems odd doesn’t it? But it helps to “surpress” the ovaries for a while so they aren’t overworked before the other procedures.

A week after that I have to go in for a saline sonogram to make sure that my uterus is clear of fibroids/polyps/endo. As long as that is good then we are all set to start the big guns.

On cycle day 21 I start Lupron which will shut down the pituitary gland from affecting my ovaries. Then I wait for AF to show again and the I start my stimulation meds….no clomid or Femara this time, all injectibles all the time. There are a few other meds in there too like antibiotics, baby aspirin, Ganirelix which makes sure your follicles don’t mature too fast and so on.

Then I go in every other day for u/s and bloodwork until my follicles are ready, then we trigger and I go in for the egg retrieval. It is a small surgical procedure done under IV sedation. I am actually most nervous about this as I have never had any type of surgery done. I know I will just sleep through it, but I am nervous. So hopefully we will get 5-12 eggs from the retrieval. Then they put them in with the sperm and wait for fertilization.

After three days they will pick three embryos to implant (the rest will be grown out to blasts and frozen) and will do that via a catheter. It is very similar to the IUI procedure. I will then be on two days of bed rest and then have a blood test eleven days after that.

The doctor said for my age this raises me from a 10-15% chance to a 45-50% chance. I like those odds. So as this goes on I will update and explain things in a bit more detail. It really is a fascinating process, especially when you get into frozen embreyos and transfers.

Thanks so much for all the support through all of this, I couldnt do it with out my friends irl and online. 🙂

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I haven’t updated here like I said I would. The last few weeks have been a bit of overload on me. But here is a quick rundown. I went in on 8/3 for my first ultrasound for IUI cycle #3 to see how I responded to the Femara. I was very lucky and got no side effects from it at all and was a bit worried that maybe it wasn’t working because of that. But low and behold I had not one, not two but THREE great follicles. Sizes were 24mm, 19mm and 17mm! So I was ready, like as in go home and immediately take your Ovidrel injection and come back the next day for the IUI.

It was a whirlwind and I really had no time to think. I had to put things on hold, miss knit night again and just go. So I went in the next day for the IUI and the counts were great for the sperm: 36 million with 72% motility. Not bad for frozen. :):):) The doctor was very pleased and told me not to make him look bad and come back with a positive pregnancy test. Yeah, thanks Dr. S. LOL!

So while I checked out I did the unthinkable and jinxed myself by setting up an IVF consultation with Dr. Z on the 30th. The only reason why is because I really feel that we need to plan ahead….cycles come and go so quickly and we only want to take a month off, plus the month we will need to be on birth control (and hopefully no more) before we start IVF. And we can always cancel and hopefully I will be pregnant and we can!

So I am 4 days past the IUI today and 5 days past the trigger. I am actually feeling kind of awful, this whole week has been one emotional mess. Including lots of tears, fighting, hanging up on people, etc. I guess it is a response to the Ovidrel but it hasn’t been fun. I am trying to be more positive and move on starting today. I cleared off my sewing table and plan on working on some of the sad projects that have been sitting there for years, gathering dust. I am also knitting and hopefully spinning. And last but not least, I am teaching a class on dyeing in October, today I ordered the supplies and just need to get my notes together and come up with some worksheets. Looking forward to it, but nervous, I am always like that about speaking in public.

So my test date is officially 8/18/11, but I will probably test on 8/16. Fingers crossed, wish me luck!!!!

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So this cycle is also a bust and ended super early, instead of late like last time. I think the timing of this IUI was messed up…I am pretty sure I ovulated the day I got my trigger shot. So there was really no chance. But who knows for sure.

I called the clinic and am changing my protocol for this new cycle. I will be taking 5mg of Femara instead of the Clomid. It is a drug for postmenopausal women with breast cancer actually. But it has an off label use for infertility and I hear less side effects as well. Brian will be pleased. Best thing is that it is actually covered by insurance! You gotta smile at the small stuff.

This will be our last IUI before moving onto IVF, so we are hoping it will be lucky #3. IVF is not only expensive, but very hard on your body. The egg retrieval is a surgical procedure and bed rest is required after the transfer. And the meds….you take huge amounts. So fingers crossed that we don’t have to go that route.

My first monitoring ultrasound is August 3rd,so we will see how I respond to the new med and go from there.

I will be updating with actual knitting stuff in the next day or so as well….lots to share!

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So AF reared her ugly head early yesterday and boy is she raging. I think my body is extremely mad at all the drugs, poking & prodding that took place the month before. Ugh. I knew it was over, so I was happy for it to finally end. I was ready to move on.

As of now we are sticking with the same protocol, since I responded well to my dosage of Clomid, although they are doing an earlier ultrasound to keep an eye on my lining, since it was thin last time. I might have to take supplements, but we shall see. I ordered all my meds and went to pick them up today and of course Walgreens STILL didn’t order the Ovidrel. I had this issue last month…..my insurance denies it, so they don’t order it. Hello???!!! It is a fertility drug, of course they are going to deny it. So I tell them once again to please order it, I will pay the cash price and I get the run around. But they say it will be in tomorrow, we shall see…..

I also ask them if they can take my empty syringe from last month, nope no sharps box there. I think I am going to drop it off at the vet, lol….they know me well enough and I know they have one. 🙂

So I start Clomid again on Saturday, for five days and then go in next Friday for an ultrasound to see how things are progressing and we move on from there. Here’s hoping this is our cycle. 🙂

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