Sunday, September 18, 2011

embryo status

After reading over my last post I realized I didn't say what happened to the embryos we were hoping to freeze for future use.  Unfortunately the embryos did not survive so if we do IVF again we'll have to start from scratch.  There is so much that goes into IVF, I feel pretty educated on the matter but there are still some questions and concerns.  If you or someone you know is going through or debating going through IVF I would love to talk to you or them.. I remember feeling so helpless when starting this journey, it's so foreign!!  I would also love to hear any stories related to your journey with IVF and infertility.  I hear from more people about how they had trouble getting pregnant, lost babies, had miscarriages, and now they're proud parents!!  I do not like being labeled with "infertility issues" but I am not alone.  Although I wouldn't wish this heartache on ANYONE it's refreshing to know we're not the only ones struggling.. So I encourage you if you are walking this dark path to please look for the light, it's there!!  Some days it's hard to see but you have to have FAITH and believe in the One that's bigger, smarter, & greater than we could ever imagine!!

Saturday, September 17, 2011


My last post was July 24, and it wasn't much of a post.. I said I would update you all on everything that has been going on with us. I had good intentions but life has been pretty crazy the past few months.

As far as every day life goes, Ben and I are both still working and loving what we do. I'm so grateful to have a job that I passionately love going to!! Ben continues to amaze me by going to school Tuesday - Friday, working a 12 hour shift Saturday & Sunday, with Monday being his only day off to study and sleep in. We both know this is a means to an end and it will pay off come December when he graduates!! He still gives 110% and is on the honor roll, I am so proud of him!! We did some fun things this summer while taking some time off from trying to get pregnant. We also celebrated some family members birthdays and special holidays together. Speaking of family, we are so fortunate to have such an amazing family (on both sides) that love and support us unconditionally!!

I've been asked by a couple different people why I haven't blogged, some family & some friends.. in all honesty, I've sat down, logged on, started to type then signed back off. When you don't have kids it's hard to find something to blog about every day. Right now Ben and I lead pretty predictable lives.. we usually see family at night, go eat with them, but mostly we come home, Ben studies, & I typically take a bath and get in bed. Crazy right??

I do know a lot of people keep up with our infertility journey on this blog which I've decided to continue. I've debated over the past few months if I should delete this or start back.. I've learned that most people care and want so badly for Ben and I to have children. I've received several notes in the mail from total strangers (some I know, some I don't) encouraging us, sending us prayers, & bible verses. That means more to me then any of you will ever know!! So here's a condensed version that will get you all up to date. After taking a few months off at the beginning of the summer, I started back on birth control the end of June. This would be the start to another IVF cycle. (IVF cycle #2 for us) Mid July I stopped that medicine and soon after started the beloved shots every night. Along with shots I took several other medicines every day. By the end of July I was finally ready for the retrieval of my eggs. I don't remember how specific I was with our last IVF cycle but I'll give you a few details here.. A "normal" woman should produce at least 20 eggs, that does not mean they will be good enough to use.. For whatever reason I do not produce many eggs, I am lucky to have 6. This particular cycle I believe they retrieved 9, which we were thrilled about. We did a day 5 transfer (options are day 3 or 5) because the embryos were growing and thriving, again we were elated. I should also mention with this cycle I was responding so much better to the drugs, my levels were much higher which was a huge praise!! We chose to put in two embryos the day of the transfer which was the first of August. The transfer went smooth as could be, and we had to wait a few days to see if the other three embryos survived. (In this case we would freeze those to use at a later date) At this point you have to wait two weeks from the day of the retrieval for blood work to see if you were successful. This put us doing blood work the second week of August, which was positive!! Praise the lord, the number was also much higher this time then last. You always go back two days later to make sure the number is rising and we were elated to learn it had more than doubled. I ended up doing lab the following week for some reason or another and it was much higher than the doctor anticipated!! That put our minds at ease more than we can say.. the anxiety that comes with trying to get pregnant is intense but when you've been through what we've been through and add IVF that same anxiety intensifies by 100,000!! Besides the emotional aspect, we also have a lot of money put into this venture. The following week I had some discharge that was less than calming. They got me in that day for an ultrasound, which was four days earlier than our original U/S was scheduled for. We learned on this day that one embryo had implanted and there was a heartbeat, a very slow heartbeat but it was there. We were only 5 1/2 weeks at this point so the heartbeat wasn't a worry to the doctor, we were just so blessed there was one there!! We kept our appointment four days later and learned the HR had jumped to 99 which is right where it should be at six weeks!! The following week I went in on Monday & Thursday, both days the heartbeat was around 100 which all involved were a little hesitant about.. at this point they would of liked it to be in the 120's.. The following Monday, Labor Day we had another ultrasound and learned that our embryo did not have a heartbeat. Two days later, one last ultrasound to verify there was no heartbeat and later that morning I had yet another D & C. So, yes we did IVF again, yes we were successful, but we did lose the embryo and I am now recovering from another surgery. Like last D & C I've had some complications.. talk about kicking you when you're down. Through it all Ben and I have held our heads high and leaned on each other for support. We're VERY open and honest and communicate our feelings throughout the whole process, it's all you can do to stay sane. We kept this IVF cycle more hush hush this time around so please don't be upset if you didn't know.. Of course it did leak out to a few people and immediate family & friends did know. Everyone has been more than supportive and loved on us. How did I handle this loss?? To be honest, I'm numb.. I have not cried since finding out there was no heartbeat. I asked Ben if there was something wrong with me.. I do get an occasion knot in my throat but it's usually because I hear something else sad. With me random things set me off, usually it's a song or something someone says. We are not discouraged and plan to try again.. We do not have a plan at this point, we're letting my body heal once again. That's where we're at in our journey with infertility.  Please pray for patience, answers, and for open minds and hearts as to what our next step should and will be...

This is my favorite time of year, other than Christmas itself!! I love the cool weather, football on Saturdays, getting dark earlier, decorating the house, fall scented candles, getting together with family, grilling out, taking walks, & a lot of fun holidays!! I love my life - husband, family, friends, & dog.. I am one fortunate woman!! Although the past couple of years have been trying, we've learned something through each loss & our story is being written.. we look forward to each chapter and seeing what God has planned!!

Every day's a good day, some days are just better than others!!