now and ever more

each journey begins with one step . . . a baby step

appointment and day 30 . . . January 30, 2012

So today was our long-awaited appointment with the RE.  I came prepared with a list of questions and also ready to listen.  As we suspected, the doc aid that it was most likely a chromosomal issue as to why I miscarried.  No surprise there.  Hubby asked questions about statistics and so forth.  Then we talked about our next plan.  And I felt very prepared to ask questions about different protocols thanks to the ladies on the BBC forum.  If not for them, and me asking questions about those different protocols, I am not 100% sure we would be doing this cycle differently, but we are.

So basically, if AF cooperates and gets here by the 9th of February or thereabouts, we will be able to do IVF #3 in March, if not, then for sure in April.  This time we will be doing a micro-dose Lupron protocol.  For stims we will still use Follistim but this time we will also be adding in Menopur.  The doc said that they sometimes go this route for women who have not produced as many eggs as they had hoped.  So I am feeling pretty good about this.  I basically told her that I would do 20 shots a day if necessary, but I won’t have to. 🙂

I also shared my concern about the possibility of return polyps.  If you remember, we started IVF #2 and had to freeze the embryos to have a hysteroscopy to clean out the uterus.  So she said they could do a saline sonogram in Feb, before we begin, to check for anything in there.  That made me happy and also relieved.  My gut was telling me that if we didn’t and they could not see anything on ultrasound, that there might still be something there to prevent implantation.  AND she said she would try to see if insurance would cover that.  Bonus!  And praying that they do.

So I should be getting a call from the nurse sometime, probably within the next week or so and then if AF shows up, we can start our journey once again.  And I do believe this will be the one.  Third times’ the charm!

DAY 30:  After a month of infertility talk, we need a distraction.  Give us a link to one of your favorite non-infertility-sites, or tell us about your favorite distraction activity/book/feel-good movie.

Well, I don’t spend a lot of time just browsing different sites online.  If I am shopping for something, I usually check out Amazon first.  They almost always have what I need at a cheaper price than most places.  I have also gotten into Pinterest.  I usually browse that before going to bed.

As far as distractions . . . a few shows I enjoy watching are, “Once Upon a Time”, “Pan Am”, “The Office” (I do miss Michael Scott), “Criminal Minds”, “Amazing Race” (new season starts soon), and “The Good Wife”.  Books…well, I have several as I mentioned last night that I can start reading any time.  Feel-good movie:  Love the old hollywood musicals.  How can you not feel good after watching those?

So that was the end of my 30-day challenge.  I had fun.  I hope you had fun getting to know a little bit more about me.  I think I would like to do another 30-challenge, I just have to find one that is interesting.  If anyone has any ideas, please pass them along.

Thanks for reading!

 

before the appointment and day 29 January 29, 2012

Well, tomorrow is our follow-up appointment with the doctor (after IVF#2 failed).  It seems like it has been so long since it happened.  Almost, what is the point?  I am sure that she will say it was a chromosomal thing that caused the miscarriage.  We aren’t going to be able to start another round right away unless they decide we are the 1-millionth customer and give it to us for free.  (wishful thinking)  So I just don’t know what to expect.

I will prepare a list of questions.  They will have more to do with our next cycle.  It is helpful to chat with other women who have gone through IVF.  To see what protocol their doctor’s used.  I know every woman, and for that matter every doctor is different.  But at least it makes me seem somewhat educated when I can ask the doctor about a certain drug that someone else took and why I didn’t.  Will this protocol work better for me?  Or that one?

I know the goal is to get as many eggs as we can possibly get.  The first cycle was pretty good…the 2nd one not as many.  They used the same dosage of the same drug.  So it tells me we need to do something different the next time.  I am at the point that I would tell her I would take 20 shots a day if it meant that this time would work.  I know it will not be that, but this will truly be our last time, unless we win the lottery or the state of Illinois decides to start covering IVF for self-insured people.

So I will probably talk about our appointment in tomorrow night’s blog.  And it is the last day of my 30-day challenge.  I have enjoyed the challenge of blogging every day for 30 days.  So much so, I am thinking of trying to find another 30-day challenge somewhere.

Day 29:  What is your favorite book?

Can’t say that I have a favorite book.  When I was younger in my teens, I started reading Stephen King books.  Loved them.  Of course I would read them right before I went to bed.  Big mistake!  LOL  I do still like Stephen King, I actually have a couple of books of his sitting on the shelf that I haven’t started yet.

I have also enjoyed reading all the Christmas books by Donna VanLiere; such as “The Christmas Shoes,” “The Christmas Blessing”, etc.  Very heartwarming and easy reads.  You can read one of those books over a weekend. 🙂 I am interested in reading her story “Finding Grace.”  In it she talks about miscarriage and her difficulty with infertility.  I will read it someday, just have to be in the right frame of mind.

One book I am looking forward to reading is “Fairy Tale Interrupted: A Memoir of Life, Love, and Loss”, written by John Kennedy Jr.’s assistant.  I read excerpts in People Magazine and it sounds like it will be good.  Oh and I am a sucker for books about animals, or more specifically dogs.  My hubby got me “Rescuing Sprite” by Mark Levin when we were dating and I loved it.  Have lots of kleenex handy.  Along those lines there is a book in my Amazon shopping cart, “A Big Little Life” by Deane Koontz that I will read eventually.  Also on my list are the memoirs of Julie Andrews and Katherine Hepburn.  Dang there are a lot of books I want to read…I better get started! 🙂

Thanks for reading!

 

chocolate cake and day 28 . . . January 28, 2012

OK, here is a little something I found several months ago on someone elses blog.  I do no remember where or who the author is, but I love how this is written.  I haven’t told most of my friends about our TTC journey, but I did post this on Facebook.  I think it was my way of “talking about it” without really talking about it.  The friends who know, commented and those who don’t, well, they probably didn’t get it.  Here is hoping we all get our special dessert one day!!

Dessert Anyone?

Imagine yourself dressed up in your finest clothes. You and your sweet husband are attending a dinner together in one of the nicest restaurants in town. You both have planned, waited and saved for this evening. To say the least, you are very excited! You and your husband arrive and the atmosphere is more than you expected. Everyone around you is having a good time. The chandeliers are sparkling, candles are glowing and sweet soft music is playing in the background. To your pleasant surprise you see others there you know. You are seated with them and in your heart you think there just couldn’t be anything better!

The table is just exquisite. Breathtaking really. The people at your table begin to talk to you in jolly conversation. You glance at the menu and you don’t even know where to begin! You look over everything slowly and carefully, especially the dessert menu! All of your life you have been hearing about this restaurant’s marvellous and divine desserts. Deep in your heart, you have been looking forward to enjoying dessert the most!

Everyone at your table orders their food. For dessert they all order chocolate cake. You think, “Hey that sounds perfect. I’ll have chocolate cake too please.”

The waiter nods in approval and quickly swifts off to put in your order. In the meantime, you are still enjoying the surroundings, the music and the company. You grab your husband’s hand and sigh “Yes, life just couldn’t get any better.”

The food comes and everything looks just pleasing. Some of the things you tasted you really love, some of the things you didn’t. Either way, you know that dessert is on its way. That thought in and of itself is just exciting! Then you see him, your waiter!  Your wonderful, blessed waiter with a silver tray full of plates of chocolate cake! He comes and starts handing out plates to those you know. You look at the cake and to put it simply, it looks just divine. You’re even more excited now! The waiter comes to your side and then passes you and your husband. You are shocked and think there must be some mistake. you don’t know what to do, but rather than make a fuss you think, “Just wait, I will get my chocolate cake soon too.”

Those that have their dessert are going on and on about how amazing the taste is. You smile, you are truly happy for them. Deep down you are anxious and their feelings only feed your curiosity and desire. Then you see the waiter again and think, “Ahhh, here he is.” You notice that he starts handing out seconds and thirds to those that have already had their piece of cake. Your husband doesn’t notice, he’s busy chatting with the fellow next to him! Deep down though you get a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach. You know something is wrong, something is very, very wrong.

You ask the waiter, “Excuse me please. Where is my chocolate cake that I ordered”? The waiter just replies, “The baker has said that you must wait.” He rushes off and not another word is said. Time goes on. You still enjoy the surroundings, the people and the conversations. All the while though, you can’t get chocolate cake out of your mind. Time keeps creeping by and soon your husband notices too, “Where is our dessert?” You hold his hand and look into his loving eyes and think, “Even without chocolate cake, life is still good.”

Time, however, creeps and it creeps. At moments it seems like it has even stopped. It’s getting late and people are noticing you haven’t received your dessert yet. Questions start arising and you just don’t know how to respond. You look around other tables and notice that people are also getting their third, fourth and fifth servings of dessert. “Why” is all you have to lean upon.

You notice that others have ordered things for dessert besides chocolate cake. There is cherry pie, brownie ice cream sundaes, raspberry cheesecakes and such. They seem just as pleased, if not more pleased with their desserts and you wonder, “Should I order cherry pie too”? You talk to the waiter and he simply says, “I’m sorry ma’am, you just need to be patient and wait.”

You are starting to burn inside. Despite all of your best efforts you are beginning to boil. You really want to jump on top of the table and stomp while shouting, “Where is my chocolate cake?” You don’t though because you know that will get you no where! Instead you look around and notice that there are some that are refusing their chocolate cake. “It will make me fat” one says. “Ugh. I have enough already” another states. One woman, simply dumps her beautiful chocolate cake onto the floor.

As you look deeper around you, you notice there are a few others that are waiting too. Your heart goes out to them. You smile and wish there was something more you could do. You know their pain and it hurts. It really hurts.

Finally, the waiter comes and he has chocolate cake on that familiar beautiful silver platter…and he has enough for two. One for your husband and one for you! Your so elated with joy that you can’t hardly stand it!!! You tell everyone at your table and they are just as happy for you. “We knew it would happen” they say. “You just needed to relax”! Little did they know that deep inside relaxing was the last thing you were feeling! You look at your husband. Tears are in both of your eyes. You carefully take a taste. It’s such sweet, sweet perfection. You go to take another and just before you do the waiter comes and gently takes your plates away. “Something is wrong” he says. “Don’t worry my dear, the time is soon.”

There’s confusion. Sadness. Anger. Above all though, you are just deeply and truly heartbroken. Heartbroken to the very core. You don’t know what to do. You turn to others for support. They cry with you and to ask why. You take a deep breath and find the strength to go on. You have been given the promise that you will receive dessert. It is just not understood as to when. You decide to put your full trust in the baker. You reach far inside within yourself and find the effort to ask your husband to dance.

He looks at you and smiles…”Yes, I would love to dance with you my dear one.” You both get up, leave the table and set off to dance.

As you are dancing, you get your bearings. You again begin to notice your surroundings. The beautiful surroundings that have so magically grabbed your attention in the first place. You remember the music, the sounds, the smell of the sweet flowers. You breath. That’s all you can do. You breath and slowly begin to enjoy the moment again. Slowly, it all comes back to you. The things you love. Being with the person you love the most. The pains you have just felt are still there. Still vulnerable, but you feel life again. Yes, life is still good.

After quite a few dances, you both decide it’s time to sit at your table. People still have their desserts and their chocolate cakes. Your space is still empty. You decide, however, to really focus on those around you. In doing so you find more joy. The desire for dessert is still there- but it’s manageable. Time moves on.

Then suddenly, out of nowhere, your waiter appears. He has the biggest smile on his face. He is pleased to announce that you and your husband’s dessert is finally here!! Your heart wells up with joy, but you’re afraid too. You ask the waiter, “Will you take it away”? “No, this one was made especially for you.”

You smile back, hardly believing that this could be true or real. You look at it and it’s not a dessert you have ever seen before. It’s then that you realize that the baker has made a dessert with all of your favorite colors and flavors. Careful detail was lovingly taken into every consideration. “How did He know that this is exactly what I wanted”? The waiter just smiles and says, “Because he knows and loves you.” If you look, you can see him there. You look and at the door, through the little round window you see a gentle man with tears in his eyes. He is grinning from ear to ear and looking at you and your husband. You can’t hardly see anymore because of all of the happy tears. You whisper a big “Thank You” and in your heart you feel that this simple phrase will never be enough.

You look at the people around you, they too have tears in their eyes. They too are smiling from ear to ear. Everything is so precious and tender now- even more so than when you first arrived here. It’s then that you learn that the pains you have felt all along the way. The waiting, the crying, the agony. It’s all been a special recipe to make this moment this much more wonderful and sacred.

In your soul you take a deep breath and slowly let out a big sigh of gratitude.

You grab your husband’s hand and sigh again, “Yes, life just couldn’t get any better.”

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

DAY 28:  Have you ever done something “non-traditional” in order to help you conceive?

For those familiar with my blog and our journey you know we have.  I consider medical intervention non-traditional.  So we have tried IUI and IVF, unsuccessfully.  Even though we had a positive result this last IVF, it was unsuccessful.  Success is when we get to hold that baby in our arms.  I am still hoping that we have a shot at the traditional way of conceiving, but the odds are not in our favor.  But we keep praying everyday that the miracle happens.

Thanks for reading.

 

and day 27 . . . January 27, 2012

No though provoking post today.  Feeling worse and heading to bed.  Hope to be back to “normal” within the next couple of days.  Thanks for hanging in there with me.

DAY 27:  What do you use the “nursery” for right now?

Well, it is a spare bedroom/sewing room.  Which, when it becomes a nursery, will probably still be used as a spare bedroom.  There are days when I am in there and I think of how the furniture will be rearranged with the baby furniture.  It makes me happy to envision that and sad that we haven’t been able to do it yet.  It will happen!  And I can’t wait to decorate it!!!

Thanks for reading!

 

still sick and day 26 . . . January 26, 2012

OK, well I am getting it full force now.  The sore throat started and I got very little sleep last night.  I sure hope it doesn’t last long.

Not a lot happening today.  Worked on a few projects.  We did not walk but played with the dog outside a little.  Not sure if any of you noticed my ticker, but I have officially lost 2 pounds.  Only took 3 weeks!  UGH!  I think if I can be better about exercising I will see better results.  I do not expect to see the pounds drop off quickly.  I didn’t gain the weight quickly.  And I prefer slow and steady so that I am more inclined to keep it off.

I think too many times people want a quick fix.  Give me a pill, so I don’t have to change anything that I do.  Or surgery.  I am not saying that surgery is wrong.  I think for some people, that is what they need.  And for a lot of those people they work their butts off after the surgery to learn to live a healthier life.  But unfortunately there are those who think of it a quick fix and then refuse to change the way they eat or refuse to exercise and therefore the weight comes right back on.

It is a constant struggle for most, especially as you age.  I certainly thought by my 40th year I would be in better shape…well that is what I wanted at least.  But I make excuses and say, so much has been going on with TTC and just life in general that I just couldn’t get there.  What I should have told myself is “if it is that important to you, make it happen…make time for it!”

So with that being said, tomorrow I am going to walk.  It will either be for 20 minutes on the treadmill or a walk around the block.  But I am going to get off my butt and do it, because that is the only way I can drop the weight I want to and still remain healthy (and eat better too).

I am also motivated to lose the weight because when I become pregnant I am going to put about 20-25 pounds on, so if I can drop that amount pre-baby, I will feel much better about things.

DAY 26:  Post a picture of something that makes you happy.

I love this photo of my hubby with Buddy our dog.  My two favorite fellas.  Pure joy!

Thanks for reading!

 

sick and day 25 . . . January 25, 2012

Ok everyone I think I am getting what my hubby has.  Been extremely exhausted all day and just really did nothing.  So not too much to write about.  Will write more tomorrow.  On to the challenge.

DAY 25:  What was your first baby or pregnancy-related purchase you ever made?  Was it before or after you started trying to conceive?  Or was it after you were already pregnant?  Why did you choose that particular item to buy first?  If you haven’t purchased anything yet, why not?

When we first started TTC obviously I thought it would happen right away.  I did not purchase anything, but I did a lot of looking online.  I bookmarked a lot of sites that had items I was interested in, etc.  I just didn’t want to “jinx” anything.  I guess I compare it to buying a wedding dress when you aren’t even dating anyone.  Hey, if that works for you, great.  It doesn’t work for me.

So now that it will be coming up to 3 years of trying, I am glad I did not purchase anything.  I am still remaining positive because I know it will happen, but I just don’t want to buy something to have around as a constant reminder that it hasn’t yet.    That doesn’t mean I don’t look at sales ads I get in the mail, or look online at things that I think would be neat to have for a baby.

When I found out I was pregnant in December, I seriously thought of getting something like a cute onesie.  I was trying to remain positive, even though my numbers did not look good.  I am really glad I did not get one.  I just know it would have been too hard to see that….as a reminder of the miscarriage.

So for now, I browse online.  I see things my friends post on Facebook, and make mental notes.  I will get to start shopping for something soon….I just know it.

Thanks for reading.

 

hubby getting sick and day 24 . . . January 24, 2012

So hubby is starting to come down with a cold.  His business takes him to a lot of different places and so he comes into contact with a lot of people, therefore, a lot of germs.  So today he started feeling crappy and I am just hoping that I don’t get it.  He did a lot of tossing and turning last night and I am a light sleeper so I woke up every time he rolled over.  And I started feeling the tiredness around lunch.

I asked him if he wanted to walk this morning and he said he would later.  So I opted to hop in the treadmill for a bit to see if it could help me get some energy.  I walked a mile and it helped a little bit.  I also got the dog to walk 1/10th of a mile.  He enjoyed it. 🙂  Then after lunch I got hubby to go for a walk with me.  So we did 2 miles.  Now darn it, if I don’t see something different on the scale tomorrow I am going to scream!  But I hope for the best!  Now on to the challenge question.

DAY 24:  Does your religion (or lack of) help/hurt/affect your infertility journey?  Have you found religion?  Lost it?  Does it affect what treatments you do?

Let me tell you….early on it was really tough to stay positive about it all and to stop myself from wondering if I was being punished.  Afterall, I had thought I did everything right in my life.  I waited until I found the right guy. It wasn’t my fault that I didn’t meet him until I was 35!  But there came a point when I had to stop being so negative about my journey.

I did that when I was single.  I could not understand why it was taking me so long to find someone.  Then I finally just accepted the fact that I might never find that someone and that I would be single.  I was at peace with it.  I would not stop looking, but I would be ok if I didn’t.  Then of course I met my hubby.

But unlike that, I do not want to accept the fact that I may never have a child.  I can’t!  And one of those reasons is my religion.  The priest asks us during the ceremony if we are open to having children.  They don’t ask, would you be ok if you never had children!  So I can’t believe that we won’t.  I have to believe that His plan is for us to be parents.  Call it the power of positive thinking or just having faith.  It is what we must do to survive this whole process.

Now of course, being Catholic, how we get pregnant can be a sticky issue.  I never thought in a million years that I would have to have medical intervention to have a baby.  Who does?  That is not natural.  And unfortunately not accepted by the Catholic church.  But, I have said this about many things, the decisions you make are between you and God.  No one can judge you but God.  And after going over this in my mind a lot, I have accepted that if IVF is what it takes then it is ok.  God will be ok with it.  Some may disagree, but it is a private and personal decision that no one can make for us.

So choosing to do IVF was never an easy decision, money aside.  And I certainly would never tell the priest at our church how we finally got pregnant.  Maybe I am scared at what he would say, maybe I do have some little feeling of guilt, just because it is against “the rules.”  But that is what I have to live with and no one else.  And if that is how we get pregnant, I will live with it and even though it wasn’t done the “natural” way, I will thank God each and every day for that baby.  Because I will know it was Him that gave it to us.  Faith will get us through this.  I know it will.

Thanks for reading.