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EricsMom September 22nd, 2008 02:05 PM

I guess I'll get this forum started.

A summary of our long journey to have a family:

I'm Candie (33) and DH is Steven (39)
Married in Sept. 2000 - off BCP June 2000
TTC 1 year with family Dr. - 3 rounds Clomid @ 50mg - no O
2001 - 2003 saw RE - b/w, u/s, S/A, normal. Clomid @ 50mg, no O, 100mg O'ed, 150mg stopped mid cycle due to illness.
Dec. 2003 hospitalized for chronic lung condition. Put on high dose Prednisone. Got AF on my own in Jan. (same day I started the Prednisone). End of Feb. 2004 found out I was pg with our "Miracle Baby". DS was born 6 weeks early on 09/18/04 due to pre-eclampsia caused by the Prednisone. After a tumultueous first year he is a thriving 4 year old now with nothing more than a speech delay and mild tick.
Apr. 2006 we got back on the TTC roller coaster to work on baby #2. Of course it wouldn't be that easy.
Apr '06 - Jul '08 - various testing (normal). 6 rounds of Clomid and Metformin, no "O". Adoption options investigated. (Other urological issues got in the way so we had to keep taking TTC breaks while I dealt with those).

This all brings us to where we are now. As you can tell, I am completely annovulatory and IR. I almost never get AF unless she is medically induced. I am also overweight by 100+ pounds and I'm sure this plays a role in our infertility journey although my Dr. has never seen it as an issue. DH's SA is normal. Age is working against us now as I'm soon to be 34 and DH will be 40 in 6 weeks. We have embarked on our first injectibles cycle with timed intercourse.

09/11 - CD1
09/13 - CD3 - estrogen 240, 112.5 units Gonal-F
09/16 - CD6 - estrogen 307, continue same dosage
09/18 - CD8 - estrogen 224, up dosage to 150 units Gonal-F
09/20 - CD10 - estrogen 180, up dosage to 225 units Gonal-F
09/22 - CD12 - u/s showed 4 follies on right measuring less than 9mm and 6 follies on left measuring less than 9mm. However, estrogen 527 (tripled in last 2 days). Stay on same dosage, back for b/w and u/s on 09/24.

Grow follies grow!

That's the summary of the past 8 years. We're really hoping this cycle is the one. I'm most stressed about the time off work as I don't want anyone at work to know what we're doing. I don't like anyone to know what we're doing as I hate the questions.

I must get back to work but I'll type more later.

jlk September 23rd, 2008 05:39 PM

Lots and lots of baby dust for you this cycle!! T & P your way.
I totally understand the time issue. DH and I are both in our 30's as well. If only we were 20 again..LOL
Hopefully your no one at your work asks too many questions. You definitely do not need the extra stress.
How wonderful that you got a miracle baby! I was really hoping that would happen to us this time around but I knew in my heart it wouldn't. We just are not as lucky as those who can naturally have children. Oh well, when life throws you lemons, you have to make lemonade right? :smile:

EricsMom September 24th, 2008 01:50 PM

Well today is CD14, day 12 of injections. Had my b/w and u/s this morning. The Dr. who did the u/s said not much had changed - I still have 4 small follies on the right and 12 small follies on the left (up from 6 on Tues) but no dominant ones. She said my lining also isn't as thick as it should be. She didn't see how we could keep going much longer but she wanted to speak with my Dr. and see what my estrogen was before making a decision. She didn't think my estrogen would be much higher than it was on Tues. based on the u/s. Needless to say I was really upset coming in to work. I was just starting to feel positive about all this (something I try not to do because I'm a pessimist) and now it sounds like this cycles a bust (and my clinic only does a max of 6 injectible cycles).

I just got off the phone with the nurse and my estrogen was 955 - almost double the 527 it was on Tues. I should be elated. I have to take the same dose of Gonal-F tonight and go back for b/w only tomorrow. All that being said, I'm just physically and mentally exhausted. If I closed my eyes for 2 minutes I'd be sleeping at my desk. I have a headache and just feel completely blah today. On top of that, my car is in the shop and will probably cost $900 by the end of the day (and I have no idea yet how I'm paying for that) and my healthcare plan seems to have lost the last claim form I sent in and I should have had that $1000 back this week so if I do need more injectibles I'll probably have to borrow from my inlaws.

I just feel rotten today. I'm trying to change my pessimistic attitude but I'm starting to realize that the reason I never let myself get too excited about things is because it hurts that much more when the letdown comes. I know that's no way to live life, I guess it's just the way I'm dealing with stuff now. Besides, this is my blog and I can write what I want.

Some days I feel like such a failure in life in general and I know this journey is not helping that. I can't help focusing on my age. DH will be 40 in Nov. Financially we are not where we want to be, I can't say I really like my job, my weight is a huge issue, the list goes on and on. I think I'm rambling just to vent a little now. Every day my DS wants to know if there's a baby in my tummy.

Again, I think I'm just really tired now. Oh well, that's what this blog is for, right? To vent the successes and failures of this horrifically wonderful journey that no one should have to go through.

Back to work now . . . .

EricsMom September 25th, 2008 02:03 PM

I'm trying to be very excited right now. My b/w today showed my estrogen levels more than doubled over night! Yesterday they were 955, today they are 1957! That's awesome! At least my body is finally doing what it's supposed to after 12 days of injections. They lowered my dosage tonight from 225 to 150 and I have to go for an u/s and b/w tomorrow.

I want to be excited but I'm afraid to get excited because I'm a pessimist and figure "it's too good to be true" - that tomorrow when I go for my u/s I'll find out that my lining is too thin or my follies haven't grown and the disappoint of that scares me. If we don't get pg this cycle I can handle that as long as I "O" because at least I know my body (and the drugs) did what they were supposed to. I can't handle having my estrogen levels be where they should and still having my follies not develop.

I'm excited about tomorrow yet very nervous to see what they find at the same time. Being my first cycle I don't know how fast follies grow. On Wed. I had 4 less than 9mm on the right and 12 less than 9mm on the left. I'm just praying that 4 or 5 of those have started maturing.

Here's hoping! It's going to be a long night tonight - I know I'll toss and turn thinking about my appt. tomorrow. This has been the longest 2 weeks of my life!

EricsMom September 26th, 2008 11:02 AM

This journey never gets easier. Yesterday I was feeling really positive. My follie # had increased the day before, my estrogen had doubled over night. I was really looking forward to going in for my u/s today and seeing a few giant follies and being told we could trigger this weekend. Yeah, it was wishful thinking but the let down is still hard. As of today I have 4 on the right - 2 are now 9mm - and I have 15 on the left, all below 9mm. My lining was 13mm. the Dr. who did the u/s just said "boy, you really are a challenge". When she says nothing is happening I can't help but wonder if my follies will ever grow. Is it possible to go through all this and not have any mature follies? That thought scares me. I really want to be done the monitoring routine soon. This driving 1.5 hours return trip every day (or every other day) before work is wearing on me - as is the energy-sapping injections. I only have 2 injections left and we're out of money. I don't know if my MIL will be really happy about lending us more - she's already lent us $2500. This whole journey is the hardest thing I've ever done and I dare to argue that absolutely NO ONE can understand the physical and emotional toll this journey takes unless they've been through. I thank God every day for JM because it's the only place I can go and feel normal.

EricsMom September 26th, 2008 02:16 PM

Well my estrogen today is 2267 so I'm to stay at 150 units of Gonal-F and go back tomorrow for b/w only. I asked the nurse about my lining and she said it's good - nice and thick and ready for an embryo. I asked her about the correlation between my estrogen and the # of follies and she said every folicle releases estrogen and since I have so many folicles that's why my estrogen is high. It's just a matter now of getting those follies to grow bigger. I didn't ask if it's possible they won't grow because I didn't want to know the answer to that.

I'm so worried this cycle will be cancelled because I have too many small follies and they won't want me to keep going for fear of too many maturing in the end.

Argh. I need a vacation - somewhere hot and sunny with a tropical drink . . .

EricsMom September 28th, 2008 01:58 PM

Well as thought my u/s this morning did not confirm much growth. I have one follie that is almost 10mm and 2 that are 9mm, the rest are less than that. The Dr. does not want to continue with the injections since it's been 15 days already (I'm on CD18) and there has been no significant improvement this week. My estrogen did go up a little over night but it's still fluctuating too much.

So the plan now is to take the Ovidrel shot tonight since I have it because "you never know" they said. I'll go back next Sunday for a progesterone draw to see if I did ovulate. If not, I need to see my RE to decide the next treatment course, if I do then I go back for the pregnancy b/w the following weekend. At least I don't have to go in early during the week. I'm really tired after driving in and out of town (1.5 hours round trip) every day for the last 6 days.

I was also a little shocked today when I asked about PCOS and was told I have a "textbook case". My RE had checked me for PCOS before (I think it was before my DS) and said I didn't have it. When speaking with the nurse she said I had everything - the shape of my ovaries, LOTS of tiny follies, annovulatory and 2 abnormal hormones (androgen and testosterone). I had always thought I might have it but since my RE had said no before I never pursued it. I know when I was going through fertility treatments for my DS my testosterone back then was normal. I can't help wondering if the high dose steroids I was on for 2 years affected that permanently (as they did deepen my voice).

Oh well, I guess that's something to discuss with my RE when I see him. For now I'm a little numb but I'll deal with it. To top off today it turns out my SIL is having a c-section at 3pm to deliver her twins.

I'm really tired with Dr's being intrigued because I'm a challenge (long story relating to a previous lung illness that almost killed me and complicated pregnancy). I just want something to be "normal".

EricsMom October 14th, 2008 01:01 PM

I haven't updated this for awhile. Long story short:

7 days past trigger - progesterone 75 - Holy Crap I "O'ed" ! ! !
14 days past trigger - Beta - BFN.

AF showed with a vengence on Oct. 12 - worst EVER. Plan of action now - give my ovaries a 4 week break. If I don't O on my own this cycle we'll commence injections on or about Nov. 12.

EricsMom January 2nd, 2010 10:12 PM

Re: Candie's Family Journey
I've avoided JM for a year now, except a periodic peak here and there. I just re-read my blog from a year ago and so many emotions come flooding back. After the failed injections cycle my RE told me to lost 40lbs before proceeding with the next round. I expected it, but the cycle itself had taken it's toll on me. I never did lose that 40 lbs although I've half-heartedly attempted it many times.

I desperately want to be pregnant again, my soul aches for it. At the same time I get too wrapped up in depression to do what I need to get healthy.

Our journey has taken a new turn. DH and I have decided to adopt a child in foster care. We met with the social worker in Oct. and have since started researching and reading up on the special challenges child in foster care face. Our education classes start this week and continue through April. Although I struggled with the decision to adopt at first (because I don't want to give up on the idea of another biological child) I'm definitely excited now and looking forward to this new chapter in our journey to expand our family. I hope that by the time we have a child placed with us, my health will be where it needs to be and then maybe we can look at TTC'ing #3 biologically. I hope that by focusing on the adoption I will take the pressure off myself to "have to lose weight in order to get pregnant" and I'll be able to concentrate on creating a new healthy lifestyle. Our homestudy will be in the summer and then we'll be put in the data base to look for a child. I pray that maybe by the end of the year God will help match us up with a child who needs us. It could be a matter of weeks or years, there are never any guarantees.

It seems weird to continue this blog, but at the same time I called it "Candie's Family Journey" and not our "Trying to Conceive Journey" . . . guess somehow I left this blog open to be used for whatever method we used to expand our family.

I'm excited to start our course this week. Being on JM again is great but it does renew the twinges of desire for pregnancy. I'm sure no matter what, that's a longing that never quite goes away. I continually remind myself that I must feel blessed for the gift I have. He is my world and I cherish every day with my DS. If I never again am able to get pregnant, at least I was able to do it once and that's a precious gift I'll never take for granted.

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