Somewhere Over the Rainbow

This one will be a little different as we are at the one year mark.  I have so many emotions rolling through my head, thankfully I have a pretty large work problem to keep me distracted at this time.  I’ve also been meditating at least once a day and practicing mental breaks so that I can distract myself from focusing on what we have lost, diverting my focus to the good things in life.  I still have my moments, who wouldn’t?  Our hearts are still broken, that will never change, you just put the pieces back together and move on.November 8: 1 year ago today we went in for the transfer of our one and only embryo from our second retrieval.  It was one of the most terrifying things I have done.  The last of our combined genetics, will this work?  We had done literally everything in our power to make it work.

Right before we went back. Our first family photo. I hate that you can see the fear in my eyes, after one failed transfer it shows.[/caption]

November 10, 2016: Today my dogs began devoting themselves to me. Ryker was so bad that he refused to go outside without me, he had to be touching me or see me at all times. I began having symptoms that I didn’t realize were symptoms yet.

November 11, 2016: The nausea started. Satsumas were the cure.

November 14, 2016: I took a pregnancy test. After 6 years, 2 pink lines showed up on that baby. I was so excited I cried.

November 15, 2016: I took a different another pregnancy test, the line is darker. At this point I’m riding that happy until my blood test.

November 18, 2016: Blood serum day. Officially I am pregnant, 105.

We went to MO to visit our family for Thanksgiving, 12 hours one way in the Explorer.

Our first ultrasound was scheduled November 30, 2016. Seeing our baby on the screen was the most amazing thing. There it was everything we had worked so hard for. Everything in one tiny bubble in my uterus. Yolk sac and embryo both look great. We schedule for the next week. That weekend we traveled to a race we volunteer at (2 hours in the Explorer one way).

December 5, 2016, growth was a little behind but nothing to be concerned about at this point. We will be back the next week.

December 6, 2016, I nearly pee myself coming into work. I had no idea that this was the beginning of the end. That evening, bright red followed by a blue tinge clot. I had not idea that was our baby at the time. Several of my friends had bled during their successful cycles, I wasn’t going to panic.

December 7, 2016, went in to have an ultrasound and make sure everything is ok. There was NOTHING in my uterus, nothing at all. I broke, that was my breaking point. All that we have been through and this is what we end with. There are no answers, our embryo quality was great everything was growing great we have no understanding as to why this happened to us.

1 year later I still have so many questions. We got rid of the Explorer, I’m not sure I’ll ever be convinced that the vehicle did not cause the miscarriage. In January we learned of the problem with carbon monoxide in the cabin and bought a meter. Almost the entire time I drove the Explorer there was a reading, typically around 4ppm but as high as 10ppm during my normal drives around town. Our trip to Arizona it reached 15ppm (not one single car around us for as far as we could see) and was still rising when we pulled over opened the windows and doors to air it out. I’ve come to terms but it still angers me that we went through 2 rounds of IVF to lose our last genetic connection potentially due to our vehicle poisoning us. We still have not succeeded and are left with so many questions.

What I’m doing now is clearing out my system. I’m going to a functional medicine doctor and will be following autoimmune paleo protocol for the next several weeks. I need to figure out why I cannot lose weight, what causes my inflammation and generally get my shit back together. I was able to see this on the anniversary of our last ultrasound. There is always a rainbow after the storm. We are getting there.

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Stop it.


I just need my brain to stop, to shut up.  Meditation is helping, but if I miss it I’m up most of the night (last night…).  I can’t imagine the next 2 months will be any better.  I’m focusing on the positive, it is what I have to look forward to.   I was gearing up to start my Leupron this time last year in preparation for the transfer of our last genetic chance.  To go through infertility and to get pregnant is a dream come true.  To lose that child is beyond my worst imagined dreams.  To all of the mothers who have lost, you are not alone.  We will go through this and it’s ok to grieve.  I will never forget the way the doctor looked at me as I was staring at the empty screen knowing what was about to come out of his mouth.  He strategically placed himself in front of the screen so I didn’t have to see it anymore.  I break down every time I replay that scene, the gut wrenching agony of our hearts being ripped straight out of our chests.  It doesn’t matter how you join this undesirable club, you are loved, you will get through and you will find your way.  Anniversaries are the hardest and not even being a year out it is all still fresh.  The wounds will heal and we’ll deal better every year.  That scar will still be there to sting it will always be there, it is part of your story, part of you.  

Fix it all

We’ve been busy.  Ronin (2 years) needed TPLO surgery.  I was fortunate enough to get him into a clinical trial at LSU which helped some with the costs.  TPLO is a repair for the CCL (the equivalent to the ACL).  We have been leash walking him since 3 weeks before the surgery, and we have at least 7 weeks to go. Instead of repairing the tendon, they cut the tibia and change the angles of the knee, plates and screws included.  He had the procedure September 13, and is doing very well.  He’s using that leg when he walks, squatting he does sometimes, but other times he tucks it under.  He’s starting to feel pretty good and we’re finding we have to crate him more and more because he’s starting to return to his wild man ways, it’s going to be a long remainder to rehab…  His first few days home were pretty rough for everyone involved.   He had solid restrooms, but there was some fresh blood.  Because of this they asked that we not give him the Rimadyl (it can upset the tummy).  He was only taking Tramadol, which from what I’ve read after the fact doesn’t do a whole lot for the pain.  The first night home, he was anxious and trembling and it just got worse.  I gave up by Saturday afternoon and added in the Rimadyl.  The stools cleared up and I’m guessing it was stressed (he doesn’t like to be away from us or his brother) and the pain was reduced in less than 2 hours. Thursday he goes in for his 2 week check, stitches out and rehab appointment.  He’s such a big boy we’re spending the extra money for the rehab to help us all out in the long run.  Thank goodness we have insurance.  

Kali has been adopted by a wonderful man.  We’re still working on the poor girl’s nose issue.  She has an appointment with LSU today and hopefully they can figure it out.  She is the sweetest and it breaks my heart she’s had to deal with this issue this long.  I’m still leaning towards fungal by going to LSU, we cut out the middle man since any of the local vets will send us to LSU anyway.  

On the infertility front, I just started a new cycle after 60 days.  I would have started the 2nd trimester this week, or our child would have been nearing 2 months.  I’m dreading November and December at this point.  Way too many reminders.  Unfortunately I have to pick myself up and live my life.  I’m hoping we can get away for the weekend at least once, I need to sit on a beach or in the woods or something and just reflect, I need to be able to let go.  There are days I just want to curl up and cry other days I just want to be done.  I’m just tired.  Tired of failing, tired of being broken, tired of it all.  I have been getting back to running.  It feels nice to be back out there.  Ryker appreciates it too.  Ronin however does not like to be left behind.  Did I mention he’s spoiled?  That’s enough randomness for today.  I hope you have a great week.

Fixing Humpty

How do you pick up the pieces?  In my life I’ve found that it is easiest to do this one piece at a time, start with the obvious placements and work your way to the much more difficult ones to put back in place.  I’m still working on this one and know I cannot glue one of the largest pieces back until after the WTF appointment the 25th.  I went ahead and put our names back on the donor embryo list for matching.  Almost immediately we received a potential embryo, last time it took nearly 3 months to even get our first donor profile and before we received another my friend donated hers to us.  I was shocked.  This embryo will also be discussed at the WTF appointment since we received minimal information with this profile.  At this point we’re not sure when we’d move forward, but we will eventually.  I am sure that it is a lining issue and that we will need to be above 7.5 for a transfer.  I really didn’t do anything different between the miscarriage transfer and this transfer, so I’m not sure.  I do believe that the regulation between July 2016 and my transfer in November 2016 was a huge player.  That question will be brought up for sure.  I let these embryos down, I should have fought harder.  Honestly until the 2nd appointment all was great so I don’t know what happened and why the lining stopped growing.  Right now I just wait for auntflow to show up and my appointment at the end of the month.  

For now I just put myself back together.  I’m working on my endometriosis and trying to get it more under control.  I am back on the pycnogenol and am working on getting some semblance of a running schedule together.  We will be running the local infertilty run in November called Baby Steps.  Our team is “Are you sure you’re doing it right?”  We came up with that because we are so vocal about our problems and with educating others on what they need to know.  I’m still dumbfounded by people who do not realize what their body does month to month.  I’m even more so when someone has to go through IVF or any other fertility treatment and they still have no clue.  Ignorance is not always bliss and could have saved someone years of heartache if they just knew how to do something as simple as charting.  For many people it isn’t so easy.  Maybe it’s just the scientist in me but I want to know what is going on and why.  I want to know why the doctor is prescribing this for this time of the month and I’m only taking this other drug some other days.  I want to know what I’m looking at on the screen when the tech is looking at my ovaries and lining.  I want to know what that number means, 7.2, 7.8…  What does that mean for me?  Is my lining trilaminear?  I’m ready to be through all of this needing to know.  I’m ready to be holding a child that is so dear to us that our love could start a fire.  I’m ready for the long nights and the grumpy days, the ‘Watch what I learned!” And the questions.  All of the questions.  Without questions you get no answers.  Without pain you don’t get strength.  I hope our child(ren) do not know all the pain we learned through, my hope is that they scrape through learning that maybe that branch wasn’t the one to climb, or that step should have been 2 inches to the left on a trail run.  I know we cannot protect them, but we can guide them and to us that is worth every pain we have been through.  We can teach them how to get through it and how to be good humans.

Let’s get this party started!

I’m ready to get this show on the road. I began Leupron injections Monday.  I had my scratch test on Tuesday.  I don’t know if my uterus is extra sensitive or what the deal is, but it does not like this test.  I take Tylenol before I go in and it doesn’t put a dent in the pain.  Because I cramp up so bad after and it lingers for the day I took the rest of the day off.  I was able to play with the twins.  It’s crazy to think they’re 3 months, and that next year I’ll be holding my own.  💕I received my APA, NK and MTHFR results and all are negative!  That is some of the best news we’ve received in this entire process.  It was getting a little hairy for a bit waiting on the NK results.  They were supposed to be in before the APA panel, but they ended up coming in at the same time as the MTHFR results (twice the amount of time the website states).  With endo, I was most likely to come back with the NK cells activated.  So it’s official that I have done all I could do to not be the problem.  My last birth control was Wednesday and I know my body was ready for that.  Mentally I’m ready to move forward.  I didn’t figure it would take long for period day 1, and I was right. She’s here only 1.5 days after stopping the pill.  Now for my official calendar.   July 29th I’ll start the estrogens with 2 u/s and blood work before the transfer July 17th.  That lines up my official blood test for July 27th, which was my due date for my miscarriage.  I feel so good about this, so many good things are happening, so much love to give.  My friend who has donated these babies to us had her transfer exactly 11 months prior.  I call her schedule the “good luck schedule” and I’m following in her footsteps.  

From the IVF Emoji app. Where was this when we started this process?!

In other news.  We had a mild tropical storm come through, unfortunately I know farther east it had much more rain then we had and I hate that for them, but we didn’t need it.  I had some panicked friends who flooded in August and I don’t blame them with drainage being blocked still due to overwhelmed public services as well as difficulty getting to some of the blockages, and just regular PTSD when the heavy rains come down.  I understand.  No matter how much logic you tell yourself if you’ve been through something like that it wears on you and can give you fears.  My older dog (Ryker) has not been acting near as nutty, well at least not until this past Sunday.  I was at the neighbor’s with him and a storm brewed up pretty quickly and it was a noisy one.  By the end of it, he was on my lap with his head buried.  His brother always tries to make him feel better which usually ends up making it worse, thankfully he was distracted by my neighbors’ dog.  They have a tree over their house so I’m not sure if that is why he was acting like a nut or if he’ll be a chicken for life (understood, we did have a tree crash through our house during a storm).  But they are so sweet!

July 20, 2012

This post is from July 20, 2012
Once again, I start another cycle. It’s like Groundhog Day but worse. You live through the motions of every month, but you can’t have fun with it. Once again, someone else is expecting. No matter how happy you might be for them, you don’t want to watch that belly grow, you don’t want to see what you’ve been trying to achieve for over a year. The worst thing is that I will be waiting more and more… Admitting that you need help is hard and we’ve hit the point that we need it. An appointment will be scheduled with an RE and we’ll go from there.

In other worlds I fell flew off my bike. I grossly miscalculated a corner and hit a poorly created road and WHAM!!! Next thing I knew the bike was in the street 5 feet away from me and I had blood gushing from my eye. The grass couldn’t be bothered to assist in my fall, just the sidewalk. My husband’s phone of course was not behaving the night before and the battery had been removed. Of course there are neighbors to beat on the door… Or not, one of those when you need someone the most you can’t find them situations. The home phone was not behaving either so I called my chiropractor, since that’s where I was headed to and he came to get me. When I got home my husband was up since I had called the home phone repeatably (we need to go buy a new one) and he knew something was up. I think his heart sank since it looked horrible, I just happened to be wearing a white shirt with a gaping head wound it looked like it was actually red, that is until you looked at the back. 2 hours in the waiting room at the ER, a CT Scan and 4 stitches later, nothing’s broken (they thought that I broke my suborbital bone). All in a good day…

 Healing has been a lesson in asking for help, that is for sure. I hate to not be able to do stuff for myself, however, put my hands together and you have one good hand. The right one looks like hamburger and the left one has “issues”. Not sure if it is jammed or just severely bruised. Time will tell. Overall the damage was minimal and I’m happy to once again be told “You have a hard head.” Yup, hard headed that’s me. It’s what pushes me through the worst of it. What pushes me out the door when I want to sit in bed and cry, when I just want to hide. I should mention this was Saturday the 14th, I have had 2 car wrecks and 2 (recent) falls on the day after Friday the 13th. I can tell you what I’ll be doing September 14, 2013, staying home!!!

The stitches came out yesterday and the doctor thought it was a healing beautifully and the hospital did a great job of shaving my eyebrow. Nope, Doc, all concrete. No razor was used in this creation, I’m that good. I’ve been exhausted but I do know how to take care of some wounds.

  I couldn’t believe that my fertility chart was actually amazing this month even with a crash and burn. Stress should cause a saw-tooth pattern, however, my chart was amazing, even went triphasic. Alas… 13 months of BFN (Big Fat Negative). It’s to the point I never expect to see it, those 2 glorious lines. How people who go through this for years, even decades I don’t know. Each month is like a new day, by the end of the month you are so ready for that positive you can taste it and you believe it, you believe it is there. You even start imaging another line only to realize you’ve lost your mind. Onward ho to the next month, Groundhog Day, over and over again you repeat. You continue to have hope, you continue to dream, eventually you choose to not run races because they are kid oriented, you start dreading baby showers. Yes it’s selfish, but there is only so much a person can take at once. It is always worst the first half of the cycle. Once ovulation occurs, you have new hope, new dreams. Here’s to starting back at one and going on. I love my husband and without his love, I’d be nuts (still debatable). One to next month, maybe we’ll get it right.

Sorry if this is scatter-brained, I did hit my head, LOL!

June 27, 2012

This post is originally from June 27, 2012.  Funny how little things seem to have changed in 5 years, but yet how so much has changed.  

As with running, you are always one step closer to your goal. Positive thinking can do a lot, but there are so many days that you just can’t deal with the outside world. Those days are meant for a run and a little BB King. Yesterday was one of those days. When you are young, you think you’re invincible, then you grow up and sometimes that happens faster then you want. You do everything possible to be the best person you can be, you do everything possible to be good to yourself, then you get news, news that literally throws you back on your behind. Then the questions start…

Where did I go wrong?
Is that all that is wrong or are there more problems hidden?

WHY?????????????????????????  
Things that seemed so easy to obtain are so far away, and each month they seem to get farther and farther away. The doubt sinks in more and more, and it becomes so hard to keep your head up, to be strong. You’ve been here time and time again, and nothing came of it so why will this month be different? Then you get results that explain a little, but those results can’t be the full picture, in your gut you know there is more. All around you is happiness, all inside you is a great sadness. Think the great sadness from “The Never-ending Story”, ironic that is how I feel since it was a favorite movie growing up.

It is so easy to obtain, but yet, so difficult. There are options, not many and some with a huge burden. When you want something so bad you convince yourself of it month after month, where do you draw the line? Then there are people you love who don’t realize how bad things really are, they don’t realize how bad it hurts when there is a repeated failure and you have went over and beyond the call of duty to obtain your goal. There are others who pester you constantly, they don’t know your goal and they don’t know how far away it is for you. Exhaustion sets in, mentally, physically, you feel like its futile. You see the stories, get the results, start researching and then reality sinks in. First you cry, then you get mad and when I’m mad I don’t stop until I achieve my goal. I will obtain my goal. Some days are better than others, the disappointment gets easier because your hopes dwindle more and more, but in the end no matter what you are one step closer to your goal. A problem has been solved and in solving a problem you obtain a form of solution. It might be next week before that solution is confirmed, it could be 3 months from now, maybe even longer thing is you keep walking, keep your head up and jump in when you need to swim, every movement forward is one step closer. I will achieve my goal!