Sunday, July 31, 2011


Hello Bleeps (I guess I've adopted this word now and will stop referring to Busted Kate whenever I use it)!  Here we are 3 days after transfer and I'd love to say that I "feel" 100% pregnant already but I don't.  It's too soon to tell I know, but if you thought my pregnancy radar was going nuts before, imagine where it lies now...10 times more sensitive!  But try as I might the only symptoms I can come up with are a little bit of fatigue (which I can contribute to other things) and some soreness in my "girls".  Other than that, I feel great...which isn't a bad way to feel at all, but I want to feel something!

So what is today's title about?  J.  Again.  I know I write a lot about my husband, but he is kind of a leading factor in all of this and by my side constantly.

Last night we went to dinner with Trainer, Mrs. Trainer and Baby Trainer.  Baby Trainer is now 2 months old and growing like a weed, but ridiculously cute.  We went to a Greek Restaurant and no sooner had we walked in a family with two small children walked in a boy and a girl, and the children were a bit nutso.  J looked at me and said, "that's what we're in for" with a bit of fear in his voice, and I said, "I know."  Pretty soon the Trainers walked in and we headed to our table, Lil Trainer in his car seat fast asleep, cute as can be.  Mrs. Trainer, having given birth 2 short months ago, looked AMAZING as usual.  I have never seen her NOT look amazing, even at boot camp at 6 am.  She is just "that" lady that is blessed!  So we chatted and had our dinner, all the while, keeping an eye on Lil Trainer sleeping, even as the band started to play not far off and fire breathers were 10 feet away. 

I'm a fast eater, even though I wasn't that fast last night, I still finished before everyone (healthy chicken covered in spinach and pesto with Greek salad).  So Trainer asked if I wanted to hold Baby Trainer and I gladly said yes.  He was passed over the table to me and after a moment or two of squirming and getting comfortable, finally settled into my shoulder.  I was in H-E-A-V-E-N!  J was still eating but was definitely curious about this little creature cuddled up on me.  I must have held him for 20 or 30 minutes and while he occasionally squirmed, banged his head, or squished himself down into a ball even more, he really didn't cry.  He was happy as can be.  Finally, J was done eating and I asked if he wanted to hold him.  Now J doesn't hold babies.  He's afraid he'll break them.  With a little prodding from Trainer and Mrs. Trainer, he said he would and I handed the lil man over.  Again, Lil Trainer moved around a bit and looked like he was going to wail (which led J to be slightly terrified for a second) but then settled down.  And that was when J turned into a pro.  He was bouncing him and rubbing his back and he was smitten.  He held him for a good 20 minutes before handing him back to me to go to the restroom.  J was entranced by his soft skin, his firm grip and his small-ness.  It was beautiful to watch and Lil Trainer gave J just the training he needed.  I think I even heard him say, "I hope our baby is like this."


As you can tell, we had a wonderful evening with two three amazing people who also let us pepper them with questions about pregnancy and having a newborn and are wonderful friends.  I'm so glad they are in our lives! And I'm glad they let us "practice" a bit on their little wonder.  Thanks you two!

Are we ready?  I'm gonna say "You betcha!"  Bring it on....we're in for the ride of our lives!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

With a touch of God's hand...

So dearest Bleeps (there I go again, stealing Busted Kate's word), it's 3:24 am and I'm up blogging.  I got up to pee and my mind started racing about the events of today, some other stuff going down in our lives, and pretty much anything you can think of besides going to bed.  So, since part of what I was writing in my brain were blogs, I figured I would get them out and maybe, just maybe, it would be enough to let me go back to sleep until I get up at 5:15 am for boot camp.  That, and the bright light of the computer screen always helps tire my eyes out.

After I blogged last night, J and I had dinner, watched some TV, and finally I wandered off to bed about 10 pm.  I won a meditation set from Busted Kate from Circle and Bloom last year some time for IVF, so I've been listening to that at night or at acupuncture to calm me down and help me go to sleep at night.  Works great, usually when I take my ear buds out I'm out cold.  Tonight was a little different in that afterwards I said a longish prayer to help us with our next step in life, mostly surrounding today's adventure.  And the weirdest/greatest thing happened.  Right as I thought, "Please Lord, help this IVF work and get us a baby or two healthy babies" I felt pressure on my left shoulder.  Now I'm laying in bed, by myself, J is downstairs and there is NOBODY near me.  For just about a half second, it truly felt like someone had their hand on my shoulder.  It was almost like somebody touched my shoulder and squeezed for just a second.  Then it was gone.

I'm choosing to believe that it was a sign from the heavens that this will work today.  It could have been a variety of people I've lost - either of my Grandpas, my Great-Grandpa, J's Grandma, or a variety of close friends of the family who have passed - or all of them cohesively.  One will never know.  What I do know, is that it definitely made me notice that God's hand is in this process and He will help us get through it no matter the outcome, but I'm choosing to believe the outcome will be favorable with a child or two.

Yet another amazing evening in my life....and now I'm going to try to go back to bed.  Night...again!

I forgot to make the deviled eggs for Dr. H for transfer day...yes I know they've already had them but it just fits everything and they LOVED them...and I have half a mind to do it now at 4:17 am.  But I won't.  I'm going to try and go back to bed and just make them tomorrow at some point before our appointment at 1:30 pm today...less than 10 hours from now!  I will get it done, but for now....goodnight again!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

On the eve of Conception

Hello Bleeps (I'm stealing Busted Kate's name for her Blog Peeps)!  I know I said I wouldn't abandon you, but it's been a crazy week as you can well imagine.  And here we are at the precipice of our new adventure!

Tomorrow, two embryos (technical term: blastocsysts) will be deposited into my uterus, with the hope that one or both will implant and grow to be one or two beautiful babies.  Who knew it would take this much to get us pregnant?!  I'm still a little timid about the whole thing, but everything just feels like it is falling into place too perfectly for this not to work.  There's some other things that have been happening this week too, but for now that will remain on the back burner and I promise to update you more as that comes to fruition!

So here's my plan for tomorrow:

5:15 am - Get up
6:00 am - Boot-camp with Meanie Christinie (drink water)
7:00 am - Shower, get ready at the gym, breakfast (drink water)
8:15 am - Acupuncture (drink water)
9:00 am - Home to work for a few hours (drink water)
Noon - Stop work, have lunch, J home from work (drink water)
12:30 pm - Take Vicodin and begin to drink my liter of water (drink more water)
1:00 pm - Leave the house
1:30 pm - Appointment with Dr. H (TRANSFER time!)
2:30 pm - Transfer complete, have relaxed with legs up, time to go home and rest
3:00 pm - Home to rest, with legs elevated, possibly take a nap
5:30 pm - My Dad comes to pick me up (still not allowed to drive) to take me to dinner
7:00 pm - Go to Healing Mass with Mom and Dad (Read my first experience with Healing Mass here)
8:30 pm - Home and to bed rather early

So that's where my day is tomorrow!  Kind of exciting and full if you ask me. However, now I refer to my diet as the "milk, water and Snickers" diet.  I can't have carbs and I'm only allowed low glycemic foods.  So while reviewing the list online I discovered that Snickers bars are a "low glycemic" food.  I kinda think it's partly due to the nuts in it, but I don't care!  I'm just happy there's actually something I can eat (not in excess) since so many things have been taken away.  I can't have bananas, grapes, pineapple, most breads, tortillas, you get the picture.  I at least aim to only have carbs at one meal a day, and very little at that.  So far I've done pretty well, it really matters to me now because we're so close to this actually happening!

Well, I guess this is where I've run out of things to talk about.  Are you amazed?

Again, remember to let me tell you when I feel comfortable that we're preggers.  And don't worry about me if I fall off the planet for a little bit.  It's just going to be hard for me to blog when I don't want to talk about the situation at hand.

So here we go...time for blast-off!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

No going back now

Look, it's only been a couple days and here I am again.  Promised I wouldn't make you wait to long!  One of my cousins refers to my blog as her favorite TV show with a cliff hanger at the end of every episode! (smile)  So here I am again...

Last night was my first shot of Progesterone Goldschlager (wow, try spelling that!) and it kind of crept up on me.  It had been a busy day with a session with Trainer (we'll come back to this), getting my hair done, lunch with a friend in from out of town, some shopping and dinner with J.  So once we had returned home from dinner, we only had about an hour until it was time for the Progesterone Goldschlager shot (remember I've named these after alcohol because it sounds more fun that what's really in that vial, although again I am not a fan of Goldschlager, that should tell you what I think of this shot!). 

I have put reminders in my phone for all my meds now so as not to miss any and the reminder went off for Progesterone Goldschlager about 8:50 pm.  I pulled out the box o' meds (or as I refer to it, the "box o' fun)...
Box o' fun (it's gotten really full)
 (Let me make note here, the bottle in the center is our "used needles disposal."  I had to upgrade from the other bottle because it was too small!)

...from the box o' fun, I found the Progesterone Goldschlager, the needles and the antiseptic wipes.  This shot was just like the HCG shot except I didn't need to mix anything, but I still had to use the fat needle (see below) to extract 1 mL of meds from the bottle and then change needles to the small one to inject myself.  
The fat needle is already on the syringe, then I switch it to the "small" needle for injection.  "Small" is relative because as you can see, they are both the same length!  The "small" needle really is the "skinny" needle.

Well that fat needle didn't want to take the Progesterone Goldschlager at all! (Another note: Progesterone is an oily kind of substance and it's purpose is to help ensure the pregnancy thrives and prevent miscarriage.  When this works, I'll take progesterone for 3 months into my pregnancy.) I think the reason the needle didn't want the med was because it was oily and not like the other "easier meds".  After a few minutes of battling with the syringe and asking for J's help (to which he refused, he HATES needles - like I don't), I was able to get the right amount.  That was the other thing, my protocol said take 50 mg but the syringe was in mL classifications, so I quickly checked Holly's email and it said 1 mL.  Whew, that could have been a melt down!  Change the fat needle to the skinny needle and off we go to the bathroom because this lovely shot doesn't go in the belly.  No, it goes in what Holly so delicately called my "love handles"!  Which involves watching it in the mirror to make sure I hit the right place.  Cleaned it with antiseptic and then probably sat there trying to stick myself for 2 minutes.  I just couldn't do it!  I kept repeating to, baby, baby.  Finally, worked up my courage with a lot of deep breaths and in she went!  I was expecting a lot more of pinch, but it wasn't too bad.  Then out she came and a couple big drops of blood too.  Whew, first shot of Progesterone Goldschlager over!

Went back to sit down with J and then I started to feel some hurt.  More of a stinging.  This shot is intramuscular, so it seemed to hurt, then stop, then hurt, then stop.  Very odd!  Finally it subsided and we headed off to bed. 

Now as promised, back to my session with Trainer yesterday (Saturday) morning.  I love the system we have set up.  I meet with him once a month, we discuss what's going on in my life, what I like about my workout, how my nutrition is going and what needs to change.  Sometimes, we don't change anything, just perfect it.  Other times, like yesterday, we change it all up.  So first we sit and discuss for probably 20-30 minutes where we stand in this process (and he knows ALL about it - partially directly from me and partially from reading the blog).  So I brought him up to date about where we currently stand and what is happening this week (but he already knew that), and what the doc said on Thursday about workouts and eating.  We reviewed the Glycemic Index Chart I had brought so I understood better, and then talked about workouts.  

Trainer always tells me that I am very similar to his wife (I wish!  She's a knockout and sooooo smart!) in that I worry and cut myself down too much.  He (like everyone else) wants me to focus on being positive that this will work.  I'm pretty positive it will, but there's still that shred of doubt in my can there not be?!  But he still said it repeatedly that I need to believe and relax.  And when it comes to working out and eating, eating is far more important than working out because not only will I do it more (because you eat three times a day or more and I only workout for an hour) and because there will be days in my pregnancy that working out is the last thing I want to do (he speaks from experience remember, they have a 3 month old son so he just watched his wife go through all this, well, maybe not ALL this, but the pregnancy part at the least.  Let's just say, as always, it was a great conversation and reminded me that this will work.

Then he proceeded to change my entire workout, and my quads are feeling it today.  But I like it.  I really really do.  (He emailed me last week to change our appointment time and the first line of the email said, "I'm trying not to get too excited for you!"  So very sweet!  I love that he is my trainer and my friend.  Might even call him like a brother? Here I go again, adding siblings!)

And my last sign that this will be great was from my Angel Ash.  I emailed her Friday asking if there was any word from above to pass along and she emailed back could she text me a photo of the cards she pulled.  This was my photo....
It's a little blurry, but one card says "Pregnancy" while the other says "Children."  When I told J, he responded, "children, not child!"

Peace out...I'm off to a shower for Super-Mom with lady!  Wish me luck and tenacity!

Friday, July 22, 2011

6 days and counting....

Ok, I know I keep saying this, but sorry for being absent so long!! Things have been a bit crazy!

Montreal was good, albeit VERY hot and humid. Now, I know you are thinking, "Nikus, you live in AZ! It gets to 115 in the summer!" And yes, that's true. But, it's a dry heat and that truly makes a difference I have learned recently. Getting off the plane on Tuesday and having an audible sigh because that "dry heat" felt so much better was wonderful.

When mom and I were flying back from Canada, we were in line for Customs standing behind a family of 2 five-year old twin girls, their older brother, and their mom. These girls were soooo very beautiful! But it occurred to me that if we have two girls, I have no name for one of them. Let me my phone, I have a memo of boys and girls names. The boys are a huge variety, the girls have all the same first name, only the middles differ. If we have 2 girls, I'm gonna need another name.  Now I realize we have plenty of time, but it was a small realization that this is going to work and we could have two kiddos next year! Amazing.

I also realized that I'm very sensitive to parenting now. We encountered many families on this trip and I was quick to form opinions based on minute details. Not gonna say that they were dead on, but they we're there. Like the father in the airport, waiting for mom to get back while he watched the kids who was on the phone for about 45 minutes, paying them no mind and getting mad when they demanded his attention once or twice. And the father on the plane listening to his child read to him and telling her how proud he was of her. Then switching so mom could have her turn too. Both constantly telling the child and each other how proud they were of her! I want to be that parent, not the one annoyed with their child for existing and interrupting the phone call. I think this process will stick with me forever and I will never take my child for granted.

But back to us....yesterday was kind of a big day. We had an ultrasound with Dr. H to make sure everything is on track for next week's transfer. AND...we had "the discussion" about how many embryos. Plus a whole bunch of other questions.  I was really worried about "the discussion."  Whenever I mentioned having more than one embryo put in to Holly she said he would probably say no.  I even told J in the waiting room that I was getting nervous about it.  Our appointment was at 8:45 am and J and I were coming from different places.  I had gone to boot camp with Meanie Christinie at 6 am, showered at the gym and come from there.  J was coming from home.  So we waited.  And waited.  And WAITED.  Finally, got called in about 9:20 am.  Dr. H came in about 9:30 am.  And the fun began.  Dr. H saw that I had my notebook and smiled, saying he had seen the version I dropped off to them and liked it.  Then he asked what my questions were, stopping himself saying, "Wait, first, how many are we doing?  One or two?"  I quickly looked at J and said, "Two?!"  His response was, "ok."  Done!  That was our discussion! Whew!

J said, "we're okay with twins."  Dr. H then began to talk about complications and the like, but also mentioned a couple stories of past patients and their experiences.  I just said, "I feel 2 is the right number.  Not that we'll necessarily get 2 babies, but if we do, we've weighed the consequences and we're up to speed."  Dr. H said that was all he needed to hear.  TWO IT IS!  YAY!

We proceeded with my next questions:
1) What exercise can and can't I do after transfer?  His answer was "for the 5 days directly after transfer, exercise should be mild...walking on a treadmill, elliptical, etc.  No boot camp, heavy  lifting, etc.  (Sorry Meanie!).  After the 5 days are up, (August 3), back to normal exercise is fine."   This lead to a discussion about next Thursday's exercise routine.  Transfer isn't until 1:30 pm, originally it was at 10:45 am.  So I'll actually work in the morning, then go get embryos in my belly.  I'll even go to boot camp, with the only stipulation being that I need to take it kind of easy (he said go to half) and I need to drink double the water I usually do!  Then he said, "no sugar" so I think "bye-bye" to the sweets in my brain, and he keeps going saying, "no fruit and no carbs."  SaY WhAt?!  I love my fruit and it's healthy!  Again, with the carbs?!  What does he have against carbs?  He said that they don't want anything in my system to make my insulin spike.  So my brain heard, "no fruit!"  (I finally called back today to talk to Randi - Holly until Holly's return on August 1st - and she clarified that he just meant to cut back on fruits, aim for more veggies and watch the glycemic index.  Just looked it up, we're good!)  And since I've been taking them all these goodies, he also said, "you like to bake sweets," to which I replied, "that's only for you guys!"  J backed me up and said, "yeah, I never get that stuff!"  So then Dr. H was less worried I think.

2) Can I go horse-back riding when we go to Pinetop?  Quick answer was "no, it's too dangerous."  Huh?  I've ridden horses since I was little and never really had a problem.  Dr. H was more concerned about the horse throwing me than the general movement.  He said his daughter had once been thrown from a horse down a 150 foot cliff, so I understand why he's a little gun-shy about it. 

3) Can I have more drugs?  I was out of Doxycycline and some other med that Holly had said their office could give me.  So just asked for that situation to be fixed.

4) The information about "transfer day" says not to wear anything scented, me or J.  Apparently, embies don't like it and have issues if you do.  I wanted to see how far that went.  Are we talking shampoo? deoderant? toothpaste?  Everything has a scent these days!  He said, just things like perfume, cologne, etc. 

5) And my last question was how many, but we'd already decided that was 2!

Now, time for the exam and it was fine.  He says we are ready to go.  He left, I got dressed, J and I walked out to where Randi was going to go over my meds and I sent J to work.  We went over a couple things and got everything clear in my mind (clear as mud anyway) and off I went to pick up my Doxycycline.  Randi did give me the meds Holly had instructed her to.  Walked over to the pharmacy and they told me a 10 minute wait, I kind of spouted off "I have to be at work in 10 minutes" because it's now 9:50 am and I have a 10 am appointment!  Miraculously, after that outburst, my prescription was ready in 1 minute!  1 whole minute! Off to work I went!

Got to work and Mom and MBM were chomping at the bit to hear how things went.  They wanted to know if Dr. H had agreed to two and when I said he had there were actually cheers and fist pumping!  I thought it was quite humorous and very sweet that they both want this as badly as I do!  It was a busy rest of the day and then left for acupuncture and had a wonderful visit there.  We are really on our way!

The ONLY slightly bad thing that happened on Thursday was that Super-Mom texted me (first to tell me she was thinking of me and that transfer was a week away) then to tell me that one of my not-so-favorite people would be at her shower on Sunday.  To read the indepth version of who this person is, click here.  Anyway, Super-Mom wanted to warn me so I could prepare myself.  I would never skip the party just because lady was there, but I definitely have to gear up my courage for it.  Super-Mom asked if there was anything she could do to ease some of the tension.  (Let me reiterate here, I don't hold grudges.  And I don't even look at this as a grudge.  I just feel sick around this woman.  She is absolutely oblivious to those around her.  She is just....just....argh!  That's all I can say.  She rubbed me the wrong way and I doubt if I ever will get over it.  It would be different if she were a close friend of someone, but she isn't.  She just happens to be married to Super-Mom's hubby's best friend, and nobody is really a fan of her, even Super-Mom!  But she invites her because she is polite and her hubby is BFFs with her hubby.)  Super-Mom reminded lady again not to ask about pregnancy to me and I'm grateful for that.  Anyway, she'll be there Sunday and I've prepped myself as best I could.  I told J what Super-Mom had told me and his exact words were "sucks to be you!"  He knows how I feel about her.  Oy!  I was looking forward to Sunday and not anymore!

And with that, I must be off to finish Super-Mom's present for baby number 4!  Sorry again for being so absent Bleaders, but I'm back now!  And next week is a big week!  Six days and counting.... YIKES!  This is really going to happen!  Shots begin again tomorrow!  Fun fun!  Happy weekend friends!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Whoa...who are you?

Hello dear ones, how are you?  Long time no see! I've been a busy little bee this week and haven't had time to blog.  Let's see if I can get everyone caught up without having a 10-page blog...

We left off on Sunday, so let's go to Monday.  I woke up with a wonderful migraine and opted to work from home since every time I stood up I got dizzy and had serious pain in my head.  Remember, I started estrogen pills on Saturday.  I think this was related to that.  Tuesday was much better and I even had a good bit of energy and returned to boot camp.  Wednesday I think it is entirely possible that I yawned at least 100 times over the course of the day.  I was simply exhausted! 

Thursday, I had my OB appt scheduled and about an hour beforehand the office called because the Dr. OB had been called away for an emergency.  So we rescheduled, again!  I had to fill her in on why we rescheduled last time and she understood.  It all ended up being okay because we are in the process of renovating our office and I could move things before the painters got there early this morning.  Just as I left I realized I had a message on my phone from the mani/pedi I was heading for...she was running 30 minutes late.  Boo!  As this was a new place, care of Groupon, I took my time getting there and chatted with Schelle to pass the time - always enjoyable.  Walked in and after being greeted by a lady doing hair, still saying she was late, I feared the worst.  You guessed it, she didn't start me 30 minutes late, but 60 minutes late!  Now I had big plans for last night including laundry and packing for my trip to Montreal tomorrow.  After she finally started, she took her time (which I usually appreciate) but this time instead of just under 2 hours for manicure and pedicure, I left after about 3.25 hours of actual procedure and 1 hour of waiting.  Folks, I got home at 9:45 pm last night, having not had dinner yet, not done laundry and not packed at all!  Picked up a bite on the way home for J and myself and hit the hay right after the last bite!

So today started off fine and dandy with going to the gym early, but not as early as I had hoped for.  Got through my workout, and went to get ready and realized that I didn't have any chonies!  Lovely...that's what happens when I get home late and don't have time to pack for the gym properly! Got ready, sans chonies, and to work I went.  Got to the office just about 9 am, only to find that it looks like a bomb went off in our suite.  I should have taken a picture!  Anyway, the painters were there and doing there thing, leaving us a small area to wrap up  before the weekend.  Managed to get the few things I needed to done, only to scoot out the door for today's big event when MBM came to pick me up, and thankfully run me to Target for chonies!

Side note: I have one wonderful Dad by blood.  He is a great big teddy bear and I love him dearly.  But I also have 2 surrogate fathers that I have adopted over the years.  Dad Ledford is one of those and he's MBM's Dad by blood.

So today's big event was Dad Ledford coming home from Iraq where he has been deployed for 6 months.  He's my Dad's age and went back into the military after working for American Airlines for a good long while and he was deployed last December to Iraq.  So the family, me (the adopted daughter), and a few friends headed to lunch, then the airport to give him a hero's welcome.  And it, of course, turned out to be an adventure! 

We had lunch then caravanned in at least 4 different vehicles to the airport where we met up with MBM's sister's hubby's friend who worked for Airport Police.  He was going to escort us all to the gate.  Everyone was decked out in red, white or blue and we had signs, flags, and balloons with us.  We met with the officer and were told that since we weren't going through security, we needed to all stay together and couldn't divert to the bathroom or stores or or anything away from the watchful eye of airport security.  So we started our trek, past security (not going thru mind you), through the back alley-ways of the airport, outside on the tarmac, upstairs, and finally back inside to the gate.  Then we waited, and waited and waited.  And finally, the plan landed and Dad Ledford was home!  Here's just a couple of the 58 photos I took in about an hour!

 Heading into the airport, balloons and signs in hand.

 Mama Ledford, MBM's sis, and MBM

 Going through one of the many back doors to get to the gate

 The 13 of us family and friends waiting to welcome him home.  I'm on the far right.

 Mama heading down to the aircraft to greet him first!

First view of the crowd gathered to welcome him home!

This was just after he walked in and he said, "where's my girls?" then hugged MBM's sister.  I wasn't quick enough to zoom out. But oh, what a moment.

 MBM's turn to hug and cry!

 Time for the grandkids' turns at hugs!

 Little E wouldn't let him go and needed to be with Grumpy (that's what they call him instead of Grampy)

 Little E got his wish!

 MBM's sister, still in awe that he is home safe.

 Walking down to baggage claim, welcomed by applause from waiting passengers.

MBM and Little E and Big E.

What a way to end a week!  SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO very happy he is home to this cool temperature...95 in AZ instead of 117 in Iraq!  Grateful for his service and his safe return home to all those that love him so much!

And I get to go back to the airport tomorrow, but not at such a decent time as today's 1 pm arrival, 5:30 am for my 7:30 flight to Montreal for work.  Will be a nice little get-a-way, but heck of an early Saturday.  So will be offline for a few days.

Oh and let's not forget to mention, transfer is in 13 days!  YOWZA!  We're almost there!  Happy weekend folks!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Fertility Folder

Okay, at long last here is the Fertility Folder I have put together.  This same information is on the Fertility Binder Page as well.  Enjoy!

Each 1.5" binder is covered in a cotton fabric that is really soft and durable, plus some batting underneath to make it more durable.  All covers can be removed and washed should they get dirty!

Fabrics available at this time are:

Inspiring Words
Beautiful Butterflies 

Inside, each binder is a large pocket to keep a pen, post-its, whatever suits your fancy.
It is SUPER organized...anyone who knows me will know that's how I roll.  
Here's just a pic of some of the dividers and the tabs that are within the dividers.

Front of binder

 Bucket list for you to write out for "other" things to concentrate on

Some inspirational quotes to keep you inspired

Ideas for stress relief (who doesn't need that!) courtesy of Volleyball Queen

A Basal Body Temperature Chart (I realize a lot of you are way past this, but figured I would include it just in case - there's a master copy so you can make as many copies as you need)

Calendars to get you through all the month with calculating what your Cycle day is, what stage you are on, and a bunch of other things.  Three different master copies in different colors for you to work from.

Fertility History Summary sheet for quick reference and cost tracking

Books and websites that have helped me and others (Volleyball Queen again!) Plus a couple that are infertility humor to keep you laughing.

Some additional things in it that aren't photographed are:
  • A business card holder for all your docs (OB, pediatrician, RE, acupuncturist, etc.)
  • An Inspirational Poem from a fellow Infertile
  • Sheet protectors to hold whatever you want - doctor bills, insurance cards, articles,  anything!
  • Love and relief.  
  • This binder will also be personalized to meet your needs.  I realize that everyone is in a different place with this process.  So we can discuss what dividers you actually need.  I'll make it suit you!
Now where can you purchase this binder when you need it for you or for a friend?  You just email me at!  You have your choice of the fabrics I have.  Each binder is $40 payable in cash or via Paypal.  If you just want the binder cover itself, no binder or organization stuff, it is $20.

I'm working on getting new fabrics, but the fabric I like isn't cheap so I try to stock up when it goes on sale.  Let's just say the next time it is on sale, watch out!  I also have some fabric for you University of Arizona fans out there, and it was pricier so if you would like a binder of that it will be a bit more expensive.

Friday, July 8, 2011

FET process

As promised, I will now attempt to document the FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer) process.  It's a bit different than the "fresh" cycle.

So we'll take a step back first.  AF came on June 25th, about 2 am.  She was quite mean, but I was relieved that she finally came and that meant I was on the road to recovery.  I figured she might be meaner than normal, but after all the other pain I had been having, her cramps weren't bad after the first day.  On the 27th, I emailed Holly and let her know that AF had flown in for her visit.  Holly emailed me back with my new protocol, which included starting birth control pills that day until July 5th.  So, organizational bee that I am, I went home and put the required pills in my little daily pill taker and stopped on July 4th.  Then, evening of July 5th, J and I were eating dinner and I realized that I still had one pill to take.  Almost messed the whole dang thing up.  For some reason, holiday weekends always throw me off!  Nice thing about these pills was that I didn't have to buy more because I already had some left over from the last cycle.  Saved me from spending a whopping $15!

Currently, am just back to taking my vitamins and folic acid.  However, this morning I had a bit of a surprise waiting for me in the bathroom.  AF showed up again!  Say what?! Are you surprised?  I sure was!  I came out to reveal to J my findings and he said, "wasn't she just here?!"  "Yup!" I replied.  Of course as soon as Dr. H's office opened I called Nurse Pamela to determine if this was expected and she assured me it was.  The uteran lining is again flushing out.  Anytime you go off birth control, AF is supposed to come, even though I only had about a week of pills.  It's funny because I thought to ask this and figured she wouldn't because it was such a short period of time.  Oh well, at least we know it's all good!  So once again, I'm an empty palate.  And after looking at the calendar again this morning and counting days, it all makes sense. Whew!  Sure woke me up this morning!

Starting tomorrow, I will begin taking my Estrogen pills.  Yes, estrogen pills and a lot of them!  And every day is different.  I either take 1, 2 or 3 pills every morning and every night.  However, the kicker is that the night pills don't go "down the hatch", but rather up!  Anybody catch what that means?  If you didn't, think REALLY hard. 

First doc appointment of this part of the cycle is on the 21st of July (Cycle day 14) to make sure that my estrogen levels are doing what they are supposed to and my uteran lining is getting thick.  Then, that day or the next (don't have my protocol in front of me) I start my Progesterone shots and more pills (again, Doxocycline for infection).  Progesterone shots go in the hip (like the HCG shot) and happen every night from the 22nd to about the 27th I think.  It's also at this appointment that we will have the discussion with Dr. H about putting 2 embryos in.  Fun, fun!

Coincidentally, I have a regular OB appointment schedule for July 14th.  Initially, it was scheduled for June 29th, but realizing that the day before I would have found out if I was pregnant or not, I didn't know how prepared I would be to go to the OB and relay the news.  So I moved the appointment to July.  But now that we didn't do the transfer in June, I considered moving the appointment to August.  Holly said to just leave it, get it done, fill in Dr. OB and maybe even lay the groundwork for how things will work once we are pregnant. 

On the 28th (Cycle day 21), J and I go to the doc's for Transfer.  Again, wearing comfy clothes, I am supposed to show up having drank a liter (yes, that said LITER) of water before the transfer and have taken some "happy pill" to squelch the pain.  If I haven't drunk enough water, they'll make me drink before I'm transferred.  You have to have a full bladder so that Dr. H can see the uterus and the embryos being released within.  Once they are in and I've laid on my back for 30 minutes, I'm free to empty my bladder and go home.  Still need to relax for the rest of the day, partly due to the happy pill.  The following 2 days, there should be no strenous activity, but also not necessarily bed rest.  I can still work from home, and do things, just no marathon running (darn!). 

What have you noticed here?  Every Thursday, starting next week this week (acupuncture last night) through the end of the month, I have a doctor appointment somewhere.  And the Saturday after the first Dr. H appointment (July 23st), I have a session with Trainer.  Should be interesting to try and figure out the workout with all this going on as well!! 

I'll be back at work and I believe light workouts Monday and Tuesday, and then Wednesday we'll head up to Pinetop with MBM, her hubby and their 2 boys for a little vacation.  A couple days later, her Mom and Dad and her hubby's Mom and Dad will join us I think, staying at a different cabin, for lots of family fun.  We'll have some time away from the heat in T-town and good distractions, to come back to the blood-test on Monday.  (Please remember, don't ask me, I'll tell you when I'm ready the results!).  It will be good because J has also taken Monday off so we'll be together when we hear the news, good or bad, hopefully good.  Then, if when it is good, we'll be back at the doc's every couple days to have blood work done again and confirm that the numbers are doing what they should be.  And at some point we'll have an ultrasound and then be handed off to my regular OB.  And then....well, we'll get there when we get there.

Wow, that's a lot to take in huh?!  Guess I'll release you from there...hopefully the next post will be binder stuff!  T-minus 19 days and counting!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

I know it's been a while, but...

How do I start with a sentence like that?  I know it's been a while, but for once in my life I have little to say.  I think!?  Remind me of that at the end of this post.

My last post was Sunday, July 3rd.  The weekend was relatively uneventful, save for the party the afternoon/evening of July 3rd where I think I told everyone that after Monday I was back to my "milk and water diet" and that meant I needed to drink every last drop of caffinated tea, soda and alcohol that I could before it would all be taken away.  Of course the "milk and water diet" comment sparked many questions from new people, and of course that led to me telling them that we're in the middle of IVF.  Common responses are below:

1. "What's "IVF"?"  (I sometimes forget that not everyone's world revolves around my uterus and making babies, and I have to explain that IVF means In Vitro Fertilization and even further that means a "test tube baby")

2.  " wonderful! You'll be great.  That's so exciting!"

3.  "I had a friend who did that and they have a baby girl/boy/twins/triplets now!  It will work for you guys too."

4. The last response is just a multitude of questions about IVF and all it involves.  "Have you had this test?" "What meds are you taking?"  "How does it all work?"  Etc, etc.

It was quite interesting times.  The sweet thing was that when we finally left about 11 pm, everyone who we hugged goodbye whispered in my ear, "best of luck" and "I know it will work" or "my fingers are crossed for you guys."  It was very sweet.  Many of those people I will never see again, but so many I will.  Ms. T's hubby was so happy to hear about IVF and his parents were too.  We see his parents a lot at their house and they are so great.  It was a very nice evening to say the least. 

That's about all my excitement for the holiday weekend.  I promise that I will post the fertility binder stuff, just didn't get time to work on more yet, VERY SOON.  And will update about the process of the FET (Frozen Egg Transfer) that Lobster reminded me I really hadn't done yet. 

Have a good one folks!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Dreams and lack of sleep

Happy Sunday dear Bleaders and for those of you who'll get this via email tomorrow, Happy 4th of July!  This post was on Facebook this morning and I think it's very fitting to share:
The American flag does not fly because the wind moves past it. The American flag flies from the last breath of each military member who has died protecting it and those who have stood watch ready to defend her. American soldiers don't fight because they hate what's in front of them...they fight because they love what's behind them." Thank all military personnel that you know, past, present or future.
I make it a point to thank servicemen and women whenever I see them, especially at the airport.  MBM's dad comes back from Afghanistan in just about 2 weeks I think!  He'll be glad to be done and we'll be glad to have him home safe!  This country wouldn't be near where it is without the people who put their lives on the line for us!  Happy 4th of July!

Okay, now back to me.  :)  I'm having serious issues sleeping, which I usually never have.  Once I hit the pillow, I'm out.  Could be due to my lack of exercise, but I worked out three days last week and plan to work out four or five this week!  Yesterday, I spent the day with MBM and her crazy lovely family that I do adore...not kidding on this one, they are incredible...out by the pool and eating things that I won't be allowed to after tomorrow.  But you would think being in the pool and out in the sun a lot of the day I would be beat, and I was, but when we finally turned the TV off and the lights out at 11 pm last night, it took me forever to fall asleep yet again. And then woke up at least 4 or 5 times during the course of the night to move, which doesn't usually happen either.  The night before I think I woke up every hour!  Not fun times! 

Plus the dreams I have been having are really wacked out.  We watched Inception last weekend and I think it started then, but I'm having some trippy dreams.  There was the one where J's parents were going to give us a new refrigerator (that we don't need) if we could dismantle and put back together 3 in a short period of time.  What in the what?!  Then last night I was being chased by a gila monster (it's an Arizona thing, see below photo) who was meowing like a cat at me whenever he got agitated. They usually will hiss at you, kind of cat-like I guess, but this one sounded like our crazy kitty, Sonoma. 

Just a little about the gila monster, which I have never seen other than behind plate glass at the Desert Museum, except for the one time I saw a guy in my parents' neighborhood ushering one back into the desert with a golf club...anyway, albeit sluggish in nature - unlike our friend the Diamondback Rattlesnake that is quicker than I like to think about - it is still poisonous and if I recall the teeth are slanted inwards so it's hard to get him off once he bites, Wikipedia suggest holding him underwater to get him off.  Anyway, no fatalities since 1939 (according to Wikipedia) but still a scary little monster, but he's a protected species in Arizona - which I never knew, thanks Wikipedia!  I mean, look at those claws! So imagine this meowing at me in my dream while I walked around somebody's pool.  So very odd!

I don't know if its because I have a lot on my mind or what, but it's getting annoying.  We have another day slated by the pool today with Ms. T and her family, hubby finally back from his trip overseas, so maybe tonight I'll get some decent sleep?

Anyway, happy 4th of July to you all and I hope tomorrow is spent with loved ones.  Again, thank our military men and women for all they do to protect our freedoms!

Friday, July 1, 2011

A reading from Angel Ash

Hello my lovelies!  I hope you all have something fun planned for the July 4th weekend, even if that is just resting.  We have a few parties, but unfortunately J has to work tomorrow.  Boo!  At least he has Monday off!

I emailed Angel Ash last night to see if she had any words from my Angels about this month's activities.  I know some of you might not believe in this stuff, but I can't NOT believe in it.  She hits the nail on the head every time and this time was no different! This morning, she asked if she could call so we could talk about what I wanted to know.  Of course I said yes!  So here's what we talked about:

She asked how many embryos the doctor should put in (and let me say that my gut has really felt like 2 all along, not necessarily because we want twins, but just knowing it gives us a better shot at getting a baby or two babies) and the answer Angel Ash got was 2! 

The next question she asked was will this cycle work?  The answer she got was YES!  And I just got chills repeating that answer to you.

Then she asked if there was anything I needed to know for this cycle.  The cards she pulled were:
SPRING (which is a photo of a girl sitting in a flower) - this card means a variety of things: pregnancy, birth, projects will be successful, along with a few things that I didn't write down.
BE YOURSELF - basically meaning "feel what you need to feel" and "stand up for what you want."  To me that says to go along with our gut feeling of implanting 2 and getting Dr. H to agree.

Her next question was is there anything we can do to help this work and she pulled:
VEGETARIAN card - not meaning I need to go full vegetarian, but that I need to eat healthy (and I emailed Holly yesterday to ask when I needed to go back to no caffeine, no alcohol, no sweeteners, etc and she said after the holiday weekend - after a little pushing from me!)
STAND UP FOR YOUR BELIEFS - again back to the 2 embryos to transfer!
and the last card made me verbally gasp:
DAUGHTER - that is what I want soooooo badly!  I will be happy with a son, don't get me wrong, but I really want a daughter.

The last question she asked was "is there anything we need to know about this pregnancy/IVF cycle" and the card she pulled was:
DAUGHTER (again!) - um.....WOW!
PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE - this basically means that now I should be living as if I were pregnant, and positive thinking is a good thing.  Think that this will work and know it in my heart because the Angels say it will.  Angel Ash said "if you fully believe in something, positive thinking goes that much further!"

The last thing that Angel Ash and I talked about was the baby(ies) being due in April.  I told her that I was born on my parent's anniversary and it would be possible if we got pregnant with this cycle.  She said as soon as I started telling her that story she knew where it was going and got chills. 

I'm now thinking this will work!  I'm so grateful for her time and what she was able to tell me.  If you want a reading from Angel Ash, please go to her Facebook page by clicking here.  It's an amazing experience to hear what your Angels want for you and she is just an amazing lady! 

I had a mini-breakdown to J on Wednesday night.  We were having a discussion about something totally unrelated and he asked where all this was coming from, and I finally was able to say, "I'm scared!  I'm scared this won't work."  He switched into supporter mode and was ideal saying that, "we need to be positive because everyone (the doc) is saying we have great potential for pregnancy and we have so many good embies.  And if the first cycle doesn't work, we have plenty of back-ups.  And he's there with me for the whole process."  That calmed me down enough where I could breathe again and know, once again, that he has my back and we are in this together.  I haven't doubted that for a long time, but it's nice to hear him say it.

And the other perfect thing that is in the works is we're trying to go back up to Pinetop for a little vacation with MBM, her hubby, and their kids, as well as maybe some other family members.  It is slowly falling into place, people are able to get time off from work, and things are working out.  It would also be great because I would come back to be tested to see if I am pregnant and J would take that day off from work.  It would be so awesome to have him home with me when we found out.  So either we get to celebrate together or cry together, without me having to tell him either way when he got home from work.  Just feels entirely right!