Thursday, April 30, 2009

IUI #3

Holy cow that hurt!! I don't know why, but my RE had a hard time getting the catheter into my cervix. He kept readjusting the speculum, and he used some other instrument that caused major cramping. Then, when he put the catheter in - YEEOW!!! It felt like he had put a knife into my uterus. It seemed like it took 10,000 years to perform the IUI, but it was probably only five minutes. However, it hurt so badly that I felt like my head was going to explode from concentrating on the words "suck it up." It's now nine hours later and I am still feeling sore.

Hopefully the pain will have a big payoff! My RE said he got the catheter in there "really good" this time, we had good looking sperm, and I think we had perfect timing.

So, onto the 2WW. I am considering ditching the BBT in attempt to make it a little less torturous. I always spend way too much energy analyzing my chart in the 2WW.

If we have do another IUI, I am definitely Tylenol beforehand! Apparently, while IUIs don't usually hurt, sometimes they can like a mother effer!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

IUI #3 Tomorrow

I had another rendezvous with the dildo cam this morning. My 17mm follie is now 23mm, but my 14mm follie actually shrunk to 10mm, so that’s a bit of a bummer. The good news is my lining looks great (7.5 mm), and the RE said the three obvious lines we could see when looking at my lining meant all was very good for a baby to snuggle into (well, he didn’t use the word snuggle).

So, we administered the trigger shot and have scheduled the IUI for tomorrow morning. Fingers crossed!

Monday, April 27, 2009

CD 13 Follie Check

I just got back from my follie check. It looks like the Clomid is doing it’s job, because I have two follicles. However, one is not yet mature enough to trigger, nor is my lining thick enough. I have a 17mm follie on my left ovary and a 14mm one on my right ovary, and my lining is 5.2mm. So, our plan is to go back for another ultrasound on Wednesday and hope that my 17mm follie doesn’t ovulate on it’s own. If it does not, we will trigger on Wednesday and do the IUI on Thursday.

So I guess I need :::no ovulation until Thursday dust:::

As far as the Clomid went, I think I am pretty lucky because I experienced minimal side effects. I had night sweats almost every night and was tired and a little nauseated in the afternoons, but that was about it. No Clomid crazies (at least, nothing beyond my normal bitchiness ;).

My RE was so sweet and kept apologizing for us not being PG yet. I told him I understood the odds and that it may take a while. He said "I wish there was some way we could tell if the sperm is even making it to the egg. But, there isn't. We don't know if you might have some sort of tubal issue." Bah, that is something I really hope we don't have to worry about, so I'm going to put it out of my mind for now.

Anyway, I will be obsessively peeing on OPKs until the ultrasound on Wednesday!

Friday, April 24, 2009

CF in Today's New York Times!

What amazing timing - right when I decided to write a series of FYI posts about CF, the New York Times published a few very good ones.

Today's New York Times has the following articles on-line:

A Brighter Outlook for Cystic Fibrosis Patients (this is the main article)
An Expert Q & A (this has some really good - stuff that I was planning to blog about in an FYI)
Debunking the Myths of Cystic Fibrosis
What to Ask (your doctor) About Cystic Fibrosis
Clinical Trails
Neonatal Screening
Nutritional Considerations

I'm still planning to write more FYI posts, but I just wanted to take a minute and pass this along as well!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

FYI #1 - How CF is Passed from Parent to Child

At the suggestion of a few people who said they'd like to hear more about CF, I've decided to do a series of "FYI Posts.". I'm glad to have this opportunity to spread CF awareness! I will try not to get too technical with these posts, but, as I am an engineer, that might be a challenge ;)

So, here is my first one.

Cystic Fibrosis is a recessive, genetic disease. The key word here is "recessive." Recessive means that a child must inherit two copies of the CF gene in order to have CF. A child who carries only one copy of the CF gene will not have CF. And, because a child receives one gene from each parent, if one parent is not a carrier of the CF gene, it is impossible for the child to have CF.

CF is just like just like blue eyes - remember that lesson in high school science? Well, if you don't, here's a recap: Every parent carries two copies of a gene for eye color. Blue is a recessive gene and brown is a dominant gene. If a child is born with one brown-eye gene and one blue-eye gene, the child will have brown eyes. A child must have two copies of a blue-eye gene in order to have blue eyes.

As I mentioned before, a child gets one gene from each parent. For two parents who are carriers of the CF gene, (e.g. my parents), here are the possible outcomes for a child.

So, as you can see, when two parents are carriers of the CF gene, there is a 1 in 4 (25%) chance their child will have CF.

Now, let's look at the case in which one parent has CF and the other parent is not a carrier. This almost certain is the case for Greg and I. The reason I say "almost certain" is because genetic testing, (which Greg has undergone), does not account for all of the CF genes (I will explain this more in the next FYI). There is still a 0.4% chance that Greg is a carrier. However, for the moment, we will look at that 99.6% chance. Here is a chart for a CFer having a child with a non-carrier.

As you can see, it is impossible for a CFer and a non-carrier to have a baby with CF.

Now to look at the 0.4% chance that Greg is a carrier. If that were the case, our chart would look like this:
If one parent has CF and the other is a carrier, they have a 50% chance of having a child with CF.

What all this means is Greg and I have a 0.4% x 50% = 0.2% chance of having a child with CF. In comparison, the average Caucasian couple has a 0.04% chance of having a child with CF, (so I was wrong in my comment response the other day).

So yes, Greg and I have a higher chance of having a child with CF compared to an average couple. However, 0.2% is a very small chance. To put it in even more perspective, 0.2% is the same chance a woman my age, (32.5), has of having a child with Downs Syndrome. It is a chance that we, and my doctors, feel very comfortable with.

I'll See Your Natural Cycle & Raise You a Clomid One

First, I would like to thank you all for your amazingly supportive comments to my previous post. It really meant a lot to me!

And now, it's time for IUI #3. On Friday, my RE said he wants to put me on Clomid. I will admit that I am apprehensive about taking fertility drugs. According to my RE, Clomid provides a 10% risk of twins. While twins would be a blessing, the idea makes me a little nervous because we do not have any family nearby to help us out. Luckily, the risk of triplets, (or more), is less than 1% with Clomid.

Greg feels comfortable with these odds and told me he will support me in my decision It was pretty much all I thought about this weekend. After doing lots of Googling, a bit of praying, and asking the advice of other women struggling with IF, I decided it is worth giving it a try because, according to my RE, Clomid will increase the chance of a successful IUI.

Here's one reference I found that discusses the success rates of various fertility meds (success rates are for women with unexplained infertility - not our situation, but still interesting to read):

IUI Success Rates

I just took my first dose (100 mg), and my fingers are crossed for no nasty side-effects! I go to the RE’s office for an ultrasound on CD 13 (next Monday).

Friday, April 17, 2009

IUI #2 = BFN

I waited so long to write because I was not taking things well, and I just needed a break. I know the odds (20% chance each time), but I was really hopeful this cycle. My chart had been looking better than ever, (so much that I was cheering in bed when I saw my high temp at 10 dpo), Greg had a great sperm count, and my follicle was a good size. So, when my temperature crashed and I started spotting on Sunday, it felt like knife to the heart.

When we were trying on our own, the failed cycles were so much easier to take because I could chalk it up to, "Oh, well, of course it didn't work. I have CM issues." On IUI cycles, there is no good reason it shouldn't work, and now I am scared that we will never get pregnant. Even Greg asked, "Why isn't it working???"

I think this gave me my first real taste of what it feels like to deal with infertility. And, as it has only been 10 failed cycles since we started trying, I'm sure it is just a small taste. But, let me tell you, it hurts. It feels like a broken heart. Correction: It is a broken heart.

You spend so much time, energy, and money trying to get something you want so badly, and, over and over again, it doesn't work. And it seems like everyone around you has no clue what you are going through, which makes you feel so alone. It hurts to see pregnant women and babies, it hurts when you hear people talk about how happy they are to "get away from their kids," it hurts when other people get pregnant in two seconds, it hurts that everyone feels sorry for you, it hurts when people who don't know you are TTC ask "why you aren't PG yet?", and it hurts that your family is so disappointed that they still don't have a grandchild.

And, you feel like crap when you feel sad about yet another pregnancy announcement, because you know you should feel happy for them, so then, not only are you feeling sorry for yourself, you are feeling bad about yourself.

Also, I started falling into the blame game. What if I worked out too hard? What if I drank too much caffeine? What if I had too much wine? What if I got too stressed out? A smart person on a message board said the other day, "It's my PCOS that is causing my IF, not my occasional glass of wine." This was a huge reality check for me, (except, insert my CM for her PCOS), and helped bring me back to sanity :D

So there's my sad rant. I will say that this whole thing has brought Greg and I closer, and made me so happy that I am married to him. On Sunday, when he saw that I had been sobbing my eyes out, he dropped his plans for the day and went for a run with me, (which he never does), and then he took me downtown so we could spend the afternoon walking around and coffee shop hopping.

I am feeling better and more positive about things now, although I still have a knot in my stomach. I just keep reminding myself of the odds, and reveling in the success stories of women who have gotten pregnant on their third, fourth, or fifth IUI.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Halfway Done

Well, we are halfway through this 2WW. It's been a little easier this cycle because work has been super busy. But now we're headed into the days when my temps might actually mean something, so the obsessing will begin very soon.

It's 8 days past trigger and it's still not out of my system. I really hope it is out soon because, otherwise, I will be going insane wondering if it's the trigger or a real BFP!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

IUI #2

IUI #2 was a bit of an adventure. Our RE told us to allow Greg’s "boys" a minimum of two days to build-up, but we shouldn’t go longer than five days. Because of my yeast infection, we couldn't have sex in the days leading up to the IUI, so I reminded Greg he needed to take care of business two days before the IUI.

Well, the night before the IUI, I was feeling elated about my big follie - last cycle I was a little nervous that we triggered too early, (with my follie at 16-17mm), so I was thrilled it was 27mm this time. Then Greg mentioned to me that he "forgot" to do his part! That meant it would be over five days since the last time we had sex, and a bit too long, according to our RE. I was so upset for a moment - I wanted so badly for everything to be perfect. I never thought I would get mad at my husband for not spanking the monkey! After a few minutes I calmed down and reminded myself that we would be just outside of the limits, so, hopefully everything would be fine. And then we had a good laugh.

Fast forward to the next day. As I was sitting on the table, half-naked, at the doctor's office, the RE walked in and said to Greg, "Holy Cow! That was an incredible sperm count! I haven't seen one that high in a long time! You should give yourself a pat on the back!" I'm surprised he didn't give him a high five.

Then, when the RE was performing the IUI, he told me, "Now, this is going to take a little longer than last time because there is so much sperm for me to inject!"

I think Greg's head is at least three times bigger now. He even told his mom!

The rest of the IUI was uneventful. It didn't hurt this time, yippee for that! And now, we wait!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

IUI #2 Tomorrow!

I just got back from my ultrasound. One 27mm follie! We triggered right after the ultrasound and will do the IUI tomorrow morning. Fingers crossed!
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