Friday, July 29, 2011

The Two Week Wait

I'm really having a hard time focusing on much of anything. I've been working on my new online design portfolio so I can partner up with photographers and get my design business up and running before we move. (Which probably won't be happening before the baby(ies) come anyway.) After the transfer, I spent 2 days on couch-rest. The first day wasn't so bad, but the second day about killed me. It's one thing to be sick and not want to move. But I felt totally fine and it was frustrating toward the very end of Tuesday night. Around 10pm our best friends called us to tell us their little boy had arrived at 8:22 and that they'd love for us to come see them at the birthing center. (Super mama had a water birth!)

He was so unbelievably cute and tiny! We took a tour of the center after we finished visiting. It's exactly what I want. So calm, private, peaceful. The staff was very friendly. My friend looked amazing regardless of if she just gave birth or not. That is the kind of birth experience I want. As I held their little boy, I couldn't help but think that mine were growing strong inside of me right at that moment. I have babies. They are little tiny ones, but they are mine. They are ours.

As for symptoms, I'm really trying to remember that it's all probably in my head. Either way, though, I am extremely hot and tired all the time which means I'm irritable. Also, I had the most bizarre dream last night that's pretty embarrassing and I don't really think I want to remember it, so I'm just not going to write it down, but vivid bizarre dreams are a symptom too, right? My back and legs constantly ache and most of the time it's all I can do to keep my head up and my eyes open. I am eating the house down and I sobbed 8 times during The Sound of Music last night. It's all in my head, though, right? Right.

I'm not even looking up my due date.
Even though I really want to.

First blood draw is on Monday.
We find out if it worked on Wednesday.

This anticipation is by far the worst.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Picking Up the Kids

from my journal, July 24th 2011 -

There are two little babies inside of me right now! I wish I felt more different, but all I really feel is impatient. I wish they would make me sick or something. I've only been pregnant for a few hours. I'm sure eventually it will kick in. The transfer was wonderful today. We snuck in the back of church & my heart pounded for the entire hour. We left early so no one could have the chance to talk to me. It worked out perfectly. We left right after sacrament meeting, made a quick stop at home, said family prayer and went to pick up the kids. ") My mom came with us & I am so glad she did. She took pictures of everything. The nurse told me I needed to have a full bladder for the procedure & gave me a val.ium to take in the waiting room to help me relax.

I went back to the exam room and waited for the Dr. Right then, my dad called. I am so glad I got to talk to him! He and I chatted for a while. He said he had been and still was praying for me and our family and then laughed and told me to "go get pregnant." I love him. He always knows just what to say.

The procedure only took a few moments. The Dr. explained every part of the process while he did it and in went our 2 strong, healthy, brave little babies. Mr. gave me a blessing after everyone left (& they turned off the music in our room.)

I have faith that this has worked. Satan is fighting that faith hard right now, though, which makes me so grateful that I have kept such a good record. It is so easy to look back and see Heavenly Father's approval for all this. That alone brings me a lot of comfort. We came home, took naps, enjoyed delicious food brought by friends and watched movies. This is going to be a long 48 hours on bed rest, but it will be so worth it!

Grow Babies, Grow!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Pre-Transfer Update

I'm feeling pretty OK considering. I slept until about 6:30 and then dozed on and off until 9:30. I'm a little stressed about having a full bladder for the procedure. Timing things like that is always kind of rough. When I woke up this morning, all I could think was "It's all up to my body now, and my body does not feel ready for this. Not at all."

I slept for a while longer and Mr. went downstairs to prep my progesterone shot. When he came back up, I focused on my breathing and staying relaxed throughout the shot. As soon as Mr. pulled the shot out, I was overcome with the feeling that my body is now ready for this. I'm ready for this.

I asked Mr. to write his own update for this, but all he said was to put him down as saying, "Let's do this thing."

So yes, let's do this thing!


Yesterday, Mr. took me for a drive up the canyon to a cute little town. We ended up at a little hole-in-the-wall chinese place for dinner on a friend's recommendation. The food was incredible, and for a while, we were the only ones in the entire restaurant. It was perfection. We played footsie under the table, talked about how things were going to change after the transfer regardless of what happened, fed each other the best bites, and enjoyed the quiet.

We received our bill along with 2 fortune cookies. We each grabbed one, broke it, ate it, and read it.

Mr.'s said "Treat yourself to dessert 3 times a week."

Mine said "You will soon be appointed a great honor."

I don't give fortunes a whole lot of credit, but I was impressed with how applicable it was to my situation right now. I sure hope that great honor is the great honor I've been praying for all this time.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

A Whole Basketball Team

Mr. and I decided to celebrate our actual embryos starting their little lives yesterday. 12 to be exact. I still can't get over that. TWELVE!

Before Mr. and I were even engaged, we were out to dinner with Mr.'s family at a little local restaurant. I'm not even sure if Mr. was holding my hand or anything, but a cute little old man behind us said, "You're going to have a whole basketball team!" (We're pretty tall.) We laughed and agreed with him, because even though there was no ring on my finger, we knew we were getting married. It makes me so happy to realize that while that dream of a basketball team has been so far off for the past 2.5 years, we are closer than ever to starting it. And we actually have the possibility of even having more than 1 member of the team! Wow. I am so grateful.

Mr. picked me up from work and we went to the library to pick out baby name books and went down to Sub Zero ice cream to cuddle up in a booth and pick out our favorite 12. We got a good laugh over some of the names in the books. So much so that I was laughing so hard my body was hurting. Tons of sharp pains all the way up to my shoulder, but I couldn't stop. We haven't been able to laugh like that in a long time. Probably because of all the stress we've been under lately. When I suggested the name "Keeyatas" we both completely lost it. I love laughing with Mr. His laugh is one of my favorite sounds in the world.

Our favorite 12, though, turned out pretty great.

  • Paige
  • Ella Rae
  • Amoret (<-- Mr. doesn't like this spelling, but I'm in love with it. I think it is so feminine and beautiful...almost romantic)
  • Tenley
  • Mikaylie (Mika <-- pronounced Micah)
  • Aniston

  • Nash
  • Granger (Gray)
  • Anson
  • Emmett
  • Landin
  • Rhett
Obviously, we won't be able to use all these, but it was sure fun to sit around and actually dream about our family again. We allowed ourselves to imagine the best case scenario and it felt so good. We're back to being cautiously optimistic, but we are already so in love with our little embryos! It makes my heart soar when Mr. prays for them to grow healthy and strong.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Sperm, Meet Eggs

We have 12 little embryos growing in the lab right now!!

I couldn't breathe all day. And I got temporarily paralyzed when I saw the clinic's number on my phone. The nurse said,

"Hello. I just wanted to call and give you an update. You gave us 35 eggs yesterday. 12 of those fertilized normally. We'll call tomorrow or Friday with another update. Please call us if you are worried about anything and we can check on them for you."

Ohmygosh we have 12 little babies growing right now. TWELVE!

That is unbelievable to me.

I am so glad my eggs and Mr.'s sperm like each other!

*After telling the family we had 12 embryos growing, my sister said "Mr. just got you prego 12 times. Not many men can say that."


Morale is high over here.

Oh this has been a wonderful day!


We'll hear today how many eggs fertilized. I don't think I realized how anxious I would be today. I just want to know we still have a chance. Every phone call from here on out has the potential to be devastating. Since we have 35 eggs to work with, I'm hoping to stay focused on the fact that our chances are pretty great. There are a lot of prayers being said in my heart today. Please let the clinic call soon and give me the reassurance I need!

As far as how I'm feeling physically, I. AM. SORE. I haven't had to take any pain meds though, so it's really not that bad. The most obnoxious part of this entire thing is that I haven't had a bowel movement since the surgery. I know that often happens because of the anesthetic, but the pressure down there...? Ouch! I could barely move this morning. I'm hoping it settles down over the next few days. I think my body is angry at me for letting it be invaded.

Mr. gave me my first progesterone shot this morning. It's about an inch and a half long needle that goes in my rear. I was really nervous for it because the needle is so darn big, but it went great! I'm sure after a few more my bum will get more sore, but for now I'm just going to enjoy only having 1 shot a day.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Retrieval Day - Good Job Body!

Yesterday, the clinic asked me to take a pregnancy test to make sure the HCG Trigger shot was given correctly and that it was in my system. It was so weird to take a pregnancy test and know it would come up positive.

I've never seen that little pink line before! Hopefully in a couple of weeks we'll have a real one.

This morning at 6:30 we checked in for our egg retrieval. I was nervous that something would go wrong with my follicles or that some had ruptured or that my estrogen levels would continue to rise and we'd have to cancel the cycle or something, but it all went so smoothly. After this week, I was really looking forward to some medically induced sleep. It felt so good to just have a day to relax and not worry about anything.

We went into the exam room we were in for the last ultrasound. It was nice to be in a familiar place. It didn't seem so cold to me and definitely helped me relax. On the table were all the vials and tubes for the treatment. There were 24 of them. It felt good to know the doctor had high hopes for my body!

 In all honesty, the hardest part of any medical procedure for me is getting the IV put in. Luckily, our anesthesiologist was an all star. I barely even felt the needle. I was really grateful I was allowed to keep my bracelet on. Mr. got it for me for Mother's Day this past May. It says "Eventually" on it. I love it. It has been such a great source of strength to me. They had Mr. kiss me and head out to the waiting room. I fell asleep about 10 seconds later.

When I woke up, the anesthesiologist walked me into the recovery room and told me that Mr. was back collecting a sample, but should be in in a minute. I was grateful to have the chance to pray for him. The best part of my day by far, though, was when Mr. came through the door to my recovery room. He gave me a kiss on the forehead and held my hand. The sweetest moments in marriage come when you are given the opportunity to conquer something together. It's moments like that recovery room conversation that make me so grateful for this trial. We talked for about 15 minutes and then our brilliant Dr. walked in.

"We were able to get 35 eggs."
*Jaws drop*
"You're kidding me!?"
"Not in the least. And we normally expect about 60% to fertilize, so hopefully that means 15-20 will make it to the next step."

We are floored. On the way home from the clinic, Mr. stopped to pick up my favorite breakfast from my favorite breakfast stop, Kneaders. They have some killer croissant sandwiches and smoothies. Yum! We got home and Mr. helped me up the stairs to bed. He read me a chapter from Harry Potter and we cuddled up for an hour or two of deep sleep. The rest of today has been full of watching TV and eating food. What a glorious day to celebrate.

We couldn't be happier.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Pulled the Trigger

This morning we had another ultrasound appointment. My follicles are growing right along! We now have 26 follicles that are over 10mm a piece.

The stats are:
Left Ovary-
  • 23.9
  • 19.3
  • 19.2
  • 18.7
  • 18.5
  • 18.2
  • 17.6
  • 17.6
  • 17.4
  • 15.1
  • 14.2
Right Ovary-
  • 19.9
  • 19.3
  • 19.2
  • 18.0
  • 17.4
  • 17.1
  • 16.9
  • 15.9
  • 15.4
  • 14.6
  • 14.6
  • 12.2
  • 11.7
  • 11.5
  • 10.7
I love that they are improving! The nurse actually told us that we were good to go for our trigger tonight and about 3 hours ago, Mr. gave me the trigger shot! We are set for the egg retrieval at 7am Tuesday morning. I am so scared and excited. I can't believe we're already at this point. It is coming up so fast. I had a really hard time focusing at church today. We are exactly 1 week away from our 5-day transfer date. I hope that we make it to that point.

I took a picture of my belly today, right after the trigger shot. I'm pretty proud of each of those bruises and bulges. It's all a small price to pay to bring our little one into this world.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

First Ultrasound Monitoring Appointment - Follicle Update

We have 24 follicles!
It's kind of mind blowing at this point. I can't believe my body is actually doing what it is supposed to do! It was unreal to see something other than a uterus wall in the ultrasound. Here are the stats:

Left (top 12):
  • 20.2
  • 16.6
  • 16.5
  • 16.4
  • 15.5
  • 15.1
  • 15.0
  • 14.8
  • 14.7
  • 14.2
  • 13.6
  • 11.9

Right (top 12):

  • 17.4
  • 16.1
  • 15.9
  • 15.7
  • 15.4
  • 14.1
  • 12.8
  • 12.6
  • 12.2
  • 11.4
  • 10.5
  • 10.8
  • 9.9
The left is definitely better than the right, but they said we are probably about a day ahead of schedule and see no reason why we should have more than 20 eggs to work with. TWENTY!!

We find out tomorrow if we get to take the trigger shot tomorrow night. Potential Egg Retrieval is now on Tuesday! 

As far as how I'm feeling, my body is spent. I am sore sore sore today. We went to Cracker Barrel after the appointment for breakfast and I was really shaky from the blood draw. I felt much better after eating something, but my body is still very bloated and sore. Also, I think it's dang tired from growing 24 eggs at the same time. I sat down to work on a project or two and ended up sleeping for 3 hours, drool and all. It felt good, but the only reason I'm not still sleeping is because Mr. woke me up so that I have a chance of actually falling asleep tonight. 

I could potentially take my last stims tomorrow!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Sick & Tired

I'm sick. I'm tired. And I'm sick and tired of a number of things. Last night, Mr. and I threw a Harry Potter party to kill time before the midnight showing. It was supposed to start at 8. We only invited the two other couples we bought tickets to the midnight showing with and at about 7:30 I got texts from both of them saying they'd be a little late. Since all "fun" is over today, we decided to fool around a little bit.

We were just enjoying ourselves when a very loud knock sounded at the door. Panic ensued.

"Who is that?!"
"My life is a joke."
"Put your clothes on! I'm not getting the door."

It was my mother-in-law.

I don't even think it's possible to explain how absolutely sick of family I am. I feel like since we started this IVF cycle, that everyone who is related to us has decided that they will come up to see us and stay with us for at least 4 days a piece. I really just want to disappear. And I need my house.

Mr. and I's relationship is the most important thing right now. I really want this to be a beautiful, unified event for our marriage and most of the time it is. I just need everyone else to leave us alone for the next month! I'm going completely insane. Our "open door policy" is now very much closed.

Wish I was gutsy enough to enforce that.


We got home last night around 3:30 am and went straight to bed. Still, 4 hours of sleep really isn't enough, especially when I'm on all sorts of medicines and hormones. This morning, Mr. woke me up and it took everything I had to get out of bed, or even just roll over. I felt nauseous and the shots hadn't even happened yet.

Mr. went downstairs to prep the shots and I got up to get ready for the day. When Mr. was ready for me, I went and laid down on the bed to get the 3 shots over with. Lu.pron was fine. Men.o.pur was terrible, as always. I hate it. I always try to keep my breathing deep and even, but Men.o.pur tends to cause me to panic. The nurse reduced my dosage yesterday from 150 to 75 of Folli.stim, but the cartridge we were using didn't have enough medicine left in it to finish the dose. Mr. was bummed and complained as he went down to get a new cartridge. I had put my hand on my sore belly from the Men.o.pur. When he came back upstairs he told me that he stabbed himself with the other needle. I asked him if he got a new needle. He said, "Of course." I ask him to re-swab my belly with alcohol because my hand has been resting on it and I don't want to get an infection.

He complained on his way back downstairs to get the new swab and whined for me to come downstairs for the last injection. All I could think about was how my belly was really sore and my head already hurt.

I was so angry I stood right up and screamed, "[MR'S FULL NAME] NO!"

I shouldn't have stood up. I got queasy and sick and laid right down again for the last injection.

I know Mr. is just as tired as I am from last night. He doesn't want to go to work either. He's exhausted and I haven't been the easiest to be around lately. I knew that, but it made me so angry that he wanted me to come downstairs. I completely lost my patience. Mr. is the best man I could ever have wished for as a husband. This is all harder than we both imagined.

Mr. asked me to say the prayer and I said, "No." (By this point, he'd already apologized quite a few times and kissed my belly as well.) I shouldn't have said no. Mr. is the sweetest, most genuine man. I am pretty rough around the edges. I hate it when that bratty side of me comes out.

Mr. prayed that my body would have the strength to make it through today. He prayed that I would know how much he loves me for being so strong and willing to do all of this for our babies. He prayed that I would be comforted today. He prayed that I would be kept safe.

After all that, I really don't think my pains are worth being angry about. He is not the enemy. I wonder why that is so hard for me to remember lately.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Remember...Mr. Is Not the Enemy

I'm having a hard time with this. The man wakes me up every morning, kisses my belly, and proceeds to swab it with alcohol and jab 3 needles into it. (The men.o.pur is by far the worst.) Except this morning, he picked up a shift at a Dr's office he used to work at. So he had to be there at 8 and I had to be at work at 8. Normally, I get to work between 8:15 and 8:30. They know what is going on, so it doesn't matter. No one blinks an eye. Today, though, Mr. bellowed down the hall for me to get up. I had 10 minutes to curl my hair, put makeup on, get dressed, get jabbed, eat breakfast, and get out the door. Needless to say, that didn't happen. I still curled my hair, put makeup on, got dressed and got out the door, but the 10 minute part was definitely omitted from the equation. So was the belly kiss. And I don't know why, but it put me in such a terrible mood.

We were both in the bathroom brushing our teeth and Mr. said (completely calm and rational) "Babe, it really bothers me when you do this." (sleeping in until the last possible second.)

Cue the blow up.

"It really BOTHERS me, that every morning I have to get stabbed with meds that make me icky and out of it all day long. Forgive me for not jumping out of bed ready to greet the day every morning. I have a mental battle with myself every morning because I know that as soon as I wake up, the shots are coming.  So be grateful that I'm awake at all."

Yep. Not my proudest moment. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to separate the shots from the shot-giver. So when I dropped Mr. off at his job this morning I kissed two fingers and put them on Mr.'s lips as our "goodbye kiss." As soon as I drove away I regretted it.

I'm going to be missing him worse than ever today.
I don't think he understood just how important that belly kiss is to me.
I don't think I understood either.

** As far as symptoms go, my ovaries already feel heavy. It's comforting to know that something is actually going on down there. I've had friends that get really sick from the stims, so I'm grateful to not be one of them. I did gag pretty bad at dinner last night. Something about the chicken...I couldn't take another bite of it. Also, as soon as the Folli.stim injection is put into my belly, the headache is pretty much instantaneous. I can only imagine it's going to get worse from here. 5 more days of stims and then it's retrieval time! Can't believe it's coming up this fast!

Monday, July 11, 2011


We're 3 days into stims. The shots aren't near as bad as I thought they would be. I'm getting little bruises all over my belly, but Mr. is getting really great at giving me shots. They hardly hurt longer than it takes to get the medicine into me. I'm having a bad day today, though. The headaches these medicines cause are unbelievable. Nothing makes them feel better. I am so family-ed out it's ridiculous. I want to be invisible. Mr. said he would get me an invisibility cloak. I love him.

He takes such good care of me.

Work is over in t-minus 19 minutes.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Faith Precedes the Miracle

I am blown away today. We had an appointment this morning at 8. It takes us about 15 minutes to get to the clinic, so we set the alarm for 7 and went to bed. No one heard the alarm at 7. It was 7:25 and both of us were just waiting for the alarm to go off, so we didn't move and just enjoyed waking up slowly...until Mr. saw what time it actually was. That started a mild panic.

Mr. had to collect the backup sample for the IVF cycle before we left and wouldn't you know it, he was done in 7 minutes! That is a HUGE deal! Normally 45 minutes go by and guilt and sadness reign. Not this time.

He walked into the bathroom where I was getting ready for the day with the most macho swagger I've ever seen on him. I loved it. He looked at me and said "I'm ready to go when you are!" I finished curling my hair and out the door we went.

At the clinic, we did a quick ultrasound (my baseline) to make sure my lining had thinned how it was supposed to and that my ovaries were calm. (they were.) We went into another room and got instruction on the new injections that arrived at our house this week. I am so grateful to know that those massive needles that came with the injections aren't for poking me with!

We took notes and asked questions, held hands and walked to the front of the clinic. I left to use the bathroom while Mr. checked out. I came to the desk and he had our regular checking account debit card out to pay with. I wasn't sure what he was paying for. I just assumed that it was a consultation fee or something and said he should use the medical account. He agreed and continued to pay. He said "There should be about $3,000 left on this card." (We had used the other $2,000 for the meds that are now camping out in the produce drawer of our fridge.) HE WAS PAYING FOR THE ENTIRE IVF CYCLE!! With the medical account, the $1,000 gift we received a couple of weeks ago, and the 50% off we got from our amazing doctor for attending a fundraiser, we didn't pay a single extra dime.

We are blessed. We are so very blessed. It is humbling.

We walked out of that office and realized that we paid cash for every single bit of our IVF cycle, and we still have money in the bank! I am amazed at how we have been provided for. Faith, prayer, obedience works. We are so grateful for the plan our Heavenly Father has for us. I am in awe of His hand in our life.

We stopped at Mimi's cafe for breakfast before Mr. dropped me off at work. I'm having a hard time focusing. Stims start tomorrow! I can't believe we're already here! My Egg Retreival could be less than 2 weeks away!

I've started to get excited about actually being a mom. I find myself constantly wrestling with whether or not I can be confident and hopeful or if I'm just setting myself up for heartbreak. The phrase that keeps resonating in my mind, though, is "Faith Precedes the Miracle." I have to have faith. I have to believe this will work. My baby deserves it. My babies deserve it. I will be faithful. I can't help but feel like they are looking down at all we are doing to get them here and they are grateful and cheering us on as loud as they can.

Faith Precedes the Miracle.

I gotta have faith.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Battle Scars

My belly is bruised. I've been in a huge funk lately. Not being productive at work, at home, in our relationship, etc. We have been bombarded with family lately, and luckily it's turned out to be OK. I think most of the time, I psyche myself up for a miserable time because I think I don't want to see family, but really they rejuvenate me. We are one of the extremely rare and lucky couples that has sensitive, tactful, kind, and supportive family members on both sides of the family. Not to say that I want one of them to move in with us, but the weekends they stay here are really fun, contrary to what I thought.

I've always thought bare belly maternity pictures were weird and awkward. I want the belly, (more than I ever thought I would), but having pictures of the skin exposed just kind of weirded me out before. Now, I want a picture of every mark, bruise, scab, and stretch mark so that one day I can say "Look at what I did to get you here. Don't ever doubt my love for you."

The reality is, this baby is worth every single shot, pill, meltdown, and tear. I would do all of this again and again if it meant being a mother to my child.

I have to write this down because our second shipment of meds came yesterday. Mr. told me I wasn't allowed to look at the new needles. That means they're big. And so, while I'm having this rose-colored glasses approach to shots, I should probably document it because heaven knows it's not going to last! Stims start in 2 days!! Shot class tomorrow.

My belly says, "Bring it on."